We need to nurture our young guns


March 31, 2014

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Is it time to grow up? The industry certainly thinks so. And so do some of those ambitious thirty-somethings working within it.

Typically, these individuals started their career ten or more years ago in a fledgling firm in the then-fledgling wind industry. They have spent the time since then experiencing impressive growth.

Over that period, companies have rapidly been built up around them and, as business has flourished, so too have the projects that they’ve played a key part in bringing to bear. That growth – both personal and corporate – remains hugely infectious.

It has made many of these people start to think really big. In doing so, it has lit a multitude of entrepreneurial fires that will, over the coming years, play a key part in the evolution of this global sector.

This brings with it fresh thinking and fresh ideas. It injects a fresh wave of enthusiasm that will soon play a key part in inching new projects over the line.

But not everyone is so enamoured with these new kids in town.

There is a small handful of individuals that view these ambitious upstarts with a growing degree of unease and doubt.

These individuals – who are often more set in their ways than most – feel that such enthusiasm is either plain naïve or, at times, dangerous. They feel that such ambition must be kept in check.

That is a dangerous mindset to have. At best, it is short-sighted job protectionism; and, at worse, it risks holding more than just the individual back. As an industry, many of our most aspiring firms have always made a point of nurturing new talent and in investing heavily in its people – from the very start.

Such forward thinking must continue to praised and encouraged. Everyone has start somewhere, and it helps the industry to have new talent coming in. If this doesn’t happen then we will risk skills shortages and the withering of this currently-dynamic industry. It is in nobody’s interests to get into that situation.

Therefore, as the industry matures – and as the old guard increasingly rubs shoulders with the new – let’s ensure that focus remains on positive praise.

And in short, let’s be careful not to undermine the confidence, ambition and enthusiasm that such new talent brings with it.

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