September 20, 2013

EDF Energy Feedback

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

Some new feedback:

“Marc, was one of the easiest and responsive speakers I have worked with over the last four years of arranging these type of events. His enthusiasm and his understanding of exactly what we wanted to achieve for our audience made the whole event a breeze. I was overwhelmed by the level Marc engaged with our audience of over 400 people and we have heard nothing but thought provoking comments as a result of the time he spent with us. I hope our paths cross again.”

Bonnie Banks Internal Communications, EDF Energy

Audience Feedback

Many thanks for a truly inspirational keynote speech. A great message delivered with humour and sincerity. Highly recommended!”

Andrew J Hancock – Head of Customer Services & Revenue Management, EDF Energy

Massively enjoyed seeing Marc Hogan at our work conference today. Top quality event speaker!”

Pete Fear Service – Development Manager, EDF Energy

Engaging and entertaining whilst being thought provoking!”

Stuart Treloar, EDF Energy

Thoroughly enjoyed the EDF away yesterday! Good show & inspirational”

Chlöe Smith – EDF Energy


Click here
to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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September 16, 2013

Hugely Enjoyable

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

Some new feedback:

We were very pleased with Marc’s Funny Business Keynote. It hit the mark in terms of bringing our theme of ‘Discovery’ to a close in a witty but relevant way that could appeal to every individual in the room. We really appreciated Marc taking the time to prepare and ensuring he understood the audience – that came across and made a real difference.

The audience exercises were refreshing and the interplay between Marc’s own comedy stand-up quest and broader lessons for people to bear in mind was hugely enjoyable.”

Daniela Zuin Head of Strategy Development, T-Systems


Click here
to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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September 11, 2013

Break A Leg Mr Bobble Head

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

As I’m sitting at the BFI (British Film Institute) on London’s Southbank it seems appropriate to talk about acting at work.

We are all actors when it comes to the workplace.  No, I’m not talking about that Oscar winning interview performance where you had your audience enraptured as you recounted the tale of how you single-handedly made millions for your last company and that you are not desperate to leave but honestly you are ready for a new ‘challenge’.

By the way the strangest question I was ever asked at an interview was, “if you were a kitchen utensil what kitchen utensil would you be? (I told them to fork off).  Oh and as a side note I once interviewed a person who had put ESP down in his skills section (yes, that ESP! Honestly I must have ESP right now as I know what you’re thinking – no he did not get the job, but only after I had tested this – if he did actually have ESP it would have been awesome!)

I’m also not talking about how we might act in certain work situations, whether that’s trying to appear confident when we are presenting or when we phoning up our bosses to tell them that we are sick, when really it’s just a horrendous hangover.

Again the best story I’ve heard about an employee calling in sick was from the boss who heard this excuse, “Sorry I can’t come into work today as the voices have told me I have to clean the guns.” Needless to say the individual had a meteoric rise to the top of the organisation…

No what I’m taking about is one of the fundamentals of acting and comedy – ‘Status’.

Status:  position or rank in relation to others

There’s a clear difference between a high status and low status individual.  Think about Woody Allen – a fabulously successful comic, actor and director who has made a career out of playing low status individuals. Or think about The Usual Suspects (spoiler alert) where Kevin Spacey goes from low status Verbal Kint to the very high status Keyser Soze in the last 2 minutes of the film.

So how do we assume high status?

Forget about the clothes you wear (though they do help). Forget even standing straight or keeping steady eye contact. The most important thing high status individuals do begins with their head.

If you watch any hero in any movie they show status in one simple way…

They keep their head still as they talk.

You would be amazed the change in impact a person has with this one trick. If you want to appear low status all you have to do is let your head wobble from side to side as you talk.

Don’t believe me? Try talking to your boss tomorrow about something important and keep your head still, and then talk to them later and let your head sway from side to side.  See which reaction you prefer!


Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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September 8, 2013

What A Carry On

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

Inspiration can strike us anywhere, even when we are standing in a queue.

Recently I met a former IT consultant called Alistair Callender. Like many of us Alistair travels abroad frequently and like many of us he’s had to endure the hell that is business travel.

You know the type of thing, you print your boarding pass because apparently that’s easier, you check your luggage in online again because apparently that’s easier too. You buy the tiniest tube of toothpaste in the world which for some reason cost more than the normal sized version (or you don’t bother bringing any because the moment you get through security you’ve got two hours to buy 3 litres of the stuff).

You leave your house at three AM to catch a six AM flight because it’s really important that you spend at least two hours shopping at an airport for no good reason at all, and then you park your car at the handy car park three miles from the terminal.

You then proceed to remove your shoes, belt, bra, etc at security and once through the x-ray you walk another 3 miles from the terminal to the gate.

At the gate someone usually wearing a tabard – who really tried to become a traffic warden and failed – scrutinises your hand luggage to make sure that it’s not 1 cm bigger nor 1 ounce more than it should be and then finally allows you to sit on a plane in the tiniest seat possible where just in case you weren’t sick and tired of shopping they decide to sell you more stuff which for some reason is even more expensive than the most expensive shop in England (by the way that’s not Harrods, that’s the Oxford service station on the M4).

Well Alistair (remember him) at least has made my business travel a little more pleasant and more importantly I no longer have to put stuff in the hold or feel the dreaded gnaw of panic when just before you board the plane that SS security guard makes you try and fit your carry on into that ‘your bag must fit into this’ metal frame thingy or they will charge you £50 to put it in the hold, even though it would’ve been cheaper to buy a second seat on the plane and put your hand luggage on it!

