Write an Open Letter
Jonny Miller
510

Open letter to my amazing colleagues at Penguin Random House

In the next three weeks, I will be leaving my job at Penguin Random House to properly begin my startup adventure. This leaves me in quite a reflective mood, and I’ve been considering all the great experiences and incredibly talented people I’ve met over the course of the last 18 months.

I’ve been drafting a farewell email to some colleagues who have made a particularly big impact on my time in this role, and I thought this would be a good place to publicly recognise some of them. Here goes nothing…


Jon Salt for masterclasses in how to galvanise a team and bulldoze problems, and providing inspirational leadership in tough times.

Dave Young for making eCommerce the most fun project I’ve worked on at PRH, and for bulldozing through blockers. And for motivating me to get to the gym even when I didn’t feel like it with phrases such as ‘no pain no gain’ and general look of disappointment.

Imola Unger for being intelligent, thoughtful and caring, and creating order from chaos. For training a team at the same time as learning the skills herself, which is no mean feat.

Sam Borland for being straight talking, efficient and getting shit done. In no small part, responsible for the success of the newly-developing relationship between digital and technology.

Kim Fitzpatrick for believing in me and telling me that what I was doing was important. And for all the sci fi references.

Mat Pearsons for pretending to be cynical about everything and everyone, but actually being quite a nice guy. ;-)

Joel Rickett for publishing Get Sh*t Done, which has become my bible for the last few months and guided me and Dave Young through eCommerce pre-discovery.

Jodie Fudge for making me laugh and making organizing our Technology awayday feel like a fun social occasion rather than a serious business meeting.

Carla Chittenden one of my skydive buddies, for being a calming influence and all-round sensible person.

Stefan Beavis for being an incredible mentor, for sharing your balanced, fair and strategic business sense, and for being one of the nicest people I’ve ever met.

Shaun Whatling for teaching me how brief emails really need to be.

Minesh Vadgama for being the voice of reason when things get completely crazy, and for showing true leadership in tough times.

Tim Gow for ploughing through work and seeing a clear path when nobody else can, and for doing it all with incredibly good humour.

Fran Taylor one of my oldest friends, for being the best desk buddy I’ve ever had and introducing me to all the best places to eat and drink around 80 Strand.

Becky Lille (my current manager) for being so understanding when only the third time we met, I handed in my notice. You have been nothing but supportive and encouraging, and I’ve really enjoyed working with you.

Jo McCormick for being an inspirational and encouraging person. You are a ray of sunshine and it’s quite lovely to spend time around you.

Hazel Duthie for seeing beyond the ridiculousness of various situations we’ve found ourselves in and ploughing on regardless.

Bex Dawkins for being an inspirational human being, in what I know has been a tough year for you. You have a great future ahead of you, your team are lucky to have you.

Matt Stewart for listening to me harp on about existentialism, aliens and the Fermi Paradox, and for being an excellent drinking buddy.

Noel Gillett for listening, helping me to corral errant members of the business and being one of the nicest people I’ve worked with. For being an early adopter and supporter of our hackathon and for your appreciation of the powers of gamification.