Founder and CEO of Beyond Governance Ltd
From humble beginnings and difficult schooling, Erika navigated setbacks on her mission to be the first in her family to get a good education and have a career. As a teenager she became the family carer, supporting her mother and younger brother. This resulted in her losing a place at Cambridge University to study law.
Erika then hit rock bottom and went through years of self-doubt, feeling that her future was written for her and lost direction. In her early twenties, she realised that the only person standing in her way was herself. From this point on she wasn’t going to be a victim of circumstance anymore.
She became driven because of her life experiences rather than in spite of them; they fuelled her unrelenting determination and self-belief that she could do whatever she put her mind to. At 24 she found her career path and fast tracked her professional qualifications. Thereafter, her career accelerated.
But her career hasn’t been without its challenges and set-backs; not everyone saw her self-belief, passion and commitment as a positive. With a positive and relentless self-belief, Erika continues to progress her goals.
After becoming a mother of identical twin girls, it raised her awareness of stereotyping once again; everyone is unique and has something different to offer despite what you may look like, where you come from and how you were educated. Again, this fuelled her determination and by 32 she had reached the top job in her industry; advising the boards of UK listed companies.
Erika’s story of positivity, resilience, humour and experience of climbing the corporate ladder and rising to the top in a traditional, paternalistic environment leaves her audience feeling empowered and uplifted.
They can all relate to her experience of unleashing her inner self confidence and belief to overcome adversity, identifying her uniqueness and unlocking her authenticity.
Erika wants the workplace to be a more inclusive environment for her daughters when their time comes.