Q&A: Darren Lyall, mailing operations manager, GI Solutions

By Jo Francis, Monday 13 October 2014

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Hats off to Darren who has become the first student to complete the BPIF’s graduate management programme. Apart from a six-week stint doing something dull in another industry, Darren has been in print since he left school in 1987.

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Darren Lyall, GI Solutions

His hobbies include playing golf which used to be once a week and now tends to be “closer to once a year”, and he and his “print widow” Tracey have two wonderful children: William aged 15 and Abigail aged 13.

What is your nickname?

Jockstar – I was born in Paisley, Scotland and having moved to England in 1978 the name has stuck with me, luckily I am not a foreigner thanks to the No vote

Why did you get into printing? 

After working in an engineering firm repeating an identical one-minute-33-second task, eight hours a day for six weeks I thought I would do something more interesting and diverse

What would be your dream job?

A professional golfer – you can see the world and get paid for it and nowadays you can even win a trip to space

Who would play you in a movie about your life?

Ewan McGregor – He was a Scottish Jedi, say no more. (And the missus fancies him)

What is your dream bit of kit?

An Alfa Romeo GT that doesn’t breakdown. You did say a dream and not a lot of them come true

What would you most like to print?

A ‘Premiership’ Coventry City ticket

What is your favourite film?

The original Star Wars – way ahead of its time

What is your greatest luxury in life?

Family and friends – what would we do without them

What is the strangest job you’ve had?

When I was 16 I dressed up as a bear for a local radio station and played musical statues in a park with 100 children. It was worthwhile: I managed to get two tickets to the 1987 FA Cup Final as payment

Who would you like to be stuck on a desert island with?

Angelina Jolie and Noah – I am sure I would be bored of Angelina by the time the Ark was built

What is your greatest ambition?

To reach the top. Not sure of what yet

Who or what makes you laugh?

Monty Python’s Silly Olympiad, especially the 100m race for people with no sense of direction and the 200m freestyle for non-swimmers

Most embarrassing moment?

I fell asleep with my 20-minute-old daughter in my arms and had a serious talking to by the midwife (in my defence it was 3am). In my younger days there was also an incident involving women’s lingerie and being left three miles from home...

Where would you like to be now?

Sirmione, Lake Garda in Italy. We went this year and it is an amazing place

Which superpower would you like to have?

Foresight, we would all be better off although it might not be as exciting

Who would be your favourite party guests?

Brian Clough and Muhammad Ali

What is the worst kind of print?

A ‘League One’ Coventry City ticket

Life is…?  

Different for everybody

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