Meet the Team

The People Factor are a group of HR Experts with differing talents to enrich the People Factor Portfolio, who are able to handle individual pieces of work or join forces to work on large scale projects.

Their personal strengths range from managing large scale acquisitions, mergers and restructures, TUPE, employment legislation, immigration issues, employee relations, compensation & benefits, HMRC audits, recruitment initiatives, coaching, payroll, outplacement, psychometric testing, and dealing with any HR issue you could possibly think of.

Karen Davies MSc – CEO

Founder & CEO of The People Factor HR Consultancy, Karen has spent her entire career as an HR specialist within the hospitality and leisure industries.

As both an international consultant and a long-time HR Director, she seen first-hand, how complex and challenging HR can be for organisations and their people – particularly, when company mergers, acquisitions and restructures are involved – and how the right specialist support makes all the difference to the end outcomes.

As well as knowing what it’s like to manage the people aspects of these changes, she also know what it feels like to be merged, acquired and moved around.

That’s why to her, HR’s about solving and fixing people challenges and helping prevent people mistakes from being made. It’s about getting organisations through difficult times and coming up with practical and realistic ways to deal with situations that can sometimes appear insurmountable.

And, ultimately, it’s the reason Karen does what she does: to help organisations get their HR right so that they can grow and change in a way that works for everyone.

With more than 30 years successful experience, she has witnessed, managed and resolved most issues an HR Director can ever have to encounter!

Simon Wilkinson – Non Executive Director & CEO Byron Hamburgers

Simon is our Non-Executive Director who has over 25 years of experience within the Hospitality Industry. Most recently he was MD of Strategic Options at the Casual Dining Group having previously been CEO at La Tasca Restaurants where he oversaw the successful turnaround and sale of the business to the Casual Dining Group in August 2015. Prior to that Simon has worked in 5 Star Hotels both within the UK and overseas, for major pub & bar Plcs as well as international restaurant groups.

Gail Selby – Senior HR Consultant

Gail has spent most of her career in Hospitality and Retail environments giving her a solid understanding of fast paced ever changing business environments.
Having worked as a senior operator before moving into HR this allows her to build strong relationships with managers to provide realistic and workable solutions. She ensures organisations have HR interventions and solutions that allow them to work effectively and efficiently within legal frameworks.
Her strengths lie in guiding organisations through a wide range of ER issues. Be that developing policies and procedures, coaching operators through difficult cases all the way to large scale TUPE, restructure and redundancy programmes.

She also provides ongoing outsourced support across the full ‘people’ function for a number of small organisations supporting training, recruitment, engagement and ER.

Fiona Legros – Executive Coach

Working with leading global & UK businesses, Fiona facilitates transformational coaching to support leadership development and impact the bottom line. Her background in executive search has given her a valuable insight into the employer criteria for attracting and developing their top talent, and this underpins her approach to coaching. A passionate believer in the value of having an external coach, her track record is testament to her ability to help business leaders excel in an ever-changing world. With over 30 years experience in the executive search & coaching industry, working with corporate clients across a range of sectors including Leisure & Hospitality.

Vilyen Pluck – Learning Director

Vilyen is our Learning Director at The People Factor following an extensive career in leading and developing training initiatives and teams within Hospitality & Leisure. His recent experience consulting in a wide range of sectors including; Financial Services, Pharmaceuticals, Media, IT & Technology to name a few, has given him a deep understanding of different people, their roles, their culture and the business aspirations.

He specialises in creating, delivering and reviewing learning and development programmes, that promote team/individual performance, enhance the customer experience, or drive sales growth. He has developed training programmes and academies, that drive performance through people and productivity of employees at all levels.

Wayne Morgan – Consultant People & Development Director

Wayne has over 20 years operational, learning and development and human resources experience, working across multiple Hospitality and Leisure brands coupled with experience in Retail, General Aviation, TV production and FMCG.
Wayne has led on delivering a number of transformational change programmes focusing on organisational design, talent management, succession planning, performance improvement, employer branding & employee engagement.

Wayne offers a diversity of thinking through his creative and commercial approach to organisational challenges ensuring that they align to the culture and values of the business.

He is comfortable conversing at board level as well as being hands on in the operational environment. He is capable of dealing with challenging environments using his quick wit and tenacious nature.

