Potted Career History.

After graduating with a degree in psychology, I started my career working for British Gas in IT. I’m no techie, but I’ve always been very analytical so programming and systems analysis suited me. I moved into team and project management and then change management, which brought me back to psychology.

Redundancy offered me the chance to study full time for an Occupational Psychology Masters. When I graduated in 1997, I decided to go self-employed because I was enjoying the autonomy of life outside the corporate world. I worked on a freelance basis for a number of different consultancies, which gave me the wide-ranging experience I needed to become a Chartered Psychologist.

My freelance work was with large corporates and public sector organisations but in the mid-2000s I got introduced to the mid-sized, privately owned business sector and I was hooked. I find the work so much more varied and I like having an impact on a whole business. I still occasionally do freelance work, generally at a very senior level in large organisations, but most of my work is in the mid-sized business sector.

Qualifications and affiliations.

I have a BSc in Psychology from the University of Wales (Swansea) and an MSc in Occupational Psychology from the University of Hertfordshire, for which I was awarded a distinction. I am Chartered Psychologist through the British Psychological Society, a Registered Psychometric Test User and a member of the BPS’s Division of Occupational Psychology and Special Group in Coaching Psychology. I am a Principal Member of the Association for Business Psychology and in 2014 my work with a family business was shortlisted in its Workforce Experience Awards. 

I have a Level 7 Diploma in Executive Coaching from the Institute of Leadership and Management and a Counselling Skills certificate from the Spectrum Centre for Humanistic Psychotherapy. I have coached on leadership programmes at Saïd Business School, Oxford University. I take my professional development seriously, keep myself up to date and have regular professional supervision to help me reflect on my coaching practice. I also have a business coach to hold me accountable for my business performance.

I am the first psychologist to become an associate member of the Institute for Turnaround and sit on its regional committee for Wales and the West. I work as a Leadership Expert for scale up businesses through Business West/ Innovate UK. I am an associate of Edgecumbe Consulting whose Primary Colours® Leadership Model is the starting point for a lot of my work.  

About me as a human.

I grew up in Penarth, a small seaside town between Cardiff and Barry Island. I’m a comprehensive school kid with parents who wanted us to have better educational and career opportunities than they’d had. After university, I lived in London for 16 years until I got married and we set off for a new life. I now live in beautiful Bath with my husband David, who’s a curious hybrid of IT technical trainer and landscape artist, and our timid cat, Lula. I’m a regular meditator, a rather inflexible yoga practitioner, a fair-weather runner and a member of Rock Choir, the choir for those of us who need to be certain our voices will be drowned out by everyone else. I make very nice cake.

About me as a writer.

I’ve always enjoyed writing, so starting a blog in 2012 gave me a place to share my ideas. I’m told that some managers and trainers use my articles as reference material. At the time of writing (the weird summer of 2020) I’m exploring the idea of compiling the articles into a book.

I generally write one article a month. There’s always something to write about, whether it’s some management basics, like delegation or listening, snippets of interesting research, an issue that seems to be coming up for a lot of my clients or something topical, like the psychology of Brexit or the impact of Coronavirus. I am always rather relieved when I hit upon an idea for a series, such as workplace myths or emotion at work, as it means I don’t need to find inspiration for a while.

What people have said about my blog:

“Caroline’s monthly blog posts are unfailingly amongst the most interesting to land in my inbox. They offer stimulating intellectual insight but they’re also intensely practical, routed in a wide range of common workplace and leadership challenges – they’ve often helped me understand and deal with real situations in my own work. Each post conveys some substantive content in an accessible and concise format.”

Nic Pillow, Ventures Manager, Blackfinch Ventures

“I found Caroline’s blog immediately interesting, relevant, and a fresh perspective on a range of topical areas. I read her articles to challenge, confirm or deepen my understanding.”

Greg Nixon, HR Programme Manager, Renishaw
“Caroline writes a remarkable and insightful blog on management and personal development issues, very appropriate to evolving 21st Century organisational and personal challenges.”
Dr Liz Bell, Research, Education and Innovation Consultant

“I’ve been reading Caroline’s blog for several years now and it’s one of the few emails I almost always open straight away. She has a knack of finding an angle on a topic that makes you think about it in a different way”

Cecilia Thirlway, Strategic Communications Consultant and Writer
“Caroline’s blog has been an ongoing source of inspiration and is something that I now share with colleagues; one article formed the basis of a recent professional development session that was well-received by new team leaders.”
Eilis O’Donnell, Regional Cluster Manager, IntoUniversity

I’ve also written for other websites, notably TrainingZone and HRZone, for whom, I was a columnist for a while. I’ve been translated into Latvian for an online magazine who call me Karolīnas Džorlejas. I’m open to sharing content, writing guest blogs and co-creating content, as I did here with an employment lawyer for the thorny subject of discussing religion and politics at work.

