Commonwealth Leaders have Manchester in their Sights

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Today saw specialist Cloud Service Provider ANS host a visit for senior leaders from diverse organisations across the Commonwealth and HRH Princess Anne, as part of the first stage of the CSCLeaders programme, run by the international leadership development organisation, Common Purpose.

CSCLeaders assembles 100 exceptional senior leaders selected from government, businesses and NGOs across the 53 countries of the Commonwealth. The programme is a partnership between Common Purpose and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conferences. The group, who are joined by HRH Princess Anne, President of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conferences, collaborate to tackle challenges that businesses, governments and society face today. This year’s Challenge is: “what would produce a step change in how the public, private and not-for-profit sectors work together?”

Marie Mohan, Chief Executive of Common Purpose UK, said, “we are delighted that global leaders are visiting Manchester this year to explore how the city’s leaders work across boundaries to innovate. ANS is a cutting edge business which sees developing young talent in the region as key to its future. They are not only focusing on how this will help their business, but also playing a key role in the conversations between employers and education providers to ensure the future talent pipeline for the region.”

ANS was chosen to play host to the study tour to investigate the Challenge and concepts of leadership. The purpose of the visit was to explore ‘skills’, one of four themes running through the Common Purpose initiative. As part of the visit the participants took part in a tour of ANS, followed by a briefing session where participants had the opportunity for Q&A before hearing from the organisation’s digital apprentices.

As a business ANS are heavily invested in apprenticeships, training and skills development. The ANS Apprentice Academy was founded in 2012 and provides industry leading training and real jobs for apprentices. In addition to the Academy, earlier this year ANS supported 60 stricken apprentices and guaranteed that all Level 3 Apprentices finish their training after the collapse of digital firm Bright Futures. Scott Fletcher, Chairman, ANS commented on the importance of the visit:

“It’s significant that Common Purpose chose to ANS to host this important visit. ANS are committed to training our city’s young people and ensuring that people from all walks of life benefit from the digital revolution that is taking place

“The role of our Academy is simple. We aim to nurture young talent and help to develop the next generation of digital leaders. To survive as an organisation, no matter what industry, you need to be fluid and to re-invent yourself at least every two years and for that you need young talent, with fresh insight and new skills. Young people are our future.”

During CSCLeaders, participants spent three days on a Study Tour immersing themselves in the city to explore the challenge in-depth and visit different organisations, meeting key contributors to hear their thoughts and share experiences. Fletcher highlights the importance of visiting the city:

“It’s imperative that participants discover how the city operates; observe styles of leadership and better understand how decisions are made and how things get done.

Industry in Manchester recognises that if we want to project our image as a European Powerhouse, our city to needs to excel in technology, fashion, music and culture – and we need to train and develop our youth to do this. Young talent is the jewel in Manchester’s crown. Our youth and the investment in their talent creates constant reinvention and innovation and the essential fuel for that transformation and growth in our city.”