Director of Reward, Benefits and Pensions, O2 Ltd
After studying for a Business Studies degree I joined Marks and Spencer on their graduate training programme. This marked the start of a 25 year career in human resources. Since then I have worked on both an employed and consultancy basis with a range of organisations including Nationwide Building Society, Prudential Insurance, the BBC and EasyJet. Today I am Director of Reward at O2, where I am responsible for managing the pay, benefits and pensions for our 6,500 employees.
I went to a comprehensive school in Surrey. At times I found it challenging, and unfortunately despite working hard I didn’t get the grades required to go to my chosen University and study law. It was with hindsight the best thing that could have happened! I took a year off, learnt how to answer an exam question, did a secretarial course and re-took one of my A-levels increasing the mark by 2 grades. At the end of the year I had lots more confidence and a much better idea about what I wanted to do for the next few years. I re-applied for a degree place at a Polytechnic and haven’t looked back. This experience, and a genuine interest in helping young people starting out, has resulted in me being involved in coaching and mentoring apprentices and graduates since I have started work.
I live in Reading with my Scottish husband, two teenage sons and two cats.
CEO, Health Education England
The Governor of the Bank of England
Assembly Member and Cabinet Secretary for Education, Welsh Government
Former Chairman of Arsenal and the Football Association
Founder, The Lighthouse Company
Chairman, Evening Standard Ltd & Independent Print Ltd