In the middle of this year (June 2022), I will have been a speech pathologist for 28 years. I’ve had breaks at various times to travel and have children, but I have always come back to the profession. I have worked in many different teams, flown solo at times and have treated clients with all sorts of weird and wonderful issues.
Ten years ago I decided that it was time to make a new break. I had been working in a government position which I enjoyed, but I was chaffing to give my clients more. I wanted them to have more therapy opportunities, more flexibility in how they received services and more of me. I wanted to see my clients have every opportunity to make the changes they wanted to see in themselves.
Newcastle Speech Pathology was born from my desire to give my clients choices and me the opportunity to explore creative solutions to their problems. I wanted the freedom to really get to know and understand my clients and tailor-make therapy plans not just for them, but with them, in true partnership. I wanted to give my clients my best, to have time with them and not feel as though we were pushing through a programme or sticking to an inflexible therapy schedule.
I never set out to grow a large practice, I just wanted to offer my clients a different kind of service. One that gave them the opportunity to step off the therapy treadmill and take time to explore new possibilities.
Good things grow. It’s exciting but also challenging. Finding just the right team members who understand not just the way we operate at Newcastle Speech Pathology but understand our fundamental philosophy is not an easy task. This lead me to articulate exactly what I believe is at the core of my practice so that I can easily identify others who share my philosophy and are suited to joining our team.
The essence of our practice can be summed up by the three critical actions that my team and I are committed to taking every day.
Listening is at the heart of what we do. We take the time to listen to our clients and our colleagues because we are driven to understand each other. Through listening, we begin to understand our clients’ perspective, their needs, desires, expectations and goals. Only then can we shape a service that will be the right fit for them.
2. We Learn
We are constantly learning and asking ourselves ‘what do I need to know?’ This question guides our therapy, ensures that we maintain the highest evidence-based practice, and drives our understanding of our clients. What do I need to know about my client, their personal situation, their goals? What do I need to know to provide them with the best possible therapy? How can I apply my up-to-date professional knowledge to best meet their needs?
3. We Serve
Every day we consider the question ‘how can I help?’ This relates to our clients, their support network and our colleagues. We are here to actively serve and support each other. We look at situations from all perspectives and look for ways to help, not just as speech therapists but as wider community members. One of the ways we serve the broader community is through our support of The Freedom Project, which seeks to end slavery, one life at a time.
Working with a team who are equally committed to these critical actions makes working at NSP such a joy. Listening, learning and serving are at the core of our mission and I get to see how this affects our clients on a daily basis.
If you are interested in learning more about Newcastle Speech Pathology, as a client or a prospective team member, then please get in touch. We’d love to chat with you about your needs and expectations as a client. If you see yourself as a part of our team, please get in touch through our opportunities page.
NSP partners with individuals and families to give them the tools, confidence and support they need to improve vital speech and language skills. Whether it’s in school, at work, or in the community, everyone deserves to be heard and understood.