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About Us .

Increasing people and organisational performance for over two decades and we know what works.

Our Founders

The founders of the business are graduates of the Commando Training Centre Royal Marines. Between them they hold two Commando Medals, one Sword of Honor and a commendation for exemplary service. Both served all over the world training and leading teams in a variety of situations.

On leaving the Royal Marines they won two expedition races to the North Pole, trained and coached four fleets of Round the World Yachtsmen and Women, worked on every continent of the world with some of the World’s most successful organisations, built and retained a large team of skilled practitioners that have been deployed globally for the past 20 years and have raised life changing amounts of money for charity.

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Rob Lewis

Founding Director

A graduate in development economics and qualification as a secondary school teacher of Geography preceded a career in the Royal Marines where I won the Commando Medal in Officer Training and went on to lead teams in a variety of challenging operational environments.

I went on to be a lead facilitator at the Royal Naval Leadership school coaching senior managers in all aspects of leadership.
A keen sportsman with a blue from Cambridge and a keen amateur in all endurance events including expeditions to many of the wild places of the world including the North Pole and latterly long distance cycling and multi-sports events as a belated attempt to save my knees.

I have 20 years of training design, consulting and delivery experience globally, working for some of the world’s largest and most successful organisations. From executive coaching to global development programmes.

I live in the Black Mountains of Wales with my wife and two girls.

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Chris McLeod

Founding Director

A straightforward, honest and positive leadership practitioner. I’ve had the privilege of either being part of, or actually leading teams of self-reliant high performers from an early age often in challenging environments. I chose to serve in the Royal Marines at an early age and was promoted through the ranks and awarded the Sword of Honour and Commando Medal in Officer Training. I served on operations globally for 15 years.

For the last 16 years and as a founding director of Mission Performance, I’ve developed close collaborative relationships with clients from a wide range of industries helping them deliver their strategy and to transform their internal leadership and management capability. By establishing clarity, creating the right mindset and culture, transferring knowledge and skills through coaching, we help our clients develop the agility to survive and thrive in their own challenging environments.

I still like a challenge and have twice raced to the North Pole, winning both times, and still enjoy many endurance and adventure challenges. Finally, I’m a proud father of three and husband.

Fujitsu Polar Challenge Winner
A Race Magnetic North Pole and labelled the “Worlds Toughest Race,” started on the 13th April 2004. Seven teams raced on skis the 360 nautical miles, pulling 90-kilo sledges of supplies and equipment. Competing against each other in the harshest of conditions, the teams raced from Resolute Bay in the Canadian North West Territories, around and across the many islands forming the Queen Elizabeth Island chain, to the Magnetic North Pole. Only two teams finished the race.

Chris Captained Team Fujitsu, who had the added challenge of integrating a volunteer novice into his team for a BBC documentary only five weeks before the race start.

Against all odds and defying expert opinion, Chris inspired, engaged and empowered his novice teammate and went on to win the Polar Challenge by only a few hours. His story is one of building a winning mindset, incredible teamwork, stamina, courage and determination; the thrill of a close encounter with a Polar Bear, their daily battle with the frozen ice fields and the danger of frostbite in temperatures, which with wind-chill, sometimes dropped as low as – 65 degrees C.

Our Leaders

Our diverse team are all drawn from performance backgrounds. None are professional trainers, all are practitioners in their chosen field.

They bring the lessons from a wide variety of professional arenas to your project. All have a track record of performing in high profile and challenging situations.

These situations make for great teachers. They teach you the importance of leadership, courage, cheerfulness under adversity, selflessness, professionalism and the need to focus on the basics executed flawlessly.

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Matt Burgess

Director of Communications Practice

An actor by trade, Matt has worked extensively in theatre, television and film, starring in productions such as; War Horse, Prometheus and Black Mirror. As a trainer he has travelled Globally, working at all levels of organisations in both public and private sectors. Working as a Communications Coach, he has been able to work one to one with, amongst others, politicians, sports people and Heads of Global Business.

Specializing in enabling communicators to understand and control their fears, to focus on their audience and to impact, affect and engage the people they speak to through their message.

Bringing a contagious enthusiasm and sense of fun to all of his work, striving for excellence in everyone. Pushing people to achieve beyond their expectations. Matt believes that learning happens best when people are allowed to enjoy the process.
An expert in Personal Impact, Presentation Skills, Leadership Communications, Conflict Situations, Sales Communications with 18 years experience developing and delivering training he is a Qualified NLP Practitioner and also Key note speaker on Communication and Leadership.

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Gerry DeVries

Consulting Director and Coach

Since leaving the Marines in the early 90s and taking his MBA at London Business School, Gerry de Vries has become a specialist in turning businesses around. His expertise lies in improving performance through effective leadership and culture change. He has played a leading role, as Management Team member, Interim Manager and Consultant, in strategic turnarounds and optimisation projects across different industries. He has led over 35 teams globally and worked with leaders at all levels including Executive and Ministerial.
Before joining Mission in 2013, his professional route covered Managing Consultant at Gemini; Senior Strategy Advisor at the BBC; Interim Manager at a Reuters Subsidiary; Director Business Development for a Silicon Valley Tech company; and Business Transformation Lead at Shell, the Anglo-Dutch oil company. While at Shell, one of his key assignments was leading an extended team of over 600 in the 2-year transformation of a 15,000 strong $4.7 Bn Oil & Gas provider.

At Mission, Gerry’s major engagements have included the design and or delivery of leadership programmes for a global insurer, a global defence contractor; and for most of our Oil & Gas clients, as well as the strategic turnaround of a leading UK Law firm. He has also been seconded to the leadership teams of clients and partners, latterly as the Transformation Director of CCN, a telecommunications infrastructure provider. Most recently he has focused on our Human Factors programmes which deliver better safety and reliability outcomes.
Gerry has written training materials and lectured on a range of performance-related topics including Change Leadership, Behaviour Change and improving Accountability and Compliance. He was instrumental in the design of an Ethical Leadership Model, with one of our partners

Apart from his MBA, Gerry holds a BA in International Relations. He passed out top of his year from the Naval Academy and received Commendations for outstanding operational performance from the Commandant General Royal Marines and from the Commanding General Dutch Marines for his role as Head of Training.

He is fluent in English, Dutch and German and is conversant in French and Spanish. He is a non-executive Director at a Building Conservation company and a passionate sailor, runner, cyclist, and amateur dramatist.
 

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Matt McFadyen

Head of the Americas

Very few people have the ability to combine the adventure world and the business world quite like Matt McFadyen. For over 2 decades, Matt has worked with organizations all over the world to align leaders, energize culture, and build high performing teams.

Matt is a world-class speaker and facilitator who addresses leadership, building high performance teams, motivation, and inspiration.
From dragging heavy sleds to the North Pole to sailing small yachts through some of the world’s deadliest oceans, Australian adventurer Matt McFadyen has pushed himself and other to the ends of the earth, testing the limits of human potential.

He has been a leader of teams in some of the toughest conditions on the planet. This includes three record- breaking expeditions to the North Pole and two-long haul sailing trips to Antarctica.

In 2013 Matt rowed, sailed, and dragged a small boat 2000 miles across the infamous Northwest Passage in the Canadian Arctic. Matt’s presentations focus on the Power of Purpose.

Understanding why we do what we do both personally and professionally by understanding our skills, passions and legacy we identify our purpose statement and that of others, thus creating the foundations of building high performing teams.

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Janine Lane

Finance & Operations Manager

Janine lives in the Southern part of the UK and was born and brought up in Cape Town, South Africa. She learned that hard work, dedication, and quick solutions bring opportunities and further growth in one’s personal and professional life. Her values are working smart and hard by surrounding herself with people who inspire her.

Janine has experience in Finance and Management for over 25 years. By 2006, she felt that she had built up the knowledge and courage to build her own business. The company was named Blake Technical Services after her first son, Blake.

