by Lee Kennedy
July 24, 2018
I left school as soon s I could in May 1991, this was supposed to be my study leave but to me, this was very much the end of my academic life.
Like so many kids, born in the 1970’s and growing up through the eighties, I was a latch-key kid, left for hours as my parents went out and grafted, because they had to, to make ends meet. I say this time of life, my formative years; I may have too much freedom and worked, at the time for McDonalds. I loved the way the company had a strict training programme, allowed progression through proving skills in certain fields and gave everyone, no matter their background, the opportunity to flourish.
Fast forward 6 years and on 17th March 1997, I turned up at Lichfield for the beginning of my Army career in 623 platoon, phase one of the training that would change me from a civilian, who had by now had several different jobs across a wide range of industries, to a paratrooper.
During the next 8 years, I travelled to places I had only read about, met people that would become life-long friends and experience things that shaped me as a human being. My aim was to lead a group of paratroopers in an operational environment; actually, my aim was to get through the training! The rest was a bonus!
I have had as many opportunities as anyone else in life, I was lucky that people took a chance on me and I really do believe in giving others the same chances in life.
When I really began to look at KVF Consultants as more than just a job, that could pay me a wage and wanted to create a business, I knew that I would need help. At this time a friend and ex paratrooper, came to me and said his step son wanted to leave the Army and was interested in working in health and safety, I saw this as an ideal situation to expand my burgeoning company and give somebody else one of those opportunities that I was fortunate to have had.
Almost 3 years later, Jamie has seen KVF grow and I have seen him grow, he now heads up all face-to-face training for first aid 1 & 3 day courses and fire marshal training. Jamie has been instrumental to the company’s success; he has assisted with development in all areas and always has a fresh outlook on new projects and at our quarterly team meetings is as enthusiastic now as he was on his on his first week.
This story is not just about Jamie & I, as we expand and grow, we have been working with Irene, who is looking at leaving the services and wants to expand her practical knowledge in health and safety. Irene has worked with our H&S Manager, Simon and all of our safety advisors, to expand her knowledge and give her more confidence.
McDonalds and the British Army may seem like worlds apart, they are the two largest organisations I have worked for and given me a strong foundation, teaching me 2 really important lessons.1. It doesn’t matter where you come from, if you are prepared to put in the effort, you can be rewarded. If you work hard, others will recognise this and you will advance. 2. The cornerstone of any successful organisation is giving them the knowledge, tools and confidence to go out and provide the necessary services you offer.
KVF Consultants will always support our Armed Forces; we respect what they do when they are serving our country and believe they need the encouragement and support during that transition to civilian life.
As always, thank for you for taking the time to read this.