What’s on the web….. stays on the web! Be aware

Every now and then, I google myself just to see what others do when trying to research me………  It also serves as a reminder of past achievements and contacts.


I just came across the link below referring to a programme I devised and ran for a national FM company from 2006-2013.  The link covers a really proud moment for me – winning the overall European Employee Volunteering Award back in 2012.  Beating 22 other countries was amazing.


Although the picture of me is pretty embarrassing, it reminded me of some of the things I achieved during my employment with the organisation.  It is strange to think back to my departure from the company.  They didn’t want any mention of my work on the Real Apprentice in any future posts for a year after parting company whilst they built up a new work experience programme.




What they and organisations like them don’t consider is the web coverage from other organisations – once on the web – it stays on the web!


Clearly we don’t have much control on what others post about us, but we do on what we post on ourselves.  I make it a rule never to post anything that would cause me embarrassment if family, friends or an employer read it.


This practice can take the fun out of sharing jokes etc but it is much safer!




‘Accept every challenge – work out how you will deliver it later’ – Richard Branson

Wise words from Richard which struck a chord with me when I first heard them a few years back.  It’s the only way to develop ourselves and recognise our full potential – I believe!


A few weeks ago,  I was invited to devise and deliver a bespoke workshop for the national arm of an international FM company.  The account they had in mind for the trial of this project is unique.  Set in a remote location the staff are often living and working in what can appear to be a separate world!


The workforce from the local community are tight-knit often by marriage and personal relationships.  This can be a good and bad thing depending on how healthy those personal relationships translate into the workplace.  It can be difficult when your partner is your supervisor at work?  How do you ever get any ‘me time’ to recharge those batteries which make a great employee?


The client requested three separate workshops be devised.  One for senior managers focussing on building their Personal resilience and recognising when they may be at risk of pressure impacts. A second for managers looking at what mental health actually is and whether ‘wellness’ is a buzz word or a critical business tool, the final workshop is for Supervisors one how to start a conversation and when/how to signpost someone on to the experience people who can help.


I was given a basic course brief and then given a free reign to devise something.  Yesterday, I delivered the first to the Senior Manager group.  With 12 senior managers who had travelled far and wide to attend the workshop in London, the challenge was on.


We spoke about the different tools we can use to make us mindful of our resilience and then some solutions to deliver increase personal resilience.  The workshop ran on with enthused discussion and questions.  Future plans were put forward and the end response was incredibly positive.


It shocked me how well I did.  I accepted a challenge for an area I wasn’t wholly prepared for and delivered something very special which was well received.


Richard is absolutely right.  Never doubt you can do anything.  Focus, research, immerse yourself in the challenge and you will succeed.

Judging Panel Formation!

With just a few short weeks to go before kick off, Senior Managers are juggling their diaries and confirming their place on this very special panel.


The crux of the event is affirmation of the confidence and talent the Growing Talent Associates have grown over the week.


A choice is given to work alone or in small groups.  The remit is to devise a social enterprise idea which will benefit a section of the community, develop a revenue stream and have development potential.  A tall order for largely unemployed people with little self-confidence.


Working on this largely in their own time with one full day (broken into shorter segments) it’s amazing to all, including the Associates, the confidence with which they deliver their ideas.


It’s always difficult for the senior managers to select one winning idea.  The small trophy has now been replaced with a cash prize of £10 per winning Associate – much more useful that a ‘tin cup’!


After this a buffet lunch and networking takes place.  By this time some of the Associates are really ‘assertive’ in getting contact details from the panel!


Watch this blog for more stories of success, laughter and a few tears when the next Growing Talent launches later this month…….


GT7 and Judges

Seated – the previous judging panel comprising Selvan – Invest In Buy To Let, Julie – Portico, Peter – Wilson James, Lois – MitieTDM, Allen – PwC – Head Judge, Sharon – Harrow Green, Shane – Invest In Buy To Let & Trevor – known by previous Associates as ‘the legend’ Harrow Green.



Growing Talent – Keeps Growing!

A New Year sees the start of a new Growing Talent programme.  Now on the 8th programme having secured over 60 people into permanent full-time jobs!


So far 23 jobs have been pledged by various corporate employers and partners.  Wide ranging roles from Recruitment Consultants, to Receptionists, Administration Clerk, Security Vetting Supervisor, Industrial Cleaning Technicians, Hospitality/Food Services Assistant, Business Moves Porters, Mini Bus Drivers and Forklift Truck Drivers to name a few.  With a salaries ranging up to £25Kpa.


Looking forward to the personal growth stories that will follow……………..


If you know anyone who could do with some mentoring into a permanent job – direct them to http://www.growing-talent.co.uk………………..

New Year – New Way of Working

I chose this year not to make any new year resolutions.  Past performance shows none last despite the best intentions!


Instead, this year I thought about what would really make the strongest difference to me and deliver the biggest, positive impact on my life?


Like many self employed people and indeed employed, I had an ’empty in-tray’ ingrained in my work ethic.


‘If you clear your in-tray, you feel like you have achieved something’. Really – where did that come from?  I don’t actually remember being taught this but it’s the unseen DNA strand that has always been there.


Why spend time clearing an ‘in-tray’ when I could be meeting some amazing people, designing a great workshop, or painting my house?  I couldn’t answer that one.


We live in a truly 24-7 society – connected to the internet we are perceived by others as being available constantly.


When did it become the norm to read/type/send texts walking along the platform after getting of the train in rush hour – so dangerous, or juggling emails on our mobiles whilst trying not to spill our take out coffee?  Why can’t we wait until we reach the office?  Why can’t we get up and talk to colleagues two rows down rather than send them an e-mail?


We are in danger of having the life, innovation and creativity sucked out of us by our own thoughts/actions!


My pledge for 2016 is to take a breath, ensure I have taken the time to innovate, take notice of what is going on around me and engage with others.


If I have one or two things left in my in-tray at the end of the day, I will see that as a success because I have given myself the time to just be.


All good wishes to you for 2016.