Personal account: Beth Tanton

Collaboration gets the best results, says Macmillan's corporate fundraiser.

The best advice I've had

Sarah Lock, a former colleague at the children's charity NCH, told me to always use your feet: go and speak to someone in person rather than send them an email.

The biggest challenge I've faced

Launching Macmillan Cancer Support's charity of the year partnership with supermarket chain Somerfield was pretty huge. It involved so many people across Macmillan and was a steep learning curve for me in many ways. Now the partnership has launched, it is gaining momentum and no two days are ever the same. I'm also doing a diploma to qualify as a massage therapist. Juggling a full-time job with a course that takes up two evenings a week and all weekend is pretty challenging. Saying that, doing something practical is a great balance to a job that involves a lot of time in front of a computer. I'm hoping that once I finish I'll be able to work as a massage therapist in the evenings and at weekends.

My greatest hit

When I was at ChildLine, I managed the charity of the season partnership with Arsenal Football Club, the highlight of which was the Arsenal charity ball. It took a year to organise and I've never worked so hard. But it was such an amazing evening and well worth all the effort. We raised more than £120,000 on the night and I was so proud of what we achieved.

I'm also really proud of my relationship with my boyfriend. We've been together for more than 10 years and we are testament to the fact that long-distance relationships can work. We met in a bar when we were both studying in the US, and after a decade of letter-writing and phone calls he's now in the UK and we're planning to get married.

My worst moment

When I first started fundraising, I was invited to do a presentation at a company to recruit people for a fundraising event. When I started up the PowerPoint presentation I had created, I discovered that I had inadvertently put a sound effect on every slide. I decided it was best to carry on regardless, so the audience was treated to the sound of a dog barking every time I clicked a button until one kind soul stepped in and rescued me.

My top tip

Work collaboratively. The best work I've done has been in partnership with other people.

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