Looking back I probably was one of those slightly unusual children whose playtime seemed to gravitate to building things, electronics or digging tunnels in the garden. I liked seeing how things are made and clearly remember unscrewing old electrical appliances and seeing the inner workings behind them.
Growing up in a big family I learnt two things: pulling my weight and the economies of scale! Making up 8 packed lunches taught me a lot about “mass production” and the benefits of standardisation. I also loved the idea of automation and getting machines to do repetitive and tedious, yet, necessary tasks. We had an extremely prolific apple tree which blessed us with a huge number of large cooking apples. One time my brothers and I developed a small stewed apple factory with an upside down bicycle that we rigged up to peel the apples, which my other brother de-cored and chopped for all he was worth. I dreamed of becoming a robotics engineer; machines were the way forward, and a career in engineering seemed the right choice for college and university.
I started working for one of the UK largest engineering companies and had a great time as a techie and was lucky enough to be involved in some seriously fun projects with brilliant people to whom I owe a lot. I was ambitious and started seeing a pattern in how remuneration worked. This caused me to move from engineering into project management and working with people rather than technology itself.
I was also getting interested in real wealth creation and wanted to become less “niche”. I eventually left the defence giant and became manufacturing manager at a Perforation company in Reading with line management responsibility and quantifiable output easily linked to the bottom line of the company. It was a perfect place to learn about business, manufacture, Lean, quality and most importantly the role of people in company. Again I owe so much to those who invested me.
Since then I have worked as a manager in a pilot production where I straddle the gap between scientific insights to productionisation, turning ideas and theories into tested reality.
I have always been a hard worker but my energy and application seemed to fail to lead me to meeting wider goals for myself and my family. I was a “yes person”, enjoying helping people at the drop of a hat. A good friend of mine introduced me to coaching and soon I was facing up to “saboteurs” deep down in my psyche which had been un-challenged my whole life. I began to believe in my own skills and making sure the most important things in life were not being pushed out by my “too busy” schedule.
“Being” not just “doing” was an amazing discovery for me as an action oriented person and I the power of the “Slight Edge”, by Jeff Olsen continues to be an inspiration for me. I am passionate about unlocking the potential in others which I have been able to unlock in myself.
I hope we can talk sometime and that you will leave with greater clarity on how to realise your own goals and the full confidence that you can astound yourself in the near future.