News And Views


Master Negotiator Workshop

Date: 23 March 2018

Venue: Central London TBC

Cost: £745 +VAT,

Early Bird Discount £675 if booked before the 9th February 2018


For further information or to book your place, please contact Tanya on +44 (0)1923822766 or by email:


Going for Gold – How To Become A World-Class Commercial Athlete


After hanging up my ski boots for another year, I can’t fail but be amazed by the skill and performance of the athletes competing at the top of their game in this year’s Winter Olympics. The sight of Lizzie Yarnold, hurtling to her second Olympic Gold in the Skeleton Race is a powerful reminder of the importance of dedication and hard work – traits that are just as important in the commercial world as they are in world of sport.


So with Team GB just one medal away from reaching their highest tally at a Winter Olympics, take the time to be inspired by their dazzling displays of Fitness, Agility and Resilience to help you go commercially FAR and achieve the extraordinary.



Master Negotiator Workshop – Friday 23rd March 2018

Get The Negotiation Results You Deserve

Make 2018 your most successful year yet by developing your commercial EQ so you can take your negotiation skills to the next level and achieve the extraordinary.

We’re offering you the chance to kick-start your training journey by joining us for our highly interactive Master Negotiator Workshop. This popular one day session is packed with practical tools and expert advice to help you get commercially Fit, Agile and Resilient so you can go FAR and achieve real negotiation success.



How To Deal With Negotiating Gameplay – The Grocer

Learn more about how to deal with negotiating gameplay in our article for The Grocer


10 Ways To Be Emotionally Intelligent – Female First

Read more about how to live your life in a more emotionally intelligent way in our article in Female First


4 Steps To A Winning Mindset – Association of MBAs

Read our full article here for the Association of MBAs on how to develop a winning mindset.



How To Become A World Class Negotiator – The Telegraph


Don’t miss this article in The Telegraph by Diadem CEO, Nicole Soames on how to become a world-class negotiator.



‘The Negotiation Book’ – Diadem CEO Nicole Soames Launches Practical Guide To Becoming A Master Negotiator


Yesterday saw the launch of ‘The Negotiation Book’ by Diadem CEO, Nicole Soames – an inspiring handbook, packed with expert advice, practical tools and easy-to-use exercises to help you harness your EQ so you put negotiation theory into practice and become a master negotiator.


Nicole was delighted to be joined on the night by EQ specialist and Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Martyn Newman, Author of ‘Emotional Capitalists’, who helped celebrate the launch of Nicole’s new book with an engaging and lively Q& A session about her passion for helping people raise their negotiation game.



Can Theresa May Rebuild Her Leadership Brand?


The headlines in this morning’s papers can’t make easy reading for Theresa May following her disaster-stricken conference speech yesterday. “May on Final Warning after Speech Shambles” reads the front page of The Times, “A Tragic Farce” exclaims The Telegraph, “Carry on Conference” says The Independent likening the unfolding drama to a carry-on film.


Regardless of your political leaning, there’s no denying that the longer Theresa May’s speech went on the more it seemed to resemble a scene from a disaster movie. Everything that could go wrong, did go wrong – from the P45 prank, to the hacking cough and finally the falling down sign. No one could miss the irony in her closing words, “The test of a leader is how you respond when tough times come to you.” Well these are indeed tough times for Mrs May, so what steps can she take to try to rebuild her leadership brand?



How To Negotiate With Your Boss


Whether you’re asking for a pay-rise, a deadline extension or extra resources for your project – negotiating with your boss can be daunting prospect. In fact, most people find negotiating internally far more challenging than negotiating with suppliers and customers because of the relationship and emotions involved.

So how do you make sure you banish your negotiating nerves, level the playing field and negotiate with confidence when you are next faced with this challenge. As a commercial skills trainer and coach who has helped hundreds of people master the art of negotiation, here are my 4 steps to help you achieve a win-win outcome.



Team GB – Be Inspired To Keep Raising Your Game


As host nation at the World Athletics Championships, there were high hopes that Team GB would achieve their medal target of six in London 2017. However, with only one podium place so far – thanks to Mo Farah’s impressive victory in the 10,000m – these hopes of glory are fading fast, only to be replaced with tears of disappointment from Laura Muir, Sophie Hitchin and Katarina Johnson-Thompson.

So as we near the end of this year’s Championships what lessons can Team GB take from their fellow athletes to help them get back on track?



Master Negotiator Workshop – Friday 6th October

Take Your Negotiation Skills To The Next Level

As commercial skills trainers and coaches, we know just how important it is for you to return to your desk after the summer holidays feeling commercially fit and ready to hit the ground running in what is often the busiest quarter of the year.

