Oscar O'Connor

Occupation: Professional Services Director, Selex Communications 

First Car: A ghastly Mini Metro - the only thing I could afford!

Favorite Restaurant: Le Manoir Aux Quat'Saisons, Great Missenden -outside Oxford, England.

What are three things most people don't know about you?

a). I played field hockey at student international level 
b). I made a few extra pennies as a chef when I was a teenager 
c). I’d like one day to write fiction and run my own brasserie.

What's been your greatest adventure in life?

Fatherhood. By some distance the most exciting and rewarding passage of my life so far.

What's your best childhood memory?

Summers spent in the Dordogne (a region in France), messing about on the next door farm.

If you could have a conversation with a person of your choice, past, present or future, who would that person be and why?

  1. The architect responsible for the Great Pyramid at Giza - I’d love to know the real story about why and how it was built.
  2. Myself as a young teenager - to persuade myself to focus more on studying to give me more choice… and to follow my dreams.

What's the hardest thing you've ever done in your life?

Having to leave my son when I divorced his mother.

Tell us about your favorite hobby.

  1. Having fun with my son and chatting about the universe with him.
  2. Playing golf - a true test of character and a physical test of risk management ability.
  3. Cooking - making up interesting recipes fusing influences from around the world.

What are you currently reading? What is your favorite book?

The Strange Death of Doctor Kelly by Norman Baker MP.  Just finished the Pullman trilogy His Dark Materials, The Ghost, Vice and Al Gore’s latest.  I love the novels of Robert Ludlum and Frederick Forsyth and read at least three or four per year.

Is there a particular place or thing you want to see?

The Great Pyramids, Easter Island & Macchu Picchu.

If you could give $10,000 to a charity, what would that charity be and why?

The Web of Hope of which I am a trustee - devoted to providing information and education on sustainable development and practical ways we can all make a difference to saving the planet from our own follies… check out the website and add your own stories of Hope!

If you weren't on the professional services career track, what would you be doing?

Writing, cooking and spending more time with my son.

What is the path that led you to Professional Services/Consulting?

A series of coincidences.

What advice would you give to a recent graduate who just took a job in professional services?

  • Never stop learning.
  • Never assume you know more about your clients’ organisations and operations than they do.
  • Never assume that because you were asked a question the answer will be welcome.
  • Never forget to say thank you to those who assist you.
  • Remember always that today’s adversary could be tomorrow’s customer.
  • Never assume that the hypothetical ultimate solution will work in practice.
  • Always assume that your client is at least as clever and knowledgeable as you are.