Executive Leadership Programme – Managing your Career and Fulfilling Ambitions

  • Leadership Development

Managing the development and progression of your career can be a complex, challenging task for aspiring Executives. But investing time into and taking ownership for your own development can pay significant dividends in the long run.

The 5th of December saw our 2023 Executive Leadership Programme (with the University of Edinburgh Business School) draw to a close for this year's delegates, and there was no better way to sign off than by hearing how Malcolm Kpedekpo has managed his own.

Malcolms story is a fascinating and inspiring one. A professional footballer with Aberdeen from the age of 16, he managed to combine education and study with professional football and took the bold move to leave at the age of 21 and retrain as an accountant with KPMG. This was the first of many strategic and deliberate moves he made, always planning for the next.

His development as a leader and latterly business owner, investor and non-executive was aided by experience gained with Bank of Scotland in corporate finance & private equity functions, travelling to Australia in the process, and underpinned by formal education with the University of Aberdeen, ICAS, Harvard Business School and the IOD.

In recent years, Malcolm and his business partners have successfully built a private equity investment business, Panoramic Growth Equity, which has over 15 current portfolio investments and recently closed a new £100mn fund to invest in many more. Alongside this he has held Non-Executive Directorships with Scottish Golf, and bringing his career full circle, the Scottish Football Association.

The importance of building a professional network was emphasised, with several career opportunities presenting themself to Malcolm through connections he had made many years in advance, an important lesson to ensure you invest time into maintaining and engaging with your own professional networks.

Throughout all of this, Malcolm has been heavily involved in assessing leadership capability, whether that be a recently graduated entrepreneur looking for seed funding, or in being one of an 8-person panel in selecting the new Scottish National Team Football Manager.

Some of the consistent traits that have been important for Malcolm in identifying strong leaders include:

  • Leadership through action
  • Strong emotional intelligence
  • An appropriate balance of decisiveness and inclusion of others' opinions and views
  • Tenacity and Resilience

We also discussed how leadership in todays economic and societal climate is ever changing. Management teams are tired, there are increased people challenges with regards to recruitment and retention, nationwide inflation, cultural and mental health challenges, evolving regulatory and governance requirements around ESG and the ever-increasing EDI objectives for businesses. That's before we consider profit and shareholder return!

Professor Susan Murphy wrapped up our programme with a recap of the course which covered key leadership subject areas including the following;

  • “Modern Principles of Leadership”, led by Dr Lila Skountridaki and Rosemary McGinness
  • “Leading in a Data Driven Word”, led by Professor Susan Murphy and Graeme Smith
  • “Developing Strategy”, led by Professor Chris Carter and Simon Pitts
  • “Decision Making & Strategic Thinking”, led by Professor Winston Kwon and Ana Stewart
  • “How to be effective in the Boardroom”, led by Professor John Amis and Fiona MacLeod
  • “Driving Sustainability Effectively for Business & Environmental Benefit”, led by Dr Sarah Ivory and Samantha Barber
  • “Crisis Management: Leading Through Adversity”, led by Gordon Dewar and Michael Crow
  • “Managing Your Career”, led by Professor Susan Murphy and our final speaker Malcolm Kpedekpo

We would like to take the opportunity to thank all our academic and business speakers, as well as our committed intake of 2023 delegates, and wish all a well-earned break during the festive period.

If you would like to find out or pre-register for our 2024 Executive Leadership Programme, please contact Laura MacDonald at FWB Park Brown: ELP@fwbparkbrown.com

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