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Talent Management Symposium

When and where?
Tuesday 19 June 2018, Marriott Hotel, Regents Park
£75.00 Member Price
£85.00 Member Price Scotland
£90.00 Non Member
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In the introduction to our research paper Talent Management: Learning Across Sectors, the author Dr Wendy Hirsh began 'Talent management is about what we need to be doing today in order to have the people we need for tomorrow.' Creating and maintaining an active talent management strategy is about planning, strategy, consistency and learning from others. As with the research paper we have designed this Talent Management Symposium, not as a 'how to' - higher education HR professionals are already experts on developing talent management strategies and plans. This symposium is an opportunity to hear what those in other sectors are thinking about talent management and what they are doing to attract, develop, retain and deploy the people they will need in the future.

Contributors will share their talent management progress, successes, and ideas from higher education, central government, and the charity and business sectors.

It is a one-day event and will start at 10.00am and close at 4pm, on Tuesday 19 June at the Marriott Hotel, Regents Park, London.

Speakers and contributors include:

  • Dr Wendy Hirsh, Institute for Employment Studies
  • Sarah Churchman, Head of Diversity, PwC
  • Debra Lang, Head of Human Resources, DCMS
  • Colleen Harding, Bournemouth University
  • Jane Ginniver, University of Sheffield
  • Jacqui Marshall, Exeter University
  • Sheila Gupta, Director of Human Resources, University of Sussex

Quote from Talent Management: Learning Across Sectors:

“Make sure that you are confident in the organisation’s talent management system. Challenge it, be part of the steering group, review it. Confidence will help you verbalise the talent management process to your team who will then advocate it visibly too.”

Global Talent Lead, British Council



The Talent Management Symposium 2018 will take place in central London.

10.00 Arrival, registration and refreshments

Opening keynote - Trends in talent management: Building diverse talent pipelines

  • Dr Wendy Hirsh, Principal Associate, Institute for Employment Studies

Case study presentations - Talent management in wider context (followed by Q&A and group work)

  • Sarah Churchman, Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Wellbeing, PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • Debra Lang, Director HR and Organisational Development, The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport

Panel chair:  Sheila Gupta, Director of Human Resources, University of Sussex 

12.30  Lunch
13.15  Small group discussions - Talent management in your own institutions 
14.00  Break

Case study presentations - Talent management in higher education (followed by Q&A)

  • Colleen Harding, Head of Organisational Development, Bournemouth University
  • Jane Ginniver, HR Manager (Organisational Development), Sheffield Leaders
  • Jacqui Marshall, Deputy Registrar & HR Director, Exeter University

Panel chair:  Sheila Gupta, Director of Human Resources, University of Sussex 

15.45 Closing remarks
16.00 Depart 


We reserve the right to change the programme at any time.

The Talent Management Symposium 2018 is part of the Leadership Foundation’s funder commissioned work to tackle sector challenges and advance the promotion of equality, diversity and inclusion. This event will focus on TM strategies and how universities can nurture and retain talent in the context of growing uncertainties around Brexit, student fees, global markets, vice-chancellor's pay and perceptions of value.  

Retaining talent in the face of these challenges, ensuring a workforce is diverse and creating an inclusive culture are tasks which are often tackled separately. This symposium aims to bring these two strands together to explore their interconnectivity and how HEIs can approach TM to enable a diverse talent pool.

In response to a wider interest within the sector on how talent management can be applied in an higher education context, we commissioned Dr Wendy Hirsh, principal associate,  and Elaine Tyler, research fellow, Institute for Employment Studies to help leaders in higher education as they address talent management within their own institutions. The report highlighted that organisations saw their approaches as accelerating their progress on diversity and inclusion.

Building on this report, this Symposium will offer participants an opportunity to:

  • Explore talent management within an higher education context
  • How to establish talent management approaches that will enable diversity
  • Hear from voices from within and outside of the sector on their approach to talent management
  • Consider next steps for their own institution
  • Explore the potential for creating a community of practice around talent management that respects diversity

Quote from Talent Management: Learning Across Sectors:

“Look at things holistically, don’t just focus on performance. Consider well-being, the environment that people are interacting in, the system the talent is in, and accept that the system will change just by putting the talent in there.”

Head of Civil Service Fast Stream



  • HR Directors
  • HR Business Managers
  • Talent Management specialists
  • Organisational Developers
  • Leadership Development specialists
  • Senior management team members with an interest in talent management
  • Equality and Diversity leads interested in talent management

Quote from Talent Management: Learning Across Sectors:

“Do things in bite sizes. Embedding a culture where talent management is seen as really important takes time, you need to join it up with your existing systems rather than creating lots of new processes.”

