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Your G8Way ... To Customer Focussed Support

Seeing the NDIS participant as a customer is a new way of working in the disability services marketplace. As a customer the NDIS participant will expect to be treated with the same respect as any customer would.

In this section, you will learn about customer-focussed service, supporting the Participants to meet their NDIS plan outcomes, providing choice and control and ensuring value for money.

Customer Focus

What you do and how you do it should be informed by the Participant and by their best interests. The Participant is your customer and the focus of your person-centred delivery of supports and services.

When you are customer focussed, you put the Participant first, recognise the goals of their plan and respect their contribution to decision making. Your focus is, “How can we work together to build the Participant’s capacity and achieve the goals and aspirations identified in their plan?”

Customer focus is about consistently delivering services that meet and sometimes exceed expectations. To achieve this, you, the support worker, need to provide supports and services that meet the aims of the plan for the Participant. Organisations that provide supports and services also need to ensure everything they do is focussed on the Participants.

Participant perspective

Good habits

To ensure you are delivering service that is
customer-focussed, add these five habits to
your practice.

Listen

Create a meaningful relationship that enables you to support the Participant’s goals as agreed to in the plan. Create an environment that welcomes feedback and a safe place to express concerns.

Think

Consider the feedback you have been given about the way the Participant wants to be supported. Consider the resources you may need to provide that support, for example, appropriate referrals and other services. Think about who else may need to be involved and how others have achieved similar goals.

Build

Remember that everyone’s plan is different and your role is to support the Participant to develop capacity. You will need to be adaptable when things change, when outcomes are met and plans are reviewed.

Solve

The best solution might not yet exist. Offering tailored supports means that things may need to be done differently, in a completely new way.

Exceed

Go above and beyond to be recognised for providing quality support. Surprise people by being responsive, informative and supportive. Increase your value by creating experiences and relationships that exceed expectations.

Tell me more

Providing customer focussed supports and services embraces a person-centred and rights-based approach to working with Participants. Person-centred support aims to empower Participants to make or participate in making decisions that affect their lives. It requires collaborative decision making regarding care and support planning.

What others say

Alzheimer’s Australia project, Valuing People, supports the standpoint that while there are many different theories of person-centredness, they are all based around the following principles.

Valuing people

  • Treating people with dignity and respect by being aware of and supporting personal perspectives, values, beliefs and preferences
  • Listening to each other and working in partnership to design and deliver services

Autonomy

  • Facilitating choice and showing subsequent respect for the choices made
  • Balancing rights, risks and responsibilities
  • Optimising a person’s control through the sharing of power and decision-making
  • Maximising independence by building on individual strengths, interest and abilities

Life experience

  • Supporting the sense of self by understanding the importance of a person’s past, their present-day experience, and their hopes for the future

Understanding relationships

  • Collaborative relationships between the service provider, Participants and their carers, and between staffing levels
  • Social connectedness with the local community and opportunities to engage in meaningful activities

Environment

  • Organisational values are underpinned by person-centred principles
  • The service Participants receive is responsive to their individual needs
  • Services are delivered within an organisation where there is commitment and actions supporting individual and organisational learning

In practice

Working with the Participant you support, your role should be focussed on assisting them to:

  • pursue their goals and aspirations
  • be well (e.g. have a positive mindset and body language, stay mentally and physically active)
  • improve social skill (e.g. be comfortable in social environments, develop conversational skills)
  • build relationships and meet new people
  • create natural circles of support, community associations, business networks
  • build confidence and capacity to do things for themselves (help with budgeting, employ support staff, review goals, pursue new goals)

Remember that any technique you use must appropriately reflect the Participant’s personal communication.