Mark Wales

Former Troop Commander, Consultant, Entrepreneur & Speaker

Mark Wales has led elite soldiers at war in Afghanistan, battled depression and stress disorders, consulted with McKinsey & Company and started up his own ecommerce brand Kill-Kaptur. A contender in Australian Survivor 2017, he believes that you should never allow your past to hold you back from experiencing and excelling at something new.

An engaging keynote speaker, Mark draws on his experience and his research to inspire his audiences to achieve peak performance and become expert strategic leaders.

More about Mark Wales:

Mark Wales grew up in the red dirt of West Australian mining towns in the Pilbara. After deciding he wanted to join the SAS in high school, Mark embarked on a career in the Australian military that would eventually lead him to the battlefields of Afghanistan. As a Troop Commander in charge of 30 elite soldiers, Mark's role was to lead combat missions against senior enemy commanders, deep behind enemy lines. Through this unique and harsh environment, Mark developed his skills in leadership, teamwork and high performance.

Like many in his situation, Mark battled depression and stress disorders after warfighting in Afghanistan. He tackled recovery with the same intensity he applied to Special Ops training. He rigorously researched the fundamentals of neurobiological science and the benefit of skill development. This approach underpinned a strong recovery, and drove personal growth far beyond his previous abilities.

Mark's successful recovery and growth led him to embark on a high profile career in business. With four attempts of the GMAT, he was accepted into an Ivy League college in the U.S.A, and after graduation he joined McKinsey & Company, a respected consulting outfit also known as ‘The Firm'. He founded a fashion startup Kill-Kaptur, a tough-luxury ecommerce brand. He was a competitor in Australian Survivor 2017, the world's #1 reality TV show.

An avid surfer, boxer, and cook, Mark stays active and keeps his experiences as varied as possible. He believes that past experience should never be a limitation to embarking and excelling in something new.

Mark loves to reveal the common threads that run through human competition in all arenas, and the importance of a growth-mindset to overcoming mental illness and drive success in future endeavours.

Mark Wales speaks about:

Battlefield: Leadership in uncertainty - Using examples from Special Operations, startups, and McKinsey, Mark focuses on tactical tips you can use from Day 1 to improve your leadership and drive results.

Who Dares Wins - Mark draws on his experience at the top levels of Special Operations and business to show you that the basics done well, are the foundations of mission success.

The Mind: Mental resilience - Mark draws from neurobiology and uses personal examples to illustrate a proven approach to prevention, recovery and growth from failure and trauma.

Close Combat: The art and science of competition - Mark reviews the importance of strategy, execution, and agility in any competitive system, drawing lessons from warfighting in Afghanistan.

Execution eats strategy for breakfast - Mark shares anecdotes about a hard-earned lesson: execute quickly, with a sound plan. Learn about goal setting, asymmetric warfare, contingency planning and the impact of emotions in a team setting.

Peak performance under stress - In this 45 interactive session Mark focuses on using four-count breathing to dampen stress responses, and improve quality of decision making.

Mission, Team, Self - Mark outlines the hierarchy of needs that any effective leader should follow, discussing the importance of rest, nutrition, exercise and growth for maintaining your foundation as an individual leader.