EIA 062 Laurence Barrett Journey from Engineer to Aerospace CEO and Founder

Laurence Barrett
Laurence Barrett

Laurence Barrett is a pioneering aviation engineer, entrepreneur and active member of the Brunel University Alumni Association. He has worked and lived in Singapore since 2014. His career in aerospace started as a systems engineer in 2002 in September 2012 he started an MBA in Aviation at Brunel University after making the challenging decision to leave a successful career as an engineer. After graduating He moved to Singapore working as a self-employed Aviation Business Specialist. Then in May 2015 he made the daunting decision to found his own aviation company Barrett Aerospace.

“And I do actively employ people that are passionate about the jobs that they do. So much so that I would even create the job around the person”

I sat down with Laurence in his engineering workshop for a conversation that covered his path from engineer, then founder, a few of the exciting developments that are occurring in the aerospace industry and the role that Brunel has played in his career and business development.

“The MBA taught me a lot but I think the real world teaches you a lot more, and when you have something that’s a deadline that’s looming”

This conversation is part of a new venture with the Brunel Alumni Association (Singapore).

The format is based on my Entrepreneurs in Action series and we are looking to evolve it into a stand alone podcast series focused on Brunel Alumni based in Singapore. Send your ideas and suggestions to me on LinkedIn.

So now without further delay let’s begin

As well as:

0:02:00 Leaving school with less than exemplary A-level results getting him into Polytechnic or RAF, or A-level repeat

0:02:58 Followed by 15 years in industry with Multinational companies

0:03:31 Learning how companies work by changing roles every 3 to 4 years

0:04:39 The role that overwhelmed him and revealed what he was not good at

0:05:05 supply supply relationship/analyst or engineer and the opportunities presented

0:07:14 Decision process of the next career move that led to quitting and a full-time MBA at Brunel University

0:09:12 Consulting wife, family and friends

0:10:48 Learning as a mature student and why choose Brunel University

0:12:33 Thinking about career options after the MBA

0:13:40 The realisation of the goal of doing something financially successful in the commercial aerospace industry

0:15:41 The Human-Powered Aircraft the Merlion Project

0:15:56 A bad joke by the host that’s cleverly sidestepped by Laurence

0:16:04 Back to the serious business of human powered flight

0:18:47 Barrett Aerospace’s journey from drones to other aircraft and the effects of covid

0:19:53 electronic aircraft and electronic flight cooperation with Eviation and Deadlines

0:21:01 The importance building a network over time in an industry that enables working with other people and collaborating

0:21:27 project on time and on budget, the Alice Aircraft, July 2019 Paris

0:21:56 Eventually not just an engineer but the CEO and Founder

0:22:32 Creating jobs and roles around passionate, determined and driven people to create innovation

0:23:32 The real world need to bring engineering and return on investment together to the Human-Powered Aircraft Merlion Project

0:25:37 Working with other companies and start-ups that use crowdfunding and other non-traditional finance

0:26:24 how can and does the Singapore Alumni Association help?

0:31:08 Barrett Aerospace looking for engineering students for industrial placements

0:32:35 Finally we can be both contacted via LinkedIn

A reminder if you’re a Brunel Alumni or a current student and you wish to

contact Laurence Barrett or myself Neville J Mckenzie you can do so through LinkedIn