Where were you before joining South Gloucestershire Council?
I joined the council from a mental health NHS Trust. One of my main motivations for switching to social care was so that I could build much broader relationships with those I work with than just looking at someone’s medical condition – we do a great job in health at helping people recover from illness and injury, but you can be limited in terms of what you can do when looking at social networks and wider interventions.
And has the reality of the job matched up?
Yes, I love that I can take forward plans with individuals. At that first ‘getting to know you’ type visit we’ll talk about the health issues which have brought people to us and hopefully I’ll be able to guide them to some quick ways to make life a little easier, but importantly we’ll also talk about what they want to achieve in the longer term and how we can bring together support to make those ambitions happen.
What’s important to me is that when I get back to the office, I have the autonomy and the resources to put those plans into action.
What do you like about South Gloucestershire Council?
The supervision is brilliant. Individual supervision happens regularly and is protected, but the council also sets great stall in the value of group supervision. We’re encouraged to take on different and new projects and share learnings with others. We’re encouraged to ask questions about ‘how we do things’ – there’s a genuine openness to creativity and innovation.
Beyond that, it’s a great environment to learn. We have access to the training we need, but we’re also working alongside and learning from others with fantastic experience and expertise. If I’m ever unsure about something, I know I can go to my manager, but better than that I can also talk it through with colleagues. The different teams work together in the same building and everyone is working towards the same aim of finding the best solution for those we work with.
Overall, I feel that the council cares about my wellbeing, my development and my career goals. It can be difficult job, but I feel happy being at work knowing that everyone has my back.