Simone Robinson, Head of Regional Relationships for IoD East of England puts Carolyn Rand under the spotlight
Tell us a little about your career to date.
Director (26 years experience), Consultant, CEO (aged only 30) incentive and wine company CEO Biotech,COO, CFO, Fellow, Fellow, Chair, Chair, Board Member, ….Chartered Accountant, and built a few self-build houses in between for fun.
What keeps you busy outside work?
Family, friends, past colleges and a love of networking and hearing other people’s stories.
How long have you been involved with the IoD ?
I joined the IoD back in the early 80s when I had my first leadership role managing a hamper, incentive and wholesale wine business based loosely in Cambridgeshire, the IoD had a vibrant team but due to life changes I drifted away in the 90s, until a friend and CEO told me how I was really missing out on a trick, she had just herself become a Chartered Director and after hearing her story I thought I could do with some of that. So I re-joined, and found the extra advice services and are fantastic and I have completed the certificate course. I wish I had done that earlier in my career, better late than never. So now I am a convert and happy to recommend the experience.
Tell us about life in Cambridgeshire
I came to Cambridgeshire 30 years ago and have never left because - there is always something happening. It's vibrant. From music and science festivals to the Shakespeare's season in the city. There is history, learning and knowledge, punt tours on the river and the wildlife in the Fens is amazing. The business as an area is healthy and growing. Cambridgeshire is both a hub of innovation and tradition. It’s a great place for business.
Why did you apply for to the chair role?
I see this as an opportunity to encourage the sharing and pass-on knowledge and experience in order to help benefit business and its leaders, not just from me, through our members and Ambassadors ...The IOD is about improving the way we and businesses do things, through communication, dealing with the current issues, education and influencing to the benefit of all.
I see my role as continuing and building on this philosophy, and perhaps encouraging small business to diversify and extend their knowledge networks to build in the ability to cope with the changing landscape.
What do you hope to achieve over 3 years as Chair?
The IoD is the foundation stone supporting everything that is good in business a meeting of minds.
This a quite a unique region in terms of the diversity of the business landscape. It offers wide opportunities to gain knowledge. I want to share the secret, the Chartered Director program .We are not born business gurus it is a skill that is learnt, and can be passed between leaders.
I am keen to develop the business IoD ambassadors of subject specialists in Cambridgeshire to provide a conduit of help and advice through the networks, advising on policy development, influencing and supporting our local business needs to create a bigger and clear voice.
Collaboration! That is the word! With our IOD ambassadors joining together we are stronger, we can seek out the opportunities change brings and so becoming the change that we really want to see.
So if you are interested in getting involved meet new people, enhance your personal brand, have a voice, share an opinion and are happy to talk to the media or write an article join us by becoming an IoD voluntary ambassador. If that appeals to you please get in contact.