2006 Winners & Shortlisted

Businesses with more than 250 employees  

Roger Evans, Plant Director, Schaeffler (UK) Ltd

Established in 1955, Schaeffler (UK) Ltd is privately owned and an autonomous subsidiary of the German based Schaeffler Group, a world leading manufacturer of rolling bearings and precision automotive engine components.

Roger Evans took on the role of Plant Director at the Llanelli plant at a time when the Company was faced with globalisation and increased competition from lower labour costs countries particularly from Eastern Europe. A number of the low tech products and machines were transferred out of the plant which resulted in around 20% of the workforce being made redundant. Employee morale was at rock bottom and absenteeism on the increase. Roger realised that survival of the Llanelli plant was at stake and that in order to secure its future, the entire workforce had to be developed in order that the employees would be skilled and flexible enough take on any challenges that came their way. It was decided that a culture change was needed, which would have such a marked impact, that the parent company in Germany would sit-up, take notice and reverse global decisions in favour of Llanelli. Mission impossible, said some, however, Roger was determined to make this work and rallied support from both his colleagues in Llanelli and his superiors in Germany; acting as a catalyst in Llanelli and an ambassador in Germany. The Company embarked on a three year Culture Change Programme with the aim of making Llanelli the ‘Production Location of Choice’ within the INA Group. Success would be determined through effective leadership at all levels and good communication at all times. Roger led from the front throughout the initiative inspiring those around him. Added value per employee has increased, morale is much higher, productivity has increased and absence and accident rates have fallen. Germany has agreed to introduce new products, securing the future of some jobs that otherwise would have been lost. The company’s owner, Frau Schaeffler, visited the plant last year and gave Roger and the workforce a glowing report. Colleagues say Roger has been a role model through his commitment, passion, integrity and inclusive approach.

Carol Bogue-Lloyd, Global Contact Centre Manager, LogicaCMG

LogicaCMG is a global IT solutions company dedicated to enabling organisations achieve their business objectives through the innovative delivery of information technology and business process solutions.

Carol took up her current post two years ago. Her task was to transform the business operation from a small 25 seat non-technical help-desk into a professional centre of excellence that would support LogicCMG’s global aspirations. Under Carol’s leadership the Waterton Contact Centre in Bridgend has grown to 200 staff who operate 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. It has become the central hub for LogicaCMG’s outsourcing division – linking sites such as Bangalore, Holland and Australia.

With her passion for developing people, Carol has successfully inspired her management team to focus on the customer services elements of the business. In less than two years there has been a culture change away from an autocratic approach to a collaborative style thanks to Carol’s vision. LogicaCMG is adopting this style of management across all its other centres globally. Colleagues say the major positive changes to the business have been achieved through Carol’s passion, enthusiasm, dedication and her ability to inspire others. She has also demonstrated tenacity in the face of adversity and encourages everyone to perform to their very best. Carol has implemented a number of different schemes to further develop staff but also recognises the importance of recognition and rewards for individual members of staff and team achievements. Customer service is of paramount importance and Carol believes that can be best delivered by a focussed, confident and enthusiastic team. Colleagues say she is a charismatic, innovative and passionate leader who always has one eye on the future.

Jeremy Masding, Chief Executive Officer, FIRSTPLUS Financial Group PLC

FIRSTPLUS was created in 1997 to provide a unique secured personal loan product.

Jeremy joined FIRSTPLUS as CEO in October 2003. To date turnover has increased by 36% and pre-tax profits by 29%. So how did he do it? Jeremy is committed to the business philosophy of Value Based Management (VBM). VBM is a set of principles and processes that creates better strategies, better plans and better results. However, these outcomes cannot be achieved without an underlying commitment to great customer service and, most importantly, a great people model. At the heart of this people model is a drive to make employees feel they own the business and their work. The aim is to inspire and motivate staff by respecting their contribution and rewarding it. As a result staff at FIRSTPLUS relish coming to work and are determined to excel in what they do. Jeremy believes being a good leader is about fostering a positive attitude by giving people a clear understanding of the business, its beliefs and its values. FIRSTPLUS has been successful in winning several awards and Jeremy has been praised by judges for being totally focussed, a good communicator and for creating a world-class management team. The result is highly motivated people and a steadily increasing base of satisfied customers. The company was 12th in the Sunday Times Top 100 Companies to Work For in 2006 and 1st in Wales. Colleagues say Jeremy is an inspirational leader who has brought fun back to the workplace and nurtures a culture that allows people with ambition to flourish.

