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Mandy Hickson: speaker on empowerment, decision making under pressure, and her career as a woman in the armed forces.
Mandy was one of very few female pilots on front line Tornado Squadrons, flying multi-million pound fast jets for the Royal Air Force. She has operated in hostile environments, including patrolling the ‘No Fly’ zone over Iraq.
Her route to the top was tumultuous in every sense – awarded a RAF flying scholarship at 17, long before she even passed her driving test, she went on to win aerobatic competitions whilst still a student. However, despite her prowess in the skies, she failed the computer based tests, taken by all potential RAF pilots. Undeterred, her self-belief and dogged determination persuaded the RAF to take her on as a test case, thereby overcoming seemingly insurmountable hurdles.
Mandy relates her experiences of working within an elite team of fast jet operators to audiences with great clarity, outlining how the same values apply within any environment. She demonstrates only too well the importance of remaining calm under pressure and leading, quite literally, from the front, in order to get the best from herself and her team.
As a trained Human Factors Facilitator with the Civil Aviation Authority, Mandy uses her in depth knowledge of aviation, calculated risk taking, decision making under pressure and the critical role of the human in the system to transfer these lessons from the cockpit to the corporate boardroom.
Mandy has also founded Inspiring Women for Work, tailor made events designed to help women to realise their full potential and regain confidence to return to work. In October 2019 Mandy joined a female fundraising team and summited Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, raising funds for the Hampshire Hospitals Charity – Winchester Hospice. Her book ‘An Officer, Not a Gentleman: The inspirational journey of a pioneering fighter pilot’ was released in June 2020.
As a speaker Mandy puts a huge amount of energy, creativity and passion into what she does, working with clients and educators on an individual basis means she can create an event that is unique and memorable. Mandy brings a wealth of insights from her years serving on the operational front line, where a keen sense of humour has been the key to her success and survival.
For speaking enquiries or to book Mandy Hickson please call Specialist Speakers on +44 (0)203 002 4125 or use our contact form