Expert in strategic conflict resolution
Founder and Managing Director, Questions of Difference (1996-present)
Author, Cash in on Conflict (2006)
He is someone who gives people a powerful shock to their imagination and helps them get curious enough to follow their passions.
Charles Irvine grew up in South Africa during the height of apartheid. He developed his belief in working with conflict for positive outcomes whilst acting as a peace monitor between ANC, Inkata and the army. In 1996 he left South Africa and went on to build Questions of Difference – a UK based niche consultancy with a turnover of over £1million per year.
Charles works as a strategic business consultant all over the world having worked with over 30,000 people across 24 countries. Charles’ focus is on Partnering, Strategic Management and Leadership, Organisational Transformation and Conflict Management. His innovative approach is informed by his work in South Africa.
Charles has worked on projects from top-end strategic consultancy right the way through to pro bono work. From a £9 billion Public Procurement Programme in the UK and the USA to a Pan African Leadership Programme spanning 19 African countries as well as the UK to working with students in Integrated Education in Northern Ireland.
Since founding Questions of Difference, Charles has built a formidable reputation for helping senior management and board members to deliver results by paying attention to the long and short-term outcomes for key stakeholders, including staff, clients and the organisation. Charles’ main business strategy is to work with organisations in a way that builds internal capability and draws on the existing strengths within organisations. One of his specialities is working with groups of leaders in their own environment where he is able to draw on a unique combination of strategic business consultancy, leadership, project and conflict management, team dynamic and inter-personal communication expertise. Unconventional and passionate are terms often associated with Charles’s style and approach.
In 2006 he published his book ‘Cash in on Conflict’ which introduces the ethos of Partnering – a radical approach to positively exploiting differences between people in organisations, communities and in our daily lives. Adopting a Partnering attitude means working with the reality that the differences between people can be the greatest source of inspiration for you and for them. The book demonstrates how to achieve the changes you desire and at lightning speed – it contains tools and common sense approaches that are easy to apply and stories that bring them to life.
As a result of Charles’ experience and innovative work in facilitation and Partnering business models, he was appointed Professor of Transformational Dialogue at the University of Middlesex Business School. His work with Middlesex will aim to drive future thinking on how organisations co-operate for ‘both-gain’ outcomes.
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