Quantum Computing 6 Oct:  CMCE Virtual Showcase
ProBono Workshop Discussion: Charity M&As 11 Oct:  Plaisterers' Hall
Master's Installation & Celebratory Dinner 24 Oct:  Apothecaries' Hall
Click here for our rolling calendar or here for City events

NL April 2022

WCoMC is a collegiate forward looking Modern City Livery Company; we maintain City traditions, share expertise and information between fellow members and give back to the community through our pro bono activities.

WCoMC News


Reminder: All the images in this column are linked to the appropriate article in the main body of the Newsletter. Just click the photo.

 

What’s up?

New Freemen


Lisa Preuveneers

 

 

 

New Liverymen


Cosette Reczek

 

 

 

 

 

Other Stuff!

Helen O'Sullivan - moving on

 

 

 

Peter Hyman - Guest Speaker at the Education Supper

 

 

 

 

Mrs Julie Fox 

 

 

 

 

Janell Dudley - Shop Talk

 

 

Hugh Tinsley - Shop Talk

 
 
 
 
 
 

Newsletter Editor:
news@wcomc.org

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Issue 79:  April 2022

 

Our Master's Voice

I write this having just completed the first half my Master’s year. That went fast! It’s been “eventful” since the last Company Newsletter and I find myself recovering from Covid. We had a full programme of events all of which are reported upon below. Meanwhile out in the wider world of the Livery it was busy.

At the end of February I attended the World Traders’ 35th Annual Tacitus Lecture at the Guildhall. The lecture was delivered by historian and broadcaster Prof David Olusoga OBE who spoke about “Finance and the City in an Age of Historical Reckoning”. As you might expect it was well researched, expertly delivered and very thought provoking. (Ed: Should we be removing all those statues - even in the Guildhall?)

A few of us attended the Livery Pancake race on 1st March. The race itself was cancelled due to the bad weather but many gathered for a nice lunch in the Guildhall. It ended with judging a bunch of grown men and women done up in fancy dress. (Ed: The event is organised by the Poulterers - hence the chap in the chicken suit!) It was good to meet some other Masters that I'm getting to know now.


On the 3rd I attended the Tax Advisors “Budget Banquet” - another opulent occasion, this time at Saddlers’ Hall. (Yes, there quite a lot of jokes about it not being an “Aldi” event). The Worshipful Company of Basketmakers invited me to their Basketry Showcase on 8th March. I had to fight the urge to buy!

On 16th March we had our Easter Court Meeting which I’ve already reported separately. I’ll not repeat any of that except news about our Chaplain Helen O’Sullivan below.

The Worshipful Company of Security Professionals invited me to their The Lord Imbert Annual Security Lecture on 17 March. The guest speaker was DAC Dean Haydon QPM Metropolitan Police Service who gave a Chatham House Rules presentation on the Global Terrorism Threat. I was one of 23 different Livery Company Masters and all found what the MPS is doing to interrupt terrorist operations very impressive and positive.

On 23rd March I attended the Financial Services Group Masters' Dinner, joining our representative Frank Brown. I have to say that this was a slightly strange affair. The conversation encompassed the whole table – see photo – and while the first 20 minutes was quite productive on the subject of pan livery pro bono activities, it did turn into a fairly unstructured workshop with “dinner on the side”.

The following day was the Past Masters' lunch and it was particularly good to meet some older Past Masters of our Company whom I had not met before. Very many thanks to Calvert Markham for organising the event and for inviting me. The lunch was followed by dinner with the Information Technologists at their hall near the Barbican. An entertaining dinner if rather lacking in social distancing - see below. I was joined on that occasion by Walter Gill.

So March was very busy, with perhaps a bit too much socialising because I rapidly became ill after that and tested positive for Covid within a few days. I suffered for about 5 days so that was the end of March. I just about recovered sufficiently to take a long-planned holiday to Scandinavia in early April, a trip not without its challenges but enjoyable nevertheless. As a result I have been out of action for about a month. While I am not quite recovered from Covid yet as at end April, I'm looking forward to my second six months as Master.

News about our Chaplain

Our Chaplain, Helen O’Sullivan has been rather ill for the past couple of months - since she had her Covid booster jab she tells me. Helen feels that she is no longer able to add value to the Company as our Chaplain given her health and her current location which makes fulfilling the role difficult. Accordingly she has resigned her position as Chaplain, and I have accepted with regret. I have written formally to Helen accepting her resignation and PM Denise Fellows will lead the search for a replacement. The Court wishes Helen a full and speedy recovery and every success in her future endeavours.

