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CPD - Open Programme

IoD South CPD - Professional Director Series, Reading

25 Oct 2019
VOCO Hotel (formerly the Millennium Madejski Hotel), Reading

IoD Professional Director Series | CPD in your region

The IoD is here to help you be the best leader you can be. Whether you’ve been a director for days or decades, there is always something new to discover about the role, your responsibilities, and the business world around you. In an economy that’s changing by the day, it’s never been more important to be on top of your game with professional development. 

To help you understand your role as a director, and future-proof your board and organisation, we’ve developed our Professional Director Series – bringing accessible and digestible CPD to your region on the topics that matter. The whole series – wherever you are in the UK - is mapped to the IoD Director Competency Framework, keeping your learning relevant, up-to-date and in line with your professional development ambitions. Whether you’re embarking on the Certificate in Company Direction or are a qualified Chartered Director, this CPD series is the perfect accompaniment – or refresher – to your existing knowledge.

You’ll also be part of a group of leaders from organisations of all shapes and sizes across your region, giving you the opportunity to connect, learn from each other, share your setbacks and successes, and encourage each other at the most senior level. 

Learn more about the Professional Director Series, including dates, venues and agendas here.

Course attendees can either register for a morning session, an afternoon session or the full day.


Date and location

Session 1
(morning session)

Session 2
(afternoon session)

Full Day
(morning and afternoon sessions)

25th October 2019

Millennium Madejski Hotel, Reading

Strategic Decision Making
Step to the top - Are you board ready?
(9am - 12.30pm)

£140 for members
£240 for non-members

Practical Tips for Becoming a NED
Leading from the Chair
(1.30pm – 5pm) 

£140 for members
£240 for non-members

Full Day CPD session
(9am – 4.30pm)

£249 for members
£349 for non-members


CPD Workshop Details 

Strategic Decision Making - Morning Course 1

The aim of this workshop is to equip participants with an understanding of the ingredients of effective strategic decision-making and provide insight into the main challenges. Having done this, the workshop provides participants with a way of assessing their own organisation’s competence in strategic decision-making and identifying the areas to focus on to strengthen this ability.
The workshop looks at all three of what Cliff Bowman called the ‘zones of debate’ and what these mean for directors. It looks at the role of ‘comfortable debate’ and the limits to its value. It looks at the notion of ‘uncomfortable debate’ with guidance on how to facilitate this. It will also explore the impact of ‘assumptions’ that underpin debate about strategic decisions, and how these are promoted by organisational culture and human behaviour as well as strategic deliberation.
This workshop is based on academic research and the book ‘Strategic Decision Making’, which focus on how senior teams make strategic decisions. 

By the time the delegate has completed the session, they should be able to:

1. Identify the ingredients of and challenges around effective strategic decision-making

2. Understand what their organisation needs to do to strengthen its strategic decision-making capability

Step to the top, 'Are you board ready?' - Morning Course 2

This workshop will enable the participants to determine whether they are ready (and willing!) to take the step to the boardroom.  Sometimes people often find themselves presented with the opportunity to become a board member on the basis of either being good at something else (e.g. perhaps at being a senior manager, an accountant or an engineer perhaps) or often by accident! Often, no consideration is given to whether they are board-ready or capable.

This interactive workshop explores the duties and obligations that delegates will face as board directors. Additionally, this workshop will also discuss the personal characteristics and traits that are required of an effective board member. As part of this workshop, delegates will also delve into the critical differences between being a director in an organisation and a manager in an organisation. 

The workshop is delivered by experienced board directors who, drawing on their personal experiences, will provide the delegates with a practical insight into life as a board member of both large and small companies. The workshop will also provide the delegates who wish to make the leap to the boardroom with signposting to areas where they may get further support and training in order to develop into confident and effective board members.

By the time the delegate has completed the session, they should be able to:

1.  Assess whether they are ready and/or willing to meet the challenge of becoming aboard director.

2.  Identify the gaps in their knowledge and expertise, and understand how they need to develop in order to become a confident and effective director.

Practical Tips for Becoming a NED - Afternoon Course 1

Choosing to become a non-executive director (NED) could be prompted by a lifestyle change or a desire to use skills and knowledge gained in an executive environment. This could be fuelled by a desire to do something worthy in the third sector or to support enterprising organisations. It could be something completely personal, fulfilling a desire to become involved in an organisation without taking on an executive role.

Whatever the rationale, it is essential to know how to access such roles – and how to make yourself the most desirable candidate in a marketplace where multiple applicants may be attempting to secure a prime role.

This workshop will also explore the risks and responsibilities of the NED role, with recommendations on best practice for assessing contracts in an increasingly litigious environment.

