16 April 2024, Tuesday
The Game Plan



“It was the best of times; it was the worst of times”: Charles Dickens. A Tale of Two Cities.


Welcome to STEP ONE on our Covid-19 lockdown e-Learning journey.

Great to have you onboard…….

The purpose of this programme is to share with YOU insights, innovation and inspiration to help YOU to navigate YOUR way through the ‘Covid-19 tunnel” and come out the other side stronger – with a new higher level GAME PLAN to help you to:

Do Life Better

Robin Sharma summed it up wisely with this perspective on Covid-19:

Covid-19 is a period of enforced quiet – in a world which was driven by busyness. We have been asked by the world to shift from being human doings to be human beings again.

American author Bob Bulford’s words echo the same philosophical approach to Covid-19.

The great champions of life recognize that self-interest is central to one’s human design, but count the greatest gain as the goodwill of fellow human kind.

Undoubtedly, Covid-19 has brought about sudden transformation in our world – for all of us.

I’m sure you will have also noticed that people have far more time for you in times of an urgent common concern.

Indeed, Covid-19 is first and foremost a humanitarian challenge – and an economic one second.

When we look back, post Covid-19, we will have seen that the Charles Dickens’s quote at the beginning of this STEP ONE, is a call for us all to slow down and :

Reflect, Re-imagine, Re-Position and Re-boot.

In lockdown, we have been given the gift of time – to learn, to grow and to emerge stronger as human beings – not human doings.

Many moons back, whilst attending a Wits Business Institute programme, I listened as Professor Nick Bindell, described champions as ‘REALISTIC OPTIMISTS’.

He had it spot on, as neither outright optimism, nor outright pessimism, will serve you well in times of crisis.

In times of crisis, it’s wise to avoid polarised beliefs and maintain a balanced perspective, in order to have the opportunity to turn adversity into your advantage.

Adversity is the training ground of champions.

The podiums are now empty and waiting for the winners to step up.



Okay, let’s now focus on how these insights can benefit YOU?

How can you emerge from the ‘Covid-19 Tunnel’stronger and ready to be your own ‘World Champion‘

Let’s take a closer look at how the great champions of life leverage the power of PERSONAL BRANDING – especially in times of crisis?

Personal Branding can best be defined as:

Creating and leveraging your outer IMAGE and inner IDENTITY.

There are two components – outer and inner branding.

Outing branding (IMAGE) is the flashy part – the part that other people see.

Inner branding (IDENTITY) is the important part – the part that other people do not see.

Think of Personal Branding as an ice-berg.

The big important chunk of the ice berg which lies below the water line – is your inner IDENTITY.

This is where we will place the primary focus for this e-Learning Programme.

We will do this by sharing with YOU – learnings, insights, optimum performance techniques and case studies garnered from more than two decades of researching and studying accomplished champions of business, sport and life.

First up, CHAMPIONS are continually asking themselves the three BRAND REALITY CHECK questions:

#1.Where do I come from?

#2.Where am I now?

#3.Where do I want to be in the foreseeable future?

Covid-19 has given us all time to ask these invaluable questions, and if one wants to emerge from the ‘tunnel’ with a higher level game plan, it’s wise to set up right by asking these questions of yourself.

Let’s begin the journey to a more powerful PERSONAL BRAND – BRAND YOU.

The BRAND Reality Check:

It’s important to know where you stand right NOW, by giving yourself a perceived score our ‘BRAND BAROMETER’ as pictured below.

Consider both your personal and professional life.

Give your own current GAME PLAN– your current BRAND YOU – a perceived score out of TEN.


At this early point, it’s just your perceived score, but by the end of the programme you will know exactly where you stand – the objective of this programme being to get you firmly on the path from Good (LEVEL: 7) to Great (LEVEL: 8) to Greater (LEVEL: 9).


All the great champions of life operate their lives consistently at LEVEL: 9.

They go on to achieve SUSTAINED SUCCESS & SIGNIFICANCE – these being the 3S’s which determine human greatness.

Let’s look at just three examples:

As a country great, Nelson Mandela scored at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

As a business great, Bill Gates scores at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

As a sporting great, Roger Federer scores at a consistent LEVEL: 9.5.