With this in mind, we’re offering you the opportunity to join our highly interactive Master Negotiator Workshop, packed with practical tools and expert advice to help you raise your negotiation game when it matters most.



Advantage Konta – A Masterclass In Focus And Determination


Johanna Konta’s quarter-final match against world number two Simona Halep, was a thrilling display of athleticism and power. The barrage of serves, ferocious returns and gruelling rallies kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the two and a half hour match, but what impressed me most of all, was Konta’s unwavering focus and determination.


In what was possibly the most highly pressured match of her career so far, Konta kept cool, calm and collected as she battled her way to become the first British woman to reach the semi-finals of Wimbledon since Virginia Wade in 1978. This ability to stay focused on the end goal is just as important to commercial success as it is to winning Wimbledon. So let’s learn by example and follow Konta’s masterclass in focus and determination to help us raise our game and become a true commercial athlete.



Be Inspired By Wimbledon To Get Match-Fit


I don’t know about you, but the sight of the world’s best tennis players donning their whites to battle it out on Centre Court at Wimbledon, can’t fail but inspire me to keep raising my game.


Whether it’s Federer’s bid to achieve a record eighth Wimbledon title, Murray’s determination to defend last year’s crown or Nadal’s desire to show that he still has what it takes to win on grass – all of them display inspirational levels of ambition, commitment and resilience – qualities just as important in the world of business as they are on the courts of SW19.


So as we tuck in to our strawberries and cream and sit back to enjoy the delights of the Wimbledon fortnight, let’s learn by example and follow these three steps to help us get match-fit and ready to face our next commercial challenge.



Great Leaders Help Us Move Out Of Our Comfort Zone

Given the ongoing uncertainty and challenging nature of today’s business conditions, I often find it helpful to remind myself of the saying, “what doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you!” As CEO of a leading commercial skills training company, I believe the secret to being a great leader is empowering others by helping them move out of their comfort zone and into their stretch zone, so they are able to challenge the status quo and achieve the extraordinary.


Helping your team move out of their comfort zone can often be easier said than done. It’s called a comfort zone for a reason – it’s the mental space in which we feel emotionally secure. This is not always a bad thing, as it can protect us by helping us feel cosy and safe. However, it can also lead to low self-esteem or feelings of boredom and frustration. In either case, staying in your comfort zone will eventually prevent you from achieving your commercial personal best. It’s only by working with your team to help them push the limits and move into their stretch zone that they will reap the rewards of greater confidence and increased results.



3 Reasons Why Companies Need To Embrace EQ


The success of this year’s EQ Summit in London was proof – if further proof were needed – of the crucial role EQ plays in managing the challenges of leading business in the new economy.


The keynote speakers, including Dan Goleman, the best-selling author of “Emotional Intelligence”, Sir Ken Robinson, the most watched TED speaker of all time and Jeremy Darroch, Chief Executive of Sky, gave inspiring and invaluable insights into how EQ can help companies adapt, innovate and thrive in today’s challenging conditions.


So as a proud sponsor of the EQ summit, as well as a qualified EQ practitioner who has helped hundreds of people develop their EQ skills so they can stand out from the competition, here are the top three reasons why companies need to embrace EQ if they want to stay ahead of the game.



When Was The Last Time You Learned Something New?


If I were to ask my youngest daughter this very question, I’m sure I would be inundated with examples of new topics covered in school and new skills developed on the sports field or in the art room. Unfortunately, as we grow older, our appetite for learning often begins to wane. Before you know it, you can become so focused on managing the day-to-day, that all thought of self-development goes out the window and that negative voice inside your head tells you to prioritise those looming deadlines instead of developing your skills at work.


This week marks Learning at Work Week, a reminder to everyone of the importance of honing your commercial skills so that you can stand out from the competition and deliver real business success, after all, as Albert Einstein so wisely said, “Once you stop learning, you start dying.” So as a highly qualified coach and EQ practitioner who has helped transform more than 2500 people into commercial athletes, here are the three most common learning myths and how to banish them:



EQ – 3 Steps To Becoming A Creative Leader

As a leading commercial skills training company that uses EQ as the cornerstone of all our training and coaching programmes, we are delighted to sponsor this year’s EQ Summit on the 25th May 2017; the main theme of which is the role EQ plays in encouraging creativity and innovation.


In challenging and uncertain times, it is more important than ever for leaders to adapt to the changing business landscape by creating a culture of innovation that enables them to stay ahead of the competition. When times are tough, it can be tempting for companies to focus on the here and now and lose sight of the bigger picture. However, by standing still, you risk going backwards. To be truly successful, you need to harness your EQ to help you create new opportunities that allow you to thrive under pressure and keep you ahead of the curve.


