Meet the Team

Co-Founder and Managing Director, Headhunter, Coach

Martin Grady


An experienced search and selection professional, Martin started working life in the Royal Navy, dealing with technical writing, HR, payroll, discipline and grievance. While there he learned the value of a clearly-defined and clearly-communicated process – a skill which very much benefits The Thrive Team’s clients and candidates today.

Since leaving the Navy, Martin has worked as a senior HR and Talent Acquisition professional on both sides of the fence – as a search consultant with major agencies as well as in HR and recruitment management roles with global, world-class organisations in the automotive engineering, marine and defence sectors.

Martin has achieved fellowship level of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals (FIRP). He is also a coach accredited with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) and holds a Diploma in Transformational Coaching. He is a licensed practitioner of the Mental Toughness and ILM72 (integrated leadership model) assessment tools.

Co-Founder, Coach, Trainer, Mediator

Ali Grady


Ali has many years of experience working with and coaching senior leadership teams. She’s held senior HR positions in organisations including Boots the Chemist, the NHS and the BBC, where she spent 18 months heading up the small specialist team investigating bullying and harassment allegations across the organisation.

Having supported a number of managers and employees on complex cases where mental ill-health was a concern, and having had experience of managing her own mental ill-health at work, Ali has developed a passion for helping to raise awareness of mental ill health in the workplace through training and workshops.

Ali is a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) Instructor, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and a member of the British Psychological Society. She holds a Certificate in Workplace Mediation.  She is also a coach accredited with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) and holds a Diploma in Transformational Coaching. She is a licensed practitioner of the MTQ (mental toughness) assessment tool.

Paul Metcalfe
Non-Executive Chairman

Paul Metcalfe

With more than 38 years in the recruitment sector, Paul has long held a passion for identifying talented professionals and empowering people.  He credits the talented people around him as being key to his success in growing a number of recruitment businesses, and it is his belief in the importance of people that underpins his business and ways of working.

As Paul says, “I have always believed business is all about people; fundamentally businesses fail or prosper according to the talent they have in place.”

Throughout his career, Paul’s goal has been to create and nurture market-leading businesses and opportunities for the people within them.

PA to the Co-Founders

Steph Taylor

Steph joined the business in March 2022, primarily to support Ali and Martin and ensure The Thrive Team runs as smoothly as possible at all times. She’s responsible for assisting the co-founders with their day-to-day work as well as running special projects.

Steph is known as The Passionate PA, because she is exactly that! Steph provides freelance business support to a selection of ambitious business leaders, helping them achieve momentum and results. Steph launched her own business in November 2021 after a thoroughly enjoyable and varied career.

Steph spent 20 years working her way up the ranks at Sainsbury’s from ‘checkout girl’ as a teenager to HR Change Manager. Steph has a true passion for people and so understands Ali and Martin’s business in every way.

To learn more about Steph visit: https://www.thepassionatepa.co.uk/meet-the-team/steph-taylor/

Technical Adviser

Richard Wenham

M.A., C.Eng, F.I.E.T.

Richard has held significant P&L responsibility at Board level in a number of advanced technology businesses. A science graduate from Cambridge University with postgraduate qualifications in Finance & Management, he has particular expertise in the automotive and transport sectors. His track record in business development includes step change growth through innovation and diversification, programme delivery, change management and increasing profitability by identifying commercial opportunities and overseeing cost control.

Experienced both technically and commercially, Richard has led teams and projects based in geographically diverse locations including Asia, US and across Europe and is proven in understanding cultural considerations and the needs of the marketplace.

Richard is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Institute of Technology. He serves as a member of the IET Automotive & Road Transport Systems Committee and on the Governance Board of InnovITS. Previously he has been a member of the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Electric Vehicle Steering Group and the IET Charging Standards Committee, in which capacity he has been asked to advise government.

