For a while now we’ve been talking about what our team are up to here at One Stop Social HQ, how excited we are about upcoming projects and our dedication to providing social work and care professionals with the best service we can; but we realised something this week. We’ve never told you much about the people who actually make One Stop Social possible! With a few new team members joining us this month, we thought we’d take a moment to introduce you to the wonderful people who are behind every social media post, new business venture, training workshop and more.
We’re a bit of an unorthodox company as we don’t believe in hierarchies within an office. Every employee brings a particular set of skills we need (no, not like Liam Neesen in Taken) so we are very much a team working together, to do the very best we can for you! So here’s a bit of a look at who’s behind the curtain at One Stop Social:
Who are you?
Matt Hughes: Director and Social Worker (“Oh Captain My Captain”)
Elena Jones: Marketing, Communications & Events Executive (aka: Chief Social Media Pest)
Neil Byers: Head of Adult Social Care Services (“Our go-to relationship guy”)
Panagiota ‘Yiota’ Iosifidou: Financial Intern (aka: “The Numbers One”)
Shaira Abdullah: Information Systems & Project Management Intern (aka: “The Techy One”)
Debora Barbosa: Digital Marketing Intern (aka: “The Media One”)
What does your typical day look like?
Matt: “Nothing happens before coffee, but I’m up early answering emails and plotting new projects for the company. Then I check in with the team and see what we’re all up to that day. Usually I’m then running around the country at meetings for One Stop Social partnerships or supervising students in my capacity as a social worker.”
Elena: “Everything starts with Facebook and Twitter for me! As I check in on our social media and answer any queries people have, I fill many post-it notes with jobs to tackle that day (I love the ability to throw away a list after finishing tasks!). Lately my job is dominated by organising our first convention “Work and Care Together”, so I’m calling our fabulous partners, emailing out information and making sure it’ll be a success!”
Neil: “I usually steady myself with a double dose of Berocca, (at my age I need them…), and, as soon as they’ve kicked in, straight onto answering emails and messages!”
Yiota: “Although I haven’t started yet I know my day will start and end with numbers. Yes, I’m really excited about that!”
Shaira: “My day starts with a hot cup of tea (my one good start to the day!) whilst checking my emails. I like to jot down each and every task I need to complete throughout the morning, so I can keep on top of things. Throughout the day, you’ll find me project managing, liaising with clients or editing the OSS website. I’m also working on a top-secret project for OSS that I can’t tell you about, but am so excited for!”
Debora: “Wake up, exercise, design branding for OSS, maybe create a promotional video, work with Elena on our campaigns and communications projects, study for my degree in Business and then sleep!”
What’s it like working for One Stop Social?
Matt: “BUSY! Developing this company from the ground up has been an incredibly rewarding experience, as I’ve had great feedback from social workers, care professionals and students about how helpful our services are.”
Elena: “Every day is a little bit different, I get the chance to write news pieces, post across social media and plan events. Above all it’s a fast-paced environment with a great team, trying to achieve a really positive goal of helping social work and care professionals.”
Neil: “Since Matt asked me to come on board 18 months’ ago, One Stop Social has grown and developed more than I ever originally thought possible, (at least, in such a short space of time!). I start work every day looking forward to what the day will bring, and knowing that by the end of that day, we will have made a difference to the quality of care people receive. That’s the passion that One Stop Social is built on.”
Yiota: “In such a friendly environment, I know from now that it isn’t gonna be boring!”
Shaira: “With One Stop Social growing rapidly, there are a lot of things going on – which means we’re constantly working on improving different aspects of the business. This makes it incredibly exciting, especially when you have a supportive team”
Debora: “The way we work is different and gives me a lot of freedom to try new things and learn more.”
Why do you like working in social work and care?
Matt: “I like to make a positive difference in people’s lives… Or at least I like to think I do!”
Elena: “I get to learn more about a sector that does really valuable work and feel like I’m helping people with every little job I do as I promote the information on our site. It’s not every day you find a Marketing position that’s so rewarding!”
