A word from the forthcoming chair of Future
News Categories: future
As The Handover fast approaches I am on a daily roller coaster of excitement and trepidation. Tara has done such an awesome job – I have a tough act to follow, but I have been lucky to have had her as mentor and guide to help with the transition. I have huge admiration for Tara and will be working to build on the great work she has done and continue the initiatives she has introduced.
In case you haven’t noticed, Birmingham is absolutely thriving! So I am thrilled to be taking on the Chair role at such an exciting time! Our energetic Mayor Andy Street is now settled in to his new role and working hard to promote the Midlands Engine. There are almost daily headlines on Birmingham’s ongoing transformation; the region is seen as a hotspot for investment and is getting overdue recognition for it’s cultural scene. High profile projects are already underway, and the region has ambitious plans for the future. This really is a defining time for those of us who live and work here – with opportunities to be involved and play a role in our city’s regeneration.
But despite this, employers in the region are still fighting the ongoing battle to retain talent. We are still losing good people to other cities, primarily the capital. The biggest frustration for me personally is that sometimes these moves are made based on misconceptions and a lack of understanding. Namely, a lack of understanding that you can have a fulfilling, challenging career in professional services here in Birmingham and the wider region and you can create the home and personal life you want to go with it. (Now, I should say that I am also guilty of leaving Birmingham to work elsewhere for a time during my career; but the difference is that my move away was not because I didn’t think I could get the career I wanted here – but in any event, I am so glad to be back!)
So where does Future come in to all this? The way I see it, Future helps to connect the dots. It gives you the pathway and the platform to develop professionally (Leadership Development Programme application deadline 1 Sept! #justsaying) and build a genuine and meaningful network of connections across the entire BPS sector. In turn, you can get closer to and feel connected to the city. But Future also helps its members in more ways than just getting ahead in their day job: it presents opportunities to give back, and has the inside track on new developments in the region. In short, it offers a sense of community and helps its members create that well rounded and fulfilling work/home life we often spend a lot of time looking for – and which the search for often sends people away from the area.
But we are not the only people in the region passionate about Birmingham, there are other like minded organisations, each with their own core identity, but who share a similar goal. I would like to ensure we are talking to each other; and exploring ways we may be able to work together for the benefit of our members and to help with the wider, ongoing aim of retaining talent in the region.
I hope to see many of you at Thursday’s handover and throughout the coming year.
Best wishes, Victoria,
– Victoria Ball, Trowers and Hamlins