What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned over your professional career?
History does repeat. Sometimes identically but mostly it rhymes in new guises. When things are going well don't let complacency set in. Being aware of the risks (and opportunities) and trying to predict how things are likely to play out will generally put you ahead of your competition who aren't usually doing anything but basking in the glow of today's calm. That preparation and consequent change in behaviour will likely stand you in good stead when some form of disaster inevitably strikes but also propel you into a competitive advantage.
My biggest lesson is that you can never stop learning. There is always new and better ways of doing things and people should make it their business to be educated as to how these practices can impact and enhance their careers. There is a very obvious pattern that the most successful entrepreneurs are naturally curious individuals. You can never be satisfied with what you already know – those who don’t look to continuously evolve will likely be left behind.
If you can't measure it, you can't manage it, which is the "mechanics" or process part of the business. It sets the framework in which everyone needs to operate. The second is the "dynamics" or cultural EQ. People are motivated differently, have different personalities and understanding that helps you find out what will bring out the best in them and for the team.
'If you want to get somewhere in life, you should do more than what you get paid to do'. This is something that I have tried to do throughout my professional career, and it is a lesson that has been reinforced. Be an irrational optimist and you can never be too curious.
The biggest lesson I have learnt in my professional career, is the importance of establishing and maintaining a healthy culture in an organisation. In the early years, my primary focus was on building systems and processes, but you also need people to understand the values of a business and this comes from a strong culture driven by its leadership.
Ask questions & try and avoid statements. A well thought out question in commercial conversation has the advantage of building rapport and ensuring that the listener leaves the interaction in possession of knowledge or insight that they didn't have prior.
Success is directly correlated with the amount of hard work, passion and persistence you put into something.
Change is a constant, and the more prepared you are to embrace change, the more successful you will be in your career.
Building trust in relationships with a strong professional team around you provides both excellent client outcomes and makes coming to work more than rewarding for everyone.
Look to put in more than you take out both internally and externally. If you do that things seem to work out pretty well. Clients will see you adding value to them, Partners and the team see you genuinely trying to help them and clients will trust you as the first point of call when they need advice.
What motivates you at work?
I'm motivated by discovering and building new things and then passing that onto others. My mantra has long been: Learn, Practise, Achieve. Teach, Succeed.
Motivation is complicated and fluctuates. But a constant is the feeling you get when people get better outcomes than they expected.
From very early on in my life I have always loved to be part of creating and formulating new and interesting ideas and concepts – and then to see an these germinate and take hold all the way through to final realisation of the end "product" — through to the continual challenge of refining these ideas and concepts. The most satisfying part of this "journey" for me is seeing the completed "product" and thus actually fully implementing the idea. It is that satisfaction the most motivates me. Additionally a major motivation for me in recent years has been seeing and enabling the personal and professional growth of those whom I work with.
Being part of something that is starting to lead the way – being seen to have leading products and services that provide real value to our clients.
I love my team. I get great enjoyment seeing them grow and becoming successful. We need to always focus on our staff - as happy, engaged and well skilled staff, will offer quality service to our clients, who in turn value this and are happy to pay the fees associated, which leads to good business and shareholder outcomes.
Being a part of our staff and clients lives, helping them to fulfil their dreams and ambitions both financially and personally in good times and in tough times makes it really easy to get up in the morning.