hero image
Philippa White - The International Exchange. London, , GB

Philippa White

Founder and CEO | TIE Leadership


I’m passionate about helping businesses become more human.









I'm the Founder and CEO of TIE Leadership and for 20 years I have been unlocking corporate leaders’ and team’s potential with my unique leadership development approach.

Born in South Africa and raised in Canada, I relocated to the UK after a business exchange programme in Thailand, and now live in Brazil. My focus has always been to bring a people-first approach to business that fuels not just commercial success, but also contributes to a more sustainable world. Over my career I have worked with some of the world’s biggest businesses, helping their people develop the necessary human competencies to thrive in today’s corporate world.

A global thought leader, social innovator and as the creator and host of the TIE Unearthed Podcast and London ‘Evening with TIE’ events, I share my learnings over two decades of working in this area. I am also an accomplished speaker and author, with over 60 published articles, and the much-anticipated book, Return on Humanity.

I also mentor and advise companies keen to adopt a more human approach to business, drawing on my extensive experience and the transformative power of my work.

Would love to chat if you're interested in knowing more.

It's time. Let's do things differently!

Industry Expertise (2)

Corporate Leadership


Areas of Expertise (9)

Power of Business and Leadership


Leadership Development




Diversity & Business Education

Cultural Intelligence & Intercultural Competence

Intrapreneurship (Corporate Entrepreneurship)

Education (3)

University of Winnipeg: B.A., History and Economics 1999

Western University, Ivey Business School: H.B.A., Business Administration 2001

Thammasat University: Business Exchange Programme with the Richard Ivey School of Business, Honours Business 2001

Languages (2)

  • English
  • Portuguese

Testimonials (8)

Simon Rogerson, Co-Founder and CEO | Octopus Group

At Octopus, we think that to learn and grow as a person, you need to take chances and do new stuff. We love how TIE works because they attract caring people who have valuable skills and are willing to be thrown into the deep end. Then they match those people with projects where they can make a big difference. That’s how TIE gets such fantastic results.

Susan Min, Account Director | VMLY&R

Professionally, I think I’ve grown into being a more conscientious, well-rounded team member, striving to listen effectively and combine others’ input with what knowledge I may have in a given area. Moreover, I think I’ve grown into becoming more comfortable [and confident!] in taking a leadership position, leveraging my skills productively and believing in the contribution I can make.

Deborah Ahenkorah, Founder and CEO | The Golden Baobab

The test of true partnerships is in the tough times and I’m so grateful for TIE’s tenacity since the pandemic hit. The organization has shown a commitment to their community of social impact organizations when we have needed the support the most. The resulting new program is brilliant and innovative while still completely authentic to the TIE brand. You know an organization, its work and its brand is powerful when you will miss them and feel their absence if they stopped operating. I believe what TIE has shown this year, when so many social impact organizations need help getting on their feet, is that its work and innovative model is indispensable.

Sir John Hegarty, Co-Founder | BBH London

It isn’t just charity. It’s a process of our people taking their skills and coming back with skills themselves.

Elisa Birtwistle, Director | Futures Company

I’ve realised that all of the wonderful experience and confidence I’ve built in doing my job means I very rarely feel the rush of being completely and utterly out of my comfort zone. TIE will allow me to be inventive in a new context and test myself in areas in which I have less experience.

Conor Fox, Director | Hestian

The marketing leadership from TIE has been invaluable. One of our main products, The Maeve stove, which the launch campaign was organized with help from TIE, had sold 500 stoves over two years before TIE’s help. After the TIE event (30 days after the start of the TIE project), Maeve sold 10,000 stoves. 4 years later we are close to reach 400,000 households. It seems that almost everyone in Malawi is now aware of the stove and its benefits.

Carter Murray, Global CEO | FCB

What we do matters. And no place is this more demonstrated than with this program, which allows our people to flex their muscles as marketers to help others and learn invaluable entrepreneurial skills along the way.

Ryan Fisher, Managing Director | Wieden+Kennedy

At the onset of this project I knew I wanted to make a difference, do a bit of good, and experience a totally different culture. What I maybe hadn’t considered was the impact this experience would have on me, my outlook and the direction that my life/career would take afterwards. The time I spent in this Brazilian city would sow a seed for the type of working experience that I craved post the project. An experience you don’t get from working in an environment where everything you need comes pretty easily.

