Manley Hopkinson leadership speaker
Manley Hopkinson leadership speaker

Manley Hopkinson

Record-breaking adventurer

Speaker Themes

  • Leadership
  • Peak performance
  • Strategy
  • Overcoming adversity
  • Delivering rapid and lasting cultural change

Travels from

Bali or UK


Manley Hopkinson is a highly regarded and sought-after speaker on leadership, peak performance and strategy.

He twice served as an officer in the Royal Navy, re-joining for the first Gulf War. Between times Manley Hopkinson was an Inspector in the Royal Hong Kong Marine Police.

In 2000, he was selected as a skipper in the BT Global Challenge round the world yacht race, leading a team of volunteers, including novices, for 9 months in a 32,000 mile journey, the “wrong way”! 

Manley continued his adventures as part of the 3-man team that won the inaugural race to the Magnetic North Pole. The team faced polar bear attacks and sub-zero temperatures, learning huge lessons about both surviving and competing in very difficult circumstances. Their record time of 10 days and 9 hours still stands.

In 2014, Manley Hopkinson published Compassionate Leadership: How to Create and Maintain Engaged, Committed and High-Performing Teams. In this entertaining and hugely readable book, Manley combines the two worlds of business and adventure to encourage leaders everywhere – at work, at home, in sports and mid-ocean – to take a new approach to creating teams of developed, self-aware and committed individuals.

Manley sits on the Board of a number of organisations globally, including the ATLAS Consortium, Hewlett Packard Defence UK and Ark Data Centres, where he delivers true “high performance cultures”.

For more information on peak performance speaker Manley Hopkinson, contact VBQ founding agent Leo von Bülow-Quirk on or 0044 7833 727090.


Manley Hopkinson has delivered over 500 keynotes worldwide. He is a seasoned speaker with an impressive ability to engage with the audience, giving them a real sense of purpose and direction. 

Drawing on his life of adventure and record-breaking success, Manley Hopkinson’s talks continue to inspire, motivate, educate and entertain audiences around the world. 

Manley delivers inspirational and memorable presentations that incorporate his compassionate leadership style. 

He is brilliant on topics such leadership, peak performance, strategy and how to deliver lasting cultural change. What’s more, his extensive business experience means he knows exactly how to engage a corporate audience.

His inspiring presentations are brought to life with high quality video and pictures taken during the BT Global Challenge and The Polar Race.


“The reports coming back to me about the weekend are that all of the customers who attended have decided to move all their business …….to BT!!  Thank you for helping to make the weekend so much fun for our guests, and our own people. All the feedback I have received has been very positive. Customers and hosts have remarked that this was truly a memorable and inspirational occasion. The effort you both put into making our first pan European hospitality event such a success was really appreciated. Apparently the customers that attended want a repeat event every quarter!” — BT Global Services

“I thought Manley’s exposé was very powerful; a rare combination of wit and real depth. Fantastic. I must now read the book.” — PWC

“Thanks very much for making such a great impact on our audience!” — Xerox Europe & UK

“The feedback on Manley’s session was superb – he knitted in his real life experiences to the topic of leadership ensuring that his stories were relevant and demonstrated his points to perfection – It was a unique combination of fun, knowledge, insight and inspiration – the only problem was that time ran out!!!” — John Ryan, Great Place to Work

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