Recommend Print

Women, Inspiration and Leadership




Date: Tuesday 18 March 2014, from 18.30 to 21.00
Where:The Institute of Directors, 116 Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5ED
Guest Speakers: Dame Helen Alexander, former President of the CBI and
Laurence Parisot, former President of MEDEF (French equivalent of the CBI)
Moderator: Simon Walker, Director General of Institute of Directors
Cost: £40+VAT per person; £60+VAT Special price for two




For further information, please contact Kim Darragon at
or on 0207 092 6642                               



Two exceptional women with extraordinary career paths in male-dominated worlds talk about the development of gender diversity in France and the UK with anecdotes from their own experiences, particularly as former ‘Boss of the bosses‘ and ‘Patronne des patrons’ in their respective and coinciding roles of President of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and President of Mouvement des Enterprises de France (MEDEF).   



Dame Helen Alexander, former President of the CBI

Dame Helen Alexander is chairman of UBM plc, the Port of London Authority (PLA) and Incisive Media. She is also deputy chairman of Esure Group Holdings, a non-executive director of Rolls-Royce Group plc, and senior adviser to Bain Capital. Dame Helen was President of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) until June 2011.

Helen is Chancellor of the University of Southampton and is currently involved with other not-for-profit organisations in media, the internet, the arts and education, as a director of the Thomson-Reuters Founders Share Company, the WorldWide Web Foundation, the Grand Palais in Paris, the Said Business School in Oxford and St Paul’s Girls’ School.  
Dame Helen was Chief Executive of the Economist Group till 2008, having joined the company in 1985 and been managing director of the Economist Intelligence Unit from 1993 to 1997.







Head and shoulders





Laurence Parisot, former President of MEDEF
(French equivalent of the CBI)

Laurence Parisot was born in 1959. She graduated from Nancy University with a Masters Degree in Public Law. She was awarded a Diploma by the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po) as well as a DEA in Political Studies. She was an assistant to the Cevipof’s (Centre d’Etudes de la Vie Politique Française) President from 1983 to 1985 in Science Po.

After joining Louis Harris and Associates in 1985, she was appointed General Director of the Institute in 1986. She left this position so as to become shareholder and CEO of l’IFOP ('Institut Français d'Opinion Publique) in 1990.

From 2005 to 2013, she was President of MEDEF (Mouvement des Entreprises de France).
She is a member of the Economic, Social and Environmental Council. She is member of the Board for BNP Paribas, Michelin, Coface and Fives-Lille.From August 2013, she has a weekly radio slot on Europe 1.

She has published many works:

« Besoin d’Air » Medef sous la direction de Laurence Parisot. Janv.2007  –  Editions du Seuil
« Un piège bleu Marine » Laurence Parisot &  Rose Lapresle. Sept. 2011 – Editions Calmann-Lévy
« Besoin d’Aire » Medef sous la direction de Laurence Parisot Fév. 2012 –  Apple Store

She is an Office of the l’Ordre National du Mérite and a knight of the l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur.





Laurence Parisot 0808 3resize



Simon Walker, Director General of the Institute of Director

Simon Walker became Director General of the Institute of Director in October 2011.

Previously he was Chief Executive of the BVCA, the organisation that represents British private equity and venture capital from October 2007.

Between 2003 and 2007 Simon worked at Reuters as Director of Corporate Communications and Marketing.  He was Communications Secretary to HM The Queen at Buckingham Palace from 2000 to 2003.  Earlier he served as Director of Corporate Affairs at British Airways and a non-executive director of Comair Ltd (South Africa).  From 1996-1997 Simon worked as a special adviser in the Prime Ministers Policy Unit at 10 Downing Street.

Read more



       Resize Simon - headshot          






About The Institute of Directors                                   
The Institute of Directors has long been recognised as an influential and respected membership organisation in the UK. With more than 100 years' success, we are measured by our members, who are some of the most skilled and experienced business leaders in the country, representing the full business spectrum - from start-up entrepreneurs to directors in the public sector and CEOs of multinational organisations.

The London headquarters of the Institute of Directors are housed at 116 Pall Mall. As well as being one of the most popular business venues in the capital with thousands of IoD members and their guests visiting the premises every week, the building is also a landmark of London’s great Georgian Heritage.

For more information, please visit
      Resize IOD           

© 2011-2017 Chambre de Commerce Française en Grande-Bretagne - All rights reserved

Site Login