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Stacey Hanke | Influence Redefined

219: Stacey Hanke: My influence was redefined

Stacey Hanke Show Notes Page

Stacey Hanke was doing introductions for speakers early in her career and her boss said she needed to be recorded for feedback and coaching purposes. Stacey reluctantly complied and upon reviewing the taping, she shockingly realized she had a huge disconnect between how she felt and what everyone else experienced. Now Stacey helps others grow their positive influence Monday to Monday®.

Stacey grew up on a farm in central WI in a small community, Marathon.  She’s the middle of three girls. The best move Stacey’s made in her business was to invite her two sisters to join her in her company.

The three of them have their father to thank for their work ethic which carries through to their work today. Their father’s words of wisdom are a part of their success today. Always follow through and you’ll be in the top percent. Be kind to everyone because you will always need help in some way. Be consistent.

Stacey worked in the corporate world as a trainer on numerous topics; leadership, customer service, and time management. Companies included Target, Bosch and a not-for-profit where she hired speakers and was the emcee at their conferences. She started to hang onto these speaker’s shirt tails asking them to mentor her. She learned from the best.

Stacey is known for the impact she has on her clients personally and professionally.  Most importantly she wants to have a positive impact on her nieces. To be a role model for them to be confident knowing they can be anything/anyone they dream to be.

Stacey’s business passion is to is teaching others how to communicate with influence Monday to Monday®. As a keynote speaker and mentor to C-suite executives, she helps individuals see through the eyes and ears of their audiences. The result is career-changing insights. She is the author of Influence Redefined: Be the Leader You Were Meant to Be, Monday to Monday®.

She previously wrote the #1 Bestseller, Yes You Can! Everything You Need from A to Z to Influence Others to Take Action. She has appeared in the New York Times and SmartMoney, has emceed TedX, and has appeared on the Lifetime Network and WGN Chicago.

She lives in downtown Chicago with her husband where she works hard and plays hard. When she’s not traveling living in airports, she teaches fitness classes.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Listen to @StaceyHankeInc to get over the hump on the @FastLeaderShow – Click to Tweet

“When do you need that break and when do you need to go all in?” – Click to Tweet

“You build focus during the silent times.” – Click to Tweet

“Influence is not, you turn it on and you turn it off.” – Click to Tweet

“You can’t be saying one thing and your body language totally disconnecting and disengaging.” – Click to Tweet

“Think about how people experience you every day.” – Click to Tweet

“There’s always a camera on. People are always watching you.” – Click to Tweet

“We’re living in a new world of work, called noise.” – Click to Tweet

“The only skill that conveys trust is what you do with your eyes.” – Click to Tweet

“Allow and trust your competence that sometimes silence is the right answer.” – Click to Tweet

“When people start trusting and respecting you, that’s when they start buying into your ideas.” – Click to Tweet

“Only speak when you see eyes.” – Click to Tweet

“Hang up the email and sometimes pick up the phone.” – Click to Tweet

“Every interaction we have determines the relationships we have.” – Click to Tweet

“If you look at any leader who’s a reputable leader, current or even in our history, all of them have coaches.” – Click to Tweet

Hump to Get Over

Stacey Hanke was doing introductions for speakers early in her career and her boss said she needed to be recorded for feedback and coaching purposes. Stacey reluctantly complied and upon reviewing the taping, she shockingly realized she had a huge disconnect between how she felt and what everyone else experienced. Now Stacey helps others grow their positive influence Monday to Monday®.

Advice for others

Network more to gain more resources.

Holding her back from being an even better leader

Sometimes, fear.

Best Leadership Advice

Servant Video tape and audio tape on a regular basis.

Secret to Success

Discipline and never giving up.

Best tools in business or life

My family.

Recommended Reading

Influence Redefined: Be the Leader You Were Meant to Be, Monday to Monday

Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds

Five Stars: The Communication Secrets to Get from Good to Great

The Storyteller’s Secret: From TED Speakers to Business Legends, Why Some Ideas Catch On and Others Don’t

Resources and Show Mentions

Call Center Coach

An Even Better Place to Work

 

Show Transcript: 

Click to access edited transcript

219: Stacey Hanke: My influence was redefined

 

Intro: Welcome to the Fast Leader podcast, where we explore convenient yet effective shortcuts that will help you get ahead and move forward faster by becoming a better leader. And now here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert and certified emotional intelligence practitioner, Jim Rembach.

 

Call center coach develops and unites the next generation of call center leaders. Through our e-learning and community individuals gain knowledge and skills in the six core competencies that is the blueprint that develops high-performing call center leaders. Successful supervisors do not just happen, so go to callcentercoach.com to learn more about enrollment and download your copy of the Supervisor Success Path e-book now.

 

Okay, Fast Leader legion today I’m excited because I have somebody on the show today who’s going to help me update some of my skills and I know she’s going to  have the opportunity to update yours as well. Stacey Hanke grew up on a farm in Central Wisconsin in a small community called Marathon. She’s the middle of three girls. The best move Stacey’s made and her business was to invite her two sisters to join her in her company. The three of them have their father to thank for their work ethic which carries through to their work today. Their father’s words of wisdom are a part of their success today, always follow through and you’ll be in the top percent, be kind to everyone because you will always need help someday and then be consistent.

 

Stacey worked in the corporate world as a trainer on numerous topics, leadership, customer service and time management. Companies included Target, Bosh and the enough for profit where she hired speakers and was the emcee at their conferences. She started to hang on to these speakers’ shorts tails and asking them to mentor her, she learned from the best. Stacey is known for the impact she has on her clients personally and professionally. Most importantly she wants to have a positive impact on her nieces, to be a role model for them to be confident knowing that they can be anything or anyone they dreamed to be. 

 

Stacey’s business passion is to teach others how to communicate with influence Monday to Monday. As a keynote speaker and mentor to c-suite executives she helps individuals see through the eyes and ears of their audiences, the result is career changing insights. She’s the author of, Influence Redefine: Be the Leader You Were Meant to be Monday to Monday. She previously wrote the number one bestseller, Yes You Can: Everything You Need from A to Z to

Influence Others To Take Action. She has appeared in the New York Times and smart money and has emceed TEDx and has appeared on the Lifetime Network and WGN Chicago. She lives in downtown Chicago with her husband where she works hard and plays hard. When she’s not traveling, living in airports, she teaches fitness classes. Stacey Hanke, are you ready to help us get over the hump?

 

Stacey Hanke:     I am. I’m ready. Thanks for that introduction.

 

Jim Rembach:    I’m glad you’re here. You and I just had some great discussion prior to this interview and I’ve shared a little bit about you with my Legion, but can you tell us what your current passion is so that we can get to know you even better? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Hmm, on the professional side, and I know it sounds crazy and you probably hear everyone say, it truly is the work that we do with people. It’s gotten to the point where 16 years in the business it’s getting the emails several months after I work with them saying you’ve had such impact on my life. And I’m thinking, it’s not like I’m doing brain surgery but you start to pull through that even when you realize, gosh, we communicate all the time it’s such a critical piece that it does have impact when you start increasing people’s awareness of how they come across. So that that’s definitely on the professional side. And because that can be pretty intense sometimes a little too often like 24/7 I spend a lot of time truly with friends and family to break myself away from the business side. I really believe in health and fitness. With living on the road as much as all of us speakers do. I learned the hard way, years ago that if you’re not healthy you can’t keep up with that level of stamina and if you’re not healthy I also think that it also impacts the level of influence you have.

 

Jim Rembach:    As you were talking I started thinking, I started having somewhat of that conversation talking about that energy and that burnout and recharging of batteries and all that. I was at a conference last week in Nashville, in the customer contact center industry, we were talking about how it just zaps you by being at one of those events and having to network and talk, because me I’m a slight introvert, and so it just drains me to be on and be on the entire day. A lot of these folks that are more on the extroverted side they want to go out at night and party and do this the other and I’m like, man I just need it to be quiet. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     It is. It takes a lot of energy. Because if you truly care about every interaction you have and the conversations that you’re having the relationships that you’re building I tend to, which it sounds like you do too, I tend to put a lot into it. And at some point I just have to totally recharge. My recharge is a lot of times at the gym or that quiet time back in the hotel room back on the airplane. I know that it’s a plane seat and just puts the earbuds in to take a moment there’s so much work around that too. I talk about this with the mentees, with our executives that we mentor, that why in the corporate world do we run 24/7 every day of the week sometimes or at least six five times a week yet any athlete knows that the football season the tennis seasons, because they cannot perform at their best at that high level. That’s the big part of influence is really identifying when do you need that break? And when do you need to go all-in? 

