AN ACCLAIMED leadership programme proved ‘invaluable’ for business owners and helped them emerge from the pandemic in a stronger position than ever before.

ION Leadership’s ILM Level 5 Leading Growth course at Bangor University was praised by delegates for the positive impact it had on their personal and professional lives.

Among them was Mike Townsend, Managing Director of Quality Internet Solutions in Llandudno.

MORE: Start-ups to battle for investment on free business advice roadshow

Celebrating two decades in business, Mr Townsend diversified in the past two years, working with different industries and building on the firm’s reputation for SEO and digital marketing services.

“As well as looking at the company and overcoming the challenges of Covid-19, I decided to take some time to reflect on my own academic development,” he said.

North Wales Chronicle: Connor Watkinson also benefitted from the course.Connor Watkinson also benefitted from the course.

“Being part of the Leading Growth programme gave me new ideas, I found the whole course invaluable and have found out a great deal about myself, how I can add value to the way I lead my teams and to listen and learn from other business owners on the course, which for me was one of the highlights.”

“We have been successful in partnership with organisations in the online gaming, creative, education and property sectors but have started to attract more clients from other areas.

“I look forward now with a renewed sense of confidence and am already seeing the benefit of putting the things I’ve learned into practice.”

Anna Roberts, a chartered surveyor at A Roberts Ltd on Anglesey and CEO of online marketplace Explorage, was also looking to sharpen her leadership skills on signing up.

“The course exceeded my expectations, compounding the knowledge I already had and reframing it in a way that helps me to get the most of out of my time in a variety of situations,” said Ms Roberts.

“ION Leadership enables you to become the best version of yourself in business, to understand the theory behind the action and how to refine your approach to achieve a particular outcome.

North Wales Chronicle: Mike Townsend.Mike Townsend.

“I learnt a lot from the one-to-one coaching and from the interactive group tasks, as well as making some great friends and professional contacts in the process.”

Another to benefit was Connor Watkinson, a Project Manager with Transport for Wales.

Based on Anglesey, Connor enjoyed the course and is focused on further sharpening his leadership skills in the future.

“Continuous development is important to me; I believe we never stop learning and we should never stop learning!

“I completed the ILM Level 3 in Leadership and Management last year and thoroughly enjoyed the course, so I was looking forward to the Level 5. I loved it, especially how interactive and engaging it was, despite being online.

MORE: Colwyn Bay café for sale as owners look for “pastures new”

“I would absolutely, wholeheartedly recommend this course to anyone who wants to transform their organisation or themselves.”

Lorraine Hopkins, Manager for the Leading Business Growth programmes at Bangor University Business School, added: “It is heartening to hear such positive feedback about the programme and the effect it had on their professional lives.

“Congratulations and thank you for being a part of what is a growing ION Leadership community – we couldn’t be prouder of you all.”

ION Leadership Programmes are delivered by Bangor University Business School in collaboration with Swansea University and are currently funded up to 70% by the ESF via WEFO.

The very final suite of part-funded Leading Business Growth programmes will take place over the coming months.

The ILM Level 3 New Leaders programme begins September 14, the next ILM Level 5 Leading Growth programme will consist of a Pan-Wales cohort and starts September 6, and the final ILM Level 5 Leading Growth programme will run from November 30.

MORE: Business leaders warn North Wales economy "at risk" due to lack of trains