00:03:19: It began at college
00:06:43: Random first jobs and travelling
00:10:06: A job could also be extra concerning the bundle that comes with it
00:12:43: Choose up the cellphone and be open to exploring different roles
00:17:10: Having a constructive angle can deliver you luck
00:22:20: Managing relationships will be key
00:24:58: Do not let ego cease you from stepping throughout as a substitute of up
00:28:25: The “burn-the-boats” angle
00:33:36: How the podcast was born
00:38:14: Simon’s profession recommendation
00:40:43: Closing ideas
Helen Tupper: Hello, I am Helen, and that is the Squiggly Careers podcast, the place every week we document and share an episode with you that will help you with the ups and downs of Squiggly Careers, whether or not you’ve got received an interview arising or a confidence gremlin getting in your means, Sarah and I discuss it and share as many sensible concepts for motion as we will to help you. This week is barely totally different, it is Nationwide Careers Week within the UK, and Sarah and I assumed, “What can we do to assist individuals take into consideration their profession, and maybe how they might develop in numerous instructions and reap the benefits of the alternatives that Squiggly Careers current?” We thought we’d speak to some totally different individuals about their Squiggly Profession, and perceive how they’ve developed in numerous instructions.
So, our conversations this week have included my chat with Jim MacLeod, a Royal Navy Rear Admiral, about how one can squiggle and keep in an organisation; Sarah’s dialog with Steph Douglas, all about operating your individual companies and the way you do this and the challenges which might be inevitable as an entrepreneur. Sarah talked to Eric Sim as effectively, about his profession story of resilience and bravado and many pivots in his story as effectively; and at this time, you are going to hear me speaking to Simon Mundie, a BBC journalist, additionally the presenter on the Life Classes podcast, and a good friend of Wonderful If; large fan of Simon.
His profession story is basically all about the way you create alternatives. I actually favored how Simon talked about how, even whenever you’re in a big organisation, typically you may really feel a bit caught, you may really feel a bit siloed or a bit constrained in your profession, and Simon felt like that at one level when he was on the BBC. So, he determined that he was going to actually begin pushing his development and creating alternatives for himself that did not exist till he did them. And I believe there’s so much to study from Simon’s strategy, and to consider how we will create these alternatives for ourselves. I do not know if I might go full-on Simon, however I might undoubtedly begin a bit Simon, having listened to this podcast!
There’s heaps to study and much to remove. We might like to know what you may do after listening to this dialog at this time. Electronic mail us, we’re simply firstname.lastname@example.org, however this is the dialog with Simon.
Simon, welcome to the Squiggly Careers podcast.
Simon Mundie: Helen, it is an absolute pleasure to be right here. Thanks for having me.
Helen Tupper: So, we have had a number of chats over WhatsApp, in individual now, and after I began to search out out extra about you and your profession, I used to be fascinated. It is very Squiggly.
Simon Mundie: It is very Squiggly, sure, certainly. I believe, having grow to be acquainted with Squiggly Careers, and the squiggle itself, it actually resonated with me. So, yeah, it’s.
Helen Tupper: And the factor that I actually favored after we have been speaking is how lots of the Squiggly strikes that you’ve got made, you might have created for your self. I believe some individuals comply with the squiggle, however I really feel like you might have actually created it for your self, and I wished to share some with the viewers; as a result of after I heard about it I used to be like, “Wow, that is superb. Why did not I ever do this?” I might have had a really totally different profession. I am fairly pleased with my profession, however I believe you’ve got finished some actually fascinating issues that individuals can study from.
So, I wonder if we begin early Simon squiggle, early, and perhaps the primary time that you simply suppose that you simply created a possibility for your self in your profession that perhaps took you down a distinct route than you’d began out from.
Simon Mundie: Okay, I am truly going to have to return to college. So, I simply wished to go to Leeds College. It is probably the most enjoyable college, that is a reality, it definitely was in my day. Varied of my pals have been going, so I simply wished to go. I had finished a kind of profession psychometric assessments and it mentioned, “Be a journalist”, as a result of I used to be a gobby so-and-so. So, I began doing sociology, which I did not get on with. It was boring and I wasn’t engaged in it in any respect.
I got here again for the second time period in my first yr and I did not even realise we had exams, and I did not realise I had stuff handy in, and I keep in mind my mum purchased me a ebook, “Sociology for Dummies”, for Christmas. Anyway, a good friend of mine had dropped out the yr earlier than and had redone his first yr, so it laid an concept in my thoughts, I assumed perhaps I might do this.
So, I beloved French at college, so I used to be within the library, and I used to be flicking via the prospectus in search of French, “Growth“, opened the web page, Broadcast Journalism. I by no means even knew it existed. I assumed, “That sounds depraved!” I tootled off to the printed journalism division and met the dean, or no matter it was, of the entire division, sat down, received on very well along with her, informed her I would finished some work expertise at college at a paper, bigged myself up, she was like, “I find it irresistible, you are in subsequent yr”.
The irony is, I by no means would have gotten in had I utilized, as a result of my predictions weren’t excessive sufficient and it is a very prestigious course. So, it was solely that I used to be already in college and had gone to see her in individual. That is why I all the time say to individuals, “Get in entrance of individuals”. So, I then dropped out, went residence, did some menial jobs after which got here again and second time spherical, I used to be totally engaged, I used to be actually into it.
So, that was half one, and that has formed my profession, that one factor; to start with, stumbling throughout broadcast journalism, after which going to see that instructor.
