I’m James Souttar

I’ve often been described as a corporate therapist. I take clients on a journey of self-discovery to find their truth and their voice, and to reintegrate their organisations. From this deep-digging I help them develop distinctive, engaging and memorable approaches to connect more authentically with their audiences

I clarify what wants to be said, find an appealing way to say it, and present it delightfully

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In 2005 I was awarded an Honorary Doctorate for my work with Middlesex University

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What others have said

‘I honestly never heard Governors use the word excellent so easily and instinctively. They are very good at being unexcited! They were so impressed. By James’ presentation, of course, but you’d all put so much in to make sure the presentation could be that good.’
Marie Owens
Director of Communications
Middlesex University
‘Middlesex has a vision of where it wants to be — and, unlike many of its rivals, a communications strategy that links back to this goal.’
Financial Times
‘Perceptions of Royal Mail, as evidenced by the new forms, will shift massively in a positive direction.’
Conway Smith Rose
Market research report on the Royal Mail forms project
‘I truly believe we have a brand that we can be proud of and this project has been hugely successful. We’ve achieved something incredible here and the new brand is an important step forward for the University. We’ve really enjoyed working with you. And your expertise, experience and talent has been invaluable — especially in the darker days!’
Angelina Bingley
Head of Marketing Communications
University of Southampton
‘The Vice-Chancellor was over the moon! James was really switched-on and his work was superb.’
Caroline Dowler
Acting Head of Marketing & Communications
Southampton Solent University

Titles and organisations applied at the time of each project.

Some recent projects

Cambridge Enterprise is the University of Cambridge’s commercialisation business, combining the functions of technology transfer, company creation, seed funding and consultancy support. With more than 60 employees it’s the largest operation of its kind in Europe. After extensive internal and external consultation I helped Cambridge Enterprise create an approach which brought the company much closer to the University. I have also designed their annual reports for the last four years.

Founded in 1348, Gonville & Caius is the fourth oldest Cambridge college. Tucked away at the top end of Trinity Lane, Caius is one of the University’s hidden gems. My job was to make it more visible. Which I did with a distinctive typographic logo that made play of Gonville & Caius being the only Oxbridge College with an ampersand in its name. This is accompanied by a range of supporting elements, including the historic Gate of Honour through which Caius students pass at their graduation.

Cambridge Innovation Capital is the £50m investment fund started by the University of Cambridge to grow IP based companies in the Cambridge Cluster. Working with cutting-edge technology businesses, CIC represents the most modern face of Cambridge, while also drawing on the University’s 800 year old reputation. I developed a scheme for CIC which uses the ermine bar in the University shield to highlight their connection, while letting them look like a modern venture capital firm.

I don’t believe in brands

Branding also leads to the splitting of an organisation’s image from its reality. In an individual this splitting is the basis of clinical narcissism and it is a distressing condition. Narcissists are ashamed of who they really are. They go to great lengths to hide it behind an idealised version of themselves. But they can only find true self-worth when they accept themselves as a whole. I help people to connect with their reality and express it. That is our truth. And as such, it is compelling in a way that a concocted brand can never be.



I put on a regular programme of evening and weekend events, including talks, workshops and webinars.


My writings on the subject of communications include books, articles, white papers and presentations.

Only connect!

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