Member of the Month: March 2012

ROSS MCKINNON

What’s your background (hometown, university, etc)?

I grew up in Kilmarnock around my family’s agricultural road haulage business. I wasn’t interested in school – instead my plan was to run trucks and make lots of money! In the 90’s however, farming and haulage became very tough; after struggling for a few years, foot and mouth disease sent our business into liquidation in 2001.

I decided to study Adventure Recreation Management at Glasgow Caledonian and spent 5 summers working around Loch Lomond, gaining valuable experience and building many of the relationships which are now key to my business.

Tell us about your job/company – why did you choose it, what does it involve, what’s the best thing about it?

I started Amazing Days Scotland in 2006, at which point our focus was on tourism. Over the years, the business has evolved into a Corporate Events and Destination Management Company.

We create unique Corporate Days and Team Building Events in exciting locations with our own activities, as well as those of our tried and tested partner organisations. The diary is in great shape for the summer, with our new “Loch Lomond Speedboats & Private Island Beach BBQ” proving to be very popular.

The Destination Management side of the business is going well too, delivering incentive travel programs for international clients wanting to reward their top performers. We recently delivered a program for 65 French accountants, which featured a two night stay in Edinburgh and two nights at Cameron House.  They took part in lots of activities including our Black Cab Treasure Hunt, Mini Highland Games and ceilidh dancing lessons with Whisky Kiss, the band who played the GYP Ceilidh!

The best thing about my business is the buzz I get from creating unique events, and seeing people really enjoy themselves and benefit from the experience. Last year we created the “Speedboat Challenge” on Loch Lomond for Lyreco (office supplies). Teams had to visit 3 private islands to compete in various challenges. One of the challenges was “Helicopter Castle Hunting”, where teams had to direct their helicopter pilot to fly over as many castles as possible to photograph them from the sky! There’s a brilliant wee movie of the event on our website.

When you’re not working what do you enjoy doing?

Snowboarding, wakeboarding, going to festivals, travelling, keeping fit, and right now I’m training to part in the Tough Mudder endurance challenge!

Why did you join GYP?

It’s a great way to meet like-minded, ambitious young people.

What has been your favourite GYP event and why? Which upcoming GYP event are you most looking forward to?

Last year I helped the GYP team to create the summer BBQ at Loch Lomond. This year we are upping the game and introducing some good fun activities and some more speedboats! It’s set to be a brilliant event – see you there!

Are you a member of any other networking groups?

Not at the moment, but I’m considering joining JCI and Entrepreneurial Exchange.

Can we find you online?

LinkedIn

www.amazingdays-scotland.com