Fearless Woman: Q&A with Hermes GPE’s Karen Sands

The COO of Hermes GPE talks about her inspirations and what the future is for women in investing

Karen Sands, COO Hermes GPE, shares her thoughts on women in investment, including what the future holds in this latest article from City Hive’s Fearless Woman campaign.

DiversityQ, ESG Clarity, and What Investment are delighted to support the campaign to celebrate 50 years of women investing in the UK. 

What or who inspired you to work in investing?

My father has always been my inspiration – not to work in investing, per se, but in terms of having a successful career. When I was younger, I had a bet with him that I would have more letters after my name than he did, and after completing all my undergraduate, postgraduate (Bachelor of Science, Master of Arts) and professional qualifications (Accountant and Investment Operations) – I now have!

What do you think the future looks like for women in investing? What would you like to see?

Women have different views, and different ways of looking at things, and different things matter to women than they do to men. This has to be reflected in the representation of decision-makers in all walks of life, not just investing. It’s just common sense to me and will create a fairer, more successful, more relevant world for us all. I am not a fan of quotas, though, just to get representation – and the ‘right person for the right role’ rules must still apply. It’s all about making the attainment of success more achievable, and more accessible for women, particularly in a traditionally male-dominated environment like investment. That’s what still needs to change in my view.

What is your attitude to investment risk?

It is always worth taking fully considered investment risks – you shouldn’t shy away from risk if judgement and diligence all point to good outcomes

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

I would love to be able to fly. Go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted – on a carbon-neutral basis!

Tell us your motto or if you don’t live by one, why not?

Worry about what you can control, and don’t waste time on what you can’t.

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