Stephen Grinham

Stephen Grinham

As an executive leadership coach and mentor, Stephen sees his role as a personal and independent thinking, listening and learning partner uniquely invested in his clients, their career success and wellbeing. A specialist in helping people step up to leadership, manage change and develop high-performing cultures, Stephen has a patient and empathetic approach borne of extensive personal experience of these challenges. 

Stephen provides confidential support and encouragement while challenging clients to develop their existing leadership strengths. His passion and purpose is to help unlock a new way of thinking, learning and leading, while inspiring clients to drive their ambitions beyond perceived limits, with the freedom to create a life that is rewarding, balanced, and satisfying.

Stephen has extensive international experience developing and leading businesses and multidisciplinary teams with diverse cultures in the UK, Germany, France, Singapore, the Middle East and the USA, with a track record of developing talented people in advanced technology organisations for over 40 years. 

He began his career as an engineering apprentice and, after qualifying as an electronics design and development engineer, progressed into various technical leadership roles. He eventually transitioned from technical leadership into mainstream general management and executive leadership. He has worked at organisations of all sizes within commercial, defence and service sectors and with numerous government organisations globally. 

As a graduate of the Meyler Campbell Mastered Executive Coaching Programme, Stephen now focuses on leadership coaching, mentoring and consulting, applying extensive practical experience of strategic and operational leadership, delivering transformational and sustainable change, identifying and growing talented people and building exceptionally performing teams.

He combines an ability to recognise and develop the potential of individuals with great empathy and personal experience of the context and challenges of organisational leadership.

Sarah Harvey
Coach, Trainer, Mediator

Sarah Harvey

Chartered FCIPD, FInstLM

Sarah is a leadership coach, values and culture consultant, training facilitator and workplace mediator. A highly experienced HR leader and senior consultant, she has worked with over 50 organisations and thousands of managers in the public, private and third sectors.

Sarah is the author of ‘Savvy Conversations: A practical framework for effective workplace conversations’ (Librotas 2020). The book is about creating workplaces and relationships that get the best from people and help people to be their best selves. It brings together compelling human psychology and communications research into a no-nonsense, practical framework and easy to understand model to show how to have the right conversations, in the right way, at the right time.

A Chartered Fellow of the CIPD and Fellow of the ILM, Sarah has a Post Graduate (Level 7) Diploma in Personnel Management and a Post Graduate (Level 7) Diploma in Leadership Mentoring and Executive Coaching. She has a passion for psychology and its application in the workplace. In 2017 she began studying for a BSc (Hons) with the Open University.

Coach, Trainer, Mediator

Johanna Hooper

Johanna is an independent workforce consultant and leadership coach specialising in Strategic Workforce Planning and the psychology of peak performance.  She is passionate about ensuring organisations get the best results from their workforce and that individuals have the greatest opportunity for peak performance. 

Johanna is a Chartered Manager and holds a CMI post graduate qualification in strategic leadership and management. She is a licensed practitioner of the MTQ (mental toughness) and ILM72 (integrated leadership model) assessment tools and a workplace mediator.


Alison Hughes

An International Coaching Federation ACC certified coach, Alison is inspired by helping people effect positive change – through their careers and their personal lives. Her approach is supportively challenging, non-judgmental and always positive.

As well as her coaching expertise, Alison’s own career path and life experience contribute to her credentials in these areas. Her twenty-year consulting career includes over ten years in executive search, coaching and advising senior professionals on how to achieve their career aspirations. She built and ran her own search business in the City and has enjoyed many fruitful life transitions of her own.


Cara Moore

Cara is an ICF Professional Certified Coach, had a former career as a Chartered Surveyor but developing people not property is her passion! In a nutshell she helps people get better at what is expected of them and to succeed in their roles. In particular, Cara coaches senior individuals to develop their leadership style and gravitas, improve self-confidence, self-belief, decision making, holding difficult conversations, impact and influence, developing an authentic personal brand, networking, emotional intelligence, building relationships and managing teams. She also coaches on resilience and well-being.

