Dear Simon,

I’ve just read another LinkedIn post of yours, which made me want to write this letter to you.

Having undertaken a little desktop research on you, I’ve come to the conclusion that we have a lot in common. Our names are both alliterations of the letter S. We were born a year apart but in the same month of October. We’ve lived in the UK and South Africa and have both been educated at the University of London.

However, none of this was ever at the same time. Which is why I haven’t bumped into you…yet. We are even further apart now. Me down under and you living in the US somewhere.

We also have our differences.

I am female and you are male (clearly). I am a person of colour and you aren’t. I haven’t invented the simplest of business models, so simple as to baffle the academic world…yet.

My rustic TED video hasn’t had almost 45 million views. Oh, I forget I don’t have a TED video, rustic or not. I haven’t even published my first book and you’ve published 5 at the writing of this letter.

It makes me question, what have I done with my life? And that maybe I dislike you.

No, I don’t really.

I think you are amazing! A modern-day hero, in fact. I remember watching your TED video many years ago in a previous role I had. I was at my desktop computer trying to do a million things at once, including eating my lunch. Your video felt like gold. Like truth coming across my screen. I got it.

It challenged me to ask why of myself and the organisation I was working for. It was one of the sparks that led to the start of a very brave new journey. One that combined the three things I am passionate about most – branding, leadership and purpose.

A lot has changed since then. I have a company called Markd Global now. We help personal and company brands live on purpose to thrive in a more dynamic world. Like you, we believe purposeful people and companies create value and change culture for good.

So, we have a lot in common. I hope to bump into you one of these days to talk about it some more. Especially now that we are doing similar work and all.

Until then, Sibon.

P.S. Thanks for that video. It helped change my life.

Sibon Schouten - Markd Global

Sibon Schouten

CEO and Founder Markd Global