Friday, 19 August 2011

Curved balls and luck

I wrote on this here blog not 3 weeks ago about how I had landed a new job that was a similar commute to my old job (and current assignment) but was a perm job in one location without the hassle of a consultants "might be anywhere next month" concerns.  Well err.. I got offered another job this week.  I am so privileged.  I read, hear, see plenty on the news that this recession we are in is hard for people and unemployment is rising and many are really struggling to find any employment and here is me now with a job with a company that don't want me to leave but which I have a major lifestyle choice issue with, another company locally offering a really good job and now a really exciting opportunity in London!

I'm taking the London based one - firstly it is right in the centre and a few mins walk from a terminus with a regular service from my local station.  It is with a top university and is at ground zero today - i.e. they are transforming their IT function and have started to create the new one from the top down, I'm the next in at the management layer and have to define the shape, strategies, culture etc. of an entire new group.  Working with top notch researchers in many disciplines is going to be a challenge but also what a fantastic environment to be privileged to be in.

I am very very blessed at the moment.  Luckily as well this has all come through just before we head off to the Lakes for a family break together - so I can go into that relaxed that I have a future shape that fits me very well and will provide me with some unbelievable opportunities.

There is also a bit of irony around this for me.  I never went to uni myself, I flunked at A levels through starting the course late due to a daft idea to try and get a job at 16 which my Dad finally talked me out of, then I was only there until the big record contract was landed with the band, so too much time spent playing the guitar than working and finally I didn't really pick the right subjects for me.  But the one A level I did get got me into a training scheme with a local firm and a place on an HND course in Computer Studies... always been a bit of a chip on my shoulder that I'm not a graduate, and I know I've been rejected for jobs even now in my late 40s because of that.   And now here I am joining a leading university as part of the IT management team - I should lay that monkey totally to rest shouldn't I?  A dear friend and old boss of mine is similar - i.e. came from working class background and no university... he made it to VP in my old company and reports to the CIO in a worldwide respected very high profile organisation whose opinions are considered globally when given.  So anyone out there who knows someone who is struggling to find a placement after A levels - point them at us two, you can achieve without a degree you know. :-)


  1. Good for you, F'on! That's great. :-) P

  2. Congratulations! Sounds like a wonderful opportunity. Enjoying your blog.

  3. What fantastic news! Well done. You are - for many reasons - a great example!

  4. Actually, here in America, where the costs of a university education are skyrocketing, there is a discussion as to the real value of a degree, especially if one is saddled with crushing debt after graduating. I know some very successful people who never went to college, and I know many more, like myself, who have degrees in fields that have absolutely NOTHING to do with the careers they ended up in. For instance, my job, and the advancement I have had within it, have had nothing to do with me possessing that almighty piece of "sheepskin" (does that slang translate? If not, it's just Yank slang for college degree...).

  5. Quiet F'on. Hope the F'ons are okay. :-)

  6. @JohnJayJay - with the costs rising here you have to think - it is nothing like the USA I hasten to add... it'll be £9000 a year tuition fees from next Sept.

    Soon we'll face this with my daughter... I'm sure for my son it was the obvious thing to do, he wants to be a research physicist - tricky as a hobby in your shed without any uni training :-)

    My daughter... I don't know, more than bright enough, another string of A's at GCSE this year shows that but again depends on career which she still isn't certain on...

  7. Congratulations! You are indeed blessed... :)