 

Jim Rembach:    So what you’re saying right there too even when you start to come out from a fitness perspective people who are in fitness know that, for example if you’re trying to build some muscle you don’t build muscle during the workout process you build muscle during the rest process. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     It’s so true. I think you built focus from a professional level during the silent times. I know for myself when I’m responding to emails like everyone else does in a day and having lots of calls and podcast interviews I don’t have that pocket of time. So my pocket of time is me making the commitment. I blocked my calendar off a certain point in a day. And even if it’s thirty minutes, usually it’s an hour I’ll block a good hour off because I know that I can’t be my best in responding to the emails to keep up with the calls if it’s constant back-to- back without that moment of just focusing through. How did that conversation go? What went well? What didn’t go well? And how can I prepare for the next interaction?  

 

Jim Rembach:    I think what we’re talking about here really goes into something that you addressed in Chapter one of the book. You talk about, is your influence outdated? Even when we start talking about professional life, you talk about the whole 24/7 thing, personal life that way too. It’s just non-stop all day long until you crash. Even if you think about your influence,  I’m not thinking about my influence because I’m going all the time I think I’m actually being influential I’m actually not, so when you start thinking about could my influence be outdated? What do you really mean? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Exactly that. I think when it’s outdated it’s an old definition of influence. For example, how many times have you been, maybe at corporate meeting a client event you have this conversation, the person who’s leading the conversation is all caught up in their own dialogue half the group is down in their smartphones or their side conversations going on the person leading the conversation their subconscious says to them, we’ll just keep talking torture them even more and eventually you’ll figure out what to say. Influence not, you turn it on and you turn it off, that’s not what I’m talking about here. Influence really is this concept of no matter who interacts with you whether it’s like what we’re doing today all way conversations and your personal life your professional life they always get you, they never have to guess who’s going to show up. In order for that to happen though of body language and the messaging they need to be consistent. 

 

You can’t be saying one thing your body language is totally disconnecting, disengaging, and expect people to think you’re influential. With that level of definition, Jim, that’s heavy that’s going to take discipline it’s going to take work. Here’s the good news, if you consciously thought about your verbal and your nonverbal during every conversation, you’re constantly practicing. And I think that’s the piece people don’t get. For example, if I’m working with a sales group sales professionals they’ve been taught, written for the sales pitch turn it on, in practice right before the meeting. That’s probably the worst thing you can do because it’s going to be a cluster you’re going to mess up because now suddenly you’re going to think about connecting and engaging and you don’t typically do that. But it’s like the mind to be athlete, however, the athlete prepares, practices Monday to Thursday is how they’ll perform on Saturday. 

 

I’m trying to get my clients to think more in those terms of don’t wait for the big gig and turn this on there’s nothing authentic about it. I think you start jeopardizing your trust when you do that. It’s more about, think about how people experience you every day. Here’s the good news though Jim, we get to choose every day what that looks like, based on how we show up how we stay showed up and what we leave behind.

 

Jim Rembach:    For me when you were talking you much in sales you mentioned executives, we’re talking about really everything. We’re talking about a colleague connection and relationship. We’re talking about a mentor mentee relationship. We’re talking about that personal relationship whether it’s at home. Yesterday, my 10 year old son he behaved in a certain way that was just quite rude. I said, would you do that to your friend’s parents? And I said, let me tell you what, if you are you’ll never go there again. Why would you treat me differently? And he goes, oh no. I said, that’s right, you shouldn’t because you never know with that behavior if you’re going to take it out of the house and take it into somebody else’s house that would not be okay. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     It’s so true. There’s been a couple of situations last year where one of my clients I’ve known for a while and I truly respect them and I admire them. Well, I get them out of the corporate environment perhaps we go to dinner to lunch and I watched, Jim, how they interact with the service staff. I look at them and I’m thinking, alright, you totally have changed my perception of you. Maybe it’s a mindset for your listeners today to think about that there’s always a camera on people are always watching you they’re always seeing you. Whether it’s your parent, I always say I’m not a parent myself, we talked about this before the show Jim, but my sisters have little ones and the big joke was always anytime their girls had problems at school just look at the parents. 

 

Usually it was the parents that caused the behavior because the child followed it. Whether you’re a husband wife, a partner, a leader, a co-worker interacting with internal or external customers you get to decide how you want to show up. I’m not talking just about your messaging it’s a much bigger picture than that. Why this is also, I’m kind of layering this and going deep, why everything I just talked about is even more important. We’re living in a new world of work called noise and there is 24/7 we are living the noise, the dialogue in our head, or the many conversations that we receive via email, text, social media it makes it that much more difficult to make sure that not only are we heard, it’s more than that, it’s making sure people remember you, they understand your message in order for them to act on your recommendation.

 

Jim Rembach:    In the book you actually talk about some of those characteristics to be specific of those folks who are influential at all times you said trustworthy, credible, competent, knowledgeable, authentic and passionate, for me when I start looking at those I can say, yeah I’m those but I’m not those all the time and I think that’s when a constant effort and struggle comes from. Also and I started looking at these I’m like, hmm, which one would be the most important if there is such a case? I know they interrelate and they affect one another and things like that but we are talking about the work that you do and the people that you find that they have that self-blind spot they’re not self-aware, where does it often fall?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Definitely the trust. I about how the only skill that conveys trust is what you do with your eyes. I look at people when I talk yet half the time they’re there looking down at the smartphone or they’re kind of talking and looking someplace else that’s not the kind of trust I’m talking about. I am really shocked that wow, this really is about when you’re speaking you’re locking into someone’s eyes. Anytime you’re not talking you look away, you can look away as often as you need to, just don’t talk to people’s shoes. Don’t talk to the top of their head or talk to the PowerPoint deck behind you in that meeting. It’s that one, Jim, and then it’s the other one that conveys knowledge and that’s brevity, getting to the point. We love to talk we don’t realize that a lot of times our sentence structure is no longer a sentence we speak in paragraphs because we’re constantly filling the gap rather than allowing and trusting their competence that sometimes silence is the right answer.

 

Jim Rembach:     It’s interesting you say that. So I have a couple coaching clients that I help with marketing and social selling and things like that and we do help them prepare for webinars and all of that and to me when you start talking about someone who has technical skill and confidence that’s quite deep a lot of times they want to convey all that right up front and I always have to reel them back and say one thing, we need them to focus on one thing we only have so much in the resource bucket. So therefore, if we’re taking so many resources out to try to get them to pay attention they’re not hearing your message at all and they’re not going to do anything they’re going to zone out they’re going to check out. When you start focusing in on one thing, how do you actually go about doing that per the audience? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Mm-hmm, I think it definitely comes back to that trust. If people like you they’ll listen to you there’s no influence attached to it. When people start trusting and respecting you that’s when they start buying into your ideas and that’s influence, getting them to act. That’s the first place I always start with someone is make sure that when you’re speaking—I used the take line, Jim, no eyes no talk only speak when you see eyes. And even as a parent you probably can relate when your kids were a little younger and if you’re wondering they’re telling you the truth not you may have said to them, look me in the eyes and tell me you didn’t do it. My dad would do it all the time, I couldn’t lie to my dad. It’s the same concept but I wonder if our phones, they’re becoming horsing face to face communication to be a lost art. We feel like the world’s going to  end if I don’t respond to that text that just came in or I don’t quick like that

Facebook post. 

 

I’m not saying this is a bad thing, it’s amazing that we have so many ways that now we can connect and build relationships, but this isn’t the one builder. And it’s really making sure that when you’re talking to someone they really believe that you are invested in that interaction. Because they can be anywhere else they don’t have to listen to you if they don’t want to. Make it so purposeful so impactful that they don’t want to do anything but pay attention to what you’re saying.

