“The road of an entrepreneur is a lonely one and the Entrepreneurs Organisation (EO) provides an important platform to learn and grow and knowledge share,” Shilpa Mehta, the incoming president of the Durban chapter of this groundbreaking international organisation, told guests at the “Evening At The Races” event held a Durban’s iconic Greyville racecourse on February 28.
The evening, which allowed members and their guests to not only watch some night races but also network and listen to the inspirational keynote address by Johannesburg based public speaker, Richard Wright, emphasised that it is possible to overcome insurmountable challenges, which is particularly important when navigating the difficult economic landscape in which South Africa finds itself.
Richard Wright is a born storyteller and business guru who combines authentic, challenging content with a humorous and dynamic presentation. He draws on his diverse background in the business and real estate industry which encapsulates sales, coaching, horticulture, law and management. He combines this with his experiences as a three-time, stage four brain cancer survivor who overcame all the odds whilst, at the same time, competing in some of the world’s toughest endurance events, including six Ironman triathlons.
During his dynamic and inspiring presentation, Wright shared the many hardships he has endured whilst also illustrating the lessons he learned from overcoming these insurmountable challenges. He spoke about how to use the mind to fight against hardships and gave his audience practical advice on dealing with adversity and responding positively to change.
He shared the importance of the unravelling of one’s own DNA to discover one’s true identity. Starting on the inside and working outwards, he explained that it is our ‘why’ which is the platform on which to build our ‘how’ and then he shared his extensive knowledge about neuroscience and how important it is to understand and control thought processes which ultimately determine how our life turns out.
Wright captured everyone’s attention as he explained how he successfully faced down some of life’s biggest challenges with the tenacity of an endurance athlete, overcoming fear in the process. He is a radical optimist whose story of endurance, passion, heartbreak and the triumph were an inspiration to all entrepreneurs to elevate their businesses to the next level.
Tarryn Tait (Marketing chair at EO) and CEO of Colindale Trading, underscored many of Wright’s learnings and pointed out that the evening had perfectly illustrated the value of EO which is now active in 62 countries globally.
“An evening such as this allows the EO Durban chapter to share the gift of EO with other entrepreneurs in the region,” she said, listing the benefits of EO membership as having access to one’s own “non-executive” board of directors through EO forums, having access to one-of-a-kind chapter events built around learning and growing, as well as global events and learning programs, and benefiting from executive education on both a personal and professional level.
“EO helps transform the lives of those who transform the world, through core values such as trust and respect, thirst for learning, boldly going, making one’s mark and being cool,” she said.
Ï loved the evening function, Richard Wright was amazing. He reminded me of what is important in life and how we should never limit our thinking at the expense of living a fulfilled life. Moreover, he inspired us to remember that we are more than conquerors. Nothing is impossible and we can defeat our own limitations. Richard’s story is truly remarkable.
As a new EO member, I look forward to exploring what has been planned for the year. Already my mind has shifted towards setting clear goals which I hope to achieve. I have also started to crystallise my business and our service offering which should bode well for us. I look forward to enjoying my best business year yet.
Responding to Wright’s story Shaza Ballim, EO member and female entrepreneur in a male-dominated industry said that Richard’s message is an inspiration! She said his story proves that a powerful mind can change your destiny. What you think is what you will achieve, and his journey is a testimony to that. “Hearing him speak was an absolute honour.”
Incoming EO President Shilpa Mehta said it makes us realise we must persevere even though it is uncomfortable, but we need to be uncomfortable in order to grow. This applies to all aspects of life. We need to have the mindset to live.
Caption: Pictured at the Entrepreneurs Organisation event held at Greyville Race Course on Friday 28th February 2020 are from left to right: Krista Clive-Smith, Vivek Pattundeen, Grant Gavin, Shilpa Mehta all EO members who shared their EO story with keynote speaker Richard Wright.