In 2009, Janine re-branded to Liquid Friday, and in 2011, they were honoured to be recognised by The Times 100 Fast Track list as the UK’s 22nd Fastest Growing company and again as the 31st fastest growing in 2012.

By 2012, she felt it was time to step away from the business and take time out to raise her children.
In 2018, Janine joined Mission Performance and has had the privilege of working with a team of great communicators and leaders who teach and encourage positive and effective change to their Clients.

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Jade Burnett

Logistics Manager

Jade Burnett has been with Mission Performance since October 2012. Jade joined as a Support Administrator, looking after the logistics for all our programmes globally. Jade has now taken on new tasks and has progressed to become a fantastic Office and Logistics Manager.

Previously Jade worked for a large hotel firm as their Wedding and Events Coordinator. Whilst at the hotel she was responsible for organising a significant number of weddings, Christmas parties and corporate events. Prior to her work in hospitality, she worked as a travel agent completing her City & Guilds Travel and Tourism Level 3.

During her time at Mission Performance she has grown her family and welcomed 2 delightful children.

Jade has a passion for travelling and experiencing different cultures worldwide. As a keen walker, Jade often takes part in the Crickhowell Walking Festival where she has experienced the Welsh weather at its finest.

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Ross Preston, MBE

Senior Leadership Coach

Ross is a seasoned facilitator and coach, working in commercial, not for profit, and government sectors. He is passionate about teams and leaders, and through his experience has developed his perspectives of leadership beyond competencies to view leadership as a way of thinking and being; truly generating leadership at all levels.

For Ross, leading and being a part of teams began with a love of sport and his formative years in the Royal Marine Commandos. Leaving as a Lieutenant Colonel after a dynamic and exciting 18 years, he adapted and developed his skills to meet the demands of a new role as director of operations for a vibrant, fast-moving global disaster relief charity. In more recent years Ross and his young family moved to Canada, giving him the opportunity to focus fully on leader and team development. This has seen engagements with many clients and organisations all over the world, across all sectors and levels, developing and coaching leaders and teams to increase efficiency, profitability and individual personal happiness.

Ross views leading and being part of a team as both an honour and a responsibility. However, it should not be onerous; we all seek to excel at what we enjoy and, although a serious business, leadership need not be somber or grave. The strength of the Royal Marines’ ethos is legendary with a philosophy closely aligned to Ross’ beliefs. The Commando Qualities of Courage, Determination, Unselfishness and Cheerfulness in the Face of Adversity have consistently proven their worth. Ross has seen them carry the day in some exceptionally demanding circumstances.

Moving from the Military to Not for Profit and Commercial Sectors has helped evolve Ross’ philosophy of Leadership and High Performing teams, and he is always open to new views and perspectives; committed to continuous learning.

Ross harbours an enduring passion for sport, exercise and the outdoors. These passions have shaped his life and continue to do so. Whether it is cross-country skiing through the beautiful winter forests of eastern Canada or kayaking the lakes and rivers in the summertime, being part of the outdoors is as important now as it was when Ross sought to join the Royal Marines; seeking adventure and a career that would keep him from feeling confined to an office.

Ross shares this love of the outdoors with his family. His wife and three young sons are accomplished skiers and snowboarders with a thirst for adventure. Living in Canada gives a lot of scope to be in the outdoors as a family!

Ross is a ShelterBox Response Team volunteer, a role that delivers vital aid to families made homeless by natural or man-made disasters all over the globe.

More recently Ross has qualified as a firefighter and is a volunteer member of his local fire department.

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Sophie Hughes

Logistics and Experientials Coordinator

Sophie Hughes has been a Logistics and Experientials Coordinator at Mission Performance since February 2021. With a strong background in managing logistics for various programs, both in-person and remote, Sophie ensures smooth operations and seamless experiences.
 
After completing a 2-year course in Uniformed Services at Fareham College, Sophie discovered her passion for the inspiring and challenging world of public services. She kickstarted her career at HSBC as a PPI payment assistant at the age of 18 and finished her career there as a Project Manager.
 
When Sophie is not at work, she cherishes quality time with her young daughter Grace. She enjoys capturing precious moments through her photography, preserving everlasting memories

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Luke Etherington

Marketing

Luke joined Mission Performance as part of the marketing department. Previously to this, Luke had managed his own artistic woodworking company where he learnt the power of digital marketing. Using this powerful tool and studying the marketplace, he was able to turn an interesting hobby into a full-time income.  

Luke has also worked all over the world in marine restoration, has a passion for history and has been training various martial arts including Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Kickboxing for nearly 10 years.

Nowadays, Luke has packed away his passport and spends his time with his wife and daughter, but still keeps his artistic flare close at hand – mainly on Sundays.

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Sam Rawe

Logistics

For the past 14 years, I’ve been immersed in the office world, specifically in finance departments. Throughout my journey, I’ve honed my skills in bookkeeping, payroll, and admin tasks. I’ve had the privilege of working for a recruitment company and a public house management company, gaining valuable experiences along the way.


When I’m not at work, I prioritise spending quality time with my family. We love going on trips and embracing every opportunity for a holiday. It’s during these moments that we create cherished memories together. Interestingly, my 5-year-old daughter seems to have a more bustling social life than I do, but I don’t mind tagging along with her for some fun and laughter.


In 2022, I decided to take on the challenge of climbing mount Snowdon. Let me tell you, it wasn’t an easy feat reaching the summit. However, I persevered and overcame the struggle, filled with excitement and a sense of accomplishment as I made my way back down. It was truly an amazing achievement that I’ll always hold dear.

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Paul Chequer

Personal Impact & Communications Consultant

Paul is a Senior Associate at Mission Performance, with 20 years’ experience in Executive Learning and Development. Alongside his prestigious career as an actor, he has helped Leaders to communicate value to key stakeholders, excel at managing work and team dynamics and resolve conflict.

Experienced in both 1-2-1 executive development and executive team coaching, he brings a studied and supportive approach to enabling mastery in communication and allowing people to excel in all stakeholder relationships, being true to themselves while meeting the needs of others.

An EMCC practitioner coach, certified NLP and Strengths Deployment Inventory practitioner, Paul draws together a wealth of experience and expertise to help Leaders and organisations get the best from themselves and each other.

Paul had a successful career as an actor for 20 years, working at the National Theatre, RSC and in the West End. He found TV success with the show ‘As If’ in the noughties as well as appearing in Sherlock, Torchwood and Whitechapel amongst others. He also starred in the film Tea with Mussolini with Judy Dench, Cher and Maggie Smith. (https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0155733/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1)

He brings his passion for rehearsal and performance into his training work by enabling others to learn and explore new skills and strategies and to identify solutions that work best for them in a safe and positive environment.

Paul’s recent work includes Executive team coaching on group dynamics and collaboration, Leadership programs for young and aspiring Leaders,1-2-1 Executive coaching on communication and messaging. As well as global delivery on Sales, Presentation and Leadership programs. Clients include Google, The Premier League, SLB, The WHEB Group, Pivotal, and the NHS.

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Justin Cunningham LLB(Hons) MA CIPD

Senior Leadership Consultant

Justin Cunningham had an 18-year career in the Royal Marines, having joined from Liverpool University where he studied Law, during which time undertaking a variety of challenging leadership appointments from frontline operational service to programme director roles in the Ministry of Defence.

After the Royal Marines, Justin Cunningham spent five years in senior NHS performance improvement and change management roles. Additionally, tasked by the Department of Health to initiate and lead networks to improve the provision of military health services in the NHS for veterans. He was then recruited as a Regional Director for the NHS’s property company three years ago with responsibility for an operational budget of £98m, circa 500 suppliers and 1300 staff.

Above all, Justin Cunningham is a people person, and seeks to blend the skills and experience he’s acquired from a number of sectors to become a valuable and welcome member to any team. Justin is extremely motivated by helping people, teams and leaders build the relationships to overcome the blockages to change.  Improving communication and generating a shared understanding of the goal overcomes these blockages, which drives improved performance.

