North East Connected


Screen Shot 2015-06-05 at 09.50.36General Sir Nicholas Carter believes business and army can work together

The North East Chamber of Commerce (NECC) recently welcomed the Leader of the British Army to the region.

General Sir Nicholas Carter attended the region’s largest business membership organisation’s Partners & Corporate lunch at Northumbria University to share his experience on Leadership and Change.

Having served worldwide in Northern Ireland, Kosovo and Afghanistan, General Carter spoke with North East business people, explaining how his experience as a leader can be reflected in civilian life.

“In many ways, what I do with The British Army and The Army Reserves is similar to what is going on in offices all over the country. Our people are at the heart of everything we do,” said General Carter.

“Every day we must take stock of our challenges, develop a strategy and manage the talent of our workforce,” he said. “As with any other organisation I believe we must empower individuals and trust them to try innovative ideas and encourage our employees to learn from their mistakes.”

“That’s not to say newcomers should be left to their own devices. It is important to set a clear set of values and standards that should be used from the very top of an organisation to the very bottom. Values are not just for new recruits, we must lead by example.”

Comparing The Army Reserves to North East Business, General Carter said: “Times have changed. Businesses evolve and so has the Army. We have moved on from the images shown on televisions during the last decade.

“Never before has the British Army been so well supported but less understood. We must adapt to a new set of challenges and new recruits help us do that.

“With permission from employers Army Reservists can work with us for 27 days a year, learning skills they’d never otherwise learn, which they then take back to their employer. They enjoy a camaraderie rarely found outside The Army and make lifelong friendships.”

With the changing demography of the United Kingdom, General Carter acknowledged that the typical new recruit has moved on from a male, Caucasian, aged 16-25.

“This is a change I see as a huge opportunity. There are prospects for people of all backgrounds and we welcome diversity,” said General Carter.

“As business people you will recognise that what is of utmost importance in your workforce is employees who share your core values, are ready to be empowered and have a sense of duty. The British Army is no different.”

James Ramsbotham, NECC chief executive, said: “It is a pleasure to welcome General Carter to our region. As part of the research into our 200thanniversary year we have found many examples of how North East business has supported or been supported by the British Army, in times when it matters most. I have no doubt that this will continue in the years ahead.”

Exit mobile version