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Top businesswoman inspiring companies to ‘build back better’

Award-winning businesswoman Jo Haigh has teamed up with leading education and training company In Professional Development to refocus the direction of organisations that have suffered during the Covid-19 pandemic.

After months of lockdowns, furlough, staff shortages and the seemingly ongoing opening and closing merry-go-round, many organisations have been crying out for assistance in getting back to what they do best, and as the Government puts it: “building back better”.

Enter Jo – a former winner of The Sunday Times NED of the Year award and Most Innovative UK Deal Negotiator 2016 and The AI One to Watch in Corporate Finance at the Acquisition International M&A Awards – whose considerable experience promises to help shape this ‘comeback’ for many companies by delivering expert tuition via an In Professional Development programme.

As non-executive director and chair of a number of prestigious companies, and a best-selling author of seven books, including An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Starting a New Business, Jo is already helping companies to come back from the pandemic in better shape.


GCC Facilities Management credits its recent “refocus” to In Professional Development course, which Jo delivers.

Its Managing Director Claire Maclean believes it was the right time to take part in the C-Suite Leaders Programme to help the specialist facilities management cleaning company to refocus its board of directors.

She said: “An invitation to join this course came at exactly the right time. As we emerge from Covid-19 restrictions, it really does feel like it is the right time to refocus the board.

“It was time for some leadership ‘gap analysis’ and the course content was relevant to where we were at. Jo was extremely engaging and comes with a wealth of experience so she was able to add anecdotes to make the content come alive.

“The content itself turned out to be extremely relevant and it didn’t just refocus me, it energised me to make some significant changes particularly around managing risk and bringing in new directors. I came away with a ‘to do’ list and look forward to sharing it with my fellow directors. Jo was also particularly helpful in correcting many misconceptions that were widely accepted amongst the group – again with useful evidence.”

Claire, having previously taken part in a directors’ development course with In Professional Development in 2019, says she will be using the company again as part of its future director ‘on-boarding’ programme.

Describing why she took part in the programme now, she added: “I think most businesses have had their focus diverted elsewhere during the pandemic and have, out of necessity, done the bare minimum of box ticking required.

“It has been a tough balancing act for many companies and objectives and budgets have probably been overshadowed by ensuring they remain financially viable, the need to engage strongly with employees and maintain acceptable levels of service.

“So I think now is the time for a lot of my contemporaries to consider what we have and think about doing a course such as this.”

Jo Haigh, tutor at In Professional Development, said: “The business world has gone through a traumatic 18 months, of that there is little doubt. But we take great pride in helping to navigate companies successfully out of Covid-19 restrictions and back to doing what they do best.

“We were delighted to have been able to help Claire and GCC Facilities Management and with spaces still available on our future courses, we would be honoured to welcome further companies to join us. Do sign up before we are fully booked and we look forward to meeting you.”

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