8th October 2018

Umar Zamman, Director of People and Organisational Development at Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU), recently delivered a speech to the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) on the power and importance of being inclusive leaders. He was awarded a bursary by the ACU to attend the conference. Speaking at the ACU’s global ‘HR in the HE Community’ conference in Canada, Umar discussed the characteristics, actions and qualities of an inclusive leader, examining how HR can support leaders to be more inclusive and help organisations create an inclusive environment and culture. Delivered by strategic HR practitioners, the conference programme included an exciting line up of 27 international speakers from 12 countries across the Commonwealth, featuring a mix of presentations and panel discussions. In addition to Umar’s address, delegates discussed how to meet the many challenges facing HR professionals working in Higher Education today, as well as exploring opportunities for the profession in the future. Activities throughout the conference were guided by four sub-themes, which had been identified by HR practitioners from universities across the Commonwealth as their key priorities:
HR as a strategic partner
Exploring how HR can transform into a more effective resource for the organisation, enhance its credibility, evolve into a strategic partner, and align business objectives with university goals.
Leadership and capacity building
Building the capacity to effect change and fulfil the University's mission, engaging and inspiring teams to get the best results, and creating participatory and collaborative processes that develop the abilities of the next generation of leaders.
HR in the digital age
The impact of technology on human resource management; using digital HR tools and approaches to recruit, develop, and retain a talented workforce, and the changing role of people management in the digital era.
HR operational excellence
Developing an HR analytics framework to drive strategy, becoming a proactive, collaborative business partner; transforming operations using organisational design theory, identifying and adopting world-class capabilities, and delivering maximum value from your HR function. Returning from the conference Umar described it as being a part of positive change in the Higher Education Sector: “It was fantastic to be asked to represent BGU at the Association of Commonwealth Universities Global HR conference. I met some wonderful colleagues from around the world and it enabled me to share best practice on inclusive leadership in the HE sector. “It also gave me an opportunity to talk about some of the great things we are doing here at BGU. I look forward to the next ACU conference in 2020” The staff and academics at BGU are regularly invited to present at conferences around the world, you can follow all their travels on our news page and find out how you can start your own adventures on our course pages.