 

Jim Rembach:    You even mentioned that in the book talking about making sure that your using the proper channel in order to convey your message, it’s get up and walk down the hall get out and walk down the block if you need to. They have that face-to-face communication connection instead of sending the email or doing something different. Proximity is very powerful and like you said it’s just too easy to shoot something off and it has a negative draining effect. It goes back to almost that resource bucket thing. You’re gaining credibility by the contacts that you make and how you make them and what you’re conveying within those contacts. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     I always tell my audience, because this whole email concept that you should just hang up the email and in turn pick up the phone and just try a conversation. There’ll be times I’ll catch myself Jim, I’m not perfect by any means I think all this is a work in progress which makes it tough, I’ll be responding to a client’s email and I’ll be midway through and I’m thinking, okay, no matter how they put this this is not going to come across the way I wanted to. I can’t even get it to work. I’ll pick up the phone I’ll call and at the times that they answer, I’ve had a couple of good ones today where I’ve caught people, and they’re shock that I call. And they’ll thank me over and over for taking the time to call. I’m thinking every time I get that phone interaction or any time, like we’re doing I get to actually see you, it just takes that relationship to the next level. Again that’s important because you don’t have a lot of time in the day. Unless you’re an amazing email writer and you know something that I don’t know you’re

getting responses all the time you’re making sales all the time definitely let me know what you’re doing I really do believe at some point you’ve got to be looking at people you’ve got to create that relationship through some face time.

 

Jim Rembach:    I have seen evidence over the past many years and it being more difficult to have some of those deep conversations. Really if you can have that deeper connection and conversation with just one or two people those were the ones you want to really hold on to when you bearish more, you’re going to get more done I would rather have those three conversations than 300 superficial ones.

 

Stacey Hanke:     Exactly. To me, I’m sure you’re busy too Jim, I’m getting to the point I don’t have time.  I don’t have the time I used to have. I think about if I’m going to have a conversation can’t we just accomplish so much more in that conversation? I get more done when we can talk live. Then the email, all the back-and-forth how many times have you been caught in that trail of email? And you look at where the first email started you’re thinking, I could have solved that in what a minute two minutes. To think in terms of that too I think influence is someone who really values productivity and use of time not only for themselves but also for their listeners. How much your listeners would appreciate that you’re always thinking ahead of, what can I do with this interaction to save you time but still make sure it’s valuable?

 

Jim Rembach:    That’s a good point. I’ve started saying in certain instances where I don’t want to waste your time and I don’t want mine wasted either just so it’s kind of like a mutual thing.

 

Stacey Hanke:     I like that. Yeah, I like that it might steal that from you.

 

Jim Rembach:    Please do. Okay, so you also have a really powerful graphic that you’ve developed that you call the influence model.  It starts with a foundational component and builds up from there. It talks about the importance of accountability feedback and then also practicing these things. And so at the bottom, the foundation is that self-awareness piece we talked about this a little bit, consistency you’ve mentioned that as well, reputation, adaptability impact, and then influence is really the pinnacle at the top right. We didn’t talk a whole lot about the reputation piece what do you mean by reputation?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Mmm-hmm what people are saying behind your back. Just give like a visual fire listener this is a triangle model. You’ve got feedback, practice, and accountability and if you’re not doing that constant, I’m not saying feedback is—glad, nice job that was great, that’s not feedback you can’t do anything with that. But if you’re not constantly asking for specific feedback you’re not constantly consciously practicing during your conversations during the day thinking about how you’re coming across and then having someone help you hold you accountable I think the reputation could be a misrepresentation of how you truly want to come across. So this idea of reputation is one that you’re proud of Monday to Monday. It’s one that you continue to build and going back to what I said earlier it also ties to you know exactly what people are saying. You’re creating this reputation that however they interact with you, Jim, whether they catch you at dinner one night at a restaurant or they catch you on a podcast, Jim is Jim. I know we adapt because adaptability is the next piece on the model the next element, of course, it’s all about adapting based on who you’re speaking to and the type of medium you’re using. But the idea the reputation is if you want people to trust you is that consistent. Or do people sometimes guess based on, if you had a chance to prepare or if they see you in your personal life? There’s a conflict there. When that starts happening people start guessing. 

 

Jim Rembach:    I can only imagine talking about your upbringing being in such a Wisconsin, your grandparents we talk about that’s still being on the farm and working the farm, which today I think he said it was negative three degrees up there and Grandpa’s still out there working in the farm but you’ve had a lot of inspiration in your life. I can only imagine too working with your two sisters and how that give someone inspiration as well. We use quotes in the show to help inspire us and point us in the right direction. Is there a quote or two that you can share that you like?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Nothing from my family. There is one, let’s see, there’s two can I give you two? 

 

Jim Rembach:    Please. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     One I think is from Warren Buffett and he states that, perhaps I’m so successful because I have failed more than anyone else. I don’t need to explain that. There’s another one from Johnson Maxwell that states, discipline is doing what you really don’t want to do so that you can do what you really want to do. And that’s all tied to, just your work ethic and what you want to make out of that reputation. I learned early on growing up on a farm, I didn’t understand the chemistry of planting and changing the fields it was just too complicated I still don’t get it. But one thing I always got was whatever my family would plant in the spring would be our finances in the fall, how interconnected those two were. When I got into corporate world, Jim, I realized is that actually is also determination of every interaction we have determines the relationships we have the people that follow us and the money in our pocket. I’ve really taken that whole piece of every interaction that I have every day it’s going to  come back, it’s somehow that’s all going to come back. 

 

My dad used to always talk about good and bad karma. I remember in high school there was an episode, and my dad kept saying, never be mean to the janitor because someday you’re going to need the janitor, and that could be anyone I just pulled that out of midair. I think that theme is part of influence too. I see too often, Jim, a leader working with me is professional and kind and then I’ll see them interact with their team and I’m wondering, who are you? That’s not the experience I just had with you.

 

Jim Rembach:    That ten-year-old misbehaving at home. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Right. There’s DR of you, remember in the book. It was (24:31 inaudible)a scenario that I saw, I talked about how you go in a restaurant and the parents and the kids are sitting together in the restaurant and they’re just obnoxious and they’re not listening to their mother. Their mother gets up to, it could be a mother or father, mother gets up to use the restroom and the kids are super well behaved as soon as she leaves. That’s what I mean by disconnect. I think everything in the book on influence redefined really does tie to everything that we do in our personal or professional life because that’s who we are. I don’t think you can be one person and another. People argue with me on that, and I go, no, no I’m different at home. How do you like turning that one on and off every day? 

 

Jim Rembach:    Most definitely. I can only imagine too, like I said on several discussions there’s humps that we all have to get over in order to get to the point to where that we are today and as far as being a little bit more enlightened, right? Is there a time where you’ve gotten over the hump that you can share? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Yes. Very early in my career I was doing a lot of introductions at our big events for speakers. I was young, I had this great job which I did and I had a really big ego. Because everyone always kept saying how good I was I believed it. At that time I was ready to introduce the speaker at one of our events and my boss said to me, I think we should record you so you can see it. And we kind of went back and forth in this banter my job pretty much came down to it, that it was time for me to get feedback, so I agreed. And after I did the introduction we go into this conference room to watch the playback. We’re very early in the playback, me and my boss, he looks at me and he says would you want to sit through that? And I remember what a slap in the face that was. It was the best thing that could have happened in my career because at that point I realized, wow, there is a huge disconnect of how you feel rather than what everyone else experiences. And from many, many years I’ve got a speech coach, I’ve got a business coach that I work with on a monthly basis and they’re constantly pulling me down, as long as they build me up I’m okay with it I’ll keep paying them their monthly fees, but it’s important to know that you’ve got to witness the bad, you’ve got to witness the good, to make sure that consistency is there to build that reputation you’re proud of.

