It is hard to believe that a year has passed since the IQ Fellows Lunch and Student Awards at the Tower of London. It was a great environment to celebrate the successes of students from the University of Derby Centre for Mineral Products. I look forward to returning this November to celebrate another year of academic achievements.
The Fellows Lunch last year was also a fitting backdrop for the Institute to launch its ‘Creating Future Leaders’ strategy, a roadmap for its future success. Celebrating the successes of our members is a key part of the strategy, recognising the achievements of organisations, teams and individuals. It helps to remind us of the incredible accomplishments the industry and our members are making across a breadth of areas.
The Institute launched its first-ever industry awards this year. Recognising the commitment to continuing professional development, the IQ Excellence Awards categories are aligned to the different quadrants of the IQ Skills Wheel. With regional award presentations now taking place at branch events in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and England, winners automatically go forward to the National Excellence Awards to compete for the overall title in each category at Hillhead 2020.
Above all, the awards collectively recognise the key elements that the Institute and its members believe are critical to demonstrating our competence and capability as professionals.
Alongside the obvious need around core technical knowledge, the Skills Wheel also identifies that ‘personal effectiveness’ is a critical part of what we need to develop to be the fully rounded professional that our industry needs.
For any of us that are familiar with the old “DAPs” educational route, or more recently have completed one of the courses at the University of Derby Centre for Mineral Products, we are aware of the commitment required to complete the studies whilst balancing a day job and personal life.
The Skills Wheel reflects this commitment through the career development and self-management segments. High achievers from the University of Derby, who will be congratulated at the Tower of London, have shown a real commitment to developing their knowledge and skills.
Likewise, the IQ Excellence Awards highlight teams and individuals who understand that delivering profitable, safe and sustainable outcomes for their business are not achieved alone. They exhibit personal qualities that we should all aspire to as professionals, building trust and effective ways of working through good communication skills, leading by example and respecting the needs of those around them.
It is particularly pleasing that we are celebrating individuals across the industry at all levels, recognising that leadership can be delivered and expressed in a number of different ways.
As President of the Institute, it is warming to be able to celebrate these successes and achievements. As often discussed in this column, we know there are challenges and opportunities facing our profession and these wider competencies will play an increasingly important role alongside our technological developments.
As members of the Institute and industry professionals, reflecting on our personal effectiveness and qualities in an honest way is one of the most challenging things for us to do. It is also one of the most rewarding and potentially helps us to unlock and encourage the talent and people that we have working with us.