Helen Tupper: And that takes various confidence although, notably at that age, I believe to make the choice itself to not stick out on the factor and see it via to the tip, as a result of perhaps your mother and father had anticipated you to do this, so that you have been going towards different individuals’s expectations, which it’s important to do quite a bit in Squiggly Careers in any respect levels of your profession; but in addition, to have the arrogance to have a dialog with any person you did not know, additionally an individual, it was a dean, proper, so ready of seniority. The place did the arrogance — it this simply Simon was fairly a cocky individual?
Simon Mundie: I used to be cocky, sure, however I used to be additionally insecure and missing confidence. I believe, had I not recognized my good friend who had finished it, I would not have finished it. So I assumed, “Okay, it is attainable”. So I believe having that proof that it was doable was key. I’ve all the time been somebody, I believe, who feels issues fairly strongly, so I simply had this sense that the course I used to be on was not proper, and I wanted to do one thing about it.
Going to see this instructor doesn’t suggest I wasn’t filled with doubt; I used to be, however for no matter cause, I did it anyway. I believe it is that outdated cliché, “Really feel the concern and do it anyway”. However that has been a quite common theme all through my life. I believe outwardly, individuals have usually perceived me as assured, at college smug even, however that is all the time simply been a entrance to the insecure little boy behind!
Helen Tupper: We will get into that one as effectively! So, courageous selection primary.
Simon Mundie: So, that was courageous primary, yeah.
Helen Tupper: Okay, so then we’re on broadcast journalism?
Simon Mundie: So, I did broadcast journalism, actually loved it. It was solely about 5 hours every week. It truly pissed off me how little we have been doing, as a result of truly the work was so enjoyable. I received a 2:1, left, did some fairly cool jobs straight out of uni. I labored for a manufacturing firm making documentaries for Radio 1, I did crowd warmup for Robotic Wars, do you keep in mind Robotic Wars?
Helen Tupper: I do keep in mind Robotic Wars. You have been crowd warmup? What does that entail?
Simon Mundie: I used to be Robo Babe! It was meant to be for a girl, however she broke her leg, I believe, the day earlier than the collection began.
Helen Tupper: Robo Babe; greatest job title for Simon Mundie ever!
Simon Mundie: So, I would should do quizzes, hand out T-shirts, video games, in order that was enjoyable. Then they wished to reinforce my position, however I would agreed to go travelling with a good friend of mine, so I went the stereotypical route, via Asia, then I went to Australia and I lived and labored in Australia for a yr.
I got here again, anticipating to be actually on it and extra motivated, extra readability, and throw myself again into it. However I truly got here again — I used to be truly going via a little bit of a interval of tension on the time, uncertainty, feeling like I used to be outdated; I believe I used to be solely about 22. However you get that feeling in your early 20s of, “Oh my God!” My pals have been working at Sky and no matter else, and I used to be —
Helen Tupper: “Am I behind already?”
Simon Mundie: Precisely, that factor. And I keep in mind my mum being like, “Get a job, you must get a job”, when truly, the higher recommendation — perhaps that was nonetheless good recommendation; you may’t change the previous, the previous is what it’s. However I believe the recommendation that I might give anybody now of their 20s could be, that decade, for me, is an opportunity for experimentation, is to search out out what makes you tick. However I used to be like, “I want a job and I want it now”.
So, my large ardour in life, for many of my life, and I imply next-level stuff, complete tennis geek, was tennis, and I used to learn this tennis journal known as Ace Tennis journal. So, I rang them. That they had a man, it was very lucky, I actually rang and was like, “Have you ever received any jobs?” and the man who answered the cellphone was like, “Funnily sufficient, I am leaving in a few months”, and he was doing gross sales, advert gross sales.
So, I went and labored for this tennis journal that I would been studying since I used to be 8. I’ve nonetheless received copies relationship again to 1990 at residence.
Helen Tupper: Why are you holding these copies?
Simon Mundie: They’re keepsakes. When Sampras gained the US Open in 1990, who might neglect that?
Helen Tupper: For those who might see Simon now, you’ll simply see the love in his eyes, all people!
Simon Mundie: Correct tennis nerd! So, I received this job there, and it was for the LTA. So, it was at Queen’s Membership, it was like being again at college, it was a great deal of younger individuals. There have been tennis courts, Andy Murray was coaching there.
Helen Tupper: And also you’d by no means finished gross sales earlier than? So, you have been calling up —
Simon Mundie: No, I had finished gross sales in Australia, I used to be promoting life insurance coverage, fairly good at it truly.
Helen Tupper: Okay, so we’re going from promoting life insurance coverage to promoting one thing to do with tennis, which you might have a ardour for; received it.
Simon Mundie: Advert gross sales within the journal. However I can not truly keep in mind promoting something, it was simply individuals doing repeat. Truthfully, it was an entire waste of time from that standpoint. I did some writing for the magazine as effectively, however actually I loved the life-style. It was like being again at college; everybody could be out enjoying sport at lunchtime. It was very sporty, tennis tournaments, all these items. And earlier than I do know it, three years has passed by, and unexpectedly I am like, “What am I doing?” I am now 26 and I am pondering, “Oh my Lord, what am I doing?” Simply once more, that inside feeling of, “This isn’t proper”.
Folks have been saying, “You do not admire the job you’ve got received. Why do not you go for a gross sales job on this, that and the opposite?” and one thing in me was simply screaming, “No, this isn’t for me”.
