In 1997 I found myself employed by a large, corporate organisation doing a role I was able to do, but which didn’t give me the scope I needed and had little room for self-expression. I suspect I was a bit too alternative for the organisation. Perhaps there was a bit too much Belbin plant in me?
My early academic studies had fuelled my interest in business and how things work both at a macro and micro level. I took this forward with my degree (a combination of economics and politics) and then focused on business when I joined a firm of accountants after graduation.
It wasn’t just the financial aspect that appealed to me, but everything from analysing the market, setting the strategy, looking at how an organisation can fulfil customers’ needs whilst making a reasonable return and the essential contribution of people. In my opinion, having a great strategy but no commitment just does not stack up.
Why I love what I do
I joined Elgood, the family business, at a time when my father was thinking about winding down and over the years I’ve developed the expertise we offer to match my skills, interests and personality.
My job fits the way that my brain works. I am a natural problem solver, with a creative but practical flair. I can move from concept to solution once the objectives have been clearly defined.
I have the opportunity to travel and to meet new people. I am fortunate to work with different people in different companies and across different industries. This is great because I have a low boredom threshold.
Why I am good at what I do
I’m definitely a glass half-full person. I am knowledgeable in my area, I relish a good challenge and am very enthusiastic about what I achieve personally and for my clients. Almost all the work we do now helps organisations to overcome the challenges they face so they can improve performance.
Almost all organisations involve an input, some processing and an output. In a commercial organisation the objective is to maximise the return you get, which is often measured in financial terms. However, in government and not-for-profit organisations there is no profit. The aim is to generate as much output as possible and in some cases potentially a surplus. I’m confident digging around to work out the key drivers, the links between them and the pressure points that create bottlenecks and limit optimum performance.
My MBA, gained while still working within the corporate world, has given me additional tools to help analyse markets, undertake research and lead and manage teams.
As I have journeyed through the last 15 years I’ve learnt a lot through informal methods, but I’ve also found it useful to reality check my knowledge levels. I have completed a Certificate in Training Practice (to help understand the tools and procedures many of our clients use) and a coaching qualification (to enable me to support individual clients who may be facing challenges). More recently, I have undergone a game design course to benchmark myself and explore new industry trends and I have also collaborated on a book. The marketing for this will be out in April.
Passion and perspective go a long way
I am passionate about improving the performance of individuals and organisations. I enjoy getting to the root cause of problems by asking probing questions and generally by being the “grit in the oyster.” Constructively Disruptive you might say.
This puts me in an excellent position to help you diagnose your challenge, agree your desired outcomes and design and deliver a solution to meet your objectives which is fun and engaging.
The College of Law, Birmingham implemented Growbal, an Elgood business simulation game, to help develop the commercial awareness of solicitors and barristers and prepare them for their professional lives. According to Senior Lecturer Paul McConnell, ‘Growbal generates a high level of excitement and competitiveness within the student body, who really appreciate the energy and fun Christine Elgood brings to the exercise. In addition to developing the complex business simulation, Christine leads all the sessions and advises students on their priorities at each stage of the game. The students clearly like her dynamic style, and her motivational skills definitely generate results.’