How does he manage? Ice sculptor - Jamie Hamilton, Co-director, Hamilton Ice Sculptors

- When did you become a manager?

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

My dad set up the company 35 years ago, and I joined after my English degree. That's how I got into it: nepotism. But I grew up with the business. I'm 36, so it's about as old as me.

- What does management mean to you?

Artists often struggle with the fact that you have to be a businessperson too. We make sure to integrate the team into every aspect of the job. We don't have a separate sales team, so clients are talking to the people who will design and sculpt their pieces. We do a lot of work for Christmas parties, as well as extravagant installations for PR launches. Right now, we're making a lot of hand-carved ice-cubes for drinks ads. The strangest brief was when we froze a dead dolphin in ice for a Greenpeace protest. Crucially we're all still hands-on: I love to get the admin out of the way, put on my hat, gloves and steel toe-cap boots, grab the chainsaw and get sculpting.

- What do you like/dislike about your job?

It's frustrating when clients leave decisions to the last minute. Also, ice is a very volatile material: it's heavy, slippery and fragile, so it's easy to drop; and, of course, it melts. But the work is really therapeutic - you have to be focused and it's very physical, so it's a good release of adrenaline when you're stressed. I even like being in a freezer every day.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

A mini case study in horizon scanning

Swissgrid has instituted smart risk management systems for spotting things that could go wrong before...

Interview ghosting: Stop treating job seekers like bad dates

Don’t underestimate the business impact of a simple rejection letter.

5 avoidable corporate disasters

And the lessons to learn from them.

Dressing to impress: One for the dustbin of history?

Opinion: Businesswomen are embracing comfort without sacrificing impact. Returning to the office shouldn't change that....

How to motivate people from a distance

Recognising success in a remote or hybrid environment requires a little creativity, says Insight SVP...

What pushy fish can teach you about influence at work

Research into marine power struggles casts light on the role of influence and dominant bosses...