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Empowering Leaders: Liberty Pipes & College Collaboration

Here at Hartlepool College, a pioneering training program has been successfully implemented in collaboration with Liberty Pipes Hartlepool, a subsidiary of the Liberty Steel Group. This initiative, a first of its kind, was tailored specifically to meet the unique needs of our industry partner.

An initial three-man cohort from Liberty Pipes Hartlepool’s workforce are ready for leadership roles after completing a new training programme here at Hartlepool College. David Butler, Michael Purvis and Trevor Mavin successfully completed the leadership and management Level 3 course by attending College for a day a week over a six-week period. It is the first time we have has specifically designed such a course around the needs of an employer – and now Liberty Pipes are looking at sending a second group.

And Liberty Pipes - part of the Liberty Steel Group - have congratulated the successful candidates and thanked them for their determination as well as looking ahead to seeing them develop in their future careers. Andy Williams, Liberty Pipes’ works manager, said: “The College has worked collaboratively with Liberty Pipes Hartlepool to create a leadership programme to develop the next generation of team members, equipping them with the tools and techniques required to become future team leaders. Exposing the selected candidates to a wide range of business disciplines will enable the candidates to gain a greater understanding, particularly areas critical to delivering our customer requirements.”


Caption: Karl Nicholson (operations manager), Trevor Mavin, David Butler, Jo Pardue, Michael Purvis and Andy Williams (works manager). Picture: Liberty Pipes
Left to Right: Karl Nicholson (Operations Manager, Liberty Pipes), Trevor Mavin, David Butler, Jo Pardue (HCFE Lecturer), Michael Purvis and Andy Williams (Works Manager, Liberty Pipes). Picture: Liberty Pipes


The College’s lecturer in Business and Management, Jo Pardue, has delivered leadership courses in the past, but never centred around one employer specifically. She said: “This shows we can support in business areas and highlight the importance of offering these skills to employers for their employees. The Institute of Leadership Management (ILM) package means we can see what fits each employer and deliver courses around what will benefit them by using specific units. Liberty wanted to develop members of their teams in the leadership area, so David, Michael and Trevor have developed skills, gained a greater understanding so they can potentially slot into leadership roles in the company when they become available.”

David, Miichael and Trevor were selected after a selection process carried out by Liberty, an industry leader in sustainable steel. They completed two units beneficial to Liberty by heading into College regularly to attend classroom sessions, build experience of assignments, learn about leadership styles and study areas of problem solving.

Now they are taking what they have learned into work at Liberty Pipes’ site at Brenda Road, Hartlepool. Jo added: “They can now take aspects of the course on to the shop floor. Liberty Pipes wants to upskill to create greater opportunities for retention. We discussed what would work well, what would be suitable and we were happy to help them develop on a personal and professional level. The learners were engaged, enthusiastic and showed leadership qualities throughout the programme. They were aware of certain approaches, and we made them think about how to respond in different scenarios.The leadership element was new to them, but they quickly learned how the course linked with their processes and why they would need those to move forward in the business.”

Liberty Pipes are now working through a selection process for the next cohort to attend Hartlepool College for the leadership and management training.

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