Mike Bates On Developing a Dream-Big Mindset

What kind of bigQUEST will define your legacy? Tune in to today’s episode where Andy Murray talks with Mike Bates, who’s training for a solo row across the Atlantic. They discuss  the single biggest dragon Mike has faced as he prepares, how he’s training to avoid “handle down” moments, and what is driving this unique Quest. 


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3 Highlights From Mike

1. If you haven’t identified your core motivation, you’re at risk of raising a white flag.

“I think any big goal, or any bigQUEST that you set for yourself, one of the key elements — and I've kind of done a lot of thinking around this over recent years — is that motivation. If you don't have that deep down inside, the reason why you're trying to do something, then when the going gets tough, and let me tell you this is a relentless training regimen I'm under right now, then you just won't do it.” 

2. It’s not necessary to have all your questions answered before embarking on a Quest.

The ideas will come. If you try and anticipate and solve them all before you get going, you’ll never get going. And with that comes a bonus, says Mike:

“And I think it's almost like a self-fulfilling prophecy then because the more you push yourself a little bit, the more confident you become. The more confident you become, the bigger the dreams get. The bigger the dreams get, the more options present themselves.”

3.The Agile mindset is like a muscle to be developed and strengthened. 

“I don't go to a commercial gym. I go in my own garage, there's no heating, it's freezing cold, there's no one there, no one sees me do it. I suffer alone and I suffer in silence. And I do that because that trains and conditions and calluses my mind. So, when I'm on the ocean for that long I'm used to suffering alone.”


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About Your Host

 Andy Murray

 CEO and Founder of bigQUEST

Andy is a highly effective senior leader with a passion for growth, creating cultures that unleash talent, and building capabilities through collaboration across functions. He has held leadership roles across retail (Walmart), CPG (P&G), start-ups (Mercury 11, Saatchi X) and global organizations (Asda U.K.). A creative problem solver, innovator, and marketer, he is known for building high-performing teams and delivering results.

Andy is a lifetime Honorary Board member of the University of Arkansas's Center for Retail Excellence where he helped developed the Center's presence and Innovation conferences. He is also an Early Board Member for the Soderquist Center for Leadership and Ethics college. Andy was inducted into the Shopper Marketing Hall of Fame in 2013 for his pioneering work in developing best practices and industry leadership in the emerging field of Shopper Marketing. He currently serves as Chairman of Asda Foundation.

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About Our Guest

 Mike Bates 


In 2022 Mike will row across the Atlantic Ocean solo.  Dubbed the world’s toughest row, Mike will row 3000 miles alone on a voyage that will take between 50-90 days and see him battle storms, salt sores, hunger, sea sickness and the varied wildlife that live between the surface and the 5km depths below (this year a boat was attached by a Marlin, puncturing the hull of the boat!).  A former Royal Marines Commando serving, operationally in Afghanistan, Iraq and Northern Ireland, Mike has spent the last 15 years serving the UK in a front-line operational role in the war on terror.  Most recently, during the global pandemic, Mike opened a new Brazilian Jiu Jitsu academy with the aim of sharing both his black belt experience in Jiu Jitsu and his very unique take on the power of ‘Mindset’ within his community and beyond.

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