Ahead of The Care Show 2018, 17-18 October, NEC Birmingham), Care Home Professional talks to Issac Theophilos, Author/ Founder – Outstanding Care Homes, about the importance of leadership and how it can achieve better outcomes for the people we look after.
CHP: Why should your care home manager be an outstanding leader and what does that look like?
IT: A leader is someone who motivates their team to attain a shared vision. The vision for any care company is to deliver outstanding care for the people they are looking after. The inspiration to provide outstanding care must start with the manager and outstanding managers are those with passion, people skills and strategic thinking. A study done by Article Consulting with Judgment Index in 2017, reveals that outstanding managers have equal skills across the management of people, tasks and lateral thinking. Within a care home setting, this is reflected as delivering exceptional care in a safe, effective, caring and responsive way.
CHP: Why do you think leadership competency has not been given focus in the past?
IT: It is hard to assess the quality of leadership as it is mostly subjective in nature. There are generic 360 feedback versions available, but nothing specifically developed for care home managers as such. Such generic assessments don’t address the needs of the care home industry. There are silos of proper leadership training happening in the industry, but this is only available at a cost which may not be affordable for everyone. Again, that is not enough to ensure the sustainability of these behaviours.
CHP: How does the Care Home Leadership (CLA) Score help to monitor the performance of care managers?
IT: CLA has two purposes: to help care managers identify areas for improvement, and for the organisation to standardise the performance of their managers across the board. Working as a care manager can be an isolating job, with most of the work expected without any coaching, mentoring or support. CLA gives an objective measurement which can be used to standardise the performance of care managers, hence reducing the variation of quality of care delivered in different care homes. Leadership can make or break any care home easily.
CHP: What must change in the industry to see leadership competency better addressed?
IT: It doesn’t make sense to me that currently there is no formal way of assessing management competency in our care home managers. We should view it in the same way as nurses receiving medication competency training or train drivers and aeroplane pilots undergoing their myriad of competency tests to prove they are working safely. How we perceive ourselves as leaders can be very different to how others view us. Ultimately, care home managers are the decision-makers in delivering care to our vulnerable people, and so formal measurement of competency is crucial.
CHP: What is the key takeaway visitors to The Care Show will leave with after your session?
IT: It’s not rocket science to understand: the performance of a care home is mostly the reflection of the manager, and we need high-quality leader-managers to raise the standards of the industry. In my session you’ll learn how to utilise tools like the CLA Score to help to objectively measure how managers are performing. Assessing and addressing the leadership skill of the manager objectively is the first step to outstanding. I am looking forward to the opportunity to launch CLA Score during The Care Show as it is the best venue to reach people working in the care sector.
Meet Issac at The Care Show on Wednesday 17th October 2018 from 12:10 – 12:40 as he presents in Theatre 3 as part of the show’s Excellence in Care, Residential Care conference stream. For the full conference agenda please click here.