Taken a wrong turn?

Ever put your trust in someone who’s then let you down?

It’s a situation we can all relate to – especially at work.

A conversation with someone in this position recently reminded me of a couple experiences in my distant past. The trouble with some humans is it can sometimes take repeat experiences to learn the lesson!

Similar to the person I spoke to recently, I was in a recruitment admin role in a complete rut. I knew the role was never going to expand and neither was the micro business it was in. One of the clients headhunted me to a role in their new start-up. Looking back, I didn’t reflect on the offer to check it was real and what I wanted. I believed everything I was told after all the offer was made by a client – they wouldn’t exaggerate the truth…..would they?

Of course! The thing I’d buried at the time was they were human first and foremost.

At that point in time, I was bored, frustrated and going nowhere professionally so I accepted the offer which I quickly realised was a big mistake! I could do nothing other than try to make the best of things until something better revealed itself. After all, who can leave a job without another to go to when they have bills to pay?

Shortly after came my repeat lesson. I was approached by a headhunter I knew about an ‘exciting new opportunity’ to set up a talent hub within a business who had done a lot of research and had interested clients lined up to use the hub’s services.

Too good to be true? Yep it was. The opportunity was real but they had done no research. There were no interested clients lined up.

The difference this time was my attitude. This was a blank canvas. I could grow it how I wanted it to be. Over a number of years I grew that talent hub into a multi award winning programme which made a real difference to many people who had experienced barriers to get into work.

So why share this with you? Well a couple of reasons really:

  1. We are all human and trust those offering us an escape – without considering it might not be the right escape.
  2. Sometimes when you make a mistake you can turn it into the most magical thing ever just by changing the way you look at it.

If you are in a rut professionally, frustrated and feeling like you are on a burning platform, take the time to stop and think what your purpose is. Plan your own escape journey to where you want to be. Otherwise you may end up having repeat experiences which are exhausting and worthless.

Nowt As stange As Folk!

I’m always amazed at how true that saying is!


This week I’ve been interviewing over 50 people interested in a place on the next Growing Talent.  All have been assessed by their Job Centre Plus office.


All get the same information yet the interpretation of that information along with how to dress, and act when attending a meeting on a corporate site sees to be absorbed completely differently or ignored totally!


Some stick in my mind – and others especially our receptionists! – more than others


One chap was over 45 minutes late. and never called ahead despite having contact relevant details  When he arrived, he was very well presented but our receptionists were looking a little taken aback.  During our meeting – he chewed gum – one of my pet hates! and explained he was late because he came from Tottenham Court Road where he’d stayed with friends.  On realising that is only three underground stops from our location he quickly added he had to go home first and get his smart clothes.  At least he thought on his feet!


When asked what he liked to do socially ‘well man – I’m a real party animal – I love clubbing’ – not the smartest answer to give an employer!  After he left, the receptionists told me he’d asked if the client biscuits and bottles of juice were free – then proceeded to fill every pocket with them!  They had to re-stock!


Was he really stupid? or really clever?


I suspect the latter.  Acting like that, no employer will give him an opportunity so he can continue living on benefits without any sanction.  I wonder if he’ll feel the same way when he’s middle aged?