Moving on to pastures new – life after Asda

Dom Burch is the founder and MD of Why Social, a strategic marketing consultancy, and former senior director of marketing innovation and new revenue at Asda. Trained in PR, Dom has spent the last 17 years in a variety of comms roles at Asda, Direct Line and Green Flag including head of PR and head of social.

In a few weeks time I'll be leaving my current employer to take up a new challenge.

It's an exciting time for me personally having spent the last 17 years working in-house for Green Flag, Direct Line and then Asda.

Since graduating from uni I can count on one hand the number of days I haven't enjoyed my job, which is testament to the three companies I've had the pleasure of working for.

My dad once said to me when I was younger, if you find a job you love you'll never work another day in your life.

I thought he was very wise, until I later realised he'd been quoting Confucius.

But the sentiment is bang on.

When I had a career break four years ago, during which I attempted to write a book on how to avoid a midlife crisis, he also had these words of reassurance:

"In my experience it is a lot easier to find people who love to finish a job than it is to find people (like you) with genuinely original ideas that are worth doing in the first place."

He was making the point that although I was good at being inventive and innovative, good with words, very good with people because, as he put it, "you are self-confident and able to behave as an extrovert when you want to or need to", he also pointed out I have a low boredom threshold.

"You sometimes find it hard to complete tasks once the initial novelty or excitement wears off."

He's not wrong.

But, my own father, an award winning, world renowned professor of chemistry, with an OBE no less, was recognising that my strengths outweighed my weaknesses.

It was a significant moment, and helped lay the foundations for a different chapter in my life and career.

I rejoined Asda with a renewed sense of purpose, and confidence to follow my gut and pursue my passions.

I took risks and took chances, seizing opportunities to innovate.

For want of a better phrase, I got my mojo back.

This morning, as I started to ponder what life will be like next month when I leave Asda to set up on my own, he sent me the following email.

The timing as ever was impeccable:

Dominic

Thought for the day, as you branch out on your own.

As Mahatma Gandi said to his followers:

“Man often becomes what he believes himself to be.

"If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it.

"On the contrary, if I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning."

Very wise words. And to his credit at least now he quotes his sources!

Thanks dad.

And thanks too to my colleagues over the years who have supported and guided me.

Given me a lift when I've needed it, picked me up when I've been down, and encouraged me to jump off the edge and fly when I worried I may fall if I was pushed.

Follow Dom on Twitter @domburch

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Dom Burch

Dom Burch is the founder and MD of Why Social, a strategic marketing consultancy, and former senior director of marketing innovation and new revenue at Asda.

Trained in PR, Dom has spent the last 17 years in a variety of comms roles at Asda, Direct Line and Green Flag including head of PR and head of social.

More recently he was responsible for marketing innovation, helping explore new revenue opportunities. In his tenure he helped build a pipeline of digital assets that unlocked investment from FMCG brands who valued having access to Asda's 18m customers.

This included overseeing the transformation of Asda.com's adserving capability, which will enable Asda to become a credible media publisher. He has also built Mum's Eye View on YouTube, capturing 11m views since launch in under 18 months.

His 'Thought of the Day' column explores the ever changing world of social media marketing.

All by Dom