Headstrong Performance – Marcel Daane


Research in the neuroscience of leadership is teaching us that optimal leadership capacity is dependent on our ability to effectively regulate our own brains so we can raise our potential to positively influence other members of the organization. During his Gravista Leader keynote on May 25thMarcel Daane – a pioneer in integrated health, neuroscience and the author of Headstrong Performance, will provide a number of powerful, health performance strategies that will enable today’s leaders to improve their mental fitness and remain on top of the game for years to come.


I met Marcel Daane some weeks back through an introduction by a common friend. As we sat at a coffee house in Suntec City, Marcel shared with me his story – a journey that had taken him from his mother’s Apartheid-era home country South-Africa to an exile in the Netherlands and New Zealand, and finally, to Singapore.  He shared with me why  he had become a naval intelligence specialist during the cold war era in the Dutch Royal Navy, and how he effectively became a personal trainer in the 80’s – long before the term was even coined.

Marcel had just finished writing a book, which he gave to me. Headstrong Performance. As I read through the chapters about human physiology, how our brain works and transformational personal stories, there was only one question on my mind: why had no one ever put together the insights from sports science, nutrition and neuroscience before? And presented them in the context of leadership – yet another sports discipline with high performance requirements?


I was really glad to read Marcel’s book. It all made such sense. Explained in simple ‘plain’ English, anyone can understand it. For someone who has always loved sports and with a recent interest in nutrition, there are many familiar themes. However, it is the multidisciplinary scientific evidence brought together that makes this book unique among a plethora of leadership and other performance books. Without a deep dive into human physique and neuroscience, they seem shallow in comparison.

But the most important reason for me to invite Marcel to speak with us is this: it’s is about your health and well-being, and that of those near you – whether family, friends, colleagues, superiors or team members. Your health directly affects your performance and your relationship with those people you care about. Finally there is a ‘legitimate business reason’ to go for a run, to the gym, dance, laugh, engage in social activities. Take care of yourself, don’t succumb to stress or endless demands on you.

Together with Marcel, I warmly invite you to our evening event on Monday 25th May (7-9 p.m.) at The Exchange on Asia Square to better understand how to make this happen. Register here by 21st May.