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S1E25- Chris Collard- No Barriers! From Jail to World Champion in 5 Years

S1E25- Chris Collard- No Barriers! From Jail to World Champion in 5 Years.

August 22, 2019

Chris Collard is a world champion indigenous kickboxer and professional fighter. But it has not been an easy path. Chris spent his early years in and out of the juvenile justice system. Chris ‘celebrated’ his 18th birthday in prison BUT five years later he won his world title fight.

This is a story of inspiration- from a broken home to a happy home. A man wanting only to encourage belief in those who feel there is none.

Chris has over 70 professional fights across kickboxing, Muay Thai and pro boxing. He is also a three times Victorian middleweight boxing championship

And he’s also a bricklayer! Chris talks also about how being a brickie has been great for his fighting career.

With no role models and coming from a broken family this is also a story of tenacity and hard work. On how to turn your life around. It is a heart-warming interview with a man who now only wants to inspire and mentor those who may have started life like him….

“Fighting is like a game of physical chess. The best man with the best moves’ wins” – Chris

Breathing and mindfulness? No.

On visualizing the fight? No.

Pre-match rituals? No.

Footnote: Ben also got in the ring with Chris. He got punched a lot .… Ben that is! Marc Wohling (in Episode 23) talks about this fight, and describes Ben as looking like he was working out a puzzle. 


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

  • 4:00. How, where and why it started.

  • 4:50. Chris’s recollection of his first ever fight in the ring.

  • 5:25. Chris’s tough upbringing.

  • 8:30. Chris’s professional record.

  • 12:30. That world title fight!

  • ‘He planted him like a tree!’ … Footage of that fight:

  • 16:40. That feeling of winning a world title

  • 18:50. How to work through pain.

  • 27:10. Chris’s next MMA fight.

  • 29:40. Being a role model.

  • 32:45. About being a bricklayer.. and the benefits!

  • 34:10. On fear, nerves and fighting.

  • 35:40. On breathing and mindfulness, visualizing the fight and pre-match rituals

  • 36:05. The Steve Dale fight… and Chris wearing silver sunnies:

  • 41:40. A Hypothetical Fight with Danny Green.

  • 42:20. A Hypothetical fight with Anthony Mundine.

  • 43:20. Chris’s toughest fight.

  • 43:35. Chris’s shortest fight.

  • 44:10. The one must do training exercise for boxers.

  • 47:10. Home life now in comparison to Chris’s upbringing.


Music by The Externals:  Song is Seven Brothers from the Album Bushranger Rock .... available on Spotify.

  • Hear our interview with The Externals on Episode 16.

S1E24- Susan Saleeba- All Give, No Take: Inspiring Hope for Kenyan Children

In this episode we head into the depths of a Kenyan slum with Susan Saleeba. Susan is one of the most selfless people we have come across. She gave up her lifestyle to start Nakuru Hope's Orphanage in the slums of Kaptembwa, Nakuru, Kenya. She now has integrated an orphanage, school and farm to bring education, hope and a life to hundreds of kids…. who previously were literally living on piles of rubbish.

She left behind her idyllic lifestyle in Australia to pursue her purpose - or what our previous guest Greg Wallace has called – ‘following your bliss’.

This is an amazing story. Of joy and frustration and sadness. Of loss but also gain.

Life I feel tends to move quickly the older I get, or is it that I endeavour to pack so much in, as there is still so much to do?- Susan

And boys- Susan is single!!!!

Get involved in this great cause. Make a difference.


Music as always by....  The Externals.

@RV9- On Phil HSC & Sans Tattoo, Alaskan Real Estate Deals, Junior Leadership and Life without Consequences

There's plenty in this RV. Ben and Tim reflect on the episodes with Phil HSC and Sans Tattoo; as well as hearing from Phil HSC on Sans Tattoo! Then musings on the Cynefin framework and why hindsight isn't as great as people think it is!!

We then detour to LAX and meet Ben and Tim in the lounge discussing their trip to Alaska and Alaskan real estate deals!

Then what was taught in recent junior leadership workshops. Plus what about emotional contagion, imposter syndrome, Tim's thinking on micro leadership ..... and much more.

* Our question posed to all is: "What would you do today, if you knew you couldn't fail?"

* Who reads show notes anyway!?!? 

As always Music from The Externals.

S1E23- Marc Wohling- Movement is a Story

This episode is a fire side chat. Literally! Marc Wohling discovered surfing, music and martial arts early in life. These three things gave him a pattern for life; but also a structure for loss. Working in remote communities and with underprivileged youth, Marc has been using techniques drawn from surfing, music and martial arts to teach, coach and mentor.

And Messr Sans Tattoo joins our chat by the fire.

In this episode we discuss Marc’s eclectic background and adventures. From West Timor, to the red dust of outback Australian aboriginal communities through to the best guitar rifts and then into the boxing ring. This is another great yarn.

And we conclude with a song from Marc’s band Handsome Frank ….


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

Website & Contact

Marc’s Blog:

Music by Handsome Frank (‘On Me’)

S1E22- Conversations with Mandela … and Subsequent Corporate Combat - Sans Tattoo

From bouncer to the boardroom. ‘Sans Tattoo’ is an ex-soldier and former bouncer who designed the fighting system that was taught to Nelson Mandela’s personal bodyguard.

But that’s the short version of a longer story.

In order to get there Sans dealt with months of rejection. He was out of money, but not out of belief, when he seized on one small opportunity. His fighting system has been used by many police and military units including the US FBI and 22 SAS (UK).

This interview is full of philosophical goodness. San’s recounts his interactions with President Mandela, and how he uses his knowledge, skills and experiences as a bouncer in his current career as a highly regarded professional speaker.

And unlike a lot of ex-Bouncers, Sans has studied post-graduate law and taught conflict resolution strategies to executives on five continents. Sans has shared the speaking stage with major identities that include former Australian Prime Minister John Howard, Olympic Gold Medallist Lauren Burns, and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak.