Recent Events:

Members' Reception and Admissions

On 16th March we held our regular annual gathering for all current and any prospective members, led by the Membership Committee and hosted by 2W Kanan Barot. The reception was preceded by an Admissions Ceremony, enabling existing members to welcome new Freemen and congratulate those who are being clothed in our Livery. Lisa Preuveneers was admitted as a Freeman and Cosette Reczek was clothed. Hearty congratulations to both.


At the reception, we heard from several speakers who each gave a five minute overview. We heard about:
•    What’s happening across a wide range of our activities
•    The experiences of a new Freeman
•    Why Freemen should consider “taking the Livery”
•    What you can do as a member
•    What our membership achieves
•    Our new Climate Action Strategy

There was plenty of time for networking and those present enjoyed a selection of wines from the Company Cellar and a finger buffet.  

Pro Bono Workshop - Improving charity performance and sustainability - 22 March

Patrick Chapman, reports as Chair of the ProBono Committee:

Many of our members support charities and their staff and trustees through our ProBono Consultancy and Mentoring programme or through their own role as trustees or volunteers. We frequently find that these charities have common challenges in building an appropriate resilient management infrastructure and ensuring long-term financial sustainability. The ProBono Committee arranged this workshop to shed light on these challenges by inviting two experts in this field to share their knowledge with us, and therefore to help us enhance our own support.

Beth Clarke has been a trustee and employee at several charities, and recently led a programme at the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) aimed at helping small charities develop their resilience to ensure their long-term survival and the continuation of the vital services that they provide. Through "CAF Resilience" ten small to medium sized charities across the UK received grant funding and bespoke advice and training. CAF has recently released the final report from this Resilience Programme that shares the insights and learnings gained, including recommendations to funders. Beth presented these findings and the plans for the next phase of the resilience programme.

Ian McLintock has been a volunteer for 40+ years and has held various Chair and CEO appointments over the last 25 years. He built and personally funded the free Charity Excellence Framework online toolkit. The website was launched in 2018 and now has over 23,000 member charities, nearly half of whom rate it 10/10. It acts as a digital mentor, tapping into the collective expertise of the sector by connecting member charities to a huge range of free support and has created Big Data for the sector. Ian explained how the CEF can support our ProBono clients and offer insights into what it tells us about the challenges they are likely to face today. He also outlined the even more ambitious strategic development phase for CEF, which has recently registered as a Charity. Our own Jo Mann, who is now a member of the ProBono Committee, also gave us her early  experiences of becoming a Trustee of the CEF Charity.

Overall it was an interesting and challenging meeting, topped and tailed by a glass or two of networking. Our thanks to both our guest speakers and all the attendees who made it a very worthwhile evening.

United Guilds Service -  1st April

First Warden Chris Sutton reports:

A dozen liverymen from the Company represented us at the United Guilds Service at St Paul’s Cathedral on 1 April. This is a grand event in the annual City calendar, full of pageantry. After 2 years of Covid cancellations, it was a great reaffirmation of the livery companies being back and ready for action. Every livery company gets its own pew in the nave. It’s quite a sight to see over 100 masters all in their different gowns, and it would be a trainspotting challenge to identify each one of them. It struck me that the broad white borders on each side of the WCOMC Master’s red gown is notably distinctive!

24 Masters process down the aisle of the nave at the start of the service, and form an honour guard for the Lord Mayor, the Bishop of London and other dignitaries who process behind them. The great 12 livery companies are an annual fixture in this procession, and the other livery companies take turns to fill the other 12 slots. This year we Management Consultants got our turn.

Sadly Master Steve was down with Covid, so as First Warden I had the honour of representing us in the procession. A very long slow march down the nave, quite a challenge to keep in step!

The United Guilds Service started in 1943, during the incredibly tough times of the blitz. This year’s preacher, the Rt Rev Humphrey Southon, used the opportunity to ask us in these tough times to recapture the spirit of reconstruction that followed the blitz, while delivering a thinly veiled rebuke to the government as regards its moral fibre. I sensed the spirit of Thomas a Becket!

My day had started with breakfast at Goldsmith’s Hall, featuring a chipotle scramble. I jest not, and it was surprisingly nourishing. This was the City’s catering trade, determined to show us they are on the front foot in terms of responding to climate change, offering us diners an entirely plant-based breakfast. Potential future masters were encouraged to think about adopting plant-based menus at their forthcoming dinners. Comments to our learned Clerk please….

After the service the WCOMC contingent enjoyed a traditional lunch at the Guildhall Members' dining room, and raised a glass to Master Steve’s speedy recovery. (Ed: No photo's allowed in St Pauls.)

