Warwick Fairfax Shares Pain of $2.25B Failure, Joy of Finding Significance in Book Due in 2021 – #24

Warwick Fairfax

June 16, 2020

Life has not always been easy for Warwick Fairfax. That’s a statement many in his native Australia never would have associated with the fifth-generation heir to arguably the country’s most influential media empire. But then he launched a multi-billion-dollar takeover of the company that failed spectacularly — leaving him with regrets, self-doubt and uncertainty about his future. More than 30 years after the takeover fell apart, the founder of Crucible Leadership and host of BEYOND THE CRUCIBLE will speak in detail for the first time about what motivated his bid to assume control of the company and why he thinks it wasn’t successful in a book from Morgan James Publishing due to be released early next year. On this episode of the podcast, Fairfax discusses with co-host Gary Schneeberger why he initially didn’t want to write a book at all, why he changed his mind and what readers can expect when it hits stores. “It’s a collection of stories and parables about life and leadership — about me and my family, history’s greatest leaders and biblical and inspirational figures,” he explains. “If writing about my story can help people and give them hope, it’s worth going through the pain.”

Highlights

 

  • Warwick’s big announcement about the book (1:34)
  • The corporate motto of Warwick’s publisher (2:52)
  • Why he initially didn’t want to writer a book about his story (3:27)
  • The No. 1 question he got from fellow Australians through the years (5:23)
  • Why not talking to the media during the takeover was a bad move strategically (7:59)
  • We he decided ultimately to write a book (9:48)
  • What the core of the book is about (13:45)
  • It’s more than a personal memoir (15:40)
  • What the book isn’t (20:15)
  • Why significance is more rewarding and meaningful than “success” (24:57)
  • One of the keys to moving beyond your crucible (26:50)
  • It’s never too late to pursue a life of significance (28:37)
  • Why now is the perfect time for the book to be released (32:40)

Transcript

Gary S:
Welcome everybody to this episode of Beyond The Crucible. I’m Gary Schneeberger, the cohost of the podcast and the Communications Director for Crucible Leadership. And you have clicked play. Hopefully you clicked subscribe to a podcast that deals in crucible experiences, those events in life that can be extraordinarily painful. You know them when you experience them. They’re failures, they’re setbacks. There are things that maybe happen to you. There are things that maybe you do some things that bring those things on yourself, but the organizing characteristic that they all have is that your life is changed after them. The trajectory of your life can be shifted because of them and we talk about these experiences on Beyond The Crucible, not so that we can feel sorry for ourselves or wallow in them, but so that we can learn from them, so we can apply the lessons of them to live a life of significance, to point ourselves on a path to a life of significance.

Gary S:
And the host of the show and the architect, the creator of Crucible Leadership, the man who authored this idea of going from crucible to a life of significance is here with me now. And it’s Warwick Fairfax. Warwick, welcome.

Warwick F:
Great to be here, Gary, and very much looking forward to this.

Gary S:
Yes, this one is going to be a special one, listeners, because, and I will admit I have a flair for the dramatic and I’m also an old newspaper guy, so I love the idea of breaking news. I love being the first one to report news to you. So we have some news that we’re going to break here on Beyond The Crucible today about Warwick and about Crucible Leadership that is extraordinarily exciting. It’s both good news for Crucible Leadership and good news for Warwick. And Warwick, with that buildup, with that setup, tell the listeners just what the news is that we’re breaking today.

Warwick F:
Absolutely, Gary. Well, Crucible Leadership and I have a book publishing deal with Morgan James Publishing, which I am super excited about. It’s been a long journey, but this is a huge milestone for me and for Crucible Leadership.

Gary S:
Yeah. I mean, let’s stop here and make sure the listener heard that. There is a book now coming, authored by Warwick about Crucible Leadership. And we’ll talk here in detail about just what that book’s going to contain. Because I’ll let you in on a secret, I’ve read the manuscript and it’s good stuff. And when that comes out next year you will, listener, really understand some aspects of both Warwick’s story and Crucible Leadership that haven’t quite been elucidated in the way that there’ll be elucidated in the book. And I want to say one more thing before I turn it back over to Warwick and we start talking about the book, but he mentioned that the publisher that he signed with for this book is Morgan James Publishing. And I just want to read what their corporate motto is, so that you have an idea of the kind of book this will be, the kind of story this will tell, the kind of hope, I think, this will engender for you who read it.

