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5 minutes with EMFA judge, Colin Anderton

With the East Midlands Finance Awards category deadlines just over a month away, we've already received some top entries and will spend the next few weeks catching up with each of our award judges. This week, we sat down with Colin Anderton from SDL Group, who picked up the award for Finance Director of the Year in 2019 to hear his thoughts on the sector and the awards themselves.

How long have you worked in the East Midlands Colin?
I’ve worked in the region for 22 years, with a short 1-year gap in the middle when I worked down in London to support a transaction with Egg Plc.  I came to Nottingham a few years before that to study at Nottingham University, and loved the city so decided to stay. 

Why do you think the region does perform so well as a hub for finance?
As a “place to do business”, I think the East Midlands is great – London was much more anonymous, but building relationships with like-minded individuals and companies in and around Nottingham has been easy.  

I’ve seen a real pool of talent in the East Midlands in my time at Deloitte, Egg, and at SDL – and the quality of candidates seems to grow year on year.  I think it’s becoming a more “obvious” place to develop a long-term career in finance.   

Early on in my career, there was a feeling that if you wanted to operate at a senior level in Finance, you needed to head to London – whether it was true then, I don’t know, but I definitely don’t believe that today, and the evidence is there when you look at the quality of finance individuals at all levels. 

How did you first hear about the awards?
I don’t recall precisely how I heard about them, there was a bit of a buzz in the office and with my peers at other businesses so I was intrigued. Distinct created these awards and I think they are a brilliant (and overdue!) way of recognising the talent the region has.  

I’m very passionate about developing people and recognising their success, and that’s why I was delighted to jump at the chance to support the awards this year.  

Any top tips to help catch the judge's eye?
There’s no template but I’ll be looking for individuals or teams who aren’t afraid to go out and try new things, who step outside their core job to add value to a finance team or business, and who collaboratively celebrate their success and the success of their colleagues.

If the thought of winning an award sounds good to you or your team, make sure you head on over to our dedicated awards page and get entering now! The awards celebration is taking place at Nottingham Contemporary on the evening of Tuesday 23rd June. The deadline for all of our awards is 31st March – for any queries, drop us a message at:

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Alex Alcock

Alex Alcock


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