MASTERS OF BUSINESS
In this monthly series I ask self-employed people to talk about what lessons they have learned,
what practices are important and what advice they have for others who are “Out there on their own”.
To paraphrase The Hoodoo Gurus classic “1000 Miles away”, it can as lonely at the top as at the bottom of the corporate tree. Being in business for yourself isn’t easy, and we all have our own reasons for going out on our own.
In this series I ask local self-employed people what lessons they have learned, what important practices they use to be successful and what they would like to pass onto others.
MASTERS OF BUSINESS SERIES;
John L. Clayton – Managing Director – East Asia Limited – Global Infrastructure Project Management
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Today’s entry is a special one. Nature vs nurture can be argued all day, and this man to me is both. He is a giant in my eyes and always will be, as most fathers are to their sons.
To me, he’s Dad. He kept us fed and clothed, put a roof over our heads, could fix anything and to him nothing was difficult. Nothing. He was just a “Bloody Good Fridgie” who loves a laugh and a drink. People that worked for him love him like he’s their Dad too.
I heard the stories over the years of mysterious oil rigs, feats of brilliance and daring, but only when I followed him into the commercial Refrigeration and Air Conditioning industry did I get all of the picture.
I couldn’t have known he was the Kaiser Soze of business. (Homework; watch “The Usual Suspects”). He’s been there, seen it and done it. And was right every time. Others in the industry were genuinely terrified of “John”.
After finishing my time, I went to work for him and I saw why.
He sets a standard of nothing less than absolute excellence and you are expected to keep up. “You don’t need to ask how high, you should know when to come down. The impossible can be done. Of course, we can do that. Is there anything else that we can help you with while we’re there?”
1) What are the top three lessons you have learned in the 43 years you’ve been in business?
1) Be Professional and Honest above all as its your reputation that is on the line. This will make your reputation known to be one of a Leader.
2) Always support and Mentor your juniors as a Leader your role is to nurture and surround yourself with Future Leaders.
3) Always think Outside the Square to resolve problems, as there is an answer to everything, this will develop your Skills and Strengths to succeed.
2) Could you name three essential practices that you use to keep the business running; I.e. networking, budget/inventory/costs control, short, medium, long term planning;
3) If you could offer some one that is self-employed any advice what would it be?
Be true to yourself and follow your plan.