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Sat Series: Become your own champion as a listed leader

Ever heard of Anthony Mahavoric?

What about Sasha Fierce

No?

The odds are you have, but just know them by another name.

Anthony Mahavoric was born in 1960, and you will know him by another name - Tony Robbins. Watching Tony now you can be forgiven that he has always been a strong, charismatic speaker. But what we see as Tony, was actually an invention by Anthony.

 

Through developing his own mindset, creating a new persona and changing his rituals he created the Tony Robbins we all see today.

Similarly Sasha Fierce is the stage persona of a very well-known artist - Beyonce. Beyonce has said before that she has never performed live, but that only Sasha Fierce has - this stronger, more confident version of herself.

 

These aren’t unique cases; they’re great examples of what goes on behind the performance of the world's best. Beyonce and Tony are the results of setting the right mindset, consistently following their rituals and believing in themselves. 

And they haven’t just performed once - they’ve done it thousands of times now.

It’s that repetition, iteration, and ‘shots on goal’ that all create feedback loops. What works, what doesn’t, what resonates, how can I tweak the message and how can I link it back to that aspect?

That’s why I know that if we create our own personas and rituals and add in the repetitions, we can build up the muscle and confidence to drastically improve our leadership performance.

Develop your presentation mindset

As the leader of a public company, you have to be ready on a moment’s notice to switch ‘on’. Shifting out of the operational CEO mindset, and into the pitching one can be tough. 

A great way of doing this is to have a different persona (just like Beyonce and Tony). Getting into character and giving that “person” a new name and traits can really help speed this up. 

It’s something you can work on over time too, and that’s really the key. I’ve been working on my own alter-ego, Rex Williamson. Rex is the middle name of my Dad and Granddad (what I wished was mine), so I can jump into Rex at any time and be ready to pitch.

Rex is:

  • Confident.

  • Loves to help listed companies engage and grow their shareholder base.

  • Resonates with being a leader in public.

Ben Williamson is one of the CEOs of InvestorHub, but Rex Williamson is the evangelist of listed growth companies and the people behind them. He’s the persona who writes these articles and presents at conferences, and it’s his job to help people like you excel.

Ben has to deal with P&Ls, people and investors - but Rex can just advocate and add value. 

So who is your persona? Pick a name, give them a personality and lock it in.

Review and change your rituals

So now we have our persona (in my case, Rex), how do we improve? 

We need to get the reps in. We want to build muscles that drive the outcome when needed. The championship isn’t the first shot you take - by the time you get there, you’ve already practised thousands of times. 

It’s the exact same with presenting. 

You can do it privately or publicly, whatever works best for you. I like to use Loom for practice, and it sits in my browser. Whenever I want to practice, I can get into the right mindset, turn it on, and have a go. 

It records it so it feels real, even though I might not even send it anywhere. You might have seen my deck reviews on LinkedIn. That’s Rex getting his reps in and getting comfortable being on camera. That way, when I need to present or pitch for real, I’ve already done it so many times I’m more than comfortable.

So - set some time aside every week and practice privately and/or publicly.

Act like a champion

I hate the phrase “fake it till you make it” and I think that we can reposition the goal away from faking anything, and instead believing in yourself. 

Three-time Superbowl champion coach Bill Walsh said it best:

“Winners act like winners before they’re winners…The culture precedes positive results. It doesn’t get tacked on as an afterthought on your way to the victory stand. Champions behave like champions before they’re champions; they have a winning standard of performance before their winners.”

So believe in yourself and start acting like a champion - because you already are one. It’s just going to take some time for it to be recognised. 

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