Top job: Sarah Landry, head of HR, Yes Telecom

Sarah Landry has been appointed head of HR at mobile communications operator Yes Telecom. She joins from electricity supplier Economy Power where she was head of HR.

What are the duties in your new role?

I will be responsible for incorporating an effective HR function into the business. This will include introducing policies and procedures in accordance with the company’s strategic plans. I will also be responsible for setting up a training function.

What do you hope to achieve?

Initially, I aim to create an HR and training function that complements what the company is trying to achieve. I hope to use my previous experience of how to create and nurture a new department along with harmonising the workforce. Once we have strong foundations in place our ultimate aim is to create a really great place to work.

What are the challenges facing HR in the next five years?

Becoming a true business partner and adding value to the business is crucial. With government legislation steering more towards work-life balance, the task of retaining the same levels of productivity and focus on working life is going to be challenging.

What advice would you give to people starting out in HR?

Do plenty of networking and reading but most of all don’t be afraid to use your common sense. Be prepared to stand your ground on what you believe is correct.

What is the essential tool in your job?

My previous experience.

What is the worst thing about HR?

The fact that people with no understanding of the profession have such rigid views on how things should be done.

What is the strangest situation you have been in at work?

Having to drive to a police station to rescue one of our employees who had been arrested 200 miles away while visiting one of our offices.

Who is your ultimate guru?

Richard Branson.

What is the most annoying piece of management jargon?

I tend to be wary of anyone who tells me they are a straight talker.

What is your essential TV viewing?

Channel 4 show Lost.

Who would you most dislike to work with?

Arthur Scargill and David Brent.

How do you fill your spare time?

I am an avid cricket fan so the summer months are taken up with that. In the winter I tend to travel a lot to sunnier climes.

What is the greatest risk you have ever taken?

In my earlier days I did a bungee jump while on holiday in Rhodes.

What was the last book you read?

Deception Point by Dan Brown.

What song gets you on the dance floor?

Anything upbeat by Justin Timberlake, Michael Jackson and Beyonce.

What would be your dream job?

HR for the England cricket team would probably be pretty good.

Who would play you in the film of your life and why?

Kate Beckinsale, because she is gorgeous.

What is the best office party you’ve ever attended?

A company conference when we had a night out at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. It was the night I met my husband.

Landry’s CV

2005  Head of HR, Yes Telecom
2001  Head of HR, Economy Power
1997  Regional HR adviser, First Leisure
1994  Senior personnel officer, Imedia Group

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