One of Britain’s greatest rowers of all time, Greg Searle is a successful motivational business speaker who draws upon his experience of elite performance as an Olympic Gold Medalist.
Greg Searle MBE speaks on the following topics:
Achieving Goals | After Dinner | Change | Communication | Host/Facilitator | Inspirational | Leadership | Motivation | Olympics 2012 | Setting goals and working towards them | Team Building | Teamwork
One of Britain’s greatest rowers of all time, Greg Searle is a successful motivational business speaker who draws upon his experience of elite performance as an Olympic Gold Medalist.
Greg developed a love of rowing at Hampton School in Middlesex. Inspired by his brother, Jonny, who won the Princess Elizabeth Challenge Cup at Henley Royal Regatta and by Martin Cross claiming the Gold at the LA Olympics in 1984, Greg took up the sport in 1985 rowing for the school until 1990 when he moved to Molesey Boat Club and straight into the GB team.
Together with his brother Jonny, ‘The Searle brothers’ famously won a Gold Medal in the Coxed Pair at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. They fought an epic race as they faced fierce opposition from the Italian Abbagnale brothers. With just 250 metres to go, the brothers surged past the Italians in one of the most exciting and memorable finishes in an Olympic rowing event. During subsequent World Championships, Greg amassed a total of 5 World Rowing Championship medals and became Bronze Medalist in the Coxless Four at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic
After retiring from rowing in 2000 and during his 9 year break from the sport, Greg took to sailing, taking part in the America’s Cup Challenger Series as a grinder – powering the winches that are used to hoist and trim sails on a boat, he kept fit by taking part in the London Marathon and London Triathlon, reaching the final of the BBC’s Superstars series.
Greg had two children and became a director of Lane4, a company established by the former Olympic swimming champion Adrian Moorehouse that imparts lessons learned in sport to the business community.
But much to the delight of British rowing fans, the draw of a home Olympic games proved too much to resist for the 40 year old, who came out of international retirement in 2009.
Drawing on his strength, determination and single mindedness Greg competed in the London 2012 Olympics, winning a bronze medal with the rowing men’s eight on home soil. His literary account of his quest, ‘If Not Now, When?’ was published in e-book form only 15 days after his incredible return to Olympics.
In recognition of his achievements, Greg became one of the youngest recipients of an MBE aged 20, announced in the 1993 honours list.
Greg is a fantastic, experienced speaker with a relaxed, humorous and engaging speaking style. His sporting analogies following his return to rowing for the London 2012 Olympics, after a twenty year break, provide thought provoking and relevant business messages.
• Motivation and goal setting: Knowing you have given something your very best and having the determination and self belief to achieve them
• Communication: Connecting and stepping up the levels of communication within your team
• Change: Adapting to changing environments personally, as a team and an organization
• Teamwork: Sharing information, communicating and developing trust within a team
“Greg surpassed our expectations; he met the brief brilliantly and brought our learning agilities to life in such an inspiring way but with humour and humility. His style is very natural and he’s a great communicator, really relaxed, with great pace and gravitas. Greg was a huge hit with our audience, both inspiring and thought provoking. We are so pleased we booked Greg for our event as he created a huge buzz throughout the day.” Telefonica
“This is the second time we have booked Greg Searle to speak at one of our events. He always exceeds our expectations and consistently manages to tailor his presentation to make his points relevant to our work. Thanks again Greg” Brighton and Hove Clinical Commissioning Group
“Greg spoke about self-awareness, managing change, knowing your role and team work – all of which hit the mark. Greg is a great speaker, he held our attention and made an impact (which can be hard if you are last up and people are thinking about leaving and getting home). We received lots of positive feedback and a huge queue for selfies afterwards!” Leadership and Organisational Development Lead, NHS Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital
“I thought Greg’s keynote was exceptional. Carefully delivered, well researched in terms of the needs of the audience, extremely well crafted, balancing content between sporting achievement and wider performance themes. The slides were informative and included theory models which worked very well with this type of Business School audience. I think the ‘break out’ sections with the audience worked well and no mean achievement to do that with 170 people in the room and the timing was pretty much perfect. Again, it was a pretty long intervention and to time it that well was really impressive. “ MBACSEA
“Greg’s style, delivery and pitch met our requirements perfectly –it was exactly what we needed in terms of teams, motivation, success, not so much success and unlearning. Staff have taken away some key phrases e.g. the difference between baggage and tools! They have returned to work saying they are inspired, motivated and really enjoyed Greg’s manner and the learning he shared. We would definitely have Greg again and would recommend him to others.” NHS Brighton & Hove
“We really enjoyed the day with Greg who brought some really interesting and relevant insights to the Shell Contracting and Procurement Team. Greg’s manner and style was very professional and he very much inspired the audience. He left us with great food for thought, allowing us to think of our challenges in ways that a professional athlete does and succeeds. His presentation was much enjoyed by everyone.” Shell UK C &P Team
“Greg’s presentation fitted perfectly to the purpose of the day in a very entertaining and engaging way. He was able to perfectly refer to his experience and success and failures in a very thought provoking way. It was clear he had spent the time understanding our brief and taken information from the call. Lots of our employees made a point of telling me how much they enjoyed Greg’s presentation. A number of them saying how emotional it had made them feel and loved hearing the story behind the races. Even today people have contacted me saying how his comments have made them really stop and think about things differently which is impressive from a 40/50 min slot!” Head of HR, Semperian
“Greg’s presentation was excellent. His engaging and relaxed manner kept the audience’s interest and resonated with our team. Greg’s presentation dovetailed well into our overall message. We have received very good feedback from the team and some positive behavioural changes already.” ISG
“We asked Greg to Sky to speak to our senior Technology teams to reinforce our leadership training agenda. He totally engaged the audience through his presentation and team working facilitation which he delivered with down to earth approachability, passion and personal charisma. Greg spent a good amount of time with us preparing the material beforehand and completely tuned into the objectives of the session, tailoring his messages superbly to get the right tone and emphasis which was extremely impressive. We were all won over and left energised and inspired!”
