Karren Brady leadership speaker

Karren Brady

Famous for her skill in football management and for her role on The Apprentice, Baroness Karren Brady of Knightsbridge CBE truly has smashed the 'glass ceiling' and is an inspiration for women everywhere.

The Vice Chairman of West Ham Football Club and Lord Sugar's trusted aide on The Apprentice, Karren Brady is one of the UK's most high-profile businesswomen. A role model for women of all ages, she has overcome adversity during her career and has had to rely on her business intuition and passion, progressing from an early career in sales to become the managing director of Birmingham City F.C. at the age of just 23.

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About Karren Brady

Baroness Karren Brady of Knightsbridge CBE is an influential, high profile and respected female business leader.

First rising to prominence as the Managing Director of Birmingham City Football Club in 1993, Karren is now CEO of West Ham United, one of the leading Premier League football clubs, currently valued at £800M. She is also senior non-executive director of Syco Entertainment and non-executive Chairman of leading retail multinational Taveta Investments which owns global brands such as Topshop.

Despite her young age and a lack of football management experience when she took the helm at Birmingham City FC, her business instinct and people skills soon brought the club out of administration, transforming it into a successful and profitable PLC by 1997. Through this achievement she became the youngest manager of a publicly listed business. She remained Managing Director of Birmingham City until 2009 when it was sold, having been valued at £82M.

Her success at Birmingham City and her passion for football and business soon led to Karren's involvement with another club as Vice Chairman of West Ham United. In the years since, Karren has transformed the struggling club's fortunes; seeing it become profitable for the first time in many years within the first few months of her involvement. More recently, she has led the club in a successful bid for the Olympic Stadium.

In addition to her work in football management, Karren has also become a popular figure for her television roles and for her books. In 2006, she led the winning team in a The Apprentice Comic Relief special; in 2010, she became Lord Alan Sugars aide (alongside Nick Hewer) on the series. Known for her humour and for her fair appraisal of candidates, she assists Lord Sugar by supervising teams and providing feedback on candidate performance. Her TV role on The Apprentice may be her best known, but Karren has also appeared in a number of other programmes, including a BBC documentary about her management career called 'Inside Story' - The Real Life Manageress'.  She presented the ITV GMTV show Just the Job in 2009 and has experience in presenting from a number of others. She has been interviewed numerous times on television, radio and in printed media and was the interviewee on BBC Radio 4s Desert Island Discs in 2007. Karen has written several popular books, some of which focus on succeeding as a woman in male dominated industries. A regular columnist for The Sun and for Woman and Home magazine, Karren Bradys down to earth attitude and approachability make it obvious why she is one of the UKs most influential and well-liked businesswomen.

Awards, Accolades, Achievements & Honours

  • Appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to entrepreneurship and women in business.
  • Joined the House of Lords as a Conservative Life Peer
  • Included in 100 most powerful women in the United Kingdom - BBC Radio 4s Woman's Hour (2013)
  • Patron - Stroke Association Annual Life After Stroke Awards (2013)
  • fcbusiness Magazine CEO of the Year Award - Football Business Awards (2012)
  • Ambassador - Wellbeing of Women (2012)
  • Britain's Most Inspirational Women - Breakthrough for Breast Cancer Inspiration Awards (2011)
  • Best TV Judge - National Reality TV Award (2011)
  • Vice Chairman of West Ham F.C. (2010 present)
  • Aide on the BBCs The Apprentice (2010 present)
  • Included in 100 Most Powerful Women in Britain - The Sunday Telegraph (2010)
  • Included in London's 1000 Most Influential People 2010 (sport) - Evening Standard (2010)
  • Honorary Doctorate - University of Birmingham (2010)
  • Spirit of Everywoman Award for services to women in business NatWest (2008)
  • Founder - 'Today's Business Woman' magazine (2008)
  • Business Woman of the Year (2007) 
  • Attended The Queens lunch for Women Achievers and Business Leaders (2006)
  • Woman of the Year - Cosmopolitan magazine (2006)
  • Managing Director of Birmingham City F.C. (1993 2009)
  • Honorary Fellow - Institute of Sales and Marketing
  • Board Director - Channel 4 Television
  • Non-Executive Director Arcadia
  • Board Director - Mothercare PLC
  • Board Director - Sport England
  • Ambassador - WellChild
  • Ambassador - Teenage Cancer Trust
  • Chair - Mothercare Group Foundation

Speaking Topics

  • Winning Leadership
  • Inspiration and Motivation
  • Stepping Into The Unknown & Taking Risk
  • The 10 Key Principles For Successful Women Leaders
  • Goal Achieving


"On behalf of Sage World 2010, I would like to thank you for your participation in the event earlier this month. The feedback received has been fantastic, and your involvement certainly contributed to the success of the event." - Sage UK Ltd
"...everyone was wondering how on earth we could top Karren. We have had great feedback from both reps and students alike as to how well Karren spoke and how she pitched her level perfectly to our student population. Please pass on our positive feedback and thanks to her." - Kate Temple-Brown, Deutsche Bank
"Karren’s after luncheon speech was informative, motivational, humorous where needed and highly inspirational. She also agreed to a Q&A session as well and spent 30-40 minutes answering questions from the audience. The audience all commented on what an excellent speaker she was, how warm and engaging and extremely humorous. By far one of the best speakers we have enjoyed at City Luncheon. 10 out of 10." - Hewlett Packard
"On behalf of the IoD North West, may I express my thanks for your contribution to the Conference last week. Your speech was a perfect round up of the day, with personal insights and inspirational advice. Feedback has been tremendously positive, and you and the other speakers have given me a hard act to follow for next year’s line up. A nice problem to have!" - Darrell Matthews, Institute of Directors North-West
"...the feedback on your presentation at our Monaco conference has been exceptional. It certainly seems that you struck a chord with our staff, many of whom have said your presentation was both the highlight of the weekend and a really motivational experience" - Chris Meyer, Investec

Books By Karren Brady

  • Strong Woman: The Truth About Getting to the Top (2013)
  • Karren Brady?s 10 Rules for Success (2012)
  • Playing to Win: 10 Steps to Achieving Your Goals (2004)
  • Trophy Wives (1998)

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To book Karren Brady call +44 (0)1628 636600 or email info@speakersassociates.com

Please note:
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