Career Stories is an article series about the people who work at Kindred. For this article, we sat down with Taina Grech, Responsible Gaming Analyst, to talk about passion, sustainable gambling and seizing opportunities.
Tell us a bit about yourself, what is your passion?
For me, passion springs from curiosity and an openness to new things. I still remember when a person close to me, just before he passed away, said “make sure you live the life I lost”. In a simple yet very compelling manner he encapsulated what life is really about: making the most of every day and dare to embrace your curiosity. With that in mind, I believe that the best way to live a fulfilling life is to explore the world, connect with new people and learn to cherish excitement, even in the little things. One of the ways that allow me to live out my passion is through travelling, through which I get to learn about different people and their stories. Yet, I’m lucky to be able to realize my passion in my everyday life as well, not the least through my work in which I’m constantly challenged and given room to explore my curiosity.
Imagine telling your family about your daily work, how would you describe it?
In short, I would tell them that I’m making gambling more sustainable. What that means is looking at players’ behavior, analyze and de-risk. Through such tools, I can provide expertise and guidance on how to adopt and integrate different measures that make gambling less harmful and more enjoyable. Basically then, I do my best to make sure gambling stays a positive and safe experience for our players. Kindred have put a lot of emphasis on making the gambling industry more sustainable, and I feel proud to be a part of that journey.
How did you end up in current position at Kindred?
From my very beginning at Kindred, I’ve felt a growing interest in responsible gambling (RG). I think it came quite naturally for me, as I’ve always found the psychological aspects of gambling very interesting. Maybe even more so, I believe sustainability to be an imperative part of the industry’s future. By working with RG, I get to combine both those areas into something important and rewarding. When I first heard that there was a position focused on RG available, I was instantly intrigued, but felt a bit insecure about whether I was the right fit. At that point I got some well-needed encouragement from what came to be my team leader, after which I applied and ultimately got the required training.
It’s often said that learning is a lifelong process, how does Kindred help employees to develop and pursue new interest?
We are constantly given opportunities to innovate, educate and challenge both ourselves and others, for instance through in-house training initiatives. Generally speaking, having a positive and open mindset will get you far, both at Kindred and in life.
Kindred was recently recognized as a Great Place to Work by the UK’s Best Workplaces 2019. Why do you think 87% of employees say Kindred is a great place to work?
First and foremost, our beautiful and spacious office help to create a relaxed and productive atmosphere. Even more importantly though, the people here are genuinely positive and makes everyone feel appreciated. It’s a place where we empower each other through support, transparency, corporation and honest communication. Our values are not only something that sounds nice on paper, but a way of thinking that actually permeates our entire work environment.
Kindred is proud to employ people from all over the world, what’s the best thing about working in such a multicultural environment?
Through our internal talent development team and their extensive course offerings, we are regularly given opportunities to learn more. Needless to say, my move into the RG-department is another telling example where I was able to pursue my interests and felt supported while doing so. I think that truly speaks for a capacity to let employees advance and explore different directions in their careers.
What is one moment that you will always remember from your time at Kindred?
The move to our new office is something that I’ll never forget (Yes, that office that I’ve already bragged about). But there are also much more “mundane” things, such as the general feeling of excitement and appreciation that I’ll always associate with my time at Kindred. Lastly, I’ll cherish Kindred’s forward-looking way of working and the constant anticipation of what’s to come that comes with it.
Finally, what advice would you give to someone who is starting out their career at Kindred?
Believe in yourself, embrace your individuality and learn to appreciate what both you and your colleagues bring to the table. Keep in mind that it is more important to be eager to learn, than to know it all. Besides that, just remember to have fun and you’ll love your time at Kindred!