Perception is strong and sight is weak.
— Miyamoto Musashi


+44 (0)7711 571309



Paul Gray

Coaching I received personally helped me realise that what I regarded as one of my greatest strengths was getting in the way of my seeing the full range of future possibilities. So, for me, coaching in a supportive and trusting environment is about helping to recognise and remove the blinkers and limitations we place on ourselves. We all have untapped talent and energy we can translate into stronger performance and closer alignment with our core values.


Paul’s business career was largely in the UK public service, working in the Treasury, 10 Downing Street, Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). But alongside that, in the 1970s he spent several years in the private sector as a corporate planner with Booker McConnell, and in the 1990s was a non-executive director of Laing Management

Paul held three Permanent Secretary posts, culminating in his role as Executive Chairman of HMRC; until 2007. His approach as a senior leader in two of the three largest Government Departments was to reinforce their core public service values while transforming them into the customer focused financial services businesses they need to become. Earlier in his career, he spent two and a half years as Margaret Thatcher’s private secretary for economic and domestic policy issues.

While serving as HMRC Chairman Paul was also Head of Profession for Operational Delivery across Government; and was invited by his international peers to chair the OECD Forum on Tax Administration comprising the heads of tax authorities in the 30 leading developed countries.

Paul complements his coaching with a range of other activities. Since 2011 he has chaired the Social Security Advisory Committee, which provides independent advice to Government on welfare policy.

Professional Expertise

Paul’s original discipline was economics and he worked as a professional economist and policy analyst in his early years. In the latter part of his civil service career he complemented that focus on strategic and policy development with roles in and accountability for HR, finance, large scale projects and operational delivery. During his business career Paul spent a growing part of his time as mentor and coach for people across Government and, since leaving the Civil Service, has operated as a professional coach across the private and public sector.

Selected Client Companies

Bank of England
Department for Education
Financial Services Compensation Scheme
HM Treasury
Ministry of Justice
NHS England
Scottish Government
Serious Fraud Office
Student Loans Company
University of Cambridge
University of Reading 

Watch Video