Monday, 5 August 2013

The departing dear doctor...

Well, after 6 years I am to lose my wonderful deputy Dr Peter Kyle. I always liked to use his moniker though that led to difficulties sometimes when I told my PA to get hold of my Doctor!

Last week he handed his  notice in to me because he has accepted a job offer that he would be mad to refuse. He is going to became the CEO of a start-up charity( prov title of Working for Youth )  established by CEO's and Chair's of FTSE 100 companies and which seeks to tackle the demand-side challenges of youth unemployment. The new charity will support the private sector to become more 'youth friendly' and accessible to young people from all backgrounds, and also establish a think tank element that will become the 'go to' resource for policy makers and practitioners.

It is essentially carrying on where the ACEVO task-force (chaired by David Miliband) left off. You must read that brilliant report if you have not- see ACEVO website). You can see why it appeals. He will be based at the Standard Chartered head office as it's Chair, Sir John Peace, is there. He also chairs Burberry but not sure if he can get me discounts?

He is just right for a start up charity. And he will put youth unemployment back on the map. It’s a scandal we will have another lost generation and yet there is so little attention on this issue.  Peter will sort that though!

I will miss Peter. He has been a great Deputy. Loyal and supportive. Fierce in promoting ACEVO interests. He takes no prisoners when he thinks something is wrong- like the fiasco over the Third Sector Leadership Centre. Always fun to be with; he shares an interest in good wine (like all prospective Labour MPs should!)and has  good policy and campaigning brain.

It’s always sad for a CEO when they lose such talent. I'm lucky to have had Peter for 6 years. And I'm proud that ACEVO has nurtured and fostered such incredible talent which the sector now sees; Nick Aldridge, Gail Scott-Spicer ,Seb Elsworth and Ralph Michell are prime examples.

As a CEO you want these people to stay for ever (I think Nick Aldridge never thought he would get away!) But part of your job is to encourage development, knowing you will lose people eventually. I think there are 2 types of CEO; ones that pick people less able than themselves so they are no threat and those who pick people more able in the knowledge they will leave but having made a stunning contribution to the job). As long as you are sure of someone's loyalty then you must always go for the very best- even if they may at times out shine you! 

And in May 2015 Peter will become MP for Hove. I think this is a safe bet with only a less than 2% swing required!  He will be a wonderful candidate; kissing babies and old people (and others no doubt) and charming them to the Polls.

Ave et vale Peter.

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