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Hunt

Interview with Emily Hunt

Emily Hunt has quite a story to tell. It’s a story about vulnerability, fighting and power. In 2015, she found herself naked and scared in a hotel bed next to someone she had never seen before and with no memory of what had happened. Today, she is fighting to get justice. Read her interview and learn more about her and her speaking career.

What gave you the courage to come forward with your story and seek justice?

I’ve always done a lot of speaking for work – usually about trends, politics or communications. But in late October of 2017 I found myself quite suddenly on a stage, filling in for someone else at the last minute, and I went for it. I spoke from the heart. I started talking about what had happened to me and how I want justice.  And really, that first audience I told my story to gave me the courage to launch the crowdfunding campaign and go public. They listened. They listened so intently and compassionately that they made it possible for me to speak out. Afterwards, everyone came up to me and asked me what they could to help. That moment changed everything for me. It showed me that without a doubt, from vulnerability comes a power like no other. And it also showed me that people can be quite amazing if you let them.

 

What’s your opinion of the #MeToo movement?

I think it’s important to remember that this started from a call on Twitter and Facebook for those who has been sexually harassed or assaulted to post “Me Too” so that people might get a sense of the “magnitude” of the problem. And suddenly, it was everywhere. The magnitude of the problem became really obvious – and from that, with people talking out in the open about what happened to them – change started to happen. It’s been an amazing few months.

 

How do audiences gain from your keynote presentations?

I talk about a variety of things – so it’s a little different depending on the topic! But, on the surface, I’d say that they probably gain perspective and perhaps some hope.

When I speak about the role of Anger in modern society or about growing intolerance, I help audiences understand that the moment that we are in is completely different to where we were 10-15 years ago. In order to understand anything about what is happening now, we need to understand people’s behaviour, their attitudes and their lives in this moment. I help audiences to grapple with big shifts in the way that people approach life. For businesses, it can change the way they approach their customers (or employees). For a less corporate audience, I can help decode what’s happening around us to make sense of the world.

Obviously, when I speak about vulnerability and the power to change the world, it’s very different. I help audiences to see their of vulnerabilities – and the vulnerabilities of those around them – as a source of strength. I help them to tap into that strength and transform it into power. We all have the ability to change the world if we want to. Sometimes it’s doing something like I am doing now, but sometimes it’s just recognising that being kind to someone could really help them to make the world a better place.

 

Why do clients typically hire you to speak?

As a data storyteller, clients usually hire me to speak because I bring the world to life based on facts and figures, but tell it all in a way that it isn’t dreadfully boring. I can explain what is happening in the world in a robust way – without anyone really needing to start at graphs, charts or slides.

When I speak about vulnerability, power and changing the world: they hire me because of my story and the fact that I am out there trying to change things. My story proves that grassroots campaigns still can work, that anyone can get a meeting with MPs if they try hard enough, and that we all have the power within to do what needs doing.

 

Who or what inspires you most?

Probably a bit cliche, but definitely my daughter. She’s too young to know the details of what I’m doing right now – but she gets the idea that “mummy is starting a charity to help put more criminals in jail”, and she’s really proud of me for it. Given all of the meetings that I’ve been having with MPs, she’s even decided that perhaps she wants to be an MP when she grows up. And amazingly, she’s already developing her legislative agenda. This is not someone who I can let down. So if I don’t change things now, before she grows up, what world am I creating for her?

 

What is the most unique experience you have had as a result of your job?

Oh dear – as someone who has done quite a lot of travelling for work over the years, I have a pile of stories. It’s hard to pick just one! It might be the time when I conducted research interviews sat next to a medical outreach tent in rural Madagascar, or it might have been speaking with women in Saudi Arabia about gender roles, or it might have been when I was everywhere from Kuala Lumpur to Buenos Aires asking people about corporate reputation, or maybe it was the focus group I ran in San Francisco on GMOS.. amongst people who spend more on organic food.

I’ve worked for everyone from Apple to Unilever, from an armed rebellion (on the right side) to a Royal Family. I have way too many stories!