The Wise Why

Episode #45

Episode #045

#45 Alex Dean MIRP CertRP – The Power of People in Business

by | 20 Jan,2023

About This Episode

Alex has a background in retail and operations where he worked trouble shooting for stores all over the country and opening new branches. Whilst working in retail it became apparent the store personnel were the make or break of the store, be that setting up a store or fixing it, the same applied.

Moving into the agency world Alec cut his teeth supplying temporary and permanent staff to the world’s biggest fashion houses both in Oxfordshire and Central London before going on to run both locations.

Taking the skills he learned with him, Alex diversified to other sectors joining a larger agency supporting several sectors and sitting the exams to becomes a Certified Recruitment Professional.

Finally, he moved into Be More Effective, a growth enabling consultancy as a Director and Part Owner, heading up the employment side of the business, whether that be coaching on best practices, upskilling directors, or line managers, or working with my team to recruit staff who not only have the right skills but are the right person. 20% of employees leave a new role within 45 days, our processes remove the emotion, opinion and bias and therefore significantly reduce that risk.

Episode #45 : Full Transcription

During this episode Alex Dean and Kirsty van den Bulk talk about people being at the centre of any business. Alex has 15 years’ experience in and around recruitment and employment, working both internally and externally.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Hello and ah welcome to the wise y this morning I am joined by what I consider to be one of the calmest men I have ever met. Well, that’s next to my husband, uh, Alex Dean who just doesn’t let stress worry him and if he does, well I’ve never seen it. But as usual The Wise Why is not about me; it is about my guest. So, Alex, the floor is yours.

Alex Dean: Good morning. Uh, my name is Alex. Be more effective. We are a great enabling consultancy based in the Home Counties but supporting clients all over the world. We do training, development, HR recruitment, coaching and consultancy.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Awesome. Now can you explain a bit more about the training development before we go into everything? Just a bit more about what Be More Effective does and how it would help and support a business.

Alex Dean: Yeah, absolutely. So, we work with clients from your one-man bands all the way up to multimillion pound, 100 million pound plus businesses with hundreds of staff um, helping them with either their HR or their training, um, whether that be sales, leadership, growth, um, whatever that need may be. That’s mainly through my business partner Bob and some of the team there. The other side of the business day is we will work with businesses to help them find and develop the right people. So, we will look for the right skill sets and the right people, whether that’s coaching line managers, um, MDS directors all the way through to identify and bring these people into the business. We’ll get the best out of them when they’re already in the business.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I know people are really important to you, you talk about it a lot. I wondered if you could expand a bit more on the why people are really important to you.

Alex Dean: People make or break everything. Um, it doesn’t work without people. So, whatever your process product, service is, um, its people orientated everybody in the entire world that has a role is in the sales role of some description. They’re either selling their boss to get appointments for them, they’re either selling a product or a service um, or themselves. Whatever it is there’s a sales aspect to it because they’re trying to get their service to happen to the exchange of money. Um, but there are also people, a coach and developing others. Everything revolves around the people, um, and putting people into the right place and being in the right place for them, it’s as equally important that they’re doing the right thing for themselves as it is for the business they either own, work in, work with. And there’s got to be synergy there as well. And if you put the two together, as I say, you always come back to the people there’s. Big success story is all about people.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Genuine and of course you started like I did on the shop, well not necessarily on the shop floor but in retail.

Alex Dean: Mhm now start on the shop floor and then in retail went way up. Um, yeah, I did that for a number of years. Worked with some big fashion houses, um, in retail and then moved out into supporting them on the other side of the desk with the recruitment side of it with temporary and permanent staff in. Um, don’t miss m the Christmases. Have to say, um, nice to have my Christmas back and not have my phone ringing on Boxing Day. But, yeah, I did the retail side of things for a number of years.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I know yesterday we were talking about agency stuff because I’ve worked in a Role, uh, where I managed a nationwide demonstration team. And some of the call I just want to explore a bit on some of the calls you get at 03:00 in the morning when you know 100% the person is not coming to work tomorrow because they’ve been out the night before. And I wondered how many times because I know it certainly happened to me. And my husband went, please put your phone on silent. And it’s always like I was about saying, can you not just wait till 07:00? Because then I would assume that you really are sick rather than phoned me at 03:00 in the morning.

