A question for you to consider…

What would an event have to offer you, to be the most inspirational event that you could ever attend?

This is what we had in our mind when we set about organising Maximise Potential ‘LIVE’ 2012. It was our intention to create an event that would offer a wide range of speakers, who have taken different career & life paths, all of whom had stories to tell and life lessons to share; offering inspiration, education and motivation. From the feedback we have received, it appears as though we have succeeded - I'm just sorry for not anticipating the level of response we had; we could have filled the room 3 times over! In the ongoing quest for an answer to the question...

“what separates high achievers from others?”

We started the evening with an overview of leadership and an explanation of the 5 traits of highly successful people. With the help of ex-KPMG & ex-PwC consultant, Steve Davies, together with the research faculty at Keele University, we were able to identify the common traits amongst all of the people interviewed on the Maximise Potential podcast channel. These commonalities are:
  • Persistence
  • A Clear Vision
  • Adaptability
  • A Strong Sense of Purpose
  • Commitment to Lifelong Learning
Our first guest speaker of the evening was Nick English (Co-Founder of Bremont Watches) who took us on a fantastic trip through their business, describing how he and his brother Giles turned a catastrophic event into an everlasting legacy to their father, themselves and British ingenuity. The feedback from the attendees was that they found the Bremont story to be interesting, inspirational and “very proud to be British.” Next on stage was number 1 best selling author and communication coach, Kay White who provided and array of simple take-away tips, which could be immediately applied to instantly make your communication more effective. Kay specialises in assisting people gain promotion within the corporate world and her overview of building relationships was both educational and interesting, especially the tip about using people’s names in both verbal and written communication. I personally enjoyed the “Why” amnesty and took on board Kay’s advice that as soon as you ask someone ‘Why?’ you are placing them on the defensive. Marc Koska, the inventor of the K1 non re-usable syringe and founder of the Lifesaver campaign and The Safepoint Trust then joined us. From the feedback I have received, Marc made a major impact on the audience by demonstrating and explaining how he went about changing the world to make life better for 100’s of millions and saving an estimated 16 million people from the associated diseases of re-used syringes. Personally, I found Marc captivating and found myself in awe of being in the presence of someone who has literally changed the shape of medicine on a global scale. Amazingly, he sees that he is only at the beginning. All from a ‘big idea.’ How many of us have ‘Big Ideas’ but do nothing about it? Marc is living proof that if you are prepared to take action, be persistent, don’t take no for an answer and have a strong purpose, we can change the world. Then the stage welcomed Andy North, an extreme endurance athlete and director of ISS food, and we all immediately warmed to his down to earth approach and anecdotes. What struck me about Andy was that from a conversation, he made a commitment, set his goals and took action! Turning thoughts and conversations into actions is always a challenge, but I took note of Andy’s determination and the way his life has continually improved and the great things that have happen for him as a result of turning ‘banter’ into goals and goals into actions. Our next speaker has been a major influence in my career, Jora Gill (CTO of Elsevier). Jora made a huge impact on my way of viewing leadership and opened my eyes to how to build and communicate within a team. During his talk, Jora gave a very personal view of how the ‘worker’ has evolved in the UK from being manual tangible output based to the worker of today who is knowledge based. Jora pointed out that your knowledge is your commodity and we should all look to constantly up-skill ourselves. In the current age of the knowledge worker, recognition, development and empowerment are key to staff happiness. Jora left us with a list of 5 questions, but the one that stood out for me is - ‘who is the captain of your soul?’ Bonita Norris is one of life’s amazing people who just exudes a thirst for life and adventure. When she came to the stage, there was a predictable whisper around the audience of senior CXOs and Directors of ‘what will this young lady have to tell us to inspire us?’ Within seconds everyone was captivated with Bonita’s story of how a chance encounter with a guest speaker (Adventurer) changed the course of her life forever. From being a student unsure of what was to happen next in her life, she set one of the biggest goals for a human being – to climb Everest. Bonita’s talk had numerous applicable messages, but for me “One Life, live it and be inspired” really hit home. Also the whole area of goal setting made a big impact on the audience. I have received feedback from a CTO in the audience who outlined to me how he has already delivered a talk to his Team on goal setting, based entirely around Bonita’s presentation. The next speaker is a leading author of Sales books and motivational speaker, Gavin Ingham. Gavin used an intriguing audience participation exercise to help convey that in order to create a great sales culture within your organisation you must hire people with the right attitude. Subsequently, focus on building long term relationships, based on emotional intelligence and train your people to be the best that they can be. In my opinion, these messages are not restricted to the sales floor, but are relevant across all sectors of our businesses. Steve Morris (Operations Director Morgan Cars) gave us a unique insight into the Morgan Motor Company and the ethos employed within the business. He discussed the key areas that a company, such as Morgan, must focus on in order to be competitive. For me, the importance Steve placed on the development of strategic partnerships that connect at an ‘emotional’ level, coupled with the need to keep your organisational structure as flat as possible to ensure it is flexible and responsive, were ones I could truly relate to. Our penultimate speaker was Richard Hume (Endurance Athlete and Trans-Atlantic Rower). I was ‘blown away’ by Richard’s candid overview of himself and his life to date. Having been diagnosed at 12 with a highly debilitating condition, and being told that he would never be able to compete in sport or have an active life, he then endured some incredibly challenging surgery and follow up treatment for several years. As a result of this you can clearly see that Richard lives for every moment, taking on challenges head-on and setting himself new goals all the time. Amongst the numerous messages within his talk, I took on board that we should always focus on what we ‘Can do’ and not and what we ‘Can Not’ do. This will improve the quality of our life. Our last speaker of the evening was Fiona Campbell (Leadership Development Trainer, Best Selling Author, Life Coach). I have been lucky enough to have worked with Fiona for over 2 years now and know what a powerful influence she can have on a person’s career and business. However, it is still amazing to see her light up a room with her energy and enthusiasm, whilst still getting her messages across. T-F-A-R was the key take away from Fiona’s talk. Your thoughts create the feelings, which influence your actions that in turn create results. So many of us when we don’t get the results that we want start to examine the actions instead of examining what thoughts created the process. T-F-A-R is particularly relevant to those who attended who manage others. The evening finished with networking and drinks, where attendees had the opportunity to ask questions on a 1:1 with the guest speakers. Thank you all so much for your feedback.

Maximise Potential ‘LIVE’ is a gathering of a group of people whose intentions are to share stories that will inspire, educate and motivate.

Article by: Philip Fanthom, Managing Director - Jenrick IT Ltd.. LINKS AND FURTHER INFORMATION: