Meet our Members: Anna Hunt, UK Chief Risk Officer at National Grid

3 min read
Dec 15, 2021

Our new “Meet our Members” blog series will profile a cross-section of risk professionals within our network, revealing their day-to-day responsibilities, their company’s risk priorities for the year ahead, and why they joined – and continue to value – Risk Leadership Network.


In this first instalment, we speak to Anna Hunt, UK Chief Risk Officer at National Grid, who discusses the multi-faceted nature of her role, her team’s efforts to drive towards NetZero, and how the tailored approach of Risk Leadership Network is keeping conversations about risk “worthwhile and relevant”.


Name: Anna Hunt

Job title: UK Chief Risk Officer, National Grid

My day-to-day responsibilities at National Grid

I have a long and varied list of responsibilities, including setting and executing risk, compliance and ethics (RCE) strategy; leading transformation in support of effective and efficient standardised risk management; and thought leadership to balance value protection and creation through risk-based decision-making. I am also our business separation compliance officer, accountable to Ofgem for upholding all our license conditions and leading the risk response to TCFD.

A regular day consists of many meetings across all areas of our business, but there is no ‘regular’ set of meetings. It could be me facilitating a sensitive high profile allegation triage, an exec training session on risk appetite, or an integration planning workshop for a large acquisition. There really is never a dull moment!

Why I enjoy working in risk management

We are working tirelessly to ‘make risk everybody’s business’ at National Grid, so I get a lot of exposure to the wider business and the great people within it. There is so much variety to my role and I get to be part of fascinating conversations every day that make a huge difference to what we are trying to achieve as a business, ultimately helping us lead the way to a NetZero future.

Why I joined Risk Leadership Network

I was inundated with different network invites when I took on my role at National Grid, but the personal, tailored, and responsive approach of Risk Leadership Network really resonated with me and what I needed. I liked the fact that Risk Leadership Network are real, invested and engaged people, rather than a faceless, generic network. It is also refreshing and unique that the approach is about ‘putting concepts into practice’, rather than just teaching the theory of ‘best practice’ ideas.

How being a member of Risk Leadership Network has provided value

The set-up works brilliantly for me and my wider team. The biggest value-add for us is the tailored approach adopted by Risk Leadership Network, which engages members to drive the agenda. This allows the network to make sure conversations are worthwhile and relevant, and the audience and attendees are engaged and interested. The creation of like-minded ‘cohorts’ is also fantastic, allowing for more detailed discussions and the creation of enduring relationships outside of the network. The Risk Leadership Network team are also really accessible and receptive to ideas and requests. On many occasions, they have supported me with informal requests for information or collaboration, which has been invaluable over the last 12 months.

The main challenges for risk leaders in my sector

There is such an increased focus on risk at the moment – not just in terms of threat management, but value protection – that the pace of transformation to adapt to this increased scrutiny needs to be rapid. Recent events have also proved that ‘traditional’ risk management methods don’t always manage or predict risk with enough agility, so innovative and responsive approaches need to be found. Our aspirations around leading an effective energy transition and paving the way to NetZero create a complex set of challenges for us; we need to balance operational risk and strategic objectives in a climate of huge reputational scrutiny, and our risk approach needs to consider all of these aspects.

Our priorities and outlook for 2022

We have several strategic priorities, but some overarching themes include ‘demystifying risk’ for our business and making ‘risk everybody’s business’, mainly through upskilling of the first line, empowering the second line and prioritising with the third line. We are also bringing together our risk, compliance and ethics functions to create a robust, controls-based approach to how we approach each of them. Working with strategy will also ensure we are thinking beyond our current risks and allow us to horizon scan more effectively. The transformation agenda for 2022 is packed!

If I wasn’t a risk manager, I would be…

I was told by a facilitator on a course I attended a few years ago that I would make a good therapist!

To see how becoming a Risk Leadership Network member could benefit you, find out more about membership today.

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