To be honest when I went to school (a fair few years ago now!) I didn't bother. I tried in a few subjects I liked including art but to me going to school was about spending the days with my friends.
I left school having done 9 G.C.S.E's but not with the best grades and the highest was in Art which i received a B for. But by far I wasn't a drop out, I decided I wanted to go straight into work and start earning. So at the age of 16 I left school and there was no summer off for me as I immediately obtained a job as a trainee insurance consultant in a small insurance brokers. I loved working, I felt so grown up earning my own wage (albeit a small one!) and I took the challenge on and I believe I grew as a person and my confidence soared. I feel If I had chosen university as my next step I would of missed out on these skills when I was at an age to mould who I was and what I wanted out my career. Over the years of my working career, I worked hard, and I learnt on the job. Fast forward eight years later and I was working at a top insurance company as a sales executive looking after 100 brokers within the UK. I obtained many N.V.Q's whilst working and worked towards my diploma in insurance.
At the age of 25 I fell pregnant with my beautiful daughter Ashleigh and was lucky enough to be able to take a long break from work. I loved being a mother but I soon realised I needed more of a challenge and never one to sit still I started my first business.
I never thought I would be in a position of where I am now running my own string of successful businesses and being a single mum to my daughter. My life was never mapped out to be an entrepreneur and it got me thinking as to where we obtain these skills to make it in this field. What makes us an entrepreneur?
When I now go back into schools and colleges to provide talks or when I did my time with young enterprise it still really irritates me that students don't really understand what 'enterprise' means. I don't mean I think everyone should start their own business as some people just aren't cut out for it, but where's the options and advice to open the eyes to these students and to make them realise that in this world you make what you want from it.
People often comment that I have great people skills. I used to be shy but now I love meeting new people and learning about their lives and their dreams. Not only is it thought provoking to how we are mapping out our own future it it also can be so inspiring.
We need to give the children of our future options, to realise that if they work hard enough they can get what they want. Yes there are always obstacles but if you want something hard enough you will fight for it to the dear end. This world is full of material things we want like an iPad, new phone or a new car etc but let's make an active change to not only want the material things in life but to concentrate on the skills that are going to give us the life we want to lead.
I have a five year old daughter and as any parent would tell you, I want the absolute best for her. When the time comes and whether she chooses to go into further learning, a workplace or to start her own business then I will be by her side all the way. What I want her to realise is that the skills she already has now are what she can utilise to make her go far. My daughter is a blessing to be around, polite and quietly confident, she will step into any room and make friends, something I admire so much.
So come on parents lets switch off the computer games and tv once in a while and lets invest in the future of our children and our enterprise.