Pride, Purpose and Perspectives- insights from the Business Committee
By Simon Gray – Chair of the ICAEW Business Committee
As an ICAEW member since 2000, I’ve sat on the ICAEW Business Committee for a number of years now. A short spell as Vice Chair led to my appointment as Chair, which I officially took up at the September 2019 meeting.
The Business Committee comprises a group of active business members who volunteer their time to support the teams at ICAEW that focus on business, such as the Business and Industrial Strategy team and Communities. Our primary role is to advise on issues important to business, and to bring an external perspective on how best to engage with business members.
The Business Committee supports ICAEW’s overall vision of a world of strong economies and regularly comments on public policy. Gaining perspectives from members across a broad range of sectors helps to provide an evidence-backed viewpoint using real-world examples which makes a real difference. I recently contributed to a consultation on regional imbalances, and was pleased to see my comments feature in the submission presented to a Government Select Committee. Corporate governance and skills are other areas of focus where the views of ICAEW members can and will have a direct impact on policy making.
In the spirit of devolution and to better represent the opinions of members outside of London, the Business Committee is working hard to build closer relationships with ICAEW Business Representatives and District Societies.
In addition, ICAEW Communities bring ICAEW members together with knowledge of specific sectors, through face-to-face events and online communication. Communities have been hugely successful in connecting ICAEW members across the UK and beyond.
Through my role as Chair of the Business Committee, I also sit on ICAEW Council and attended my first ICAEW Council Conference in the summer where I was pleased to learn more about the technological advances ICAEW is championing. Finance in a Digital World is an incredible resource that has been well adopted, and changes to the professional qualification are being made to keep up to speed with the increasing demands of business. It was also very interesting to hear from a number of younger members during a panel discussion, who all emphasised the importance of sustainability, which I’m pleased to say is another area of ICAEW focus.
Although I no longer practice as an accountant, I place a high value on the professional qualification I hold and remain a proud member of ICAEW. I’ve always been a big believer in what you put in you get out, and I personally gain a huge amount from my work with the Business Committee.
It’s an ever-changing world out there and a challenging time in particular for the UK, our economy and those running businesses. As ICAEW members we all have an important part to play, and in my opinion, there is no better way than being an active member of an ICAEW Committee.