Helen Tupper: Simply to pause on that time truly, as a result of I believe there’s one thing in what you’ve got described there, which is basically related to how lots of people are feeling about their work proper now, which is the place the job that they did, or have been doing pre-pandemic, had a number of issues round it that made it an expertise that they loved. So, “I’ve my job, however then I’ve the social life, the those who I work with, the cool workplace, all of the stuff”, and it was just like the job was a part of a bundle.
Then, in the course of the pandemic, various that bundle has gone away and also you’re left with this job, and I believe lots of people get to the purpose that you simply received to of, “What am I doing; and what am I doing it for?” when the remainder of these parts have gone away, you are simply left with the work on the finish of the day. I believe it’s resulting in individuals to perhaps get to that query level that you simply received to about, “Is that this truly what I need to be doing? Is that this what makes work worthwhile for me?”
Simon Mundie: 100%, I am actually noticing that. I am getting a number of emails and communications from individuals saying precisely that. I believe you’ve got summed that up very well. At that time, all of the extras, the tennis, the socialising, and so forth, was not capable of compensate for the work I used to be doing that I used to be simply discovering very irritating. However all of them knew that I used to be a correct tennis nerd. So, I can title each Wimbledon winner and finalist relationship again to about 1968, and they’d get me to do interviews.
For those who go on YouTube, in 2007 I represented the journal speaking about when ladies received equal prize cash at Wimbledon, and I used to be doing a couple of interviews like that, and for speak sport, and I did one for Radio Wimbledon in 2006 and the editor received in contact. He was like, “You have been actually good”, and I used to be like, “I skilled on this. Why am I not doing radio? I must be doing radio, I’ve wasted this time”. It wasn’t a waste truly, in hindsight, in any respect. Really, I am actually glad I did it. However I used to be like, “I must be doing radio”.
So, I ring this contact at Speak Sport, and I am like, “What do you counsel?” and he is like, “Effectively, there’s this little radio station in New Malden, the place I now reside funnily sufficient, and it is known as Radio Jackie, and they’re fairly good at serving to individuals out simply beginning out, as a result of clearly I would received this four-and-a-half-year hole in my CV, so I could not anticipate to go in at an affordable stage.
So, I rang Radio Jackie and I mentioned, “Look, have you ever received any jobs?” Guess what, the man solutions and he is like, “Effectively, funnily sufficient, the man is leaving who does the information and sports activities present on a Saturday afternoon. Do you need to do it? We won’t pay you, however do you need to do it?” I used to be like, “Completely!” It is that outdated factor, commit after which work it out later.
Helen Tupper: Yeah, there may be a number of that. There’s additionally a theme coming via for me of, choose up the cellphone and to be open to discover. Every time, you are creating alternatives by selecting up the cellphone, after which individuals are coming to you with, “Effectively, this is an choice”, and also you’re fairly open to, “Okay, advert gross sales, okay, I will do this job”. There’s an openness on this as effectively.
Simon Mundie: Yeah, 100%. And at every step, and it is a theme that can proceed as I inform my story; every step, I nonetheless have the ideas of, “I can not do this”. The “I can not do this thought”, has been very outstanding all through my life, not notably with the advert gross sales, not that I can keep in mind, however definitely when it was like, “Do you need to do the game and information?” I used to be pondering, “I have never finished this for ages, I do not know what I am doing, I do not know tips on how to drive a desk”, the voice saying, “No, do not do it!” However I ignored it and I used to be like, “Sure, I will do it”.
I went and I did this job for a yr without cost on a Saturday. I lived in Clapham on the time, and I used to drive down, so it could take me about 45 minutes, an hour to drive, so it was costing me cash in petrol. I would get there at 11.00am, and I would not get residence till 8.00pm each Saturday. So, for that entire yr, my social life took successful.
Helen Tupper: What was the motivation to do it, as a result of that is a giant time dedication, large life dedication; was it, “I am loving what I am doing” or, “I am studying” or was it, “That is going to assist my profession in the long run”; what was the pondering?
Simon Mundie: I believe I would had that dialog with the Radio Wimbledon man who’d mentioned, “You are good”. I would remembered my coaching, I would remembered that I like speaking and I assumed I would give it a shot. Then, after I did it, I loved it, I loved being on air. I nonetheless keep in mind my first broadcast for Radio Jackie, truly. There was a soccer match occurring and a purpose was scored as I used to be on air, so I needed to commentate reside, a typical baptism of fireside that always occurs in your first day, proper.
I received via it and I keep in mind the DJ going, “Effectively finished, Simon”, in a form of Smashie and Nicey, yeah! And I received via it, and I simply actually loved it, in comparison with my regular job. I skilled a way of move. After I’m within the studio, even earlier than I am within the studio, I am not interested by, “God, I can not look ahead to the weekend”, or no matter; I am having fun with this, it offers me a sense of being alive actually. So, I used to be having fun with it, so I did that for the entire yr.
They introduced in, funnily sufficient, a brand new Chief Govt round this time on the LTA who got here in, typical chief exec, “Proper, I am coming in to cut and alter”, optimism, everybody’s going to get made redundant.
Helen Tupper: I am unsure all chief execs do this, however I can perceive that is a stereotype!
