Daniel, Team Leader

Daniel tells us about his experience in the care industry and why he chose the Children's Residential service.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Daniel, I’m 30 years old and I’ve been in the care industry for almost 12 years now. I started working in the adults' care sector as a support worker and worked my way up to deputy manager. Eventually, it was my time to leave, as I wanted a new challenge and I found my way to children’s residential care at West Sussex County Council.

I’m a very active person, I like rugby and play for my local team, Shoreham. I go on hikes, love travelling and anything exciting I like to do!

What made you want to change over and move into children’s residential care?

It was another thing to experience. My girlfriend worked in the children’s residential service and she told me it was good. It had also been a dream to work in a council. I’d thought about working in children’s residential care for quite a long time, but I hadn’t thought I’d get into it because my whole career up until that point had been supporting adults. However, I got the job and it’s been great!

What inspired you to become a team leader?

The main thing that inspired me was helping people. In my previous jobs, I always cared about improving people’s lives and supporting them in the best way that I can. I also wanted to learn new skills from other team leaders and managers to improve my own skills.

You mentioned you wanted to work for a council. Why did you choose to work for West Sussex?

West Sussex, I think for me, was a great opportunity to get onto the career ladder. The training opportunities are extensive. I like to progress in my career and deepen my knowledge as much as possible and there are a lot of other opportunities to develop yourself here.

I think they’re great at supporting as well; with my dyslexia, my managers have given me such great support, which is important to me.

What is the best thing about being a team leader at West Sussex?

I think learning new skills and the training. The training for team leader is probably the best training I’ve ever received - it’s up to date and person-centred, based around what your skills are.

For me, the training is more engaging and fun than what I’ve experienced in other organisations and companies, which have been quite boring. At West Sussex the training is available online as well, which is definitely a bonus.

What do you particularly enjoy about working in the children’s residential team?

It’s a whole new challenge for me and I love a challenge! I think seeing the children and young people’s faces really brightens my day. There are so many opportunities as well; there is so much we can do to help children and young people to enable them to achieve better lives as they grow into adults.

How does West Sussex support you to develop and progress?

The training is outstanding - there is so much training it’s unbelievable! That’s face-to-face and online as well, which is a bonus.

I think the opportunities to progress up the ladder and the support and training you receive to help you along the way is great. They give you the tools to be the best you can be in your role and wider.

So, do they provide you training so that you have the tools to progress to higher roles?

Yes, and the other staff are great in supporting you with this as well. They talk about their experiences and are happy to coach you as well. My manager is great in that area - she’s been supporting me perfectly and guiding me to progress and learn, which is really nice.

What has been your proudest moment at West Sussex so far?

I’ve only been working for West Sussex for six months and so far, my proudest moment has been getting the job and being part of the West Sussex Children’s team. Also, being part of a team that’s building a new home, BS, from the start, I’d say that’s one of my proudest moments too.

What would you say are the biggest challenges of being a team leader in West Sussex?

For me, I feel my dyslexia holds me back sometimes, but there is great support from colleagues and West Sussex with this. There are a lot of new methods, processes and systems that West Sussex has which I’m not used to yet, but I’m getting there!

If there is one myth you could bust about working in residential care, what would it be?

The full moon myth! People say that if there’s a full moon, the brain wires of people with learning disabilities and autism are much higher, so you’ll see a lot more activity from them, which simply isn’t true.

What would you say to somebody considering joining us?

I would say I think it’s a great opportunity for you! I have nothing but great feedback on the training and support that West Sussex provides. The money is good, the support is excellent and the people you work with are really welcoming, and there is great teamwork.

Find out more about careers in Children's Residential Services and view our current vacancies.

Last updated:
26 May 2022
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