Exciting Journey to Becoming a Chartered Manager and CTO: My Story of Success

Introduction

Hello, everyone; I’m thrilled to share my journey towards achieving Chartered Manager status with you all today. A Chartered Manager is a globally recognised professional designation in the field of management and leadership, signifying the highest level of professional competency, ethical behaviour, and commitment to continuous professional development.

For those of you who are new here, let me give you a brief introduction about myself. I’ve spent the last 18 years immersed in the world of technology and digital strategy, honing my skills as a full-stack software engineer, solutions architect and digital strategist.

My career has been a diverse and rewarding adventure, spanning freelance, in-house, and agency roles across a multitude of industries.

My passion lies in harnessing the power of the internet to make businesses thrive. I’ve had the privilege of working on an array of projects that reflect this aspiration, from developing CRM and email marketing platforms and strategising digital marketing initiatives to building and maintaining a website for a London Stock Exchange and leading tech & digital marketing teams.

I’ve also had the pleasure of working on projects for some of the world’s biggest brands, including Shell, Lotus Cars, IVECO, Hako, Evrie, Aquis Stock Exchange, Social Stock Exchange, and Linde Material Handling.

But what truly drives me is the relentless pursuit of learning and the constant evolution of our technological landscape. The curiosity and eagerness to explore new ideas is what fuels my journey.

This lifelong commitment to learning led me to seek out the esteemed Chartered Manager status, a recognition that would not only validate my managerial and leadership skills but also open doors to new opportunities and challenges.

In this blog post, I will be sharing my experience of achieving this significant milestone in my career.

Whether you are an experienced manager, a budding entrepreneur, or someone with a keen interest in management and leadership, I hope my experiences and insights add value to your journey.

The Path to Management

My Management Journey: The First Steps and Key Learnings

My management and leadership journey began at Converta (previously Think Methodology), where I was appointed as the Head of Digital in Feb 2013 and, most recently, Chief Technology Officer in Feb 2022. In 2019 Converta aquired their own CRM technology including existing customer base, KulaHub, for which i am currently the CTO and hands-on software developer.

The Initial Steps

The initial steps of my management journey were filled with excitement and a fair share of challenges. As a full-stack software engineer and technology strategist, I have spent years solving complex problems for clients through the creative use of technology.

However, transitioning into a managerial role required a shift in perspective. Instead of solely focusing on technical solutions, I now had to consider the broader business objectives and orchestrate a team to achieve those goals.

Soon into this journey, I decided to study a BSc in Business Management and leadership part-time from the Lifelong Learning Center & University of Leeds, and a Leadership and management qualification from Chartered Management Institute.

This program provided me with a solid theoretical foundation on which to build my practical managerial skills. It also highlighted the importance of continuous learning, a principle that has always been close to my heart.

Key Learnings and Experiences

Over the years, I’ve had the privilege of working on a variety of projects that have allowed me to apply and refine my management skills. Leading the tech and digital team in a lead generation agency, and the development of a CRM and email marketing platform is a particularly exhilarating experience.

Many projects require not only my technical expertise, hands-on software engineering and solutions architecture, but also strategic planning, resource allocation, and team management. Working on projects for global brands allows me to further expand my managerial and strategic skills.

One of the key learnings from my experience so far was the importance of communication. Ensuring that everyone on a team understands, their roles, and how these fit into the larger picture.

These experiences have taught me the importance of staying ahead of digital trends and adapting strategies to meet the changing needs of clients and consumers.

My management journey has been a rewarding blend of continuous learning, practical application, and innovation. Each step has added a new layer of understanding and expertise to my managerial capabilities. As I continue this journey, I look forward to sharing more insights and experiences with you.

Embarking on the Chartered Journey

My decision to pursue a Chartered status was driven by my commitment to continuous learning and professional development. With a BSc in Business Management and leadership and a CMI level 5 certification in Leadership and Management, I strongly believe in the power of education and its role in shaping one’s professional journey.

The Chartered status, recognised worldwide as a mark of excellence in management and leadership, is a testament to a manager’s ability to lead people and manage change. It signifies a commitment to uphold the highest standards of integrity, professionalism, and ethical conduct in business practices.

Given my experience as a Chief Technology Officer at KulaHub and Converta, I felt that achieving Chartered status would be a natural next step in my professional journey.

The Process and Challenges Faced

Embarking on the journey towards Chartered status was both exciting and challenging. The process required a demonstration of continuous professional development and a commitment to ethical, sustainable leadership practices.

The process was rigorous and demanded a high level of dedication. Balancing the demands of my professional roles, academic pursuits, and personal life was a significant challenge.

However, I found this balancing act to be a valuable learning experience in itself. It taught me the importance of time management, prioritisation, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

One of the key challenges I faced was gathering and presenting the necessary evidence to demonstrate my competencies. As a technology strategist and full-stack software engineer, much of my work involves complex problem-solving and innovative use of technology. Translating these technical accomplishments into evidence of effective leadership requires careful thought and presentation.

