00:00:03 My name’s Kevin J, and I’m a Steward at the Eden Project. I’m basically Eden’s Customer Service first point of call. And in the winter I ice skate on the ice rink. Just be looking after the public, making sure they’re all safe – safe and well on the ice rink, and behaving. In summer kind of time I’m anywhere round the site dealing with various customer questions. As a kid I didn’t – I wasn’t really too bothered about a career at that kind of – 5 to 10. No, I couldn’t imagine being in charge of an ice skating rink, no. it would have been the last thing I would have thought of, to be honest.
00:00:45 When I finished school – I did all right in my GCSEs but I – my original plan was to try and find a job, but I couldn’t find anything at the time, so I ended up going into college. And I done quite well again there. When I left college I went into a horticultural job, of all things. I was in charge of maintaining the grounds of a Country Club for about eighteen months. Got made redundant unfortunately, because they put the grounds out to tender. But after that I pretty much went straight to Eden, and I’ve been here ever since.
00:00:31 Looking back on it, you don’t realise it at the time, but school’s pretty good time really. I just felt that I’d had enough of education at the time, when I’d left school. But ever since I’ve been constantly doing qualifications and so – it often changes, the way you feel. My first job in horticulture I ended up doing NVQ 2. I wasn’t in that job long enough to go further than that. But then while I’ve been at Eden, I’ve done NVQ 2 and NVQ 3 in Customer Service, and various different qualifications in tourist attraction kind of operations. Eden’s been very supportive, for one thing. And just wanted to push myself a bit more, and see where that leaded – led!
00:02:24 The major cross-roads in my life was – well the thing that’s had the biggest impact was starting at Eden, because when I was at school, and college, and my first job, I didn’t really have much contact with the public, and I was a reasonably shy person, and not particularly outgoing, but dealing with the public all the time has brought me out of my shell a lot.
00:02:50 I’m a practical person, I like making things, doing things, with my hands and – I’ve got an aspiration possibly to train up as an electrician, in the future, possibly do an apprenticeship. It would make the best use of my abilities and the type of person I am, being a practical kind of person, so I think that would be the best thing to go into these days. But for the moment I’m happy where I am, and – it’s a nice variety of work, and I’m happy, so at the moment I can see myself here for a bit.
00:03:29 The only thing that’s probably held me back a little bit, is not knowing what I wanted to do. I am quite envious of people that know what they wanted to do from school, because then you can just get straight on and do it, but I don’t think you necessarily have to know what exactly you want to do from school to get on in life, and you can still end up in a good job, and be happy. I’ve been lucky in that I’ve found a job with Eden, and yeah it’s been plain sailing really.
Kevin J, steward at the Eden Project, knows that at 16 not everyone has (or needs to have) a clear career plan. When he couldn’t get a job after school, he went on to study horticulture at college. Joining Eden has been a real turning point in his life. He has taken numerous qualifications e.g. NVQ 3 Customer Service and now realises that eventually, to make the most of his interests and talents, he may take up an apprenticeship to become an electrician.
More information about Customer service managers and supervisors
The UK average salary is £28,758
There are 37.5 hours in the average working week
The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male
- Develops and implements policies and procedures to deal effectively with customer requirements and complaints;
- Co-ordinates and controls the work of those within customer services departments;
- Discusses customer responses with other managers with a view to improving the product or service provided;
- Plans and co-ordinates the operations of help and advisory services to provide support for customers and users.
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