What’s your job here at Itad?
Director, Organisational Development, since 1st July 2014
What does that involve?
The main element is ensuring that we develop the company’s culture and values, with behaviour and skills to match it.
How did you get into the field?
I travelled in Africa aged 18 and that set me on a path for life… but my first working experience was with big cats and Bushmen in Namibia – a wondrous time in a remote rural area, tracking leopards with Bushmen who were still hunter-gatherers. Their skill sets for survival in the semi-arid landscape were mind-blowing, and motivated me to work in rural development for the rest of my career.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
The constant interaction with great people – here in the company, and out on projects. We have diverse partnerships with organisations and individuals all over the world, and that is fantastic.
What new innovations/methods have you noticed in your sector?
I am focusing on social protection and rural livelihoods. Perhaps the most interesting challenge at the moment is the introduction of more and more complexity into any individual intervention – trying to mainstream climate change into social protection, or nutrition into livelihoods – with us working on the particular complexities of measuring the difference that the new thinking will bring.
Recent highlight/ Job wins?
Ongoing work and expansion of the portfolio in Ethiopia – which is now my second home, so I am delighted that Itad is doing more and more there.
Most interesting question you have been asked recently?
Whether a gorilla would beat a tiger in combat! By a friend’s small son …
Favourite place you have visited as part of your job?
In terms of my work with Itad, highland Amhara in northern Ethiopia. It is wildly beautiful, and the people extremely hospitable as ever…