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  • Writer's pictureRoger Grant

My Story: Momento Mori

Updated: Jun 18, 2020

I built the first 20 years of my career being tapped on the shoulder for greater opportunities. I moved as an ex-pat from New Zealand to Singapore. I took on regional and global roles with Nokia, IBM and Check Point Technologies. At one point, I was managing a team of 110 people. I was a member of the PPS Club, jetting around the world in Business Class, and earning a great salary.

Superficially, my life was fantastic. Yet, deep down inside, I was not happy. And I was embarrassed for thinking like that. “My life is perfect. What right do I have to complain? I should be grateful.”

So I kept it to myself, and continued my supposedly awesome life. I invested all my energy into climbing the corporate ladder, pretending that I was happier, more successful and more in control than I felt.

And it nearly killed me. I would arrive home from my business travels completely exhausted. I was starting to be a stranger in my own home. Daddy collapsed on the floor, letting the kids hop on pop, did not count as quality time. 

Something changed in 2013. There was restructuring, and I was asked to report to a new boss whom I didn’t align with. I couldn’t bring myself to play the impostor game anymore.

The tank was empty.

This was a moment of truth. Questions had been brewing in my head for a long time. I had been putting it off, thinking “I’ve got time”. At age 39, I finally called bullsh*t on myself.

This gave me the courage to face my real problem. “How do I get back to doing work that energises me? How do I change?”

There was a series of events, and I ended up co-founding PERSONNA with my wife. We’re on a mission to help organisations create fast business impact by facilitating fast change from the inside out. 

I have always been tapped on the shoulder for opportunities. Change always happened to me. This time, I found clarity and chose to change. I overcame the resistance. The fear of running out of time overpowered the fear of leaving the comfort of the status quo. 

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PERSONNA is a leadership development company focused on the people side of transformation. We hold a simple belief that everyone is an extraordinary and powerful force for positive change. When you make work personal, naturally you become a better leader.

We’re here to help people become better leaders, build highly-effective teams, and create a culture of trust & collaboration in their organisations. We provide leadership branding, leadership coaching and group experiences. If you are curious to learn more drop us an email to

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