Shaper: Karen Mattison

Show aired on 28th March 2015


Karen Mattison is the innovative co-founder and joint CEO of Timewise , the £1.6m organisation that helps organisations unlock the business potential of flexible working. Experts in flexibility, with more than 10 years of experience, Timewise runs several services designed to build the market for flexible work in the UK, including a jobsite, a recruitment agency, a content site showcasing flexible work in practice and consultancy and training services. 60,000 people who want flexible work are registered with Timewise, which has advertised roles for businesses ranging from EY, to LVMH, to Diageo. Karen and her co-founder Emma Stewart have both been made MBEs for their work, named as two of the UK’s most radical thinkers by the Observer; are Management Today magazine ‘small business heroes’ and have been listed by Real Business magazine as one of the ‘12 leading social entrepreneurs to watch’. In 2014 Director magazine named Karen and Emma as the UK’s most influential ‘Women Changing the Business World’ following a landslide public vote.

Follow Karen on Twitter @karenmattison.

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“If you wait for all circumstances to be perfect, tick every box, there is never a right time”

“…the driver for us all was making a change in the world of work and giving something to the kind of candidates who have got that amazing experience but find themselves falling out of work for all the wrong reasons.”

“While businesses are increasingly happy to give flexibility and trust to the people they know, they are still nervous about offering that flexibility to the people they don’t.”

“…we still have a big education role within businesses to show them the kind of talent they can tap into if they only open their mind to the possibility of flexibility.”

“…all the diversity challenges that you have will float away if you start understanding that flexibility is as important to many people as money.”

“I think in many ways that the world of work for a long, long time has been very much a man’s world and more and more we are seeing that changing…”

“In some ways we feel Government legislation has gone as far as it can and actually now it is about trying to change business culture…”

“…my day job involves going into a business where they are scratching their heads saying ‘we don’t know why the women are leaving'”