Ian Rowe


Speaker, Rower, Businessman, author in progress, nominative determinist.

Ian took part in an attempt to become the first boat in history to row unsupported across 3,000 miles of the Atlantic Ocean in under 30 days.

Ian has a core belief that there are only ‘ordinary’ people in the world and it is ordinary people that do extra-ordinary things. Unlocking the ‘extra-ordinary’ in your team is essential to increased performance and the lessons from the Atlantic can deliver exactly that.

Ian talks about:

Big challenges, small steps. One million rowing strokes, one world record. Breaking big challenges down into small steps, finding the marginal gains, making sense of overwhelming inputs. This applies on the ocean and in ‘normal’ life.

‘Normal’ however, is the place where things go wrong and can be the most dangerous of places as we become ‘expert’, ignoring new methods, or complacent with what we have in place already. That is the time to be looking for change, for innovation, to recalibrate normal but how do we facilitate that and how do we handle it?

Different characters bring different skills, capabilities and experience. They may not get on personally but they will pull together, support each other, back each other to achieve the shared goal or vision – provided everyone knows what it is and had bought into it. It is about choosing our attitude to ourselves and to others.

Dare to try
There is only ever one reason for failure, it is because we dared to try. Without trying anything how can we ever fail? The conflict between fear and courage is the battle we have to face to get out of the harbour and take on something ‘extra-ordinary’. It will require resilience, change, teamwork and a willingness to dare to try!

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