Interview with Danny Bent
Do you have a favourite experience from you speaking career?
I have two moments that really stand out from my speaking. The first was speaking to a very corporate old school tech firm where the atmosphere was quiet, reserved, and introverted. After the talk the atmosphere had completed reversed and people were talking to each other animatedly, laughing and some were still pretending to ride a unicorn.
The second moment was at a school talk. With reference to me being a best selling author but also a terrible dyslexic I was speaking about the fact that people can achieve their dreams if they worked hard enough. I asked the audience of 5-11 year olds what they wanted to be when they grew up. A little girls hand shot up immediately and called out I want to be a mermaid. I’m not sure if that is achievable even with the hardest work.
What motivated you to start Project Awesome?
I love people. The more people I can surround myself with the happier I become. I wanted to share my love of sport and brighten up the city of London. I wanted to encourage people to talk and break down social barriers.
During your epic 9000 mile cycle from London to India, what kept you motivated to keep going?
The kids from schools in the UK who were following me and sending me beautiful messages of support kept me from throwing in the towel at times.
How much does humor factor into your keynotes and other speaking engagements?
Rather than humour I guess I focus on being authentically me and telling people honest believable stories. In that way you possibly end up making the audience laugh, cry and grimace more than any script.
Can you give 3 tips for creating a happier and more innovative company culture?
- Step past your fears and social barriers. Becoming a fearless leader.
- Always find the chink of rainbow in a grey day – there’s always something that can be flipped into a positive. (Eg. finding a reason to smile when you have an AK47 against your forehead in the Ukraine.)
- Find your tribe and how to lead your own.
Who or what inspires you most?
I’m not someone who is inspired by famous people or successful people. All my drive comes from trying my hardest to be authentic to myself, helping others as much as possible and standing by my morals. Although cheesy as it may seem I’m inspired by my parents who dealt with my slight ADD and extreme energy without ever curbing my spirit and lust for life.