Authentic leaders talking openly about themselves and their journey so far

Helen Cook

HR Director for Corporate BankingRoyal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank

Raised by her parents in Kenya, Helen began her HR career in 1993 on a Graduate Programme; a scheme she credits as vitally important, both economically and socially. She is also a founding member of The Two Percent Club in Scotland, a high level networking group aiming to help get more women into senior business roles in Scotland. Helen shares with Heather Jackson her career personal highlights to date; including the anguish of prioritising different things at different times of her life; and encouraging a strong sense of ‘self.’

Official Biography

Helen joined RBS in 2001 as HR Director for Group Functions. She has since held a number of roles: HR Director for Retail Direct, HR Director for UK Retail Banking, Head of Organisational Effectiveness and Resourcing for Retail, Wealth and Ulster.

Helen began her HR career in 1993 on the Graduate Programme at Deutsche Bank (formerly known as Morgan Grenfell). During her 6 years at Deutsche Bank she fulfilled a number of roles in the UK, France, US and Germany. Helen subsequently moved to Morgan Stanley where she worked in Sales Trading and Research for the EMEA region.

Helen’s career spans specialist HR roles in reward, resourcing and shared services as well as business facing roles in Corporate Finance, Trading, Asset Management and Retail Banking where her responsibilities have included leadership development, talent management, inclusion and organisational design and restructuring.

Helen has a Bachelor of Education (Hons) specialising in Geography from Cambridge University and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. She is also a founding member of The Two Percent Club in Scotland (a high level networking group aiming to help get more women into senior business roles in Scotland) and an active member of The Two Percent Club in London.

Helen is married with two young children.

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