Episode 97: Covid stories: From redundancy to opportunity – with Kerry Parkin of Est Communications

Kerry Parkin explains how, having been made unexpectedly redundant as a result of the Covid pandemic, she took the opportunity she’d been waiting for to start her own business.

Today’s guest

Kerry Parkin of Est Communications

LinkedIn: Kerry Parkin

Website: Est. Communications

Kerry has worked with some of the biggest brands in the world including Facebook, WhatsApp, Astellas, Nokia and Costa Coffee.

She’s moved to working for others to working for herself and now specialises in supporting businesses to achieve the same level of global fame.

Currently CEO of Est. Communications, Kerry leads a unique global agency providing communications strategies for start-ups, scale-ups, and disruptors.

What you’ll learn in this episode

  • [1:12] What a communication agency does.
  • [2:36] What led Kerry to this career.
  • [4:02] What Kerry enjoys most about her job and what her main drivers are.
  • [5:00] What Kerry’s last marketing job was before Covid hit.
  • [6:34] The extensive traveling Kerry had to do as part of her job pre-Covid.
  • [7:57] What Kerry’s career plans were before the pandemic hit.
  • [8:56] How Kerry’s company responded to the pandemic and the shock of being made redundant.
  • [10:51] Kerry’s immediate reaction to getting made redundant.
  • [13:11]  How to decide what’s next when facing redundancy.
  • [14:38] How spending time with your children can make you reassess your priorities.
  • [16:27] The process of finding your purpose and what’s really important to you.
  • [19:50]  The benefits of working for yourself rather than another organisation.
  • [20:48] Why Kerry hadn’t started her own business in the past.
  • [22:16] How to attract clients when first starting a business. 
  • [24:09] The importance of continually reassessing business ventures to see if they’re still working for you.
  • [25:40] Where Kerry would like her business to be in five years.
  • [26:36] The resources that have been most helpful to Kerry.

Resources mentioned in this episode

Please note that some of these are affiliate links and we may get a small commission in the event that you make a purchase.  This helps us to cover our expenses and is at no additional cost to you.

To see the resources recommended by all our guests, visit the Resources page.

Episode 97: Covid stories: From redundancy to opportunity - with Kerry Parkin of Est Communications

Jeremy Cline 0:00
Being made redundant is an opportunity. Yes, it's stressful. Yes, it causes uncertainty. But if you let it, it can lead on to bigger and better things. Don't believe me? Then listen to this interview. I'm Jeremy Cline, and this is Change Work Life.

Jeremy Cline 0:29
Hello, and welcome to the Change Work Life podcast, where we're all about beating the Sunday evening blues and enjoying Mondays again. This is the second interview in a series, all about the changes people have made to their careers as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Many people have lost their jobs and have been made redundant over the past 12 or 18 months. And whilst that can be a very worrying and a very stressful time, it can also lead to opportunity. And that's what we're going to talk about today with my guest, Kerry Parkin. Kerry founded Est. Communications in January this year, 2021, and it's a communications agency for start-ups, scale ups and disruptors. Kerry, welcome to the show.

Kerry Parkin 1:07
Thanks for having me. Good morning.

Jeremy Cline 1:08
So, to start off, what does a communications agency actually do?

Kerry Parkin 1:12
It's a great question. It depends on the kind of communications agency you work with. So, for my agency specifically, we help small businesses and new businesses tell their story to a range of stakeholders, such as the media, to consumers, to politicians, to regulators, and really help to kind of make sure that that message is understood for the business success. Alternatively, we also help businesses that might be getting into trouble reputationally, so they might have come a cropper with the media, they might be on the wrong side of a debate, or they might have a challenging view that's not a cultural norm, and therefore, we have to try and educate those same stakeholders on that position and help them recover from that. So, it's both a positive and a reactive experience, I suppose.

Jeremy Cline 1:56
I'm curious, which of those do you prefer? Do you prefer the sort of the building the message? Or do you kind of like the firefighting?

