Dr Derek Mowbray

Dr Derek Mowbray is an Organisation Health Psychologist who specialises in the primary prevention of stress in the workplace. His approach is to create the workplace as a ‘fabulous place to work; a place where people get out of bed in the morning and run to work’.


Part of the processes involved in prevention are those required to strengthen the resilience of organisations and individuals. He is an Independent Technical Expert in psychological wellbeing to the European Commission, and was previously a visiting Professor of Psychology at Northumbria and Gloucestershire Universities. He is a director of MAS and OrganisationHealth.


Derek has a doctorate in the psychology of leadership, is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, a Chartered Scientist, and Fellow of The Institute of Health and Social Care Management. In 1988-89, he researched and was author of a joint BPS/DoH funded Review of Clinical Psychology which was judged by The Psychologist as one of the best pieces of research of that decade. 


In his previous life, Derek was a chief executive or equivalent of three National Health Service (NHS) organisations, including St. Thomas’ Hospital in London. He has also been a chief executive of a Charitable Trust. He combines his practical experience with his academic work to provide clients with sound practical solutions to the psychological problems created by organisations and people in the workplace.


The Leader, manager and individual role in strengthening resilience.

Resilience is a choice, largely based on attitude combined with an imperative to overcome an adversity because it is in our best interests to do so. Add to this is our assessment of adversity and the situation in which it occurs, and an assessment as to our skills in overcoming the adversity.

Resilience is the ability to rise to, and overcome, potentially stressful events without experiencing stress oneself. For this to happen, we have to transform a potential threat into a challenge, as a perceived challenge energises us to take action.

This presentation will describe the problems for which resilience is a possible solution. Why being resilient is important. What resilience is and how it differs from coping. The four pillars of resilience and how these need to be either maintained or enhanced for resilience to occur. The role of leaders in creating the working environment that both reduces the need for resilience and enhances the reasons for choosing to be resilient when the need arises. Some ideas for strengthening the foundations of personal resilience will be introduced.

Dr Derek Mowbray