Avril Henry

Travels from: New South Wales

Passionate about diversity, leadership and cultural transformation

Categories: Business Speakers, Women in Business

Full Presenter Profile & Bio

Internationally acclaimed keynote speaker, Avril Henry is ready and willing to pass on her knowledge to your team. Passionate about diversity, leadership and cultural transformation, she is straightforward in her approach ensuring every audience member understands and implements her strategies.

Several years ago, the Australian Armed Forces found themselves needing assistance as younger generations saw no merit in having a career in the navy, army or air force. They were receiving fewer and fewer inquires and the talent pool depleted massively.

The government turned to Avril for help in understanding why this was occurring and what could be done to mend it.

Completing a Ministerial Review for the Minister of Defence into Recruitment and Retention in the Army, Air Force and Navy, Avril was appointed as a Strategic Advisor to the Chief of Navy. She also was able to join the Navy’s People and Capability Committee, being the first female and only civilian on the committee.

In 2013, Avril was appointed as a Senior Advisor to the Chief of Army on gender diversity, values and cultural reform, coaching senior officers in those topics to ensure a balanced and inclusive workplace for all. Her extensive work with the government has seen the number of recruits increase and an overall cultural transformation.

Throughout the past decade, she has won the Lifetime Achievement in HR Award. Avril has also been a finalist for Best HR Director at the Australian Human Resources Awards and the Sydney Business Review’s Business Woman of the Year Award. Her impeccable achievements have been recognised by the New South Wales Government as part of International Woman’s Day.

Aside from all her incredible work, Avril has been featured across multiple television and radio shows as the resident expert on workplace relations and HR. She has also contributed to newspaper articles and publications and authored and co-authored several books.

Avril’s latest book ‘Leadership Revelations ll How Australians Lead in Crises’ topped the Australian Financial Review BOSS Magazine’s best brain food books in 2012.

When she isn’t busy influencing workplaces across the nation, Avril enjoys raising money for several charities by completing adventure runs.

The perfect speaker for any business event, Avril Henry speaks passionately and openly about the importance of creating diverse and strong teams. She is highly sought after for her views on leadership, organisational change, gender differences and intergenerational issues facing workplaces. Avril has spoken to a range of industries including Finance, Retail, IT and Legal Businesses in countries around the world.

Speaker Topics

Engaging and Understanding All Generations
Each generation in the workplace has different expectations of the organisation, career development, learning and development and their leaders, and they are motivated by different things. Understanding these differences and harnessing the uniqueness of each generation enables managers and leaders to motivate and manage each generation for maximum employee engagement, productivity and performance.
Leading the Future Workforce
In the year 2050 there will be rapidly ageing populations and workforces in educated societies, global skills shortages and population growth confined to the 50 poorest countries in the world. Will you be prepared? Business models, strategic workforce planning and leadership styles will need to adapt now to ensure sustainable, corporate socially responsible and profitable businesses in the future.
Opening Our Minds to Diversity
Diversity leadership is about understanding the value and strength of difference. It is about harnessing the strengths of gender, age, culture, disability, flexibility, and different ways of thinking, working, managing and leading. True diversity leadership results in creativity, innovation, and an environment where employees are encouraged to be the best they can be.
Self Leadership: The Power of One
You cannot lead others unless you know how to lead yourself first. Self leadership is about choices, self awareness, self belief and backing yourself. It is about taking care of yourself, before taking care of others. Self care leads to self preservation and a greater ability to lead others successfully. It is about the Power of One.
The Leader of The Future
What will it take to lead the workforce of the future? By 2020, 40 percent of the workforce will consist of Gen Ys, and Gen Zs will then be part of the workforce. Generation X will be the new senior managers and Baby Boomers will dominate boards in the private sector. This keynote is based on extensive interviews with over 100 successful leaders and future leaders and will give you a detailed insight into the characteristics required of future leaders.
The Recipe for Success: Emotional Intelligence and Resilience
According to Harvard Business School research, the greatest predictor of success in the future will not be in an individuals IQ, it will be their EQ (Emotional Intelligence), and their resilience. Are your people, and is your organisation emotionally intelligent and resilient?


Avril was an excellent presenter, challenging our conservative thoughts on good leadership


Avril is a fantastic presenter – energetic and engaging. She captivated a large audience of people leaders with her insights into Gen X and Y and the challenges and opportunities in managing them


The feedback has been terrific, the participants appear really motivated and inspired and much of that is thanks to your contribution

NSW Health

Avril Henry - Women in Business

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