I firmly believe that those teams that communicate in times of change and challenge are the most successful.

Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development
Master’s Degree in Defence Technology from Cranfield University
ILM Level 7 in financial management; business operations and business strategy and marketing
Prince 2 qualified
Avid kitesurfer

Ollie

Ollie Dimsdale

Communications Consultant

Ollie Dimsdale is an actor for stage, television and film including leading roles for the BBC, ITV and Sky, as well as stage plays at theatres such as The National Theatre and The Royal Shakespeare Company. He has been BAFTA-Nominated as a voice artist for Video Games.

Ollie Dimsdale is also an Artistic Director of the critically acclaimed Filter Theatre, a company he co-founded in 2001. Creating shows for the UK and international theatre markets, Filter’s work has taken Ollie from the UK to Europe, India, the USA and Australia.

An excellent communicator, he enjoys being a part of successful and productive teams and thrives in highly pressurised and challenging working environments. Drawing on twenty years of experience in performance and workshop-leading roles across the Globe, Ollie has extensive skills in motivating others to achieve their objectives.

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Justin Featherstone, MC FRGS FRAI

Head of Leadership Practice

Justin Featherstone is a leadership consultant and expedition leader. He has worked with a variety of public sector and commercial organisations both in the UK and overseas and specialises in helping people develop compassionate shared leadership and resilience, in order to be the best that they can be.  He also is an adjunct lecturer on leadership at the Universities of Exeter and Llubljana.

A former Major in The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, he deployed on various operations over his eighteen years’ service, including commanding a Company in Southern Iraq in 2004.  He left the Army in 2007 and his final posting was as the principal leadership staff officer at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.  

A keen mountaineer and whitewater kayaker, he has led and participated in over thirty overseas expeditions to the mountains, rivers and rainforests of the world.  He was awarded the Military Cross for his actions in Iraq and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, a Fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute and a member of the Alpine Club.  As a Leadership Fellow of University of Exeter, he has a role supporting the Exeter Centre for Leadership, as well as the wider Business School.  He has an interest in researching leadership in traditional communities around the world.

Justin is a qualified Winter Mountain Leader, whitewater kayaking coach and climbing instructor and when not working, is often found relaxing in the wild spaces on his Devon doorstep.

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Emma Kilbey

Associate

Emma Kilbey combines facilitating, directing and theatre-making with singing, script-writing, voiceover and corporate coaching.

Emma Kilbey ‘s experience includes TV soaps, various comedies and dramas for BBC Radio 3 and 4, the lead in an international tour of an all-female Macbeth as well as directing Shakespeare, musicals and co-writing and performing in a comedy show with Russell Brand. She regularly sings in psychedelic folk trio, The Silver Swans.

When it comes to corporate communication she has 20 years’ experience creating and facilitating training packages, focusing on Equality and Diversity, Inclusive Leadership, Customer Care and Executive Change across the public and private sectors, as well as the military. She is also the co-author of 101 Days to Make a Change and a qualified coach, utilising the Management Drives tool. She regularly works with trainee barristers at the Inner Temple on presentation skills.

Passionate about ‘truffling’ out people’s potential, she prides herself on her ability to engage delegates with her enthusiasm and drive to make a difference.

Jamie

Jamie Honeybourne

Associate

Jamie Honeybourne is an accredited EMCC (Global) coach. He specialises in Communication and is a Senior Practitioner with the Communication’s team here at Mission Performance. 

Resilient and flexible, he works globally, onshore and offshore and across six continents, for some of the world’s most successful organisations. Jamie creates the right environment for others to be as creative and dynamic as they need to be in defining and then pursuing their goals in all aspects of their life. 
He firmly believes that life and work should be fun, enjoyable and inspiring, helping people find their voice and communicate effectively and with credibility. 

He specialises in communications, presentation skills, inspirational leadership, teamwork and confidence building. He helps individuals to discover what is special, unique, funny and powerful about themselves. Then he gives them the tools to make sure those elements are always present in all of their interactions – both at work and at home.

He is also is a working TV and Film actor. Working on two of the most famous television shows in British Broadcasting history, Coronation Street & Emmerdale.
He lives on the North Yorkshire coast with his husband and their Patterjack Terrier. His hobbies include people watching, home brewing, writing a popular lifestyle and career blog for actors and making vegetarian curries which will blow your socks off!
 
 -Expert in Presentation Skills, Public Speaking, Personal Impact, Storytelling
 -Certified NLP Practitioner
-Coach EMCC (Global) 
 -Over 20 years as a professional screen actor
 -Over ten year’s experience as a Facilitator and Coach

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David Mugridge

Senior Human Factors Consultant

David joined Mission Performance after 15 years of working globally in the energy sector. He has delivered Leadership & Operations Management training to top performing drilling companies and operators alike. His niche area of expertise is delivering operational start-up advice, to help organisations deliver exceptional results through structured change management. He delivers Crew Resource Management training for Mission Performance in the Middle East. Outside of the energy sector, he offers bespoke Risk Management services based on current geo-strategic issues.

Like many at Mission Performance, David had a previous military career. His 20-year Naval service saw him deployed operationally across 5 continents on 7 operational tours. He held two commands and is an alumni / graduate of the Advanced Command & Staff Course. Additionally, he has held three teaching-research positions at Universities & Business Schools in Europe & North America.

He holds two Masters Degrees in Operational Management & International Relations and a Bachelor’s in Modern History & Politics. He is a qualified Project Management and an expert in Critical Infrastructure protection.

Living in Munich, his active family life revolves around mountains, lakes and trekking. The family relish rough travelling to non-tourist destinations and remote areas.

Don

Don Evans

Human Factors Consultant

A former Royal Air Force Wing Commander and fast jet aviator, Don Evans has over 20 years’ experience leading a wide range of complex and demanding operations in hostile conditions within an international context.  He has deployed extensively to the middle-east, the Balkans, the United States and continental Europe in a variety of air and ground roles, completing appointments with the British Army, the United Nations and the United States Air Force. He was also a member of the Tornado GR1 display for the RAF in 1997, participating in over 90 air shows across the UK and Europe.  He was a qualified instructor on several aircraft types and was responsible for the training and standardisation of leadership at the RAF Officer Training College at Cranwell. Don is also a Civil Aviation Authority qualified Crew Resource Management Trainer with extensive experience in this area across several industries.

A keen sportsman, Don Evans also represented the RAF and Great Britain at Bobsleigh before common sense combined with a few injuries led to him hanging up his ice spikes.  During 9 years of competition, he competed for GB in international races as a 4 Man and 2 Man driver on over 30 occasions against the major Alpine nations.  Towards the end of his involvement in the sport, he coached the RAF team and assisted with the development of the national squad, helping to achieve a rigorous culture of individual and collective accountability consistent with his flying background into the squad.
 

Within industry, Don Evans has held senior positions in a multinational telecoms company.  He was responsible for the operational delivery of 1500 field engineers on a daily basis, as well as the education and training of several hundred apprentices. He implemented the honesty, rigour and accountability based upon the ‘Just Culture’ of military aviation across his 120 strong management team, which led to a step change in safety, efficiency, and employee engagement throughout his workforce.  Don has led the design and implementation of the Well Operations Crew Resource Management & Human Factors programme for Mission Performance.  He has worked with Schlumberger to introduce a series of training courses for Drillers, Engineers and Well Site leaders, delivering multiple courses within Europe and the middle east.
Mentoring and coaching people to achieve their full potential as leaders and team members in a dynamic environment is Don’s principal focus.  He believes that effective leadership begins with the behaviours, standards and values that you demonstrate to your immediate and wider team every day.  These qualities, added to a clear purpose, consistent mentoring and a determination to transform complexity into simplicity forms the basis for a high-performance environment.