Alex Dean: Yeah, I think the one that sticks in the mind is, um, getting a phone call about somebody having a puncture on their car at, uh, probably 03:34 am clearly not in a fit state to be driving at that point either. Um, and ringing me to tell me that they won’t be at work because they’ve got a puncture. Well, why are you at your car in the first place? It was always a little bit suspect. Kirsty sometimes.

Kirsty van den Bulk: We were talking yesterday about how I had to race to a store because my demonstrator had gone in and ended up with an altercation at the store manager. He was doing one day’s work and you’re like why, why don’t you just walk out? I’d rather you walk out than actually got into fisticuffs over uh something which is I think it was about having a break, which just you’re like, why?

Alex Dean: Yeah, sometimes they do more damage. People are ah, fantastic. I love working with people as I’ve touched on already. But the other side of that they can also be challenging to work with as we know, because you’re reliant and your trust is entirely in that individual and as they are with staff for any business, you’re trusting them. But it’s um unfortunately they’ll sometimes let you down through silly mistakes when they look back on the wise, as I do that themselves better than the headaches, they give us.

Kirsty van den Bulk: But that’s what’s beautiful about being human, isn’t it? We learn from our mistakes and I look back now, I’m obviously I’m a bit older than you are, but I look back over my life and I think now my daughter’s school calls them magical mistakes, which I really love. I love the idea that when you make a mistake, it’s actually magical because you’re going to learn from it. I don’t know how you feel about that.

Alex Dean: Yeah, I, uh, completely agree. The only way you learn is by making mistakes. I actually did a, um, self-development session with a, ah, coach a, um, couple of days ago now. And one of the first things he said to me is, you’ve got to be okay with making mistakes. If you’re not okay with that, you’re never going to develop. You’re never going to get any further because the fear of making that mistake will hold you back. Um, and it’s something that we should encourage everyone to do. If you’re making the same mistake repeatedly over and over again, there’s a bigger challenge there and something that needs to be addressed. But you’ll never learn unless you make mistakes because you’re not going to get it right every time.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I remember when I worked at D-Link, and I used to work with a guy called Simon Fitch and he used to talk about the definition of madness and Confucius. I’m not going to try and even paraphrase the quote today, but sometimes I do think about Simon quite a lot when we think about the mistakes and learning from them. And it’s just interesting to hear that you work with humans, you work with people and mistakes are normal. And yet for some reason we spend our lives trying to be perfect and not making mistakes. And the pressure we put on ourselves just incredible.

Alex Dean: If you get the right people and you’re working with the right people and you surround yourself with them, the mistakes they make are totally fine. They’re okay. Where you get mistakes that really affect businesses, individuals, et cetera, is where you’re trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. When you get mistakes there, they tend to be more significant, and they tend to have more of a profound effect on whether it be the business or the individuals around them because they’re trying to do something they’re not. Um, a big part of what I do for a living and what I enjoy doing is making sure the right people are in the right places because the individual will enjoy it as much as the business will get the best value. The people they’re working with, or even just putting networking connections together. You put the right people together, it will work well. You can’t put a square peg in a round HM hole. As I said to you before we went live, Kirsty, I don’t go into offices and clients in a seat. I’ll go into machines and trainers, shit and jumper. Surround yourself with people that you’re okay with and you’re comfortable around them. Great. Happy days. If that’s not what they want. And they want the big corporate impression, someone to come in the suit, whether that be male or female, whatever, then fine. But otherwise, you’re trying to squeeze me into a square peg in a round hole with me. And that’s not us either. So, it’s all about making sure you’ve got the right people.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I love it because I can remember when I was told I had to wear a suit and I used to, but it was like I was in constraint. Somehow, I was pulled in. Um, I want to explore a little bit because you started in retail, but you learnt a lot because you didn’t just work front of house, you worked back of house, didn’t you? And you saw and you built, and you really grew a really good, successful career and now you’ve had this transformation and you’re a partner in the business, aren’t you?

