Meet our Social Director, Colin who joined JCI Birmingham at the end of 2012.
I’m a Chartered Surveyor working as an Associate within the Logistics & Industrial Agency team of Cushman & Wakefield LLP – a global commercial real estate consultancy firm. I provide acquisition, disposal and development advice to a range of occupier, developer and investor clients, focusing on distribution warehouses and manufacturing premises within the Midlands and South Wales. Our clients include Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s, Gap, Jaguar Land Rover, Unilever and Kraft to name a few.
Why did you join JCI Birmingham?
I had actually never heard of JCI before July last year. A good friend of mine Stuart Pownall, is a Director of JCI Edinburgh and really enjoys being involved. He told me about the social and training opportunities, as well as the national, European and global conferences, and it sounded really interesting. Unfortunately, Birmingham didn’t have a chapter at that time but after a few enquiries, I made contact with Kirstie who was looking to establish one and things have progressed from there.
What are you looking for out of your membership of JCI Birmingham?
My side of surveying is pretty social but the majority of people you meet are based within the property sector. I’m keen to expand my network outside of the property industry and hopefully make some new friends in the process. There are several networking organisations in Birmingham however none of them are global or offer the same training opportunities that JCI do. I also feel that with its unique attributes, JCI Birmingham could be very popular and I’m pleased to be involved at such an early stage to help shape it.
What do you get up to in your spare time?
Well at the moment, I’m trying to learn to play golf which is going well although I’ve still a long way to go before I’m any good! I also try to get to the gym two or three times a week which is particularly essential just now after two much food and alcohol over the Christmas break.
Apart from that, I’m a big fan of getting out of the city and walking in the country side – I find it really relaxing and the ideal way to clear my head after a long day or a stressful week, especially if it can be tied in to lunch and a few drinks in a country pub somewhere!
Where did you go on your last holiday?
My most recent proper holiday was a week’s skiing in Les Arcs, in the French Alps in January of this year. The group we went with comprised 6 old school friends of mine, so it was a great opportunity to have a proper catch up.
I’m not the best skier by any stretch and it’s been several years since my last visit to the Alps, but the scenery was breathtaking. We were up on the first chair lift each day to enjoy the fresh snow and a few mugs of hot wine at lunch helped to keep us warm!
What has been the most exciting part of JCI for you so far?
Tricky one – there are two and I can’t chose between them!
The UK Conference in Belfast last year was a really eye opening experience to enjoy so early on in my JCI career. It was a great chance to develop my skills through mentoring and business development training, whilst getting to know my fellow members from the other Chapters. The formal dinner at Titanic Belfast was a great way to draw all attendees together on the last evening and we all had a great time.
Jointly though, I’d have to say the official re-launch of JCI Birmingham. Being involved in reigniting a truly unique organisation in Birmingham and watching it develop is very rewarding and a lot of fun!
If you were being stranded on a desert island, what three items would you take with you?
A knife (it would make hunting easier!), matches to help build a fire and my Ipod…nothing like your favourite songs to help while away the hours whilst relaxing on a beach! Can I squeeze a solar powered Ipod charger in there too?
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by Kirstie Barnett