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Meet the Chair


We talk to our new IoD South chair and Founder of Serious Readers, Alex Pratt, about his many failures and mad ideas.

Why are you proud to represent the IoD?

In the end, everything we hold dear is a function of someone’s leadership. My own economic starting point tends to be ‘blessed are the wealth creators, for they shall inherit the bill’, because our way of life as a civilised democracy needs to be paid for. The IoD, in standing for ever improving leaders is here to make the case for better businesses and higher standards of leadership across society. It’s a great honour to be able to work with a group of such committed members, active branch chairs and professional executive team players. 

What is the IoD’s role for business leaders in your region?

We are here to keep setting the bar higher and to encourage you as great leaders to reach ever higher. We do this through our events and debates, and by stimulating us all to share and question ideas, perceived wisdom and experiences. 

Tell me a little about the members you represent.

IoD South has about 8,000 members from business services to manufacturing, from pharma to space technologies. We are young, old, small, male, female, hands-on, strategic and all other points of the business compass. What unites us is that we all hold leadership positions and have major potential to make a big impact on the world around us.

What’s so unique about your region?

There is a substantial economy in the South which runs independent of London. In point of fact, the South is the only region of the UK outside of London which is a net contributor to the Exchequer. This net contribution is in reality delivered by our highly competitive, innovative and productive business base, all sectors of which are represented in the IoD through our broad membership base of Directors.

What does your region offer business leaders?

There are good reasons why the South prospers as one of the most competitive regions in the world. At the heart of our productivity engine sits a talented, well-educated, diverse workforce with a global innovative mindset. There are just as many reasons why this talent congregates here, such as our proximity to the world’s No 1 City, our incredible lush green environment, and our position at the heart of many global trade channels from the Commonwealth to Financial markets.

What are you most looking forward to in the next 12 months?

Hopefully thriving in what many  expect to be one of the most turbulent periods of the modern era. We are certainly living in interesting times.

Finally, what's your personal business ethos?

Hire people better than me and getting out of their way. This seems to work, as long as we set a clear compelling direction of travel that is worth everyone getting up for in the morning.

Contact IoD South

For more information, please contact

020 3855 4359


Branch and staff contacts can be found on the main Contacts tab

View IoD South Premises

IoD South
116 Pall Mall