Jenny Garrett is an Award Winning Coach with over 11 years experience of running a Global Business. She is a Freeman of the Guild of Entrepreneurs – City of London and was listed in Brummell Magazines Top 30 City Innovators 2016.
Her mission is to transform the world for everyone, one empowered woman at a time. She uses her years of experience in coaching and leadership to inspire and motivate people, working with them to deliver career and life changing results beyond expectation.
Jenny has written an Amazon Bestselling Book ‘Rocking Your Role’, on the taboo subject of female breadwinners.
Can you tell us about your background and career to date?
I come from humble beginnings, starting life in a council estate in North West London, brought up by a teenage Mum with the odds stacked against us. I left school at 18 with A Levels, I wanted to go to art school but couldn’t get a grant so entered the workplace. I am a determined person committed to learning, and so went on to continue my studies part-time in the evening, alongside work and later work and family. I now have a BA (Hons) in Business, PG Cert in Coaching and MA In Management Learning & Leadership.
I worked in Retail and then Marketing, holding down full time roles alongside a weekend job in IKEA for 5 years, as well as studying to achieve my career goals and buy my first flat. Eventually working my way up to Director of Marketing & Communication at Ashridge Business School. After discovering coaching, I went down to part-time in my role and started to build my business. Within a year, I had left my career in Marketing to pursue freelance one to one coaching, my work quickly grew from word of mouth and this progressed to delivering coaching programmes and facilitating training.
In 2006 I founded Reflexion Associates, a leadership and coaching consultancy, which aims to evoke the best in individuals, teams and organisations with depth, personalisation and meaning.
Reflexion Associates is passionate about:
* Challenging leaders to make a positive difference
* Motivating women to live their best life
* Inspiring authentic leadership
What would you say are the main personality traits you have that helped you progress?
Focus, Perseverance and Curiosity.
In your career, what has been the most difficult challenge and how did you overcome that?
Work Life Balance and still a work in progress, but I decided to take control and write my own rules and give myself permission to say no to some things.
What is the single, greatest instance of trade-off you have had to make in reaching the role you currently hold and, in hindsight, would you change it if you could?
Leaving the security of my marketing role to go at it alone as a coach 12 years ago but I wouldn’t change a thing!
What are the top 3 things you would advise people to do to manage their career growth?
Get a mentor or a coach, someone who will guide you and hold you to account.
Develop your Self Awareness – know your strengths and development areas.
Remember confidence comes after the act, not before. To develop your confidence, you must take action.
How can one ensure that they are a top performer in this competitive and ever changing environment?
Keeping your head down and working hard isn’t enough, you must lift your hard up and network, attend training events and keep in touch with industry, sector and world developments.
What does diversity mean to you?
Embracing your uniqueness as a strength
What observations have you made about the progress of diversity and inclusion in organisations that you’ve worked in?
We have a long way to go, a certain level of humility is required to be inclusive and many organisations are driven on ego, which gets in the way.
What do you think is the key to unlocking the talent pipeline in women of colour that could open the door from middle management to senior management?
Women of colour need visibility, providing them with the challenge of high visibility opportunities would help, alongside the support to navigate the politics and increase their self awareness.
Have you experienced any kind of discrimination in the workplace (consciously or unconsciously)? And how have you tackled it?
Yes, I’ve felt that I had to prove myself when others didn’t, that my credentials were doubted. I have overcome this by consistently showing up and not being dissuaded, until I was accepted, even when its felt uncomfortable.
What role do you think mentoring plays in career progression?
Benefiting from someone else’s wisdom and experience is a huge asset, as well as knowing that someone is on your side. Having mentor(s) in your corner, especially if they introduce you to their network and advocate for you can definitely aid your career progressions.
What advice would you give to someone beginning their career in any industry?
Be interested and curious about everything.
Volunteer and show enthusiasm.
Understand your organisation’s culture and how things get done.