Above: Toyota GB, April 14th 2016 – Our automotive talent conference.

Thank you to everyone who participated in our interactive event, created by Ennis & Co and kindly hosted by Toyota GB. In addition to the speakers and panellists, our hosts and our chairman Al Clarke, we also owe thanks to all of the delegates for their willing contribution that made this the truly interactive session we hoped it would be.

In brief: Yesterday, five teams of speakers and panellists discussed some of the key opportunities and challenges facing the automotive industry today, and the implications this has on, and for, talent.

We debated subjects from Generations X, Y and Z and Developing Senior Management to Traditional V “New” retail and Learning from beyond the automotive sector. We also heard from some of the leaders of the future, a panel of young professionals who shared their experiences of the industry with us.

A brief history: Eighteen months ago, Ennis & Co and several of yesterday’s speakers and panellists created an open network of interested parties who have since been sharing knowledge and ideas about the key opportunities for our sector, today and in the future. The group has researched several different areas; this event was our forum to share this learning and these ideas, and, crucially, to bring some new people into this important conversation and to have a debate with like-minded people.

What unites yesterday’s delegates is that they all care and that they have the ability to help our industry make the most of the opportunities now presented to us through new marketing opportunities, new channels, new technology, new customer demands and new people.

Equally important is that we don’t get so transfixed with a lot of interesting talk about the different opportunities presented by Millennials, generation Z, generation K and so on that we forget the enormous wealth and ability to create strong legacies that lies within our current crop of leaders. We discussed some innovative ideas about how to harness and share this wealth, which we will share in the coming weeks and months.

With so many senior figures showing a great openness and a passion for the continued evolution of the industry at our event yesterday, I can’t help but feel there is no need to fear the changes that are upon us: rather, we’re at a point in time where there are opportunities for the taking as the industry is poised to transform beyond recognition. These opportunities lie within our leaders, our developing talent and the leaders of the future who are just entering the industry now, or have yet to do so.

Watch this space for updates and feedback about our event, and keep looking for #futureautopeople on our twitter feed, @ennisandco.