Shola Kaye – Keynote Speaker

Сommunication and inclusion specialist, an award-winning speaker and the author of two books

Looking for fees and availability for Shola Kaye?
Shola Kaye Profile Picture

Specialist Subjects

  • Empathy Skills for a High Performance Culture
  • Inclusive Leadership
  • Delivering effective feedback with Empathy
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Inclusive Communication



  • English


Shola Kaye works with large companies to help them transform their cultures using the power of empathy, transparent communication and inclusion nudges. Shola’s work is frequently described as both practical and inspiring. Shola created The Empathy to Equity Blueprint, a step by step programme that guides and supports organisations on their journey towards greater diversity, equity and inclusion. She shares implementable insights that help her clients create happier and more engaged environments where belonging can flourish.

Early in Shola’s career she worked in consulting and account management in New York and London with clients such as Goldman Sachs, Charles Schwab and British Airways. She also spent time in academic research at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Later, she performed on four continents as a professional singer and entertainer.

Shola’s experiences as a Black woman working for global corporations led to an understanding of some of the many challenges faced by underrepresented groups and she shares these insights during her keynotes and training, helping to create greater understanding. She always provides compelling data and research alongside multiple opportunities for reflection and interaction.

Shola’s work blends her background from both the STEM and the creative industries to deliver clear, effective frameworks that allow people to work better together. These are delivered in a warm, engaging, relatable style that draws in even the most reluctant audience members.

Shola’s clients include American Express, Deloitte, The United Nations, Google, IBM, Nestle, Henkel, HSBC and Oracle. Typical events include global company keynotes, leadership development sessions, employee network meetings, diversity summits and industry conferences.

Shola Kaye grew up in the UK and as a child was fostered. She went on to obtain a degree in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University and a Masters in Neuropharmacology from Emory University in Atlanta. She’s a LinkedIn Learning Instructor.

Shola believes that alongside creating awareness, keynotes should drive action, inspiring audience members to become catalysts for change. One of her favourite quotes is from author Susan Cain, ‘Everyone shines given the right lighting’.

Popular Talks by Shola Kaye

Empathy Skills for a High Performance Culture

This keynote explores the role of empathy as the foundation for a successful, inclusive workplace culture where employees are empowered to be their best selves and do their best work.

Many organisations have already made the shift from transactional to transformational workspaces where enlightened leaders and managers focus on the whole person rather than task accomplishment. Through the power of understanding, empathy and compassion we can create workplaces of belonging, happiness, high retention and productivity. This is an interactive keynote with opportunities for reflection throughout and stories to help land the learning.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the increasing importance of empathy in the workplace
  • Learn about the three types of empathy and the differences between pity, sympathy, empathy and compassion
  • Explore the importance of language and specific action when attempting to demonstrate empathy
  • Understand that perspective taking can help reduce biased decision making
  • Learn that an empathetic attitude can cut down on microaggressions and other harmful behaviours
  • Discover the link between empathy, feedback and performance
  • Understand the importance of creating psychological safety for your colleagues, especially if you’re a low-empathy individual
  • Value the gift of encouragement as a way to inspire high performance

Inclusive Leadership

Equip your leaders with the skills and knowledge to combat bias and foster belonging

Today’s leaders need an expanded repertoire of skills and know-how to ensure staff are engaged, happy and productive. To flourish in today’s complex work environments, managing ever more diverse and demanding teams, it’s not enough to be a good leader. You need to learn to be an inclusive leader.

Learning objectives:

  • Explore the need for inclusive leaders in today’s workplaces
  • Understand the six key traits of inclusive leaders including humility, awareness of bias, and
    cultural intelligence
  • Translate the six key traits into six essential behaviours including empathy, adaptability and
  • Discover what it takes to develop an environment of psychological safety
  • Understand the power of inclusive language to engage your teams and discuss some examples
  • Understand the power of inclusion nudges and learn some effective strategies for inclusive
  • Learn about allyship and go beyond by becoming an accomplice

Show More Show Less

Recent testimonials

Watch Shola Kaye speaking

Want to book Shola Kaye as a keynote speaker for your next event?