Kerry Parkin 2:03
I quite like the mix of the both. And I've always done both. Really, interestingly, I've done proactive communications and crisis, from my very first engagement and my very first in house role that was with Virgin. And sometimes you think Virgin can't possibly have crises or issues, but they did, like any big organisation. So, I enjoy the mix. I enjoy the strategic planning of the positive proactive, and I enjoy the all-hands-on-deck that an issue or a crisis presents. And you know, I think both give me energy in different ways. So, I enjoy both.

Jeremy Cline 2:34
How did you get into this field in the first place?

Kerry Parkin 2:36
Ah, it was one of those very old career coaching bible books that they used to have. So, I went to a career coach at university and said, 'I like reading. I like films. And I like running events.' And they took out this huge manual and did an index and they said, 'Right, well, either a journalist, a public relations specialist or a marketeer would be your best option.' And so, I thought, well, I'll give the middle one a go, and did some work experience, I did three weeks' worth of work experience, and was offered a job off the back of it. So, it was almost kind of falling into that career. But actually, I probably couldn't have found one more better suited to me. I enjoy fast-paced organisations, I enjoy thinking strategically about the world and how you can impact it for the better, I really enjoy the fruits of labour when you see media coverage landing, and when you stop media coverage from happening, that actually is a real thrill. One of my jobs, I actually would have a rate of around nine to 10 stories not making it to the media each month. And that was my definition of success. I was reviewed on how well i'd kept them out of the media at some point.

Jeremy Cline 3:44
That's remarkable, that even at university, you were able to, with help, identify a career which you've stuck with, because as I know from and listeners will know from this podcast, a lot of people start a career and then change partway through. But for you, it's always been what you've loved and what you've enjoyed.

Kerry Parkin 4:00
I do enjoy it. And dealing with difficult people and trying to explain a point of view is the one thing that I really enjoy in my job, about having the calm, steady approach to actually turning something around and/or making those who are not heard heard, is something that really kind of drives me. I think the other thing as well is, I've had quite a varied career, so I've worked in house and in agency. So, I've had quite a variety. I've worked for people like Virgin and Microsoft, and then people like Costa Coffee. I've worked for an alcohol company. So, I've had a lot of variety in the people I work with, the companies and the sectors I work in. And I've also done global, so I've worked across 92 markets before. So, that gives me enough variety, I think, to keep me interested, especially in cultural differences. That's really interesting for me.

Jeremy Cline 4:50
Before you were made redundant, which I gather was in November last year, is that right?

Kerry Parkin 4:53
It was, yeah.

Jeremy Cline 4:55
So, what did your last job look like? How long were you in it and what did it look like?

Kerry Parkin 5:00
Yeah, so I was in a very large agency network in their London office. I led quite a number of accounts. So, I led Facebook EMEA, Whatsapp, Weight Watchers, now known as WW, Astellas, which is a pharma company. So, really lovely variety of accounts and clients and some across Europe, some global, some very UK. And for each of those clients, there was a different brief. So, one perhaps would like to raise their profile in the region, so they could talk more positively about their business. One wanted to really kind of explain their change in their business to end consumers, so very different briefs, working with around 30 team members. So, real collaboration, really collaborative affair, but very, very busy, you know, very flitting from one account to the next trying to keep hold all the plates in the air, and ultimately, you know, working 13 hours a day in London, so would be on a train by quarter to eight, and at home, probably about eight o'clock, and get dinner and log back on again. That was the working day. That was what I was used to. And I did that for 18 months. And they're a great company, I hold absolutely no barbs with them at all, because they did treat me very well. And they were really interesting company to work for. And I believe they did me a favour as well. COVID hit quite a lot of agencies very hard, it hit a lot of business very, very hard. Budgets just weren't the same. So, I left there in November, with a real clean slate about what would I like to do with my future, and that was a new kind of opportunity that I had never considered before.

Jeremy Cline 6:31
So, you mentioned very long days, travel as well, or did you do all this from the office?

