For those who thought the post-London Olympics year would be restful, the events that 2013 offered up denied them the chance to kick back….From the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI to the demise of The Iron Lady; from the horrific Boston Marathon blasts to the uplifting and hopeful successful cloning of human stem cells, and the arrival of the third heir to the British throne, the world continued to move in unpredictable, progressive and formidable directions.
At Speakers Corner we have continued to aspire to keeping up with our changing environment. The dynamic world of corporate events demands higher standards than ever before, and the speakers who inspired us the most are those who predict and embrace change.
At Speakers Corner we’re the lucky ones who get to be inspired every day at work. When an Outlook reminder pops up to tell us that a speaker is coming into the office, we relish the opportunity to withdraw our eyes from our screens and settle comfortably into the office sofa. And then we get to immerse ourselves in the part of our job that we all love best – hearing some of the most inspirational, clever and creative people on the planet tell us their thoughts and relate their journey.
2013 was one of the most exciting years Speakers Corner has seen. Our visitors ranged from the hilariously tech-friendly comedic Tweetmeister David Schneider; to the effervescent intellect of Maxwell Hutchinson. From the thought-provoking healthcare debate brought to us by Pritpal Tamber ; to the poker playing genius of Caspar Berry and the courageous Cliff Diving tales of Joey Zuber.
A profusion of amazing women made an impression on our team this year, including the first female fighter pilot Mandy Hickson; Coffee Republic co-founder Sahar Hashemi and swimming sensation Karen Pickering. We also fell for the beautiful and intelligent Dr. Linda Papadopoulos and the lovable Jo Fairly – full of entrepreneurial wisdom and handfuls of her delectable Green & Black’s organic chocolate.
Business acumen with brand gravitas was available in spades, from ex-British Airways flat-bed innovator Hamish Taylor; Former John Lewis customer service guru Andrew McMillan and ex Virgin Atlantic marketing man and music entrepreneur Alex Hunter.
Innovation and creativity – always a popular space – was conveyed with clarity by Nick Jankel, Simon Duffy and Jo Malone; Icons Greg Searle, Mark Foster and Derek Redmond imparted valuable lessons from their sporting careers, and Mike Forde related running a football team to the blood, sweat, tears and egos of running a business!
When blind hero Miles Hilton Barber regaled us with tales of record-breaking adventuring and exploring , there was not a dry eye in the house, and Debra Searle moved us equally with a tale of sheer perseverance and fortitude.
Looking to the future were Jonathan McDonald; Dean Van Leeuwen and Christer Holloman, and relating history to the present day - Leonard Brody took the stage by storm at our Showcase event, alongside the impressive Shaa Wasmund and Alex Hunter.
As the year draws to a close, we reflect on the beneficial and significant education we’ve received, and look to 2014 for the next thrilling instalment of the Speakers Corner journey.
Who will inspire, enlighten or emote? Who will educate, change us or move us to tears? Watch this space…we can’t wait!
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