Head of L&D, Plan International




Wendy Hirsh (130x130)

Dr Wendy Hirsh
Principal Associate,
Institute for Employment Studies

Dr Wendy Hirsh is a consultant and researcher on a range of people management issues especially career development, talent management, succession planning, workforce planning and leadership development. Her particular interests are in considering both organisational and individual perspectives; linking employee development more strongly with changing business and skill needs; and helping managers and employees to tackle these career and future-related aspects of employment more clearly and more confidently.

In addition to working independently, Wendy has close links with several leading institutions. She is principal associate of the Institute for Employment Studies (IES), where she was formerly associate director; fellow of the National Institute for Career Education and Counselling (NICEC) and associate of Roffey Park Institute. Wendy is also visiting professor at Kingston University and visiting professor of career development at the University of Derby. She has been a regular research contributor for the Corporate Research Forum (CRF). In recent years she has regularly featured in the top 20 list of HR Magazine's Most Influential HR Thinkers.

Recent consulting projects include succession and talent management strategy and implementation in a global NGO, a European bank, in oil exploration and both local and central government in the UK. She has run workshops for both HR professionals and line managers on succession and talent management, career development, effective career conversations and strategic workforce planning in a range of sectors including power generation, logistics, food and the police. She has contributed to recent research for BIS on changing employer approaches to graduate recruitment and how adults make career decisions. She was recently on the national consultative group for the re-design of the Investors in People employer standard.


Sarah Churchman (130x130)

Sarah Churchman
UK Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Wellbeing,

Following her graduation from Reading, Sarah worked as a HR manager and then senior manager at Coopers & Lybrand, where she remained for over 17 years. In 2004, she moved on to PwC, leading on talent management, diversity & inclusion, and employee wellbeing, with a special focus on mental health.

With more than ten years of experience in the area of diversity and inclusion, Sarah is one the country’s most experienced professionals in this field. She was an early adopter of unconscious bias awareness training, winning and Opportunity Now award in 2011 for Open Mind elearning and won a further Opportunity Now award in 2013 for her sponsorship programme.

Debra Lang (130x130)

Debra Lang
Director HR, OD and Change,
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Debra is an innovative and forward thinking HR leader with 20 years' strategic, operational and policy HR experience in the public sector.
Debra is a career civil servant starting work in frontline operational roles in the DWP (and its predecessors) and later moving to corporate centre HR roles including a spell as fast stream grade manager in the Department of Social Security. Other roles include senior HR business partner, head of employee relations, head of civil servant talent and now HR director for the department for media, culture and sport. She is a chartered fellow of the Institute of Personnel and Development.
Debra is married and lives with her husband, eleven year old daughter and a fat cat in Surrey. In her spare time she is Chair of Governors for a local infants school and a keen gardener.
Colleen Harding (130x130)

Colleen Harding
Head of Organisational Development,
Bournemouth University

Colleen is currently focusing on embedding a culture of leadership, talent, succession and performance across the organisation. Eighteen years’ experience in Higher Education has been preceded by thirteen years with Marks and Spencer, together with two years in the charity sector and as a freelance consultant. These experiences have prompted a lifelong interest in the importance of effective relationships between individual and organisation, including a doctoral study on academic and organisational alignment.

As assistant editor of the International Journal of Evidence Based Coaching and Mentoring, Colleen has many opportunities to reflect on the importance of evidence-based practice, and recently completed a project for the European Mentoring and Coaching Council exploring the link between practice and research. Current research projects include: institutional life cycles; transformative career progression for academics; impact of coaching; and mentoring for hospital consultants.
Jane Ginniver (130x130)

Jane Ginniver
OD and HR Manager,
University of Sheffield

Jane leads the team responsible for leadership, management and staff development for University staff.

Jane is also a co-founder (with colleagues from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada) of the 'Higher Education Leadership Forum', bringing leadership development academics and practitioners together from across the world to share good practice and to encourage the development of excellence in leadership across the global HE community.

Jacqui Marshall (130x130)

Jacqui Marshall
Deputy Registrar and Director of People Services & Global Partnerships,
Exeter University

Jacqui is the University's deputy registrar & director of people services and global partnerships. As director of people services and global partnerships, Jacqui is responsible for delivering all human resources, organisational development and change, and health, safety and wellbeing services for the University. Jacqui also leads on the University Transformation programme and is vice-chair of the Russell Group HR Directors’ network.

