Jonathan Lebrett first came to CareerBalance in 2006 whilst working for Porsche UK as a Business Manager. He went on to work in accountancy recruitment, but after being made redundant, returned to CareerBalance in 2009. Today he works as a Membership Executive at 47 Park Street, London’s luxury private residence club owned by the Marriot Hotel Group. He says that going to CareerBalance “paid for itself”.

What major issue did you want to tackle?

I’d first gone to see CareerBalance because I was frustrated in my job at Porsche. My career coach helped me identify my weaknesses and strengths and I decided to go into recruitment, but the company wasn’t right. I then joined a small family business which ran into difficulties during the economic downturn. I got back in touch with CareerBalance and decided to give myself six months to sort myself out job-wise.

How did CareerBalance help you move forward?

My career coach is an independent person with no bias, who could tell me the truth. During our 75-minutes session every couple of weeks, he successfully focused me on what I needed to do. The experience was very positive.

Where did CareerBalance make the most impact for you?

I lacked confidence. My dyslexia was always there in the back of my mind, but I left every one of our sessions feeling more motivated.

My career coach always helped me focus on the next challenge of the day. I’m quite self-disciplined as I grew up in boarding school from age eight. But my career coach encouraged me to send a certain number of speculative letters a week and spend a couple of hours every morning scouring the Internet.

I’m now a Membership Executive at 47 Park Street, a central London shared ownership club for people who prefer a more personal service to a luxury hotel. Every day I talk to people from all walks of life. My career coach prepared me for the interview and it’s one of the best jobs I’ve ever had. If anything, it came too soon because I was hoping to take a few months off!

How might things have turned out differently without the help of CareerBalance?

Without CareerBalance, I’d still be struggling with my self-confidence and the outcome would be very different. My career coach is very good at what he does. He recognises strengths and turns them around and throws them back at you. He might say for example: “These are your strengths, don’t focus on the negatives.”

How is your new career going?

Really well. I’ve been here since November 2009. Three others joined when I did, but I’m the only one still here. I love the company – Marriot has 127,000 employees round the world. I get on well with the people and my quality of life has improved. Would you recommend CareerBalance or go back in the future? CareerBalance is a luxury, but I got my money’s worth and it paid for itself. I’d definitely, definitely go back to CareerBalance.

* Jonathan did a Career Planning & Job Search programme with CareerBalance.

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