Sans blends humour, hard facts and practical tools anyone can apply to reduce conflict and build trust. He also shares his resilience model with us that provides a toolkit on how to deal with the everyday stressors that we all confront in the ‘age of outrage’.

 ‘The common thread of successful people is discipline’- Sans Tattoo

 Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

  • 2:30- Which is more difficult- being on a nightclub door or speaking to a corporate audience ?

  • 4:05- Sans’ endearing memories of Africa

  • 7:11- Dealing with rejection… and overcoming it

  • 10:12- ‘Entrepreneur’ by another name (in 1994)

  • 14:20- Being receptive to ritual dissent

  • 16:30- An anecdote about Nelson Mandela

  • 19:05- San’s first meeting with Nelson Mandela

  • 7 things you don’t know about Nelson Mandela (via BBC):

  • 21:50- Nelson Mandela’s advice on what a child owes a parent

  • 23:45- On stoicism

  • 28:10- Using combat techniques to deal with fear

  • 30:45- Sans outlines his ritual recitation before each keynote

  • 32:20- The importance of narrative and storytelling for leaders.

  • 34:26- Aesops Fable on video for kids:

  • 35:55- What are the secrets to communicating a good message?

  • 41:10- Education v Entertainment… which do you need?

  • 45:10- The evolution of the human species into a goldfish (our decreasing attention span)

  • Time Magazine Article on Attention Span:

  • 49:05- The Goldfish Series of Questions (Quick Questions/ Quick Answers)

  • 51:45- San’s Resilience Model (….. get your pens out!)

    • Mind

    • Body

    • Social

    • Global

  • 1:00:20- Is Sans Tattoo really Sans Tattoo?


Website & Contact


Music by The Externals available on Spotify

S1E21- The Entrepreneur’s Entrepreneur: From Little Things… with Phil HSC

This episode is for anyone who dreams big …. And then wants to build that dream from scratch. It’s for anyone wanting to tenaciously solve a problem. This episode is for entrepreneurs and start-ups ….. and anyone working in a café wearing a hoodie! 

Phil Hayes- St Clair (HSC) is a career entrepreneur. With a shortened first career in the military, Phil has made his career turning kitchen table ideas into reality. Mentoring dozens or entrepreneurs himself, Phil also  teaches entrepreneurship to MBA candidates at Australia’s leading business school, the Australian Graduate School of Management at UNSW.

With a Bachelor of Science (Microbiology) from QUT and an MBA from AGSM, today Phil is CEO & Co-Founder of DROP Bio, a direct-to-consumer biotechnology venture. He is a Member of the Board of Directors at Sangui Bio and an Advisor at the BlueChilli HealthTech Accelerator for Southeast Asia.

Here's to start-ups! And here's how!

Seize your moment. Latch onto that chance!

Fill your Unforgiving Minute!


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)


  • 02:45: The Early Years – Phil at Ben go to School.

  • 05:15: How Tim gets amused.

  • 08:15: How and why Phil got started as an entrepreneur … and why he didn’t give up when he failed the first time.

  • 11:00: About failing and moving on.

  • 15:15: The #Entrepreneur hashtag… isn’t it just #SmallBusiness?

  • 16:35: What you need to start! And scaling.

  • 19:30: What the motivation and enticement for being an entrepreneur?

  • 21:35: The critical importance on wanting to solve big problems.

  • 24:59: Why failure is necessary.

  • 28:00: Enticing capital into your start-up

  • 30:21: What new industries, sector or disciplines are investors looking to?

  • 31:45: Venture capital in the US versus Australia

  • 35:15: Making good entrepreneurs and celebrating successes (even if small)

  • 40:20: Phil tests Ben and Tim on their entrepreneurial skills inside the Unforgiving60 podcast:

    • Have you set yourselves up to learn quickly?

    • How would you rate yourselves on marketing and distribution?

    • Have you built a community around the U60 podcast brand?

  • 47:40: Tim (and Ben) throw down the challenge to Hamish and Andy!

  • 48:19: Having fun! ‘Humour is a free circuit breaker’- Phil HSC

  • 52:15: Quick Questions/ Quick Answers to Phil

    • What do you do for fun?

    • What’s your definition of success?

    • Definition of happiness?

    • Any sources of inspiration?

    • How does one become mentored by Phil HSC?

    • Why are you running in a weight vest?

    • What sort of writing does Phil do?

    • How can I give a shout out of encouragement to someone?

  • 57:45: Wider ramblings and other nonsense

    • What it’s like to meet Tim (from Ben)

    • The challenge (redux)


Website & Blog  

Podcast: Founder to Founder

Music by The Externals


** Opening Comments the Podcast by Lucy (age 13)

@RV8- On Jess Dane, Greg Wallace, Andrew Leigh’s Interview of Ben, Art and Playing Music on Operations

Welcome to RV8!

Reflections on Jess Dane, 'Motorsports IS for Girls' .... and about authentic leadership as it trades off to the 'theatre of leadership'.

Greg Wallace, building 'More than Just a Surfboard'. Generosity of spirit and energy.

Then Ben's reflection on his favourite guest- himself! .... As he is interviewed by Andrew Leigh, MP.

And Tim begs forgiveness in using the audio of Ben's band playing on operations. Wider reflections on music and Ben recording a song in the bathroom of one of Saddam Hussein's palaces in Iraq. 

Lastly, some discussions on art and therapy.



Special Episode- On SAS Leadership, Elite Fitness and Why Specialisation is for Insects- Ben Pronk, DSC Interviewed by Andrew Leigh, MP (via The Good Life Podcast)

This episode is a reciprocal interview where Ben is interviewed by Andrew Leigh, MP on his podcast The Good Life. You will will remember Andrew from our episode: 'The Tale of Two Andrews'.

Ben talks with Andrew about entering the Army, SAS Selection Course and broader life in the Unit as well as fitness and a slice of business. And of course, why specialisation is for insects. Also some beautiful reflections by Ben on what is important in life.

