The lunchtime lockdown with... Kerry Byrne

17 Dec 21 by Kerry Byrne
Kerry Byrne

As a firm which places Employee Relations (ER) at our heart, we are proud of the amazing team here at esphr. That is why our current employee Q&A seeks to share a little more about each one of our colleagues.

In this month’s instalment, we hear more from senior marketing executive, Kerry Byrne, who shares a humorous tale of a trip to Tenerife, why a career in marine biology sadly wasn’t to be, and the colleague that never fails to make her laugh out loud…

1. What’s the one thing which marks esphr out as an employer of choice?

In a nutshell – working with my colleagues towards a clear goal.

For years, we’ve all shared the same vision of being a successful disruptor within the legal industry and having like-minded colleagues all contributing to that has created a really inspiring environment to work in.

2. What would you say if you were to explain what esphr does to an alien?

Helping organisations with people issues and making life easier for them – from both an advisory and a technology point of view.

3. If you could give anyone an internal award, who would it be and what would it be for?

Hannah Thompson – our operations executive.

No matter how much work she has on her desk or how much pressure she’s under, she will always just get on with it and deliver what she needs to. It’s something I really admire in her.

She makes my working life a lot more fun too and there’s rarely a time when we’re together in the office that we’re not laughing our heads off.

4. What is your funniest memory of someone in the team?

This seems to be a common theme in our Q&A answers, but Russell Guest (sales director) really has given us some corkers over the years.

We have been lucky enough as a company to have been taken away on holiday for hitting various targets. One year, we went to Tenerife and after a jolly old night in the hotel bar we went back to the rooms for a bit of an after party – it’s safe to say that we weren’t quiet, and the guests upstairs decided to throw a fork down onto our balcony to make a point. Russell then proceeded to take said fork and try to identify the room it belonged to, in order to return it.

However, the layout of the hotel – plus the night’s activities up to this point – contributed towards Russell then getting lost and knocking on a complete stranger’s door instead at 3am. It will forever be one of my best nights and funniest memories with my esphr colleagues.

5. What keeps the job interesting for you?

Having been acquired by Marlowe plc earlier in the year and, more recently, co-branded with our sister company WorkNest, we are now lucky enough to have the support of a variety of new colleagues and specialisms that – in my role particularly – I have benefitted from, both from a knowledge and a resource point of view.

This has meant my job has become much more collaborative and I have lots of exciting plans for future growth within esphr and across the businesses we’re now working with closely.

6. If you hadn’t chosen/gone into the career you’re in, what other profession would you be in?

I always wanted to be a marine biologist when I was younger, I even took biology as an A-level only to be told very quickly that it wasn’t a great skill of mine and I should probably focus on my more creative subjects…

Otherwise, I think I would’ve/could’ve gone into an IT role – I’m pretty nifty with computers and did a bit of programming at university (plus I love all things data related) so something techy maybe.

7. Where do you see esphr in five years’ time?

Hopefully, where we always wanted the business to get to – a leading provider of employment law advice for mid-large businesses in the UK and ahead of its game in terms of software solutions for employers. A legacy our MD Pete Byrne will hopefully be even more proud of.

8. A little-known fact about you?

I used to be a dab hand at producing photo-realistic paintings – not something I have the patience for these days but something I can look back at and admire about myself.

9. If we went into lockdown again, who would you like to be locked down with and why?

Trying not to come up with a boring answer here, obviously I missed my family loads during the various lockdowns we’ve had so far but is it bad to say my parents’ dogs?

I don’t feel like a reason why needs much more justification other than the photo below.


10. Which five celebrities (dead or alive) would you invite to a dinner party?

Just a precursor, none of mine are particularly intellectual and are mainly film, music or TV based:

  1. Eddie Redmayne – in the unrealistic hope that he’d be like his character Newt from the film Fantastic Beasts
  2. Benedict Cumberbatch – again, I love Sherlock so these answers are all character based
  3. Billie Eilish – beautiful voice and songwriter, plus she seems like a fun person to have around
  4. Ant and Dec – For the laughs (do they count as one or two?)
  5. YEBBA – if you don’t know her, look her up – one of the best singing voices around at the moment in my opinion.


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Post by Kerry Byrne

Senior marketing executive, esphr