Staff profile: Helen Gauld

I’ve been with the TCA for five years, and came in as the Finance Officer to a part time role. There have been considerable changes during that time; we’ve had a change of director and a reorganisation of staff and the dynamics of the organisation have changed.

From a financial point of view times are getting tough; I started just at the peak of the financial crash and where funding is difficult to secure, there are difficult decisions to be made and budgets are tight. This has thrown up a lot of challenges and that has got me involved a lot more in third sector experience. I had no experience of council funding, no experience of the charitable organisations out there and how they work before I came to the TCA.Helen-800x450

Working here has also opened my eyes to the problems associated with alcohol abuse as well. I never gave it a second thought before, about the issues that people have and that alcohol can cause. I enjoy the work as there is a lot of it that is daily or monthly routine, but every now and then you can get curveballs thrown at you for example funding bids to be submitted the next day and everything else has to be dropped.

I like working with figures. What makes this job enjoyable is that I know what I’m doing, I have confidence in what I’m doing but always open to taking on board what other people say, such as the board members. With finance, you have to give out information in various different ways because people understand information differently, especially when it comes to figures. That is something that I want to improve on – is explaining figures, as verbalising it can be quite difficult, but a good challenge. It is amazing how many people find figures difficult!

I enjoy doing the routine, the everyday things like bank books, financial reconciliation and dealing with the payroll and helping colleagues with information about tax. I really enjoy the tax side of things and have 20 years of experience dealing with tax and payroll.

It’s good fun because it is actually a good crowd of people here and considering what we do here, and what everybody else does, we can have a really good laugh. It is good not to take yourself too seriously!

Outside of work I go to Curves gym and there are lots of nice women there who I get on well with. I enjoy like knitting, especially for my grandson Gabriel, who was born in Feburary and also reading books and going out for walks.