Gary S:
This is Morgan James’s corporate promise, their corporate slogan. “To educate, encourage, inspire, and entertain.” And having read Warwick’s book, I can tell you it does all four of those things. So Warwick, how did this all begin? What made you decide to write a book in the first place?

Warwick F:
Well, the funny thing, Gary, is for many years writing a book about my story is the last thing that I wanted to do. I had no interest in writing a book. So you might ask, “Well, why is that?” So as listeners would know, I grew up in a 150-year-old family business started by my great-great-grandfather, John Fairfax, that grew to be this huge company with newspapers, TV stations, newsprint mills, magazines. It had thousands of employees and so it was a lot of pressure. A lot of expectations on me. I prepared my whole life to go into it. Certainly seen by my parents as the next generation. So I went to Oxford like my dad and some other relatives, worked on Wall Street, got an MBA at Harvard Business School. And in early ’87, my dad died. He was in his late eighties. There was turmoil within the company and, I guess, a different vision. The company wasn’t being well run, at least as far as I and my parents thought, so I launched this $2.25 billion takeover.

Gary S:
That is, listeners, I’d like to say to Warwick, that is billion with a B.

Warwick F:
Absolutely.

Gary S:
That is billion with a B.

Warwick F:
I’m afraid so. And so right from the beginning, things went wrong. Other family members sold out. There was the October ’87 stock market crash. And within three years the company went under. Australia suffered a big recession in late 1990. And so my dream of restoring the company, the ideals of the founder and have it being well-run was ended. And so the question some people would ask over the years, “Well, Warwick, why don’t you write your story?” The story of what at time was one of the biggest takeovers in Australian corporate history, of a organization that had the Australian equivalent to the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal. Iconic names, iconic mastheads. And that was the last thing I wanted to do because it was so painful. I mean, I am a person of faith.

Warwick F:
I, in my naivety, felt like maybe this was something that God wanted to resurrect in the image of the founder, who was also a person of great faith, which was a bit naive at the time and simplistic. And it was just… It caused friction with other family members. I didn’t do it, at least consciously, against other family members even though there was friction between some and my dad over the decades, but it was so painful that it’s like, “Why would I want to write a book about something that was so painful?”

Warwick F:
And the other thing is when you mostly write these sort of books, it’s a tell-all book in which you’re meant to diss and basically say, “Well, look at these other family members and look what they did to my dad and they’re this and they’re that,” and name names. The last thing I want to do is cause more pain within my family and books that say, basically, I was right, they were wrong, whining books, or as we say in Australia, whinging, which is almost worse than whining, it’s just typically boring, untrue and self-serving. And so it’s like it was A. It was painful and B. writing a tell-all book to cause more pain, I mean, that’s just not what I’m about. So, forget it. I wanted to move on with my life, not relive something that was so painful.

Gary S:
Right. And that does sound, in one sense, like it would be an easy decision for you to make. “I don’t want to write this book because it’s going to be painful and I’m not going to throw people under the bus and I’m not going to blame other people for some missteps that I took.” But in one sense, it had to have been not easy, too, because it’s true that pretty much everybody in Australia wanted to hear your side of the story or at least wanted you to talk about your side of the story. This was big headline-dominating news about the takeover. You did not do a lot of interviews in the press at that time. So it’s still safe to say today, it was safe in the late eighties, early nineties, it’s safe today, your side of the story is not really known in Australia. Is that fair?

Warwick F:
Absolutely. Yeah. It was not known. And it’s funny, growing up in a media business you’d think I’d be a bit more open to talking to the media, but even at the time during the takeover years, those three years, I gave no interviews, which in hindsight was obviously a very significant if not colossal mistake. Not talking to the media, whatever you may think of them, is rarely the right strategy. Figure out how to handle it well, and obviously, Gary, you’ve had a lot of experience in media. Not talking, they’ll just write whatever they want to write. So I remember there was a equivalent to the New York Times Sunday Magazine, a competitive newspaper, and the headline in the sunday magazine, I guess it was Saturday, that was when the big paper came out, the headline was Warwick Fairfax, The Man Behind the Mask. And all these people were trying to guess at who Warwick Fairfax was.

