I guess by now you have persuaded mum and dad to allow you to buy that Lambretta you were so keen on. If so, please assure them that you will always wear your crash helmet! It’s not a legal requirement, but for the sanity of your mother, wear your helmet and ride with real care as falling off hurts – I can talk to you about that too. But I assure you Robin, your love for cars and scooters will open up plenty of opportunities in the car and motorsport industries and beyond, and take you places all over the world that I guess you will not have even considered yet.
If I told you that I am writing this in your future office, enjoying every minute in an industry that you love and a business that you have nurtured for 30 years this year, what would you say? You would probably think that careers fair you went to last week did the job. I have a few nuggets of knowledge to share with you... things I wish someone would have told me when I was 17, and advice that will make help you to persevere personally and professionally.
The first one is, don’t worry so much about that cricket match against Millfield School next weekend. Granted they are tough opposition at all sports, but trust in your team, prepare, work hard, focus, and all will fall into place. You’ll find those principles are pretty much the same as you carry on through life, and will help you many times over.
Also think hard about building relationships – it is a huge key to your future. Loyalty too is key; this will be a re-occurring theme. But don’t let it spoil your desire to move on when a bigger, more secure opportunity pops up.
Look at all the pieces to a business puzzle, stand back, take some time, see how best your aspect fits into that puzzle/business/marketing plan. Secure your first steps on the ladder of life, by researching companies that really appreciate apprentices or have strong business junior programmes.
Realise that many influences, especially in this industry, aren’t always in your control. Take the weather for example - it doesn’t become more predictable. When you speak to people or potential clients, smile, be positive, and then look at where you can tie in with their business and how your skills and knowledge can improve their work, not yours, as yours will follow naturally from this approach.
And one last thing Robin, keep an eye on the younger ones and no matter what is going on, help them the best you can - after all - they too will one day lead the industry you will help to grow and love, and that will treat you well.
My very best regards,
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