How strong communication skills boost care

Care home staff may need to improve their communication skills to build trust with residents and convey vital information.

Taruna Chauhan

This is the view of CQC consultant and business mentor Taruna Chauhan who works with providers to help them manage their staff more effectively.

“Communication is a key element to get right when caring for people and this means being aware of your body language and tone of voice,” she says. “Carers need to be clear and provide the right amount of detail.”

Chauhan adds that carers must also be able to adjust their communication style in different situations.

“Someone with dementia might need a different approach. For example, more eye contact and shorter sentences, and it is important to avoid communicating when there is a lot of background noise.”

Her company, the T Chauhan Consultancy, also offers help to care home providers to improve how staff communicate in meetings.

“Meetings should not just be a tick-box exercise, so train your staff to think about why they are attending, what the meeting is about and their objectives from attending,” she says. “Is the meeting about solving a problem or sharing information and what will you be asked to communicate?”

Chauhan’s advice for managers is to ensure staff feel listened to when they attend meetings and that gatherings are inclusive so that everyone feels confident enough to have their say.

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