So with my family we headed north to the beautiful Westmorland Dales National Park and I shifted my working life to providing income generation consultancy for charities and social enterprises.

There was a lot in Cumbria that I was expecting to find.  Fresh air, hills to climb and the odd sheep or two.  I enthusiastically had a try-out with the local Mountain Rescue team, took the Mountain Leaders course and volunteered as a Trustee with a Kendal-based charity.  I even got involved with an amazing rewilding and regenerative agriculture social enterprise based out of Ambleside.

But perhaps what I wasn’t expecting to find up here in the far North West was a company like Just R that has the ideas and ability to become a world-first and world-class provider of solutions to some of our most enduring public health issues.

I met Rachael Bagshaw (the ‘R’ in Just R) when we both attended a Lancaster University Business Growth Programme.  During that time I learnt more about both JustR’s solution, and her team’s unusual, empathetic approach in partnering with the NHS in talent attraction and retention.

This is where things got interesting.  I had come across a company which was genuinely interested, and able, to help solve the challenges that the NHS faces for the long-term.

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In further conversations Rachael, and COO husband Ian, explained their socially-driven, values-based – and highly strategic – approach to finding the very best staff for the NHS.

I was struck by their pride in the amazing team that they had gathered (not in London or Manchester, but quite deliberately in Rachael’s home town of Carlisle), and their single-minded focus on the mission to help tackle urgent staff shortages in the UK’s most loved institution in a really cutting-edge way.

Meeting with the team I found that they shared Rachael and Ian’s passion, and had sought out the opportunity to work for Just R, bringing a shedload of postgrad-level digital and marketing skills into the business because they believed in – and wanted to be part of – improving the quantity and quality of staff teams in the world’s largest health provider.

And so in March 2021 I was delighted when I was invited to become Just R’s Marketing Director, to help position, scale up and tell the whole world about our work.  I’m excited to add my efforts to their work attracting, converting, onboarding and retaining the very best, brightest and most caring people, to look after the nation by joining the NHS.

We’ve got an amazing journey ahead.

Please do drop me a line and ask any questions, share any thoughts or find out more about what we’re doing based out of our ‘Silicon Fell’ Cumbrian HQ.

Lakes Uk

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