Like many entrepreneurs, my work life has been far from ordinary. When I saw #FirstFiveJobs shared on Twitter, I couldn’t even get to the magic number. Sure, I had done a couple of small jobs at school, like a paper round for a few years, and then a Saturday job, in a local computer shop, earning less than minimum wage (I was under the age for it to apply).
Eight and a half years at universityAfter school, I spent a massive eight and a half years at university – our of those years on a combined Chemistry with Pharmacology Masters degree, followed by another four and a half years on my Computational Chemistry PhD. During my third year of my “fully-funded” PhD I discovered from my supervisor, (as if it wasn’t a big deal,) that although you get funding for three years (this paid any fees and payment for living costs), no-one ever finishes a PhD in 3 years. So, I was to work for another year, maybe longer with no income, and a PhD in Computational Chemistry (running simulations to discover the 3D structures of chemical compounds, using Newtonian and Quantum Mechanics) is pretty time-consuming!
I could have got a job in a barI suppose I could have got a job in a bar, or in a shop, but it is hard to fit a shift pattern around scientific research. Calculations took days to run, sometimes longer, and you had to be ready to start the next calculations, on the results of the ones that had just finished. Missing eight hours because you are in a job was not going to work.
My first businessSo, I did what any ridiculously busy person would do, right? Start my first business. In this business, I eventually met a client who was that impressed with my work, we are now business partners at SwiftCase. I brought my clients from my previous business into our new business, and here we are twelve years later. More on this later. So, you could say my #FirstFiveJobs were:
- IT Technician & Sales Assistant
- Managing Director
- Managing Director