February 28, 2023

My Top Ten Learnings – Lessons Learnt Over Time


While thinking about my top ten learnings, I realised that there have been many things I have learnt since leaving my corporate role at NAB 18 years ago. As I enter my tenth year of running my own practice it’s good to reflect on my learning journey. I’ve discovered that when I learn a lesson, it falls into one of three categories:

  • making mistakes
  • experimentation
  • continuing with things that work

I think these categories apply to personal development, regardless of whether you are running your own practice or not.

So, I’d like to share my top ten learnings over time. It was hard to narrow it down to only ten but here they are.

My Top Ten Learnings

  1. Back Yourself

We are constantly making decisions both big and small. When it comes to the big ones, there is always an element of risk and it can feel bloody scary. It will be alright in the end… and if it’s not alright, it’s not the end.

  1. Be Yourself

This statement has become a bit clichéd but maybe for good reasons. It is very easy to fall into the trap of comparison and try to be like someone else. This is not sustainable. While it’s good to look up to the people you admire and try to learn from them, never try and be them. Always be you[1].

  1. Outsource Your Weaknesses (or stuff that does not bring you energy)

I know what I am good at and what I love, so that is where I put all my energy and time. Everything else I outsource or delegate. This includes the things that I am not good at, that don’t energise me and are simply not a good use of my time.

  1. Manage Your Energy

I have become very aware of what gives me energy and what drains me. Maybe as I have aged, this has become a greater priority for me. But I know if I don’t do this my work and mood will suffer.

  1. Take Control of Your Brand

It’s never too early to take control of your brand. I am not going to add ‘too late’ because sometimes it can be. The longer you take to control your brand the harder it can be to change it.

  1. Do Work You Love

While this can’t be true for everyone, if you are running your own business then you should love what it is you are doing. I am often asked when I will retire. Why would I stop doing something I love?

  1. Know Your Value

Without a doubt I know that I can change the way leaders communicate and present for the better. There is a positive ripple effect for every leader I help with improving their communication. I know what that is worth.

  1. Be Enjoyable to Work With

Never take yourself too seriously, have a laugh and don’t be difficult to work with. It is so much easier to be this way than to be a pain in the arse.

  1. Find Your Support Crew

There is no way I can do what I do without the support of the people around me. Find the people that challenge you, encourage you, who are excited for you and who are there for you.

  1. Continually Develop Yourself

If you are not learning, you are going backwards. Do things that stretch you, things that challenge you and things that even scare the shit out of you.

Here’s to another few more decades of learning, laughing and loving life.


[1] Unless you are a dickhead, then you should try and be someone else.