Listen to our latest podcasts, all designed to provide insight, information and inspiration about getting to and operating in the boardroom.

Our podcasts are available in all major apps. Simply search 'Women on Boards Success Stories' in-app and subscribe. Alternatively, you can listen here. 


Bursary Podcast Mini-Series

In these two episodes Fiona Hathorn, CEO and cofounder of Women on Boards UK, catches up with some of the previous - and current - participants of our Bursary Programme, which is designed to help women who would not otherwise be able to afford our support.

This year’s bursary is generously sponsored by leading global executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles.

In this first episode Fiona was delighted to speak to Rituja Rao and Nicky Neal-Smith about why they applied for the bursary, how they found it and what their plans are for the future. 

In our second episode Fiona was delighted to speak to Bami Adenipekun and Marianna Sikorowska about why they applied for the bursary, how they found it and what their plans are for the future.

We hope you enjoy listening to these episodes as they share their inspiring and very different experiences of our Bursary Programme.

Find out more about our Bursary Programme and apply today here

Success Story: Ama Ocansey

In this episode Rachel Tranter, Founder and Director of Women On Boards UK is joined by Ama Ocansey, UK Head of Diversity and Inclusion for BNP Paribas, one of our Corporate Partners. As well as sitting as a non-executive on internal BNP Paribas boards, Ama is also a board member at the Financial Inclusion Forum, contributing to this important cause.

Ten for Ten podcast series

Women on Boards UK was founded ten years ago. To celebrate, we are interviewing ten of our members to share their advice and insight into building a successful board career. 

Thanks to all who have participated in our 'Ten for Ten' podcast series. Episodes will be regularly released from September 2022. 


10 for 10: Sally Duckworth

Sally, an experienced Chair, board member and CEO/CFO, shares her journey to the boardroom including her involvement on start up boards.

Sally has held 18 NED and 3 Chair roles. She was shortlisted top 5 NED in Private Equity in UK's 2021 NED Awards and was a Judge for the British Business Excellence Awards 2021 SMB category. She was previously one of Cranfield’s “100 Women to Watch 2018" in FTSE Board Report. 

10 for 10: June Aitken

Experienced portfolio NED and investor June Aitken chats to Fiona Hathorn about her journey to the boardroom starting out at Shepherd's Bush Housing Trust, and how she moved on to more competitive roles, including working with headhunters and stepping up to Chair. 

June's current NED roles include JP Morgan Asia Growth and Income, Greengage, CC Japan Income and Growth Trust plc, and BBGI Global Infrastructure SA. June is also Chair of PEAL Capital UK and an Advisory Group Member at Abundance Investment.

10 for 10: Jacqui Ferguson


Jacqui is an experienced non-executive director in multiple industries and a former divisional CEO from the technology industry.

Jacqui's current roles include the positions of Chair of Remco and NED at Wood plc and Croda plc, as well as Senior Independent Director at Tesco Bank. Jacqui is also Deputy Chair of Engineering UK, a not for profit focused on inspiring diverse young people into engineering and technology careers. In 2018 she won the Sunday Times 'NED to Watch' award.

10 for 10: Nia Roberts

Experienced trustee and Chair Nia Roberts shares why she loves being a NED and how she went about creating her portfolio career. Nia's NED roles include Member of the Advisory Panel for Public Services Ombudsman Wales, Member of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Strategic Advisory Network, Board Member at Menai Science Park Ltd, Member of Institute of Physics Wales Committee, Chair of School Board of Governors and Vice Chair of an arts charity.

10 for 10: Karen Finlayson

Experienced NED Karen Finlayson, who is a partner at PwC, one of our longstanding corporate partners, is also a Board Member on PwC's UK Supervisory Board, shares how a board career has been part of her career strategy from the start. Karen's non-exec experience includes a NED role at Doncaster Children's Services Trust Ltd, Governor at Sheffield Hallam Univeristy and Chair at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

10 for 10: Alex Tamlyn

Experienced lawyer and governance expert reflects on developments in corporate governance over the past 30 years. 

