Pivot Until It Hurts - Proteus Leadership I Leadership I Programs I Events
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Des Bit

Pivot Until It Hurts

Last week I had a bit of a purge to let some feelings out and I feel better for it. Thank you for the feedback that came through relating to those thoughts and for those people who sent best wishes to people living in Victoria – it meant a lot. I hope that you took up last week’s challenge and contacted three people and asked if they were OK.

But this week I am back promoting HOPE because not only do we have to survive in these times, but we need to re innovate and grow – as hard as that might seem right now.

I know that when the pandemic hit, I thought that was the end for Proteus and I would have to start the process of closing down a 27-year old business, but then the fighter kicked in.

There is no way that the last 27 years of my life would be defined by a virus. I have worked too hard for this and people still need and want what we do and so with my team we set about reinventing ourselves and have created a new Proteus that we like very much.

We are now a national Virtual Education, training, coaching and consulting business, ready for another 27 years of input into the Australian leadership space.

So, what is being asked of us right now is to reinvent and one of the best ways to do this is to use the popular 80/20 rule and spend 20% of our time looking at the problem and 80% of our time on new initiatives and solutions. Unfortunately, there are still too many people and businesses that have it around the other way and they will continue to struggle.

So, my challenge this week is for each of us to reverse the 80/20 model in our lives. Take a piece of paper and on one side write down the impact of COVID-19 on your life and business and then on the other side, write down how you can change your thinking around each of those things on your list and begin to build HOPE.

This challenge will not change the impact of the virus, but it will change how we respond and the future we create. Also, take a quick moment now to do a stock take of how you have changed during this time. On the back of your piece of paper, write down the positive things you have already done. Have you studied more, have you learned a language or learned how to paint? Have you spent more quality time with family? Have you taken better care of yourself? Continue to add to this list as you take back the controls and try new things.

How we think and what we do will determine who we become, not the virus!

Don’t just hang in there – pivot until it hurts, you will be so proud of yourself if you do.

Have an awesome week.


Des Penny - Co-CEO
Proteus Leadership


Join Des Penny For
‘The Keys To Staying Relevant’ Webinar

On August 11th, 2020, I will be presenting my Webinar on The Keys To Staying Relevant. I would love you to join me to discuss what leaders need to do to stay relevant in these crazy and exciting times, because it is far more than just gaining new skills. Register here for the webinar.

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Re-Launch Of The Complete Leader Program

Last week I had the privilege of re-launching The Complete Leader program through a webinar. Thank you to all of those people who attended. If you could not attend and would like to view the video, please request the video at info@proteusleadership.com
If you would like to speak to us about the program, then contact us on 1300 219 903

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There Will Never Be A Better Time

Professional Development will never not be relevant, or needed, if we are to create great Leaders. Whether it be to retain and move up in your current job, or to develop yourself for something bigger in the future, we must embrace life-long learning. Please visit our website and discover how you can continue to grow in your time and your space.

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Did you know? Keeping Our Minds Active

  • • During your lifetime, you will produce enough saliva to fill two swimming pools
  • • Only a quarter of the Sahara Desert is sandy
  • • The Eiffel Tower can grow more than six inches during the summer
  • • There are more stars in space than there are grains of sand on every beach in the world
  • • More than 50% of the people in the world have never made or received a telephone call

Nathan’s Apple Tart for the real Masterchef

Staff Recipe

Our recipe this week is a little more complex and will probably take about 2 hours to prepare, but that just makes it tastier. Our Chef is Senior Leader, Nathan Browne along with his wife Tamara Gray (formally of Proteus fame).

Apple Custard Crumble Pies

The longest and most delicious recipe ever

Pastry - pie crust, make your own or buy from the shop.

Apple filling

  • • 3 Apples slices into wedges
  • • 5cm piece of ginger
  • • Juice of 1 mandarin
  • • 30gm caster sugar

Vanilla pastry custard (makes about 400gm)

  • • 250gm full-fat milk
  • • 1 vanilla bean
  • • 3 egg yolks
  • • 15gm plain flour
  • • 10gm cornflour
  • • 65gm caster sugar
  • • 25gm unsalted butter, room temperature

Butter-oat streusel (makes about 450gm)

  • • 100gm old-fashioned or rolled oats
  • • 120gm plain flour
  • • 100gm light muscovado (or soft brown) sugar
  • • 150gm unsalted butter, very soft and squidgy
  • • 2 tsp fine sea salt
  • • 1½ tsp freshly ground cinnamon

Step 1
Blind Bake your pastry

Step 2

Roasted apple with ginger (30 minutes prep)
Preheat the oven to 160°C.

Put the  apples slices, ginger, juice and sugar in a generously sized non-reactive roasting tin. Massage the ingredients together.

Place a sheet of baking paper over the sliced apple and then cover tightly with foil. Roast for 10–30 minutes – the timing depending on the thickness of the apple and the heaviness of your baking vessel. Do the first check at the 10-minute mark.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool with the paper on top.

Vanilla pastry custard (30 minutes prep, plus chilling time)
Pour nearly all of the milk into a small saucepan but reserve 1 tablespoon to add to the yolk mix. Split and scrape the vanilla bean into the milk, then place the pan on the stovetop and scald the milk over a medium–high heat.

Just before the eager bubbling, whisk together the egg yolks, flours, sugar and reserved milk in a small heatproof bowl. The milk helps to bind the egg and flour mix. Don’t do this too far in advance or the mix will form small, hard yolky lumps.

Pour half the hot milk into the egg mix and whisk well, then pour in the remainder. Return the mix to the pan, place over a medium-high heat again, and whisk at a medium tempo until the mix thickens. Take extra care to whisk right into the corner of the pan – where the side meets the base. Speed up the mixing as the custard thickens – it will look lumpy but just whisk hard and it will all come together into a thick paste in 1 to 2 minutes. As soon as the custard comes to the boil, keep whisking for another 30 seconds.

Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the butter. Remove the vanilla bean, scrape the custard into a plastic container and press a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the custard to prevent a rubbery skin forming. Chill for an hour.

Butter-oat streusel (10 minutes mixing)
Whiz the oats in a food processor until super fine. Tip into a bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Rub and squeeze the butter in with your fingers until all the dry ingredients are coated in butter and the mix easily forms small buttery clumps when squeezed in your fist. Take care not to overmix everything to the point where you make an actual dough.

Assembly and baking
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Place the blind-baked crusts, still in the tins, on a heavy baking tray.

Pipe the custard into the pie base, then layer the apple. Finally pile the butter-oat streusel on top, allowing a little fruit to be visible around the edge.

Bake for 20–30 minutes until the fruit starts to bubble at the sides and the crumble is toasty brown on top. The perfect eating temperature is after a 20-minute cool down.

You Tell Us What Programs You Would Like To See

As we continue to develop new and inspiring virtual programs, we would like to hear from our clients as to what they would like to see. So, if you have any suggestions about the types of programs you would like to participate in and would like us to develop, then please send your ideas through to us at – info@proteusleadership.com

Stay Connected In 2020


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Upcoming Virtual Programs



Making Decisions That Matter (3-hour Workshop) - 8th October

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Having Conversations That Matter (3-hour Workshop) - 22nd October

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Creating A Positive Culture (3-hour Workshop) - 11th November

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The Oceans Of Change (3-hour Workshop) - 19th November

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Visit our website to see our full schedule: Virtual Programs