Bobby Tolan, Chief Executive Officer, Creative Outsourcing Solutions International Limited

COSi is a leading developer and manufacturer of beauty and health products providing a full subcontract manufacturing business.

Since Bobby joined COSi in 2002, he has been the driving force behind the transformation of the company into a leading global company, and his achievements have secured the future of many jobs at COSi’s Maesteg factory. Bobby introduced a system of team-based working on the shop floor, which directly improved productivity. His leadership style proves that performance can be improved through investment in people, which has defined Bobby’s leadership style. He has instigated learning and training programmes in the company, with teams regularly presenting their achievements to the board. His changes have made a real difference, leading to a drop in accident numbers, lower absenteeism and higher productivity levels. Thanks to Bobby, there is a team spirit at all levels of the business, from product development to working with customers to improve their business. Bobby has also created a management team with an understanding of the company as a whole. One of the ways he did this was by introducing a policy of senior managers going back to the factory floor to learn the processes of manufacturing. Whenever possible he personally interviews each manager to ensure that the ethos of the company is maintained at all levels. Bobby lives the company’s values, and his commitment to developing the potential of all his staff has created genuine employee loyalty. He has an exceptional ability to motivate others, and uses the talents of his whole workforce to continually surpass expectations. Bobby aims to help others in all he does, and is humble in accepting praise for his inspirational leadership. His honest yet passionate leadership style is what makes COSi the success it is.

Voluntary and not for profit organisations with an annual income of less than £250,000

Tom Price, Chairman, Landsker Community Credit Union Ltd

Landsker Community Credit Union Ltd offers savings and loans to those who live or work in west Carmarthenshire and Pembrokeshire.

Tom instigated the establishment of the Landsker Credit Union in Sept 2000. Through his role as a community councillor he has encouraged others to get involved and take an interest in establishing other credit unions in the area further promoting the union’s ethos. Tom has overcome many obstacles working relentlessly to secure funding to make the union a success. As chairman he continues to inspire and encourage through his tenacity, perseverance and determination to succeed in the face of apathy. With over 500 members the union is on the brink of becoming a viable business after starting with just 28 clients five years earlier. Colleagues say without Tom’s optimism and dedication many of them would have given up years ago. He is a shining example of involvement in voluntary work, leads from the front and always remains cheerful despite the many frustrations and disappointments the union faces trying to spread its message.

Aran Jones, Chief Executive Officer, Cymuned

Cymuned is a community-based organisation that campaigns for the Welsh language as a community language.

Aran Jones accepted the role of Cymuned Chief Executive at a point when the movement was losing members and facing some serious financial difficulties. He changed that by setting up a financial strategy based on new membership options and an on-line membership drive. Aran also addressed problems with the organisation’s internal communications by delivering a monthly newsletter, starting a web blog, providing weekly email bulletins and launching a comprehensive internet strategy that included targeted, marketing web sites. He has led Cymuned towards more practical community work in Welsh-speaking communities, and has encouraged the movement to work more closely with other organisations, such as the Commission for Racial Equality (CRE). He has also helped develop an international strategy that has involved building a European-wide NGO for groups involved in minority language based community work. Since being appointed Chief Executive in Sept 2004 Aran has turned the organisation around through his strong strategic leadership. Colleagues say he is committed to improving skills in the voluntary sector, and to promoting the Welsh language and sustainable communities across Wales.

Tina Stephens, Chair, North Wales Management Development Network

North Wales Management Development Network helps organisations to improve management and leadership skills.

