My real focus is on trying to bring my family businesses -which are centred around property and agriculture and which I inherited- into the future; to make them thrive, to make them truly relevant. At root these businesses are pretty traditional, we own and manage houses, commercial buildings and shops for rental, we farm, we grow trees, we manage heritage buildings.
What I do is sprinkle magic across these businesses by creating employment in operations that feel alive and modern. I’ve launched a restaurant, several cultural events, a farm shop, a pub, a holiday rental operation, a festival, a school for craft, food and business, a couple of events spaces, a bushcraft school; that sort of thing. If I’m known for anything, it’s these, which I run with passion and determination and a clear vision as to what looks and feels good.
I’ve also had a couple of books published by major houses, managed a band that had some hits, developed property, broadcast around 100 episodes of a podcast (currently in hibernation) and recently started lecturing on Gentle Leadership and Emotional Intelligence at work.
I work with my wife and two of our daughters (we have four daughters and two sons and three grandchildren) and it’s this aspect of my working life that gives me the most pleasure.
If you want to get me sparked up, just ask me about music or contemporary art or current affairs or football or literary fiction or even clothing that’s made in Japan.