Wine Club Trip to Burgundy

Patrick Chapman reports, this time as Wine Club Chairman: 

"After some two years of delay owing to the pandemic, the planned Wine Club trip to North Burgundy has happened earlier this month. A group of 21 ‘pilgrims’ drove to Auxerre (18 in two “splitter vans” each with large cargo areas at the rear hired from the aptly named “Vans for Bands”, the others travelled independently by car) and used this historic city as the base for searching out Chablis (Chardonnay) and Pinot Noir, the two distinctive wines of this area of France and a few lesser known ones. We visited five vineyards, tasted some 20 wines and in true French style took in gastronomic lunches and dinners, as well as stopping at Cramant in the heart of the Champagne region on the way back to Calais, where we also tasted three champagnes over a light lunch.

All in all a wonderfully enjoyable, if not exhaustingly full-on, four days and a good time was had by all. We even managed to cope with the new post-Brexit restrictions on customs limits, bringing back both personal orders and topping up the Company cellar.

Our thanks to Calvert and Carol Markham, and Patrick McHugh for their incredible organisation (no small feat) and the four drivers, Andy Miles, Simon Chapman, Patrick McHugh and me, who safely drove us to Auxerre and back.

The Wine Club is open to all WCoMC Liverymen – it is a sociable group of members who enjoy developing their knowledge and love of wine, and who are certainly not ‘wine snobs’! The Club also helps to fund the Company’s wine cellar through loans that have enabled WCoMC to build an impressive range of wines “for all occasions” in a just a few years. The Club was also behind the series of lockdown virtual tastings, filling in two years of privation that was forced on us all! We are delighted, now, to be planning some in-person meetings this year including a trip to Kent in September. If you wish to join us, please contact me".

And my thanks to Ian Bonny for these pictures:

Pan-Livery Pro Bono Interest Group

Bob Harris Reports: We had a successful inaugural workshop of the Pan Livery Pro Bono Interest Group on 28th March. Despite several last-minute dropouts due to positive Covid tests, (Ed: Including me!) we had 24 attendees from 18 Livery Companies. There were presentations from two speakers: Philippa Seal gave a fascinating case study for a Women’s Refuge, and Susan Walker gave an introduction to the “Gift of Communication”. We also had good discussions in the breakout groups and many ideas for future meetings to cover.

There was general agreement to continue with a similar format of in-person meetings on a quarterly basis. The next meeting has been arranged for 26th May and will focus on resourcing pro bono work. More on that in the next Get to Know Philanthropy Newsletter.

My Most Interesting Whatever - Lessons from a postmodern consulting journey

Coming right up to date, on 26 April about 20 people including two prospective members, joined the latest (Ed: the 12th edition) of My Most Interesting Whatever. Malcolm McCaig introduced proceedings and outlined a future programme events that runs into the next 12 months and beyond!

Then First Warden Chris Sutton shared, from a hotel in Liverpool, what he has learned about the consulting business from PwC (blue chip), to Logica (no consulting brand, therefore white chip), to independent consultancy (green chip, having to learn a whole new set of skills).  
Chris gave us an interesting and engaging walkthrough his varied career to date and drew some thought provoking lessons learned from his experiences. This prompted a lively discussion, including getting people on the call to say whether, when they first became a consultant, they thought they would remain as a consultant for the rest of their working career; or whether they became a consultant as a stepping stone to another career. There was also a good debate over what we might mean by "career".

Overall this was another great chance to learn more about our colleagues and do some virtual networking. Congratulations to Chis and Malcolm on an excellent event.

Management Consultancy Artifact - Continued

A couple of years ago, we asked "What artifact would best represent the work of Management Consultants?". This was prompted by the lack of a gift from our Company in the Guildhall – the room where Freedom Ceremonies are carried out. In December 2021, I asked again here. I am pleased to report that we now have a firm proposal. The idea and the proposed artifact come from Father of the Livery, Calvert Markham.  Calvert has suggested that a stopwatch, as used in work study, might be appropriate. As Calvert explains:

“Management consultancy emerged in the early 20th century with the application of time and motion study to manufacturing industry. Time study is a direct and continuous observation of a task, using a timekeeping device (e.g. decimal minute stopwatch, computer-assisted electronic stopwatch, and videotape camera) to record the time taken to accomplish a task and it is often used when:
•    there are repetitive work cycles of short to long duration,
•    wide variety of dissimilar work is performed, or
•    process control elements constitute a part of the cycle.
The application of science to business problems, and the use of time-study methods in standard setting and the planning of work, was pioneered by Frederick Winslow Taylor. By counting and calculating, Taylor wanted to transform management, which was essentially an oral tradition, into a set of calculated and written techniques.

