Did you know that working at Vinfen can not only transform the lives of the people we serve but can also transform your career? As one of the largest and most respected nonprofits in Massachusetts, Vinfen is a great place to develop a long-term career in health and human services. So where do new staff begin? Here are some tips from long-time Vinfen staff on establishing a rewarding and fulfilling career.
First, there’s no one right way. Staff are encouraged to explore different job opportunities and to progress along their own career path. As Vinfen’s Transition to Independent Program Team Leader Rachael Robertson says, Vinfen works really, “hard to develop the agency and provide enhanced programs, services, and seek out new business. They also provide the opportunity to have ‘choice’ in your career. There are other companies that I have worked for that have nowhere near the opportunities that Vinfen has.”
In addition, the journey is valuable. “Starting as a Residential Counselor in a high intensity home and then moving to supported housing for young adults was a great way to get experience working with different populations of people, who were in very different places in their lives and recovery. This not only helped me interact with people on different goals, but it helped me develop skills for assisting people according to where they were in their recovery,” states Vinfen’s Community Based Flexible Supports (CBFS) Rehabilitation Specialist Joseph Spinale.
Another suggestion is to take advantage of all the opportunities Vinfen has to offer. Vinfen’s CBFS Clinical Specialist Suzanne Waas says that, “I was involved in the mentoring program, in facilitating trainings, in many work groups, and as a trained fact finder. Becoming involved in many of these things, I feel, assisted me in many ways. First, they taught me more about the company and the people I work with, but I also got to know many people who were considered senior leaders and drew from their skills and expertise, which I feel has only helped me move towards achieving my goals.”
Vinfen’s CBFS Team Leader Kathryn D. Anzola stresses that, “I would encourage new staff to get involved in agency initiatives, activities (as well as area specific activities,) and get to know your colleagues and other departments.”
Finally, working hard and self-assessment are key to career development. “You have to want to do the job and do it well, because the work we do has such a tremendous impact on the lives of the people we serve. It also has a tremendous impact on us, so having the ability to take care of yourself, take time off, and use your colleagues and supervisors as supports, is very important,” reveals Kathryn.
Joseph concludes that, “If you’re here for the right reasons, and you’re willing to invest time in developing your ability to be effective, there are plenty of opportunities to move up the ladder.”
Interested in learning more? Vinfen recently developed a Career Ladder for positions in our Psychiatric Rehabilitation Division to show new employees how they can grow in their careers.