Alex Dean: Yeah. So, the business sorry, excuse me, the business is, um, 23 years old. Uh, my business partner, Bob, he’s had it the whole time. Um, I bought in, he’s convinced me to come on board and I did. I love it, it’s great. Um, but everything I’ve done is revolved around where I’ve been before, so I couldn’t do anything without what I’ve done in the previous world, if that makes sense. Um, right back from the retail, the operations side, working with stores all over the country, um, building connections and working with the people, understanding people. Um, within these stores, both front house and back house, you say. Um, right. From warehouses all the way through to getting stock on the shelves and everything, every success has always come back to people.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Just amazing. I’m really honestly loving it. So, along the way, you’ve met Bob. Now he’s convinced you to come into the business. What was it about Bob that inspired you to because it’s quite a big leap of faith you’ve done.

Alex Dean: Um, yeah, I always knew I wanted to work myself. That was always something and it was something that I was considering. Um, anyway, and then Bob twisted my arm and said, Come and come with me. There was no twisting involved. Um, we had a coffee, truth be told. I phoned him and just out of the blue and said, do you know of anything going? Um, we had a relationship in the first place anyway, we knew each other well, we’d work together on product, uh, projects. I’ve done some consultancy work for the business, um, through another organization. And then he turned around and just said, you’ve got to come in, we’ve spoken before, you’ve got to come into the business. Um, the service drives each other up the wall sometimes. Um, but we get on well on that. On the whole, we have a good relationship. We’re always on the same page with what we want and where we’re going. The how is where we have questions. But that’s the beauty of people. Again, you’re always going to have a slightly different way of thinking, how you’re going to get there. And it’s putting those ideas together that make us stronger, and we just work well, it just works. Um, we’ve had a really good couple of years, and long may that continue.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Awesome. And you were talking yesterday about a lovely lady, that you were doing a job, and then after you’d finished the contract, she ultimately said, come and work for me.

Alex Dean: Yeah. In previous roles, when I came out of the REIT, that was moving out of retail, um, into the agency side. So, when I was working for a retail brand, Jack Wills, um, we did a project where we use a number of temporary agency staff to cover gaps, if you like, across the store and back of house. While we were redesigning, uh, the teams and doing a brief at the store. It was a fantastic experience. Um, and Kelly, um, who I worked with previously, she very kindly said to the agency, come and have a go and come and work with us. Um, it was a point in my career I either took another project and I found something else to do, because the project I was working was coming to a place, um, or changed roles, and Kelly offered me an opportunity. Off I went. Um, yes, that’s where the agency stuff started. And I started working with all the different fashion houses across London and, well, Oxfordshire is on Bicester Village.

Kirsty van den Bulk: It’s beautiful. I love the fact that you have been brave and embraced and jumped and embraced and jumped and embraced and jumped. And that’s kind of what I was getting to, is how many times you’ve just been brave. You’ve jumped into the unknown and you’ve come out the other side and look at you. You are thriving. It’s just beautiful to watch. So, I want to know about moments where you may have just gone, why did I jump? Did I make the right decision? Those are harm moments. Those moments where maybe you were actually riddled with self-doubt.

