Classic management training and techniques focus on the technical aspects of business. These are important, but they’re no substitute for what really creates and sustains value—the people who make it all possible. | Lead the People provides you with a roadmap to realizing your full potential as an authentic people leader. In each episode, Dr. Matt Poepsel—aka The Godfather of Talent Optimization—and his guests explore a wide range of leadership topics and trends in an informative and engaging way. | If you're pressed for time, you prefer practical applications over abstract concepts, you're seeking a playbook for how to lead, and you want to feel that you're making tangible progress every day—Lead the People was built just for you. | While the path to becoming an authentic people leader isn’t easy, it’s an effective and extremely rewarding way to make a greater impact in your work and in your life. | More about Matt: http://mattpoepsel.com
#60: Leadership Experience with Jessica Ivins
Jessica Ivins is a veteran User Experience (UX) researcher. She leads UX research and research operations at The Predictive Index. Before joining The Predictive Index, Jessica honed her skills through a variety of roles in UX research and design. She’s dedicated much of her time to the UX community, presenting at conferences, appearing on podcasts, and writing many blog posts.
Top 3 Takeaways
Words matter. There’s ample confusion about the difference between management and leadership. The most important definition of leadership is your own.
Lead by example. As a leader, all eyes are on you. You’re always in control of how you comport yourself through modeling your attitudes and behaviors in any situation.
Go for growth. A fixed mindset may be common, but it’s not the only option. A growth mindset is not only possible, it’s preferred.
From the Source
“To be a manager, you have to be given a title with management responsibilities, and at the core of your responsibility as a manager is you're responsible, responsible for retention and results.”
“A leader can be just about anybody, and as a leader, you're moving other people toward change and hopefully positive change.”
“ I think most people have the potential to be a leader, and that's the beauty of being a leader, right? And it's very fulfilling, too, right? You don't have to earn a management title. You don't have to earn a leadership title, so to speak. You can just help other people move toward positive change.”
“I do see it go the other way, too, though, where people who have pretty lofty titles are reticent or hesitant to consider themselves to be a leader, even though they'd be managing large groups of people.”
“I have a daughter and so modeling is huge for me as a parent, but it's really showing up in the career context. It's really showing up as the professional that you want to be and that can make your workplace better, that can make the people around you better, and just basically modeling that for everybody. It can start with simple things like showing up on time being a decent professional and also the harder things like handling stressful situations with professionalism.”
“People often go to their peers because it's safer to go to your peers and vent than it is to go to your boss. I think even just listening, sometimes just being a sounding board, can really help people because sometimes people just need to vent and get it out of their system and then move on.”
“I've managed a lot of perfectionists and perfectionism unfortunately often comes with a fixed mindset. So it's just been a lot of reframing.”
“When people come to you for help, they usually don't want advice. They want you to help them think things through.”
“If you know in your heart of hearts that you don't want to be a manager, then it's probably best not to do it.”
Connect with Jessica
#59: Sustainable Leadership with Dr. Gabrielle Bouret-Sicotte
Gabrielle Bourret-Sicotte is the co-founder and CEO of Greenr. Gabrielle’s background includes a PhD in Solar Panel Research at the University of Oxford. Her research led her to inventing a technique to improve the efficiency of Silicon Solar Panels leading to a world record efficiency. Gabrielle also spent time working on Climate Policy and Transition Risk in developing countries.
Gabrielle quickly realized that many businesses lacked the time and resources to invest in expensive consultants for one-off carbon emission assessments. This led her to co-found Greenr, a sustainability as a service organization helping businesses to measure and reduce emissions at source.
Top 3 Takeaways
Put it to the test. Running a business is a lot like conducting a science experiment. Be clear about your hypothesis and remain as objective as possible while testing it.
Do your part. There may be some differences in attitudes across the generations, but we all want a healthy planet, and we can all do small things that add up.
Know your numbers. Even the most heartfelt ideas need a rational defense. Gather your research around the business benefits before making your pitch to start up a sustainability program.
From the Source
“You don't really get feedback as a CEO. You don't get performance reviews in terms of how your colleagues and the people working for your company are perceiving you.”
“You have to self-motivate. There is an end goal, which is either revenue or finishing your degree, but at the end of the day, you just have to lead yourself along the path of putting a hypothesis out there—whether that's science or looking at consumer needs—and then you just test this hypothesis again in science or whether your customers like it, and then you build it, and then you iterate.”
“I won't say that millennials and Gen Z's are more active in the climate than actually our parents or our grandparents. I don't think that's necessarily true.”
“We have a lot of stats around what is the actual business add and business value add for companies to actually use a product like Greenr or an employee engagement tool. So we have a lot of stats on average employee retention. I think it's 31%. You get an average retention of 31 percent increase when you have a sustainability policy that involves employees. You can actually also attract 74 percent more talent and range of talent by having a sustainability policy. So we have all of these metrics that we can go to top management and say ‘these are the numbers’ that you can use in order to get the budget and get a decision.”