AND! In some Bonus Material: Tim also shares some audio from the battlefields of the Middle East that is relevant to Ben. Listen until the end of the episode.

S1E20- More Than Just a Surfboard! Greg Wallace- Building Surfboards but Rebuilding People

How do you know when you are at your very lowest? Well, Greg Wallace has probably been lower. As a troubled youth, he realised that his journey was full of evil energy which would likely lead him either to jail ….. or death.

Greg tells us the story of how he rebuilt himself with purpose from this point. And how he committed to be the best person that he could be. Greg discovered his passion was building surfboards. But not any surfboard ..... wooden surfboards- that perform better in the water than their fibreglass alternatives. He also realised that in teaching people to make surfboards he could apply philosophies that he believed in and loved. But in turn, those people building boards with him, also realised that the surfboard was only a small part of the journey.

Incredibly well read, Greg also shares insights in life, balance and outlook. There is plenty of reflection.

There is no true happiness without struggle. And this episode certainly has that.



Intelligence Summary (INTSUM) 

Bodhi Tree Surf:

Bodhi Tree Facebook:

Coming Soon: Connected By: 


** As always music by ‘The Externals’, Birds of a Feather – The Externals music is available on Spotify.

*** Thanks to Drew for the connection to Greg. You had to prompt and prod us .... and we thank you for your persistence! 

S1E19- Motorsports IS for Girls! Jessica Dane- Red Bull Holden Racing Team & Triple Eight Race Engineering

Jessica Danes is a force for women in Motor Sports. A granddaughter of one of the founding members of the British SAS and daughter of Roland Dane, Jess is forging her own career and ignoring all doubters and critics.

Her first foray into motorsports was working in the Triple Eight Race Engineering Team gear box shop as a sub-assembly mechanic! She was acutely aware that she was building the brakes that would need to make a V8 supercar stop on a dime. Enjoying being out of her comfort zone, Jess then moved into a marketing, media and PR role in the Red Bull Holden Racing Team/ Triple 8 Race Engineering. She talks how she managed negativity on social media.

Jess talks about the business of motorsports and her commercial role. The franchise, the team and its leadership. She gives fascinating insights into the role of drivers and other technical experts in the ‘team’s leadership’.

Jess talks about gender disparity - and why it exists in motor sports - and more broadly - and indeed what she says makes great practical sense. Parents and teachers take note!

Not being content with her current commercial role in Triple Eight she is also the Chairperson of the Australian Women in Motor Sport Commission, which has been designed to provide a voice for women in motorsport. And not being content with all that- Jess is also studying law!

An amazing human being- Jess is breaking all stereotypes and ignoring everything except high performance – Jess’s insights in this episode are inspiring. She coins a phrase when asked about her myriad of challenges- ‘I don’t think there was ever anything I thought I couldn’t do’.

 And we will simply leave you with that!



Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

About Red Bull Holden Racing:


- Music by The Externals

@RV7- On Matt Hall, the 2nd Battlefield, Supposedly Irrelevant Factors and Recent Travel

Welcome to the RV!

In this RV we reflect on the episode with Matt Hall, Ex RAAF F18 Fighter Pilot and now Red Bull Air Race Pilot.

We discuss feedback we have received about the episode on 'the 2nd Battlefield' (of Business!) And the application of the Principles of War on the battlefields of business.

Then, some more information on Richard Thaler and Supposedly Irrelevant Factors (SIFs) Why we continue to eat dessert when we are not hungry!? ..... And why we travel to buy running shoes but not a car!?

Why we should avoiding simplification and also be comfortable with being imprecise.

Lastly, we talk recent travel to Washington DC (Ben) and Ho Chi Minh City (Tim). What's going on in those places.

AND, music from the Externals to finish.

Don't forget to fill you unforgiving minute today! 

Thanks for listening!

S1E18- (Extremely!) Top Gun- Matt Hall- Australia’s (Only) Elite Red Bull Air Race Pilot

Matt Hall has been described as the ‘best pilot on the planet’. Could you make precision decisions while travelling at 450 km/h and pulling 12G. Matt does .... routinely. 

Matt is an ex Air Force F-18 Hornet Pilot and Fighter Combat Instructor and is now a Red Bull Air Racer.  He is an elite athlete, business owner and father. 

In this episode, Ben and Tim discuss Matt’s flying history, including in the F-18 Hornet and also with the US Air Force on combat operations in an F-15 Eagle. We discuss why Matt left behind his Air Force Fighter Combat Instructor career and how & why he got into being a Red Bull Air Race pilot.

The Red Bull Air Race is the Formula 1 of flying. It features the world’s best pilots in the world's fastest motorsport competition that combines speed, precision and skill. Using the fastest, most agile, lightweight race planes, the pilots hit speeds of over 400km/h while enduring forces of up to 12G as they navigate a low level slalom track marked by 25-metre-high, air-filled pylons.

And what about teamwork in the individual sport of Red Bull air racing? Matt discusses that too.

Hang on to your seats…. This episode will take you over the edge of what is known about human performance.



Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

  • 2:20- Ben’s Audio Association Game for Matt

  • 4:20- Matt’s early flying days

  • 6:10- Matt’s total hours…. And why that doesn’t matter! (take note: Malcolm Gladwell)

  • 9:20- Into Air Force…. Habit Patterns and Flying Training

  • 10:55- Matt’s Air Force Resume….. Is he just a natural?

  • 12:20- About the Air Force’s Fighter Course

  • 15:00- Matt on thinking faster than the jet is moving

  • 17:10- Matt on transitioning out of being an Air Force Fighter Pilot

  • 19:20- What is Red Bull Air Racing?

  • 20:20- About the Red Bull Aircraft

  • 22:10- Comparing Formula 1 Cars, F18 Hornets and Red Bull Aircraft

  • 22:51- How important is teamwork?

