What Else Would You do for Your 80th?

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Who said you can’t teach old dogs new tricks? They’ve obviously never met our Chairman, John Dickson!

A well known character and leader in the hospitality industry, he’d be well known to many of you already though and he wanted to challenge himself this month, just in case any of you thought he was “old” at 80!

John will be celebrating this milestone birthday in February, so for the first time he decided to try abseiling and chose the stunning cliffs at Kangaroo Point – much to the horror of his wife and children, while his grandchildren were all waiting for him at the bottom of the cliffs – the kids thought it was great fun and hilariously they said they’d wait at the bottom to catch Pop if he fell!

The abseil was organised through River Life Adventures, who are based at the old Navy facilities at the bottom of Kangaroo Point cliffs. John told us that he lied about his age, just in case they thought 80 might be a problem, which of course it wasn’t! As usual John saw the positives in the abseil not only from accepting and completing a challenge, but also the lesson he learned, that “when you are abseiling for the first time don’t look behind you”. Interestingly, he thought this was quite relevant in the current environment, where too many people are focusing on what’s happened in the last few years rather than what we should be doing right now and into the next few years. Personally, I think he is inferring a polite plug for Strategic Planning in this comment, but that’s just me!

When he started his descent, Renée his instructor said to his wife that “he is doing well for a 60-year-old isn’t he?”, to which John’s wife Glenda replied, “He is 80 actually!”  In 2022 we are also celebrating 30 years since John Dickson started the company, when he allegedly retired as General Manager of the prestigious Brisbane Polo Club, where he was awarded Club Manager of the Year and Best Club Food.  To compliment his long list of career achievements, there’s no other than the prestigious Service to Industry Award to add which he was proudly awarded in 2015.

So what’s next?  With no signs of slowing down at 80, it looks like we’ll be putting up with John Dickson around the office and the industry for a touch longer!

Just out of curiosity… if you were turning 80, what else would you do to ring in this milestone age?

Samantha Litfin Group Marketing Manager DWS and CTA

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