08 Nov, 2016
Finance for Guernsey**
What are you currently working on?
My main project currently is Finance for Guernsey, a business that is looking at the viability of opening a new bank in the island, providing Guernsey’s first domestic bank for over 40 years and filling the gaps in the availability of banking products and services that currently exist. I also provide help, advice and investment to a range of early stage technology and finance businesses through Afaafa, a business I co-founded with my wife.
What is the most enjoyable part of your job?
I love the creative element of early stage businesses. There is a problem, a team come up with a solution that can be delivered profitably and then work with others to develop the business plan, the brand and ultimately launch the company. Seeing businesses blossom from an idea to taking on a life of their own is an extraordinary process that I never cease to get a kick from. What are the most important lessons you have learned in your career? Firstly, always listen to all advice that you are given, never dismiss the ideas of others because they disagree with you but always remain true to your instincts and analysis; make decisions that matter fairly, clearly and transparently.
Secondly, always treat people with respect and seek solutions that work for everyone. At times when things have not gone my way, I have always had help getting back on top from advisers, friends, colleagues and at times business rivals, because I have always sought to be fair with everyone along the way. Thirdly, never be afraid of changing your mind. When setting out on a project there will seem to be a clear path to success, but in reality there will be points in the road that you need to turn. Don’t be dogmatic, admit that things need to change.
Finally, given that I have worked mainly with regulated companies in my career, don’t try to bend the rules for expediency. As the saying goes, “you can’t get a little bit pregnant”; once you choose to slightly ignore regulations you are outside of the rules and you risk losing your moral compass. Always do the right thing.
Describe your management style in three words?
Leadership, vision, and empowerment
What motivates you?
I’m a West Ham fan. As such I learnt at an early age that life is full of ups and downs, but it’s those moments when everything comes together that makes all of the blood, sweat and tears worthwhile.
What would you still like to achieve?
I don’t believe in setting specific targets. If you achieve them then there is the risk that you get complacent; and if you never achieve them you feel that you are a failure, regardless of what you have achieved elsewhere. I want to continue to make a positive difference to people’s lives in everything I do.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
My father passed away last year and I read out at his funeral the 12 things he taught me. The list is pinned up in my office. If I had to pick one, it would be “Always find joy in everything you do”.
If you could have any job in the world, what would it be?
The man that polishes the Champion’s League trophy once it has been placed in the West Ham trophy cabinet.Return to Blog Posts »