Cristina Chimenti

WiBF Glasgow

IFSDG:  How long have you been the Chair of WiBF Glasgow?

Cristina:  I took up the Chair's role in November 2011 after having been on the WiBF Glasgow management team since April 2009, just a few months after it opened its doors in Glasgow.

IFSDG:  How many people support you with the WiBF network?

Cristina:  Our management team is currently 7 strong but we have great links with the Edinburgh group and good support through our national network which covers  London, Bristol and Dublin.

IFSDG:  What is your vision for WiBF in Glasgow?

Cristina:  To provide a platform for women to get together and expand their potential in their personal and professional lives. WiBF is not necessarily just for those in the banking or finance industries as I believe that the best connections are often made when least expected and in less obvious ways.

IFSDG:  What is typically involved in WiBF in an average month?

Cristina:  We meet to discuss future events once a month to help make preparations for our strategy and our future events, including arranging locations and speakers. We do this at the beginning of the month to allow us time to deal with the marketing and circulation of the events to our network. The roles within the management teams are shared so that we all work together to deliver the events, from sending out emails and contacting future speakers or venues to liaising with new members or maintaining the links with our sister groups.

Our events tend to be on the last Thursday of the month by which time, we are able to relax a little with a glass of wine or a cocktail and enjoy what we have planned during the month along with the other attendees. 

IFSDG:  Why did WiBF choose to set up a branch of the network in Glasgow?

Cristina:  The main group is based in London and several years ago, due to a growing presence of Banking and Finance organisations in the North, a Scottish branch was set up in Edinburgh.

This was very successful but events didn't attract many people from the West and it was proposed that the Scotland branch be split over the two main cities, Edinburgh and Glasgow, to provide better coverage and events to our members. As a result, in early 2009, the Glasgow group was born.

IFSDG:  Three good things about having a Glasgow presence?

Cristina:  Glasgow is such a vibrant, international city with a growing banking and finance presence. Being here means that:
a. We are firmly on the UK banking and finance map,
b. We have access to first class facilities and people
c. ...and the restaurants and shops are great!

IFSDG:  What is your biggest success to date?

  When I moved to Glasgow after graduating from University in Italy, I would have never thought I would still be here 15 years later. I'm very proud to be on the Board of the Glasgow Print Studio and Chair of the WiBF Glasgow branch. But probably the biggest achievement is being able to cope with the Scottish weather :-)

IFSDG:  What is the best investment you ever made?

Cristina:  Apart from several pairs of Louboutin shoes, I would have to say my best investment has been my education. Getting my MBA has opened several doors and has helped me look at and deal with problems in a different way. What is it that they say? "It's not a problem, but a challenge to overcome."

IFSDG:  Which business person or company do you most admire and why?

Cristina:  Tamara Mellon, OBE and co-founder of Jimmy Choo. She had deep belief in her ideas when setting out and had a vision to create a new concept. She followed through on this concept and delivered a very successful company within a few years. Although she faced several challenges along the way, she always maintained her integrity and personal brand.

IFSDG:  What did you want to be when you were a child?

Cristina:  A lawyer or an astronaut!

IFSDG:  What do you do to relax away from the office?

Cristina:  I've recently started to learn salsa dancing and, apart from proving a great way to keep in shape, it has also led to the discovery of a completely different view of Glasgow!

IFSDG:  Blackberry or iPhone?

Cristina:  iPhone

IFSDG:  Suit or no suit?

Cristina:  Perfectly cut dress :-)

IFSDG:  Heels or pumps?

Cristina:  Heels!

IFSDG:  Wine or cocktails?

Cristina:  Cocktails; make mine a French Martini!

IFSDG:  Sunshine or snow?

Cristina:  Sunshine…missing the Italian weather!

IFSDG:  and finally, what three words to sum you up

Cristina:  Outgoing, Determined, Stylish

  • Cristina Chimenti