Meet Becky Wollam -

Regional Operations Director

Meet Becky Wollam, our new Regional Operations Director, who joined Costa Coffee earlier this month.  Becky shares her thoughts on empowerment, always saying yes to opportunities and showing up at work as your whole self.

What was it that excited you the most about joining Costa?

So many things! Joining a team who have been market leading for thirteen years as the Nation’s favourite coffee shop but continues to strive for more. Our plans for growth, both in the UK and internationally, not just within Costa but our parent company, Coca-Cola. And the opportunity to work within a team where we operate over 2,500 served stores over the UK. And of course, our great quality coffee!

Becky With Group Of Costa Colleagues

What is your favourite Coffee?


What stood out to you throughout the interview process about Costa?

The purpose and values of an organisation are incredibly important to me. So, when I started looking for my next role, this was my starting point and Costa’s values of passion, warmth, courage and trust really resonated.
From the beginning, the process was a two-way conversation, allowing me to get to know Costa and vice versa. The process was pacey yet comprehensive, friendly and warm, professional and detailed.
Costa made me feel valued from our first interaction. This included checking-in with me throughout the process and allowing me to spend lots of time in their stores to better understand the business. There was no doubt in my mind that this was a values driven business which I wanted to be part of.

As a female leader what have been your biggest challenges and how did you overcome them?

In my early twenties I had a line manager who was incredibly focused on my age and gender. This presented a number of challenges and wasn't always easy to navigate. It taught me to keep going, to invest my time on my contribution (not his), to always be positive and to take the great stuff about his leadership style, not dwelling or focusing on the not-so-great stuff.

As a leader how do you empower others on your team?

It is always important to show up with positivity and a can-do attitude. After all, nobody wants to work for a grumpy, inconsistent boss! But with positivity must come clarity of vision and purpose; what are we striving to achieve and what role would you like me to play to support you in achieving it.

What's the best career decision you have made?

To just say yes! I have always taken the approach that if I am offered an opportunity then to go for it. Whilst I have always enjoyed roles to varying different degrees, I have always learnt something about myself and they have enabled me to progress my leadership style. This has better set me up for my next role. Don't chase the promotion chase the experiences and make your CV as varied, different and exciting as you possibly can.

Becky Holding Cambridge Half Marathon Medal

How do you think the culture at Costa will allow you to thrive?

From my first interaction everybody has been incredibly welcoming, making me feel at home and part of a team, from sharing knowledge, insight and opinion to also wanting to hear my thoughts. There is a real togetherness and team spirit at Costa which I believe is critical to not just enable me to thrive but for the business to succeed. I am excited for the future!

What memorable lessons did you learn from people who inspire you?

To always be yourself. I once worked for a line manager who invited myself and their other direct reports to their home each year for dinner with their family. I initially thought this was a little odd, whilst of course, it was always a brilliant evening, but it really taught me that to lead people you have to show your full self. You cannot be a robot or only show the side you want or think people want to see. But, to lead people well, you have to be all in to fully gain their buy-in and show them why you’re worth following.

What advice would you give the next generation of leaders?

At times I think it can be easy to focus on the next promotion, but my advice would be to focus on your next experience. If someone asks you to do something or a different role, they would have considered why you are the best person for the role, so say yes. I remember once being asked to open an acquired store for Waitrose. I straight away said yes. My Line Managers response? ‘Do you not want to ask where it is located?’ I still smile when I think of the conversation. It was a brilliant experience and whilst it wasn't a promotion, I learnt so much and it was one of my most enjoyable and challenging roles to date.

How can you be a role model for future leaders at Costa?

Whilst it may sound a little clichéd I truly believe that ‘people won’t remember what you said or did, but, they will remember how you make them feel.’ When I reflect on the very best people I have worked with, they have made me feel a million dollars! I have felt confident, resilient, positive, happier that I can achieve everything and anything and under their leadership I have always delivered.
As a successful leader in Costa, this is what I would want people to feel when working with me. To look back on their time working with me with a smile on their face and pride in what they delivered.

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