The Things I Know - Dan Taylor, Principal project officer, London Borough of Southwark

- Where did you study?

Dan Taylor
Dan Taylor

I gained a BA in geography from the University of Sheffield and an MSc in town planning from the Bartlett School of Planning.

- What skills did you have when you graduated?

The planning masters course helped me develop excellent analytical, communication and team working skills.

- What attracted you to planning?

I have always been keen to find a role which has an impact or makes a difference. It's possible to achieve this in urban regeneration, albeit very slowly.

- What did you learn in your first job?

How to sell dreams and round the world tickets - I used to work for travel service Trailfinders.

- What skills have you had to learn over your career?

Negotiation, communicating and getting people to do things they would prefer not to.

- What or who have been the biggest influences on your career?

Working with a great team to deliver on-street car club bays in my previous role setting up the first car clubs in London.

- What is your career highlight?

I have worked on major developments in Bankside and London Bridge but I am most proud of working with a youth club to convert a derelict railway arch in Bermondsey into a skatepark after a major community consultation exercise.

- What have you learned outside work that has influenced you?

Taking a sabbatical and travelling overland from Bangkok to London has made me realise how enormous the urban challenge is.

- What further skills do you aim to obtain or develop?

I'd like to develop more property skills and get involved in managing larger regeneration projects.

- How important is it to keep abreast of developments in allied professions?

Very. I have yet to meet anyone who knows everything there is to know about planning and development.

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