Team Profile: Katie Pilkington – Assistant Director

We have some amazing news, because four, yes four(!), members of our team at Preston have been promoted so this week we’ll be interviewing a team member each day.

Last, but certainly not least is Katie. Katie has progressed from our Registered Manager at both our Preston sites to Active Pathways’ Assistant Director.

What’s your career background?

I joined the Active Pathways team in 2008 but prior to that, I wasn’t in the care sector. I worked as an Operations Manager and General Manager for a couple of leisure brands.

How long have you worked at Active Pathways for?

I have worked at Active Pathways since 2008 and during that time I have had a few different roles. My most recent ones included being the Registered Manager for The Hamptons and Brookhaven (our services in Preston) for 7 years and prior to that I was the Governance and Special Projects Lead which covered approximately 17 of our services at that time.

What does a day in the life of an Assistant Director look like?

I was previously the Registered Manager and I’m now progressing to Assistant Director (although I’ve been doing dual roles for the last 18 months).

In my previous role, even though I was in the role for 7 years; every day/week was different with a new challenge or something else to learn and develop from. I was accountable and responsible for delivering and sustaining a high standard of both operational and clinical quality. I was also responsible for leading and supporting our teams on a daily basis and, in doing so, ensuring a positive and open culture in line with our values.

Over the years I have led on the development and implementation of new systems and process in order to support good governance; continuing to improve both the working environment for our teams and the service we provide to those we support. It was busy and challenging but very rewarding! In my new role … I imagine it to be just as busy but just in different ways! My priority will be to support all our Registered Managers, in both Preston and Leeds, to the best of my ability and continue to support Active Pathways through our growth plans – exciting times ahead!

What’s been your highlight so far about working at Active Pathways?

There’s been so many!! There are the bigger highlights such as achieving the overall Outstanding CQC ratings for both The Hamptons and Brookhaven in Preston. Both where such proud moments; knowing that all the hard work our teams do was recognised. It was also reassuring to know that we’re providing a high-quality service to those we support.

Achieving the GOLD Investors in People award was also another big highlight as it meant that we were on the right path in relation to supporting and investing in our teams. This not only benefits our teams in relation to skill and personal development but if we look after our teams then we’re contributing to ensuring they are better able to support our service users.

I also enjoyed leading on the roll out of our Champions Model as this really promoted the whole team and those we support to be directly involved in our service development plans, with them being fully involved in the decision making and the changes we made.

Then there’s the day-to-day highlights which are just as important; like watching the team support people every day to be as independent as possible and ultimately seeing this result in successful discharges to the community. We have such a great team!

Would you recommend working at Active Pathways to a friend?

Yes absolutely! Active Pathways is an empowering, caring and inclusive place for both our teams and service users.

I believe the culture that is driven throughout Active Pathways is one which empowers people (both teams and service users) and one which drives continuous improvement. Your ideas are listened to and acted upon which means you have a real ability to influence what we do and feel like you can truly make a difference.