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Damian Hughes is an integral part of our Postgraduate Certificate in Coaching. His presentations are inspirational, transformational and punctuated by real-life examples of positive change in the workplace, the world of sport and in people’s personal lives. I defy anyone not to be inspired and moved by his belief in people and their potential.

Kim Morgan, Managing Director, Barefoot Coaching

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Damian was our keynote speaker at the University’s inaugural Cheshire Industry Professional Network event. Damian’s sheer enthusiasm and knowledge of motivation electrified the room of hundreds of university academics, guests and professional members. As a true orator, Damian had the audience wide eyed and ore inspired by, not only his jaw-dropping research, but also the practical approaches which everyone could take away and use instantly within their own organisations. Damian is a Visiting Professor and as such, is able to demonstrate not only the underpinning theory but the illuminating practicalities of motivating and inspiring people. Everyone in the audience was able to reflect and put into practice at least one of the ‘psychological jewels’ which Damian had given out during the evening, which would have immediate impact in the workplace to move an organisation forward positively.

Professor Ruth Ashford, Executive Dean, Business, Enterprise and Lifelong Learning, Grosvenor Professor of Marketing, University of Chester

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I first experienced Damian and Liquid Thinking some 10 years ago when he delivered on the Leadership Development programme for my previous employer and then subsequently at other occasions such as the CIPD Branch events. His style of delivery and down to earth concepts really resonated with me and I’ve been an avid follower of his work since. When Wigan & Leigh College were looking for someone to engage with for our Leadership Development journey I immediately thought of Damian and was delighted he was able to join us on our annual College Management Team Conference.

The excitement and engagement I saw from the management team, both from the pre read of The Winning Mindset and during the Day that Damian delivered, was unprecedented and it was wonderful to see how they related so well to the concepts, as I had done many years ago.

Damian’s impact upon the team did not stop at the end of the Day of the Conference and much talk, reflection and reference to Damian’s work continues as the management team grows and aspires on their journey to become outstanding.

Thank you Damian!

Wigan & Leigh College

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On 7th November 2023, Damian delivered an inspirational talk on “Lessons in Transformation from the World of High Performance” at Manchester Metropolitan University. This was a key note talk, as part of the Faculty of Business and Law’s ‘Week 6: Get Career Ready’ event. This was a three day programme of sessions designed to kickstart student’s career preparation, with Damian participating in the ‘Create’ themed day of our event. This was focused on facilitating creation of career opportunities, through developing networking skills and employability strategies.


Damian’s key note talk was a hugely popular session, in which 192 students attended. It was clear to see how inspirational this was for the student attendees, culminating in an engaging Q&A section following the talk. Students were inspired by this talk and are now able to utilise Damian’s guidance within their own career planning next steps. For example, Damian’s reference to anecdotal case studies to explain ways of approaching problems provided excellent insight. They also provided practical tips to empower students to tackle their own individual obstacles. The faculty careers team and event planning team were honoured to have such an engaging and inspiring talk as a stand out feature of this event.

Luke Clark, Faculty of Business & Law, Manchester Metropolitan University

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Damian’s keynote speech was truly brilliant! The feedback from conference delegates was ‘it was one of the best conference key note talks they had ever attended’.
It was both engaging and interesting and held an audience of international academics captive for one and half hours which in itself is no easy feat!

Linda Alker PhD, MSc, BA (Hons), FHEA,MCIPD PG Coordinator, MSc Leadership + Management Programmes Manchester Metropolitan University

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Damian is an inspiration to students and staff alike. It was great to work with him from the initial ideas right through to the presentation. Damian cares about young people. He cares about them aiming to be the best they can be. I thought the way that Damian could use intelligent research linked to professional celebrities, and teams, he has worked with was the key. Students could use the theory and link it with success that was in their own experiences. I thought the combination of presentation, quotes, research and activities was carefully thought through. Nothing was ‘dumbed down’ for young people. Damian made students really think- at some points you could actually see students reflecting on what they had heard- their eyes and body language showed they were linking Damian’s words with their own lives and future aspirations. I know it was a success because the students told me it was! One even e-mailed Damian straight away and was very appreciative of the prompt detailed reply- yet further evidence that Damian’s session made a measurable impact. Personally I took a lot from the session – I am constantly referring to parts of Damian’s work. I look forward to working with him again.

Jaq Lysandrou, Head Teacher, Myers Grove School, Sheffield

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Damian Hughes – a refreshingly different talk for this kind of conference, delivered in a very relaxed style but with some really important messages. I could have listened to Damian for hours!

Steve Moore, Associate Director, Cardiff University

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Damian came to our school when we embarking on significant change. His contribution was highly valued by all. Damian has the rare ability to connect and engage with people and inspire them. He certainly enabled our school to embrace change and gave us confidence in our own future. Damian’s liquid thinking is a must for all schools wishing to grow and develop. I would recommend without hesitation.

Andrew Fell, Head Teacher, Chantry High School, Ipswich

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Damian has been inspirational. It’s not just that he has the gift of the gab but that he is able to ground such complex theory into absolute simplicity with humour and humility, but also the gift to help a range of audiences believe they can change things for the better. We’re going to and if you work with him, you will too.

Alex Killick, Director of People, Glasgow Caledonian University

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We first saw Damian at a conference and immediately I thought his engagement with people was great. We also had recommendations from others in the Higher Education sector so we decided we would use Damian for some of our leadership development and also as a guest speaker to address all of our people at our AGM. Both sessions were fantastic. They were thought provoking, Damian connected with the people and I witnessed some almost immediate change in attitudes. Overnight people behaved in a different manner and became responsible for their actions. The feedback from our people was great, even from some self-admitted sceptics. I would thoroughly recommend Damian to any organisation that wants to engage their people in change.

Kevin Walmsley, Corporate Services Manager, Loughborough University

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Damian’s speaking event really inspired our students. The feedback was brilliant and those that attended left feeling very positive about what can only be described as an uncertain few months ahead. I know that they also really appreciated Damian taking the time to answer their questions and to give advice to those that came along. His session was informative and interactive and he really engaged with the audience. Damian is definitely on my list for future events!!

Tonia Galati, Faculty of Business and Law, Kingston University

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Damian provided an interesting, amusing and thought provoking presentation. He kept the audience engaged throughout the session by involving them and providing opportunities for participation and interaction. Damian has a really down to earth attitude and despite his vast experience and knowledge he was very relatable. His anecdotes and experiences working within the third sector were both moving and comical whilst remaining relevant, which provided a really well rounded talk.

Sue Cadd, Innovation Manager, Lincoln University

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Damian Hughes’ session at the AoC College Finance Conference was truly inspiring. Our delegates rated his session exceptionally highly and his uplifting session on ‘Leadership through a period of change’ was a great way to close the event. Our delegates left with a lot of food for thought.

Sarah Clancy, Conference Producer, Association of Colleges

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