Don is married to Elizabeth and they have 2 teenage sons, Tom and Alex.  The family home is in Lincolnshire, where they settled after travelling quite a bit when he was in the RAF.  Don’s hobbies are mostly outdoor type pursuits, with skiing, windsurfing, boarding and sailing when time and money permits!  Most of his spare time is currently devoted to supporting his sons’ activities, driving them to various matches and athletics meetings around the Midlands.  He is also Chairman of Newark Athletics Club and enjoys walking the family dog, Olly, in the countryside at the weekend.

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Dave Pearce

Associate

Dave Pearce spent 24 years as a British Commando, seeing operations across the globe and serving in many elite arms of the services, becoming adept in survival within all environments as well as an expert in mountain, arctic, jungle and desert warfare. Towards the end of his military career, Dave Pearce was Sergeant Major, to a squadron of Commandos, in Afghanistan, for 8 months in 2001/2 and he left in 2005 as a Warrant Officer. Dave Pearce received a military commendation.
 
Leadership, high performance in individuals and teams is key to achieving robust success and stretch targets. Something Dave Pearce is spirited about facilitating for others.
 
Dave embraces challenges and in 2003, he reached the summit of Mount Everest via the challenging and difficult North Face along with the expedition’s audacious rescue high on the mountain. Dave was awarded the BBC’s Outstanding Overseas Achievement Award. He returned to Everest again in 2006 and became a member of the first successful British ascent of Kangchenjunga, without oxygen, the world’s third highest mountain. Dave made an early British ascent of El Capitan, joined Bear Grylls as a team of 5, navigating a RIB through the North West Passage, spent three months exploring Greenland in period 1911 clothing and food. He has led and participated in many other extreme expeditions.
 
In 2005, Dave Pearce started working with Bear Grylls supporting him on all programming and wider challenges also leading production teams into dynamic and hostile environments, delivering safety, consultation and stunt coordination as well as being a member of the creative production team. Dave was instrumental in setting up the Bear Grylls Survival Academy and have worked alongside many high profile figures including President Obama and his secret service agents.
 
Dave continues to mountaineer, sea paddle, ski and challenge himself in all manner of activities. His mantra is “Come back alive, come back friends and come back successful” In that order!
 
Dave is a published author and a volunteer for the Sidmouth lifeboat team. He has been married for 26 years and has three daughters – probably his biggest challenge to date!

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Clare Plested

Associate

Clare Plested is a critically acclaimed actor, writer and director. She performs on the London comedy circuit and improvises with London improv school The Free Association.
 
Clare Plested has over ten years global business training experience in both the public and private sector. Drawing on over seventeen years of performance experience, to a wide variety of audiences and cultures, Clare delivers engaging and entertaining workshops that focus on the transferable skills of an actor.
 
10 years’ experience designing and delivering arts based training in Presence and Personal Impact, Presentations Skills, Crucial Conversations, Storytelling, Creative Leadership, Women in Business and Executive Team Development. Delivered globally on Leadership Programmes, Graduate Programmes, Senior and Junior Nurses and Healthcare Teams, Senior Clinicians and Consultants, Senior and Middle Management, CEO’s.

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Mandy Hickson

Associate

Mandy Hickson was one of the first female pilots on a front-line Tornado GR4 squadron. Flying fast jets for the Royal Air Force, she worked in constantly challenging and hostile environments, including patrolling the ‘No Fly’ zone over Iraq, carrying the latest weaponry, her unit was ready to drop ordnance on any target in support of operations.
 
As a qualified CRM (Crew Resource Management) instructor with the Civil Aviation Authority, Mandy Hickson now uses her in-depth knowledge of aviation, calculated risk taking, decision making under pressure and the critical role of the human in the system to transfer these lessons from the cockpit to the corporate boardroom.
 
Mandy Hickson is a regular speaker on Safety, Human Factors and Culture Change at conferences across a range of industries including Financial Services, Nuclear Power and Healthcare.
 
Working within an elite team of fast jet operators, she conveys how the same values apply within any environment. She is able to share from personal experience how to remain calm under pressure and leading, quite literally, from the front, in order to get the best from yourself and your team.
 
She recently founded Inspiring Women for Work, tailor made events designed to help women realise their full potential and regain confidence to return to work.

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Toby Wilsher

Communications Consultant

Toby Wilsher has been a theatre director for 28 years, with an international reputation.  His work as a writer and director has been seen in 31 countries to date, most recently in 2009 with a major project for the State Theatre of Turkey.
 
He was a pioneer in establishing Arts-based training for business in the early ‘90’s, finding ways of transferring the skills and experiences of theatre both as a performance-based industry and as a model for team-working.
 

He is now a lead trainer for the WPP group, the world’s largest media group with companies such as Ogilvy, Landor, JWT, Mindshare, PRISM, Hill and Knowlton and Millward Brown.  He works with WPP companies in Europe, America, the Far East, as well as running regular sessions in London.  Other current clients include major Pharmaceutical companies Sanofi-Pasteur and Astellas, Denplan, Red Door Comms, and the NHS (Chertsey and Ashford NHS trust), as well as a new branding agency Blue Marlin.
 
All of Toby’s training stems from a belief that everybody is a brilliant communicator in some area of their life, be it at home with family, out with friends, or at work. Through his extensive experience of working with actors and with audiences, he knows how to transfer the natural, social skills we all possess to the formalised arena of the presentation, the briefing in a meeting or to the conference podium.  He has trained chief executives and receptionists, engineers and brain surgeons, teachers and store staff. All have benefited from an exuberant and infectious style of training that is fun, inclusive, challenging and highly actionable.
 
 
He has been training for nearly 20 years, a pioneer of the arts-based training movement.  He has been teaching communication skills to companies as varied as the WPP group, Denplan, Sanofi Pasteur, BT, the NHS, UK Film Council and ASDA.

Paul M

Paul Mattin

Head of Team Development & Outdoor Experiential Learning

Following an exciting 25 year career as a Royal Marines Officer, Paul Mattin has spent the last 15 years working with teams and leaders within professional sport, business and in extreme expedition scenarios.
 
The experiences Paul Mattin gained from numerous operational deployments; skiing to and from the South Pole and from developing Young Officers, allowed a privileged insight and understanding as to how high-performance is shaped and sustained under rigour.
 
Whether Paul is working with a senior leadership team, a premiership rugby squad or a charity trekking team – his driver for success has to be positivity. The leader who shapes a happy and committed crew; who takes time to talk and share; and who leads with a generosity of spirit; will be surrounded by unified, decisive owners – all capable of stepping-up when the situation requires.
 
Paul has delivered training and coaching for Mission Performance extensively across the Oil and Gas, Financial, Healthcare and Construction sectors. He also leads numerous outdoor experientials to UK sites (i.e. Dartmoor and Wales) and to a number of far flung locations (including Norway, Nepal and Africa) and can invigorate any organisation with a key-note or motivational speech.
 
Executive Coach (AoEC)
Teacher (Cert Ed) and Neuro Linguistic Programming Coach
Strength Deployment Inventory (SDI) Facilitator
Performance Climate System (PCS) Practitioner
Mountain Leader and Ski instructor (all disciplines)

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Tony Underwood

Leadership and Resilience Consultant

Tony Underwood was one of the stars of the popular England rugby side of the 1990s. A grand slam, world cup semi-finalist and two-time tourist with the Lions, he experienced life at the top of the rugby tree both as an amateur and professional. Winning a Varsity Match whilst at Cambridge to a premiership winning title for the Newcastle Falcons.
 
The minor ‘bump’ in the road came in the shape of the infamous Jonah Lomu which forms the basis of an engaging and inspirational tale of bouncing back from life’s obstacles.
 
Crippling knee injuries and slower speeds brought an early end to his rugby days, but he dusted himself down, went through a process of re-invention and came back in the shape of an airline pilot. A career spanning 20 years took him from low-cost aviation at easyJet to long haul Virgin Atlantic to low cost long haul at Emirates and ultimately becoming a commander on the world’s biggest commercial aircraft, the mighty A380.
 
