Influencing

Influencing

Advocacy * Lobbying * Public Affairs

Campaigning * Social Marketing

Building

Building

Training * Coaching * Mentoring

Capacity Building * Systems & Structure Reviews

Planning

Planning

Strategic Planning * Programme Planning

Project Planning * Campaign Planning

Doing

Doing

Campaign Coordination * Copywriting * Crisis PR

Facilitation * Event Organisation * Interim Management

helping charities, social enterprises & the public sector to achieve more

Planning
Do you need help developing strategic, programme or project plans? I design, facilitate and support structured, participatory and evidence-based planning processes for small teams, whole organisations and multi-agency networks. My support will be tailored to...
Doing
Do you need help implementing your plans? I can bring your plans to life by helping you with your communications, campaign management, a Wales Public Affairs service, crisis PR services, conference facilitation and interim management....
Influencing
Do you need help in influencing others? Do you want to change the policies and practices of governments, businesses and public sector bodies? Do you want to stimulate public awareness and understanding of your issues...
Building
Do you want to build the capacity of your organisation? Would you or your colleagues benefit from developing their skills and ways of working? I provide bespoke training that is highly participatory and fun but also...

Do you work for a charity, social enterprise, public sector body or other non-profit organisation and want it to achieve more but without putting greater pressure on over-stretched people and resources? Do you want your colleagues to work together effectively with all the knowledge and skills they need? Do you want to collaborate with other groups, or influence those with the power and resources to make a difference? Do you want your plans to be responsive to the changing world around you, focussed on what really matters as well as being innovative and exciting? Do you want to put your plans into practice?

Let me help you. I provide strategic consulting and capacity building to organisations like yours trying to do good things.

  • I have been a senior manager in the voluntary sector with an MBA and a track record of strategy development, implementing change, building high-performing teams and achieving lasting impact.
  • I am a highly regarded facilitator, trainer, coach and mentor. I have designed and delivered over 400 training workshops to more than 5,000 people.
  • As a consultant, I’ve supported over a hundred different organisations in more than 60 countries.
  • Campaigns that I have led or supported have improved the lives of millions of people and given me a world-wide reputation as an expert in advocacy, lobbying and campaigning.
  • I write clear and compelling copy that draws on the disciplines of framing, social psychology and rhetoric.

The services I offer do not use “off the shelf” packages but are individually designed to meet your specific needs and circumstances, drawing on a wealth of experience and a vast tool-kit of tried and tested techniques and models. I help you to develop your strategy for change. My approach is participatory (ensuring relevance and building ownership and commitment) and mission-focussed (maintaining attention on what is important).  You already have the knowledge and power. Let me help you to focus that power and use it to make change.

Contact me for a no obligation chat.

Services that can help you achieve more

Bespoke Training
Bespoke Training
Instead of sending individual staff on external training courses, you could train them as a group. Not only can this be more cost-effective, but also...
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Coaching & Mentoring
Coaching & Mentoring
Coaching and mentoring aim to help individuals achieve their full potential. While coaching is usually focussed on specific outcomes and mentoring being more open-ended, the...
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Strategic Communications
Strategic Communications
Communications are crucial to success but getting the desired response from your audiences is not easy, whether you want to promote your organisation and its...
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Facilitation
Facilitation
To facilitate means to make things easier. As a facilitator, I help groups of people to reach agreement or achieve a joint purpose. This may...
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Wales Public Affairs Service
Wales Public Affairs Service
Wales has a population of over 3 million people who elect the National Assembly, which appoints the First Minister to form the Government of Wales....
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Free Mini-Guides
Free Mini-Guides
Don’t you wish you could have clear, focussed and high quality guidance without all the padding and waffle? Me too. So I have put together...
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About

Ian’s Story

I am married with four children and am fortunate to live in rural Wales. I enjoy music, reading, gardening, walking and cycling. I also love my work and am very driven to make a difference. For as long as I can remember, I have been one of those people who have got stuck in and tried to make things better. As a consequence, I have packed a lot into my life, not all of it conventional.

My first taste of responsibility was running the 6th form coffee bar in my London comprehensive school. While studying chemistry at Exeter University, I was elected Treasurer of the students’ union and was a leader of a campaign against the imposition of tuition fees for international students. This gave me experience of speaking to large public meetings and winning their support for action. Graduating into Thatcher’s Britain, I worked in advertising and marched against cruise missiles, racism and neo-liberalism before leaving the UK to live and work in Jordan, where I ran a training company and set up a media agency specialising in Palestine.

