Lisa’s passion for caring for others led to her dream job

by KinCare — 22 January 2019

The first light bulb moment of Lisa’s career didn’t happen on the job, it was while tenderly caring for her elderly Nan that she discovered her great gift.

When you first meet Lisa, a KinCare Customer Care Manager, it’s clear that this mother and grandmother is a very compassionate individual.

When her own cherished Nan got sick, Lisa determined to be there for her every step of the way; helping her Nan overcome tough daily hurdles like showering and eating.

“I think caring for my Nan was the thing that really let me understand how older people are feeling when they are ill, feeling down, or worn out,” says Lisa. “I also saw for the first time how families feel when their loved one isn’t coping at home anymore.”

Today, Lisa cares for her own family. Lisa didn’t always know that helping others could also be her livelihood, but pivotal life lessons with her Nan have helped her discover – and retain – her passion.

Ultimately, this desire to help the most vulnerable in our community led Lisa to pursue a successful career in a large nursing home. She relished the challenge of helping older people live their best lives. She climbed the ladder to become operations manager and it was immensely satisfying.

However, after 30 years, Lisa knew something was missing. She was now heavily involved in the logistics of running the nursing home, and no longer getting the chance to connect face-to-face with people like her Nan and Mum each day – something she dearly missed.

That is why, Lisa recently came to work at KinCare in the important frontline role of Customer Care Manager. It’s a role that combines the best of both worlds – big picture thinking and logistical skills – and direct contact with our Customers.

“What I like at KinCare is that I get to have the one-on-one contact with Customers in their homes. I get that quality time to really support them better.”

“At the nursing home there were 102 residents and I did spend some one-on-one time with them, but my role also included maintaining and supplying equipment, staff rostering, as well as training and assessing in the facility. What I like at KinCare is that I get to have the one-on-one contact with Customers in their homes. I get to work with our Customers and their families to help them find the best way to stay in the home.”

Lisa is thrilled that she now gets to connect all day with our Customers to ensure they always feel supported and get the services they need. It’s a challenging and stimulating role that combines the best of her account management skill and clinical expertise. Australia-wide, KinCare is always looking for registered nurses and allied health professionals to fill roles like Lisa’s and transform lives.

She admits, at first, she was nervous about moving to KinCare – she’d been with her old employer for her entire career. 

“But six months in, I know I’ve made a good decision,” she says. “My customers are just lovely. I couldn’t have met a better bunch of people that I case manage.”

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At KinCare, a typical day begins with answering phone calls from Customers who could need anything from transport, to a medical appointment, to simply someone to talk with. But what Lisa loves is that 75 per cent of her time is now spent visiting Customers in their own homes, rather than sitting behind a computer. She is responsible for 58 Customers in Sydney and wider NSW and visits each person once every six weeks to review and assess them and ensure they are receiving the best possible support to remain living independently at home. After each visit, her job is to then advise the person’s Home Care Workers, and other support workers, of any changes they need to their services.

“Expect great teamwork, an excellent environment to work in and wonderful support. Lovely Customers and staff to meet and a very friendly environment.”

In this short time with KinCare, Lisa is amazed at how many happy memories she has made. One favourite is visiting a “beautiful family” who were struggling as the elderly wife often needed to lift her husband from his chair and had injured her shoulder. Lisa was able to arrange for the couple to access equipment that dramatically reduced the physical burden on the wife, and alleviated the worries of their daughter. It was life-changing.

“They’ve got all the equipment now – they’re happy and no longer stressed. The wife feels safe to leave her husband with one of our Home Care Workers as she knows he is getting the support he needs, and she will get her time out to go shopping or go for a coffee. Seeing them grow is inspiring.”

Another win that made Lisa feel overjoyed was for the elderly woman who she noticed on a visit had become very isolated. She helped the lady get a tablet computer so that she can stay connected with her family and friends and play Solitaire for entertainment.

“I’ve also got one customer who likes to potter in the garden and she explained on my visit that she wants her Home Care Worker to potter with her or take her to the nursery for plants. So now I’ve been able to schedule that into her Home Care program.

“It’s so incredible to see the expression on people’s faces when you say you have a solution,” Lisa explains. “And I just love that I am helping their families too.”

Asked what people can expect if they come to work at KinCare, Lisa responds:

“Expect great teamwork, an excellent environment to work in and wonderful support. Lovely Customers and staff to meet and a very friendly environment.”

When asked what makes her good at her job, Lisa says it’s simply about putting people first.

“I talk to our Customers about where they were born, what they did in their life. I look at the whole picture of who these people are. We all want the same thing, at any age – to be respected and cared for.”

It’s a lesson Lisa learnt early in life – and one she will never let herself forget.