Tony is a regular speaker on creating resilient cultures through resilient individuals and leaders across a range of sectors ranging from Financial and Legal Services, Olympic pathway athletes and the RNLI.
 
What inspires Tony and what he tries to inspire in others, is the life changing experiences of operating in high performing team environments where the balance is struck between capability and vulnerability. Surviving success as well as failure as a team, embracing and learning from them and in the process, getting stronger.
 
Tony brings an authenticity and humbleness to everything he does and lives by the mantra that “there is beauty in everyone. My job is to let them know that I see it and that they do too.”

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Brendan Hall

Keynote speaker and coach

In 2010 I skippered the winning yacht in the Clipper Round the World Race, leading a team of 44 amateur sailors in a 10-month lap of the planet. It was a unique and formidable leadership challenge. Our overall victory came down to our high-performance team culture and my inclusive approach to leadership.
 
I now help teams and leaders reach that same level of high performance and create a culture where their team will meet its potential. Using a combination of story-telling, coaching, experiential learning and practical, co-created interventions, I am a catalyst for meaningful organisational change.
 
-AoEC diploma of Executive coaching
– Winner of the 2009-10 Clipper Round the World race
-Author of the Mountbatten award shortlisted ‘Team Spirit – Life and Leadership’

Team Spirit: Life and Leadership on one of the World’s toughest Yacht races

The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race is the ultimate long distance challenge – a 35,000-mile circumnavigation of the globe, contested by amateur crews in identical racing yachts. The 2010 winner was 28-year-old Brendan Hall and his crew in Spirit of Australia. Although Brendan was the youngest and least experienced skipper in the race, the win was no accident – it was the culmination of years of training, skilled navigation and a leadership style way beyond his years.

His skills were soon put to the test – in the middle of a North Pacific hurricane, Brendan went to the rescue of a competing yacht and skippered both boats across one of the most feared oceans in the world. This brutally honest, no-holds-barred account is revealing and instructive, with valuable lessons in leadership and management – as well as never giving up. Thrown in quite literally at the deep end, he is pushed to the limit, and learns lessons you can only learn the hard way.

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Colette Barratt MSc

Senior Leadership Consultant

In 2001, Colette fulfilled a long-term ambition to join the army and attend the world renowned leadership course at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. On Commissioning, working with the Royal Engineer Corp brought about the challenges and opportunities she had hoped for as a young girl.
 
Her key role as a Troop Commander during a short deployment to the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2003 saw Colette as the only female within the Squadron. Deployed to little more than a dusty grassland, she worked with her Troop to deliver a construction project in an austere and dangerous environment. Other deployments saw Colette working in Northern Afghanistan, where again, she was the project lead for a large construction project, liaising with local suppliers and again, in remote and challenging conditions. Colette’s third deployment was to Southern Afghanistan, as a Squadron Second in Command, pulling on all her skills and experiences to ensure the safe and smooth operational running of the Squadron while under extremely difficult situations.
 
In 2008, Colette resigned her Commission and switched focus to the Learning and Development profession. Her experiences include a role in Abu Dhabi, initially as a team leader in a remote Southern location. Her responsibility was to deliver a Youth Development Programme to local Emirates with a core team of specialised trainers. Within a year, Colette was promoted to Regional Manager, working with 40 staff to deliver the programme to 12 different locations across Abu Dhabi. This role stretched Colette’s skills in communication, team development, staff development and led her to work at strategic level planning for the programmes success.
 
Since returning the UK in 2014, Colette has been working as a freelance coach, trainer and facilitator working with a rich and diverse client base. She utilises her military and industry experience to provide realistic and tangible management development solutions. Drawing on her own challenges, successes and failures to develop working professionals skills, knowledge and performance. She is passionate about coaching and has seen incredible change through the support and framework she can provide with insightful and transformational sessions.

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Richard Tarran, MVO

Senior Coach Practitioner

I have noticed through coaching, people discover that there is more in them than they thought. Couple this with the skills, capabilities and confidence to challenge the process and success is hard to stifle in any organisation.
 
Whether you’re already in a leadership position or have the desire to be there I can assist you on your journey. We all have behaviours which at times can hinder us. I help you see how to use these more positively. With more focus on our strengths and underused capabilities, anything is possible. When we discover our self-belief we start to value ourselves. This is when we start to see ourselves for what we are and appreciate the reason we do what we do.
 
I was a Military Officer for 16 years and for the last 17 years have worked extensively in training and personal development. Executive coaching is my forte which is enhanced by my ability to back up concepts with evidence. I have a very client focused ethos and feedback says that I am flexible and willingly focus time on the challenges in hand.
 
A key strength has been my exposure to a diversity of organisational cultures across an array of business sectors. I have experience working from board level to customer focused front line roles. As a Royal Navy engineer, I have worked from ships’ engine rooms to shore support in Hong Kong, to Buckingham Palace, managing people at all levels from young mechanics to a Head of State.
 
As an Engineer, I know technology, society and business will continue to change faster. Those who adapt quickest will probably survive, those who hope for magic could be disappointed.
 
INLPTA Certified Coach Practitioner
Very Experienced Executive Coach
NLP Master Practitioner
Certified/licensed in SDI, MBTI, LPI, TMSDi
Mountain Leader
Owner of Morocco-Guides.com
Former senior member of the Royal Household
Former Royal Navy Engineer Officer
Member of the Royal Victorian Order MVO
2 Campaign Medals

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Dr Catherine Lavers PsyClinDoc, Phd, BSc.

Senior Practitioner Coach

I am a Senior Practitioner Coach with the EMCC and have a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. I bring a solution focussed approach, alongside a breadth of experience and passion to my work as an executive coach and people development consultant. I work with individuals and teams to unlock their thinking and realise organisational, relationship and personal ambitions. My clients range from senior leaders in private and government organisations, to teams and individuals requiring development of skills and practices across a range of areas including leadership, communication, resilience, team work, personal effectiveness and relationship awareness.

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Mark Beaumont

Athlete, Broadcaster & Ambassador

Mark Beaumont has made his name through documentaries about ultra endurance and adventure. Having smashed the circumnavigation cycling World Record twice in his career, he now holds this 18,000 mile title in a time of 78 days and 14 hours, averaging 240 miles a day. His epic documentaries have taken viewers to over 100 countries, into the Arctic, the high mountains and around the Commonwealth, also surviving capsize in the mid-Atlantic. Mark lives in Edinburgh with his wife Nicci and two daughters, having studied Economics at Glasgow University. Known best as an athlete, Mark also works in education including Honorary President of Scottish Student Sport, as well as in business, as a Patron for Entrepreneurial Scotland and a Director of Eos Advisory, which supports Scottish start-ups that have global potential.

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Andy Fieldhouse

Team Coach

Andy Fieldhouse is man on a mission – to help teams perform to their true potential.
 
A best-selling author and specialist team coach with 13 years of Middle East experience, Andy is based in Dubai and works across the region. 
 
In 2020, Andy published his first book ‘Getting Teamwork Right – the key to happy, successful and resilient teams’ which became an Amazon #1 best seller: 
 
Get his Book
 
He is a qualified ORSC™ – Organization & Relationship Systems Coaching™ – team coach.
 
Andy has spent 25 years working in and with teams in the UK and the Middle East and uses his experience and expertise to help work teams create the culture and practices necessary for them to achieve success.
 
Andy has been connected to Mission Performance for over 20 years and is the perfect partner for us in the Middle East.
 
Originally from the UK, Andy is in his 13th year living in Dubai with his Australian wife and their two children. When not working or enjoying time with his family, Andy enjoys the odd round of golf or catching up on read­ing history books.

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Jennifer Tollady

EMCC coach

Jennifer works with individuals and teams all over the world, helping people find their voice and learn to communicate their message in a way that gets them noticed. She is an EMCC coach and is passionate about developing confidence, communication and collaboration in people.
 