So based, on over 25 years of coaching and commercial experience, here are three steps to help you dial up your EQ so you can become a creative leader:



Be Inspired by This Year’s Marathon To Go The Extra Mile

The sight of 40,000 runners gathering together for the gruelling 26.2 mile journey through the streets of London is always an inspiration. You cannot fail but be impressed by the culmination of weeks and months of hard work, practice and commitment. However, there was a moment during yesterday’s London Marathon that I found particularly moving and uplifting. It was when Matthew Rees, from Swansea Harriers running club, sacrificed his own race to help David Wyeth of Chorlton Runners reach the finish line.



General Election 2017 – 3 Traits That Define Strong Leadership

Theresa May’s unexpected announcement to call a snap General Election on the 8th June in order to create “certainty, stability and strong leadership” immediately raises the question, “what are the qualities that makes a strong leader?”

In times of great uncertainty, the need to unite people, inspire confidence and drive action is more important than ever. So whether your role is to lead the country or to run a business and motivate your team, check out the top three traits that define strong leadership.



How NOT To Negotiate Brexit

Yesterday marked the historic moment when Theresa May triggered Article 50 beginning the two year countdown until the UK leaves the EU. In what promises to be one of the most complicated political negotiations of all time, Theresa May will need to draw on all of her emotional intelligence (EQ) to negotiate with the 27 EU member states to secure the best possible outcome for the UK.


So based on more than 25 years commercial experience including 12 years developing and delivering negotiation training programmes throughout the world, I wanted to share my expert advice with Mrs May on what not to do in the Brexit negotiations.



Master Negotiator Workshop – 19th May 2017


Raise Your Negotiation Game

As we go into the second quarter of a year characterised by uncertainty and challenging trading conditions, it’s more important than ever to take your negotiation skills to the next level so you can stand out from the competition and achieve real commercial success.

With this in mind, we are offering you the opportunity to join our highly interactive Master Negotiator Workshop, packed with practical tools and expert advice to help you unlock your commercial confidence and master the art of negotiation.



3 Ways To Adopt A Winning Mindset And Kick Your Self-doubt Into Touch


Eddie Jones, the England rugby team’s head coach, has described England’s defeat by Ireland on Sunday as “a great learning experience.” In an interview yesterday, Jones demonstrated high levels of resilience and optimism by taking responsibility for the outcome, saying, “I don’t think I gave the team the right environment to prepare well. I don’t think I created the right mindset for the team and I need to look at what I said and what I didn’t say and improve that for the future.”


This ability to harness your EQ to bounce back from setbacks by taking the learnings from a situation and moving forward is the key to success both on the rugby pitch and in the commercial world. So what lessons can we learn from the world of rugby to help us adopt a winning mindset that delivers commercial success?



EQ: 3 Steps To Improve Your Empathy

I was reading the Evening Standard last week when my eye was immediately drawn to the headline saying, “Research proves that emotionally intelligent people are more likely to be successful.” As CEO of a commercial training and coaching company that uses emotional intelligence as the basis of all our training programmes, I understand better than most, the important role EQ plays in building meaningful relationships that help you stay ahead of the game and deliver real commercial results.


As Dr. Martyn Newman, explains in his book “Emotional Capitalists”, EQ is “the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.” People often interpret this to mean you need to “be nice” to get ahead, but this is to confuse sympathy with empathy. Sympathy, suggests you feel sorry for the other party, whereas empathy is about understanding the other party’s point of view.


It is this ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes that enables you to build strong relationships based on shared experiences and trust. The great news is that EQ, just like selling, negotiation and other commercial life skills, can be developed over time. So here are 3 steps to help you boost your empathy levels: …more


Fake News? How To Recognise And Respond To The Unfair Use Of Tactics


Just watching President Trump in action in his first solo press conference last week is proof – if further proof were needed – that his attacks on the media have reached unprecedented levels. His interaction with BBC reporter Jon Sopel leaves us in little doubt that he is prepared to use gameplay to shift the balance of power in his favour. However, the BBC reporter refused to take the President’s barrage of tactics lying down. Rather than ceding ground, he had the presence of mind to think live in the moment and manage Trump’s unfair behaviour, which is clearly better suited to the school playground than it is to the Oval office.


