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Mark Wales

Travels from: Victoria


A motivational speaker with a passion for resilience 

Categories: Business Speakers, Motivational Speakers

Full Presenter Profile & Bio

Mark Wales grew up in the red dirt of West Australian mining towns in the Pilbara. After deciding he wanted to join the SAS in high school, Mark embarked on a career in the Australian military that would eventually lead him to the battlefields of Afghanistan. 

As a Troop Commander in charge of 30 elite soldiers, Mark’s role was to lead combat missions against senior enemy commanders, deep behind enemy lines. Through this unique and harsh environment, Mark developed his skills in leadership, teamwork and high performance. 

Like many in his situation, Mark battled depression and stress disorders after warfighting in Afghanistan. He tackled recovery with the same intensity he applied to Special Ops training. He rigorously researched the fundamentals of neurobiological science and the benefit of skill development. This approach underpinned a strong recovery, and drove personal growth far beyond his previous abilities. 

Mark’s successful recovery and growth led him to embark on a high profile career in business. With four attempts of the GMAT, he was accepted into an Ivy League college in the U.S.A, and after graduation he joined McKinsey & Company, a respected consulting outfit also known as ‘The Firm’. H

e founded a fashion startup Kill_Kaptur, a tough-luxury ecommerce brand. He was a competitor in Australian Survivor 2017, the world’s #1 reality TV show. 

An avid surfer, boxer, and cook, Mark stays active and keeps his experiences as varied as possible. He believes that past experience should never be a limitation to embarking and excelling in something new. Mark loves to reveal the common threads that run through human competition in all arenas, and the importance of a growth-mindset to overcoming mental illness and drive success in future endeavours

Speaker Topics

Battlefield: Leadership in uncertainty
Focused on skills and mindsets needed to lead teams under extreme uncertainty. Using examples from Special Operations, startups, and McKinsey, Mark focuses on tactical tips you can use from Day 1 to improve your leadership and drive results.
Close Combat: The art and science of competition
Here Mark reviews the importance of strategy, execution, and agility in any competitive system, drawing lessons from warfighting in Afghanistan. Useful tips on how to apply this from Day 1 are included in the talk.
Execution Eats Strategy for Breakfast
Here Mark shares anecdotes about a hard learned lesson: execute quickly, with a sound plan. Learn about goal setting, asymmetric warfare, contingency planning and the impact of emotions in a team setting.
Mission, Team, Self
Outlines the hierarchy of needs that any effective leader should follow. This is a useful carry over of military values into business settings, proven by 2,000 years of history. Mark discusses the importance of rest, nutrition, exercise and growth for maintaining your foundation as an individual leader.
Peak Performance Under Stress
In this shorter session, Mark focuses on using 4 count breathing to dampen stress responses, and improve quality of decision making. This is an interactive class that uses heart rate monitors to demonstrate the benefits of deep breathing in a stressful situation.
The Mind: Mental resilience
Focused on skills and mindsets needed to prevent mental illness, and to recover and grow from trauma and failure. Mark draws from neurobiology and uses personal examples to illustrate a proven approach to prevention, recovery and growth from failure and trauma.
Who Dares Wins
Any endeavour requires applying the basics of a clear mission, a high performing team, and mastery of self. Mark draws on his experience at the top levels of Special Operations and business to show you that the basics done well, are the foundations of mission success.

TESTIMONIALS

Mark spoke to our group and he led topics related to mental health and effective techniques for stress management in the workplace. He was deeply credible and highly engaging, drawing on his experience from both the battlefield and the boardroom. We would be thrilled to have Mark join us again in the future and would certainly recommend him for other engagements.

McKinsey & Company

Mark was very engaging and provided the perfect message that the team required as we head into another year of selling. Mark delivered a message that demonstrated mental strong, commitment, ownership and emotion. I would highly recommend Mark.

Mimecast Aust. Pty. Ltd.

Wanted to thank you for your presentation to the team on Friday. The feedback from the team was fantastic and certainly hit the right cord in terms of personal and professional challenges.

Design and Build

Mark Wales - Business Speakers

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