While I was in Australia recently we enjoyed a catch up with the Virgin Money team on a boat in Sydney Harbour. Little did I expect that I’d go on a voyage down memory lane too.
15 years earlier, I was in Sydney at our Virgin Megastore on George Street with Guy Sebastian. He had just won the very first season of Australian Idol and was extremely popular with the young crowds. There were thousands of people there, quite rightly, to see Guy.
I was on my way out when a young man shouted my name and asked me to autograph my first autobiography, Finding My Virginity. I turned around and asked him if he was a Guy Sebastian fan. “I don’t really know anything about him,” he said. “I came here to meet you.” We had a quick chat, took these photos (long before camera phones, thankfully a photographer was there to capture the moment) and I wished him all the best.
Fast forward to 2018 and I was fortunate to meet the man I’d last seen at Virgin Megastores all those years ago. His name is Daniel Da Silva.
He told me how, not long before our meeting at Virgin Megastore, he had left his corporate job and wanted some inspiration to become an entrepreneur. He read Losing My Virginity and ever since always reads my books or listens on audiobook.
Daniel explained that his biggest learning was that he needed to find a business that he would really love working on every day. He needed to work out what he was really passionate about, not just what would make him money. He realised that he loved being on the water, ever since he was a kid, and could turn his interest into a successful company and an enjoyable lifestyle.
So he started his business Any Boat on a shoestring budget. It has now gone on to become one of the most successful charter boat agencies in Australia, and we had hired them for our event. It was a delightful turn of events and I’m very honoured to play a small part in their entrepreneurial journey.