Working with Clarissa
Clarissa is an internationally renowned speaker, writer and consultant on effective education. With more than twenty years’ leadership experience at the top of the UK independent education sector, she has coached and mentored leaders and educational decision-makers throughout the UK and on four continents.
Recent speaking engagements include a presentation to governing boards and school leaders in Dubai hosted by RSAcademics, an evening event organized by leading search firm Wilton&Bain on collaborative attitudes to parenting in the workplace, and an on-stage discussion at Fenwick, Bond Street with Helena Morrissey on attitudes to women in leadership. Clarissa also gives talks within a wide variety of club and society speaker programmes such as the Hurlingham Club and as part of diversity training initiatives in the financial industry and other businesses. Listen to her talk to business leaders on developing the new generation of women in leadership with Hanover.
As a consultant, mentor and coach Clarissa has worked with aspiring leaders and chairs of boards at all levels. Based on her own experience, she believes that the right coaching relationship provides the most powerful and enduring professional development that any leader can have. In an uncertain world, the clarity and confidence that coaching provides have never been more important.
Working together: a coaching partnership
- Diagnostic appraisal
- Individual coaching for Directors and Heads
- Individual and group coaching for senior leaders and those aspiring to headship
- Advice for governing boards managing a leadership transition
Clarissa Farr Consulting Limited works in partnership with school development professionals RSAcademics to build and develop leadership capability in today’s and tomorrow’s school leaders.
RSAcademics is renowned for its work in identifying the best leadership talent. The company’s trusted experts now manage a high proportion of new senior appointments, across the UK independent sector and its international practice is rapidly expanding.
The appointment of excellent people is only the start. Boards serious about performance and growth invest in developing and strengthening their leadership teams, whose challenges change all the time. They know that long term, this is the single most cost-effective way of maximising the school’s performance overall.
As a qualified coach, Clarissa heads a small team of experts who drive that powerful continuing development, providing bespoke appraisal and coaching, for individuals and teams, across the UK and internationally.
Clarissa says this:
Being a head is one of the most complex leadership roles there is. Research shows that highly successful business leaders could learn from heads, who typically use a wider range of leadership styles, contributing directly to the performance of their staff. Headship has always been stretching - how much greater is that challenge now?
Explore before committing with a conversation on Zoom or Teams. We look forward to talking to you.
John Leary-Joyce The Fertile Void
Being a Head can be a lonely job, balancing the need to remain ‘in charge’ with moments when you are wondering how to keep yet one more plate spinning. I was privileged to be mentored by Clarissa for over a year and can say, without fear of contradiction, there can be no one better suited to providing the guidance, motivation, and emotional support one needs in a leadership position.
It is a rare person who, after an illustrious career, can still remember what it was like to be starting out and to listen and empathise without judgment or a hint of fatigue. A mentoring session with Clarissa feels like a combination of good counselling and focussed inspiration. Eminently practical, insightful and great fun, every session left its mark and I still use the notes and reflections from our discussions.
Tammy Howard, Head, Reddam House, Berkshire
On reading The Making of Her:
I laughed out loud when you described your experience of St Hilda’s…
it is from these setbacks, as you say, that we learn, show our mettle and thrive.
Jean Ritchie, QC
I had the great good fortune to work under Clarissa Farr’s leadership and know from personal experience how inspiring her mentoring can be.
She was a generous and thoughtful leader, receptive if I had a problem, or wanted to chat something through and open-handed with her ideas. She was attuned and attentive to professional potential in her staff. She certainly found professional direction in me I did not know I had.
Her great gift of listening with grace, her astute perception of people and her immense experience of strategy-building and leading schools make her ideally suited to coaching school leaders.
Headmistress, City of London School for Girls
Clarissa and I worked together for 18 months as I transitioned into a new company. She was open, challenging and always focussed on the positive impact and outcomes for the students. Clarissa has a calm and considered coaching style, which helps the flow of dialogue and the unearthing of deeper connections. Clarissa and I worked together on a vast number of areas, from strategic planning, to result improvement, tracking and the marketing of success.
She is focussed on recording agreed actions and has a gentle and persistent approach to ensuring that agreed targets are delivered. We worked both in face to face situations and through video conference. We quickly built rapport, which fostered meaningful impact fast.
Headmaster, Sotogrande International School
Clarissa has been fabulous! She has been a constant source of encouragement, challenge and empowerment.
I have valued enormously the conversations we have had – she knows exactly the right questions to ask, has a great depth of experience and has a wonderful way of getting to the nub of issues.
I come away from every meeting or phone call with Clarissa with a refreshed sense of focus, usually a solution or two to something I had been concerned about and a few positive action points to add to my to-do list.
Head, St John's International School, Belgium