We are really sorry to hear of the death of Dame Helen Alexander. She was chief executive of the Economist and Director of the CBI and held directorships in many great businesses. She was widely recognised as a brilliant and effective leader.

We were proud to have her as one of our illustrious “star questioners”. Our experts’ views can help a graduate job seeker or professional to improve their own predictive skills and decision making.

We recommend reading some of tributes which attest to the respect and affection people held for her.

The Times Obituary

Dame Helen Alexander Tributes:

The Economist  – “The best of bosses”

The Guardian

The Independent

Radio 4 Today  (21:00 mins) & BBC News

John Karslake writes:

I first met Helen in Paris, in the ’70s, when we were occasionally studying and enjoying post school freedom before coming to university in the UK. Helen and her great school friend, Victoria Manser, were frequent attenders of parties at my house in Auteuil and wonderful to have around. (Helen’s continuing love of France, which took her back to the Sorbonne and her MBA at INSEAD was reflected by her role in the Franco-British elite networking group and recognised when she was awarded the Legion d”honneur.) In London, in our early working days, the best Christmas parties were at Helen’s house, where her circle of Richard Curtis’ friends provided hilarious, entertainment. Some of the jokes aired duly appeared in films later.

I was really delighted when, all those years later, she agreed to become a “star questioner” for Mettletest, despite all her commitments. Helen was sometimes described as “self-effacing”. I share here her email acceptance when I asked if she would join Mettletest:

Do I think this is an interesting idea? Yes. 

Do I hope you will forgive me for not replying before? Yes. 

Do I expect you will? No, but hoping.

Will I do it – at least once, i.e. for a year? Yes.

Am I scared about having to write 200 words for a ‘model’ answer?

You bet.


When we last met at a party we agreed she and her husband Tim would come to dinner “after the summer”. Not to be now….