Kerry Parkin 6:37
So, really interestingly, yeah, for the last 12 years, I've travelled quite extensively, mainly in my global roles. With one business, I used to fly around the world every six weeks. So, I used to stop off in Spain, the UK, New York, and then back to Australia again. And, you know, that was just the price of doing business, and that was the travel required. And when I was in another job, you know, going to Dubai every four weeks was required, and then going to all of their launches across the world was a required travel mandate. And really interestingly, you know, COVID, I think, has taught us more than ever before, you don't necessarily have to get on a plane to do good business. I think culturally, some markets do enjoy that kind of face-to-face interaction, culturally, that's more of a norm for them. But I can, and I do, I currently hit something like six markets in one morning, you know, before 12, I've usually spoken to Australia and New Zealand, probably Dubai, I've definitely spoken to the UK, and our business in the Czech Republic currently, and one of the clients I'm working for, and I haven't left my desk, I haven't had to pack a bag, I haven't put my body through the stress of an aeroplane, I haven't had to kiss my children goodbye for two weeks. So, it's been a bit of a revolution, to be honest, to kind of run a global account from my study in my house, it's been a revelation.

Jeremy Cline 7:53
Before the pandemic, what were your career plans?

Kerry Parkin 7:57
I'd say there was two career plans. One was pre baby number two, and that was just before the pandemic. So, pre baby number two, I wanted to be a CEO of a company or Chief Of Staff in a big global company, travelling the world as I did, and you know, really kind of rising to the top level that I could. Pre-pandemic, after baby number two, and just before the pandemic, I wanted to be in a very stable job, but I wanted to get to the top of my field, probably wanted to be an MD or a CEO of the agency, not just a CEO of a business. Yeah, pre-pandemic, seems like a long time ago.

Jeremy Cline 8:38
What was the seven months kind of from the start of the pandemic leading up to when you were made redundant like in terms of the job and you know, whether it was a kind of like a gradual decline, or whether things were kind of okay, and then it was a sudden drop off and a sudden redundancy situation?

Kerry Parkin 8:57
I mean, I think like many, the pandemic turned the business upside down. And I think actually, the business I was working in responded very well. You know, we had a huge number of clients affected by the pandemic, and it was our job to try and, as much as we can, give them the best advice and counsel, to kind of respond to that. So, I was incredibly busy. I'm also the kind of individual where, if the challenge is presented, I will go out there and try my best to actually fix it or to actually make some changes in order for things to stabilise quite quickly. That's just how I work. So, I was incredibly busy, actually. And my husband lost his job, and that meant that there was a kind of increased focus on me keeping mine. And I wouldn't say it was a gradual decline at all. In fact, the call that very cold November morning was quite sharp. It wasn't something that I had expected. And I wasn't the only one, but I think it's fair to say that with the pandemic, we were six months in, but the guidance we were getting is this was going to be an 18-months, two-year issue. So, actually, we still as a business had a long road to travel before business would normalise or stabilise. And so, yes, it was a huge shock. I think previously, I've always led change comms, so I've always led the change in an organisation. So, to be on the receiving end of that change was a real shock. And it really rocked me, as well, because you know, my husband wasn't working, we have two children, we were trying to cope in a pandemic with a lockdown. We had enough kind of choppy waters happening for us anyway, without this added to the mix. And then, my biggest challenge was I just didn't know what to do next. I had no idea what I would do, or what I wanted to do. I had no idea. And that was more scary than actually losing my job. That I could cope with, that I can figure out, but what do I do with my rest of my career, that I really struggle with.

Jeremy Cline 10:44
So, did you have an immediate reaction or sort of like, 'Oh, I need to find another job, any job as quickly as possible'?

Kerry Parkin 10:51
No, my immediate reaction was to cry. And my immediate reaction was, it's the end of the world. And my immediate reaction was, I've let my family down. Because they were banking on me having a job. And now, we are left with nobody working, the events industry had died for my husband, he couldn't get a job in events. I knew that I had skills and I was marketable, I knew I could get a job. That wasn't what was most upsetting. I think the most upsetting thing was one, leaving my team, and then quickly followed by the sense of shame that I'd let my family down, quickly followed by, yeah, I could get another job, but do I want one? And what do I want to do next? What's even my calling in life anymore? I don't know.

Jeremy Cline 11:30
Where does this sense of shame come from, out of interest? I mean, we're in a situation where it's a global pandemic 1000s upon 1000s of people are being furloughed or made redundant. So, what was the shame in being made redundant?

