Managing and meeting expectations means having as little discrepancy as possible between client expectations and their actual experience. However, this needs to be balanced with maintaining a consistent and flexible approach to your practice that reassures your women that they are cared for as individuals.
Managing client expectations can be a challenging part of providing midwifery services. Not only in terms of what you, as an individual practitioner, can provide but what is required for practising within guidelines and collaborating with others.
Consider these key areas that may create a tension when both parties have different expectations
- The services you provide
- The level of risk that you are prepared to manage
- Your collaboration arrangements and what that means for the woman
- Your availability. Are you available 24/7?
- In what circumstances will the woman see a different midwife in the practice?
- What happens if you are not available for a period of time.
- Explore and understand what the client wants to achieve. What the issues are for them?
- Be realistic
- Be clear about what you can provide
- Don’t promise what you can’t deliver
- Explain when you may need to consult, refer or transfer care
- Clarify responsibilities of all parties involved.
Book your place at a workshop dealing with these issues – Managing expectations for midwives. Talk to your peers about what they do and don’t do. You are guaranteed to go away with new ideas and strategies.
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Workshop - Managing expectations for midwives