Personal journeys; Dave

“I found my forte in the care sector.”
Meet Dave
Residential Director - Children's Residential

Dave has been working at Keys since he was 21 years old, starting as a Support Worker in 2005 and now the Midlands Director overseeing both Residential and Family Assessment services. Find out more below.

What advice would you give to someone looking to work in care?
Keys already has all the opportunities and qualifications available, so my biggest advice would be that you just need to make sure you’re coming into the industry with the right attitude. By that I mean: you need to always try your best, want to learn, train and engage with whatever might be thrown at you. No day will ever be the same, you have to embrace the fact that there’s always going to be challenges and take the opportunity to reflect and develop from them. It’s that attitude that we look for from our applicants as it’s a big part of our company’s culture.

What are the responsibilities within your role?
Some days it can involve lot of meetings, that includes regular one-to-ones with regional managers for oversight of what’s happening in different areas. Depending on the week we can have different focuses, for example, anything from development, financials and quality, to filling vacancies if there are any and maintaining occupancy levels across the division. Looking at the bigger picture though, our collective goal and responsibility is very well said by our CEO, David. “We inspire, encourage and support children, young people and adults to achieve great things and lead happy, healthy and successful lives.”

Are you able to make your work-life balance a priority?
My work-life balance is very important to me, so I’m a very strong advocate of that and so are my regional managers. It’s directly correlated with maintaining a social life as well as good mental and physical wellbeing. We try to cascade that value down through all the services, because your “out-of-work” time should always be your own, and we as a company have a responsibility to protect that. To help me “switch-off”, I like to do bootcamp classes, hang out with my friends and family, while also taking time to reflect and prepare for the week ahead.

How has Keys supported your professional development?
Initially, I was uncertain as to whether this was the right path for me as I’d previously worked in the retail industry. However, I soon realised that I’d found my forte and knew that this sector would be the right fit. My manager at the time encouraged me to apply for a senior position and supported me to complete my NVQ. Since then, I have gradually progressed through several roles and completed a management qualification, which gave me the confidence to apply for the managerial position where I was dual registered across two homes in the region. Now, as the Midlands Residential Director, I’m looking to remain in this position for the long-term and am self-motivated to continue my development within the role. Keys have invested in my development and this has aided me to fulfil my roles to the best of my ability, as well as support others in their development to give them similar opportunities to what I’ve been fortunate enough to have had.

How did you get to where you are today in your career?
I started my career as a Care Worker in 2005 at the age of 21. I found my feet quickly and was soon encouraged to apply to the senior role. I was a Senior Support Worker for 2 years, a Registered Manager for 5 years at two different services before being redeployed to another home as Deputy Manager. After that, I decided I wanted to be a Regional Manager, I remained in that role for 7 years and last year was appointed Residential Director, taking care of Residential and Family Assessment services in the Midlands.
Dave's Journey

Is it time to try something different? A career in care where what you do has a powerful and immediate positive impact on the lives of people, could be the right fit for you.

Residential Support Worker Senior Support Worker Deputy Manager Home Manager Regional Manager Residential & Family Assessment Director

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