Alex Dean: Going back, talking about mistakes. If you don’t jump, you never know you made the mistake. And you only get one chance. So, everything we do is we’re built on, you’ve got to try. You got to give it a go. I’ll do my due diligence. I’ll m go through my thought processes, um, what I need from the environment to be successful, what I would want, what I like, et cetera. Build days list, build that picture. Um, talk to my wife, make sure she’s happy, make sure she’s comfortable with it, um, and go from it. There’s always a what if question. Um, and if you always answer that question with them, I’m not going to do it. Because what if that happens? As I say, you’re not going to get anywhere. The, AHA, moments I’ve had a, ah, couple, I’ve had moments where I’ve gone, why? Particularly at 03:00 a.m. As I say on Boxing Day morning when the phone is ringing from temps, that’s probably the wisest, the biggest why questions I’ve had. Um, yeah, the AHA moments though, it takes time to get comfortable where you are. And the biggest, AHA moments for me have always been kind of six, seven months into whatever I’ve started doing and gone, that’s why, that’s why I’m here. And seeing the difference, particularly when you work with people to see successes. So our successes are rather people being successful, quite literally, whether that be coaching, whether that be leadership, whether that be recruitment, whether that be training, developing leaders to be able to do it for themselves. It’s all based around other people’s successes. If we can add value, then whoever we’re working with will be more successful and we’ve done our job. And that’s the, AHA, as simple as that.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I really love the fact that you said it takes six to seven months to get settled and then you get that AHA, moment. I was talking to someone recently who said, I’ve been in the job three, I think it was a month. And they were like, It’s uncomfortable, I’m not where I am. And I was like, but it takes six, seven months for you to feel comfortable. And I think it takes two years for you to really establish yourself in a role. That’s why I get the jumping thing where in recruitment, where people jump every two years, they’re jumping, but you just know your role, I feel.

Alex Dean: No, you’re right. Um, I had this conversation with my wife. She joined our business four or five months ago now. Um, I’m not entirely sure she knew what we did beforehand, truth be told. Um, but she bit the bullet and jumped and came and joined us. Um, and we had conversations, but the whole thing was around. You’re never going to know what we do; you’re never going to know how we do things or what you’re expected to do in the first few weeks. It’s going to be the first few the first few weeks is going to be the worst thing in any role you do. Because you’re understanding you if you knew what you were doing the second you walked in the door, then everything would be easy to be boring. It’s all about that learning phase and going through things, understanding what’s expected of you, et cetera. She’s been here as she started to get comfortable. Um, first time we’ve ever worked together as well. We haven’t killed each other yet, so, yes, it’s going on.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I like that, I really do, because I couldn’t work. I adore my husband, but there’s no way we could work together because we have completely different fields. I’m this creative. He goes off and does, um, marketing and confidence and all these really creative stuffs. And he is the engineer. He is practical. I’m often looking at stars and stripes and pretty things. And he’s off doing a wind farm. Can we put a wind from there? Can we drill into the seabed. So, there’s, there again, we’re not going to work together.

Alex Dean: There’s complementary skills in everything. It’s just fine and it’s just fine. And the ones you want to work together, um, and it’s decent. She does all my, um, support work. For example, she plans my diary curse. I think you’ve spoken to her a couple of times. Um I wouldn’t know what I’m doing. I literally spend my life either talking to people or in the car. Um, and I look at the diary and everything is ready to go for me. Everything’s organized and I wouldn’t be without her for that. She does a fantastic job for me.

Kirsty van den Bulk: That’s brilliant. I was thinking about this actually, because I was talking to someone yesterday who said to me that they didn’t have transferable skills. Um, I won’t say who it was, and I won’t say what sector they’re in, but I went through and very quickly explained you’ve got a lot of transferable skills. You know how to work through a deadline. And this also, um, is pertinent to a lot of mums who are returning to the workplace. And I’m sure you see the same thing. They say I’ve got no skills. And yet you’re used to planning, you’re used to time management, you’re used to juggling, and you’re a really good negotiator.

Alex Dean: I’m going to use more efficient as an example. But she was a hairdresser. Um, went to be a legal secretary and now works for us. Transferable skills, the communication skills of talking to people, all the skills that she’s bought three. But we sat down and I’m just a hairdresser, I can’t do it. And we proved it wrong. She does a fantastic job.

