Looking after vulnerable people and helping to maximise their quality of life in the face of old age, illness and disability is an incredibly important and responsible role.

While knowledge and experience are very important, the most exceptional carers are often those who also have extremely good people skills and who integrate our values in the way that they deliver care each day. As part of our induction, we ensure that everyone new to the team understands and lives our vision and core values, which affect everything they do. We have also aligned the qualities required of our carers to our Canford Healthcare values.

  • Care
  • Family
  • Honesty
  • Commitment



We are committed to offering attentive, person-led care with kindness and compassion, rather than simply going through the motions and performing tasks mechanically out of a sense of duty. We want our residents to always feel safe, respected and comfortable, and also ensure that they maintain their sense of dignity throughout. When going about our daily duties, it is engrained in all of us to ask ourselves the all-important questions: “Would I feel comfortable receiving care in this way? How would I want my mum/dad/gran treated in this situation?” And, if something is wrong, getting it dealt with promptly.

Patient and calm under pressure

Caring for people with physical and psychological health issues requires calm and patience, as well as professionalism. If you are a keyworker to several residents, ensuring that everyone is looked after – and at their own individual pace – can be challenging. Performing care effectively while remaining unruffled and good-natured, however demanding the situation, is all part of the job.


Passion and dedication

Do you have a passion for helping those in need? Putting others before themselves is a trait that many care workers share, and most see their work as a calling rather than just a job. Even in difficult situations, the best carers go the extra mile for those in their care without expecting recognition or any other reward.

 Warm and friendly

A friendly presence ensures that residents feel happy, safe and respected. Being open and warm helps care workers build a good rapport with residents, developing better working relationships as well as long-term friendships.


Respectful and open minded

Residents are all individuals with their own rights and needs. Regardless of their lifestyle and beliefs, they should always be treated fairly and respectfully in a way that maintains their dignity and privacy and promotes their individuality.

Upbeat and positive

People with long-term (and often challenging) health needs require you to remain strong, positive and cheerful, especially during their difficult times, even if you yourself fall under pressure. And making them smile can make so much difference to their physical and mental wellbeing. Laughter really is the best medicine!



Our residents’ needs do not stop just because it’s the end of your shift! We need to be flexible enough to ensure that residents always receive excellent care, whatever the circumstances or time of day.

Keen to learn

Most people gain care qualifications while at work. Right from induction, training is both rigorous and ongoing to ensure you’re safe and effective at work. Treating every day as a learning experience and reflecting on how you’ve managed certain situations can also enhance your knowledge and skills.


Many vulnerable individuals see their care workers as their lifeline, performing the activities necessary for their daily living as well as providing conversation and friendship. Being reliable is a key requirement of the job – unnecessary short-term routine changes could cause physical and psychological damage. It’s also important to remember that we have a duty to protect residents at all times, shielding them from undue anxiety and maintaining a professional distance when required.

Core skills of exceptional care workers 

To develop effective teams, we need a mixture of care workers with complementary skills, which may include one or more of the following:

Clear communication skills

You will need to be able to read and write clearly in the language used by the service. Being a good listener is also essential. Interacting successfully with people from different backgrounds with individual (and often complex) needs is not always easy. Listening attentively to them, explaining what you are doing and asking their permission will help to forge a healthy and happy relationship. Clear communication with colleagues ensures that all residents receive an excellent level of care.

Strong interpersonal skills

The ability to work effectively on your own as an individual or as part of a team – whatever is required in a particular situation – is a highly desirable skill. This means being able to get on with the job under any circumstances and communicate clearly with all parties concerned, especially where conflict is involved or where people exhibit behaviours of concern.

Good organisational skills

Working in a care home requires planning and co-ordination with the rest of the team to ensure that residents receive their medical and personal care, nutrition and activities. You will also have to manage your own time and know how to prioritise tasks, sometimes when requirements change at very short notice. There’s a lot to remember, too, about the health, capability and needs of each resident – so being well organised is vital.

Problem-solving skills

Carers work in an increasingly complex industry. They must be able to think on their feet, always being alert to changes in a resident’s symptoms and behaviour so they can head off potential health problems before these become more serious. The ability to find solutions to resolve issues and challenges efficiently and effectively is very valuable.

Team skills

To develop an effective team, we require people who enjoy working as a team member under direction. We also need those with good leadership and organisational skills at all levels to create a constructive environment and enable colleagues to feel engaged, motivated and focused on the vital job in hand – delivering high-quality care to society’s most vulnerable people. A big part of leadership is about ‘walking the walk’ – consistently demonstrating good work practices and thereby positively influencing the quality of care throughout the home.

Proficiency with a smartphone

Most people nowadays can easily use computers, printers and other equipment. But for us, the ability to use a smartphone is essential because all our homes are digitally equipped. We pride ourselves on using current technology – not only to deliver care but also to free up time for more! You will need to be able to keep in touch with families, colleagues and professionals, especially in emergency situations.