Retired Registered Managers

A new Interest Group for former managers of care homes
Developed by Liz Taylor, Harish Chavda, Janti Champaneri OBE, Pat Bailey, Richard Banks and Shrikant Honap

Registered Managers hold a most important leadership role in adult social care services.  How they do that job has a crucial effect on peoples experience of care and support. Registered Managers are the lead professional and set the quality of care that staff provide and expectations for values, knowledge and skills. They turn the stated purpose and vision for the home into the reality of the lives of the people who live there.

The last few years have served to confirm that the quality and resilience of those managers has made the difference between adequate care and excellence.  

Registered Managers, of course, retire – taking with them their experience and hard learnt wisdom. We are concerned that the experience, knowledge and capacity of this group of people is insufficiently recognised and certainly underused. The idea of a network for retired managers started in My Home Life and was raised as part of a conversation between Professor Juliette Meyer and Richard Banks.  So, we began to think of how it might be possible to bring some of those retired managers together. We are clear that such a group should take complete control of what they do – so are avoiding setting any fixed plans. It will be for the people who join the group to decide what and how to operate.

After looking at various ways to do this we decided to set up a Zoom-based interest group with the University of the Third Age (u3a). They have been very helpful in thinking through this idea as a learning organisation with a truly remarkable range of interest groups. The u3a provides all sorts of mutual support for wellbeing but cannot provide any direct care or support provision.

As you may know u3a is based on local groups that are run by members and offer a wide range of learning groups including languages, creative writing and philosophy. What maybe new to you is that there is a part of the u3a that has more than 50 different interest groups that meet entirely on Zoom.

Interest Groups

It is this part of u3a that we thought might be a good place to start a group made up of retired Registered Managers.  Using a Zoom based group will allow people to take part across the UK and beyond – should there be interest then country or regional groups may, of course, be set up. Another advantage of doing this with u3a is that people will be able to access any of all the other interest groups. Joining the zoom-based Trust u3a will cost £10 a year (or £5 if you are already a member of a local u3a)

As said, what this group might do is not yet decided and is there to to be shaped by interested people.  It will be for the participants to decide what and how they want to progress. We are a group of retired managers, we do not have any set agenda or closely defined plan other than seeing how our combined experience might be shared and our own learning continued. We have discussed the possibilities and made a list at the end of this note but only to illustrate some of the possible options for the group.

Information about this group is, intially, being circulated by My Home Life , Skills for Care and MakingHomeHome. We will be contacting equivalent orgnaisation across the UK, Please do pass on to retired managers and, indeed, those who have left social care that you know who may be interested.

To join the u3a interest group for ‘Retired Registered Managers’ 

  • Join the u3a Trust using the website
  • You can then sign up for the interest group ‘Retired Registered Managers’ that is on the list of available groups HERE
  • We will then set a date and time for the first meeting – probably early in November.
  • As a bonus you will get a regular update of all the other groups available

If you need any further information, please do contact Richard.

Some of the ways the Interest Group of Retired Registered Managers might choose to develop and operate….

  • Continue to learn about developments in care and support.
  • To provide a link of benefit to us – sharing experiences – post retirement support network
  • Not lose the knowledge and experience wisdom that we have (and to acknowledge and celebrate that expertise)
  • To encourage local or neighbourhood programmes that seek to enable communities to take a role themselves in the co-production and planning of social care provision.  (u3a cannot provide any direct care or support provision).
  • Be able, with support, to contribute to local or regional learning programmes – for the general public who are carers or thinking about ageing issues plus perhaps education of staff and volunteers in social care and/or community organisations 
  • Participate in wellbeing programmes and activities 
  • Act and respond to calls for research or consultation exercises (we notice that often reports seem to have ignored the experiences of social care staff and as a result have missed important issues)
  • Informal mentoring for Registered Managers
  • Advice on implementing change for improvement
  • Research development – with My Home Life to set up proposals for university-based research
  • Community research leaders – available to be recruited by researchers to gather information from people who use services
  • Local or community leaders and sources of information related to ageing
  • Just to let off steam!

We are sure we are scratching the surface and there are lots of ideas out there so do get in touch and join in.

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