Ruby McGregor-Smith was born in 1963 in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, in northern India. She moved to the UK aged two with her mother, joining her father who was training as an accountant in London. She grew up in Stanmore in the London Borough of Harrow, attending Bentley Wood High School and Lowland Sixth Form College before graduating from Kingston University in 1985 with a degree in economics.
Career Following university McGregor-Smith trained for six years as an accountant at BDO Stoy Hayward. After qualifying, she joined Serco Group PLC, an outsourcing firm, in 1991, and worked there for nine years in a range of operational and financial roles.
In 2002, after a brief spell at the facilities management firm Service Group International (SGI), McGregor-Smith joined Mitie Group PLC as Group Financial Director. In 2005 she was promoted to Group COO, and became CEO two years later when her predecessor Ian Stewart retired to take over the role of Deputy chairman. As the first Asian female chief executive of a FTSE 250 company, the appointment received extensive press coverage.
McGregor-Smith’s tenure as CEO has seen Mitie’s top and bottom lines grow every year, boosted by strong demand for energy efficiency services.  She was quick to identify energy management as a source of future growth: the 2009 acquisition Dalkia UK, a facilities management firm specialising in energy services, significantly boosted Mitie’s strength in this niche market. Internal initiatives at Mitie in which McGregor-Smith has personal involvement include ‘Mitie’s Got Talent’, a company-wide talent contest; and ‘Mitie Millions’, at which she and finance director Suzanne Baxter judge budding entrepreneurs with up to £5m to invest in the winners. The only non-executive directorship she holds is on the board of recruitment firm Michael Page. title