Episode #26: Caroline Casey – The magic of possibility

19 March 2019

Caroline Casey

In this episode, I talk to Caroline Casey.

Caroline is a social entrepreneur, international speaker and leading authority on diversity and inclusion. She is the founder of the Valuable 500 campaign, and is committed to building a global movement to create an equal society for the 1.3 billion people in the world with a disability. 

In this interview, we talk about her extraordinary journey, the highs and the lows and what she learned from them both. We talk about why businesses are scared of the issue of disability, and how there’s a huge opportunity for those that step up to the plate to deal with it.

Caroline says she doesn’t believe herself to be inspirational. I, and a lot of other people I know, respectfully disagree with that assessment. She is a real force of nature and it was a huge privilege to have this frank and illuminating conversation together. I think you’re going to love this one.

Show notes

What did the world look like to the young Caroline as she left school and prepared for adult life? (2:02)

How did Caroline navigate through the world in her early years without realising how different she was? (4:54)

What was the factor that led Caroline to break through her early situation to become confident and successful? (7:38)

How did Caroline feel towards her parents when she discovered the truth? (11:46)

Why did she start off with a degree in Archaeology? (15:05)

How did she end up starting her career at Accenture? (16:25)

The moment when Caroline had to admit to the world what she’d been hiding (19:25)

The rock bottom moment that Caroline experienced, and the remarkable adventure it led to (21:00)

How Caroline ended up making her trip into something that would make a difference, and how it led to her very first breakthrough (23:34)

What are the obstacles that businesses have to overcome before they can embrace disability inclusion? (30:27)

What do the leading companies do successfully? (33:30)

What is the Valuable 500 and what is its call to action? (35:16)

What was the characteristic that pulled Caroline through the dark moments to get to here? (40:00)

If Caroline was to have another elephant-riding moment, what form would it take? (43:25)

What is Caroline’s personal purpose? (46:12)

One practical change Caroline would like to single-handedly bring about before hanging up her gloves (46:27)

Advice Caroline would give to her younger self (47:06)

Impressive change makers that Caroline has been inspired by (47:38)

What mistake has Caroline made that led to some better outcome or personal growth? (48:53)

What habit would Caroline most like to change? (49:59)

What book or books has had a powerful impact on her thinking or her life? (50:35)

What advice would she give to young people interested in making a difference to the world? (51:48)


Caroline on Twitter - https://twitter.com/CarolineBinc

The Valuable 500 - https://www.thevaluable500.com

Video of the Business Case for Disability Inclusion panel at Davos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SrSmhK_RqdY

Caroline’s TED talk https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YyBk55G7Keo

Books Mentioned

The Jungle Book, Rudyard Kipling https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jungle-Book-Rudyard-Kipling/dp/1978193726/

Rising Strong, Brené Brown https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rising-Strong-Brené-Brown/dp/0091955033/

The Gifts of Imperfection, Brené Brown https://www.amazon.co.uk/Gifts-Imperfection-Think-Supposed-Embrace/dp/159285849X/