Interested in the Keynote Speech?
Watch the video to find out more!
Wendy Orhan, Head of Brand and Communication, TGT
Thanks for you interest in my speech for your upcoming event. Take a look at the video above to find out more, get more of a flavour about my approach, what to expect and some of the key lessons you can tap into on the day!
Can you believe it?
I get audiences, teams, and conferences engaged right from the get-go with intriguing insights into the limits of human performance. I illustrate what we are truly capable of by measuring the incredible distances of the long jump and triple jump and comparing weightlifting records to common kitchen appliances! This dynamic beginning never fails to capture attention and stir wonder.
But why does it matter?
I use these world records as examples to show how sometimes, setting goals and aiming for slight improvements can hold us back. Drawing from my 25 years of experience in high-performance environments, I’ve discovered a transformative concept: “What is the smallest change that can make the biggest difference?”
Let me share a story.
I had the privilege of working closely with Jessica Ennis-Hill throughout her career. The complexity of her event, the heptathlon, encompasses seven different disciplines, each with its unique demands. There’s no definitive guide to top-tier performance. When high-performing teams gather to address an issue, diverse opinions often emerge, making consensus challenging. However, when teams adopt a ‘win-win’ mentality, things start to change. My strategy, developed for Jess as she faced the immense pressure of the London 2012 games, exemplifies this. This approach directly influenced our game plan on the final night of the heptathlon, where she clinched the Olympic Gold. It was a triumphant display of prioritisation, collaboration, and utmost focus.
Taking a broader view
Jessica’s journey provides insights into the dynamics of a high-performance team. But what patterns emerge when looking at numerous such teams? Having spearheaded support teams in 3 Olympic Games, I’ve noticed certain characteristics that define teams which either exceed expectations or fall short. One pivotal observation: successful teams don’t just concentrate on ‘what’ they do, but also on ‘how’ they execute it. After the London Olympics, I was tasked with an unprecedented challenge: propelling a team to win even more medals after hosting the Games. By emphasising trust, psychological safety, shared responsibility, adherence to norms, and fostering empathy, we rallied together and set our sights on an ambitious goal – one that we passionately pursued.
Ready for a leap forward?
Wondering about the strategies I employed? Drawing inspiration from a range of high-performance areas like space exploration, the military, emergency responders, and air traffic control, I’ve devised methods to bolster my support teams:
- Listen to team members – it acknowledges their worth and reveals valuable ground insights.
- Engage with them – stirring them to be an integral part of the solution.
- Activate their potential – entrusting them with decision-making and action.
- Purpose – Stay true to your core mission, and you’ll witness enhanced team harmony.
My assurance to you… this talk isn’t just enlightening and enjoyable, but it’s designed to elevate and inspire your teams. By the end, I aim to leave everyone invigorated, equipped to optimise their efforts, find joy in their roles, and make a substantial impact.