40 Minute Mentor

Episode 17

March 2, 2020

Creating Access To Opportunities For Everyone with Sophie Adelman

When it comes to careers, there’s so many more options out there than there used to be even 5 years ago. Speaking to clients and candidates day in and out, we hear so many different stories of how people have got to where they are, the route they took and the different paths that people follow. The days of getting a university degree, joining a graduate scheme and staying with one company for 10-15 years are long gone. With rising university fees and increasing opportunity we’re seeing many companies starting to offer apprenticeships to enable talented young people to follow an alternative path to reach the career they want.

At the forefront of this major shift across education and employment is today’s 40 Minute Mentor – the amazing Sophie Adelman, Co-Founder and president of WhiteHat.

While Sophie has a very successful academic background herself, she saw her acceptance into Cambridge as a lucky break and in some ways an unfair advantage over all the equally talented people who for whatever reason didn’t get the same opportunity.

As Sophie explains in today’s episode, this helped her shape her mission in life to create access to opportunities for everyone, no matter the background, social status or upbringing.

That’s where the idea for WhiteHat came from. Sophie and her co-founder Euan launched WhiteHat – a tech start-up building an outstanding alternative to the traditional university route – to level the playing field and open opportunities to work with great companies to more people, rather than a small selected pool of talent from well-known universities.

“Raising VC funding is not a badge of honour. VCs really put you on a treadmill of growth, where you’re constantly chasing the next target, so it’s not for everyone.”

Sophie Adelman

Tune in to discover

30 second CV [03:45]
From University to entrepreneur [04:57]
Deciding whether to go to university or not [06:25]
Bad experience in investment banking [08:29]
Creating a diverse group of future leaders [10:33]
Approaching big businesses in the early days [13:41]
Creating a diverse talent pipeline [17:22]
Typical day as a Co-Founder [19:20]
Fundraising advice [22:26]
Defining & finding A-players [26:21]
How do you spot excellence [28:18]
Becoming a mentor [30:07]

Listen on

Helpful links

💙 We’d love to hear your thoughts on this episode, so please do get in touch at ku.oc.cmbj@semaj

➡️ If you want to find out more about Sophie, check out his LinkedIn profile – https://www.linkedin.com/in/sophie-adelman1/

➡️ If you want to find out more about WhiteHat, you can have a look at their website – https://whitehat.org.uk/

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