The Institute of Human Development was founded by Adrian Gilpin in 1994 with funding from Kent Training & Enterprise Council.

In our formative years we were a traditional training and coaching provider, running short workshops around team development. Adrian’s speaking engagements, largely driven by the publication of his book, led to a flood of requests to coach, rather than train, teams and boards.

This led to the development of our High Performance Coach Training courses which we opened to public access. After many iterations of this programme, a sudden insight led to the creation of Adrian’s Pathfinder System which remains at the core of everything we now do.

In 2010 we were engaged by IBM to design, lead and facilitate a Partners’ conference on Fearless Behaviour. This had a huge impact on the individuals and on IBM’s performance - significant financial returns were achieved as early as day two of the event when one partner tested the ideas with a client and secured a multi-million pound win before lunch. This got IBM’s attention and led to the development of our first Fearless learning platform which was cascaded to 20,000 IBM-ers.

We made pitches we would not have made previously, won business we would have lost, built relationships we would not have built, and resolved issues which would likely otherwise have allowed to drag on. General Manager, IBM Global Business Services.

We quickly progressed to thinking about how we could cascade these simple and transformational ideas out into society as a whole. Our Be Fearless Global project is the manifestation of this vision.

Adrian Gilpin

Adrian Gilpin BW1.jpg
  • Founder & Chairman, IHD

  • Founder & Editor in Chief, Be Fearless Global

  • Author of the core materials in Be Fearless

  • Author, Unstoppable - The pathway to living an inspired life

  • Co-Developer of IHD’s proprietary psychometric / personality indicator

I believe we are witnessing a very significant shift of consciousness that is causing millions of people around the world to seek better ways to balance life with meaningful work, and better ways to unlock the potential of people in all parts of society.

This is leading to a growing public and business awareness of the critical importance of wellbeing, mindfulness, self-belief, and confidence. These topics are my obsession.

Over the past 25 years I have studied many of the traditions of ancient wisdom, a number of schools of philosophy and the latest developments in behavioural science. I think of these as three great rivers flowing into each other and throwing up rich nutrients in the white waters of their dramatic confluence. Bit flowery? But what has emerged is a small set of very simple ideas and concepts that can be quietly transformational for almost anyone.

Adrian on LinkedIn


This is my account of how I first discovered the world of personal development by finding myself at an event run by a larger than life American motivational speaker who had us walking across burning coals at 1 am at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham, in the rain.

My deep scepticism, triggered largely by the style of the event, was gradually eroded as I discovered I had found a source of inspirational ideas that I could use immediately to raise my game. I put the concepts into practice the day I returned home, and immediately started to reap extraordinary rewards in by business and in my general sense of confidence.

I wanted to “translate” many of the ideas into a style and language that would work better in UK and Europe than the Californian approach that I had been exposed to.