When Jane Rennie was first asked to hold a training session, she thought she’d rather stick pins in her eyes.
Jane was fresh out of university, qualified as an accountant.
Her boss wanted her to hold a training session for a client.
This was the last thing Jane wanted to do, but through several conversations her boss convinced her to do it.
Jane looks back on the day as a defining moment in her life.
“As cliche as it sounds, that was the moment where I thought I have found my thing,” she says.
“I found what I love doing and I want to carry on doing this. And it just went from there.”
The Extraordinary Training Company is born
Jane moved on to work for a global training organisation in Dubai.
She wanted to explore more topics and areas of training her organisation wasn’t interested in.
In 2012, she took the leap and started her own training and consultancy business, The Extraordinary Training Company.
She says: “My husband said to me ‘you’re running out of excuses not to start your own business’, so that’s how we started out.
“We were born in Dubai, spent a little bit of time in Asia and then we moved back as a family to Scotland in 2016 and the business continued to grow.”
Before settling down in Perth, Jane lived in 27 countries and spent her whole life travelling all over the world.
Tourism and hospitality focus
In 2019, Jane made the decision to focus purely on the training and coaching aspect of her business.
A year later, just before the pandemic hit, she shifted the focus of the business to training in the tourism and hospitality sector.
While in lockdown, Jane spent months looking at her business model, going through her offerings and deciding what content to take online.
She says: “Something in the back of my head that told me not to try to do it all.
“To just do the stuff that I know is going to translate to a really good experience.
“That’s what we did and we then started being recognised for delivering some really great online experiences.
“Because of being in the hospitality and tourism space, we were also able to reach a lot more people than we could have done.”
Anyone can be extraordinary
Since the end of last year, Jane has also worked with Hospitality Industry Trust Scotland to put together an online training programme.
It is the largest training programme of its kind to ever be delivered online in Scotland.
Every week for 10 weeks, 2,000 people were online to do training.
In The Extraordinary Training Company, Jane has a core team of four staff and an extended team of 27 associate trainers.
They are all still working from home, focusing on completing their online library of training.
However, Jane has plans to start meeting clients in person again from November.
Jane says: “Our mission is to help businesses create really extraordinary leaders.
“Absolutely everybody has the potential to be extraordinary, and the skills, behaviours and tools people need to become extraordinary leaders are all learnable.
“People aren’t born with these skills, everybody has to learn them, no matter how great a leader you are.”