Natalie White is Talent Match's very own Statistical Insight Officer. She works at Sheffield Futures as part of the Central Management team. Her job is too look deeper into the current Talent Match provision and report on the successes and avenues for development and thoroughly enjoys it aiming to dedicate her professional life to a research based career.
In her own words she was a very nosy person that found her dream job and called it research.
Her free time is torn between trying not to research out of work and walking a small heavy-breathing French Bulldog named Ruppert.
What was your first job?
I worked in an animal sanctuary for 6 months prior to joining the Army. I wanted to work with dogs but the job was basically picking up poo and swilling our the kennels, I got a mini-promotion after a week and was allowed to walk them but I was caught letting them off the lead to run free so they demoted me in the cattery. Cats are vicious! But their poops are smaller and they smell far less. I picked up a few things and soon I was the feral cat tamer. Those skills have served me zero.
What was your biggest mistake?
There are a few, and mostly down to the folly of youth, many will die with me. In Oxford I stole the colonel’s car and took my friends to Manchester gay pride. In Northern Ireland I peed myself in front of Princess Anne because I was told duty comes before personal needs. In Canada I escaped a camp lock down and headed to the local shopping centre in Medicine Hat for the day with a friend who had suffered a relationship break up, when we returned the whole battalion had halted work and been searching the prairie for us because they thought she may have harmed herself – we were gated after that. Again in Canada I was on sentry duty but got distracted lip-syncing songs into my phone camera, like an early snapchat, and an enemy tank rolled by on the screen behind me, we lost the exercise.
What is your favourite thing about Talent Match?
Its mission, the opportunity to test and learn, the driver of quality over quantity and mainly the impact it’s having. Without it what else would there be? Talent Match shows youths that the world cares, it’s not about getting people off benefits into any job to save the State money, it supports youths in sourcing employment in a trade they aspire to attain, with guidance, funding training and other services that may support their development.
What do you like to do in your spare time? e.g. any hobbies?
Try on shoes and eat crisps. I kid, I have a small dog child, Rupert. We camp out a lot, I like writing, reading, I’m addicted to a phone game, StarWars Heroes, and every other Sunday we see Nan and cook Sunday dinner together.
What would you want your epitaph to say?
I’d like to be buried under a small tree, no epitaph needed, just decorate my branches at Christmas.
What motto do you try to live by?
Lead by example.
If you weren't working for Talent Match what would you be doing?
Extending my education with a PhD.
What would your ideal day away from work entail?
Being with my dog-child and girlfriend wandering about a large forest, having a little campfire and pulling out a stash of gin and tonic and talking about everything and nothing, ideally if Nan was there that would be cool, she’s got a wicked sense of humour and tells great fireside stories.
What is your favourite time of day?
What did you want to do when you were younger?
I wanted to work with animals (hence my first job), I think it boiled down to wanting a dog but never being allowed – well look at me now! Suck it Mum.
Where would you love to travel to?
Japan and the Himalaya’s – not busy Japan, the calmer side. I like the philosophy and I’d like to learn from the culture.
What is your greatest achievement?
Perhaps transcending disadvantage. I can relate to the young people we see today, twenty years ago I was in the same position, I was lucky to have a Nan that strong-armed me into the military, it gave me the environment to develop self-discipline, task-focus and humility – by seeing countries destroyed by war. When I left I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do so I went into Higher Education, and silly as it sounds, for Nan, to repay her for being wiser than a rebellious 16 year old, but again I gained by developing my thinking and view of the world. So perhaps my greatest achievement wasn’t something that I’d earned but rather who I have been gifted with in life.
What advice can you give to others?
Improve your education, it’ll open your mind and your opportunities.