Dr Cristina Blanco-Andujar, Chief Technology Officer at MediSieve

Cristina and I met back in 2019 when I facilitated a leadership programme at the Royal College on Engineering, designed for Founders and director-level leaders at some of the UK’s most exciting tech and engineering start-ups.

As Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at MediSieve, Cristina has been establishing the technological vision for the company and leading the internal research development since 2017.

Did you know?

Less than a quarter of director-level roles in tech are held by women, although when we consider that only 19% of those working in tech are women, the gender balance at a leadership level is far better in tech…


Vicki is one of my biggest success stories as an executive coach.

We met in 2018 — she’d just left her board-level role at a leading digital marketing agency and had approached me to help navigate her new business venture, Hey Vicki Jakes. Less than a couple of years on Vicki has a thriving business with a paid membership of over 160 people and helps in excess of 500 people a month with her Supercharge Your Website Challenge!

Vicki, tell us a bit more about your journey. What did life look like in the run up to starting your own business, Hey Vicki Jakes?

I spent several years making websites in my spare time at home. It was all I did in the evenings and I…


Claudia Beresford, Senior Software Engineer at Weaveworks

A self-described antisocial hiker and tattoo enthusiast, ‘who occasionally moonlights as a Software Engineer / tech leader’, Claudia is a rare breed amongst other leaders in engineering.

Despite living just a few miles apart, Claudia and I are yet to meet ‘in real life’ — thanks COVID! I was lucky enough to partner with Claudia as part of a leadership + management programme I facilitated and it was pretty clear from the offset she has a natural ability to influence + motivate others.

Claudia, tell us a bit more about what you do

I’m a Senior Software Engineer at Weaveworks. My job is a little abstract to explain, but it…


You see man made the cars
To take us over the road
Man made the train
To carry the heavy load
Man made the electric light
To take us out of the dark
Man made the boat for the water
Like Noah made the ark

The world has changed a lot since James Brown released ‘It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World’ in the 1960’s, which references a number of inventions made by men:

  • ‘You see man made the cars’: Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot, who is credited for the first mechanical vehicle in 1769
  • ‘Man made the train’: Richard Trevithick, who is considered…

My husband, Richard, with our two kids Oliver and Joey

“It’s great your husband works from home. I bet that makes it a little easier for you when you’re looking after two kids!”

Just one of the well meaning, but slightly frustrating remarks we’ve received from health visitors, midwives and nurses since our son was born at the end of January.

No, my husband doesn’t work from home. He’s on shared parental leave.

He’s taken 9 months ‘off’ (we all know it’s not actually ‘time off’…) to spend more time with our son and is one of the estimated 2–8% of parents who’ve taken shared parental leave since the government…


As we approach the end of 2020 (a year that seems to have flown by, yet dragged at the same time!), it seems working from home will continue to be a given during 2021. It’s not all doom and gloom — there’s lots of positives to remote-working. Everything from cutting commutes to increased flexibility and engagement fall under the ever-expanding umbrella of reasons to go remote, but there are challenges.

The lack of the natural flow of conversation we experience when we use video calls is something that regularly interrupts us (though the ability to mute pre-sneeze is helpful), as…


One of the best pieces of advice about working from home is to create a separate working space. Somewhere that’s just for work, that allows you to close the door at the end of the day and return to your home life. But throw in a partner working from home too, plus the kids searching for a work surface and screen time for their school work, and locating a dedicated work space might be as likely a foreign holiday this year!

So, while we’re battling a pandemic, and as a result seeing the boundaries between home and work blurred, how…


At first glance, you might think not really. Though, in reality, there’s a few fundamental things you’ll want to consider. From awkward “hellos” to desktop notifications taking your mind away from the conversation you were engaged in…

Then there’s COVID-19. A whole other ball game. Enforced remote-working for many, higher levels of stress, anxiety and a mishmash of balancing parenting, teaching and working…

We asked Hanna Smith, Chief People Officer at Futrli, why virtual one-to-ones are so important, given the sudden shift to remote working:

One-to-ones are important to perform on many different levels, given the uniqueness we’re in right…


Johnson grilled by MPs amid Cummings row. That’s the headline dominating the media right now. Before I start, let me make something clear. This article isn’t about politics. Far from it. But it does raise an important question: What should you do when a key member of your executive team goes off-piste?

How you respond to that question likely depends on how far ‘off-piste’ the individual has gone and ultimately, you may have to make some difficult decisions, which I’m not here to make for you. …


As consumers, we’re going to be seeing a lot of content around how to celebrate Father’s Day in lockdown and you might be wondering how to mark the occasion with your teams at work, but there’s a bigger question to ask here: What if they don’t want to celebrate it at all? Or they do, but just in their own way?

This year has brought loss, grief, and untold pain to thousands of families. There are people who will be facing their first Father’s Day without their father around, including my husband. There will be fathers separated from their children…

Alison Jones Coaching

Helping tech scale-ups create incredible (+ super high performing) places to work through Leadership and Management development + executive coaching.

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