Even at school I was interested in business, and at fourteen, reading the Economist, I decided I needed to learn about money, business exists to make money.

For the first fourteen years after university, I worked for Unilever; joining as a Commercial Management Trainee and leaving as a Vice President in the Global HR department – an unusual journey. I received world-class training from Unilever, both financial and management. For the first ten years, I worked in Commercial roles, such as Financial Controller, Group Financial Accountant and Commercial Manager in factories and head offices, supporting sales, marketing, supply chain and manufacturing. These roles were in Foods, Speciality Chemicals, the Plantations & Plant Science Group and, as an expat, in Home & Personal Care in Poland.

In my first big role at the age of twenty-five, Financial Controller of a small chemical company, all three of my assistant managers were middle-aged; one had had fifteen years’ experience before I was even born, they had good reason to resent me. Thankfully, I did what I now know is the most important thing – I listened to them; not only that, I respected their experience and judgement. Together, we transformed the financial reporting and analysis.

After ten years of analysing and budgeting, I changed course mid-flight to focus on people – working in areas such as change and culture management, leadership and organisation development. It became a very obvious step to use all of my experience to become a freelance coach.

In recent times I have faced personal challenges: my own health – including heart failure and two cancer diagnoses; both my parents suffering horrible deaths; and one of my sons being chronically ill for years. Working with my own coach has enabled me to thrive despite all this.


As I moved through Unilever, I noticed the importance of behaviour – how subtle intangible differences had a huge effect

I was able to explore this further as Vice President Leadership Development for Unilever working in the Strategic Centre; a global role with a population of 220,000 employees, including 25,000 managers in 90 countries, where my principal responsibilities included:

  • the Performance Development process
  • the adaptation and roll-out of new leadership competencies
  • developing workshops and communication tools for Corporate Social Responsibility principles
  • development of plans and board approval for a Unilever HR Academy
  • coaching and supporting HR and line managers
  • playing an active role within the global HR team

What I learnt during the years in this role turned an interest into a passion and I have since dedicated my career to coaching others



  • MSc Organizational Behaviour
    Birkbeck College, University of London
  • Level 7 Certificate in Executive Coaching and Mentoring
    Institute of Leadership and Management
  • Advanced Certificate in Executive Coaching
    Bristol Business School
  • Trained in the use of Clean facilitation
    Academy for Soul-based Coaching
  • Neuro Linguistic Programming – Business Practitioner
  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • BA (Hons) Economics and Accounting
    University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne
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