Throughout my life, I have been very lucky to have people who have always encouraged me to follow my passions and sense of purpose; family, friends, colleagues and bosses.
For nearly 20 years, I worked as an educator with amazing people and extraordinary pupils. I often say that the children I worked with taught me more than I ever taught them.
I remember one boy, in my first years of teaching, who struggled in class; he was withdrawn, a little awkward and at times aggressive.
However, everything changed the day I discovered his hobby. He kept, trained and raced pigeons. He lived near the school and on one sunny afternoon, we took the class to visit his coop and he showed his peers what he did. His eyes lit up and his passion shone through.
It not only had an impact on me and his classmates but the difference to his confidence was transformative. He began to make real headway with his school work and he became a fantastically productive member of the school community. This, I believe, all sparked from the value and worth he felt when his sense of purpose was recognised, encouraged and supported.
After two years as Headteacher of Grange School, I made the decision to leave the comforts of a great job, salary and pension to venture into the life of self-employment as a speaker, consultant and author.
Some people thought I was mad but those close to me understood my passion and supported my dream of sharing my experiences and insights on a global level.
I'm eleven years in now, and I do not regret my decision. Whilst I've had my moments, I have always had my clear sense of purpose to guide me through difficult and seemingly impossible moments.
I passionately believe that, as leaders, we can help our people find their sense of purpose. By exploring their interests, passions and finding work that resonates with them both in and out of the office, we can transform our organisations productivity and wellbeing.
Maybe it’s not luck after all? It’s about belonging to the right tribes, with skilled leaders and a powerful support network. We all have a right to that and I hope we can all further explore ways to make that the norm for everyone.