Warwick F:
Some people that they interviewed saying, “Warwick’s the most secretive, enigmatic person I’ve ever known. I don’t know what he is thinking.” Well, it’s because I didn’t really talk about it. I never really gave interviews. I’ve given a couple in more recent years, but I really have not got into any level of detail about why I did the takeover or what I was thinking. I’ve just been very, very, extremely careful even when I’ve talked to the media.

Gary S:
Right. And that’s a great set up, Warwick, for what this book, which is going to be called, we believe, Crucible Leadership, same as the brand, the same as your life practice is called. But this is a good point to pivot on that question of, yeah, it’s been more than 30 years. People have not heard your side of the story. You didn’t want to write the book that people wanted you to write, yet you’ve now written a book and it’s going to be published. What changed? What changed in your vision for what the book could be? And what was the impetus for that change from you from that switch going from, “I don’t want to write a book,” to, “Hmm. Maybe I’ll write a book?”

Warwick F:
That’s an interesting question. Really, the answer is in 2008, the pastor of the church we go to in Maryland, it’s a large-ish nondenominational church, and my pastor was giving a message on the life of David. He was King Saul’s right-hand man, a very successful commander, and as often happens when you’re super successful, your boss tend to get jealous. Well, back in those days, jealous meant he’d try and kill you, which typically doesn’t happen in the corporate world. But when you’re a king back in the day, the rules were a bit different. And so he was running away, hiding in some cave and feeling pretty sorry for himself. So my pastor wanted to give a message of a righteous man falsely persecuted. I said, “Well, that’s not really me. I mean, I brought a lot of pain on myself, a lot of missteps, but fine. If you want me to give a seven, 10 minute talk about my story and what I feel like I learned, and because it’s a church, what I feel like God was teaching me, I will.”

Warwick F:
And I’m not Mr. Public Speaker. I’m more of a shy, retiring person, my personality, but I guess I must have given it in a vulnerable, authentic, “Here’s the story and what I went through.” What was amazing to me is weeks, months after, people would come up to me and say, “You know what, Warwick? What you had to say really helped me.” And I’m thinking, “How could that help anybody?” I mean, I don’t know too many former media moguls in the congregation. It’s just a cross section of just regular folks from different jobs, different walks of life, different problems, different challenges, just like any group of people have.

Warwick F:
But somehow, I guess, by me sharing my story, which is failure on really quite an epic scale, larger than most people will fail on, and just being authentic and vulnerable about it, somehow that resonated with people. And so that was the big shift because I thought if by writing about my story, it can help people, now it’s worth going through the pain. And it was painful writing about these episodes. That’s pain worth going through. So that seven, 10 minute speech in church in 2008, that was a significant shift in my thinking.

Gary S:
And to hear you explain that the way that you explained it right now, and I hope you hear this, listeners, we’ve had 10, 15 guests who’ve been on this podcast and they’ve said versions of the exact same thing that Warwick just said. “If talking about my pain, if reliving my crucible experience and how I bounced back from that, if that can help somebody, then I’ll do it.” So the very same thing that has led guests of Beyond The Crucible to come into our little studio and have a chat, or our virtual studio and have a chat with us, is the very thing that led you to realize that this is something you want to set, at the time when you started it maybe typewriter to paper, but certainly a computer to a whatever it is that happens inside a computer. To gigabytes. Computer to gigabytes. It made you realize that you could type this story out and it would have an impact.

Warwick F:
Absolutely. And so really, that began a journey and I mean, we’re now 2020. That’s 12 years. That’s a long time. I mean, it took a long time and there was some reasons for that, but certainly one significant reason and we’ll get into this more in a bit, but the core of the book is really my story. And so when you’re writing about some of the dumbest, stupidest decisions you’ve made and writing about them in exhaustive detail, explaining what you did and what you were thinking, what you were not thinking and what you should have been thinking, I couldn’t write for more than maybe a couple hours a day, max. And then I needed a breather to recover from the experience and to get my equilibrium back before I went into the lion’s den again. So that was certainly one significant reason why it took so long, but I was committed to doing it because I felt like by talking about this, it could help people.

