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Chief encounters: Includem’s Angela Morgan on the top trick for people in leadership roles

This feature is almost 8 years old
 

From kayaking to bounty hunting, there is more to Includem's chief executive Angela Morgan than board meetings and five-minute lunches

What time do get up and what’s your morning routine?
6 to 6.30am – multitask: eat breakfast, apply makeup then routine competition with cats for access to sink while cleaning teeth.

What is your perfect weekend?
Either city lunch, shop, spa and theatre with friends or Ardnamurchan sea kayak and barbecue with husband.

Have you made your mind up about the independence referendum?
Yes I have made my mind up.

The chief executive must anticipate, nurture, inform, guide and be prepared to challenge their board. Good boards need managing – and good boards expect their chief executive to do that.

What’s your favourite album or film?
Is this cheating? It is one of our compilations with Joni, Dylan, John Martyn, Steely Dan, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Thomas Tallis, Allegri and Schubert as the backbone.

What advice would you give to your 22-year-old self?
Same as most people I guess: be kinder to yourself, don’t waste time – it speeds up with every decade, you think you know it all but actually… oh and you’d give anything not to have long curly red hair? Well that happens!

Is lunch a five minute sandwich at your desk or do you find time for yourself?
Crumbs at the computer.

You’re home, fully fed with your feet up – which comes first Eastenders or emails?
Can I have Dog the Bounty Hunter on?

Is this a step on the rung to success or your final destination?
Sounds like a question for someone with a career plan, which I’ve never had. The trick for people in leadership roles is to know when they have made their contribution and when to move on and to leave an organisation others are queuing up to join. I can’t say every day is a joy – that wouldn’t be true. The chief executive role is at times lonely and stressful, but I consider myself fortunate to work for a fantastic organisation and although in the top job it can be hard to see your work day by day, my yardstick is easy: how does this meet our purpose to help young people have better lives?

If you were your boss would you like you?
Well, sometimes. I believe that serious commitment to mission, purpose and professionalism is not synonymous with po-faced formality. I personally like a friendly, informal working environment in which people are clear about performance and accountability but are relaxed. I feel it’s a good sign if people are laughing. I don’t mind admitting I am wrong and also happy to apologise where required.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever done?
Aged 18 I worked in the back ward of the local institution populated by many elderly ladies who had had babies 50 years prior. I can remember crying all the way home on the bus because it was so sad.

Are boards the strength of the third sector or a thorn in its side?
I have seen and experienced both. The chief executive must anticipate, nurture, inform, guide and be prepared to challenge their board. Good boards need managing – and good boards expect their chief executive to do that.

Brian Denis Cox or Brian Edward Cox?
Dinner with the actor. Lecture with the physicist.

 

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