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| Posted by: Prospectus

Trustees Week Profile 2014: Peter Beeby


Peter has a BA(Hons) in International Relations and is Prince 2 qualified. His experience is drawn both from the private and 'beyond profit' sectors, having previously worked for Halifax plc and the British Council. Peter is currently a trustee for Timebank, the national volunteering charity, and was previously Chair of Southwark Bereavement Care, a counselling charity. He also volunteered at London 2012, recruiting volunteers as well as taking part as a Games Maker.

What motivated you to become a trustee?

Volunteering was my initial motivation – and when I considered how I could apply my skills in my free time I thought serving as Trustee could be a good option. In terms of choosing the organisation I volunteered with, for my first role I knew I to volunteer with a cause that I was passionate about but also something local – which is what led me to Southwark Bereavement Care.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced?

As a Trustee of a small charity I felt that the team of staff (which was only 2 people) was very reliant on the board – they deserve good, strong and quality people to support them and meeting that commitment could be challenging at times – but also rewarding in terms of my learning and experience as a Trustee.

Do you believe you add value and in what way?

Yes – particularly with Southwark Bereavement Care I felt as the Chair I was a good sounding board and point of contact for the team. In my current role with Timebank I think I add a lot of value with my skills around HR, people management and compliance. Beyond this I think the informal support you can offer the executive team and board, be it talking through challenges and opportunities outside of meetings, is really valuable – as much as the formal side.

Do you believe the organisation values you?

Yes – to answer no begs the question why are you on the board? If I don’t believe it and the organisation doesn’t think it then something isn’t right. This is one of the benefits of a good recruitment process and understanding what skills you need to complement the existing Trustee Board – people will feel they add value because you have appointed them and value them for specific skills.

What have you learnt that you didn’t expect you would?

That I have a lot more to say than I realised! In meetings I have found I ask a lot more questions and give my view (be it positive or negative) than I thought I would.

Do you have any tips for aspiring/newly appointed trustees?

Go with your gut feeling when looking at a role – but always do your research on an organisation before you jump in. Understand what the organisation does and how they do it – also always insist on an induction!

With over 13 years experience in charity recruitment, Peter Beeby is the Deputy Chief Executive at Prospectus. Peter oversees the delivery of all Prospectus back office functions, ensuring the efficiency and effectiveness of day-to-day operations. Peter is also the strategic lead for our Frontline recruitment team, and manages large operational projects. Peter recently delivered an employability project in partnership with Thames Reach, supporting homeless people back into work.

Peter registered with Prospectus for work in 2000 to pursue a career in the charity sector when he was offered the opportunity to centralise the operational functions at Prospectus. Peter's passion for Prospectus is driven by his belief in the value of professional recruitment services, that enable the charity sector to find the best people and facilitate the right choices.