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Insight 26 May 2020

Rugby great and global people development company team up during lockdown

Former Scotland rugby captain John Barclay will discuss how to build the mental toughness to help get through the coronavirus crisis, during a free webinar on Thursday.

Barclay, who won 76 caps for Scotland between 2007 and 2019, is partnering with Dundee-based people development company Insights to deliver the webinar which is open to the public.

He said:

There can be a lot of pressure, especially via social media, to put on a façade and say that things are great, but the reality is that many people aren’t loving it just now. And it’s ok not to be ok. It’s ok to have a bad day. We will all come through this stronger for it. I have days when I’m fed up with it and I’m really bored. I really like to have a purpose in my life and some structure, and rugby has always provided that. I can’t play rugby right now and I’m finding that quite hard. But then I remember that I’m very fortunate in many ways because I’m with my family, we’re healthy, and we’re lucky enough to have a back garden. I’ll probably never get more time with my family than right now.

In the free webinar, John will provide an insight into how he has dealt with adversity through a 17-year career in professional rugby, from form to injury, and non-selection, as well as coping with individual and collective triumph and failure – and the media spotlight. John said:

Sportspeople can be put on a pedestal, but I believe that people everywhere experience very similar struggles – and I’ve always found it best to take a systematic approach. Looking at the whole challenge can be quite daunting, but if you can cut the whole thing down into smaller, more manageable challenges, then you’ll increase your overall chance of success.

Insights has been running free weekly webinars since before lockdown, with the aim of building a virtual community and keeping learning alive. Average weekly attendance is around 400 people, with people dialling in from around the world.

Thursday’s webinar is being facilitated by Insights Head of Learning and Experience Marcus Wylie, who said:

We’re living in a very disrupted and challenging world right now, and people will be experiencing many different emotions. At Insights, we believe increased self-awareness is the foundation from which everything is built – I think people will really benefit from hearing John talk about self-awareness has helped him successfully manage his own experiences of adversity, triumph and disappointment.

He added:

When we understand ourselves better we open up the possibility of making better choices, which of course can lead to better outcomes.

Insights people development solutions have traditionally been delivered face-to-face in ‘classroom’ settings. However the company moved to a ‘virtual first’ delivery model in response to the coronavirus crisis. Since mid-March, it has delivered 10 free webinars, 21 educational webinars to its global practitioner community, and launched five new virtual products. Marcus added:

As physical distancing measures are relaxed around the world and we transition into the ‘new normal’, we fully expect our virtual solutions to remain as popular and well subscribed as our face-to-face experiences.

Centred around self-awareness and based on the psychology of Carl Jung, Insights’ innovative people development solutions help individuals, teams, leaders and global organisations reach peak performance. Insights has offices in 18 countries and its flagship offering, Insights Discovery, was deployed in over 90 countries last year. Clients include more than 80% of both the S&P and FTSE 100 indexes, and some of the biggest names in the world of sport, pharmaceuticals and technology including Nike, Google, Microsoft and LinkedIn.

Spaces are limited for Barclay’s webinar, to sign up, go to

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