The fifth Regional Leaders Programme is now open for applications and Waterford Chamber are looking for professionals who have management potential, run their own business or looking to advance their career to join the programme which will begin this September.

According to Gerald Hurley, CEO Waterford Chamber, “The Regional Leaders programme has gone from strength to strength over the past five years, having been shortlisted for a number of national awards and a significant factor in us winning Chamber of the Year.

“While the pandemic may have affected a multitude, it has in fact allowed us to reflect and adapt the programme, making it even more flexible for our participants. It has also allowed us to reach out to national and international mentors who conduct sessions online. As the world reopens, this year’s programme will be hybrid, a mix of online and actual events, which will allow for better networking and interaction.

“The programme is unique in that it is designed by business for business and we are delighted to have our industry partners Bausch + Lomb with us again this year. They act as a mentor to us in terms of leadership development and the direction of the programme and of course have a number of leaders taking part.

“In addition, Waterford Chamber Skillnet is back as our funding partner, offering 25% for this year, meaning the nine month programme is a mere €262.50, which is incredible value.

“This year, the programme also has the full support of all the regional Chambers and Skillnets, who will also be participating. This will add huge value to the programme, not just in terms of cross regional networking but also in developing leaders who will go on to make a huge difference to the future development of our region. It will strengthen ties with other counties and add value to the South East as a great place to work and do business.”

Mark Hennessy, Site Lead at Bausch + Lomb, who has been a leader on the programme since its inception said: “Mark Hennessy, Site Lead at Bausch + Lomb, who has been a leader on the programme since its inception said: “Promoting leadership development is very much in line with our People Strategy here at Bausch + Lomb and we see tremendous value in the Regional Leaders Programme. We have had a number of our team involved over the years, both as leaders and participants and it has proved invaluable. Developing future leaders is essential for industry and through the Regional Leaders Programme, they get real life experience and support from a cross section of business people.”

Meanwhile, Tommie Ryan, Network Manager at Waterford Chamber Skillnet said: “Ensuring the skill needs of industry is met is what the Skillnet organisation is all about. We are delighted to be a funding partner again this year and also welcome the addition of our colleagues from across the region as they too will fund participants from their respective counties. This will ensure a dynamic new cluster of leaders across the region, which is very encouraging for future growth and development.”

The programme has over 40 leaders with real life experience who work with participants on a one to one basis and at group sessions, while there is also a fantastic line-up of inspiring speakers from across the country and beyond, including Paul Healy, CEO of Skillnet Ireland, Paul Stenson, White Moose Cafe and David Mc Redmond, CEO An Post and previously CEO of TV3.

So who is the programme for? In essence, anyone in business. CEOs, CFOs, entrepreneurs, start-ups, middle and senior managers have all taken part – it’s about inspiring future leaders, sharing knowledge and information and creating a powerful business network across the region.

For more information on the Regional Leaders Programme, please contact Lynda.lawton@waterfordchamber.ie or click here.