Gary S:
Right. And so that’s one part of the book. Unpack a little bit about it because one of the things that’s fascinating to me about the book is that you’ve got, there’s a little bit of personal memoir in it about your story as you’ve talked about, but there’s far more than that in there as well. There are other perspectives that you bring to the table. So explain to the listener what you try to bring to the book in terms of the content, and then how you think that content will help with the subject of what this podcast is about, helping them move beyond their crucibles and become crucible leaders themselves.

Warwick F:
It’s funny and we’ll get to this probably in a bit, but the whole concept of Crucible Leadership, it came out of the book, but I didn’t, when I started writing it, I didn’t have that notion. So often one lesson learned is when you have this vision, it may not be fully formed, but just take a few steps. I wrote a blog a while back now, something like vision and the fog or something to that effect. You might not have the total picture. If you have a sense that this is right, this is what you need to do and the vision will become clearer and clearer as you keep going down the path. So at the time, and I’ve always loved leadership, I’ve been a student of leadership. I’ve loved history, I’ve read about history, about great figures in impossible situations, whether it’s Lincoln or Churchill doing amazing things.

Warwick F:
And so what I wanted to do is write my story, but I wanted to do it through the lens of leadership and lessons learned. And so it’s really a series of parables, a series of stories, and it’s organized around key leadership principles. So there’s chapters on vision, shared vision, how you get a group of people on the same page, how you implement it, character. Obviously there’s a chapter on crucibles, even a chapter on faith, by which obviously my faith in Christ is the most important thing in my life. But truly I talk about faith in a general sense. What governing system of beliefs is the anchor of who you are as a person and a leader, whatever that might be. It could be a religion or some other way of thought. And so I’ve got all these chapters on different leadership themes, but then in each chapter I talk about my family, certainly a key part of my story.

Warwick F:
And typically it’s like, “This is what I did. Don’t do what I did. Instead, do the opposite. Do something else.” And so you see my story, it’s all laid out there, but you’ll see it through different lens. It’s like watching a movie and by looking at different camera angles, the story appears a bit different. So I’m writing about my life. It’s really that way. If I’m talking about my vision or what character traits are important to me or how I try to get people on the same page with my vision, which was obviously largely unsuccessful because I was a bit clueless. So that’s one part of one strand. But then I talk about my dad, who greatly influenced me. And then the founder of the media company, John Fairfax, who as good a businessman, wonderful dad, wonderful husband, elder at his church, person of great faith. I mean, an amazing person. You’ve got the Fairfax family strand.

Gary S:
Right. And he was your great-great-grandfather, so the listeners know. Yeah.

Warwick F:
Exactly right. So 150 years ago, I was fifth generation. A long time ago, so that you’ve got the Fairfax family strand. Then you have an historical strand. I’ve mentioned I’ve loved history. The way my dad and I communicated in some ways was history. He loved history and we would talk about that. He’d tell me these amazing stories of great leaders faced with incredible, impossible situations. So you’ll have that strand. You’ll hear stories from Lincoln, Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt.

Gary S:
Walt Disney is one of my favorite parts of the book. One of my favorite parts of the book.

Warwick F:
Walt Disney, exactly. Walt Disney. Gandhi. Some English heroes because my dad and I loved English history. Lord Horatio Nelson and Duke of Wellington. A collection of leaders, but all looking at it through a leadership lens. And typically historians write about history, which is appropriate, but I’m looking at it through what can we learn today as leaders, be it in a big organization or small, from these great figures in testing times? So that’s another strand. And the third strand is really the biblical inspirational strand. And so there you’ll hear stories of biblical figures such as David, Ruth, Samuel, Daniel, Joseph, as well as inspirational figures like Gandhi.

Gary S:
And Jesus. I mean, you talk about Jesus. He had great leadership abilities.

Warwick F:
And Jesus. Absolutely. And Jesus. Yeah. People think about how can we lead with the character of Jesus, but Jesus has something to teach us about organizational principles and how the faith was able to grow over the first few hundred years to a remarkable degree. What were some of those key leadership characteristics? So with the biblical inspirational strand, it doesn’t really matter whether you believe in the Bible or not. These are historical figures and what can we learn from them? So it’s really, when I think of those three strands, you’ve got the Fairfax family strand, the historical strand, the biblical inspirational strand, the book is largely a collection of stories and parables. Because I often think the best way to learn is through stories. And that’s really what this is, a collection of stories all around leadership.

