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Peter Docker      

Leadership & "Start With Why" Culture Expert

Peter Docker is passionate about enabling people to unlock their natural talents. He teaches leadership that is focused on commitment and human connection. This approach harnesses the collective wisdom of teams to generate extraordinary outcomes. He illustrates his insights by drawing on examples from his previous industry, flying, and military careers to explain powerful concepts that can be applied in any business.

Docker worked with Simon Sinek for over 7 years and was one of the founding ‘Igniters’ on Simon’s team. He took his years of practical experience to co-author "Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Discovering Purpose for You and Your Team," with Simon and David Mead. Published in September 2017, it has been translated into more than 25 languages and has sold over 420,000 copies.

In December 2019, Docker stepped away from Simon’s team to focus on sharing his wider insights into how organizations thrive. His new book, "Leading From The Jumpseat: How to Create Extraordinary Opportunities by Handing Over Control," will be published in October 2021. A trained leadership consultant and executive coach, Docker's commercial and industry experience has been at the most senior levels in sectors including oil & gas, construction, mining, pharmaceuticals, banking, television, film, media, print, hospitality, manufacturing and services – across 92 countries. His clients include Google, Four Seasons Hotels, Accenture, American Express, ASOS, EY, NBC Universal and over 100 more.

Docker served for 25 years as a Royal Air Force senior officer, has been a Force Commander during combat flying operations and has seen service across the globe. His career has spanned from professional pilot, to leading an aviation training and standards organization, teaching postgraduates at the UK’s Defence College, to flying the British prime minister around the world. Docker has also led multibillion-dollar international procurement projects and served as a crisis manager and former international negotiator for the UK government.

Docker has been married to his wife Claire for 33 years and has two grown-up children from whom he learns a great deal.

Speech Topics

Truly Human Leadership

Some teams are able to trust each other so deeply that they would literally put their lives on the line for each other. Other teams, no matter what incentives are offered, are doomed to infighting, fragmentation and failure. Why?

Since 2011 Peter has worked in partnership with Simon Sinek and the Start With Why team to help organizations bring to life the ideas Simon shares. In this talk Peter draws on material from Simon’s latest book Leaders Eat Last and brings it to life through his own examples of working within extraordinary teams. Peter explains how leaders can harness the natural drivers that exist in us all to create an environment that attracts the right people, keeps them loyal and encourages them to work together to create remarkable results.

When leaders set the right conditions for their people – the right context – individuals will be instinctively drawn together to support one another and overcome the constant dangers that threaten our ability to thrive in today’s marketplace. The approach works seamlessly with the concept of Why – and when used together organizations can become truly extraordinary.

Leadership During Crisis

Peter gives a compelling account of what it was like to take 170 men and women to war and back during the 2003 Gulf conflict. This is a story not about politics, but about people who were called upon to put their lives on the line for each other. Lacking equipment and operating old, unprotected aircraft, they flew every mission they were tasked and everyone returned home safely. This was not by chance – it called upon a particular type of leadership. Peter draws on his own experience and uses other case studies, including from NASA’s space program, to identify how this different type of leadership can be applied in business to produce results that extend far beyond what may be expected.

Building on the “Golden Circle” – Harnessing the Power of Why

Building on Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle, Peter Docker’s presentations inspire others, enabling them to generate new possibilities for themselves and their organisations. It’s often the extreme experiences in life that offer more opportunity and sharper focus than others around what it takes for people to be extraordinary. Peter illustrates his insights into what makes people tick by drawing on his broad commercial, flying and military experience, including his first-hand compelling account of being a Force Commander during the 2003 Gulf War. Using examples drawn from industry, he then explains how these principles can be applied in any business to create an extraordinary, inspiring and sustainable organisation.

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