One of the most interesting developments I ever had in my career was when I told my boss that I wanted some experience of acquisitions and disposal of companies. His eyes were wide open as he smiled at me sheepishly and said ” be careful what you wish for “. Little did I know that the company was about to acquire another company and they were desperately looking for someone to lead the finance function, but had assumed everyone was too busy and were considering hiring a consultant. He was so relieved and immediately handed me the file.
I worked on the acquisition for about three months, once it was completed I thought I had finished but I was asked to stay on as the finance director to integrate the company and implement new financial system. As I was planning my exit to return to my old job, the company changed its strategy and the acquired company became surplus to requirements and I was asked to stay and work on the disposal of the company.
In a moment of boredom, I managed to get myself a whole lot of work and nearly 3 years of commuting to London at a time when I was working less than 1 mile from my house.
I am glad I asked though as I gained a lot of experience and exposure to very senior colleagues in the process. The lesson for me is never be afraid to ask for what you want, in terms of experience.
All I remember now is that it was a lot of unforgettable fun and great experience.