Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success.

Henry Ford

Alison J Cowan develops global leaders who risk failure in different cultures when they refuse to adapt their style, and provides HR solutions to complex people problems. She speaks fluent English, French and German.


Executive Coaching

Executive coaching is one of the business world’s most transformative tools for building the critical capabilities within leaders, assisting them to overcome the critical blocks that can cause leadership derailment  and boosting individual and organisational performance.

As a coach trained at the prestigious Henley Business School, who is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF), and receives regular supervision, Alison specialises in coaching global executives in English, French and German who risk failure in different cultures when they refuse to adapt their style. She has coached 170 leaders from 24 countries across Europe, North America, Asia Pacific, Middle East, Russia, and South Africa.

Executive coaching is effective in many business situations, whether it is tackling an individual performance issue or providing crucial assistance at times of difficulty. Often the difference between success and failure, the outcomes benefit both the individual and organisation, and justify the investment. Alison’s Executive Coaching programme is client -centred and tailor-made to suit each individual’s development needs. Executive coaching is also a key component of Alison’s Leadership Development 2016 programme.

HR for Business

Being fleet-footed in today’s complex HR environment is essential for staying ahead of the curve. As a consultant with 16 years’ HR experience, Alison provides practical HR solutions that make a real difference to your organisation because she has successfully dealt with the very same situations you face as an HR Director across the UK, mainland Europe, Middle East & Africa.

Alison can solve your HR problems and prevent them arising in the first place. She can lead your change management programmes or department re-engineering. She can manage complex employee relations matters. She can design and write HR policies; ensure your business is fully compliant with changing employment legislation; measure the business perception of HR and turn the function from process driven to a true business partner. She can reduce absenteeism, improve employee retention and ensure you have the right talent in the right place at the right time to grow your business.

Quickly diagnosing the issues and providing bespoke, robust solutions to complex issues is designed  to reduce the risks, protect your reputation, deliver cost efficiencies and provide a productive, engaged workforce.


Leadership Solutions

Alison’s Leadership Development Programme 2016 is an innovative, tailor-made, targeted solution designed to give your leaders the competitive edge. Road-tested across EMEA and Asia Pacific, the LD16 helps your people achieve their full potential, improving self awareness and strategic thinking, turning them into effective, high performing individuals leading highly-functioning teams to deliver business growth and long-term value.

The flexible programme is focussed on what works for you and your people.  This is what LD16 can do for your business:


Talent Identification

LD16 identifies the talent gaps that are critical blocks to your strategy, defines the leadership competencies needed and creates bespoke metrics to objectively measure current capabilities and behaviours. The talent audit identifies your HiPos.  A full suite of tools, including MBTI, Hogan Assessment, DISC/Thomas International, SHL OPQ32 and MRG 360, provides individual assessments of each leader’s strengths and weaknesses.


Building better leaders

LD16 provides collaborative single and multi-day workshops to develop core skills and competencies within your leaders. Cross-functional, cross-generational, cross-cultural groups fast-track development, supported by individual programmes and executive coaching to target specific development goals. Individual leadership action plans build resilience among emerging leaders and high potential candidates.


Benefits to your business

LD16 delivers effective leaders with core competencies, skills and behaviours aligned to the strategy of your business, leaders who inspire results-driven and fully engaged teams focused on performance. Protecting business investment and reducing recruitment costs, LD16 encourages leadership mobility and confidence, allowing greater business flexibility and opportunity for HiPos, satisfying your talent needs today and tomorrow.

Français / Deutsch

Bonjour et bienvenue.  Si vous souhaitez avoir ces infos en français, ou si vous souhaitez me parler ou m’engager pour un projet en français, veillez me contacter par e-mail ( ou par téléphone (+44 7714 217784) pour une discussion confidentielle en français. Merci.

Hallo und herzlich willkommen.  Hätten Sie gerne diese Information auf Deutsch oder wollen Sie mich für ein Projekt auf Deutsch engagieren, nehmen Sie bitte Kontakt mit mir per E-mail ( oder rufen Sie mich an (+44 7714 217784) um eine vertrauliche Diskussion auf Deutsch zu führen.  Danke.

Success Stories

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I worked together with Alison on a number of occasions mainly unusual, difficult and high exposure HR- and Ethics related matters which required the involvement of the legal department. Alison managed to handle these matters in a professional way with the right degree of sensibility required in the specific situations. She is an experienced and talented HR-manager and has a very positive attitude which is well balanced with her pragmatic communication style. Her excellent German language skills were highly appreciated by the German speaking colleagues in our company and facilitated best practice sharing and communication with the HR-managers of our German subsidiaries. I enjoyed working with Alison and would highly recommend her without hesitation.

Sebastian Gilcher, Region Counsel & Director Europe at Masco Europe Sarl

Alison is a highly dependable and outgoing HR professional who strives for excellence in all that she does. She is a people person who has a talent for developing a rapport with others at all levels within the business. Alison has a natural flair and ability to coach and support those around her. It is without reservation that I would recommend Alison and on a personal note she has been a superb Manager and supportive coach to me.

Sarah Leahy, Learning & Development Business Partner at Centro; Progression Mentor at Princes’​ Trust

Core Values

With honesty, creativity, objectivity and desire to affect lasting personal and professional development, Alison embraces her responsibility to contribute to a world where everyone can flourish. These are the values and commitments intrinsic to Alison; they underpin her relationships with everyone and every business she engages with and define who she is and how she works.

Honesty and Integrity

Developing trusted relationships that deliver success requires all stakeholders to be transparent, truthful and ethical in all interactions. Doing the right thing means understanding your business needs; being balanced and collaborative in approach; challenging accepted wisdoms; and offering bespoke solutions. It means treating each and every commitment as a promise, and being accountable for each and every action.

Trust and Confidentiality

In a practice built on the principles of helping people to overcome their fears and achieve their full potential, confidentiality is essential. An approach centred on the best interests of  organisations, leaders and executives requires the safeguarding of private and commercially sensitive information. That promise is at the core of developing relations which strengthen the trust and confidence between all stakeholders.

Equality and empowerment

People drive performance across a business.  In today’s diverse society, finding and developing the best talent means instilling in everyone the belief that they are truly valued and have the opportunity to actively shape the growth of your business, without barriers. Embracing a multi-national, multi-generational culture cultivates a socially-conscious environment where everyone can collaborate and succeed.



Alison has spent twenty years in the international business environment, working as an interpreter, creating commercial HR teams, leading organisational change and developing successful leaders across four continents.

As a human resources professional, Alison has worked for SMEs, entrepreneurial start-ups, Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 companies – and knows what great HR looks like in the fast-paced manufacturing, engineering, distribution and FMCG industries. She has an MSc in Strategic Human Resource Management and specialises in overcoming the challenges presented by multi-national, multi-generational teams across cultures. As a founder member of the Nottingham Business School Alumni Fellowship Scheme, Alison provides mentoring support to the next generation of business leaders.

Alison has designed innovative global leadership development programmes, identifying talent and building the capabilities of 170 leaders across 24 countries. She has coached high-performance, high potential executives in three languages.

Alison speaks native English and fluent French and German, having studied Modern Languages at universities in the UK, Germany, and the École de traduction et d’interprétation, in Geneva. She is a Chartered Member at both the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and Chartered Institute of Linguists and a member of the Institute of Directors and The International Coach Federation.  She trained as a coach at the renowned Henley Business School.