Lucy Adams

The BBC's Former HR Director

Lucy Adams was the BBC’s HR Director during one of its most turbulent periods. Responsible for all aspects of employee relations, reward, training and development, she reduced the BBC management by over 30%, saving the organisation £25m a year. She also faced a torrent of personal and professional criticism as the broadcaster dealt with a series of crises.

In her five year tenure Lucy saw four DGs come and go, oversaw the move to the Salford site and coped with numerous, very public crises including executive pay-offs and the Savile scandal. This alongside the everyday work of talent retention, development and remuneration, HR policy, and the challenges of a publicly-funded organisation working in a highly commercial, fast-moving sector with over 20,000 employees.

In speeches, Lucy discusses how to deliver real change within a large, complex organisation, and why it isn’t always popular; balancing the need for quick decisions with possible moral backlash about severance, and issues relating to employee engagement.

Lucy states that in an uncertain world, many accepted ideas of leadership aren’t up to the job and by looking at everything from management theory to neuroscience she considers fresh perspectives on leadership, employee engagement and management organisation. She also addresses how businesses can deal with public scrutiny and adverse publicity, and the nature of leadership and change in organisations.

Prior to working at the BBC, Lucy was Group HR Director at Serco, the government services business covering transport to nuclear facilities to schools. Lucy was in position during a period of extensive expansion and acquisition for the business, incorporating new employees and cultures. Prior to Serco Lucy worked for the law firm Eversheds.

To book Lucy Adams as the keynote speaker for your corporate event, function or conference, simply contact the Champions Speakers agency by emailing or by calling a booking agent directly on 0207 1010 553.

When at corporate events, Lucy is known to cover the following topics:

  • Retention, Development & Remuneration
  • HR Policy
  • British Broadcasting Corporation
  • Department Management
  • Leadership