What qualities should you look for in care staff?
Whether you work in care home management or you’re looking for freelance carers to look after someone you know, finding the right staff is essential. Caring is a challenging yet rewarding profession, but you need the right qualities and traits to be effective in the job. Those who aren’t suited to the care environment often don’t last long. In such a demanding workplace, hiring the right staff is crucial to continue offering the appropriate level of care to your residents or clients. So, what are the key qualities you should be looking for in your next care hire?
First and foremost, care staff should be dedicated and passionate about providing a high standard of care and attention. Without this willingness to go the extra mile and to do the best job possible, care may fall short of the standards you expect. This trait should come across instinctively in their interview, otherwise it may not be there.
A good carer needs to be able to understand and respond to the needs and feelings of clients and their family members. Empathy is key in tricky situations to support both the client and their loved ones, and this will undoubtedly be needed at some point along each person’s care journey. Furthermore, understanding one’s thoughts and feelings is essential to be able to provide personalised and tailored care to suit their individual needs.
A professional carer should be able to concentrate solely on their job responsibilities whilst on shift. They should be competent in following policies and procedures, and be comfortable wearing the appropriate work clothing. Professionalism is to be expected of every candidate you interview, but it’s important to ensure that they will be able to carry it into more challenging situations.
Working in care requires patience. It’s needed across a wide range of scenarios from mealtimes to mobility and general conversations. Different types of care will present unique challenges, but patience is an important quality across the board to ensure that clients or residents are given all the time and attention they require.
Attention to detail
Paying close attention to detail should be a priority when it comes to hiring carers. Where medication is involved, any mistakes can be incredibly serious and can lead to serious repercussions for all involved. Therefore, someone who is detail-driven and competent is an absolute must in most care environments.
Calm under pressure
Another essential quality that you should be looking for in all care staff is the ability to stay calm under pressure. Things aren’t always plain sailing, so the reaction and response of your staff will determine how quickly situations are resolved and in what manner. In certain specialist care environments, composure is key when dealing with more challenging clients.
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels