Area manager joins fellow leaders on new MSc course

Experienced area manager Lisa Bullen is amongst the inaugural batch of participants set to undertake the first UK Masters programme geared specifically to those who work in customer-owned/mutual financial services organisations.

Lisa (pictured), who began working at The Nottingham eight years ago, will join 25 others from 17 building societies of all sizes across the country on the MSc in Leadership and Management - which has been introduced by the Building Societies Association (BSA) and the School of Business and Economics at Loughborough University.

Her involvement is made all the more satisfying by the fact that The Nottingham’s Chief Executive David Marlow and Head of HR Anne Mellors were both significantly involved in pushing for, and helping to set up, the course.

David said: “Along with our Head of HR, Anne Mellors, I have been involved in conversations about the value and potential of a course like this so it is fantastic that it is going to happen and that the inaugural group of participants has been chosen.

“We are of course especially pleased that a colleague, Lisa Bullen, will be taking part and have the chance to hone her leadership and management skills. It’s also great that a local university will be staging the initiative and making such a strong contribution to the development of future leaders of the mutual sector right across the country.”

Anne explained: “The course is designed to develop the mutual financial services organisation leaders of tomorrow – to ensure organisations can deliver to their members not just now but long into the future.

“It’s fabulous that the MSc in Leadership and Management is up and running with the icing on the cake of course being that Lisa will be involved.”

The three-year course will see the students spend between 12 and 14 days a year, across four modules, at the School of Business and Economics at Loughborough University and will include topics such as Leading and Managing People, Corporate Governance and Financial, Operations and Marketing Management.

Woven throughout will be the practical, cultural and ethical approach required to lead a modern mutual organisation.

BSA Chief Executive Robin Fieth said: “The rigour with which a building society has to be led and managed is no different to that of a PLC. But customer-owned businesses take a different approach to how they operate and make decisions.

“Their focus is not on maximising shareholder value, but on delivering real and sustainable value to current and future generations of members. Profit is important for growth, strength and stability but it’s about making enough rather than going for the maximum. This programme provides the rigour and focus to develop the mutual leaders of tomorrow.”
Professor Stewart Robinson, Acting Dean of the School of Business and Economics at Loughborough University, added: “This is a unique and exciting joint initiative. It is designed to equip participants with the skills needed to meet the strategic and management challenges they face in an environment where competition and regulation are constantly increasing. 

“The School has considerable expertise in delivering professional development programmes and a well-established reputation in the analysis and support of the mutual sector. We look forward to delivering this Masters programme in conjunction with the BSA and welcoming our new students onto campus for their induction programme.”

Lisa, 45, previously undertook the ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) Level 5 in Leadership and Management as part of The Nottingham’s accredited Management Milestones Programme, and was selected for the MSc via the society’s talent and succession planning process. She has worked in the building society industry for 27 years, undertaking all branch network roles. Lisa Bullen

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