  • 25:00- Flying, risk and danger

  • 26:40- Matt on having a wing strike during a race. And here’s the footage:

  • 28:30- Matt’s parachuting career

  • 29:20- How Matt deals with failure

  • 33:00- On routine.

  • 37:40- The toll on the body as an elite pilot (athlete)

  • 39:10- What’s needed to get to the top of the Red Bull Air race podium

  • 40:15- Matt on ‘Luck’

  • 41:20- What keeps Matt grounded?

  • 43:00- What makes Matt go always a little further?

S1E17- The 2nd Battlefield! Applying the Principles of War to the Battlefield of Business

Business is a brutal battlefield.

For Ben and Tim it’s their second battlefield.

In an episode requested by listeners, Ben and Tim reach deep into their camouflaged knowledge banks all the way back to their time at the ‘College of Knowledge’ (The Royal Military College (RMC)) – as they take a look at the applicability of the Principles of War to the corporate environment. 

As is mandatory for all lessons at RMC, they outline some Carl von Clausewitz theories before examining each of the ten Principles of War and how they can assist the campaigns we now mount on the ‘second battlefield’ – the cutthroat and unforgiving world of business.

As a special bonus, we even throw in an eleventh, unsanctioned (but, we think, very relevant) Principle of War. 

And along the way, we suffer through Ben misquoting numerous dead generals and failing miserably in his attempt to recite the Role of the Infantry.



Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)

1:28 – Some fun facts on Carl von Clausewitz (1780-1831) can be found here

 6:42 – Ben unsuccessfully tries to demonstrate knowledge. The correct reference was Horst Ritter and Melvin Webber coined the phrase ‘wicked problems’ in 1973, in their seminal work Dilemmas in a General Theory of Planning.  Sounds dry, but it’s actually a great read:

 9:00 – Richard Thaler was the 2017 recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science for his research into behavioural economics: 

 20:41 – Ben is pretty much wrong again.  Von Moltke was a student of Clausewitz rather than a peer….

 27:39   – William H. McRaven, Spec Ops: Case Studies in Special Operations Warfare: Theory and Practice.  A precis of the key concepts McRaven proposes in this book is contained here

 28:13 – The Australian 2ndCommando Regiment’s motto is ‘Foras Admonitio’, Latin for ‘Without Warning’: 

 31:36 – More information on Robert Heinleincan be found here: 

32:49 – Again, Ben throws out another half-cocked, only semi-correct reference – it was actually General Omar Bradley who said ‘Amateurs talk tactics.  Professionals talk logistics

@RV6 - On Two Andrews and SAS Band The Externals. Questions from Listeners.

Welcome to RV6!

In this RV we reflect on the Tale of Two Andrews.... our interview with two federal politicians but NOT talking politics.

Then, we discuss the hidden aspects of the interview with original SAS band, The Externals. It is clearly more than beer and hard rock. What did they do when faced with a horrendous review from a music critic? How important were they to the SAS culture?

Then a listener's analogy of learning to drive v learning to lead. Do you like it? Do you agree?

How about a question on grand strategy?..... Do we/ would we ever question the government's decision to deploy the SAS. Are they always right?

Why doesn't the business world use the word 'honour'?

And lastly, that the SAS motto 'Who Dares Wins' seems reckless!



00:43- Reflections on The Tale of Two Andrews... two politicians, no politics 

04:14- Reflections on The Externals.... Who Sings Wins.

09:10- Influence of The Externals music on Ben and Tim.

11:30- Leadership is like driving (an analogy)

14:25- What is the leadership simulator ?

16:09- On 360 degrees of leadership learning

18:16-  A question on grand strategy ... do we/ should we question government decisions?

20:30- The Charge of the Light Brigade: 

20:50- Dark Victory, Wilkinson and Marr: 

22:05- Honour and Mottos .... Honour v Integrity.... why doesn't the business world use the word 'honour'.

25:55- The SAS motto 'Who Dares Wins' seems reckless.

32:00 - Our short story about The Externals song, 'I Don't Believe It'

From 33:34- Song...  'I Don't Believe It' by The Externals

Season 1, Episode 16 - Who Sings Wins! The Stories and Music of the SAS Rock Band - The Externals

This is the unique story and music of the original Special Air Service (SAS) rock band, ‘The Externals’.



Do not ever, ever, ever go see this band unless your IQ is lower than the entrance price’-  David Coggin's music review on The Externals



We recommend disengagement of brain prior to listening. Just sit back and enjoy the ripping yarn and great music of The Externals.



Numerous references to beer and rock and roll.



May insult those who like to wear cardigans and/ or listen to pop music.



The Story (So Far)……..  Formed in 1991, The Externals were full time SAS soldiers who used the band as an outlet from their high pressure work in the SAS. The idea for the band was born during a SAS interrogation course and the band grew to playing most major Australian festivals, opening to iconic Australian bands and also being profiled on Triple J Unearthed.

Over time they realised, that The Externals were more than that- they became part of the rich tapestry of the SAS. Assisting during times of tragedy, including the mass fatality event of the Blackhawk disaster in 1996. They have inspired SAS operators preparing for dangerous tasks and missions.

 The band played regularly at the Hotel with many sold out performances to manic crowds of beer and sweat drenched surfers and soldiers in search of the 'four on the floor' style guitar charged rock music the band passionately played. The Externals still hold the record attendance numbers for a local Perth Band’s record release to this date.


Show Notes

-1:20 : Inspired by their SAS interrogation course – How to start a rock band!

- 06:00: Shaky starts

-  07:40 : Ben’s story about ‘I Don’t Believe It’…. The SAS theme song that inspired us to do SAS Selection Course!

- 12:10: If the Swanbourne Hotel could tell a story!?

- 20:38: The story of ‘Dick Dale’… who was caught stealing beer from The Externals esky!

- 24:39:  Moff’s story of ‘The Edge of the World’… and why it’s special to him

- 28:03:  Talking about the mortal (fictitious) enemy of The Externals- The Cardigans!

