Unit SHC 51: Use and develop systems that promote communication

24. 10. 2012 Unit SHC 51 Use and develop systems that promote communication Criteria: 1. 1,1. 2,1. 3 – Review the groups and individuals whose communication needs you must address in your work role. Explain how you support effective communication within your work role. Analyse the barriers and challenges to communication within your work role. Communication can be defined as information transfer. This can be exchange of thoughts,messages,feelings. The way we transfer information is by speech,signals or writing ,to express oneself in such a way that one is really and clearly understood.

We all use a variety of communication techniques to both understand and be understood. Without communication nothing would get done,no information would be passed on. Communication take place to inform ,to support,educate,give and receive instruction,keep records,liaise and coordinate. All these communications can assist any or all of the service users and key people in the health and social care and children and young people’s settings . In this sectors communication is used to talk about needs,concerns,attitudes and feelings as well as to impart information.

Communication is vital for those who desire and for those already working in the childcare sector. In this sector practitioners need to build relationships with children,their parents and other relevant authorities. As a practitioner I communicate with parents ,colleagues,children and other professionals ,such as health visitors,social workers,medical stuff,sales reps,visitors to the setting,other managers. Therefor I make sure that everybody is provided with the necessary information they need. My communication has to be clear and concise – both verbal and written.

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The first time I meet a new parent or child it is important that I am friendly and welcoming. This is the start of the relationship and it is good to begin with firm foundations and that they get a positive feeling about me. The day-to-day conversations, of asking “How are you? ” or just asking about someone’s weekend slowly build up rapport with a parent or child and gradually the relationship moves on from that first friendly “hello” as I get to learn more about them and they learn more about me.

To gain and share information I find out information from the parents and children to help me do my job effectively and ensure that the needs of the children are met. I gain a good knowledge of the children and in return I share information with them. It is also beneficial for me to build relationships with other professionals so that I may gain and share information with them to help us run our setting effectively. To gain reassurance and acknowledgement whilst working with young children I give them reassurance physically with positive comments and acknowledge them by showing that I am interested in what they are doing.

Reassurance and acknowledgment is also important to me ; by children being content in my setting and their parents acknowledging that they are happy with care their children are receiving. Communication takes vital and huge part of my work role as a manager and for me being a successful and meaningful communicator is essential . Our survival and success as humans has been dependent on our ability to communicate. People communicate for different reasons: to teach,to learn,to relate.

Along with these I use communication to maintain and promote good working relationships,to encourage the children to communicate effectively,to ensure that everybody knows where they stand,to get my colleagues their point across and ensure safety in the work environment,to help people understand how I feel and act accordingly,to work together and prevent errors,express my wants and needs,to help build and maintain trust,to negotiate and liaise with others.

To support and develop my communication skills as a manager I make sure that I keep myself up-to-dated with all the relevant informations and news and pass them on to the relevant authorities. To keep my communication effective I use one way method : fax,e-mail,memo,voice mail,letter; two way method: -in person,phone calls; collaborative method: -team meetings,consulting,decision making,group problem solving. In my work role as a manager, one of the ways I ensure the correct methods of communication are being assessed and used effectively for the service users within my setting, is to review care plans.

I do this during supervisions with the key workers, I check that the needs and wishes of the children are being met, and recorded appropriately. I also ensure that the way information is recorded is done so in such a format that can be understood by all that need to read it( large print and avoid using jargon. ) I also maintain contact with family members, care managers via email and the telephone to ensure that all necessary information is passed on. This can be formal or informal.

Part of my role is to help the staff to develop care plans, a large part of that is aimed at ensuring the staff understand the importance of identifying the best method of communication based, on each individual needs, if someone is non verbal use of signs or pictures or has sight problems using large print etc. I make sure that the key workers know the importance of acting as an advocate to ensure the rights of the individual are met, and to giving support and guidance on how best to achieve this.

One of the ways that I inform my stuff and the parents of up-and-coming events is to use a notice board, which is located in a visible part of the setting and is written using appropriate wording and text. To support effective communication in my work role is also important to build respect in business,inspire confidence,develop a distinct personality and reveal my ability to others. It is vital in establishing effective relationships in my work setting by allowing practitioners to expect support from colleagues/management and to provide them with the necessary support in times of stress and difficulty.

Effective communication is one of the most important sources of my work. When practitioners communicate effectively with children this benefits massively on their learning and development,and they become to trust and respect them as practitioners. Family and friends know me well and will usually understand me, even if I communicate poorly or very informally. Communicating with people at work is different because it is important that colleagues communicate respect for each other. Colleagues who do not show respect for each other may fail to show respect to the people who use the setting.

