Ea Change non-executive director celebrated for commitment to diversity

Non-executive director and original founder of change management specialist ea Change has been recognised by ITV’s prestigious National Diversity Awards 2022.

Cheryl Robson, who co-founded ea Change with her husband Steve in 1998, has been shortlisted in the Entrepreneur of the Year category at the annual awards, which celebrate charities, campaigners and activists, who work tirelessly to combat injustice and discrimination. The awards take place on 16th September in Liverpool.

Cheryl has spent a lifetime championing equality and diversity through the arts. Over the years she has worked as a writer, producer and director, established her own theatre company, and run her own independent and inclusive publishing company Aurora Metro and Supernova Books.

In addition, Cheryl has trained numerous young people of colour, helping them to find jobs in the publishing industry and committing to make it more diverse. She is currently leading a campaign for a statue of Virginia Woolf in Richmond which has raised 90% of the £50,000 target.

Cheryl was previously a finalist in the Lifetime Achievement category of the ITV National Diversity Awards in 2019.

Cheryl Robson said: “I’m honoured to be among such an incredible group of people who are determined to make the UK a more equitable, diverse and inclusive place to live and work.”

Ea Change Managing Director Andrew Oliver said: “Cheryl’s ethos and dedication to championing equality and diversity is inspiring and forms the backbone of all our work at ea Change. It isn’t enough to pay lip service to wanting to see a change, people and businesses need to make change happen in order for there to be any sort of improvement.

“From all the team at ea Change we would like to wish Cheryl the best of luck at the awards in September.”

Designed to highlight the country’s most inspirational and selfless people, the National Diversity Awards continue to gain endorsements from high profile figures such as Sir Lenny Henry CBE and Graham Norton. Activist Katie Piper, Emmerdale star Ash Palmisciano and Paralympic Gold Medallist Danny Creates were on this year’s judging panel, dedicating their time to help choose the highly anticipated shortlist.

Since going through a management buyout in 2021, ea Change’s company’s directors have placed an ever-increasing emphasis on being ethical and inclusive in their approach to business. To date, they have worked hard to eliminate unconscious bias from their recruitment process, leading to a 50:50 gender split within the company, increased employment of people from a variety of backgrounds and have created more opportunities for young people at the beginning of their careers.


New appointments for change management specialist

Change management specialist ea Change has made a series of new appointments as it continues its trajectory of growth following a successful management buyout in 2021.

The company has welcomed Naomi Pudney as Compliance Consultant and Tamarah Zammimba as Finance Administrator. The two new recruits will help strengthen the existing team, bringing new skills and a fresh perspective to ea Change.

Naomi, who joins the firm from a previous role in office management said: “I was looking for a new challenge and jumped at the chance to be part of such an exciting, thriving company. Although it’s a well-established, well-respected business, in some ways it’s a start-up mentality which is really exciting. I’m really looking forward to building my career here among a team of talented, passionate professionals.”

Tamarah joins the finance team after graduating with a degree in international law from Nottingham Trent University. Tamarah said: “This is a completely new challenge for me and I’m keen to get stuck in and put the skills I learnt in university to the test. There is a lot of experience in the finance team and I’m keen to learn as much as I can from people who’ve been working in the industry for longer than I have.”

On the new appointments, Managing Director James McNicol said: “We’re delighted to welcome both Naomi and Tamarah to the team and are keen to benefit from the skills they will each bring to their roles.

“It’s really important to us that each new team member has not just the expertise, but the right personality and enthusiasm to fit in with our talented group. This is a company where hard work and ambition are rewarded and I’m confident that both Naomi and Tamarah will fit in very well and play their part in helping us achieve our expansion goals moving forward.”


Significant growth on the agenda for ea Change

A year on from a management buyout, change management specialist ea Change is going from strength-to-strength.

In just over 12 months, the business has doubled the size of its team, trebled its interim numbers and significantly increased turnover, with monthly revenue increasing by 135 percent.

Despite taking over the business in the midst of a global pandemic, owners James McNicol and Andrew Oliver were confident from the outset that the business was prime for success and have stuck with their ambitious growth plans, building on the company’s already strong reputation.

James said: “There was a period, not so long ago, when business seemed to stop spending in any meaningful way. Brexit uncertainty coupled with the impact of Covid led to a lot of hesitation but, touch wood, things seem to be moving in a much more positive direction with clients investing in a way we haven’t seen since 2018.

“It is incredible how quickly things can change and we wanted to make sure that we were in a prime position to take advantage of any shifts. After a period of uncertainly, we are finding that lots of people are moving jobs again, the market moved very quickly from being client to candidate led.”

James and Andrew have invested heavily in training, technology and a new CRM system to ensure that business systems are robust while the company itself is agile and able to adapt quickly to any changes in the market.

Andy said: “Even though ea Change is a well-established, well-respected name within the industry, since the takeover we have endeavoured to run it with a start-up mentality, making changes and ensuring that we’re agile and able to pivot as and when required.

“From the outset we’ve worked to build a positive culture for our business. Recruitment can be a challenging industry and we want to make sure that we nurture our talent, creating an exciting and supportive environment.

“Our team is at the heart of what we do. Of course, experience is important but so are enthusiasm, energy and drive – subsequently we employ people based solely on their talent and have a young, diverse, passionate team. We put a lot of effort into our people policies, ensuring that we reward and incentivise our staff for the work they put in.”