Following opening remarks byGarth Ritchie, Deutsche Bank’s Head of Global Equities and member of the CIB Executive Committee, James P Rubin took the stage to give his view on the current geo-political landscape. An Executive Editor of The Bloomberg View and former US Assistant Secretary of State, Rubin said that technology has changed the way governments function: where leaders once relied on cables, embassies and conferences to hammer out solutions, now they must develop and apply principles very quickly.
Next to address the audience wasSir Roger Carr, Chairman of Centrica plc and recently elected as President of the Confederation of British Industry. Sir Roger examined the challenges facing business leaders in the UK, touching on boardroom governance and composition. He said that the composition of boards should be improved to be more reflective of the customer bases they serve, adding that the presence of more women could improve the types of debate in the boardroom, their atmosphere and dynamics.
Katty Kay, Washington correspondent for BBC News, then led a panel discussion with: Ana García-Fau, Chief Executive, Yell Publicidad; Katherine Garrett-Cox, Chief Executive Officer, Alliance Trust plc and recently-elected member of Deutsche Bank’s Supervisory Board; and Angela Knight, Chief Executive of the British Bankers’ Association. The panel discussed the qualities needed for leaders to be effective in a rapidly changing environment, debating the value of different communication styles, the ability to bridge cultural gaps and the role of reputation. Garrett-Cox emphasised the importance of trust and reputation to businesses and their leaders, citing the current focus on ethics in business schools as a very positive sign.
The conference’s closing speaker was Patsy Rodenburg, Head of Voice at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. A 35-year veteran of the theatre who was clearly at ease on stage, Rodenburg presented the audience with ways they could use their voices, posture and breathing to enhance their personal presence and be better leaders.
Deutsche Bank sponsors similar events in Frankfurt, New York and, for the first time this year, Singapore. For more details, please visit www.womeninbusiness.db.com.