Get to know your peers in the leadership community through our career profile series. Today, we talk to Kevin Green, CEO, REC.
Name: Kevin Green
Current employer: Recruitment and Employment confederation (REC)
CV in brief:
1989-2003: MD, Qtab strategic human resource consultancy
2003-2008: HRD, Royal Mail Letters
2008 to present CEO, REC
A day in the life
I am always up early and read my emails before I leave home. I’m in the office by 8:30am. Every day is different; a mixture of meetings, presentations and media interviews. I try to only do one evening function a week (but fail quite often).
Tell us about your job and organisation
I lead a professional body with full P&L responsibility.
Who do you report into?
I report to our non executive chairman and non executive board.
Tell us about your team
A team of 6 (used to be 10) and each has responsibility for an area of the business. We now have a corporate structure which is very different to most other not for profit professional bodies.
What is the most rewarding part of your role?
Meeting and helping members (recruitment businesses) to grow and develop.
What is the most challenging part of the role?
Trying to balance all the conflicting priorities.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Start early, finish late and try to make a difference in between.
Why did you choose your current organisation to work?
Love the variety of the role. Running an organisation is always fun! I enjoy meeting and influencing policymakers at the same time as promoting the benefits our £31.5bn industry creates for the UK.
Perks and downsides of your role?
Working with committed people and making things happen.
Not enough time and work-life balance isn't ideal.
What skills are essential for the role you’re in?
- Good communication
How did you get to where you are now?
Hard work, trying to be as good as I could be and working with some great people who I learnt a lot from.
What were your best subjects in school?
At school I was focused on sport.
What and where did you study?
I didn't go to university, so did BTEC Public Administration followed by a CIPD diploma in HR while working.
What was your first job?
Admin assistant at Wandsworth Borough Council.
Have you followed the career path you set out to?
Didn't have one, but enjoyed every role and opportunity along the way.
What challenges have you faced along the way?
Tough media interviews spring to mind... Jeremy Paxman on Newsnight or John Humphrys on Radio 4's Today programme.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve done to land a job?
I got this job by being very honest and holding up the mirror about the industry.
Do you have any career regrets?
Regrets are just the things I've not yet got around to doing. Life's too short, so my motto is "crack on".
What advice would you offer to others who are looking to get to where you are now?
Understand yourself, know what you're good at, and then find other great people to complement your skills. Keep learning and ask for advice all the time.
What advice would you give to your 22-year-old self?
You’ll be surprised at what's ahead, enjoy every day.
Coffee or tea? Coffee.
Jam or marmalade? Who cares?
The Beatles or The Rolling Stones? The Stones, I've seen them live, they still rock.
Mac or PC? iPad.
The Guardian or The Times? Times.
BBC or ITV? I love the BBC, it's a great British institution not appreciated enough, but my old Boss Adam Crozier is doing a great job at ITV.
M&S or Waitrose? Both.
Morning or night? Love to be up early especially in the summer, but like to watch great films and TV at night.
Rain on snow? Both.
Sweet or savoury? Savoury.
TV show: The West Wing (I've watched all 7 series at least 4 times).
Band: Bruce Springsteen & East street Band.
Song: One Day like this, Elbow.
Book: Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks.
Sports team: I'm an Arsenal season ticket holder... it's getting harder every year.
Thing to do on a Friday night: Theatre or film.
Place to eat: Cinnamon Club, Westminster.
Holiday spot: Monaco.
Piece of advice you’ve been given: Be yourself, don't try and be something you're not.
By Kevin Green
Kevin is the chief executive at the Recruitment & Employment Confederation.
The Recruitment and Employment Confederation
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