MPhysPhil in Physics and Philosophy, University of Oxford
What is your background?
I graduated from the University of Oxford in 2012 with a degree in Physics and Philosophy. Following this, I worked for six months at a different operations consultancy, before taking a position as COO in a technology company. I then joined Chartwell as a Consultant at the start of 2014, before being promoted to Senior Consultant in the summer of 2015.
What is the work like?
Chartwell works principally with manufacturing industries, helping clients to realise much more potential than they thought possible in a very short space of time. Some of the most exciting projects are where a company is able to sell everything it can produce due to growth in demand, and so every product off the line really counts. An example might be if you owned a fidget spinner factory – right now you need every one you can get, but there isn’t the time or long-term demand to invest in more equipment. We could help them to get 20 to 50% more fidget spinners out the door to their customers in only a couple of months – it’s very exciting to be the driving force in a transformation like that!
What is unique about Chartwell?
One of the things that sets Chartwell apart is the philosophy behind the company and the development and training of our staff: each of the partners passionately wants to create the greatest possible impact in the shortest possible time and consequently, they exhibit an extremely high level of commitment to developing their staff as fast as possible. The opportunities you’re given to develop are well beyond anything else I’ve seen – since joining Chartwell, my learning has accelerated much more than at any other point in my career. I’ve gone from improving individually to leading a small team of 1-2 colleagues and fostering their ambitions to being responsible for a team of 6 Chartwell employees/colleagues, delivering a 2-year £25m savings programme.
I was only able to seize these opportunities due to the support offered by the senior team. Going well beyond the methodology I was familiar with, managing a change programme across a whole firm required an entirely new set of skills. The partner’s decades of experience meant they knew how to guide me in the issues I faced and could make sure that when I was taking on new challenges, I had a solid foundation of support and advice to build on. I know that their knowledge and experience will continue to be invaluable as I start to take on challenges of building our continental offices’ capabilities.
The partner’s decades of experience meant they knew how to guide me in the issues I faced and could make sure that when I was taking on new challenges, I had a solid foundation of support and advice to build on.
What were your transferable skills?
I use the skills from both sides of my degree every day in what I do. Physics teaches you to take an exceptionally complex system and boil it down to the main factors at play. Once you have those main factors, it teaches you how to use experimentally determined laws to generate an expectation of what the system will do – this skill is vital in encountering a new production environment and prioritising what is important to understand. However, this improved understanding of how the process operates is worth nothing if you can’t communicate fruitfully with the people currently involved with the process. Their paradigm of how the process works and should work will be different from yours, and the skills I gained in Philosophy to help reconcile different paradigms allow me to better understand others’ views and communicate my own.
Chartwell Consulting helps leading manufacturing and support services businesses to deliver industry beating improvements in productivity, performance and profit.
Our team of consultants have many years’ experience delivering operational improvement for a wide range of companies. With offices in London, Berlin, Boston and Zurich, the growing team are led by five partners with over 60 years’ experience in industry between them.
We believe passionately in continuous improvement; our core expertise is the identification and delivery of large and often hidden potential. We repeatedly achieve 20% to 50% improvement in performance in 2 to 6 months. Client leaders testify that we have a hands-on approach that leaves lasting change in their organisations. We will not take on engagements that do not justify our fees and we back up our work with a “no result, no fee” guarantee.
For more information, visit www.chartwell-consulting.com or email Jenny Overton at firstname.lastname@example.org.