Our ForUS Board September Update

27 September 2021

Being not just on the FORUS Board, but also the first cohort to exist, has been really exciting and quite daunting at times! When I look back on the year so far, I can already feel that I’ve grown and most definitely ticked things off of lists I didn’t even know I had. This month, it was my turn to contribute to the FORUS updates and I thought a nice way to give everyone an insight into us as Board, would be to ask 3 simple questions about everyone’s experience so far. Here’s what we had to say….


Laura O’Regan:
The most rewarding part so far for me, has been the exposure to people, processes, senior leadership and the commercial and strategic awareness that’s carried out nationally across the business. Whilst we all play an instrumental role in delivering the 3YP, I appreciate more than ever the hard work, commitment and the togetherness culture of our wider team that sets us apart from other accountants and business advisors.

Patrick Faughnan:
The most challenging part I’ve found is ensuring I have the time to focus on the FORUS Board and to fulfil my obligations as an elected member. All Board members are employed in the business and the FORUS commitment is ‘in addition to’ the day job. However, based on our collective willingness to support the Board’s objectives along with other Fortus Board support (Exec, CAB, etc.) we’ve already successfully launched new initiatives with support across numerous 3YP projects still ongoing.

Alfie Burton:
All in all, the FORUS Board thus far has been rewarding for many reasons. I’ve been given the opportunity to work with people from across the business who I’ve never met, let alone worked with before. We’ve formed a strong team with sound goals and objectives I’m proud to be a part of. From a personal view, the most rewarding part’s been the learning process. Being at an early stage in my career, I feel privileged to have been given the opportunity to sit in and contribute in discussions regarding business operations I wouldn’t usually be privy to. The insight this gives me is invaluable and has certainly changed the way I view different aspects of the business. I’m looking forward to what the FORUS term brings for myself and for the business, and plan to make the absolute most of the opportunity.


2. what’s been the biggest challenge?

Vicky Barnes:
To be completely honest, joining the FORUS Board’s been a completely new experience for me and there’s been a few things that have taken me outside of my comfort zone, not least, speaking to the whole business at the QBR! But probably the biggest challenge for me, has been putting myself out there and initiating conversations with so many people in the business that I’ve not spoken to or met before; particularly on areas that aren’t part of my ‘day’ job. At the same time though, this has also been the most rewarding part of being involved in the Board, as I’ve had the opportunity to get to know so many people I might not have crossed paths with otherwise, and it’s been great to be able to find out more about my colleagues and their experiences of working at Fortus.

Bruce Keir:
For me, it’s been thinking about how we can gain insight from our colleagues on issues they may be experiencing or feedback which they may want to give to the senior teams. I don’t think we’ve fully got this quite right yet, but it’s really important employees feel they have a representative body they can talk to and a forum in which to voice their opinions, and most importantly, they can see action has been initiated as a result, which is why we’ll keep working hard to provide this.



Louise McGowan:

Rizwan Ashraf:
Learning curve (Rizwan, that’s 4 words but we’ll let you off…..)

Hopefully, that gives everyone a taste of how we’re feeling and handling things so far. Having the exposure to so many people within the business has been very rewarding personally, however finding the time to keep everything balanced has been a challenge too. Everyone on the Board wants to make a difference and contribute as much to the 3YP as possible, so if there’s one thing I suppose we need to remember, is ‘it isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon’. Much like for Vicky, speaking at the QBR was also a big challenge for me, there was a huge amount of relief and elation when we’d done it! I’m looking forward to seeing what’s in store for the next few months, we’ve got big plans… so, watch this space!

We actively encourage anyone who has any questions or wishes to bring any comments or thoughts to the Board’s attention. Please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us.