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Balancing the Grind with Carly Ash, VP of People at Influencer

Carly Ash is the VP of People at Influencer, an influencer marketing agency co-founded by entrepreneur Ben Jeffries and YouTuber Caspar Lee.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

Currently, I’m VP of People (Heart) at Influencer. We are a fast scaling ad-tech based in the UK but we are growing globally, and fast. I’ve been with the company for around 2 years now.

It’s a great company, with an amazing culture and mission and even better, the people are just so talented and I am so lucky to work with them all.

My background is in People Ops in all types of businesses, small, large corporates, private & public sector. Over the last 10 years it’s mainly been in startups > scaleup – which is where I have developed a niche and passion for working in. 

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

Anyone in People Ops will agree, no day is the same and you can plan a day and it will all go out of the window at a moment’s notice!

I usually have meetings with my team to understand various touch points of what is going on in the business, my exec & project work. We have just expanded into the US and a lot of my focus is on our Global People Strategy and what that looks like as we scale.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

Yes. My role is incredibly flexible and I am able to work from home. Which is huge for me as I am a mother and step mother (plus dog mum) so I have a bit of a juggle. I tend to go into London once a week to catch up with my team and show my face around the office.

I love the balance I have, as usually when I would be commuting, I’m eating breakfast with my son and that to me is precious time. I’m super grateful for the flexi working I’m able to have at Influencer. 

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Being able to flexibly juggle work around personal life is huge. It can mean I work hours outside of the norm (you’ll usually find me working first thing in the morning and late at night) but it’s worth it so I can make sure I’m at pick up for my son and get home for bath and bedtime.

I have an incredibly supportive partner, where we are both equal and we ensure our diaries are aligned for the week ahead to juggle childcare and our work schedules.

Influencer are incredibly supportive with ‘the juggle’ and I’m always transparent with people when I have to shift a meeting or need to shoot off from work early. People get it and that’s the culture we have embedded here. 

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I started meditating three times a day a year ago. It has genuinely changed how I manage my stress and react in different situations. I also tend to find I am much calmer. It’s such a powerful practice and I try to keep it up as much as possible.

Even for 2 mins a day, it’s so worth it! My release has always been a class at the gym. I try to ensure I go 4-5 times a week and punch a bag or lift some weights with some good music to release and get the good endorphins going! 

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

I love Patty McCord – Powerful, Kim Scott – Radical Candor and I’m about to read Agile HR as I’m very keen to implement the practices from this within my team. 

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

A good moisturiser, my diary, Headspace and the Apple News app! 

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?  

Anyone in my field of working. We have such a huge job on our hands and I’m always keen to hear how everyone is managing! 

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

There is no one size fits all with work-life balance. Do what is right for you and your loved ones <3.

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About Author

Balance the Grind is a work-life balance publication on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.