Storytelling – A Purpose Story

So, here we are. July 2023. A beautiful summer’s day.

I’m feeling both astonishingly calm and centred and at the same time energised and passionate.

You see, I’m about to give my first talk about my new book “Soul Leadership”, and at this moment I’m  about to be called out to stand, front and centre, on the famous “red dot” of the TED stage.

It has been an amazing few years, last few months, and even last few weeks.

Let me take you back to where it all began, in January 2018 in a gorgeous hotel in the Cotswolds in England, with cosy log fires warming us against the enveloping winter mist and fog.

I was at that wonderful hotel, Cowley Manor, thanks to the leadership of Hilary Rowland of the Academy for Chief Executives. She had invited me in to her community to launch a new group for CEOs in 2018, and one of the first steps was to invite me into her “group 1”, the founding group of her City of London community. This was a reflection of trust in me and it certainly was a deep pleasure and privilege to be there.

The two day retreat for the group was centred around reviewing the Purpose of each individual, as having clarity of individual Purpose is SO powerful for CEOs and Owners of businesses and in fact anybody in their own leadership fo self and others.

When it came to be my turn to present my Purpose, I stood up and recited the purpose statement I had been using for the past five years and what it meant to me. You see, as a coach of many years experience I had worked with so many clients on their Purpose and, “of course”, I had mine “nailed”.

Except I didn’t. One of the members, in that wonderful space of trust and care, firmly called “bullshit” on my “recitations”, telling me they didn’t believe it, it was just a bunch of words (etc).

It was an ‘oh s**t’ moment for me, as they were ABSOLUTELY RIGHT.

I stood there at the front of the room for a moment, then a massive energy filled me and then exploded out of me :

“Yes, you are right, so let me tell you what my Purpose REALLY is !”

I then unleashed a flow of consciousness that elevated my existing purpose statement (which was accurate, but didn’t reflect my full and energised higher Purpose.

More on that Purpose to come, but for now simply to say  it WILL propel me for years to come in whatever I do, including writing that book and speaking at TED !

I thank the Academy and, in particular, Hilary and the members of the group this week. Peer groups are SO powerful !

Oh, and my focus in 2018 is on building a new peer group as part of that London City community. I’d love to talk to you about it, for more information see :