Nikki and Nick!!! Watch out world, with a brand like that, they’ll want their own radio show!!
If you haven’t had the pleasure yet, let me describe Inner Peace’s latest fantastic guest. Nick Williams is a world-leading expert on inspirational leadership. Nick believes that inspiration itself is the highest quality fuel for achievement, much more powerful than manipulation and force. His passion is working with leaders and emerging leaders, helping them to flourish in their roles and to become a source of inspiration to others. His coaching clients have achieved amazing results: landmark hotels, TV series, pioneering schools, best-selling books and inspired businesses.
Nick is himself a best-selling author, whose 14 (yes, FOURTEEN!!!) books include the ground-breaking The Work We Were Born to Do. He gives talks at events and conferences around the world, and has been invited by many household-name companies to speak to their employees and leadership teams, including BT, Johnson & Johnson, the Institute of Leadership & Management, BAE, IKEA, the BBC, Yahoo, MasterCard, Deloitte…the list continues! His work has been widely featured in the media, including on television and in the national press. Now though, it’s Panda’s turn to show you what he’s all about.
Nick loves helping people to combine the spiritual, entrepreneurial, leadership and business aspects of themselves in their work. Listen to Nikki, our resident Inner Peace guru, as she chats with her latest esteemed guest.
In his own words, here’s a bit more on Nick himself:
“In 1986, I gave my first public talk at a TA conference held at the Royal Horticultural College in Cirencester. I was working as a computer sales professional for the Digital Equipment Corporation, selling high value computers to foreign banks in the city of London. One weekend a month I was training in Transactional Analysis, (TA), a very accessible psychological model, with Julie Hay. It was about how to utilise TA at work, in business and in leadership. She was the one who encouraged me to give a talk at the conference. I resisted like mad, but eventually agreed to submit a proposal on a two-hour workshop on “Confidence”, hoping it would be rejected. The buggers accepted it so now I had to follow through. Even on the day on the workshop I secretly hoped no-one would come it, so I could walk away and not have to face my fear of speaking to a room full of people about things that really mattered to me. But as I arrived to give the talk, there was about 25 people in the room. I could run away, but decided I had better face my fear. As the starting time approached, I looked at my copious notes, took a deep breath, faced my terror, and I was off. And then a funny thing happened. I started to really enjoy myself. I saw people making notes, some were were laughing, and doing what I asked them to do. I was loving it!
And then something even stranger happened. The thought arose in my mind, “This is what you were born to do!” It was like the idea of having a soul shifted from being a nice idea to a tangible experience. I was experiencing myself in a whole new way. It was a shift I couldn’t deny or pretend hadn’t happened, although I really did try. So, I decided I had no real choice but to follow this impulse, this inner voice of inspiration and encouragement. I wanted to feel more inspired, and if I could be more inspiring to others.
It took me another nearly three years to actually pluck up the courage and develop my inner strength enough to pioneer and resign, in order to start my own business as a speaker and coach. So in April 1989 I resigned, and in July I left. My plan was to take a gap three months, get a round-the-world ticket, rent my flat and then come home to start my business. Well, that was the plan! After travelling across the USA, falling in love with a Canadian woman in San Francisco, having a whirl-wind romance with her in Australia, London and Toronto, and then organising another TA conference in London, it all fell apart, and so did I.
Instead of starting my business in a blaze of inspiration, I fell into a black hole of depression and even suicidal thoughts. With an empty diary, no structure to my life and money running out, I felt all hope was lost. It was over before I even started, my leap into the dark had failed, and I told myself I had just been crazy and stupid. The idea of creating a business doing what I loved with no contacts or entrepreneurial experience seemed too high a mountain to climb. I didn’t want to go back to my old work, yet going forward seemed impossible. I believed so many horrible things about myself, and I had tried to “succeed myself” away from my “bad” feelings. I felt I failed everyone, which was why I was so driven to succeed. I felt so scared and vulnerable, so I signed on the dole while I tried either to get my head together, or decide to do away with myself. Eventually, after many months or going around in circles in my head, a voice in me said, “OK, its time to start your business.” So, on November 6 th 1990, I came off the dole, registered as self-employed, and set up my first business.
It was a slow start, and it wasn’t easy. I had no road map and didn’t really know what I was doing. But gradually I found my own voice and listened to my own inspired ideas. Over the years, I have developed more of my “creative and spiritual musculature.” I kept showing up, and I began to gain some traction. I created more opportunities and invitations to speak and coach, and in 1998 secured a book deal and in 1999 my first book was published, which amazingly became a best-seller. That opened more doors and more invitations to speak, coach and teach came in from around the world.
My journey still has many ups and downs, and at the age of 60 now I still experience some resistance as I pioneer, and as one chapter comes to a close and a new one beckons me. But today I have created a body of work, written fifteen books, each pioneering in to new ways of looking at work, callings, success, power, business, inspiration and most recently, leadership. I have been invited to speak in seventeen countries around the world and worked with many amazing companies and leaders. I have become a “Global Micro-Brand.” I love the many adventures I have had. I am more inspired than ever and more creative project projects in development than I have ever had. The Muse and I are on pretty good terms now.
Today, I still have my demons, I still have a strong inner critic, like we all do. But they no longer have their hands on the steering wheel of my life. I have transformed more of my inner critic into more of an inner champion for myself and my work. But I am doing the best work of my life. I am consistently inspired now, and I am inspiring to others. I have positioned myself as a thought leader in the area of inspirational leadership. I still love to speak and write, and now I coach leaders in their field to help them cultivate their own most powerful relationship with inspiration, so they can be inspired about who they are, what they are doing and serve as a source of inspiration to their people. I love working with leading who hear the inner call of leadership, rather than simply have a position of leadership. My great passion is how inspiration invites us to draw the best out of ourselves and each other, despite what we might have to face to do that.”
You can head to Nick’s own website right here.
As always, don’t forget that you can always read more from our wonderful host, Nikki Slade, or find her other guests by searching for Inner Peace on this website.