Aileen Gibb

It may have been at age 15, when my careers officer told me no university in the UK offered a business course combined with languages and I proved him wrong by contacting all the universities until I found the exact course I wanted at Strathclyde University in Glasgow, that I first realized authority figures don’t always have the answer and that you often have to find those answers for yourself.

It might have been my professor suggesting I take personnel management as an additional course in my graduation year and then asking if I planned to go on and do my professional Human Resources qualification, that I learned there are always possibilities and options out there that you don’t know about until someone asks you the right question.

It may have been when my manager appointed a less-qualified guy to the new role of Personnel Assistant and didn’t promote me, that I questioned whether I’d done enough with my own talent and ambitions.

It might have been when my Managing Director asked me where I really wanted to go in the company and showed that he had more faith in me than I perhaps had in myself, by making me the first woman sales technician in a North Sea oil and gas business, that I appreciated sometimes it pays to take a leap of faith, test yourself and be prepared to fail.

Or it might have been when that same Director subsequently promoted me to Sales Manager and I learned what it takes to build relationships within a team, as well as with customers, that I first understood the importance of the right conversations.

It might have been when I became General Manager of a learning business and had the opportunity to hire my own team members that I learned to look for the potential that someone doesn’t always see in his or herself.

Or it might have been as a Consultant when I shared tears of joy with a group of women entrepreneurs presenting their ambitious visions for the success of their businesses, that I fully appreciated how success comes from within and I heard my own sense of purpose in inspiring others to reach their goals.

It was undoubtedly when I read Reclaiming Higher Ground by Canadian leadership guru, Lance Secretan, that I set out on a path I could not have predicted would emerge for me and set up my own business.

It was definitely the experience of building a $1million business with cherished colleagues and experimenting with what it takes to create a truly inspiri