10 for 10: Lesley Lloyd

Experienced portfolio NED, Lesley Lloyd is a Governor at the University of Central Lancashire, where she chairs the Sustainability Committee (SustCo) and also sits on the Audit & Risk Committee. Lesley is also an Advisor at M&I Material Ltd and a mentor for women who are at, or aiming for, C-Suite level.


Alison-Thorne-Quote-10-for-10-podcast.png10 for 10: Alison Thorne

Alison is an experienced NED and Chair who has recently been appointed as Chair of National Dance Company Wales. Alison is also currently a Governor of Cardiff Metropolitan University; an Independent Panel Member of the Welsh Government's Public Appointments service; and a Board Member of Sport Wales. Until 2021, she was Chair of the leading equality charity Chwarae Teg and a trustee for six years.

10-for-10_Tazeem-Abbas-Testimonial-LinkedIn-Twitter.png10 for 10: Tazeem Abbas

Tazeem is a board member at SW9 Community Housing and School Governor at Caldew School, Carlisle. She is a qualified accountant with broad executive experience in regeneration and the tourism industry. 

10 for 10: Shefaly Yogendra PhD 

Shefaly is a portfolio NED, currently sitting on boards of Harmony Energy Income Trust plc; Temple Bar Investment Trust plc; JP Morgan US Smaller Companies Investment Trust plc; London Metropolitan University; and is a member of the Enterprise Committee for the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Enterprise Hub.

More coming soon .... 

Previous podcast series:

Carlotta Zorzi - Success Story

In this episode Rachel Tranter, Founder and Executive Director of Women On Boards UK is joined by Carlotta Zorzi, who shares her experience of balancing her successful executive career alongside not one but two, non-executive roles. Carlotta is an award-winning tech professional, currently at tech commerce giant Shopify.

Taking a different approach

How can you recruit diverse board members and source new and interesting candidates? Fiona Hathorn talks to Tanya Gass, our Bespoke NED Search Lead, about how many boards are now prepared to take a conscious and different approach to NED searches and how we work alongside open-minded headhunters. Whether you're interested in the more competitive NED roles, or your board needs great people, this is a must-listen!  

'Life in the Boardroom' with Paul Norris, CEO of MM&K

In this episode, Fiona Hathorn, CEO of Women on Boards UK is joined by Paul Norris, CEO of MM&K. Paul talks Fiona through MM&K's recent report on 'Life in the Boardroom'. It is a data-rich report that covers many things including what directors get paid per sector. It is a fascinating report on what is going on today in terms of succession planning, recruitment, diversity and change. Life in the Boardroom is a report of the 2021/22 MM&K survey of UK board Chairs and Non-executive Directors (NEDs). The survey covers directors’ fees and time commitments, as well as their views on a range of current board issues.  

Modernising Risk Management - a discussion with Bryan Foss

Risk is a core issue for all boards, but thinking on the best way to manage risk has moved on considerably in recent years. In this episode, Fiona Hathorn, Founder and CEO of Women on Boards UK is joined by Bryan Foss, Portfolio NED and founding member of the Risk Coalition to discuss how boards can shift their approach to risk and ensure they keep up with the current best practice and methodologies.

Unette Spencer - Success Story

In this episode Fiona Hathorn, CEO of Women on Boards UK, is joined by Unette Spencer, Chief of Staff to Ann Cairns, Mastercard’s Executive Vice Chair; trustee for The Inspiring Leadership Trust; and a member of Affinity Waters Customer Challenge Board.

Find out what's involved in two very different non-executive roles, how she got the positions and why she went for them.

Pandemic Appointments, Non-Executive experiences of a hybrid world

In this episode Rebecca Ganz, Women on Boards' lead in the North West is joined by Carol Ann Whitehead, Helen Gilder and Erica Morriss, all of whom have landed a NED role during the pandemic. They explore how they've had an impact on their board despite being virtual or hybrid; their views on what this means for being an effective NED going forward; and their thoughts on how this positively or negatively impacts finding NED opportunities.

Mind the pay gap!

