We are publishing a couple of interviews with the team over the next few weeks. You may have never spoken to us (you may not ever want to!) but thought we would give an insight into those manning the desks at Precise Consultants.
When you were five, what did you want to be – is it what you’re currently doing?
The first thing I ever wanted to be was a journalist. I was a keen reader and liked stories – from what I could gather when I was a kid, it was what something that people did involving stories and writing. Over time I’ve grown to appreciate how difficult it can be to be a journalist – and to be successful. I think anyone doing it is admirable. I feel the same way about teaching, as a critical area of society that is not receiving the support it deserves. As I grew up I didn’t go down that path strictly – my background is international relations, history and politics – but I’ve written a lot of academic papers, so there was a journalistic element. By virtue of where I grew up, the Middle East with the hydrocarbon economy, a lot of my papers were about the interplay of politics and energy. There was a natural connection to what I enjoyed at the start to what I do now. I like that there’s a thread there.
Although oil and gas is still an essential product, I feel that generating a transition-economy around renewable energy is going to be one of the defining challenges of our time. Precise Consultants is a tiny reflection of that process, due to the spread of projects that we are involved in.
What challenge defines you?
The biggest challenge I faced was also a privilege. Growing up as an expat I spent a lot of my life moving around without a clearly defined sense of identity (i.e. feeling a bit out of my depth when back in UK) which wasn’t always easy. It’s provided me with a wonderfully diverse upbringing and some great stories but can leave you feeling a bit rootless without the continuity of people and place that others have.
Who has inspired or supported you in your past?
It’s the obvious choice but family. Mine has given me lifelong lessons and guidance. My parents have a realistic view on life but with a good smattering of liberalism and idealism. I also have two younger brothers – they’re younger but bigger so there’s been some vicious pecking order battles in the past but they’re both very kind and driven young men.
What brought you to Precise Consultants?
I’d been working in oil industry in the Middle East for years when I made the decision to come back to the UK. I spent the first year in further education because I wanted something that was different from the environment I’d left. I wasn’t looking at recruitment agencies – I’d been on the other side and had a skewed view – some were very good but many were just looking for a quick buck.
With these reservations in mind, I agreed to be interviewed by Adam and Pete. I didn’t know anything about them apart from the fact that they were two young guys looking to build an agency. I was won over pretty quickly. I knew that it wasn’t going to be a conventional agency as soon as I saw Adam, I was impressed that Pete had considerable experience in the industry. Knowing I was going to have the opportunity to be involved in something from the beginning sealed it. I have been there two and a half years now.
What excites you about the industry’s future?
It being on the cusp of a transition to a post-hydrocarbon economy and environment. I think so many exciting things are happening in offshore wind when you consider the technological advances. Developments like floating wind turbines in areas of very strong winds and all those challenges which are being grappled with. So much has already been achieved in oil but renewables has the potential for real positive impact on the planet. As far as agency involvement goes, I like the momentum that comes from strong account managing – you display a track record with a client, then you leverage it and bring those skills to the next one. You see the momentum building as you get to know the sector in more detail and that’s exciting for me.
Name your top 3 things about Precise Consultants
1. The in-house technological knowledge– that’s critical.
2. The integrity and values shown by the company. There is a definite company culture that informs business decisions and our language and that’s getting stronger all the time
3. And the autonomy to make business decisions. We’ve got a direct line to Adam and Pete to put forward our ideas and they show faith as long as you have a reasoned argument.
What would your colleagues say are your best and most annoying habits?
Worst: Well, Pete gave me a nickname – Prickles. I can be quite snappy on occasion, and Prickles has stuck. I can identify with that idea of a bristling hedgehog very easily.
Best: Although prickly within certain situations, I am generally very approachable especially with junior members of the team. I feel that I take the time to understand the varying components of the business and provide feedback on how to work together effectively.