Future 50 companies to inspire next generation of business leaders

A room of people stood up and talking to each other. Some are having a drink.

The Co.next launch event was held in Norwich on Wednesday, February 9 - Credit: Norfolk Chambers of Commerce

Three Future 50 companies are represented on the board of a new initiative aimed at empowering, engaging and encouraging Norfolk’s next generation of business professionals.  

Co.next was created by The Norfolk Chambers of Commerce to support working professionals and future leaders aged 35 and under with networking events and knowledge hubs. It is chaired by James Groves, managing director of Indigo Swan, a former Future 50 member.  

The Co.next board also includes Rebecca Headden, co-director of R13 Recruitment, a member of the Future 50 cohort for 2022, and Alex Sellers, operations director of Turning Factor, which joined Future 50 as a partner this year. They are joined by an advisory board of seven under-35s, who will provide feedback on how the initiative can stay relevant.  

Rebecca Headden, co-director of R13 Recruitment

Rebecca Headden, co-director of R13 Recruitment - Credit: R13 Recruitment

Mr Groves and Ms Headden both presented to an audience of over 90 attendees at the Co.next launch event, held in Norwich on Wednesday, February 9. They also took part in a Q&A session with Mr Sellers and other board members.  

“I wanted to be involved in Co.next because I relate to it,” said Ms Headden. “Ruth [Harding] and I were in our late 20s when we set up R13 Recruitment. Whilst we had a collective two decades of experience recruiting, we had no experience in setting up and growing a business. 

“To have had the opportunity to be able to access the information, expertise and opportunities which Co.next will present to the next generation of leaders would have been a game changer. Now I’m delighted to have the opportunity to do my bit and support this awesome initiative to help others grow their careers.” 

Headshot of Alex Sellers, operations director of Turning Factor

Alex Sellers, operations director of Turning Factor - Credit: ETT Photography

Mr Sellers said: “I was blown away to be asked to sit on the Co.next board. It’s not just about speaking to those under 35 – it's also about speaking to employers and managers. Recruitment is a real struggle for businesses at the moment, so it's inherent on employers and managers to really focus on retention and internal growth by supporting their young professionals. And that for me is where Co.next fits perfectly.”  

Most Read

Rose Steward, account manager at The Norfolk Chambers of Commerce and Co.next advisory board member, added: “It is a privilege to be working alongside such an incredible group of people, and we look forward to delivering more exciting events and opportunities to young professionals in Norfolk.” 

Find out more about the Co.next initiative at https://www.linkedin.com/company/co-next-norfolk-chambers-of-commerce/