This week our Staff Snapshot Interview is with Mr Carr, our 'life-saving' IT Manager!
Tell us about your path into your job at MHS:
I started as an office junior at a software house, having been offered the job two years after doing two weeks' work experience at the same company while at school, I’d obviously left enough of an impression that they’d kept my details on file! I then spent twenty years there, initially working my way onto the helpdesk team followed by a brief stint in software development (where I wrote a new computerised support call logging system for the company, mainly because I couldn’t face doing any more filng of paperwork which was how the support calls were being recorded at that stage!) before ultimately becoming the first member of their new technical support team.
That role and the department grew over the years until I decided to seek out fresh challenges, at which point I became “Senior Technician” for an IT service company. That was a lot of hard work and a huge amount of fun, but then three and half years later COVID hit and the resultant knock on our clients' business found me seeking yet another fresh challenge.
I ultimately ended up with three options, and MHS looked as if it offered the most unique challenge, the most fun and a nice change of pace from my previous few years. I'm pleased to say I made the right choice 😊
What do you love most about your job?
Everything! The people keep it interesting, the challenge of making the technology as seamless and easy to use as possible is fun, getting that tech working in a school setting can often throw up some interesting and unique challenges each day and keeping everything else running in the background without anyone noticing is oddly satisfying. If the staff notice the IT, then it’s normally because it’s not working, which means I probably need to work harder!
What were you like at school?
Too smart for my own good and lazy as a result! Once I could do something and there was no longer a challenge I lost interest very quickly, much to the annoyance of my teachers. Every school report also mentioned the need to improve my terrible handwriting, to which my answer was always “but I’m going to work in computers so will type everything, so it doesn’t matter”. Now I must admit they were right; my handwriting is still absolutely terrible and despite working in IT I do occasionally need to write things down (although I do cheat and use notes on my iPhone a lot!).
When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I played with computers from a very young age (at 3 or 4 I was copying lines of computer code from a magazine onto a Commodore 64) so I always wanted to work with computers. Either that or to be a film director. Film stars and fame never really interested me but the process of making films still fascinates me to this day.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
There’s no one moment that immediately jumps out but being able to fix something quickly and seeing a stressed-out teacher suddenly relax a little is always a nice moment.
What are you most excited about at Marlborough House this year?
Hopefully completing a full school year with everyone in school, I think we’ve all had more than enough of Teams video meetings for a while!
What makes Marlborough House such a special place to be?
It’s an amazing place with some brilliant people who clearly love being here doing what they’re doing. Even if you’re having a bad day it’s hard not to get caught up in that and get lifted by it.
Years at MHS: This will be my second year
Unusual fact: Neil Morrissey (Men Behaving Badly / Waterloo Road / Bob The Builder) made me late for a curry on my stag-do. I can also juggle, which I’d argue is the most pointless skill in the world 😉
The book I am reading: Just finished “And Away…” by Bob Mortimer, just starting “Before & Laugher” by Jimmy Carr, currently reading “The Long Earth” by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter as well as “Nobody Walks” by Mick Herron (I’ve always got a few different books on the go, which one I pick up depends on my mood at the time).