Kerry Parkin 11:43
And I think that you asked what my immediate reaction was, and it was that. It was more that I let the family down, that I had in some way contributed to a process that was beyond my control. And I understand that now. But my immediate response was, you know, I've let them down. For whatever reason, they were banking on me to bring in that salary. And of course, my family didn't feel like that. And of course, that was the most ridiculous thing to actually consider when we're in a pandemic, and millions of people have lost their jobs. But it was that, that's how I felt at that moment in time. That one didn't last as long, it was more of, I miss my team. And I've kept in touch with some of them. And as I said, I left with real grace and no hard feelings with the business. You know, I still recommend them to people I work with, if they're looking for big agencies, they're a good outfit. And there's some really lovely people. I left with no hard feelings, but it was more, it very quickly, within the first week or two became, you know, what do I do next? And that became the all-encompassing challenge, not about money, or my family, or even the teams, it was more about, I just genuinely don't know what to do next.

Jeremy Cline 12:48
Can you talk a bit more about what that means? So, you know, one possibility, I suppose, could have been, well, I'll just get another job in a similar organisation doing the same sort of thing. So, were you concerned that that job didn't necessarily exist? Or was the situation causing you to reassess whether you even wanted to go back to that sort of thing?

Kerry Parkin 13:12
I think for some time, I think for probably around 12 to 18 months before this happened, I had been quite concerned about whether or not I lived up to my potential, and what my purpose was in life. And was it to make money for rich people, was it to do something more for myself, what was driving my purpose in life? And I found that to some extent with some of the clients I've worked with, but on a more fundamental level, I didn't. And that was concerning me, reaching, you know, my age now of nearly 44, it was a concern around, well, what am I here to do, and my concern was going back to another agency or back into another big in house job. It wasn't meeting any kind of purposeful need within myself. But then I couldn't, I couldn't tell you what my purpose was, I couldn't tell you what I wanted to do with my life. So, it was kind of this conundrum of, I really didn't want to keep doing what I was doing, but I really didn't know what it is I wanted to do. And I'm a very solution-oriented kind of person, so to try and figure that out was causing a great deal of emotional angst in me and a great deal of mental stress, because I just couldn't quite crack it.

Jeremy Cline 14:27
Did the pandemic and the situation accelerate this then, do you think? Is this something that was already there and it just kind of was all brought home as a result of circumstances?

Kerry Parkin 14:37
I think so. I think that the pandemic brought me much close to my children and their wants and needs. You know, as I said, I used to spend 13 hours in London every day, for five days a week. So, you know, I got to know my children intimately, which I didn't, you know, it's hard to say, but I didn't know them. You know, I had nannies and day care and schools. I didn't have a hands-on responsible for my kids in the working week. And so, that kind of made me reassess actually about what kind of presenteeism I wanted in my children's life, which meant that I couldn't go back to a five-day-a-week agency job for start, because after pandemic they would want and then expect people in agency to be in office, in my opinion. I think the second thing is, we lost my father in law in week one of lockdown, like first lockdown last year to COVID. And I think that just kind of generally brings a reassessment of life's priorities when you start to lose family members, and about what you leave behind. So, again, kind of faced with my own mortality, it's kind of what's the obituary, your writing, you know, she spent 13 hours on a train every day and did a good job, but doing what. I just think, yeah, the pandemic shifted how I felt about family and my responsibilities. It shifted how I felt about mortality and what I'm here for. And I think it levelled the playing field for everybody. I think in previously, you would have to have a face and an office or a face in front of your client, it just levelled the playing field enormously for everybody concerned, so that it didn't matter so much anymore that you weren't in an office nine to five and that you weren't with people face to face, you're all in the same space.

Jeremy Cline 16:12
So, you knew that going back to a big agency wouldn't fit your purpose, but you weren't necessarily sure what your purpose was or what you needed to do to fulfil your purpose. So, how did you start to figure those things out?