Instead of getting frustrated by airline travel, Alistair came up with a solution and designed the ingenious Gate8 Trifold Carry on Travel bag that is completely compliant with all carry on regulations for all airlines and carries my suit, shirts, Laptop, iPad, chargers, adaptors for the chargers, underwear and as many of those tiny toothpastes as I like!

Most of us when we have an idea we might think “oh that’s a good business idea” but then never do anything about it because of daily distractions, lack of belief, aversion to risk, or just being too afraid to seek out the right people who could help. Just think, many brilliant ideas don’t become reality…

Well, not Alistair. After one too many frustrating business trips Alistair took the plunge and after several trips to Hong Kong and China he managed to turn what originally was a very crude product design (back of a post-it note drawing) into a working prototype clever piece of Business Luggage, and then finally into a premium product.

It took over 2 years of hard work and determination (whilst also working a full-time job), coupled with investment of personal finances to get the product design, supply chain and branding to a standard that attracted retail interest and ultimately convincing the one business mentor that he had “stalked” for over 2 years to finally invest and help accelerate business growth.

His GATE8 Bag is brilliant. I use it all the time. I can’t recommend you more strongly to go and check it out on his website www.gate8-luggage.co.uk

And next time you think of a brilliant idea, before you dismiss it, think of Alistair…


Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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September 4, 2013

Holy Character Assassination Batman!

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

In case you hadn’t noticed the Internet imploded last week, no I’m not talking about the system crashes affecting Google, Amazon, Apple and Nasdaq, I’m talking about something much bigger than that…

Last week it was announced that Ben Affleck star of Gigli, Pearl Harbour, one time fiancé of Jennifer Lopez (whatever happened to her?) and lest we not forget two-time Academy award winner will be the new Batman in the next Superman versus Batman film.

‘Batfleck’ as he has now being christened (still better than Bennifer) will now be fitting that chiselled jaw into some seriously tight rubber and lycra…

Twitter went into meltdown. How can Ben Affleck replace Christian Bale (widely considered the best Batman ever)? The whole thing has got so ridiculous that thousands of Americans signed a petition on the Whitehouse.org website asking President Obama to intervene – they clearly think he has nothing better to do, such as dealing with the crisis in Syria, saving the global economy and improving his golf game (the President has played a mind boggling 146 rounds since becoming president in 2009 fact fans).

Hey I’m not judging Obama, last night our Foreign Secretary William Hague spent the evening at the GQ Magazine Men of the Year Awards, I mean I’m sure he still had his blackberry on him, but really? He wasn’t even nominated for Politician of the Year – that honour went to Boris. Perhaps William is not putting all his eggs in David Cameron’s basket?

Whether you think Affleck is a good choice or not, Warner Brothers is about to invest over $300 million in making and marketing this new film. I remember when a certain ‘blonde Bond’ Daniel Craig was widely denounced as being the new James Bond. At the time of going to press Skyfall made over $1 billion at the box office and Craig is now considered the best Bond ever…

My point is that things change. Sometimes someone will get promoted ahead of you, or the company will launch a new initiative that you don’t agree with, or like Nokia you might be bought out by a bigger stronger company.

It might turn out terrible, or it might not. Surely the best thing to do is to dig deep and give 100% because there are three really important things that I have learnt as a business speaker: one change happens, two positive attitudes make everywhere a better place to work, and three, things could be a whole lot worse – Adam Sandler could be the new Batman.


Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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September 1, 2013

Flat Pack Thinking

Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival for 21 nights. He won the bet!

I was in one of those sexy metal and glass offices today, you know the ones, all chrome surfaces and funky chairs designed by a man in a chunky knit cardigan called Sven and instead of carpet they have a lawn of organic, GM free, grass inside that’s mown not by an electricity wasting Flymo but cut by a a local specialist farmer and his rare breed sheep like the ones that nice Adam Henson from BBC’s Country File is so fond of.

Of course this doesn’t hide the fact that the office is still in Slough and half the people in the place looked like they wanted that nice Adam Henson to show up and put them out to pasture…

What I always find interesting in these places is the turnstiles. You know the ones, those rotating Tridents of death that at the start of every day like to smack you in the groin before you start work.

I mean who decided that so many of us were so desperate to get to into work as quickly as possible that in order to avoid chaos and panic we should put turnstiles in just in case we all rush into the building like a mob of baying teenage girls desperately trying to get into a One Direction concert?

To be fair I like these crazy offices with their quirky chairs, pool tables and latte machines, it reminds me of being a child and going into Hamley’s Toy Store for the first time except even Hamley’s didn’t have the turnstiles…

These spaces are designed to boost creativity and they’re safer than giving everybody pyschedelic dugs like they did in the 70’s (I promise you that’s a fact).

But not all of us have access to creative zones in our offices (or psychedelic drugs for that matter) and the only Swedish furniture we have in our office is a bookcase called Billy (apparently between 1 September 2012, and 25 October 2012, Ikea sold 503,441 Billy bookcases around the world. It is its most popular product!)

What do we do if we want to be more creative?

Well lets try these five ideas:

1. Put what you think you know aside for a moment.

2. Imagine how things could be.

3. Know your company’s rules and then break them or at least bend them a bit.

4. Try drawing your problem and then redraw it.

5. Look for the problem behind the problem.

Feeling more creative? No? Time to go buy some expensive funky furniture!


Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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