Simon Mundie: Simply talking to the stereotype, and he did adhere to that. I noticed a possibility, so I went for voluntary redundancy, argued for it, received it. By this level clearly, I would received a yr’s expertise on a Saturday beneath my belt, considerably embellished that, shall we embrace, on my CV, and I had the college diploma as effectively. So, I utilized for numerous radio stations, and one in Chelmsford supplied me a job.
Then, a couple of week earlier than I used to be attributable to begin, I went to take a look at homes in Essex, leaving my pals in London, they known as me and mentioned, “Somebody’s give up in Ipswich, so principally you may get a promotion earlier than you begin”, as a result of I used to be a bit older than everybody else and so they have been like, “Do you need to transfer to Ipswich?” and I used to be like, “Yeah”.
Helen Tupper: They hear you are coming, and somebody decides to depart!
Simon Mundie: Definitely the way in which issues transpired, that will effectively have been the case. So, I moved to Ipswich, took a giant pay reduce. I used to be solely incomes £16,000, £17,000 having been incomes most likely late-£20,000s, doing the promoting gross sales. However as quickly as I moved to Ipswich, left all my pals, left my girlfriend on the time who lived in London, I used to be by myself on the market in Ipswich, by no means been to Ipswich earlier than, however I had this sense in a short time of, “Sure, I’ve made the suitable determination. My ladder’s up towards the suitable wall”, as I usually say, “I am having fun with the work”.
So, I used to be in Ipswich and I solely stayed for a yr. On the finish of that yr, I began getting a bit twitchy, I used to be like, “I need to come again to London”. So, a job got here up utterly by probability, actually on the time that I used to be prepared to depart, presenting sport on Virgin Radio because it then was, now Absolute Radio. So, I despatched in a demo and I received it! I’ve been very fortunate by way of issues falling in my lap. So, I labored at Virgin Radio/Absolute Radio for a couple of years.
Helen Tupper: Do you suppose you might have been fortunate, sorry, as a result of I really feel like if somebody’s listening, they’re going to be, “Simon’s been fortunate”, however I really feel such as you have been trying, so sure, it was there, however you have been trying?
Simon Mundie: Sure, I do suppose that. I believe my very own private philosophy, and there’s no proof of this, is that if you happen to make strikes and try to make issues occur for your self, and I do know it is a large factor that you simply discuss, is taking cost of your individual profession and creating alternatives, not ready for them to come back to you, then in my expertise, and within the expertise of the individuals round me, when you’ve got that angle and also you act in a robust, relatively than a powerless means, usually, it appears to me, the playing cards will fall in a useful means.
Now clearly, there’s proof of that, however in my very own life that has undoubtedly been the case. All through, at any time when I’ve been — Jimmy Chin, Free Solo Director, Meru, the rescue, we spoke about earlier than we began recording, I spoke to him and he is received an incredible phrase, “Commit and determine it out as you go alongside”. Each time I’ve dedicated to one thing, radio after which numerous incarnations of that going ahead, at any time when I’ve dedicated and tried to determine it out, issues have then gone my means. However I believe it is that dedication and the angle and making an attempt to make issues occur that then, it is nearly like life appears to satisfy me midway.
Helen Tupper: Yeah, it is a pretty means of framing it. So, you are dedicated, you’ve got received your demo in, drivetime, they’ve given you the job?
Simon Mundie: They gave me the job. After which, I additionally used to do festivals for them and red-carpet occasions. V Pageant, I used to do; I used to do the Mercury Awards, stuff like that. I used to be truly on the Satisfaction of Britain Awards for the Each day Mirror and there was somebody from Radio 1 there. I spoke to them and was like, “Are there any jobs going?”
Helen Tupper: In fact you probably did!
Simon Mundie: She mentioned, “I will provide the quantity and title of the Deputy Editor”. In my thoughts I am pondering, “Radio 1’s far too good for me”, the outdated imposter syndrome. So, I received the quantity and the title of this deputy editor and I discovered, funnily sufficient, after I had been getting again into radio, I used to take heed to LBC, and he’d offered the information. I used to actually document him, as a result of I assumed he sounded so good, and try to copy his radio information voice.
So, I received in contact with him and he mentioned, “Are available and spend the day with us”. So, I went in, they have been on the point of put all their programmes out, and I am sitting there pondering, “This seems to be super-intense, there is not any means I might work right here”. One of many first issues he mentioned to me was, “We have no jobs presently and I can not see any arising within the close to future”, and a part of me was, “Thank God”, if I am sincere. However on the similar time, I then laid it on actually thick. I am like, “Simply so , I used to document you and I beloved your voice”, and so forth. I received on very well with this man. In truth, he and I are nonetheless actually good pals, and this was shortly earlier than Christmas, so I assumed I would ship him a Christmas Card.
So, I despatched him a Christmas Card pondering, “Simply keep on his radar”. It will need to have been January, definitely the primary couple of weeks of January, he was like, “By the way in which, we have a couple of shifts which have unexpectedly come up, I believe in February or March”, as a result of clearly it is close to the tip of the monetary yr, everybody would not take their vacation, so everybody was taking vacation, so that they had a couple of gaps within the rota. So he was like, “Are available, do a few days without cost, we’ll see if you happen to’re any good after which if you’re, we would be capable to give you some shifts”.
