CAREERS: How I Got Here - Robert Pritchett, chief executive, EveryChild

What was your first job? After my degree in zoology, I became a research assistant at Liverpool University.

What does your current role involve? As chief executive, my job involves employing the right strategy, people and systems to meet the challenges facing the children that we work with. I am also putting the finishing touches to the merger of Christian Children's Fund of Great Britain and the European Children's Trust to create EveryChild.

Roughly outline your career path? In 1987, I became the managing director of pet food suppliers Windsor Foods and in 1992 took on a similar role at what is now called Novartis, a pharmaceutical company. I later led the buyout of a small part of Novartis and sold it in 2000. After a career break, I resurfaced in October 2000 as the chief executive of the Christian Children's Fund of Great Britain.

What training or course has most enhanced your career? In the 1980s, I spent four months at the Henley Management College. I developed as an individual and discovered a great deal about my limitations as a manager.

What has been your greatest career achievement? It's happening. The merger to produce EveryChild is something that all 300 of our global staff are very proud of.

What is your advice for people starting out in the sector? People in the sector are often very conservative and adverse to change. They need to embrace change as it's a big part of life.

What is your advice for people starting out in the sector? I only regret things I haven't done. But I do have nostalgia for the career paths I left behind.

Are there any charities you support financially, or with time? I am a sponsor of EveryChild and I also support the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, the Woodland Trust and lots of other conservation charities.

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