Markd GlobalPurpose-driven leadership

Love actually… and being a bloody good human

By February 14, 2022 No Comments

Andrew Davenport by Markd Global

One purposeful day

We never thought that Andrew Davenport would teach us about love. We just wanted him to experience our Professional Branding with Purpose program. He is our target market to a tee – a successful leader at halftime who has risen to Managing Director positions in high-profile agencies and companies in the UK and Australia. But was he willing to dedicate a day to himself to navigate a new journey? One intended to move him from success to significance.

Time was the issue. All we ask of our halftime leaders is one day to focus on purpose. But it can feel like an indulgence for those who have spent most of their leadership journey giving to others rather than themselves. 

A fortuitous window in time happened for Andrew, and for one purposeful day, he gave himself time to answer three fundamental questions: Who am I? Why am I here? And what does the next half look like? 

“Going through the experience with Sibon was interesting. I don’t remember a day before when it was ‘all about me’. It was a bit of a luxury. The day was worth it for this alone.”

Andrew’s story of success

Like many of us, Andrew’s life is full of ups and downs. What has been defining is his working-class British background, natural intelligence, and bright personality that have always opened doors for him. Those doors have seen him rise to the top of agencies to deliver both impressive results and strong teams. 

“In my 40s, I think I reached a pinnacle. I was as far away from my working-class background as I could get living in Sydney, leading an amazing agency, which offered my wife and kids new friends and the great Aussie lifestyle. I remember looking around and feeling a wonderful sense of achievement.”

The turning point

All we can imagine at this point is Andrew’s picket fence life. An impressive career, a wonderful wife, two kids (pigeon pairs), and a dog called Frank. But the stories never end here for our halftime leaders. Life is guaranteed to throw a few curveballs and the one that came next was the most defining of all.

“Two roles later I found myself in an extremely unhappy place. The root cause was the job I was in. I was being paid well but feeling unfulfilled, which cascaded into my personal life. I lost joy. The unhappiness that came after was like a cloud hanging over me that I couldn’t shake off.”

Rather than stay in an unhappy place, Andrew made the brave decision to leave his job and give himself time to think about the next step. Resigning meant taking a large financial risk. However, staying in a job that was changing who he was at his core didn’t feel like a good alternative either. A more significant personal change was also around the corner when Andrew and his wife decided to end their marriage of 24 years. 

Even he says the decisions he was making at the time seemed counterintuitive to the successful life he had built. 

“Everybody’s journey is different. But I knew I had to take ownership of my unhappiness and the impact it was having on the people I cared for most. They were big and not easy decisions to make but I knew on the other side of them was the possibility of a happier and better me.”

Andrew’s story of significance

In working with leaders, we’ve found it is their values that guide the journey to significance. Defining them helps every leader articulate their purpose.

We asked Andrew to share the values that had carried him through to his turning point. It was not easy to shortlist them but when he did, it was clear why they were the most important. Love, Curiosity, Smarts, Integrity, and Energy had been constant themes in his life and he saw clearly how they would continue to propel him forward into his next half. 

“Defining my brand values was hard. There were so many that I felt genuinely attached to but I am happy with the final five. They light fires in my belly. They represent lines I will draw and not cross. Things I will fight for. Ways in which I live my life. Genuinely live my life.”

They eventually helped Andrew articulate his purpose: Loving life as a bloody good human. It is simple, yet broad and frankly, Andrew. It could be the title of a book that we’d all take a leaf out of its pages. This is a leader who loves life and all that it has to offer. Mostly, he loves himself and that is the most important lesson of all. It was easy to describe his perfect day after that and see how days like it could add up to a significant life – on his terms. 

So what’s Andrew doing now? Using his ideal day as a guide to a more fulfilled life. It’s a journey but full of more of the stuff that matters. Getting out with Frank in the morning, building a new lifestyle for the family beyond a separation, creating a portfolio career that includes growing a mid-sized agency, and mentoring leaders and businesses through his consultancy offer – Davvers. 

Markedly Different

Recognising that he loved leading teams as much as mentoring leaders, Andrew wanted to give us strategic feedback on his Markd Purpose Experience. We were thrilled at the reverse mentoring opportunity, which has helped shape Markd Global 2.0 which now allows every leader to define what Andrew experienced as a Markedly Different moment.

We learn as much from the leaders we work with as they do from us. 

If you’d like to connect to Andrew to learn about how he is Loving life and being a bloody good human, link in with him here.

If you’re a leader at halftime wanting to go on a journey from success to significance, contact us.

Sibon Schouten

Sibon Schouten

CEO and Founder | Markd Global