“Many thanks again for everything you said and did yesterday at our Staff Awards Ceremony. Your talk was inspirational and made us all evaluate ourselves, how we could work even better in our teams, how we can make those multiple tiny differences that add up to bigger differences and how un-learning can be as important as new learning. Thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to come and talk to us.” NHS Blood and Transplant – OD Manager
“It was so inspirational to hear you speak, not simply of trophies and being the best you can be, but of successes and failures, personal struggles and outstanding commitment and bravery. We have taken inspiration from you and from Team GB, and are now thinking about all the different disciplines contributing to the OnePfizer Team. Thank you for some simple messages which can make a big difference, we are striving to go 0.2seconds faster every day!” Head of Customer Marketing, Pfizer UK
“Greg is an incredibly inspirational speaker – the approach he takes in ‘rooting’ his reflections on over 20 years of learnings in Sport are easily applied to individuals and companies seeking high performance. He both inspires, enthuses and supports change through sharing techniques and approaches that are remembered way beyond the event.” Customer Operations Director, Pfizer UK
‘Greg presented at our annual Leadership Conference for head teachers and senior leaders from Middlesbrough in the spring term 2015. His preparation, presentation and delivery was inspiring. Greg linked his Olympic challenges and that of being a world class athlete with an honest and refreshing approach on how to meet targets. He came across as such a likeable and family orientated man with a style that was easy to listen to and perfect as an opening address at our conference. There was, however, that steely determination evident in his presentation to perform both individually and as part of a team that struck a chord with everyone in the audience. We will certainly look to get Greg involved again and next time with some of our emerging leaders.’ Middlesbrough School
“The feedback on your session yesterday has been universally positive. They're sometimes a hard crowd to please but, as someone described it, you had them mesmerised! I think everyone took away their own message to put into practice back in the office. Thanks for working with me to get the session prepared and I very much hope to see you back at Sky sometime.” Information Technology and Services, Sky
“Greg has attended and presented at a number of internal and external meetings, supporting us in engaging, inspiring and entertaining attendees with his personal experiences and insights. On each occasion, Greg gauged our requirements well and adapted his messages with ease and style. The feedback has unanimously been extremely positive and his inspiration resonates for a long time subsequently” HSBC
“Greg absolutely blew the audience away. He related sports to business in a way I have not seen a speaker do in the past. He has been a true professional and gent to deal with, thank you so much.” Dell
“Greg delivered his presentation in a very personable and professional way. Greg presented his material well. Piece around emotional engagement was thought provoking.” Clydesdale Bank
“Greg’s approach was authentic, relaxed, approachable, humorous, professional and relevant. Whilst Greg’s story in itself was inspiring, what was equally impressive and much appreciated was the effort he put in to adapt it and personalise it to suit our language, challenges and situation. Greg created a strong bond and rapport with the audience. Without exception, every person I have spoken to was impressed, inspired and energised. He helped us build an energy, enthusiasm and platform to drive our business forward in the New Year.” Tesco
“Thank you so much for helping to make our retreat exactly what we had in mind. By generously sharing your wisdom, insights and experience with us, you gave the people of the whole department a fresh perspective on how we can approach the vital work we do every day. You engaged and inspired each of us, to be even more effective in advancing the GAVI mission, while preserving our own wellbeing and capacity to excel. Well done!” Managing Director, Finance and Operations – GAVI Alliance
“Everyone is still buzzing from Greg’s inspirational session” Home improvement company
“Thank you so much for a really brilliant session we all enjoyed it so much and the positive feedback is still coming in. A couple of times yesterday when I was talking to colleagues about decisions that had to be made fairly quickly they quoted some of your advice and that was good to hear and to know that your session has promoted some thinking amongst them. We could have listened to you for a lot longer but time is of course always the enemy. Wishing you good luck in your future pursuits and many thanks again.” NHS Foundation Trust
“I wanted to pass on my thanks for your excellent presentation at Leeds Castle on Tuesday 11th March” on behalf of HSBC.