With a BA in Acting from the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and subsequent career in TV, Film and Theatre, Jennifer draws on her performance and coaching experience to provide clients with practical strategies for finding gravitas, power and presence when they speak.
 
Currently studying for an MSc in Transactional Analysis Psychotherapy, this learning brings a greater emotional intelligence to her work. 
 
Jennifer knows that with the right training, everyone can become an authentic and effective communicator.

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Alison Griffin

Actor, Comedian, Writer and Director

Alison is a critically acclaimed actor, comedian, writer and director. She has worked extensively in TV, theatre, film & radio. She can be seen on Comedy Central, Sky, BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and she has worked with Bad Robot & Paramount Pictures. As a comedian she has written and produced her own 5-star smash hit, live comedy shows, which won critical acclaim at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, transferred to sold out runs at Soho Theatre in London and were streamed on Amazon. Selected as one of the Observer’s Female Millennials Changing Comedy, the Evening Standard’s Best Comedy Shows to See and The Telegraph’s Best of the Fringe. She has recorded numerous comedy shows for BBC Radio 4 and has been part of two separate BBC Comedy Writers Rooms, developing her own pilot sitcom script. She is also a highly-experienced improviser, developing improv TV formats for ITV & BBC.
 
Alongside performing, she has been a communication skills trainer for over 7 years. As Head of Business Training for The Free Association Improvisation Theatre in London, she created and delivered 100’s of communication workshops for businesses, including building bespoke programs for blue chip financial firms and Fortune 500 companies. Alongside this she led the Comedy Lab course at Soho Theatre in London’s West End, working with emerging comics, helping to develop their comedic talents. She has a huge passion for using the skills honed over many years of a creative, portfolio career, to offer tangible tools and processes that are relatable to business and everyday life. 

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Victor Grove

Brand Ambassador

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Gary Wakefield

Facilitator & CRM examiner

A former Naval Officer and Fleet Air Arm pilot, Gary Wakefield served in the Royal Navy for 21 years. Gary Wakefield was fortunate enough to fly and lead all over the world with an exchange tour to the Royal New Zealand Navy and a tour as a Qualified Helicopter Instructor. Following two years on the staff of Britannia Royal Naval College as the Head of Leadership Training he studied for a Masters Degree in Defence Studies at the Joint Staff College part of Kings College London.
 
On leaving the RN Gary Wakefield trained as a Fixed Wing Commercial Pilot and have flown for the past 17 years for a British aerospace company providing Operational Readiness Training to the RN and RAF. During this second career, he has been promoted to Captain, trained as a Training Captain and served as the Flight Safety Manager for 4 years. He has facilitated CRM training for his entire career and am currently the CRM Trainer Examiner and CRM Manager for the Company.
 
In his spare time, he keeps fit. He is a keen road rider and a fanatical Laser sailor. He also have the privilege to serve as Rear Commodore for one of the largest yacht clubs in the British Isles.
 
Gary Wakefield lives in Dorset with his wife and son, and his daughter living away from home at university.

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Alf Evans

Associate

Alf served 23 years in the Royal Air Force as a Navigator on Air Transport and Air to Air Refuelling aircraft, including as an instructor where his fascination with how high performing teams operate in pressurised, safety critical environments led him to the become a Human Factors facilitator. Using what he had learned about team and individual performance het hen became a Hostage and Conduct After Capture Instructor, training Special Forces, Aircrew and other specialist agencies in this niche and highly challenging environment. This gave him the rare privilege of debriefing and learning first hand from individuals who have found themselves, and their team, in hostage and captivity situations, testing resilience and leadership skills in the most extreme of circumstances. He has continued to work in this area helping to set up Government Academies as a consultant.  He spent the later years in the military continuing to maximise performance in harsh environments by developing the equipment and ethos of use of aircrew survival packs, modernising the UK Military’s Aircraft Survival Packs and the training required to use them.  
 
 
He then left the service and to become the Head of Operations for an International Disaster Relief Charity, training, and leading professional and volunteer teams in insecure environments post disaster, to deliver essential aid. This gave him the rare opportunity to further develop his leadership skills in diverse and varied cultures and environments for well over a decade in places like North Korea, Colombia, and Malawi to name but a few. This has given him the experience of working successfully with a varied mix of people from Presidents of Countries to the most vulnerable of society to get the best from those around him, within and outside of the team. He created the Risk Management policy for the charity and has further deepened his risk management experience through serving as the Head of Operations of a leading UK Air Ambulance Charity.
 
He is currently renovating a 50-year-oldsailing catamaran in order to sail it to Greenland (and back!) in the future.

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Gordon Mackenzie

Associate

Gordon’s early career was as an Officer in the Royal Marines Commandos, this was cut short through injury but not before serving on deployments around the Globe as an operational leader and Staff Intelligence officer to the Naval Commander throughout the first Gulf War.  Upon leaving, Gordon went on to study an MBA at Warwick Business School majoring in Organisation effectiveness.  He subsequently worked in Leadership and development roles in the NHS, ICI and financial services before moving on to grow a successful career as a management and OD consultant.  Initially with Hay Mcber, Gordon has worked on International assignments for Boston Consulting Group in the Middle East and with McKinsey.  In 2000 he set up his own successful consultancy which he sold in 2019.
 
Gordon has over 30 years of working with clients across the Globe, often in high hazard industries including oil and gas, Formula 1 and the nuclear and chemical sectors; Throughout his career he has focused his efforts on developing well led, safe, and high performing organisations and developing leaders and teams.
 
Gordon is an experienced executive coach and author of a number of published tools on leadership and team performance.  He is also a trained counsellor and works pro bono with veterans and others in need.  
 
A dedicated humanitarian Gordon volunteers with REACT, a disaster response charity focused on rapid response to humanitarian crises and disasters.  Most recently he was deployed in an Intensive Care unit at a major hospital during the covid pandemic and to Ukraine at the start of war. When not working, Gordon is a keen diver and nature lover and takes any opportunity he can to explore the world’s oceans and reefs or working on his orchard in Hungary.  

Rick Charlton

Associate

Rick has an extensive background spanning over 30 years. He is the father of four amazing and inspirational young adults three of whom are currently serving in the British Army with his youngest still studying. He is a British Army veteran himself and has been across the globe in several volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environments.
 
He is also a former UK firefighter with a career that culminated in being a fire tactical commander. He also worked as a Crown Premises Fire Inspector with the UK Government and was the lead for fire safety enforcement in English prisons.
 
He is a certified performance coach, action learning facilitator, change manager, and experienced emergency/crisis management and leadership professional. Since leaving the fire and rescue service he has worked in Nuclear Decommissioning in roles spanning from leading a change management capability, program and project management, operations management, nuclear intelligence / independent oversight, security, and resilience, to emergency planning. He has worked for the World Association for Nuclear Operators (WANO) as a peer review team member at a nuclear power plant in France.  
 
He is qualified in aviation fire and rescue and has operated on major UK airports and critical national infrastructure.
 
He has also delivered risk management projects and behavioural safety training for global aerospace and defence organisations.
 
Rick lives on the Solway Plain in north Cumbria in the UK overlooking the Lake District fells and the Solway Firth. He spent his formative years growing up in Southern Africa.
 
His upbringing developed in him a real ‘blinkers off’ understanding and appreciation of people, diverse cultures and a deep passion for Africa, the outdoors, and adventure. This has been the driving force throughout his life and career to date. He actively embraces opportunities to develop as a leader whenever they have arisen.
 
Rick volunteers as the operations officer for the UK charity Veterans for Wildlife. They support conservation efforts worldwide by working to repurpose the skills of volunteer veterans of the military, and emergency services. They support anti-poaching operations and the wider conservation of endangered species such as elephants and rhinos in southern Africa and forest elephants and pangolins in Cameroon.
 
Rick is also a mental health first aider and is currently training in ‘Trauma Incident Reduction’, ‘Critical Incident Risk Assessment’, and ‘CRISIS Schema’ (Critical Incident Stress Integration and Support) practice.
 
