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Spotlight on Ann Pickering: Speaker at this year’s Inspire London event on 14th April

Ann joined 02 in 2004 and was appointed to the UK Board as HR Director in 2008. Prior to joining o2 Ann worked for Marks and Spencer, Fidelity and Xansa (now Steria). She is a chartered Fellow of the Institute of Personnel Development.

These previous roles enabled her to gain experience in creating and implementing key strategic developments from an HR perspective in both the UK and abroad, including a  joint venture in the banking industry, change management processes in Retail and integrating HR cultures and competencies with a newly acquired IT company in India.

Since joining O2, she has seen the company achieve a Top 20 place three times in the Sunday Times Top 100 Employers in the UK and  8th in the UK Best Places to Work. She was also named by her peers as one of the top 20 HR Directors in the UK.

Ann has worked in the M&A arena throughout her career having been part of the team in Xansa which worked on the acquisition of an Indian IT company. When Telefonica acquired 02 in 2005 Ann was involved in the integration of the 02 into a global telecoms giant.

Outside 02, Ann is a Board member of the ‘UnIock the Cure’ Appeal, a Breast Cancer Charity formed specifically to focus on accelerating finding the cure for breast cancer. She is the Chair of the Sheffield University Management Business School Advisory Board, is married with two sons, aged 25 and 23 years respectively.

What inspires Ann?

People who have overcome huge personal obstacles in order to move on in their lives

What 3 words would Ann use to describe a successful leader? 

Positive, confident and trustworthy        .

One piece of advice that Ann would you give to someone who wants to lead?

Remain calm and learn to tolerate ambiguity.

Ann Pickering is speaking at Inspire London 2016 “The Changing Nature of Leadership: Why we need to think and act differently to succeed” on Thursday 14th April 2016.  100% of profits from the day go to The Marketing Academy’s Merlin’s Apprentice Programme.  For more information on Inspire London 2016 and how to get your early bird tickets please visit

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The Scholarship – a 9 month, free, part time program for 30 of the UK’s fastest rising stars in Marketing, Advertising, Media and Communications.

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