CBI interviews 45 but then gives top job to an insider

David Hellier
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JOHN Cridland was yesterday appointed to the £310,000 a year job as the CBI’s new director-general, succeeding the outgoing Richard Lambert.

The current deputy director-general, Cridland becomes the CBI’s 10th director-general but the first to be appointed to that position from within the organisation.

The CBI was at pains to point out that the appointment was no shoe-in. The successful candidate fended off competition from 44 other candidates, 17 of whom were interviewed as part of the process. One woman and five men made it down to the final six candidates, the CBI said yesterday. Announcing Mr Cridland’s selection, Helen Alexander, CBI President, said: “With all eyes on the business community to lead our country’s economic recovery, the role of CBI director-general has never been more important.” Cridland, 49, was educated at Boston Grammar School and has an MA in History from Christ’s College, Cambridge. He joined the CBI as a policy adviser in 1982 and became the CBI’s youngest-ever director in 1991, when he took over the environmental affairs brief. He moved on to human resources policy in 1995, and has been Deputy Director-General since 2000.