 

Jim Rembach:    Good for you for doing that. I think one of the things that is really important that

I’d also like to emphasize is that every coach needs a coach. Also if you’re talking about the feedback as far as, how am I doing? You can’t get that from somebody who’s close to you and knows you they’re going to protect you they’re not going to tell you the unfiltered truth. However, if it’s somebody who you’re, either paying or you’ve worked out some equitable agreement where you do them and they do you and you remove that error of protection you start get into some reality. 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Yeah, that is such a good point. Because a lot of leaders come to me because they don’t have anyone else that’s going to tell them the truth especially at work. In our personal lives, sometimes your family members always willing to tell you what is really going on. If you get any leader, that’s a reputable leader, currently or even in our history all of them have coaches. I struggle sometimes, Jim, I’m wondering—you’ve may experience the same thing with your clients sometimes. Whoever I’m trying to sell to they’ll tell me, well, be careful with the feedback you give with our leaders because here the culture is it worked hard to get to where they’re at. What do you mean? They feel they’ve made it. Like, really? They need even more coaching because of that role that you’re in, in that position.

 

Jim Rembach:    Nothing like a culture of arrogance.

 

Stacey Hanke:     Yes, yes, they’re out there. 

 

Jim Rembach:    And the Fast Leader legion wishes you the very best. Now before we move on let’s get a quick word from our sponsor: 

 

An even better place to work is an easy-to-use solution that gives you a continuous diagnostic on employee engagement along with integrated activities that will improve employee engagement and leadership skills in everyone. Using this award winning solutions guaranteed to create motivated, productive and loyal employees who have great work relationships with their colleagues and your customers. To learn more about an even better place to work visit beyondmorale.com/better. 

 

Okay, Fast Leader legion, it’s time for the Hump day Hoedown. Okay Stacey, the Hump day Hoedown is a part of our show where you give us good insights fast. So I’m going to ask you several questions and your job is to give us a robust yet rapid responses that are going to help us move onward and upward faster. Stacey Hanke, are you ready to hoedown?

 

Stacey Hanke:     I’m ready, let’s go. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Alright. What do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Sometimes fear. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What is the best leadership advice you have ever received?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Videotape and audio tape on a regular basis. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What is one of your secrets that you believe contributes to your success?

 

Stacey Hanke:     Discipline and never giving up. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What do you feel is one of your best tools that helps you lead in business or life? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     My family. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What would be one book that you’d recommend to our legion, it could be from any genre, and of course we’re going to put a link to, Influence Redefined on your show notes page as well.

 

Stacey Hanke:     I was just going to ask you besides my book? I don’t know the exact title, Carmine Gallo, he’s written several books around TED talks highly recommend those books. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Okay, Fast Leader legion, you can find links to that and other bonus information from today’s show by going to fastleader.net/StaceyHanke. Okay, Stacey, this is my last hump day hoedown question: Imagine you were given the opportunity to go back to the age of 25. You’ve been given the knowledge and skills that you have now and you can take them back with you but you can’t take it all you can only take one. So what skill or piece of knowledge would you take back with you and why?

 

Stacey Hanke:     I would have networked even more. Because I look at the business now and it’s the power of the resources that we have. The more people know what we do the more profitable we are and the more impact we have on others.

 

Jim Rembach:    Stacey, it was an honor to spend time with you today, can you please share with the Fast Leader Legion how they can connect with you? 

 

Stacey Hanke:     Yes, feel free we’ve got lots of resources on our website so we can be there accountability from afar. It’s staceyhankeinc.com.

 

Jim Rembach:    Stacey Hanke, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump. Woot! Woot!

 

Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links from every show, special offers, and access to download and subscribe, if you haven’t already, head on over the fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster. 

 

END OF AUDIO

 

 

090: Bob Burg: I resisted change and it set me back

Bob Burg Show Notes

Bob Burg is not a technical person by nature. He even built a business that did not depend on technology. Despite several people warning him that he needed to learn technology, he got complacent, even cocky and his business suffered for several years. Listen to Bob tell how he was left behind and how he got over the hump.

Bob was born and raised in Massachusetts but as he says he got to sunny South Florida as fast as he could.

His dream was to be third baseman for the Boston Red Sox except for one thing any semblance for talent.

So Bob became a sportscaster in radio then in television then he got into sales and never looked back and then he moved to the stage.

Bob Burg, coauthor of the international bestseller, The Go-Giver and a much sought-after speaker at sales and leadership conferences, is committed to inspiring the entrepreneurial spirit in us all. He shows that companies both large and small that conduct their businesses “The Go-Giver Way” are not only of much greater value to their customers; they are also significantly more functional, and profitable, as well.

Bob is an advocate, supporter and defender of the Free Enterprise system, believing that the amount of money one makes is directly proportional to how many people they serve.

Bob says his life is pretty much his business and vice versa. He’s not married and has no kids. But he is a voracious reader, baseball fan, an unapologetic animal fanatic, and serves on the Board of Trustees of Furry Friends Adoption & Clinic in his town of Jupiter, Florida.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Listen to @BobBurg and get over the hump on the @FastLeaderShow Click to Tweet

“People do things for their reasons, not our reasons.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet

“People are going to do things because they believe it’s going to bring them closer to happiness.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Nobody’s going to buy from you because you have a quota to meet.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“People are not going to buy from you because you need the money.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“People are not going to buy from you because you’re a nice person.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“People buy from you only because they believe they are better off by doing so.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Great leadership is never about the leader.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Great influence is never about the influencer.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Great salesmanship is never about the sales person.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Money is simply an echo of value.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Money is the thunder to value’s lightening.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Sometimes our truth and the truth are the same, but often there’re not.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“As human beings, we all see the world from our own unique individual viewpoints.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Our belief system is our unconscious operating system.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Our basic belief system is set in stone by the time we are toddlers.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“As human beings, we think that everyone sees the world the same way.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“We tend to believe that what we value is what everyone else values.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Sales is discovering what the other person wants, needs, or desires and helping them to get it.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Everyone ultimately seeks happiness.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“First ask, will it serve.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“People will do business with and refer business to people they know, like and trust.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Leadership is never about the technology, it’s always about the people.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

“Get around leaders that are great leaders and learn from them.” -Bob Burg Click to Tweet 

Hump to Get Over

Bob Burg is not a technical person by nature. He even built a business that did not depend on technology. Despite several people warning him that he needed to learn technology, he got complacent, even cocky and his business suffered for several years. Listen to Bob tell how he was left behind and how he got over the hump.

Advice for others

Sales is always about the other person and their beliefs and values.

Holding him back from being an even better leader

Myself. I would be what’s holding me back.

Best Leadership Advice Received

Get around leaders who are great leaders and learn from them and keep reading about it.

Secret to Success

A sense of empathy for others. I can easily relate to wat others are feeling and communicate that.

Best tools that helps in business or Life

Having such a genuine caring for those that I lead.

Recommended Reading

The Secret of Selling Anything

Contacting Bob

Website: www.thegogiver.com

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bobburg

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BobBurg

Resources

Sample chapter of The Go-Giver

54 Emotional Intelligence (EQ) Competencies List: Emotional Intelligence has proven to be the right kind of intelligence to have if you want to move onward and upward faster. Get your free list today.

Show Transcript: 

Click to access edited transcript

090: Bob Burg: I resisted change and it set me back

Intro: Welcome to the Fast Leader Podcast, where we uncover the leadership like hat that help you to experience, break out performance faster and rocket to success. And now here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert and certified emotional intelligence practitioner, Jim Rembach.

 

Need a powerful and entertaining way to ignite your next conference, retreat or team-building session? My keynotes don’t include magic but they do have the power to help your attendees take a leap forward by putting emotional intelligence into their employee- engagement, customer-engagement and customer-centric leadership practices. So bring the infotainment creativity the Fast Leader show to your next event and I’ll help your attendees get over the hump now. Go to beyondmorale.com/speaking to learn more. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Okay, Fast Leader Legion during episode 80, which was an episode packed with a lot of nuggets and of wisdom with Paul Maskell, Paul recommended our guest today’s book the Go Giver as one of his recommended books to read. Bob Burg was born and raised in Massachusetts but as soon as he could he got down to sunny South Florida. His dream was to be third baseman for the Boston Red Sox except for one thing, any semblance of talent. So, Bob became a sportscaster in radio then in television and then he got into sales and never look back and then he also moved on to the stage. Bob Burg co-author of the international bestseller the Go Giver and a much sought after speaker at sales and leadership conferences.