Kirsty van den Bulk: And that’s the same as where you and I both started to meet her. I started in a stockroom. Stocking, um, trains and, um, planes in a modern railway shop. Then I went to a dance shop. Then I ended up in a big department store called Orders. But all of those skills, those transferable skills, the organization of the stock I use now for organizing a marketing schedule.

Alex Dean: It’s everything like what I’ve done. Kirsty everything you’ve done; you probably couldn’t do what you do now without what you’ve done before. It’s the skills and experience you pick up along the way, which make you upskill, uh, uh, you to be able to do what you do now. That’s a big part of it.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Sorry to interrupt you there. Um, so you talked about your wife and she’s obviously a real amazing inspiration in your life. I’m wondering who else is inspiring to me.

Alex Dean: Yeah, there’s the obvious one there’s. My mum. Always mummy’s boy, always will be. It’s, um, she’s done a lot of work and, um, she, she helps, uh, actually an awful lot for us growing up. Um, she’s mum and dad. So yeah, she did a fantastic job for us. Um, but there’s lots of people I have a huge amount of thanks for. My first line manager, a guy called Andy, who taught me an awful lot, gave me the time and patience when I was an irritating teenager to actually show me things and set me on my way, um, and put up with me, turned up late. All the rubbish stuff that we think we can get away with that age. Um, there’s been a number of people that have influenced me, but, yeah, Andy some of the people I still work with now. I mean, Bob, some of the skills and some of the things that he shares and teaches me. He’s had incredibly successful businesses before. He does very well. Um, you’re always learning, so the people around you are always going to be influences on you.

Kirsty van den Bulk: So, when you’re not working and, uh, your wife’s not organizing your diary, what do you get out to? I’m just being really nosy now.

Alex Dean: That’s fine. Um, is a big thing for me. I used to play rugby to, um, quite a good level. Used to really enjoy that. Um, got a nasty injury. But sport is still a big thing for me. I now play a lot of golf. Um, but if it’s on the TV or I get an option to go and it drives people up the wall because there’s no offseason for me because I follow all sports, um, which is great. Um, socializing. I like to be out and about with friends, family, um, and walking the two-year-old ball of fluff that’s currently sat on my foot in our golden retriever. Um, so, yeah, that’s the downtime.

Kirsty van den Bulk: So, you’ve talked about Bob, you’ve talked about your wife, you’ve talked about, I think it was Kenny, or is it Kerry you were mentioning earlier. I’m wondering who else has helped you rather than inspired, who’s actually helped and shaped you to be who you are today.

Alex Dean: Going back to what I was saying about, um, surrounding yourself with the right people. Um, if you surround yourself with the people, they’ll help and shape you and get you to where you want to be. I’m not a marketeer, so Caroline is a coach that I use, and she does a fantastic job. She helps me. She’s also my sounding board and puts up with my rants as well and gets me through things, admittedly, normally with a bit of wine as well, which helps. Um, but I’ve always been very fortunate to have the right people around me. Um, whether that be my family, Lucy’s family, whether that be, um, friends. I’ve always been fortunate to have them. The help and support of a very close network, which has helped me grow. Um, and I’ve done a lot of networking as well and made some fantastic relationships, which means there’s always do you know somebody? No, but I know somebody that will know somebody. So you can always get that information you need. You can’t do anything on your own, you always need the support network. And I’m very grateful and very lucky to have a very strong network around me.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Um, and that’s how we met. We met through me walking into my first bars, actually. And I walked in thinking I’m a confident little I would say, um, I’m quiet, shy, and retiring, and everyone just giggles because it’s just so not true. But, um, networking was scary. I walked in and I’m confronted by a whole group of and I’m quite short, so a whole group of tall people. I think you’re quite tall. And it was like, okay, yeah. And I think at five foot four, I was like, oh, I feel really overwhelmed here. Yet the networking is totally what helped and got me to where I am. Of course, Carolina Connor has been on the show. Caroline has supported me, and I’ve talked about this, that, uh I had a terrible weekend last year where my husband suddenly had to go into hospital, and Caroline was supposed to come on the show, and yet she was there. She was supportive, and she carried me throughout the whole weekend, along with Sarah Southee, who you also know. And that support network has become incredible. And it was all from one networking meeting. Now, I know that your part of a networking group, so I wondered if you could explore a little bit more about why your part of that building, those relationships.

