“It’s never too late to change direction, believe in yourself, don’t try to be all things to all people – just be true to you"

Date published: 08 March 2021
Di Krochmal

That is the motivational message from West Lindsey District Council’s Assistant Director of Homes and Communities, Di Krochmal, who is celebrating 17-years at the Council this month.

Di starting as a part-time enabling and monitoring officer at the Council in 2004, when she was in her early 40’s, her first job in the public sector.

She said: “I didn’t see it as a ‘career change’ – it was a part time job that I liked the sound of and the hours suited me as they fitted with school hours. I’d applied for the same job twice – not being successful either time as I ‘didn’t score highly enough.”

Looking back on her unsuccessful applications,  Di said it was ‘hardly surprising’ she didn’t score high enough for the local authority job.

But in her 20-plus-years of work experience as a sales negotiator in both new homes and estate agency and advertising sales for a number of newspapers, not to mention owning her own tea shop and being a lifeguard, there was something that made her stand out.

She said: “The Head of Community Services must have thought I was worth a risk and when the role became vacant for a third time she contacted me and offered it to me. Seven-years later I’m proud to still be working for West Lindsey and I’m grateful that she took that risk.”

Despite the opportunity, Di admits she didn’t have a career plan. She said: “I just enjoyed what I was doing, the continual learning, the constant changes and all the challenges that came with the various roles I’ve held.

“I’m lucky that I’ve worked with and still work with inspirational women of all ages. My message to them, and especially to the younger generation, would be – it’s never too late to change direction, believe in yourself, don’t try to be all things to all people – just be true to yourself, be proud, be kind and support one another – we’re all just doing our best.

“One of the most satisfying things for me is sharing my knowledge, experience and time and seeing colleagues grow, develop and succeed so that they too can enjoy what they do, embrace the learning, the change and the challenges and be proud.

“I’m fortunate that I’ve had women who have supported and encouraged me in both my personal and professional lives and I hope there is someone somewhere that I have influenced in the same positive way.”

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