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Being a carer is not a dead-end job!

The notion of caring as a dead-end job has been obliterated by leading home care provider Caremark. This is illustrated brilliantly by the career progression of Michelle Jackson, Managing Director of Caremark Redcar & Cleveland, who provides concrete evidence that caring is a thriving occupation with infinite career prospects.

Before starting out in the care sector, Michelle Jackson always had ambition. With an affinity for sales, coupled with a genuine desire to help people, she had originally established her own mortgage brokerage, but soon realised that her calling was in the field of care.

Driven by a yearning to make an impact, Michelle embarked on a remarkable career trajectory, starting as a care assistant in 2011, providing emotional and physical support to help customers enjoy life safely and independently in their own homes.

Actively encouraging professional development, Charles Folkes, the franchise owner of Caremark Redcar & Cleveland, empowered the rise of this compassionate and motivated individual, who has embraced every opportunity for learning and progression.

Having mastered her first role, Michelle was then promoted in quick succession from being a carer to becoming a coordinator, then supervisor, then compliance officer - a role specialising in Caremark recruitment.

At each step, Michelle welcomed every chance to progress and acquire new skills, and in October 2012, she set her sights high and secured the role of registered manager.

Equipped with a wealth of practical knowledge, Michelle came to epitomise the endless possibilities available within the field and the Caremark franchise, and became Managing Director and joint franchise owner of the Redcar & Cleveland branch in April 2021.

She now uses her hands-on experience to inspire the way she leads the 330+ care team, leading by example and challenging any outdated concepts of hierarchical or authoritarian leadership.

By advocating a supportive and collaborative management style, she ensures that the care her team delivers, mirrors the level of attention and compassion she would want for her own family members.

Michelle explained how her own experience helps with her approach to management:

“Because the team knows I’ve done their job, they know that I’m not going to tell them to do something I’m not willing to do myself.

“I also know how it feels to work in their role. I understand their stress and feelings, and I can relate to that, and that’s why we are a family. I don’t dictate, I am on the ground with them and part of the team, not someone superior locked away in a room.

“I run the business how I’d want my family to be looked after. The care that we give is the care that I would be happy to give my Nanna and Grandad to make sure they’re comfortable and safe at home.”

By progressing through all the roles on offer at Caremark, Michelle has amassed significant industry expertise, which has not only provided her with a comprehensive understanding of the business, but also given a deep insight into the needs of both customers and staff. Because of this first-hand knowledge, she’s able to provide exceptional training and guidance for her team, whilst cultivating a harmonious work environment where people feel valued and supported.

David Glover, Joint CEO of Caremark, commented:

"Michelle's remarkable journey from a care assistant to the Managing Director of our Redcar & Cleveland franchise is a testament to the power of hard work, unwavering determination, and an unwavering belief in her abilities.

“Her success story is a shining beacon, not only within Caremark but also in challenging perceptions of a career in the care sector. We take the utmost pride in supporting every member of the Caremark family to achieve their goals – offering various training opportunities and career advancement paths.

Through her dedication and commitment, Michelle is proof that a caring profession can be varied and full of opportunity. It is a great example of our progressive leadership style, highlighting the limitless potential for a career in care to aspiring professionals.”

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