He endeavours to be an inspirational leader and prides himself on being calm under pressure. He is people focused and uses his skills and experience in developing and coaching teams and individuals to achieve their potential.
 
Rick passionately believes that a leader should be visible smart, compassionate, and committed to affect real change regardless of the scale of challenges faced.

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Alex Murray MBE

Associate

Alex is an experienced operations manager, project manager, development, security and risk management consultant with over 35 years’ experience.  He completed a successful 24-year military career in 2012, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Royal Marines.  Since then, he has gained commercial and international development experience working in various risk, crisis, project and operations management, and leadership positions.  
 
Pragmatic, professionally driven and highly versatile.  A committed internationalist, he actively enjoys the challenge of operating across cultural divides.  He has the requisite patience, resilience, and tenacity to succeed in culturally and politically sensitive environments.  Being utterly flexible and getting things done (usually with considerable good humour), in challenging environments with diverse groups, is Alex’s main distinguishing characteristic.
 
Alex has extensive Africa and Middle East experience, most recently setting up and running a UK government sponsored project, while on secondment to UN Office for Projects and Services (UNOPS) in Djibouti.  For 15 months he worked alongside international UN staff and delegations from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), delivering the United Nations Verification and Inspection Mechanism (UNVIM) for Yemen.  This involved the delivery of assurance (through rigorous inspections and vessel searches) that commercial shipping entering Yemen’s Red Sea ports were not in violation of international embargoes.
 
Alex has two Masters’ degrees: Defence Studies from King’s College London and Applied Leadership from Leeds Trinity University, which he gained while working full-time for 2 years as a Prison Officer.  Alex is a passionate about Criminal Justice Reform and in particular helping veterans who have ended up in prison – he actively supports the Armed Forces charity; The Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) as a prison-in reach volunteer.
 
Alex is an enthusiastic Telemark skier in winter and a SCUBA diver in summer, and he enjoys the company of Bedlington Terriers year round!

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George Hopkins

Associate

George Hopkins is an experienced mechanical engineer working across a variety of sectors including automotive, defence and construction; having successfully undertaken roles spanning from operational support to research and development George has moved from high volume automotive production to cutting edge metal 3D printing. All of these have required a strong focus on process, safety and quality underpinning any technical solution.
 
In parallel to his technical career George has always been heavily involved in the voluntary sector, working with several organisations helping to deliver their core activities as well as supporting the development of their future leaders. After nearly 20 years with the Rona Sailing Project based in Southampton, George was part of the leadership team of the winning yacht in the 2017 tall ships race, winning both line honours and first in class with a crew of under 18s on the transatlantic leg.
 
In 2019 George joined REACT Disaster Response, quickly qualifying as an international response leader, and has since gone on to lead teams in operations in the UK and globally. George also supports the development of new leaders within this organisation as part of the training directing staff, where he believes in a strong focus on soft skills and communication as key to effective leadership.

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Mason Phillips

Communications Consultant

Mason has worked extensively in over twenty years as a Facilitator, Coach, Actor and Writer.
 
With a background in theatre, film and television, Mason’s corporate experience ranges from bespoke practice sessions with senior executives at major financial institutions to facilitating forum theatres with engineers at nuclear power stations to coaching sessions with Olympic athletes and everything in between. He is a big believer in affording people the opportunity to practise their skills and experience different communication methods in a safe but challenging environment, utilising feedback, influencing, negotiation and coaching models to assist the learning.
 
Areas of expertise include Influencing Skills, Performance Management, Coaching, Presentation Skills, Assertiveness, Interview Skills, Leadership Development, Appraisal Skills, Personal Impact and Challenging Conversations. As well as either facilitating the sessions or working as an actor-coach, Mason is highly experienced in the design and writing of interactive briefs and scripts.
 
Recent work has included facilitating a series of remote management workshops with a leading global law firm, running a programme with a leading sportswear company across 12 countries in three months, facilitating a series of coaching workshops across such Olympic disciplines as Sailing, Judo, Tennis, Swimming and Table Tennis and working on a series of Influencing workshops for a leading tech company in India.

Mason is also a Certified SDI Practitioner

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Sue Fontannaz

Team Coach

Kathie Knell served 20 years in the Military, leaving as a Lieutenant Colonel, with a wide-ranging portfolio including operational deployments in Bosnia with special forces, Northern Ireland, Jamaica, Belize and as the Training Development Advisor to HM Sultan of Brunei.  She was awarded an MBE for her work on operational training across Defence. She was the Army’s lead for Welfare and was a Trustee with Service Charities including BLESMA, The Soldiers’ Charity, AWA and for the Princes’ Charity Forum for HRHs Williams and Harry.
 
After leaving the Army in 2011, she was Head of Welfare for Help for Heroes (H4H), setting up support centres across the UK.  Wishing to continue as a Reservist, she specialised in Gender and Military Operations, developing gender training for African Forces under AMISOM, for UK personnel and was elected Deputy Chair for the NATO Committee on Gender Perspectives, liaising across NATO Countries and partners to forward the gender agenda.
 
Employed by the UK Government Stabilisation Unit, (the operational arm of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO)), she was involved in initiatives to ‘Prevent Sexual Violence in Conflict’ and as part of the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict (London 2014); latterly being  selected as one of the FCO ‘Gender Team of Experts’.  She has deployed to deliver gender interventions and CSSF gender audits globally, recently returning from Sierra Leone, Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia.
 
Kathie Knell is also an advisor and consultant for the Humanitarian Organisation, RedR, deploying in 2017/19 to Afghanistan, Sudan, Singapore, delivering X-Government training on CSSF and the Prosperity Fund.  As an associate consultant for Inspirational Development Group she has lead initiatives in ‘Empowering Female Talent’ and ‘Inclusive Leadership’ to maximise business potential.  She has 3 teenagers and a Pets as Therapy Dog and in her spare time she performs Appalachian tap dancing, at Festivals and is the Director of the Winchester Mayfest. A keen mountain marathon runner, she has just completed the Marathon Des Sables.

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Will Mitchell MA(Oxon.), C.Psychol.

Head of Assessment

A business psychologist specialising in leadership assessment, development and resilience.  I spent my early career working for the Outward Bound Trust in Australia and the UK helping people of all ages and abilities realising their own potential and building self-belief.  This enabled me to continue a passion for mountaineering and rock climbing across the greater ranges of the world. 
 
I became a Chartered Occupational Psychologist working the global leading consultancies, Towers Perrin and Mercer, designing and delivering leadership assessment and development programmes across leading global businesses for 15 years.  Since 2013, I have moved into senior corporate roles in leadership development with JLT partnering with Mission Performance in a number of executive leadership programmes.  
 
I have a deep interest in the realising of potential through adversity and have designed and applied several psychometric tools around resilience and learning agility.   I am accredited in a wide range of psychometric tools and am a strong proponent of strengths based leadership and have a Masters in Organisational Consulting from Ashridge Business School.   
 
My coaching practice focuses on helping leaders and managers thrive through uncertainty and pressure and career transition.

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Steve Booker

Outdoor Specialist

Steve Booker lives in South Wales with his wife and two sons. His passions include walking, skiing and to Jane’s concern, paragliding. He moved from the south east of England to South Wales in 1986 to work with 8 to 16-year-olds and soon discovered a talent for working with young people and adults in the great outdoors. In 1991 he subsequently set up an outdoor pursuit company teaching navigation, rock climbing and caving.
 
Recognising the power of the outdoors to facilitate and engender change in aspects of personal development. Steve Booker has extensive experience of course design and facilitation and is one of Mission’s specialist outdoor facilitators. Steve has worked extensively overseas in India and Africa. Where he regularly takes 6th form students from London to work alongside overseas communities. One of these expeditions saw his team build a primary school for The Maasai people living in the Kilimanjaro basin, Tanzania. He has worked on similar projects in Kenya, and in India – Rajasthan and Ladakh.
 
