Coaching in Child Welfare: The Coach and the Worker

the scenarios and characters depicted in this video are fictional references are not made specifically to any actual child welfare case although the actors portraying characters may be child welfare professionals and the questions and issues may be based on real experience these sessions are not scripted and are meant to demonstrate techniques and approaches in a learning environment this video is designed to provide samples of brief coaching sessions these examples are to be used as a learning tool and are not meant to provide expert examples the following coaching scenarios are presented not only to provide an example of a strong coaching session but also as a discussion topic for how coaching skills may have been more strongly utilized in this interview you will watch as Heather coaches Chelsea in the use of safety mapping a strategy to assess family strengths a few days prior to this session Heather was present in two distinct safety mapping sessions that Chelsea facilitated with a child welfare family in the interview watch for the phases of the child welfare skills based coaching model facilitated reflection feedback evaluation of the coaching session and next steps Chelsea I'm so excited to talk about your sessions with you it was really nice for me to be able to observe thanks for sharing the original home visit and how you felt that one with mom you know in a coaching role I really want you to feel supported and encouraged as you adopt signs of safety practice how you're integrating all the other aspects of the work together so thank you for coming you bet what would be helpful for us to focus on today what would you see the best purpose for our meeting together today to be I think just kind of you know your reflection about how I did any feedback on what could have been done differently and that may have been more effective with the family I think more just what you thought when you observe the meeting in the office and then some of what you thought about what I shared with you about the home visit okay so for me I think the purpose would be about us achieving that goal of getting the reflection but I'm hoping we can start with you that you're willing to reflect on what you feel you did really well anything that you might want to do differently next time and then we can maybe move to feedback and if I have any additional things to add that make sense yeah yeah that sounds good okay great so tell me what do you think was your like star moment what was something you did that you felt really was effective in facilitating the meeting I think that I was able to engage you know carrying over from the home visit that there was already some engagement that happened and that it felt like I was able to explain things pretty well I you know a couple of times the family got a little confused like when you stepped in and helped me but mostly I think I got the needed information out there and that the family felt fairly safe in the meeting great so you were able to engage the family so that they felt safe enough to be honest and open and share the information from their perspective yeah great it's on a scale of 0 to 10 compared to other meetings you've done how would you rate this meeting so zero is it was the worst you want to do over you wish you could have you know totally done things differently in 10 being that you felt like wow I really I nailed this like I got the the purpose clear achieve the goals and everybody was on board I may be a seven okay well that's great sevens a high rating what would you give it a seven what were the specific skills you did that gave you the feeling that you could give it a seven well I felt like you know I I follow the structure pretty good I did forget the to do the plus Delta at the end yeah let's go back to that in a minute okay what did you do that really worked well they gave you a seven again the engagement piece I tried to really get clear about what was the impact on Lauren what specifically the family needed to do to make everybody feel comfortable and I think that the process helped the dds worker to feel a little more comfortable on maybe that will help their work together the family and Michelle how did you do that what specifically did you say what was it about your presence how did you do that well I think just really the family did based on some of the questioning that happened through the process and I don't know do you remember no into questions yeah do you remember any of the questions you asked that maybe helped them think differently about something maybe being able to be clear about the difference between what's really harming a child and what's just complicating issues because I felt like a lot of Michelle's concerns were based on you know the house being small and the potty training and so I think asking those questions that gave me more more specific and then also letting the family say show that they had a plan yeah to start working towards that help feel better so asking the family are helping the family come up with those goals to address the worries even if they were just complicating about you started with the family first in every part of the conversation right so their viewpoint was validated yeah that's great you did a really nice job with that what else would you say that you did well that helped to improve the working relationship between the other service providers and the family I allowed I think I allowed a space for everyone to really just listen and I think that happened because we came up with the agreements that everyone was kind of on board from the beginning that these are the agreements and we're gonna hear each other out yeah get a good list of Group agreements and and I feel like you were able to help everybody from the get-go adopt those and then you didn't actually have to worry about too much disruption they really did follow the agreements that they chose you did a good job yeah great great what do you think if anything you might do that would maybe make your rating from a seven move up to an eight or if you can think of another meeting you've done certain skills that you would have rated your meeting higher well a couple things I mentioned I didn't do the plus Delta and I think that's pretty valuable especially if you're gonna meet with the family again yeah and so I would have liked her to do that to do that and then the other thing was the purpose and developing the purpose maybe helping the family or introducing it in a way that worked better for them so that how have you I felt like I kind of had to come up with the purpose and I would have preferred it came from the family okay so how have you done that in other meetings where you felt like it was coming more from the family than from you to get clear perfect the questioning just asking more quite the right kind of question so I think