A Message to our Members from IoD South West Chair Muir Macdonald
Welcome to 2021. After the year we've just had, many of us are not underestimating the challenge ahead to rebuild. As we enter Lockdown 3 in England, we puzzle over what Brexit really means and we wonder what Mother Nature has in store for us next. Yet there's plenty of room for optimism as some of the uncertainties of the last 12 months are behind us and many of us have learned extraordinary new ways of working, of adapting and of coping. Above all, the vaccine rollout offers hope that our freedoms might be returning in the second half of 2021.
One of the biggest takeaways for me from 2020 was the sense of community spirit and I believe this will continue. Business realised the benefit of collaboration and the importance of support from the community around it. We don’t have to do this on our own.
As for so many of you, the IoD was also navigating significant change last year and I believe we have emerged as a much stronger and more resilient organisation, helping its members Connect, Develop and Influence. These are three critical pillars for director development and I am grateful we could use our virtual platforms in 2020 to continue to bring you a range of speakers and events that helped you actively connect, developed your capabilities and offered you a more powerful voice to amplify your impact.
It was no surprise either that our virtual director development courses were heavily subscribed. It wasn’t just because some people had more time on their hands. Faced with a crisis, it is more relevant than ever to be practising the best governance, developing critical skill sets and capabilities and living values that will help us steer our way forwards with confidence.
I am very hopeful that by the end of 2021 we will have seen the worst. Here at the IoD we will continue to support you through our director development courses and online events as well as access to peer networks where you can share experiences and learnings, including our now established Centre for Corporate Governance. We’ll be announcing some new volunteer Ambassadors for the region who bring added talent and skills to our existing network. We’re also developing ever stronger links with the region’s key centres of further education so we can help develop tomorrow’s director based on the experience of todays. And of course, we continue to be at the centre of influencing Government to secure the best possible financial and practical support for your business as we move out of this crisis.
In my final year as Chair I will continue to champion the role of the IoD in developing better directors which will ultimately lead to a better world: “ last year I had the privilege to have helped a wonderful team of IoD volunteers to shape the future of our organisation, Covid being a catalyst. It was also a wonderful opportunity to learn and develop through and with others. Something else I'm grateful to our Institute for." Please don't hesitate to contact me at IoD.Southwest@iod.com if you have any questions about the future of the Institute, or if you know of any Director who also buys into what we stand for and should be invited to join us.
Muir Macdonald FREng CDir
Chair IoD South West