Published on 21/03/2024
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Professor Zoe Radnor, James Timpson and Professor Aleks Subic
Professor Zoe Radnor, James Timpson and Professor Aleks Subic
  • James Timpson OBE DL is chief executive of the retail business, which has over 2000 shops
  • His visit included an interactive session with Aston Executive MBA students as part of an Aston Edge day
  • The public event was hosted at the Enterprise Hub at Aston University’s John Cadbury House on Wednesday 13 March 2024.

The CEO of Timpson Ltd visited Aston University for a wide-ranging visit discussing management strategy and corporate kindness on Wednesday 13 March.

James Timpson OBE DL is chief executive of the retail business, which has over 2000 shops. He is also chancellor of Keele University, chair of the Prison Reform Trust and is the national chair of the Employment Advisory Board, which works closely with New Futures Network and the Ministry of Justice helping those in prison secure a job on release.

He was hosted for the day by the Department of Accounting at Aston Business School (ABS) and the research Centre for Personal Financial Wellbeing. 

James, who is also a visiting professor at the University, took part in a series of activities designed to inspire and educate students, faculty and staff. This included an interactive session with Aston Executive MBA students as part of an Aston Edge day, during which he provided an introduction to his business philosophy, before delving into an informal Q&A session covering topics such as VUCA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous) management and employee development.

He also met with final year undergraduate accounting students in small roundtable discussions, where he shared insights into careers, the concept of corporate kindness and the practical utilisation of accounting data in business management. 

The visit culminated in an ‘in conversation’ event with Professor Mark Hart at the Enterprise Hub at Aston University’s corporate headquarters John Cadbury House in Birmingham city centre, where they discussed James' approach to collaboration, profit and success, as well as his newly released book, The Happy Index: Lessons in Upside-Down Management. 

Professor Andy Lymer, head of Department of Accounting at Aston University, said:

“It was fantastic to welcome James Timpson back to Aston University for his first such visit since November 2022.

“His commitment to corporate kindness and innovative leadership serves as an inspiration to our students and faculty. 

“These sessions offer valuable perspectives for students preparing to enter the workforce.

“I was wonderful that the visit coincided the release of his latest book, The Happy Index, which explores the correlation between employee happiness and business success. This timely publication adds an extra dimension to his discussions, offering practical strategies for creating a healthier and more productive workforce.”
 

Notes to Editors

About Aston University

For over a century, Aston University’s enduring purpose has been to make our world a better place through education, research and innovation, by enabling our students to succeed in work and life, and by supporting our communities to thrive economically, socially and culturally.

Aston University’s history has been intertwined with the history of Birmingham, a remarkable city that once was the heartland of the Industrial Revolution and the manufacturing powerhouse of the world.

Born out of the First Industrial Revolution, Aston University has a proud and distinct heritage dating back to our formation as the School of Metallurgy in 1875, the first UK College of Technology in 1951, gaining university status by Royal Charter in 1966, and becoming The Guardian University of the Year in 2020.

Building on our outstanding past, we are now defining our place and role in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (and beyond) within a rapidly changing world.

For media inquiries in relation to this release, contact Sam Cook, Press and Communications Manager, on (+44) 7446 910063 or email: s.cook2@aston.ac.uk

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