Jo Sullivan – Senior HR Consultant

Jo has spent most of her career within Hospitality but additionally benefits from a background in Construction, Insurance and Law – the understanding and experience she has gained from each sector enables her to understand the needs and demands of a number of different sectors whilst being able to lend herself to the cultures and values that flow from these businesses.
Having worked at every level of HR, she not only understands each aspect from start to finish but additionally the impact engagement and a strategically led people plan can have on a business commercially. Working at each level has ensured she has excellent communication skills, building strong relationships with staff, managers and directors alike, having been invited to sit on the board as Corporate Social Responsibility Director, Jo is looking to expand on this experience with a more holistic view on HR, Wellbeing, Social & Legal Responsibilities.

Jo has a depth of knowledge in ER, loves training and coaching leadership teams, building employer brands and is becoming a dab hand with immigration project planning.

Kam Jagdeo – Talent Director

Having good commerciality and by using her strong hospitality and retail operational experience, Kam moved into and headed up global recruitment & ​resourcing, working across retail, hospitality & leisure, telecoms, beauty and marketing industries.
She has designed and delivered creative strong recruitment campaigns including executive search, talent attraction & employer brand strategies for employers and is a firm believer and enthusiast in understanding the business needs.
Kam’s strengths lie in being adaptable and fluid. She plans and implements unique employer branding, creates clear and robust talent acquisition functions and individual recruitment marketing programmes, providing the best solutions and tools for organisations which includes hands-on recruitment and educational sessions in an ever changing employer market.

Liz Charter – Senior Payroll Consultant

Liz has spent a lot of her career in the hospitality and retail environment, giving her a solid grounding for the complexities and the pace at which payrolls in that environment need to work at. From weekly to monthly, from 10 to 2000 employees, there is not a payroll solution that Liz cannot understand and apply herself to.

Liz also has substantial experience in the Manufacturing and IT Security industries, from team work to stand alone positions. Liz can operate UK and EMEA payrolls. She has had great exposure from implementation of new payroll solutions, changing payroll solutions with a TUPE situation along with changing of in-house payroll providers.

Liz’s strengths lie in being able to handle whatever the demands of a payroll require. Her ability to be flexible, personable and professional, will ensure your payroll department/team are in the best possible hands.

Jeremy Wright – Consultant HRD

Jeremy has  over 15 years of HR experience covering a number of sectors including Hospitality & Leisure, Finance & Insurance, and FMCG holding various positions, from his current role as HRD Consultant for The People Factor and Burger King UK to previous roles as HRD for Cafe Rouge, Head of HR for Homeserve and Head of HR for The Spirit Group. During his career he has covered a number of specialisms including Employee Relations, Talent Management & Resourcing, Reward, Recognition, L&D and Employee Engagement. Jeremy has  also undertaken a number of corporate projects such as acting as HR lead during the demerger of Punch & Spirit Group and establishing HR processes and policies in a start up environment. Always commercially focused, he has  partnered with many functions in organisations including Operations, Marketing, Commercial, Finance & Property.

Gabi Clipp – Senior HR Consultant

Gabi has spent most of her career working in Human Resources within the Hospitality sector where she developed a flexible, practical and commercial approach to People matters, ensuring HR and Business objectives and priorities are supported and achieved in a fast-paced environment.
Having the ability to devise and implement coherent HR strategies and practices, whether this be at start-up stage or growth of the business, ensuring all HR processes and procedures are legally compliant. Working closely with people at all levels of the business to make sure all are trained, engaged and motivated to deliver the HR and business objectives.

Sophie Darmas – HR Consultant

Sophie has extensive experience across a broad range of commercial, multi-site organisations with a particular focus in hospitality and charity sectors. From a foundation of Operational HR, Employee Relations, Resourcing and Performance Management she has operated as an interim and HR Specialist.

Her focus is upon ensuring that organisations operate effectively within legal frameworks and have processes in place to make that operation efficient and hassle free. Organised, structured and with an eye for planning she has led and supported numerous change, redundancy and reorganisation programmes. Sophie is detail focused with an interest in change that can lead to reduced cost and increased efficiency whether that is in the Human Resources function or the wider business.

At home with an excel spreadsheet, she can gather data and generate typical HR statistics such as labour turnover and retention rates, exit surveys. She can handle Employee Relations issues, rewrite policies and procedures, hold succession planning meetings, introduce pension auto enrolment, review payroll and HR Systems.

Mike Williams – Consultant People Director

Mike has over 25 years experience and has operated at board level for a number of years. His proven track record of implementing award winning HR strategies have had significant impact on the bottom line in either Private Equity, Founder Led or PLC business environments.

Mike is able to work in high growth environments as well as businesses in decline requiring restructuring, and has most recently been the project lead on a CVA (Company Voluntary Arrangement).

