The Andonis of Learning and Development…

The Andonis

Matt Radiant, facilitator extraordinaire was a picture of perfection and exhorted radiance.  A great natural physique, a rigorous training regimen and the judicial use of the best steroids money could buy, Matt Radiant stood 6ft 5 very well-shaped and taut.

Apart from the Steroids, Matt Radiant was pure organic.  He treated his body like a temple and nourished his mind with the latest and greatest in leadership and business knowledge.  Matt Radiant, early 40’s had street credibility, commencing his career with the Federal Police; Matt spent his early years in the SWAT squad, learning to perform under real pressure.  Talent recognised, Matt Radiant moved up quickly through the ranks and showed himself to be a leader of men (and women).

Matt Radiant was always destined for bigger things and through sheer force of personality and presence he had carved out a very successful career after leaving the Federal Police. Matt, happily tells his clients that a near death experience during a raid with the SWAT team changed his life forever.  Matt had a dream that a Swami came to visit him and changed his life. It was a visitation like those experienced by people who had seen an Angel or saint, and to some extent of religious meaning. He clearly knew from that time on that he would dedicate his life to being the best. It was this cornerstone in his life that changed everything, and Matt Radiant chose a life based on self-improvement and teaching others.

Matt Radiant got results because he was able to peel the onion layers away from otherwise enclosed and insular executives.  Whatever it took, Matt Radiant’s job was to get people to drop the bullshit and work together.  ‘Who are you’ was Matt Radiant’s catch cry as he used a suite of unusual workshop activities to take people on a journey of self-awareness and enhanced leadership performance.

Folio in hand, designer black pants and wearing his trade mark electric blue polo, resplendent with his company logo, Matt Radiant, CEO of boutique leadership development company, ‘The Edge.’ Matt Radiant marched in to the meeting room and embraced me like a long-lost brother.

Engulfed by this Adonis of Development, I took a moment to compose myself in the presence of this very impressive looking human specimen.

‘Max, I have never been so excited by a brief.  It’s not only about being in Antarctica, which I admit is pretty cool, I really sense the opportunity here to bring people together and to get a result.  Max, I guarantee I will get you a result.

‘Awesome Matt, that’s what I am paying you for, and of course your reputation exceeds you, so I too am looking forward to the session,’ I said.

‘Awesome, let’s go through the program once again’ responded Matt Radiant.

Matt Radiant promised different to what we discussed. It was clear that Matt Radiant had a penchant for taking people out of their comfort zone.

The objective of the program was contained in the information each participant would receive on the plane tomorrow.  It was a report based on the confidential feedback they had received from key people in the organization about their leadership style, strengths, weaknesses etc.  Now this approach was nothing new, a staple of the leadership consultant is the 360 degree review.  The difference with Matt Radiant was the way he got people to ‘live the results’ and ‘own who you really are, not who you think you are.’

Over the next thirty minutes, I was mischievously entertained as I learnt what the groups were going through.  It was a set of activities that would take you right out of your comfort zone and explore your inner self. Matt Radiant had decided upon a set of physical and mental challenges that included:

Ice Pants. Each participant to wear a set of ice pack underwear for up to twenty minutes in complete silence at the commencement of the program as a way of taking them out of their comfort zone.  Matt Radiant thought this fitted in very well with the Antarctic theme.

Be a Swami.  Obviously drawing from his own personal experience, during different sessions of the day, participants had to take it in turn to dress up as a Swami, sit in a tent and provide feedback to one other team member about opportunities for self-improvement.

Too cool to cuddle? In this exercise, participants were given the choice of either a twenty-second run in underwear in the snow, or a cuddle with a colleague for five minutes.  Matt Radiant was big on breaking down the macho bullshit that goes on in the boardroom and wanted to offer people an opportunity to choose between controlled intimacy, and an individual pursuit.

Group Challenge.  As the pièce de résistance, the last day was devoted to an Antarctic Challenge.  In teams, the group will navigate their way in snow buggies to an Antarctic hut, complete a challenge and return.

Matt Radiant was confident these activities would deliver not only a ‘Step Change’ but more importantly ‘Change in the Step’ the executive team would march towards….

Another snippet from Corporate Psycho to follow….become a follower and get regular updates