Tom Bates TEDx

Who was it that once said; “nothing great was ever accomplished alone”?

I like writing blog posts like this one.  It gives me the opportunity to express gratitude and send back a little piece of the love and support shown to me in the weeks leading up to my TEDx talk on Creativity and Imagination.

In this post I get to share the passion and pride of being involved with TEDx and give credit where it’s due.

So, Here goes!

My deepest thanks to Marc Skinner @skinairo for the countless hours of technological support with the powerpoint presentation, music embedding and facility hire at our local education centre Solihull College.  Marc was also the inspiration behind the track ‘Time’, from the film ‘Inception’, which you can hear playing in the background during the gratitude and dream vision exercise with the audience.

After sitting and listening to my ideas for the talk, he was a true thinking partner, asking questions and helping me to sculpt my ideas and visions.

Marc was so instrumental in the process that on the first day he guided me to a room with whiteboards on all of the walls,  5 coloured dry white markers and said “I know you will work well in here”.  He was right – Marc knows me well from our time as coaches and teachers together.  He is a visionary in his own right and it is my absolute pleasure to thank him publicly for his support and advice.


Josiah and Isabelle, my two children, provided the inspiration for my ideas.  They helped me to detach from the adult world and enter into the realms of pure imagination without limits.


I am eternally grateful to my wife Hannah for looking after the children during the hours that I would read, write and re-think.  I now know that they are the most important team of all.

John Downes ThinkSmile, the creative genius behind the TomBatesCoaching brand encouraged me to be myself. He is a long term family friend, business partner and excellent professional who was walking every step with me.  His continuous support is a central driving force behind TomBatesCoaching.

My sincere thanks to Bill and Val Beswick for being the best mentors I’ve ever had.  Their continuous commitment to supporting me over the years has empowered me to help the next generation of inspired minds.  I hope I can pass on all that they have taught me.  Their critique of my draft attempts were commendable and made me think carefully about the style, delivery and content of the talk.  Bill has always taught me to dream big and has given me tremendous opportunities to grow, study, learn and develop.  I owe a great deal to him and I hope that I make him proud.

A special thanks to John O’Sulivan @coachjohnnyo who was an imperative part of the initial phase of planning. John is an American Psychologist and author of (Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High-Performing Athletes and Giving Youth Sports Back to Our Kids). He guided me to the talk on How to Give a Great Ted Talk by Nancy Duarte.  John  also sent me InsideOut Coaching by Joe Earhman – How Sports Can Transform Lives’.  This book has been instrumental in thought formulation and articulates a great deal of inner intuition I have connected with for many years.  I recommend it to everyone.

Thanks to Julian Wiggins @wiggiwham who responded with studio ideas and lit up a line that highlighted the uniqueness of each and very person in this world.  He helped me to encourage others to find their uniqueness.

To Elena Dimitrov @elenaXdi and the TEDx Bournemouth University team @TEDxBmthUni for creating a life changing platform for all to share in.  Ideas have the potential to change the world and the ideas that were shared at TEDx can hopefully be a small part of that potential life changing new horizon.  Professionally produced and personally articulated, the event was the first of its kind in Bournemouth.

Ian Jones @ian_jones_ was the man who recommended me to speak at the event.  His continuous support and friendship, event consultancy and forward thinking made TEDx Bournemouth go to the next level.  He is a great innovator, leader and inspired thinker.  Ian, Thank you.

Thanks to Jamie Robinson @JamieRobinson23 from the Football Association for spending the time grab a coffee and talk about coaches who allow their creative players to flourish.  Jamie has a way of helping me to generate ideas and think clearly.  Although our conversations are admittedly not always linear, that also might be one of the reasons they are magical.  Jamie is a future leader in professional youth development football in this country.

My time spent studying one of the best football teams in the world, FC Barcelona helped me understand the creative genius and paradoxical nature of imagination and hard work.  I learned this through watching Lionel Messi in training and was hugely privileged to live amongst the FC Barcelona staff.  I am so thankful for their generosity and treating me like a family member. I continue to support them from afar.

To view the official TEDx talk ‘Imagination – The Power of Creativity’ click here.


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