Power Part Timers 2017 - flexible heroes

It's here - the annual list of the UK's 50 most inspiring senior part-time executives.

by Andrew Saunders
Last Updated: 01 Feb 2017

This year’s Power Part Time 50, produced by flexible working specialist Timewise in association with MT, is chock full of even more shining examples of how to make flexible working work, both for employer and employee. From banking to the civil service, from tech to FMCGs and from retail to politics, this year’s winners are an object lesson in how it’s not only possible to work flexibly in a senior job, it might even – whisper it – be more productive.

So for anyone wanting to have a go at part-time, read on. There are some great role models here, and if they can do it, so can you.

Sonya Arthur

managing partner, MediaCom UK
Works 4 days a week

Arthur joined media and content agency MediaCom, the UK’s biggest ‘Content + Connections Agency’, as a graduate 16 years ago. She was initially a successful trader before switching to a planning role after a decade. She has worked part time for the last three years, after returning from her second maternity leave. In January 2016 she became head of department for MediaCom’s entertainment division, before being promoted again in July to managing partner, one of the firm’s most senior levels. She heads a team of 70, managing more than 20 client relationships and leading business growth. With her team she won four new business pitches in 2016, securing additional billings of £30m.

Ounal Bailey

global director of adult portfolio brands & new ventures, Britvic
Works 4 days per week

An ‘intrapreneur’ within Britvic, Bailey is co-founder of incubator company WiseHead Productions, which focuses on developing new drinking experiences for when people are socialising. Her previous successes include the launch of the multi award-winning concentrated soft drink Robinsons Squash’d.

A Britvic employee for 10 years, she changed her work schedule in 2014 to support her husband’s recovery from cancer and to care for her son. Bailey has been instrumental in developing key areas for WiseHead, from brand development to sales and marketing. She has secured exclusive listings for its first product in venues including Harvey Nichols and Fortnum & Mason, pioneering a new alcohol-free ‘zero proof’ drinks category. The second brand from WiseHead, The London Essence Company, has been launched to tap into the growth in premium spirits with a range of skillfully distilled mixers.

Kate Broadhurst

head of branch (Peterborough), The John Lewis Partnership 

Works 4 days a week

Broadhurst is a member of the John Lewis Partnership senior leadership team. She runs the retailer’s Peterborough store, where she is responsible for around 500 employees. She also invests time in representing branches on a key working group in Head Office.

A John Lewis partner (employee) for 16 years, Broadhurst began working part time in 2012 following the birth of her son. In 2014, she completed an 18-month secondment in two senior Head Office roles, both on part time hours, then took six months unpaid leave to spend time with her son before he started school. Since returning to the Peterborough store on a flexible contract earlier this year, she has led increases in employee satisfaction and ensured the store has hit its KPIs across sales, profit and more.

Liz Brown

head of group corporate development, Dixons Carphone plc
Works 4 days per week

Brown plays a key role in developing strategy for Dixons Carphone, through acquisitions, disposal of non-core parts of the business, and mergers. She is also a director in the services executive team, targeted with adding £1bn in shareholder value. Brown was hired into the role on a part-time basis in 2013. She takes Fridays off to be with her children and husband, who also works part time, and to pursue other interests including advising small businesses on equity fundraising.

In 2014, she helped negotiate the merger of Dixons Retail and Carphone Warehouse, one of the largest retail mergers of all time. On completion, Dixons Carphone was the best-performing FTSE 100 firm in 2014, and was recently named ‘Retailer of the Year’ by Retail Week magazine.

Dr Alessandra Buonfino

deputy director and Head of GREAT Investors, Department for International Trade
Works 4 days a week

Buonfino’s role is to help the British Government cultivate its relationship with high value family-owned businesses from overseas, driving investment and philanthropy into the UK. She set up this new function within the Department for International Trade and the GREAT Britain campaign two and a half years ago, after gaining the backing of 10 Downing Street. She took up the role working four days a week, having worked flexibly since the birth of her now four-year-old twin boys, and built a team of eight around her. Buonfino’s work now covers 20 global markets, facilitating millions of pounds worth of trade and investment in sectors as diverse as healthcare, technology and fashion, as part of the effort to attract jobs and growth to Britain.

Jessica Butcher

co-founder and director, Blippar
Works 3 days a week

Butcher is co-founder and director of Blippar, the leading ‘visual browser’ business, which utilises sophisticated artificial intelligence and augmented reality technologies to bring the physical world to life through the 'eye' (camera) of a smart phone with educational, entertaining content. Following her second maternity leave, in early 2016 Butcher returned to her business on a part-time basis. In the last year, she has connected the business to high-profile business partner interest, and promoted Blippar’s profile and game-changing technology at national conference events and in the media.

Hailed as one of Britain’s most successful new technology businesses, Blippar has attracted funding in the region of £100m and was recently ranked ninth in CNBC’s global ‘Disruptor 50’ list alongside the likes of Uber, Airbnb and Spotify.

Ingrid Cope

senior legal advisor, Pernod Ricard UK
Works 3.5 days a week

Cope established and leads a legal team which supports the UK and world brands duty free businesses of Pernod Ricard - the world's number two in the wine and spirit industry. She was the first senior lawyer hired into the UK business, initially on a three day per week basis. Cope then negotiated a half day working from home, in order to best fulfil her role without compromising on time spent with her children. She has since been promoted to the UK senior management team, won the Pernod Ricard Global Best Practice Award 2015, was included in The Lawyer magazine’s ‘Hot 100’ in January 2016, and was named 'In-house Lawyer of the Year' by the same journal in July 2016.

Louise Cruttenden

European innovation marketing director, Diageo 

Works 4 days a week

Cruttenden is a leader in one of the fastest-growing areas of Diageo’s business, developing innovations for brands such as Guinness and Johnnie Walker to grow the group’s £2bn business across 56 European countries. At any one time, she and her team are involved in over 25 innovation projects.

After nine years working in a marketing role at Diageo, Cruttenden approached her employer about part-time work following her first maternity leave in 2013. Since then she has won a number of awards, both internal and external, and has led her team to deliver over £50m of new business from product launches in the last two years. Working part time enables Cruttenden to spend time with her two young sons.

Arpad Cseh

senior investment director, UBS
Works 2.5 days a week

Cseh is an executive director in the infrastructure team of UBS Asset Management, which provides financial advice to clients worldwide. A UBS employee for 16 years, he moved to his part-time arrangement in 2016 in order to work voluntarily on setting up a climate change initiative, aiming to align climate action with the short-term and self-interest-dominated priorities of decision-makers.

In his client-facing role at UBS, Cseh plays a key part in the acquisition and management of significant investments and works on the launch of two infrastructure funds with combined capital of over $2bn. He also serves on the supervisory board of an Austrian waste management company and is a member of the UBS Investment Committee of the Infrastructure Debt Platform.

POWER PART TIMERS D-H  >>>

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime