Former Olympic athlete Kriss Akabusi MBE inspired a crowd of more than 300 electricians with a rousing talk at this year’s Live North event.
Akabusi hit the headlines in 1991, when he anchored the final leg of the 4×400 metres relay at the World Championships in Tokyo to win Gold for Great Britain.
He was the keynote speaker at the show which is organised by NICEIC and ELECSA and took place at Aintree Racecourse in Liverpool recently. Now a motivational speaker and businessman he energised the audience with his notes on what it takes to get to the top.
“A career as an electrician is very similar to that of an athlete,” commented Akabusi. “One day you could be working on your own and competing against others in your area and then suddenly a big job comes up and you all have to work together in collaboration to get the job done.
“You have to adapt. You need to motivate yourself to achieve the best and then change that attitude to work as part of a team.”
Akabusi highlighted the influence that the then 19-year old Roger Black had on the relay team when he first joined.
“Roger came in with new ideas and new goals. Suddenly, just reaching the final was not good enough and we had to win. It was a new way of thinking and I always say to any business owner that it is important to listen to the young guys. They might have something different to bring to the table which will help your business grow. Always be open to new ideas.”
In addition to Akabusi, Live North also featured a presentation from one of the leading voices on Physics – Professor Jim Al-Khalili from Surrey University. The scientist, author and broadcaster spoke passionately about the invention of electricity and the battle between Thomas Edison and Nikiola Tesla to determine whose electrical system (AC or DC) would power the modern world.
NICEIC and ELECSA’s technical experts were also on hand to discuss the upcoming proposed changes in the 18th Edition of the wiring regulations, along with Mark Coles from the IET. Business advisor James Dewane presented a talk on how electricians could attract and win more customers.
Attendees benefitted from some great deals in a lively exhibition hall which featured some of the biggest names in the industry including headline sponsors Bosch Power Tools, Elite Security Products, Scolmore and Tradepoint.
Mark Smith, Marketing and Communications Director at NICEIC and ELECSA added: “Our Live events are a great way to meet contractors and discuss the latest news and initiatives within the industry. With an eclectic mix of presenters and exhibitors from across the industry there is something for everyone and we want to ensure those who attend go away with something that will ultimately help them build their business.”