CMI boss warns of new leadership challenges in a tech economy

Bruce Carnegie-Brown (PR)
Bruce Carnegie-Brown, president of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI)

18 May 2018

  • CMI President Bruce Carnegie-Brown uses Aston University MacLaren Memorial Lecture to say data-driven businesses must balance social and commercial responsibilities
  • Social media is changing the priorities of leaders
  • Acting responsibly must be an essential attribute for bosses

The president of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI has warned business leaders and students in Birmingham of the challenges facing bosses in the rapidly evolving tech and data-driven economy.

Speaking at the annual MacLaren Memorial Lecture at Aston University, Bruce Carnegie-Brown highlighted the need for bosses to consider the wider implications of their business decisions in which companies hold ever greater amounts of data, as well as face heightened scrutiny through social media.

Carnegie-Brown, who is also the chairman of Lloyd’s of London, said: “With information more accessible than ever before, those that own or collect data find themselves with huge amounts of power - both social and commercial. But with great power comes great responsibility and balancing these two forces is the greatest leadership challenge of today’s generation of business leaders.”

Carnegie-Brown also told the 200-strong audience that the digital revolution is having a transformative effect on the priorities of business leaders, which pose new management challenges: “The growth of social media has made an invaluable contribution in democratising the control of information, in increasing transparency through universalising access to data and doing it in real time.

“Visual images re-broadcast globally of the impact of business on the environment, whether in the exploitation of labour in developing economies or the damage to our oceans caused by plastics, have dramatically altered the priorities of business leaders as the ‘how’ becomes as important as the ‘what’ in evaluating a company’s performance.”

Carnegie-Brown said that Millennials, as digital natives, understand this revolution better than any other generation and that they must gain skills needed to lead as they start their careers: “CMI’s 21st Century Leaders report found that 70% of employers want all university students to have access to management, enterprise and leadership modules to improve their employability. It is up to organisations like CMI to work with universities and employers to help graduates and post-graduates gain the skills we need and the employers want in our leaders of the future.”

The MacLaren Memorial Lecture is an annual event held jointly by Aston University and the CMI. The event has run since 1953 and has attracted major speakers from business and industry. It commemorates the life of James MacLaren, one of the most eminent industrialists in Birmingham’s history.

CMI also partners with Aston University to dual-accredit BSc degrees in Business & Management and International Business & Management to give graduates work-ready professional skills. More than 130 students are now enrolled on CMI-backed courses.


Notes to the editor

Photos (click links to download)

·         Aston University campus pictures

About Bruce Carnegie-Brown

Bruce Carnegie-Brown was appointed President of the Chartered Management Institute in 2017. He has been a Companion of CMI since 2014. Carnegie-Brown is currently the chairman of both Lloyd’s of London and Group. His other appointments include vice chairman of Banco Santander SA.

About CMI

The Chartered Management Institute is the chartered professional body for management and leadership. Its vision is to create better led and managed organisations. Its mission is to increase the number and standard of professionally qualified managers and leaders. The organisation counts more than 175,000 managers and leaders in its membership community.

Supporting professional skills development, CMI is the only organisation to offer the coveted Chartered Manager accreditation. CMI now partners with more than 125 UK universities and hundreds of education providers, to dual-accredit business and management courses for nearly 60,000 learners. CMI also partners with higher education institutions in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, and Australia.

CMI has created a suite of management apprenticeships with a 40-strong employer group. This includes the flagship Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship and the newly launched Senior Leader Master’s Degree Apprenticeship for executive and C-suite development. More than 4,500 workers are currently enrolled on management apprenticeships. CMI is a Skills Funding Agency-registered apprentice assessment organisation.

CMI’s thought leadership, research, events and online resources provide practical insight on critical issues for professionals to improve their skills, nurture high-performing teams and pave the way for supporting the next generation of managers and leaders.

About Aston University

Founded in 1895 and a University since 1966, Aston is a long established university led by its three main beneficiaries – students, business and the professions, and our region and society. Aston University is located in Birmingham and at the heart of a vibrant city and the campus houses all the university’s academic, social and accommodation facilities for our students.  Professor Alec Cameron is the Vice Chancellor & Chief Executive.

Aston has been a leading university for graduate employment success for over 25 years and our students do extremely well in securing top jobs and careers.  Our strong relationships with industry partners mean we understand the needs of employers, which is why we are also ranked in the top 20 for graduate employability.

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