Q&A with Katie Hooper
1. What motivates you?
Seeing people go through a shift or experiencing a light bulb moment or a realisation. That’s what makes consultancy worthwhile for me.
2. How do you handle pressure?
My background in elite sport makes me inclined to seek out a high-pressure environment. However, I’ve learnt over time to put things into perspective and make situation-specific smart decisions. Therefore, I’ve come to realise that I can’t be everywhere at once, doing everything at the same time. Being smart about what’s required and knowing when 80% is alright or when 100% is needed.
3. What will change most about the world of work in the next few years?
I think there will be even more remote working, with the increase of diversity, inclusion and tolerance for different styles of working. I do think there could also be a plateau in the technology revolution, due to the speed of advancement. Alternative research may catch up and suggest that face to face communication has further benefits. This is a fascinating area for me as I specialise in communications.
4. What’s your defining career moment so far?
Moving into communications as a specialism. Communications unites all my previous experiences and passions, including elite performance sport, media and commentary. I am fascinated by the relationship between people and performance, and where it can meet traditional communication practice.
5. What book, film or tv show has really changed the way you thought about something?
I really love the book “The Tao of Pooh” – simple and philosophical life lessons from 100 acre wood and Winnie the Pooh and friends, which are founded on Taoism philosophy. This book reminds me not to overcomplicate my life and trust my inner wisdom!
6. What’s your favourite sport to business lesson or story?
Certain narratives shape our current norms and expectancies in terms of what is viewed as possible. Therefore, when a barrier is broken, new norms are established of what humans are capable of, for example Roger Bannister’s four-minute mile or the increased normality of para and female sport in the media. This mirrors potential growth in a business, when a leader or manager breaks current expectations.
7. What makes you proud?
Being part of Lane4’s growth; how we have undergone huge change whilst upholding our true values and moral integrity. Also my children, and the way they surprise me with their insight, creativity and energy most days!
8. What makes you angry?
People who moan about a situation that they aren’t prepared to act on and fix.
9. Which leader do you most admire most and why?
My first swimming coach; he changed the narrative in my head to believe a different story and grow. As a parent myself, I aspire to use this mentality with my own children, so they believe they can do anything.
10. What are your best and worst characteristics?
My best is being open minded, which means I don’t make snap-judgments or assumptions. My worst is that I can be bad at decision making, leading to indecisiveness.
11. What would you like to learn and why?
I used to play the piano and I’d love to learn another musical instrument. There is significant power in music as it can act as a universal language.
12. If you could choose anybody, who would you be for a day?
A Buddhist monk, to experience full immersion in a whole new world of learning.
13. Who would you like to invite for a dinner party, living or dead?
David Attenborough – for the smooth communication and magical stories of nature. Russell Brand – for the comedy and quirky ideas. Aretha Franklin – for the voice. All my old Uni friends together – for one big student reminisce. And my Dad, who passed away six years ago.
14. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
You are stronger than you think you are.
15. What would your motto be (if you haven’t already got one)?
Above the clouds the sun is always shining. It serves as a reminder that in life there is always another perspective.
16. What personal value would you never compromise?
My willingness to learn. I always want to grow and learn more.