I often have to greet colleagues by asking if they are well and spend time on ‘warm-up talk’ in order to show that I value them. I need to demonstrate that I am a good listener and can remember details of conversations with my colleagues. Colleagues have to develop trust in each other. It is important to demonstrate that I respect the confidentiality of conversation with colleagues. My work setting has its own social expectations about the correct way to communicate thoughts and feelings,which is in difference with the social expectations when communicating with my friends and family.

Although communication between colleagues may often be informal it is important that they use skilled communication in order to develop respect and trust. As there has been,and will continue to be,an increase in the demand for good communication skills,as everyday life is becoming more complex and most jobs now need good communication skills,as it is crucial for progress in our changing world. In my work role ,as in all health and social care settings, there are barriers that affect my communication. These barriers are sometimes extremely difficult to overcome or very easy.

The reasons that can block my communication can vary- difference in culture and values;personal feelings and difficulties in my own life;feeling unsafe or unwell,tired;not listening effectively,environment factors. Environmental factors that influence communication: It is very hard to hear what someone is saying if there is a lot of background noise. It is also very difficult to make sense of other people’s facial expressions if I can’t see their faces properly due to poor lighting. Rooms with awkward seating positions might mean that a group of people cannot see each other comfortably.

People sometimes feel uncomfortable if they are trying to communicate with a person who is too close or at a distance. A room that is too hot, stuffy or cold may inhibit communication if it makes people feel tired or stressed. The environment also plays an important role in the effectiveness of communication aids. For instance, hearing aids will amplify background noise as well as the voice of the speaker. A noisy environment may therefore be difficult and unpleasant for someone who is using a hearing aid. Good lighting will be critical for someone who supports their understanding of speech with lip reading.

Time limits can also interfere with communication. Barriers associated with personality, self-esteem, anxiety and depression: Sometimes people can create their own barriers because they feel stressed by the emotional needs of the people they work with. Listening to others can involve hearing about frightening and depressing situations. People sometimes stop listening in order to avoid painful emotions. Tiredness, lack of time or a desire to avoid emotional stress can create a barrier to providing caring communication.

Building an understanding of another person and establishing a ‘caring presence’ can be very difficult when their personality or self-esteem needs create a barrier. Many people who are depressed or anxious experience negative thoughts that ‘just come to them’. Attempting to understand these thoughts and feelings can feel like trying to find a way through a brick wall. It may feel as if there is an emotional barrier preventing the person from experiencing any positive emotions. Sensory impairment and disability: A sensory impairment means that a person’s senses do not work effectively.

Impairments create the first kind of communication barrier, where information is not fully received. Disability is not the same as impairment. Some people experiencing barriers because of their difference may have a communication disability. In my work role I come across with people who suffer with a variety of disabilities or learning difficulties. If I meet a person who has visual disability then I would have to support him/her in order for communication and interpersonal interaction to be effective. It would be important for me to have appropriate resources such as glasses,magnifiers and high quality surroundings such as lighting.

Along with these I need to use a clear tone and voice and speak louder so the person can understand what is being said,as him/her wouldn’t be able ti lip read. Hearing disability is another communication barrier. If I am communicating with someone who is partly or fully deaf ,then I have to take into consideration the environment in which the communication takes place. Physical disabilities,such as speech impediment, could cause difficulty in communication. In this case ,the use of sighs and symbols,used in different ways (facial expressions and hand gestures) can help my practice.

Barriers associated with assumptions: Building an understanding of other people’s needs takes time and effort. Jumping to conclusions and making assumptions can save mental effort and time, but assumptions may cause me to misinterpret what another person is trying to communicate. For example, I might believe that I don’t need to listen to a person because I already know what his/her needs are. Assumptions can create a barrier because people stop listening and checking their understanding of other people’s communication. Some people make assumptions that people who have a disability are damaged ‘normal’ people.

When disabled people are seen in this way, they might be pitied or ignored. Difference in culture and values: Many cultures have different beliefs about suitable communication between people,for example they may consider certain body language and hand gestures appropriate ,but others may find it offensive. An example of this is the “thumbs up” hand gesture ,which is commonly used to show that something is good or OK,but it is an insult if you were to show somewhere in Iran, Afganistan,Nigeria and parts of Italy and Greece. Also,a language in part part of the country could be different from somewhere else in this country (dialects).

Accents and dialects can be confusing to understand the same for accents, in Britain there are many of these such as “Geordie” and “Cockney Rhyming Slang”. In my work role I must understand and respect people’s cultural backgrounds,thinking before I speak or make a certain action ,whether it is appropriate. Effective communication in my work role is also to make sure that the people know that what is said is kept confidential,and that I will not judge them based on what is said. I must be sensitive to the people’s needs and feelings,by not discriminating,judging or showing negative body language towards them.

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