The Peter Greedy episode

In the seventh episode of The OT  Podcast, we speak to optometrist, entrepreneur and leadership coach, Peter Greedy

In episode seven of The OT Podcast, we explore leadership, and learning from your successes and your failures.

“My whole career in optometry started as a failure in that I got kicked out of dentistry school,” our guest, optometrist Peter Greedy declared at the start of the recording.

As a teenager applying for university, Greedy admits that he was uncertain about which healthcare path he wished to follow: optometry or dentistry. Initially, he planned to apply for both, but was told by his career adviser that it would look like he was undecided, so eventually he opted for dentistry.

However, having failed his first-year dentistry exams after he became distracted by “another life event,” Greedy applied for optometry at City, University of London. While he was accepted, the course for the next academic year was already full and he was placed on a waiting list. Fate next played a hand when Greedy was called four days before term started and was offered a place starting that year. It was then that Greedy’s career in optometry begun.

Upon qualification, Greedy spent the early stages of his optometry career in High Street practice. Describing himself as “a jack of all trades with a low boredom threshold,” he advanced through the ranks at the Ronald Brown Group, latterly as the group’s contact lens manager.

Considering where to take his career next, Greedy knew that he enjoyed, and felt he excelled in, leadership and management, and side stepped into an industry role as professional services manager at Bausch & Lomb UK.

“I like a wide variety of challenges,” Greedy told OT, and within a couple of years he was appointed European training director for Bausch & Lomb’s then newly-acquired surgical division. This role gave Greedy his first experiences in coaching – developing a training programme all about questioning and listening skills.

Later seconded into the company’s IT department as European IT director, over the six years that proceeded Greedy learnt “a whole new set of skills” in IT management. “I learned a lot, but felt like a misfit,” Greedy shared, with no formal background in IT.

Since becoming self-employed a number of years ago, fitting in is something that Greedy considers extensively as part of his work in leadership and coaching.

“Fitting in is not a culture of belonging… it is all about changing yourself to express the norm,” he shared, highlighting this as unhealthy.

For Greedy, it is belonging and creating a sense of belonging that is important.

“We get so caught up in what we are trying to do and what we are trying to achieve that very few of us take the time to look back retrospectively with a learning mindset,” he emphasised.

The OT Podcast

OT will release a new episode of The OT Podcast bimonthly, with episode seven due for release in January. You can listen to The OT Podcast on our website, or via all the main podcast apps, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Castbox. Be sure to catch-up and listen to other episodes, featuring experts including Professor Nicola Logan, Ian Cameron, Keith Valentine, Dr Peter Frampton, Dr Stephanie Campbell and Lisa Donaldson.

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