Consultant spotlight: Wil James


Q&A with Wil James

1. What motivates you?

Getting good results and getting better at stuff, working with a fun team, feeling fit and healthy (convincing myself I am not getting old!)

2. How do you handle pressure?

I try to avoid or limit pressure by staying ahead of it with exercise, sleep, planning and preparation. I also seek support and help – to chat through and/or to make the challenge smaller.

3. What will change most about the world of work in the next few years?

We will be even more connected by technology and by the need for pace that we will be able to do business and interact with anyone, regardless of geography. We will have to choose if we want clearer work/non-work boundaries.

4. What’s your defining career moment so far?

Overall, a continually changing work focus - helping to keep shifting my ambition and keep me interested and energised.  

Being the lead psychologist role for the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB). Being a sport psychologist for Team GB at the Olympics. Becoming a partner at Lane4.

5. What book, film or TV show has really changed the way you thought about something?

One book – ‘Hostage at the table’ and a film - ‘Hidden figures’

6. What’s your favourite sport to business lesson or story?

That there is a goal beyond winning – ‘Inspire a nation’ (England Cricket, Team GB and British cycling)   

7. What makes you proud?

The development/growth, happiness and laughter of those who I lead, parent or have worked with.

8. What makes you angry?

Feeling undermined or controlled.

9. Which leader do you most admire most and why?

Any leader who has a real defined and meaningful vision and a strong sense of direction but who seems able to put others first and make them feel like a super star.    

10.What are your best and worst characteristics?

I want to make things happen but I don’t always make stuff happen!  

11. What would you like to learn and why?

Guitar – so I can play well for my friends and family

12. If you could choose anybody, who would you be for a day?

Many of Tom Cruises (action hero) characters

13. Who would you like to invite for a dinner party, living or dead?

My best mates

14. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Aim to be your children’s best friend rather than their Dad

15. What would your motto be (if you haven’t already got one)?

Don’t die wondering

16. What personal value would you never compromise?

Learning and applying effort

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