Karen Maher

Australia - NSW

Karen Maher is a workplace culture transformer. She is passionate about the prevention of bullying and sexual harassment and focuses on the fundamentals to inspire and transform cultures into great and productive places to work.

Her experience spans over 17 years, firstly as an employment and safety lawyer in Australia and the UK, and then through her own consultancy formed in 2010 and more recently as a keynote speaker. She has worked on over 300 cases from all parts of the process including legal, investigations, advisory and process improvement, including working with many organisations during times of crisis and even following workplace fatalities.

As an evolution of her experience, Karen has developed an innovative culture model SmartCulture®. This model is a world-first and includes effective strategies and foundations applicable to any organisation ready to evolve and transform their culture and go to the next level and get ahead of the game with engagement, retention, productivity and creating great, safe and respectful places to work.

Karen speaks and partners with a diverse range of industries and organisations. From the NRL to emergency services, retail, tech companies, hospitals, charities, manufacturing, legal and accounting firms, hospitality, government agencies, private schools, construction and mining.

Speaking topics

Transform Your Culture for the Future World of Work

Culture eats strategy for breakfast so let’s transform your workplace culture and get prepared for what’s next in the world of work.

After so much upheaval and disruption it is no wonder so many organisations went into ‘survival mode’. It is time to prepare for the future. Time to dust off the organisational ‘values’, refocus and take your culture to the next level with Karen’s proven SmartCulture® strategies.

During this presentation Karen will share the five fundamental components of the SmartCulture® model and how each one relates to your workplace culture transformation and ultimate success.

Key take-aways:

  • The five key components that add up to SmartCulture®
  • Understanding why and how Good Culture is absolutely Good Business
  • Why authentic leadership is vital to building a great workplace culture in this new world of work.

Workplace Bullying is on the Rise – Time to Put a Lid on it

Workplace bullying statistics in Australia were already concerning and now with all of the additional stressors arising from these challenging times, they are skyrocketing.

The negative impacts from poor workplace behaviours are simply enormous. They impact health and safety, morale, culture, productivity and so much more.

In this presentation Karen will share her insight and refocus your teams and leaders on the importance of respectful behaviours at work to minimise the risk of bullying and enhance your culture.

Key take-aways:

  • Understanding the key risk areas with workplace bullying and psychological safety
  • Key strategies to put a lid on workplace bullying, keep people safe and protect your workplace culture
  • Why prevention and authentic leadership are key to win the game against workplace bullying.

Saying ‘Goodbye’ to Sexual Harassment and ‘Hello’ to Respect at Work

The Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) recently released their final report on the landmark National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in the Workplace. According to the findings, we still have a very long way to go to eliminate sexual harassment at work in Australia. This work will not be easy, but it is necessary.

We must face these issues head-on, and Karen has devised ways to do so.

During this presentation, Karen will deep-dive into her proven strategies, drawing extensively on her seventeen years of experience in this space and offering actions that will drastically reduce the risk of sexual harassment within your organisation

Key take-aways:

  • The pivotal role of awareness and effective education in getting this right beyond #MeToo
  • The key learnings from the AHRC National Inquiry and what they mean in real terms for your organisation
  • 5 effective strategies and tools to guide your leaders and organisation on proactive leadership to prevent sexual harassment at work for good. It’s about respect and safety.


Karen Maher is an engaging communicator who is extremely passionate and well-informed; evident in the way she discusses topics and the breadth of the knowledge she imparts. We have had excellent feedback from many staff who attended the session, including our own CEO, about how the session was run. This session will allow us to cultivate a more informed, respectful workforce.
Juliette Salmon, HR Coordinator
Ainslie Group

Communication with Karen was so thorough and efficient from the start. She took the time to understand our business in a pre-session conference and the session was tailored specifically for our workplace. Our senior managers were engaged and we were very impressed with Karen’s experience and passion to prevent bullying and harassment in the workplace before it’s too late. If you are looking to get your management team onboard with preventing bullying in your workplace do not look past Karen’s sessions.
Mandy Pement, HR Coordinator
SIKA Australia

At Stedmans, we were looking to improve our workplace culture and introduce a bullying and harassment program for all of our staff.

Due to the nature of our business model we needed someone who could drive this and had a solid understanding of the hospitality sector.

Karen came to the table with this experience and was able to deliver an exceptional program. Not only does Karen have experience in hospitality and law, she also has a great deal of compassion and is someone I can trust implicitly to deliver an exceptional session
Nicholas Luhman - HR & Recruitment Manager
Stedmans Hospitality

Karen Maher speaker

Speaker Video

Evolve Your Workplace Culture Pronto

Evolve Your Workplace Culture Pronto

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