Talk to me today about writing opportunities.

Sign up to my monthly blog mailing list.

About me as a speaker.

I’m increasingly asked to speak at conferences or business events and to be a guest on a podcast or webinar. I enjoy the opportunity to share my knowledge and experience of the psychology of people at work.

I have tried-and-tested, good-to-go talks on:

  • Six pitfalls of family business leadership
  • Three different types of poor leadership –  dysfunctional, incompetent and absent
  • Why people behave badly at work
  • The difficulties of teamwork
  • Leadership during the pandemic

and the ever-popular

  • Shadow side of personality

I can also create custom-made presentations.

What people say about me as a speaker.

“Caroline provided fantastic material which prompted some great discussions and insight into the thinking behind succession planning for family businesses. Caroline is very professional in delivery and also fun at the same time.”
George Bryan, Family Business Consultant and Director of Drayton Manor Theme Park

“Caroline is an excellent speaker and conveys complex psychological concepts in such a way as to make them accessible and understandable by everyone.”

Jessica Booz, Partner, Veale Wasbrough Vizards

“Caroline’s talks are interesting, informative and entertaining and I have no hesitation in recommending her as a speaker at events and conferences.”

Adrian Charlish, local co-ordinator, NRG Networking

Talk to me today about speaking opportunities.

Testimonials

Caroline’s assessments are very thought-provoking. She’s stopped me recruiting the wrong people and identified the best candidates. You get a really rounded view of a person, their potential and how to get the best from them.”

John Midgley, former MD, Touchstone

Caroline’s input is a really valuable part of the recruitment process.For a senior role why wouldn’t you take advantage of the insight itbrings?”

Paul Giessler, Partner, PKF-Francis Clark

Caroline’s support with our recruitment process was a revelation – her compelling combination of psychology, insight and gentle challenge brought an unexpected depth of understanding and confidence to our decision to appoint.”

Catherine Mitchell, Employment Lawyer and Director of Mitchell Law

Caroline’s assessments really get under the skin of a person. They don’t just help us decide whether to take a person on but how to manage them and what to watch out for once they’ve started.”

Andrew Wood, Finance Director, Rock Roofing  

Caroline is a very capable, friendly and efficient BusinessPsychologist. In my dealings with her, I really appreciatedher warm yet professional approach, that produced very insightfulresults & feedback.” 

Chris Green, Director, MEMPRO

Caroline has been very helpful in developing efficient selection strategies to ensure we choose the right candidates. The selection techniques provide the added benefit of helping with development programmes for the staff once they have joined the company”

Mark Gordon, CEO, T Jolly Services Ltd    

Caroline provides excellent coaching and support to our recruitment of senior staff. I particularly value her ability to guide me to the root of issues and to help me to find the solutions for myself. She is incisive and insightful and has a comprehensive understanding both of businesses and of people.”

Phil Horton, MD Dulas

Caroline has provided trusted, candid and robust insights to inform numerous selection decisions. Her professional, insightful and non-threatening approach, elicit a deeper analysis of candidates’ suitability than interviews alone.”

Andrew Richards, Managing Partner, PKF-Francis Clark

Caroline helped us with psychometric profiling of a candidate for a strategically important role within the organisation. She spent time really getting to know what we needed, getting to know us, the organisation culture, the role and our aspirations for the person too. She has a natural gift in being able to explain complex psychological assessments in a way that make sense and gives you a well-rounded and unbiased view of the person.”

Lindsay Lucas, MD, Software Solved

I was coached by Caroline and found the experience absolutely invaluable. The way she prepared and followed through on each session ensured maximum benefit and reflection. She showed great insight in her questioning of me, and whilst probing was always incredibly kind.

Alison Sturgess-Durden, Director, Mayden

Working with Caroline helped me significantly in reflecting my business behaviour towards colleagues and our management. Having someone sitting (virtually) next to you and reflecting on your interactions with colleagues was definitely helpful and a gift for me.”

