Women in FM: Emma Learmonth, Key Account Manager

Women in FM: Emma Learmonth, Key Account Manager

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SBFM is committed to removing barriers for women in the workplace. Indeed our team is made up of talented and knowledgeable colleagues like Emma Learmonth, Key Account Manager, who continue to drive the business forward. In the latest in our Women in FM Series, we speak to Emma about her career path, and what the future could hold for the industry.

What is your role at SBFM and what does it involve day to day?

My role is a Key Account Manager. My day-to-day duties can vary widely, but almost always include addressing any issues raised, communicating with the main client contact and site managers to discuss business and any changes or concerns, as well as co-ordinating onboarding of new sites.

A central part of my role is to ensure all sites are serviced to the highest standards. I routinely spend days out on client sites, conducting audits and fine-tuning the delivery of all contracted services. By working closely with our head office and operations team, I help ensure services are delivered safely on time, within budget and to the required quality standards.

Emma Learmonth, Key Account Manager

What made you chose a career in FM? Can you tell us about your route into the industry?

I came into FM in a recruitment capacity and quickly transitioned to the Account Management role. Having long aspired to work in a fast-paced and constantly evolving industry, FM was the ideal fit. The volume and speed of the work requires the continual use of my initiative, meaning I am always engaged and impassioned by the work I am undertaking.

So far, I love working in the FM industry, I don’t see myself ever switching out!

What is your favourite thing about your job/the industry?

My role is largely independent, which means I am afforded the freedom and trust to manage my diary at most times, and work where needed to deliver in line with business needs.

It is fast paced and unrelenting, at times, requiring me to adapt, drop things and pick up elsewhere. As a result, organisation is a necessity. I also have to be reactive to change – something I am used to not just in work, but most aspects of my life – which suits my personality and temperament perfectly. It is part of who I am naturally.

What drives you? Why do you do what you do?

I am driven mainly by job satisfaction. Doing a good job and feeling accomplishment at the end of each working day is what keeps me going. Enjoyment also plays a huge part in my passion for the industry. I genuinely enjoy working at SBFM in particularly. The background of the business, the people, the values and the passion, are all driving factors for me.

I also hope to portray a vision to my young son that as a single mother, I can work full-time in a demanding role, be successful, and still be very hands-on. I want him to grow up always knowing that I worked a lot, worked hard, and provided a very happy life for us both, independently. I want him to be proud, and that encourages me to work hard at everything I do. I feel grateful to work within a business that understands that this can sometimes be a juggling act.

As a woman in FM, what would you say are the biggest barriers you face?

My biggest barrier is probably encouraging other women to push themselves as hard, to believe in themselves. I don’t see any barriers in terms of opposite gender, I believe anyone can achieve anything they really want, male or female.

I have always been in a male dominant environment – having spent several years in the army – meaning I have naturally grown to own my voice, vocalise my opinions and be heard. It has, therefore, never occurred to me that any such barrier really exists.

Women are just as strong and capable of becoming board members and playing key roles within the industry. I truly think we just need to believe it more and pursue it with a fierce yet humble attitude.

Why is gender balance and having a more diverse workforce important, especially in senior management teams?

It’s 2022, times have changed, women and men have the same capabilities as one another. A diverse workplace can create a relaxed workplace for new employees entering the business. Diversity, equality, and inclusivity will only encourage everyone to rid the line of gender discrimination for good and empower future generations. To identify people’s capabilities and skill set whether they are male, or female, should be a natural thing in today’s world.

To find out more about Women in FM, and how SBFM is supporting gender equality and diversity, keep an eye on our website or follow our LinkedIn page.

[1] https://www.grantthorntonni.com/insights/publications/women-in-business-2021-a-window-of-opportunity/#:~:text=Our%202021%20research%20has%20shown,woman%20in%20their%20leadership%20teams.