INTERVIEW with Lauren Ker
Current role: Guernsey Managing Director
One word that best describes how you work: Hard!
1. I see that you have worked in both South Africa and the UK – how did you have to adapt your working style when you moved location?
It required a degree of flexibility. South Africans are often considered abrupt whilst we believe we’re just being honest! This made me more aware of the need to adjust how I dealt with colleagues, probably to be more supportive and patient but still have candid communication.
2. How important is company culture to you and what measures do you take to maintain your desired culture in the Guernsey office?
It’s fundamental and is the basis of our decision making for example who we recruit. I’d say it was the most important factor in us joining Clermont Trust Group. With the culture alignment, we knew the teams would enjoy working together and perform well.
I believe our culture comes from everyone being on the same page as to what work we need to get done, an understanding of everyone’s role in those shared goals and celebrating the achievements together. We are a small team so every member has a significant influence on the team’s attitude and we all play a key part in each other’s day. I can honestly say we have built an excellent team in Guernsey and Sark as we all love working together, on interesting work with clients we love working with.
3. What is your current and ideal work/life balance? What measures do you take to control the work/life balance of you and your colleagues?
This has generally been a struggle for me but since having my daughter who is now 2.5 years, I needed to make changes. I was frazzled! It is a conscious commitment to making time for her. We are very lucky in Guernsey where there is a great support system and community, minimum commute time and fantastic childcare which I think all contribute to achieving the ultimate work/life balance.
At work, whilst we do work under pressure and in a time-sensitive environment, our team is well supported. We continue to recruit suitable people to build our team and ensure existing members aren’t left to deal with a huge workload as a result of our high-growth business.
4. Can you share a pivotal moment in your career that significantly influenced your leadership style and approach.
The merger of Rock Trustees and Clermont Trust was defining for me. Our team went through significant change and uncertainty and in order to provide reassurance and stability our leadership ensured we were transparent as the transaction progressed so the team felt informed, we led with confidence and communicated with clarity.
5. In today’s fast-paced business world, continuous learning is crucial. Can you share arecent book, article, website or podcast or even a person that has significantly influencedyour thinking either personally or professionally?
I recently listened to Flea’s (bassist of Red Hot Chilli Pepper) autobiography as an audiobook which he narrates himself.
I thought of this rather than a business book etc because I was really affected by his passion, gentleness and the incredible influence music has especially on my mental health.
More business would be Shoe Dog which I loved and was shocked to read about the struggles the founder had on building his business. It was unexpected when thinking about such a significant brand like Nike.
Thank you for your contribution!