40 Minute Mentor

December 7, 2022

Sponsor Spotlight: Building Human-Centred Learning Experiences, with Stuart Packham, CEO of Alchemist

“I realised that for the first time in my career, I reported to a board and investors, but the decisions were on me. It was all on me.” 

In this week’s 40 Minute Mentor episode, we’re joined by Stuart Packham, CEO of our Series Sponsor’s Alchemist, JBM board advisor and longtime mentor and friend of team JBM. 

Our host, James Mitra, and Stu have known each other for years, dating back to their days at Michael Page, so it was extra special to have Alchemist as our Series sponsor and Stu joining us on the podcast today. 

We chat about: 

➡️ Stu’s journey through recruitment and into learning and development [02:05]

➡️ Why recruitment is such a great foundation to your career [04:36] 

➡️ His transition from recruitment to learning and development [07:58] 

➡️ Why becoming a CEO was a much bigger shift than expected [10:47] 

➡️ How he puts being people-centric first [14:00] 

➡️ The imposter syndrome that comes with being CEO [15:42] 

➡️ Realities of merging two businesses into one [18:43] 

➡️ How Alchemist approaches L&D differently [22:51] 

➡️ Transitioning from 98% face to face L&D sessions to digital and virtual sessions [25:56] 

➡️ The benefits of bringing on external partners to help with hiring [29:42] 

➡️ Why now is the time to put together a risk plan and not ignore the downturn [33:47] 

➡️ What the future holds for Alchemist [35:59] 

➡️ The advantages of being a board advisor [38:02] 

➡️ Why Alchemist partnered with JBM and the results they’ve seen so far [40:06] 


Helpful links:

➡️ More about Stu: https://www.linkedin.com/in/stuartpackham/ 

➡️ More about Alchemist: https://thisisalchemist.com/40minutementor/  


🤝Explore Hidden Pages: 

For this year’s Black History Month, we’ve had the great pleasure of partnering with Samuel Tholley and Hidden Pages – a zine discovering hidden Melanated history & lists of sources exploring the Melanated/”Black” experience. 

We talked about his motivation behind Hidden Pages, why it’s so important to normalise black history and he shares some amazing historic figures we can all learn from.

This is only the beginning of this partnership, so make sure you check out our initial conversation with Samuel here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kF_-blY_kUQ 


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