I went in, nonetheless keep in mind my first day, my mum does too. I keep in mind ringing her, as a result of I OD’d on espresso; I drank an excessive amount of espresso! I used to be actually on the again having coronary heart palpitations and an anxiousness assault at lunchbreak! After which, they received me to document a few packages and I keep in mind the man who was the political reporter on the time, I requested him for some recommendation and he gave me this improbable line explaining, I do not know, trade charges or no matter, and I nicked it and put it in my script. The Editor on the finish got here up and mentioned, “That was a superb line”.
Helen Tupper: Did you credit score?
Simon Mundie: No! He solely mentioned it in passing and I assumed, “That is a extremely great way of explaining it”. And Radio 1’s all about explaining complicated stuff in a means that’s digestible and simple to know for younger individuals. So, they favored my flip of phrase, or relatively this different man’s that I would nicked, and so they received me in, and I used to be additionally masking the game man, as a result of they knew I had a little bit of background in sport. Now, this is the humorous factor.
The man who’d finished sport had been there for the very best a part of a decade, it is what occurs at Radio 1, it occurred to me too, and his quantity two had actually been ready all this time. However round this time, the quantity two did one thing, I am nonetheless unsure what, however principally he fell out of favour. So unexpectedly, 2010, the principle sports activities reporter’s going off to the World Cup of South Africa, they want somebody to cowl Wimbledon!
Helen Tupper: It is all coming collectively! However what is the perception there may be that you simply picked up the cellphone once more, since you spoke to this individual, again to that being courageous sufficient to speak to somebody that you do not know about a possibility that you simply’re simply open to exploring; you’ve got put your self ready the place you knowingly do not know what you are doing, , you discuss that imposter syndrome. Sure, you had it, but in addition there was a actuality that you have not finished that job in that place earlier than, however you continue to have been prepared to do it. After which, you fairly strategically managed a relationship.
Simon Mundie: Sure, I believe that managing a relationship is vital, it is how do you stand out, little issues. So clearly, being sincere and open about the truth that I used to document his voice, individuals love having smoke blown up them, do not they, let’s be sincere.
Helen Tupper: However you genuinely did, it wasn’t such as you have been mendacity.
Simon Mundie: It wasn’t insincere, it was completely true. I actually favored the man and we received on very well. Then I believe the Christmas Card contact; I believe issues like which might be good, and I do know you advocate stuff like this. It is the little touches that can simply make, when they should fill, for instance, a rota, you are in thoughts, easy as that. So I believe that was actually elementary. They mentioned there could be no positions, however then there was, so that you by no means know the way the playing cards are going to fall.
Helen Tupper: So, you’ve got received this dream job now, however it’s not the tip of the story. So, the factor that you simply have been so obsessed with, you’ve got received the printed journalism, the tennis, it is all come collectively?
Simon Mundie: Effectively, I used to be doing information at that time nonetheless, however then the man who was doing sport left after the World Cup, I would finished Wimbledon. I keep in mind the man saying, “Are you aware something about Wimbledon?”
Helen Tupper: “Let me let you know about my magazines!”
Simon Mundie: Clearly; choose a yr! And I went to Wimbledon and I would labored at Radio Wimbledon the three earlier years, which continues to be probably the most enjoyable job I’ve ever finished, it was superb. So, I used to be rehashing a number of the concepts and movies I would finished. The man who’d finished the World Cup, they’d been a bit underwhelmed with what he’d finished; I used to be making these cool movies, as a result of I knew Wimbledon inside out. So then, when he left, the man who had been the quantity two had been ready for the very best a part of eight years. By now, he is out the way in which, so abruptly there’s this hole.
I am there, I’ve simply finished Wimbledon, which is the very best place for me to showcase what I do know. The then Editor, he form of pressured me, he despatched me the job software, he says, “I would like you to use for this!” I used to be like, “I’ve received to use for this”, so I did. After which, I received the job simply after the summer time of 2010 and there I used to be, sports activities reporter of Radio 1, thought I would completely made it, thought I would hit the large time and that was it. I used to be fallacious.
Helen Tupper: As a result of I believe that’s fascinating as effectively, each the “I used to be fallacious”, but in addition the, “I assumed I would made it”, as a result of there’s a level the place ego might creep in at that time and you would be, “I am now doing this super-cool job, I am profitable, I’ve received what I would like”, and I believe that will also be some extent at which, in your profession, that may typically cease you being Squiggly, since you’re like, “I’ve solely received to do greater and higher from this level, and I am now ‘profitable’ and subsequently, the one issues that I might have a look at or contemplate could be actually a step up”, again to the ladder language, “a step up from this, relatively than a step throughout”.
Simon Mundie: Are you aware, that is completely proper, and that turned a giant subject a couple of years later, as a result of I anticipated being there for the London Olympics 2012, which was unbelievable, after which I assumed I would go away, so I used to be pondering two-and-a-half years; however it truly took me the very best a part of eight, 9 years to extricate myself, and it is precisely what you say, “The place would I’m going?” I imply, at one level, I thought-about PR, I used to be doing display screen assessments for Sky Sports activities Information.
However once more, my instinct was like, “This is not proper for me”. I am not a giant soccer fan, I might be doing it for ego, I would be doing it as a result of I get to put on a jazzy tie on TV, receives a commission an honest wage, however it was by no means proper, so I by no means adopted via on that. It is the identical as why I by no means labored for Soccer Focus, as a result of it is not me.
Helen Tupper: That, “It is not me”, as a result of clearly we speak to individuals about their values, and now we have workout routines like “extra about me”, the place we encourage individuals to do this self-reflection and to write down that down, was this a factor that you simply had sat down with your self, with Simon, and written down some ideas about, “What makes me me and what issues?” or is that this only a intestine really feel, instinct?
