Education, education, education
I’ve been in role as Education and Skills ambassador for around a year now and I have been reflecting on my role with the IoD and what value I get from my membership and involvement.
Motivated by later-in-life academic success, I am an advocate for social mobility and inclusion in the workplace and have a deep-seated belief in the value that education brings to these.
Much of my focus is on building relationships with our Surrey based universities. The universities are very focused on the employability of their students and, of course, the students want to be confident that their studies will help them into the world of work.
There is so much that the IoD community can do to help. We all want employable students and the work we are doing is focused on:
- connecting students and the business community through placements, research opportunities and internships
- providing students with a network to tap into for advice
- creating a network of engaged students
- holding ‘getting ready for employment sessions’.
At the events we have already held it has been great to connect the generations and bring diverse talents together – it helps us all in our continuing professional development.
At a personal level, I value the opportunity to share, develop and encourage. And the students never fail to impress me. Sometimes they don’t know how best to present or use their abilities, but I’m always left reflecting how talented, driven and engaging they are.
It leaves me hugely optimistic about the future – the directors of tomorrow are a great bunch of people. Sometimes they just don’t know how good they are or what the business community wants or expects from them.
Turning to education for directors, I want to recognise that lifelong learning is core to our purpose as a professional institute under Royal Charter. The IoD seeks to foster a climate of innovation, entrepreneurship and resilience. You will see regular updates on what is available through courses, events and briefings.
One specific topic I wanted to draw your attention to is ED&I (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion). I recently attended the launch of the IoD “Future of Business – harnessing diverse talent for success” event at 116 Pall Mall. It was fabulous because the guidance document launched is a real stand out for being concise, accessible and helping me feel that I can just get on and do things.
So often in the ED&I space the ideas feel ‘too big’ and needing huge teams to implement. Not in this report – it works for me as CEO of an SME. Follow the link here and take a look yourself.
If you want to get involved with our work with the universities or can offer a student work placement, please let me know.
As with most things in life, you get out what you put in.
IoD Surrey, Education and Skills Ambassador