The month of April yields brighter skies and new optimism

As we emerge from winter and go full into Spring in the UK, I become fully energised at this time and the passing of the years does not diminish this. As we emerge from the gloom of winter, the weather improves, daylight hours get longer, I can cycle in the late evening sunshine and my life changes with the changing seasons.

Setting this new found optimism against a darkening international political backdrop slightly takes the edge off things for sure. These are worrying times. We are all watching what is happening in the world closely I am sure. It leads me to question if there are implications for the marine surveying sector specifically? I suspect not however.  Many surveyors already work in highly dangerous locations across the world and in difficult circumstances too, performing their important and challenging roles. But if I have one message it is to be safe in your work and to ensure you risk assess carefully.

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The year has started with a bang!

Already we are one month down in 2017 and things are busy at IIMS head quarters! The first few weeks have seen so much activity. Camella Robertson has joined to replace the soon to retire Jan Cox as Membership Secretary. Cam to her friends is settling in well at what is a busy time of the year for membership.

Already we have delivered two great, well attended training events. I relish the opportunity to get out and meet members, but equally non-members to talk about the work we are doing at IIMS and in particular the resources that are available to surveyors of all persuasions. Ultimately it is about helping great surveyors to become even greater by sharing all this mine of knowledge and expertise.

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Time for reflection at the end of an inspiring year

Firstly let me pass on my season’s greetings to all IIMS members who celebrate Christmas. May you have a peaceful and joyous holiday time.

The past twelve months have been memorable and I believe when we look back in time and reflect on 2016, our silver jubilee anniversary year, we will look back fondly and with pride. At a recent meeting with the head office team, I took the opportunity to share our achievements as an organisation and I think we were all genuinely surprised at what has happened over the past 52 weeks! It is always, in my opinion, important to recognise how far one has come before setting out one’s stall for the period ahead. Some of the things that go on behind the scenes at IIMS are not important to the wider world, but make a world of difference to the team – the installation of fast broadband, new PCs and a brand new server, for example, have transformed the way we work and our productivity this past year. And our progress as we embrace new technology and turn it to our members’ advantage is very pleasing.

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The magnitude of what we do

It is a while since I last posted to my blog here. In truth, my time has not been my own since the IIMS London Conference on the first day of September. There are busy fools of course and people who are busy with a purpose. I certainly identify with the latter. The past couple of months have seen IIMS meeting, training and sharing knowledge with dozens of marine surveyors, both members as well as others in the marine world.

Only after the delivery of a presentation, or a paper, does the magnitude of what we do or say become apparent as the audience assesses and gives feedback. But what exactly do I mean by that? In my role as CEO of IIMS I have a duty to think carefully before I speak, to ensure I strike the right chord and to deliver a message that is relevant. It is a responsibility I take very seriously and I always check and double check my content before releasing it in whatever format.

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Eight months to prepare, two days to deliver

Never before have I been dwarfed by two such menacing looking pirates!

Never before have I been dwarfed by two such menacing looking pirates!

It is hard to know where to begin as the dust starts to slowly settle on the IIMS 25th Anniversary Conference and AGM. I am sure I speak on behalf of my colleagues at head office, as well as myself, when I say how humbled we are by some of the kind comments people have made about the past couple of days.

The issue is that over eight months one gets far too close to these things and it is hard to see the wood from the trees. It is all about meticulous planning and envisaging the outcome of course. But ultimately it falls to others, the participants and delegates, to provide true feedback – and they have in the dozens and I am most grateful. If I sound emotional, then it is because I am. My colleagues and I put everything we had into organising this conference and I truly believe it was a fitting occasion to celebrate our silver jubilee.

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