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A little about me.

Updated: May 9, 2023

I grew up on the streets of downtown Auckland, my mum’s youngest of three and I was two when my parents separated and embarked on a long and painful custody battle. During these early years I learnt to cope by doing things for myself, to be independent and resilient. These behaviours were learnt due to situation, due to growing up as a young child in an environment where everyone busy just trying to make the most of a difficult situation and I wasn’t immune to this and developed what I eventually labelled a turtle shell approach to life.

The turtle shell approach was to hide inside my shell from all the surrounding emotional and environmental turmoil with parents fighting over custody, travelling by bus from one house to the other to spend time with two parents that clearly had differing views of what I needed. I protected myself in my shell and popped my head out to do what I thought I needed to do to survive. When I was hungry I learnt to cook, mum tells of the story of me as a 5 year old cooking crepes, trying to make a cake without following a recipe then sharing it with my first year teacher. That poor woman, she ate it and smiled and reassured me it was good; looking back how could it possibly be?? But that recognition lit a spark in me, that feeling that I have done this, I made that cake on my own and someone enjoyed it taught me the power that recognition gave me. This recognition became my driver, I learnt to cook more and cooked more often and developed a dream to be a chef, that was my career choice and I set my sights on it and nothing swayed me.

One of the other stories both Mum and Dad talk about are my 5 year old adventures walking home from primary school, often on my own if not with my older brother and sister. Mum didn’t have a lot of money, we were poor and this was no secret to any of us. Hand me down clothes and often bare foot I would walk the 5 km’s from school to home on Constitution Hill past the same restaurants and shops on Parnell rise that was a hub to Aucklands bustling restaurant industry at the time. Walking home after school I was hungry as you might imagine with little food in my belly and no money in my pocket I had noticed when visiting the Pizzeria that they had wrapped toffees they would give diners as they left so I would pop in and ask if I could have one and they would always show me kindness and let me take a toffee on my journey. I also had seen how at the butcher they would give kids a cheerio sausage when their parents were buying meat so I thought I would try my luck there also. And again such kindness they showed me in handing me over a cheerio as a snack on my walk home, there I was carrying my turtle shell on my back having the confidence to ask for what I wanted and being shown kindness in having my ask recognised and rewarded taught me an early valuable lesson.

“If you don’t ask, you don’t get”


I share this with you as most skills in life are learn’t, out of necessity or desire. Often the skills learnt from necessity have shaped who we are today and the foundation of the person we are at our core. That doesn’t mean we can’t learn to adapt and learn new skills, this is one of the traits that separate humans from the animal kingdom, it is our ability to learn and evolve, self improve, change and adapt. I wrote a book, yet to be published and this is some of the content. I am sharing some of the skills I have learn’t applied and developed, how I have developed them and hopefully and understanding of why I developed them. My vision is that by reading my book you understand that today selling is not about telling people why they should do something, but “helping them” better understand why they should do something and that something is buy the product or service that you are selling. Some of the techniques in my book can be applied in other parts of your life but that is your own journey and for you to explore and discover, isn’t that what it is to be human?

My biggest influencers in the last 10 years of selling are the principles of Robert Greenleaf’s thesis on Servant Leadership and Daniel Pink’s Servant Selling ideaology. I think of it as;


“To Sell is to Serve’

Don’t just take my word for it………


1* “This book is about Sales. But it is unlike any book about sales you have read (or ignored) before. That’s because selling in all its dimensions - whether pushing Buickson a car lot of pitching ideas in a meeting – has changed more in the last 10 years that it did over the previous hundred. Most of what we think we understand about selling is constructed atop a foundation of assumptions that has crumbled.”

2* “Whether you’re in traditional sales or non-sales selling, the low road is now harder to pass and the high road – Honesty, directness and transparency – has become the better, more pragmatic long-term route.’

Daniel Pink, To Sell is Human

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