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About Parkwood Leisure
Parkwood Outdoors has a vision to encourage children and adults to get active in the outdoors. With an almost endless supply of outside activities and countryside we know that there is something for everyone. Our talented instructors and innovative programmes combine physical fitness and social experience all in the wonderful outdoors
Job opportunities with Parkwood Leisure
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Parkwood Leisure employee profile

Ian King

National Partnership Lead & Area Manager

Parkwood Leisure

Ian King has been working in the leisure industry since 1999. He first joined Parkwood Leisure in 2006
What has your career progression been?

"I studied Sport & Fitness studies at university, so working in the leisure industry was quite a natural progression. After graduating I needed to gain management experience so undertook a six month training programme at Gala Bingo before getting my first job in the industry, operations manager at Esporta."

What was your first position at the company?

"I first worked for Parkwood between 2006 and 2008 as an area manager. I rejoined the company in 2013 as the centre manager of Crook Log, before becoming the area manager for Bexley and National Partnerships lead in 2015. Now I manage more than 250 staff members across three large wet and dry leisure centres and am responsible for the delivery of healthy living and sports and community development initiatives. I also work closely with Boxwood Leisure and the London Borough of Bexley to ensure that their leisure objectives and CPA targets are being met."

What career advice would you give to young people trying to break into the industry?

"The best piece of careers advice I’ve been given is don’t sell yourself short and don’t be too self-critical. To that I would add don’t give up when you’re told no. When I was out of university I applied to between 15 and 20 operators and was rejected due to lack of skill or experience. If I had given up I wouldn’t be working in the industry now. Gain those skills and experience and then knock back on the door. Don’t be put off by rejection."

Proud moments?

"Winning the Parkwood Leisure Manager of the Year award earlier this year was a very proud moment. It was an honour to have even been nominated, and I was very humbled when I found out that I had actually won. It was the Andrew Holt award, making it even more special, as it was Andrew who encouraged me to apply for the area manager role when it came up, he has really helped to push my career forward."

I am responsible for delivering healthy living and community initiatives
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