Author Archives: Aodan Enright

Red Chair: Kathryn Thomas, Pure Results

Kathryn Thomas is an accomplished broadcaster, and is now embarking on an entrepreneurial journey with her fitness business, Pure Results.

In this revealing interview, you’ll understand why Kathryn is as successful as she is. Her resolve, her spirit of adventure and her determination shine through in several different stories.

While building the Pure Results bootcamps, Kathryn has learnt a lot about herself, about business, and about how to help people make profound changes in their life and wellness.

In this fast-paced conversation, you’ll hear a lot about Kathryn’s career, including:
* how she landed the gig for The Voice
* her first TV job – bringing Duncan Stewart his lunch!
* the uncertainty of life as a freelancer
* why The Late Late Show might be in her future
* building on Gerry Ryan’s legacy with Operation Transformation
* the power of shows like OT to drive societal change
* why she’s more nervous on radio than on live TV
* her motivation in starting Pure Results
* why Ireland could/should become a wellness tourism mecca
* the traumatic experience of starting a business from scratch
* her advice for anyone looking to make a change

More details on availability of Kathryn’s bootcamps in 2017 can be found here.

Kathryn Thomas, broadcaster & founder of Pure Results with Aodan Enright at Smarter Eggs at The White Horse, Ballincollig. Photo: Donagh Glavin.

Kathryn Thomas, broadcaster & founder of Pure Results with Aodan Enright at Smarter Eggs at The White Horse, Ballincollig. Photo: Donagh Glavin.

This conversation was recorded at a Smarter Egg event on the theme of Peak Performance at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in June 2016. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get on our exclusive events list, getting first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

Egg Talks: The man on the train – Colm O’Brien

Colm O’Brien is a successful businessman. He owns and runs Carambola Kidz, a catering business that feeds 23,000 school children with healthy lunches every day.

But Colm hasn’t always been successful. In fact, he oversaw a major business failure when his coffee shop became unsustainable.

In this entertaining Egg Talk, Colm shares some of his story, of how he built his career with Bewleys, but lost everything when a punt on his own franchise hit a perfect storm.

He tells the story of a chance meeting with a man on the train, how a simple offer of help opened up an unlikely opportunity, and concludes on the importance of working from the attitude of service.

As mentioned at the end of the talk, you can access a free audio download of his book, Feeding Johnny.

 

Colm O'Brien of Carambola Kidz, and author of Feeding Johnny at a Smarter Egg event at The White Horse, Cork. Photo: Donagh Glavin

Colm O’Brien of Carambola Kidz, and author of Feeding Johnny at a Smarter Egg event at The White Horse, Cork. Photo: Donagh Glavin

This talk was recorded at a Smarter Egg event at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in April 2016, also featuring Laurence McCahill and David McCarthy. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

Egg Talks: Predicting your future success – Neil O’Brien

Neil O’Brien is one of Ireland’s top coaches and conference speakers.

In this entertaining Egg Talk, Neil reveals a key question we must all ask about our performance in life, business and sport. Our answer to this question is an excellent predictor of our future success.

This key question is the centre-point of a hilarious story that Neil tells about his first interaction with a Gaelic Football team. Coming from the world of golf coaching, Neil steps outside his comfort zone as he grapples with an untrusting and sceptical audience.

If you’ve ever struggled with nerves and confidence while speaking, you’ll identify with Neil’s story!

Neil O'Brien, Time To Fly, speaking at The White Horse on June 28th 2016. Photo: Donagh Glavin

Neil O’Brien, Time To Fly, speaking at “Smarter Eggs at The White Horse” on June 28th 2016. Photo: Donagh Glavin

This talk was recorded at a Smarter Egg event at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in June 2016, also featuring Kathryn Thomas, Conor McCarthy & Canice Kennedy. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

One Year On: Niall & Jennifer O’Callaghan

No Reproduction Fee. Aodan Enright, Smarter Egg with Jennifer O'Callaghan, Nutrition4Living and Niall O’Callaghan, Performance Coach discussing plans for the Smarter Egg event on the theme of "Performance" which takes place on Thursday, 25 June at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Cork . Photo: Donagh Glavin

 

In June 2015, Niall and Jennifer O’Callaghan both spoke at a special Smarter Eggs at The White Horse event on the topic of performance. In the lead-up to a similar event on June 28th 2016, Aodan caught up with both Niall and Jennifer for a quick chat.