Connect with Gabrielle and Greenr
#58: Lifelong Learning for Leaders with Dr. Deborah Watts
Dr. Deborah Watts has more than 20 years of experience helping people and organizations grow. Her passion is developing professionals into tomorrow's leaders and coaching leaders on how to optimize their performance as well as the performance of their team. Her experience has come from many unique opportunities spanning a wide range of disciplines and industries including organizations such as the Governors Literacy Foundation, RJ Young, Lands End, Humana, Harley-Davidson, Seaspan, Starbucks and Zillow.
Currently, Deborah is the Founder and CEO of Hayde & Company, a talent optimization consulting firm and the Director of Graduate and Executive Education at the University of Tennessee, Haslam College of Business. She also serves as a Certified Partner for Predictive Index and Senior Consultant for the Leadership Pipeline Institute.
Top 3 Takeaways
Follow the joyful energy. When Deborah felt a similar energy in the classroom that she had during her work in the motorsports industry, she set an intention to make a shift and she never looked back.
Find your why. When you have a clear understanding of your purpose, even the most menial tasks have meaning. Without it, you may produce big results but still feel something is missing from your work and your life.
Commit to the craft. Deborah built a powerful learning experience for leaders who are willing to put in the work to reach their next level. Be a student of leadership for your own benefit as well as to serve others.
From the Source
“Someone on the board had the idea of ‘Hey, we need to bring in a consultant to help us.’ Well, that consultant came from the Oliver group and the very first thing they did is have us take the Predictive Index Behavioral Assessment, and I was blown away.”
“We realized that if we wanted to go acquire these dealerships and then have them perform at a higher level, we had to invest in the people. So I think that was just a powerful experience for me.”
“I remember feeling that same excitement I felt for the power sports industry I felt in the classroom. So I thought, what do I do to make that happen?”
“I ended up teaching a class at a university in Europe, and it really started expanding how adults learn and how in the U S, how we only promote if you're going to manage people. Typically for the most part, you have to take that role of ‘I'm going to manage human beings to get a raise or get a better title.’ Europe has a lot of specialist programs. If you say, ‘I don't ever want to manage people, but I want to continue to grow’ then you move into maybe a specialist role.”
“When I was at the Ohio State University, I remember our janitor was awesome. He was super friendly, great guy. He was there when we woke up and there when we went to bed, and our dorm was spotless. And I remember us talking to him someday about ‘Where do you get this drive and passion from?’ And the way he saw it was, ‘I keep people healthy. I keep you all healthy. Because of me, you all get to stay healthy, come to school, get a degree and go do great things in the world.’ And so he had a bigger understanding. He understood the why behind his job.”
“I get the opportunity to work with a lot of folks that do have that combination of workplace, corporate experience, or non profit experience. And they also have the academic piece. And so together, I think in the classroom, it just equals some really powerful stuff.”
“There will be moments where you're thinking about your organization, like you just said, like where you're working and you think, ‘Is this my leader? Is this how they operate? Is this a place I want to continue to invest my time,?’ which is very valuable time that you're not with your family. You want to make sure where you do spend it is worthwhile. And so it does make you think. It absolutely makes you think, and it makes you take the stories that you're hearing and apply them to your own personal situatio
#57: STICK to Your Values with John Saunders
Saunders spent more than two decades as a Wall Street SVP, sales team leader, and award-winning sales executive. He is now a coach, consultant & author. He spent years as a member of the Georgetown McDonough MBA Alumni Advisory Council and is an active angel investor. He is a long time regular contributor to the Executive MBA mentorship program and spent 3 years on the committee that built the mentorship program for the EMBA and MBA programs.
Top 3 Takeaways
Follow your heart. Life throws a lot at us, and we’re asked to make tough decisions every day. Being clear about our values helps us navigate with intention.
Put it to the test. When you’re clear about your mission and vision, these serve as a kind of litmus test to determine whether a given idea is worth pursuing. Otherwise, an idea may fizzle.
Balance it out. As storytellers, we need to ensure that our message is rooted in a strong foundation. Persuasion, structure, and the right amount of detail turn a good story into a great one.
From the Source
“The simplest definition of vision I'd like to use is: It's your ideal and maybe aspirational future. And maybe you never get there, but it's that big North Star that you say, ‘Hey, that's what we want to be when we grow up,’ right?”
“That's where the power is, that's where it became really powerful. It was pushing her, challenging her to think bigger.”
“It brings clarity on sort of how to think about things and how to bring new ideas forward for innovation and growth.”
“We're all in this together, but we need you all to come forward with ideas on how we get this, get this going. And it was all based on their values, mission, and vision.”
“It gave them something to lean on to say, ‘How do we make these decisions here in this very difficult environment?’”
“This is a message that needs to permeate every aspect of your organization.”
“You know that the inevitable stress point is going to come. And that cannot be the day that you suddenly say, ‘This is what we stand for, people.’”
