“There’s so much opportunity in aged care and particularly at a fast-growing company like Opal. Most nurses probably don’t even think about ending up in a corporate role, but really anything’s possible – there’s lots of support and training to help you get where you want to go.”

Dean Saxby is the General Manager at Opal Mudgee. He completed his Registered Nurse training at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst, before exploring every aspect of nursing from the renal ward to the emergency department, and acute surgery to gastroenterology.

In the fast-paced hospital world, Dean longed for the opportunity to build up more of a relationship with the patients he supported. This was exactly what he found when he started work at an aged care home in Sydney’s Randwick. Dean worked his way up to Deputy Director of Nursing, where he took his first steps into management, getting involved in the ACFI quality process and preparing the home for accreditation.

With this experience under his belt, Dean moved to Western New South Wales to take up a role with Opal Aged Care as regional ACFI officer, with responsibility for quality, clinical systems and processes, and maintaining funding streams.

After three years, Dean secured the role of General Manager at Opal Mudgee, bringing together his clinical and management experience.

Asked what success looks like in his role, Dean says, “My number one job is to make sure the residents are safe, well looked after and happy. There’s a huge amount involved in making that happen, from high-quality clinical care to lifestyle, environment and much more. It’s a challenging job but also a great career stepping stone. When I think about the future, I’d like to work at a senior management level where I can positively influence the policies and processes that make a difference to residents at a local level.”