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R3’s Virtual Training Festival: a review

R3’s Virtual Training Festival: a review

29 January 2021

More than 350 insolvency and restructuring professionals joined our first Virtual Training Festival last week to mark the launch of our new Training Academy.

Over the week, we showcased a number of our online and on-demand training courses and certifications, and gave delegates the opportunity to find out more about what’s on offer and speak to some of the experts who have developed our training courses.

Starting in the virtual classroom

The festival began with a showcase of part of our Introduction to Insolvency virtual classroom course led by Sam Fenwick – a Partner at Moon Beever, and Nick O’Reilly – an Associate Director at Manolete Partners PLC.  

Nick and Sam walked us through the key elements of the course, drawing on their own experience to bring some of the more technical elements to life and show how these are integrated into the training.

We ended with a Q&A – and with 130 people tuning into this session, there was always going to be a lot to talk about and a lively discussion when the speakers took questions from the (virtual) floor.

Tuesday bootcamp

Our Tuesday session introduced R3’s new Insolvency Bootcamp series, led by four of our course lecturers: Amrit Khosa – Of Counsel based in Morrison & Foerster; Dominic Dumville – Corporate Restructuring Partner at Mercer & Hole; James Hopkirk – Restructuring Director at Kreston Reeves LLP; and Jamie Leader – Partner at Eversheds Sutherland.

This taster session discussed the range of topics covered in the series and provided an insight into what to expect from our bootcamp series. And with such a broad range of experience on our speaker panel, there were a lot of examples of how some of the principles from the training have been applied across a variety of industries and businesses, and insight into some of the hot topics in insolvency and restructuring.

The question of ethics

Wednesday’s topic was our ethics compliance training course, which aims to support professionals and organisations comply with ethical requirements.

Our speakers – Julia McKay, Senior Manager at RSM UK, Gareth Limb, Compliance Director at Compliance On Call, and Caroline Sumner, R3’s Head of Technical, Training and Education – once again blended the technical with the practical.

Throughout the session, the group moved between exploring and explaining key principles of ethical compliance to sharing examples of where and when these principles have been complied with and, unknowingly, breached.

The key takeaway: ethics is about more than just ‘knowing the rules’ – it’s about understanding the implications of and troubleshooting ethical dilemmas as they appear.

Learning about e-learning

On Thursday, we hosted a fireside discussion on R3’s 21-chapter Introduction to Insolvency eLearning certification, with four of our expert speakers from this course.

In part one of this session, Louise Durkan and Sarah Balsom from Quantuma talked us through Chapter 9 of the series, which explores ‘Administration’. In the second half, Gemma Kaplan and Harry Clark from Pinsent Masons introduced the ‘Bankruptcy’ chapter of the series (Chapter 14) and walked us through an overview of the process and some of the key elements of it.

It was great to get an insight into two key insolvency processes from people with such a deep experience of advising and supporting clients about and through them, and to understand more about how some of the principles and lessons from the certification have been applied in a variety of situations and across a range of industries. Our in-course polls were running throughout – and contributed to a fast-paced Q&A at the end of the session, with attendees asking a variety of questions about both of the topics.  

Last, but not least: Wellbeing

Our final session of the festival focused on ‘Wellbeing for Remote Workers’, with guest speakers Dr Catherine Marshall and Andy Coughlin, who co-founded Elemental Wellbeing.

Catherine and Andy talked us through identifying different types of stress (including some that have become more common since the COVID-19 pandemic began) and provided us with a range of tips for managing and supporting ourselves, colleagues and friends who may be suffering with it.

One key takeaway was the type of questions to ask colleagues or friends who may be exhibiting signs of stress – a useful thing to learn in the current circumstances.

Thank you to everyone who attended and contributed to our Virtual Training Festival – speakers, supporters and delegates, and our Festival Sponsor, Azets. You helped make it a great success.

If you missed any of our sessions or want to recap on any of the ones you were able to attend, you can access them until 28th February 2021 in the Live Session Recordings Library on the Training Festival platform.

And if you couldn’t attend R3’s Virtual Training Festival, you can sign up to view it for free at:

About The R3 Training Academy

R3’s Training Academy provides live, on-demand and in-person training for insolvency and restructuring professionals of all levels of experience. 

Our courses, certifications and bootcamps are aimed at three levels of learning: Principles, Intermediate and Advanced. Our courses are designed and delivered by insolvency and restructuring professionals from across the UK.

For more information and a list of our upcoming courses, visit

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Robert Beer
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