Tina is the driving force behind North Wales Management Development Network . She works tirelessly to raise the profile of the network, taking part in and chairing high profile conferences while also attending breakfast meetings across North Wales and spreading the word further a-field to Mid and West Wales. Tina is able to not only communicate but also influence people at all levels and leads by example. Tina has had a positive influence on the public, private and voluntary sectors inspiring organisations to make changes for the better. Her approachable nature coupled with excellent communication skills and a supportive approach defines her leadership style. Her enthusiasm, motivation and creativity inspires all she meets and under her expert guidance North Wales Management Development Network has become a true success story. Businesses across North and Mid Wales have benefited from events organised by Tina enabling people to introduce and implement new ideas and ways of thinking into their respective companies. Through Tina’s support, coaching and excellent inter-personal skills she is able to inspire, motivate and influence others at all levels. The Network has grown to include 200 members who place a high value on being able to contribute and learn from others in the group. Creative, innovative and dynamic are just some of the words colleagues use to describe Tina who is a personable, quiet but professional and strong leader.

Voluntary and not for profit organisations with an annual income of more than £250,000

Mutale Nyoni, Chief Executive Officer, BAWSO Ltd

BAWSO is a charity that supports black, minority & ethnic (BME) women and children who are suffering from domestic abuse in Wales

Mutale spearheaded the setting-up of BAWSO ten years ago. Under her leadership the charity has grown from two staff supporting 12 women to 50 staff, with 70 volunteers, helping 300 at-risk women and children at any one time. The key to Mutale’s success is her experience and tenacity. She is able to gain the trust of BME women who are vulnerable and fearful for the safety of their children and themselves. Before BAWSO the plight of BME women suffering domestic abuse was unrecognised and unaddressed. She set about putting this right with great vigour by identifying areas of need and convincing and badgering those holding the purse strings to increase funding. She also encouraged BME to work together. As a result she has built an efficient charity and crafted the delivery of an effective service. She has often struggled but her strength of character and perseverance has allowed her to succeed in the face of great challenges. Mutale has worked with other organisations and has played a part in influencing and advancing their policies that will help many women suffering at the hands of abuse across Europe and Africa. One of Mutale’s biggest achievements has been to develop and sustain a charity which delivers services to one of the most marginalized members of our communities. She has nurtured staff and involves people in the development of BAWSO. Hundreds of BME women and their children owe their security, mental health and – in some cases – their lives to BAWSO. Mutale is a resilient, organised leader who is able to influence at all levels and inspires and empowers her staff.

Mark Gardner, Chief Executive Officer, Eastern Valley Housing Association

Eastern Valley Housing Association is a not for profit organisation that provides homes and services of the highest quality at affordable cost for those in greatest need.

When Mark took over as Chief Executive of EVHA ten years ago the Association was in crisis. The regulator was concerned about its management and was prepared to use its powers. Immediately he worked to address the problems; not by posing an autocratic mandate but by involving all staff in rebuilding the organisation. He empowered staff to effect change that built morale and created a sense of purpose and vision. Mark has worked tirelessly and with passion to turn the fortunes of the organisation around and ensure EVHA delivers an exemplar service to its customers. Mark has led from the front nurturing and motivating his staff. Because of this, staff feel valued and respected and are not left feeling like a small cog in a big wheel. Staff are encouraged to use their initiative and emphasis is placed on training and development. Customers too are included and are invited to have their say on the service provided. Through Mark’s integrity and strategic vision he has motivated and empowered his staff, encouraged customer feedback and ensured good communication throughout the organisation. Colleagues praise Mark for being approachable and accountable with both staff and customers. The association has gone on to achieve IIP status plus numerous other awards and recognition from the National Assembly for Wales for its above-average performance.

Margaret Pritchard, Chief Executive Officer, George Thomas Hospice Care

A registered charity George Thomas Hospice Care is a major provider of specialist home based palliative care for those suffering from cancer and other life threatening illnesses with Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.

