Petra Wilton leads on CMI’s thought leadership agenda and on building strategic partnerships in the public policy arena. She is responsible for promoting the needs of practising managers through engaging with and accessing the views of CMI's 120,000-plus members. Through a bespoke research agenda, these views are shared with those in Government, business, education and the media.
Petra led CMI’s partnership with the Chartered Association of Business Schools to deliver the ‘21st Century Leaders’ report, and is now also working with the business schools and an employer group on the development of a new Trailblazer Chartered Management Apprenticeship Degree.
She also manages the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Management and was responsible for its Commission’s report ‘Management 2020’. She also represents CMI on various external groups, including Valuing your Talent and Access to the Professions.
Before joining CMI, Petra was a director of a public affairs consultancy. She has an MA (Hons) in History from Cambridge University and is a Fellow of the RSA.
Investing in management skills and building capability in our managers and leaders is key to solving the productivity puzzle. And management apprenticeships are already playing a critical role in this, by turning our 2.4m accidental managers into conscientious and productive leaders.
Petra Wilton, Director of Strategy and External Affairs, CMI, addressing the Westminster Employment Forum Keynote Seminar: The future for higher and degree apprenticeships - expansion, integration and standards
In the last fortnight, more than a million GCSE and A-level students have collected their exam results and many will now be moving onto the next stage of education. Of course, the well-established further and higher education routes will dominate the choices made. Yet, too few young people and their parents are aware of exciting new options, such as higher degree apprenticeships. As the skills gap grows, and the prospect of massive graduate debt is deterring more people from pursuing higher education, we need to fix this lack of awareness.
Government approval to develop a new Master’s-level degree apprenticeship in leadership and management means organisations will be able to use Apprenticeship Levy funds to invest in the skills of their most senior leaders.
Changes to the UK’s education system come at a time when post-Brexit we need a renewed focus on developing home-grown skills. In the past year, we have seen the introduction of Trailblazer Apprenticeships, proposals for the implementation of the Apprenticeship Levy and wider reforms to create 15 new technical routes for school leavers. The restructure of education and training serves to address a nation-wide issue of low productivity and ongoing skills shortages. The policies we are seeing emerge from the government are a reassuring move toward reinvigorating the development of higher level and technical skills through work-based learning routes. These vocational routes for far too long have been given far less attention than traditional university education.