The second part of our 'Getting to know' series introduces Andy McKechnie...
...Andy is one of our Regional Account Managers and his role involves managing relationships with both new and existing work providers. Andy covers Scotland and surrounding areas.
Tell us a bit about your background.
Whilst studying Product Design Engineering at the University of Glasgow, I started a part-time job working for Esure. After a year of dealing with personal insurance, I moved on to NFU Mutual, where I gained a wealth of experience in a multi-faceted role. In my 7 years with NFU Mutual, I gained experience; dealing face to face with business’ commercial insurance, recruitment, people management, project management, quality & compliance and I gained some professional qualifications.
Why did you decide to do the work you are doing now?
I have worked within the insurance industry for 8 years and have learnt a lot about the products, their benefits and the insurance market. I enjoyed being on the road, dealing with clients face to face and having the ability to be involved in key projects, as well as having the freedom to run my own. I believe my new role as Regional Account Manager for Kindertons will allow me to pull together all of the positive aspects of my previous positions and use my experience to offer a different dynamic to the role.
What makes Kindertons different to other places that you’ve worked?
I’m relatively new in the door, but I can already see that Kindertons has a great ethos. “Work hard, play hard” is a phrase that I’ve heard quite often from my new colleagues and with the great work that everyone is doing, the rewards are clearly on the horizon.
What do you think is going to be the biggest challenge for our customers over the next five years?
With the rapidly increasing reliance on technological solutions, I think the biggest challenge for our customers will be the ability to grow in line with the rest of the market. Not just on the service side, but also with the suite of products offered and methods of facilitating these products. The key will be developing and investing in the right areas and not just upgrading for technology sake.
If you didn’t do your current job, what would you do instead and why?
I love taking things apart and trying to understand how they work. I also own a few 3D printers, CNC router and a laser engraver, so I often find myself going around the house trying to find things that I can design and 3D print improvements for. I also design and create 3D printed gifts, so, I would probably want to do something along those lines.
What could you give a 30-minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?
3D printing and the future applications of it in day to day life. The fact that I can (and have) literally 3D printed completely random things like; a replacement handle for a pair of scissors, door-stops, a charging dock for my phone and an accurate topographical representation of the moon, it’s so exciting to imagine what we’ll be able to do in the future.
What is something you think everyone should do at least once in their lives?
I skydived a few years ago for charity and I absolutely loved it. Definitely something that I would recommend to anyone that hasn’t done it already.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t kill yourself doing something for someone who would just replace you tomorrow.
What do you wish you could tell yourself 10 years ago? What do you think you’ll want to tell your current self 10 years from now?
I wish that I had convinced myself to invest in Bitcoin when I had first heard about it. I had always been intrigued by things like cryptocurrency, but I never had the guts to part with my hard-earned beer-tokens, whilst I was a student. Looking forward to 10 years from now, I think I’d want to try to convince my future-self that living in a 3D printed house and driving a 3D printed car is a great idea.
In your opinion, what’s the best way to start the day?
Waking up to natural sunlight and the smell of bacon & coffee. I’ve never experienced it, but it’s what I strive for.