A positive outlook for 2018 for the Chartered ABS Professional Managers’ Committee

The first meeting of 2018 for the Professional Managers Committee let us take stock of the successes of the previous year and look to the future, with a wealth of reports to consider and apply to our work in creating a positive and constructive environment for business school professional management.

To ensure that the work of the committee is aligned with that of the wider association, we have been looking in detail at the Chartered ABS priorities for 2018/19 to ascertain that those priorities are the focal point of our own endeavours and to measure the progress of the committee’s goals against them. We hope the wider member community will find new uses for this committee’s output as a result and we are progressing work to forge stronger international alliances with that in mind.

A further major topic for discussion was, of course, the Professional Managers Annual Conference 2017 held in December at the University of Liverpool. For 2017 we had trialled a new formula, seeking submissions from professional managers and others in business schools for papers for the conference, in addition to running a poster competition. We are extremely grateful to all those who engaged with this new format and we are delighted about all the positive and constructive feedback it generated. We hope to build on this success for our 2018 event being held at the end of the year, something we will talk more about in the coming months. Our considerable thanks go particularly to one of our committee, Stephanie Readey, University of Liverpool Management School, for stepping in to chair the conference. Also, in the first poster competition, with a large number of very strong entries, very many congratulations to the winner, Kirsteen Daly of the University of Glasgow, Adam Smith Business School.

The conference also demonstrated the success of the professional managers’ professional development matrix, which for the first time had been used to help format the conference and to manage submissions. The matrix continues to exist as a living document; we still have many great ideas for its development, with potential new fields, and we’re looking at new ways of presenting all the useful data it will eventually contain. We are also now collecting our illustrative case studies to feature online alongside the matrix itself, to illustrate the value of using the matrix in a variety of ways in professional development.

Lastly, following informal soundings taken from delegates at PMAC 2017, we are seeking to develop our proposed mentoring scheme for professional management, with a view to moving to a pilot phase. This is very exciting and, although this is still in the early planning stages, we look forward to sharing our findings as and when they yield new insights.


All questions, comments, suggestions on any aspect of the committee’s work gratefully received.

Dr Phillipa Towlson-Mulbregt, Chair, Professional Managers Committee