Emma Seaton Smith Celebrating Women in Project Management

Emma Seaton Smith Celebrating Women in Project Management

Emma Seaton-Smith


Location: London, UK

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I left school to pursue a degree in Jewellery & Silversmithing at the Birmingham School of Jewellery. Despite loving my work and achieving First Class Honours, I couldn’t see myself in the life of a designer artist and although I couldn’t put my finger on it at the time, I needed a greater purpose.

Having found myself accidentally working my way up management in a pub brand, I knew a big change was needed. After considerable research into medicine, I eventually decided on a degree in Radiography instead and qualified in 2006 and I loved working for the patients. I worked for three years in busy departments in the NHS and privately, before accepting a National Radiography Manager’s job with Lifescan.

Whilst not in my job description, I found myself in a key role integrating this small company’s radiology IT systems into the Spire Healthcare network when they bought Lifescan. It turned out to be a complex task which ignited my enthusiasm in clinical IT systems and I was fortunate that Spire Healthcare recognised this and offered me a position as a Clinical Implementation Specialist in the central IT team.

I am now an IT clinical project manager managing a handful of projects at any given time, including interfacing of clinical IT systems, clinical software delivery, radiology IT projects for imaging and scheduling systems and improving clinical incident management software. I love making the applications work for the clinical staff and bridging the gap between complicated IT systems and the clinical end users experience and I also love that my work still ultimately benefits patients.

Why do you enjoy working in the field of project management?

I enjoy turning a strategy or goal into a delivered outcome. I get a real sense of achievement when a project is completed and I also enjoy moving onto something new. I like that no two projects are the same and each one means I get to learn something new about the business, technology or processes.

What are your greatest achievements as a Project Manager?

I was shortlisted for a Rising Star Award 2017 in technology within 2 years of becoming an IT project manager.
Passing my Prince 2 early on, I found it initially, comletely baffling.

I was new to this career in 2015, my route was from another (clinical) area of the business. I now manage multiple projects concurrently and I really enjoy the job too.

Why is a career as a Project Manager a great choice for women?

I find it hard to answer why I think it is great for women in any way that doesn’t also apply to men, other than to say there are more men than women in the field and it would benefit from a female perspective, like so many traditionally male dominated roles. Listening and being sensitive to what is happening with your team are important skills that ensure your project keeps on the path to the project outcomes, timescales and budgets. You also then need to be able to steer them back in the right direction.

How can women stand out in the field of Project Management?

Seeking active involvement in mentoring for young people and putting yourself and your team or colleagues forward for awards. A social media presence is also good.

What are some of the challenges women face as Project Managers?

Project work can take you away from home, which can be hard with a young family, but this applies equally to men in my view..!

What can we do to help women to be exceptional Project Managers?

Mentoring, getting and staying connected and sharing ideas via social media or ‘real life’ groups. Celebtrating one another’s success with excellent organisations such as We Are The City.


To celebrate International Women’s Day for 2018, I will be sharing the profiles and stories of some incredible women who have flourished in their project management careers. May they inspire you and the women around you to kick goals in the world of project management.

Read more about my ‘Celebrating Women in Project Management’ 50-day series here. Starts February 1, 2018.

Join the conversation!

  1. Submit your own profile as a PM to be shared and celebrated online!
  2. #CelebratingWomenInProjectManagement (Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn)



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