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5. Managing care teams

One of the most challenging, time-consuming and complicated aspects of working with catastrophically injured clients is getting their care package just right to maximise rehabilitation and to demonstrate the most accurate need.

And this is separate to recruiting, training, rota management, creating employment and care compliance, and developing risk and care plans.

This is simply about making a group of helping-oriented people who do not know one another focus on the client they have offered to work with in a way that fits together and achieves goals.

Except it’s not that simple. Human emotions, needs and shortcomings all come into place and can make the job ot manage a care team much harded.

At PsychWorks Associates, we want to share our psychological insights of group processes to help you manage your clients’ care teams better.

So, what are group processes and how are they relevant in PI work?

Read on to find out….

Silhouette Photography of Group of People Jumping during Golden Time

First, here’s some science about how group processes work:

Group processes is simply psych-talk for “interactions between people” and it encompasses a range of behaviours and experiences.

One example is “group cohesion” which is about a shared identity. Another example is “intra-team connection” which is about individual engagement when within a group.

Psychology research indicates that by understanding group processes, we begin to understand how to get a well-functioning group to achieve a goal for the sake of the goal, but also for individuals to thrive, too.

That said, there is little empirical research on the mechanisms of change that will enhance optimal outcomes. We do know that:

Anyone leading a group should invest time paying attention to and focusing on improving the quality of group interactions.

Avoidance makes the situation worse.

Case Managers would need the understanding of legal colleagues and family in doing this part of the job for the best outcomes for the client.

OK, but how do you know when to focus on group processes in the team?

When a Case Manager, family member or legal colleague is

spending a lot of time managing the care team.

When goals are not being met or requests are not being adhered to

When there is a lot of criticism from and within the team

When members are requesting not to work with certain people

When there appears to be a lack of trust including with

management or family members

When the Group Leader feels uncomfortable working with the team

Is group engagement low?

Is conflict high?

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