Vanessa King

Speaker, writer, programme designer, positive psychology at work expert, architect of the10 Keys to Happiness. Board director Action for Happiness

Vanessa is passionate about bringing the best out of people and helping us get the most from our lives. She is a Board Member of the not-for-profit, Action for Happiness that was founded by the leading economist Professor Lord Richard Layard. She is their lead Positive Psychology expert and heads up their work with organisations.

Vanessa is the architect of the ‘10 Keys to Happier Living’ framework which is used around the world, she is the lead author of the psychological content of Action for Happiness’ extensive website. She designed and leads the Doing Well from the Inside Out Programme™ which applies the latest psychological research to increase employee engagement, build leadership capability and increase resilience and well-being, and she co-designed and delivered the Practical Ideas for Happier Living programme for communities. Vanessa is asked to speak around the world and she has been featured in the Sunday Telegraph, the Guardian and Psychologies magazine.

Vanessa completed a Masters degree in Applied Positive Psychology (including Appreciative Inquiry), under Martin Seligman at the University of Pennsylvania, one of a small number worldwide to have done so and she is trained as a facilitator on the University of Pennsylvania’s Master Resilience Training programme.

She has an interest in the connection between design and wellbeing and has worked with students of service design at the RCA, Ravensbourne and TU Delft, and with architects at Birmingham City University.

Vanessa is an experienced leadership, talent and organisation development consultant. Her consulting experience spans a wide range of organisations in both the private and public sectors, across the UK, Europe, US and Asia. She is a member of the UK Taskforce on Employee Engagement and Well-being.

Earlier in her career Vanessa qualified as a chartered accountant, working at Arthur Andersen and Coopers & Lybrand (now PWC) and had a spell in human resources in investment banking. In addition to her Masters degree and ACA, Vanessa has a BSc (Joint Hons) in Psychology and Zoology. She loves food and wine – especially shared with friends, yoga, design and being outside by the sea.
Is Happiness

Is Happiness Selfish?

Ultimately, above all else, what do you want from your life? Or, if you have kids, what do you ultimately hope for them? Ask most people these questions and the usual response is 'I want to be happy' or 'I want them to be happy'. Yet do we know what this really means and what it takes for what we focus on in our lives?
01/05/2015 12:54 BST
Three Steps to

Three Steps to Happiness

Is there a formula for happiness? Well not exactly - lots of things contribute to how we feel in the moment and about our lives overall, and it varies from person-to-person and over time. But if I had to pick a number - when it comes to happiness that might well be three.
20/03/2015 16:34 GMT