The very nature of cave diving means having to continually adapt to whatever challenges you come across, which is something Chris Jewell has had to do time and again. His experience includes squeezing through tiny muddy underwater holes in Somerset, leading cave diving expeditions in Spain and Mexico where he established the Huautla cave system as the deepest in the Western Hemisphere, and diving underwater in the Yorkshire Dales.
The experience and knowledge gained through expeditions such as this, led to his involvement in the dramatic rescue of 12 boys and their football coach from a flooded cave in Thailand. This rescue has been adapted into a feature documentary, Thirteen Lives (2022), directed by the legendary Ron Howard.
For his bravery, Chris was presented with the Queen’s gallantry medal in 2019.
Chris Jewell Keynote Talk Topic, The Thai Caves Football Team Rescue
High-performing teams under pressure – The Thai Cave Rescue
High performance in business isn’t just about how good you are when you’re at your best – it’s about how you perform when you’re tired and under pressure. It’s about keeping focused and motivated over weeks and months and still getting the job done, even when you’re having an off day. Very often, performance isn’t so much about the peaks in output, instead, it’s about how you deal with the troughs.
Cave diving success is also about sustained achievement over an extended period. With little external recognition, it relies on personal motivation and goal setting. There are no points for style in what we do – it’s about getting the job done, even in the toughest of conditions.
Operating under immense pressure, the Thai cave rescue required belief and confidence in our team’s skills, as well as the ability to challenge and innovate.
The rescue was an unprecedented situation which required unique thinking and negotiation of many obstacles in order to attempt something high-risk which had never been tried before.
A Chat with Thai Caves Diver Chris Jewell
As part of our ‘Chat With…’ podcast series, Great British Speakers’ director Jane Farnham chats with Chris about his experiences as a Cave Diver and Expedition Leader, and his understanding of performance, leadership, skills and resilience.
Chris has spoken at a range of events including at the Go Diving Show, on the Big Scuba Podcast and contributed to a Wilderness Lecture, all about his history of cave diving, his experience in some of the world’s toughest environments and, of course, the Thai cave rescue.
Chris Jewell Speaking Topics
– Creative Thinking
– Mental and Physical Resilience
– Thinking Differently