Hume City Council

Government and Local Council


During the COVID-19 pandemic, the team at Hume City Council encountered a notable surge in challenging behaviours exhibited by their clients and occasionally their family members.


This escalation led to frontline staff experiencing heightened frustration and a sense of being overwhelmed, ultimately impacting their resilience and overall well-being.


The primary objective of the training initiative was twofold:

  1. Equip the team leaders and co-ordinators de-escalation skills. Provide the knowledge, understanding and practical response strategies to support deescalating for a range of aggressive and difficult behaviours..
  2. Team Consistency. Foster team consistency in adopting best practice response strategies and enhancing team confidence and resilience were key objectives.


Participants included supervisors, service staff, internal management and care co-ordinators who make up the care support service team at the council.


CCS specialises in providing difficult people training solutions for a range of industry and role specific needs. Managing Difficult and Demanding Clients is a workshop specifically designed for those in the care sector providing strategies to manage complex client interactions and heightened state behaviours.




After a series of pre-consultation meetings with the client we designed and agreed on a clear set of learning outcomes for the sessions based on their objectives. Some of these objectives were as follows:

  • For the team to identify early warning indicators to help defuse unnecessary escalation.
  • To develop a set of common team communication responses that maintained empathetic impact to clients and reduced the sense of impersonal transactional interaction.
  • To support the team with strategies that improved self-management helping staff to remain calm with lower stress when faced with client incidents.



Feedback from staff following the workshops has been overwhelmingly positive, particularly regarding the practical nature of the skills imparted.

Customised scenarios included in the participant guide effectively connected learning with real-world situations, enhancing relevance.

Staff implementing the self-management strategies reported improved resilience and healthier stress management practices, reflected in overall session evaluations rating 4.5 out of 5.



As the training continues throughout 2022, ongoing positive feedback underscores its practical benefits for daily client management within the care team.

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