17 July 2024, Wednesday

“Less than 5 % of people get anything like their potential horsepower translated into their actual horse-power, less than 5 % of people go on to achieve their greatest potential in life.” 

“My Advice: Invest in Yourself.”  Warren Buffett 


Business and Sports greats are always looking for ways to optimize their own greatest potential – being on a journey from good too great to great to greatest- and they like to stay there for a long period of time.

It’s as easy as we think – as the great champions leave big footprints – and patterns of greatness that are clear for us to see – especially in the sports world which is highly transparent for all to see.

“If you want to be the best, you must learn from the best “

In this short article I will be sharing ideas/footprints with you as to how the great champions go to and stay at nine will be sharing ideas with you and taking you through the THREE POTENT STEPS which the great champions take for building a HIGH LEVEL PERSONAL BRAND.

Here they are:  The all-important 3P’s of a potent inner brand identity

P#1: Defining your PURPOSE

P#2: Setting your PRIORITIES

P#3: Aligning your PERFORMANCE GOALS

ONE MORE FINAL STEP:  Putting it all into ACTION


“Branding is everything” Richard Branson


STEP ONE: P#1: Defining your PURPOSE

“The two most important days in your life are the days you are born and the day you figure out why” ”Mark Twain

Great companies invest in defining their purpose – their why.

They know why they exist.

Simon Sinek in his game-changing book: ‘’Start with Why’’, shared how great companies all ‘Start with Why’ – by putting their why before their what.

Apple is known for making great electronic products.

It’s their what.

But, it’s their why which sets them apart as a truly great company.

Steve Job’s instilled a culture of thinking differently:

Apple’s purpose statement:

“To change the status quo”

That’s a potent why – one which enabled Apple to be the first to go through the trillion dollar capitalisation mark – beating both Amazon and Alphabet (Google) to the magical number.

Here are further examples of great companies with clearly defined purpose statements which inspire their greatness:

❖           Coca Cola’s purpose is “to create happiness.”

❖           Disney’s purpose is “to make children smile.”

❖           Facebook’s purpose is “to connect people.”

❖           Microsoft’s purpose is “to empower people to do more.”

❖           Google’s purpose is “to organize and disseminate the world’s information.”

❖           Amazon’s purpose is “to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.”

❖           Starbuck’s purpose is “to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, one neighbourhood at a time.”

❖           Discovery’s purpose is ‘’to help people to do life better.’’

It’s the same with great individuals.

They all ‘start with why.’

Their inspiration coming from their purpose:

❖           Nelson Mandela’s purpose was “to deliver freedom for all.”

❖           Winston Churchill’s purpose was “to inspire hope.”

❖           Bill Gates’ purpose is “to empower people to do more.”

❖           Elon Musk’s purpose is “to elevate humanity.”

❖           Mark Zuckerberg’s purpose is “to connect everybody.”

❖           Rory McIlroy’s like – all sports stars – purpose is “to entertain, to educate, and to enrich lives.”


Face book’s Mark Zuckerberg shared the following in a commencement address at Harvard:


“Purpose is that sense that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, that we are needed, that we have something better ahead to work for. Purpose is what creates true happiness.”

Consider the following wisdom from his book HALF TIME

’The Great Champions of life recognize that self -interest is central to one’s human make up, but count the greatest gain as the goodwill of fellow humankind’’ – Bob Bulford

In his address, he related one of his favourite stories of when John F Kennedy visited the NASA space centre. JFK saw a janitor carrying a broom and he walked over and asked what he was doing. The janitor responded,

“Mr. President, I’m helping to put a man on the moon.”


When one puts the ‘the why‘ before ‘the what’ in one’s life, things certainly begin to look a little different ……..

❖           Purpose is about seeing the bigger picture.

❖           Purpose empowers you to take action.

❖           Purpose is about revealing YOUR OWN inner greatness.

❖           Purpose inspires you to do more.

❖           Purpose drives a culture of great and is the key to living a life of fulfilment.