Margaret took over as the first full-time Chief Executive of George Thomas Hospice Care in May 2000. Since then she has moved the charity forward to cope with the demands of the 21st Century. The strategy has involved increasing George Thomas Hospice Care’s profile, creating a stable financial base and meeting any demands from the Charity Commission as well as securing fundraising to safeguard the charity’s future. Margaret has reorganised the staffing structure that has made the organisation more effective and efficient. However, perhaps Margaret’s greatest achievement has been to secure funding for and oversee the design, planning, land purchase and building of a new purpose designed £3 million hospice centre that was opened by Prince Charles last year (2005). The new hospice, Ty George Thomas, is a watershed both in the history and development of George Thomas Hospice Care and in palliative care facilities in Cardiff and the Vale. Colleagues say without Margaret’s commitment, endless drive and enthusiasm and strategic planning and business acumen the project would not have been achieved. Part of the secret to her success is simple honest hard work. Margaret does not ask her colleagues to do anything she herself would not be prepared to do.

Gaynor Richards, Director, Neath Port Talbot Council for Voluntary Service

Neath Port Talbot Council for Voluntary Services is the umbrella body of the local voluntary and community sector. It supports, promotes and develops the participation of voluntary organisations, community groups and individuals in the voluntary sector in Neath Port Talbot.

Under Gaynor’s leadership NPTCVS has achieved a number of firsts including a partnership agreement between the local authority and the voluntary sector in Wales. A skilled net-worker, Gaynor has promoted NPTCVS’s role giving the organisation a reputation for being able to deliver on all fronts. As well as coping with the ever changing external agenda Gaynor has also dealt with internal demands such as the rapid rate of expansion of the organisation and an office new build and re-fit. She works tirelessly with other organisations and bodies to improve services and foster a spirit of partnership. Colleagues say her influence cannot be underestimated. She inspires not only her staff but others in the sector. At the heart of everything she does is a desire to make a positive difference to people’s lives. A visionary within the voluntary sector through her hard work, determination and passion, she has firmly established the credibility of NPTCVS at a local, national and international level. The organisation began in 1997 with just 4 staff working in rented offices. Today 36 staff work from two offices with a budget worth over a million pounds. Charismatic, Gaynor has a mix of skills and qualities that together create a winning formula. Leading by example her commitment and energy makes anything seem possible.

Businesses with fewer than 250 employees

Allan Meek, Managing Director, Smoke Control Services Ltd

Smoke Screen Services Ltd is a small expanding company, it specialises in design, supply and installation of smoke ventilation systems.

Allan set-up SCS with a partner 13-years ago, in that time it has become a well known brand and a leader in its sector thanks to Allan’s vision and desire for constant improvement. He has embraced Knowledge Management (KM) and installed an IT system that encourages people throughout the company to share information on best practice. This has helped speed up work and made the company more productive. He ensures staff have the latest and most suitable tools and equipment to do the job and encourages staff to make the use of flexible working hours. Allan has nurtured a ‘blame free’ culture making sure people learn from their mistakes, giving everyone from shop floor to management confidence and the ability to share and learn from each other’s experiences. Allan studied the amount of time the company wasted on unsuccessful tendering and suggested working with strategic customers could be more profitable. Together with KM the partnership has had a major positive effect on the business as a whole. Allan communicated well with all his staff to make them aware of the advantages and received their support. He has initiated meetings with partners and suppliers in an attempt to change working practices and has enjoyed some success, which is an achievement in itself as the construction trade is not known to be receptive to change. Allan encourages and supports his staff through training and development and by setting clear business goals. Because of his approach, staff morale and retention is high. Allan has turned SCS into an award winning company that encourages all employees to support each other. Colleagues say Allan’s vision, innovation and charisma have made the company a success.

Sam Lloyd, Managing Director, 7Side Limited

7side is a specialist in UK and international corporate information; documents, property search services and company formation services.

