AN INTERVIEW WITH
AN INTERVIEW WITH
I’m currently the EMEA vice president of HR. I have the great privilege of taking care of EMEA, which has 14,000 employees, 41 locations, many different languages and cultures and I have a wonderful HR team. I have been with NCR for a long time and I was never going to be one of those people that did this, but I've been with NCR for 18 years now. And, the truth is, every time I felt like I needed a change, the company reinvented itself, honestly. I've had both of my children whilst I was with NCR, and both times returned to a promotion after maternity leave. I’ve worked for some phenomenal women, but also men. And so for me, the diversity and inclusion at NCR, as well as coming back from having a baby into a promoted job, twice, is a massive indication of who NCR is as a company. I lived in London for 20 years and am now back in Scotland, but I've traveled all over the world with NCR up to the US and before COVID, three or four times a year I would travel to many different locations in EMEA. So, NCR is a very easy sell for me.
This is easy for me and it's cliche. But for me, everything is about people. Everything. Every customer is a human being and it really boils down to: everybody wants to be connected, right? Love, connection, people. So, it's really easy for me — it's the people. It's very cliche, but it's true. Every person we work with has feelings, wants to be connected, wants to feel self-worth. I've had the privilege of working for some amazing leaders and what's kept me here is just getting to continuously evolve my career. I was given chances really before my time. I was given big stretch assignments, really, before I was ready and that's why I feel so passionate about the generation that's coming to work now. I have a teenage daughter, so I feel really strongly about women's diversity in hiring and I feel really passionate that we have to pave the way for the women who come next, and the men included.
There have been too many to name. I've had the privilege to attend sales kickoffs, different events in Florida and to just be really inspired by our technology and our customers. I was always in HR but I was a sales business partner. So, for about three years, I supported the banking business under Diego Navarrete, the global banking sales leader. He was so focused on people that I would actually go to all of his customer meetings with him. So that, for me, was my biggest growth opportunity. Even though I've been here for such a long time, I learned so much about our business through him: What does it mean to run the X? What does it mean to be software as a service? What does self-directed banking mean? So, the three years when I worked in sales was a real eye opener, actually and those were great memories.
I am a single parent. So, the reason I'm telling you that is not only to showcase our diversity at NCR but to introduce you to the three greatest loves of my life: my two children, 15 and 11 and my dog. Thus, outside of work I am likely to be doing something very active with them. We were fortunate enough to go to the Maldives three weeks ago where we scuba dived for two weeks. We're big adventurers. We have a rule where we don't go back to the same location twice, so we're going to Kenya and doing a Kenyan Safari next on the list. So we travel, travel, travel as much as we can. We were in London this weekend. We're going to Carmel next weekend. We're going to Dubai in October. I choose to spend my money on experiences, rather than stuff and focus on making memories with the kids. We like to climb mountains together and take the dog to the forest together. So, I'm a strong believer in work life balance. For me to do my best, I need to be the best version of myself. For me, that means spending time with those people that I love, being adventurous and taking care of all of our needs in the process.
Absolutely. It's on me as a leader and as one of the vice presidents in EMEA to set the tone. So, for me and my team, everybody knows that I'm a single parent, they all know my kids are called Ruby and Luca and my dog’s called Archie. Everyone knows it's my expectation that they take annual leave. Never under my watch, do I want my team to miss a birthday or family dinner, ever. We are family first, always. That's how we are in EMEA and actually the hybrid model that resulted from post COVID really helps. I think it helps diverse groups, especially women. I think traditionally, women were having to juggle everything. I'm one of those women. So this open, flexible approach is needed and I'm so happy that we have it.
I think the world has changed forever. Not just with Covid, but with the metaverse and especially in regards to ESG issues (environmental, social and governance). My children care about things that my generation didn't really care about. My daughter wants to work for a company that does not put plastic in the ocean. My son wants to work for a company that doesn’t support palm oil. I think if we don't sit up and pay attention to these critically important factors, we're going to be left behind. So for me, what will create lasting change is having an employee value proposition that isn't just about compensation. It's about everything: compensation, wellness, mental health, ESG, diversity. During one of our company’s last webcasts, our CHRO Patrice showcased the changing culture of NCR in such a genius way. She opened up about herself and her family when talking about the Employee assistance program that’s now available in all of our countries. The fact that she could be vulnerable: this is what's going to create change. Being open, being vulnerable and seeing our leaders as human beings with real problems like us.
I'm going through breast cancer at the moment and I thank the Lord it's treatable. I've got wonderful health care benefits with NCR and I am making a full recovery. I'm so grateful, but this is something that's going to touch all of our lives. Whether it’s our mom, dad, brother, sister, friend, niece, nephew — sadly, this is going to touch us all. And I think even more, as an employer, we have to recognize that. Whether it's breast cancer or cancer that affects women only or menopause issues, we need to get comfortable being uncomfortable. So, I shared my story with the HRLT. And I'm very, very grateful to have a team that has allowed me to go off, spend two weeks in the Maldives with my kids before having surgery, take my time off for my surgery, and has supported me the entire time in the background. I think this makes NCR quite special.
Just believe in yourself. Really, truly believe in yourself. And for me, vulnerability is important, especially in interviews. Just be authentic, have your own ideas to share and be really, really proud of who you are. Ask questions. Be confident.