FORMER ROYAL AIR FORCE PILOT, ENTREPRENEUR, AND MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER
A former Royal Air Force pilot and trained Human Factors facilitator, Mandy Hickson has a remarkable insight into decision making under pressure, calculated risk taking, and the critical role of humans in advanced systems. Her keynotes are both professional and personal, making her an exceptionally inspiring speaker.
Mandy Hickson has flown multimillion pound jets for the United Kingdom Royal Air Force. The only female pilot on her Front Line Tornado Squadron, she has operated in extremely hostile environments, including Iraqs No Fly zone during the Iraq War. Along with her unit, she carried the last weaponry and was ready to drop ordnance upon orders.
Mandy Hicksons route to the skies was intense and tumultuous; at age 17, she received a Royal Air Force flying scholarship, already winning acrobatics competitions during her time as a student. Although an expert in practice, Mandy Hickson failed her mandatory computer based tests, but by sheer determination and with reference to her excellent skills in the skies, she convinced the Royal Air Force to accept her as a test case.
Mandy Hickson has overcome great hurdles in her career. These experiences led her to co-found Inspiring Women for Work, an organization that helps women rebuild the confidence that they need to return to work and realize their full potential after a career break.
In her keynotes, Mandy Hickson draws on her experiences with working in a team of elite fighter jet pilots. It is one of her main points that the same values apply within any environment; the importance of maintaining a calm demeanor under pressure, as well as leading from the front in order to achieve the best results from ones team.
A trained Human Factors facilitator, Mandy Hickson is an expert on interactions among humans, and she understands in great detail the role of human beings in complicated systems. She applies this expertise, as well as her personal experience calculating risk and making important decisions under pressure, to businesses, demonstrating a remarkable understanding of humans and organizations alike.
"I first heard Mandy at a networking event and was fascinated by the effortless way she put her story across. As a motivational speaker she has to be right up there; there are not many people, let alone women, who can talk so eloquently about a career as a fast jet pilot without intimidating the hell out of everyone. This is why I sought her out to take part in a debate on the lack of women in technology and she didn't disappoint. She is a true inspiration to men and women alike on how to make it in an alien environment, against the odds and with little encouragement.
If you need motivation, enthusiasm and inspiration, get in touch with Mandy. I guarantee you won't be disappointed either."
--David Cradduck, Graphic Designer and Business Development
"I have worked with Mandy on a number of occasions and can thoroughly recommend her as an excellent speaker and presenter. All the clients that we have put Mandy in front of have rated her highly in terms of meeting their expectations, often commenting on her enthusiasm and professionalism. On a personal note it is wonderful working with a speaker who has such a great sense of humour and a 'can do' attitude - such a pleasure."
--Alice Bufton, Consultant at Harvey Thorneycroft
"I would wholeheartedly recommend Mandy as an amazing, motivational and deeply inspiring speaker. Mandys true ability was to capture the essence of team working, resilience and the importance of leadership within a context of energy, enthusiasm, commitment and humour. This was not only by using her own experiences, which in themselves were exceptional but she had also researched our organisation and weaved our own Trust values and mission statement into her presentation. Mandys messages cross any and all boundaries and I would suggest apply in any setting. It was a real pleasure for us to spend time with her."
--Alison Moon, Chief Nurse, University Hospitals Bristol NHS foundation Trust