Andre Schneider, Head of Supply Chain Management, Westfalen

Caroline is a fantastic leadership coach. What makes Caroline so good? The balance that her psychology and real-life business experience brings to the conversation. I always finish our conversations energised and with a clarity of thought. I recommend connecting with Caroline if you have a complex opportunity you’d like to explore and better understand from a personal perspective or simply if you want someone to help your thought processes on an ongoing basis.”

Simon Philip Smith, Transformation leader

I recently completed a number of sessions with Caroline as part of the Innovate UK Business West programme. Caroline is a great listener and knows exactly how to encourage me to push myself to perform to the best of my abilities. She provided me with new ways of looking at situations, including breaking down what I thought were ‘impossible’ tasks into easier to manage tasks. I’ve noticed myself develop further just over these past few months, and I know it was down to her helpful encouragement and positive outlook.”

Emma Harcourt, Quality Manager, Open Bionics

Caroline provides excellent coaching and support to our recruitment of senior staff. I particularly value her ability to guide me to the root of issues and to help me to find the solutions for myself. She is incisive and insightful and has a comprehensive understanding both of businesses and of people.

Phil Horton, MD Dulas

I had a series of coaching sessions with Caroline during my first year in a new Chief Executive post. The insights that she helped me gain have proved invaluable. It was a pleasure to work with Caroline. Whilst she never failed to challenge or push me – our sessions were draining – she also never failed to engage and enthuse me.”

Matthew Byrne, CEO, Westbank Community Health and Care

As a recently appointed Managing Director in a family-owned business, the time spent to date with Caroline has been invaluable. She is very approachable and a great sounding board, being able to listen, challenge and converse across a broad range subjects which maybe new to me but are not new to business or Caroline.  The insights developed in the session are built upon further by reading Caroline’s blog articles, which give me more to reflect upon and apply as desired.”

Nick Connors, MD Stonehaven Care Group

I benefited from Caroline’s coaching for a short three-monthperiod when I was changing employer and role. It was a tremendouslyuseful experience, giving me a great deal of insight, andconfidence to act on that insight.

Neil Jacobs, Senior Strategy Adviser, UK Research and Innovation

Caroline has proved a very effective leadership coach, giving me insights into myself that I would not have reached on my own. The Primary Colours model, which she uses as a basis for understanding and discussing issues, worked very well as it enabled me to focus on particular aspects of leadership and explore them further in relation to real issues 

Bryan Carroll, CEO Bristol Zoo (now retired)

Caroline has a wonderfully warm yet analytical approach to unteasing complex situations and team dynamics. Her insights helped me refine my own leadership approach – I wholeheartedly recommend working with her

Eilis O’Donnell, Regional Cluster Manager, IntoUniversity

Caroline provided some extremely helpful insights into my motivations and behaviour. She then went on to recommend some really useful exercises, and these have already been a great help in influencing my behaviour and attitudes.”

David Bryant, Area Supervisor, Andrews Property Group

I have had three rounds of coaching with Caroline. I come back to her when I need a sounding board, as I really value the challenge and support she provides The leadership model she uses is an excellent framework and ensures I don’t miss anything.”

Andreas Weisheit, MD, Westfalen

As a coach Caroline is down-to-earth, business focused and approachable. Although she is psychologist, she doesn’t talk psychobabble. Instead she asked me the right questions to make me think and to learn more about myself. Her coaching has without doubt enabled me to improve my personal and business effectiveness.”

Phil Joyce, Director, The Orange Partnership

I received six coaching sessions from Caroline as part of an Innovate UK scheme and they were an extremely beneficial experience. Caroline is very good at encouraging reflection and getting you to put yourself in the shoes of others. She was very good at listening to real-life, practical issues I was facing, and asking the right questions to shed light on the situation and let me come up with a solution.”

Jonathan Raines, Mechanical Engineer, Open Bionics

Succession planning is critical in a family business. Caroline was very important in preparing my son and daughter as they took over the business. She has helped us to better understand the dynamics between us as a family and between the family and non-family directors.”

Geoffrey Harrison, Chairman, Harrison Catering Services

Caroline helped us to work through some really difficult issues in the senior management team caused by differences in personality and priorities. She did so with sensitivity and positivity but didn’t shy away from challenging issues. We have got a better understanding of each other as a result and are working together more effectively”

Anon, (details omitted for privacy reasons)

The bespoke workshops Caroline ran for us made us really think about our interaction with clients and how to work more collaboratively to bring about a lasting solution for them. Caroline introduced models and theory which got the team thinking and talking about how we work as a team and how to best support our clients.

