When we are in the midst of a challenging conversation—a supervision session, a finely-balanced meeting with a family or a conversation with someone struggling with their mental health—having a few simple, practical and visual reminders to help guide the conversation in a positive and solution-focused direction can be incredibly useful.
Enter the tried and true, the humble yet mighty … POSTER!
This set of five ‘Reminders for Best Practice’ posters is designed to be visually engaging and full of prompts for reflective conversations.
Posters create culture
The simple messages contained in these posters help communicate, to people accessing services and to staff, the strengths-based culture of your organisation, community service, school or business. Imagine them in your reception area. What might they communicate about the values and practice of your service? The posters might just make all the difference to people as they read that they will be welcomed as ‘People not Cases, Contributors not Clients’.
Posters create dynamic conversations
These posters work as reminders of some key values, skills and principles of strengths-based practice—working with people in ways that share power and build on strengths. They are designed to be talking points and sources of inspiration. People may find the messages reassuring, inspiring, challenging. Depending on where the posters are placed, people can glance at them from their desk, take inspiration from one in the middle of a meeting or discuss them with a colleague in the kitchen over morning coffee. These are the kinds of conversations that build reflective practice in organisations and teams.
Posters are highly visual
Whatever happens, these posters won’t fade into the background. The unique, interesting and highly creative designs by Tim Lane (graphic artist for several of Innovative Resources’ card sets including Reflexions and Choosing Strengths) include a hand-made stencil; an industrial, Eastern-block-style label; a grid of watercolour circles on absorbent paper and a mind-map of scribbles on a turquoise wall (Tim photographed the wall in the ‘happiest place in the world’—the school in the middle of the largest slum in East Africa).
Each poster focusses on a different subject including …
Recording: This poster challenges us to reflect on strengths-based ways of record keeping. It asks seven pivotal questions to remind us that how we keep records has the capacity to fundamentally change power dynamics and therefore the service we offer.
Supervision: Do you give or receive supervision? Whichever role you find yourself in, this set of 12 great questions can help guide strengths-based supervision sessions.
People not Cases: Contributors not Clients: This poster challenges labels that we may take for granted. It asks how practice could be different if we changed the way we see people, and the words we use to describe them. It is crucial to remember that even though someone may be accessing a service, they are first and foremost a person, not a case.
Feedback: Giving and receiving feedback are fundamentally important skills in human services, and ones that need regular honing. Here are a set of very good questions to keep in mind as you prepare to give or receive feedback.
What just happened? As a human service worker, have you ever finished a conversation with a family, young person or individual and wondered why things went so differently to how you’d planned? This poster includes 12 great questions to help you navigate challenging interactions with others and extract the learning that lies within these situations.