René Carayol MBE is one of the world’s leading executive coaches.
A passionate and inspiring speaker, René Carayol is an expert on leadership, culture, and transformation. He has advised world leaders including Tony Blair and Mikhail Gorbachev, as well as some of the most powerful CEOs in the world. His current work has a strong focus on diversity and inclusion.
A question that René is often asked is: “are leaders born, or are leaders made?”. In his experience, the answer is neither; leaders are found. The best indicator of tomorrow’s leaders is who can influence and persuade without authority. René has had the privilege of ‘finding’ many leaders over the years.
René was given some advice early in his career: that he would benefit from having a Black male mentor who had served on boards and been a chairman, but at that time none of those existed in the UK.
On joining the board of Pepsi in 1992, he became their first Black Board Director. And again, on joining the board of IPC magazine in 1995. In 2001 he was appointed to the Board of the Inland Revenue as it merged with Customs and Excise to become HMRC.
At that time, there were no diversity or inclusion programmes, but René found it exhilarating to be in a ground-breaking and pioneering role. It was where he first met the burden of being a role model, which energised him to be the best that he could be.
René is a co-author of the bestselling books Corporate Voodoo and My Voodoo. His most recent book, SPIKE, focuses on identifying the things that we excel at to build self-esteem and confidence.
The range of René’s experience and audience is vast. He is a regular guest of BBC Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live, ITV, Sky, Channel 4 and BBC TV as a business commentator. He is a regular contributor to various publications and broadsheets on the subjects of leadership and business transformation.
In 2004 René was awarded an MBE for his outstanding contribution to the business community.