Given the prevalence of gameplay at the highest echelon of power, it will come as no surprise to discover that you will encounter the unfair use of tactics in boardrooms and meetings across the world. The secret to leveling the playing field is firstly recognising the tactics, and secondly learning how to respond to them. So based on my years of experience developing and delivering training programmes, here are the 3 most common types of tactics and how to dispel them:



“You Can’t Do It By Yourself” – How To Build A High Performing Team


As Donald Trump starts his first full week in office following his inauguration on Friday, it’s telling to hear that Obama’s parting words of advice to the new president were that “this is a job of such magnitude….you can’t do it by yourself’.

Obama goes on to explain “You are enormously reliant on the team, your Cabinet, your senior White House staff” reminding us once again just how critical it is for leaders to build a strong team around them.

With this in mind, we wanted to share with President Trump our expert advice on how to use your emotional intelligence to build a high performance team, able to go the extra mile and achieve the extraordinary.




Master Negotiator Workshop – 15th March 2017

Stand Out From The Competition

Given today’s challenging trading conditions with increasingly squeezed profit margins, it’s more important than ever to develop your negotiation skills so you can raise your game and achieve real commercial success.

With this in mind, we are offering you the opportunity to join our highly interactive Master Negotiator Workshop, packed with practical tools and expert advice to help you unlock your commercial confidence and master the art of negotiation.




Don’t Blame Brexit – It’s Business As Usual


The news that Jamie Oliver is planning to close six of his restaurants as a result of tough trading and rising Brexit cost pressures, has highlighted how tempting it can be to look for excuses when times are tough. No one can deny that these are indeed challenging times, but it’s important to remember that businesses need new challenges to stay at the top of their game. In fact, in the absence of any external pressures, you need to remember to set your own challenges or risk standing still.

So before you leap on the blame Brexit bandwagon, remind yourself that it’s business as usual and follow these 3 steps to help you keep raising the bar and stand out from the competition.



How To Break Negotiation Deadlock



If you are one of the 500,000 commuters who have been affected by Southern Rail’s nine month dispute with the Driver’s Union ASLEF, you are no doubt hoping against hope that today’s face-to-face talks will finally end the negotiation deadlock.

We all know that when emotions are running high, it’s very easy for negotiations to become heated, causing one party or the other to walk away from the table. So what steps should both parties take to make sure they negotiate successfully and break the deadlock?



Make Your First 90 Days Count!



With the news that Gareth Southgate has been confirmed as the England Manager on a permanent basis, you can’t help but hope that his first 90 days will outstrip Sam Allardyce’s record of just 67 days in the job.

Making a great impression with your colleagues and customers both internal and external in your first quarter is crucial to business success. First impressions really do count. So, whether your new role is as England Manager or as a Commercial Manager, here are our 4 steps to help you get your first 90 days off to a flying start!



Make This Final Quarter Your Most Successful Yet



We all know what it’s like to return from our summer holidays at what is undoubtedly the busiest time of the year. With so much to achieve in so little time, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the volume of work ahead.

Although, it can be tempting to delay the inevitable and spend the first few days easing yourself back into work, years of experience has shown me that prioritisation not procrastination is the secret to being productive and stress-free in the workplace.

So here are Diadem’s top tips to help you make this year’s run-up to Christmas your most successful yet.



3 Ways To End 2016 On A Business High



With just 30 days left in the countdown to Christmas, it can be very tempting to kick back those heels, ease yourself into the festive period and write off the rest of the year.

But given today’s tough market conditions, do this at your peril. Instead of taking your foot off the pedal, take advantage of every opportunity to achieve real business results.

So based on my years of commercial experience, here are our 3 steps to help you make the final push of 2016 your most successful yet!



How Andy Murray Can Help You Reach The Top Of Your Game



The news that Andy Murray has become the first British player to reach World Number One since computerised rankings began in 1973, is testament to his extraordinary commitment, resilience and self-belief.

In a year that has seen Murray regain his Wimbledon title and win a second Olympic Gold medal, being crowned the best player in the world must surely be the icing on the cake.

So what lessons can we learn from Andy Murray’s remarkable achievements to help us reach the top of our game in the business world?



How To Battle Your Negotiating Inner Demons



Tonight is Halloween –  the time of year for ghosts and ghouls to come out in force and trick or treat. However, whereas a sweet or a coin will banish those Halloween gremlins from your doorstep, it can be harder to battle the negotiating inner demons we all have deep inside us.


The Enemy Within

Stephen King, author of countless horror stories, said, “ Monsters are real, ghosts are too. They live inside us and sometimes they win.” When it comes to negotiation we often have more battles with ourselves than with anyone else. As human beings, we are disproportionately more likely to be negative than positive, so as we enter a negotiating situation the voices inside our head can all too easily take hold.