Her coaching style is calm, insightful, results-focused and warm; she provides a safe and trusted space for individuals to reflect, be vulnerable, overcome limiting beliefs, focus and develop an actionable plan for what needs to be achieved. Cara will challenge her clients, asking uncomfortable questions so they can see fresh perspectives and how they may be ‘standing in their own way’. She creates a Thinking Environment® for them to think clearly and independently and to elicit breakthrough thinking and new solutions.

Cara has a special interest in Diversity and Inclusion, harnessing the diversity of thought from individuals in teams to foster creativity, innovation and growth. She also believes in ‘Human’ leadership which values care and respect for individuals, ‘humanising’ organisations to engage employees and improve business results.

Coach, Trainer

Geraldine Joaquim


Geraldine spent over 20 years working in international marketing before deciding to change direction and retrain as a clinical hypnotherapist and psychotherapist specialising in workplace stress management, with a focus on the neuroscience of the stress response system.  

She has gone on to deliver workshops and talks in diverse organisations including ParkNow, a technology division of BMW, and the University of Surrey. She has featured as an expert voice in the media including Men’s Health, BBC News, Metro, HRNews and Glassdoor. She was involved in ‘How to Break into the Elite’ a BBC2 programme due to air in June 2019, and ‘The Why Factor’ from BBC World Service.  

Having worked in a stressful corporate environment herself, Geraldine is keen to promote stress prevention as the key to good health: it’s not about avoiding pressure but how we cope that makes the difference, and she has an innate belief that everyone deserves to be happy at work – which in turn benefits employers. 

Geraldine is also a personal therapist who helps individuals work through periods of mental ill-health, develop long term coping strategies and get back to enjoying life.  She holds a CIM DipM from her marketing days as well as a Diploma in Solution Focused Hypnotherapy and the gold standard Hypnotherapy Practitioner Diploma. She works to CNHC requirements (Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council, a government register of complementary healthcare practitioners).


Beverley Coghlan

MSc, PGDip, PG Cert, RGN, Specialist Trauma Therapist

Beverly is a specialist trauma psychotherapist, having started her clinical career as a nurse. She has a degree in Physiology, a masters degree in Biopharmacy and a master’s degree in Health Psychology. She has spent twenty years working in clinical research, both in the pharmaceutical industry and in academia.

Beverly’s works clinically with people who need help overcoming PTSD and other anxiety disorders; as well as those with depression and with severe and enduring mental health problems. Her work main treatment modality is ACT (acceptance and commitment therapy) which comes under the umbrella of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). In addition she is trained in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) to enhance her work with with people who have experienced trauma.

She has a special interest in working with people who have experienced any kind of trauma – single incident (such as road traffic accidents and sexual assault) or enduring (such as domestic/childhood abuse and work related trauma). 

Beverly runs training sessions for professionals and regularly lectures final year and masters psychology students at The University of Chichester.

She is accredited as a cognitive behavioural psychotherapist with the BABCP and registered as a general nurse by the Nursing and Midwifery council (NMC) and bound by the ethical code of conduct of both professional bodies. She is an accredited member of the EMDR Association for UK and Ireland and also the European Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.  


Elizabeth Barley


Elizabeth’s work as a Health Psychologist, Registered Nurse and academic reflects her passion for promoting wellbeing and addressing health inequality. As an academic she has developed, delivered and tested programmes to help people manage difficult emotions, adjust to living with ill health and to help people to make lasting healthy lifestyle choices. She has published over 50 papers in peer reviewed journals and has authored a text book: Health Psychology in Nursing Practice (Sage).  

She works clinically with people with a wide range of problems including cancer, long term conditions, ‘medically unexplained symptoms’, depression, anxiety, stress and unhealthy lifestyles. In her private therapy practice, she uses an holistic approach to explore how thoughts, feelings, behaviour and bodily reactions work together and to facilitate changes to help people feel and function better. She uses evidence-based behaviour change and problem-solving techniques informed by acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

Elizabeth is also an experienced lecturer and trainer and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.  Through her experience of undertaking senior management roles in the university sector, she has contributed to a number of staff and student wellbeing initiatives.

