Yesterday’s IOD Director of the Year Awards for Yorkshire and the North East couldn’t have come at a better time.  At the end of a tumultuous week in politics, uncertainty in the Markets and national soul-searching, 200+ business leaders met in Leeds Civic Hall to celebrate risk-taking, creativity and optimism.

I had the pleasure and luck to sit on a table with 3 of the award winners: Keith Jackson of JRI Orthopaedics, Paul Teasdale of Premier Technical Services Group PLC and John Savage from Flame Heating Spares. Each of them achieving phenomenal success in a diverse range of markets.

There was, as you would expect, quite some discussion on Brexit, political leadership and what next, but also a surprising amount of sober and pragmatic realism.  Time for cool heads and self-confidence seemed to be the sentiment.

None of the directors nominated for awards last night had an easy ride to the top.  In their own ways they have all wrestled with extremely challenging circumstances within and outside of their businesses over the years. After all, it hasn’t exactly been plain sailing since 2008.

A timely reminder that up and down the UK successful business leaders developing or implementing business strategy are also calling upon those most rare of ingredients that sets them apart from the also-rans – strategic objectivity and patience.

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