Social Impact Heroes: Why & How Magnús Scheving of The World of Business Ideas Is Helping To Change Our World

An Interview With Savio P. Clemente

Savio P. Clemente
Authority Magazine

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I also work with Make-A-Wish Foundation and some kids have only nine days to live. So you come there and they will be dressed up in Sportacus costumes and I would say, you want me to bring you an apple? Not because they want to be healthy, but because they want to do things with me. They want to eat the apples and do push-ups.

As part of my series about “individuals and organizations making an important social impact”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Magnús Scheving at the World of Business Ideas (WOBI) Forum in New York City, New York. Magnús is an Icelandic writer, entrepreneur, television producer, actor and athlete. He is the creator, director, and star of the children’s television show LazyTown, in which he also portrayed the character Sportacus.

Thank you for joining us in this interview series, Magnús. Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’?

I was born in a very small town in Iceland. It was only 500 people. There were eight people in my class and there was nothing there at all. At a very young age I knew I wanted to motivate the world somehow. I wanted to basically do something. That’s what inspired me about health. How can I make things easier for kids or parents to raise healthy human beings? What is a healthy person? I went around the world to try to talk to as many people that I could meet in the fitness industry. I used to teach fitness around the world and I was a world champion in fitness. I did it as a hobby because I ultimately wanted to be an architect. But then suddenly I wrote a book about health for kids and parents and it became a bestseller. I then created LazyTown and was stuck there for 30 years. I went around the world to 170 countries with LazyTown and won Emmy and BAFTA awards.

What’s the most impactful initiative you’ve led that you’re particularly proud of?

I learned so much from kids I have visited from around the world because they could tell me what they were thinking and the impact it had on them. Once I was in Argentina or Colombia and I was in the hotel and this woman was cleaning the room and said to me, “Oh, you are Sportacus. Por favor, my kids really love your show. Can I get them to the hotel to see you.” I said, of course I can meet them in the lobby. At 5 o’clock the hotel called me and said, “Mr. Scheving, there’s a major crisis here in the lobby.” I went down and there were 300 kids jumping around in the lobby. They were showing me different moves.

I also work with Make-A-Wish Foundation and some kids have only nine days to live. So you come there and they will be dressed up in Sportacus costumes and I would say, you want me to bring you an apple? Not because they want to be healthy, but because they want to do things with me. They want to eat the apples and do push-ups.

So I think we are lacking good role models in the world at the moment. There are not enough of them. There’s not enough good leaders anymore. You can barely find them and there are two types of leaders in the world. There are leaders who manage the industry to keep the world rolling and there are people who change the world or change the industry. A good leader is a person who cares and kids can see it in their eyes if they mean it or not.

Thank you so much for your time and for sharing your expertise, Magnús.

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Savio P. Clemente
Authority Magazine

TEDx Speaker, Media Journalist, Board Certified Wellness Coach, Best-Selling Author & Cancer Survivor