Being involved in and working with the special needs community for over fifteen years now, I have seen some very good and very bad providers. As a provider it is your job to serve the customer, or person with special needs in this case. You must keep in mind what the parents want (if applicable), what your agency wants, but above anything else what your client needs from you.
Often, I have seen providers with personal agendas. They come into every situation with a plan and rules and strategies to achieve a goal they or the agency has set.
In all honesty, this style of providing is ridiculous. Do you feel and respond to situations the exact same way every day? NO! So your goals need to be set on a day to day basis on what your kid needs. You have to be understanding that they may not be able to do what you are asking of them at that current time; moreover, you have to be able to bring them to a regulated state so that they are prepared for what comes their way for the rest of the day. This is your duty, and our kids rely on that skill so heavily it must be taken seriously.
Also, with many of my kids, a relationship has to be formed BEFORE you can work on any type of learning skill. Think of it this way, if you were to be in school all day and come home to someone barking orders at you, are you really going to respond well to that person? Probably not. You have to be a friend first and consider their needs above your own, and then you can help them learn (if applicable).
Overall I guess I’m trying to say that we need providers and therapists to just use common sense. What would you want if you were in their position?
Above all other things, especially with our nonverbal kids, you need to remember that you are their advocate. They need you to see who they really are and understand what they need. To have a friend and to be supportive and stick up for their individual needs. It is a guarantee that by acting as such, you will ultimately better that child’s learning, love, and life.