1 May 2018
As I write this month’s briefing we now have the lighter evenings that the turn of season brings and, reflecting on what has been a whirlwind first quarter for the Association, I am pleased to once again be able to report on my favourite event of the spring.
On Monday 26 March 2018, CABE once again welcomed each CABE regional officer attending the 2018 Regional Officers Training and Induction Day at HQ, Northampton.
Extensive planning culminated in an incredibly productive day with every regional officer in attendance being asked for their views and opinions on where we are heading as an organisation. As the regional officers arrived for morning registration and coffee, they were able to meet the staff at HQ updating themselves on current initiatives and projects.
I opened the meeting with our usual round up of the previous year, highlighting all the regional achievements 2017 had delivered to us; whilst writing this section of my presentation it allowed me a moment of reflection as to how far we have come as a collective over my eight years with the Association.
We now have a suite of regional conferences, centres of excellence, extensive regionally sourced CPD opportunities, an online booking system, user-friendly and highly informative regional website pages and content, to name but a few. At the forefront of all of these ventures and those to come in the future are you, the members of the Association, with whom we wish to further engage as we reach for our joint goals for tomorrow.
The day continued with the Regional Development Team’s aspirations for 2018, an update on what's new at HQ in terms of resources and support along with a section on the regional officers/regional committees’ roles and responsibilities.
I was delighted to then welcome our incoming Chief Executive, Dr Gavin Dunn, to present an overview of the vision for the future of the Chartered Association. This presentation addressed various subjects including the outline of the strategic overview and business strategy for the future and which areas of the business Gavin will focus on when he takes up his post. Much of that discussed has been indicated previously in this publication via the Vice-President’s pages; however, this allowed Gavin to gain a useful insight into the thoughts of our members around some of the key areas on which he will be concentrating his efforts from mid-April.
Next to present was Katie Di Stefano, Digital Services Specialist, who updated the officers on CABE's digital marketing achievements over the last 12 months and how each region can get involved digitally by the use of social platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to help promote activities within their region.
Officers then took part in their first brainstorming session to discuss What does good look like? in terms of CPD provision for members; this was followed by the first workshop of the day which asked officers to consider the CABE's vision for raising standards, sharing knowledge and developing professionals in greater detail; these discussions raised a number of valuable insights and new ideas for the promotion of this message.
The afternoon sessions started with a second workshop on Building for the Future where practical solutions were sought in respect of growing our membership base and further engagement. Participants were able to discuss what they would like to see on membership surveys, what benefits would attract them to join and how to enhance member engagement and increase attendance at regional CPD events.
Operations Director, Kate Ilott, then presented an overview of 2018's Annual Conference and Exhibition taking place this October near Kenilworth and reminded the officers of the imminent deadline for the Built Environment Awards 2018, encouraging as many of them as possible to think about their involvement in projects over the past year which could be considered for an award.
Representing CABE Benevolent Fund in his capacity as a Trustee, Southern Regional Chairman Michael Wadood shared with officers the work of the charity and its practical application for members who may need assistance. Michael asked the regional committees to further promote the work of the fund and officers were given a copy of the video promoting its work to share with members.
To bring the day to its close, we looked for the top three requirements for the next 12 months and reviewed the officers’ expectations to clarify whether or not these had been met and to use this as a basis, along with all of the day’s findings, to create a strategic regional action plan for the upcoming year.
The day was once again a resounding success in offering the regional officers an opportunity to continue their highly valued contribution to the CABE with one stating via a feedback form that the day was ‘A well-structured event with interactive workshops which made our opinions feel heard in terms of shaping the future of our Association’.
I would like to thank all of the participants from the regions, HQ staff and Board for their open-minded approach and highly effective work ethic which enables us to move forward with a sense of purpose.