Debunking common misconceptions around the pay gaps ~ Key errors many companies (listed & not) make in their statutory gender pay gap reporting and how boards can ensure they are fully compliant ~  Anthony Horrigan, CEO of Spktral (the pay gap experts) shares his expertise.

Interested in start-up boards? 

Have you considered supporting an early-stage company either as an adviser, mentor or non-executive? In this episode we meet founder of Connectd.co, Sam Luckett, to find out more about the opportunities available in this space. 

How best to approach your board campaign - tips from a leading headhunter
Listen to this session with leading headhunter, Helene Usherwood, Partner at search firm Anderson Quigley.  In this session Helene clarifies the difference between the executive and non-executive space, both from a headhunter point of view but also from the angle of a candidate. She explains how important it is to clarify your board value add - what is it that you are bringing to the board table - and she gives her top tips on how to make the most out of your supporting statement or covering letter. If you would like to know what a headhunter is looking for in a non-executive candidate this episode is for you!

7 Reasons why Joining a Board is good for your Career
Hear the top reasons why we think joining a board is good for your career progression, but also for your personal development and reward.  

Brigid Whoriskey
Fiona Hathorn talks to Brigid Whoriskey who has a background in banking, in the marketing and then research and innovation arenas before she trained as an executive coach, set up her own company and started developing a portfolio non-executive career. Brigid shares her top tips on gaining board success and particularly on the importance of setting clear goals but also being clear on your board value-add and being genuine in your approach. 

Malado Kaba - Success Story
For this episode we meet the former (and first!) female Finance Minister for the Republic of Guinea, Malado Kaba as she shares her journey to the boardroom. Bringing her solid economic background and expertise she now sits on the boards of a government agency, a bank and a charity. 

Karen Morton - Success Story
For this Success Story podcast Fiona Hathorn is joined by Karen Morton, an experienced board member with Non-Executive Director experience across commercial public sector, private and not for profit organisations. Karen is currently on the board of DAA, Irish Chamber Orchestra and Water Safety Ireland. Karen was previously Chief Marketing Officer of DELL Financial Services and held executive roles in British Airways, Eir and Monster.com.

The Benefits of taking on a Non-executive role alongside your day job
Sarah Perris, Women on Board's presenter and representative for the North of England, explores the career benefits of taking on one or more board roles alongside your executive career. She is joined by Amber Hill, Lisa Maynard-Atem and Katy Read - all busy executives who have developed board careers to run in conjunction with their day job. They discuss the benefits they believe incorporating non-executive activities have on their personal and professional lives. 

Success Story - Karen Furlong
Karen Furlong joins Rachel Tranter as she reflects on her journey to the boardroom. Karen explains how important values-alignment is for her when taking on a new role and also why a non-executive career suits her personal life best. 

In Conversation with Claire Braund and Charlotte Valeur
Original founder of Women on Boards and CEO of the Australian company, Claire Braund talk to Charlotte Valeur, the internationally renowned and highly experienced Non-Executive Director and Chair who is committed to increasing levels of good governance globally through value-based leadership.

In Conversation with.... Zarin Patel
Zarin Patel joins Fiona Hathorn for this boardroom conversation. Having been CFO and Executive Director at the BBC for many years, Zarin has built a successful and diverse portfolio career. She currently sits on the boards of Anglian Water Services, Post Office Ltd, National Trust and just recently joined the board of (publicly listed) Pets at Home. She is also an Independent  Member of the Audit and Risk Committees at John Lewis Partnership and HM Treasury. Listen to her journey to the boardroom and her top tips for anyone who wants to develop a portfolio career. 

Success Story - Susan Hooper
For this Boardroom Insight podcast Susan Hooper joins Fiona Hathorn as they discuss her journey to the boardroom and some of the themes and trends she is seeing as the Covid crisis continues to impact the economy and society on all levels. 
Susan definitely falls into the category of having a "portfolio" career as she currently sits on the boards of Uber UK, climate change network, Chapter Zero, Affinity Water and Rank Group Plc. She is also Chair of Advanced Biomass Sequestration, an agri-mining company in Australia as well as being Chair of a Scottish medi-tech start-up Care Sourcer. 

