Reflective Practice

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Dawn Clark

Diploma level 5 in Leadership for Health and Social Care

Unit SHC52 – Promote Reflective Practice

Outcomes: 4.1, 4.2, 4.3 and 4.4

Within my role as Manager of a Nursing Home I am frequently involved in situations whereby I need to make decisions and act quickly. The role demands strong leadership skills, financial management skills, and the ability to deal effectively with many people from many different backgrounds and on different levels.

The manner in which I deal with each situation that presents can be influenced by many extrinsic factors such as the individual person at the centre of the event, including the manner in which they present themselves, their capacity to understand and make decisions, time and financial constraints and pressure from others involved.

I find reflective practice useful to identify what went right or wrong and to consider how things could be improved for future experiences. It is crucial that I develop professionally and learn through these experiences by reflecting on them. If I did not reflect on them I would not learn from them, and consequently not develop on a professional level.

Whilst working in an extremely busy environment it is necessary to move quickly from one task to another giving little or no time for immediate reflection. It is important that I consider what I am doing whilst I am doing it, to ensure it is done effectively. It is easy to be distracted by thinking about the tasks that will follow which will affect the effectiveness of the task in hand.

Reflective practice enables me to identify shortfalls in my knowledge and skills, analyse the effectiveness of my communication and strength of my relationships with others. This allows me to improve collaborative working.

I find de-briefing an effective way of reflecting for the whole working team, especially following a particularly upsetting or disturbing event has taken place. It is vital that we allow those involved and affected by the event the opportunity to air their thoughts and feelings. Regular supervisions and annual appraisals with all staff members enable me to monitor their progress as individuals and highlights which areas they require support and development within their job roles, to allow them to reach their full potential.

As professionals we reflect on our practice on a daily basis and ask ourselves questions relating to incidents and events, such as:

Did I make the right decision?
Do I feel good or bad about the outcome?
What else could I have done?
If it happens again will I do the same or do it differently?

Dawn Clark

Graham Gibbs (1998) developed six stages to reflective practice which make up a continuous cycle. Gibbs encourages us to take into account our feelings and emotions when reflecting on situations making this a popular model for use in health and social care reflective practice. See diagram of Gibbs Reflective Cycle below

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(www.mini.blogspot.co.uk/2011/03/gibbs-reflective-cycle.html) Dawn Clark

Chris John’s model arose from his work in the Buford Nursing Development Unit in the early 1990’s. He envisaged this model as being used within a process of guided reflection. His focus was about uncovering and making explicit the knowledge that we use in our practice. The framework uses five cue questions, which are then divided into more focuses to promote detailed reflection. (www.communityhealthcarebolton.co.uk)

1. Description of the experience
• Phenomenon – describe the here and now experience
• Casual – what essential factors contributed to this experience? • Context - what are the significant background factors to this experience? • Clarifying – what are the key processes for reflection in this experience?

2. Reflection
• What was I trying to achieve?
• Why did I intervene as I did?
• What were the consequences of my actions for:
o...
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