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British Cycling CEO Julie Harrington is the guest on episode 69 of the Leaders Sport Business Podcast. Harrington joined British Cycling in May 2017, replacing Ian Drake at the helm of one of British sport’s most successful National Governing Bodies, but one in need of governance reform following successive investigations into anti-doping procedure and workplace culture.
Harrington took on the role having been Group Operations Director at the FA since 2011, running both Wembley Stadium and St George’s Park. Prior to working for the FA, Harrington spent nine years with the Northern Racing Group as operations director. Harrington has also worked in senior marketing roles for brands such as British Airways, Whitbread, and Carlsberg-Tetley.
Harrington sat down with Leaders during a break at Global Sports Week in Paris, where she was speaking on the subject of sport and urbanism.
On the conversational agenda:
– How Harrington has gone about building a new integrity and compliance function within British Cycling;
– “Three years of flying the plane, while trying to fix the plane;”
– The challenges she has encountered during the change process and her advice for other leaders with a mandate for reform;
– Her route into the sports industry and why working for a brewery in sports sponsorship felt like too much like hard work;
– Imposter syndrome, Gareth Southgate’s killer question for Harrington on her FA recruitment panel, and her advice for how to crack an interview for a big job.