Success Story - Bronagh Kennedy
For this success story podcast we are joined by experienced board member and remuneration Chair, Bronagh Kennedy. Bronagh juggles a busy executive career as Group Company Secretary and General Counsel at Severn Trent Water Plc alongside being on the board of specialist retailer Wolseley UK, where she also Chairs the Remuneration Committee.

Boardroom Conversation - How to Navigate Sustainability and ESG in 2021 with Alex Tamlyn
12 months ago we took a panoramic view of the many landmarks and influencers in changing norms around corporate purpose, human capital and climate change.  Now, faced with very limited time and finite resource, we must decide what really matters, and what doesn’t. Listen to Head of DLA Piper's Boardroom Advisory Services Practice, Alex Tamlyn as he reflects on how to best navigate sustainability and ESG in 2021. 

Success Story - Rebecca Ganz
Rebecca Ganz (aka Becks) is an ex pat who successfully kickstarted her Non-Exec career in August 2018. Enjoying a range of Non Exec roles, which span Education, Institutional Health and Business sectors, Becks knows what it takes to strategically build a Non Exec portfolio. In this recording, Becks shares highs, lows, surprises as well as ‘grass roots’ practical insights on how to design a fulfilling, challenging and rewarding Non Exec career.

Success Story - Sharon Constancon
Join Rachel Tranter for this month's Success Story podcast when she speaks to finance expert, Sharon Constancon​ about her journey to the boardroom. Rachel finds out about her experiences when there and gets her top tips on how to succeed in building a range of non-executive roles. 

In Conversation with Roisin Donnelly
Roisin is a portfolio non-executive serving on the boards of Bourne Leisure and Holland & Barrett. She is also a Digital Advisory Board Member for Coca-Cola Partners. Until recently she was also on the board of Just Eat which until February 2020, when it was acquired, was a FTSE 100 listed business. Roisin talks to Fiona Hathorn about the importance of getting your story right and defining what your "super power" is for the board. 

Achieving Board Success at an earlier stage in your career

For this Success Story instalment we are delighted to be joined by Nicole Gajree and Amy Hennessy who share their journeys to the boardroom while an earlier stage in their career. Both have taken on trustee positions recently at organisations doing work that they are passionate about. 
You are never too young to consider taking a board role. In Nicole's case she was encouraged to apply for non executive board positions despite the fact she had not yet reached senior management positions in her career.
They both share their advice and learnings and reflect on the benefits joining a board has had on their personal and professional lives. 

"It was good to hear from less experienced NEDs and their journeys to date including obstacles they had to overcome and help sought. A very positive, uplifting session."

Success story - Helen Gillett

Join Helen Gillett and Fiona Hathorn when they discuss how to be an effective new NED on a board. Gain top tips and insights on how to get up to speed quickly and effectively whilst ensuring you have impact and presence in the process. 

Helen Gillett joined the board of leading housing provider, Orbit Housing Association 18 months prior to this session and has recently joined the board of tech start-up, Better Space. She is a WoB member and Ambassador. 

"An excellent session. Super practical!"

Success story - Irana Wasti
In this episode we are joined by Irana Wasti, President EMEA of GoDaddy and recently appointed member to the Board of FTSE listed business, Sage. Irana talks to Fiona Hathorn about her experiences of juggling a senior executive role with a non-executive position on a FTSE 100 company.  As well as delving into how Irana manages her busy schedule, they discuss international relocation, virtual interviews, on-boarding in a virtual world and the importance of mentors and sponsors in her career. 

As Regional President of GoDaddy EMEA, Irana leads a team that helps everyday entrepreneurs get online quickly and easily, by creating an online presence to help grow their business. Prior to GoDaddy, Irana ran product teams at Intuit, where she oversaw the launch of Quickbooks POS and mobile payments. Irana began her career at IBM having studied first for a Computer Science degree at University of California Berkeley and then an MBA at Harvard Business School.

