Gemma Godfrey is a young woman, making a big difference in international business and finance. She is Head of Investment Strategy at Brooks MacDonald and a co-Host on CNBC, a channel that reaches 395 million households around the world. If that isn't enough, Godfrey is also a trusted business expert on daytime television and was selected by the BBC as one of the World’s Top 100 Women 'striving to make the world a better place'. Gemma trained as a quantum physicist and is passionate about getting more girls studying science. She has in excess of 50,000 Twitter followers, and somehow finds the time to be a Mummy too.
Steps To The Top: 8
Quantum Physicist - Fund Manager Goldman Sachs, UBS, GAM - Chairman of Investment Committee, Credo - Founder, The Investment Insight - Ambassador, The Fold London - Television Contributor, Sky News, CNBC - Board Advisor, JC Investments, CLU, GrowthPoint Structures, Templars, Head of Investment Strategy, Brooks MacDonald
Gemma in your sphere of interest, you're the exception, not the rule. Why are there are so few women in finance today? Throughout my career I've often found myself to be one of the only women in the room, and even more often one of the youngest. Therefore, I have felt a degree of prejudice at times. However, being underestimated can become their weakness and my advantage. It pushes me to raise my game. I'd like to see more girls studying science at university, more visible role models and better childcare support to improve the gender balance. We're moving in the right direction but there's more work to be done.
Social media: how has it changed the landscape of your career? Like a friend, social media can challenge you, support you and certainly take the mick out of you! It can be a powerful ally and it's helped me reach a whole new audience. Never before have we had as much power at our fingertips. It's also teaching the corporate world the importance of connecting with customers and showing personality. Finance, in particular, is learning that it's not about pushing products but engaging people.
Work shoes: where do you sit on the heels/flats debate? I think comfort is just as important as style when we're talking about shoes for work. Pounding the streets between meetings means flats are a must. Russell Bromley sells some great pumps and loafers that have can endure a lot of running around in. Then for heels, I go to Kurt Geiger, for shoes that make an outfit pop – then I’m ready for anything.
What’s been your career highlight? I'm quite proud of my TED talk, as speaking for that long without notes was terrifying. It enabled me to express my passion for challenging the financial industry to put its customers first. However, I believe my best is yet to come...
You have a little boy at home, how easily do you switch into Mummy mode? As soon as I see my son's cheeky face, I’m Mummy again! And as for getting the balance right between home and work, I realised that regardless of whether you believe you can "have it all" and what your definition of "all" even is, you certainly can't do it all. Accepting help when and where I can has made finding the right balance a good step closer.