With businesses juggling early finishes and flexible working during the England football team’s glory run, one Derby firm has gone a little further, extending the summer break of their Business Development Manager James Williams, as he helps one of the rising stars of the golfing summer, Russell Knox.
Before a career in corporate sales, James was a professional golf caddie for many high-ranking professionals. So when the call came from PGA Tour pro Russell Knox to assist him at the 2018 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open Champion, James arranged the extra leave with ValueLicensing Managing Director Jonathan Horley.
ValueLicensing are a pre-owned Microsoft software specialist that buys and sells software throughout Europe in large volumes. They pass on significant savings, and release cash to their customers and suppliers. They also have a fantastic reputation for innovation and flexibility in their industry.
Their flexible approach has been rewarded, with Russell Knox winning the tournament, ably assisted by James, and at 5th on the European Tour Race to Dubai rankings, he is now in with a shot at making the European Ryder Cup team, when the players are selected in early September.
Of course, if he does, he will be speaking to Jonathan again about flexing his diary commitments and annual leave allowance, to be able to attend this prestigious event.
Jonathan explains: “When James initially came to me I was more than happy to help as golf is his absolute passion. He’s an excellent player, a top-class caddie and of course a major asset to our business development team. To some less innovative businesses, that might have meant a flat ‘no’ to the extended leave but we are in the era of flexible working, and we work within an industry that embraces innovation and finding solutions to complex problems.
“We’ve been able to find a way of working that means James has been free to pursue this fantastic opportunity, whilst still keeping his eye on the ball for us. The technology available for the modern business is now fantastic for remote working, reporting and management, and we knew we’d find a way to make this a win/win for James, for us and of course for our clients. I’m delighted for him and Russell.”
James is currently in Scotland at the Gullane Golf Club, for the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open , blending his work commitments with the challenges of supporting a golf professional.
He said: “I am massively thankful to Jonathan and the team for finding a way to make this work. We work in a very complex world with technology at the heart of it, and that has meant we could find a solution for the old work/life balance conundrum.
“The win was fantastic and there is a real chance that Russell will do very well at these next two tournaments here in Scotland too. If he does, I will be having a quiet word with Jonathan again I am sure. Fingers crossed on both counts!”