Media Appearances (5)

Perceiving the world differently...and how to make it useful

The Foundation  online


Every day the sun comes up over the houses at the end of our road, to the left of the front door. And every day it goes down over the trees to the right. It’s obvious that the sun goes around us, and even if you still thought think the Earth was flat, it’s still clear that the sun is doing the moving.

view more

Ten questions for The International Exchange

Octopus Group  online


The International Exchange (TIE) connects people from the private sector with social initiatives around the world. We asked CEO and founder Philippa White to tell us how TIE got started, and her hopes for the future.

view more

An Original Approach to Leadership Training

ISSUU  online


Article published by Market Leader, in January 2017. More at theinternationalexchange.co.uk

view more

From Shoreditch to Uganda: advertising in a different context

The Guardian  online


The opportunity to go to Uganda arose at work. You could apply do a placement with an NGO, through a programme called the International Exchange (TIE). TIE pairs the expertise of communications professionals with the needs of non-profit/NGOs to create sustainable change – contributing skills that these organisations need but rarely have the resources to pay for.

view more

A Catalyst for Change

The Marketing Society  online

He fought tirelessly against apartheid in the field of worker’s health, supporting trade unions in their battles for healthy workplaces, found himself sprayed with purple paint on one occasion when he was part of a team of medics supporting a protest march (it was a way to tag those fighting against the regime), and he was appointed as Nelson Mandela’s personal doctor during the first round of negotiations with the Apartheid government.

view more

Event Appearances (5)

Guest speaker

The Foundation Forum: Perceiving the world differently....and how to make it useful  London, UK


Curator and Host

The Big TIE Debate: Does Purpose Pay?  The Royal Society of the Arts (RSA) London


Panel Speaker

Bloomfest  London, UK


Guest speaker

WPP Fellows Weekend  Chateau de Touffou, France (Ogilvy family residence)


Brief Curator and presenter

Young Lions Digital Competition  Cannes Advertising Festival, France


Sample Talks (3)

The Power of Turning the World on its Head

It's easy to get stuck in a rut. Doing similar things every day. Thinking the same way. Meeting the same people. This is not the answer to finding new ways of doing things. Solving new problems. Or being inspired. Talking through experience, I talk about how breaking out of my bubble has lead me down the path I'm currently on. And how, along the way, I have fundamentally changed many other people's lives as well.

30 Days to Change the World

The private sector’s guide to making the world a better place. The purpose of this talk is to inspire professionals from the private sector, and through drawing on our experience of over a decade working in this area, help people see how they can realise the power of what they know and tangibly make the world a better place. All in 30 days.

Be the Leader the World Truly Needs Now

I did a business degree. It was a good one. But I didn’t learn about the power of the private sector to make a difference. Where were the regular discussions around transparency? Purpose? Trust? Authenticity? Shared value. Where were the discussions around leading with the heart? But the pandemic has changed the rules of the game. Leadership has been redefined. Leadership now requires a social component. The soft skills are becoming more critical: Cultural intelligence, conscious leadership, purpose, self-awareness, authenticity, trust and emotional intelligence. So the question is – how do you hone these skills to thrive as a leader in today’s world?


  • Keynote
  • Panelist
  • Corporate Training

Articles (7)

Going barefeet in Zambia: volunteering to change young lives

Octopus Group

2019 Now that Claire Cunningham is back from her month-long placement with Zambian charity Barefeet Theatre, we asked her to share her experiences from week to week. In January 2019, we spoke to Claire Cunningham, Investment Administrator for Octopus Ventures, as she prepared for her month-long placement with Barefeet Theatre, a charity in Zambia.

view more

Volunteering overseas: using your initiative to make a difference

Octopus Group

2019 Emma Ryan recently returned from a month-long volunteering placement with Lao Disabled Women’s Development Centre. Read about her experiences below. Thanks to The International Exchange – an initiative that places volunteers with social enterprises in developing countries – Emma Ryan was given a month-long assignment with a charity in Laos in south-east Asia. To use its official name, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic shares borders with China, Myanmar (Burma), Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia.

view more

Life in Laos: five unforgettable moments from my TIE volunteering assignment

Octopus Group

2019 Emma Ryan works as Head of Servicing and Legal for Octopus Real Estate. In June, Emma left the comfort of her desk to spend a month in Laos, on a volunteering assignment on behalf of The International Exchange. Here, Emma shares five of her most memorable experiences.

view more

Felicia’s five most memorable moments from volunteering in Myanmar

Octopus Group

2019 We asked Felicia Kodderitzsch, Business & Operations Manager for Octopus Cash to tell us her top five most memorable moments volunteering with educational charity Prospect Burma in Myanmar.

view more

The power of data: improving education in Myanmar

Octopus Group

2019 In 2019, three more Octopus colleagues are preparing to travel overseas, thanks to Octopus Giving’s volunteering partnership with The International Exchange (TIE). We spoke to Felicia Kodderitzsch, Business & Operations Manager at Octopus Cash, about her upcoming project in Myanmar.

view more

From London to Malawi: turning disadvantaged youth into entrepreneurs

Octopus Group

2018 We wanted to give volunteers the opportunity to broaden their horizons and try their hand at putting their business skills to good use in completely different surroundings. Working together with TIE, which links charities with corporations that are keen to provide volunteers, felt like a great way for the people who worked at Octopus to gain new experiences and skills, before returning to work with fresh insights, motivation and a greater sense of purpose.

view more

Using digitisation to help transform Brazil’s education system

Octopus Group

2018 Earlier this year, through a partnership with The International Exchange (TIE), we gave two Octopus people the opportunity to apply their skills and experience by spending time volunteering with a charity based overseas. This is Amira’s story.

view more