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Spotlight On: Ben Breeze

Each week we highlight a member of staff, this week we put the spotlight on Bristol Sport Foundation's Chief Community Officer, Ben Breeze.

What time does your alarm go off?

6am - I like to run for an hour in the mornings (or as many mornings as I can make myself), the rest of our house gets up at 7am. We always have breakfast together, make packed lunches (or talk to my wife Katie whilst she makes the packed lunches) and drop my daughters to school.

Whats the first thing you do when you get to work?

I say hello to as many people as possible and make strong coffee.

Ben Breeze

Before working at Ashton Gate, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?

I had lots of jobs growing up, I worked as a waiter, I worked in an electronics factory, I sold timeshare, I even did summer in MacDonalds (and loved it) but probably my most unusual job I was a saxophonist in a band, although we didn’t get paid much money!

How long have you worked at Ashton Gate?

Playing wise, I signed for Bristol Rugby from 1995 and enjoyed five seasons in Bristol before moving to play in Wales. Off the field, I started the then Bristol Rugby Community Department in 2005, reformed it as a registered charity in 2010 and more recently worked with a great team to design the concept of Bristol Sport Foundation in March 2016.

What do you like most about working for the company?

The potential of what could be achieved by the group in a fantastic City, the Bristol Sport model is tremendously exciting and unique in so many ways.

How do you define success?

From a charity perspective, through the ability to sustain and up-scale an efficient and impactful group of charities. Personally, by giving the great people I work with, the opportunity to find their passion within the charity world and give them the support and autonomy to follow their dream.

What does leadership mean to you? Leadership is trust, ambition, challenge, opportunity, autonomy, clarity, humility, integrity and a good sense of humour.

What 2019 concert are you looking forward to most at Ashton Gate?

Although I cannot say I know their music all that well, I am really looking forward to volunteering at Muse as I have heard they are amazing live.

How do you balance your career and family?

By remembering how lucky I am to have a stable and happy family to come home to every night.

If you could switch your job with anyone else in the business who would it be?

Really tough question, I am becoming increasingly fascinated by the use of IT to capture data and provide insight in order to create effective marketing campaigns to demonstrate impact and drive growth. But if I am honest, it would probably be one of the coaches at Bristol Bears as I love teaching, coaching and leadership and (in another life) would have pursued a career in pro-rugby coaching after being placed on the elite coach pathway in Wales towards the end of my playing career. I have the utmost respect for all of the amazing coaches we have a Bristol Sport, I genuinely do not know how they cope with the stress by proxy, week in week out and the transient nature of their chosen profession whilst being family men and women.

What advice do you have for prospective Ashton Gate candidates?

Enjoy working really hard, show you care and can progress through the organisation. Remember the Bristol Sport model, by its very nature is multi-faceted and so co-operative and cross-departmental partnership working is crucial for overall success and try to remember that everyone is trying hard to fulfil their aims and objectives. Don’t be a mood hoover or fun sponge, drink large amounts of good coffee, have (or get) a sense of humour, come to matchday’s and go the extra mile when you can – the road tends to be quieter when you do… 😉

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