We’re a friendly bunch at FOLK2FOLK and we love seeing the positive and life changing impact finance can have. We get to know our customers so we thought you might like to know a bit about us too. Over to you Fiona…
I was born in Gibraltar, but my parents moved back to Salisbury in Wiltshire when I was three. Spanish was my first language, and I didn’t speak English until I was five. My early school reports comment on the fact that I am at last mastering the English language! Regrettably, my Spanish is a bit rusty now.
I studied Geography at Goldsmiths University in London and then fell accidently into H.R. (it was known as Personnel back then) but loved it from the start. My first role was with the London Ambulance Service, and I still remember my induction which included a day with the paramedics. Consequently, I have had a lifelong respect for health professionals and what they deal with on a daily basis.
After a stint in a major London hospital, I moved to Wiltshire with my husband. Three children later, several animals and a part time HR role with Bristol City Council we decided to move to Cornwall and have lived in the Tamar Valley for twenty-five years.
For seventeen of these years, I had an HR role in the food industry. A very busy role, great experience but demanding hours so I decided in 2014 to make a change and achieve a better work life balance.
I have my daughter Ruby to thank for joining Folk2Folk. She was working at Folk2Folk when the CEO at the time said they could do with some HR help. Ruby volunteered: “My mum is an HR Manager and is looking for a new role” I came in for an informal chat and here I am five and a half years later.
Being a small business in terms of the number of staff, I fulfil the full HR function, so I cover everything from recruiting right through the employment cycle. However, I also enjoy working closely with the Senior Management Team on wider business issues.
I have found it fascinating and motivational to work in a small entrepreneurial business. It’s a real contrast to the large company I worked for previously with 600+ staff.
When I first joined Folk2Folk there was only a handful of staff. Being able to grow a workforce and attract real talent into the business is very rewarding, as is developing the careers of team members.
We established a Nomination and Remuneration committee last year and the business genuinely wants to improve benefits and terms and conditions for its people.
People at Folk2Folk are seen as an important asset; in previous roles this hasn’t always been the case.
The best thing is, I feel I make a difference and contribute to the success of the business. People at Folk2Folk are seen as an important asset; in previous roles this hasn’t always been the case.
In the most challenging of times over the pandemic our staff have been just fantastic. Everyone adapted to home working and helped to grow profits when so many businesses have struggled. We have just returned to the office in greater numbers but have moved to a more flexible way of working with a mixture of home and office working which I am sure will work well for staff and the business.
I feel very lucky to have lived and brought up our three children in such a beautiful part of the country. They are grown up now but visit the family home regularly which gives me great pleasure.
Being active has been a big part of my life and I have played a variety of sports. I cycle, walk, and go to the gym regularly. Gig rowing has been a discovery and become a passion. Racing a gig on the River Tamar or at sea with my crew makes me very happy. Twenty minutes of extreme effort followed by sitting on the beach eating cake and maybe drinking a cider. What could be better?!
If you’re interested to join FOLK2FOLK, view our employment opportunities here.
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