Chairman of 6 Nations Rugby Ronan Dunne on tackling comms in a crisis and engaging with impact

Delete Delete Engage

Jun 22 2022 • 36 mins


Ronan Dunne is Chairman of Six Nations Rugby and has been a hugely successful telco leader on both sides of the Atlantic. Between 2008 and 2016, he was CEO of O2, the UK’s largest wireless operator. He then moved to the US to lead Verizon Consumer Group where he was responsible for 100 million customers and built the first 5G network.

These were the headlines from a fascinating conversation with Ronan which explored a CEO’s view of communications, storytelling and engaging with impact.


(1.20) On whether charisma is a natural trait


(2.29) On his role as a ‘chief cheerleader and storyteller’


(3.56) On adapting is comms style for different audiences


(5.55) On creating a blockbuster story with chapters of your own rather than being the witness to someone else’s achievements


(6.36) On managing crisis comms and surviving a grilling from Sky News’s Kay Burley


(10.03) On why it’s important for leaders to be transparent, authentic and not afraid to show vulnerability


(11.07) On how he overcame his struggles when he first became O2’s CEO


(13.37) On letting us into “the CEO secret” and preparing to speak at big events


(17.07) How observing others has informed his approach to influence


(19.20) On spotting and nurturing talent and shaping “the most diverse leadership team in telecoms in the world”


(22.06) On his new role of Chairman of Six Nations Rugby and great leaders and communicators in sport


(25.28) On the importance of curiosity and how it can help leaders engage more effectively


(27.30) On honing his social media approach by having a pint with 20 Twitter influencers


(29.13) On his lockdown learnings that still apply in today’s hybrid workplace



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