Ros Helliwell believes that the skills she learnt during our Care training workshop proved to be excellent preparation for her new job.
After 20 years working in marketing, Ros felt it was time to change career and find a new role which allowed her to connect with people on a day-to-day basis. During her week at Think Employment, she managed to gain nationally-recognised qualifications in a brand new industry, as well as skills and knowledge she’s already been able to put into practice.
Earlier this week we caught up with Ros to talk about her time with us and her new role as a Support Worker for Leonard Cheshire.
Ros, when did you first become aware of Think Employment?
I went to a job fair in Manchester at the beginning of January because I was considering a career change and the care sector appealed to me. That’s where I first became aware of Think Employment and I spoke to someone briefly about the care training you offer.
What was it that made you think of changing your career?
I’d been working in marketing for about 20 years and I decided I wanted to do something different but didn’t have a clue where to start or what to do! I figured the jobs fair was a good place to start and I found a number of stands relating to care work and it dawned on me that it was something I might like to do.
You said that it dawned on you that care was something you might like to do. What do you think the driver behind that decision was?
I felt as though I’d done marketing, I’d done PR, I’d done internal communications, and I decided that it was time to do something different. Yes, I could have jumped back on the bandwagon and found another job in marketing but I wanted to do something for people. I wanted a job where I could really make a difference to people and a day-to-day basis. I’d been working in an office for the last 12 months and was starting to feel a bit detached and so I was keen to change that.
Along with our Care course, didn’t you find and apply for a job after attending the job fair?
I spoke to someone on the Leonard Cheshire stand and they convinced me to apply for a job as a Support Worker. Obviously I was a bit concerned because I didn’t have any formal experience or qualifications in that area but I was informed by the people I spoke to that it’s as much about a person’s personality and nature as it is about experience or qualifications, particularly at entry-level, which made me feel a lot more confident about applying.
So did you think that our Care training could help you to gain new skills and qualifications?
I wasn’t completely sure what I was going to get out of the training but it turned out to be excellent preparation because I was offered the job whilst I was doing the course! The things I learned allowed me to feel so much more confident walking into work on my first day as well as some important knowledge about the sector. For example, I didn’t know what a care plan was until I did the training at Think Employment.
What other skills do you pick up from the training that helped you in your role?
Just understanding the nature of what it is you are doing in the role. Respect is an important thing in care, what with person-centred and one-to-one personal care. Because of the workshop I did, I was more aware of what they all meant which helped me in the early days.
And finally, what did you think of the learning environment at Think Employment?
I thought it was nice and relaxed because you don’t come here to do hours solid learning from 9-5. You can speak to the tutors and discuss things out loud. Everyone was friendly and welcoming. I’d recommend people come to Think Employment to do a course like I have because it’s only a week-long course and it will give you the basics to start a new career and understand the sector you’re going in to.