Associate Director – Actorshop
Former Head of Diversity UK & Europe for Global Financial Organisation
Some organisations find talking about inclusion, diversity and equality issues quite easy. Others struggle with the practicalities of making policies come to life. Senior managers often “get it” but translating the rhetoric into reality on the shop floor, with colleagues or with customers can be problematic. My approach has always been to come up with straightforward, pragmatic solutions to the issues faced by the front line, by supervisors and line managers – as well as senior leaders in organisations.
Trying out strategies to cope with knotty issues using forum theatre and listening triads with a single actor has been, in my view, invaluable in giving people the courage to take brave decisions. I began working with Actorshop when we jointly delivered our ground-breaking workshops called “Respect for Individuals” to over 5700 line managers in HSBC Bank plc. I was then Head of Diversity for the UK and Europe for the bank. The workshops still have resonance and I am frequently reminded by my ex-colleagues how powerful and effective they were.
Since leaving the bank, I became a management consultant and, in partnership with Actorshop, we have delivered diversity training events to a variety of clients from the Immigration Service Tribunals and the Valuation Office to Bracknell Forest Homes, the Home Housing Group, Vaultex UK, Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service, and the National Theatre.
My background? Apart from a 28 year career in banking in both HR and operational management roles, I was a commissioned officer in the Royal Naval Reserve. I have the Reserve Decoration, a Master of Science in Human Resource Management from Portsmouth University and until quite recently I was a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and a Justice of the Peace.