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A day in the life: Ellen Lapworth-Maisey

Published on June 28, 2022

Since March this year, Ellen Lapworth-Maisey has held the role of wellbeing and equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) manager at RSK – a fascinating position that helps to create an inclusive and empowering culture for all RSK staff.

Here, Ellen talks about her job and her career journey to date.

Ellen Lapworth-Maisey

“My background has been working in mental health primarily, as I studied counselling psychology at university,” she explains.

“I’ve been a carer, I’ve worked with convicts with serious mental health concerns, been a manager for a local branch of Mind and volunteered in Bali educating communities about disabilities and mental health, with lots of other random roles in between.

“The common theme with all of these roles is people. I want to make positive change for people in any way I can. EDI is intrinsic to that – if you don’t feel valued, represented and respected in your workplace, then inevitably your wellbeing will suffer.”

There’s not necessarily a ‘typical’ day at RSK for Ellen, with each day having a different focus.

“There’s the usual mountain of emails and meetings to get through, but each day is generally different,” she says.

“There’s often a different project and all my bits and pieces rely on each other to move forward, so I have to juggle them all on the go, otherwise none of them will progress.”

“Ironically, it’s the challenges I like. Getting my claws into something and discovering it’s even more of a mess than I originally thought – I find that really enjoyable!

“I have never worked somewhere where I have felt so at home. It’s varied too – I will never be bored in this job – and what I put in place for 2023 might change for 2024, and I love that.

“It’s constantly moving and changing, which might be an absolute nightmare for some, but I thrive on that,” adds Ellen.

Helping people to understand just what EDI is all about can be a challenge, Ellen admits.

“The phrase I use is that people think it’s all kittens and colouring books,” she says. “It’s not. Getting people to break down their own ideas about EDI and wellbeing is the big one.

“EDI isn’t just about race or gender and wellbeing isn’t just about mental health. It’s about what makes us the amazing unique individuals that we are, and shouldn’t that be celebrated and understood? “Actually, both EDI and wellbeing affect you directly or indirectly, whether you know it or not.”

“RSK is a global company, so trying to create a strategy for EDI and wellbeing with a global perspective has its barriers and limitations,” she explains.

Being so new to the role, Ellen hasn’t had to adapt her job in the wake of the pandemic, but she says this period did make her realise she worked most productively from home, which encouraged her to look for a job that didn’t require her to be in the office full time.

“After the pandemic was apparently over and I had to be back in the office three days a week, I realised I didn’t like commuting, I didn’t like being in an office full of people (ironic for my role I know) and I liked that I didn’t have to plan when to leave or what food to take, for example,” Ellen recalls.

“I was also diagnosed with ADHD at the end of last year, so combined with the prospect of commuting and my diagnosis, I realised working from home really helps me manage my ADHD and enables me to do my job better.

As for the near future, Ellen says: “We’re starting to get more involved with acquisitions than before I joined, having conversations about what we offer and how we can support them

“There is a potential for them to feel a bit side lined and as the EDI/Wellbeing manager I really want a new company’s experience with us to be a positive one,” she adds.

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