Introducing Jake O’Gorman (The Business Memory Coach), Memory World Cup champion and Business Memory extraordinaire. Here at Cranberry Towers, we’ve enjoyed his memory training workshops so much that last week, we asked him to become an honorary panda. And he said yes! From November, you can catch juicy tips and mind-bending tricks from Memory Panda (see what we did there!) right here on our blog …
To celebrate and get the ball rolling, we thought we’d kick off his blog debut in proper panda style, with a Panda Q&A session.
We’re very excited to have you involved in our blog! Tell us, how did you become The Business Memory Coach?
Well...like most people, I never had a particularly great memory; at work I’d go to events and often forget the names of the people I’d meet, say I’d do things and end up not doing them and if I ever had to do a talk or presentation, I’d always forget some of the key points I’d planned to say. I knew as a result I was missing out on some great opportunities to expand my business. I’d also developed a rather annoying (and costly) habit of losing mobile phones. After losing my 12th Mobile phone (yes, 12th!) I decided to look into some ways to improve my memory.
After a short while researching how to improve memory, I stumbled upon the strange world of competitive memory sport; gatherings where ordinary people train their minds to do amazing things and go head to head memorising random information. Always throwing myself in at the deep end, I decided to enter the next event to see what it was like. Not surprisingly, I came last! As if coming last wasn’t bad enough, a reporter from The Times covering the event decided to engage in a bit of investigative journalism by going head to head with one of the competitors; of course he picked me...and he won. He was ecstatic, thinking he’d won against a ‘memory professional’ - It made its way into the Times the next day. Funnily enough, when the reporter finally realised that I wasn’t actually a professional, he retracted the story …
Anyway, I knew I was on to something, If I could use these techniques to improve my memory, it would make a big difference in my daily life. So I began training. Starting out with 10 minutes a day, then 20 then an hour. Within three months I was representing England at the World Memory Championships as well as other international events. I was so happy with the progress I was making, I started sharing tips and tricks with the people I worked with who quickly started seeing benefits too.
Fast forward to today; I run workshops showing executives and employees how they can use their memory to get an advantage in business, whether it is memorising a pitch, company statistics, or just remembering prospects names. I regularly compete in memory competitions all around the world (...And I no longer come last!)
When did you decide that you wanted to give up your day job and become The Business Memory coach?
In 2014 had the pleasure of being asked to appear on a TV Show called Memory Slam on UKTV Watch. Myself and two other memory professionals worked with 8 ordinary 11 and 12 year olds, enhancing their memories with training exercises. In just 3 months, we took their memories from normal to amazing. They then competed at various events, e.g. having to memorise a one hundred digit number in 5 minutes, 104 random articles left on the London Underground in 10 minutes, and even learn the entire history of spam in under one hour! It was an incredible experience, and seeing the extraordinary results that could be achieved really made me realise how valuable these techniques really were. I started working with companies to help them use these techniques with their employees and it all seemed to take off from there.
We all want to remember peoples’ names, but can you tell us a little bit more about how people benefit from having a tip top memory?
Having a great memory gives you a competitive advantage; it sets you apart in the workplace and gives you more confidence in yourself and your abilities. People I work with use it to help them remember company statistics, pitch new ideas and proposals confidently and remember names in networking situations. Businesses are also finding it really useful because in the long-term, it helps to reduce training costs by teaching people to learn effectively and really remember things, cutting down on the need for refresher courses.
Are people using memory training to boost their own personal branding efforts?
Yes! Building your own personal brand by speaking at events and networking isn’t the easiest thing to do. When it comes to public speaking, a lot of people are frightened of being up there, in front of hundreds of people. In truth, fear tends to stem from a feeling of not knowing something, audience reaction, your main points etc. By enabling you to remember what it is that you want to say – what’s on your slides, or key statistics for example – you can take that fear away and truly focus on presenting and answering questions or addressing concerns. It has helped so many people unlock their true capabilities.
When it comes to networking, improving your memory helps to boost confidence. Remembering names, faces and facts, and being able to confidently show an interest in someone and their needs is great for building relationships, enhancing your personal brand – everything. People love to feel special and nothing evokes this feeling better than being remembered warmly and sought out by someone who cares enough to have listened!
What’s the one thing people need to remember when they decide that they’re ready to boost their memory?
That your memory is already amazing, it’s just a case of learning how to use it. Read our next Memory Panda blogs to learn the next steps.
And the question that no doubt everyone asks you … are you banned from casinos?
In reality although there is a crossover, winning at the blackjack table is far more a case of cool mathematical skills than being able to remember things well.
Want to know more about Jake O'Gorman?
Winner of the 2015 Memory World Cup, Jake is one of the world's leading experts in applying memory techniques to the business environment.
A Business Memory Coach by day, he helps companies and individuals learn how they can use their memory for profit. His workshops and presentations show teams and individuals how they can improve their personal brand and win more business through effective pitching, presenting and networking, while also enabling businesses to save money on future training costs by teaching participants how to learn effectively.
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