Aodan: It’s been a busy year for you since that White Horse event, and for you Niall, you’ve made some changes.

Niall: Yes some big ones. I moved on from my Engineering Project Management Role and have gone full time into the Fitness & Wellbeing Arena. I went straight into the role of managing Pure Results Bootcamp for Kathryn Thomas so I have not had much time to think about it. It’s been great so far, challenging but very rewarding. Jen and I have also set up our own company: Everyday NFW (Nutrition Fitness & Wellbeing) so getting that off the ground has also been very exciting.

And what’s been going on with you Jen?

Jen: Yes things have been growing quite progressively since last year. It’s amazing once you are open (lift the fears!!) how things start to flow. I have seen a lot of growth in my Nutrition4living business taking part in companies’ Health and Wellness weeks. Companies like PM Group, VMWare and Kerry Foods. It’s great to see how companies are starting to see the value of bringing this in for their employees. I am also having good fun with the food demos here. My one to one consultations have grown especially in weight loss, sports nutrition and digestive ailments. I am also doing a day in Mallow in an Osteopathy clinic where there is a very integrative approach to clients health. I still do events with our local SuperValu, I have been giving a lot more talks to clubs and schools on nutrition.

Of course Pure Results has grown even more this year, where we have also visited companies on their wellness weeks. At present a lot of time is taken up with onsite camps. As Niall has mentioned we have set up our own company Everyday to incorporate our skills. As I have found when working with people, in order to get the best results you have to look at the whole picture not to be one dimensional in your programmes. We want our clients to live their best life!

Tell us more about your collaboration, what services are you now offering?

Niall: We are primarily based in the Nutrition, Fitness & Wellbeing space, offering entire packages to Corporates like Health & Wellbeing Days incorporating awareness sessions, interactive demonstrations and personal assessments.

We will be providing fitness classes from September which I am very excited about and also personal Strength & Conditioning sessions for those who wish to push to the next level of fitness.

We are also very excited about our new Lifestyle Assessment Products. We have teamed up with a Finnish company Firstbeat to provide Personal Lifestyle Assessments which are based on Heart Rate Variability measurements. This evidence based coaching has been used for years by elite sportspeople including national rugby & soccer teams, but is also now very popular among executives. It measures stress reactions during the day and also the amount of recovery achieved during the day and during sleep. It provides valuable information as to how anyone with a demanding role can manage their activities to ensure adequate recovery to allow peak performance when it is needed in any situation at work or on the pitch etc.

Jen: Yes our Everyday company is now going to offer companies/clubs and the individual a wide range of programmes to choose from.  At the end of the day when we feel at our best we perform at our best.

Of course, you’ve already been working together as part of the Pure Results bootcamp team, what’s that been like?

Jen: When you work for yourself you can sometimes spend a lot of your time on your own. So it’s great to also be part of such a great team who are as motivated and passionate as we are on health and wellbeing. When you are working on this kind of project and you are there on site for a number of days it is great support to have Niall there as well. You have an understanding of what you have to give to the camp and the long hours involved. It has been a fantastic opportunity to work on as we have met so many people, all with their various struggles and inspiring stories, which inspires us more to do what we love.

Niall: It’s great. We have met some amazing people over the past two years and work with a great team. Our roles are quite different at the camp but we then come together to offer Nutritional & Exercise workshops including all aspects of Health & Wellbeing. It’s a demanding role but it does not seem like work when you love what you do. It is inspiring to work with clients who give their all in making the leap to change their lifestyle for the better.

Your boss at Pure Results, Kathryn Thomas is in our Red Chair on June 28. What kind of a boss is she?!

Niall: She is an absolute ball of energy. It’s been a huge challenge for her to set up Pure Results and get it to where it is in just two years. She is very open to how we would like to provide our service but always pushes for the best. She is also good fun and always up for the craic.

Jen: Yeah, Kathryn is great, she is a very driven, open and an honest boss. She is open to everyone’s ideas and contribution to camp. She will wash a plate and set a table – no problem, she just gets stuck in and has endless energy. She gives 150% so her standards are high in the service provided at camp, but as we believe in the same thing we are on par with this.

What are we likely to learn about Kathryn in The White Horse?

