I’ve been tagged to complete a meme. Like Steve, I’m not a huge fan of tagging memes, they are a harmless version of the chain letter. But Steve is a good friend, the meme is a nice one and this story will go full circle back to Steve, nicely feeding my fascination with feedback loops.
I’ve been fortunate to have benefited from the wisdom of so many people through my life, it doesn’t seem fair to only call out one. But to avoid writing an autobiography…
I never really planned a career in I.T. (or a career at all, for that matter), it just sort of happened. Half way through school, I discovered horses. And from that point on, every decision revolved around finding more time (and money) to be able to work with horses. Whilst sensible people went off to Uni, I went to a training centre to improve my riding skills. When I ran out of money (happens when you are around horses), I grabbed the first job on offer (there weren’t many for non-graduates). Bored senseless by paperwork, I automated most of my job using macros in Lotus 1-2-3 and within a few months became the the IT dept.
Fast forward a few years, and one day I found myself in the atrium at Microsoft in the UK. I had just turned down a job offer and was persuaded to come in and chat with someone who was doing the job on offer. He made a simple comment that struck a chord. One month later, I was a Microsoft employee. And that change of mind without doubt changed the direction of my life. I had a fantastic time working at Microsoft and met amazing people along the way, many of whom I feel lucky to consider friends. The experience gained has opened up a world of new opportunities. All thanks to one person’s words of wisdom! That person was Ewan. Steve will know who I mean 🙂
Adding in another feedback loop, horses are still influencing decisions. Two years ago, the opportunity arose to move to Microsoft’s HQ in Redmond. It was the logical next step and I was all set to go. But the offer was for me alone and I just wasn’t ready to give up the horses. Instead, I left. And so the journey continues… 🙂