Cowra Men's Probus hosts first meeting for 2021

At the first meeting for the new year Cowra Mens' Probus Club were very fortunate to have Ricky McKay as their guest speaker.

Ricky is the new manager of the updated Woolworths store in Cowra and he talked about the development of the store and its progress.

The store was built in 1969 and has served the people in an excellent capacity since that time.

Recently there had been a major makeover of the store with $8.5 million spent on the store to bring it up to being one of the most modern in the country with all the facilities that can be had at any city store, such as fresh seafood seven days a week.

He said that he was absolutely amazed with the efficiency of the team that did all the renovations.

He said that when he left in the evenings, he was never sure that the work would be completed by start of business the next day, but it always was done.

He also stated that the store would not need upgrading for 15 years. It is his plan to make it the best Woolworths in the country.

Ricky then spoke about himself in the job.

He started 11 years ago as a night fill clerk and, through the online education system that Woolworths has, he trained himself in all aspects of the business until he came to the notice of the managers who put him into a managerial position.

He said that the company was excellent to work for as you could gauge your own advancement.

As a manager, he said, he likes to be on the floor as much as possible and would not expect staff to do anything he was not willing to do.

It was a very 'sweet' talk as Ricky brought samples from the bakery for the members to enhance their morning tea.

Ricky was thanked for his talk and presented with a memento by Allan Vorias.

We are very fortunate to have very interesting people in our club and to hear them talk about their lives is very satisfying.

Our man behind the badge for this meeting was Paul Deland.

Paul had 30 years experience as a Senior Facilities, Operations, Project and Assets Manager and before that he was operations managing for a company Tyree Building involved on very high profile jobs such as Melbourne Hospital, Parliament House in Canberra, the National Library, University of NSW.

He also managed at Geoscience which ensured he was on many different projects.

His Facilities and Project Management at Geoscience and the AIS required high level organisational, analytical and problem solving skills.

During Paul's working life he worked on the University of Melbourne Campus in the Florey Institute (which is the largest brain research group in the southern Hemisphere) managing all Operations and Building Services, Utilities and Energy Management and Maintenance.

This was only one of his many Managerial Projects.

This is only a small look at Paul's very active and interesting life.