Meet Our Team
Lisa Thomson, the CEO of Purpose HR, is experienced in establishing HR functions and people management and development frameworks within high-growth, entrepreneurial technology companies. She is also an alumni of the Entrepreneurial Scotland Saltire Fellowship programme, a Chartered Member of the Institute of Personnel and Development, and a qualified Executive business coach.
Lisa started her HR career with Wolfson Microelectronics, a university spin-out semiconductor engineering business which grew to a global business post-IPO. She then worked for a privately-owned global helpdesk software technology company with 250 staff, then moving onto support the growth of a healthcare technology and services company from inception to post-investment commercialisation. She has a deep understanding of the people, leadership and organisational development challenges of growing and scaling a commercial business. Since founding Purpose in 2014, she and her team have provided high quality HR consultancy support to founders, investors and executives across our client base.
“I’ve worked with Lisa in two separate organisations now and have always found her to be extremely helpful and supportive. She has a detailed knowledge of all HR related matters and can be relied upon to provide excellent advice.” Robert Bryce, Head of Delivery, Aridhia Informatics
Lisa is a Chartered member of the CIPD and holds an Executive Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring Practice from the Edinburgh Coaching Academy, working towards an ILM (Institute of Leadership & Coaching) level 7 professional coaching accreditation.
Lisa supports business leaders and managers with business growth and the associated people and organisational challenges. As a business coach, Lisa specialises in working with technical, creative and entrepreneurial people supporting their personal and soft skills development. This is balanced with a pragmatic and highly commercial approach developed in SME and start up environments.
As Director for Scotland for Startup Grind, Lisa also runs monthly networking events for entrepreneurs and founders across Scotland. Lisa is a 2014/15 Saltire Fellow with Entrepreneurial Scotland, an international programme aimed at developing entrepreneurial, globally minded, business leaders for Scottish businesses, which blends teaching at the world’s #1 ranked business school for entrepreneurship (Babson College, Boston) with hands on experience at both major global companies and Scottish high growth companies.
Lisa is a proud Ambassador for Women’s Enterprise Scotland, actively supporting Women’s Enterprise Scotland in the development and promotion of the Scotland CAN DO Women’s Ambassadors programme. In 2017 she was named one of Business Insider’s 20 Women to Watch in Business. In 2018 she was selected as one of 20 ‘Business Stars’ in the Scottish Government ‘Unlocking Ambition’ Challenge.
Victoria Lees, Associate, is a highly experienced and commercial HR professional, with a passion for delivering results and a pragmatic business led approach. In addition to her commercial HR experience, which includes managing through an MBO and also delivering results in the fast-paced media sector, Victoria was brought up in an entrepreneurial environment with a thriving family business at its heart. Having lived in 3 continents, Victoria is well versed in working across diverse cultures, timelines and to tight timescales. Victoria is adept at problem solving, and while entirely results driven, has the integrity and tenacity required to manage through challenging situations and get the best from people.
Victoria holds a BA Hons in HRM (2000) and is a member of the CIPD. Although Victoria has broad generalist experience touching all aspects of the HR spectrum, special interests include integration of HR strategy with business goals, talent management, change management, communications, employer branding, and cultural development. Victoria was Head of HR for Hawksmere Ltd during a successful MBO which took the business to sale in 2008. Hawksmere was one of the UK’s leading legal, financial and professional training and events businesses. The business was backed by ISIS Equity Partners and was sold in a trade sale to The Washington Post Group/Kaplan in 2008 – generating a 2.5x multiple for ISIS & significant returns. Victoria worked in partnership with the management team, the non exec chairman, interim MD and investors to deliver and implement a results orientated compliant HR framework and manage the large scale cultural change required to achieve business turnaround.
Sara Ferreira, HR Consultant is experienced in developing HR functions and people management with SMEs and entrepreneurial companies.
Sara has developed from scratch the HR function of an architecture company, advising and working closely with the business owners and managers to design fit-for-purpose and tailored processes, documentation, and learning and development initiatives. Her background qualifications are in Business Management and Economics, and earlier in her career Sara has set up and developed her own business in communication skills coaching.
Sara is an Associate member of the CIPD and she holds a masters qualification in Human Resource Management from Edinburgh Napier University.
In her spare time, Sara was a coach and mentor for the Beltane Fire Society, a registered charity, working closely with over 300 volunteers to deliver on charitable goals, and delivering various workshops and development initiatives.
Wendy Davidson, Operations Support has over 20 years HR experience in the oil and gas sector, including 5 years as an HR Director for an oil service company covering Europe, Africa and the FSU, where she managed an HR, Training and Communications team of up to 50. Wendy travelled extensively throughout her remit and is a firm believer in developing people from within an organisation. She latterly set up her own HR consultancy in the Aberdeen area, providing mainly manufacturing and engineering SMEs with hands on HR assistance. Having moved to Edinburgh with her family 5 years ago, Wendy kept busy in a variety of ways – invigilating at Heriot Watt University, cat sitting, dog walking, set up and run her own ice cream shop, however, the pull of HR and desire to use her extensive knowledge proved too much.
Wendy joined Purpose HR in Sept 2017 as the company encountered a growth surge and she now manages our Operations behind the scenes, ensuring the consultants are sufficiently primed and prepped to fully support our clients.
Wendy is a keen runner, having run every day in 2017 and takes part in 10K+ events. She and her husband have a 17 year old son who is studying to become a luthier (guitar maker!) and she loves to cook!