A Valuable Lesson Learned…

11th Sep 2015

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Category: Uncategorised

Friday’s food for thought kicks off with a bit of time travel…. Whoohoo! Yep – I have invented a time machine! No, not really, but hopefully I have your attention…

Here goes the story… Back in 2011 I was pretty miserable working in a pub in London for a company that didn’t pay well or on time for that matter, I was a manager and putting in a lot of hours for very little reward from up the ranks.

I decided to branch out, look for something new and find a more uplifting place to work. I went through a recruitment agent who looked at my CV, re-wrote it, and whisked it off to several companies, one company got in touch and before long I was sitting in a newly refurbished pub in North London across the table from the Operations Director; this is the point where you go, ‘oooooooo.’ The interview went well, I was on top form, rattling off KPI figures and talking about my ability to manage a team. It went so well that I got asked to meet The Big Boss at a later date after completing a SWOT analysis on one of their pubs.

I visited the pub on a Tuesday afternoon, listed my thoughts, before long I had a lengthy document typed up which I then sent through cyberspace to the Managing Director; A.K.A The Big Boss.

Fast forward a few days to the final interview. I remember the morning vividly, I took the tube, it was early (8.00am, which is early for a bar manager). I was still half asleep, and had decided that I would pack my smart shoes in a bag and wear my awesome comfy trainers on the tube. My feet hurt so much back then, mostly down the to extra weight I was carrying. As I got off the tube I realised that I had left my packed shoe bag at home! I walked up and down the street near the tube station, but strangely enough there werent any shoe shops open at 8.30 in the morning. Sensing a slight panic attack I figured I would just try and skirt the issue if it became noticed. I also decided not to smoke for fear of smelling like an ashtray, which probably heightened my sense of alarm. (For those who are new to the blog I was well into my, ‘box a day lifestyle.’ Click here to find out more.)

I found the pub and was led into the bar area to take a seat. After being kept waiting for ages I was eventually ushered into a room with The Big Boss; we shook hands and I was offered a seat. Then I suddenly remembered that my feet were very visible mainly because they were attached to the rest of my body. Like a true champion I blurted out, “sorry about my shoes, I forgot my nice ones at home.” A solid start to say the least, but The Big Boss didn’t really react; there were two other directors sitting in the corner of the interview room, whom I didn’t even notice until I sat down. It felt like I was on Dragons Den and had tripped up the stairs on the way in.

I started conversation easily and we built a bit of rapport. We talked about my role at the time and my life up until that point and then he hit me with two questions I didn’t expect… 1. “Why did you visit the pub and do your analysis on a Tuesday afternoon?” 2. “Why not visit on a Friday night when the pub is more busy?” My response was simple; “that was my day off, it was the only time that I could visit the pub for a drink.” At that point the conversation shifted, I had angered The Big Boss, he looked me right in the eyes and said, “A good manager will always make the time.”

The interview became more difficult from that point on, I was flustered and my answers to his questions became worse and worse. At the end I was left with advice to do more research, get some more experience under my belt and make contact again when I have thought things through a bit more. Bang! My hopes for a better paid job were gone; I became defensive and quite put off. With hindsight I learned some valuable lessons. One of the most important things I take from that experience is the fact that I was trying to sell myself as organised, effective and bright; but I showed up without the right shoes, and did my analysis at the wrong time. Let’s face it you wouldn’t want to visit a pub on a quiet afternoon to see how the place runs under pressure.

If truth be told I didn’t like the industry, and maybe The Big Boss could see that, maybe if I was more passionate I would have made a bigger effort. The lesson still remains; if you want something bad enough then you will find the time and engineer a way to make it happen.

With regards to health, fitness and lifestyle I have learned the same lesson. If you really want it; if you have that burning desire to be fitter, stronger or lose weight then don’t put it off until tomorrow. Organise your thoughts, look for guidance if you need it, then pave the way for your future, don’t stumble along a path hoping it leads you there.

I hope you liked the story and the lesson I learned, we all have moments in life that we cringe about late at night before we fall asleep. Next time that happens try and pick out a lesson from that memory that you can use to make things better the next day.

Have a great weekend and remember to Stay Strong and Keep Moving

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