It's Learning at Work Week 2017, an annual national event organised by the Campaign for Learning, which aims to highlight the importance of learning and development at work. This year's theme is 'Curious & Creative', and companies and organisations of all sizes and types are invited to join in to promote a culture of learning, curiosity and opportunity for their employees.
We have our own apprentice here at Speakers Corner - Jaden Warner - who joined the team this year to crunch numbers as our Finance Admin Assistant while he trains to become a Chartered Accountant. We interviewed him to see how he's finding learning on the job!
You’ve been at Speakers Corner since February 2017, training on the job as our Finance Admin Assistant while you work towards your ATT (Association of Accounting Technicians) qualification.
How are you finding it so far?
So far, it’s been good! I’m enjoying it, and it’s different to what I was doing before. Now that I’m doing my AAT, I spend part of the week here at Speakers Corner to gain experience in the field, and on Fridays I attend classes. It’s all helping me work towards becoming a Chartered Accountant by allowing me to gain the qualifications needed.
Jaden has always gravitated towards numbers
That's great! What were you doing before?
Previously, I was competing in athletics around the UK and working in a shoe shop. I specialised in high jump, but unfortunately I suffered an injury. That's when I decided to search for an accountancy apprenticeship. As well as sport, I'd always gravitated toward numbers in my school life – I wasn’t such a fan of the words, but I liked maths!
What are the benefits of learning at work?
There are many benefits to being in a working environment. It's interesting because you're learning while you’re doing at the same time; you're acquiring the skills that you need for the job as you do the job. It all ties in together to help you move forward in a company and reinforces what you learn as you go.
Is there anything specific that you’re hoping to learn here?
Not specifically – I’m just generally trying to learn as much as possible and take in as much as possible. Speakers Corner is a really nice place - everyone is so friendly and passionate, which always helps.
What are the key skills needed for your job?
You need to be really patient and have a good eye so that you can spot any mistakes. A long attention span is definitely important!
How are you finding meeting our speakers in the office and at events? Any faves so far?
I really enjoyed listening to Ben Ryan – the coach who led the Fiji 7s Rugby Team to win Gold at Rio. I thought his story was really inspiring and unique with a great background.
I also was so inspired by Anne-Marie Imafidon – the mathematics and tech expert. She just really caught my attention because her delivery was really good, and I couldn’t stop listening. I can't believe how much she achieved so young!
High jump was one of Jaden's specialisms
Considering your interests, it's not surprising these are your fave speakers so far.
Sports and maths!
Both great subjects! So what do you do when you’re not at Speakers Corner?
Well, my injury's still there but I managed to go back to the gym recently.
I also read a lot – I like to read anything. My mum has always given me books from a young age.
You should join our book club here. Do you have a favourite book?
One of my favourites is ‘The Accountant’s Story’ by Roberto Escobar - Pablo Escobar's brother, It's the story about when they were young, watching his brother become a famous criminal, and goes all the way until when Pablo died. It’s a really good book that tells of how their lives changed throughout that time.
Sounds good! Thanks Jaden. We're happy to have you at Speakers Corner and wish you luck with your ATT qualification.