What is your new role?
I am the HR director at legal outsourcing company Intelligent Office UK.
Where were you working before, and what were your duties?
I was head of employee relations at CSC Computer Sciences, which had 60,000 staff worldwide.
What qualifications do you hold?
Chartered fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
What are the duties in your new role?
To create and implement an HR strategy which will support the organisation’s aggressive growth plans. I report to the director of operations.
What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
To make HR a driving force in the development and growth of the business, to help the company achieve its goals and to be the best service provider to the legal sector in the UK.
What advice would you give to people starting out in HR?
To be a successful HR professional, you must have a strong business focus. Get some experience in the business and understand what your managers are up against.
What are the essential tools in your job?
Integrity, and the ability to influence outcomes.
And the most overrated?
Making sure all the ‘rules’ are followed.
What is the worst thing about HR?
Being perceived as the administration centre for the organisation.
What is the strangest situation you have been in at work?
Being Santa’s regional HR manager many years ago in Santa Claus Land in Aviemore, Scotland.
Who is your ultimate guru?
Anthony Robbins – leading US motivational leader and life coach.
What is the most annoying piece of management jargon?
‘Thinking outside the box’, or ‘touch base offline’.
What is your essential TV viewing?
For some light relief I’m a real ER fan.
Who would you most dislike to work with?
A CEO who underestimated the power of a motivated workforce.
How do you fill your spare time?
Dance and travel.
What is the greatest risk you have ever taken?
Entering into a partnership agreement with one of the UK’s largest trade unions with the objective of encouraging closer working relationships – it paid off.
What is your most popular web page?
I couldn’t live without Google.
What song gets you on the dance floor?
Anything Latin, and of course Scottish country dance music.
Who would play you in the film of your life and why?
Diane Keaton (pictured). I admire her sensitivity, humour and sense of fun.
What is the worst (or best) office party you’ve ever attended?
I enjoyed the occasional whiskey-tasting sessions we used to have while I was working at Diageo – after all, product knowledge is extremely important.
Who would you most like to be stuck in a lift with?
Even just talking about the weather with Goran Visnjic (Dr Luca Kovac from ER) would be OK.
July 2006 HR director, Intelligent Office UK
1995 – 2006 Head of employee relations UK, CSC Computer Sciences
1994 – 1995 HR manager, Department of Trade and Industry – National Engineering Laboratory
1993 – 1994 Employee relations manager, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh
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