So based on my years of negotiating experience, here are my top tips to help you banish your negotiating inner demons once and for all:



The Secret To Negotiating A Win-Win Deal



The news that Unilever and Tesco have so quickly resolved their price dispute makes it seem as though this was all rather straightforward. In my experience this is unlikely – there is often a great deal of complexity and the emotion on both sides in this type of negotiation especially if it has resulted in brinkmanship – in this case Unilever ceasing to supply.

Although we think we’ve watched these two corporate giants battle it out on the business stage, we’ll never know exactly what happened at the negotiating table. However, we can be sure that similar price negotiations will be taking place between suppliers and retailers throughout the UK.

So whatever side of the fence you sit on – whether you’re a retailer or supplier – here are our top 3 secrets to help you negotiate a win-win deal.  …more


3 Ways Mindfulness Can Drive Your Performance



In today’s increasingly demanding world, where the boundaries of professional and personal life are constantly blurring, the ability to focus your mind and bring your attention back to the present is easier said than done. How many times do you find yourself scanning your emails as you wait for a friend in a restaurant or answering a quick work call in the evening when you should be unwinding after a day in the office?

As someone who is guilty of doing both of the above, it was a real pleasure to attend the launch of clinical psychologist and EQ specialist Dr. Martyn Newman’s “The Mindfulness Book ” and gain even greater insight into how developing a peaceful and focused mind can help you reach your peak performance.



How To Ace Your First 90 Days



With Sam Allardyce’s reputation in tatters following allegations of improper conduct after only 67 days in his role as England Manger, we can be left in no doubt about the importance of building a strong and trustworthy leadership brand.


As Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room” and you don’t have to be the England Manager to understand that how you appear to others is crucial to achieving success. So whether you’ve recently been promoted or are about to start a new job, follow these 3 steps to help you make a great impression and ace your first 90 days.



What Is The Secret Of Emma Walmsley’s Leadership Success?



The news that GSK has appointed Emma Walmsley as their new CEO has been described in the press as a watershed moment with headlines referring to her as the most powerful woman in business today.


Having worked with Emma when she was GM for Garnier/ Maybelline during her time at L’Oréal, I am in not doubt that although she is an impressive role model for women everywhere, her appointment to Chief Exec has nothing to do with the fact she is female and everything to do with her being a World-Class leader.


So based on my first-hand experience of working with Emma, here is the “secret sauce” that makes her a truly great leader who is performing at the very top of her game.



When was the last time you helped someone over the finish line?

The sight of Alistair Brownlee helping his younger brother Jonny cross the finish line at the World Triathlete Championship in Mexico is an enduring image that reminds us all of the importance of great sportsmanship.



Going For Gold – What We Can Learn From Team GB’s Success



What an enthralling and unforgettable Olympic Games Rio has been for Team GB. Currently second in the medal table, with Gold medals in Golf, Tennis, Cycling, Gymnastics, Dressage, Rowing and Diving to name but a few, Team GB have already beaten their pre-Olympics medal target of 48.

As we sit glued to our screens for the final days of Rio 2016, it’s worth taking a moment to ask ourselves what lessons we can learn from Team GB to help us raise our game in the business world.



Practice Makes Perfect @Rio 2016



As the countdown starts for the opening ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympics, you can’t help but feel in awe of the 11,000 athletes who are gathering together from 206 countries to compete on the world stage.

The Olympic Games mark the culmination of years of hard work, discipline and commitment – demonstrating once and for all that practice really does make perfect. As commercial skills trainers and coaches we understand better than most that this principle is as important for commercial athletes who want to reach the top of their game as it is for Olympians.



Stand Out From The Competition

Master Negotiator Workshop – 23rd September 2016


In uncertain times it’s more important than ever to develop your commercial skills so you can raise your game and achieve the extraordinary.

As Albert Einstein said, “When you stop learning, you start dying” so as the kids head back to school in September, why not kick-start your learning with our Master Negotiator Open Workshop.



The Power Of A Confident Mindset



It’s not often that you have a week packed with high profile sporting and political events that so powerfully show the importance of developing a confident mindset. From the grass courts of Wimbledon to the corridors of Westminster, both Murray and May demonstrated, in their own individual ways, that self-belief truly is the key to success.

So with Andy Murray crowned Wimbledon Champion for a second time and Teresa May taking over the reins of power at No 10, what learnings can we take to help us build a confident mindset that prepares us for the challenges ahead?



3 Steps To Help You Bounce Back When Times Are Tough



In the words of Billy Ocean, “when the going gets tough the tough get going” but this can be easier said than done in times of great change and uncertainty.