Gary S:
I’m going to steal. Here’s the first preview of what’s in the book, listener. I’m going to read a paragraph from the introduction to the book to summarize what Warwick just talked about, about what the book is and isn’t. What it isn’t is, as Warwick has intimated, it’s not, “Here are the seven tips of all the things I did right that you should follow and then you’ll be perfect and successful like me.” It’s not that kind of book. It’s not a seven tips book. It’s a book of stories, as he said. But this is what he wrote. This is what Warwick wrote in the introduction to the book. “Crucible Leadership isn’t a one size fits all formula, but an extremely personal journey. So don’t expect a how to manual because that’s not my approach. Instead, I leverage the learning power of story and insightful questions to help leaders transform past trials and hard-won insights into a new, exciting, enriching, an uncompromised present and future.” That’s pretty inspiring. That makes me want to go grab the book right now.

Warwick F:
Yeah, I mean, to me, as I think about what’s different about this book is a lot of people write “10 steps to losing weight in two weeks,” or “the five ways to get into the C suite and be CEO. Here’s the five year plan.” And I mean, that’s definitely an approach, but I often think life is not simple. I mean, it took me years to get over my crucible experience, which we’ve talked about in other podcasts and blogs and what have you. Life is rarely linear. Three steps forward, maybe two steps back. And so I think it’s often better to talk in stories and principles and then the reader can apply them to their life. “Okay, so how does that apply to me? And I might be going at a different pace than others.”

Warwick F:
And so the other thing that’s really different is many leadership books talk about, “I was a successful CEO. Learn from me.” Or, “I’ve interviewed the top 10 CEOs in the last 10 years. What can we learn from them?” And that can be useful. Learning from people who’ve succeeded, that can be helpful. But this is more looking at it from another perspective which is, “I made some incredibly stupid mistakes. Okay, I was young, but they were stupid nonetheless. What can we learn from those stupid mistakes as well as leaders from history and from my family?” And so very few people write books about, “I was an idiot. Read this book and don’t make the mistakes I did.” That’s just not a popular genre for maybe somewhat obvious reasons. Who wants to write that book? I didn’t.

Gary S:
Yeah. True. True.

Warwick F:
But the only reason I did-

Warwick F:
Yeah. It was because if it’s going to help people and it’s like, maybe what helps me a bit is just my faith. My perspective is, because I believe God loves me unconditionally, I’m okay with telling people I was an idiot and made some colossally bad mistakes with significant consequences, both monetarily and my family. I mean, I’m certainly very comfortable now. Don’t have as much money as I could have. Money isn’t really that important to me, but still reliving all this and telling the world about how stupid you are, the fact that my faith is a definite help there, but still I’m human. It’s difficult, but that’s just not a normal genre. “Look at me. I was stupid. Read my book.” It’s just, people don’t write those books.

Gary S:
Right. Again, having read the manuscript, I’ll say you’re a little self-deprecating when you say, “I was stupid.” You made mistakes as you’ve acknowledged on every episode of Beyond The Crucible, but you also learned some things. You also learned and applied some things about transparency, about character, about helping others, living life on purpose and having that purpose be motivated by helping other people. And that’s been who we tried to bring in as guests for Beyond The Crucible because of your example. So you’re a little bit hard on yourself, I think, when you want to end your description of your story as, “I was stupid. Follow me.” No, it was, “I made a mistake. I learned from those mistakes.” You learned when you gave that speech to your church that people were moved by that. And I think you’ve found that since we started the podcast with people writing to you, emailing you and saying, “Wow, what you’re talking about’s really helped me.” That’s your hope for this book as well, right?

