Guin Batton Head of Strategy and Development, British CanoeingTalks about High Performance, Leadership, New, Social Innovation
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As a high performance athlete Guin was instrumental in the culture ‘shift’ within the women’s rowing team, who for 6 Olympic cycles had reached a glass ceiling of 5th place to their first Olympic medal and their subsequent position as a rowing powerhouse. Guin’s experience highlights the balance between building strong systems and the role personal ambition play in high performance success.
After her retirement from Olympic sport, Guin has continued to push the boundaries of possibility achieving a number of world firsts, including crossing the English Channel in an Olympic class scull and skippering the first British women’s crew to cross the North Atlantic the ‘wrong’ way. Her stories about leading teams into the extreme provides some powerful insights into how female teams have survived and flourished doing the impossible. Asking the question ‘do your people see the word impossible as statement of fact, or as a question?’
Guin is a Council member for the International Federation for rowing (FISA) where she leads the emerging disciplines of beach and coastal rowing, she is the first woman in 175 years to sit on the Henley Royal Regatta Management Committee and is chair of the largest women’s rowing race in the world – the Women’s Eights Head of the River Race.
She has worked for the British Olympic Association, UK Sport and Sport England. In the last 12 years Guin has been instrumental in the design and development of a range of cutting edge programmes for the leading UK youth sport charity the Youth Sport Trust. Using the power of sport to change young peoples lives.
High performance teams
Impossible: a statement of fact or a question
Women in Leadership
Sport as a Tool for Social Development
“Guin’s inspiring story and presentation exceeded all of our expectations for the day, it was so well prepared and linked perfectly to what we were trying to achieve at corporate level. Guin also was seemless in her delivery, spoke with great passion and conviction that made the hairs stand up on the back of your neck. I also have to thank Guin for the preparation effort she put in to understand our objectives at work and how she could bring in and link our themes into her presentation. I spoke to many of the sales people after the event and words like “inspiring”, “confidence building “, “given me a new level of determination” were commonplace. Our meeting with Guin unfortunately only lasted 3 hours, we could have listened to her all day”
Saul Pyatt - Regional Vice President Gartner UK
“Guin is an inspirational role model, not only as an athlete, but as an active decision maker and leader of sport. Guin throughout her career continues to be a highly active influencer and champion for equality in sport, especially women in sport.”
Julie Robbins Head of Inclusion
“The staff and governors session was a massive hit - the staff are absolutely buzzing this morning. It is really heart warming as a Head to sit in your office (which as you know is right next door to the staff room) on a Friday morning and listen to them talking openly and enthusiastically about how inspirational the meeting was last night. They got a huge amount from your presentation and the messages within and the great things is that 16 hours on, they are now starting to match these with their own roles and responsibilities.”
Head Teacher Holy School