Resilience and the ability to bounce back from hard knocks is one of the key traits of successful people. Resilient people pick themselves up when they’ve been knocked down, brush themselves off and move forward.

So whether you’re worried about future upheaval or disillusioned with the state of English football, here are 3 steps to help you bounce back when the going gets tough.



Advantage Murray – The Secret Of A Great Coach



The news this week that Andy Murray has resumed his coaching partnership with Ivan Lendl is a timely reminder of the powerful role a coach plays in helping people achieve the extraordinary.

Under Lendl’s coaching from 2012- 2014, Murray experienced his most successful spell in tennis, winning the US Open, the Olympic Gold and Wimbledon. Following Andy’s decisive victory over Mahut and Bedene to reach the quarter finals of Queen’s, Murray’s supporters are hoping that Lendl can continue to work his magic in the run up to Wimbledon.

So what’s the secret of a great coach? And how can coaching help you become a true commercial athlete who reaches the pinnacle of success?



3 Steps To Help Re-energise Your Team



Returning to your desk after a holiday can be energy-zapping for the most dynamic of us. So how do you help your team beat those holiday blues and feel re-energised and motivated about their work ahead?

At Diadem we know that unlocking people’s commercial confidence is the key to driving performance. As a great believer in practising what we preach, I wanted to share with you how I create energy, passion and drive in my own team.



Muhammad Ali – 3 Lessons In Greatness

Muhammad Ali featured on UK newspaper front pages

The tributes and outpouring of remembrance for the legendary Muhammad Ali is testament to his greatness both in and outside of the ring.

The world’s most talented heavyweight champion embodied power, strength and determination, which is evident in his unprecedented boxing record of 56 wins to 5 losses. So what lessons can we learn from the genius who was Muhammad Ali?



How To Communicate Successfully Around The World

If you managed to endure – I mean enjoy – so much as 10 minutes of the Eurovision Song Contest on Saturday night, you would have been left in little doubt of the varied and fascinating cultural differences that exist throughout the world.

Having worked with more than 75 clients in over 10 countries including Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Sweden, Denmark and the US, we understand better than most how different countries have different communication styles.

So, to help you master the art of communicating internationally, here are our top tips on how to recognise, respect and respond to these cultural differences.



5 Tips To Conquer Your Presentation Nerves

Cheering young man raising his arms against sky


Sweaty palms, butterflies in your stomach, a dry mouth – do you recognise these signs of nerves before a big presentation? Don’t worry you’re not alone, research shows that as many as 75% of us suffer from a phobia of public speaking. In fact people often rank the fear of speaking in public above the fear of death, which means, as comedian Jerry Seinfeld joked, “at a funeral, the average person would rather be in the casket than giving the eulogy.”


So based on my years of experience helping clients unlock their commercial confidence so they can engage their audience and present with flair, here are my top 5 tips to help you conquer your presentation nerves.



The Three Secrets Expert Presenters Don’t Want You To Know!


At some time or another, we’ve all been captivated by an expert presenter at work. Articulate, confident, inspiring – they hold the audience in the palm of their hand. Surely they’re naturals, born to perform and take centre stage? As an actress on the stage and screen as well as a public speaking coach who has worked with hundreds of clients, I can reassure you that behind every polished performance there is a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes.

So to help you conquer your stage fright and present with confidence and flair, here are my top three secrets that expert presenters don’t want you to know….



Learn To Present Like A Professional

Inspired Presenting Workshop – 2nd June 2016


Expert presenters make speaking in public look easy. But with every polished performance there’s a lot of hard work that goes on behind the scenes. You need ambition, practise and commitment to take centre stage and engage with your audience.

So if you want to unlock your commercial confidence and present like a professional, then join us at our Inspired Presenting Workshop In June.



4 Secrets To Successful Internal Negotiations



Whenever I deliver our Master Negotiator Workshop I always ask the delegates to tell me when they have found negotiating particularly tricky. Invariably some of the most taxing examples have occurred during internal negotiations.


Whether you’re asking for a payrise, a deadline extension or extra resources for your project – negotiating with your colleagues can be far more difficult than negotiating with suppliers and customers because of the relationships and emotions involved.


So how do you make sure you have a level playing field when you negotiate with your manager? Based on years of experience from my training and commercial background, here are my 4 secrets to help you become a true commercial athlete in negotiation.



Do you want to achieve your personal best?

Master Negotiator Open Workshop – Friday 6th May 2016



As commercial skills trainers and coaches, we know that achieving your personal best in negotiation takes ambition, practise and hard work.

Our highly interactive Master Negotiator Open Workshop will give you the practical tools and expert advice to help you unlock your confidence and become a true commercial athlete in negotiation.