Consultants used method analysis to break working processes into their component parts and used a stopwatch to time each element. The accumulation of knowledge from conducting studies provided information on standards which then could be applied to other repetitive tasks – for example, bin collection or vehicle repair. Improved working processes were often introduced with bonus incentive schemes that encouraged adoption of new practices and increased rates of work. Increased productivity created new needs – for example, an improved salesforce; then perhaps better accounting systems and development of management competence – in all of which management consultants offered to assist.
Today management consultancy continues that tradition of helping organisations to develop their performance by providing expert resources and has grown into a major business activity in its own right”.

So, a Stopwatch, symbolic of the origins of our profession, seems an appropriate gift.  This is not simply an abstract idea.  Calvert has his own stopwatch, pictured, and is willing to donate it, on the Company’s behalf, to the Guildhall. The Wardens have agreed to progress this idea and we’ll report further in later Newsletters.

Future Events 

Our Annual Education Lecture and Supper - Why our schools need a revolution post Covid 
Every young person can be excellent at something, can be happy and give value to society. They need the opportunity to explore what they do; they need to develop persistence to succeed; they need to learn how to overcome challenges. But does the current education system provide them with these skills? No - our education system is not fit for purpose. We need something bigger and bolder.

Our keynote speaker, Peter Hyman, will explain how the 'Head, Heart and Hand curriculum' he developed as co-founder of School 21 in East London is an example of what is possible if we want to educate the whole child. Peter is a proactive influencer of change in the education sector with various leadership roles across the education sector to his credit including working as a strategist with Tony Blair in Downing Street. He is the Co-Director of Big Education, a multi-academy trust and social enterprise with a mission to change the way we do education.

The evening will be introduced by Andrew Marsden. A management consultant by background, Andrew is a Liveryman of four Companies and Chair of the Financial Services Group. He helped set up the annual Sheriffs' Challenge, which encourages schoolchildren to work together in developing and presenting persuasive presentations.

This event is open both to Company Members and Non-Members to book here

Shoptalk: The Artillery Arms - Tuesday 3 May
Led by Janell Dudley and Hugh Tinsley

This will continue our return to the traditional format for Shoptalk. Two members who joined the Company recently will lead the discussion by talking about their experience and interests in management consulting:

Janell Dudley has some 20 years experience in financial services. After an early career in New York with Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank, she has spent the last decade as an internal consultant at Barclays in London. Her leadership, team motivation and risk management expertise has resulted in successful change delivery for business operations, regulatory responses and technology enhancements. In addition, Janell is committed to supporting diversity and inclusion. She is the founder of the Art and Creativity Events Team within the Barclays Women's Initiative Network, which in 2019 won the Barclays Citizenship and Diversity Award for valued and extensive contribution through organising events and fundraising.

Hugh Tinsley has spent most of his consulting career with EY and Cap Gemini. His work has covered a wide range of strategy and transformation projects in the public and private sectors including Royal Mail, DWP, HMRC and most other major Government Departments. Much of his work has focused on transforming business operations and behaviour following technology change. Since leaving corporate life he has been involved in a number of contracting and pro bono roles. He is looking forward to the Company providing him with the opportunity to extend his pro bono experience.

CMCE Showcase: The Future of Work - Tuesday 10 May
The Centre for Management Consulting Excellence runs symposia that we call Showcases. There is still time to book your place at our next virtual Showcase. We are delighted to welcome our speaker James Davies, Employment Law Partner at Lewis Silkin who will join us to discuss the eight drivers of change that will shape the world of work.  Book your place here.

Summer Court Meeting - 8 June
The Quarterly Meeting of the Company's Court of Assistants will be followed by a Members' Reception at the Company's new home – Plaisterers’ Hall. This will be open to all members and it is a great chance to visit our new home as well as meet friends and colleagues old and new.  Save the date - details to follow via the website.   

What Did You Do For The Queens Platinum Jubilee?
PM Ian Daniell poses the question: "If it is too embarrassing to say 'Well darling, we had a quiet night in!' fear not, help is at hand. 

A few of us are arranging a dinner to celebrate HM’s platinum anniversary under the aegis of the Duckers and Weavers Company and have some places left!  The dinner will be held in the National Liberal Club at 1830 hours on 14 June. Black tie, partners, badges, decorations and bling. Please do read the linked document for background. It will be a fun, not sombre event. The cost is a modest £96 a head. If you are able to attend and/or would like to know more about the Duckers and Weavers, please contact: Ian Daniell or Satjit Singh.

