Claire Noble, Head of Talent – Thought Leadership
Claire Noble has recently joined Eclipse Power Networks as our new Head of Talent. We asked Claire to share with us her views on thought leadership in the workplace and what she is hoping to bring to Eclipse in her new role within the team.
I am now into my second month at Eclipse Power Networks, having spent 18 years in the energy and utility industry. I decided to take a different step in my career and to work for an up-and-coming organisation, which not only has big plans for growth in the future but employs less people than one of my previous teams! Quite a change!
People at the heart of the organisation
No matter how small or large a company is, the heart of an organisation is their people. At Eclipse, the knowledge and expertise from the team is inspiring; they know everything; they can name the projects they have set up, they have great relationships with the customers they work with and have a supportive team culture with ambitious plans.
My perception so far is they also have some varied thinking; and they feel they belong. One colleague described Eclipse as ‘coming home’.
Having said this, it is clear they have experienced a reasonable amount of change this past year. Those who have been here from the beginning have new colleagues around them and have been inspired by new people with fresh perspectives, but also understandably, have each gone through their version of the change curve at different speeds.
Support, nurture and grow the team
My role as Head of Talent is to support, nurture and grow the team, along with understanding their skill requirements both for now and for our future, an important part of thought leadership.
I aim to help them focus on development and coach, mentor and guide us to being the strongest high performing team we can possibly be. As part of the leadership team, I have the ability and experience to guide and influence, providing support to all the staff.
I have always been passionate about supporting people, talking about their careers and challenging them to approach things differently. Sometimes, helping them with a simple tip, a thought provoking quote or a model has significant benefits.
GRADUATE SCHEMES & APPRENTICESHIPS
Having always been enthusiastic about inspiring the next generation, I am a strong supporter of apprenticeships which is something I am keen to explore for Eclipse going forward.
A new graduate scheme has already been introduced recently to Eclipse, with the idea being to bring graduates in and offer them a rotation around different departments of the business. This hopefully allows them to understand (and challenge) what we do and how we do it, and to bring value in each placement by delivering a business initiative. We also had some placement students in the summer who assisted in delivering some quick projects.
As a small company, we unfortunately don’t have the resources to provide significant school outreach advice, run big programmes or bring in large numbers of new talent entrants; but we will do what we can.
INSPIRING NEW TALENT AND GROWING OUR EMPLOYEES
I strongly believe in effectively balancing the resourcing model of ‘Build, Borrow, Buy, Bot’. Whilst we will support and inspire new talent entrants, we will also focus on growing our own employees, understanding our teams’ aspirations, and supporting individuals to be the best version of themselves.
I aim to strengthen our strategy of balancing a ‘grow your own’ model vs recruiting people into our business. This will enable us to continue to bring strong people into the business who have the right skills to help us flourish and scale up to meet our targets.
My goal is to optimise our capabilities and build on expressing the behaviours we want in our business to be successful and grow. By doing this and introducing development opportunities, I hope to enhance our already strong employee engagement and grow our team culture.
In turn, this means we will have a strong, committed group, who will truly operate as a high performing team; frequently outperforming our competitors and making a name for ourselves in the Independent Distribution Network Operator (IDNO) world; and wider.
ENCOURAGING LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
A recent webinar I attended, talked about driving incremental change in daily behaviours; understanding how little changes and focus on development and engagement can impact on performance.
Providing effective communication and feedback loops with colleagues, the right learning opportunities, stimulating creativity and asking for ideas, celebrating wins and keeping to promises are great examples of this. I love seeing the power of small changes, recognition of successes, and how the sum of the parts can total so much more than the individual components.
Expectations for the future
Since starting my new position at Eclipse Power Networks, I started in listen, question, understand and review mode, but have now moved in to evaluate and plan mode. I have created my Talent plan, with ambitious statements on where we want to get to as we introduce and strengthen our Eclipse offering as we strive to be a class leading employer of choice within the industry.
Our brand for prospective clients and customers is important but equally as we grow, we also need to enhance our brand as a prospective employer.
We are embarking on transformational, exciting change and being a central part of that plan is beyond exhilarating. Whilst I don’t want to wish time away, I can’t wait to see where we are in 2 years’ time, let alone 5 – and I guarantee we are going to have fun along the way!