Given the weekend he had just come through, and the personal criticism he had shipped in its wake, Johnny Sexton could be forgiven for wanting to be at home in front of Netflix with his family last night.
Instead though, he was sitting on stage in the banking hall of the Westin Hotel fulfilling his first engagement as a Brand Ambassador with global recruitment firm Cpl Resources.
And he seemed to be enjoying it as well, sharing stories on the introduction of mindfulness sessions within a rugby team framework and having a gentle dig back at some of the pundits he thought had got it wrong about the demise of the Irish team.
The occasion was the first event in the Cpl World Class Talent Series; an eight-part series of events showcasing world-class leaders from across business and sport.
Sexton was joined by Ailis McSweeney from Peptalk, Simone Macleod-Nairn, Irish Life Group Head of Corporate Resources, Barry Winkless, Cpl Strategy Director and Future of Work Institute Lead, and chaired with a good sense of humour by Cormac Loughlin, Group Sales Director of CPL.
He revealed that at first he was unconvinced by the mindfulness sessions, using the time to think about what he would do during the rest of the training session but after a previous challenging time in his career, he realised the benefits it could bring to him on a personal level and is now a convert.
“Tadhg Furlong has yet to reach that point though and he has been known to doze off,” he told the room full of HR professionals and other invited guests.
The Cpl World Class Talent Series is billed as “a platform for best-in-class practices, thought leadership and a forum for tackling the important topics around business in Ireland and beyond.”
“I am very excited to be partnering with Cpl,” said Sexton.
“When I initially discussed the series of events it sounded like a perfect fit and made sense to me. I have learnt a lot over the years from being involved in a high-performance environment through sport. I am very much looking forward to sharing these transferable skills into the world of business and adding value to the Cpl group and their wider customers through the experiences and learnings I have taken from my career to date.”
“Johnny will play a key role in our World Class Talent Series as Irish businesses continue to evolve, adapt and capitalise on the challenges and opportunities of a modern workplace and workforce,” added Cormac Loughlin.
“The Cpl World Class Talent Series is an opportunity for business leaders to learn from some of the best talent in the country as well as to network and knowledge share.”