Roger Federer, on recently donating one million dollars to helping those most vulnerable in Switzerland – had the following words to say:

These are challenging times for everybody and nobody should be left behind. Our contribution is just a start and we hope that others join in supporting families in need. Together we can overcome this crisis: Roger Federer in a joint statement with his wife.

Sport, even in its on-field absence, is proving to be a shining light in unprecedented global times, as the greats open up to donate and educate via their extensive social media  networks.

That’s LEVEL: 9 – and it’s never easy to maintain this level.

However, in my consulting & coaching roles, I commonly see South Africans scoring themselves around LEVEL: 6, sometimes even closer to LEVEL: 5.

It’s my firm belief that we as South Africans hopelessly underrate ourselves.

We need to change that because we are doing ourselves a massive disservice.

Just look at what Rassie, Siya and the Boks achieved as Rugby World Champions.

Just look at how President Cyril Ramaphosa has led with distinction through the Covid-19 crisis.

We, as South Africans together, should all strive to be on the path Good (7) to Great (8) to Greater (9).

Hence this e-Learning programme has a lot to do with an initiative I started a few years back with Cell C called: ‘Growing South Africans Great’.

Unfortunately, I also commonly do see the other side of the human great equation – which is called human implosion.

This is when ones GAME PLAN level drops below LEVEL: 5 and stays there for a protracted period of time.

What happens then?

With Covid-19 – this is important to know – as your GAME PLAN score also has a direct correlation with how your immune system functions.

In other words, the higher your game plan level – the better your immune system functions.

And the lower you game plan level – the more your immune system malfunctions – leaving you at risk of contracting all types of disease.

Once your score drops below LEVEL: 5 – your life is certain to change.

You’ll find yourself having more visits to the pharmacy – and to your doctor.

If your level remains below LEVEL: 5 for any protracted period of time you will have effectively moved your mind and body from:

A state-of -EASE into a state-of- DIS-EASE.

It’s here when one is likely to risk encountering what I term: “The Big Five”, namely:

Cancer, Heart Disease, Motor Neuron Disease, Depression/Addiction and any one of the multiple Auto-Immune diseases.

These insights are even more relevant when it comes to the current Covid-19 pandemic situation. Those with a high level game plan score – a strong immune function –  are far more likely to shake off  the effects of  Covid-19 if contracted, than those who have a low level game plan score – a low immune function.

They are the ones who are sadly facing up to a life /death scenario with Covid -19.

Covid-19 deaths are not ONLY about age, but also about your current level of immune function.

(PS: If you are interested to know more on the subject of  health, you are welcome to visit my non-profit cancer resource site at www.cancerchampions.co.za – or email me and I will send you a complimentary copy of my eBook : NO HEALTH.NO WEALTH– how to optimise your health and happiness.

Okay, let’s wrap it up for STEP ONE on your BRAND REALITY CHECK.

  1. Be sure that you know where you come from, so that you can take full advantage of your heritage and culture. That’s if it’s all positive – or make changes for the better.
  2. Be sure to know exactly where you stand now with your current GAME PLAN LEVEL.Covid-19 presents the perfect opportunity to power up your GAME PLAN.
  3. Be sure to create a vision of where you want to be, when you emerge from the COVID-19 tunnel. Covid-19 is an opportunity to life better.

Next Tuesday 14/4, I will be sending out STEP 2: BRAND DIAGNOSTICS (what’s currently working for you – what’s not currently working for you?).

And then it will be all systems go next the next  Tuesday 21/4 , when we power up your game plan with STEP 3:  BRAND GAME PLAN – PERSONAL BRAND.

Exciting power stuff coming your way.

Till then, #StayHomeKeepSafe

Go Great. Go Well.


GET IN TOUCH : robopie@thegameplan.co.za


an inspirational poem we penned together at THE GAME PLAN.





Rob shares topical weekly insights, innovation and inspiration on business,sport & life.

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Rob Opie is a Brand Strategist, Keynote Speaker, Author, Performance Coach to Business & Sports Teams – and Life Coach to those on a journey to self-actualisation.

His game- changing THE GAME PLAN METHOD, is helping both teams and individuals throughout South Africa to achieve their greatest potential.