During the week I continued with the supervisions and began doing more management checks on various areas of the home. I discussed with staff that I would begin doing checks on things like finances, but I was still waiting for the financial handover.
I came in one morning to more complaints from staff. The deputy manager’s daughter had walked off shift the previous night without telling anyone, and just left the home. Again I asked staff to write a statement outlining what had happened. When she came back on duty I asked her to do the same, although she wasn’t due on shift until the following week. When she came in I had a meeting with her to discuss it, I listened to her side of the story and told her that I understood it had happened before. She responded by saying it didn’t matter as she was resigning and handed me her notice.
I had pushed a recruitment drive and had received a number of applications, which I was starting to read through, however the number of new staff the service needed was growing. The deputy manager was still doing the Rota as we hadn’t yet got the template Rota going, I wanted to get that in place so I decided to work on it myself.
The office was a mess, there was paperwork everywhere, it appeared very little filing had been done previously. I really needed to get the office straight so I could work and began tidying up and filing, I felt dismayed by what I found, there was information belonging to residents’ everywhere, sometimes just left in boxes, not even a box for each resident, it was paperwork for all residents just put in boxes. I started a box for each resident to bring their paperwork together, I found old bank books, bank statements, support plans, finance records, photographs, people’s personal histories, things that might be useful when compiling care plans. I found a bundle of incident forms, they were dated just before I had arrived, some of them should have been reported to CQC under the Health and Social Care act, I couldn’t find a record of it being done, I put them to one side ready for my next supervision.
A staff member came upstairs concerned about Paul who was still suffering from diarrhoea and didn’t want to get out of bed. I went to see him, he didn’t look well at all and had very shallow breathing, I told staff to phone an ambulance so he could be checked out properly. The ambulance arrived and the crew did their onsite checks then took him straight to hospital, accompanied by staff, and admitted him. Additional staff would need to stay and support him, which would put a greater strain on the staff team, I supported on shifts and at the hospital where I could, working late to try and manage the paperwork as well.
On 21st June I attended a Management training course at head office, I had completed management training courses previously with Cygnet and completed my level 4 NVQ’s. Although my workload was high, it was mandatory to attend as a new manager, so I went to the training. I’m glad it was mandatory as it was a good opportunity to learn and meet other managers and staff from around the organisation. As I met colleagues it was becoming clear that everyone knew that the service I was managing was problematic. Part of the training was spent on recruitment, staffing and Employment Tribunals. It was facilitated by the head of the training department who had brought in two actors to do role plays, it seems strange to me now that some of the role plays were around employment tribunals. We had a discussion about the cost to the organisation of the numerous tribunals they had been involved in at that time.
I returned to the service the following day, to hear another staff member had walked off shift without finishing it, ‘here we go again’ I thought to myself.
It turned out while I had been training the two staff involved in the last ‘walking off shift incident’ had gotten into an argument, It had ended up with the staff member who had been deserted on shift last time saying to the deputy mangers daughter “Well you walked off shift last week and left me to finish everything, So I am walking off yours!” and left.
Again I got statements and started to talk with the staff involved. When I spoke to the deputy manager’s daughter she told me the home was making her ill and she didn’t want to be ill, having already resigned she had decided not to work her notice and would finish her shift that day and not return.
As a manager there is nothing much you can do if people won’t work their notice and it certainly wasn’t good practice to have a mother and daughter team working together so changes were needed there anyway, only I wanted to do it with minimum impact to the staffing and the Rota. It was now taken out of my hands and the problem was resolved.
I had also learnt during supervisions that another of the part time staff was also related to the deputy manager, although distantly, that didn’t seem to cause too much of an issue as I still felt there were more important issues to concentrate on.