An entrepreneur who has helped to build and safeguard the futures of companies worldwide is urging the regional business community to promote the next generation at this year’s Humber Business Week.
David Hall, author of the “Telling Tales” compilation of short stories about business leaders and owners, said this year’s festival of business in the Humber region is tailor-made to appeal to talented young people aiming to make their mark.
But he added that new talent can only make the breakthrough as business “rock stars” if the current people at the top step back to provide meaningful opportunities, and if rising stars step forward and stake their claim.
David said: “One of the great things about Humber Business Week is the way it offers real-life learning opportunities with highly-experienced business people from our region and much further afield.
“The involvement on the steering group this year of the successful ‘Top 30 Under 30’ programme, coupled with the increase in digital events will hopefully mean that we have a higher turnout of ambitious young people. What Humber Business Week can do is bring them together.”
Humber Business Week takes places from Monday 7 to Friday 11 and David will be the Wednesday interviewee for Paul Sewell in the eagerly-awaited Elevenses series.
During the course of the week Paul will also interview Adam Pearson and Neil Hudgell on the Monday, Steph McGovern on the Tuesday, then me and Baroness Warsi on the Thursday. On the Friday Paul will find himself in the hot seat with Alan Johnson pitching the questions.
But David will be scouring the rest of the Humber Business Week schedule for evidence of young people taking part and learning lessons from the men and women at the top.
He said: “Elevenses promises to be fascinating. I’m not going to reveal what I plan to talk about but I’m looking forward top it, and to hearing the other interviews. But only one of our group is under 50 and I want to know what the younger people are doing during business week – and who is listening to them.”
Some of the key themes which David has identified in a business career spanning more than 40 years are the need to find and unleash the young talent within an organisation and the need, when the time comes, to let go to grow.
He said: “When I tell business owners to let go to grow I don’t just mean Mickey Mouse tasks but real business development projects where entrepreneurial skills are developed. The leader must not see themselves as the source of all wisdom – their aim should be to create leaders at all levels.
“Not every young person will turn out to be a business rock star but the only way to find the winners is to give people an opportunity – it’s often surprising where the talent resides in a business.
“When this happens both the business and the individual flourish. The leader’s real legacy is leaving behind an organisation that is able to innovate and adapt without their hand on the tiller.
“Younger people can bring more energy to a business and they are much more in tune with the digital revolution so can add real value, but as well as opportunities they need confidence. They need to understand that you don’t have to be 40 plus to become a leader. If you are good enough you are old enough.”
Humber Business Week takes places from Monday 7 to Friday 11 June 2021. For details visit https://www.humberbusinessweek.co.uk/