So, after – ooh, what – almost minutes of fevered anticipation, here it is: the Highbury Management website. ‘At long last,’ I hear you cry. Or perhaps not.
Thanks to the efforts of my old school pal Dave Tillotson, music and ale aficionado going back aeons, and his company, Riflebird, I have finally managed to acquire myself a web presence. Now all that’s left is to promote it. Having been repeatedly asked ‘How’s the Netball?’ and after being told at the England/Sri Lanka international in Cardiff this Summer that I should be ‘sorting out the scoreboard instead of standing in this b****y queue’ (the gentleman in question clearly of the view that I was still in a role I vacated in 2008…) it was apparent that my marketing is not what it might be, so the website is very welcome as a pointer…
It’s been quite a journey (to steal an overused hackneyed reality TV cliché). Back in my Welsh Netball days I decided I wanted to do something a bit different. Having been tightly wrapped up in the bubble that is elite sport, and approaching my, ahem, middle years, I decided to fund myself through a Masters in Human Resource Management at the University of South Wales. Surprising myself by coming through that experience with a distinction, along with my shiny new Associate CIPD status, I was ripe for the HR market.
The company name. Yes, the company name. If you look at the ‘About Mike’ section on other pages (yep, you’re right; it is a lovely photo) there is reference to my spare time. After reading that it doesn’t require a sporting Mastermind to understand where the Highbury comes from.
Having set up the company, and newly armed with my Tolley’s Employment Handbook, I was fortunate to be asked to work with the good people at Abbey Glass, based in Llantrisant. They have been through – are still going through it, in fact – a huge organizational development programme and it’s been a pleasure to be able to support their two directors, Richard Green and Angela Worgan, as they grow the company. Fantastic people, and they have a really thriving business there.
Alongside Abbey I’ve worked on one or two other projects which, combined, have helped me to cut my HR teeth in a generalist role. Although organizational development remains a real passion of mine – I enjoy the challenge of working with people and trying to extract the very best from them in a business context – the whole world of HR has opened up. From initial wider audits to absence management; from rewriting procedures to supporting recruitment; from performance management to advising on compliance, I enjoy it all, be it on an ongoing basis, as an associate or as a one-off piece of work. It might sound very far removed from sport but although the context may change, it’s still grounded in the development of people, after all.
As it says elsewhere on these pages, I can help with your HR and business development so please do consider me if you’re looking at these areas, or recommend me to others who are. Putting the right processes in place and fostering good habits can prevent the need to call on the employment lawyers, which, be assured, is an expensive way of dealing with your HR!
Feel free to look around. But keep any typos to yourself.