 

He is committed to inspiring the entrepreneurial spirit in all of us. He shows that companies both large and small that conduct their business the ‘go giver’ way are not only of much greater value to their customers they are also significantly more functional and profitable as well. Bob is an advocate and supporter and defender of the free enterprise system believing that the amount of money one makes is directly proportional to how many people they serve. Bob says his life is pretty much his business and vice versa. He is not married and has no kids but he is a voracious reader, baseball fan, and unapologetic animal fanatic and serves on the Board of Trustees of Furry Friends Adoption and Clinic and his hometown of Jupiter, Florida. Bob Burg, are you ready to help us get over the hump?

 

Bob Burg:     Sure I am Jim it’s great to be with you. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Thanks Bob I appreciate that. I’ve given our listeners a little bit about you but can you tell us what your current passion is so that we can get to know you even better?

 

Bob Burg:     Current passion is that we put together a Go Get Sales Academy where instead  me going out now and speaking to your major companies groups, organizations as I always have, I still continue too but not as much, at 58 I want to get off the road more than being on it. But there are groups of 12 people that we go very deep into their business and help them to become a lot more confident, communicated their value and just have a lot more—business it’s a lot more fun a lot less stressful and a lot more profitable. So that’s really our passion right now in the part of the business we’re really geared to. 

 

Jim Rembach:    There’s a couple of things that stood out as I was reviewing the book. You had mentioned something about the ‘go giver’ being congruent and even honors human nature, what does that mean?

 

Bob Burg:     Oh! It’s such a great question. One of my favorite book and I’m sure you’ve read and I’m sure our bookshelves are very similar actually, but one of my favorite of all time of course was Dale Carnegie’s, How to Win Friends and Influence People, just an amazing classic. And one the statements in there of all the many amazing statements he made I thought was the basic premise of the entire book mentor and that’s where he said, ‘ultimately people do things for their reasons not our reasons’ and that is human nature. People are going to do things because they believe that it’s going to bring them closer to happiness than doing something else, okay.  I often say when I speak at a sales conference, nobody’s going to buy from you because you have a quota to meet. They’re not going to buy from you because you need the money. They’re not even going to buy from you because you’re a really nice person who has a great product and you think they should have it. They’re going to buy from you only because they believe that they are better off by doing so than by not doing so.  

 

So in the go giver philosophy which is basically the shift in your focus from getting to giving, and when we say giving in this context Jim we simply mean constantly and consistently providing value to others, we understand that it’s not about us, great leadership is never about the leader great influences never about the influencer and great salesmanship is never about the salesperson, it’s always about the other person focusing on them bringing value to them and that’s why John David Mann my awesome co-author and I often say that, money is simply an echo of value, if the thunder if you will to values lightning which means the focus must be on pleasing the other person understanding again they’re going to do what they feel is in their best interest.

 

Jim Rembach:     Thanks for sharing that. There’s something that stood out to me when you started talking about that even a value component. I think so many times that we potentially inside of us value certain things and then we find it difficult to believe when others don’t value the same thing. 

 

Bob Burg:     You are so right on the mark. It’s all about belief systems. What is a belief? A belief can be defined as a subjective truth. In other words, it’s the truth as we understand the truth to be it doesn’t mean it’s about truth that means it’s a true or it means our truth. Sometimes our truth and that truth are the same but often they’re not and the reason why is because as human beings we all see the world from our own unique individual viewpoints, it’s based on our belief systems which we could also say is our unconscious operating system. Belief system is a combination of upbringing, environments, schooling, news media, television shows, movies, popular culture, cultural mores, everything that comes into our light but as you know our basic belief system is pretty much set in stone by the time were little more than toddlers and everything that comes into our life after that is basically added onto that foundational premise. And as human beings unconsciously viewing the world in a certain way we also think that everyone else sees the world the same way, how could be any different? It’s all we know. This is why you hear people say things like, Oh, everyone loves that, or nobody would like that,  or if you’ve ever heard someone say, maybe you’ve said it I know I have far too often, oh, I would never treat someone like that. Now we wouldn’t it becomes not part of our belief system but that’s not true for others. And so what happens is as a salespeople we tend to believe that or as leaders inspiring the team of others, we tend to believe that what we valued is what everyone else values. It’s like the person who was trying to sell me a copying machine. And he came in and all he was talking about was the price. 

 

Now you know I had I just moved from a big office into my home office, this maybe seven or eight years ago great move I’m so glad I did it, but I remember my office manager use to have to do this thing with the copying machine that she had to fill in this information and send it in to them every month, if you know me you know that this is not something I’m going to do in a million years, so my question to him and he had a sales assistant with him who wasn’t saying anything and I asked, “Well, would I have to fill in that information?” I really don’t want to do that it’s not something—he just kept coming back with price. He wasn’t asking me question about what I wanted, he was telling me about the great price. And of course you know, hey, there were people who buy just on price not many, okay, usually it’s not a price question a value situation but some people are status buyers, some people are—I’m a convenience buyer in other words I’m lazy but he never took the time to ask and I was just about to politely end the interview when finally his assistant couldn’t hold back any longer and she said, “Mr. Burg, if we could put into the agreement that you’ll never have to check the—whatever that’s there, would you buy it?” And I said, “Absolutely, I’ll do it right now.” And they made the sale. What he didn’t realize that his trainee did it wasn’t about him and what he found to be of value it was about me the customer and what I found to be of value. One quick thing, this is why I define sales as simply discovering what the other person wants, needs or desires and helping them to get it. 

 

Jim Rembach:    You know Bob, to me you’re talking about something that is somewhat universal from the perspective of it doesn’t matter if we were referring to needing to make a register ringer or wanting to make a register ring or have a deposit put into your particular account from a sale, this things apply even when we’re starting to talk about working cross functionally within an organization. When we started talking about being part of a group and talking about moving things forward and change initiatives and all of those things, it applies universally.

 

Bob Burg:     Right. 

 

Jim Rembach:     Everybody wants to do this. 

 

Bob Burg:     Alright, alright. Well, here’s a thing, one of my old heroes, the late Harry Brown use to say, Everyone seeks happiness, and then he said now, aside from that one thing you cannot use the word to everyone or anyone or no one, only that other than that one thing everyone’s different but everyone ultimately seeks happiness. And that’s why the go giver methodology if you will, is congruent with human nature. Because it’s honoring the fact that that person is going to make decisions based on their own values, which is how it should be.

 

Jim Rembach:    Now you also mentioned something about a good or a question being a bad first question. Now I know that we do that a lot, just meaning as people, we often just jump to a question that at oftentimes maybe, and even if they ask or should be fifth or sixth down the line, what is good first question to you?

 

Bob Burg:     Well in the story, I think you’re referring to when Joe the protegé was talking about making a killing or something making a lot of money and that’s the number one thing to ask, will it make money? And Pindar the main mentor said, “Well, ask him if something will make money isn’t a bad question it’s a great question it’s just a bad first question. First ask, will it serve? The statement asked first will it serve is meant twofold, one is it something that’s a good thing. Alright, is it a good thing towards the advancement of light? Is it something that will help people, that’s not always a good first question? The second thing is, is there a market for it? Is it something people will want? You can have greatest invention in the world but if no one wants it then you’re going to have an expensive hobby you’re not going to have a business. 

 

And what happens is when someone says, ‘but I need to make money’ ‘Oh, yeah, of course part of business is making money, a lot of money, that’s wonderful. You provide a service, you provide value you make a lot of money. But asking if it will make money as a first question is sort of like driving down a highway at high speed while looking in the in the rearview mirror, it’s the wrong question to ask first because it doesn’t serve if it doesn’t have value to the marketplace that people understand and embrace you’re not going to make money. 

 

Jim Rembach:    That’s for true. Talking about wrong direction and getting on the right direction a lot of times we use quotes on the show in order to help us find that right point to be headed on to and path to follow. Is there a quote or two that stands out for you that helps you on the right path? 

 

Bob Burg:     Well, there’s a quote I’ve been saying since I first started in business and it’s been I guess the underlying premise of everything that I’ve taught I guess as a speaker and an author and that is: All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust. And I think that when we can keep that quote in mind whenever we’re about to embark in a new relationship, whether business or personal what have you, we’re going to stay on the right track because it we’ve got to know it’s about the people. You look at technology and you look at new leaders coming into the fold and they’ve got this wonderful technology at hand but what they’ve got to understand is that even with the best technology in the world leadership is never about the technology it’s always about the people, the technology is simply a tool. 

