AS A MENTOR, COACH AND CONSULTANT
After over 40 years in corporate life I decided three years ago that it was time to make a change and look at new and varied challenges. The time as a mentor and business coach has been spent interacting with businesses that are owner-managed in diversified business and educational industries. I have also mentored and coached staff in corporates as well as in the businesses where I have been working with the executive teams.
I have used my previous experience in the financial services industry in South Africa, Africa and south east Asia in these ventures. My expertise was predominantly in the personal financial services market and covered the development, introduction and management of card and payments solutions, products, loyalty programmes, and multi-channel distribution models. I have also headed up the card issuing functions in credit, debit and charge card portfolios. I operated at a senior leadership level requiring strategic development and tactical execution as well as a team member within the value chain. One of my strengths is to bridge the gap between the technical and user world to get the most out of new technology.
At a personal level I am committed to whatever I do and see projects through to the very end. I am resilient and adaptable as I have often operated ahead of the current business paradigms, and have navigated and grown through turbulent times of fundamental change in the countries I have operated in. I highly value relationships with people at all levels. I have also built a business network both locally, on the wider African continent, and abroad and have travelled extensively.
Additional to the above experience I have been involved in family businesses for almost as long as I can remember. This started in my parent’s hardware store when I was at school and included various sales, store operations and delivery roles. My wife left corporate life in 1989 when my son was born and since then has owned several small enterprises. These have included publishing, a call centre, and a life coaching/reflexology practice. There have been successes, and failures, along the way and valuable life lessons have been learnt.
I am sure there are areas that I can add value in diverse areas of any business by providing short-term contract project deliverables or interim assignments both locally and overseas (virtual services).
AS A PHOTOGRAPHER
My passion for photography began in the seventies when I bought my first DSLR, a Nikkormat film camera. Since then I have evolved from the film to digital format. Over the years I have specialised in all aspects of wildlife photography. Living in Johannesburg I have easy access to game reserves and national parks throughout the country, the closest being just over 30 minutes from home.
I frequently host day trips with fellow photographers or nature lovers to Big 5 reserves, such as Pilanesberg and Dinokeng. Early-morning trips to Rietvlei and Marievale are opportunities to photograph many species of wild birds, especially in our summer when the birds migrate south from Europe.
My main mode of transport for photography is a 2002 Landrover Defender 110 that I have kitted out to better cater for a maximum of four photographers. A raised suspension, gull wing glass rear windows, reducing the rear seating to two places, and an inverter to allow for on-the-move laptop and battery charging are examples of these modifications.
I have remained loyal to the Nikon camera brand and now mainly use the D610. Importantly, when photographing wildlife, a wide focal range of lenses need to be on hand. Zoom lenses provide the largest utility and over the years I have moved solely to zoom. Consequently, I own several lenses with the Sigma 150-600 mm (and 50-500 mm) being the most used for wildlife photography. The Tamron 24-70 mm, 70 – 200 mm, and 28 – 300 mm are used where appropriate. The latter lens is my choice for travel photography because of its breadth of focal length and the need to carry light loads. I have learnt many difficult lessons when carrying a 12 kg camera bag on a day walking trip on cobbled pavements.