In 2012 Katie and four other women rowed across the world’s second largest Ocean covering 5,000kms from the Canary Islands to Barbados. With no outside assistance and no sight of land for 45 days, the women braved 50ft waves and survived on dehydrated food and desalinated water whilst rowing (naked) on a two-hour shift system all day and all night. With equipment malfunctions, huge storms, sleep deprivation, sea salt sores, only one seasoned rower in the team, no home comforts and a bucket as a toilet.

Katie shares her captivating story of how they smashed two Guinness World Records! They are:

The fastest female crew to row across the Atlantic Ocean.

The first female crew of five to row any Ocean.

Katie is a British national who was born and brought up in Brunei. She went on to study Financial Economics in the UK where she started her career in an International Bank. Katie climbed the corporate ladder in the same company over an eight-year period working in various locations in the UK and Dubai, where she has now been based since 2005. Katie went on to be a Director of a UAE based Finance House and later worked as a Sales Director of a Consultancy Firm. In 2011, Katie decided to take a career break and joined the RowForFreedom team raising awareness and funds against Human Trafficking.

Katie has strong business acumen with a tenacious attitude towards tasks. She is often referred to as a natural leader and an inspiration to others. Katie now has her own fashion line called Boho Princessa and is a Motivational Speaker.



Rowing Boat
KMs of Open Ocean
days at sea
outside assistance
World Records





Katie speaks about her experience within her team and how they went from being non-rowers to Guinness World Record Breakers in what is known as the world’s toughest endurance race.

“Our focus on aligning our goals and our core values was the start of our team building. Individuals had to demonstrate: commitment, determination, hard work, passion, positivity, a can-do mentality and open communication.

Getting to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses was so important to ensure we filled gaps and we could also pull the right resources together in life and death situations whilst on the ocean.

Being stripped back to absolute basics, there was no room for ego’s out on the ocean and there was certainly no time for us to start to get to know one another. We needed to have an effective working relationships on dry land before we set off on this adventure.

The build up to our departure involved an eight-month period of intense training and preparation. We worked hard to find solutions to team problems and ensured that ever-changing roles were always clearly defined.

The outside world only saw our success when the media announced our recorded breaking Atlantic Row. What people didn’t see was the preparation it took for us to get to the start line.”

The techniques used within this extreme adventure can easily be transferred to the corporate world. Katie delivers these key messages in her captivating story to inspire others.

“You can do what I cannot do. I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things” Mother Theresa



A good leader is honest, courageous, authentic, passionate and inspiring. We all have these qualities in us but the challenge is to make sure that they are always present. A combination of competence and consciousness creates a good leader. As we become more conscious, our effectiveness as a leader increases.

Katie speaks of how each team member stepped up to be a leader in their own right whilst working together as a team. The key here was to gain commitment. Clear roles and responsibilities were agreed based on individual strengths within the team.

“Showing commitment and dedication to the end goal was so important and we regularly challenged one another to make sure everyone was as committed to the crossing in equal measures.”

Katie speaks of how serious and high risk rowing the Atlantic really was. With one third of those who attempt an Ocean crossing ending in failure, this challenge was not to be taken lightly.

The lives of the team members were literally in each other’s hands. Lack of commitment wasn’t an option. The Ocean doesn’t give you any room for excuses!

These same principles can easily be applied in the corporate world. Katie speaks of the importance of gaining buy in, acting with integrity and being transparent with open and honest lines of communication.

“Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.”



Why would you CHOOSE to row across the Atlantic Ocean with no outside assistance for 45days?!

Katie speaks about the motivation behind her decision to join this all female crew to take on the world’s toughest endurance race. And how this motivation gave her focus and determination to get across the finishing line.

“As we get older having a “new experience” in our daily activity becomes less than when we were a child. As adults we have to actively seek out new experiences to ensure that we are continuously developing as an individual.” Says Katie.

Katie is a strong advocate and encourages others to “get out of the comfort zone” and learn new skills to stay alive and become a more confident and capable individual.

The row took place to raise awareness and funds to help fight Human Trafficking. The victims within the Human Trafficking industry have no choices. We had every choice to be on the boat and that was a massive privilege that doesn’t come along every day. The suffering we felt was nothing in comparison to those who don’t have their freedom. This was a massive motivation as there is always someone who is in greater need than you. Being selfless and putting others before you has the power to make this world a better place.

Katie speaks of how an experience like this soon changes your perspective on life.

By going through this physical and mental challenge it made Katie realise how insignificant we are in comparison to Mother Nature.

“If you want something bad enough you will find a way, if you don’t you will find an excuse!”



As humans we only use a very small percentage of our full potential. Growth is so important to feeling alive and passionate and to also building new skills to make you a more confident human being. To grow we need to get out of our comfort zone. To achieve new things we must do something we’ve never done before. Katie speaks of how it is scary being exposed to new experiences and how she still feels fear. “It’s how we respond to that fear that matters. Our instincts will warn us that we are at risk and we will make a decision based on “fight” or “flight”. We can either choose to face the fear or run away from it.” Katie believes in being brave and facing fears and being very conscious and tuned in when weighing up the risks. “To take risks they must be analyzed and calculated. Never enter into a new experience without doing your research. Weighing up the risks versus the reward is so important and training yourself to do this will help you in life to make good decisions efficiently.” “If it’s failure that you are scared of, then don’t be as failure brings you lessons which are often more valuable than succeeding.”



If you fail to plan you will inevitably plan to fail! Katie spent her early years of her banking career advising small to medium sized businesses. Katie would work together with her clients to help create their business plan. Entrepreneurs often have the vision and know their goals. Putting pen to paper makes it real and people accountable. Katie and her team did the same with their planning for their row. The overall common goal was clearly defined with a precise mission statement. This process also helped establish the work ethics and team culture. Daily actions were monitored and reviewed to ensure they were on track to achieving their goals. Katie speaks about the value of planning and preparation. Eight months were dedicated to the planning and preparation process and it only took one and half months to carry out the actual physical rowing journey itself. Success comes from consistent daily actions, with a clear objective in mind and a flexible yet determined approach.


"The only constant we have in life is change."



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