Jo Hompstead

Founder & Director of ConnectUp

Life is precious and time is finite. Work is one part of the whole that makes us who we are, but it’s a big part – so it matters that it aligns with our individual sense of purpose and meaning and we feel that our contributions matter.

Much of that meaning comes from the connections we make. In fact, How, Who and What we connect with is core to our individual and collective humanity.

It makes sense on the human as much as the commercial level to put people first. Because it’s the people who do the work that makes any project or business thrive.

Unfortunately, the systems of which we’re a part – whether that’s the organisations we work for, or the society that surrounds us, the authorities that govern, or the networks we struggle to belong to – don’t always empower us to live or work at our best.

Thanks to the work I’ve dedicated my life to, coupled with my own experience, and the insights from the people I’ve had the pleasure to support, I know how dehumanising this can feel – when we feel treated more like a business asset than a human being, and where work consequently becomes disconnected and uninspiring.

It would be fair to say that the system is broken, that the old ways of working don’t serve us anymore. That brokenness is also the key to the solution.

All it takes is a change of perspective, a new way of thinking, which requires safe, supportive and open spaces where people have the chance to engage in meaningful activity.

I’ve spent most of my career creating these spaces, giving people the tools and the understanding to create a working life that is more fulfilling and therefore more productive.

We all know what it’s like to feel disregarded and unhappy. Equally, we know there is the potential to feel seen, heard, understood and a valued part of the solution. That’s what I’m passionate about – helping people to think differently and to find fulfilment through meaningful connection.

I’m really curious about what makes people tick and I enjoy helping leaders and business owners unleash the potential of themselves and their people. I am known for working as a trusted advisor and confidante, drawing ideas together into meaningful action and bringing insight and intelligence to problems.

I have a dinghy sailing and powerboat level 2 qualification – though usually found being deck crew to my ‘Captain’ husband around the solent!

The digested read

I help people open up – open up their thinking, and open up to new ways of engaging in connected work and intentional actions. The impact: individuals and organisations that value showing up, being honest, and are supported in their desire to be part of something that matters

Adrienne Saunders

As a business confidence and public speaking coach I have made it my mission to give people the techniques they need to learn more about themselves and their way of reacting to the world. I am passionate about giving my clients a voice they can use to change the world one word at a time.

Hidden superpower:
I have the ability to cause major power outages and software freezes in airports, banks and supermarkets just by being present. I am convinced it’s a superpower, but others don’t seem to see it that way 😁

Tania Harland

I am driven by equipping and enabling business leaders with practical and technological solutions that improve the working lives of their people and ensure they are legally compliant from an employment law perspective.

Hidden Superpower:
Despite being really outgoing and sociable, I am an avid book worm and get through fiction books super quick, especially psychological thrillers with a huge twist.

Sarah Smith

With over 15 years HR experience, I have a broad generalist background, providing support in a variety of ways including, interim HR leadership roles, grievance and disciplinary investigations, and restructuring exercises, to name a few.

Hidden Superpower:
I am a Grade 8 piano player, though don’t have as much time to tinkle the ivories as I’d like!

Tina Jennings

I have innate abilities to make the complex simple. I am a culture transformation specialist, problem fixer, chaos clearer and pathfinder. I have had the privilege to partner cross-functional leaders around the world through dynamic change environments, working with both small organisations and large corporations.
I have a whole kit bag of experience and tools to share to help move your people, possibilities and business forward.

I am a yoga teacher and a secret WIP weight lifter.

Jackie Goddard

Maya Angelou said, “You Can’t Use Up Creativity, the More You Use the More You Have“I am, we all are creative. It is innate and my role is to stimulate more inventive thinking through creative prompts. My reason for being is to use my training as an actor and artist to build connection, confidence and resilience, through improvisation, play, and positivity.

Hidden Superpower:
My Mulled Lamb is legendary and I’m a sensation on a sewing machine!

Debbie Greenwood

I work hand in hand with business owners and leaders to help them build successful and productive businesses by developing their people and processes. Bringing people together to create positive, collaborative and fun workplaces is what I do best, I love to see everyone thrive. So through consultation with leaders and employees, training and mentoring, we can create true brand ambassadors.

Hidden Superpower:
Well, I haven’t quite mastered flying sadly, that would be so useful and cool. However, I am a bit of a baker, not quite Bakeoff standard and it’s not something that I do too often, because I love cake and that really isn’t good for my figure!

Nicola Green

I provide workplace presentations and support relating to menopause, grief and loss, neurodiversity, nutrition, breathwork and more. I am passionate about helping to change lives by providing ‘real life’ support and education in the workplace; whilst empowering all with knowledge and information for greater awareness and understanding. 

Hidden Superpower:
I’m able to endure an ice bath to then enjoy the ‘benefits’!

Susanne Samuel

I am humanist in my approach, always seeking the best solution for the business and its people. I support businesses with implementing the right HR strategy to support a positive working culture. Delivery of management and leadership development and coaching using DiSC behavioural profiling.

Hidden Superpower:
I am a keen decorator in my spare time, love interior design and am a ‘dab hand’ with a paintbrush!

Phil Duffin – Exec Assistant

I find value in being part of something bigger, quietly beavering away in the background in where I am happiest. If I can help you sleep better by lightening your mental load, then it has been a GOOD week! I enable others to experience success and I am fuelled by their growth. Yes, I live vicariously through others.

Hidden Superpower:
I have been told that Empathy is my superpower and boy am I proud of that!

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