London’s Swann team was present at Mines & Money Week (28th November to 1st December). The team was busy attending information sessions, participating in as well as mediating panel discussions on the state of the Mining industry. Here is a brief summary of what our team achieved in the week.
John Murray participated in a panel discussion alongside Robert Court, Managing Director of Global Stakeholder Strategies (GSS) entitled “Looking at the Societal Impact of Mining in the World”. Court examined the need for a fundamental rethink of the relationship between the Mining and Metals industry and society with a focus on the consistent application of relevant skills in managing that relationship. Court highlighted the rethink as a matter of as a priority for the generation and protection of shareholder value.
John discussed the important role Social Media will have in reshaping corporate governance guidelines. John described Social Media platforms (SMPs) as a strategic marketing tool in reshaping Mining and Metals companies’ public image and highlighted the importance of comprehensive SMP campaigns to display positive engagements by the mining industry as a way to mitigate negative publicity. Such engagements John referred to are the ‘Social License to Operate’ initiatives and community investment programs.
John also attended the Mines & Money Reception at Australia House with fellow colleagues John Revie and Richard Handke. The event was hosted by the Agents General of South Australia, Western Australia and Queensland. John was also present at The Oxford Mining Club and Mining Indaba Annual Drinks Reception.
John Revie moderated a panel discussion on “Mining industry skills shortages – now and in the future”. The panel comprised of industry figures Dennis Buchanan, Emeritus Professor of Mining Geology at Imperial College London, David Netherway, Non-executive Chairman of Altus Strategies and Neil Woodyer, CEO of Leagold.
The panel explored the concept of skills shortages ranging from technically-educated graduates through to ‘dealmakers’, experienced mining engineers and Non-Executive Directors.
The panel also discussed how to capture and continue the knowledge of highly-experienced professionals.Prof. Buchanan focused on the career paths natural resource postgraduates are aiming to enter and how achievable this will be over the next two years. Netherway examined how the Mining industry is dealing with skill shortages against the backdrop of the cyclical nature of commodity prices and Woodyer highlighted the importance of non-technical personnel such as entrepreneurs, promoters and the deal makers. John spoke of the need to better equip boards with people who are experienced in dealing with issues as cyber security, technological innovation, climate change impacts and social license to operate initiatives.
John was also invited to a panel discussion moderated by Mining Journal’s editor Chris Cann on “Mines & Money 2016 – What are the key takeaways? John discussed his findings alongside panelists Mark Wellesley Wood, ex-chairman at DRD Gold, Mike Price, advisor with RCF and Ian Henderson, ex-Fund Manager, JP Morgan Asset Management. In addition, John attended the Oxford Mining Club and Mining Indaba Annual Drinks Reception and the Mining Journal Outstanding Achievement Awards Dinner 2016 to mark the end of Mines & Money week.