Whether working in the UK or Australia, Andrew Barrett, Training and Customer Relationship Manager at Maybo, has always had one goal - to reduce the number of restrictive practices used against people whose behaviour may challenge.
Here, he tells us more about his career to date, what his role at Maybo consists of on a day-to-day basis and the outcomes he hopes to achieve for service users.
Can you tell us what a typical day looks like in your role?
Typically, my day involves the delivery of Maybo training to a diverse range of sectors throughout Australia and New Zealand.
Training can include a range of theoretical content, which is brought together in Maybo’s extensive training modules and the delivery of engaging workshops. All of our workshops utilise scenarios and role play to make the training highly interactive and relatable to the situations that delegates encounter.
As a result, delegates are completely involved in the session and their contributions are valued and respected, which helps to transfer the learning into practice.
What do you love most about your job?
It is great to work for an organisation where I am not just a number and I am genuinely appreciated. In the past, I have worked predominantly for large organisations and although there may be a “thanks” sent via email for a job well done, it lacked a personal touch.
I feel like Maybo really values my contributions and encourages my career development.
My own values align closely with Maybo’s core values. I have also always had a keen interest in helping teams to support people who have an intellectual disability using evidence-based practice.
What outcomes do you hope the work you undertake will help to achieve?
That’s an easy question for me to answer – at the centre of all my work is a desire to achieve a reduction in restrictive practices for people whose behaviour may challenge. I genuinely believe that by implementing appropriate strategies you will see a decrease in challenging behaviour and an increase in quality of life.
“At the centre of all my work is a desire to achieve a reduction in restrictive practices for people whose behaviour may challenge.”
What are your career highlights?
That’s a hard question, although, there is one particular service that comes to mind.
The team were working with a very complex individual, who had assaulted a number of staff members and this had led to a number of restrictions being implemented against the individual.
Working together, we explored a number of strategies aimed at helping the staff better manage the behaviours that the individual was demonstrating, whilst finding ways to improve their quality of life in order to reduce the number of incidents that occurred.
Post-training, the organisation implemented the strategies, and as a result, the individual’s behaviour significantly improved.
They now have plans to move the participant into a residential home in the community, which demonstrates the huge impact our training can have on a person’s quality of life.
Can you tell us more about your career to date?
In 1999, I qualified as a Registered Learning Disability Nurse in the UK, where I worked for the NHS for a number of years, predominantly with adults with an intellectual disability (or learning disability in UK terminology), who also had a history of offending behaviour.
I was lucky to get to work in a number of different roles in Low to Medium Secure Settings, Rehabilitation and as a Community Charge Nurse within an Assertive Outreach Team, which supported people in the community with the aim of reducing the need for in-patient services.
In 2009, I moved to Australia where I was employed by the Queensland Government to write Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) Plans for adults whose behaviour required positive practices to be implemented that would help to minimise any risk of harm to themselves and others.
This role led me to take up a position as a Clinical Project Lead, exploring transition pathways for high-risk offenders within the very first Forensic Disability Service in Queensland.
It was whilst working at the centre that I first encountered Maybo. As part of my role, I undertook a number of their Train the Trainer programmes and delivered the learning internally to other staff members. The training was always really well received and so when the opportunity came to join the Maybo team, I knew it was the right decision to make.
Now, I work with organisations across Australia, providing training and awareness around PBS and the links to Australia’s National Disability Insurance Scheme Legislation.