Business Leader Insight with Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham MBE: ex-SAS leader and star of Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins

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Watch the full interview with Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham MBE here

In this instalment of Business Leader Insight, presented by Interaction – the office workplace research, design and build experts, we were honoured to get to talk to Mark ‘Billy’ Billingham MBE, ex-SAS leader and star of Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins.

A leader like no other, Billy joined the Parachute Regiment in 1983 and served until 1991 holding an array of positions including Patrol Commander for operational tours in many worldwide locations and also served as a training instructor for the Regiments as a military specialist.

Billy joined the SAS in 1991 as a Mountain Troop specialist and has been responsible for planning and executing strategic operations and training at the highest level in numerous locations (Iraq, Afghanistan, South America and Africa) and has led countless hostage rescues.

After his military career, Billy became a bodyguard and looked after people such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Sir Michael Caine, Jude Law, Hulk Hogan, Kate Moss, Russell Crowe and Tom Cruise. He is also one of the stars of the hit TV show SAS: Who Dares Wins and is an author and public speaker.

Visit to purchase Billy’s book The Hard Way and to find about REBUILD Globally – fighting poverty in Haiti through education, job training, and community development initiatives.

Here’s a breakdown of what we discussed in the interview:

• Can you tell us about how you ended up joining the army? (1:54)
• You served for 27 years in the elite unit – that must make an incredible mark on somebody. How did shape you? (4:44)
• What was your lowest point during this long SAS career and what did you have to do to get through it? (5:54)
• This edition of Business Leader Insight was brought to you by Interaction (7:05)
• So how did you end up on Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins? (9:19)
• What is your view on how the UK has responded to COVID-19 and have you ever seen anything like this? (11:30)
• What advice would you give to leaders to help them navigate this crisis? (14:05)
• Do you think the era of the “Hero Leader” is fading away and a different style is needed for issues like this? (16:12)
• How do you reflect on your time as a bodyguard to the stars and were there any close scrapes? (17:31)
• You talk a lot about ‘Always a little further’ – what do you mean by that? (20:00)

Questions from the public

• What would be your advice for new leaders? (22:32)
• How do you mentally prepare your mind to deal with situations you think you can’t achieve? (24:07)
• Where have you experienced strong leadership and why? (25:05)
• What morning rituals do you follow to set your day up for success? (27:47)
• How do you deal with negativity in a team? (28:39)
• How do you schedule your week or month? (29:53)
• How do you inspire yourself and pick yourself up when you have a bad day? (31:12)
• How do you achieve your team goals when the wider business team can’t see the ultimate goal? (32:36)
• What is something we can’t find online about you? (33:46)

• Final word from Billy (34:24)

Click here to watch other Business Leader Insight interviews and be sure to check our Virtual Events page for upcoming interviews and events.

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