Jane Cumming, regional chairwoman of the SCDI, on the positives of change.
This will be my final column as Highlands and Islands chairwoman of SCDI. I am not leaving, but as we have appointed a new Highlands and Islands manager, I can finally put down my pen. Or should that be keyboard?
It’s been fun going back to my roots, for my first “proper” job was with a local weekly newspaper.
Based in a glorified wooden shed in a back lane, we operated with manual typewriters and used carbon paper to make copies.
If you don’t know what carbon paper is, ask your parents or possibly even your grandparents.
By the time journalism entered the digital world I was working on the opposite side of the fence in public relations.
Sinking under a mountain of memos –the paper equivalent of internal emails for those of you younger than 50 – I recall a visit from somebody trying to sell me the idea of the worldwide web. Can’t see it catching on, I can remember thinking.
Technology – and particular social media – gets a bad press these days but there’s no doubt it has been our saviour.
How would “working from home” have looked if we’d had to post letters to one another? How would we have held meetings without Zoom or Teams?
But technology hasn’t managed to conquer everything. I miss the opportunity to put on the glad rags, enjoy a good night out with a thought-provoking, funny after-dinner speaker and the chance to catch up with others from the business community and put the world to rights in the bar.
So I’m delighted our Highlands and Islands Awards Dinner will take place in June this year online. It will be inspiring and fun. Using amazing software we piloted at our Aberdeen lecture it’s possible to chat to your guests, visit other tables and even go to the bar!
You can also enjoy a Highlands and Islands food and drink package delivered to your home to complete the experience. I hope to see you there.