Simon Mundie: Yeah, it is intestine really feel, as a result of truly I attempted to go towards it. So, the benefit of — hear, the Radio 1 factor was superb, I received to do some unbelievable issues, World Cups, Olympics, and so forth. However the factor I did most was cowl soccer. So, I used to go to Wembley and I would cowl England matches, press room, getting muffins, the meals. Truthfully, it is like being once more, the varsity pecking order; it is ridiculous, however enjoyable. However I would be there feeling like an entire fraud, as a result of I used to be basically; of all my pals, I used to be the one who cared the least about soccer.
I might sit there and I might be like, “Proper, I’ll commentate on this match, I’ll practise my commentary, as a result of in some unspecified time in the future I’d should be a soccer commentator”, and I would try to do it. And after about quarter-hour, I would get bored, so I would put YouTube on. I would be a kind of individuals at Wembley, at an England recreation, watching tennis on YouTube!
Helen Tupper: Oh my goodness! However you have been practising commentating at a recreation that you simply weren’t going to commentate at, to develop a talent that you simply did not know that you’d want but. That is fascinating.
Simon Mundie: It’s fascinating, and I felt actually dangerous. I felt dangerous that I could not do it for the entire 90 minutes, I assumed, “I am garbage at this”, however in fact I am garbage at it, as a result of I had no real interest in it. My thoughts was telling me I ought to do that, similar to my thoughts was saying, I ought to go to the Sky Sports activities display screen take a look at. However truly, my emotions have been this is not proper and in the end, my emotions proved to be proper. And for this reason I all the time discuss instinct.
So, my hunch is that your instinct is aware of greater than your thoughts, and in my case, that is undoubtedly proved to be the case. So, I might have chased the Sky Sports activities factor, I might have chased the Soccer Focus factor, however for no matter cause, I did not. In hindsight, it makes complete sense why I did not, as a result of I did not need to do it, despite the fact that I assumed I ought to do it.
Quick-forward, in about 2016, I met my now spouse, and for no matter cause, I had a couple of epiphanies. I imply, there have been causes, however I will not go into them now, however I had a couple of epiphanies the place I used to be like, “Okay, I’ll cease ready and I am simply going to –“, I truly describe it as a “burn-the-boats angle”. What I imply by burn the boats is, it is the factor the place I believe there some explorers who went to an island, and so they have been like, “Proper, we have to make a hit of this, and we’ll make a hit of this by burning the boats so we will not get off the island”.
So, I had a little bit of an angle like that the place I used to be like, “Okay, I am both going to create one thing, or I’ll p-i-s-s individuals off a lot that I’ll have to depart”.
Helen Tupper: Yeah, by hook or by crook.
Simon Mundie: One thing or bust, proper, that is it, that was my angle. A quote I fairly like is, “Center managers cannot say sure, however they’ll so no”. So I assumed, “Proper, I am not going to use for any jobs, I am not going to undergo center managers, I am going straight to the highest, I am going straight to the highest individuals. I recognized and went straight to the Head of TV Sport to speak about getting on TV at Wimbledon, as a result of I used to be already masking it for Radio 1 and I used to be performing some digital stuff; and I went to the Head of the At the moment Programme to discuss performing some stuff there.
Helen Tupper: Do you suppose you needed to have no matter that revelation was; do you suppose it’s important to have that time limit with a purpose to have your burn-the-boat technique? May it have come sooner?
Simon Mundie: The reality is, I used to be most likely truly working via some private stuff earlier than that that I wanted to undergo to get to that time, I believe truly. Lots of people discuss work/life stability; to me, it is simply life. So, they have been all a part of the puzzle truly, and I believe most likely assembly my spouse was one other one. After which, simply feeling like I used to be getting older as effectively, “Oh my Lord, I want to start out doing one thing, I can not simply sit right here and wait and anticipate”.
Helen Tupper: However I suppose the factor that I take away from that’s, whenever you’re taking a look at your job, there may be the job itself and the way rewarding it’s, or not, for you; however typically, it sounds to me like there was a little bit of time at Radio 1 the place that position that you simply have been doing created area so that you can replicate on another issues. So, you form of have to take a look at the job within the context of your life and what it could be enabling exterior of simply the job you are doing?
Simon Mundie: Yeah, completely, that is what I imply, it is all one factor. So, that is why I believe, if yow will discover a job that you simply love doing, or that offers you emotions of move or no matter, then you definately’re not trying ahead to retirement, as a result of it is a part of what you take pleasure in.
Helen Tupper: It is a part of the life you are residing.
Simon Mundie: Yeah, it is what you need to take pleasure in. And my thought was, as a result of because the age of 10, it is all the time been about Wimbledon and tennis, my thought was, “It is all about TV at Wimbledon; that is it for me. After which from there, I can go off and do TV in numerous areas”.
So, as an example between most likely early 2017 after which Wimbledon 2018, so the very best a part of 18 months, simply shy of, I received in contact with the Head of TV Sport, and I might be emailing and getting in contact saying, “Can now we have conferences?” so usually. And each time I wrote an electronic mail, the voice in my head could be going, “He’ll let you know to do one”.
Helen Tupper: It is since you’ve received the, burn the boats, as a result of I believe lots of people could be pondering, “I would be frightened about being irritating”.
Simon Mundie: I used to be frightened about being irritating.
