Rohan Sykes – Phoenix Workplace Safety
Former factory worker Rohan Sykes’ life was changed for ever when he suffered horrific burns to 35 percent of his body in a workplace accident. Having formerly been an apprentice safety rep, Sykes experience only strengthened his passion for workplace safety. Determined to make a difference, he founded Phoenix Workplace Safety, giving presentations to workplaces about the importance of staying safe on the job.
CROWDINK’s Interview with Rohan Sykes:
- How did you get started?
I initially was asked to give a 15 minute summation/presentation to a group of 16 and 17 year old’s live from my hospital bed about a month into my 7 week stretch at The Alfred Hospital in Melbourne. Felt great to contribute to hopefully the safety of others even back then, but it really wasn’t until my wife’s positive attitude to beating cancer that motivated me to finally get Phoenix Workplace Safety off the ground.
- What was the inspiration behind the brand?
Inspired by my wife’s attitude first then once I started delivering my family’s and my own experiences around the workplace accident I’m lucky to have survived, I was truly inspired seeing the audience empathise, feel and relate my story internally as this could easily have happened to any one of us. I’m inspired by my goal to prevent as many needless safety accidents as humanly possible. Also at a company level, the inspiration behind the brand comes from a Phoenix that rises from the ashes and is reborn greater than before. I’m a major burns survivor that considers himself a far more appreciative and grateful person than prior to the accident.
“My brand is all about educating and developing a mindset shift in people to realise accidents can happen and how to best prevent them. Also, to coach people into an ‘Anything is Possible’ mindset despite adversity.”
- What makes your brand unique/different?
Being a real-life safety speaker is already quite unique, but my real point of difference of my brand I believe is the educational value giving people the tools to act appropriately from a safety aspect at work or away from work. This is the real value, creating lasting change.
- What have been some of the challenges in the last few months/years and how did you overcome them?
Lots of mental and physical issues from not only my workplace accident and living with permanent disfigurement, but in 2015 my wife was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer which is ongoing but she’s been amazing in that space also. Also learning to not take it personally if a prospective client says ‘NO’ to booking me amongst other things.
- What advise would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs
Be authentic, find your angle and niche in the market that services the needs of your target audience, and bottom line, kindness always wins in the end. Gratitude is also key. Appreciate don’t expect.
- How can people connect with your brand? Website? Social Media?
Connect with Roahn
My website is www.phoenixworkplacesafety.com.au