MDE 38: Helping people to become 'themselves', Nina Grunfeld of Life Clubs

Based on the premise that the more you know about yourself, the more effective you are, Nina Grunfeld set up 'Life Clubs' with a mission to give you the confidence and courage to live the life you want. Now before you dismiss this as being a bit 'hippy'! (her word not mine!) Life Clubs Life counts companies like Boston Consulting, Accenture and Google as clients. Their wellbeing webinars and workshops get great feedback for their employees and are clearly finding a niche in a crowded market of...


MDE 37: Playing games to solve problems, Ben Gallagher from Ben & Andrew

Fancy playing games all day? and get paid for it? Well this pretty much seems like the dream job! Ben & Andrew, is a problem solving business - using creativity techniques to solve business, cultural and social problems that their clients face. Sitting somewhere between a creative agency and a management consultancy. The gap in the market as Ben explains is that creative agencies have brilliant new ideas but can't really apply their ideas practically, whereas management consultancies are...


MDE 36: Scratching your own itch, Rob Symington of Escape The City

Escape the City has been in my sights for many years. There is something revolutionary about a company that helps its members escape from boring corporate jobs to do something interesting. And it's all the more interesting and authentic because Rob and his co-founder Dom have been there themselves. Desperate to do something more worthwhile with their working lives they figured that if they felt his way, then other people must feel the same way too? They were right! Escape has evolved over the...


MDE 32: Encouraging the athlete in everyone, Tracy Strandness of Barefoot Athletic

The Barefoot Athletic Company’s mission is to “to support and encourage the everyday athlete through eco-friendly products that motivate and inspire.” But founder Tracy Strandness’s own story is one of the most motivational of them all. I spoke to her on the phone from Washington. From a background in youth work, via marketing and office management, Tracy built the Barefoot Athletic Company from the ashes of domestic abuse. “In a nutshell our world turned upside down,” she says,...


MDE 29: Leading a supermarket revolution, Ruth Anslow of hiSbe

I love shopping in farmers’ markets and I am very into local food so the story and concept of hiSbe Food was something that immediately appealed to me. hiSbe (how it Should be) is a different kind of supermarket; one that puts the customers, suppliers and employees before profits and shareholders. Pretty groundbreaking. The supermarket was opened in Brighton in 2013 in a 'fanfare of alternative', but the route there for co-founder Ruth Anslow was a traditional one. She studied international...


If not now, when?

My colleague and I were laughing recently about how in our recruitment days we would smirk over cheesy headlines in job ads such as ‘New Year, New Job?’ or ‘New Year, Time for a Change? Jokes aside both summer holidays and the more obvious New Year often makes us reflect on how things are and what changes we need to make both in our personal lives and in our work. There are other life events that make us take stock too, significant birthdays and the death of someone close.  As a career...


A quick boost if you've just been knocked back!

© Marilyn Barbone | Dreamstime Stock Photos Even the most successful people have failed.  I was amazed to read recently that Nobel prize winner Sir John Gurdon who created ‘Dolly the sheep’ was given no encouragement to pursue a career in the sciences, if anything he was actually told that it would not be a good idea. His teacher said, “ I believe he has ideas about becoming a scientist. On his present showing this is quite ridiculous, if he can’t learn simple biological facts...


Become a Parrot Fish in the Ocean - standing out in a crowded job market

Doing well, doing good' Last year I was at the inspiring conference at IESE, 'Doing well, doing good' which has just taken place this weekend. This year I couldn't go, but I happened to be reading about Zainab Salbi. Zainab is the founder of a global organisation called 'Women for Women' which provides support, such a access to legal advise and health services and training including job skills, to women affected by war in eight countries. She has just published a book; 'If you knew me you...