Helen Tupper: However your burn-the-boat technique meant, “Effectively, I’ll do it anyway. What have I received to lose? I am in a job I do not need to be in anymore”.
Simon Mundie: Precisely. It is extra vital that I make one thing occur than I irritate somebody. I am prepared to annoy somebody to try to make one thing occur. So, it was actually a query of precedence. My dad’s received a beautiful phrase which is, “It is the squeaky wheel that will get fastened”, I am certain you’ve got heard it earlier than. It is like, you have to make noise.
So, I should not admit this, however I would be like, “I’ve received this good concept, can now we have a gathering?” He’d be like, “Certain, yeah, my secretary might help us prepare a time”. After which I would be like, “Proper, Alex [my wife] are you able to assist me provide you with an concept?”!
Helen Tupper: At the least she will get credited this time, not just like the individual whose line you took!
Simon Mundie: Pay attention, she has been elementary for certain. We have one another’s again, I believe, within the sense — and I believe having a help community, I do know you discuss this so much, is basically vital. So, having somebody who believes in you and encourages you and may see issues extra objectively than you, as a result of we’re all nice at giving different individuals recommendation; however in terms of ourselves, that inside critic voice can get in the way in which, and it is about stepping out of that. So, she was vital.
So, I simply harassed him and his quantity two for the very best a part of a yr, while on the similar time doing comparable with the At the moment Programme. A fast story: I keep in mind, I sat down with the Head of the At the moment Programme, and I received on very well along with her, and I simply thought, “Are you aware what, I am simply going to be sincere”, and I simply began slating the truth that soccer takes up a lot protection in broadcasting. After which I used to be speaking about tribalism, and the way the tribalism of soccer displays tribalism in so many different areas, and the way sport is both, in terms of broadcasting, a language you both communicate or you do not and really, we may very well be doing it in a solution to make it extra interesting to people who find themselves solely considerably , and he or she was like, “I find it irresistible, I find it irresistible!”
Anyway, simply earlier than Wimbledon 2018, I nonetheless do not know if I’ll be working at Wimbledon on TV, and I am truly in Liverpool, I believe, doing a narrative for Radio 1. My cellphone rings and it is the Head of the At the moment Programme. And he or she’s like, “Simon, I need to create a job for you”, the reason is, the BBC on the time have been like, “We have to deal with youth”, and I used to be thought-about the youth for the At the moment Programme! She was like, “I need to create a job for you”. I used to be like, “Cool, sounds good”.
I went again to the workplace a few days later. There is a man at my work who’s a little bit of a consigliere, bit of somebody I favored. I spoke to him and he is like, “Simon, you need to do a podcast”. I am like, “In fact I ought to do a podcast!” So, I went and had this assembly with the Head of the At the moment Programme and mentioned, as a substitute of what she had in thoughts, which was me going out and doing packages and reporting from reside, I used to be like, “Give me a podcast”. She clearly thought, “Podcast, youth, finished, you may have it”.
Do not Inform Me the Rating was born, credit score for the title — by the way in which, it is modified anyway, it is now Life Classes: From Sport and Past. However the cause it was known as Do not Inform Me the Rating was to distinguish it from the remainder of the protection on Radio 4, which is all rating, techniques, all that stuff. My spouse got here up with it. So, yeah, I received this podcast. They agreed it simply earlier than Wimbledon 2018.
Helen Tupper: And once more on that, I believe the factor that I am taking away, effectively two issues, that you simply pursued potentialities in parallel, so that you have been doing that factor the place you have been like, “Let’s examine what it may very well be like on the BBC if I contact these individuals”, after which clearly contacting the At the moment Programme, so there have been a number of issues that you simply have been exploring, which I do not suppose lots of people do this. I believe that is one thing to remove when individuals are interested by loopy potentialities.
But in addition, the position that somebody supplied you was not the position that you simply accepted, having the arrogance to iterate that position, even whenever you went in it.
Simon Mundie: Yeah. I believe like I mentioned, at this level, I would let go of the thought of what I ought to be doing and had embraced the thought of, “What do I need to do?” I would gone via a couple of issues on the BBC truly the place I used to be like, “Okay, you have to care about your individual profession”, as a result of truly large organisations typically cannot, in the way in which you need them to, and I believe individuals want to grasp that; as a result of companies, by their very nature, specific as soon as they recover from a sure measurement, cannot take care of you or care about you personally in the way in which all of us need to be cared for.
So, sure, she supplied me this, we agreed this podcast, and I keep in mind my spouse saying, “I believe this podcast goes to be actually vital for you”, however I am like, “No, it is all about Wimbledon”. So, Wimbledon 2018 begins, I nonetheless do not know if I’ll be doing TV, so I assumed, “I do know what, burn the boats”, so I went and acquired two ice lotions, went as much as the TV manufacturing workplace, walked in with these two ice lotions, Cornettos they have been, one was strawberry and one was chocolate, and I gave them to the primary and the quantity two. I mentioned, “Right here you might be –”
Helen Tupper: “I simply purchased you an ice cream”!
Simon Mundie: “– I purchased you an ice cream!” and considered one of them mentioned, “All proper, in you go”, into the manufacturing workplace, into the place they have been planning, and I received my break and the prospect to do some filming. And I used to be nonetheless working at Radio 1 and the At the moment Programme, so I used to be having to suit it round my radio work, however they gave me a possibility to document a couple of issues, and I clearly impressed them sufficient that they invited me again for 2019.