Kerry Parkin 16:26
At one of my departure conversations with a very good colleague of mine, who actually had lung cancer, so you know, again, lots of, lots of kind of mortality raising questions happening around me, he gave me a lovely piece of advice, which was, you know, just leave a little bit of your soul out there. And I love that. And it got me thinking, and I've spoken to a coach who'd asked me to map out my life in seven-year increments, from when I was born right through to today. And when I did that, what I found was, there was a lot of common themes, helping people was one of them. I got my greatest sense of achievement when I helped somebody. My second greatest sense of achievement was when I've done something that people couldn't believe could be done, you know, like, I moved a mountain. And then my third was when I'd help people grow their business. And you know, that was from a very early age, when I was, I must have been 13, at school, we used to have these horrible school lunches, and I hated them. And one day, I went over to a newsagent across the road from my school, and I took a loaf of bread and a packet of cheese and said, 'Why don't you make sandwiches? Can you just make me a sandwich now and I'll pay you for it?' And I worked with him to develop a whole sandwich offer for the school. And by the time I'd left the school, there would be queues around the block waiting for this sandwich guy. And for me, that was one of the greatest kind of achievements, I helped this guy sort of a whole new offer, I got my fresh sandwich, which I loved. And you know, I'd helped him grow his business. And then, I kind of looked back at my seven-year increments, and there was lots of things like that. There was a real entrepreneurial spirit, there was a real kind of sense of helping people grow their own businesses and grow my own thoughts and dreams. And when I was working through this coach, it kind of became apparent to me that, where I would find most fulfilment in my life is helping scale up, so start-ups or new businesses or pre-IPOs, or just post-IPOs, those businesses that are embryonic, and they're in growth mode. But there comes a point where you have to watch your back as well as grow, you have to grow up and professionalise. And I was able to take all of my very big large tanker experience that I've got in FTSE 100 companies, and you know, really big businesses, but apply them to people who I think needed the most and can't access that kind of counsel without a significant price tag. So, it took a little while to get there, took a lot of coaching. But I think I remember I had the idea on New Year's Eve. And on New Year's Day, a very good friend of mine reached out to me from Australia and said, 'I'm working in a scale up, we want to globalise quickly, we need some help.' And within 10 days, I'd established the business and had my first client. So, I'm also a very big believer that whatever you put out to the universe comes back to you, you know, manifesting for me has been a 20-year kind of dream then and action and activity. So, I have two clients now, one's big, one small, I'm okay with that.

Jeremy Cline 19:13
Let's talk about the coaching. Was this something that you started between being made redundant and starting your own business?

Kerry Parkin 19:20
It was a parting gift, actually, from the business I left. And I only did three sessions. So, it was very light touch. And actually, that was all I needed. I think a lot of people feel like you need to do, you know, six months worth of coaching in order to find your way. I think if you genuinely commit to the process and are quite an insightful person and you know yourself, I think it can be much quicker.

Jeremy Cline 19:40
And what was it specifically that pointed to doing this on your own account in your own business rather than something similar to what you've been doing before?

Kerry Parkin 19:49
Oh, first of all, I don't think anybody's doing it. I think if they're doing it, they don't do it particularly well, and they do it in a very kind of, I tell a lie, actually there's one agency that does this quite well, but they do it in a very UK basis. So, there aren't people that do it globally. And I think that's where, you know, having worked across 92 markets before, I can kind of bring a global view of international expansion as well, which a lot of start-ups look to do quite quickly, really interestingly. They don't just seek to be more market. And I just felt like I wanted to benefit my family going forward. And I wanted to make sure that whatever IP sits within me, stays within my family and my business success. And I've never felt like that before. But I felt like there was a real pride in kind of having 20 years in business, that my next 20 would be about, you know, supporting new businesses, but equally supporting my business and my family. I've always wanted to own my own business and never did. And I felt like I needed to at least try.

Jeremy Cline 20:45
What do you think stopped you from doing it in the past?

Kerry Parkin 20:48
I think it's the hamster wheel, right? It's the mortgage, and then the children and then the school fees, and then the children and then the dog and the cat and the mortgage gets bigger. And I just think taking that risk feels a lot riskier when you have other options, and this safety net. I think when all of that comes away, and the safety net comes away, and you're standing there in your own two feet with no job, I think it just gives you a do-or-die purpose, really, I think you kind of go for it or you don't.

