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I understand the challenge of finding just the right speaker.

In my previous roles as a CEO and current roles as a chairman, I appreciate that the success of an event comes down to the quality of the speakers. Thanks for considering me as a speaker for your upcoming event. I am honoured.

 


 

An Overview of this Page

This page provides an overview of what I have to offer, along with a taste of what you can expect. You can click on the links below to take you directly to the relevant sections.

 

WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT

A LITTLE BIT ABOUT ME

MY MOST REQUESTED TOPICS

THE NEXT STEP

 

What You Can Expect

Here’s what you can expect from me and my team:

 

1. Prompt, professional replies to your phone calls and email messages.

2. A personal phone consultation with a member of my team prior to your event, so we can better understand how I can best serve you and your audience.

3. An announcement about your event on my blog and social media channels. (This assumes that your event is open to the public and you want additional visibility for it.)

4. A professionally prepared, dynamically delivered presentation focused on achieving the outcomes you want with your audience.

5. A custom resource page, exclusively created for your attendees. It will include the slides I used in the presentation, along with links to books, articles, and other resources I believe will be helpful.

6. A quick follow-up communication after the event with someone on my team, to make sure I met your expectations. (I also want to know how you think I can improve.)

 


A Little Bit About Me

I have been speaking publicly for more than 20 years. I spent the first stage of my career in management roles and consulting to Fortune 500 companies, including Mobil, Ford and Compaq. Most recently as the Founder of nLIVEn, I’ve coached and mentored hundreds of CEOs, MDs and Chairmen from a diverse cross section of industries.

I am the author of a variety of books, essays and a fortnightly blog that integrate personal and professional development.

I now devote my time to writing, consulting, and speaking. My platform includes:

I have been happily married to my wife, Azita, for twelve years. We have two sons. We live in Camberwell, in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria. In my free time, I enjoy reading, travelling and golfing.


My Most Requested Topics

I speak on topics related to leadership, management, work-life balance, productivity and adapting to change. I will customise my presentation to meet your organisation’s specific needs. My goal is to facilitate the outcome you want to create.

My most requested topics include the following. Keep in mind that I can present these as a keynote or a workshop. Also, I have a half-day, and in some cases, full-day plus two-day seminar versions.

 

1. Unlocking Your AdaptAbility

Albert Einstein famously opined, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results”. And yet, as a species, most humans are hardwired to blindly resist change. Perhaps we should not be surprised. Research shows we distort our perceptions to enhance self-esteem, while psychology studies support the idea that we view ourselves through "rose-coloured glasses." Biology coined the idea of adapting but has apparently failed to teach us how to successfully adapt.

This is a critical matter for business. Change, and the ability to effectively deal with it, is a vital characteristic for success. If the buck stops with the CEO, so indeed does the responsibility for understanding, preparing for, embracing and responding to change. It’s often said that the best CEOs are “visionaries” as they seem to sense a changing landscape and be in a position to leverage it to great advantage. The latter-day poster boys include Jobs, Branson, Bezos and Zuckerberg. But more than simply reacting to change, they made change work for them.

It’s clear that being able to successfully adapt to change is an incredibly valuable commodity. But like most other habits of highly effective businesspeople, it doesn’t come naturally. I call it AdaptAbility and have identified it as a crucial competency that separates the best CEOs from the also-rans. It’s more than being adaptable; it’s about having the ability to adapt in a way that always achieves a desired outcome.

As a CEO, chairman, entrepreneur, professional coach and author, I draw upon a wide range of experiences to assert that change itself is not the problem – it is being able to call upon a reliable, structured response that is the key to success, health, happiness and high performance. By melding philosophies of biology and business, I have unlocked and codified an approach to change that is bringing great reward to those who embrace the rich opportunities that AdaptAbility offers.

 

 

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2. What Is Your Vision?

As an adult, how have you felt when someone has asked you that directly? The question greets us suddenly and in a number of forms. But the intent is the same – and we know it. It is a query about the clarity and intent with which we are living our lives.

For most people, it is the most confronting question they could be asked. It is no more confronting than the variant we were asked as children – about when we grow up – but as adults it has added resonance.

The notion of vision presents us with an enduring question: What shifts us beyond our thoughts and feelings to a state of knowing? It is intriguing to think that we could more regularly ask this of ourselves in our daily lives. The result would be experiencing a greater sense of flow in how we pursue our goals and objectives.

What most of us need is hope. We need to accept that believing in something better can at some level help make it so. In fact, we need reminding that when it comes to our own lives this is the only case.

Without our own belief and concerted action we can hardly hope for more than inertia - but with it we can expect for the very best.

In my book “Visioning”, I reveal the philosophy and process I use to help leaders develop a deeper level of engagement with their lives, careers and organisations. A new level of personal leadership is a precursor to a new level of interpersonal leadership.

In this talk, I share about the impact of visioning in my own life and those of my clients, to help my audience better understand the duality of their roles, as both sense makers and sense givers, within the organisations they lead.

 

3. Why CEOs Fail

HOLDING THE TOP JOB IN ANY ORGANISATION IS A RISKY BUSINESS!

It's a high stakes environment often layered with extraordinary expectations. At times, for even the most hard working and committed CEOs it can feel like an unwinnable game. People increasingly expect CEOs to simultaneously and ceaselessly possess superhuman levels of endurance, the wisdom of a sage and unwavering judgement. What I have observed, in my quieter moments sitting one-on-one with a CEO at my office or on the other end of the phone, is that for most their deepest fear is of failing. The prospect of being sacked by their board (or their spouse for that matter) is irreconcilable with an ambitious star performer whose career has previously gone from strength to strength.

The prospect of a tarnished reputation or the potential loss of face can be overwhelming for any self-respecting CEO who suddenly and unwittingly finds his or her underbelly exposed. And yet some CEOs do fail. I've met many CEOs whose headaches – left untreated – have deteriorated into nightmares. They enter a vicious cycle that gradually erodes their confidence, decisiveness and the capacity to drive execution – both at home and at the office. Ultimately, in the worst cases, they either burn out or are ‘invited’ by their board to find a ‘new opportunity’.

UNDERSTANDING FAILURE PROVIDES IDEAS FOR SUCCESS

I have served as the CEO and chairman of more than a dozen companies and advised hundreds of CEOs from a vast array of industries. For the past fifteen years, I have studied CEOs and worked with them to leverage their potential to improve the underlying performance of the organisations they lead. To better understand what makes some people succeed in the role of CEO where others don’t, I've also made it my business to extensively examine Why CEOs Fail. The answers were not things I learned at business school. This talk comes out of one of my major findings: that many CEOs unintentionally become the bottleneck to growing their business, putting both themselves, and the business, under pressure.

My Speaking Formats

There is a range of formats that I am accustomed to working with:

1. Keynote Presentations – inspiring and educational teaching

2. Small Group Workshops – facilitating integrated learning

3. Forum Discussions – leading strategic dialogue for executives and boards

4. Seminars – in person (or via webinars) training, coaching and mentoring

5. Interviews – both as interviewer and interviewee, including podcasts

 


The Next Step

 

Thanks again for considering me for your event. You can take the next step by contacting us to check on my availability. Someone on my team will get back to you right away.