Happy New Year 2018 – a Message from the Chair of the London HR Connection

Dear all,

As we enter 2018, I wanted to take the opportunity to wish you all a very happy New Year on behalf of the Board of the London HR Connection (LHRC). I hope you had a great Christmas and are looking forward to exciting prospects for 2018.

Our 2017/18 season got off to a great start for the LHRC, culminating in our Christmas Special event which was a fantastic fun-filled evening hosted by our friends at Live Nation/Ticketmaster at their funky offices in Islington. Who can forget the slide (which many of used to make our dramatic entrance), and the jukebox which plays every hit since 1952! We were delighted that the event raised nearly £1,000 for our chosen charities, Cancer Research UK & Crisis at Christmas. Thank you to everyone for your kind donations.

Our highlights of the autumn season included a fascinating panel discussion in September on the topic of diversity, exploring the subtleties and complexities of this deeply sensitive topic, with guest contributors from companies including Harper Collins and Aviva. Then in October, we heard the case for strategic talent acquisition, with contributors including Shawbrook Bank, hosted by one of our lead sponsors, Cielo. In November we were delighted to welcome Julio Bruno, the CEO of Time Out, who had many engaging observations on the subject of leadership in the digital age. All in all a great line-up of speakers and hopefully something for everyone to learn and enjoy.

We welcomed two new LHRC Board members in 2017 – both of whom are highly experienced senior HR practitioners. Firstly, Nicky Costa, whose roles have included HR Director positions at Expedia, CBS Outdoor (Exterion Media), PhotoBox and Time Out.  And secondly Sue Turner, former HR Director for Simply Health, Bank of Ireland, The Body Shop and Barclays Bank. We also said farewell to Guy Pink, a former Chair and Secretary of the LHRC, who has decided to retire from the LHRC after many years’ service as a Board member. On behalf of all of my fellow Board members, I would like to personally thank Guy for the outstanding contribution which he has made to the LHRC over the years and I hope he will keep in touch with us and be a regular attendee at our future events. And as always, the LHRC would not be a success without the tireless efforts of our Membership & Events Director, Denise Jones, and our PR Director, Fraser Butters.

Thanks go also to our commercial sponsors who in 2017 included Bird & Bird, Cielo, Network HR, Intoo and London Business Forum. We also welcomed a new sponsor, the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPD), and we are delighted to have the active support of our professional HR body. Our academic sponsors are Kings College London and Cass Business School and we are very grateful for their support in providing us with great venues and facilities for our events.

I hope you will join us at our first event of 2018 (evening of Jan 18th) which features the transformation story of Gate Gourmet, with our guest speakers Richard Wells (CHRO) and Catherine Nugent (Global Director of Comms). For full details see our website

We welcome ideas and suggestions from our members for future guest speakers and, as a not for profit organisation, we are always delighted if anyone can provide venue facilities or would be happy to host one of our events.

Thanks to all our members and guests for supporting us in 2017 and we hope you will join us for our forthcoming series of events in the year ahead.

As always, happy networking!

Craig McCoy