 

Geoff Colvin wrote a fantastic book called ‘People are Underrated’ and  what his premise was in this book that is technology continues to advanced, which it will, and will continue to do so many things not only better than humans can do it but the humans can’t even do it’s still going to be the key qualities of a leader is still going to be empathy, gratitude, team building collaboration all those human things is so important and as long as we remember that then we never put the technology first we let the technology be the servant not the master.

 

Jim Rembach:    That’s a good point. Now I know along the lines even when you started talking about moving and finally realizing your dream to be third baseman of the boss in Regs, I suppose it’s going to happen, we have a lot of humps to get over in life, is there a time where you’ve got to get over the hump and it really made you a better person that you can share?

 

Bob Burg:     Numerous times both personally and in business. I learned a very important lesson in the mid-to-late 90’s, this is when the technology revolution is really taking place. We didn’t have social media yet but we were really starting to have a very technology based form of humanity happening and I’m not a technical person, by nature I’m not, and so it’s scares me. I have a very successful business at that time that did not depend on technology other than e-mails I really did not need to use technology at all. And I got complacence and I knew and I was told by people who knew that you’re going to have to learn some of these stuff, you’re going to have to at least be familiar with it be comfortable, and you know what? I got a little cocky and was feeling a little too much like I had things together and it really set me back. It’s interesting in the field of personal development, which you’re in and I’m in and many people listening to this are in as teachers, as students, we’re all students, we have our own form of political correctness, if you will, certain things that are said and just accept it as dogma and one of them is that, ‘I love change even if it’s uncomfortable I still love it because it helps me grow.’ 

 

You know something Jim, I hate change. I like things the way they are. And yet I knew I needed to change and I resisted and I didn’t do it and it really set my business back. And over a couple of years I got really, really left behind and I had to, regroup and rebuild my business. And eventually I did and that was fine and now I’ve got a great team around me and they know technology and now I really enjoy the technology part, not the—yeah, I couldn’t program a thing but the usability of it. 

 

Jim Rembach:    I know for all of us sometimes we get stuck in that habit of things going well and oftentimes it’s the outside that causes us to disrupt ourselves and that’s the part that’s painful I think of change is waiting to that point to occur but it happens, it does. So, you talked about doing the online learning in order to be able to, maybe not, hit the airwaves as much as you have been, and you have—talking about working on the Board of Trustees, and still a baseball fan which—hey, hey, me too—what are some your goals beyond that?

 

Bob Burg:     We are also, aside from our Go-Giver Sales Academy, we’re building a team of certified Go-Giver speakers and coaches. So, we have them in several countries now and it’s a growing team and basically they have buy the rights to be able to teach all the Go-Giver properties. I always say with quotation marks around it, my intellectual property, because it’s very hard for me tell them that I would have intellectual property, if you knew we’re going to school you know why. So, building that is just fun, I’m fond of work, I don’t I don’t have a lot of hobbies. I do love baseball and a couple times a year I’ll get down to Miami to catch a Miami Marlins game and I watch them on TV when I can but you know, I’m a voracious reader I absolutely, absolutely love reading. I love learning it just fascinates me but really my life is my work I do love it and that tends to be what consumes me in a very good way. 

 

Jim Rembach:     And the Fast Leader Legion wishes you the very best. Now before we move, let’s get a quick word from our sponsor. 

 

The number one thing that contributes to customer loyalty is emotions. So move onward and upward faster by getting significantly deeper insight and understanding of your customer journey and personas with emotional intelligence. With your empathy mapping workshop you learn to evoke and influence the right customer emotions that generate improve customer loyalty and reduce your cost to opera. Get over your emotional hump now by going to empathymapping.com to learn more.

 

Jim Rembach:     Alright here we go Fast Leader Legion it’s time for the Hump Day Hoedown. Okay, Bob, the Hump Day Hoedown is the part of our show where you give us good insights fast. So, I’m going to ask you several questions and your job is to give us robust yet rapid responses that are going to help us move onward and upward faster.  Bob Burg are you ready to hoedown?

 

Bob Burg:     I am ready, I will do my best. 

 

Jim Rembach:     Alright. So what do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

 

Bob Burg:     Oh! You would have to ask me something I can’t answer that fast. Myself, I would be what’s holding me back. 

 

Jim Rembach:     What is best leadership advice you have ever received?

 

Bob Burg:     Oh! Get around leaders who are great leaders and learn from them and keep them keep reading about it.

 

Jim Rembach:     What is one of your best secrets that you believe contributes to your success?

 

Bob Burg:     I don’t know if it’s a secret as something that I feel I have a lot of and that is a sense of empathy for others. I can I can very easily relate to what others feel and communicate that. 

 

Jim Rembach:     What do you feel is one of your best tools that helps you lead in business or life?

 

Bob Burg:     One of my best tools…? Is that a physical tool or like online or just a quality?

 

Jim Rembach:     Whatever comes to mind. 

 

Bob Burg:     I would say it’s having just such a genuine caring about those people I lead and I think that comes through.

 

Jim Rembach:     What would be one book that you’d recommend to our listeners and it could be from any genre? 

 

Bob Burg:     The Secret of Selling Anything by Harry Browne, written in the 60’s as a manuscript, published posthumously it is the best book I’ve ever read on understanding human nature and connecting that with selling. 

 

Jim Rembach:     Okay Fast Leader listeners you can find links to that and other bonus information, which would include a link to Bob’s first chapter of the Go-Giver on the show notes page at fastleader.net/Bog Burg. Okay, Bob, this is my last Hump Day Hoedown question: Imagine you were given the opportunity to go back to the age of 25 and you have been given the opportunity to take the knowledge and skills that you have now back with you but you can’t take everything back you can only choose one, what skill or piece of knowledge would you take back with you and why? 

 

Bob Burg:     It would be the knowledge that I don’t know anywhere near as much as I think I know and I would take back the quote, I would paraphrase the quote by Mark Twain and say: “What could get me into trouble is not what I don’t know but what I think I know that just ain’t so.”

 

Jim Rembach:     Bob, it was an honor to spend time with you today, can you please share the Fast Leader Legion how they can connect with you?

 

Bob Burg:     Sure Jim, and it was a pleasure to spend time with you, I’m honored to be on your program. The best place to reach me is just the gogiver.com everything is pretty much there right on the site.

 

Jim Rembach:     Bob Burg, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom, the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump. Woot! Woot!

 

Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links from every show, special offers and access to download and subscribe, if you haven’t already, head on over the fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster. 

 

END OF AUDIO 

 

 

076: Chris Edmonds: I’ve got to be walking the talk

Chris Edmonds Show Notes

Chris Edmonds had a heart attack in December 1993. Being overweight and behaving badly he knew he needed to be an effective influencer when coaching leaders. So Chris lost 30 pounds and then gained 20 back. He was at risk of another heart attack and found it difficult to challenge people to change their behavior because he was unable to change his own. Listen to Chris tell his story of getting over the hump.

Chris was raised in Long Beach, California, in the 1950’s. He grew up in a typical neighborhood with his dad (who ran a mortgage company), his stay-at-home mother, and his brother, 9 years older than Chris. Like any little brother, Chris annoyed his older brother, Jim, for years, quite effectively.

Chris was an active kid. He surfed at Huntington Beach, played guitar, went to YMCA camp each summer, and played football through high school. He went to Whittier College and, despite spending a great deal of time chasing a record deal, earned a degree in education.

Rather than join his father’s mortgage firm, which his dad was encouraging him to do, Chris became a YMCA executive.

In his fifteen years of YMCA leadership, Chris led high performing teams of paid staff and volunteers, managed several national projects (one focused on values clarification), experienced his worst boss ever, and – thankfully – enjoyed his best boss ever.

His best boss, Jerry Nutter, demonstrated servant leadership in daily interactions. Jerry’s team’s were high performing, values-aligned, and incredibly fun. Jerry’s approach formed the foundation for Chris’ understanding of the importance of culture in organizations and how leaders can build safe, inspiring, productive work cultures.

