CAREERS: How I Got Here - Jimmy Billimoria, finance director, Muscular Dystrophy Campaign

What was your first job?

Having qualified as a chartered accountant, I joined Otis Elevators as marketing accountant.

What does your current role involve? I direct and manage the finance, HR and office administration, IT and company secretarial departments with an emphasis on setting policies and ensuring that business processes are aligned to key objectives and that they cover and minimise risks identified.

Roughly outline your career path? In 1978, I joined the Inlaks Group, based in Geneva, and worked my way up to be group director of finance and support services. The Geneva operations closed in 1997, so I moved to London where I became a charity-sector consultant. I was head of finance in 1999 at the National Autistic Society and recently joined the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign as director of finance and support services.

What training or course has most enhanced your career? I have benefited from courses on leadership, communication, strategic and project management by Kepnor Tregoe.

What has been your greatest career achievement? During my time with the Inlaks Group, one of its principal companies in Nigeria had gone horribly off the rails and I was sent to lead a strategic review of the business.

What's your advice to people starting out in the sector? The assessment of success is much harder to define given the social agenda and the need to evaluate qualitative factors.

But the scope for learning and development is vast, particularly when there is a constant pursuit of improved means to achieve an organisation's goals.

Are there any charities you support financially, or with time? When able to, I participate in the review of several charities with a focus on South Asians both in the diaspora and in India.

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