Magazine article Management Today

Brainfood: Julia Cleverdon - If I Had to Start Again

Magazine article Management Today

Brainfood: Julia Cleverdon - If I Had to Start Again

Article excerpt

I'd like to be reincarnated as someone who didn't operate so closely to deadlines, just to see how different things could be. I don't think anyone could describe me as terribly strategic. When McKinsey came to write my business plan in 1992, they were impressed with the strategy behind the campaigns I'd initiated. It was, in fact, complete happenstance.

I'd simply gone with the wave breaking on the beach at each time. But I've always had a fascination with the new thing that companies need to be aware of, and that has served me well.

I had an extraordinary change of direction when I was at Cambridge University.

I applied for, and was offered, jobs as assistant governor of a prison, assistant secretary in a hospital and something so secret in the Secret Service that it was hard to know what it was. But I was advised that if I wanted to change the world, I should go into industry.

I thought it an extraordinary concept - my father was a BBC radio producer, and I'd never met a single person in business. …

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