International Women’s Day – Booker Group

Celebrating the influential women across convenience

Lindsay Murphy, learning and development partner at Booker Group.

This post was written in collaboration with Booker Group.

Lindsay Murphy, learning & development partner at Booker Group

Tell us about your own success story, positive experiences etc?

I have worked for Booker for 15 years now, and I love my job. I enjoy the variety my role brings and having the opportunity to collaborate with people from all over the UK in an array of roles and levels across different parts of the business.

I enjoy working with people, being part of a brilliant team and contributing to the overall success of the business. The relationships that I have built across Booker are integral to my success and the ability to influence and engage others to build support.

I have built up a great network and enjoy supporting colleagues to learn, develop and reach their full potential. ​I joined the team at Booker from Makro when they became part of the group.

I have since had the opportunity to work on various projects including delivery, health & safety, operational, service, and supervisory training. I then had the opportunity of leading the fresh training programmes. This gave me the chance to lead on a key, high profile programme that involves working with a broad range of internal and external stakeholders.

In the last few years, I have also been able to provide support with a cultural change programme, delivering management development, behavioural programmes and inclusion and diversity learning.

Besides supporting the development of others, I have been supported to continue my personal professional development by completing a Level 4 Food Safety qualification (enabling me to deliver Food Safety Level 3 qualification to others), Level 5 Learning & Development Consultant Apprenticeship and latterly accreditation as an Insights (personality profile tool) Practitioner. I am now planning to complete the Level 7 Learning & Development Apprenticeship, to support my aspiration to develop and progress further.

What opportunities are there for career evolution within your company?

One of the projects I manage, the Fresh Development Academy, provides a great example of how Booker supports colleagues’ development and career progression. The Academy provides a clear pathway to develop colleagues trade skills and supports their career path from entry level trainee, through a Level 2 or 3 national apprenticeship, to becoming a butchery manager and even achieving master butcher status.

I am a strong advocate of encouraging more females into the butchery trade and have seen some great successes with this; with many progressing through the development programmes and furthering their careers into management positions. ​

I am delighted that the Academy has encouraged more women to start and develop their careers within butchery, we have some brilliant role models who have progressed their butchery careers within the business, including the Institute of Meat’s first woman master butcher.

I am proud of the part I have been able to play in achieving this. The programmes have supported over 50 women to start and progress their careers in butchery, many using the programme to re-skill and restart their careers.

Beyond this, over recent years, there has been a real drive in the investment of developing colleagues and providing opportunities for colleagues to benefit from. We now have a brilliant learning offer and toolkit to support colleagues who want to get on and develop in their role or progress their career.

What has your experience been like as a woman working in your field?

In 2020 I won 2 awards at the Meat Management Industry Publication, Women in Meat Awards – Woman Wholesaler of the Year and the overall Businesswoman of the Year award, which I was extremely proud of. ​It has been brilliant to be recognised for my contribution and be supported by the business by being put forward for these awards.

I have recently joined the Women@Booker network as deputy lead for comms and events which I feel very privileged to be part of. Wanting to support, inspire and motivate female careers across the business, I strongly believe that women can progress throughout the company in any role and in an industry that has historically been male dominated.

I feel passionate about contributing to this and use my own experiences to help other women achieve their goals and be anything they want to be.

What experiences have your female clients had (positive or negative) within retail, if this is something you can share with us?

It is great to be part of a business that fully supports and invests in all colleagues. I have worked with many female colleagues who have started off with no experience in butchery and gone on to progress through our internal programme and national apprenticeships to butchery manager. We also now have a lot more women enrolling on our programmes, which is fantastic to see and be part of.

We launched our Women@Booker network in 2023. This has been such a positive step in bringing women together, raising the profile of our many talented women, along with developing a strong network of allies to support us in continuing to work towards gender diversity.

Through the Women@Booker network and events I am highlighting opportunities for women to develop and raise their profiles; spreading the message that this is a very dynamic, passionate industry to be a part of, and I have certainly found it very rewarding and enjoyable. The colleagues I have met and worked with both internally and externally have also been very welcoming and positive about what women can bring to the industry.


Click here to read more about the inspiring and influential women working across the convenience retail sector.