Sam inherited a culture that practiced a cautious approach to investment in technology, which had low investment in company profiling and was guarded about its business and financial planning. Sam was the catalyst for a complete turnaround in the culture of the company’s Cardiff office. He achieved this by re-branding, hiring new staff, investing in new technology and being more open about finances and the business plan. Sam did experience resistance from senior colleagues in the beginning but through his strong negotiating skills was able to convince them of the merits of his vision. One of Sam’s biggest achievements is restoring staff morale and creating a happy and vibrant company. Staff feel valued, are clear about their role within the company and feel a part of the businesses’ three-year plan. Sam’s changes have had a positive effect on all staff and as a result suppliers and competitors view 7side as a progressive business with a promising future. His changes have focused on goal driven changes for all staff that have included both personal development and a profit share scheme. These were introduced as an incentive, to promote a feeling of ownership, belonging and influence. Sam leads from the front, believes in investing in his staff and the business as a whole and is described as a visionary, strong and honest leader who delivers on his promises.

Ted Sangster, Chief Executive Officer, Milford Haven Port Authority

Milford Haven Port Authority is a Trust Port with commercial divisions and operates two companies as a joint venture.

Milford Haven Port Authority is the fourth largest port in the UK; the largest in Wales and is responsible for over 22 miles of navigable waterway set within the UK’s only coastal National Park. In 1996 an oil tanker named the Sea Empress ran aground off the Pembrokeshire coast spilling crude oil into the sea affecting beaches and wildlife. Ten years on the area has largely recovered from the disaster and so too has Milford Haven Port Authority thanks to the strong leadership from Ted. He has also fostered a culture where he encourages staff at all levels to develop leadership skills and pursue career aspirations. He has developed a pro-active rather than re-active spirit across the whole group one result of which is that Milford Haven Port Authority has achieved Investors In People (IIP) status. Realising the importance of the port within the community he has made money and resources available to local groups and organisations. The work of the authority is varied; pilotage, dry dock, ship repair, marina, commercial development, supply, conservancy, ferry port and docks, fishing, environmental services, training and a 24 hour emergency response team. Ted’s vision and management strategies have had a positive impact on all of these areas. In Ted’s capable hands the port is a profitable enterprise, a rewarding environment for employees and a vital service to the community. Colleagues say Ted single-handedly turned around the fortunes of the port following the Sea Empress disaster, lifting it out of the doldrums and moving the authority forward – a true leader who is diplomatic, committed and inspirational.

Caroline Wheeler, Sales and Marketing Director, Pace Telecom

Pace Telecom is an established communications company delivering services and products to thousands of SME businesses throughout the UK.

Caroline has forged a successful career in a male dominated environment. However, her achievements are all the more impressive when you consider she is still only 27 years old. Caroline has worked in every department since joining the company eight years ago as an office junior and now holds down one of the most senior roles with the company. She has worked in; administration, customer service, order processing, Sales, Marketing and CRM – actually setting-up some of these departments herself.

In all her roles Caroline has demonstrated excellent leadership, organisational and inter-personal skills making a success of all her posts continually adding value throughout the business. She has a strategic approach and has increased sales by 160%, reduced customer turn over from 30% to 2% and aims to transform the company from a £6 million turnover to a £20 million turnover within the next three years. In the face of opposition Caroline has restructured and reorganised staff and created and implemented a Customer Relationship Management Strategy, which has had a significant and positive effect on customer satisfaction and the company’s bottom line.

Having recently identified a gap in the market, the interest generated has contributed to turnover, doubling in the past 2 years. Caroline has been leading and managing the culture change, moving the business away from a small businesses mentality to that of a larger organisation. Caroline provides clear direction, unrelenting enthusiasm and boundless energy and drive. Her changes improve results; turnover this year is estimated to be £7-£8 million compared with £1.5 million in 2003. Colleagues say Caroline is inspirational, creative and focused.

Public Sector

Allison Williams, Chief Executive Officer, Ceredigion NHS Trust

Ceredigion NHS Trust is an acute, community services NHS Trust serving the population of Ceredigion in Mid Wales.

Allison has strengthened clinical management at the Trust by developing a strategy that suits the needs of the local population while encouraging clinical leadership among staff within the organisation. The changes she has made take into consideration the provision of rural health care and has included new approaches to patient care. Allison empowers and includes clinicians and as a result the Trust recruits and retains high calibre staff that are committed to patients in their care. Allison is described by colleagues as a role model for female leaders in public services in Wales having delivered a modernisation agenda whilst also successfully coping with the demands of her young family.

