Find out what our managing director, Simon Jackson, likes to do when he is ‘Out of the Office’.
What does your business do?
SDL Surveying is a Nottinghamshire based residential surveying specialist. Our headquarters are in Chilwell, though we serve clients all across the UK. We offer lender valuations as well as independent surveys for buyers..
What is your job title and what does it involve?
I’m the Managing Director of SDL Surveying. This sees me mainly involved with the strategy of the business, so my day-to-day role involves a variety of planning duties to ensure the company is running smoothly towards where we want to be. I work to help us stay up to date with the latest trends and technologies in the world of surveying, keeping us at the cutting edge. This helps us to offer a premium service to our clients while also attracting and retaining the best talent. Training and developing our existing staff is also important to us, and something we take great pride in.
Alongside this, I also enjoy building on our client relationships and overseeing our operations too, keeping a hand on all aspects of the business.
How do you manage work/life balance?
It’s pretty simple, I tend to not do that much work on weekends and I’m quite strict with this. For me this is personal time to enjoy with friends and family. I think it’s important to take that time to switch off and spend quality time with loved ones.
What are your favourite things to do in your spare time?
I love rugby, so much so that I coach our local team, the Oadby Wyggs under 15s on a weekend, and I’m a Leicester Tigers season ticket holder too. Sports aside, I enjoy cooking and baking. Bread and cake are my specialties!
What’s your favourite film and why?
It’s got to be Godfather 2 as I like the character of Michael Corleone – he’s a really cool guy, and definitely has to deal with a lot!
Who is your favourite author and why?
Fantasy writer, Raymond E Feist. I started reading his books when I was 15 and I’ve just finished his last series at 52.
What is your favourite book and why?
Weirdly, it’s not by Raymond. Wind in the Willows is my favourite book – it’s the first proper book that got me interested in reading, and I still love it now.
What was the last album you bought and why?
Noel Gallagher, High Flying Birds. I actually bought it on vinyl from a record shop in Leicester.
What is your best celebrity story?
I met Steve Redgrave once when I was hungover! At the time I was involved with Visa, and he was doing a presentation for them.
What type of theatre productions do you enjoy watching and why?
My wife and I love live theatre, especially attending musicals. We saw Hamilton last year and it was absolutely brilliant. I enjoy live theatre generally, and that feeling of being close to the audience and the actors, and musicals just make you feel good, so what’s not to love?
Which is your favourite theatre venue?
Any theatre in the West End in London is amazing, and locally I go to the Curve in Leicester too.
What are your favourite concert venues?
This is a little more tricky to answer… I have been to places like the O2, but generally I prefer somewhere smaller. Perhaps outdoor festivals are my favourite – anywhere with mud and beer!
What is your favourite gig that you’ve ever been to and why?
I saw the last Kasabian homecoming show at Victoria Park in Leicester and it was absolutely brilliant. I’ve seen them play a few times but they were just amazing this time and the crowd were really up for it.
Do you like to visit art galleries? If so, which ones and why?
Though I have visited art galleries, they’re not on the top of my list of things to do. Give me the theatre any day!
Where’s the best place to eat and why?
I like to support local restaurants rather than chains – though I do love Michelin Star restaurants as well. One of my favourites is John’s House. It’s modern British and all locally sourced, so it’s based on a farm. It’s a pleasure to eat there and the menu changes all of the time – not the sort of thing you can cook at home. Local, smaller eateries are great as you get a unique experience as well as the food, and I also enjoy contributing towards the local economy.
What’s your favourite meal?
Roast beef dinner, with all the trimmings.
What was your worst job?
When I was about 15, I used to work night shifts washing up in a restaurant. I got paid the same amount as others who finished at normal times. After starting in August, I wasn’t still there by Christmas or New Year…
What’s your biggest extravagance?
Recently my wife and I went to [Heston Blumenthal’s restaurant] Fat Duck, twice, for our anniversary.
What smartphone do you have and why?
Apple iPhone – I’ve always had an iPhone starting with the first generation and I’ve stayed the same and upgraded all the way through to now. I like it because it works with a lot of other tech I use.
What item could you not live without?
Definitely the iPhone. I don’t use multiple phones, my one smartphone is essential for lots of things – it’s work, it’s my emails and it’s also how I keep in touch with friends and family, as well as for entertainment too.
What sort of places do you like to go on holiday and why and where was the best place you ever visited?
Though we did go skiing in February, I do enjoy going anywhere hot but not necessarily with a beach. The best place I’ve visited is Thailand. The locals are some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet and the food was phenomenal. My wife and I went for two weeks on our honeymoon, after a visit to China.