It is important to continually strive to improve our knowledge and the way we practice, this can be applied to personal or professional goals. Developing our potential, will enhance our work role and promote our talents. It enhances our lives and contributes to achieving our dreams and aspirations
Continued professional development is important, and it’s not just about attending training courses. It about promoting a culture for learning, with work based learning at the centre of this. In order to meet the needs of its service users.
This enables staff to keep up-to-date with current legislation, care standards it expands their knowledge, and helps the meet their full potential, it promotes a culture of lifelong learning It enables them to carry out their work roles as per their job role/ description in a safe and competent manner. It keeps staff motivated, and feels valued.
The GSCC code of practice states that all social care employers must provide training to enable staff to develop their skills and knowledge. CPD helps to raise standards of care, which is very important to comply with current standards and legislation and also meet the needs and aspirations of the users of the service and for employers have a competent workforce.
CPD benefits the employer, the employee and the services users that they support, better knowledge leads to better practice, to deliver a high quality service, that is accountable
To promote professional development, we also need to look at the potential barriers that can occur, when trying to promote staff development/ implement change. These can be things such as lack of understanding of why we need to change or develop. It can emotional barriers that staff fear the activity, or fear being judged, age can also be a barrier, staff think that they are getting older and don’t wish to develop further/coming to the end of their working life.
•Financial barriers/ budget restraints can be barriers, so looking at other way we can deliver training or aid development is needed such a sourcing training that is free of charge is one possible way to overcome this barrier.
•Training being in another country/ distance/ time, this is a problem for our schemes in England, other problems faced is having enough staff requiring the same training here in England to justify the trainer flying over hear. A possible way that this can be overcome, could be maybe training more staff over here that can deliver certain training, and become training champions, working together so that all our staff training is due at the same time, would then make it more cost effective to have trainers over from Ireland.
•Parental responsibilities/ single parents/ child care/ work life balance. Working around a young child can be a juggling act. In order to support parents, we should give as much notice as possible to enable them to find child care. Be flexible in our approach, offer flexible working and offer advice and understanding of their difficulties.
•Staffing levels/ lack of cover, being short staffed and then having other staff on training can cause stress and strain on the service. One way to possibly combat this is staggering training days, and getting in relief staff if budgets allow.
•Intellectual barriers/ over confident/ don’t feel they need to be trained, I think that in this situation it needs to be discussed during supervision/ appraisals, assessments and feedback. Identifying area’s that are lacking, discussing the benefits of CPD, how it will enhance their role and job satisfaction/ better understanding of their role and responsibilities. The importance of continually keeping skills and knowledge up to date to meet current standards, and to be able to practice. Offer ongoing encouragement.
•Lack of encouragement from management. If staff feels that they are not being supported or encouraged they need to bring this up at supervision/ annual appraisals. Identify what they need and speak openly with their manager, as supervision should be a two way process, ask their manager for a supervision contract and agree goals and aim for the future. If the manager continues to fail to provide encouragement staff or development opportunities then staff should put in a grievance.
There are many sources and systems of support to promote CPD and supervision, being the one that is used most of all.
Mentoring to new staff can provide a great source of support; Mentors can pass on their experience and knowledge to the mentee. They can provide guidance and support to aid mentee’s learning, and development. They offer advice and provide feedback about skills and knowledge of the mentee. They can support the mentee to evaluate and develop their new role, provide practical help and guidance. They aid the mentee to learn, and identify areas for improvement.
Another source is coaching, this is more a 1-1 process, designed to develop management and leaderships skills/ potential, such as with team Leaders and their managers. I have found my own manager’s coaching, has been really helpful. In identifying my goals and what I need to do in order to develop.
They can offer advice, provide useful hints on how to manage the team, promote change and how to deal with challenging behaviour from other staff members, and how to manage the team to accept changes within the workplace. Help to identify career goals, and plan what skills are needed for progression, build confidence
Other sources are annual appraisals, this looks at plans for future development, sets goals and targets, with a time scale and how it will be achieved. Reading company policies and procedures, helps to enhance knowledge and keep up to date, reading journals on care, subscribing to magazines within your profession/ reports/ television/ listening to the news on incidents that have happened is another good source of information.
E Learning is an easy way to learn online, attending staff meetings, listening to your peers, in house training courses, DVD presentations, local free training, such as CAB, local DAT, recognised bodies websites, CQC, GSCC, HCPC Working in partnership with other organisations. Sharing training opportunities. The local safeguarding board offer free training.
It’s important to discuss with your manager, your needs and they will also be able to provide you with other sources of information that can build on your strengths and address weaknesses.
Budgets and time retrains have to be considered when looking at desirable training for staff, but essential training needs to be continually kept up to date. As this is the back bone of our service and what we provide. Things such as health and safety, safeguarding moving and handling is all mandatory training that needs to be renewed and continually kept up to date. Failure to have this training and up to date and in place could lead the company open to litigation, and not being compliant with current standards We also need to be continually aware of any changes that have taken place in care standards and make sure we are up to date with these. These could be changes in government policy or new initiatives. We must prioritise what is essential and what is desirable, and balance against less important activities.
When looking at desirable training we have to balance the needs of the service, and the needs of the service users. Will the team benefit from this training, can we just send one member of staff and they feed back the information to the rest of the team.
We need to look at the staff members job description, what do they training they need in order to perform their job to the best of their abilities.
We need to identify gaps in training where improvements can be made. Identify staff strengths so that their knowledge can be shared with others
Other factors could be using other methods of training such as E Learning, books and policies that staff can read and update their own knowledge, look at what is in their job description, what they need to do and what training will help them achieve that.