The early years..
After taken a two-year course in Business Studies at technical college I started work at an agricultural feed supplier amongst some of the sturdiest brogue shoes that I have ever seen. Amongst the sales staff was the unforgettable (and very prim-and-proper) Miss Jones who once brought the office to its knees by bursting in and declaring ‘Nuts to Charlesworth’. This was taken by all as a declaration of dissatisfaction at her relationship with her customer but was an enquiry about the scheduled delivery of cattle feed to Mr Charlesworth.
This, and a subsequent role, ended in redundancy* and after a spell working for a well-known distiller and wine importer I decided to change direction and work with people with learning difficulties which I did for the next 10 years.
* I would have to wait to for another 30 years before I achieved my hat-trick of redundancies
At a crossroads..
In the mid-80s I joined a national charity who ran a local training scheme; the role came with some challenging objectives (upon which, the future of the scheme depended). After some tough initial negotiations with the government department who funded the scheme, the objectives were met with improvements to the training being offered, accreditation as an NVQ examination centre being gained and the scheme being awarded the required Approved Training Organisation status.
With this position, my primary role was the management of the quality of the training being delivered and those delivering it so when I started to look for my next challenge I decided that I would look to return to the ‘commercial world’.