Alasdair Harris is a marine ecologist with an unhealthy obsession for corals and has spent the past decade developing conservation initiatives in the Indian Ocean. Alasdair is recipient of the IUCN World Conservation Union’s Young Conservationists Award, winner of the Conde Nast Environment Award, an Ashoka Fellow, and a passionate ambassador of Australia’s penguins. His work developing sustainable business approaches for financing conservation has twice been commended by the UK Chancellor in the ‘Enterprising Young Brits’ awards, and was highly commended by HRH the Duke of Cambridge in the 2013 inaugural Tusk Conservation Awards.
My Definition Of Success | The sense of knowing that I’ve made the most of opportunities that have come my way, that I’ve done my utmost to learn from my experiences, and to grow both personally and professionally in meeting the challenges and adventures that I’ve encountered along the way.
My Primary Motivation | Has always been my concern for the loss of the beauty and diversity of nature that’s happening all around us as a result of man’s impact on the natural world.
My Highlights | My damascene moment – the first time I dived underwater on Indian Ocean coral reef, and bore witness to the bewildering diversity and fragility of our tropical seas.
Dealing With Doubt | Recognise that anxiety and self doubt are largely irrational – they’re rarely based on substance, yet are a necessary part of the human condition – in fact it would be more worrying if we didn’t get gripped by mortal fear before (for example) we stand up on stage to give a presentation that we feel under-qualified to deliver, but it’s important to keep our fears in perspective; be aware of them, but recognise that they’re rarely fair to ourselves.
The Best Advice I’ve Received | When you get into work try to tackle first the task that you feel you least want to grapple with – chances are it’s the most important
Advice On Building Wealth | Ask yourself whether financial wealth is really what your primary motivation in life should be; do you really think this will provide you with fulfillment? Anyone can sell out to work for a bank, but would you really want to live the life of a banker when you can use your short time on earth to achieve something that actually has meaning?