Alex Dean: Um, networking and those groups are nothing without the people. These groups are all about just facilitating, they’re just enabling you to talk to people. You can do networking anywhere. Um, I join a number of networking groups, and we use a number for the business because it helps you build those relationships. It facilitates and enables you because you’ve got likeminded people buying into that process as well, and that desire to build those relationships. We work with a number of different organizations who use a number of different networking groups as well, across the country and across the world. In fact. Um, some of them we’ve been invited, and we’ve looked at. And wherever you go, whatever you do, it’s all about building relationships. And as I say, networking groups are just a facility that enables you to do that. Um, I’ve made fantastic friends out of it as well. Whether you look at it from a personal or professional perspective, the contacts you’ll make and the relationships you’ll build will overlap into both and will help you with both, um, down to if you need a plumber, you’re going to get on a Sunday morning, for example, if your boiler is not working. I know a fantastic gas engineer who I met through networking, who looks after my boiler and make sure I stay warm or, or winter. That’s that’s a personal thing for me. I want to stay warm in the winter. Um, but I met him through networking from a professional perspective, and it’s so important.

Kirsty van den Bulk: I was at, ah, an event this week and I was standing in the room, and it was like, but you two should be working together. And that’s not always and I think this is the big thing about networking. You’re not going there to necessarily get work for yourself. I don’t think I’ve ever gone into a networking event thinking I’m going to go and get a client. But I look at it and it’s that relationship back to people, back to how we started the whole of this conversation. It’s about bringing people together who can support and help each other and develop and grow. And that takes us back to and this is where I think there’s a symbiosis in the way that we probably work. That takes us back to working on a shop floor in retail where all the departments had to work together. That if you hadn’t got on the shop floor, you go to the stock and you bring it out and you’d have to then get it to the customer or you’d go back to procurement. Yeah. You just don’t on your own, do you?

Alex Dean: Exactly. It’s all about building that relationship and that team and the people. The one thing about networking is, um, you have that opportunity in the room. You talk to people in the room. The real skill within networking and the people that you really want to engage with, the people that are willing to see the stuff outside of the room, people are willing to come and have a coffee with you, people are willing to meet with you outside of the room and aren’t just there for that 90-minute session. And that’s the end of it. Because they’re the people you want to build a relationship with that are willing to put some effort in as well. Otherwise, it’s going to be truth be told, once I did the whole time.

Kirsty van den Bulk: It’s interesting because I like, I’m offsetting the buzz, but I like it. And I like um, OBCN. But I like it because I don’t have to do the elevator pitch now. I’m an on-camera coach and I’m a public speaker. But I hate the elevator pitch because it always feels, um, long and uncomfortable. Even my videos on the YouTube channel tend to be just around the minute because yeah, people turn off. So, um, just touching on it because I’m wondering how you feel about the wonderful elevator pitch.

Alex Dean: I don’t mind talking to groups of people generally like yourself. Gastric I’m happy to talk, um, the elevator pitch, if you know your product, you know your service, then a minute is not long enough. And the challenge is trying to squeeze in what you want to get out and make it as powerful as impactful as possible in that minute. If you know your topic and you know your subjects, you can talk for hours. Um, and that’s where people certainly in my experience and. Myself personally struggle is, what do I actually say in that minute? Because I want to say so much. Um, you say too much, and nothing goes in because it’s just a big blur. You don’t say enough, and after 30 seconds, you stopped, and people are aware of the rest of it. But it’s finding that 1 minute, that sums up a business that’s significantly bigger than 1 minute for anybody.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Yeah. I always have a plan, so I don’t ever plan my I don’t think you’ve ever done a 1 minute in the same place, but I never plan mine. Uh, I don’t script it. I don’t write it. I just end up talking. And it’s less more, and always believe less is more. So be succinct, be direct. Don’t bullet point and tell a story.