Jen: What you see is what you get, there is no pretence. She is good fun, honest and doesn’t mind admitting to her mistakes or making them. You will probably be surprised as to how grounded and normal she is.

Niall: You’ll probably see that she is exactly like she is on TV, very down to earth and genuine. You also see that she is always up for having a laugh and good fun to have around.

And what’s on the horizon for you now?

Niall: My new journey has only just begun so I’m very excited about that. I’m excited to build Everyday NFW with Jen and I know we will have lots of fun building it. I’m also excited to keep building Pure Results which continues to go from strength to Strength and working with Kathryn is a great experience and is always opening up new and very exciting opportunities.

Jen: Well, right now it’s the work of our new company Everyday NFW that we are looking to nurture and grow. Already this has started to take off and new projects are coming at our door-step. We are working with other team members on different things and there are lots of different projects coming up with Pure Results Team and Kathryn. It’s an exciting time, so keep watching!

Niall & Jennifer with Kathryn Thomas and the Pure Results team

Niall & Jennifer with Kathryn Thomas and the Pure Results team

Smarter Eggs at The White Horse – June 28

Kathryn Thomas in The White Horse

The Smarter Eggs are back at The White Horse, helping you close the gap between your performance and your potential.

We are joined by four inspiring people who are working at the top of their professions to enable others to get the most from what they do.

Joining us in our Red Chair is broadcaster and founder of Pure Results Bootcamp, Kathryn Thomas.

Known to many as the presenter of RTE’s The Voice and Operation Transformation, Kathryn brought her passion for wellbeing and improvement into a new venture last year, Pure Results, which provides top-class health and fitness retreats.

Among our Egg Talkers:
Neil O’Brien is an author, speaker and coach, working with some of the largest organisations in Ireland, as well as elite sportspeople, through his company Time To Fly.

Conor McCarthy is Irish Partner for Gazing Performance Systems, and through his company Kaizen Performance, delivers bespoke performance improvement programmes to the corporate sector.

Canice Kennedy has been a pioneer in sports psychology for many years, working with athletes at all levels of performance, including Olympians.

As always at our White Horse events, guests enjoy delicious food and this time a BBQ will be served in the beer garden. The event kicks off at 6pm, and ends by 9pm.

Smarter Eggs at The White Horse is a different kind of business event. In an intimate music venue, you connect with inspirational people and get to hear their stories up close and personal. Add in some delicious food, and sparkling conversation, and you have an evening that will inspire and delight.

To ensure you don’t miss out on future events, you can sign up to our special White Horse events list here

Red Chair: Laurence McCahill, The Happy Startup School

The Happy Startup School are building a global community of purpose-driven entrepreneurs.

Through their extraordinary events and popular online courses, they have assembled a loyal following of thousands of people who believe there is more to work & life than making money.

Co-founder Laurence McCahill joined us in the Red Chair for a conversation about the change the Happy Startup School is looking to make in the world.

Among many highlights include:
* The philosophy behind The Happy Startup School
* Why happiness is the new wealth
* Exploring different measures of success for life and business
* Why Laurence and co-founder Carlos started the movement
* How the Happy Startup School is a ‘marmite’ business
* Why society benefits when you build something you believe in
* The business case for happiness at work
* The Danish billionaire who discovered some dancing hippies
* The story of how the Happy Startup School has evolved and grown
* Serendipitous connections that are launching events on every continent
* Fatal mistakes that they see founders making again & again
* The 500 year business plan

Laurence McCahill of The Happy Startup School in the Red Chair at The White Horse, Cork. Photo: Donagh Glavin

Laurence McCahill of The Happy Startup School in the Red Chair at The White Horse, Cork. Photo: Donagh Glavin

This conversation was recorded at a Smarter Egg event on the theme of “Challenging Convention” at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in April 2016. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get on our exclusive events list, getting first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

Smarter Eggs at The White Horse – April 19th

Laurence HSS banner 640

On April 19th, we’re celebrating the concept of Challenging Convention at The White Horse.

We’re honoured that Laurence McCahill will be traveling from the UK to join us in our Red Chair.

Laurence is a design professional who learned so much from working with startups that he co-founded The Happy Startup School with his colleagues a few years back. Such has been the global response to their work that they had to close the design studio to free up the time to lead this global tribe.

