Last month I had the privilege of attending Changeboard’s Future Talent Conference 2016 and meeting some of their inspiring speakers.

Over 700 HR and talent management professionals attended the event at Sadler’s Wells to hear from the likes of wellbeing and mental health campaigner, Ruby Wax, philosopher, Alain De Botton and Lord Chris Holmes MBE, Lord Holmes of Richmond & Great Britain’s most successful paralympic swimmer.

The event kicked off with an inspiring session from Martine Wright, Captain of the GB sitting volleyball team, who lost both her legs during the 7th July 2005 London Bombings.

Instead of looking at what she can’t do Martine has embraced change and shown anything is possible by making the number 7 positive in her life. She now lives by a philosophy she terms “The Power of Seven”…


Martine said she had to make a choice when she looked down in that hospital bed and saw half a body. You can chose to be what you want and how you live your life.

Maximising opportunities and personal growth

Martine talked about finding herself again. Understanding her strengths and looking at how she can grow as a result of what happened on the 7th July.

The power of sport

Martine talked about the power of sport as a development tool. It’s not just about getting people fit but it is also about the psychological effect – ambition, drive and confidence.


Martine talked about the importance of her volleyball team and embracing difference. She said, “We vary massively in terms of our age, culture and background, yet by agreeing on some common values we have found a way to stick together and work as a team. For us its about respect, trust, commitment, communication and diversity.”

My ‘team me’

In life, we are not individuals; we don’t make a path on our own, it’s about being a team. Martine talked about her team – made up of her family, friends, teammates, healthcare professionals, emergency services who helped her be the person she is today.

Embracing change

Change brings opportunities.


Martine says belief is the most important. If you have the belief then absolutely anything is possible.

You can hear more from Martine here.