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How Did I Get Here? Lynne Griffin, Personnel Director, Northern Rock plc

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Lynne Griffin, Personnel Director at mortgage lender, Northern Rock explains why her business is such a great place to work and reveals her thoughts on what the new skill set of HR is.


1. How strategic is your current role and what does it involve?
Strategic in ensuring that the people strategy remains closely aligned to the business strategy. Operationally in ensuring that the personnel team deliver a service company wide which includes payroll and support.

2. How is the HR function perceived within your organisation?
As a good source of professional advice and guidance.

3. How does your business use HR practices to get ahead?
As an employer of choice our key focus is to ensure that we are a great place to work. Best practice HR supports this philosophy.

4. Why is your company such a great place to work?
The strong management team who are focused on making the business a success, the great team of people that work for us and the fantastic environment we have developed. Our head office site has restaurants and coffee shops, shops and a state of the art health club.

5. How does HR win hearts and minds in your business?
By understanding what the business is about and working closely with the line management teams.

6. Will HR survive outsourcing and changes to service delivery?
Only if HR ensures that it understands what the business wants and delivers.

7. What’s the new skill set of HR?
Being a business manager and understanding the key challenges that the business faces as well as ensuring that there is an understanding of the legislative framework around HR issues.

8. What’s the worst thing about working in HR and the best?
The worst thing has to be making someone redundant and the best is that no two days are ever the same.

9. What are the key issues preventing HR professionals from getting a seat on the board?
None only themselves and focusing too much on HR.

10. If you have a mantra/motto what is it?
I can do it.

11. What are you currently reading?
How to be Brilliant – Michael Heppell. I was fortunate enough to attend a two day workshop led by Michael and whilst off the wall it was certainly a confidence booster and got you thinking about what you want to do with your life.

12. What would be your desert island disc?
It would have to be my husband’s CD he does a fab Mac The Knife.

13.If you could have lunch with three famous people, dead or alive who would they be and why?
Bob Hope for the fun and laughter. Richard Branson for his business acumen. Kate Adie for what must be a fantastic source of interesting life stories.

14. If you’d like to be remembered for one thing what is it?
For being a good friend.

Previous career profiles can be seen on the How Did I Get Here? page.

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Annie Hayes

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