And The Oscar For Best Presenter Goes To…..

Cheering young man raising his arms against sky


Given the politically charged nature of this year’s Academy Awards, the indisputable star of the show was Chris Rock who opened the ceremony with a ten minute monologue tackling the #OscarsSoWhite controversy.

In what was clearly a high-pressured moment in the Academy Awards’ eighty-eight year history, Rock overcame any nerves to address the diversity issue with humour and insight, delivering a highly polished presenting performance.

So what lessons in presenting can we learn from this year’s Academy Awards? Here are my top tips to help you deliver an Oscar winning performance ….



Negotiating The EU – 3 Ways To Break Deadlock


David Cameron will resume negotiations later today on Britain’s future relationship with the European Union after a long and inconclusive night of talks in Brussels. With negotiations between Cameron, the European Council President Donald Tusk and the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker stuck in deadlock, what steps should each party take to make sure they negotiate successfully?


We all know that when passions are running high, it’s very easy for negotiations to become heated, causing one party or the other to walk away from the table, so here is our expert advice on how to break deadlock and secure a deal.



3 Steps To Successful Supplier Negotiations

shutterstock_108198899 copy

In light of last week’s findings from the Grocery Market Watchdog that Tesco deliberately delayed payments to suppliers in order to boost profits, it’s clear that negotiating with the supermarkets continues to be a challenging and demanding business for suppliers.


Dave Lewis, the Tesco CEO, has apologised and repeated his commitment to rebuilding supplier relationships after years of negotiating tactics. But in the midst of this lack of transparency and trust, what should suppliers do when it comes to negotiating with the supermarkets going forward?


Based on my years of experience negotiating with the supermarket big 4 as an FMCG Account Manager, here are my 3 steps to successful supplier negotiations:



5 steps to market your personal brand online



January – the month to turn over a new leaf and set yourself fresh challenges. One of the most powerful resolutions you can make in 2016 is to actively market your personal brand online. In an age where brands reign supreme, social media is a powerful tool to enhance your personal reputation, extend your reach and communicate with your target markets.


So what exactly do we mean by the term “personal brand”?

According to Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, “Your personal brand is what people say about you when you have left the room.” Whereas traditionally, your brand was built from meeting people in person or word of mouth recommendations, social media allows you to develop your personal brand directly through tools such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and blogs.



Diadem Welcomes Fiona Doran-Smith To The Ever-Growing Team



We are delighted to appoint Fiona Doran-Smith as a new associate partner to the Diadem team. Fiona is a highly qualified learning and development professional with a wealth of experience as an L&D consultant at Thales Training and Consultancy, an L&D Manager at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, and as a self-employed coach and Emotional Intelligence practitioner.



Let The Christmas Negotiations Begin!

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“Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring….” except Mum and Dad who were still debating whose turn it was to finish wrapping the mountain of presents… OK so maybe that’s just in our house, but we all know that creating that magical chocolate box Christmas for our families takes a lot of time, effort and finely honed negotiating skills.

Whether it’s agreeing whose turn it is to drive, what presents to buy the kids, whether to have turkey or goose, the list of festive hurdles to negotiate can seem endless. But you’re not alone – we’ve put together some negotiating tips to help you survive the festive season with your sense of humour intact!



Get Commercially Fit in 2016

Master Negotiator Open Workshop – 28th January 2016

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Kick-start your commercial training in the New Year with our Master Negotiator Open Workshop. We’ll help unlock your confidence, improve your negotiation skills and inspire you to get commercially fit for 2016.

This highly interactive workshop will give you the practical tools, knowledge and skills to help you become a true commercial athlete in negotiation.



4 Ways To Work Smarter, Not Harder


Last week as I listened to Radio 4’s programme “The Joy of 9 to 5”  I was reminded how much work has taken over modern life. With more than half of us in the UK working 40 or more hours a week, I’m sure I’m not alone when I admit to checking work emails before breakfast and having a quick peak at them before I go to bed at night.

But what I found particularly alarming was learning how working long hours can impair our critical thinking and negatively impact our productivity. According to research from Stanford University, after working 50 hours a week our productivity dips, after 55 hours it drops off a cliff, and a person working 70 hours a week is completely ineffective for the last 15 hours. Scarier still was the news that working long hours on a regular basis can result in cognitive loss at the end of your career and make your more susceptible to depression.

So how do we make sure we manage our time more effectively and work smartly? Here are Diadem’s 4 D’s to help you boost your efficiency at work and make this year’s run-up to Christmas your most productive and successful yet.



