Job title: Head of human resources
Company: Group 4 Falck Management Services
A broad role that encompasses working at HQ and operating companies with a small team of HR and administrative staff.
Initially, a Royal Navy Seaman Officer.
Thereafter, I held HR management roles in Seagram, BAe Sema Group, Seaboard Offshore and RJR Nabisco Russia and Baltics.
What attracted you to HR?
My last job in the Royal Navy was personnel-related, which led me, on leaving, to look at HR as a second career.
Which of your previous jobs has had the most impact on your current role?
I created an HR function on a greenfield site for Seaboard Offshore, contributing to the success of a rapidly growing business. RJR Nabisco exposed me to an international arena.
What are the key skills that you need to succeed in your current role?
Commercial understanding, intuition, adaptability, patience, understanding and presentation skills.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Being involved with a company that genuinely understands that people are key to the success of the business.
What do you enjoy least about your job?
What has been your greatest achievement in work?
Being part of the team that won the contract to build and run support services for the new GCHQ in Cheltenham. This involved the transfer of civil servants to the private sector.
Who has been the greatest influence on your work?
An admiral whose philosophy was empowerment and treating others they way you would wish to be treated yourself.
What advice would you give to people starting out in an HR career?
Understand the business; obtain CIPD membership; and develop HR skills continuously, through experience and learning.
What is the most important contribution that HR makes to business?
It supplies and develops the right people for the right jobs, ensuring the company gets the right business at the right time.
Which business person do you admire most?
Richard Branson for his innovation, entrepreneurship and original thinking. Hes not afraid to face new challenges, has drive and understands what is important to people.