Steve is now absorbed in co founding a charity, which will expand on the work he has been involved in by including people of all ages and backgrounds. The charity’s aim is to help the participants develop by realising their potential, their impact and their value.

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Tom Battye

Head of Coaching Practice

Tom Battye  is a perceptive person with strong listening and empathy skills. He has a sharp psychological awareness and can be direct and challenging in his feedback. Themes in is coaching include:
 
navigating the political landscape
managing oneself under pressure
handling difficult relationships
having difficult conversations
thinking strategically
making tough decisions
influencing key stakeholders
 
Facilitation
 
Tom is also a highly experienced facilitator and team coach. Commonly this involves assisting senior teams to:
 
break down the barriers to trust and communication
have the conversations that they need to have
identify a departmental vision
establish routines for collaboration
understand the inherent differences between individuals
learn what it really means to be a high performing team.
 
Tom has been working full time in the field of personal and organisational development since 2004. He is accredited in the use of many assessment tools and approaches. Since 1998, he has also led over 40 international trekking expeditions in developing countries and continues this as a personal interest and hobby.

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Kenton Cool

Keynote Speaker

Kenton Cool is one of the world’s leading alpine climbers, with 12 Everest Summits under his belt amongst other incredible feats of human achievement. He is Britain’s most successful Everest mountaineer, the second most successful Western Mountaineer of all times on Everest and claimed a historic three peaks record for Britain in Everest’s 60th anniversary year.
 
As a high altitude leader, Kenton says he “fulfils others’ dream” by enabling his clients to reach the top of the world’s highest mountain. He has great insights into decision making, mitigating and embracing risk, adapting to change, building high performing teams and empowering individuals.
 
Kenton shares his lessons of guiding teams at high altitudes with corporate leaders and teams. He shares how he has challenged conventional wisdom throughout his life and embraced RISK to achieve the extraordinary.
 
His motivational presentations are energetic, entertaining, inspiring and humorous, focusing on themes of team-building and leadership. There is a serious aspect too, as Kenton relates with great intimacy some of the most adverse situations he’s encountered and the personal fears he’s had to overcome across many successful summits of Everest and further afield. Each presentation is complemented by an impressive array of stunning photographs and video, taken from expeditions right across Kenton’s time in the Greater Ranges.

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Shona Crawford Bain BA Hons MBA

Senior Program Manager

Shona Crawford Bain focuses on strategy, leadership and results delivery. With a wealth of knowledge and experience across the Oil and Gas value chain from exploration & production, gas & power, refining and chemicals from capital projects to operations she has held senior line positions in Shell and Halliburton as well as consultancy roles for well-known international companies.
 
 
Kicking off her career offshore implementing major change programs, the thread of delivering results through implementing and the management of change has been a constant. With a Honours Degree and Masters in Business with a Specialism in Leadership from the University of Strathclyde Glasgow, Shona’s career progressed focusing on strategy and leadership with boards of directors and senior teams.
 
 
With a core belief that every organisation has a considerable amount of untapped talent, she sees it as her role to inspire and engage your people beyond just the senior team and to create a performance environment by stretching their skills and talents. Shona Crawford Bain is averse to ‘nice reports’ but works with you to understand strategically where do you need to be and why, understanding the dynamic nature of your business environment and its impact on your business model and results. There are no ‘me too strategies’ or a ‘one size fits all’. Her definition of success is passing skills set to her clients to the point where they can do it and sustain it for themselves
 
 
A self-starter Shona is driven, energetic and entrepreneurial. Combining her work at Mission Performance with her entrepreneurial spirit, Shona has founded and operates two businesses, one in manufacturing and retail and the other in property development. Loving nothing better than a challenge as well as variety Shona is happy whether she is working on a challenging oil and gas engagement to product or packaging design with her creative team or onsite with her team of builders.
 

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Clare Winter

Executive Coach

Clare Winter has over 15 years’ international consultancy experience, working as a Chartered Water and Environmental Manager.  In this role, Clare Winter provided leadership on multi-million-pound global projects in the oil and gas, mining, infrastructure and water sectors, working with clients and colleagues at all levels to ensure successful project outcomes.
 
Clare loves being part of a team and working together to achieve a common purpose.  As an avid hockey and softball player, she has represented both her hockey and softball clubs in the finals of national competitions and she has taken satisfaction from providing strong leadership in both environments.  As Chair of her softball club for 3 years, the club thrived and was shortlisted for Bucks’ Sports Club of the Year.  In 2016, believing that life is for living, Clare fully embraced her adventurous side, competing in the America’s Coast to Coast Leg of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.  The race presented her with numerous challenges and it took all her determination, resilience, self-belief, patience, and empathy to overcome them successfully.
 
This wide-ranging experience has provided her with a unique insight into the benefits that coaching, clear communication and effective leadership can provide to both individuals and teams. Clare utilises all this experience in her work, pursuing her ambition to enable people to reach their full potential through coaching.

Ed hughes

Ed Hughes

Associate

Ed has established himself as one of the UK’s and Latin America’s most versatile actors, onstage and screen, in both English and Spanish. With a career that spans from film and television, to Classical, Modern and Musical Theatre.
 
On Television he has acted in Ridley Scott’s “Napoleon”, “Ripper Street”, “Wallander”, ”The Snitch Cartel: Origins”, “Distrito Salvaje” (Wild District) and also Coronel Daniel Florence O’Leary in Latin America’s largest ever television series “Bolivar” for Netflix. 
 
On stage he has earned great acclaim working with many of the best theatre companies in the UK, playing London’s West End, National Theatre, RSC and Old and Young Vic Theatre’s.
 
He has also for the last 5 years been directing and adapting the dubbing of Netflix and Amazon foreign content into English working on over 20 series and films.
 
Ed has worked and delivered workshops on acting and communication globally from Bogota, Beijing, Seoul, Hong Kong to Washington DC. He is passionate about acting and how it can help people to become better communicators. He has also taught acting at RADA, Guildhall School of Music and Drama and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.

Andrea

Andrea Pelaez

Associate

Andrea is an award-winning performer, director, and movement specialist, born in Bogotá, Colombia, and a British citizen. She graduated in advertising and marketing, and later pursued professional studies in performing arts, fuelled by her lifelong passion and hobby.

With 18 years of experience, Andrea has made significant contributions to the performing arts industry and served as a facilitator for the education and corporate sector both nationally and internationally. She is the co-founder of the influential group in the UK entertainment industry, @LAIPA_UK, and serves as a board member of the organisation Stage Directors UK @SDUK.

As a mixed-race woman, Andrea emphasises the importance of including performing arts with diverse disciplines and backgrounds.
She has lent her expertise as a movement consultant to Lee Evans and Colin Salmon for the US TV Series “Single Ladies” with Queen Latifah. Andrea has also worked as a movement director for esteemed institutions such as the National Youth Theatre, The Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre, and Southbank, Colombia Ministry of Culture, among others.
Her role as a facilitator has taken her to institutions like RADA, the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Guildhall School of Music and Drama and Casa del Teatro Nacional Colombia.

Andrea’s credits as a performer for the screen include roles in “The Muppets Most Wanted” and “Avengers Age of Ultron” (Disney and Marvel films respectively), as well as appearances on “Doctors” (BBC TV).
Among her numerous awards and grants are:
The Best Short Film at the New York Film Festival for “MEMORY”, Arts Council England DYCP Grant for Performance and Technology, Arts Grant from Waltham Forest Borough for “London Borough of Culture”. Creative Laboratory (Dance, Fashion & Technology) by East London Dance.

UNESCO award for Salida Productions.
Creative Entrepreneur award from the City of London and GSMD, and the Stage One Bursary for New Producers.

Carolina

Carolina Varón

Associate

Passionate about learning and teaching. I love my family and I’m a keen sportswoman. I have dedicated the last ten years to specializing in the field of Human Factors and Proffesional Coaching because I believe that people are essential for the success and safety of any productive system based on our well-being and our unlimited potential.

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