What makes a great support worker?

Care Workers June 25, 2018

Being an independent support worker on Better Caring means you can help to let those seeking aged care or disability support live independently and feel empowered. But what are the personal attributes and qualities that clients look for in a support worker?

Flexibility
Clients on the Better Caring platform often look for a support worker who’s willing to provide support around their lifestyle. Regardless of which support services a client requires, they usually favour a worker who is available on most days. If you have other commitments and can’t give a client the support they require, remind them when you are available and let them know that you’re willing to help out.

Proactivity
As an independent support worker, you should be prepared for a change of plans when you’re providing support. For different reasons, you may need to stay at a client’s house a little longer to ensure your client is satisfied and safe. If you end up providing extra support to a client, make sure you take note of the services you provided in your shift notes. For more on how to write shift notes on Better Caring, click here.

Good communication
Clients are much more likely to hire you if you reply to their messages promptly and clearly. On the Better Caring platform, replying to a client’s message quickly shows them that they are a priority and that you’re willing to provide them support. Once you’ve built a rapport with a client through the platform, you should offer them an alternative contact option such as your mobile number so they can reach you at any time.

Be open to an interview
Clients are looking for support workers who are understanding and trustworthy. On the Better Caring platform, we ask clients to consider organising an interview as a way of gauging the worker’s personal attributes and suitability. An interview is a great way for the client to ensure you have the qualifications that are most important to them – you can even offer them the first hour free for the purposes of this initial meeting. Even though we verify your qualifications during the approval process, some clients may also ask to sight them for their peace of mind, so make sure you bring it along with you to your interview.

Sensitivity
Each client is unique. Whatever their history, ability, age or background is, it’s important to be open and accommodating to them. Most clients who are searching for disability support or aged care want nothing more than to live independently and a good support worker should make them feel empowered. If you’re supporting a client who is ageing, you could ask them what their preferred meal is or what time of the day they’d like to go for a walk. If you’re supporting a person living with a disability, it’s important to give them plenty of opportunities to be social and participate in daily tasks.

Remember, as an independent support worker, you’re in control of every aspect of your small business. Even if you aren’t able to provide support to a client, you should reply to them as soon as possible to increase the chances of them contacting you when you’re available next.

Being an independent support worker on Better Caring means you have the freedom to build your own unique support business. Find out what it’s like to be a support worker on Better Caring here.

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