top of page

7 Questions on Leadership with Nicola Richardson

Name: Nicola Richardson

Title: Leadership and Management Mentor and Trainer

Oranisation: The People Mentor

I’ve spent over 33 years in business leadership and am using my extensive experience and expertise to help support managers who want to lead with strength and compassion. Throughout my career, I have had the privilege of compassionately mentoring managers in small and large organisations. I have the delight of 16 grandchildren and a very supportive husband.

Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!

I hope Nicola's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!


Jonno White

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?

The most challenging aspect was working in volatile situations where there was scant information and we were bringing in new legislation, designing a new process, and training people all with minimal information. I learned how to work in VUCA conditions

2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?

Many years ago my lead went off sick just as we were about to move the teams from one floor to another. Everyone was running around like headless chickens so using my organisation strength I took control and coordinated it. It was at that point the Senior leads saw me in a different light.

3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

I tend to rise quite late after many years of early starts.

I am more of an owl so tend to start the day slowly and do my most productive work in the evening. I like to look at LinkedIn first thing while having breakfast and then move on to the main business. I do early evening calls with clients as many struggle in the working day.

4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?

Recently my eldest came to me having attended a leadership course. She was struggling to relate it practically to work and we spent a day looking at all the models she had been shown and translating it to the practical aspects. I hadn't heard of Arbinger's Inward v Outward model and found that helpful for my work and clients.

It reminded me that we need to look outward and concentrate on others to get the best team results.

5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

The book that stays with me is "The Go-Giver" by Bob Burg. It made me realise the impact of connecting and building relationships and also paying it forward by connecting people. I think as Leaders we need to help form connections and build relationships. Together we are stronger.

6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?

Spend time knowing your strengths and understanding them and tap into these as when you do you feel more alive, and more passionate and everything is easier.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?

I had a manager who was struggling and the senior leads thought we would need to take her off management. I met weekly with the manager coaching her and I saw her blossom before my eyes. This manager has now been promoted several times and has shown herself to be a great leader. I am so glad I gave her the time and support. It reminds me never to write someone off because you just need to dig deep into their strengths and help them grow.

bottom of page