However the fascinating factor was, then after Wimbledon 2018, the podcast began, and really shortly it turned clear that this was going to be extra vital. Then, I will not clarify how this occurred, however I received approached about doing a ebook based mostly on the podcast, as a result of somebody actually favored it. After which the podcast form of iterated as effectively, I might say, into changing into rather more about life; as a result of my concept initially was simply concerning the tribalism of soccer and what that might inform us about, for instance, the tribalism of Brexit or the tribalism of politics in America, or COVID now. After which it is simply grown and I’ve lined all this stuff.
The humorous factor is now, I might say my profession is more and more getting in the way in which of the podcast. So, I suppose the takeaway for me is, it was that burn-the-boats angle, that form of create one thing for myself, and in my thoughts had this concept that it was all about Wimbledon. However truly, it has been extra concerning the podcast and the place that is main me, which is in a really totally different tangent now. And sports activities broadcasting and TV, for instance, that is not the place my profession’s going. It is simply fascinating that what my thoughts had, the plan that my thoughts had, shouldn’t be the place I am headed, and I am grateful for that, as a result of the course I am getting in actually pursuits me and feels rather more proper for the place I am at. However I nonetheless get that thrill of doing Wimbledon that satisfies my inside youngster, if that is sensible.
Helen Tupper: If there was one piece of recommendation that you simply’d give to that individual listening now who’s pondering, “I would prefer to try to be a bit extra Simon-like in how I am taking care of my profession”…?
Simon Mundie: I might say two issues. To begin with I might say, tune into your instinct. I keep in mind feeling actually dangerous for a very long time I did not have a five-year plan. Now, I would not, I am grateful I did not have a five-year plan. Additionally, I do not remorse the gross sales in any respect, as a result of it truly made me grateful for the BBC work, whereas lots of people who went straight into the BBC nearly turned, I do not need to use the phrase “institutionalised”, however do not realise what else is on the market. So, I am grateful for that, I’ve received no regrets concerning the gross sales profession in any respect.
So, I might say comply with your instinct. You probably have a sense that one thing is not proper then, in my expertise, that tends to be true. So for me, experientially, my instinct via my working life has proved itself to be proper over, for instance, my thoughts, my ideas about what I must be doing. So, that will be primary.
Then the opposite factor I might say is, get in entrance of individuals, communicate to individuals. After I was doing my podcast, the Controller was on one flooring above me on the BBC. I by no means despatched her an electronic mail, I might simply rock up at her desk such as you would not consider! And we turned good pals. I am very grateful to her, she’s a beautiful lady, and that relationship was elementary, so I created this very shut relationship by dint of the truth that I might simply rock up at her desk and simply chat, I turned actually in with their group.
So, I believe that making a relationship, talking to individuals, getting in entrance of individuals, going above and past, authentically, to not get one thing; as a result of I believe if you are going to get one thing out of somebody, or making an attempt to get one thing, individuals really feel it.
Helen Tupper: Clear.
Simon Mundie: Folks really feel it, yeah. So, go there authentically, and I believe simply being all for individuals. I simply try to speak to individuals like I might speak to a good friend. Why deal with individuals in another way? It is this concept of whether or not it is a superstar, somebody working behind the bar, working in a restaurant, individuals change their persona. No, simply deal with everybody the identical and simply communicate to them like they have been your good friend. For me, that form of relationship-developing, getting on the cellphone, like I do every thing on the cellphone now the place beforehand it was in individual, that will be the factor.
So, yeah, instinct and creating relationships, and asking for what you need, a squeaky wheel!
Helen Tupper: Yeah, very true, be a squeaky wheel! I like leaving it along with your dad’s recommendation. It looks like passing that knowledge on.
Simon Mundie: Good outdated dad.
Helen Tupper: Possibly he’ll take heed to this podcast. Thanks a lot for sharing your insights and your story with us, I simply discover it actually fascinating. It is a actually fascinating perception right into a world of labor that I have never skilled, however I believe the way in which that you have created the alternatives for your self is basically fascinating and much to study from, so thanks.
Simon Mundie: One very remaining factor. I left the BBC full time, and it was in the course of the pandemic and it did not appear the protected choice. So, individuals have been like, “Oh, the protected choice would have been to return to Radio 1”. I left. A few months after I left, everybody at Radio 1 was informed they must transfer to Birmingham. Security inside an organisation, for my part, is an phantasm. So, I believe being courageous, taking dangers, commit and work it out as you go is basically good recommendation as effectively.
Helen Tupper: Thanks a lot for listening to at this time’s podcast, and if you happen to’ve been impressed about how you possibly can create some alternatives to develop in numerous instructions and wish some help along with your abilities, then the federal government’s Abilities for Life web site is a good place to get began. The hyperlink to it’s gov.uk/skillsforlife. We’ll put that hyperlink within the present notes too, and you’ll all the time electronic mail us to search out it as effectively. We’re simply email@example.com, however there are such a lot of free programs and assets there to help your studying, whether or not you need to know a bit extra about coding or presenting or inexperienced abilities, it is all there and so they’re all run by consultants within the areas, and most of them will be finished remotely and they’re free. So, go and take a look if you need to study a bit extra.
However thanks very a lot for listening at this time. Sarah and I will probably be again collectively subsequent week speaking about one other matter to help you along with your Squiggly Profession. Thanks everybody, bye for now.