Q&A with Mike Hurst
1. What motivates you?
Making a difference to the world.
2. How do you handle pressure?
I mentally prepare by doing two things. 1) Access my self-belief through thinking of my previous successes. 2) Think ‘what’s the worst that can happen’
3. What will change most about the world of work in the next few years?
I believe that the younger generation are so focused on games and VR and that human face to face is less important for them. They expect to communicate digitally. I saw a t-shirt which summed this up which said, “I left my bedroom the other day but didn’t like the graphics”
4. What’s your defining career moment so far?
I have loads but my biggest one was deciding to leave sales and operations in retail and moving to the L&D function.
5. What book, film or tv show has really changed the way you thought about something?
The Greatest Showman: every scene was teaching about raising self-awareness. It made me think about everyday biases that people have. I went into the film with the tendency to let biases impact my behaviour despite my strong feelings against judging, and I came out in a new frame of mind, and this has shown in my behaviour.
Also, Emperor’s New Clothes: Taught me to be brave enough to see world differently and speak out about it.
6. What’s your favourite sport to business lesson or story?
Talan Skeels-Piggins: He is paralysed from the mid-chest down and became a downhill skier. In addition to his achievements in skiing, Talan was the first paralysed rider to obtain a motorcycle race licence. He teaches that ordinary people can do anything if they want to do it enough. Motivation and inspiration count for nothing – you need commitment.
7. What makes you proud?
My children make me so proud. I have five children from very little to grown up. I’m proud of each of them for different things in different ways.
8. What makes you angry?
When people judge me, and don’t accept me for who I am.
9. Which leader do you most admire most and why?
I admire many leaders and I’ve written a book about them (not published). They are all very different. They all have two qualities in common: genuine care and the self-belief to be humble and genuine.
10.What are your best and worst characteristics?
Best: Brave, courageous, innovation, entrepreneurial
Worst: Loud and barbarous and have strong opinions
11. What would you like to learn and why?
Learn how to be good on the piano or guitar, and the ability to fly-fish well.
12. If you could choose anybody, who would you be for a day?
One of two people: Vincent Kompany, the Belgian professional footballer – he is a leader in his field. Or my wife – I could see what I’m actually like to live with, and I could see myself through her eyes.
13. Who would you like to invite for a dinner party, living or dead?
I would love to invite my granddad who has passed away. He passed away when I was young teenager. He was a war hero and I learnt all my values from him despite only knowing him for a short amount of time.
14. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Greg Searle – “Stop trying to be like everyone else and just be yourself”.
15. What would your motto be (if you haven’t already got one)?
Be brave enough to see world differently and speak about it.
16. What personal value would you never compromise?
3 values: freedom, courage, loyalty