“It's such an important part of being a leader to live and breathe those values and showcase that ‘This is how we do things.’”
Connect with John
Get John’s storytelling tip sheet: https://www.johncsaunders.com/storytelling
#56: Improvisational Leadership with Joel Zeff
Joel Zeff creates energy. His spontaneous humor and vital messages have thrilled audiences for almost 25 years. As a national workplace expert, speaker, author and humorist, Joel captivates audiences with a unique blend of hilarious improvisational comedy and essential ideas on work and life. He has shared his experience and insight on collaboration, leadership, change, communication, innovation, fun and passion at more than 2,500 events. His book, Make the Right Choice: Creating a Positive, Innovative and Productive Work Life is consistently listed as one of the top work/life balance books on Amazon. He has appeared on CNBC and featured in the Dallas Morning News, Houston Chronicle, The Kansas City Star, and many other media outlets.
Top 3 Takeaways
Show up. Treat every leadership opportunity with the care it deserves. You never know who’s watching and what they’re taking away from your performance.
Go first. Nobody will consider you an expert before you do. Give yourself the recognition you deserve after you’ve worked diligently to develop your capabilities.
Share the love. Offering your appreciation doesn’t take a lot of time or a lot of money, but it can make a huge difference in the performance and welfare of those around you.
From the Source
“I have a job where I get a round of applause. I do my job. People clap. Most people don't have a job where they get a round of applause. It doesn't mean they don't deserve it. They absolutely do.”
“You have to perform, whether you're performing in front of a crowd of a thousand people and they're all energized and excited, or there's eight people and and stale coffee and the bad lighting, you have to perform, like there's a king in every audience because you never know where that next opportunity is coming from.”
“The first person that calls you an expert is you.”
“It's not the first time you're gonna jump on stage, you're just gonna be brilliant. It's gonna take hours and hours and hours, but every little step takes you to your destination.”
“I love making people laugh, and I love telling people what I think, and so I figured out a way that that was my career.”
“I don't know if I like the word burnout. I think it's just, people just don't feel fulfilled or rewarded. They're not happy, and they're not happy because they're not receiving that fuel that rewards them.”
“You shouldn't be doing it thinking, ‘What am I going to get out of it? What's in it for me?’ If you're helping people, it will come back to you, but that's not why you made that choice. You made that choice because you're passionate, you're energized, you're supportive, you're being a great leader, a great teammate.”
“We don't give enough positive support. We don't say enough. ‘We appreciate you. Thank you for taking that extra time. We know that we're really busy right now and you've gone above and beyond.’ It's a gift and it's the best gift you can give anybody, and it really takes little time. It takes no budget.”
Connect with Joel
#55: Learning How to Deal with Doubt with Dave Hill, Jr.
Dave Hill Jr. is a former leadership team member for two successful tech startups—Ableton (2003-2011) and iZotope (2011-2016). He founded Go 2 Market Coach in 2016 offering coaching, mentoring, and now, musical healing to his wide array of clients worldwide. His new book, Doubt Riding Shotgun, documents Dave's life journey with self-doubt as well as helpful practices from his coaching practice.
Dave is an active singer/songwriter, drummer, and public speaker. He lives with his wife and kids near Seattle.
Top 3 Takeaways
Not all bad. Doubt never feels good, but it’s a mistake to think that doubt can’t serve us. Doubt calls attention to our strongest values and potential risks.
Be decisive. Rather than get stuck in an endless loop on the roundabout of doubt, we need to commit to a plan of action and execute.
Failure is an option. Things aren’t always going to break in our favor. We need to moderate our relationship with failure so we can find a sweet spot between risk taking and recklessness.
From the Source
“Doubt likes to say ‘Be afraid, be afraid. Oh, watch out. Don't raise your hand. Don't take a risk. Don't sing in public. Don't do public speaking.’ but it doesn't really tell you why.”
“The metaphor was like that we have these recurring voices, and they're kind of like a bad loop in a video game of music where it just repeats the same sound.”
“The Nike slogan of everything: Just do it. Just feel the fear and do it anyway. But sometimes the fear can be so paralyzing and confusing.“
“If we take a more mindful approach, take more steady, and have a more friendly relationship with doubt like we're working with this partner that is helping you learn where your edge is today.”
“The brain creates thoughts, you know? And when we think about witnessing our thoughts, it's about slowing down. And maybe we'll talk a little bit about mindfulness, but practices that get us to slow down and hear the voice and then allow the voice to move away.“
“How we change our body or how we work with our body is reflected in our mind.“
“If you can have a coach that can help you create that experience to see the mind differently, or to see the body and work with the body, then I think you can have the experience and then you can't deny your own experience.“
Connect with Dave
Living The Lessons - Engaging Conversations
Matt draws key lessons out of his listeners and shares the roadmap and hard truths about making the come to life. Great show and guests.
Always a great lesson
I love getting the bite size lessons from different people leaders that I can put into practice immediately. I also appreciate the diversity of guests speakers