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Women in leadership interview: Jennifer Moore - Senior Legal Advisor
Name, Job Title, Years in Serco
Jennifer Moore, Senior Legal Advisor, 5 years
Tell us a little bit about your role?
I support the whole business, across all contracts and all functions – from employee issues, to client bidding, to procurement, to client variations and extensions, to data protection, ethics and compliance and company secretarial work. What I love most about my role is how varied it is and getting to interact with a wide range of people across the business and globe.
Describe your career progression, and what has supported you to progress to a senior leader position?
I trained as a lawyer in London and Tokyo at an international British law firm before being seconded to the Dubai office. After being in Dubai for a few months, my managing partner asked me to make my position in Dubai permanent and I didn’t think twice. I worked in their Dubai office for 4 years and assisted various clients on large government projects and contracts across the region, including Serco. I was then invited by Serco to join the in-house team.
At Serco, 50% of our Executive Leadership Team is made up of females – how do you feel the business has supported you?
I am provided with opportunities to continually develop my skills and experience. A recent example is that I completed a Certified Compliance & Ethics Professional course, which is a testament to Serco’s desire to continually upskill their employees. In addition, I am currently supporting the management of one of our contracts to gain more operational experience, which I am thoroughly enjoying.
What barriers have you personally faced in your career when progressing into leadership positions, and what advice would you give to others to overcome these?
I have found that women often undersell and underestimate themselves and only go for opportunities when they are 120% ready, which is a stark comparison to the other gender. I personally have been guilty of this at times during my career. Women need to believe in themselves, their ability and their potential more and go for opportunities that will push them to grow and excel.
What makes a good leader?
A good leader is someone who listens and is compassionate, while also being decisive, focused and driven.
How do you balance work and life responsibilities?
I go to bed very early! I get up at 5am every day, sometimes earlier to train, before waking my daughter up and taking her to school. I find training helps me focus and keep well, both physically and mentally. I also manage my time as best I can and make the most of our hybrid working policy. Working from home some days saves time on commuting and allows me to be there for school pick-ups.
It is important to be adaptive and accommodating. There are some weeks when work will require you to go the extra mile and other weeks when your personal obligations may require more attention. I feel very fortunate to have the flexibility and support to adapt my working week around multiple obligations.
What has been the highlight of your career?
The highlight of my career is being able to make a difference to employees’ welfare and wellbeing, by truly listening to them, showing empathy and ensuring that their concerns are addressed.
Who inspires you and why?
I am lucky to be surrounded by many successful, hardworking and inspiring women at Serco. It is wonderful to see how they support each other.
I am always proud to tell anyone that asks me that my boss is a woman and that we have a fantastic relationship. She strikes the perfect balance of leading and managing, while also allowing people to manage projects and tasks on their own. I feel very fortunate to work in her team.
What advice would you give to the next generation of female leaders in Serco?
Believe in yourself and never be afraid to go for something you want. Always voice your opinion - it matters.