Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith is the President of the British Chambers of Commerce and was the first Asian female chief executive of a FTSE 250 company. She works with the House of Lords in supporting Diversity in the workplace. McGregor-Smith talks about smashing the boardroom glass ceiling, how to overcome the challenges of prejudice and leadership in the 21st century.

Her work in the House of Lords focuses on bringing her significant business experience to the House of Lords and also supporting the work of Diversity in the workplace, which ranges from supporting the work on the gender pay gap through to the work currently being reviewed on the ethnicity pay gap. She has also worked on Europe, with her work focused on the impact of leaving the EU on businesses and the public sector in the UK.

Ruby McGregor-Smith is now a portfolio Non-Executive Director and Advisory Director with current positions which include Mace Group, the Department of Education and Bath University. At Mace Group, a private company with revenues of over £2 billion McGregor-Smith has supported the 5 year strategy review and is working with the Board to support the growth aspirations of the Facilities Management part of the Group.

At the Department of Education McGregor-Smith is a non executive director supporting the board in a number of key areas which include supporting the digital agenda of DFE, supporting on the significant efficiency savings for the schools and reviewing the implementation and enhancement of the Apprentice Levy.

Prior to this, Ruby McGregor-Smith was appointed CEO of MITIE Group PLC. She is one of a small number of women who have held the position of Chief Executive in the FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 and is the first Asian woman to be appointed in such a role within that group of companies.

She was recognised as a top 50 female world business leader by the FT in 2013. Revenues grew from her time on the board from £500m to £2.2 billion and the Group became the number one company in the UK for Facilities Management.

Ruby McGregor-Smith is a member of the Women’s Business Council (previously Chair) and a Member of the European Committee for Internal Markets in the House of Lords. She is responsible for the Independent Report to the UK Government on Race in the Workplace published in February 2017.