Community service workers (CSWs) play an important role in communities across Canada. CSWs improve the lives of others by providing support services to vulnerable individuals and families. Students looking for a challenging, rewarding, and impactful career will find becoming a CSW a great option.
After CSW training you will be qualified to work for many different organizations. For example, after graduation you may find yourself working at a group home as an addictions worker or at a correctional facility as a life skills coach. No matter the specific role, the nature of the work completed by CSWs requires sensitivity and highly effective communication skills. Having these skills can help you advance in your career and connect with the public more effectively.
Read on to discover three tips for effective communication in the workplace as a CSW.
1. Students in Community Services Worker College Should Be Clear and Concise
While working as a CSW you will communicate constantly throughout your day not only with clients, but also with coworkers, management, and other organizations. In any career it’s important to present yourself as a qualified professional. You can do just that by demonstrating proper business communication skills.
During your training you will take CSW courses that teach the basics of business communication. Business communication can include emails, memos, phone calls, presentations, and more. One important component of good business communication is being concise and to the point. Whether you are communicating within an organization or externally, it’s important to say everything as simply as possible.
Keep your sentences short to make it easier for readers to quickly scan your communication. In business writing, shorter writing is better. A great tip for making sure your message is concise and clear is to identify the purpose of the communication. Does what you wrote fulfill that purpose? Is it free of any other information that could be distracting? If it is, that means it’s effective. Practice asking yourself these questions to make sure that your communications stay on topic, both during your studies and once you begin your career.
2. Students in CSW Courses Should Adjust Their Communication Style to Each Audience
Knowing who you’re speaking to should guide the communication style you use. For example, once you become a community services worker you may find you communicate differently with a young child who has suffered abuse than you would with a troubled teenager. By changing your communication style you can connect with your audience more effectively.
Are you speaking with a company to try to get donations? Perhaps you should adopt a more professional tone. Are you writing to volunteers? Try communicating in an excited and passionate voice. By changing your style and tone, you’ll help make sure that you’re on the same page as your audience.
CSWs should alter their communication style depending on who they are speaking to
3. Students in CSW Courses Should Place Emphasis on Their Listening Skills
Practicing excellent listening skills is paramount when it comes to business communication. Understandably, it’s easy to fall into the habit of non-active listening when you have many things on your mind. However, in order to foster great relationships with coworkers, other organizations, and your clients, active and attentive listening is necessary.
Some simple methods you can put into practice to help you become a better listener are hiding distractions, like your cell phone or other documents, out of sight while listening. In addition, keeping eye contact during a conversation can improve your active listening skills.
By implementing these skills during your studies and future career you can excel as a CSW and communicator!
The decision to pursue a community services worker diploma is a really amazing decision to make, given that this career path involves so much positive human interaction and altruistic action. Community services workers often work with those in the community who need help the most. From those who are dealing with addiction to others who may be battling disease, a community services worker is truly a local super hero making a meaningful difference in the lives of others. But in order to help others, one needs to ensure that they are in good shape themselves. In our rapidly changing world, with its busy schedules and expanding technology, keeping a proper balance can be difficult. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways that community services workers can practice self-care.
Read on to discover three of the best tips for self-care in a community services worker role.
1. Meditation is a Great Way to Stay Balanced in Community Services Worker Careers
Meditation has been practiced for several thousand years for a reason—it is a very effective tool for eliminating stress! In addition, it’s also quite easy to get started. Begin by choosing a quiet and relaxing corner, it can be as simple as sitting in a favourite chair. Then, all you have to do is close your eyes and focus on your breathing. This will help you destress after a busy day.
This practice can even come in handy when studying towards your community services worker diploma. A recent Harvard study demonstrated via MRI imaging that meditation actually changes the physical make-up of the brain and boosted areas in charge of memory, self-awareness, introspection, and learning. Try it out during your studies and throughout your career so that you can feel focused and refreshed.
