At This Time I Became Heavily Involved

At This Time I Became Heavily Involved

At this time, I became heavily involved in the trades unions. I applied for and gained various promotions as they arose, and I never felt there were any barriers because I was a woman. The only instance of this occurred when I applied for the post of Head of the Program Unit which was a brand new function, and I didn't get it. They offered it to a man who turned it down and then asked me to do it - but for less money. In all, I was there for about nine years involved in all sorts of amazing things, which you can't do in local authorities now because they're so decentralized.

'I've had a lot of opportunities in my career and have experienced high levels of stress. For a while I worked as lead officer to help create the Women's Department and for nine months was covering two jobs. I applied for and won the position of Assistant Director of Central Services, in Hammersmith, (again in two bites - when no one was chosen the first time, I was offered it the second time). That was my first major management job and I moved to Camden having begun to feel unhappy about the way things were going in Hammersmith and Flam. Until last year I was Assistant Director, Strategy and Support, when I moved to another local authority and chose my own job title of Corporate Director, Partnership and Responsibility.

'A vital component of my success is that my husband and I are a complete partnership, totally balanced. I have tried to behave in a similar way both at work and home rather than acting out a role as a manager, aping the boys, and I feel increasingly more comfortable with that now. I've been trying to be truer to myself at workto say what I think, rather than what will get me promoted and to behave in ways which I think are appropriate. It's been very tough making the transition.

At work I still have the positive conviction that I can develop myself further and I'm doing things that are challenging, because one day I intend to be a chief executive.'

Call +44 (0)7516 391 430 for more information on joining our network looks at the role women play in business in 2016 and by focusing on the past seeks to improve the prospects for all UK women in the work force. We offer women a chance to join a non profit making group of similar women to give advice and career support.