- 34:35: Opening to Powderfinger…. How to shock a crowd!

- 40:00:  Who The Externals would invite to their dinner party- living or dead

- 43:10:  Favourite Externals tracks

- 46:55: The latest album ‘Bushranger Rock’- breaking paradigms

- 50:55: What inspired ‘US Radio’ … and other aligned stories

- 54:40: Does Ben have sex appeal and stage presence? But more importantly…. the story of being inspired to do SAS selection by The Externals music on an SAS promotional video!

- From 56:00:  The importance of The Externals in getting the Unit through tough times

- 59:20: The Externals music inspiring operators while preparing for missions

- 1:01:15: The future of The Externals….




  • Dog Beach -- 1993 (4 track EP) • Anastasia's Hand -- 1994 (4 track EP) • Toolshed -- 1996 (album produced by The Celibate Rifles' Kent Steedman) • Sale -- 1999 (album) – Bushranger Rock—2018


*The Externals music is available on Spotify







Odd Screen Printing…. Exclusive purveyor of The Externals merchandise:

Season 1, Episode 15b - A Tale of Two Andrews - Two Federal Politicians / But No Politics! Andrew Hastie (MP) and Andrew Leigh (MP)

n this split episode, we interview both Andrew Hastie, MP (Liberal) and Andrew Leigh, MP (Labor).  We communally discuss everything from Shakespeare, regional security, economics and distance running. But no politics under fear of push-up punishments!

With the Australian Federal Election looming, two of our sitting members were kind enough to take a few minutes off the campaign trail to chat with us in this special double episode. 


In Part B. Andrew Leigh is a lawyer, an economist, a published author and a podcast host – his outstanding show, The Good Life: Andrew Leigh in Conversationhas been running for over 85 episodes. He also has a PhD in Public Policy from the Kennedy School at Harvard and is an accomplished distance runner, capable of completing a marathon averaging sub-four-minute kilometres. Andrew has been a member of the Australian House of Representatives since 2010, and is representing the seat of Fenner in the ACT, as part of the Australian Labor Party.


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)- Part B – Andrew Leigh, MP (Labor)


2:38 – The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG -

4:15 – Richard Thaler, winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize for economics, for his work in behavioural economics -

4:39 – Daniel Kahneman, winner of the 2002 Nobel Prize for economics -

5:55 – Boaty McBoatface was the winner in an online poll to name a new polar research vessel (the vessel was subsequently named the RRS Sir David Attenborough


5:57 – The same thing then happened with an Australian ferry, which was later renamed after children’s author May Gibbs -

8:25 – Andrew’s book Choosing Openness

11:50 – Harvard Kennedy School -

18:38 - Andrew’s book Prince’s New Clothes

21:00 – Thomas Friedman’s book Thank You for Being Late

33:03 – ‘La Volupté’, taken from Jean Bobet’s Tomorrow We Ride

33:40 – Tim Winton’s Shepherd’s Hut

34:22 – Dava Sobel’s Longitude

34:23 – David Hunt’s True Girt

34:44 – Podcasts – Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist HistoryAgainst the Rules with Michael LewisDavid Madden’sRevolution of Necessity

41:52 - Ronald Heifetz, The Practice of Adaptive Leadership

42:30 – The importance of fostering a ‘safe’ environment and of mentoring

43:50 – Andrew’s definition of happiness

46:35 – Walter Pater -

49:20 – Martha Nussbaum -



The Good Life: Andrew Leigh in Conversation -


About Andrew Leigh

Season 1, Episode 15a - A Tale of Two Andrews - Two Federal Politicians / But No Politics! Andrew Hastie (MP) and Andrew Leigh (MP)

n this split episode, we interview both Andrew Hastie, MP (Liberal) and Andrew Leigh, MP (Labor).  We communally discuss everything from Shakespeare, regional security, economics and distance running. But no politics under fear of push-up punishments!

With the Australian Federal Election looming, two of our sitting members were kind enough to take a few minutes off the campaign trail to chat with us in this special double episode. 

In Part A. Andrew Hastie is the Member for Canning, Western Australia.  He grew up in Wangaratta and then Sydney before joining the Army and graduating from the Royal Military College as a Cavalry Officer. Andrew then successfully completed Special Air Service (SAS) Regiment selection and served with the unit for a number of years, including deployments to Papua New Guinea, Jordan and multiple tours of Afghanistan.  A member of the Liberal Party, he was elected to the House of Representatives in 2015 and has served there ever since.


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)- Part A – Andrew Hastie, MP (Liberal)


8:10 – Andrew Hastie as ‘Candidate 10’, SBS Documentary- SAS The Search for Warriors

18:15- Andrew on democracy

20:30- Senator Ben Sasse (US) and how to beat confirmation bias

21:30- Which is more brutal- the military battlefield or the political battlefield?

22:15- Hastie cites Hemingway … on defeat

23:35- A day in the life of Andrew Hastie in Canberra

24:31- Reading P.G. Wodehouse.

26:15- On staying present and focussed and family

27:27- Andrew on combatting the negative image of politicians

31:04- Andrew Roberts, Winston Churchill Biography:

34:15- India’s demand for clean energy: DFAT Report:

37:45- Andrew recommends a piece of literature

38:20- On Prisoners learning Shakespeare:

39:27- Andrew recites Shakespeare’s MacBeth

40:29- Andrew looks out the window in 50 year’s time… what does he see?

41:35- Andrew’s advice for someone wanting to get into politics.

42:10- Andrew on Rudyard Kipling’s, IF


About Andrew Hastie:

Special Episode - SAS Leadership with Ben Pronk and Tim Curtis (via Life on the Line Podcast)

A special episode with thanks to Life on the Line Podcast ... Ben and Tim were interviewed by Alex Lloyd at LOTL. They discuss SAS leadership, the high profile seizing of the North Korean drug Ship - the MV PONG SU -  and leadership in business. 

