I thought it was only fair that I fill in a Meet the Member questionnaire for our Meet the National Board week. So here’s me, Fiona, JCI UK Membership and Admin Director…
Which chamber are you a member of?
How long have you been a JCI member?
About 4 years – time flies when you’re having fun!
What made you join?
I was lucky enough to get a sponsored place to join JCI Sheffield from senators Bob and Sarah Brown. After enjoying the first 12 months I’ve continued to pay for my membership.
What is the most interesting JCI event you’ve been to and why?
Wow it’s tough to narrow this down to just one. I love all the regional and national competitions. Seeing everyone come together to support each other and members pushing themselves out of their comfort zone to compete. It always makes for an entertaining evening. I recently got to attend National Convention in the USA. It was great to see all the differences between the two national organisations. Everyone was extremely welcoming and the opening event was sponsored by Jack Daniels which undoubtedly made for a great evening. The highlight of the weekend had to be the TOYP (ten outstanding young people) awards ceremony. The honourees were all extremely deserving and there wasn’t a dry eye in the room hearing their stories.
Had JCI presented any unusual/interesting opportunities?
The mean opportunity JCI has presented to me is meeting other JCI members and learning from them, whether that’s in the UK or part of the global organisation. You never know who you’re going to meet and what you can learn.
What is your job/career/profession/business?
I work for a ‘Made in Sheffield’ manufacturing company that produces machine knives and blades and safety knives. I look after our American and Canadian customers which includes spending a quarter of the year in the states.
Has JCI had any impact on your job/career/profession/business?
I’m unrecognisable as the person who joined JCI 4 years ago. The extra confidence and ability to process and formulate ideas and procedures has definitely helped to advance my career.
Who is a leader you admire?
There are many leaders I admire for their differing and unconventional approach to leadership but Matt Cutts from Google stands out for me. A typical pasty white, scrawny, 4 eyes computer nerd has taken himself out of his comfort zone. He set himself tasks he never thought possible, both personally and professionally, and related what he has learnt to truly lead by example and get the best out of people working with him. He is unrecognisable now after 10 years at Google and an inspiration to his team.
Fiona at National Convention Nov 2014
What’s your proudest achievement?
Although it may not sound a lot writing it down here and others may not class it as an achievement but in 2014 I overcame my fear of flying. I hadn’t flown for nearly 15 years, hadn’t been abroad, hadn’t had any proper sunshine or been on a ‘proper’ holiday. After a series of hypnotherapy sessions and a course on flying with confidence I’ve now done 19 flights since September 2014 and had a holiday in the sun with my husband.
Where’s your favourite place to eat?
Anywhere that has a clean kitchen and I don’t have to wash up! The come dine with us series that JCI Rotherham are running is a particular highlight as each member chooses their favourite restaurant to invite the others too. I’ve discovered a lot of new tasty places to eat in Rotherham that I never knew existed before.
What is your perfect weekend?
After only having 3 weeks at home in the last 3 months my perfect weekend would be at home, spending time with friends and generally not doing a lot. My TV box has hours of TV to catch up on and there’s a bag of Maltesers with my name on them.
Tell us something crazy/dangerous/inspiring/unusual you have done
I climbed to 4,500 metres above sea level on a 17 day trek across India. I’m not in a rush to go back and do it again but it was a great achievement with lots of lovely memories.
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This post was written by Fiona Silvester