Kirsten Wildman - Head of Operations
What is your current role? I’m the Head of Operations for the north region. My job is really varied. I lead the teams based in the upper north of the country who are tasked with letting, managing and maintaining, safe and affordable homes through the provision of excellent housing management, repair and supported services to our residents.
We work in collaboration with our external stakeholders on local priorities, and with our residents to develop and deliver our local offers and neighbourhood services.
How has your career developed at Clarion?
I started working for the organisation in 2004 as an Estates Manager in North Staffordshire. Back then, we managed everything locally and I managed a team of Maintenance Operatives and Estate Assistants. Residents came to the estate office to speak to us about their issues, we managed rent arrears, Anti-Social Behaviour (ASB), and organised the maintenance teams so they were doing the repairs, void work and cyclical painting. We started to centralise services in 2006 and my role changed to Housing Manager for a wider area. I’ve had several promotions since then, Regional Manager, then Assistant Head of Housing and now 16 years on and two children later I’m now working in my current role as Head of Service and I love every minute of it.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
The great people who work for Clarion, especially the fantastic team in the north who are all totally committed to providing a great service to our customers. I love the variety of different things that I get involved with, every day is different and there is always plenty going on, which keeps me busy. I don’t get out to talk to customers much these days, but when I do it brings it home to me that our work really does make a difference to people and that is so rewarding.
What is your favourite work memory?
There have been so many, but it has to be when I was new to my Estate Manager role and a customer called up and asked if I could send one of the maintenance team around to wallop her walls. I’m from the South West originally and had recently moved to the area, I thought she wanted someone to go and hit her walls, which seemed quite a bizarre request. I had no idea about the colloquialisms and she was asking for someone to go and paint her house!
What advice would you give to someone looking to join your team?
If you have enthusiasm, a willingness to work hard, and are a team player you will go a long way.
Tell us an interesting fact about you.
My family have been researching our family tree and found that I’m related to Sir Walter Raleigh. He was my third cousin 15 times removed.