The South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership has now
formally closed as a registered limited company.

To stay updated on the latest economic developments throughout the region, we encourage you to visit the South East Midlands Growth Hub. The SEM Growth Hub also provides free business advice and guidance to all businesses, manages funding and grant programmes and has an extensive resource library where businesses can find additional support.

Visit the South East Midlands Growth Hub here

You can still continue to browse the SEMLEP website, and contact
all employees using their existing email addresses.

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An interview with Neus Garriock, Private Sector Deputy Chair, SEMLEP Board

26 July 2021

Last week, Galliford Try’s East Midlands Business Development Manager, Neus Garriock was appointed the Private Sector Deputy Chair for the SEMLEP Board.

SEMLEP’s Board includes representatives from both the private and public sectors, and it is the Private Sector Deputy Chair’s job to champion local businesses views, ensuring they are at the heart of key economic issues and discussions.

Ahead of her appointment, we caught up with Neus to find out a little more about her key Board achievement to date, her passions, and aspirations in the role.

So, you’ve been a part of the SEMLEP Board since 2018. Can you tell me a little bit about your professional background?

I’ve worked at Galliford Try for the past 17 years; you could say I’m part of the furniture. In my role as Business Development Manager for the East Midlands region, I’m responsible for business development, customer satisfaction, sustainability and corporate social responsibility, as well as communications and wellbeing.

During my time at Galliford, I’ve held a few different roles in different parts of the organisation but have worked in the Building field for the past few years. It’s been really good, as it’s given me the opportunity to change careers, without changing organisation.

Back in 2018, what led you to join the SEMLEP Board?

I was given a heads-up about the opportunity by Jon Rawcliffe, Business Development Manager at SEMLEP.

We'd bump into each other at property and development groups all around the region and he said, 'You know, we're actually recruiting for new Board members, and I think you'd be really good.' I thought I'd check with my employer, and they were really supportive.

We are very much encouraged to volunteer, and I thought this was a good opportunity to contribute to something I'm passionate about, the economic development of the region.

Having been a member of the Board for three years, what's the most exciting project you've been part of?

The thing that makes me the proudest is the response that SEMLEP and the Board have had to the recent Covid crisis. It has been absolutely exceptional how everybody has joined together and risen up to every single difficulty.

I’m proud that despite new working conditions (working from home, childcare etc), we’ve been able to reach out and be there for businesses at the time of greatest need.

We were able to directly provide feedback to government about the very hard-working conditions being experienced in our area, which then influence policy and support available.
I’m very proud of SEMLEP’s response.

What do you hope to bring as Private Sector Deputy Chair?

Obviously, professionally I’m really, really passionate about the built environment. But in general, I think from my experience so far, not just with SEMLEP but before is, when the best of the public and private sector come together, they go on to deliver really exceptional things.

Coming from the private sector end of things, I would like to see more businesses in the South East Midlands engage with SEMLEP; To be part of it, to have their voice heard, to have the confidence that we have their back, that we're going to be representing their interests, and give us a good understanding of what they need to be put in place for them to grow.

I'm a great believer that all together, we can do that. I want to bring a much stronger business voice into SEMLEP.

What are you most passionate about when it comes to the local economy?

Growth is so important, but I've mentioned the built environment before. It's really very much at the core of it. It's the places where we work, it's the place where we learn, hospitals are the places that make us feel healthy, as well as the green spaces which are the places that make us feel joy and give us opportunities to be with our friends and families.

It is enormously important that with the impacts of climate change in front of us, we have a fantastic opportunity to make sure we use the built environment to provide that green growth and sustainable approach that is so needed if we're going to successfully leave a better planet for future generations.

It's an exciting challenge ahead. Covid has changed something fundamental in all of us. It's made us re-evaluate our priorities and think a little bit more about what's important. I always say to my kid, 'Every pound you spend is a vote for the future that you want to live in.' It's a great opportunity for us, with investment plans and the Local Industrial Strategy, to bring people together for the good of the region, to actually chart a green sustainable course that delivers much more.

Read more about Neus’s appointment here.

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