Safe Help In Your Home

Step Three: Setting up a feedback system so you can supervise and guide your staff effectively

I want to hire in-home help
I provide in-home help
I work for an agency that places workers in clients' homes
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Getting off to a good start:

No relationship is perfect right off the bat, and good hires, like good marriages, can go bad if people don’t address minor irritations. Older people who are not thrilled about needing help to begin with rarely speak up in the first few weeks when the employee is learning the ropes. Instead, they wait until their unexpressed frustration boils over and they fire the helper. A short checklist giving a little feedback (Am I talking too much? Too little?) each week can improve worker performance and client satisfaction. Ask each client to put checkmarks in the appropriate columns and put the feedback form in a stamped addressed envelope which you provide. This spares everybody embarrassment and confrontation.

This information is invaluable; it helps address minor issues while they are small and have not built up into long term frustration and anger. For the client, this is a chance to speak up safely and avoid confrontation. For the employee, this gives much needed information along the way so that adjustments can be made. For you, the information helps you keep clients happy and support and supervise your staff.

Weekly feedback gives well meaning helpers the information they need to help rather than annoy their clients. Review each week’s feedback with the employee promptly, and keep it in the employee’s personnel folder. Track progress vigilantly and touch base with clients so they know you are an attentive supervisor. If there are problems down the road you have a record of how things have been going; better still, you’ll have enough early warning to head most of them off with timely coaching.

Here’s a sample that you can customize.

Directions for clients:

The Client should
1. Fill in the left column with the tasks and behaviors.
2. Check a box, 1-4, for each task or behavior.
3. Add a suggestion or two below the grid.

Feedback Font Size 12

Feedback Font Size 18