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My name is Ciarán Fenton. My first name, which is Gaelic, is roughly pronounced keir-rawn. My current curriculum vitae is set out below in a format you will recognise. Like yours, it doesn't explain fully who I am. It doesn't reveal why I love helping leaders and boards be what they can be and why I can, very quickly, cut to the core issues and in a manner which people can hear. Meanwhile, see annotations for clues.  

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Ciarán Fenton

120 Beaconsfield Villas, Brighton, BN1 6HE; +447966168874

Married; two children

2002 – present

Board effectiveness consultant



  • Specialist in advising main and operating boards, executive committees & function teams and family offices on managing the relationship between personal and organisational behaviour, strategy and purpose using one to one meetings, plenary sessions, workshops, off-sites, video conferences, webinars, tools and workbooks

  • Clients include HSBC, BT, SERCO, Henry Boot, Shearman & Sterling UK, Latham & Watkins (Global); Radiant Law, Freedrinks, and D2D (Dentsu); NEDs, CEOs, and Family Offices

  • Developed The Fenton Method and The Fenton Model® over 15 years

  • Speaker and guest lecturer on leadership and board effectiveness: London Business School,  Bologna Business School, LBCamridge2, Association of Corporate Counsel, Global Legal Post, GC Futures Summit

  • Writer: The Seven Deadly Sins of Nascent NEDs; The GC-CEO Relationship post-Global Financial Crash: flourish or flounder; currently writing Small Change: Board Effectiveness in the 21st. Century and a weekly blog. 

  • Adviser/Supporter to charities: Blueprint for Better Business; Co-Operation Ireland; Dream Arts

After a painful process and help from others, I found my "voice" and courage to be vulnerable in writing and in talks about what I believe about board effectiveness, leadership and work in the 21st. Century ...


Hachette (Octopus Publishing Group)

Managing Director Digital Octopus


  • Repatriated digital rights from private equity-backed failed “dot com”

Negotiated my first sale and purchase agreement which involved as many tricky behaviour issues as intellectual property ones...



Managing Director ITN Archive


  • Turned around division of c 80 people responsible for managing daily picture needs of the newsroom and exploiting the secondary rights globally

I delivered a complex behaviour change programme with measurable results and involved at least one "Brubaker"moment...


Pearson Plc.

Financial Times Television

Commercial Director


  • Responsible for negotiating television deals globally using the FT brand and with partners including The World Economic Forum

Had a great time. Met Nelson Mandela...


Guardian Media Group

Business Television Limited

Managing Director


  • Following a period as Chief Accountant promoted to MD responsible for Business Daily and The Business Programme for Channel 4

Survived my first board room "tough moment" and learned from my boss the power of not bluffing in a negotiation. 


Strongbow Film & Television Productions, Dublin

Management Accountant


  • Worked on film and television projects including John Houston’s last film The Dead, Eat The Peach and When Reason Sleeps

Learned that if you are near "the money" you are near power and behaviour changes with power.

1982 – 1985

Golden Vale, Cork

Trainee Accountant


  • Trained as a cost and management accountant

Didn't want to be an accountant. Hated every minute of it except when I learned how to use Lotus 123...



  • 1978 – 1982 University College Cork, B.Comm (Hons.) Major: Accounting & Law, Minor: Management

  • 1972 – 1978 Patrician College Tullow and Ballyfin, Leaving Certificate

  • Primary Schools in Fermoy and Kanturk Co. Cork, Ireland

But the main reasons I am who I am are contained in the joys and sorrows in the stories behind these three bulett points, just like you. 

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