Anna Hegarty

Trustee at Tenterden Mindfulness Group, mentor and financial consultant

Anna is a chartered accountant whose last role was as CFO for HSBC Global Insurance, where she was the youngest person and one of only two women on the Executive Committee. She stepped away in 2012 to manage a chronic health condition and has also been caring for her young child.

Anna joined the Women on Boards Bursary programme to support her return from this career break. She planned to develop a mixed portofolio career, including NED roles, which would to make best use of her professional skills to combine the intellectual challenge she desires with the flexibility she needs.

Anna joined the board of ambitious charity, Tenterden Mindfulness Group, which aligns well with her mentoring work and remains open to adding another non-executive position to her developing portfolio.

Anna shares her experience of the Women on Boards Bursary:

“Overall, the Women on Boards Bursary has been incredibly valuable to me. I wanted to kick-start a mixed portfolio career, after a career break. I knew my background as senior finance professional would transfer well to the boardroom, but I wanted some guidance on where to start that journey.

For me, the highlight of the bursary was the 1-on-1 Board CV Review. Having constructive and specific feedback, from someone with experience in recruiting to boards, made my Board CV much stronger than it would have been otherwise. Despite having no formal non-executive experience, I have secured interviews for competitive NED roles, I believe, because my experience is now framed so effectively on my Board CV.”

Although Anna was ultimately unsuccessful at some interviews, she was delighted to secure an opportunity as a trustee at Tenterden Mindfulness Group.

“My board role aligns closely with my strong interest in mindfulness, which I also integrate into my mentoring work. The trusteeship is an exciting opportunity to apply my strategic skills in a non-executive context and I’m really looking forward to getting stuck in.”

Anna has also begun some corporate advisory work as part of her mixed portfolio, but is keen to add another non-executive role.

“Overall, my learning through the bursary programme has helped me consider opportunities in a different way and given me a long-term outlook on developing my NED career.

It does take time for the right opportunities to come up in the non-executive space and I will continue to keep an eye out as I progress in my current board role and with other elements of my portfolio career.“

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