Amber Greenwood from TerryWhite Chemmart Kapunda/Eudunda in South Australia has been awarded the 2020 Glucojel Super Star Award National Winner. Congratulations Amber!
How does it feel to be named the National Glucojel Super Star Award winner?
I still cannot believe it. I love my job so much and to receive this award has just been an amazing honour and I feel like a real super star. This has given me a real push to continue furthering myself in the industry and seeing how many more lives I can play my part in.
My absolute favourite thing has been seeing all the comments on social media posts from customers about their experiences in store and how I have helped them, or moments that have stood out. It has been an awesome reminder of why I do what I do.
Are you looking forward to attending APP2021?
To have the opportunity to be surrounded by other likeminded individuals truly is a dream come true. I am eager to broaden my knowledge of the industry and how big it is and to see what else in happening in pharmacy around the Nation that we could implement back in Kapunda, and of course to socialise and meet others who love community pharmacy as much as I do.
Due to COVID, like many others, I missed out on attending APP2020 and cannot wait to see what further training and workshops are offered over the course of APP2021.
What has your career in pharmacy looked like?
I started my journey in pharmacy in July 2016 at the age of 18. I had always previously worked in customer service roles and knew I wanted a change but was not sure what that change entailed; I just knew I wanted to help people and to be mentally stimulated. After putting my resume in at the local pharmacy just on the off chance, I started full time almost immediately and enrolled to do my Cert III with the Pharmacy Guild. I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into.
The last 4 years have certainly been stimulating and unlike anything else I had ever experienced before. I started under an amazing man and an incredible pharmacist and was trained by him and a close team for the first 2 and a half years. After his passing in 2018 our team became even closer while we honoured his vision and continued servicing the community over the next 18months on our own until the business was sold. It was a real challenge that pushed me to be the best I could be and is always a constant reminder of that. Now under a new owner, I can continue my journey of learning and having a very driven boss to support me again. I cannot wait to see what else community pharmacy has to offer and how it will continue to change.
What do you love about community pharmacy?
I love being able to make a difference in someone’s day even if its small – and then to later see them when they return to the pharmacy or around town and to hear they feel better is the best possible feeling and thank you I could ask for.
Pharmacies are generally the first line for people who need a little extra help or are not feeling well and sometimes the smallest things make the biggest differences. To have the chance to brighten someone’s day just by caring about them and their health needs every day I go to work is an awesome feeling.
What makes your customer service so great and what advice do you have for other pharmacy assistants?
The biggest feedback I get is that I am always happy, and I have customers that have nicknamed me smiley. I offer kids balloons and try my best interact with every customer on a personal level and build a relationship with them. I know all their names and their children’s names, and make sure I ask how their family are going.
Working in pharmacy everyone I encounter is either sick or already struggling in one way or another and the best thing I can do is greet them with a big friendly smile and make them feel welcome. The pharmacy is a place no person wants to go but they can enjoy their time while having to be there.
My advice to other pharmacy assistants is, we ask our customers to share a lot do not be afraid to share a little bit back and put a personal touch into your work, you will be surprised how much people will open up to you if you open up to them first.
How did you find the workshop day and your PATY experience?
I can imagine PATY 2020 has been an experience unlike any other for everyone involved because of COVID, including myself, but true to pharmacy nature we found a way to make it work
I really enjoyed my time with the judges during our online interview we had a laugh and a good chat, and it was just like catching up with old friends. Overall, it was a great experience, and I am so honoured to have a part in it and will remember it for years to come.
Why do you think PATY is important?
For members of the community to be able to nominate and recognise great pharmacy assistants that have helped them is just as important as the recognition and congratulations a PATY nominee and winners receive. It’s like a warm hug from every customer you’ve every served and is confirmation that you are doing a good thing, and I think that is something everyone in every job needs to feel. In community pharmacy we give a lot to our customers and often find ourselves going out of our way to assist our customers and although we don’t do it for the thanks, PATY is a great way for the community to support their Pharmacy Assistant’s back.
Do you have a favourite area of the pharmacy or somewhere of particular interest?
My favourite thing about working in a small rural pharmacy is that I get to experience every area of the pharmacy. From being front of shop and building my product knowledge on everyday aids and meeting company reps to being in the dispensary learning about prescription medications and how they help customers. I get the chance to be involved in every stage of the customers visit and offer a complete service. One day is never the same as another, I think that is my favourite thing – everything.