London's Turbulent Son - Guildhall Yard - 17-18th June 2022
Becket Pageant for London and City Livery Craft Fair

This event, celebrating Thomas Becket, promises to be both very interesting and great fun, and I’ve got my tickets. Get yours here

Cart Marking  - 16 July - Guildhall Yard again
Following my attendance last year at this famous event - organised by the Carmen - several people have expressed an interest in organising a group / table to attend this year.  If you are interested please contact Andy Miles.

Summer Celebration  -  22 or 23 July tbc
Early warning. We are hoping to organise a summer celebration in late July - date to be confirmed. The format will be a low key outdoor reception event hopefully with a summer fête vibe, live music and open to all members and their families. We're still in negotiation with venues but as soon as we have clear proposals they will be available on the website so keep your eyes peeled for that.

Get To Know - Julie Fox

Many members will already know our Clerk Julie Fox. Indeed most people across the entire Livery seem to know Julie but she has, thus far, managed to resist my attempts to get her featured in the Get to Know section here. No longer – read on:

Julie was born in North London and moved with her family to South London shortly afterwards where she continues to live.  On leaving school, Julie joined local government and studied part-time for her professional qualifications, qualifying as a Chartered Secretary in 1984 and a Chartered MCIPD in 1997. Initially working for several London Boroughs, she then moved to work as director of education and governance with a range of professional bodies and was recruited as an education specialist to the National Audit Office contributing to and producing a range of VFM reports.

Since 2012, Julie has provided freelance company secretarial services to a range of organisations in both the public and private sector and has been Clerk to two Livery Companies including our own. Julie is on the Court of the Worshipful Company of Horners and the Worshipful Company of Firefighters and is involved in numerous organisations within the City, including the City Livery Club, the Royal Society of St George, the United Wards Club and three Ward Clubs. As previously reported Julie is currently Master of the Worshipful Company of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators. (Ed – like me Julie is half way through her year as Master). She was admitted to that Company in 2001 and joined its Court in 2007. During her time as a Court Assistant, she has served on all the Company’s Committees and is a Trustee and Treasurer of the Charitable Trust.

Away from the City of London, Julie has been a school governor, worked on the formation and administration of a multi-academy trust, is Clerk to the local almshouse charity, on the PCC and chair of the Friends of her local church, St Mary’s, Shortlands, PCC representative on the local pre-school and secretary of the Tennis Committee for her local tennis club.

When time permits, Julie enjoys travelling, eating out, wine tasting and choral singing. Julie is married to, and supported by, her consort Mark, a Professor of Veterinary Medicine and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries – and, of course, our unofficial official photographer.

City Livery Yacht Club Regatta

PM Edward Sankey reports: The Lord Mayor’s Cup for Livery Yacht Racing is Opening Up for Entries. The Regatta for the Lord Mayor’s Cup will take place off Cowes on 21 May. All members of Livery Companies may take part in the exciting races, which are later capped by a Prize Giving Dinner at the Royal Yacht Squadron.
The Regatta has run for many years. It is the principal event of the City Livery Yacht Club. This year, for the first time, the Regatta is open to non-members of the Club (subject to being a member of a Livery Company). Our Livery Company is already represented in the Club membership, including PM Denise Fellows and myself, currently the Club Commodore. Certainly more would find the Club members and activities very interesting!

Nearly 70 years old, the City Livery YC provides a range of activities for members, of all levels of activity. On the water, there are cruises (this year including a CLYC charter flotilla in the Ionian Islands) in addition to the Regatta. Boat-owning is not a requirement of membership. As well as sailing, there are members with motor yachts, and an Inland section of membership. Social functions ashore are held in the City, in Cowes and on the mainland side of the Solent. These include daytime events and visits as well as Dinners.
Links: More about the Club can be found here or through myself. Details of the Regatta are here. Applications for membership can be made here and the Club can be contacted by email.

And finally ....

No witticisms this time. Instead I spotted this Infographic which appealed to the Change Management Consultant in me:

Thanks for reading this far and very best wishes to all fellow Covid sufferers - and there are quite few now.  Many thanks to all those who contributed to this edition.

Steve

Steve Cant
Master

 

This newsletter is produced by the WCoMC Communications Group. Please let us know if you have any items to include in relation to any topics that come to mind! The opinions expressed in this newsletter represent those of the contributors and not necessarily those of the Company.
​WCoMC is a Chartered Charitable Organisation (Privy Council Reference C877) and a Company Incorporated by Royal Charter (Company No. RC000819).