Testimonials – see what my clients say about working with me


"I have worked with and known Sarah Fountain for over twenty years, in both a large corporate company, and more recently a smaller independent hotel company. Sarah’s strengths are her deep and thorough understanding of the hospitality industry, it’s diverse people, business types and guest profile. Sarah offers a great insight into the human resources side of the business, gets to know its people quickly, and delivers training and development plans to match current issues with programmes which make a difference and fundamentally delivers change and business improvement"

Jonathan Walker – Managing Director, Bishopstrow Hotel and Spa


"2022 marked the fourth year of Forest Holidays working in partnership with Sarah. She has done an outstanding job in helping us understand our people requirements and develop our people strategy. She works with pace, professionalism and perfection in a very engaging way. So far, together we have achieved a fantastic recruitment and retention strategy which was previously somewhat lacking, focused in developing a strong employee brand and employee value proposition leading to a significant drop in team turnover and increase in stability. Over the last 12 months, we have worked on our learning and development strategy and Sarah has developed and delivered a range of management development programmes for our teams across the business, with the pinnacle being the recent launch of our “Forest Holidays Academy” which Sarah has designed and will deliver in its entirety. I cannot recommend Sarah enough to any organisation looking to improve their people capability in any area."

Andrew Heath – Director of Operations and People, Forest Holidays


"We have benefited from engaging the services of Sarah Fountain for our leadership training over the last two years. Sarah initially worked with us on delivering the ‘Insights Discovery’ programme for our senior leadership team. Subsequent to this she has worked on delivering programmes to develop team effectiveness and project management skills, as well as developing the skill set of individual team members to better understand their own contributions and how they can work effectively in a team. The results of this have been very visible in the projects and ongoing work at the Hotel. It is noticeable that team members have used the Insights programme as we work on projects together and there is a much better understanding of each other in our daily work lives. She has also developed and delivered a Supervisors Development Programme to support our internal succession.  Aside from the specific training provided, Sarah has connected well with the team members and provided enlightening review sessions during lockdown and continues to be engaged and supportive for the aims and training plans we are developing for the Hotel."

Adrian Ellis – General Manager, The Lowry, Manchester


"I have worked with Sarah on several people development projects over the last few years and it is always a delight to work with her. She is always positive and lifts the spirit and mood in every room (or Zoom call!). She is genuine, has a fantastic wealth of knowledge of people management and is just brilliant at delivering her work! Her latest project was launching our very first Fast Track Management Development programme, which was successfully delivered entirely virtually during lockdown. Sarah took on this challenge head-on, showing adaptability and resilience. I would highly recommend Sarah as a must-have addition to any team."

Cliff Rendell – HR Director, Leyland SDM

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"Sarah brings positivity and sunshine to all that she does, fabulous energy and enthusiasm and has been incredible to work with over many many years initially as a colleague and now as a consultant.  Sarah has brought fresh thinking which has enabled the voco hotels brand team to consider different approaches when it comes to working better together.  We are a high performing team with high energy working at a fast pace welcoming several new team members recently.  Sarah has help us stay grounded, reminded us of our team ways of working help us build a team purpose and enabled us all to pause and reflect on our collective achievements.  With Sarah’s help we have also focused on the ambitions and goals that are still ahead of us bringing everyone together on this fast-paced journey by ensuring both the existing and newer members of the team understand the team dynamics more readily and transparently.  Sarah’s facilitation skills and support have been a huge benefit to the collective accomplishments of the voco hotels brand team in the last 5 years ! Thank you so much Sarah!"

Julie Cheesman – Head of voco™ hotels – IHG® Hotels & Resorts


"Over the past 5 years Sarah has been an invaluable support to Grafton Group Plc and the Group Internal Audit team. She has provided many training and coaching sessions to our group, and they have always been highly engaging and insightful. Sarah has an excellent knowledge and understanding of the Insights model and has helped us to apply it in work environment to enable us function more effectively as a team. She is always willing and able to tailor the content and delivery of training to meet our needs.

Sarah’s ability to connect with individuals and understand them has meant that the coaching sessions she has had with several of the team have had a positive impact on them and made a significant contribution to their development.  Personally, Sarah is a trusted advisor and always great fun to work with."

