“My time as an apprentice has flown by but it hasn’t all been plain sailing.”
I have been with Cross keys Homes for over 14 months now and this year I am due to finish my apprenticeship and secure my diploma in social media for business. My time as an apprentice has flown by but it hasn’t all been plain sailing. I spent the first five months of my apprenticeship learning in the workplace - it was my first time working in an office environment and I loved it! However, I then suffered a bad sports related injury in February which meant I was unable to work for 6 weeks. The day before I was meant to start my phase return to the office, the country was put into a national lockdown. Which meant my first day back was working from home and I didn’t really know what to expect.
This was when I found my apprenticeship the most challenging. Returning to work and trying to learn what had happened within the business whilst I had been off through virtual meetings and calls was difficult. Also, as I am part of the Communications team it was a very busy period with the impact of changing government guidelines needing to be shared with our residents as well as colleagues. But I am very lucky to be a part of a team that took the time to help me adjust to this new way of remote working - which still feels surreal to this day!
Covid-19 has brought lot of changes, but it has also presented me with many more opportunities to grow within my team and help in other areas of the business. For example, I got the opportunity to help with our Be Kind fund project by calling our residents to arrange appointments to collect IT equipment to support young people with home study. There has also been more scope for me to take on more responsibility. I took part in a remote-learning design course which has meant I am able to design my own content for social media – I recently put together my first campaign in January, which I really enjoyed.
Before starting my apprenticeship, I thought the role would mean I was primarily studying for my diploma and then I’d need to apply what I have learnt to my job. But it couldn’t be more different! I have learnt more from my team in an actual working environment than I have in my studies and I’ve been working on real projects since day one. I find myself applying what I have learnt from shadowing my team to the assessments on my apprenticeship course. I learn best through experience and practical application, which has really helped me to build my knowledge of marketing and is why an apprenticeship was the right choice for me.
Whether my next step is with Cross Keys Homes or branching out to a new challenge, my main aim is to be confident in the knowledge that I have acquired many new skills which I can carry throughout my working career.