People behind our Places
In order to deliver our strategy of facilitating healthy communities, we need our people to pull together to provide outstanding service at our centres and our central support office.
For them to do that, we need to ensure that Places Leisure is a great place to work, regardless of the role a person plays within the organisation.
That's why we listen and act when our people speak. Take a look at our latest Big Colleague Survey results below, as well as meeting a number of our colleagues from around our centres below.
General Manager, Sparkhill Pools and Fitness Centre
When did you join Places Leisure? August 2022
What does community mean for you? "A place where everyone is welcome, where people feel safe and have a sense of belonging. An opportunity for me to be a role model and inspire the younger generation to be more active."
Any advice you’d give to someone considering a career with Places Leisure? "There is no better place to be, it's a great place to work with like-minded people, fast paced and no day is ever the same. There is lots to learn and plenty of professional and personal development available. There is a real sense of community within the work organisation and I have a huge say on how you can positively impact your local community. "
Swimming Teacher, Waendel Leisure Centre
What is your proudest moment working for Places Leisure? "It's hard to choose just one special moment because over 18 years there have been so many. I think the most emotional moment was watching Tom (Waendel's Swimmer of the Year 2022) who has cerebral palsy, move to stage five and swim out of his depth for the first time. Seeing the joy on his face and the pride of his parents was just magical."
What does community mean for you? "I really enjoy working closely with the community. The area where I work is one of the most deprived areas nationally but people still see the importance of learning to swim. We have a big cultural mixing pot in our town which means all sorts of barriers have to be overcome, including culture and language. Seeing people achieve things that they wouldn't normally do is the best feeling. I particularly enjoy working with people who have additional needs, creating a level playing field for those who have to fight harder in life."
Any advice you’d give to someone considering a career with Places Leisure? "Go for it! We have all sorts of people that work with us; people that choose roles for a lifetime, people passing through that want student jobs and people that want to work their way up. Whatever you want to do, there is a role for you, but you'll get out of it what you put in. I love my job and am happy doing what I do. I feel a sense of achievement when I teach and am lucky that it fits with my family commitments too. What more could you ask for?"
Assistant Manager, Wycombe Leisure Centre
What is your proudest moment working for Places Leisure? "My proudest moment was having the opportunity to interview the majority of our Senior Leadership Team as part of a series of videos talking about career development and pathways. This included talking to them about learning opportunities they took advantage of. All of this was aimed at encouraging colleagues to develop their learning and enrol in apprenticeships. What made this opportunity significantly more powerful for me was that within the same week of the videos being released, I was awarded a distinction grade for the management apprenticeship qualification I had been completing, which was funded through the company."
What does community mean for you? "A community for me means family and belonging. We have such a diverse amount of people, cultures, sports, activities, roles and responsibilities when working for Places Leisure. So what I love about our community is the fact that this community is my second family."
Any advice you’d give to someone considering a career with Places Leisure? "My advice for you if you are considering joining Places Leisure, is DO IT! Find a way to get your foot through the door, because when you are with us, we truly care about you and your development. The opportunity for career development is vast and immense and the resources allocated to you are second to none."
Group Exercise Instructor, Fairfield Leisure Centre
What is your proudest moment working for Places Leisure? "I was nominated for a Star Award in January this year for consistently delivering on our People Promises. After seven years working for Places Leisure and teaching numerous classes per week, I was and still am so proud of this huge achievement. Hard work does get recognition when working for a great company such as Places Leisure. I am extremely grateful to my line manager for nominating me for this Star Award. He recognised my passion to deliver a great class experience for my members. Giving my heart and soul to teaching every class is my number one priority."
What does community mean for you? "Bringing people of all shapes, sizes, gender, ages, and ethnicities together to create a safe, fun, and happy fitness environment. We are here to support them with their fitness goals and meet with people who have the same outlook. It builds a great community where members will look forward to their next visit. We have an exceptionally strong supportive fitness team. Our members' feedback from group exercise classes are phenomenal."
Any advice you’d give to someone considering a career with Places Leisure? "If you are passionate about doing your job well and knowing you will be made to feel appreciated, then you do not need to think twice. There are many roles at Places Leisure and many opportunities to progress further in your career. For example, there was a time when I needed more hours, and I was offered a role as front of house receptionist as well as teaching my group exercise classes. Also, it is a bonus to be working with a strong, supportive team in a friendly environment. We all enjoy building a community and creating active places and healthy people."