Sally Gunnell’s rise to the pinnacle of her sport was hard won. She blew the chance to be World Champion in 1991, stormed back to win Olympic Gold in 1992 and defied incredible odds to become World Champion in 1993, setting a new World Record in the process. She contended with injuries, athletes that she saw as more naturally gifted and, a relatively modest support infrastructure compared to her peers.
Her success, by her own admission, was down to a firm grip over her own mind and a lot of very hard graft.
Sally Gunnell remains a towering figure in British athletics. She has more than 15 years’ experience in addressing a wide variety of corporate audiences. She has covered global conferences of thousands and senior leadership teams of just 6. Her natural, easy-going style belies her relentless focus on achieving and sustaining excellence.
Sally Gunnell effortlessly weaves the secrets of sporting achievement with the valuable components that underpin success in business. Her key themes hold resonance for senior decision-makers and junior staff alike. No corporate speaks, no clever-sounding management models. Just tried-and-tested solutions and techniques that took a farmer’s daughter from the hay bales of Essex to the winner’s podium at the Barcelona Olympics.
Sally’s honest, down-to-earth approach has won her many admirers over the years. She has written four books and her latest gets right under the skin of what makes a successful, fulfilled person. For the first time, she brings together in one place all the themes that have brought success in her sporting, business and family lives. ’10 hurdles for life ‘is for anyone who knows they have something to accomplish in life and is focused on enabling it to happen. The only limit is our imagination, understand this and the game of life becomes more fun and less hard work.
Making Hybrid work for everyone.
Why exercise is vital to a good work ethic.
Strength of the mind and how to tap into it.
Why failure is our greatest teacher.
Fear Allowing it to be our guide not our master.
Wellbeing – why the mind body connection more important than ever.
Living in the now.
Stress – Recognising the signs and learning how notice an imbalance.
Success – the gap between getting there and staying there.
What next – how to define the new why so we enable the how.
Perceptions – who you are now and how do you make the shift.
Green stuff – that’s were the magic is.
Success is relative but the work to get there begins at our core.
Raw talent is no substitute for single mindedness and hard grit.
How to manage staff and their wellbeing in the new world – how to also reimplement the desire for success from the bottom up.
Motivation – how do we work harder not smarter.
Planning – It’s in the detail but be ready for diversions.
What it takes to be a leader.
Leading from the front but taking everyone with you.
Stepping up a gear – New world new way of achieving.
Staff retainment – the art of communication.
Stress and burn out – how to recognise the signs and how to make stress a good thing.
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“Sally was extremely natural and engaging which helped our colleagues and clients immediately settle into the event. There was a feeling of familiarity right from the start with Sally but also something very special having a national sporting icon talk to us directly and honestly. The subjects discussed touched diversity, racism, motivation and determination, mental well-being, the Olympics, coming up in sport. Varied and inclusive for all with some nice overlaps into the corporate world. I obviously loved having a special audience for 5 minutes at the start with a sporting heroine from my sprinting days at Loughborough and curly hair chat!”
Thomson Reuters, Elena Folkes, Director, Strategy & Market Development
“Sally is one of the most inspirational and motivating speakers we’ve ever had join us on our TechWomen programme, one of BT’s key diversity programmes. Throughout the past 12 months, Sally has joined us numerous times on our programme and our TechWomen always love her stories. More recently, Sally created a bespoke session for us around mental fitness which went down a storm. Sally always gets on board with your goals and objectives to make sure your attendees get the most out of their time with her and is an absolute joy to work with!”
BT, Rachel Brackenbury, Talent Programme Manager
“Sally joined us for our 2021 kickoff meeting and it was the perfect way to start the new year with the team. It was over zoom, of course, but that did not take away one bit. She was so engaging, funny, and extraordinarily inspirational. We're an HR tech company but Sally did a wonderful job of tying her Olympic experience to ours as individuals. We highly recommend having Sally join you for a speech!”
Apploi, Amanda Cianni, Project Manager
"Sally’s speech was highly inspirational and motivational. Her story, while unrelated to our profession, was easily translatable to our line of work. She went down a storm with our delegates and would be an ideal speaker for virtually any audience."
