Issue 5 2021

Mar21336 Issue 5 2021 35 Technology for All Start-ups have become increasingly common over the last few years, with the tech industry housing most of these impressive new businesses. Tech Manchester has been a key part of supporting many of these new entries in the market to thrive and survive. Named Most Influential Leader in Technology Development 2021 – UK in Corporate Vision’s 2021 Corporate Excellence Awards, we take a further look to celebrate their incredible success. It was in 2017 that Tech Manchester first opened its doors. At its heart was the work of early-stage technology businesses in north west England, many of which needed specialist support to accelerate their business growth. What Tech Manchester was able to offer was specialised support that initially focused on entrepreneurship, but now covers learning, mentoring and support in a variety of different capacities. Those who live in Greater Manchester have enormous potential that is often overlooked because they do not have the opportunities to achieve it. Tech Manchester is specifically designed to connect people to opportunities from which they might normally have been excluded because of their geography or social status. This is done with an entirely inclusive approach, with the team taking the time to secure inclusive growth funding to deliver training programmes. The nature of the team’s work means that a grass-roots approach, working with local organisations, is key to the creation of trust pathways. Instead of having competition, the team at Tech Manchester are simply part of a wider enterprise ecosystem. The strategic vision of Tech Manchester comes from Patricia Keating, who relocated from Ireland in 2017 to create its vision and launch the incubator. To do this, she took a reflective approach, engaging with stakeholders to get a deep understanding of the layout of the Manchester technology ecosystem. From this, she was able to identify capacity and delivery gaps that the new organisation could fill. Since the firm has opened its doors to the public, Patricia has had full responsibility for delivery of Tech Manchester’s programmes. Working alongside diverse significant medium business and corporate stakeholders, regional and central government, as well as a wide number of venture capital firms, she has created programmes and initiatives including interactive workshops, mentor programmes, and non-exec director development programmes. Her work has been transformational for the industrial development of the region. As the incubator has grown, so too has the team. While small, Patricia has achieved great things by empowering them to have the freedom to innovate and growth the programmes they are responsible for. As a non-profit, Tech Manchester is very fortunate to deliver purposeful value-led initiatives. This approach gives a lot of satisfaction to the team as they are doing meaningful positive work. The tech industry is not without its problems, and while its growth in Manchester is to be encouraged, the team has made the deliberate decision to ensure that its procedures are designed to counter both the lack of skills and talent, and the lack of diversity currently present. By gathering a wide range of viewpoints, technology will be able to serve its true purpose of serving the whole of society. The elimination of bias amplification is an enormous challenge, but Tech Manchester is working hard to ensure that it does not support it. One of the ways in which this is being done is through TechEquityMCR, a consortium of six external stakeholder organisations that deliver a passion project to teach computer engineering skills to people who self-identify as women and transgender from disadvantaged areas in the Greater Manchester region. When thinking about the future, it’s worth considering what future you want to build. For the people of Manchester, Tech Manchester is building a future that is inclusive and caring and will benefit people who might not ordinarily have the chance. We celebrate their success and look forward to seeing what they do next. Company: Tech Manchester Name: Patricia Keating Email: [email protected] Web Address: