Sarah Willcox


Sarah is the founding director of Fairisle, a consultancy specialising in strategy execution, change management, and organisational development.

Fairisle works with clients to bridge the gap between strategy and implementation so they can deliver real, meaningful benefits. To this end, our approach is client-centred and inclusive. We:

- Ensure a client’s strategy is clear, feasible and well understood so they can be sure they are on the right path to realising their ambitions.
- Use Agile methods to support client teams in planning and delivering the right changes and benefits at the right time.
- Problem solve and remove obstacles to progress, drawing on our tried and tested techniques to address issues in strategy delivery, such as resistance to change.
- Support teams by managing processes on the client’s behalf whilst they acquire sustainable skills to deliver benefits for the long term.
- Design and facilitate one-off workshops and workshop series to help organisations acquire the skills necessary to successfully navigate change and strategy delivery.
- Offer one to one coaching for strategy delivery and change leadership.

Key to Sarah’s approach is her commitment to working in a client-centred way, supporting teams and individuals to create, own and deliver the change they want to see in their organisation. Flexible and positive, Sarah is an effective team builder and problem solver. A certified mediator, she is also an intuitive negotiator with excellent listening and facilitation skills. She is warm, versatile, organised and creative. Sarah combines the ability to hold a vision with the commitment and energy required for effective delivery.


Fairisle has worked with organisations from the charity sector and local government, as well as social enterprises, CICs and SMEs. Sectors include, but are not limited to training, education, homelessness and tourism.

Our clients are happy to provide a recommendation or references on request, and you can view client stories and testimonials on our website.


BA (Hons) English in the School of English and American Studies, University of Sussex
Masters in Higher Education Policy and Management, University of London
Certified Scrum Master
Certified Scrum Product Owner
PROSCI and PRINCE practitioner
Certified Mediator (Globis


Prior to setting up Fairisle, Sarah worked for 20 years in the Higher Education sector, primarily in research management, culminating in her role as Head of Research Support at the University of the Arts London in 2010.

Assignments while at Fairisle include:

- Working with a major UK University to enhance its research grants management processes, leading to significant cost savings and efficiency improvements.
- Leading on the review of process and system provision for a large UK homelessness charity, to ensure systems supported their clients in the best ways.
- Introducing a social skills-sharing enterprise to Agile methods, helping them to deliver on their strategy, make best use of their knowledge resources and strengthen their provision to clients.
- Implementing a wide-ranging strategic refresh and implementation for a prominent digital media and design university.
- Collaborating with a prominent apprenticeships provider to facilitate large scale workshops and webinars to apprentices and managers on core skills for navigating change in the workplace.