Success story - Nicolina Andall
In this episode, Rachel Tranter talks to Nicolina Andall about her journey to the boardrooms of the public sector, charity and business worlds. With a background in corporate commercial law, Nicolina talks of her love of all things governance, the power of networking and the importance of investing in yourself. As she says, "you are your greatest asset". Listen today to be inspired and motivated to take your next step into the boardroom. 

Success story - Diana Brightmore-Armour
In this episode, Fiona Hathorn talks to FTSE100 board director, Diana Brightmore-Armour who has  30 years international experience in banking, corporate finance, financial management, treasury, and audit. Diana stresses the importance of effective networking when building a portfolio non-executive career and nurturing your business relationships from an early stage in your career. 

Success story - Anne Spackman
Having had an esteemed career as a newspaper editor and then gone on to run a major charity, Anne Spackman talks to Rachel Tranter about how she has started to develop a portfolio of non-executive roles. With a slightly different background to some who are applying for non-executive positions, Anne shares how her extensive experience as a journalist is hugely relevant to the boardroom. This session is sure to inspire and shares many top tips for achieving board success. 

Success Story - Maxine Taylor 
Corporate affairs and marketing expert, Maxine Taylor joins Fiona Hathorn as she reflects on her background operating in central government, at board level in the pharmaceutical industry (Eli Lilly), charitable organisations (Cancer Research UK), Banking (Nationwide), most recently with King's College London, and now also as Non-Executive Director of Women on Boards UK. She talks about the benefits of having a mentor or coach, the importance of developing a strong network and shares her advice on building a non-executive career. 

Success Story - Alison McGregor 
Former CEO of HSBC Scotland and now portfolio non-exec director, Alison McGregor shares her many tips for building a successful portfolio career. She looks at how going out of your comfort zone into a different sector can be amazingly rewarding, how important networking has been for her and she advises that you can never start too early.

The Power of Networks - Fiona Hathorn talks to the IoD about why effective networking is worthwhile.  â€‹

How have things Changed? - Founders Claire Braund and Fiona Hathorn reflect on how things have changed since the UK launch in 2012

Listen to Founders, Claire Braund's and Fiona Hathorn's tips on writing a good Board CV

Success story - Rita Dhut
Rita Dhut, senior investment professional and portfolio NED is this month's Success Stories podcast. Rita's current board roles range from listed companies to start-ups to charities; in the finance to education and medical sectors. During her conversation with Women on Boards, she gives helpful tips on how to approach building a portfolio career across these multiple and varied sectors. 

Success Story - Carolyn Porretta
Carolyn Porretta is our guest in our next Success Stories instalment. At possibly a slightly earlier stage of her career than some of our other speakers, Carolyn explains why she has started to add non-executive roles to her activities now and what she is gaining from them. A must listen to anyone who is just starting to think about this topic and would like advice on how to approach the non-executive landscape while also developing a busy and successful executive career.

Success Story - Terri Duhon
Terri Duhon is our guest in this month's Success Stories episode. With an impressive CV and multiple NED roles, plus connections with prestigious universities, Terri explains how her path to success has not been as polished as her CV suggests.

In Conversation with - Jose Luis Alvarez from Insead's Corporate Governance Centre
Jose Luis Alvarez, Senior Affiliate Professor of Organisational Behaviour at Insead and Academic Director of Insead's Corporate Governance Centre looks at the social and political trends and dynamics of being an effective director in conversation with CEO of Women on Boards, Fiona Hathorn. 

Success Story - Sue O'Brien
Sue O'Brien is our guest for the next Success Stories instalment from Women on Boards. Sue tells us about her journey to the boardroom and the various boards she sits on. Wearing her "other hat" of leading headhunter, she also shares some invaluable advice for anyone looking for a non-executive position on the dos and don'ts of liaising with headhunters. One not to miss!

Success Story - Jacqui Ferguson - With a strong technology background and having been based in the US for a number of years, join Jacqui Ferguson as she explains how she built her portfolio non-executive career alongside her busy executive one. Note, this podcast was recorded in early 2018. 

For more podcasts - just search on the net, or via your favourite mobile phone podcast app, typing in 'Women on Boards' (look for the above logo).