Archive for the ‘Motivational Speaker’ Category

Eliot Kennedy

Eliot Kennedy

Eliot is a renowned music producer who has produced hit records for Take That, Bryan Adams and The Spice Girls.  I had the pleasure of finding out a little more about Eliot and the fantastic song ‘The Sing’ that he co-produced wtih Gary Barlow last summer for the Jubilee.

1    What age were you when you knew music was going to be a huge part of your life?
I grew up in Sydney, Australia, my parents emigrated when I was 4 years old.  I remember clearly I was 8 years old when my father and sister were singers, they appeared on talent shows.  I knew then that I didn’t want to become a performer, but my father quickly realised I had a natural ability to pick up a keyboard and play a tune so he took me to piano lessons.  Music came naturally; I would hear songs and then be able to pull a melody out.  I realised that I wanted to listen to music for a living, and of course this naturally meant that I should become a producer.  Listening skills are an inherent quality in all producers.  I find that, generally in life, friends come to me with their problems, because they know I can really listen to them.

2.    Who inspired you?
It’s simple, my Father inspired me, he was a singer and a performer.  My passion for music and inspiration came from him.

3.    Have you had a mentor?
Throughout different periods in my life, I’ve had mentors but the real kinship and a type of mentoring comes from my close friends Bryan Adams and Gary Barlow.  Gary and I are very similar and we work together so well.  I’ve worked with Bryan for over 15 years, he is a truly generous human being.   Martin Barter was my manager for 18 years, he has unlocked the doors to the world, he is a brilliant man and a wonderful manager

4.    Do you see yourself as an entrepreneur?
Yes I do, it’s not common for a producer to have that attitude, however I am constantly looking for new ideas.  I’m involved in developing new artists with an Academy I created called the Eliot Kennedy Steelworks Academy, I am artist development producer for the X-Factor and currently I’m developing a social media App.

5.    Did you go to University?
No I didn’t, although I was recently awarded a doctorate from Sheffield University.

6.    What advice would you give to someone starting their own business while at College or University?
This very much depends on the field, but my advice is to do the degree to learn your craft.  Everything is competitive and there are a lot of talented people out there that don’t succeed so it comes down to an absolute unwavering belief in what you are doing.  The only thing that gets you through is that belief.  It’s a question of narrowing your options -a laser light focus is essential together with a real belief in yourself and confidence in how to convey yourself.

7.    What has been the most exciting project you have worked on?
The Spice Girls.  They lived in my house whilst the project was going on.  We were young and we had lots of fun.  When they became a worldwide phenomenon we were on top of a massive wave.  Winning a grammy was incredible and walking the red carpet at the global globe awards, then winning the Ivor Novello for the hit single ‘Picture of you’.  It just gets better and better.

8.    What project has made you most proud?
I am incredibly proud of the Jubilee project, it was really difficult, but it evolved from such a simple idea.  Gary Barlow and I were talking about doing a song for The Queen and I proposed the idea of going round the world to record a song.  The whole project came together in a week or so.  It was really made possible by the fact that I had worked on a BBC documentary about a famous Yorkshire song called ‘On Ilkley Moor Bah’t ‘at’ which has been forgotten and not taught to children so Welcome To Yorkshire (the Yorkshire tourist board) asked me to revive it, which I have done featuring several famous Yorkshire celebs. In the process of this project I bought a little digital device to record it on.  It was this same device that enabled us to record ‘The Sing’, we took it around the world to record the clips, it worked perfectly.
9.    Who do you most admire and why?
It has to Martin Luther King, he was just a regular guy with an extraordinary quest for peace, he came up with this attitude and ethos; He had prepared a speech to address the biggest NCAA rally, but that morning he awoke at 5am and  wrote the ‘I have A Dream’ speech,, it just came to him on that day, in a stream of consciousness.  I can really relate to this, a speech or words or a song that change the world.  There is so much inspiration to be taken from someone like him.

10.    If you weren’t a musician what do you think you would be doing?
I would be a physics teacher or lecturer; I am passionate about quantum physics.  I’m starting to grasp the complexities of this and read book after book and then I get to the end of the book and read that it’s just ‘a theory’.    I’ve started to read the bible; it helps me to understand people and my place in it all.

11.    What are your plans for the future?
After being in the music industry for 20 years I’ve gathered a lot of wisdom and practically developing artists is what I should be doing.  The academy is going to be a huge focus in 2013.  It’s wonderful to be able to help people develop and of course I’ll always find time to write new songs.

Eliot is currently writing a book about the link between emotions and music , the soundtracks of people’s lives.  The book is called “Our Song”.  Look out for this on the shelves soon.

by Debbie Thomas. Room54


Read Full Post »

We are thrilled that we are now be working with motivational speaker David Gustave. David is of mixed Irish and St. Lucian heritage and raised in a mostly white working-class neighbourhood in London where he was forced to confront racism in the form of verbal and physical abuse. He found his fists to be most effective in dealing with these confrontations. He left school at 16 and spent the next 15 years finding a range of ways – some illegal ones – to earn a living. At the age of 30 he decided to return to education and eventually won a place at Oxford. After leaving Oxford he won a scholarship from the Middle Temple to pursue a career at the Bar.