Please check out Life on the Line Podcast .... to hear far more inspirational and interesting guests than our co-hosts!

@RV5 - Anzac Day, Life on the Line Interview, Sabine Bird, Simon Bailey and Leanne Barron and Questions from Listeners

Reflections on the ANZAC Day Dawn Service at the SAS Regiment. Reflections on the interview of Ben and Tim on the Life on the Line Podcast. Reflections on the episodes with Sabine Bird, Simon Bailey and Leanne Barron.... and Questions from Listeners.



- 1:40. On ANZAC Day at the SAS Dawn Service.

- 09:30. Reflections on Ben and Tim's interview on Life on the Line Podcast

- 13:23. Reflections on Sabine Bird.... world record endurance cyclist.

- 16:28. Reflections on Simon Bailey.... ordering your life.

- 19:15. Reflections on Leanne Barron ... when home is a battlefield. Combatting domestic violence.

- 24:40. Questions from Listeners.

  • The place of 'wellbeing' in a mission statement?

  • What to do when a resident fitness professional isn't given direction/ guidance inside an organisation?


-34:40. End Music- 'Love Is' by The Externals

Season 1, Episode 14 - Leanne Barron - When Home is a Battlefield - Combatting Domestic Violence

Every two minutes, Australian police respond to a case of domestic violence; a nationwide problem costing the economy an estimated $22bn each year. Many of us would find these figures shocking – partly because domestic violence is a problem that is not often spoken about. 

Our guest this week not only knows about the magnitude of this problem but has dedicated her life to doing something about it.  Leanne Barron is the CEO of Starick, a charity supporting women and children who are escaping domestic and family violence.  Leanne shares her perspectives on the amazing work that her team are doing, the cultural and inter-generational factors within domestic violence, how to care for the carers and the importance of ukulele song-writing as a creative outlet!


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)


1:45 – Leanne’s background and Starick

7:15 – The history of Henrietta Starick, a midwife and pioneer in domestic violence support in the interwar years

10:35 – A little about the Starick workforce

14:15 – The impact of domestic violence on children

15:22 – The importance of positive male role models, including mentoring programs

17:10 – Who cares for the carers?

23:29 – Reference to 2015 Australian of the Year, Rosie Batty, likening domestic violence to terrorism -

25:00 – On victimhood, survivalism and resilience       

26:50 – Financial abuse       

27:45 – The importance of mindfulness

30:44 – The role of police

34:00 – Potential early warning signs of domestic violence

35:10 – Success stories from DV survivors

37:45 – Leanne’s definition of 'happiness'

40:30 – The importance of a creative outlet

42:45 – The future for Starick

45:00 – What should you do if you or someone you know is suffering from domestic violence? (See useful numbers below)

46:20 – What should you do if you are using domestic violence? (See useful numbers below)

47:00 – How to help Starick



Starick -

White Ribbon -

Where to get help -

Season 1, Episode 13 - Simon Bailey - Ordering Your House, Communications and Life!

Simon Bailey is all about order! He is a former journalist and TV producer and is now a PR and crisis communications expert. But he's also known for being the 'Movie Guru' and the 'Man About the House' on prime time radio.

In this wide and varied U60 episode we talk with Simon about journalism and its stressors, the evolution of reporting and the changing landscapes. We talk public relations done well .... and done poorly.

We talk about ordering your house.... including that abundance of t-shirts and the chaos of your underwear drawer.

And how does not having a routine work for Simon?!?!

This episode will get your thoughts, messages, communications.... and your undies in order !!


Intelligence Summary 

- From 05:15. Being a journalist

- 06:15. Radio  v television ... stupid questions and smart answers

- 07:50. Being the Movie Guru ... and our favourite movies of all times!

- 10:15. The evolution of journalism. Changing landscapes. Social media and perspective & context. Competing for immediacy.

- 14:45. Getting organised and simplification.

- 18:45. Advice for the completely ineffective husband in the house!

- 20:30. What skill we can use to impress our partners.

- 22:40 Tim's Mum's wise advice.

- 23:00. The strategy for t-shirts and the dreaded socks & underwear drawer.

- 24:00. Corporate crises.

- 27:20. Dreamworld's PR crisis.

- 28:40. PR done well.

- 29:47. Owning a public relations nightmare!

- 32:30. Reputation= Behaviour + Communications.

- 35:10. Errors of judgement versus errors of character.

- 39:25. Ben on 'balconies and dance floors'.

- 42:59. What writes your report on crisis communications.

- 46:20. Simon Bailey has no routine!?!?

-49:00. On Happiness.

- 51:05. What Simon draws inspiration from.

- 53:30. Rudyard Kiplings opinion (and reflections).


About Simon Bailey & Counsel Communications 

Season 1, Episode 12 - Sabine Bird - World Champion Endurance Cyclist - It Takes More Than Just a Bike

Sabine Bird is an endurance cyclist who is the 24 hour Road Race World Champion .... breaking the world record at the same time for the most distance covered in the 24 hour race period. She is now preparing for the Race Across America (RAAM), an ultra endurance cycling event of some 5,000km across the USA.  Sabine is also the lead rider in the Ride Against Domestic Violence.

How would you deal with zero sleep? How long can you stay in the saddle for? How about 22 hours a day?

Sabine talks fitness v toughness and how she segregates and deals with (& even embraces!) pain. 

She talks training regimes, race nutrition and keeping 'busy' on the bike and in her head. Sabine also talks about her other passion-  her research on Alzheimers.

And modestly, Sabine says all she does is pedal a bike! What an understatement!

(Music by The Externals, 'Never be the Same')


Intelligence Summary (INTSUM):

00:00 - Introductory Reflections on Episode 11, Jason Semple, The Strength of the Thin Blue Line.