Neil: “Having worked in various roles in care throughout my career, (since time immortal!), I got to a point where I felt I really wanted to make a difference, to change things for the better, and my role here allows me to do that.”
Yiota: “I was given the opportunity to start my career in a fast-growing company and that’s the greatest way for me to build upon my skills.”
Shaira: “It’s very rewarding to know that people out there are benefiting from the posts and resources we create – it’s a nice feeling!”
Debora: “It’s a very different company from others I have worked with. I have the chance to learn tons about the social work and care industry which is great!”
What keeps you motivated in the office?
Matt: “The team will always be chasing me to get things done so it’s hard not to be motivated! Coffee helps too!!”
Elena: “Music. One day it’ll be Queen, another day showtunes or classic 80s tunes to motivate me… I am never found without earphones in and the rest of the team make me jump all day long!”
Neil: “Knowing I get to treat myself to some shopping at the weekend!!”
Yiota: “Unlimited coffee!”
Shaira: “Tea, tea and more tea”
Debora: “Because I am able to listen to music and take my breaks whenever needed – this makes the time just fly and before I know it’s already time to go home!”
Crucial Question: Cats or Dogs?
Matt: “Can I not say both? For now cats win as I’ve got a British shorthair.”
Elena: “Dogs. No question! I’ve got a Weimerana back at home in Spain called Leo (yes short for Leonidas, he rules Sparta)”
Neil: “I’ve had cats for about 20 years now, from Manannan Lourdes, (Manannan as he was a Manx cat, and Lourdes as Madonna named her baby Lourdes), to Biba and Sadie, the latest two. I am Godparent to a prima donna King Charles Spaniel called Pollyanna of my friend’s too, so guess any animals in general!!”
Yiota: “Dogs of course! Although my dog has manners that remind you of a cat!”
Shaira: “Dogs without a doubt. Fluffy dogs. Never owned one but I stop every time I walk past one.”
Where will your 'wanderlust' take you next?
Matt: “Spain, I’m off to visit family and fall asleep on a beach! First holiday in 18 months!!”
Elena: “I actually have a short escapade planned to Prague in a few months to visit one of my closest friends! Then it’s a road-trip to Sardinia!”
Neil: “I want to drive along the Amalfi Coast in a Jaguar XK120 down into Portofino and sip Limoncello by the harbour. Maybe for my next big birthday!!!!”
Yiota: “Although I’ve travelled quite a lot, I’ve been only in Europe. So now I’m planning a big trip somewhere not so common for next summer.”
Shaira: “Currently planning a trip to Bali with my best friends”
Debora: “Japan I believe! An adventure camping around Mt. Fuji during summer.”
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
Matt: “Stop time – there’s never enough hours in the day!”
Elena: “Flying – it would save me any drama with trains during my daily commute!”
Neil: “Invisibility – I’m so nosy, it’d save me the hassle of trying to look discrete!!”
Yiota: “Eating a lot without gaining weight! Come on, I know that’s a superpower!”
Shaira: “I’m pretty keen on being able to teleport myself!”
Debora: “Flying or going through walls.”
What's the biggest achievement in your life?
Matt: “I’ve played semi-professional rugby since I was 18.”
Elena: “Ask me again in a month and I’ll be able to answer properly: Work and Care Together. Pulling off an event of this scale straight out of uni is such a great opportunity for me!”
Neil: “As Patsy’s sister Jackie said in Ab Fab, “Just to avoid the cosmetic surgeon’s knife for another year”!”
Yiota: “I was a professional athlete back in school and although it’s been a long time since then, I still feel proud when looking back to my achievements.”
Shaira: “Not really a big achievement but I feel a sense of accomplishment whenever I trek mountains – my dream would to conquer Mt Everest”
Debora: “Building an academic and professional career in the UK entirely on my own. I love this country and I am really proud of being here! I also have published 2 books, including 1 about learning 7 languages in 7 years!”