Based on the work Karen has previously undertaken, the following testimonials demonstrate the values and personal approach that Karen adopts and the work of KWC more generally.
‘Karen is a very commercially astute and highly personable professional. Her ability to dovetail a strategic vision and understanding for a project with the many and various elements and individuals to get things done is impressive – she sees dots that many others don’t and then she joins them. Her natural desire, ability and energy to engage with literally everyone, on every single occasion is such an endearing quality she brings out the best in people and in doing so engenders great respect and enthusiasm. Karen has a massive global network and comprehensive experience in working in different cultures. That said, when you are working with Karen, you get her personally and her fullest engagement and commitment’.
Fiona Donnelly, Founder RedLinks Consulting, Hong Kong
‘I have worked with Karen in a variety of different roles over the past ten years initially in her role as Director Development at Edinburgh Napier University and currently as a Trustee of the Festival City Theatres Trust in Edinburgh, which I Chair. Karen has vast experience locally and internationally of designing and implementing effective fundraising strategies for a variety of organisations. She led on the launch of a major campaign at Napier and provides strategic insight into the development of a new approach to fundraising at the Theatres Trust. Karen is professional and brings passion and integrity to her roles whether working with boards or high net worth individuals or building effective fundraising teams. She is committed to whatever role she endeavours to undertake and brings her own creative thought process and insightfulness to the table’.
Professor Dame Joan Stringer, Chair, Festival City Theatres Trust
Former Vice Chancellor Edinburgh Napier University
‘I feel very fortunate to have Karen Cairney as a coach, she has a very warm, insightful and professional approach, that enables you, and her, to get to the heart of any matter. She has a real talent for seeing your strengths, and helping you see them too. Karen has enabled me to identify the areas I need to work on in to become a more fully developed manager and leader, as well as gaining greater perspective on how to adapt my natural style and preferences to become a more confident and successful networker and communicator, adopting new characteristics and approaches, without ever losing the essence of me!
I worked with Karen through a period of organisational change, when I was finding it difficult to find my voice as a leader, and help my team to negotiate their way through the transition to new remits, roles and team members. Karen helped me to focus on a positive, professional and honest approach, and to make time to listen to individuals and team concerns.
I particularly appreciate how Karen sets “homework” and signposts resources during each session, which has led to me having a greater set of tools at my fingertips, more confidence in my own abilities, and has allowed me to track my personal development. She has a very positive energy which means I always leave a session feeling challenged, but energised, more confident and capable. I would wholeheartedly recommend Karen as a coach!’
Katrina Castle, Head of Widening Access, Edinburgh Napier University