CMI highlights: Companions edition

Wednesday 04 May 2022
The latest updates for CMI Chartered Companions from the chair of the board of companions, Bob Cryan CBE CMgr CCMI
A typewriter with some paper with 'Update' written on it

4 May

Dear Chartered Companions,

I hope that this month's Companion newsletter finds you well. The last month has yet again seen poor management and leadership practices coming into sharp focus through media coverage of issues in Westminster, in professional and amateur sport and in the recent coverage of a scandal in the Post Office that (whilst it occurred a number of years ago) had life-changing consequences for hundreds of people. All of this of course helps to remind us that the mission of the CMI and the contributions that we can make as Companions is as important as it has ever been.

CMI is just about to launch a new employability bootcamp course which is designed to help more people leaving education to do so with the management and leadership skills that employers are looking for. Many Companions (over 70) have helped to launch this new offer by providing video content sharing your experiences. Thank you to all that did so.

There are of course many other ways in which you can contribute to CMI – and if you haven't already, I'd encourage you to sign up as a mentor on the CMI platform. As we all know, mentoring can play a vital role in professional development and particularly in this, our 75th year as we're launching a new Bursary Scheme to help people advance their management career aspirations, now is a great time to get involved.

Speaking of the bursary, I'm delighted to let you know that we've had well over 100 applications, but there's still plenty of time for people to apply. If you can help spread the word on the scheme please do so – we want to ensure that we reach as many people as possible who could really benefit from the scheme – more information is available here.

Be sure to connect with other Companions as our next online peer learning group continues on 9th May is led by Jo Owen, places are limited and these events are always very popular so book now to avoid disappointment.

I do hope that you'll enjoy the content in this month's newsletter – there are some really thought-provoking pieces.

Kind regards


6 May

Dear Chartered Companions,

I do hope that you are well and had a successful March. It was certainly a very busy month for CMI Companions with many contributing to the new edition of the CMI digital magazine, peer learning sessions, ongoing activities supporting the CMI 75th anniversary programme and promoting our new bursary scheme.

As you'll see, in the magazine much of the content focuses on the challenges and barriers associated with socio-economic background and, importantly, how we as leaders can take practical steps to ensure that those barriers are removed and that true equity of opportunity exists. This edition is well worth a read – and thanks in particular go to Teddy Nyahasha, Allison Kirkby and Angela Noon for your contributions.

You'll find a variety of stories on collaboration, inclusion and supply chains in the newsletter this month and, if you've not already, please consider joining us for the next Companion Peer Learning session. You'll find a write up of the session from 1st March below, and if you've not been able to get to one of these sessions yet I'd thoroughly recommend it.

I hope that you'll have spotted that in mid-March we launched our first ever CMI Bursary scheme – you can find full details here. If you've not yet shared the details with others in your network please do so – the social media share links on the webpage mean this takes just a couple of clicks, and this could provide somebody with a life-changing opportunity.

I hope that April is a great month for you, and for those of us in the UK I hope that the spring weather arrives soon (it's snowing at the time of writing!). If you have any questions or suggestions, please don't hesitate to contact us on

Kind regards


9 March

Dear Chartered Companions,

It is with a heavy heart that I am emailing you today as we witness the tragic human costs of war once again in Europe, and with serious consequences beyond. We see the huge displacement of people from their homes, in particular women and children. The idea of marking International Women’s Day in this context raised emotive questions for all of us, and people are looking to leaders more than ever to help make sense of the senseless.

You may have seen a photograph being shared widely online of what appeared to be an all-male meeting of CEOs at the Munich Security Conference 2022. Or perhaps you have been asking who is in Putin’s inner circle? Wherever we look across the world, despite some differences in progress towards gender equality in leadership, it is incumbent on all leaders to ask – why are we still in this position?

As you know, CMI is currently undertaking a deep dive through our 75th anniversary project to identify the actions that employers need to take to deliver genuinely diverse and inclusive workplaces that are fit for the future.

For International Women’s Day 2022, CMI took stock of progress and has identified the key actions employers and the Government need to take, now, to ensure women have fair and equitable treatment and opportunities at work. I encourage the whole community to share this widely and champion the importance of better, more diverse management and leadership. If you have not already please get involved with #IWDCMI on social media, too.

CMI has been at the forefront, for many years now, of identifying how to ensure strong, equal, talent pipelines. In fact, our chief executive has ‘written the book’ on it. This requires a laser focus on widening access to professions, including the profession of management. CMI's response to the Government Announcement on HE Reform reminds us all that: “Achieving this requires ensuring fair and equitable access to higher education for those with the motivation and potential to succeed across all ages.”

With learning in mind, I also encourage you to delve into the content below and consider joining Anthony Impey MBE CMgr CCMI, CEO, Be the Business, for a fascinating peer-learning session considering the role and influence of CEOs.

Please do get in touch with your thoughts and feedback, as well as with any suggestions of inspiring leaders.