“I found it to be insightful, educational & self-depreciatingly honest at times, making it one of the best I've seen both in content & delivery. Amongst the many highlights it was interesting to note that the same result (in your case, your 2 Olympic bronze medals rather than concentrating on the Gold) can be viewed as a major disappointment or a huge success, depending on whether the organisation, preparation & effort put in is the best you can possibly give.”
“I was also interested in your triangle of communication referring to Management & Leadership which always seems to be a hot potato in the corporate world. If I understood this correctly from memory, you were saying management can lean more towards facts & cliché, whereas leadership is driven more by emotion & belief, & being prepared to take risks. I thought this to be as good as any way of explaining the difference as I’ve heard.” Ward Security Limited
“I just wanted to personally thank you for your outstanding contribution to the recent Macmillan Professionals’ Conference. I though the Excellence Awards Ceremony was flawless and many professionals and staff members have commented on their enjoyment of the evening and how it moved them. I also think your motivational session on the final day was an excellent conclusion to the conference with all of us leaving feeling motivated and committed to Macmillan’s work. Thank you once again.” Director of Professional Engagement, Macmillan Cancer Support
“Thank you for your quite brilliant contribution to our leadership conference last week – we so enjoyed having you with us and thank you for being so generous with your time. We have had terrific feedback across all disciplines and organisations and many have commented on how inspired they were by your session which was delivered in such a skilful, fun and personal way. One of our team leaders was delighted wanted me to pass on the following feedback… ‘It was well worth attending on my day off! A great learning experience with exceptional guest speakers.’ I plan to talk with senior leaders to see how we can further develop our learning from the day and hope we can explore involving you further in the future. Chief Executive,NHS South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare
“On behalf of the Home Office, I would like to thank you for the inspirational, thought-provoking and engaging session you lead for us. I’ve never been that close to a gold medal before – it was an honour! We have had amazing feedback from the session and it’s created a real buzz around the possibilities you spoke about – ‘If not now, when?’. This is particularly apt for us and I know Peter Kane in his round-up this week is urging everyone to take a leaf out of your book and begin to go that extra mile. Once again, thank you for a truly memorable and inspiring evening.” Leadership Capability & Change Team, Home Office
“I worked with Greg on a number of team builds and coaching activities. For someone who has achieved so much Greg’s natural modesty and humility allow him to interact well at all levels and get the best out of the groups and teams he is dealing with. Greg’s got some great experiences that correlate well with the challenges many leaders face, dealing with adversity, sustaining performance and building great teams. Greg can illuminate these subjects and challenge the audience to firstly reflect and then create change options for the future in a very motivating way”. Head of Organisational Capability, Nestle UK
“Hello Greg,â€¨â€¨you are an extraordinary person and I am extremely proud of you (not that you need me to say that.) I remember listening to you a few years ago saying just how much you wanted to be in your hometown Olympics and now you are. I think you are an amazing example of everything you teach and espouse.â€¨I recently saw you and your brother on TV and thought is was great to see you then (previous Games) and now, of course looking even younger.â€¨â€¨You have done it, the time, determination, effort, drive, the future you envisaged – how fantastic.â€¨I wish you every success I will be watching you very closely.â€¨Good luck and thanks for all your support”. HR Director at LOCOG
“I have worked with Greg Searle on a number of occasions such as customer meetings, team development workshops, and Olympic planning sessions and he has always been an inspirational and charismatic individual. Greg’s achievements are phenomenal yet he continues to be a polite and superbly unassuming individual. I shall definitely be looking to work with Greg again and can thoroughly recommend him as a top class person to work with”. Coca Cola
“Greg is a unique individual who has achieved far more than many athletes and yet he is incredibly humble of his achievements. His blend of confidence and humility endears him to all who meet him. However, it is his generosity, not only in encouraging and inspiring other athletes but in transferring that skill to Celaton’s world with such a relevant and meaningful approach. His depth and breadth of experience in both sport and business shines through in the way he engages with my entire team. He is a role model to many in my company and I’m proud of his involvement in Celaton and hugely impressed with the impact he continues to have in my company”. Celaton
“How to sum up Greg – its got to be OARS. Open – has great personal stories and experiences, which really help bring the theories to life
Approachable & Adaptable, he has connected with everyone in our business from shop floor to MD, in a number of different capacities
Rower! Supportive, really wants to help organisations/teams/individuals grow and has indeed helped improve our performance”
“Greg has really helped us to understand what being a high performing organisation is all about and has helped me personally be a much better facilitator. He is also a very inspirational speaker with real presence, tempered by an obvious humility, who has connected with everyone in our organisation”. HR Nestle Cereal Partners UK
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