NED and Trustee, part time Human Resources Director (employed) & Human Resources consultant (self-employed)
I have a “portfolio career”, which currently includes roles as a NED and Trustee, part time Human Resources Director (employed) & Human Resources consultant (self-employed).
With HR and OD experience from diverse sectors, including manufacturing, nuclear, education and defence, my focus is on helping teams and organisations plan for and work through change by building confidence, capability and engagement. After completing my law degree, I considered continuing my training to become a lawyer but decided that I preferred to work in organisations and deal with issues before they became legal problems, a move which subsequently led to my career in HR. Many years later, my breadth of experience, covering private, public and not for profit sectors, enables me to bring fresh perspectives and new insight which I use to enable teams and individuals to identify and develop their own solutions to business challenges and needs.
I enjoy working on contracts where I have a broad brief, so that I can bring structure to ambiguity, shape delivery priorities to the demands of the business and help transformational change evolve. I love a challenge, and thrive on balancing multiple demands – my inbox is never empty! I am also endlessly curious and love learning. Whilst it was a huge commitment, I particularly enjoyed studying for my MBA at Henley Business School as it broadened my understanding of organisations and the global context we work in, which has really helped me when working with Boards and Executive teams.
Over 15 years ago, I made a conscious decision to invest time and energy in building my professional network. This has provided me with a rich source of guidance and advice, along with lots of very rewarding business and career opportunities, so I’m a real advocate of developing professional relationships and sharing expertise. Linked to this, I have been involved with my local branch of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD), the professional body for Human Resources professionals, for over 20 years. Through this, I am involved in supporting the development of around 4,300 HR professionals in the Thames Valley area. In 2015, I was one of 6 volunteers to receive a national CIPD award for our impact and contribution. Having taken on the role of Branch Chair in June 2017, I am currently looking at how to strategically develop the branch to effectively meet the needs of our members in this rapidly changing world of work.
Having a range of networks is crucial. Mine includes Henley alumni, national and local CIPD communities together with our Branch HR leaders network, PWHub and professional networks in Oxfordshire, Berkshire, Wiltshire, West Midlands and the South Coast, along with lots of on-line groups where I can learn from others, collect ideas and share my expertise. I enjoy PWHub events because it provides time for some personal reflection. Networking with senior women from different disciplines is always interesting and further broadens my network and perspectives, but also allows me to share my experiences and support others.
In my spare time, I enjoy horse riding, geocaching, mixed media art and learning to play the harp (not all at the same time!) along with spending time with my family.
Reflect – As I get older, I increasingly value and use time to reflect in order to allow my deeper thinking to help me make connections and develop ideas.
Connect – Building connections with people from all walks of life is achieved by a mixture of: looking for some area of common ground or shared interests; being authentically “you” and sharing something about yourself that shows you are approachable and “human”; and building trust by delivering on commitments you make.
Perfect – However busy you are, don’t forget to take some time to recharge your own batteries. Commit to regular time out in your schedule to do things that you want to do and follow your interests, and remember it’s OK to say “no” from time to time to make sure it happens!
PWHub – Inspiring Professional Women
Space and time to reflect, relax, think and take stock in your life and career
Meet and connect with diverse like-minded senior women professionals
Hone and perfect personal and professional development skills