Black Rod’s Entrance To Collaborative Working

Today (14th May 2014) I went to the House of Lords, London and entered through Black Rods Gate to attend the Annual House of Lords Collaborative Working Reception.

Black Rod's Gate at The House of Lords, Westminster
Black Rod’s Gate at The House of Lords, Westminster

It was a lunchtime reception in the Cholmondley Room / the Terrace on the River Thames and being a sunny spring afternoon this was a perfect setting for the 14th Institute of Collaborative Working (ICW) reception.


Looking downstream of the River Thames (east) from the Terrace, House of Lords
Looking downstream of the River Thames (east) from the Terrace, House of Lords

There was over 200 people there, which indicated the growth and interest in Collaborative Working across various business sectors.  There were a number of key speakers and presentations and Lord David Evans of Watford opened the proceedings with an amusing snapshot of the current political situation, followed by a personal note from a 3 star general in the USA Department for Defence about BS 11000 and collaborative working.


Over 200 people at the Institute for Collaborative Working Reception...BS 11000 is growing
Over 200 people at the Institute for Collaborative Working Reception…BS 11000 is growing

What the General had to say…

Interestingly for me and as pointed out, this is the first British Standard that the USA has taken and applied since Independence!  Lord Evans read a personal note from the General (once I get his name I will update) who could not be there and he raised some key points in his message.

In particular (this is from memory so it may not be exact) leadership, unacceptable behaviour and self interest.  If businesses, organisations and people are to move forward and benefit from collaborative working there needs to be leadership to support and facilitate the promotion of collaboration, people need to adopt and develop collaborative behaviours to create trust and think more widely about creating mutual value and not just for themselves.

From what I have seen and experienced this will be a challenge when people are measured on short term “wins” and profits.  Creating a collaborative working culture is not an overnight fix and takes time, effort and resources.

BS 11000 to become ISO 11000

In response to Lord Evans was the Managing Director of BSi (British Standards Institute) UK and Ireland Maureen Sumner-Smith.  And in Maureens speech she highlighted that BS 11000 is a standard that is growing faster than any standard the BSi have published previously.  It is soon to become an ISO standard and as Les Pye CEO ICW commented, it will retain its “11000” brand, which is a first ever and will have its own category within ISO which is again significant and important and is testimony to the work completed by the Institute of Collaborative Working over the last 14 years.

The reception ended with presentations to two gentlemen who have played a significant role within ICW by taking PAS 11000 to BS 11000 and now on to ISO 11000 – that is Les Pye (CEO) and David Hawkins (Director of Operations) who both received the first Fellowships to the ICW.

Me at the House of Lords!

The reception was a very enjoyable experience, it went very quickly (obviously enjoying the wine, food and company too  much) and I thought I would share some of the photos with you.

Best regards


Thanks to Ben from Pera for taking the photograph...was never that good at the selfie!
Thanks to Ben from Pera for taking the photograph…was never that good at the selfie!



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