The Results of Skiing to Work (the power of social media)
What could possibly happen when someone tweets about you skiing to the Circus Skills York office space?
Wednesday 28th February: Skiing to work!
I awoke and was super excited to see that there was enough snow to make cross country skiing to work possible (I’ve had them since 2008 and have only managed to ski to work twice!). As I approached my offices in the iconic Hiscox York building, fellow members (Money Alive) of the Hiscox Business Club that I belong to, took a picture of me and tweeted it. Literally 10 minutes later I got a call from the producer of BBC Radio 2’s The Jeremy Vine Show inviting me to be interviewed on national radio, which I agreed to!
At this point let me digress slightly and tell you a little more about the Business Club…
When Hiscox opened their building in York in April 2016, they made an important and exciting decision to supporting small and brave businesses with a shared 35 hot desking area including wifi, printing, refreshments & access to meeting rooms all for free. The members of the club are disparate in their nature from pensions to education, from marketing to web design, from medical to circus skills, but due to the open plan space we can easily network and support each other. Now with that explained, let’s see what the Business Club can do in this sort of situation…
So the immediate reaction from my fellow Business Club members to the producer’s telephone call was “you’re kidding me!”, but after the initial shock, the “support” network kicked in and before I knew it I was receiving advice on Social Media and being interviewed on live radio.
Wednesday 28th February: Mid Morning
It just so happened, that Catherine Turnbull, a journalist, happened to chose today to be her first day in the Business Club. Throwing herself in straight away, see interviewed me and wrote an article which she sent out to various press agencies, and as a result the York Press photographer agreed to come in at lunchtime.
Wednesday 28th February: Lunchtime – back on the skis
Radio 2 decided they would like to interview whilst I was skiing, so I popped out and went for a little ski. While I waited, I tried juggling and found it was much harder than I thought, mainly due to the uneven speed of cross country skiing! Then before I knew it I was being interviewed by Jeremy Vine! This was my first experience of being interviewed on live radio, and though I was a little nervous, I found it quite fun! Take a listen to https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09s8g6h around 7 and a half minutes in!
Straight after the interview Frank Dwyer from the Press took lots of pictures both outside the Hiscox building and then at my suggestion on the roof terrace of the building, where there was lots of lovely virgin snow and a beautiful back drop of York Minster. I guess that there are not too many people who can say that they’ve skied on top of their work!
Wednesday 28th February: Home Time
After work on my ski home, Radio York rang up and wanted me to be on their morning program at 7:30!
Thursday 1st March: Morning – back on the skis
As a result of more snow during the night, I was able to ski to Radio York, a short 5 minutes away. I’ve never been into the building properly so it was great to see what goes on. I got to wait in the room adjacent to the studio, where due to a large window being on the shared studio room wall, you can see everything happening. The producer thought it would be fun for me to actually ski into the studio, so on went my skis again and I skied along the carpet into the studio, much to the amusement of the presenter, the lovely Joanita Musisi. I’ll tell you something, it is a little tricky trying to sit down on a chair in front of the microphone when you’re wearing a pair of skis (cross country skis tend to be a little longer than your height)!
It’s much nicer doing a face-to-face interview and Juanita and I had a good chat on air.
After the 5 minute interview (https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05wjq8t#play 1:34 in), Radio York’s social media expect, Sarah Urwin, followed me to work so that she could video me, and later she posted this https://fb.com/BBCYork/videos/1836971669669410/?t=0, which amazingly has at the time of writing got nearly 10,000 views! Sarah also recorded me having a go with my Poi whilst skiing in the Minster Gardens – https://fb.com/CircusSkillsYork/videos/1570286693087723/
Thursday 1st March: Afternoon
Just when I thought things were quietening down with the media, I got a telephone call from BBC local radio, from the producer of the Georgey Spanswick 7pm show (this show brings together the best of BBC Local Radio across the UK and is simultaneously broadcast on all BBC local radio stations).
Thursday 1st March: Evening
I had my second interview on live national radio with Nick Ahad, who was sitting in for Georgey who was snowed in, my Mum particularly enjoyed hearing me on Radio Essex. You can hear it at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05wjbzf and fast forward to nearly 15 minutes in.
So be careful who see’s you when you travel to work in an unusual way!