Endure by Alex Hutchinson

12:35 – Discussion on Fitness versus Toughness

13:45 - Breaking the 24h Road Race record

18:45-  On nutrition

20:00- About the Race Across America (RAAM)... preparation, training and focus

27:30 – Sabine discusses her Alzheimer’s research

29:50 – Sabine talks about building resilience...

31:45 – Discussion about failure ... What is the role of failure.

38:30- Music by The Externals, 'Never be the Same'



Ride Against Domestic Violence -

Social Media: Instagram - @wabeanie

@RV4 - Questions from Listeners, Clients and from Ben….and a Quick Quiz

In this RV.....


- 00:32 . More on L'esprit de l'escalier 

- 01:50 . Q1- When witnessing behaviour that is not constructive or at worse destructive....

- 06:22. Q2- How would you 'Justify your Existence' (if your life depended on it)?

- 07:30. Q3- Why are ytiou spending time on this podcast?

- 09:10. Q4- 'How can our lives get better'

- 11:51. Planning future episodes. The principles of war and unarmed combat and their applicability into business .....

- 12:30. Rob Redenbach.

- 14:33. Quick Quiz. Quotes (Who said this......?)

- 17:05. Music from The Externals, 'Edge of the World'

Season 1, Episode 11 - Jason Semple - The Strength of the Thin Blue Line

Jason Semple was stabbed in the street and should be dead. 

Jason (then a rookie cop) and his experienced partner, Constable Peter Forsyth, after having a social beer, were both stabbed and left for dead. They were ultimately stabbed over a Panadol. It led to Peter losing his life and Jason having his Police career ended.

This episode is about the 'sense of duty' and commitment that our Police Officers have as they provide a thin blue line between good and evil.

- Special medical comment by Dr Dan Pronk, ex Special Forces Doctor.


* RIP Constable Peter Forsyth. And god bless all Police that stand daily watch over the unknown evils that exist in our World.


Show Notes:

  • Up to 4:40: Reflections on Nick Caldwell.

  • From 4:50: Jason Semple's story........

  • 14:28. Interlude 1: Dr Dan Pronk on treating a stab wound.

  • 25:20. Interlude 2: Dr Dan Pronk on the probability that Jason would/ should survive.

  • 39:30. The intimacy of 'human on human' killing. 

  • 45:45. Why mindfulness is important.

  • 48:30. Jason on the importance of a 'safety person'.

  • 49:20. The importance of mutual support.

@RV3 - Questions…and Reflections on the Brigadier Rupert Hoskin and Rod Bridge episodes

Welcome to the RV! In this episode we take a number of questions from listeners on the following topics:

  • Can initiative be taught?

  • Gut feel and intuition? & unconscious bias?

  • Planning v winging it?

  • Identifying and grooming leaders?

Following this, we reflect on the episodes featuring Brigadier Rupert Hoskin and Rod Bridge.  Rupert also returns to provide 'l'esprit de l'escalier" -  an additional vignette of a life decision that is now a dinner party story!  

We wrap the RV up with a discussion about the song we used to close out the Rod Bridge episode - a tune titled, coincidentally, 'Bridges' by Atlas Chasers, an outstanding emerging band from Perth.


Show Notes:

Season 1, Episode 10 - Nick Caldwell - Building Elite Performance, from the Weight Room to the Board Room

Recorded in the Mill Gym, this week we meet Nick Caldwell. Nick is a former Special Air Service (SAS) soldier who, at the peak of his military career, was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. Nick explains about how chronic fatigue became his 'normal', and how for years he suffered through it; including on high tempo SAS operations. Nick talks about the most challenging (and unselfish) decision he ever made - to leave the SAS.  From this lowest ebb, Nick was able to establish the Mill Gym, which he has since built into a location where normal people can get started on the road to elite performance, the first step of which is to get out of bed and get your feet on the floor!  

Finally, Nick, Ben and Tim compare an SAS Patrol against the High Performance Team model (by Pat MacMillan) .... and deliver their verdict on whether the SAS fundamental force element is, indeed, a high performance team.


Intelligence Summary 

Season 1, Episode 9 - Rod Bridge - On Loss, Courage, Bravery and Growth

What’s your worst fear? In this episode, through our guest Rod Bridge, Tim is exposed to his one and only fear: Outliving his children.

In February 2013, Rod Bridge lost his only son, Preston. Preston died at the age of 16, after taking a synthetic form of LSD, during his school ball after party. Rod first talks about ‘that day’, and how, through a hunch, he was one of the first to arrive at the incident scene. He describes the shock and disbelief and his final days with Preston in hospital, including the agonising decision to turn off Preston’s life support system. There was overwhelming school and community support throughout the incident, but Rod still had a total feeling of loneliness and emptiness. He explains how he channelled his emotion in the days, weeks and years that have followed.

Last year, Rod Bridge personally spoke to 61,000 school kids through his charity SideEffect. SideEffect is Rod's campaign to educate our youth,  on substance use in order to empower them to make informed decisions. 

Sorrow, grief, anguish, agony, heartbreak, anger, emptiness…. there are no words in the English language that can describe what Rob has been through, and continues to go through every day.

This is a gripping episode of loss, courage, bravery and growth. For parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles …. and for you teenagers, you MUST listen to this episode as it will stimulate discussions that are desperately needed in our homes to keep our youth informed, and ultimately, safe.




Season 1, Episode 8 - Brigadier Rupert Hoskin AM - Preparing Junior Leaders for the Battlefield

Brigadier Rupert Hoskin, AM is the Commandant of the Royal Military College (Australia) and the Director of Army Leadership. He has the lead responsibility for the training and development of leaders inside the Australian Army.

In this episode we talk about training people in the 'art of leadership'. We discuss what has changed over the last two decades and how digitisation of the battlefield impacts leadership. Rupert shares his insights on the things that are important for leaders; their burden of responsibility and authority and the importance of a fountain pen and champagne to leaders! How resilience is developed. What can Army learn from the Corporates.