Chris opened his consulting firm in 1990. Chris helps leaders create and maintain high performing, values aligned teams, departments, businesses, and companies. He’s also been a senior consultant with the Ken Blanchard Companies since 1995.

Chris is the author of seven books, including Amazon best seller, The Culture Engine. He’s one of Inc. magazine’s 100 Great Leadership Speakers.
Chris has been a working musician since his college days. His Denver band, Jones & Raine, was signed to Greystone Records in 2008. Two singles off the band’s 2009 CD hit the top 100 on Billboard’s country charts.

Chris and his lovely bride of 36 years, Diane, live in Conifer, Colorado, at 8400 feet above sea level, with their flat coat retriever, Shady, the Wonder Dog.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Listen to @scedmonds to get over the hump on the @FastLeaderShow Click to Tweet

“We humans are procrastinators. And sometimes professional ones.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet

“Senior leaders drive the culture for better or worse.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Sometimes it’s not just the fear of change, we just don’t know anything different.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“I’m tired of these results, so I’m going to have to change my behavior.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Getting stuff done is important but it’s not the only thing.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“It’s easier to consider different behaviors than to chip away at beliefs.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Authentic challenging is needed to help people get aligned.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“It’s not just about the processes and results; what’s the human experience.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“You’ve got a responsibility to create an environment where people feel valued.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Spend half of your time managing performance. The other half managing relationships.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Create workplace inspiration and not frustration.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Too few leaders have crafted an inspiring work environment.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“To be an effective influencer I’ve got to walk the talk.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Senior leaders have never been asked to manage culture.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Only a handful of senior leaders have experience leading culture change.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“You’re going to have to praise progress on things that you think should be common sense.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“Treating people nice is common sense, it’s just not common practice in the workplace.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet 

“It’s about serving the needs of your team members who then serve the needs of customers.” -Chris Edmonds Click to Tweet    

Hump to Get Over

Chris Edmonds had a heart attack in December 1993. Being overweight and behaving badly he knew he needed to be an effective influencer when coaching leaders. So Chris lost 30 pounds and then gained 20 back. He was at risk of another heart attack and found it difficult to challenge people to change their behavior because he was unable to change his own. Listen to Chris tell his story of getting over the hump.

Advice for others

Focus on values and behavior change.

Holding him back from being an even better leader

My fears. I’m fearful of making mistakes and looking stupid.

Best Leadership Advice Received

It’s not about me; it’s about serving the needs of your team members.

Secret to Success

I am persistent and chipping away at working on leader to change behavior.

Best tools that helps in business or Life

My sense of humor. There’s difficult times where an injection of effective humor helps to move thing forward.

Recommended Reading

Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t

The Culture Engine: A Framework for Driving Results, Inspiring Your Employees, and Transforming Your Workplace

Contacting Chris

Website: http://drivingresultsthroughculture.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/chrisedmonds

Twitter: https://twitter.com/scedmonds

Resources

Creating an even better place to work

54 Emotional Intelligence (EQ) Competencies List: Emotional Intelligence has proven to be the right kind of intelligence to have if you want to move onward and upward faster. Get your free list today.

Show Transcript: 

Click to access edited transcript

Intro: Welcome to the Fast Leader Podcast, where we uncover the leadership like hat that help you to experience, break out performance faster and rocket to success. And now here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert and certified emotional intelligence practitioner, Jim Rembach.

 

Need a powerful and entertaining way to ignite your next conference, retreat or team-building session? My keynote don’t include magic but they do have the power to help your attendees take a leap forward by putting emotional intelligence into their employee engagement, customer engagement and customer centric leadership practices. So bring the infotainment creativity the Fast Leader show to your next event and I help your attendees get over the hump now. Go to beyondmorale.com/speaking to learn more. 

 

Okay Fast Leader Legion I hope you’re up and ready to move because that’s what our guest today has been doing for organizations for a very long time. Chris Edmonds was raised in Long Beach, California in the 1950’s. He grew up in a typical neighborhood with his dad, who ran a mortgage company, his stay-at-home mother and his brother nine years older than Chris. Like any little brother Chris annoyed his brother Jim for years quite effectively. Chris was an active kid he served in Huntington Beach, played guitar, went to YMCA camping summer and played football to his high school. He went to Whittier College and despite spending a great deal of time chasing a record deal earned a degree in education. Rather than join his father’s mortgage firm, which his father encouraged him to do desperately, Chris became a YMCA executive. 

 

In his 15 years of YMCA leadership, Chris led high-performing teams of paid staff and volunteers, manage several national projects, experienced his worst boss ever and thankfully enjoyed his best boss ever. Hs best boss, Jerry Nutter demonstrated servant leadership in daily interactions. Jerry’s teams were high-performing, values aligned and incredibly fun. Jerry’s approach form the foundation for Chris’s understanding of the importance of culture in organizations and how leaders can build safe, inspiring, productive work cultures. Chris opened his consultancy firm in 1990. Chris helps leaders create and maintain high-performing, values aligned teams, department, businesses and companies. He’s also been a senior ion with the Ken Blanchard companies since 1995. Chris is the author of seven books including the Amazon bestseller the Culture Engine and he’s one of Inc. magazine’s 100 great leadership speakers. Chris and his lovely bride of 36 years Diane live in Conifer Colorado at 8400 feet above sea level with their flecked coat retriever Shady, the wonder dog. Chris Edmonds are you ready to help us get over the?

 

Chris Edmonds:    I’m so excited I can at steady Jim it’s delightful to join you and the legion here today. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Thanks for being here Chris. Now I’ve given our listeners a little bit about you but can you tell us what your current passion is so that we get to know you even better?

 

Chris Edmonds:    You know my current passion is truly to help leaders craft a workplace where people are treated with trust, respect and dignity. And it’s all encompassing, all consuming, it’s what I think about constantly and it is almost a framing through which I view the business world and in so cases I even assess families because there’s values in families that could be beneficial or not, so I can’t turn this mind off around how to craft organizations, department, teams, families, communities where people are treated with respect and dignity.

 

Jim Rembach:    You’re talking about turning your mind off you’ve also got a production line of contact that you’ve been generating too. 

 

Chris Edmonds:    I do. I do. I was online a couple weeks ago, and said, I counted them up I do roughly 70 blog post a year and that’s a lot of content and probably three quarters of those have podcast around them too and you certainly as we’re experiencing here very experienced there, so that’s a little bit of extra effort but offers people another avenue to learn from you and maybe be inspired to change behavior a bit, so I write a lot.

 

Jim Rembach:    You do. I mean it’s amazing the amount of—I think I’ve shared this with you earlier, I said gosh, Chris, you’ve been doing it so long you have so much knowledge, you have so much `(4:00 inaudible)generated it’s almost like too much information.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yes, it is.

 

Jim Rembach:    But there is one thing that stood out to me here recently that I read which to me it’s kind of a plague not just in businesses but our society as a whole and that is something that you talked about in regards to the cost of waiting.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah, it’s amazing we humans are procrastinators and sometimes professional ones. That blog post and podcast was really driven by a couple of clients who had engaged me they knew they had some opportunities with the way their work environment was operating. And we went to a process of educating them about the phases I use and how I’m going to help them basically craft a more inspiring, a more productive work environment, I got the data to prove it. And they came back and said, you know, we’re not ready quite yet we’re going to wait a little bit and it was almost like it’s not that bad to have to have our leadership begin to behave so differently. And that’s what I’m very, very crystal clear about is that senior leaders, leaders of organizations drive the culture for better or worse, and it takes time and energy to fix that. It’s just like I said in my post about the cost of waiting I had Dr. Stellame—that if I continue eating fatty foods and don’t exercise I’m going to continue to be too heavy. And I was like well, apparently. Get me a couple of years to take that to heart and now I’m way smarter, and way thinner. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Thanks for sharing that. I’m kind of go on through that same effort of getting rid of some of that extra poundage to take the pressure off of my bad right knee. But you’re right it’s like—for me I had to get to the point to where not only was my knee hurting, my right hip was hurting, my lower back was hurting, my neck was starting to hurt and I’m like okay, okay that is enough.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah, yeah, I get it I’ve get enough data points. And it’s interesting I’m convinced, I’ve had a couple of back surgery so this this body is doing okay but I’ve got some new parts in me. But the idea of the that organic system, that and if we don’t walk as were designed to we compensate and the musculature supports that compensation and all the sudden the pain doesn’t go away because our muscles are holding this into doing things that really aren’t healthy, aren’t effective, are inefficient and clearly are painful.  And you know what, organizations do the exact same thing. 