In all aspects of life, conventional wisdom tends to form, and what were trends somehow become fixed beliefs. But conventional thinking doesn’t work for everyone, and most of the innovation in the world happens when we challenge that thinking.

05-03-2016 Colm O'Brien Motivation. Savoy Hotel, Limerick. Picture credit: Diarmuid Greene/Fusionshooters

Colm O’Brien, founder of Carambola Kidz and author of Feeding Johnny, is one of our Egg Talkers. Colm is an experienced entrepreneur and an engaging speaker, and is also actively involved in theatre and the arts.

DavidMcCarthy640

David McCarthy, through his award-winning startup Yellow Harbour, is tackling a significant problem: how to best align the generosity of those in the working world with high-impact charities that need sustainable backing.

Event runs from 6pm to 9pm and features delicious food from the acclaimed White Horse kitchen.

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This event is kindly supported by our friends at the impressive Cork International Hotel.

Smarter Eggs at The White Horse is a different kind of business event. In an intimate music venue, you connect with inspirational people and get to hear their stories up close and personal. Add in some delicious food, and sparkling conversation, and you have an evening that will inspire and delight.

To ensure you don’t miss out on future events, you can sign up to our special White Horse events list here

Egg Talks: Finding your true voice – Jack O’Rourke

Jack O’Rourke is one of those special talents that once you’ve heard him perform, you inevitably find yourself evangelising about him to others.

In this special Egg Talk, Jack shares an intimate story of how he found his true voice in music.

Jack delighted the full house at The White Horse with a couple of visits to the keyboard, with a selection of standout lines from his musical heroes, as well a fabulous performance of his song, “Silence”.

Amongst the many highlights of his story include:

  • traveling the journey of being an imitator to an original
  • sharing John Spillane’s invaluable songwriting advice
  • his realisation that his songs needed to be credible and real
  • how he was the great pretender before coming out as a gay man
  • finding that ‘style is a product of your limitations’
  • how his song, ‘Silence’, became an anthem for the 2015 Marriage Equality referendum
  • his belief that the truth will always out, and that people will respond to it
Singer/Songwriter Jack O'Rourke at the Business of Music event at the Ballincollig Winter Music Festival in The White Horse. Photo Donagh Glavin

Singer/Songwriter Jack O’Rourke at the Business of Music event at the Ballincollig Winter Music Festival in The White Horse. Photo Donagh Glavin.

This talk was recorded at a Smarter Egg event at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in January 2016. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get on our exclusive events list, getting first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

Egg Talks: Turning negatives into positives – Richard Barrett

We’re often seduced into believing that success in life is linear, that hard work will inevitably move the line up and to the right.

But it’s rarely, if ever, that way.

Richard Barrett’s story reminds us that the curve looks more like a roller coaster. And his philosophy has been to embrace the negatives as a prelude to some positives.

Co-founder of startup sensation Pundit Arena, Richard shares his life story in this candid and inspiring talk.

Amongst the many highlights of his story include:

  • his early entrepreneurial flair while being a popular misfit in school
  • how his interest in sport and learning (and holidays) put him on the path to teaching
  • his constant desire for self-improvement
  • the dramatic consequences of multiple broken bones & months in a wheelchair
  • how he taught himself to build a website
  • the serendipity of meeting his co-founder on the UCC Ignite programme
  • finding a business model around giving a voice to the writing of sports fans
  • the excitement and disappointment of raising investment
  • the successful growth of Pundit Arena
Richard Barrett, of Pundit Arena, speaking at the Smarter Egg 'Business of Sport' event, held at The White Horse, Ballincollig. Photo Donagh Glavin

Richard Barrett, of Pundit Arena, speaking at the Smarter Egg ‘Business of Sport’ event, held at The White Horse, Ballincollig. Photo Donagh Glavin

This talk was recorded at a Smarter Egg event at Upstairs at the White Horse, Ballincollig, Ireland in November 2015. The video footage was filmed and edited by AV3 Productions.

If you would like to get on our exclusive events list, getting first notice of forthcoming events along with more behind-the-scenes goodies, just sign up here.

Smarter Egg Profile: Barbara Nugent – Transilient Coaching

Pic Darragh Kane.

 

Members of the Smarter Egg Network come from across the business spectrum, bringing a diverse range of experiences and perspectives. What unites them though is a willingness to engage, to learn and to help each other.