David is now working with young people from the streets of South London, trying to affect personal and educational change amongst the disaffected and vulnerable young people. This quote from David sums him up: “The greatest thing you can do with your life is to be an inspiration to others. To help them do the things they thought were just beyond their grasp. Your parents, favorite teachers, your best friends lift you in this way. That takes courage – but in turn transforms your life with fun and adventure, passion and commitment. None of us is as strong as all of us.”

Jane Hamilton

Read Full Post »

Good luck to business and motivational speaker Jim Lawless as over the past nine months he has been training to make an attempt on the British “No Limits” freediving record to raise money for the children’s medical research charity Sparks. “No Limits” is the freediving discipline featured in the movie “The Big Blue”.

His target is a 101metres dive on a single breath of air. The dive should take about 3 minutes from leaving the surface of the sea to returning. If he is successful this would be the deepest dive by a British freediver and the first British dive to break the magic 100m mark.

Non one new to challenges in 2003 Jim took a £1 bet that he would become a a jockey and ride in his first televised race within 12 months. It was a good challenge as he was 3 stone too heavy to be a jockey and couldn’t ride a horse.

He won his bet on 22 November 2004 riding in the 12.00 at Southwell. On becoming a jockey Jim says “it took many years, but at last I have found a place where being short is an advantage.”

Great challenge Jim

Read Full Post »

Room54 reports growing interest in Lord Blair of Boughton (formerly Sir Ian Blair) who is one of the UK’s most informed experts on strategic
policing and security, business leadership and change management.

His extensive experience spans nearly 35 years and has included many senior leadership positions at the ‘coalface of policing’ including
Chief Constable of the Surrey Police (1998-00), Deputy Commissioner (2000-05) and the 24th Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police at
Scotland Yard (2005-08).

As a public speaker he has plenty of experience including the most prestigious engagements, the Dimbleby Lecture, where his passion shone
through and impressed leaders and decision-makers in policing, business, politics and academia.

Lord Blair was instrumental in the transformation of the Met’s organisational structure and the 53,000-strong police workforce. He
pioneered the introduction of Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs), the largest ever expansion of community policing in London,
and led initiatives that significantly increased minority recruitment.

He represented the Met as its spokesperson in politics and the media throughout his tenure, including during the London bombings of 2005.
It is no surprise that he continues to be at the forefront of UK policing as a crossbencher in the House of Lords as well as in public

Lord Blair retired in 2008 and published his autobiography, Policing Controversy, in 2009. His unique experience ‘at the coal face’,
balancing operational requirements with political and media pressures in his role as Commissioner, has seen him become an engaging and
informed speaker and writer.

Audiences also know him as a frequent media commentator, most recently presenting a documentary on the ‘Future of Policing’ for BBC Newsnight,
contributing to BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme during the General Election and writing regularly for a wide range of magazines and
newspapers, including Prospect and The New Statesman.

Oxford-educated, Lord Blair holds honorary positions at several Oxford colleges and in 2010 he became the co-director of a training programme
for senior police executives in India, led by the University of Cambridge’s Institute of Criminology.

Read Full Post »

The emotional upheavals everyone feels at times of change were magnified when broadcaster and television journalist John McCarthy was snatched from normality at gunpoint. Incarcerated for 1,943 days in dreadful prison conditions in the Far Middle East John McCarthy offers unique insights into the coping mechanisms needed to meet his shocking change of circumstance. As a professional speaker John McCarthy consistently receives “rave revues” from satisfied audiences who find his talks surprisingly funny as well as tremendously insightful. They are loaded with practical hints and techniques born out of experience rather than psychological textbook theorem.

Jane Hamilton

Read Full Post »

The title of Chris Moon’s autobiography is totally apt: ‘One Step Beyond’. Chris Moon is certainly a motivational figure. He survived abduction by the Cambodian Khmer Rouge and has never let a horrific landmine accident stop him from achieving his goals. In 1995, Chris lost his lower right arm and leg and yet he has never considered himself a victim. As Chris puts it, he chose to work in mined areas whereas people who live there have no choice. He survived against all the odds because of his high level of fitness (he was a keen runner) and because of his knowledge of first aid. Less than a year after leaving hospital, Chris completed the London Marathon to raise funds for the mine-injured in Cambodia. Since then, Chris has completed some of the most arduous marathons in difficult and hostile locations from the high altitude of mountains to the incredible heat of the desert.

Audiences are moved by accounts of his immense personal courage and alert to his messages about change management, leadership and how to challenge and defeat your limitations. You may remember that Chris received an MBE for his work with the HALO Trust clearing anti-personnel mines

Jane Hamilton

Read Full Post »

Not just a woman with an interesting story, Debra Searle walks the talk in the business world having started her first company aged 24 and her second aged 27.  She is a managing director, the only female and youngest Trustee of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, is a published author and has a successful TV presenting career with the BBC.

Debra’s overwhelming positivity and ‘go for it’ attitude are contagious, while her modesty is endearing. Often very emotive, she shares her highs and lows, personal battles and victories, to help illustrate in a very human way what we are all capable of. She is not a motivational speaker reliant on buzz words, hype and jargon. Every speech is written to help enforce the conference themes and will provide real world ideas and tools to help your people

Jane Hamilton



Read Full Post »

Older Posts »