Alex Dean: Yeah. Storytelling is the key to everything.

Kirsty van den Bulk: Well, this is where you get to turn the tails on me. So, this is the bit that I kind of dread every week because I know that I always say to people, you’ve been in the hot seat for 28, 30 minutes this time, 28. And I always feel like, okay, I have to offer you the chance to put me on the hot seat. So off you go.

Alex Dean: I think, for me, I know what your answer is going to be, but I think your answer is going to be ready. Um, but it’s why do you do this? Why do you do these talks? Why do you bring people in every week and have these conversations? It’s fantastic for me, and we have a great conversation, but why do you do it?

Kirsty van den Bulk: So I do it because there’s a couple of reasons. One, I want to raise people’s profile that aren’t, um, usually seen. Uh, so people like yourself, who may not get asked to go on a podcast that you know will go on to YouTube. And I want to show that working in business is fun. I, as a lone business owner, really, really miss my coffee morning on a Friday where you’d go and get a coffee at that coffee machine and talk to one of your colleagues. So, for me, I get that, and that fills a gap in my life. I’m nosy by nature, so I love to know about people. But ultimately, I want to give you video, because going on video is incredibly uncomfortable. And if you’re not used to it, this is a safe environment to come on. So, I’m not looking to expose your undervalue. I’m not looking to trip you up. I’m looking to keep you safe. And I feel it’s important that you get to take the video and you can share it wherever you want to. And the other thing is, I give you the copy, so you’re as vulnerable as I am. So if I say something that’s really wrong and I make a fool of myself, well, guess what? You’ve got that. And so I’m actually as vulnerable as you are through the wise. Why? And I just was sick and tired of perfection and I, um, really mean perfection. The podcasts out there were perfect. The podcasts out there were polished. And there was nothing that was just real just replacing that conversation. So, if something goes wrong on this show, it goes wrong and it stays in. If we muck up or make a mistake, it stays in because it really is about people, funny enough, and the human connection, because nobody is perfect. And it’s taught me an awful lot. And you have no idea how many nuggets of business acumen I have got since sitting here launching 45 episodes ago. And I ultimately like sharing your story. Hopefully that’s explained it.

Alex Dean: No, it does. Thank you. Um, as I say, I sort of knew what you were going to say because obviously we’ve spoken before, but it’s always good to hear it and say, for the 50th, when are you going to sit the other side for the whole thing and get something done?

Kirsty van den Bulk: Oh, no, that’s a really good idea. Unfortunately, I haven’t booked that in because I’m booked up to April, so I never thought to do that. Um, I will see what number I’m on. But, yeah, you’re right. I did a podcast for, uh, OBCN, but it was part of the group. But, yeah, you are right. I don’t very often get to sit in the hot seat for very long.

Alex Dean: There you go. I think that we must hold you to that one.

Kirsty van den Bulk: So, thank you so much for your time this morning. I promise you you’d be off in time for your meeting. It’s been an absolute pleasure. I have loved this conversation.

Alex Dean: Thank you, Kirsty. I really enjoyed it. Good talk. Take care.

In this episode:

00:01 Welcome to The Wise Why
00:19 Alex Dean HR recruitment coaching and people management
02:34 Working in retail
03:10 Worst sick day excuses
04:36 Trust is key
05:07 Magical mistakes
07:36 Square peg, round hole
09:21 Courage and bravery
11:32 Bicester Village it’s you
11:39 Jumping into the unknown
12:46 Aha and what If’s
13:22 Takes time to settle in a role
15:25 Transferable skills
18:28 People who inspire
20:39 People who help and support me
21:27 Relationships and networking
26:21 The elevator pitch
28:41 Celebrating everyone on The Wise Why
31:49 Close

Connect with Alex:

Twitter: @adean0404

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