By the time the delegate has completed the session, they should be able to:

1. Identify what skills they have, and what skills they need to hone, to meet the needs of NED positions – and how to distinguish themselves from others. They will be able to use this knowledge to write a compelling CV and put together a well-prepared list of questions before they proceed.

2.  Understand the risks and responsibilities of being a NED, and as such be better placed to assess contracts.

Leading from the Chair - Afternoon Course 2


The role of the chair in an organisation is often misunderstood and regularly becomes confused with the role of the CEO. A chair’s role is far more than organising and managing the process of board meeting execution. Analysis of successful organisations has revealed that the leadership role of the chair is vital in order to ensure that the board as a team makes decisions and discharges its duties and obligations effectively.

This session will clarify the chair’s leadership role in order to unleash the value creating potential of the board. 

By the time the delegate has completed the session, they should be able to:

1. Outline the purpose of the chair and their role and responsibilities, in particular how their role differs from the role of the CEO 
1. Describe the skills, attributes and characteristics of an effective chair
2. Identify how the chair can help to create an effective board and add value both in and out of the boardroom

Advance members please note that you have access to CPD as part of your membership through the Advance Directors Skills Day – the next one can be found here. Please contact the Advance team if you have any questions regarding Advance Directors CPD Days.

Key details

Date & time: 25 Oct 2019 09:00 - 17:00
Location: VOCO Hotel (formerly the Millennium Madejski Hotel), Reading
CPD Hours: 6.0000

Prices from

140.00 GBP + VAT - Morning or Afternoon Session - Member Rate
240.00 GBP + VAT - Morning or Afternoon Session - Non-Member Rate
249.00 GBP + VAT - Full Day - Member Rate
349.00 GBP + VAT - Full Day - Non-Member Rate

Event manager:
Ms Polly Buckley
Contact phone:
Contact email:


IoD Course Leader
Murray Eldridge CDir

From ship’s captain to company boards, Murray’s career spans the shipping, offshore oil & gas, telecoms, and desalination industries and includes a successful retail start-up. He has over 40 years international experience and has operated at board level for the last 25 years holding executive and non-executive positions in predominantly B2B organisations. Executive board roles include marketing, strategy, commercial and managing director with Smit International, ASCoSmit, British Telecom, Cable & Wireless, China Telecom and Global Crossing, among others. Recent non-executive roles also include B2B medium sized companies in a variety of sectors from services to engineering.   

Murray has extensive experience in setting up and managing international joint ventures (UK, China, Japan, Indonesia) and global alliances (NEC) and spent 7 years in Asia Pacific (Singapore and China). His experience includes successfully running companies during three major sector crashes in three separate industries and selling a major company. He remains a shareholder in the desalination company he helped establish in 2005.

As a facilitator/consultant Murray has worked with companies such as Petronas, Schindler, Philips, Porsche, Coca Cola and Alcatel as well as many SME companies, private equity firms and the Ministry of Defence (including lecturing at the Royal College of Defence Studies). He is able to: help develop organisational strategies to unlock performance; leverage cross-sector strategic and operational implementation experience at the most senior level to strengthen performance and improve resilience; guide organisations through large-scale, critical change situations. Murray has considerable experience working with board teams to enhance functionality and facilitating key discussions and decision making at board level, and across key stakeholders, to assist good corporate governance.

Program Development & Delivery

Murray is a Program Leader for the UK Institute of Directors on their examined Chartered Director program delivering: 

Strategy for Directors (SfD Certificate Program)
Leadership for Directors (LfD Certificate Program)
Developing Board Performance (DBP Diploma Program) 
Nominee Director (designed & developed) 

and other bespoke programs.

He is a Senior Associate with the Brussels based Management Centre Europe

He works with two UK universities on leadership, strategy and performance, including webinars and keynote addresses at conferences.

Murray is the author of ‘Leading High Performance’ (Crimson Publishing).

Professional Credentials
Murray is a Chartered Director, a Fellow of the Institute of Directors, a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute and holds an MBA. He is a recipient of China’s prestigious Magnolia Award. He was also a Master Mariner (1st Class).

Murray was brought up in Malaysia and has travelled the world extensively. He has lived and worked in Singapore, China and Cyprus. He is married with two children and currently lives in the United Kingdom. He enjoys sport, keeping fit, is an ex-international rower and a qualified British Rowing coach.



Prices from

140.00 GBP + VAT - Morning or Afternoon Session - Member Rate
240.00 GBP + VAT - Morning or Afternoon Session - Non-Member Rate
249.00 GBP + VAT - Full Day - Member Rate
349.00 GBP + VAT - Full Day - Non-Member Rate


Please tick here to indicate that you have read and agree to the Terms and Conditions for this booking.

  • VOCO Hotel (formerly the Millennium Madejski Hotel)
  • Junction 11 M4
  • Reading
  • RG2 0FL

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