Brian Eagar | Founder and CEO of the TowerStone Leadership Centre
After an executive sales and strategy role for a large information technology company based in Germany, Brian returned to South Africa and founded TowerStone, driven by his desire to inspire others to seek greater meaning in their lives and help them to purposefully live a life that is fulfilling and meaningful, filled with love at the core of everything. Now, years later TowerStone is one of SA’s pre-eminent suppliers of change-management and culture-building for Blue chip organizations like Nestlé, Sanlam Investments, Curo Fund Services, Tessara, Massmart, Lesedi Nuclear Services, The Aveng Group, PEP, DetNet, Shoprite Checkers, AEL Mining Services, AECI, Glencore, Levi Strauss, The South African Mint Company, Afrox, Clicks, Pick n Pay and Bluff Meat Supply and many more.
My Definition Of Success | True success can only be cultivated within yourself. As much as this might sound like a cliché, it holds true because success always starts with investing in and empowering yourself. Only then can it grow into a symbiosis where your growth supports the growth of others and vice versa. As you grow yourself, you will contribute to the growth of others and consequently reap the rewards and grow even more in turn. The more you grow, the more you are able to empower. That is what true, sustainable success means to me.
A Key Talent | Tenacity. Irrespective of what I deal with in my career and my life, tenacity is the key strength that I leverage to push through. It means facing both ongoing and new challenges and refusing to give up. This does not mean that you should apply Einstein’s definition of insanity and keep doing the same thing expecting a different result. It means doing what you need to do to achieve your goal, even if the method and the goal need to evolve along the way. Remember the familiar saying: change is the only constant in life. In a constantly-changing world, a tenacious mindset supports success, whether it means being humble enough to try a new perspective, or bold enough to stick to your guns.
Principles I Live By | Besides tenacity as I explained above, I also strongly believe in stepping up to the plate with humility, professionalism and integrity. You have to be humble enough to accept the fact that you don’t know everything and be open to learning from others. Integrity means honouring your commitments and also being humble enough to not promise more than you can deliver. Finally, I think professionalism (which can often be seen as devoid of passion) means delivering your very best, on time because you are passionate about what you do and how it can positively impact others. If you compromise on these values, you compromise both your personal and organisational brand.
Performing At My Peak | Performing at my peak has two facets – empowering myself and empowering others. I invest in my physical health (e.g. keeping active) and developing my mind, both with new knowledge (e.g. reading various pieces of literature and keeping up with current affairs) as well as being mindful of switching myself on to harness stress and make it an enabler rather than a disabler. However, I am only as good as the growth of the team behind me as well as that of the clients whom I serve. Therefore, to give my very best, I am constantly aware of switching others on to cultivate their potential and achieve top performance as a collective, making us that much stronger.
My Future Dreams And Ambitions | During my interactions with clients, I am often blown away by the potential of the young leaders I engage with. I would love to host a leadership conference to showcase these leaders, inspire others to overcome in spite of their circumstances as well as inspire hope in all South Africans for a bright future. As much as we don’t like to talk about the past, the past must be addressed to unearth the wealth of leadership that the times of adversity cultivated.
On balancing high-performance and happiness: Juggling a very busy schedule and high-pressure deliverables often requires personal sacrifices which leads to fatigue and manifests in impatience and frustration. It is my purpose – the reason I do what I do – that pulls me through in these times. At times it is necessary to be bold and vulnerable enough to acknowledge what impacts you and can hold you back. Only then can you be wise enough to raise your awareness to recognise the things that switch you and others off and overcome them.
I Am Inspired By | Those close to me inspire me the most. My role-models are my business partner Mandy Eagar who acts as my mirror and teaches me humility and patience; my daughters who show me what can be achieved if you truly apply yourself on a daily basis; my team members who constantly display such adaptability and inspire me to do the same and finally clients who show me the possibilities and benefits that come from embracing change and remind me of what is possible for myself. I love the quote by Robert A. Heinlein: “When one teaches, two learn”. I believe that to keep learning, you need to be humble enough to know that you can learn from anyone.
Important Lesson | A quote I saw a long time ago continues to inspire me: “In the face of adversity, those with resolve stand tall” (author unknown). What really matters in life is how you bounce back from failure. Discomfort will be part of your journey, but with tenacity you will overcome. Therefore, it is vital to cultivate resolve within yourself and others. Fundamental to this is instilling a sense of purpose as well as sharing and acknowledging success.