Stay safe,


9 February

Dear Chartered Companions,

We are off to a flying start for CMI’s 75th anniversary year and our community of leaders remains at the heart of all activities. I am particularly pleased to say that CMI will be awarding 75 new bursaries of up to £1000 per year, for a maximum of three years, to support their management development aspirations. The awardees will be encouraged to establish a mentoring relationship to help them succeed, so it would be wonderful if all Chartered Companions make themselves available as Mentors in advance. If you have not yet already done so, simply login to your profile and click Mentoring to set up your profile.

This anniversary year, CMI is exploring the best practice for inclusive modern management and how we as leaders can fully maximise the talent available to us by removing barriers. We have been exploring several topics recently, including ethnicity and socio-economic background. As CMI Chief Executive, Ann Francke OBE CMgr CCMI recently said to the FT: “There is so much talk about levelling up when it comes to place. But really, what we need is levelling up when it comes to people.”

With that in mind, last week Her Majesty’s Government published their flagship Levelling Up White Paper, setting out a plan to transform the UK by spreading opportunity and prosperity to all parts of it. Please take the time to read CMI’s considered response, which highlights the recognition of the value of Management through Help To Grow and new initiatives including the Unit of Future Skills and the Leadership College for Government. I’m sure you will agree with me that CMI is best placed to support these initiatives to create the impact we wish to see. Please do get in touch with the CMI Policy team if you or others in your network can help to ensure CMI’s involvement. If you are based outside the UK, please do also let the team know of similar government initiatives to boost the quality of Management in your location.

I would also like to thank the many Chartered Companions who are contributing to important CMI projects, such as the exciting development of new Employability Bootcamps and the important review being undertaken of CMI’s Professional Standard framework. This year, as well as proudly displaying your post nominals (CMgr CCMI), we will be celebrating the wide and vast contributions of our community. Please do get in touch if you would be willing to feature in a new video to showcase who Chartered Companions are and what we do. Whether you have been part of the community for the last 10 years or 10 weeks, we’d love to hear from you.

As always, please keep well.


12 January

Dear Chartered Companions,

I would like to wish you all a very happy and healthy year ahead. This year CMI is celebrating 75 years of significantly improving management in the UK and beyond. 2022 also marks 20 years of Chartered Manager status being awarded to those committed to best practice and professional development.

Chartered Managers make an essential economic contribution to the UK economy and businesses. In these relentlessly uncertain times, we need more professionally qualified managers across all types of organisation, in every sector and representing the wonderful diversity in our societies.

I would like to ask you as a Chartered Companion to amplify this message loudly and proudly this year. Please take a look at the excellent information and shareable resources available to promote the many benefits of achieving the CMgr designation, for individuals, organisations and economies.

I’m sure you will enjoy the new Insights in this edition and I hope many voices from across our community of leaders will be inspired to contribute their personal experience and knowledge this year. As ever please do contact Matt Jayes if you would like to get involved, if you have news to share of awards or recognition, or if you have suggestions for key management topics you feel should be addressed this year. Likewise you still have time to let us know who you think should be considered for the prestigious CMI Gold Medal this year.

Finally, you may be aware that January is Mentoring Month. Whilst you may have already made (and perhaps broken!) your new year resolutions, please allow me to add one more for consideration: as a Chartered Companion, can you mentor a CMI member? If so, please log in to your account and follow the Mentoring button where you will be able to register on the service.

I look forward to a wonderful year of celebrations together, please do look after yourselves.



8 December

Dear Chartered Companions,

As another year draws to a close it seems natural to enter into a state of reflection. I will certainly be reflecting on the many successes of CMI and the contributions made by so many of you. In the past year, membership of our institute sped past the 160,000 marker, the number of Chartered Managers grew at twice the rate of the previous year and there were more than 60,000 new learners registered on management and leadership programmes.

The uncertainty of 2020 has of course continued with the emergence of new Covid-19 variants. Managers across the world are grappling with understanding variants of organisations, management practices, work places and work itself. To support this, CMI has collaborated with other influential organisations to publish the new, authoritative hybrid working report.

I am sure that Chartered Companions and other professional managers who already took on the challenge to Reflect, Reskill and Rebuild earlier this year will find this report an invaluable resource. However, as we look forward I would like to challenge all Chartered Companions to proactively prevent the spread of accidental management by ensuring all people in management positions are encouraged to join the CMI community.

I would also like to ask for all Chartered Companions’ enthusiastic and active support during CMI’s 75th anniversary year. In particular and right now, the Board of Companions would appreciate your recommendations for who we should consider nominating for the prestigious Gold Medal in 2022. I’m sure you were pleased to see Alison Rose, Chief Executive of NatWest Group, accept the award this year alongside Lifetime Achievement Award winner Pinky Lilani CBE DL. I’m also sure that you would like to join me in warmly welcoming both Alison and Pinky to our Chartered Companions (CMgr CCMI) community.

Finally, as always, I hope you enjoy the new articles in this month’s edition and if these inspire you to share your own insights next year then please do get in touch with Matt.

My warm and festive wishes to all,


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