Ismena Clout, chairman at the BIFM, looks back on her first year as BIFM chairman, and ahead to her final year at the helm.
22 April 2013
So here we are. It's now a full year since I became the chairman of the boardof BIFM.What better time to ask myself how I'm feeling about it all. The answer: still very proud and thankful to have been given the opportunity. However, this sentiment is tempered by the knowledge that we still have so much more to do to make the institute even greater.
Since I wrote my 'Six months on' comment piece, I would have to say the highlight for me has to be the BIFM Awards. It was a night when the industry really sparkles and cutting-edge practice and innovation steal the show.
The BIFM Awards has proved to be the UK FM industry's flagship event and a leading light internationally, with award winners and finalists achieving great success at the Global FM Awards. It was a real privilege to be on stage welcoming all the distinguished guests and then handing the awards to the winners.
We finished the financial year in a strong position, for which I have to thank all the staff at head office for their diligent and hard work. In particular, I would like to thank chief executive Gareth Tancred and finance director Mark Morgan.
Being stronger financially means that we have been able to attack this year with agility, determination and vigour. The board voted through a new medium-term strategy, from January, and we are already seeing actions and new initiatives take shape. There will be more communication on this in the coming months so do keep an eye out for that.
I have also had the privilege of travelling to Malaysia to learn about the facilities management market there, meeting key stakeholders in both the private and public sectors. Highlights of the trip included going on live radio to discuss the profession and, on my final day, having a full backstage tour of the Petronas Towers. These are stunning buildings and so detailed on the exterior - truly unique architectural achievements.
It hasn't all been plain sailing, of course - this role provides me with lots of challenges and difficulties. But don't they say the best things are always going to be hard, but with the greatest rewards?
With just over a year to go in my term, what I am looking forward to the most? Well, of course we have the excellent Facilities Show in a month's time. I will be opening the show on the first day and, this time, I hope the guys at UBM have a ribbon for me to cut! In June, we have our ThinkFM conference, addressing the leadership challenge. The programme is action-packed this year and I can't wait to open it and spend the day learning, thinking and networking.
I hope to see you at one of these great events or at our annual general meeting in July.
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