Jeremy Cline 21:15
So, the change in perspective was having that safety net being taken away. So, basically having to make it work.

Kerry Parkin 21:22
Yeah, pretty much, having no choice. Again, with two children and a mortgage and husband out of work, my only option was to make it work.

Jeremy Cline 21:30
Hindsight is always 2020, but I know you're in the very early stages of your business, but kind of looking back, do you kind of think, 'Oh, actually, I wish I had done this before'?

Kerry Parkin 21:40
No, I think I'm a big believer that things happen at the right time for the right reason. So, you know, I look back, especially on the last 10 years, I wouldn't have known what I know in order to give the counsel I give, you know, I wouldn't have achieved some of the really important professional highlights that I had in agency and in other businesses. So, I'm actually quite comfortable that it's happened at this point. It feels like it's about time, but not too late.

Jeremy Cline 22:02
You mentioned getting contacted by a prospective client at the start of the year. Did this person know that you were thinking about doing this? Or did they literally just think, 'I need some help, I wonder if Kerry can help or know who can help'?

Kerry Parkin 22:16
Yeah, no. And it was completely fortuitous. So, he had seen that I had left my job. But he had no idea that this was what I was considering next. And so, I mean, it's a fantastic organisation, and its founder-led, it's in scale up, it's creative, chaotic, fun, the right thing to give me the new energy, and to kind of propel the business for the foundation client, it was really timely.

Jeremy Cline 22:42
And having had your first client basically fall into your lap, what were your plans before this client fell into your lap for getting your first few clients?

Kerry Parkin 22:52
Yeah, and it's interesting, because all of the comms agencies that are out there, I'm one of the very few that has a particular phase of your business development that I work with you on. You know, most comms agencies will do everything from start-ups to huge tankers, they will just cover the suite, but none of them have those kind of speciality. And so, finding those businesses, it takes research, it takes energy, you know, I've had a lot of great meetings. But what's been really interesting is some of the big businesses that have come to me and said, 'We want to recapture that spirit, and we want to kind of recapture our youth a little bit. And so, therefore, can you help us do that?' So, that's been a little bit unexpected, actually. But you know, it's early days, I'm in no rush, you know, I've got a great client, I've got a new client that's come on board, much smaller, female CEO, you know, just pre-IPO, series A funding, just really interesting business. And I'm really happy servicing them as myself at the moment. I don't have plans for world domination just yet.

Jeremy Cline 23:46
Now, we're still very early days, we're talking in May, so the business has only been going for four months. Are you still in a frame of mind where you're in kind of trial mode, you kind of got a timeframe for seeing whether this is going to work out? Or have you already concluded, 'No, this is now what I'm going to be doing for the next X period of time.'

Kerry Parkin 24:09
When I decided to do this, I had a conversation with my husband, we do everything together. And we said that I would give this a go for 12 months and see how things progress and transpire. And that's what we're doing so far. So far, so good, I think.

Jeremy Cline 24:22
So, in 12 months' time, what are your KPIs going to be?

Kerry Parkin 24:27
There's a number attached to it. There's a number of clients I'd like to get, and that will be four by the end of the year. But more importantly, that I'm happy. That's the main KPI.

Jeremy Cline 24:36
And what do you think you'll do if you don't have that four clients, or you're thinking, 'I'm not sure if I'm happy about this'?

Kerry Parkin 24:42
I think I will just evolve again. I'm trying not to get too into the future at the moment because I still am not convinced the pandemic is anywhere near done. I think there's been far too much turbulence in my own life in the last 12 months, which has made me think more near-term than I ever have. So, I suppose we'll get to that point in January next year and consider it then. But at the moment, I'm just, I get up every morning quite happy that I don't have to get on a train, I take my kids to school, and I do work I really like.

Jeremy Cline 25:10
This question might fly in the face of what you've just said about not thinking particularly long term. But if I was to force you to say, okay, five years' time, all things being equal, you're enjoying what you're doing, it's a success, what might the business look like? I mean, do you, you said you don't have ambitions to take over the world, but do you have ambitions to grow to be a small team, a large team, to carry on working from home or to have your own office premises? What does sort of the five-year future hopefully like, if everything goes well?

