What I learnt this week: The frustrating advantage of being difficult #WILTW

This is the 22nd #WILTW (and a little delayed due to my attendance at #EAPS2014)

This week I took our family car into be serviced and have an MOT. I dropped it at the garage just before work and was told it would be ready later in the afternoon. However  I had an answer-phone message at about 4pm to say that the service had been done but they hadn’t got around to doing the MOT so could I please leave the car with them overnight or come back the next morning.  I was a bit frustrated by this assumption as I either

i) I couldn’t get home or

ii) would be without an appropriate car for the school run.

I suspect, in fact know, I am a bit soft in these situations and although I was frustrated I tend not to let emotions get the better of me. So surprisingly, and probably because I missed the call and didn’t get put through to the person who had initially made it, I was able to be a little more ‘robust’ in my annoyance. I felt a little uncomfortable when I put the phone down having expressed my disappointment at the service I had received. However 5 minutes later I got a phone call back saying that manager had found someone to do the MOT…

There are often times when parents, carers or relatives of children become frustrated by hospital processes. Often they are scared and emotional and outbursts can be tolerated in the context of the situation they see their children in. But sometimes it does appear the smallest thing can be blown out of all proportion and you find yourself expending energy ameliorating the parents anger at the expense of care to other patients. Conversely in my experience parents are often very humble about things they could and should be annoyed about!.

My learning last week was reflecting on whether bad behaviour gains you rewards? My small outburst with the garage sorted a problem (which probably shouldn’t have occurred in the first place). What of the families or patients we see? When is strongly challenging the care they feel their child has received appropriate? and when is it simply a method of gamesmanship?

I hope I am never in a place where I assume the latter and will always do my utmost to facilitate the former.

What did you learn this week? #WILTW

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