I started working for Kura in April 2017, but have worked in my current position for the last 12 years. When it was first announced that our previous outsourcing provider had lost their contract, and we would shortly be transitioned across to Kura, I was, at first, particularly pessimistic.
I sat in briefings about Crossing the Bridge and how people-oriented this new company would be with an air of scepticism: how many times have I heard this? I thought. Are they really going to be interested in development, or is this just another hype that will fizzle and fade? After such a long time, I was very rigid in my approach and wasn’t convinced that there was anything I could take from this unexpected switch in employer, or anything they could show me about management that I didn’t already know.
However, I can honestly say that my development – both personal and professional – during the time that I have spent with Kura has been unrivalled in anything that I have ever encountered in terms of the professional sphere before. My colleagues, Operations Managers and Senior Operations Manager have been a constant source of support, challenge and development.
My journey with Kura has taken a few different turns: all of which have been beneficial to me and pushed me beyond my comfort zone. None of which, however, would I ever have imagined myself enduring or benefiting from.
Originally, I managed the Open and Closed complaint team. This was centred around ensuring that our agents handled complaints in a professional manner, whilst adhering to industry guidelines and standards. I was confident within this role, relished the nature of it, and had probably reached my personal ceiling. It was at this point that I was offered the opportunity to manage our Grad Team. A little reluctant at first, because I am not the most accepting person of change (and that is something else Kura has helped me to recognise), I then began to see it as an opportunity to move beyond something I felt quite comfortable with, and ponder potential opportunities to achieve elsewhere.
Within the Grad team my learning was again challenged and extended, I had to adapt my original focus to the requirements of this new role. It was really exhilarating to see people coming into the business without any preconceptions and being able to mould and develop them into successful contributors within the operation. We were truly able to underpin the Crossing the Bridge methodology here – taking people as they truly are, understanding where we want to get to together, and then beginning that journey; and it’s a continuous journey that begins the moment you walk through our doors.
Alongside all of that I have also been supported throughout my development towards an Operations Manager; and within this role I have grown beyond anything I could originally have imagined when I first stepped foot on this site. My confidence, my ability to challenge and think in terms of the business and its requirements, as well as assimilating the needs of the agents and the client, have all been learnings that I have taken away and incorporated into my approach as I move day-to-day. I have learnt that I don’t always have the answer, but I can definitely take accountability for finding out and making it work.
I am excited to see what the future holds for Kura and all of us who are at different stages in our development – as we singularly and collectively attempt to cross the bridge together!
Phil Naylor- Grad Manager, Liverpool