My last guest editorial, in May 2021, mentioned some of the many sources of knowledge and wisdom that I utilise when working with clients. On this second reflective piece on the topic, I would like to share how, earlier this year, the Worshipful Company of Management Consultants’ thought-provoking Education Lecture inspired reflections on many different subjects including the purpose of education and preparation for work.
Speakers included newly elected Sheriff to the City of London, Andrew Marsden, who provided a synopsis of the role that education has in the Liveries as well as the history of guilds and apprenticeships in the development of core skills. The keynote speaker, Peter Hyman, the co-founder of School 21, provided an awe-inspiring presentation on his working model for education and clearly illustrated the difficulties that we are experiencing with the current 1950s-style education system.
Peter Hyman’s presentation echoed many of the comments and remarks of my clients and colleagues working in the SME business sector. I was also reminded of my early involvement with Business Education Partnerships when Tony Buzan and Sir John Whitmore worked with us to develop skills, knowledge and confidence in pupils. Those schools that make a difference through “head, heart and hand” providing a “holistic education”, are the ones that create knowledgeable and valuable employees.
On the topic of business value and intangibles and since my last editorial, Jonathan Haskel and Stian Westlake have published “Restarting the Future - How to Fix the Intangible Economy”. The introduction to the book paints a picture of successful economies including the former Republic of Siena (Italy) in the early 1300s (it was an independent state and existed for 400 years) and the authors pose a key question: “What institutions, norms and strategies does the economy need as it grows and changes?” This discussion certainly led me - while on a recent holiday there - to consider Florence and the Renaissance period from a different perspective.
In my opinion, the WCoMC Education Lecture addressed part of this question and I continue to seek more knowledge and wisdom in order to help business and organisations grow.
Nanette Young FCIPS FIC FRSA, Liveryman, Worshipful Company of Management Consultants