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Together Everything is Possible - Rags to Riches

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Jeff Mostyn, AFC Bournemouth Chairman, was our guest speaker talking about the recent history of the club and applying their story to 4 key project management disciplines:

•    Leadership
•    Lessons Learned 
•    Planning
•    Stakeholder Management

The evening began watching a short video compilation of their promotion last season – please excuse the expletive towards the end.

Jeff explained his background, from leaving school with no qualifications whatsoever, through to becoming a financial advisor with his own company…and the interesting route contained therein!!

A Manchester City fan by default (Jeff’s only obvious failing right now) he told the captive audience of over 50 about the opportunity that arose to get involved with AFC Bournemouth, though some of the truth was withheld from him initially otherwise the story of ‘The Cherries’ reaching the Premier League for the first time in the club’s history might never have been realised.

Without a single PowerPoint slide in sight Jeff captivated the audience with the level of his honesty and passion as he explained about the problems he inherited, both on and off the field. He explained, with some pain evident on his face, about how the club were around 10 minutes from relegation out of the Football League and therefore likely extinction before club legend Steve Fletcher scored the all-important winner in the last game of the season versus Grimsby Town as recently as 26 April 2009.

He then spoke of the ongoing positive planning as the club quietly went about rebuilding itself and continuing to clear its debts, eventually securing lucrative investment from Russian, Maxim Denim, who remains the major shareholder today.
Throughout, the club has remained at the heart of the community and its many stakeholders include the ground owner, local council, residents, charities and fans, amongst others. Managing each of their own needs throughout the bad, and now good, times has not always been easy but is not something the club has shirked its responsibility on.

Jeff spoke within his presentation, and during the open Q&A session which followed, about the many lessons learned he himself and the club identified and have benefited from by not ignoring them.

I have been involved with Wessex branch since 1999 and can genuinely say I have not heard such genuine and sustained applause as Jeff received a the close of the evening. It certainly brought a lump to my throat.

Wanting others to also be able to hear this different and very exciting story I am in liaison with the club to try and get Jeff to repeat as a lunchtime webinar for APM so watch this space….

Russel Jamieson
Wessex Branch Committee Member


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