Simon Owen – Group Internal Audit and Business Risk Director, Grafton Group Plc

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"After working successfully with Sarah at IHG, as soon as there was the opportunity to involve her with developing the Team at M&T, I grabbed the chance. Sarah works with our team at all levels to develop their leadership skills, engaging with delegates in a fantastic way. Sarah has a genuine care for each person and this shines through, we get rave reviews for the development that Sarah delivers."

Peter Hales – Managing Director, Michels & Taylor


 "I had the pleasure of knowing Sarah before she started her own businesss, working together as colleagues in the corporate world.  Once I knew she had started her own compay I engaged in several properties for Sarah to help us with our internal team and leadership development.  Over a number of years Sarah helped my leadership teams develop and grow through a range of sessions, as well as 1:1 coaching for members of my exec team, which were both fun and extremely engaging. I have recommended Sarah to a number of colleagues in different sectors, so if you want to work with someone with years of experience, who delivers with personality, then Sarah is the one for you!"

Adam D.L Munday – Director of Operations – Ibiza Hotels


"Sarah has been a tremendous support to Turnkey in terms of her input and guidance in the development and implementation of a people strategy.  We are a long standing small business in rapid growth and required HR expertise to help drive a number of people related workstreams to help support the need for  increased headcount.  Sarah was quickly able to define the key areas of priority for us, from performance management, recruitment, renumeration, training and development, incentive scheme and the review of HR processes.  Sarah also skilfully lead the Insights Discovery programme for the business with a focused programme for the senior team which was very well received and then rolled out into the wider business.   Sarah was more than an adviser, she was embedded in our business and offered ongoing support following the implementation of the people strategy.

Her knowledge, expertise and approachable style worked really well, coupled with great enthusiasm and fun.  I would highly recommend Sarah as an HR business partner, she offers a wealth of experience and is a pleasure to work with."

Deborah Baxter – Chief Operating Officer, Turnkey IPS


"Sarah has vast hospitality industry experience and brings the same freshness, joy, and enthusiasm to every interaction today that she has always done. This combination of experience and passion is a heady and effective mix and can drive meaningful outcomes. A career at the sharp end in hotel people, culture, training, and development has given her real-world know-how and a toolbox to deliver outstanding results through her consultancy. Sarah will always be personally involved at every stage and her natural ability to engage with people makes them want to improve and deliver significant and lasting change."

Keith Griffiths – Head of Hotels, Pro-invest Europe


"Sarah is in a minority of HR professionals who really know how to drive the people agenda to add real value to the commercial strategy of a business. She knows how to quickly get under the skin of a business, understand process and culture and then implement actions that build on what’s already working well and implement what’s missing. Results driven, energetic and savvy – just what you need in an HR Consultant."

Jenny Atkinson – VP Talent and Resourcing EMEA (retired), IHG


"Sarah Fountain has been known  to me in a professional capacity for over 25 years, initially as a colleague, working effectively together on industry forums and committees and more laterally as a consultant.  Sarah bring energy, order, and a pragmatic, detailed and well organised approach to any activity with the HR spectrum.  She listens to the brief, sets clear project objectives, reviews and delivers to a high standard on time.  Her self-motivation and drive combined with extensive knowledge makes her a great business partner."

Moira Laird – Human Resources Director – Valor Hospitality Europe Limited


"I have had the pleasure of working with Sarah for over 25 years in a number of capacities, including participating in her leadership development programmes, co-facilitating learning events, and also on a 1:1 coaching basis. Sarah also supported me with the opening of a new City Centre meetings & conference venue. Being associated with global brand there were many considerations as well as meeting deadlines to achieve launch date and Sarah was able to manage these in a professional manner. From an initial meeting to discuss the brief, Sarah presented a detailed plan. It was appreciated that within the proposal there were a number of team-led modules, where Sarah would act as a remote coach, team development, management development and ongoing support after opening. In summary I would not hesitate to work with Sarah in the future or to recommend her for project or long term working solutions."

Vince Garrington – Managing Partner, C-Suite Business Management Group


"Having initially worked with Sarah in IHG and then latterly interacted with her as fellow HR Directors, I would not hesitate to recommend her on a consultancy basis.

Sarah has an exceptional eye for detail and a strong creative mind. Her leadership development and change management skills are real strengths and she has the ability to quickly integrate into any organisation and assess the requirements of the project. Her project management skills enable her to manage her work assignments at a very high standard and engage all relevant stakeholders in delivering the required results."

Susan Bland Managing Director, RBH Management

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