Jacqui Wilmshurst

Jacqui Wilmshurst

MSc PhD CPsychol LCGI

Jacqui is a passionate, innovative learning and development specialist and applied psychologist, experienced in delivering products and programmes in the UK and globally. She is a qualified and established consultant with a focus on personal development, resilience, neurodiversity and mental health at work.

Over the past few years she has worked with clients in the UK, Ireland, Germany, US, Kenya, Russia, Colombia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

She is a Chartered Member of the British Psychological Society in the Division of Academics, Researchers and Teachers (Crisis, Disaster & Trauma and Occupational Psychology Sections).


Keith Sammons

Cert IoD, FIRP, BA(Hons) Economics

Keith’s career is based predominantly in recruitment and training, where he has gained valuable insight into differing workplace cultures and developed a keen interest in promoting wellbeing in the workplace.

His extensive experience in training, mentoring, managing and developing teams across organisations has given him the opportunity to work with individuals from all walks of life.

Keith has long held a passion for developing people and his chief reward is seeing them progress however small the steps, never more so than when he has helped long-term unemployed individuals find employment. In many of these cases he supported individuals who were experiencing some level of mental ill-health.

In recent years Keith has volunteered at SAFE (Southampton Action for Employment), which furthered his desire to support vulnerable individuals. He subsequently discovered Mental Health First Aid (MHFA), became a Mental Health First Aider and then an Instructor through MHFA England.

This qualification has enabled him to use his skills to educate others around mental health, where he is an advocate of dispelling the stigma around mental ill-health and enabling all to discuss it openly.


Clare Davis

Bachelor of Financial Administration, Dip Ed, CIPD

Clare has a passion to help middle managers and teams build relationships to enhance and support their business when they have communication blocks and mental health concerns. Clare has a strong background in middle management, having progressed quickly to middle management in the recruitment industry, then delivered quality coaching, training and facilitation to middle managers for over twenty years.

Clare has worked with professional services organisations in law, recruitment, medical supply, financial services, the public sector and other industries. While working with middle managers Clare found she was helping them develop coping strategies around mental health issues as well as developing their management skills. This prompted her to qualify as a Mental Health First Aid (Adult) Instructor through Mental Health First Aid England.

For many years Clare has run charity events to support JDFR and Brain Tumour Support – both charities which are close to her heart. Her brother died suddenly of a brain tumour 5 weeks after diagnosis, and at the age of eight her son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Both traumatic situations led to Clare supporting close family members with mental ill-health.

Clare believes that “once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life. People are amazing and we need to care for them in every way, on the inside and out.”

Trainer, Mindfulness Teacher

Adrian Thomas

Adrian is a Mental Health First Aid Instructor, Mindfulness Teacher and Practitioner and Resilience coach. He came to Mental Health training after spending the majority of his career holding senior management roles, delivering high-end hospitality for major blue-chip companies and organisations in all sectors. 

While doing this work he regularly witnessed how the demands on individuals negatively impacted their mental health and himself experienced poor mental health. He now supports organisations, particularly those in the charity sector, as well as individuals, to develop their skills around mental health and to reduce stigma and discrimination in the workplace.

In 2018 Adrian moved to delivering the MHFA training full time and is approved to deliver the full suite of Adult and Youth MHFA courses. He is passionate about the topic and has trained over 2000 delegates so far. Alongside this Adrian delivers ‘Lived Experience’ talks for organisations on his own journey with mental ill health. As a mindfulness practitioner Adrian has recognised and utilised the practice of mindfulness to support his own wellbeing and draws on the skills gained to support others in their journey of wellness.

