Anne Gibson and I have just spent a couple of days in St Andrews, Scotland with wonderful and hospitable colleagues from SPDS. Their annual conference this year was on the topic of ‘Delivering excellence in times of change’.
Their new President, Karen Algie, delivered a passionate opening speech about the difference HR can make in changing organisations following which I spoke on how HR can lead organisations through the downturn. At the annual dinner on the first evening there were moving tributes to our dear friend Hogan Burke, who died suddenly in August this year. It was lovely to see Hogan’s wife Moira and his daughter Abigail there to hear the tributes.
On the second day there was a charismatic presentation from Dame Eliza Manningham Buller about the leadership challenges she faces whilst in charge of MI5. Her heartfelt view was that leadership is all about playing to your strengths, giving credit to people, thanking people for their effort and being humane. Her powerful presentation was littered with examples of how she put this into practice at MI5.
It is always a pleasure to be with our SPDS colleagues and I look forward to our two organisations building an even closer relationship over the coming years.
Have a great weekend.