Ruth Dineen, Principal Lecturer, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff

UWIC offers a comprehensive range of courses which attract students of all ages and from many backgrounds.

For the past three years Ruth, a lecturer in Art & Design, has built-up a special relationship between UWIC and Sichuan Fine Arts Institute (SFAI) in China – one of the country’s top three art and design colleges. Ruth identified the potential for combining the high skills levels of the students with a more creative and experimental approach to ideas – an approach which would also increase staff confidence and motivation.

She set about addressing these concerns with a passion through a strategy of communication at all levels; she demonstrated lecturing techniques and encouraged inclusiveness through a creative teaching model. As a result SFAI staff are more confident and the institute is redesigning its degree course. Students have benefited by becoming more independent, motivated, are critically-aware and creative. Ruth has been awarded a professorship by the SFAI and has been nominated for 2006 Three Gorges Friendship Award – the highest award available to a foreigner from the public sector in Sichuan province.

The wide-ranging educational changes at SFAI will have radical, long-term positive effects on students’ learning and motivation. Perhaps the greatest praise is the words of the Chinese students; “I have made much progress, become much braver and I’m able to push my thinking further; The teaching approach ignited my passion and desire to study; We did work that seemed impossible before; We progressed by experimenting with passion, joy and the encouragement of the teacher.” Ruth’s determination and leadership has set in motion a positive change in education that will inspire, support and encourage a new generation of students. Without Ruth’s drive and vision none of this would have been possible.

Ken Sawyers, Chief Executive Officer, Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council

Neath-Port Talbot County Borough Council is a statutory authority that is committed and dedicated to making the community a better place for the people of Neath-Port Talbot.

Ken has spearheaded an initiative to deliver a service for young people aged 11-25 aimed at helping them to enhance their citizenship skills and aide their general personal development. Ken passionately believes that success can only be achieved by working and liaising closely with partnership organisations. Delivery of the service is made possible through Youth Councils which Ken contributes to and regularly attends. He fosters a spirit of understanding, encouraging young people to communicate with older people and vice versa emphasising listening as well as verbal and negotiating skills. Through Ken’s energy, passion and commitment he has personally helped many young people to learn and develop their skills and personalities. Young people from disadvantaged communities have united and shared their views which have been used to produce a consultation video that will be used in conjunction with the Community Plan 2005-2015 that creates an incentive for youngsters to develop community youth forums themselves. It also facilitates the views of young people to be heard, encourages citizenship skills with the overall aim of createing a caring and robust community improving the quality of life for everyone. Ken’s work has had a real impact on the streets and has helped to break down barriers between young people and other members of the community. Colleagues say without Ken’s strength of leadership, commitment and ability to inspire others the project would not be the success it is.

Barbara Wilding, Chief Constable, South Wales Police

Team Leader

Elin Cullen, Head of Facilities Management, Carmarthenshire County Council Education and Children’s Services Department

Education and Children’s Services Department provide direct services such as catering, building and cleaning and procurement to both internal and external customers, she has over the last year chaired Carmarthenshire County Council’s Heads of Service Forum and the Corporate Customer Care Steering Group.

Elin is responsible for a budget of £13 million and 1,500 staff. The school meals service in Carmarthenshire has 600 staff, produces 22,000 meals a day for 150 schools and has one of the highest uptakes of school meals in the country. Elin reviewed her division to improve efficiency and effectiveness. This involved restructuring management achieving a £46,000 saving in staffing costs. She also developed partnerships with public, private and voluntary sectors to answer concerns from Westminster. Elin carried out research into child obesity concluding immediate action was needed to help alleviate the problem and improve children’s nutrition through the School Meals Nutrition (SMN) Strategy. Elin has set-up a multi-agency partnership involving Carmarthenshire based agencies in an overall attempt to improve communication and efficiency throughout the sector. Her main focus has been to improve the health of children throughout the county through education and by providing quality school meals using local produce. She has worked passionately to ensure the authority, head teachers, school governors, parents and pupils, catering staff and suppliers were all aware of and supported the SMN Strategy. Elin’s enthusiasm, innovation and motivation is outstanding, colleagues say she is an experienced, dynamic leader who has shown real commitment, tenacity and vision to turn an ambitious plan into reality.

