The “massive shock” of being named Chartered Manager of the Year

Written by Dave Waller Monday 15 April 2024
When work life began to undermine her health, Jen Baines looked to boost her management capability with the CMgr standard – and literally reaped the rewards
Jennifer Baines CMgr MCMI

“I was worried about my staff 24/7 and the stress meant my MS (multiple sclerosis) accelerated quickly. My doctor said if I carried on like that, I’d die. I realised I had to be able to protect myself as well as my staff.”

Jen Baines CMgr MCMI may have spent seven years at the National Crime Agency (NCA), but when it came to examining evidence of her a life-or-death issue later in her own career, it took her a long time to join the dots. Eventually doing so would yield one of the biggest lessons of her 22-year career.

You could be the next winner…

Nominations are now open for the 2024 CMI Awards, which celebrate outstanding leadership and management across a range of categories. Want to find out more about the awards and get started on your nomination?

Click here


Jen has MS. After the NCA, she spent four years managing the modern slavery team at a smaller law enforcement organisation, and failed to spot that her work environment was making her condition worse. 

“It was completely overwhelming my life,” she says. “We were dealing with really high-level potential threat-to-life issues and cases in the field of modern slavery. At one point, my team was only 40% of the size it should’ve been. Policies weren’t being followed up.” 

Part of Jen’s response was to embark on the path to becoming Chartered to bolster her management skills.

Read on: how a CMI award boosted this Chartered Manager’s self-belief


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