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After being afflicted with polio as a youngster, Ade refused to let disability get in the way of his love for sport and became ‘the Michael Jordan of wheelchair basketball.’ He represented GB at the European and World Championships, and won Paralympic bronze. He has since trekked through rainforests and hauled himself to the top of a 5,000’ volcano. Ade describes how he realised his condition wasn’t a big obstacle, and how we can all set our own boundaries.

People used to joke that if you find yourself in the same place as Adie you should get out immediately. As Chief News Reporter she broadcast from the front line in the Gulf War and riots in Tiananmen Square. After dinner Kate talks about Britain’s home front, when women started going to football matches.

When Apollo 11 touched down in 1969, Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong became the first humans to set foot on the moon. After a worldwide goodwill tour Buzz was asked to lead NASA’s school for test pilots. He is now circling the globe encouraging scientists, politicians and businesspeople to collaborate in the quest to create a permanent colony on Mars: “It will be built by robots controlled from satellites. Every 26 months, new pioneers will take a one-way trip!”

Benedict has lived in the Siberian wilds, survived the Skeleton Coast and crossed the Gobi. He’s been shot at, hunted and left to stitch up his own chest: “It’s a bit more extreme than the corporate jungle, though there are parallels.” Benedict happily shows off the scars from a Niowra initiation ceremony.

Claire was a young field nurse in Ethiopia when Michael Buerk interviewed her for a BBC report on the famine. She was irritated by his ‘stupid questions,’ but told him her grimmest task was to decide which children might survive if let in to the feeding station, and which must be left to die. The report inspired Geldof to set up Live Aid. Claire explains that everybody can make a difference and create value, not just be a consumer.

Karren ran the business side of Birmingham City FC through promotion, relegation – and brain surgery. Karren’s mantra for leaders growing any enterprise can be summed up in 5 tips: work hard (be persistent); use every opportunity to network (spread your message); move on (failure is history); don’t get side-tracked, and do your sums.

The former Royal Marine (aka The Arctic Tractor) led the first unsupported UK expedition from Canada to the geographic North Pole. After taking disaffected British children to African classrooms with Channel 4, Alan showed us the method to making good with a new book: Lead Yourself To Success. In presentations he emphasises the need to question norms, build total trust and make decisions purely based on the facts. Alan also advocates leading from behind.

Ed was chosen to join Cracknell and Fogle in a race to the South Pole. They skied for 16 hours each day and came in second – without any polar experience. In his workshop the hospital doctor uses storytelling and mindfulness techniques to give participants the tools to embrace challenge and live for the moment. Ed shows how exploring our feelings, opening up to change, managing criticism and agreeing short-term goals helps us withstand extreme pressure.

On the track Seb’s talent and commitment earned eleven world records and two Olympic gold medals; he has since led the most successful Games in recent history. After serving as one of many Vice Presidents Seb is now tasked with turning around the IAAF and restoring the reputation of international athletics, in the gaze of the world’s media. In speeches he shares the lessons as an athlete and as a leader delivering a vision, managing crisis and bringing about change.

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