in the past that I've been able to elicit that better from the family through questioning so we should focus questioning inna okay you know why do you think we're here that just didn't go so well I'm not meeting okay great so how do you think adopting the signs of safety practices has helped you work not just well with this family but with other families that you're working with the main thing is being able to be so clear about what is a child safety issue why in what situations does Children Services need to get involved and giving families and service providers a way to understand that better because sometimes there's a lot of concerning things and families and it's always been difficult to explain that to people because they get real worried that Michelle was just really worried about a lot of things yeah and the signs of safety model really makes makes it easy to explain the difference and it helps people understand yeah there are worries but they're not child welfare issues right that's the biggest thing I think so that family walked away today knowing that the case was going to be closed by child services but that all those supports would continue with that plan and that's the other thing is really the emphasis on getting that safety network those people that are naturally my family's life right so from my perspective and giving you some feedback I really am always looking for did the social worker create an opportunity to get a balanced assessment of both the harm endanger versus complicating factors all those worries and equally pull what's working well out of the families many of us have been trained to focus on identify the problem and help them fix it and this really felt like and this is my direct feedback to you that you have such a nice presence about yourself you you really do feel I think like you create a comfortable environment for the family that it sounds like you were able to move mom from her initial fear of CPS coming to her home to really being able to to communicate with you as comfortably as she could to talk about her worries what she saw she did well as a mom and how everybody was going to work together going forward so I think you did a really nice job making sure that you got an equal understanding of the worries and what's working well thank you um you pull pointed out the plus Delta was with that last step that you missed but you did share with me that you did that in the home visit the first time yeah how did mom respond to that she she responded well she what was clear was that she didn't feel as worried as she was from the beginning that our meeting helped her to relax the way that we were we shared information together she didn't have any gel toes but sometimes that's hard on the first visit her family's the only other thing I'm thinking about too is during the meeting you know how you scribe and and facilitate at the same time making sure you capture the words that they're saying I know you had that moment where Dad was Radian low and I love that that was a check and balance for you right because dad rated it low because his name wasn't on there yeah you were able to get his name into the dangerous thing yeah I was glad he recognized that because I didn't even yeah I had left him off which is so good so continue to do that do more of that that really worked well for you and something maybe that you could do differently in explaining you know so that I didn't have to step in using that putting it on a continuum right or creating any kind of a visual can be really helpful yeah that was families pictures putting words into pictures can be a great thing so when you think about certain failing questions that you used to reach agreement my perspective on that is that it really helped everybody recognize if they were close together in their worries or if they were far apart and when you really summarize the dangerous statement you did a very nice job summarizing the dangerous statements safety goal where was that that DDS worker she was a nine yeah yeah she had really come up in her her level of agreement around what our focus was so you did a great job anything else that you wanted to talk about today during our coaching session I don't think so I just you know this is really helpful so I would love for you to be able to come back and do some more of this for for agency and for me when you think about your own growth and development and how you've progressed in adopting the practice what's one thing you're gonna go ahead and continue to do you know you do it well and you want to continue to do it and what's one thing you're gonna try on that might be different with your next case well I think the engagement piece is pretty natural for me so that's probably the easiest part that is through the model for me the other part that I really am working on and I'm going to continue to work on is to really get behavioral details great and being able to relate that to the impact on the child so sometimes I feel like I don't follow up quite enough to get the detail that I need yeah and I think you did a very nice job then the natural part of narrowing the conversation when we know what our worries are that are listed are they really harm endanger or are they complicating factors and you did a nice job I think of reminding yourself and the group if the statement didn't connect to the impact on the child so continuing to do more that's fantast well I would love to attend additional meetings and support you in this practice what worked well for you about our time together today well it's hard sometimes to reflect on for me especially what I did well I don't know if it's always felt kind of funny to pull that out or try to figure that out toot your own horn yeah it's more comfortable to hear way what I can improve in but so but both of those things are really helpful it's it's helpful for me to say okay what didn't work so I can do it again yeah and then getting the feedback and when you stepped in during the map even I felt stuck so that was really nice to learn a new technique that I could use for great families when they're not understanding the wording great great anything you'd like to be different when we meet together I think no this is great okay all right terrific thanks Jeffy thank you coaching is a process by which the coach creates structured focused interaction and uses appropriate strategies tools and techniques to promote desirable and sustainable change for the benefit of the learner in turn making a positive impact on the organization this is an overview of the skills based coaching model walking through the three phases of initial interest joint planning and observation and demonstration in post-observation the coach and learner independently engage in self-reflection the coach and learner then meet for facilitated feedback and evaluation you

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