What is your new role?
European director of diversity and inclusion at Lehman Brothers investment bank.
Where were you working before, and what were your duties?
I was head of legal for the equities division in Europe for Lehman Brothers.
What qualifications do you hold?
A first class honours degree from Cambridge University. I am also a qualified solicitor.
What are the duties in your new role?
To develop, drive and deliver the diversity strategy for Lehman Brothers in Europe. We have a team of five. I report to the head of HR for Europe and our chief diversity officer who is based in New York.
What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
I want to drive the diversity and inclusion agenda deeper into our business units, with help from our senior executives and managers, so we increase the rate of change in our organisation.
What are the challenges HR faces in the next five years?
HR has to play an increasingly strategic role in the success of an organisation. Companies that fail to appreciate that talent comes in many forms - and that no single group has a monopoly on talent - face dire consequences in our highly competitive landscape. HR professionals have a key part to play in this regard, both as a strategic partner in the boardroom and a catalyst for change within the organisation.
What advice would you give to people starting out in HR?
Make it a priority to really understand the business units within your organisation.
What is the essential tool in your job?
Credibility with senior business executives.
And the most overrated?
That you need to be evangelical about diversity to work in diversity. You don't. You need to be focused about the business case and the value proposition that comes with an inclusive philosophy.
What is the worst thing about HR?
It is too early to comment. I am still enjoying my 'honeymoon period' in HR and have no desire to bring it to a premature end.