And no military episode would be complete without doing some time on the parade ground with drill sergeants - a component of military training which seems to never change!    


About Rupert

Rupert entered the Australian Defence Force Academy in 1988, and subsequently graduated from the Royal Military College Duntroon to the Royal Australian Engineers. He has had a diverse career, incorporating regimental and operational military service with engineering, project management, representational and diplomatic roles, as well as working in private industry.  He has worked in the UK, Tonga, Niger, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Canada, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea, Afghanistan, France, Morocco, Algeria, Kuwait and Iraq. Rupert has a Bachelor of Maritime Engineering with Honours from UNSW/ADFA, a Masters of Defence Studies from the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College, and a Masters of Business Administration from Latrobe University.  He is a Chartered Professional Engineer, and a Fellow and Engineering Executive of Engineers Australia.  He speaks French fluently and has a Diplôme approfondi de langue française (Higher Diploma of French) from the French Ministry of State Education.  He is a 2016 graduate of the Defence Strategic Studies Course, for which he was awarded the Chief of Defence Force/Secretary for Defence Prize for leadership and strategy.  In 2017, he was made a Member of the Order of Australia (Military Division) for his contribution to Defence international relations. He was made an Officer in the US Legion of Merit, and awarded an Australian Commendation for Distinguished Service, for his work in the campaign against islamic State (ISIS). Brigadier Hoskin was also awarded a Chevalier de l’ Ordre national du mérite (Knight of the French National Order of Merit) for his contribution to Australia/France relations.

Season 1, Episode 7 - Tim Jack Adams - How’s Your Battery?

How's your battery? If you're not sure then tune in! This week Tim Jack Adams gives us the no nonsense view of 'mindfulness'. How do you get started and what's important? Tim Jack Adams talks breathing, sleeping and movement .... and Ben goes Zen (see You Tube!). How can you be 'present'? The importance of routine. And critically, how can you connect with friends and families and share how you are feeling ... while avoiding stigma or judgment. 

NOW .... how's your battery!?


Further Reading & References

 Find Tim Jack Adams 

Also see Tim Jack Adams on You Tube:

The free GreenX7 App can be found at your favourite App Store and also here:

@RV2 - Questions from Listeners

Questions from listeners.....

  1. How do Ben and Tim define success & happiness? 

  2. Is the virtue of an act judged by 'intent' or 'outcome'?  (Question from 'the Chronic Overachiever')

  3. Your expectations prior to Special Forces and the realities once you got in?

  4. Your thoughts on 'gut feeling'. Do you truly believe it can be relied upon?

Further Reading

Season 1, Episode 6 - Elizabeth Armstrong - Solving the Insoluble: Up Close with Myanmar’s Wicked Problems

In this episode, we meet Elizabeth Armstrong, the Director of the Paung Sie Facility (PSF) in Myanmar. We discuss intractable conflicts and practical peace building; leading through complexity; and how to prioritise endless demands and a constantly changing regime of priorities! *


Defn: 'Insoluble'



  1. impossible to solve.
    "the problem is not insoluble"

 Synonyms: unsolvable, insolvable, unable to be solved, without a solution, unanswerable, unresolvable....


Episode Intelligence Summary (INTSUM)


Feedback or 

Season 1, Episode 5 - Mission is Nothing. Intent is Everything.

In this engaging episode, Ben and Tim talk about Mission Statements and the difference between military and corporate mission statements. And why 'Purpose' is more important than the 'Task'. The principle of 'nesting' so that a strategic mission can be operationalised all the way to the lowest levels of an organisation. Now you can critically review your own organisation’s Mission, Vision and Values statements! 

@RV1 - Questions from Listeners

Welcome to the RV! Questions from Listeners on: Emotional intelligence. Tough leadership decisions. Loneliness of leadership. Servant leadership in the Royal Marine Commandos. Bullying and Peer Leadership. (+) Containing bloopers and all ... 

Season 1, Episode 4 - Tim Robertson, Chronic Overachiever

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Tim Robertson is an ex F-18 fighter pilot who got bored of that and then successfully completed the Australian Special Air Service (SAS) Selection course! Robbo then saw operational service in Afghanistan and the Western Desert of Iraq, before leaving the military to: Consult to the United Nations || Advise an oil company in Geneva || Raise a nationally sensitive aviation capability || Start his own aviation company || And return to flying fast jets. He is current on around 40 different fixed and rotary winged aircraft and a highly talented musician. But Robbo talks about defining your happiness, the importance of hard work and overcoming adversity.... 

Season 1, Episode 3b - Leadership is a Contact Sport (part B)

In Part B on Leadership is a Contact Sport, Ben and Tim start by talking about leading an SAS Counter-Terrorist Assault Team. Then.. what is Swarm Leadership?  And how is Servant Leadership relevant to corporates? As well as reflecting on Tim's past failings in Inter-Generational Leadership while he was a Managing Director of a group of companies based out of Dubai. Pull on your body armour and settle in!! This episode is edgy.

Season 1, Episode 3a - Leadership is a Contact Sport (part A)

In this episode we explain leading in special operations, the Complex Adaptive Leadership model and the practical relationship between rainforests, mayonnaise, fighter jets and leadership. Once again, we cherry-pick and hand-deliver the tricks, tips and ideas for applying leadership in your organisation. After all, leadership is a contact sport!

Season 1, Episode 2 - Dr Dan Pronk, Average 70kg D*ckhead

Dr Dan Pronk is a former Special Forces Doctor and combat veteran, who saw five operational tours in East Timor and Afghanistan. He's a former semi-professional triathlete, a serial entrepreneur, a life coach and now an author. In this episode, Dan talks about dealing with failure and loss, tips for goal setting ..... and his internal struggle to achieve 'post traumatic growth'. 

 Season 1, Episode 1 - The Elevator Pitch

Why should you listen to two pretty average ex special operations guys with MBAs?  

Well .....  click below .... because we hope to convince you in under 3 minutes!!