Being a leader that encourages the physical and mental health of their team is what today’s guest is all about. Jimmy Westerheim is the creator of The Human Aspect which is the world’s first life experience library. Jimmy has overcome childhood issues and a devastating injury by learning what it means to be human. This questions has been top of mind for him since he was a child.
By creating an authentic library of people’s real life experiences and how they overcame or lived with hardship has taught Jimmy that we are more alike than we are different. On this episode, Jimmy shares his own story and his unique approach to leadership, team building, running a business, and being more human. This is a really unique approach to what unites us more than what divides us.
[09:31] Jimmy is joining us from Oslo, Norway. [10:13] He was born into a working class family. He grew up an hour south of Oslo. [11:09] When he was 13, his mother was diagnosed with cancer. [12:12] He was saved by sports, because it's the only place where they don't care who you are. [12:43] He went to an Athlete's College in Norway. [13:10] He tried training to be the equivalent of a Norway Navy SEAL. He ended up being a diver for the Coast Guard. [14:32] He then spent seven years working for a shipping company. [15:13] He would take a month off and travel the world. He did volunteer work with people which was closer to his heart. [17:18] He wanted to do something different, and he started working for Doctors Without Borders. He was 27, and went to Afghanistan for a year. [20:11] One of his first real questions was how to deal with his back injury when there wasn't any help for it. He used to be an athlete and, now he couldn't be one. [20:53] This is where he came up with the idea for The Human Aspect Library and The Digital Mental Health Tool. [22:28] Jimmy is fortunate to share a story that is so real and so inspirational. [23:18] The Human Aspect is behind the world's first Digital Life Experience Library. It consists of interviews from people from all over the world. [23:33] People share their life's toughest challenge in detail, and how they either overcame it or how they live with it. [24:10] They also share what they've learned to help people who may be in the middle of a similar challenge. [25:48] Jimmy has had a natural ability to get people to open up. [26:51] Sharing your story can be very empowering. [27:12] Psychologists all over the world and the University of Oslo are using The Human Aspect. [28:27] The Human Aspect is the answer. The challenges we face and how we overcome those truly decide the presets that will be dominant in our personalities. [32:42] Oftentimes, large companies lack the human part of caring for mental and physical health. [34:36] The most important thing a leader can do is create a culture that cares about your employee,s life as a whole. [37:13] It's important for teams to care about each other everyday. [43:05] As a leader, expect your employees to share and then do everything in your power to help them out. [51:23] Jimmy's success factor is authenticity. That's what makes him a leader. [53:32] We are more connected but less human-to-human connected, and that's the key element why human mental health statistics have gone up. [54:48] What will make us win over the robots is being more human. [57:01] When you go from a manager to a leader, you truly can create synergies. You have to lead by example. [01:00:47] Take time to sit with your employees and ask them when they seem a little off. Be vulnerable and share something about yourself. Explain why you are doing things or using tools to get better results. Set the tone with stories about your own life. [01:03:43] Ask open ended questions. [01:06:13] It's not easy to do these things in practice. Trust that eventually the human way of managing will be bett