My First FCUK Post
I began life not knowing what was scary or hard!
This newbie mindset is something I keep going back to even with all my experiences and life jolts. My perceptions of fear and difficulty are holding me back. Instead, I gift myself with a Newbie Mindset, embracing courage and the ability to ask, knowing that I may be asking for fogiveness at some point.
At 19, all I had was a pen, a phone and the courage of my innocence
The first thing I asked for was a job. I wrote to French Connection telling them why they were cool. I got invited to interview. Later I got asked to name my salary! What a question to pose a student!
Thank FCUK I asked.
I had an internship at French Connection’s HQ in East London shortly after their IPO. It was an insanely cool place to work and an equally rich environment for great personalities and life learning stories. I have many. Here’s my first FCUK story.
I interfaced with the board including Stephen Marks, Founder and CEO. Stuart Selwyn, Production Director, was my amazing mentor and boss. One day Stuart called me into his office.
“Nick, we need this document in New Delhi tomorrow morning!”
Easy right? No, this was 1984. Telex was our communication tool of choice. Facsimile machines were emerging. “Fax me!“, not yet a verb. Phone lines to India generally sucked. FedEx would not be along for a while yet. We often had people flying to Delhi – not today. Some legal hoops to jump through – this was business in India.
Flight crews didn’t carry documents. You can fully understand why. So I needed to find a rule breaker. So I got on the phone to the Airport. I kept calling. I tried different angles. I eventually found an ally. Nobody was telling him the rules. I’d found a fellow rule breaker. I played on that emotion and connection. This guy was not only willing to help, he went and found me another rule breaker – a flight crew member who would carry the documents.
One lesson in life- rule breakers make friends and form networks.
Once I’d got this commitment I grabbed the documents, I jumped in my rickety car and drove 23 miles to the airport. It’s insane to think I was unreachable. Mobile wouldn’t exist for another few year and it would be a decade or more before it became vaguely normal. An hour later, I arrived at the airport, found my man and handed over the package. Sorry no pictures! If it happened today I’d be tweeting out his generosity.
The documents arrived in Delhi the next day. Thank FCUK for that life lesson!
Don’t ask~ Won’t get!
Thank FCUK I asked.
The lesson from this experience has stuck with me for life
- Never be afraid to ask.
- Never accept a rule as unbreakable.
- Never take no for an answer.
If you have a just cause and plenty of courage you can find a way.
Perspective is everything.
Funny but thinking of images for this post, I thought of an FCUK logo. Then a map of Bow to Heathrow. Then I got ”big picture”. I wasn’t moving a parcel from Bow to Heathrow. I was moving the parcel from London to Delhi. I was saving the company. Never let perspective confine you to the smaller task. Then I thought this is my first FCUK story! Too funny. I sniggered.
PS We all used to write FCUK every day and didn’t snigger once. We also used to write FC FR (france) and FC USA. It was normal. It would be until 1997 before the FCUK marketing campaign was conceived.
Image Credit : Spine via Flickr.com & Creative Commons