Meet Alicia Leon-Lovelady

by | Oct 17, 2016 | News

Insights into Alicia’s career at Cirrus and the work she does with clients

Alicia is a consultant in our talent team. She has grown into this role over a five-year period since joining Cirrus in 2011. Today, Alicia enjoys working in partnership with clients to develop solutions in the areas of assessment and development, often as part of wider transformation programmes, which have resulted in some very significant benefits for a range of organisations. She also co-authored our research report, Redefining Performance Management.

“I have always wanted to be a consultant,” says Alicia. “Cirrus has given me learning and development support combined with hands-on experience of working with clients and colleagues. I’ve been very proactive about taking the opportunities on offer in order to develop my career.”

Alicia joined Cirrus as a project coordinator after completing an MSc in Organisational Psychology. It was her first full-time role, although Alicia had already gained extensive work experience as a university research assistant and part-time employment trainer at Mencap.

“I was attracted to Cirrus by the brand, which was very vibrant, and the opportunities to use my qualifications and build my skills,” says Alicia. “At my first interview, I had a really positive candidate experience. I was thrilled to get the project coordinator role and found Cirrus to be very warm and welcoming as well as highly professional. I felt very confident from the beginning that I could grow my career here.”

As a project coordinator, Alicia quickly got to know every aspect of the business, working closely with colleagues across Cirrus as well as a wide range of clients. “I learned how to collaborate with clients to really understand their needs and create very tailored solutions. I also learned how to manage every aspect of programme delivery and developed a great attention to detail. Cirrus always aims to delight clients with quality interventions supported by highly efficient project management to ensure everything is delivered on time, within budget, and with a high degree of accuracy. I’ve carried that ethos through through to my role as a consultant.”

A year after Alicia joined, Cirrus expanded our talent offering following the acquisition of talent and assessment specialist Xancam. Alicia was promoted to project manage the integration process, ensuring that all clients experienced consistently high levels of service. “I was able to draw on my organisational psychology skills as my role became increasingly associated with talent,” says Alicia. “There were opportunities to get involved in research and in developing proposals for clients. It helped to focus my development. I went way beyond a traditional project manager role to gain extra skills and experience. That was when I really started to transition into my role as a consultant.”

Alicia continued working as a project manager while beginning to take on more of a consultancy role, getting more involved designing assessment centres for clients. “It was challenging, but I was extremely well supported,” she says.

In 2015, Alicia became a full time consultant. “I still focus a lot on designing assessment centres for recruitment and development, and developing competency frameworks. Every intervention is bespoke, and often it is an integral element of a much wider programme or an ongoing cycle of assessment and development.”

For Alicia, every day is different. “I spend about 30% of my time in front of clients, and I interact with them every single day. In my role, I can really get close to clients and understand their challenges. I love working in partnership with them to create real impact. There is a great sense of reward.”

So would Alicia recommend a career at Cirrus? “Absolutely. I’ve learned so much here, and I love my job.”

Alicia is a member of the British Psychological Society and is currently working towards becoming a chartered occupational psychologist. She is highly regarded as a colleague by everyone at Cirrus, and highly valued as a consultant by our clients. We look forward to watching her career grow more and more.

 

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