Becoming a Boss with Kerry Taylor, NED and Former EVP, Paramount International

11 Jan, 2024

Kerry Taylor, NED, Former Chief Marketing Officer, LIV Golf and EVP, Managing Director, Paramount International, Youth and Entertainment tells us why she would rid the world of bad bosses in her first Female Leaders' Club interview.

Top trumps alert! What are the three cards you’ve played to help you get where you are in your career?

Be good at what you do and be kind. Almost every role I have had came through recommendation.

Say yes to opportunities. Take the chance to get involved in additional projects that arise - don't see this as work you are not getting paid for but a new chance to learn and grow. 

Find work you love. If it doesn't feel like work it will bring you pleasure and you will be able to give what you need to succeed. If you don't love it you may be in the wrong company or sector. 

Ballsiness, being the bossy boots, Machiavellian ruthlessness - why do many women feel that they need to act tough to succeed? What are the real hallmark signs of good female leaders?

Be ballsy but always be fair, consistent and kind. I have no idea why women feel they need to act tough to succeed.

Like any good leader it is about knowing the business, setting a clear vision and outlining everyone's role in delivering that. It is about trusting your team. Having the confidence to hire people who are more talented than yourself and creating a culture where they can thrive and deliver the vision you laid out. Then, being consistent and supportive. 

Who has inspired you in your career? Why?

I have had amazing women bosses (Heather Jones, Lisa Opie), amazing women peers (Pam Kauffman, Katherine Liu) and amazing women in my team who have made me want to step up and be a better boss (Tanya Leederkerken, Kelly Bradshaw). Then, there are women you meet on the way (Claire Cronin, Cindy Gallop, Sherilyn Shackell) who set an example you aspire to.

They are all incredibly smart and good at what they do but they all do it with no ego and a great sense of fun which is so inspiring. 

If you could wave your magic wand and right one wrong in the workplace, what would it be and what would you do? 

I would rid the world of bad bosses. 72% of people are leaving the workplace because of bad bosses which is an outrage. I would improve leadership training and create a work culture that allows for more accountability. My friend Alex is creating an AI coaching platform called Ovida to help solve this problem. 

The route to success is never smooth. What tips, professional, personal, and leftfield, would you give rising stars, if you were starting out today?

Preparation is everything. Prepare for interviews so you get the job.

Know your numbers and how the business makes money so you can be focused on the right thing.

Enjoy it. Noel Coward said "nothing is as fun as work". I genuinely believe that should be the goal. 

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