IRMS, Matthew Stephenson, Chair
"Sally Gunnell is a big name, who has achieved so much by working hard. Sharing her personal experiences with us was priceless. I was very impressed when she spoke about mindset; how we can achieve anything if we are mentally strong and put all of our hard work in the right direction. I felt like I could relate to her and her sporting experiences; she spoke my language. I found her inspirational and awesome!"
Armadillo Self Storage Conference, Delegate
"Sally was the ideal speaker to engage our audience of HR Directors. Our company regularly engages with HR Directors and are always trying to find a topic and speaker who will resonate with them. Sally delivered a highly interactive talk on 'resilience' explaining to our audience of HR Directors the challenges she overcame in her athletic career and how this translated into her business career. Sally provided an ideal blend of theory and practice, which resonated perfectly with the audience. I would thoroughly recommend Sally to other organisations."
Leathewaite, Kevin Matthews, Global Head of Marketing
“We were looking for a speaker who could inspire attendees at a conference, the main theme for which was: winning in the new environment. Sally did a great job in this capacity, as a living example and through the key messages in her speech. All in all, a great success!”
Brian Freidman, Ernst & Young
“Sally, your talk has had a tremendous effect on the thousands of delegates who attended our conference. You were so relatable and you have inspired them to focus on their objectives and persist until they win. Thank you!!”
Consultant International, Business System.
“Sally gave an inspiring presentation and the CSO team left the meeting feeling very motivated. It was valuable seeing how Sally related her experiences to the every day challenges in the workplace.”
Rachael French, Communications Manager - IBM Customer Support Operations
“…You can take messages from Sally's speech without having to have the vision of winning an Olympic Gold and the message fitted extremely well with everything else we were doing during the 2-day conference. On the evening itself a number of people mentioned how nice it was that Sally and her husband mingled quite happily and appeared very relaxed chatting to people in the bar prior to dinner and joined in conversations quite happily at the dinner table and afterwards. Sally was very happy to have photographs taken and to sign autographs - again something that our guys appreciated. From the point of view of the person who selected Sally as the speaker - I reckon I made a good choice!…”
Pam Norton, Synstar
"On behalf of Rolls-Royce, I would like to thank you for your inspirational contribution to our conference. Your portrayal of the formation of your back-up team and the success that it subsequently brought you was very relevant to the theme of our conference. The conference delegates were delighted that, following the dinner, you gave your time for photo-calls and autographs, the finished the evening both inspired and thrilled!"
Nick Durham Rolls-Royce Plc
“Sally is an accomplished speaker - her bright and bubbly personality combined with a quick and powerful style of delivery will enliven any event.”
"Sally Gunnell provided a fantastic finale to our Women's Network conference. Her talk was engaging and interesting, and was very well-received. The story Sally told of perseverance and self-belief sent out an excellent message to the women of CBRE and I would highly recommend her as a speaker at any type of function."
Elizabeth Thetford, Executive Director EMEA Legal & Compliance, CB Richard Ellis Limited
"We have received nothing but praise for the day which was a resounding success. Everybody who I have spoken to found your talk extremely motivating and entertaining.”
Sally Davies Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw
“We were absolutely delighted with Sally’s presentation…she hit all the right notes and went down a storm with our people.”
Head of HR Randstad UK
“Sally was the consumate professional and we were delighted with her presentation and input”
West Midlands Regional Assembly “Living Well in the West Midlands” Launch Event
“I’d like to extend sincerest thanks to you for making our Early Years Professional Celebration Ceremony such a memorable event. We found you passion for early years care and development and your personal experiences inspirational.”
Children’s Workforce Development Council
“Sally Gunnell’s speech was excellent with some great focus on the importance of team work”.
"Sally, your talk has had a tremendous effect on the thousands of delegates who attended our conference. You were so relatable and you have inspired them to focus on their objectives and persist until they win. Thank you!!"
Jerry Scriven Business Development Consultant International Business Systems
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