On coming back to the UK, I ran a development education centre before joining Oxfam. Starting as a local campaign organiser setting up and supporting local Oxfam groups in Devon & Cornwall, I was promoted to Area Director, responsible for all Oxfam’s shops, fundraising, campaigning and education work in the south-west of England. An internal restructuring saw me given responsibility for an expanded region (but without the shops) as Regional Campaigns Manager. A further promotion took me to head office in the new role of Campaigns Manager, where I transformed Oxfam’s campaigning, bringing together teams from policy, communications and activism departments alongside programme and fundraising staff to develop and coordinate several successful international campaigns. Achievements included getting several major UK clothing retails to adopt codes of conduct on labour rights for their supply chains, getting government backing for the Ethical Trading Initiative, the adoption of an EU Code of Conduct on Arms Sales, and setting up the Global Campaign for Education.

I have a passion for learning, and it was while I was working for Oxfam that I studied part-time for an MBA with the Open University. In addition to the standard modules in people management, finance, HR and information systems, I took specialist modules in strategy, creative management, managing development and managing international enterprises. What I learned was even more valuable than I expected, being able to apply it to so many aspects of my professional life. Since then, I have continued to extend my theoretical and practical knowledge about social psychology, systems thinking, communications theory and other relevant disciplines. I always try to reflect on what I and others have done to harvest the learning from that experience, and look at the evidence of what works rather than making simplistic assumptions.

In 2000, I left Oxfam to become a consultant, working as The Pressure Group. To begin with, my clients were mainly international development NGOs – the sector was I was best known – but this broadened out to include other types of charities, campaigning groups and public sector organisations. I have been hired by over 100 organisations and worked in more than 60 countries. My main roles as a consultant have been to design and facilitate planning processes and to provide training and capacity building (delivering about 400 workshops to over 5,000 people).

In 2003, I took a six-month break from consultancy and joined the International Secretariat of Amnesty International as its interim Director of Media and Audio-Visual Programmes, where my responsibilities included managing a large press office, leading the global media team and the launch of its global campaign to Stop Violence Against Women.

I have been involved in many voluntary activities. In 2007, having been active as a dad in my local NCT group, I was elected as a trustee of the National Childbirth Trust, and was made Chair the following year, overseeing a restructuring of the governance system to clarify roles and improve effectiveness.  As my children grew older, I qualified as an FA Football Coach and coached my son’s teams. In 2017, I was a candidate in the UK general election for the Green Party.

Through my experience of working with a wide range of nationalities and cultures and with people with visual impairments and other disabilities, I recognise the needs of different groups. I celebrate diversity and am sensitive to issues of power, privilege and gender.

My focus is on achieving real and sustained impact. Both as a manager and as a consultant, my priorities have been participation, ownership and empowerment.

When the best manager’s work is done, the people say they did it themselves

Campaigning with Rights

We often talk about how to campaign for human rights, but less often do we talk about how to campaign with rights, so that the act of campaigning respects the rights of those affected. The first question we need to ask ourselves when doing a rights-based approach to advocacy and …

Bespoke Training

Instead of sending individual staff on external training courses, you could train them as a group. Not only can this be more cost-effective, but also it allows the training to be more relevant to your team’s needs, helps them to learn from each other’s experience and provides opportunities for staff …

Coaching & Mentoring

Coaching and mentoring aim to help individuals achieve their full potential. While coaching is usually focussed on specific outcomes and mentoring being more open-ended, the terms are often used interchangeably as they use similar techniques. To be an expert coach or mentor requires a good understanding of effective learning – …

Strategic Communications

Communications are crucial to success but getting the desired response from your audiences is not easy, whether you want to promote your organisation and its services, change public attitudes and behaviours, influence government policy or simply raise awareness. Fortunately, there is a lot of recent evidence about what works from …

Facilitation

To facilitate means to make things easier. As a facilitator, I help groups of people to reach agreement or achieve a joint purpose. This may happen in a conference, a workshop or some other meeting (or series of meetings). The participants may be members of a single team, or from …

Wales Public Affairs Service

Wales has a population of over 3 million people who elect the National Assembly, which appoints the First Minister to form the Government of Wales. Twenty areas of responsibility are devolved to the Welsh Government. These include education, health, social services, housing, agriculture, environment, transport, tourism, economic development and local …