Warwick F:
Absolutely. And I mean, that is a fair point. That is well said. I mean really Crucible Leadership and the podcast Beyond The Crucible, it really grew out of the book because as I realized, I grew up with about as much money and power as you could have. We were old money. I get in all the exclusive clubs and all, very well respected in the community and the country. But I realized money, power, status, it doesn’t make you happy. It’s really significance. As we say in Crucible Leadership, living a life on purpose, dedicated to serving others, that’s really the secret to happiness. And that’s really what we advocate, espouse here, and that’s what the guests we’ve had on the podcast have really talked about. I mean, they really found from their crucibles, which is typically very different than mine but still unbelievably painful, that what really helped bring them back, in part, was living a life of significance. And so that’s the core theme of the podcast, the book and everything we do at Crucible Leadership is living a life of significance.

Gary S:
One of the things, if you’re listening to this podcast in audio only, listener, you’re not seeing Warwick as he’s talking. I am, because we’re recording this for YouTube. And I just got to tell you, Warwick, it’s really fun for me to see the joy in your face as you talk about this experience, as you talk about this quest that you’ve been on in some sense for 12 years, since you started writing the book, but even going back further, more than 30 years since the takeover bid. And I can see in the way that you talk about it, that you’re pleased, again, not because you’re getting a book published so much as you are getting a book published that you believe will help people with the same kinds of emotions that you went through when you had your crucible experience.

Warwick F:
Absolutely, Gary. I mean, when I think about it, really living a life of significance, that is one of the keys to coming back from a painful crucible experience, almost irrespective of what that is. Yes, there’s some soul work admitting failures, reconciliation, just, I mean, whatever the things are that you feel called to do. Maybe you were in the wrong position like I was. You needed more of a Rupert Murdoch take no prisoners or at least some kind of hard charging, decisive, executive. I am more a reflective adviser. It was a terrible fit. That’s many lessons learned I talk about in the book.

Warwick F:
But probably the biggest one is, as I began to do things that were within my gifting and focus on serving others, I have been over the years on two nonprofit boards, my church board, and previously being on my kids’ school board, and now with Crucible Leadership, I’ve done a lot of executive coaching with my blogs, writing, podcasts. All these things in different endeavors in which I’m endeavoring to help other people, as that’s happened, healing has happened bit by bit, layer by layer. Yeah. There’s always a scar. In your bad moments, you always remember.

Warwick F:
It’s, “Oh my gosh, why did I do that?” But living a life of significance, it’s almost the, I hate to use buzzwords, but like the secret sauce. The magic potion, if you will. I mean, it doesn’t solve everything. It doesn’t happen overnight, but in terms of making significant strides to getting over a really painful crucible experience, finding your life of significance is one of the key ways to moving forward and having a fulfilling, even joyful life.

Gary S:
We just had… As we’re recording this, we released a new episode of the podcast that’s available to all of you listeners with Cathleen Merkel. And one of the things that stuck out that Cathleen said in our interview with her was that you can be 80 or 90 and it’s not too late to live your life in the most contented way that you can. That’s her way of saying to live a life of significance. It’s never too late to begin that process of pointing your compass toward a life of significance and walking that out. And I think we’ve discovered that throughout what we’ve done so far, what we’re going to continue to do on Beyond The Crucible. But that’s the message of those stories that you talk about in your book, Beyond The Crucible.

Gary S:
It’s the story of your great-great-grandfather, John Fairfax. It’s the story of your father, Sir Warwick Fairfax. It’s your story. It’s the story of those historical and religious and inspirational figures you’re talking about. It’s never too late to turn what the world views as a failure, what maybe even you view as a failure, it’s never too late to turn that around, learn the lessons and point yourself towards significance.

Warwick F:
And that is so true because it’s easy to say, “Well, I’ve been thinking about writing a book since 2008. I could have started earlier, but obviously I didn’t because it was all too painful.” And it’s 30 years since the company went under. It left family control. It still exists as an entity, but it’s more than 30 years since I did the takeover. That’s a long time. But yet this is a dream come true to get a publishing deal with a company as well-respected and prestigious as Morgan James Publishing. But yeah, it is never too late. Doesn’t matter what age you are. You want to keep moving forward and living your life of significance to the best ability you can. So never say, “Oh, well, I’ve missed my time.” It doesn’t matter whether you’re 20, 30, 40, 50, 80, 90. It’s always easy to say, “Oh, it’s too late.” But it’s never too late. While we’re here, you always have that opportunity to live your best life in line with what you feel is your purpose.

