Upon completion of a four year apprenticeship I was employed full time as a Marine Surveyor and Naval Architect for another four years carrying out structural and mechanical surveys, valuations, design work and stability calculations as well as inclining experiments until my mentor retired in 2005 at which time I set up my own company and continue to conduct structural and mechanical surveys, valuations, stability calculations and inclining experiments as well as design work for both private and corporate clients.
Q1. Did you always want to become a consultant or did you fall into the role?
I studied civil, mechanical and electrical engineering at college but then didn’t really want to take that on as a career, as it happened I secured an apprenticeship as a Naval Architect and marine surveyor and have never looked back, nearly 25 years later I still look forward to work everyday.
Q2. What makes a good consultant?
Knowing your subject and your customer’s needs as well as being flexible in your approach but also to have the confidence to say what you think and feel.
Q3. Do you feel you manage yourself well or is it a case of ‘the cobbler’s shoes’?
A little of both if I’m honest, generally I manage my time well but sometimes situations change and organisation isn’t really practical.
Q4. Are there enough hours in your day?
No, especially with the digital age, work never really stops unless you force it to.
Q5. If you could magically stop your clients from making one mistake – what would that be?
Expecting miracles to be performed on ridiculous budgets and failing to listen to advice.
Q6. What do you find is the best way to market yourself?
Most of my work is through word of mouth but I find social media beneficial in obtaining clients.
Q7. What do you do to unwind?
I enjoy reading and spending time in the country
Q8. What advice would you give a starting consultant?
Know your market and know your subject, reputation is everything.
Q9. What’s your guilty pleasure?
Singing in the car, I do it all the time.
Q10. What’s your goal for next year?
My aim for next year is to get a couple of new businesses off the ground and to delegate some of my workload.