#61 Peter Baines – Living a Life on Purpose and Raising Over $30M for Hands Across the Water, Dealing with Dead Bodies and Why Leadership Matters

Peter Baines has followed an unconventional path from being a forensic police investigator solving homicides and leading international teams in scenes of crisis and disaster, to being a global keynote speaker, business consultant and philanthropist. In what reads like a spy-thriller, he has held roles with Interpol and the United Nations unravelling criminal mysteries and advising on counter-terrorism in Indonesia, Japan, Thailand, and Saudi Arabia.

Peter was part of the leadership team responding to the Bali bombings and in 2004 was called to lead the international response to the Boxing Day tsunami. Deeply touched by the number of children left without parents after the tsunami, he was inspired to establish the charity Hands Across the Water, which has raised over $30M. Peter has been recognised with the Order of Australia Medal and the Most Admirable Order of Direkgunabhorn from the King of Thailand. He has written three books including his latest, “Leadership Matters – stories and insights for leaders, achievers and visionaries.”

When not working, you’ll find Peter tending to his farm, raising Hereford cattle and driving his tractor. He’s an enthusiastic helicopter pilot and enjoys participating in ultra-marathons alongside his loyal companion, Burton.

In this episode Andrew and Peter discuss:

5:15 Peter’s latest book, his story of hitting rock bottom and how he got out of a rut

14:45 Starting in the Merrylands Police Station at 18 years old , and moving to Cabramatta and ‘leaving work at the door’

19:15 Moving into forensics, the evolution of science in forensic investigations and mentally dealing with/disconnecting from violent crimes

27:30 PTSD and whether or not training mental skills could help avoid it

32:30Being part of the Bali bombing investigation, identifying 3,500 bodies in Thailand and working in Japan after the 2011 Tsunami

42:00 The hardest and easiest part of the job, and Peter’s moving story about the beautiful Thai mother woman who came to collect the bodies of her children on 3 separate occasions

47:30 Ego and self-esteem, being an introvert in a public speaking role, and down regulating being on the farm

52:30 Hands Across the Water and the inspiring story of Tracy and Clare

59:45 Never feeling like the job is done, how he wrote his latest book in record time and raising $250k at a number of conferences/events “despite being shit at selling”

1:16:15 Performance Uncovered

1:32:05 Andrew and the Wizard’s reflections


You can find Peter at his LinkedInwww.linkedin.com/in/peterbainesconsulting/

Website: peterbaines.com.au

Or the Hands Across The Water Website: https://www.handsacrossthewater.org.au/

Find out more about Andrew’s Keynotes : https://www.andrewmay.com/keynotes/

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