IoD Essex Branch Ambassador Introduction
Your name:Ross Chaplin
Your title/role and company name: Owner, The Training Team Ltd
Your IoD branch:IoD Essex
Your IoD Branch Ambassador role:Skills Ambassador
Q: How long have you been involved with the IoD?
Q: Can you tell us a little about your career to date?
I have been in the training industry in the UK for nearly 20 years and I work with a number of key clients across the UK, delivering management and leadership and coaching and mentoring qualification programmes. These programmes are accredited by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM). They range from Level 2 for Team Leaders, to Level 7, for Senior Managers and Executives.
I am also a qualified coach and I personally deliver coaching and mentoring programmes for those who wish to be workplace coaches and for organisations who wish to introduce a coaching culture.
I also work with many business owners as a mentor, offering business development support in a variety of areas, such as setting strategy, planning, sales and finance.
Q: What do you hope to achieve as an IoD Branch Ambassador?
I hope that I can serve the IoD in a productive and valuable way. My role will be to serve, to be visible and to provide the right guidance where needed on education and skills, but also to assist to raise the profile of the IoD and its support services for business Owners and Directors.
In the UK there are 5.7 million small businesses. Recent statistics indicate that around 93% of businesses in Essex are less than 10 employees in size. Whilst Essex is a brilliant and vibrant County, with a great sense of entrepreneurship, the failure rate of small businesses is very high. I seem to recall something like 4 out of 10 new business start-ups fail in the first 18 months of their existence.
I believe that business owners (of large and small companies) need the right level of expert support, delivered in the right way and appropriate to their needs to improve the survival rates of their companies. They also need to know that they are not alone in the challenge! Joining the IoD provides a great opportunity for them to meet and network with other owners and Directors and to build greater resilience.
So, I think there may be 2 important aspects to my initial work as an IOD Ambassador. (1) To assist build awareness of the importance for Directors and their employees to be equipped with the right skills to aid success and (2) Promote the IoD as one of the key institutions that every business owner should join to maximise their chances.
Q: If you could give your 21 year-old self some advice what would it be?
Firstly, that advice doesn’t stop at 21! We never stop learning. I would tell myself to be more relaxed and less emotional when things go wrong in business and to tell myself to be more confident in my own abilities, to be more authentic and to enjoy being unique (which only comes with experience).
Q: What keeps you busy outside of work?
I’m a keen sea angler and can often be found casting a rod on a river bank or from a boat. I’m also an amateur musician, playing guitar a little and singing a little. I have a very busy family life and am married to a chef, so keeping fit and keeping an eye on my waistline also take up a fair bit of my time.
Q: Are there any business related or policy issues that keep you awake at night?
I’m very concerned at the moment about the rising levels of stress at work in general. I’m also troubled by the financial pressures that are placed on small businesses. A prime example of this is the ever-increasing rise in rents and business rates. I’m also troubled about the vulnerability felt by many people who work in some areas of the public sector, where job security is constantly threatened.
Q: Why do you think business leaders should join the IoD?
To connect with other leaders who can support, provide guidance, share ideas and to build new connections as well as friendships. Business Leaders should also join who can play a vital role in using their own expertise and knowledge to help others.