David Stone, MD, Prompt

Caroline provides tremendous insight into the psychology of business transformation and turnaround. I have found her leadership analysis based on the framework of the Primary Colours Model particularly helpful whenever I am introduced to lead a management team through a transformation challenge.

Ian Parker, Independent Interim Director and Turnaround Specialist

Caroline was my right hand woman at Cardinal for 5 years. She is insightful and analytical and understands what makes people successful in business.”

Katy Lindsay, former MD, Cardinal Management Services (MDD consultancy)

Caroline brings insightful experience to the work with family business clients .

John Tucker, Family Business Consultant and Director, International Centre for Families in Business

As a firm we’ve used Caroline’s services for years, so we’re aware of and confident of the quality of her work. I don’t hesitate to refer her to my clients when they have a need for some leadership assessment, they are looking at acquisitions and want to assess the people and cultural fit, or there’s a tricky leadership issue to sort out.  Caroline is pragmatic and brings her expertise and experience to any situation in an understandable and useable way with thorough assessments and suitable recommendations.”

Andy Killick, Corporate Finance Partner, PKF-Francis Clark

I first met Caroline when she assessed me as part of the selection process for an HR Director role. Since then she’s provided invaluable support in a number of organisations I’ve worked in. She’s always delivered quality results. She has a deep understanding of what makes businesses and people tick and a great way of communicating that.”

Jane Ginnever, former HR Director, now Change Consultant and NED

Caroline really helped us to think through what we needed to do to take the business to the next level. She didn’t just deliver what we asked her for because she didn’t believe it was what we needed and she was right.”

Andrew Wood, Finance Director, Rock Roofing

The bespoke workshops Caroline ran for us made us really think about our interaction with clients and how to work more collaboratively to bring about a lasting solution for them. Caroline introduced models and theory which got the team thinking and talking about how we work as a team and how to best support our clients.”

David Stone, MD, Prompt

Caroline provides tremendous insight into the psychology of business transformation and turnaround. I have found her leadership analysis based on the framework of the Primary Colours Model particularly helpful whenever I am introduced to lead a management team through a transformation challenge.

Ian Parker, Independent Interim Director and Turnaround Specialist

I recently completed a number of sessions with Caroline as part of the Innovate UK Business West programme. Caroline is a great listener and knows exactly how to encourage me to push myself to perform to the best of my abilities. She provided me with new ways of looking at situations, including breaking down what I thought were ‘impossible’ tasks into easier to manage tasks. I’ve noticed myself develop further just over these past few months, and I know it was down to her helpful encouragement and positive outlook.”

Emma Harcourt, Quality Manager, Open Bionics

I received six coaching sessions from Caroline as part of an Innovate UK scheme and they were an extremely beneficial experience. Caroline is very good at encouraging reflection and getting you to put yourself in the shoes of others. She was very good at listening to real-life, practical issues I was facing, and asking the right questions to shed light on the situation and let me come up with a solution.”

Jonathan Raines, Mechanical Engineer, Open Bionics

As a firm we’ve used Caroline’s services for years, so we’re aware of and confident of the quality of her work. I don’t hesitate to refer her to my clients when they have a need for some leadership assessment, they are looking at acquisitions and want to assess the people and cultural fit, or there’s a tricky leadership issue to sort out.  Caroline is pragmatic and brings her expertise and experience to any situation in an understandable and useable way with thorough assessments and suitable recommendations.”

Andy Killick, Corporate Finance Partner, PKF-Francis Clark

Succession planning is critical in a family business. Caroline was very important in preparing my son and daughter as they took over the business. She has helped us to better understand the dynamics between us as a family and between the family and non-family directors.”

Geoffrey Harrison, Chairman, Harrison Catering Services

Caroline provided fantastic material which prompted some greatdiscussions and insight into the thinking behind successionplanning for family businesses. Caroline is very professional indelivery and also fun at the same time.

George Bryan, Family Business Consultant and Director of Drayton Manor Theme Park

Caroline brings insightful experience to the work with family business clients ”

John Tucker, Family Business Consultant and Director, International Centre for Families in Business

Get in Touch

To find out more about how I can help you, use the form below to send a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.