Malcolm Cannon, National Director of the IoD
  • Event to be held virtually for first time, with Benny Higgins delivering the prestigious Leadership Lecture
  • Other speakers include Kate Forbes MSP; Robin Watson, Chief Executive of Wood Plc; and John Barclay, Former Scotland Rugby International Captain

THE Institute of Directors in Scotland has announced the keynote speakers for its annual conference, which will be held virtually over 5-6 November 2020.

In a change from its usual headline event at Gleneagles Hotel, IoD Scotland will take its annual conference online where it will be streamed live. The theme of this year’s event is Collaborating for Scotland’s Growth.

As part of the two-day event, Benny Higgins, Chair of the Scottish Government Advisory Group on Economic Recovery will deliver this year’s Leadership Lecture. The lecture will explore how a crisis can be a catalyst for change and outline the way forward for Scotland that will require courage, versatility and a recalibration of structures and policy.

With Covid-19 gripping the focus of business leaders globally, the two-day online event will provide an opportunity for business leaders from across the country to come together to listen and engage in presentations, panel sessions, and workshops. With presentations from leading industry figures and the ability to virtually meet and engage with peers, the IoD hopes that its first virtual Conference will leave delegates with the skills and connections to help ensure they stay focused on growth through collaboration.

Other keynote speakers at the 2020 event will include Kate Forbes MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Robin Watson, Chief Executive of Wood Plc, and IoD Director-General, Jon Geldart.

A panel session exploring wellness and mental health will include former Scotland Rugby International Captain, John Barclay, Scottish international cricketer, Abbi Aitken-Drummond, and Olympian and former GB Basketball and Scotland International Kieron Achara.

Malcolm Cannon, National Director, Institute of Directors Scotland said: “In the current climate, we are pleased that we can once again host our annual Conference – even if the format has changed this year. Every individual has been impacted by Covid-19 in some way this year, but despite this, we have all been heartened by the coming together of others to provide support. This has been echoed within the business community, with webinars, training, and mentoring being taken online to reach people and businesses far and wide.

“With an impressive speaker line up, this is an excellent opportunity for business leaders to pause, learn, and share before moving forward with gusto to keep their business on track for growth.”

It is hoped that the virtual delivery of this year’s conference will attract more delegates than ever before, with opportunities embedded in the agenda to encourage as much conversation and collaboration between leaders as possible.

Delegates will also be able to benefit from breakout workshops which will this year feature sessions focussing on cyber security and the green agenda from Conference sponsors Scottish Business Resilience Centre, Pike+Bambridge and Zero Waste Scotland. This year’s headline sponsor is Salesforce.