A pathway to possibility Part One

© Ian Berry All rights reserved I doubt I will ever lose my enthusiasm and excitement for the “privilege of the platform”. I consider myself very fortunate to be able to travel the world and share my ideas and insights with willing people. When clients/organizers agree I always end my 30, 45 and 60 minute presentations with a question and answer time.

After giving a presentation one time the first question threw me momentarily and the answer I gave surprised me, so much so I almost couldn’t wait to get back to my hotel room to write down what I said so I wouldn’t forget it! The questioner said “I’ve very much enjoyed your presentation but can you put it all in one sentence? After what seemed to me to be the longest pause I had taken in 15 years of professional speaking to that date I said:

Principle before passion; passion before purpose; passion and purpose during practice = possibility

The audience cheered wildly including the questioner (You had to be there). On reflection these words capture what I am mostly on about in my quest to help people change what's normal for the good of yourself, other people, our planet, and for profit.


For me there are three great life principles, an attitude of gratitude; the law of the farm; freedom of choice. These principles are unchanging and uncluttered by dogma, the hallmark of fundamentalists whether they are religious, political, business or otherwise. Fundamentalists believe their way is the only way and create dogma to justify their ideology. Principles don’t change, nor do they favour ideology, they simply just are, and, they can be lived in any number of ways regardless of beliefs, mindsets or culture.

An attitude of gratitude

When faced with a potentially life ending illness 32 years ago my doctor’s advice was to first have an attitude of gratitude. In order to get well he told me, I must first be grateful. I remember my reply as if it was yesterday. "You’re telling me I may die and you want me to be grateful. You have to be joking!"

In recovery I learnt, and I am still learning, a great truth, "when we are grateful for what we’ve got we can have more of what we want." The most productive people in history have an attitude of gratitude.

The Law of the Farm

My grandfather, a farmer, taught me this law. Grandfather knew the law as “you reap what you sow”. He believed as I do that more often than not if you have fertile ground, plough it, seed it, nurture it, you get a harvest. Today we phrase this law as "what goes around comes around”, or “you get what you give." In my book Increasing Profits Without Hurting People I use this law to explain my perspective on many things, including my five faces of human wisdom. The most productive people in history live these faces; they are universally aware, emotionally healthy, mentally alert, physically active, and spiritually alive.

Freedom of Choice

We are the sum of the choices we have made and those we haven’t. As history has demonstrated over and over again, regardless of where we were born, and even in the most dire of circumstances, we can live a fulfilling, happy life that influences and inspires others. The most productive people in history make the wisest choices for them on a daily basis.

Living by principles such a these, is in my view the first step to achieving possibility.

Be the difference you want to see in the world



Since 1991 I have partnered with passionate and enlightened leaders in changing what's normal for the good of yourself, other people, our planet, and for profit.

My specialisations are:

  • Change people can actually believe in and make happen
  • Change where everyone can win (the technical term is creating shared value or CSV) a business growth...
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