He can act as the right hand man to the CEO, and lead strategic planning sessions with the management teams and work with board members as an executive coach.

Mike can quickly diagnose the enablers and blockers in the business and develops pragmatic people solutions to drive business performance. This may be through culture, engagement, developing talent programmes to create bench strength, executive recruitment, employer brand and recruitment process to ensure the business is attracting and selecting the absolute best talent in the sector and then developing performance management systems to ensure there is a laser focus on people performance in the business. In addition Mike has extensive Employee Relations and Employee Reward experience.

Mike has worked with existing HR teams to develop their commerciality and to coach them in working strategically to deliver the best results for the business.

Penny Blake – Communications Director

Penny is a gifted communicator at all levels, especially through the world of digital and marketing. She makes this easy for any company or individual; using her talents to showcase the People Factor’s strategies, improving employee engagement communications, assisting resourcing people by utilising media to its fullest extent and improving employer rewards through events & management activities. She runs our ‘Social Media in a Day’ one-to-one courses, and she also specialises in event management from small, intimate events through to planning and delivering large scale events for over 1000 guests. An excellent all-rounder who can put her hand to anything!

Liz Robson – Executive Assistant

Liz offers administration support at the highest level to all clients. Her aim is to make their lives easier and for clients rely on her to take on those tasks for which they can never seem to find the time.

She have a passion for organising and has spent over 20 years as PA, EA. Liz offers a wide range of services including general admin, diary management and meeting co-ordination together with booking domestic and international travel.

Her background is in the leisure and hospitality industry but also has significant experience within the political arena, arranging and attending meetings within the Houses of Parliament, Whitehall and Portcullis. She is used to working on a highly confidential basis, assisting with company restructures and re-organisations and high level work for HRDs and Chairman.

Whilst Liz is mostly all about handling the small stuff for her clients thus freeing up their own time, she can also assist with bigger projects such as organising company conferences, board meetings, team get togethers, drinks receptions and Christmas parties.

Ruth Shepherd – HR Consultant

Ruth has spent most of her career in hospitality and leisure so is well used to fast-paced, customer facing environments. She has undertaken operational, strategic and project-based HR roles and works with leaders to understand their challenges, the culture and the outcomes they are looking for from HR interventions.

She works across all HR areas; ER, restructures, TUPE, projects, recruitment, development, team surveys, creating 360 programmes and has a passion for coaching those new to leaderships roles.

She works closely with a number of small business clients supporting all of their people needs and specialises in setting up people frameworks for growing businesses.

Graham Harris – HR Analyst

HR has more numbers in it than anyone realises! Therefore The People Factor think it imperative to have an HR analyst who has a substantial background in Finance. Graham has a very analytical, commercial and operational background, working in companies of varying sizes and running his own retail outlets.

He is particularly adept at presenting numbers to non-financial people, in a way that they can understand, and will drive value in the business. If you need any HR analysis, such as, labour scheduling and efficiencies, salary benchmarking, compensation and benefits review and organisational design costings, then ‘Graham is your man’

Tanya Gunn – Career Consultant & Coach

An Executive Career Management Consultant and Coach with extensive experience in developing and delivering career transition, career management, and coaching programmes to both individuals and teams. Strong track record of coaching clients from a wide range of sectors and functions up to and including Board level. Recent experience of living in Europe, has given a unique perspective and first hand experience on managing careers globally and supporting executives transition to internationally based roles. Offers a background which includes senior line management and professional consultancy roles in sales, recruitment, operational and project management. 

Allyson Stead – Senior HR Consultant

Allyson has worked in HR for 20 years mostly working in Hospitality, Leisure and High Street Retail. Therefore, is no stranger to working in fast paced, agile and commercial sectors. Allyson has worked in generalist operational focused field roles supporting business delivery through people together with more strategic roles as a member of HR leadership teams and within business start-ups.
Specifically, Allyson specialises in Employee Relations supporting large businesses deliver their ER agenda, business transformation, large scale restructures, TUPE, employee engagement, policy and procedure, employee handbooks, supporting cultural change and managing and identifying business risk.
Allyson has been involved in several strategic projects such as Harmonising terms and conditions across businesses who have grown through acquisition, driven TUPE programme within highly recognisable retail brand to franchisee models, delivery of large-scale redundancy programmes during a CVA (Company Voluntary Arrangement). Worked within Unionised environments and been involved in re negotiations of terms. Allyson is adept at cutting through complexity finding a pragmatic solution to risk and is conversant in working at fast pace and changing environments.

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