Meditation is a great way to alleviate stress and make sure your ready for the day!
2. Schedule Some ‘Me’ Time After You Become a Community Services Worker
When graduates enter their community services worker careers, they will often help those in their community that need it most. As you begin this rewarding career path, you’ll help clients from all walks of life battle addiction, navigate stressful crises, and more. And while the positive impact you have on your community will be its own reward, it’s important to remember to schedule in some “me” time too.
It can be difficult to schedule in some self-care time when you spend so much time caring for others, but it’s an important part of staying healthy and refreshed. Throughout your career, make sure to take the time to do the things that you love and make you happy. If you love baking pies, for instance, don’t put that off! If you enjoy concerts, make sure to allow yourself the time to do that too. Even if it’s just a relaxing walk or a quick coffee with a friend, scheduling in some personal time helps to ensure that your work/life balance remains intact.
3. Try to Maintain a Good Diet Once you Become a Community Services Worker
Maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly is important as it helps you reduce stress and boost energy levels. Countless studies have demonstrated that exercise lessens the impact of stress on the body and improves overall health. While it might be tempting, try to avoid staying up late, snacking on unhealthy foods, and other unhealthy habits that could sap your energy and leave you feeling drained.
Diet and exercise can help keep you feel energized throughout your career
Meditating, maintain a good diet and taking the time to enjoy some “me” time are all smart steps to making sure you stay relaxed throughout your career as a community services worker.
Crisis situations happen all the time to people in all walks of life. Whether it’s the sudden loss of loved one, medical or mental health issues, or falling victim to criminal activity, situations can arise that push people to their emotional, mental, and physical limits.
When they do, community service workers (CSWs) can offer invaluable support to people during some of toughest times in their lives. Through their work in facilities like group homes, human service agencies, and social service programs, CSWs can offer clients the help they need to rebuild their lives and come through their difficulties as stronger people.
But how should a CSW approach a crisis situation? Here are some of the most valuable things you should know about crisis management, and some common techniques experienced community service workers use:
A Guide To Crisis Intervention And Its Role in Your CSW Career
Crisis intervention techniques are the methods CSWs use to offer immediate help to people who experience situations that causes them to feel as though they can no longer cope. Depending on the area you end up working in when you become a community services worker, some crisis situations you encounter could include natural disasters, sexual assault or perhaps individuals struggling to cope with relationship changes, such as divorce. In the crisis intervention process, CSWs will assess the situation, look to calm clients down, and use problem solving techniques to deal with their situation.
People experience many different crisis situations, such the loss of a loved one.
Reacting To A Client Crisis When You Become A Community Service Worker
Being faced with a client who is dealing with a serious crisis can be overwhelming, particularly in the early stages of your CSW career. The first thing to do is understand the full extent of the situation. If the person is any immediate danger, such as a victim of domestic abuse, you will need to guide them to safety, and assess whether you need the help of police or medical professionals.
Even in less urgent situations, it is still important to listen and understand the trauma you’re dealing with. Individual reactions to crises can vary, and trying to put yourself in the client’s shoes will help you figure out the best approach. You should also assess the client’s state of mind, coping skills, and the social support network available to them.
Crisis Response Techniques You’ll Learn In Community Service Worker Courses
A key element of crisis intervention is education. When faced with an individual in crisis, it’s important to let them know that their reactions are normal and that they are temporary. CSWs will also explore coping strategies with clients, such as relaxation techniques, or encouraging them to write down their feelings on paper.
CSWs will then discuss problem solving techniques with clients, developing plans of action to remedy the crisis. A crisis experience can also be a learning opportunity for the client, showing them how they managed to get through the situation and giving them tools to cope with problems in the future. Community service worker courses also teach more specific methods for particular crisis situations, such as suicide intervention and addictions intervention.
Helping people develop problem solving skills will aid their growth.
Are you interested in a career helping people in crisis situations?
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