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Khalia Newell: Braveheart And Problem-Solver

Khalia Newell - Black British Business Awards 2015.

Khalia Newell is one of the bravest women on the planet; early in her career, she did something that needed to be done, although it could easily have ruined her career. For one of the most powerful, intelligent and recognisable women in Investment Banking (and by extension, in the City) who spends some of her time mentoring, honour and integrity are everything.

Khalia is also a Women4Africa 2017 Award finalist …


Name: Khalia D. Newell

Best Known For: Being Olivia Pope’s lookalike (apparently)…

Describe yourself in three words: Generous, Resilient and Ambitious

Previous occupation: Risk and Control Manager

12-month goal: On a personal level, to travel to new countries and truly experience/enjoy life outside of work. Professionally speaking, to be promoted to VP within an Investment bank, work for a leader who is passionate about developing their people, and mentor more within the Diversity and Inclusion space.

Describe your outlook & what makes your work, unique: My outlook has always been to consider the bigger picture in the midst of what may often be challenging circumstances. Often most of my time is spent internally trying to strategise and plan for the future. One unique trait I have mastered is being able to genuinely connect with people from varied walks of life. This often translates into my work as I will usually seek out a variety of ideas from different individuals with a unique perspective, analyse these ideas before selecting a final course of action. It often results in many innovative ideas being implemented.

Your greatest career highlights to date: Becoming the Risk and Control lead for four global businesses within Barclays Investment Bank within 12 months.

Khalia Newell – Black British Business Awards 2015.

Is international appeal important to you? Absolutely. Having the ability to impact and effect change in more than one location is a tremendous opportunity.

Most important piece of equipment you use in your career: Technology-wise, a computer to carry out my day to day activities. But intellectually, my mind.

A typical day for you is: I am up during the week at 4:30am. I get into the office for 7:30am/8am where I generally have meetings or various projects/stakeholders throughout the day to manage. I leave the office at 6pm unless something urgent has come in. After getting home, I make something quick to eat and then go to the gym for 7:30pm/8pm. After the gym, I get home for 9pm where I then have an hour to read before ending the day.

What legacy would you like to leave? To be remembered as a mensch by those I had the opportunity to meet. I’d also like to be known as the person who always put the needs of others above myself, who inspired and practically helped others to achieve their dreams.


Career Challenges

What is the hardest professional decision you’ve ever had to make? Having to challenge senior leaders and stakeholders on their conduct and behaviour towards junior members of staff, whilst I was a junior.

Khalia with Prince Charles

Your biggest career mistake: Giving up on my goals and dreams within my first few years of work and not seeking mentors and sponsors in the very early stages of my career.

Most common & avoidable mistake you see in younger people in your career: Chasing after money, titles, status and material things, as they believe having these things equate to success.

Single piece of advice you give your mentees: What you know will get you through the door, who you know can provide opportunities for you to be developed/promoted from there.



Khalia Newell

You live in: London

Favourite food: Roasted fish or curried lobster, with pear and apple crumble for dessert.

Biggest spiritual/life lesson you’ve learned: Life is full of unexpected twists and turns; it is good to pursue your plans, but equally important to have contingencies.

What do you do for leisure? I love to read, watch films and travel at least once a quarter.

One app or piece of technology you cannot do without: My phone and the internet!

Your most over-used word/phrase: “Essentially…”


Khalia Newell can also be reached on social media – Twitter and LinkedIn.

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