Gayle Hudson

I love working with The Staff College. It’s the shared values, the community and variety of work that hit the spot for me.

Starting as a member of the Coaching community, I’ve more recently worked with other associates to co-facilitate on a couple of the Leadership Development Programmes and some Action Learning Sets. I really enjoy working collaboratively with other associates, there’s always so much to learn. I’ve also run a couple of sessions for the Blue Sky Thinking Festivals.

Since setting up on my own in 2019, I work mostly as an associate with larger organisations and have found a good blend of coaching, training, and consultancy work.

I’m a generalist with a broad background in the public and third sector. The golden threads than run through my career are around social justice and equality, working with individuals or systems to help people find their voice. I’ll never want to be the expert in the room, but happy to facilitate others thinking.

I started my career as a Community Service Volunteer coordinating a Youth in Action project. I then went on to work for CSV (Volunteering Matters). It was the early days after the 1992 Community Care act and we were developing some fantastic creative projects mostly around independent living, where volunteers were supporting young disabled adults or care leavers to live more independently. I went on to set up a children’s disability charity, Friends for Leisure (still running today) creating mainstream friendship and leisure opportunities for disabled children and young people.

After having my own family, I worked for one of the first rural Sure Start programmes in the early 2000s, before moving into Social Care regulation. I developed the first Service User and Carer Participation Strategy for the Social Care regulator in Wales and was the Wales’ lead for the development of the first UK National Occupational Standards for social care commissioning.

Latterly, I moved into higher education, working for the Open University as their Widening Access Manager for Wales, which was all about engaging partnerships and collaborations to support pathways to and through higher education for underrepresented groups.

While at the OU I got involved in coaching and training, did my first coach training and was part of their internal coaching pool for many years.

I’m really interested in taking a coaching approach to leadership development and organisational culture shift. I’m also interested in neurodiversity, I work as ‘sub-sub-sub’ contractor for the DWP’s Access to Work Scheme, coaching folks who are neurodivergent. Having slipped through the net during my formal education, I have more recently started to embrace my own identity as a dyslexic adult and am starting to feel ok with saying things like “sorry, I’m not able to read that quickly in the moment, but I can get back to you” which is super empowering!

Interesting facts – My husband and I run a small bed and breakfast, we keep chickens and often have a trainee Guide Dog living with us too.