In conversation with Carol Miller of CREST Business Awards, Holdsway’s Nick Diprose and Mary Murphy are clear that when it comes to change leadership interim executives are the expert game changers.
Holdsway was launched ten years ago with a mission to help businesses accelerate change. The Woking-based firm is now one of the UK’s highest ranked interim management firms.
Carol: Why have you chosen to be a CREST23 Business Awards sponsor?
Nick: Holdsway have sponsored Surrey’s CREST Business Awards from their beginning three years ago. Climate change should be seen as an opportunity to transform how we do business and awards like CREST raise awareness. Holdsway is in the change business – we introduce a network of interim executives who accelerate and lead change. We’re working with CREST to encourage business leaders to deliver change which will benefit the environment as well as their organisations. Now is the time for businesses across the UK to take climate change seriously, plan for it, then act.
Carol: How do you feel the CREST Awards programme will help in the climate crisis challenge?
Mary: The challenge of dealing with climate change boils down to effective change and crisis management. If we continue to raise awareness of the issues and the impact of climate change we are more likely to acknowledge that action must be taken. Accepting there is a better way is a first and important step to successful change. The awards help us to engage business leaders, showing that we can each play a part in preventing irreversible harm to the planet. CREST highlights the huge opportunity businesses have to make their businesses more efficient whilst also aligning their actions with what is good for our planet.
Carol: Your business has also taken a seat on the CREST Consortium think tank group, what do you think can be achieved by such an initiative?
Nick: The CREST Consortium is a very positive move. It encourages business and academic leaders to engage with each other about climate change, sustainability and green issues. If we all engage and share ideas it’s far easier to act on the challenges and opportunities of climate change. Holdsway places interim executives into businesses to help them manage all kinds of change and transformation. Climate change is a stimulus for businesses to optimise. Interim executives add extra change management capability to help businesses use their people and resources for efficiently. The CREST Consortium, like interim executives, can act as a catalyst to inspire the positive change.
Carol: Have you been able to share your part in CREST Business Awards and in what ways?
Mary: We actively promote the CREST Awards throughout our network – we always get really positive feedback. There is clearly a growing interest in aligning business initiatives with actions on climate change. The interims we place help clients optimise their operations, systems, processes and people and use their resources more efficiently. Clients commit to change because they want to have successful businesses. They accept much the importance of a proactive climate change strategy. As with all change initiatives, they just need a spark to get them going, and experienced interim executives provide that.
Carol: Dealing with the wide variety of businesses that you work with, have you noticed a change in attitude over climate change?
Nick: We see growing demand for environment, sustainability and green expertise. Embracing the challenges and opportunities of climate change will demand change management expertise. Interim executives are experts in change leadership. Hiring interims for rapid impact is becoming an obvious solution for all types of change.
Business leaders recognise the existential threat of climate change, but also the significant opportunities for innovation, operational transformation, new products and services, and new ways of working. Successful change means thinking, planning then acting.