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Information is a valuable tool, a means of collecting data that is pertinent to helping, assessing, and gaining insight to cases at hand. Learning how to gather, evaluate, and assist people in need will not only allow appropriate services to be rendered, but permit developing goals to be achieved quickly and competently. An effective case worker learns these skills by keeping an open mind, asking questions without yes or no answers, listening for hesitations in verbal statements, and giving power to the consumer. (Austin, 1998) For a case worker to determine the origins of need, he/she must possess specific interviewing skills, documentation abilities, and the power to perform the ability to conclude an unbiased and truthful conclusion.

Dealing with consumers on a day-to-day basis will take me to a level of contentment and joy, but having an underlying fear of not reaching every one of my future potential consumers scares and dampens my enthusiasm. I will need to learn and find the best ways of gathering information, realize the importance of connecting with the consumers, and be observant regarding cultural differences that may accidentally offend a potential client. The first step in achieving the required accumulation of pertinent documentation is to create an appeasing type of an environment; an area specific for comforting, listening, and gaining knowledge to my client’s position and needs. My office will be one of tranquility, acceptance, and impartiality; a setting that I believe will convey trust and understanding. I will then welcome my consumers warmly by practicing “attending behaviors,” (Austin, 1998, p. 295) behaviors that include, “culturally appropriate eye contact, body la...

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...d solve the problems of the consumers expeditiously can sometimes lead to prematurely dismissing and closing cases. Remembering to “be patient, to show respect, and to allow consumers to determine their first steps,” takes a conscious decision. As a future advocate for the geriatric population I will attempt to not only keep these key concepts in mind, but will constantly improve upon whatever skills I have already mastered. Practice is the key to mastering any skill, and when it comes to people’s lives; it should not be approached haphazardly. Dedication, interaction, role-playing, accepting criticism, and practicing listening skills on friends and family will open my mind to fresh and current methods that prove to be beneficial for all those involved.

Works Cited

Austin, H. K. (1998). Delivering Human Services. New York: Addison Wesley Longman Inc.

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