Skip directly to content

Justin Hughes


Justin Hughes is a former Red Arrows and RAF fighter pilot. His experiences bring a unique perspective to the business world and he is able to prove the importance of attention to detail and meticulous planning to achieve faultless results. In Justin’s world, failure is not an option and mistakes cost lives. He has the ability to motivate and entertain any audience.

He joined the RAF aged 23 and during officer training, was awarded the Wilkinson Sword for outstanding leadership and graduated as the top cadet of his entry. After completing flying training, Justin went on to fly the Tornado F3, a front-line air defence fighter aircraft. He has taken part in both training and operational deployments all over the world, including in UN peacekeeping operations in Bosnia. On the Tornado, he was qualified to lead any scale of mission in any theatre, and was subsequently selected for the Red Arrows. Justin served for 3 years on the Team performing over 250 displays worldwide including 3 international tours. He was Deputy Team Leader and Executive Officer, responsible for operational day-to-day management of the team, a hand-picked group of 9 elite pilots and 90 support personnel. 

Justin can deliver both seminars and keynotes which emphasise the relevance of the fighter pilot’s skills to business excellence within a scenario customised to the client’s business.  Key messages include:

  • Flawless execution of your mission
  • Planning of highly complex tasks
  • Leadership, teamwork and communication
  • Focus under pressure
  • Defeating information overload
  • Achieving continual improvement

Justin also speaks after dinner offering a fascinating insight into the workings of the world’s premier formation aerobatic team including some highly entertaining anecdotes.

For companies, Justin looks at closing the gap between what gets talked about and planned, and what really gets delivered. His work is based on personal experience of delivering results in complex high-pressure environments. 
He has addressed Europe’s biggest gathering of business leaders, the Institute of Directors’ Annual Convention at the Royal Albert Hall, and the Middle East’s premier leadership forum, ‘Leaders in Dubai’, alongside Kofi Annan and Sir Richard Branson. 

He is a seed investor and founder partner in a retail fashion business, advising on marketing and finance, and is a non-executive adviser on organisational performance and risk management to Inox Global Capital Management, an equities emerging markets hedge fund. 

Justin previously helped 2 doctors to establish Europe’s premier international trauma conference for clinicians, profitable from the first event with negative working capital, achieved by exploiting corporate sponsorship, a flexible fee model and distribution via internet and social media. He also helped developed strategy and operating models for aviation and internet start-ups and mentors the founder of a community interest business. 

He has an MBA with Distinction from London Business School and a BSc (Hons) in Physics from the University of Bristol.

Make an enquiry about Justin»