“Man on the Moon” – John Lewis’ Winning Formula

Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a heartwarming John Lewis advert. For the past eight years, John Lewis has expertly crafted powerful stories that connect and engage with their shoppers on an emotional level, kick-starting the festive shopping season. This tried and tested formula seems to go from strength to strength, with “Man on the Moon” promising to be their most successful advert yet with over 11 million views on YouTube since it launched on Friday. So what’s the secret of their continued success?



Trick Or Treat? Lessons In Negotiation

Every year as I arm myself with handfuls of sweets, waiting for the knock on the door that heralds the arrival of the trick-or-treaters, I’m reminded of the key lessons in negotiation we can learn from Halloween.

Opening the door and finding a scary monster standing opposite you offering you a trick or a treat can be frighteningly similar to some of the negotiation tactics we face in the business world.

Just as on Halloween, we have to make a judgment call, should we take it as a trick or a treat?

So how do you know whether you are being tricked during negotiations?



Feel Like A Fraud? 4 Tips To Conquer Imposter Syndrome Once And For All

Do you feel it’s just a matter of time before you are ‘found out’ at work? Do you constantly believe you don’t deserve the success you’ve achieved and instead put it down to good luck or timing? If you answered yes to both these questions, you are likely to be suffering from ‘Imposter Syndrome,’ a collection of feelings of inadequacy that persist despite evident success. (Harvard Business Review)

Don’t worry, you’re not alone – in fact you’re in great company – imposter syndrome is surprisingly common amongst high achievers. Acclaimed author Maya Angelou once said, “I have written eleven books, but each time I think, ‘uh oh, they’re going to find me out now” and Academy Award winner Meryl Streep remarked, “You think, why would anyone want to see me again in a movie? And I don’t know how to act anyway, so why am I doing this?”

So what can be done to conquer imposter syndrome once and for all? Here are our top tips to help you stop feeling like a fraud:



Negotiating Lessons From The Rugby World Cup

No matter how many times I’ve seen it before, watching the New Zealand All Blacks perform the Haka still makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. There is something mesmerising about this powerful display of confidence, energy and teamwork – qualities that are just as important in the workplace as they are on the rugby pitch.

So, based on my years of training and coaching clients to become commercial athletes, here are the lessons in negotiation we can learn from the Rugby World Cup.



Demystifying Digital: Understanding Your Consumers In The Digital World

Over the last twenty years digital has transformed the business environment – yet many of us still struggle to fully embrace the power of digital and make it central to our business.

One of the key ways to demystify digital and achieve business success is to understand how your consumers think and behave in the digital world, for as Forrester Reach reported, In this age of the customer, the only sustainable competitive advantage is knowledge of and engagement with customers.”

So, in partnership with The Digital Consultancy, we wanted to help unlock your digital confidence by painting a clear picture of the rapidly changing digital landscape.



Master Negotiator Open Workshop

We know that developing new commercial skills, just like running a marathon or learning a new language, takes ambition, hard work and practice. To help you get commercially fitter this autumn, we are offering you a one day Master Negotiator workshop, in a addition to our tailored programmes.

This highly interactive workshop is designed to provide you with the practical tools, knowledge and skills to unlock your commercial confidence and help you on your journey to becoming a true commercial athlete in negotiation.



5 Things You Should NEVER Say When You’re Negotiating


We all know what it’s like when you’re caught up in the middle of negotiating a big deal. The pressure and frustration can build and before you know it the best laid plans can go awry. Negotiation best practice flies out of the window and you hear yourself utter the fateful words, “And that’s my final offer” when you know full well that it’s not.

I’ve worked with hundreds of clients over the years, developing their negotiating skills and unlocking their confidence so they can negotiate successfully. But as well as highlighting the positive steps you need to take, I also look at the ways it can easily go wrong.

So, based on my years of experience building commercial athletes, here are the top 5 things you should NEVER say when you’re negotiating.



Relax – It’s The Holidays!


Top tips to help you de-stress before, during and after your holiday

As we approach holiday season, I nearly laughed out loud when I spotted this vacation relaxation timeline shared on LinkedIn. Hands up if, like me, you’ve ever sat at your desk at 8pm the evening before you’re about to go on holiday, head in your hands, knee deep in “urgent” work and wondered whether getting ready for two weeks “relaxing” in the Med was really worth it?



7 Habits Of Successful Sales People

What is it that distinguishes a great salesperson from a good one? An outstanding performer from an average one? Based on my years of experience being in sales, developing and delivering sales programmes and coaching hundreds of clients from a wide range of industries, I have identified the seven habits that all highly successful salespeople have in common.

I hope by sharing them with you here, they will help you on your journey from a good to a great salesperson.