What does your role entail: As a Programme Manager, my job is to help oversee and coordinate the various projects, products, and other strategic initiatives across the business.
How long have you worked at Vodafone? As a pure VF employee, then 11 years (2012-2023), but if you include the time at Cable & Wireless prior to being purchased by Vodafone then 17 years in total (2006-2023).
Give us an insight into your career so far: My career in project/programme management started in 2000 as a project coordinator within Cable & Wireless Communications, l took voluntary redundancy in 2003 where I had extended trips to Australia & New Zealand and learned to Skydive, Paraglide and Scuba Dive. I re-joined in 2004 and from 2009 to 2022 I was the project management SME for C&W’s then Vodafone’s 3 Digit Number (critical Infrastructure) services i.e. 101, 105, 111/NPFS (National Pandemic Flu Service) & 119 Covid Test & Trace. From 2022 onwards I gained a promotion to Programme Manager & I am currently managing the Allwyn 4th National Lottery programme within Vodafone, the largest single contract VF Business has signed.
What People Network are you a part of? LGBT+ Friends Network
What made you join the network? I’ve never really thought about it. I suppose we all crave the feeling of belonging, the need for support/validation, to feel part of something with others who have the same lived experiences as ourselves. The more I think about it, that’s ultimately why I joined the LGBT+ friends network.
Tell us an interesting fact about yourself: What is or isn’t interesting is always subjective & what I think is an interesting fact, may be simply normal to someone else. But other than the fact that I’m an average 50-year-old man who’s spent the last 25 years (1/2 his life) with my husband/partner Mark, the only interesting thing(s) are that I’m a qualified Paraglider, Skydiver and PADI advanced Scuba Diver. I rock climb (though not as much I used to) & my husband & I are Kennel Club Registered Bedlington Terrier Breeders.
How do you switch off after work? It varies, it could be cooking a meal from scratch, baking, eating at my favorite restaurant, or enjoying a glass or 2 of good wine (Rioja in particular) or craft beer, or pottering in the garden or sitting in a comfy chair with a good book/listening to some music, vegging in front of the TV with Blue, our Bedlington Terrier on one side & husband Mark on the other. In most cases it’s simply a combination of all the above with my husband/partner of 25 years Mark.
What are you most looking forward to over the next year? From a work perspective, it's continuing to manage/work with the team on the Allwyn 4th National Lottery programme & our joint challenge of commencing the delivery of 45,000 individual retail network connections to support the 4th National Lottery. From a personal perspective it’s the challenge of running, but also the experience of running 5 Ultramarathon’s ranging from 28 miles to 50 miles in England, Scotland & Wales in 2024, plus multiple ½ marathons in Europe.
Why do you feel that Vodafone is a great place to work? It’s due to the visible commitment across the business from the Chief Exec downwards to improving the overall environment & wellbeing of its employees. It doesn’t just pay lip services to its employee’s wellbeing; it delivers & is constantly striving to improve its offering & benefits. How many other companies are out there who actively encourage their employees to take 4 days out per year to focus on their mental/physical wellbeing.
From a personal level, I have never felt I needed to hide or shy away from being who I am & this is because I’ve felt accepted from a peer-to-peer level & at a corporate level too. That combined with the focus on employee’s wellbeing makes Vodafone a great place to work.