A different journey
“My path to Sloan was atypical. I joined the Royal Marines straight out of pro-football, something that was really a translation of my physical attributes from professional sport into the military environment. I spent the first eight years consolidating my experience there and found myself on multiple deployments overseas. I then volunteered for Royal Marines Commando training."
“My subsequent roles have involved strategic planning, execution and learning but I’m now beginning the transition back into civilian life. And that’s tough. A family connection I know is a serial entrepreneur who advises on London Business School’s VC panel. When I started thinking about moving into a business role, I asked him how people go from simply being good at a job, to being outstanding. He recommended business school but advised me to look above an MBA or even an Executive MBA, and to shoot for Sloan."
“I’m one of those people that can’t sit still. I’m a pace setter in terms of leadership so I decided to try it and see if I could kick on into, and cope with, an executive level position."
“One of the things I loved about the Sloan programme was that key faculty – Dominic Houlder, Richard Jolley, Jessica Spungin – all understood my positioning. They were great, right at the top of their game and offering different things. I loved Richard Jolley’s pragmatic view of business, for example…he was pretty honest about the narcissistic tendencies of the business world. Jessica put me onto McKinsey and David Arnold networked me into a social enterprise."
“On that note, I probably started networking earlier than anyone else in the programme, and I was out in the workplace working CEOs earlier than anyone else, even though I was the least experienced at a business level."
“That was a really important part of the programme for me, and part of my transition back into the real world. I spent time in Germany advising BP’s Global VP of Refineries and a senior leadership team of 21 on organisational behaviour, leadership and strategy. I’d have an elective, head straight out to Germany, then come back to another elective, so I was pretty shattered. I also had a friend who started up a cyber security company leading the way in AI. I acted as a business development advisor for them during Sloan; in the first two years it’s gone from a market valuation of £6m to £75m.”