Karen Gately

Travels from: Victoria

Author, speaker, advisor and educator within human performance and leadership

Categories: Business Speakers, Leadership, Women in Business

Full Presenter Profile & Bio

Karen Gately is a highly regarded thought leader in the fields of human performance and leadership. She is the author of 2 books, The People Manager’s Toolkit: A practical guide to getting the best from people and The Corporate Dojo: driving extraordinary results through spirited people. 

A passionate optimist with an unwavering belief in the power of the human spirit, Karen brings a fresh perspective to what it takes to lead people and teams to reach the peaks of their potential. Karen’s approach is deeply rooted in the 25 years she spent training and teaching karate. 

The youngest person in Shukokai karate awarded a 1st dan black belt at age 14, Karen went on to be graded to 3rd dan after many more years of dedicated training and teaching. A multiple times winner of state, national and international titles, Karen was also a highly accomplished tournament karate competitor. 

Over the span of her corporate career, Karen has worked in client service, strategy and planning as well as quality management leadership roles. 

In 2006, after eight years with The Vanguard Group where she was the Head of Human Resources for the Asia Pacific region, Karen founded Ryan Gately, an HR consultancy company in Melbourne. In 2018 it became Corporate Dojo. 

Together with her team, Karen works with organisations large and small across a broad range of industries to support them to build and leverage talented and energized teams. 

Karen is a prolific writer and media commentator - a regular contributor to leading publications such as the CEO magazine, AFR, Company Director, HR Director Magazines, The Age and Australian, Management Today and In The Black. She enjoys writing extensively for well-regarded publications with her views on both life and business

Karen also has a weekly radio breakfast segment with Power FM South Australia and is often invited to share her expert advice for broadcast media including The Today Show, Kochie’s Business Builders, Sky Business News, Ticker TV, ABC radio, 2GB, among others.

Speaker Topics

Black Belt Leadership
Karen walks audiences through how to be a Sensei to inspire, coach and optimise impact. Discover how to deal with the tough stuff well, break through barriers to success and lead through tough times.
Audiences develop their mental and emotional strength, as well as discover the tools to powerful thinking. Karen helps individuals discover their unconscious bias and recognise the beliefs that are standing in their way.
Turn conflict into collaboration to bring people back together. With Karens help, discover how you can leverage collective potential and discover the power of diversity. Learn how to manage an ageing workforce and the changing employee mix as well as effectively integrating, retaining and engaging with generation Y.
Create your own dojo to build a high performance environment and discover the lessons from the dojo, including inspiring focus, discipline and personal accountability. Under this topic, Karen also helps audiences understand how to drive the customer experience through culture, build courage and accountability, and drive commercial outcomes through people.
Learn how to energize you team through great leadership and discover how energy is the fuel of success. Karen explains what team spirit is and what it really takes to get people engaged. She also explores the ideas of energizer and drainers at work.
Karen explains how to achieve results using the talent and energy of your team. She explores why recruitment is the back bone of your performance management strategy as well as gives audiences performance management approaches that actually work.
Self Leadership
Thrive both at work and in life, influence for success and optimise your impact


Karen was brilliant on stage, her content was excellent and her delivery truly engaging and energising.

Property Council of Australia

Thanks to Karen and congratulations on a brilliant presentation. Karen has a very special style and a quite unique capacity to establish an open rapport with her audience.

Janus Consulting

Karen Gately  - Leadership

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