Michele Simpson-Crew

Managing Partner

What do you do for the business?

My most visible role at Busec is as programme manager for the Foundation and Intermediate Programmes; my less visible one is in helping the team run the business, which includes looking after our extended family of Advisers. I also have my own portfolio of students to support, which keeps me on my toes and always learning interesting new things.

What is your favourite quote?

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” Anais Nin

What is your favourite book or movie?

I can’t reduce this to just one! For my film, I’ll plump for Frank Kapra’s Mr Smith Goes to Washington; I like the values of standing up to be counted and keeping on, keeping on. For my book, I will indulge in Orlando; a rich feast of a work, which shows us just how many options there are to be had in this life. My recommendation book is ‘Consilience-The Unity of Knowledge’ by E. O. Wilson.

What is something people in your industry/niche have to deal with that you want to fix?

Recruitment and retention. Specifically, to help businesses find ways to engage with emerging talent, and diverse talent. So many opportunities missed by companies who cannot see past a role profile to identify attributes…and so many unfilled positions. I’ll shut up!

What are your credentials/past experience?

I moved into HR with a multinational advertising agency in 2005 after a good long career in Executive Search and still have a big soft-spot for creative people and the HR people who look after them. I met Jill in Cornwall when I came back to the UK from Asia 2009 and started teaching for Busec in 2012. I am also a sessional lecturer at South Thames College Group on the CIPD HR Apprenticeship Programme. I have a strong interest in emerging talent engagement, am a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Commerce, and sat on the government steering committee ‘Skills for the Future’ in 2014-15. I gained my MA (hons) in Anglo-American Studies from University College London, my BA (hons) in English Literature and Art History from RIHE and completed my Level 7 CIPD in HRM this year. I also have a level 3 AETS teaching qualification.

What gives you the most satisfaction within your working life?

Helping people take the risk to blossom

If you were a cartoon character which would it be and why?

I found this one really hard – I don’t really ‘do’ cartoons. I’ve ended up with Mowgli; I always admired his bravery, thoughtfulness and loving heart and I hope that I manage to be these things too. He also delighted in having fun in the jungle, which isn’t a million miles away from me either.

What are the values that drive you?

Equality, Respect, Integrity, Kindness

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

Travelling; remote, beautiful places for long walks and living outdoors and being with people without need for material things. Looking at paintings and art-work, glass-work in particular. Being with my grown-up children when we can, enjoying thinking about them when we can’t. I love gardens and visiting them and am utterly useless at growing stuff – next on my list of things to learn how. Being with friends; cooking is a real pleasure, music and reading and poetry. Playing chess – not as well as I wish. I should be keeping fit, but I had an injury and still seem to be in hiatus – otherwise that’s Pilates, running, swimming, skiing, skating and tennis. Thinking about philosophy, physics and dare I say politics.