Ann Francke

CEO of the Chartered Management Institute

CEO of the Chartered Management Institute

Ann Francke is Chief Executive of the Chartered Management Institute, the UK's leading professional body for management and leadership with an international member community of over 143,000. She started her career at Procter & Gamble and has held senior executive positions at Mars, Boots, Yell and BSI. 

Ann is an expert on gender balance in the workplace and speaks frequently in the media and conferences on this and other management topics. In the New Years Honours list 2020 she was awarded an OBE for services to Workplace Equality. Her book, ‘Create a Gender-balanced Workplace,’ was published by Penguin Business in 2019. 

Ann holds several Board positions and five Honorary Doctorates for her work in management and leadership. She is an ambassador for the 30% Club.

Anne Franke



Aston University

What are the challenges for business leaders?

"The growing inequality gap where the rich are getting richer, and the poor are getting poorer. Businesses need to get proactive in closing the inequality gaps whether it is gender, ethnicity, socio economic background, disability or LGBT. Diverse teams deliver better solutions.

Climate change is also something that all businesses need to work together to combat.

The rise of technology is a major challenge. Although it creates new opportunities it brings huge responsibility i.e. social media giants.

We need to look for solutions and need the skills to solve them."



What are the key skills graduates need?

  • Problem Solving
  • Team Working
  • Communication
  • Ability to manage oneself
  • Ability to collaborate





What role do universities play? 

"Business Schools, where many of these skill sets are centred, have a special role to play in providing those skills to students from all faculties. It is really important to work with students to hardwire these employability skills as part of their education.  Universities need to connect with employers to identify these skills. This is essential for developing talent and supporting the economy."



Why did you want to be a Visiting Professor?

"It is great to be able to network with my fellow Visiting Professors and learn from them and to see and engage with students."


visiting professors