Thank you so much to those who attended Future Talent 2018 at The Royal Geographical Society in London. We're sure you'll agree, it was a great day of inspiration and our best ever speaker line up. To recap, here's what we covered yesterday...
1. Acknowledge the importance of mental health: Time to Change director, Sue Baker, opened the conference with a powerful video to demonstrate why conversations around mental health need to be commonplace at work. Later, Dr Alan Watkins facilitated a thought-provoking session between Alastair Campbell and Geoff McDonald, who shared their personal experiences of mental health problems and outlined what changes are required to create a mentally healthy workplace.
2. Be courageous around diversity: Sir Lenny Henry argued that in moments of great change, there are always opportunities, and urged you to continually re-assess – and re-invent – your skills to navigate changing times ahead. He also emphasised the collective responsibility of all leaders to look beyond the same old approaches to diversity and champion meaningful change around inclusion. Meanwhile, fellow comedian Deborah Frances-White, highlighted that true inclusion can only be achieved when we find the courage to start including ourselves.
3. Take a ‘digitally inclusive’ approach: BITC chief executive Amanda Mackenzie facilitated a panel discussion of CEOs – Moya Greene of Royal Mail, Peter Cheese of the CIPD, Chris Jones of the City & Guilds Group and Elizabeth Fagan of Boots – all discussed how the digital revolution is impacting their businesses, how they are tackling the digital skills shortage and why it is critical for leaders to work collaboratively to ensure workplaces are digitally inclusive. We also called upon the audience to tell their ‘digital inclusion’ stories so we can all learn from one another.
4. Change the way you work: Living to 100 is a real prospect for people entering the workforce nowadays – Emma Birchall explored what this means for individuals and business and how we can use this longevity to help talent to thrive in the future. Kirstie Donnelly, MD of City & Guilds group, facilitated a panel discussion between several individuals, all at different stages of their careers, exploring how the needs of the multi-generational workforce have changed and how business can adapt to meet varying expectations. Matthew Taylor made the case for ‘good work’ and what this means for leadership in a new era.
5. Build your skills to thrive in the fourth industrial revolution: In conversation with Colin Price of Heidrick Consulting, Sarah Morris, chief people officer at Aviva, gave a practical perspective on how the insurance giant is grappling with unprecedented technological change and pioneering its digital transformation to ensure it is future-proof. Future Talent favourite Lord Chris Holmes outlined how technology is changing everything in the ‘4th IR’ but called on us to retain the ‘human-ness’ in our leadership and actions to ensure success – while Margaret Heffernan urged us to nurture our friendships to thrive as the new world of work evolves; arguing that anyone who cares about work as an expression of the best that is human can only honour that ideal with the help of friends.