Kerry Parkin 25:40
Yeah, so the five-year horizon looks like a team of 15, not necessarily based in the UK. So, based across the world, servicing global clients, who are pre- or post-IPO. The dream would be that it's very healthy and diverse mix of women, people with invisible disabilities, I'm from the North, you know, I'd love to have a Northerner hiring policy, if I could, but no, you know, kind of underrepresented communities I'd love to work with. I will have probably a non-exec director role in the charitable sector, working with mental health, and just being happy in servicing great clients, really nice clients. That's what I'd like.

Jeremy Cline 26:17
Fantastic. Well, that's much more detailed than I was anticipating. So, that's absolutely fantastic. On your journey, have there been any other resources, apart from the coaching, which you found particularly helpful, whether they be quotes, books, blogs, podcasts, sites, anything like that, which you think is worth recommending to other people?

Kerry Parkin 26:36
Yeah, I find, I mean, the quote that I found when I was 15 has stayed with me for a very long time, which is, 'what lies before us and what lies behind us is nothing compared to what lies within us'. And I've always been a big fan of that quote. And more recently, I kept David's quote up on my wall here, which says, 'just to leave a little bit of your soul out there'. You know, I think that that's what I do. In terms of books, I read recently Four Feet From... Three Feet, Four Feet From Gold, I can't remember which one it was, which is about giving up just before, you know, you make it, which I found really interesting. And I also read The Chimp Paradox as well, which I found to be really revolutionary as well. More recently, I've been reading books like Truth to Power, which has been, especially in my job where you're dealing with CEOs and founders, very, very helpful. And even my three-year-old wants to read it, she gets me to read it to her now. I think that's quite worrying. But no, I read a lot. And I think there's some lovely resources available out there. But I'd say my main source of support and coaching has been my mom. My mom is, she's a phenomenon. And she's been there and done that and lived through most of it. So, I've been quite, quite lucky in that regard.

Jeremy Cline 27:41
Fantastic. And where can people find you if they want to get ahold of you?

Kerry Parkin 27:45
So, I'm on LinkedIn, very big and vocal on LinkedIn. So, you're welcome to find me there. Kerry Parkin, or www.estcommunications.com.

Jeremy Cline 27:53
Fantastic. Links to that in the show notes. Kerry, thank you so much for coming on the podcast and for telling your story.

Kerry Parkin 27:59
Thanks, Jeremy.

Jeremy Cline 28:00
Okay, hope you enjoyed that interview with Kerry Parkin of Est. Communications. If there was one bit of the interview where I was nodding my head really quite enthusiastically, it was where Kerry said that she'd kind of thought about starting her own business for some time, but she just hadn't summoned up the courage up until this point. She had been too fearful of making the leap, until basically she was given the opportunity to do so and effectively forced to make it work. We have such a tendency to allow fear to prevent us from taking action or making changes. Sometimes I just think we need to be counselled in the view, you know what, it's probably going to be okay, and even if it isn't, it's not the end of the world. Something will come up, you'll be able to go back to doing what you were doing before or doing something else. I hope it was another inspiring story of how some good can come out of the coronavirus pandemic, even though it's caused a lot of pain, a lot of misery, a lot of suffering, a lot of uncertainty. This interview with Kerry in the previous one with Chris shows that good can come of it, if we allow it to. So, if the COVID pandemic has caused you to reassess where you are in your career, then I hope Kerry's story has provided you with a little bit of inspiration. The usual show notes for this episode are on the website at changeworklife.com/97. And whilst you're on the website, I'd love to hear your coronavirus stories about how they've affected your career, what changes you've either made or are contemplating making. If you go to changeworklife.com/contact, that's changworklife.com/contact, there's a form there, send me a message, I'd love to hear from you, and maybe even feature you on a future episode of the podcast. So, do please get in touch. Next week, we find out what a former stunt woman does next. It's a really interesting interview, so do make sure you're subscribed to the show and I can't wait to see you in next week's episode. Cheers. Bye.

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