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My Penguin – Maleka Allen, HR

Read the introduction to Bachrach's bestselling book showing us how creativity really works - and which methods and techniques can help make us more creative.

Maleka at the centre, with collage of books, files and spreadsheets surrounding her

My day starts off with...

A 30 min walk to the train station and then an hour commute into the office! So lots of time to get some listening in – this can vary day to day, but I go for podcasts, music, or books (currently listening to Why We Sleep). As soon as I get into work, I make myself a bowl of porridge.

I am responsible for...

The administrative tasks within HR. This includes making sure new joiner documents are sent out, processing job changes, any holiday or benefit queries, running reports – basically the all important day to day background tasks that keep things the whole company ticking along.

I applied for this job because...

My childhood dream was to work with, or be surrounded by books. I had reached the end of my time at my previous role and was looking for the next challenge. And when your childhood dreams pop up online – you have to apply for it!

Maleka's recommendations

My day looks like...

After my porridge you can find me categorising emails, processing new joiners and job changes, talking with providers if employees have any issues with the holiday or benefits and making sure we have up to date info for employees. 

My most surreal work moment…

It's very exciting for me when I get the chance to meet authors!  So, one of my favourite moments was meeting the author of The Book of EchoesRosanna Amaka. We had a quick chat, and I tried to be cool about it, but I know my excitement took away that illusion! She was so lovely, and she signed a book for my mum, it was brilliant.

My biggest 'oops' moment...

When I first started, I accidentally issued a notification to an employee about them being made permanent... before the manager had the conversation with them – whoops! The employee came back to me absolutely ecstatic; the manager… less so but wasn’t too annoyed! It was an easy enough mistake to make when you start a new job but not one I hope to make again, phew.

I love my job because...

It's such a creative environment that helps people spread their stories across the world. While HR may be considered less glamourous than other departments, it is the vital glue that keeps whole the business together. Plus the feeling of seeing an email from a new starter delighted with their welcome pack makes it all worth it.

My daily toolkit

Picture of laptop, charger, notebook, coffee, banana and headphones collaged

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