With lunchtime fast approaching, it makes sense to meet Shaun at the best spot around for food and drink. It also happens to be somewhere he likes to go with his team for more “informal” meetings.
“I lead a team of five that support recruitment activity across the organisation, covering Care Homes, Advice and Welfare, Marketing, Fundraising and Support roles like IT and Finance,” he explains. And, before our burgers even arrive it’s already become clear that Shaun’s passion is, simply put, people. From those in his team to every single person the Legion hires.
“I’m passionate about people and hiring the right talent. For me, people are the single most important driver to success within organisations and are the ones we spend most of our days with – and sometimes make long lasting friendships with. Some of my closest friends have been ex-colleagues and I met my wife through one. I’ll always share that story as I now have some of my best memories because of these friendships.”
This passion for people, for Shaun, was enough to bring him to his role today. Though the Legion’s cause is one he now cares about, it wasn’t helping the Armed Forces community that drew him in. In fact, he didn’t actually know what the Legion did.
“To be really honest, I joined the Legion because I really needed a job. I didn’t even know the poppy was associated with Royal British Legion until I started research prior to my interview. I wasn’t happy where I was previously and had just welcomed my daughter to the world. I wanted a job that had some flexibility and work for an organisation that understood family commitments. The Legion ticked all those boxes and I was fortunate enough to be offered the job.”
“The organisation had been through a period of change within HR and at the time of offer, they hadn’t appointed my direct manager. It was certainly a risk to join on this basis but I’m really glad that I did.”
It was a risk for Shaun. But, it’s one that paid off. He threw himself, and his passion, into the role. And, it seemed as though that hard work and dedication didn’t go unnoticed.
“In November 2017, I was informed that I was one of 20 people within the organisation that was nominated and recognised for going above and beyond in my role and was invited to represent the British Legion in the Muster at the Festival of Remembrance in the Royal Albert Hall.
“It was a once in a lifetime experience. I got to meet many serving personnel backstage, crew from the BBC and my highlight – standing near to Emeli Sande and the orchestra performing.
“I’m so pleased I was recognised and valued by the organisation for my contribution.”
As our food settles down in front of us, Shaun has one last comment to make before we dive in.
“I want to ensure the Legion attract and recruit the best talent, but I want those who are considering applying to understand what they may get in return from working here. Yes, there can be frustrations, but this is a unique organisation where I believe many can find their place, be happy and develop their careers.”