Strategy & Operations » Leadership & Management » Off Balance: Cleaner comes good at Adnams

SO THIS IS a bit of an off-the-wall Off Balance article; it’s not about financial impropriety or incompetence. Or naked CFOs.

Instead it’s about Karen Hester. You probably don’t know her; in 1988 she was a part-time cleaner at brewery and pubs business Adnams. But with her logistical and transport knowledge gleaned from her time in the Army, she worked her way up the ranks.

Hester has now been brought onto the Suffolk brewer’s board as executive director, having headed up operations since 2007.

“Adnams is a fantastic company which firmly believes in nurturing and developing its own people I feel honoured and extremely proud to be the first female executive director to join the board and am looking forward to continuing to support others to develop their own careers,” said Karen this morning.

As Off Balance wipes the tears off of the keyboard, we can only look back ourselves at how we’ve progressed since being caught rifling through Financial Director’s bins. Twenty years on, it doesn’t feel as if we’ve moved on as far as Hester, to be honest, particularly as Off Balance is mainly in charge of putting the bins out…hmm.

But, congratulations anyway Karen, a great story.