“You are not here to merely make a living. You are here to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand” Woodrow Wilson




“The most important thing I have learnt in life is to FOCUS my energy on what is important in life”                                                                          Bill Gates


Setting one’s priorities right is one of the most important actions you can take in life. Priorities dictate ones destiny.

Yet, it’s surprising how few people are able to clearly articulate their ‘’Big Five” priorities in life.

Some out of ignorance, some out of fear, and some because they cannot see the value in doing so.

❖           Clear priorities focus your finite energies

❖           Clear priorities help YOU to make better YES/NO decisions in life.

❖           Clear priorities steer YOU towards what you want in life.

❖           Clear priorities make life far easier for YOU.

❖           Clear priorities empower you.


“If you do not empower yourself, someone or something will overpower you” Dr John de Martini

We are all unique human beings – and our priorities do differ.

But,the priorities of the great champions do present a pattern from which we can all learn and grow wiser.


“Human greatness leaves footprints”

The good news is that these patterns can be mapped – and modelled.

If you want to build a great personal brand, it’s wise to follow the GREAT CHAMPIONS, to see how they set up right with their “BIG FIVE PRIORITIES” in life.


“If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.”  Sir Isaac Newton


Here we go then – this is how the great champions set up right.

The hierarchical order of their top priorities being of utmost importance.


Priority Number One:  YOURSELF.

Many people see their FAMILY as their #.1 priority in life.

They put their family right at the top of their hierarchical list.

The great champions do not do this.


“Life is about setting up right to be able to inspire and help others.”

Herein lays the key to HUMAN GREATNESS – defined as achieving Sustained Success and Significance. (3S’s)

“You can’t help others effectively until you help yourself.”

In other words, you can only help others if you take care of YOURSELF FIRST– by placing YOURSELF at the top of YOUR priority list.

This may sound like a selfish act, but it’s NOT.

In life you cannot put the cart before the horse.

To impact positively on others you must ensure that you are always being coming from a position of strength.

Consider the following wisdom from Bob Bulford:


“Champions recognize that self-interest is central to one’s human design,but count the greatest gain as the goodwill of fellow humankind.”


Add these wise words from American professional life coach Corey Wayne:


“By taking care of yourself first, you’ll put yourself in a position to have abundance to take care of others.”


Just think about all the people you could help because you helped YOURSELF first.


Bill Gates is a wonderful example – empowering people all over the world to do more through Microsoft – and through his charity foundation.

The great champions of life ensure that they are always coming from a position of strength.

Making YOURSELF priority #1 sets you up for all good things to happen to YOU – and those important to YOU.


Priority Number Two:  YOUR PURPOSE (YOUR WHY)


As highlighted in Chapter One, PURPOSE is why you exist.

Purpose is ‘the why’ in your life.

It’s the one thing that you become an expert in, so that you can positively influence and contribute to this world.


“Every living being was born to accomplish certain purpose. It’s the knowledge of that purpose that enables every soul to fulfil it.”

Mohammed Ali

Invest wisely in your purpose – your vocation– as the world, your family, your friends, your colleagues, your clients need YOU.

Your contribution and your impact on others will always be more valuable when ‘your why’ is clear and compelling.


Note: Your family cannot be ‘your why’ as ‘your why’ is who you are – wherever you are, not just at home, but also at work or out with friends.


Priority Number Three: YOUR FAMILY & FRIENDS


Here it is as Priority #3 – the critical importance of your Family and your Friends.

Prioritise both as they play a vital role in your life.

The investment which you have made in BRAND YOU (Priority #1) and YOUR PURPOSE (Priority #2) will impact on those who you love and cherish.

Your contribution will be immense – if you set up right in life.


Priority Number Four: YOUR HEALTH & YOUR WEALTH


Both are important as they can easily be lost if you do not prioritise them.

Invest wisely.


The key to health is to strive to live a balanced life.

Living a balanced life means getting it right in all three realms of life and health, namely:


❖           PHYSICAL – what you put into your body.

❖           CHEMICAL – what you put into your mouth.

❖           EMOTIONAL – what you put into your head.


Each realm is of equal importance.

