That Works For Me Heroes: Simone Roche
Simone Roche is the founder and CEO of Northern Power Women, a campaigning group that aims to accelerate gender equality from the North of England. They work with corporate organisations, universities and government to create campaigns about gender diversity in business. They also host the Northern Power Women Awards and produce their Power & Future Lists, which recognises female leaders and change makers in gender equality. That Works For Me’s COO Nicola recently met Simone when she was asked to be on the panel for the Northern Power Women Podcast at the Women in Leeds Digital event.
Meeting Simone Roche
Despite being super excited about meeting Simone, I was actually dreading the podcast recording as I’m not always the most confident public speaker, I’d spoken at a few events as part of the Leeds Digital Festival and felt overwhelmed at having multiple important things to prep (and panic!) for! As someone usually described as LOUD, I soon realised that public speaking nerves are a common concern for many people, especially if you’re following an amazing free-moving and relaxed superstar – so shout out to my fellow ‘loud’ people who are expected to be calm about performing in public!
As soon as I met Simone, however, she immediately put my nerves at bay – we chatted about all the things that we both worry about (imposter syndrome was something we’ve both related to regularly in our careers), she was caring and warm and genuinely has the best interests of women in the North at heart. She talked us (myself and the other podcast panelists) through the process for the recording and put all our minds at rest, so we felt as relaxed as we possibly could. She made it feel like a conversation, intelligently and empathetically chaired by Simone herself – I even enjoyed it!
As well as helping me overcome my podcast fears, Simone is tirelessly campaigning to highlight, celebrate and support some of the amazing people in the North of England who are doing great things in business, across a multitude of industries.
About Northern Power Women
As founder and CEO of Northern Power Women, Simone is campaigning to accelerate gender diversity from the North of England; she facilitates ‘returnships’ (people returning to work after time out – a cause very close to our hearts!); showcases Northern role models; mentors; shares and contributes to research on gender equality; hosts events including the Northern Power Women awards AND of course produces a monthly podcast where a guest speaker and expert panel tackle current issues, news and events as well as fielding questions from listeners. Did I mention she has an MBE?!
Despite juggling all of this, she even offered to support That Works For Me – which we are thrilled about!
Simone – we think you’re great! Thank you for inspiring us and for helping women who work in lots of brilliant and pioneering ways. Above are just a few of the reasons why we’ve chosen to celebrate you for this months That Works for Me hero in our Women We Love series – keep an ear out for the front door, there’s a big bunch of flowers on their way as a sign of our appreciation for you!
The next Northern Power Women podcast is out on the 3rd June – make sure you subscribe and download to hear our very own Nicola and her fabulous fellow panelists discuss everything from the Leeds International Festival through to Climate Change.
See Northern Power Women’s upcoming events and find out how you can get involved here