“RANSW is a terrific place to work. No matter your career stage, there is something here for you as long as you’re willing to give it everything you’ve got.”
After more than 20 years working in the counselling space, Herb is more passionate than ever about the change he is able to help create in his role at Relationships Australia New South Wales. Before joining the organisation in 2007, he worked in private practice, corrective services, offender programs and in drug and alcohol specialist support. It was his work in rehab centres that first motivated him to specialise in helping families.
“Once I started working in rehab, I realised just how big an impact addiction can have on family and friends. It’s why I started doing further study in this area and came into contact with RANSW. I also knew of RANSW’s great name, history and the work they did in the community, and this encouraged me even more to join.”
As a Senior Couples & Family Counsellor across Macquarie Park and Dee Why, Herb has spent 8 years at RANSW working with couples and families. More recently, he spends time running programs focused on domestic violence and men’s behavioural change.
When Herb first came on board with RANSW, he was quickly exposed to what he believes is a powerful strength of the organisation – the way in which they support and welcome not only clients, but also new team members.
“When I first began here, I felt so supported and that feeling hasn’t gone away. Our teams are fantastic and the way I was welcomed into the organisation impressed me. On day one, I knew this was a great place to be.”
It’s not hard for Herb to talk about what he loves most as a counsellor. A few highlights are: the opportunity to understand different personalities; the challenge of working through clients’ issues; and being able to develop a trusting connection with those he helps.
“What I love about counselling is the challenge. People present with the same problems all the time, but how they’re experiencing these difficulties is quite unique. There is a challenge in understanding each client or couple and in always helping to find a solution. It makes work incredibly interesting.
I really enjoy the balance and the variety of what I do, from individual counselling to group work. I also get to supervise a team of up to 10 counsellors. It’s terrific to have a variation of work within the same realm. I don’t think many people can say they have that but it’s available at RANSW and it keeps me so enthused. There is no room to be bored here!”
Like all great people at RANSW, there is an admirable level of motivation behind everything that Herb does. When talking about what drives him most, he talks about four things: being part of a process that facilitates positive change; the challenge and reward of the work; working with experienced, compassionate teams; and the opportunity to continually expand your skills.
“I don’t know what it is about RANSW, but I’ve never worked with more dedicated people. It’s not just the counsellors, it’s across the whole organisation and it’s the same from office to office. I’ve never met a person at RANSW who I would consider a bit of a ‘slacker’. I believe we only have dedicated professionals who are focused on quality outcomes, and who don’t get upset over extra work. We’re all striving for excellence.”
Given the challenging nature of the work, Herb knows from experience that self-care is a big part of his role. Being supported by RANSW and the team around him helps him get through testing times, but looking after himself is also key.
“My focus at the end of the day is always caring for myself and making sure my well-being is in check. The reality is, there are sometimes tough sessions but we’re always going to give time to debrief and support one another.”
The success of RANSW is incredibly important to Herb and he knows that the work he does, along with his outstanding team, is a critical part to achieving positive outcomes in society. And how do we create positive change and succeed? The answer every time is having great people.
“In my eyes, success is having the best people at RANSW. It’s so important in the sort of work we do. Looking around my team I feel so confident in our abilities. A stand out for me is their dedication. People here genuinely care for our clients. I know we’re all here for the right reasons and if someone isn’t seriously dedicated, they’re not going to be helpful. Everyone here comes from a compassionate space and that’s a powerful thing.”
Herb is looking forward to continuing on his professional journey with RANSW and bringing his skills and expertise to a team of dedicated counsellors and support staff. Always quick to encourage people to join, he advises that anyone exploring a career at RANSW needs to be ready to go the extra mile.
“I’m looking forward to continuing with the work I love, and for all the opportunity that may come up next. The possibilities are exciting! RANSW is a terrific place to work. No matter your career stage, there is something here for you as long as you’re willing to give it everything you’ve got.”