One of Britain’s greatest ever athletic champions, Sebastian Coe once shared the following wise words on the subject of wellness:


“We all have a finite amount of energy. Whether you use physical or mental energy it all comes from the same source. Wherever you focus your energy you’re either filling or depleting the same well ’’


Optimum health comes from maintaining optimal balance.

Optimal balance comes from keeping our ‘energy well’ filled in all three realms – with all three energy buckets – Physical, Chemical and Emotional.


There is no point doing everything right in the physical and chemical realms, if one drains ‘the human energy well’ via the emotional realm.

It’s all one.

We must strive to live our lives in balance.


“Too much or too little of anything for too long creates a state of imbalance.”


When it comes to your wealth – your financial wellness – it’s important to empower yourself. Some people do not.

They fail to prioritise their wealth – they fail to prioritise money, herby often remaining poor in life.

They like to believe that money is the root of all things evil.

It’s not.

It’s the love of money which is the root of all kind of evil.

There is a big difference

Prioritise your money as money is great enabler in life – especially when you are in the league of Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and other worldwide billionaires – who have committed to give away more than half of their wealth to select causes.


Priority Number Five: YOUR LIFESTYLE.


Every one of us seeks a desired lifestyle.

If you do not prioritise the things you love to do, they will pass you by.

What’s more is that if you do not take ‘time out’ – you will run the risk of burn out.

We have defined Human Greatness as:

“Success and Significance Sustained”

It’s the third ‘S’ which is crucial.

The great champions know that if they are to sustain great– they need to manage their finite energy levels.

You have to find time to:

“Relax & Refuel “

One cannot keep running a car on empty.

By prioritising your lifestyle choices – making time for the things you love to do– you will find the energy to ‘step up to the plate’ when required.

Whether it’s running, sailing, fishing, reading, shopping, whatever – it’s vitally important to find the time to re-energise yourself.


“You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.” Walter Hagen

Now you know. The Great Champions set up right.

They prioritise right.

Here are their BIG FIVE priorities in hierarchical order:

❖           Priority No.1: YOURSELF

❖           Priority No.2: YOUR PURPOSE

❖           Priority No.3: YOUR FAMILY & FRIENDS

❖           Priority No.4: YOUR HEALTH & YOUR WEALTH

❖           Priority No.5: YOUR DESIRED LIFESTYLE



“Strategy without execution is worthless”


You have done all the hard yards by defining your Purpose and putting your Priorities in place.

You have set up right and it’s now time for action.

It’s time to let the magic begin.

It’s time for the ‘P’ which sits above the water – the part which people see – your Performance.



Your Performance Goals need to be congruent with your Purpose and your Priorities.

It’s this level of congruency which will determine the level of your performance.

If not congruent, you will run the risk of falling into the trap of average people – average performance – called PROCRASTINATION.

To avoid this common human trap – your performance goals need to be:


❖           AUTHENTIC

❖           ALIGNED

❖           ACHIEVABLE





YOUR goals must be YOUR goals.

Unless your goals are authentic you will lack INSPIRATION from the inside – and will constantly be looking for MOTIVATION from the outside.

Don’t chase other people’s goals.




It’s smart to set only FIVE performance goals for the current year – one for each of the BIG FIVE PRIORITIES you set in STEP #2.

The great champions keep it all focused and simple.


“I’ve had to do a lot of inner engineering as I like to call it”

Novak Djokovic


As per business Guru Peter Drucker, make your goals “SMART’’: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time related.




Nothing is more disempowering that setting fantasy goals – goals which are unrealistic – goals which are not achievable.

It’s fine to have stretch goals, but they must be achievable.

Finally it’s important to add one final ingredient to the recipe – that of celebrating achievements – celebrating milestones.

Make sure you reward yourself along the way.

Reward fires you up for the next great achievement on your journey through life.


Live the journey.


“Life is not a race, but a journey to be savoured each step of the way.” Brian Dyson








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Email to: robopie@thegameplan.co.za

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Email to: robopie@thegameplan.co.za

Read more: www.thegameplan.co.za