Siobhan Cole, Director of Business Development, South Wales Police

South Wales Police is the largest police force in Wales serving 46% of the Welsh population including the cities of Cardiff and Swansea.

As the Head of Strategic Development with South Wales Police Siobhan is a key advisor to Chief Officers and is responsible for business planning, change and programme management. She has spearheaded innovative development by integrating operational and organisational planning using the National Intelligence Model (NIM). This new approach has created a more focused approach across the business ensuring the prioritisation of resources, a joined up approach to service delivery and an improved level of service to the communities that South Wales Police serve. Siobhan has recently taken on the role of Acting Assistant Director and Head of Business Development. Colleagues say it is a testament to her flexibility and commitment that she has adapted effortlessly to her new and more challenging role. South Wales Police consists of 5000 people covering a vast area – serving 1.2 million people; 46% of the Welsh population. Siobhan has overcome resistance from within her own department to changes, convinced Chief Officers the new approach would deliver improvements and finally implement the changes across the whole force. Siobhan has demonstrated first class interpersonal, negotiating and team working skills in order to achieve her objectives resulting in performance improvements across the board. A professional and inspirational leader she has been at the forefront of change and has worked with energy, vigour and sensitivity.

Joanne Roderick, Controller Motor Funding, Black Horse

Black Horse is the consumer finance operation of Lloyds TSB Asset Finance Division. Its operation in Cardiff employs 1200 people primarily in business support functions and customer contact centres.

A core area of Black Horse’s work is the security registration of new and used motor vehicles that it approves credit facilities on hire purchase. Joanne realised the structure of the department contained no safeguards to ensure the company was not being abused by fraudsters. Challenging the status quo Joanne instigated and over-saw the creation of a new unit; the Car Data Registration Team (CDRT). The team’s sole responsibility is fraud prevention and protecting the interests of the company. The creation of the CDRT is no small achievement. It involved recognising the problem in the first place and then co-ordinating different departments from around the country into one coherent unit and hiring new staff. To achieve the changes Joanne liaised with staff at all levels, implemented a new management and mentoring structure, instigated minute taking and training courses for new staff. She has also published operating procedures on the intranet to enhance internal audit control. Through Joanne’s vision and hard work in setting up the CDRT she has brought a new focus of management and resources. The result is efficiency gains in alerting the company to security risks and administration errors are now being investigated improving internal controls. Joanne has made big improvements to a key area of the company enhancing corporate compliance, risk control and cost efficiency. Colleagues describe Joanne as disciplined and entrepreneurial.

Dee Jones, Research Fellow, University of Wales Bangor

The Research Institute of Enhancing Learning draws on research expertise to enhance understanding.

Dee is working with the NHS and the University on the ‘risk-e’ project that aims to improve patient safety and reduce cost of litigation brought about by mistakes in the NHS. Through Dee’s innovative approach to risk management training – NHS staff are committed to improving patient safety. The focus has been on ensuring staff and the NHS work toward a shared mission. As a result of Dee’s involvement the teaching of health service staff has been enhanced. Dee’s commitment to improving the NHS and her unwavering enthusiasm has inspired the people around her. Dee’s style of teaching is inclusive and fosters an atmosphere where staff and students feel comfortable talking about their experiences so that others can learn and benefit. She has led her team to develop educational opportunities for staff throughout Wales. One key area has been focusing on ensuring staff are clear what their goals are. Dee’s unwavering enthusiasm and understanding has pushed the process from strength-to-strength through smooth and challenging times. She believes passionately in the NHS and wants to make it the great institution it was meant to be. Dee offers support and trust that has inspired the team to achieve her vision with a sense of joint purpose. Sixteen months into the project both colleagues and students alike have been empowered to improve patient safety under Dee’s solid leadership.