Finding Your Voice - Mamoona Shah, Events Lead, Executive Education, Marketing and CommunicationsBy Rachel Harper
Exec Ed Events Lead, Mamoona Shah, shares how events at the School have helped her both to find her voice and share the power of our brand.
Tell us a little bit about your journey before LBS...
I’m a Londoner, whose parents came to the UK and this great city because of the opportunities it offered their future family. Growing between cultures made me very curious, fascinated by the world, wanting to make it fair and quietly challenging the status quo- something that still spurs me on.
I was the first girl in my family to go to university and straight after I landed a job with an arts school, where I got my first taste of events. I then moved on to a great job with a foreign affairs think tank where I worked with many interesting people including royalty, presidents, prime ministers and icons. The next job, working with social enterprises and government was personally very fulfilling because I was working for a cause I really believed in. To this day I am proud of the part I played in helping build the social enterprise movement in the UK and globally.
What brought you to LBS?
A great event provides an opportunity to create a moment, connect a community and start important conversations and I felt that at LBS I would be able to do just that.
My first role here was leading on our brand events including the flagship event - the Global Leadership Summit. In this role I put on some great events - highlights include events with a number of leading academics, political leaders and top CEO’s. I now oversee brand and business development events for Exec Ed, which include LBS Live and the HR Strategy Forum.
How has LBS helped you to find your voice?
My “find your voice” story is about LBS, the power of its brand- and just how it gave me the opportunity to create a platform for one particularly powerful conversation, with the President of Iceland at the 2013 Global Leadership Summit.
The theme that year was the crisis on leadership - five years after the financial crisis. Josef Ackerman – one of the most controversial leaders at the time confirmed as the opening keynote and I needed a big close. Doing my research I wanted to bring the story of Iceland into the conversation so I half-jokingly suggested the President of Iceland. Before I knew it, I had found a link (through a staff member), the stars aligned and we had him! It was unbelievable.
Then on the day, President Grimsson arrived at the start, even though he was speaking at the end, mingled with our 600 guests and then finally took to the stage. The hall was enraptured by a fascinating 45 minute conversation. I have never seen or heard a reaction like that before.
This is a small clip from the event which doesn’t really do the conversation justice but it moved the dial. People were listening, we made news headlines and much of what was covered back then still resonates today.
How would you sum up LBS?
LBS is a place of ideas and possibilities, a place that makes things happen - and we should all take advantage of this!