Careship: repackaging the manager’s role
Archive – Caring Times, November 2012
In a rebranding exercise, the National Skills Academy for Social Care is seeking to redefine the work of care sector professionals.
London-based Goosebumps Brand Consultancy has been hired by the National Skills Academy for Social Care (NSASC) to review the organisation’s identity with the aim of inspiring and building trust to reflect the value of the work carers and care managers provide.
Goosebumps’ solution has been to reframe the meaning of leadership in the care sector under the banner of a single word: ‘Careship’. NSASC acting chief executive Debbie Sorkin said Careship represented the important link between care and leadership in the sector, communicating in one word that it’s how people care that counts – showing how responsibility, leadership and direct accountability makes all the difference.
“At the National Skills Academy for Social Care, we work to develop leadership, management and commissioning skills across the sector, and it is through Careship that we can truly demonstrate the values associated with leadership in a down-to-earth way that everyone in social care – front-line staff, senior managers, training providers and people who use services – can get to grips with,” said Ms Sorkin.
Strategic partner with Goosebumps Simon Cotterrell said in-depth research into sector perceptions had found that, while 83% of care sector employees believed the sector was negatively represented in the media, 94% believed there was a direct link between the quality of care and leadership.
Further analysis had shown that although leadership was deemed to be the missing ingredient, there was much confusion about the term itself, with some respondents believing it to only be relevant to senior management and others reporting that it felt too much like a business buzzword. “With Careship we wanted to demonstrate that while making a bed or providing lunch is a task that can be easily ticked off a list, it’s how you do it that counts: with respect, compassion, and above all a sense of personal accountability,” said Mr Cotterrell.
“Unlike the health sector that has one lead organisation in the form of the NHS, the care sector is extremely fragmented as it blends together private providers of care, industry organisations and NGOs. The idea behind Careship was to find a word that was so disarmingly simple that it could have the potential to become a moniker for the whole sector to rally behind. “We’ve created a property for the NSA but in many ways, its success will come when Careship becomes a property that everyone wants to use. And it is not just the sector we want to galvanise, Careship aims to help guide users of care too. Imagine if you have to put your parent into care, you’d want to choose a provider that could demonstrate a positive attitude towards care, not just that they ticked the basics box. Careship has the potential to be the kite mark of the care sector and that’s really exciting.”