Gary S:
Well, that is, I mean, that’s a very resonant point. And I think, as I like to say, there comes a time in every podcast when we have to land the plane. Maybe this time I’ll say we have to temporarily shelve the book. We’ll be back, listener. We’ll talk about this more often down the road. But before we go, Warwick, there’s a question and I haven’t previewed this question with you. I just want to get your reaction to this question. I want to see your reaction to this question when I ask you, and that’s this. “You’ve had books written about you and the takeover of Fairfax Media. Now you’re writing your own book. Now it’s going to be published. You’ve written your own book. Now it’s going to be published. Tell the listeners which one is more rewarding.”

Warwick F:
I tell you which one is more fun. It is not fun reading books about you. My least favorite book was written in the early nineties called The Man Who Couldn’t Wait. And the idea was if I’d only waited, I would’ve inherited enough shares to be in control of the company one day. And obviously, because there’s a grain of truth in that, that’s particularly painful, but yeah, reality is who knows? But certainly… And my book isn’t, “Look. So there. Here’s my story,” because I’m somewhat unsparing, but it’s a lot more rewarding to write a book about your story, than read other people’s versions and this isn’t it a “Look. So there. I told you so.” It’s quite the reverse, but yeah, it wasn’t easy, but yeah, it’s more fun to have a book. At least you’ve had a chance to express things your way rather than read some other book that’s, yeah, has a different agenda. Put it that way.

Gary S:
Right. And the time is right for this for you in the sense that you have put some tread on your tires since that experience with the takeover and you’ve learned some things. And I think, I mean, is it fair to say had this book been published even five years ago, perhaps that was premature for what you understand now about how to bounce back from crucible experiences? Is that fair, that this is the time, this is the best time for this?

Warwick F:
Yeah. I mean, as a person of faith, I always believe that things happen when they’re meant to happen. I mean, you try your best to move things forward and all that. But yeah, I think this is the time. Certainly in the nineties, I was too shell shocked. I mean, I couldn’t have written a book or even begun to write a book. I didn’t really have enough perspective. 2008, by then life had started turning around for me and I had more perspective. But yeah, I mean, now’s the time. Certainly a couple of decades ago it wouldn’t have been. I couldn’t have written it. I would not have been at all ready to share my story. I mean, it was just about years in which it’s like, “Gosh, if I write the story, what will people think? Will I hurt people’s feelings? And what about this? What about that?” I mean, it’s almost hard for me to remember all of the things I was so fearful of, even back in the 2000s around the time I was thinking of writing the book. So yeah, now is the time.

Gary S:
All right. At that we will close the book for now. For sure, listener, we will continue to talk about this publishing journey that Warwick’s on now that he’s got a contract for it, now that there’s a publisher that we’re working with very closely, he’s working with very closely, Morgan James Publishing. This will be out next year. As soon as we know when that’s going to be, we’ll keep you updated. We’ll make sure you know, so until that time comes that we’re together again on Beyond The Crucible to talk about Crucible Leadership. And the book is called, by the way, Crucible Leadership: Embrace Your Trials to Lead a Life of Significance. That’s the working title right now. So we’re still early in the process, but we’ll keep you updated as we go along things about the book. If you have any questions about the book, visit us at crucibleleadership.com.

Gary S:
There’s a contact form on there. You can email us and we’ll pass those along to Warwick so that he can answer any questions you might have about the book and his experience or about Crucible Leadership. If you enjoyed what you’ve heard on this podcast, if you’re excited about the book and you’re excited about further podcasts where we have guests or Warwick and I are just talking about aspects of Crucible Leadership, we do ask that you would subscribe to the podcast so that you, one, that makes sure you never miss an episode and two, that allows us to get this kind of hope and healing that Warwick was talking about in his own experience, the same thing that he talked about to his church all those years ago, 12 years ago now, it will allow us to get these podcasts into more hands and help more people move beyond their crucible.

Gary S:
So until the next time that we’re together, do remember that Crucible Leaderships are painful. We don’t doubt that. We know that. Warwick has talked about his here today, but they do not have to be the end of your story. In fact, they can be, if you learn the lessons of them, you apply those lessons and you move forward with purpose, they can be the best part of your story. A new chapter, the best new chapter, because it leads at the end of the journey to a life of significance.

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