Adrian advocates that both self-care and a strong understanding of the risk factors for poor mental health are key to thriving in all areas of life and work. This, in tandem with education around mental health, is essential to reducing stigma and discrimination. This ethos carries into his personal life where he manages his own mental wellness through running; he has now completed 75 marathons or ultra-marathons including the challenge of running 52 of them in 52 weeks.


Marion Hewitt

Marion is an award-winning coach and trainer.  She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and is actively involved as Chair of her local branch.  Her experience of strategy-level HR in a range of industries and sectors helps her to ensure all the work she does is supported by a strong business case.

Marion works as a one-to-one coach with managers to drive their growth and performance, and has a particular passion for facilitating workshops to help managers develop their own coaching skills and understand the benefits of implementing a coaching culture. 

She is a Motivational Maps Practitioner and is licensed to deliver DISC personality profiles.  Both of these are powerful tools to enable individual and team self-awareness and effective working.

Marion is an accredited mental health trainer with MHFA England, working to raise awareness of mental health.  This interest has evolved from the dual perspectives of wanting to increase recognition of the business case for supporting those with mental health issues, rather than treat the symptoms; and recognising the wider importance of raising awareness of the challenges of living with mental ill health – both for the individuals and those supporting them.


Ian Hurst

Ian Hurst is a highly skilled and creative communicator. Having spent many years in a corporate industry across various roles such as Business Development, Training Manager and Global Relationship Leader, Ian has built a wealth of knowledge and expertise which lends itself effectively and confidently to be an Associate Trainer with The Thrive Team.

Following seventeen years in corporate Insurance, in a world where he never felt able to bring his whole self to work and after facing his own mental illness, Ian took the Mental Health First Aid course, of which he describes as changing his life. 

Driven by the content and motivated to make a change to other people’s opinions and knowledge of mental illness, he trained to become an MHFA instructor and left his corporate job, and has never looked back. He describes Having the opportunity to train individuals in a relaxed and engaging environment and feeling the energy and desire that radiates from them as a deeply rewarding experience, with feedback from his sessions always reaffirming that he made the right career choice, with his own life richer as a result. As Ian says, “both MHFA and Suicide First Aid are great courses that everyone deserves the opportunity to attend.”


Elly Johnson

Elly is a qualified Mental Health First Aid Trainer and is passionate about helping to reduce the stigma and discrimination that surrounds mental health while supporting people to live positive and meaningful lives. She has twelve years’ experience as a registered nurse working in the UK and abroad and enjoys meeting people – from senior managers of international organisations to self-employed personal trainers – through delivery of her Mental First Aid courses. 

From early on in her professional life Elly has had an interest in overall well-being which has resulted in her always thinking about people holistically whilst caring for them. She has her own personal experience of mental ill-health and, unsurprisingly given the statistics, has many close friends and family members who have been affected directly or indirectly by mental ill-health.

Elly enjoys all things health and well-being related, taking regular exercise and enjoying being out and about in nature. Socialising with family and friends is also high on her priority list. and this year she has taken up learning the piano with a goal to be able to play jingle bells by Christmas for her 3 year old son.

Monty the mobile coaching office
Mobile Coaching Office


Beginning his life in 2017 as a delivery van in Glasgow, Monty then transitioned to his new life as a mobile office and outside coaching resource for The Thrive Team. 

Monty’s expertise lies in safely transporting coaching clients to beaches and areas of outstanding natural beauty so they can take time out of their usual work space and routine and be inspired by nature and the outdoors. 

Outdoor coaching offers many benefits. Being outdoors in nature is good for our wellbeing and gives us an opportunity to take notice and be present, which helps the coaching process through clarity of thought enabling decision making.  

Monty is fully kitted out to ensure our coaches have everything they need to work away from the office, including a fridge and kettle, and he likes nothing more than to welcome coaching clients with a hot cuppa!

Building successful organisations

Organisations the world over are waking up to the importance of happy, healthy, resilient teams. But how do you build teams and cultures like this?