Fiona Pelham is the CEO of two businesses. One is a global not for profit called Positive Impact who exist to create a sustainable event industry through education and collaboration opportunities. The other is a consultancy business that works with major international clients who want to understand how to implement a sustainability strategy but with bespoke support.
She was the chair of an international standard for sustainability in events, and at the time was the youngest ever female chair for any ISO standard. Alongside this she has been involved in a number of working groups including the United Nations Environment programme and most recently was chair of Meeting Professionals International, the world’s largest association for event planners.
Fiona has also been awarded an honourary doctorate by Leeds Beckett University for her services to the event industry raising the profile of sustainability.
Through her work, Fiona has created plenty of opportunities for travel, and currently lives between Manchester and Copenhagen. She loves to spend time with her six godchildren (two in Australia and four in the UK) and also volunteers at her local football club in Manchester.
She would describe herself as a creative person who is always ready to act on new ideas, and this has helped her to create her life to be how she wants it. Not that it has been without challenges, and one of the main goals of this website is to share her experience and make life a little bit easier for people who are currently starting or growing a business in a way that works for them.
About this website
Over the past couple of months, Fiona has been pulling together the content of this website, and it’s been one of the hardest things she’s ever done. Why? When she took the time to write down the collection of her stories, she was faced with something that many of us experience: imposter syndrome. Who was she to write this?
Fiona credits her mentors for helping her overcome this by holding her to account to make sure this project actually happens. The other strong motivation is that people often ask her “how” questions (for example, how does she get to travel so much, or how did she move her business from a plan on paper to reality). Hearing those questions has inspired her to share the experience she’s had, and she’s passionate about helping people live their lives in a way that works for them, rather than following a copy or societal path that works for someone else.
This website isn’t a checklist of how to create a business or live a life, it isn’t about the “right” or “wrong” actions to take; it’s simply a collection of stories that you can take inspiration from and use to create a life that works for you.