Jacqui joined the University as director of HR in July 2013. Previously, Jacqui was a senior civil servant in the Ministry of Defence (MoD), where her most recent role was leading the department-wide Cultural Change Programme. Within her civil service career, she held a range of both HR and business appointments within the MoD including a secondment to DEFRA where she held the Board level appointment of HR Director for Rural Payments Agency.
Jacqui is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, a fellow of the Institute of Directors and a trained mediator and business coach. Jacqui is a trustee of Young Bristol, one of the largest youth charities in the South West and she mentors a range of people from both public and private sector.


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        1. Competing in a global market
        2. Improving staff diversity
        3. Case study: Exeter
      4. Issues and Challenges
        1. Student inequalities
        2. Staff inequalities
        3. Assessing specific E&D issues
      5. Value
        1. Increasing focus
        2. Gender diversity data
        3. Improving diversity
        4. Case study 1: UWS
        5. Case study 2: UWS
      6. Questions and Resources
        1. Resources
    8. Board Diversification
    9. Self-Assessment Tool
    10. Governing Body Effectiveness
    11. Governor Development Programme Evaluation
    12. Governor Dialogues
  6. International
    1. International Engagement
    2. International Reference Group
    3. International Case Studies
  7. Membership
    1. Membership benefits and services
      1. Membership logos
        1. Download the membership logos
    2. How to join
    3. National and regional contacts
      1. Abbie McKenna
      2. Cindy Vallance
      3. Gary Reed
      4. Jean Chandler
      5. Judy Harris
      6. Lesly Huxley
      7. Meriel Box
      8. Rebecca Bull
    4. Membership advisory group
    5. Membership development support
    6. Management Development Resources
      1. Download MDR1: Managing Effective Performance
      2. Download MDR2: Managing Change in HE
      3. Download MDR3: Emotional Intelligence, Personal Impact and Personal Effectiveness
      4. Download MDR4: Lean Management: Doing more with less
      5. Download MDR5: The Current HE Context: Drivers for change
      6. Download MDR6: Commercial Skills for Academics and Researchers
      7. MDR7: Caught in the Middle
        1. MDR7 Contents
        2. Download MDR7: Caught in the Middle
      8. Download MDR8: Working with Academic Motivation and Prestige
    7. Knowledge Bank
    8. Membership community
      1. Members' Directory
    9. Ten great reasons to be a Leadership Foundation member
      1. #10GreatReasons1
      2. #10GreatReasons2
      3. #10GreatReasons3
      4. #10GreatReasons4
      5. #10GreatReasons5
      6. #10GreatReasons6
      7. #10GreatReasons7
      8. #10GreatReasons8
      9. #10GreatReasons9
      10. #10GreatReasons10
  8. News
    1. Twitter

We are a membership organisation of and for a sector that has some of the brightest minds in the UK.


Our members are key to our strategy and form a community of higher education institutions with a clear commitment to and experience of developing leadership, governance and management capabilities at all levels. Academic and professional services staff from member institutions contribute to our programmes, projects and research and advise on benefits and services.


Find out more about Membership


  • Membership benefits

    • 25% discount on our open and in-house programmes and consultancy
    • a free consultancy day
    • exclusive access to research publications, development resources and funding opportunities
    • free regional events
    • funding for Staff Development Forum and MASHEIN activity
    • members’ mailing lists, newsletters and magazine
    • participation in our development networks


  • How to join

    • Membership is open to all higher education providers and related sector organisations on an annual or three-yearly subscription basis.
    • We have 154 members with around a third taking advantage of the 10% discount offered by three-year subscriptions.


  • Membership benefits

    • Research and innovation: Access to our latest, highly-valued research, Leadership Insights, Getting to Grips series and practical development project resources.
    • More…

    • Management Development Resources: Flexible workshop materials on key leadership and management development topics, for you to deliver in-house to suit your own contexts NEW: ‘Caught in the Middle’. 
    • More…

    • The Knowledge Bank: Save time with these extensive multi-media training resources for HR, staff development and OD professionals, covering key leadership and management theory and practice.
    • More…

  • Get in touch

    Meet the membership team, your national and regional contacts in the UK and Ireland, and LF networks.

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Advance HE
Leadership, Governance and Management

Peer House, 8-14 Verulam Street
London WC1X 8LZ

T: 020 3468 4810     F: 020 3468 4811

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