First Women have the last word—with Yvonne Baker, CEO, National Stem Centre

First Women have the last word—with Yvonne Baker, CEO, National Stem Centre

Discover what makes the CEO of the National STEM Learning Network, tick. Part of the First Women have the Last Word interview series.

The woman I most admire is the Queen because there is so much to learn from the way she has carried herself, done her duty across the ‘good, bad and ugly’ that comes her way.

And she still manages to make individuals she meets feel like they are – for that moment – the most important person in the world.

To juggle my work and life balance I try to offer everyone I work with the opportunity to work flexibly, so I can also work flexibly with a clear conscience.

My biggest career break was a wise, old (male) Dutch Engineer who taught me that hard work and getting things done quietly and effectively is more satisfying than all the accolades and publicity you will ever get.

The biggest influence on my career was the person who told me ‘pick your fights’.

One thing that makes me mad in business today is quotas.

Are boardroom quotas necessary or nuts? Nuts – see above.

Image: Yvonne Baker, Twitter

Image: Yvonne Baker, Twitter

My one tip on negotiating a pay rise is to ask. People, including bosses, are not mind readers. My mum also always said, ‘if you don’t ask, you won’t get’.

In five years I see myself probably pottering around a garden centre, either buying stuff or working there – or both.

My number one piece of advice to young women starting their careers is to know your limitations, and then ignore them.

My favourite wind down activity is weeding.

The last book I read was a trashy novel. Why not?

The one thing I can’t live without two decent cups of coffee a day, but not after noon.

 

About Yvonne

Yvonne Baker is chief executive of the National Science Learning Network and National Stem Centre.

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