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Kate Hulley – Don’t be a D**k!

The second insight into the Manufacturers’ Alliance Annual Conference’s top trio of Speakers looks at Kate Hulley.

Kate endeared the whole crowd on the day with her natural wit, direct delivery and brave approach to business. Pioneering the 4 day week and clearly defining good leadership with the rather blunt instruction of ‘Don’t be a D**k’!


So we asked Kate, how was the experience of speaking at the conference for you?

“I was both nervous and excited at the same time but I realised just how nervous I was just before I began to speak, the number of faces looking back at me in anticipation of my talk made me feel quite overwhelmed!  Once I began to talk my nerves subsided, but I did worry part way through whether the audience thought I was talking complete rubbish! Once the talk had finished, I was pleased I had challenged myself and done it, as it was a personal goal of mine to achieve.

What were the highs and lows of the journey in preparing to speak?

“The best high was the public speaking training with Kerry, it helped me to consider my style, techniques to help prepare for speaking and how I would feel most comfortable speaking. 

Other highs were collating the ideas I wanted to talk about and formulating them over time, this was a confidence boost also as I realised perhaps, I do have something valid to talk about. Conversely, the lows were my (several) crises of confidence and at times panic, who am I to talk? I’m not worthy, nor equipped to do this? Why would they want to listen to me? I don’t have any value I can add?  I’m going to mess up, let people down and make a fool of myself and others.  Putting myself out there scared me to death in all honesty.”

What do you hope people took away from listening to you?

“I hope people will be more self-aware of both the positive and the negative impact they can have as individuals in work.  I hope they will be more open and honest, kinder and more compassionate, show more of their authentic selves, their vulnerabilities and, in doing so, I hope they will benefit from the positive effects such behaviours bring.  I also hope they will at least consider or even trial a 4 day working week, it is an absolute win-win for both the company and its staff.”

Kate Hulley is the Owner Manager at Belmont Packaging Ltd and Boxed Up Packaging Ltd based in Wigan. Kate is skilled in Negotiation, Business Planning, Sales Management, Culture Change, and HR Policies.  She is a strong entrepreneurship professional with a BA (Hons) focused in Business Studies & Spanish from Sheffield Hallam University and we are very proud to have her as a strong member of the Manufacturers’ Alliance’s West Manchester Peer Group for Owners and Senior Leaders.