Philip Whitecross

Chief financial officer

I’ve got a pretty broad brief here at Care UK, including providing commercial and strategic guidance to key divisions. No other company in this sector has such a diversity of exciting services, but the challenge is to find ways to make the most of them and explore economies of scale in the light of ongoing funding challenges.

The company has a friendly, down-to-earth atmosphere that’s more common in much smaller companies. I’m trying to help Care UK maintain its agility and entrepreneurialism – these are often what disappear in large companies. Although I work on the commercial/strategic side, it’s important that I get out into the services, so I’m gradually visiting as many sites as possible.

Until I became a Chief Executive I was Finance Director of a number of organisations… so unsurprisingly for an accountant I was very finance focused! But a previous boss advised me to concentrate on developing my people skills: to understand the importance of listening to people and helping them to develop. That really stood me in good stead when I became a CEO.

Today I’m passionate about enabling people to do their best and to provide the best service they can, whatever part of the business they work in. I may be focusing on the commercial aspect and the financial detail, but using my softer, people side is vital to success. You can never eliminate the accountant in me but the experience of also having been a CEO is hopefully a good balance!