On leaving school, I joined the Royal Air Force!
Thought this was going to be my eternal career. I'd gone in as an Electronics Engineer, working on Navigational Instruments, but ended up with perforated eardrums and a medical discharge (as well as a nasty green one!!!).
From there I got into a local business, in Rothwell, making electric arc welders. They were developing an electronically-controlled machine and needed a young apprentice to help.
From there I moved to a firm making all sorts of electronic control and measurement systems, specialising in humidity measurement but covering everything from temperature to pressure. It was about this time that I started getting into microcontrollers and understanding analogue to digital conversion and basic programming techniques.
From there I moved on to other control and measurement businesses, but I never left my analogue background, dabbling in audio gear and some RF equipment.
This came in handy when I went for an interview for Vox Amplification. At this point, Vox were attempting a come-back, after some disastrous transistor amps in the late 70's and 80's. The firm wanted to go back to valve technology, which was making a comeback in the early 90's and I was responsible for revamping their flagship amplifier, the AC30! It worked better than we could ever hope, with big name guitarists either coming back to our stuff, after having left for other manufacturers, or finding us for the first time! Was an awesome job and I got to meet many "rich and famous" peeps (but that's another story).
Went from there to a multi-national business, where I got my marketing experience but, after 10 years with them, decided I really didn't like the whole corporate thang and took a sidestep!
I'd been volunteering for a local Youth Counselling and Information service, for a few years and a post came up managing all the agencies in the county. I applied for the job and was accepted. Unfortunately, it was a funding-limited post, but it set the tone for my future employment. The voluntary sector was where I could best use my management and marketing experience, as well as all the IT experience that I've gained in my other jobs along the way. By this time I was creating websites, databases etc and was making myself really useful, whilst helping others! In the meantime I created my own business, which was IT based, initially aimed at the voluntary sector, but taking in small businesses, artists etc, locally to where I live!
And that's where I am now! Part volunteer, part paid worker with a local charity, whilst doing a little IT work, as and when!