Jennifer Breach, Consultant – Talent Management

Describe your job? I have the best job in the world, I lead all the amazing work on our Be Yourself strategy along with managing the brilliant women’s personal development programme Springboard and our Internal mentoring programme.

What did you want to be when you grew up? Why? What options seemed open or closed to you? Growing up in a village quite close to Gatwick I always wanted to work at the airport. I used to love going through the airport on my family holidays and dream about working on check in or being an air hostess.

What in your job has given you the greatest satisfaction or fulfilment? I have been so lucky that in all my jobs there has been a consistent theme.. that is the satisfaction of being able to help people. From the graduates and apprentices I used to support at Royal Mail, to the clinicians in the hospice whom I was able to support by ensuring they had the very best training. Now at Virgin I get the most fulfilment from seeing the growth in our Springboard participants. I firmly believe it is a privilege to do a job you love every day whilst knowing you are making a difference for the better.

What keeps you motivated? My boys Ollie and Will are my world and they motivate me to be the very best version of myself. It’s important to me that they are proud of me and see that a woman can have a fulfilling career as well as being a mum. I always strive to be a positive role model in their lives.

What women have inspired you? I’ve found inspiration in many women… from my mum who was an amazing role model and taught me to always be kind to people, and who I sadly lost far too young, to the other amazing strong women in my family; my sister, niece, cousins, and the friendships I have made along the years. They constantly amaze me with their resilience and tenacity when faced with adversity.

How do you think women’s equality has evolved and what needs to happen next? I think we have come along way but there is still a considerable way to go and that we all have a part to play in achieving that.

What is your role on the Springboard course? I am proud to say that when I joined Virgin I made a point of recommending we introduce Springboard. I even mentioned it in my interview! I was a participant myself many years ago when I worked at Royal Mail and I can honestly say it changed the direction of my life for the better. I now lead the programme and am proud to be one of four facilitators we have within the business.

How does Springboard help our women? Springboard is unique in that every single woman that attends will get something very different and personal to them from attending the programme. For some that will be professional growth and maybe clarity on career progression. For others it will be far more personal and something that helps them achieve happiness and growth in their personal lives. Lots of our participants have said as a result of attending the programme they have increased levels of confidence, assertiveness and positive image. Another area that consistently comes through from our participants is the feeling of community and belonging – networking is an important part of the programme and one we focus on from the beginning.

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