I am interviewing Sarah Perugia. Sarah is an accredited Executive Leadership Coach, Team Facilitator and Key Note Speaker. One of her coaching programmes is called Women on a Mission which focuses on helping women entrepreneurs to build confidence and vision to overcome barriers. I hope to find out a little more about Sarah, her career and her focus on celebrating and supporting women leaders. This felt like a fitting topic to explore around International Women’s Day. This year’s theme is Each for Equal.

This is part two of our interview.

M: I was going to ask you more about your transition from acting into the business world. That came out naturally. Understanding that you are being real. That’s the main difference I guess. It’s the reality versus the real. I also imagine you might have performed as some of the characters in the room that are receiving the training.

S: The wisdom I take from acting is about empathy. A really good actor is able to really get into the shoes of that character. Think the same thoughts and feel the same emotions. They live in that character. This is where we can take some real insight into presenting, networking and communicating well. If I think the right thoughts and use my body in a way that I choose, then everything will fall into place. If I walk into a networking event thinking “I hate networking, networking is awful, I’m terrible at it” no matter how much I smile, that inner dialogue will show on my face. So, the first thing we do as actors is get the thought process right. If I walk into the networking event thinking “What’s going to be good about this? What intention can I set for myself? What is it that I am good at? I am interesting and interested!” I am going to go in curious about what might happen. This will help me connect. You get your thought processes right and then you’ll walk into the room with your face is alight… then you are going to build that rapport. Acting and presenting yourself well, have a similar skill set, both things are about being authentic if you are going to do them well. Preparation is vital, and understanding how your thoughts, language and physicality interconnect is hugely empowering.