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CQC inspection – Help!

July 26, 2011 Leave a comment

Every manager’s heart must start to pump harder when they notice that the Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors have arrived on the care home’s doorsteps.
Just this May (2011), my heart certainly did pump that little bit harder. I can remember making mental notes and wondering “Have I done that?” “I didn’t do that”, “I should have done that”. I think every manager goes through the motions of questions, queries, double checking and even triple checking but then when they mean an unannounced visit, it really is unannounced.
I have to say, having received my CQC report early this month, I am quite pleased to announce that I was fully compliant and got no action plans * yay * (I manage a 70+ bedded home). You might be wondering..”Well, how did she manage that?”
I can’t tell you that my home is perfect because in reality no home is. What I can do is share my experiences in running a home in order that you can achieve a good inspection. As always my rants are definitely not exhaustive – use them as you see fit 🙂

• When you spot something that needs correcting – write an action plan and work through it.

Inspectors know that things are not always going to be hunky dory. They will want to find out what you are doing to work through a problematic patch. I must admit for myself, I have action plans coming through left, right and centre but showing this to the inspector shows that you have a systematic approach to problem solving and that you are working to timescales which are measurable and realistic. Most of all you are showing them you are trying your best to solve the problem.

Work through your Provider Compliance Assessments and create an evidence based folder (you may end up with two or three)
Having completed my Level 4 leadership and management qualification last year, I applied the same principle of creating an evidence based folder for the PCA’s. I use it as a working folder and update it when the need arises. i.e. up-to-date training statistics, staff and resident meetings etc. It helps to have everything in one place rather than going off in an inspection trying to find all the documents that you need.

• Get your staff to work with you
I am in no way an autocratic leader and in some respects, one might even call me “soft”. However, I have learnt through my eleven years of management that working with the staff gets things done. Sometimes it might be slower that you would like but more ‘heads are better than one’.

• Prioritise
Planning never ever goes to plan. I can’t tell you how many times I have planned a day only to be disappointed that everything in my planner wasn’t achieved for that day. Simply because of other things that cropped up which took priority over what I had planned.

I particularly like Steven Covey’s quadrant urgent/important quadrant. In a nut shell, you simply put the issues that you are tackling in the relevant box which helps you prioritise.

To find out more about this topic, go to practice this

• Have minuted daily flash meetings
Running a large care home is no easy task but in order to know what goes on, on a daily basis, I have flash meetings with dept heads and RGN’s. This keeps me in the know and allows me to support, supervise and direct staff to the most appropriate action

Bringing faith to work

November 16, 2010 Leave a comment

If you saw a man about to jump 100 feet to his death, would you stand by and let him jump or would you try to stop him?

I read somewhere yesterday that if we do not share to someone the things that they have done wrong then their blood would be on our hands yet if we shared to them and they did not listen then we would be blameless.

I could not have it upon me not to share about the love of God and be a bystander of seeing someone go to hell. Hell is real to me and the bible tells us that everyone who does not accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Saviour will not be a part of Heaven. There are only two places to go to after death and that is Heaven or hell. Hell does not become me or anyone else.

How do I approach it at work? As always I would ask permission. If the person is willing to hear then I would share about God and His love. If not then I have done what was required of me and pray that someone might have been able to achieve what I could not. The boundary between professionalism and who we really are out of work is a fine line but I consider my pulpit my work place. Not everyone is called to be a pastor or a pulpit minister but everyone has an opportunity to minister in their workplace where ever that might be. Could you be sharing to someone whose days are soon numbered?

It’s not a crime to work for someone else after having your own business

June 25, 2010 Leave a comment

I made a major decision to go back to working for someone else after 10 years of being self-employed/having my own business. I always thought that being my own boss was the perfect lifestyle as I could balance work and personal life freely.

I have a care home which specialises in people with learning disabilities as well as an immigration business. Both do very well and I put my hand on my heart to say that the people I work with at both the care home and immigration side are amongst the best staff I have worked with. If it wasn’t for them (and of course the Lord) I don’t know if I would have a business to run now.

Circumstances change and I took a risk at the beginning of the year to start another supported living project which hasn’t yet got off the ground and my profits are being spent on the up keep of this project. Hence one of my decisions to take a step back and reconsider my options.

Another reason was that I had way to much time on my hands and whilst I love spending time with my kids, I found that my time wasn’t constructive or productive from a work level and the care home has a brilliant manager running it so I have little to do there.

After talking it through with my husband, I made a decision to go back to working for another employer whilst still having the other businesses. I felt guilty at first for doing it as I was a great advocate for self employment but people shouldn’t have to feel guilty for going back to work for others.  After being answerable for my own actions for so long, it will be an exiting challenge to go back and have accountability to someone else.

Crab Mentality and Filipinos

June 19, 2010 9 comments

I have been in business for a decade now and have dealt with many nationalities. The majority of my dealings have been fairly positive and I constitute that the negative dealings that I have had have been down to individuals rather than nationalities per se. However, one must be cautious of stereotyping nationalities. Some might say the British are pompous and autocratic.  Others may describe the Americans as obese.  Whilst others may see the Germans as icy, blond and blue-eyed.  These descriptions are stereotypes and are indeed not my own opinion.

However, taking into account that stereotypes is a belief system which needs to be overcome, there must also be an element where nationalities need to consider why they have been stereotyped. Being a Filipina myself, I am sad to say that I have met a handful of Filipino’s who have crab mentality. Crab mentality is a way of thinking best described by the phrase “If I can’t have it then neither can you”.  It is about envy and  can involve putting people down, not allowing others to flourish or when they do flourish, finding fault with their success in order to pull it down or simply having the mindset that “I’m better than you”.

Crab mentality is prevalent in most areas of life but I am going to emphasise it within the business realm.

I had a conversation with a good colleague of mine who was recommending our company to another organisation.  He conveyed to me their conversation. He was asked first off before even describing our principles and our work ethic, if we were Filipino to which he said ‘yes’. They replied ‘Oh, we don’t work with Filipinos’ which he thought was ironic and simply stupid because they themselves were Filipino.
I’ve worked with Filipino’s who try to learn every aspect of the business, try to steal clients and go off on their own business venture only to fall flat on their face.

Do Filipino’s have an incredible appetite for greed? Greed of success or money? If we could all work together and combine specialised skills and knowledge we could accomplish bigger and better things where everyone would and could benefit but it appears that the thinking of our race is one of narrow-mindedness.

Whilst on a shopping trip in the Philippines with my father, I was stuck in the supermarket line for not less than 30 minutes. When I went to inspect what was going on, I found one teller putting items through the till and one packer.  The customer or should I say a line of customers on various other tills waiting for the packer to finish packing. Is it so hard for the customer to assist with the packing in order for the time to pass quicker?  Four hands are better than two right?! I was so annoyed at the fact that the customer just stood there with their arms folded whilst their items got packed. Could this example of crab mentality be a minute reason or a contributing factor why Philippines is still a developing country?

‘It is said that we Filipinos have crab mentality and so we do not attain the progress and prosperity we have long been aspiring for, that it is practiced only by us Filipinos, and that we will remain a poor nation if it is not plucked from our selves’ says Royeca for The Philippine Studies

In light of that I have found 2nd or 3rd generation Filipinos who have been brought up in Western Culture do not have the above traits. Maybe education is the key after all….

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