These are their stories.

Barbara, what is your business about and what is your role?

My business is called Transilient Coaching.

The word Transilient comes from the world of physics and means “moving from one state of being to another”. In essence, that is what my business is about. I help individuals and teams, through coaching and mentoring, to uncover their aspirations and strengths and work towards their better selves.

My logo of a person leaping over stepping stones is exactly the journey a client will make while working through the changes required to perform at a much higher level. It reflects very much my own journey.

As a finance executive in multinationals for the past 25 years, I realised the key to being successful was through people, who if developed and mentored, could and did deliver at far higher and more rewarding levels. The impact to the organization was extraordinary.

That led me to eventually “make the leap” just fourteen months ago, into the world of self-employment, so I could have the freedom to really indulge my passion of helping others get the business results they want.

My “Build your High Performance Team” programme and “Accelerate your Emotional Intelligence” have both been well received by clients. I also work at one-to-one level coaching, which can be very powerful for clients but also very rewarding for me.

 

Why did you sign up for the Smarter Egg Network?

I initially signed up for the Quarterly Personal Offsite programme because I noticed that although I encourage my clients to take time to talk to me about their strategy and business obstacles, I wasn’t doing the same for myself!

I am passionate about delivering a high quality experience to my clients and that takes time and planning. What I got from the Quarterly Offsite was an excellent format that walked me through my thoughts, to generating plans and actions. Making myself accountable for following through with my actions was the catalyst I needed to move forward. Working alone can be isolating.

Coming back after 3 months to reflect on how the previous quarter has gone, understanding how my plans had played out and planning forward to the next quarter is an invaluable tool for business development.

Surrounded by like minded people from all walks of business provides a supportive and informative forum for discussion of ideas and sharing of knowledge.

So yes, even coaches need to be coached!

 

What have you learned about yourself in the past year?

The change from a corporate environment to being self-employed has taught me a number of surprising things about myself.

Firstly, I struggle without structure to my week and it has taken me a while to establish that and make sure that I use my time productively and efficiently.

More surprisingly, I found that I have a tendency to procrastinate. Despite being a very decisive leader, now on my own I was putting things off. The Quarterly Offsite was my antidote to this problem – putting accountability and action back into my week.

On the plus side, I love meeting new people, hearing their stories and am constantly astounded at the great businesses people are building in Cork. Such a vibrant business community that I had hardly been aware of before.

 

What kind of people do you look to collaborate with?

Being in a network like Smarter Egg, there is the opportunity to help and be helped. I enjoy meeting younger entrepreneurs because their energy and optimism is uplifting. I find I have a lot to contribute to those individuals because of my experience and background. People who have business problems are always of interest to me.

Those who want to be better at what they do, who seek self development and who recognise that having a coach can help them achieve what they really want for themselves and their businesses.

Equally I enjoy meeting those who are in business for some time and who can offer advice and usually contacts to help me progress my business.

 

If you could say to others “You have to read this”, which book would you recommend?

Ooh, tough one! I think “Who moved my Cheese” by Dr. Spencer Johnson.

Change can be difficult and often people would rather stay as they are, even if it is obvious that it isn’t working well. This book helps to put change into perspective and help people to understand it better.

 

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

Between the months of March and September I am a coastal rower with Courtmacsherry Rowing Club – so getting fit for that now! We row in regattas all over Cork and will be heading to Donegal for the All-Ireland. My husband and children are all involved, so it’s a very family oriented sport.

On a more laid back note, I read extensively. I have promised myself this year to make more of the great beaches that surround us in Cork!

 

What is the most rewarding aspect of your work?

Seeing someone recognise their possibilities, their strengths and their opportunities and knowing that I helped them to do that, gives me huge satisfaction.

Coaching involves asking questions, and sometimes when I ask something that stops my client in their tracks, I know something important is about to be discovered. I really get a buzz from that.

Or having a business owner tell me that results are better, or their staff are happier or more productive because of my intervention reminds me why I left the safe harbour of corporate life!

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You can learn more about Barbara’s work at Transilient Coaching, or you can connect with her right now on LinkedIn!

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The Smarter Egg Network is a platform for high-calibre professionals to collaborate, learn and raise their game. Membership is available to both individuals and organisations.