Our World Class Leadership Summit gave Academy members the opportunity to hear from all of our inspirational speakers, such as former SAS Major Floyd Woodrow and former Red Arrow pilot Justin Hughes. Polar Explorer Ann Daniels shares the moment she found her vision, and how it gave her the mentality to achieve her dream.
And then I was interviewed by a lot of the newspapers – woman of triplets, what will it be like when you get to the North Pole? And thinking – you have no idea, there’s no chance. But suddenly I caught this dream. And I thought, ‘What will it be like?’ And I began to get that vision. What will it be like to be the first women to go to the North Pole for somebody like me. That’s amazing! So what can I do to make it happen? What can I do? Because certainly it’s not going to happen in the way I am now. Thankfully for me they didn’t choose the team that weekend or I would not have got on the team. But they sent us away and said in nine months’ time come back and we’ll choose the team. So I went away back to my military friends and said, what, can you help? And so they helped me, they gave me exercises to do on my patio because I’ve still got three small children and my husband works away and I don’t have money for lots of personal trainers so they just set me out these horrendous horrible physical exercises and I did, I got a sponsorship from a gym, and I put the kids in the creche and trained. Friends taught me how to read a map. I couldn’t even use a compass! And so when I went back every day became about looking after the children and doing everything I could – my plan to just get chosen. And in nine months’ time I went back to Dartmoor. This time it was four days and we had to do a lot of very different things. We were up at night. We were walking for hours and miles, we were rescuing people, we were abseiling but this time I could perform. I’d done the work. There was still 200 women applying. I certainly was not the best and I was chosen I couldn’t believe it at the end of this weekend I was actually chosen and I know the reason that I was chosen because I know now the selectors. It wasn’t because I was the best. I was pretty good enough and I was pretty good but it was my mentality – they knew that I would work hard, that I looked after my team and I had the skills that they wanted so I could learn the rest and I think that’s a lesson for all of us with new people that come in. If they have and you can help them and empower them, they can learn the other stuff. If they’ve got that courage and that ability, the rest will come to them.