With so much uncertainty, distance and disconnection in the world right now, what better time for another chapter in our 'Connection Series'? Each post in the series shines the spotlight on the work of a member of the Connect Three team, and hopefully gives you a little insight into what we do, and how we can help you.

This week in the hot seat is the regal Laura Royal!

Morning Laura! As always, lovely to speak to you. Let's kick off with an easy one: what's your role at Connect Three and what do you do?

I am an Associate Organisational Development Consultant, it's one of those titles that sounds very fancy pants and often people say, 'well that sounds great…but what is it you actually do?!' I'm a person who helps businesses bring out the best in their people through training, coaching and development programmes. I genuinely get to do a lot of really fun things with people at the heart of it all.

That is a great description! So what has been your favourite moment in Connect Three so far?

Oooh, that’s a toughie as there are a lot of moments to choose from. I’d have to say though that it was the opportunity to design and lead the Scottish Enterprise backed Managing People for Growth and Essential Leadership programmes. They are both fabulous programmes and I loved every minute of designing them and even more the delivery of them to the many people that have successfully completed these industry leading programmes so far.

It's a brilliant achievement, and an amazing thing to be part of. Right, on a less serious note - what three things would you take with you to a desert island?

The three things I would need on a desert island would be my gorgeous Cockapoo Tillie, she’s so adorable, I’d need my favourite Spotify playlist as I couldn’t live without music – I’m always singing. And lastly, I’d need a large supply of tea bags and a kettle as I drink at least 12 cups of tea a day, sometimes more. I’m like a chain smoker but with tea drinking.

That is a fair ol' habit you have! So, which business leader would you like to have a cup of tea with?

I’d love to have a cuppa with Jacinda Ardern…what a power house she is…compassionate, collaborative, savvy, inclusive, human, empathetic, strong…I have so much admiration for her and I’d love to have a good old blether with her.

She's definitely a favourite in the Connect Three team. I know you are a big reader, what are you reading right now?

I've just finished reading, for the second time, Atomic Habits by James Clear. I often find that I'm soooo good at the discipline of my bad habits that I like to map across the strategy and replace the bad habits with good ones instead. I thoroughly recommend the book. I'm just about to begin reading A Mindfulness Guide for the Frzzled by Ruby Wax – I absolutely adore her work bringing Neuroscience (which I am a student of) and life experience together in her uniquely witty and humour filled style. I'm even more so looking forward to this one as it's all about finding stillness in the middle of chaos and I think we can all agree that we're slap bang in the middle of that at the minute.

Absolutely! OK, final question, if you could only give one piece of advice to the leaders and future leaders reading this, what would it be?
Look after your people, even more than you do already…it's so important. Put your people at the heart of everything you do. And lastly take breaks and get outdoors…I think we've forgotten how to do that at the minute as we are consistently at our machines in our home offices. Oh and this time, last one…tell people you care, a simple heartfelt and genuine thanks goes a very long way.

Love it - thank you so much for taking the time out of your schedule for us Laura, and I'll see you at virtual happy hour on Friday!

Look out for our next Connect with interview coming soon...