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Five for Friday with Doug Read 

The DCM Institute Professional Development program for village managers rewards participants who reach 1000 Professional Development points. This edition we spoke to Doug Read, Area Manager, ACT & NSW West, Uniting Independent Living
Did you have other jobs becoming a Village Manager?  

Prior to joining Uniting I had a career in Construction Project Management, Recreation Facility Management and Sports Management. All of these occupations required strong financial management, a high level of business acumen and most importantly, people management and negotiation with the latter being an essential skill for any successful Village Manager.  

What do you enjoy most about your role and the one thing that has shocked you about it? 

I enjoy the company of residents and fellow staff. I particularly enjoy opportunities to catch up over a coffee with residents to hear their life stories and share some of mine. I don’t think I have been particularly shocked by any events associated with my current role but I do find it interesting to see how some of the smallest, most insignificant issues can become major events after Friday night happy hour sessions! 

Doug with Keynote speaker, Matt Church, at Village Summit 2024
What have you gained from the DCM Institute’s professional development program? 

I particularly enjoy attending workshops that go into depth about legal matters and application of the Retirement Village Act. The opportunity to network with fellow workers is always great too.  

How do you manage your time to ensure you can balance responsibilities to residents and your operator, with your own learning and development? 

I find the best approach is to prioritise what is critical and needs urgent attention for reasons of compliance over anything else. 

The one thing you would tell anyone thinking of being a Village Manager. 

Have patience, be prepared to listen (a lot!) and most importantly, be consistent and mull the tough decisions overnight.  

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