d) Workers   

1. People with ABI are unique.

2. Working with them is about building independence.

3. To work with people with ABI workers need to understand each person's injury, the effect, the effect on behaviour and the strategies that can be used to manage the behaviour.

4. Working with people with ABI is being part of a bigger team. It is important to know who is in the team - professionals, family, friends, community.

5. Working with people with ABI can be stressful.

6. A common problem is where workers expectations are too high and the disillusionment process sets in. The disillusionment process moves through the following five phases:

  • Enthusiasm
  • Stagnation
  • Frustration
  • Apathy
  • Staff members leaves with negative experience

7. Know this person as an individual - understand their new uniqueness.

8. Maintain flexibility in your role - and keep your problem solving ability - how do I best manage?

9. Understanding triggers to behaviour.

10. Be attuned to managing your self, and your own emotions when working with people with ABIs - e.g. working with clients your own age or a client the same age as your children can be very difficult.

11. Keep expectations realistic - it is easy to be unrealistic (and then become disillusioned).

12. Look for the gradual changes over time.

13. Just because you can't see or hear a problem doesn't mean there isn't one.

14. Be sensitive to religious, cultural and language differences - e.g. Muslim with sexualised behaviours - not something the family had to cope with before; e.g. If English is a second language that may be significantly effected - it may be better to speak to them in their first language. Engage an interpreter.

15. Have an answer to: What is the one page summary of what I need to know to work with this client.