Jay Guilford

Founder & MD of CoWorks Leadership Training Specialists, Former Executive Trainer & Developer of SPARK for Cirque du Soleil

How to hire Jay Guilford

Contact the Champions Speakers agency to provisionally enquire about Jay Guilford for your event today. Simply call a booking agent on 0207 1010 553 or email us at [email protected] for more information.

** We do not accept requests for autographs, signed merchandise, fan mail, birthday messages or any other non-commercial contact with the speakers or acts. Each speaker on the website may not have necessarily worked with Champions in the past but are known to perform such engagements within the industry.

Jay's official speaking topics are listed below:

Create-Ovation: Three Keys to Harnessing Creativity and Innovation Among Leaders & Teams 

Drawing upon his many years collaborating with performers, directors, and technicians across various Cirque du Soleil shows, Jay shares insights on what it takes to nurture creativity and to continually innovate. In this talk, Jay uncovers, and then debunks, three myths that keep leaders and teams from tapping into their full creative power. Audiences discover that — no matter what their role or industry — we all have the ability to devise new, exciting, innovative products, services, and solutions. We only need to be audacious and unwavering as we bring our shining, inspired ideas to life.

The Diversity Quotient: The True Business 'Why' Behind DEI

By highlighting key factors — such as globalization, consumer trends, and the rise in remote work which has created an increasingly distributed workforce — Jay reveals that an organization’s future success requires its leaders to develop DEI fluency now. The aforementioned factors make it imperative that organizations adopt DEI initiatives not just to appease marginalized employees, but to ensure that it can attract top talent and maintain a competitive advantage. Jay also discusses emerging trends, such as hiring for cognitive diversity and employing differently-abled people, to help audiences update their understanding of what it means to have a truly diverse workforce. Attendees will discover how widening their aperture on DEI can positively impact their people, productivity, and profit.

New World. New Leadership: Rethinking the Way We Lead and Interact in the New World of Work

From mastering the art of virtual feedback to inspiring team members you rarely see in person, Jay outlines the skills that will help us meet the challenges arising from shifting trends in work. Jay draws on his experience advising leaders and teams during the Covid 19 pandemic to provide audiences with useful perspectives and approaches. The insights shared in this talk will help audiences meet the moment we are all facing and succeed into today’s new world of work.

Walking Through Walls: Discovering Your True Power. Living Your Highest Potential 

In this talk, Jay shares the tale of his migration from the inner city to the Ivy League — and how he went from sleeping on floors and living on food stamps to working with leaders in Fortune 500 companies. Through Jay’s combination of personal anecdotes and professional insights, audiences will discover that — though the circumstances may be unique to each individual — facing challenges in life is universal. Listeners will learn how to shift their perspective, thus transforming the inevitable stumbling blocks we will all encounter in life into stepping stones that aid us in achieving our goals.

Wow Factor: Connecting Core Values, Leadership Behaviours and Business Outcomes 

In this talk, Jay shows how — in today’s war for talent and in the midst of “The Great Resignation” — developing soft skills and living up to core values are musts. Beyond merely avoiding scandal, developing a strong leadership and company culture helps organizations attract top talent, nurture creativity among team members, and improve engagement among an increasingly distributed workforce. Drawing on his work advising executive-level leaders and namesakes of brands, Jay shares the powerful results organizations can see when its leaders live up to their core values — which Jay refers to as the Words On the Wall (WOW). Audiences will learn how small changes in core values and leadership behaviors can have huge returns for individuals and teams.

Jay is often booked as a speaker for a range of corporate events, read his latest feedback below. 

"Jay is a powerful and passionate speaker.  He delivered a dynamic, inspiring, and timely message to our 2022 HR Wellbeing Summit attendees.  In his talk, Jay balanced providing data-driven insights with anecdotes from his work with teams from large companies.  Our attendees walked away with approaches they can immediately apply in their work environments. Most importantly, our attendees left Jay’s session feeling empowered and inspired." - Julie, President & Founder, HR at Heart

"Jay’s message was powerful. For our 2022 Leadership Summit, Jay helped our team gain clarity about our core values and leadership competencies.  Jay drew upon his work with several Fortune 500 companies to provide perspectives that challenged our attendees to think in new and different ways. In addition to anecdotes from his professional experience, Jay weaved in case studies and other data-based insights.  This combination of stories and stats resulted in takeaways that our team members could immediately apply to enhance the ways they interact with each other and the ways they lead their teams." - Wilbur, Chairman & CEO, Milhouse Engineering and Construction

"For our 2022 Leadership Summit, Jay provided keen insights to our senior leaders.  The case studies and data included in Jay's presentation proved highly relevant to our group.  In the follow-up Q&A, Jay shared insights, as well as, the foresight that addressed concerns of specific team members.  We had a tight window to get our event off the ground.  Within a 10-day turnaround time, Jay was able to deliver our brief.  He went above and beyond by providing a recap video for our leaders which proved to be an excellent touch for keeping us focused after the summit.  This video summarized the main ideas he shared and suggested short- and long-term actions we can take as a leadership team to prepare for our next exciting phase of growth." - Dolla

"Jay’s 2020 presentation for our team was highly valuable.  He created a dynamic slideshow that engaged our audience and sparked many comments and questions.  To ensure that his message really hit the mark, Jay held calls with me and other leaders. On these calls, Jay worked hard to understand our needs.  Then, from his notes, Jay created a well-designed virtual talk. At the end of his talk, Jay responded to questions from our team with thought-provoking comments. Jay’s responses gave our leaders solutions for the situations some of them were facing." - Nicole, Director of Human Resources, Walker & Co

"Jay’s 2020 talk for our group was engaging and inspiring. His presentation on ways to nurture creativity and innovation included all-original ideas and insights that helped our attendees think outside of the box.  Jay took the time to craft his message to meet the specifications of our brief.  Further, he went above and beyond by following up with our stakeholders via a short video that recapped the takeaways for our attendees." - Lindsey, Spectacle Strategy PR

  • 2015 - Executive Trainer & Educational Content Strategist for the Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group 
  • 2012 - Community Engagement Programming of the Resident Shows Division for the Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group
  • 2010 - Director of Teaching Interns for Northfield Mount Hermon 
  • 2002 - Dean of Students for Northfield Mount Hermon 
  • 2000 - Founder & Managing Director of CoWorks Leadership Training Strategists
  • Led the development of the SPARK Cirque du Soleil training programme