A particularly significant challenge was effectively showcasing my management skills. As a technology strategist and full-stack software engineer, my work often requires resolving intricate issues and inventive application of technology.

Furthermore, managing only small teams so far added another layer of complexity to the mix. Compiling and articulating these technical and managerial achievements into convincing evidence of successful leadership was a process that demanded careful contemplation and clear communication.

Despite these challenges, my passion for learning and my desire to achieve excellence in my profession kept me motivated. My diverse work experiences, ranging from leading the development of a CRM and email marketing platform to digital marketing strategy and consultancy, provided me with a wealth of experiences to draw from.

In conclusion, the journey towards achieving Chartered status has been challenging but incredibly rewarding. It has allowed me to reflect on my leadership style, learn from my experiences, and strive for continuous improvement. I am eager to continue this journey and look forward to sharing more of my experiences with you.

The Moment of Triumph

After months of diligent preparation and balancing professional commitments with rigorous study, the moment of triumph finally arrived. Being approved for the Chartered Manager status was a significant milestone in my career and a testament to my dedication towards continuous professional development.

The final assessment was a comprehensive evaluation of all the skills and knowledge I had accumulated throughout my career and during my preparation. It required me to draw from my experiences and every project I had undertaken played a role in shaping my understanding of effective leadership and management.

When the news of my successful completion arrived, it was a moment of immense pride and satisfaction. It reaffirmed my belief in the power of lifelong learning and reiterated the importance of staying updated with the latest trends and advancements in technology and management.

The Impact of Becoming a Chartered Manager on My Career

As a Chartered Manager, I feel more confident in my ability to lead teams and drive business success. I’ve noticed a marked improvement in my decision-making abilities and strategic thinking. The principles and standards set by the Chartered Management Institute have helped me cultivate an ethical, sustainable leadership practice that aligns with my professional values.

The Chartered status has also enhanced my credibility in the industry. As a recognised mark of excellence in management and leadership, it has increased my visibility among peers and potential clients, leading to new opportunities and collaborations.

One of the most rewarding outcomes has been the opportunity to mentor and inspire others in their professional journeys. Sharing my experiences and learnings with aspiring managers and leaders has been an enriching experience, one that aligns with my passion for continuous learning and growth.

Achieving the Chartered Manager status has been a transformative experience. It has enriched my professional journey and set me on a path of continuous learning and improvement.

I look forward to leveraging this achievement to contribute more effectively to my field and inspire others to embark on their journeys of professional development.

Tips for Aspiring Chartered Managers

Embarking on the path to Chartered status is a rewarding journey that requires dedication, continuous learning, and a passion for excellence. Here are some personal tips I’ve gathered from my own experience:

Embrace Continuous Learning: The world of technology and management is continually evolving. Stay updated with the latest trends, advancements, and best practices. Pursue relevant certifications and courses to enhance your knowledge and skills.

Leverage Your Expertise: Use your unique skills and experiences to your advantage. As a technology strategist and full-stack software engineer, I found that my expertise in solving complex problems and my experience in digital marketing strategy and consultancy was invaluable during my preparation for Chartered status.

Develop a Wide Skill Set: A diverse skill set can be a significant asset. In addition to my technical skills, I found that my skills in leadership, management, machine learning, algorithms, and data structures played a crucial role in my journey.

Learn from Experience: Each project you undertake provides an opportunity to learn and grow. My work as a Chief Technology Officer at KulaHub and Converta provided me with a wealth of experiences to draw from.

Balance Work and Life: Juggling professional commitments with rigorous study can be challenging. Find a balance that works for you. Remember to make time for hobbies and interests. For me, activities like fishing, gaming, reading, and hiking help me relax and recharge.

The process might seem daunting at first, but the rewards are worth it. You’ll gain a deeper understanding of effective leadership and management, enhance your credibility in the industry, and open up new growth opportunities.

Remember, the journey to Chartered status is not just about passing an assessment. It’s about embracing a commitment to ethical, sustainable leadership practices, continuous learning, and professional excellence.

So, if you’re passionate about management and leadership, eager to learn, and ready to make a difference, I highly recommend embarking on the journey towards becoming a Chartered Manager. It’s a decision that can transform your career and set you on a path of continuous learning and improvement.

Conclusion

In wrapping up, the journey of becoming a Chartered Manager is an invigorating expedition of professional growth, continuous learning, and leadership. The rewards of this experience extend beyond personal gratification, impacting your credibility in the industry, and opening up new opportunities.

The nuggets of wisdom shared in this article, drawn from personal experiences, aim to guide aspiring Chartered Managers on this path.

Remember, with persistence, passion, and a commitment to excellence, this transformative journey beckons you to a broader horizon of potential and progress in your career.

The road may be challenging, but the triumph at the end is profoundly rewarding. So, take the leap, embrace continuous learning, and set forth on your journey to becoming a Chartered Manager today!

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