Meet the A&R man for some of the UK’s most well known acts

Yanik Weston is an A&R’s Assistant at Syco Music. At the moment he is working on four different projects with artists such as Susan Boyle, Il Divo, Leona Lewis and Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall.

What is the biggest challenge you have at the moment?

Well, I have joined half way through a project so that can be quite difficult. Also, I have to find the time to balance looking after four people with my additional PA duties. Before this I was a PA at EPIC records so because of my previous experience I have continued to take on these duties at Syco.

My job also involves me making sure that everyone is communicating and knows what is going on. It’s vital that I make sure that no-one is left behind.

What is the most exciting aspect of your work?

When I was at school I wasn’t particularly bothered about learning whereas in my job I enjoy learning lots of new things.

I get to see the whole process of making a record, from it being recorded right through to launch and promotion. It’s really great to be able to have an input throughout the entire creative process and there’s a real sense of pride when you see an act become successful. It’s nice to know that you were part of the driving force behind it.

How does technology help you do your job?

I suffer from Dyslexia so technology plays a really important part in my day-to-day activities. I find it a lot easier to write my notes on a laptop rather than by hand so I recently got a laptop.

Most of the people I work with have thousands of things going round in their mind at once so I need to be able to keep up with them and quickly take a note of the things that they need. Having my laptop has not only allowed me to do that but also means that I can always keep track of what I’m doing.

Has anyone been a mentor to you? What lessons did they teach you?

All the people I have worked with have been a mentor in one way or another. They have all wanted me to do better and had good intentions.

Have there been any clear turning points in your life so far?

Well I didn’t really like school and when I was 17 I was on path to become a professional footballer. I was playing at youth level at Fulham and then at semi-professional at Wimbledon and Woking. I got a full time contract but then got injured and lost interest. I spent the next year or so not doing a lot, just part time jobs here and there. I then decided that I really needed to make some changes and decided to go travelling for five months.

When I came back I started working at Christian Aid Youth Initiative and that was when the Music 4 Good opportunity came about. At the time I started studying a Fashion Marketing Course but when this opportunity came up I felt it was too good to miss. I had an interview at Epic and they offered me the job so a week later I left university and started my new job.

Have you ever regretted something you didn’t do?

I don’t have time to have any regrets!

What was the proudest moment of your life so far?

I’m hoping my proudest moment is yet to come.

Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years time?

I’d like to be the Managing Director of a record label.