Speaking about her life and career in the Secret Service, Dame Stella Rimington is invited to talk at a wide range of commercial engagements as both an after dinner speaker and keynote speaker.
Her audiences include corporate clients, business professionals, public and private sectors, trade associations and schools.
From a formal presentation on leadership, organisational change, national security or risk management to a more informal and light-hearted presentation about her lifetime’s experiences, Dame Stella’s straightforward, friendly and approachable demeanour are combined with a candid, informed and intelligent opinion.
She tailors her speech according to each event and is very happy to take questions. The one thing she will not do is tell a client how to run their business or impart business management advice; Dame Stella tells her story and the audience can then take from it what they will; incorporating any elements into their own lives or circumstances, as appropriate.
Leadership & Organisational Change
Having led MI5 through the unprecedented change from a closed to open organisation, Dame Stella Rimington is superb speaker on Leadership.
A radical change imposed by government, nobody had thought how this might affect the personal safety, and morale, of everyone involved. That lack of thought caused immense strain and pressure – she had to lead everyone through that too.
This involved looking after, and managing all ranks within the organisation, at a time when the world was under increased threats and when you had moving targets – for example, from the IRA, to global terrorism and Al Quaeda.
And the change from people who would not die for their cause (IRA) to those who wanted to be martyrs (AQ) and who were therefore more dangerous.
MI5 employs individuals with a very diverse range of skills and personality traits – from the cautious (who like detailed, painstaking work), to those who know they will have to take risks and make far-reaching decisions, with insufficient information, that might avert an international disaster.
It’s not a matter of “having a hunch”, or wandering around with a gun, like James Bond.