Tori - Know your limits, stick to them and share them with others, for me I never work late on a Friday as I’m Jewish and it’s the sabbath. It’s a restriction I never cross and I always have both Friday and Saturday nights to relax after a long week. My colleagues know this and are often the ones telling me to log off or head home as they know it’s my special family time. I’m a big believer that if you don’t look after yourself, you can’t be your best self at work.
Susie - Walking our dog Bailey, knowing that no matter what is going on he needs to be taken out. I should confess I am not always successful at work/life balance but I am getting better! I never work on a Saturday and as I shed my perfectionist identity I am learning to say 'no'.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO GIRLS LOOKING TO GET INTO YOUR INDUSTRY?
Susie - Whatever you are striving to do for a career, becoming a psychologist, writer, mediator or coach, keep in mind that there are people to offer you help and support. I have learnt so much from so many wonderful mentors and leaders.
Tori - Totally echo what my mum said. And to add, don’t be afraid to show your imperfections - there’s so much advice about being tough, full of achievements but showing you are human and have your own vulnerabilities will earn you respect and help others to truly know you as a person. If I interview someone and I get a glimpse of the real them - that always goes a lot further than just a long list of achievements.
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER YOUR GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Tori - Modelling Cefinn clothes with my mum!? (Deflecting this one!)
Susie - I am blessed with a beautiful family. I lost my mum at quite a young age so being a mother has always been hugely important to me. Knowing that I can be there to guide, support and love them and at the same time live a fulfilling life myself feels like something to be proud of. And being a lifelong learner - even though I teach, I love being a student, I am smart enough to know how much more there is to learn and understand.
WHAT IS YOUR MOTTO?
Tori - PMA - Positive Mental Attitude - whenever I was going through a hard time, my parents always taught me the importance of a positive outlook. It’s something I have tried to hold onto as I’ve lived my life, there is goodness and positivity even in the darkest of times! Take this coronavirus pandemic, the world is being hit by madness yet people still find the time to do good - donating food to hospital staff working over time or dropping in leaflets to neighbours to offer help to those in isolation.
Susie - ‘This too shall pass.’ This seems to encapsulate the perspective required to rejoice in the really happy times and to know that no matter how painful our suffering, it will ease.
Tori - First professional role, working in an accountancy firm in audit - I didn’t last very long!
Susie - I worked for BT and stayed there for years. It was exciting to be part of the internet revolution.
WHAT IS A STAPLE IN YOUR WARDROBE YOU COULDN’T LIVE WITHOUT?
Tori - My white trainers - on a Sunday with jeans and a jumper, at work with a midi dress or on Saturday night with a jumpsuit - you can never go wrong with a good pair of white trainers.
Susie - I love trouser suits, dressed up with a blouse or dressed down with a polo neck or t-shirt. They are my go to outfit that allow me to relax and get on with the job.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE PLACE TO TRAVEL?
Tori - India - I spent a few months there after university and it will always have a special place in my heart. I find the culture fascinating, the people warm and caring, the food delicious, scenery beautiful - what more could you want?
Susie - I love the sea, I don’t mind if its Brighton or Barbados, Mumbai or Mauritius.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO RELAX?
Tori - A hot bath, candle light and listening to Elizabeth Day’s podcast on How to Fail or reading the
Susie - Read, cook, see Tori! And I love a Bette Davis movie.
WHICH IS YOUR FAVOURITE GALLERY AND WHY?
Tori - V&A I love the variety of exhibitions they show it’s always a great day out.
Susie - The Wellcome Collection. Not so much a gallery more a place of wonder and curiosity. It’s free and has a continuous stream of interesting exhibitions from Play, to Architecture and the Human Body. Knowing that there is a huge archive of material beneath the building makes it feel magical. I love meeting people there, spending time in the Library or the Reading Room and wandering round the latest exhibition.
WHAT BOOK DO YOU ALWAYS RECOMMEND TO A FRIEND?
Tori - I might be a little biased but...’Bounce Back. How to fail and be resilient at work’ written by Dr Susan Kahn! Resilience is a crucial part of being and this book has some incredible tips that we all can apply to our personal and professional lives.
Susie - In Search of Meaning by Viktor Frankl, this really is a book to cherish. It reminds us of the value of purpose and that no matter what our pain or how difficult our circumstances we can control how we respond to that suffering.
SUSIE, Dr Susan Kahn is a chartered psychologist, she has a particular interest in the behaviour of people at work and below the surface dynamics in organisations. Susie is the Programme Director for Coaching at Birkbeck, University of London as well as a faculty member at the School of Life. Susie also works as a group relations consultant, including equine coaching. Her research interests embrace leadership, change and vulnerability at work. Susie has released two books; Death & the City and her latest publication is ‘Bounce Back: how to fail fast and be resilient at work.
TORI, 28, works as a Change Management Consultant for North Highland – helping clients to manage people through change whether that be a technical change, operational or leader led. Her passion in this space lies in coaching leaders through intense periods of change, working hand in hand with them to drive human centric change - using emotional intelligence to help make leaders and teams more efficient and collaborative.