How to Develop Trust & Reliability With Your New Elder Care Professional
Leaving your loved one alone with someone that you don’t know can be a challenge. It may remind you of the feeling you had when you left your new baby at a daycare or with a new babysitter– uncharted territory. You made a connection with the elder care professional and chose them for a reason, but it doesn’t make letting go and walking out the front door any easier. There is a need to develop a certain level of trust and reliability in this person between you and your loved one. Here are some simple tips to help cultivate those feelings of ease.
1. Remember that you chose them for a reason.
You wouldn’t have made the decision to hire your new caregiver if you didn’t feel a connection and trusted them right away. Although at LifeWorx we have an elaborate screening process for providing elder care, there are certain people that you will immediately feel a bond with and some you don’t. Trust your intuition! We are doing all the ground work so all you have to do is choose who is the best personality fit. Whenever you are feeling hesitant, think back to the main bullet points and experiences this person has had that lead you to making this major decision, and trust in that.
2. It will take some time.
You aren’t going to become best friends with your new caregiver overnight, so it will probably take some time for you and your family to get adjusted to having them around, and that’s okay. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having an adjustment period where they are getting acclimated to their new work environment and your loved one is getting used to having them around.
3. Establish a personal care agreement.
Beyond everything else, the personal care agreement will give you the most security. This is simply an agreement or contract between you (the employer) and the new employee that outlines all the important details about what they are responsible in their new role. It’s the best way to clarify what needs to happen on what days, compensation, how many hours per week they will be working, if they will be assisting with any additional housework, etc.
4. Spend some extra time with them.
Time is the only way that you are going to get to know this person. There is no need to pop in on them unannounced or take large gaps of time out of your work day, but make it clear that there is open communication. Many caregivers will text or email to let you know what’s going on that day. Most of all, make sure they are connecting with the loved one they are caring for.
We know, this tip has trite written all over it, but it couldn’t be truer. Be upfront with your new elder care worker with your expectations of them, and in turn let them do the same. For instance, if they need a certain day off, be open and communicative about talking about it and working it out for them. Being able to communicate and trust in each other is imperative to have a successful, professional relationship.