 

Jim Rembach:    And I think that’s the irony. I have this conversation at’s the irony no had this conversation with my kids as I was taking them to school the other morning and I was talking about insanity in the definition of insanity as adults were using so that they can really get attune and understand it. It’s like look, I’ve already been through this experience and I’ve seen other people’s event to this experience that you’re complaining about and the fact is that you can choose not to listen to me but then that’s called insanity. And they’re like, huh what. What is that? Yeah. What is that? And I said well, we talked about insanity been doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. I said we have life examples and may not be necessarily first experiences but we can see all of these mistakes that other people and organizations make around this whole issue of waiting, but yet we repeat that same darn thing.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah. And sometimes it’s not just the fear of change it’s that we don’t know anything different and we’re doing the best we can and I think that’s quite true of leaders as well in organizations. And so, what kind of education do we get before we finally say, Okay, I’m not going to get there for results and I really I’m now tired of these results so I’m going to have to change my behavior.

 

Jim Rembach:    It’s one of the things I always say too is that self-inflicted wounds they are the most. 

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yes do they do. They definitely this will get me no better. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Yeah we do. 

 

Jim Rembach:    And so oftentimes, especially on the show, sometimes we have to search for inspiration from places in order for us to get off or get over these hump of waiting move forward. And so we look for quotes a lot. Is there a quote or two for you that’s helped you get over hump that you can share?

 

Chris Edmonds:    You know it’s interesting, Jerry and I, we talked about fabulous best boss and one of the things he used to say, and this again—yes, we all think about great bosses we’ve had, okay bosses we’ve had, really lousy boss we’ve had, and there’s warnings that came from all of those experiences. And Jerry was very, very intentional with the way we operated as a team. We had very clear values and behaviors and he paid as much attention to how we treated each other and how we treated internal, external customers and it was a shock because it wasn’t the experience I had with other bosses, the bosses were focused on getting crapped on. And yes, getting stuff done is important but it’s not the only thing that’s important. And so Jerry would call me up my crap which he would with all of us, and I kind of push back little bit, no I didn’t really do that (9:30 inaudible)to him. So, this is what I was trying to do and Jerry would turn to me and say, “I believe you, believe that” and he let this pause. It was a big pregnant pause and then it would to my head with, “Is that working for you, it was kind of a Dr. Phil this day. How is that serving you? How is it serving us? How does it help us perform better? How does it help us be more innovative together just like aircraft. So he went to my beliefs, which were driving behaviors that’s worth serving. And he didn’t say you’re a moron he just said, “Brrrr. I believe you, believe that.” And the behavior has to change, I still to my core belief that it’s easier for me to get people to consider their behaviors to get those different results than to try and chip away at their beliefs, but Jerry worked on my mine.

 

Jim Rembach:    Thanks for sharing that because there’s something that stood out to me in that that I talk a lot about and that is learning to try to find you way next to the person who you’re engaging with or confronting whatever the case maybe. Instead of Jerry coming back and saying and then calling baloney on you and hitting you right between the eyes, he affirmed and got alongside you and said, “Hey, I will take your hand, I believe that you believe that but this is where we need to go.” 

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah, yeah, and he wasn’t let me off the hook. He wasn’t going to let the existing misaligned behavior. And that’s what effective leaders do that’s what effective parent do, it’s what effective coaches do, it’s what effective teachers do we’ve seen it and yet it’s often hard to do. There’s some conflict that comes from that there’s some challenging we have to do, caring, challenging, authentic challenging to help people get alighted.

 

Jim Rembach:    Yeah. There’s something that is—talking about this particular issue or subject the whole lot of empirical evidence longitudinal studies associated with people and their careers and kind of when they hit the ceiling and most often it occurs, you put an age on it it’s in the mid-40s, you kind of hit the ceiling and one of the reason that is, is because what got you there at that particular age is typical your technical skill and prowess.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah.

 

Jim Rembach:    However when you start looking at how do you get past that and continue to excel your skill and your expertise needs to flip and it really needs to flip in what we’re talking about right here, it’s the dynamics associated with the human condition, human logic and being able to take that technical skill and prowess that you built and convert it to something that will now create the culture, create that next step or point of thriving.

 

Chris Edmonds:    You’re exactly right Jim. It’s one of the biggest levers that I have to create and utilize with senior leaders and it’s not just about the processes results that you’ve crafted and all your wisdom applying all this knowledge and skills that you had over the course of your career and with the leadership team it’s careers but it’s what’s the human experience here. Are you actually demeaning people, discounting people, eroding their confidence? And it’s like that’s the only thing we’re asked to do. I understand that and I have some suggestions about changing your incentives, right? But you’ve got a responsibility to create an environment where people feel valued. And I don’t know if you’ve looked at any of the tiny HR and in 2014 they did an engagement and culture report that was just brilliant. And what they basically found was that only 21% of employees feel strongly valued at work, that’s a flat out sand and it’s up to us as hopefully, guides, coaches, consultants and leaders ourselves to help senior leaders in the organizations pay as much attention to the human condition as do to them which is going out the door. 

 

Jim Rembach:    That’s very true and it’s a totally different skills that requires a totally different mode of learning as well as really practice building what you have to do things differently than  what you’ve done in the past in order for that to happen. 

 

Chris Edmonds:    It’s very funny because as I inspire leaders to begin to pay greater attention to that and I have to help them realize that, yes you’ve got production responsibilities you’ve got performance dashboard, you’ve got metrics that there’s a lot of systemic information and expectations of you around that and you just spend exactly half of your time managing performance. They look at me like I’m from another planet and the other half is managing relationships is creating workplace inspiration not frustration and anxiety and that means you got to wonder around and talk to people it means you’ve got to engage with people that means you’ve got to listen and how customers were treated, internal customers and external ones and they’re like,  “I don’t have time to do that” and I said, “Yeah you do, you’ve hired really smart people who can probably manage the performance side without your intervention talk.” You don’t have to spend more hours on the workplace but the hours you spend have to be balanced between the results you have to drive for. I get that, every organization’s in the same boat whether it’s government non-profit, for profit doesn’t matter but too few leaders, too few organizations have crafted an inspiring environment for people to exist and they spend how many hour there a week? It’s wild. 

 

Jim Rembach:    In addition to that when you start talking about going even further up the ladder, getting to the very top position that ratio shifts it’s no longer 50-50 it’s more like when you get to the very top it’s like 80% needs to be focused on relationships.

 

Chris Edmonds:    Exactly!. And they look at me like you’ve already spent 70% of my time wandering around checking on the quality of the culture. And I said, 80% but 70 % is not a bad (16:17 inaudible). But if I get in to that then their behavior changes, they push themselves away from meetings, they push themselves away from keyboards and monitors. I had a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful, old-school senior leader that I’ve worked with for a couple years with he and his leadership team and, don’t matter the business they were in, but he was a tough on to pull along because every example, every role model he had of leadership was performance, performance, performance and here I am this little voice at his shoulder going and relationships, relationships, relationships.

 

 And probably two years into our relationship, we do monthly coaching calls and I saw his team live about every six months, is that I am an epiphany this morning. I said, “Okay, Lee tell me what your epiphany was? He said, “I use to see my job as managing results and processes and now I see my job as managing people’s energy. And I said, “Okay that’s awesome. Now tell me what you did today to do that? He actually had. He had.  That’s a fabulous shift, but it takes a while, it takes a while. 

 

Jim Rembach:    It does. Also when start talking about our own selves, making the right shifts and moves that can take a while as well. There’s humps that we have to get over that sometimes we have to go over in order to set us in a better direction. Is there a story that you can share with us that helped you get in the right direction?

 

Chris Edmonds:    You know it’s interesting because I often go to the help side of things and trying to be an effective influencer be in my family and my neighbor, broader community with senior leaders that I work with I’ve got to be kind of walk and the talk. And I mentioned that I had a couple back surgeries so from a physical side there’s kind of challenges of eating healthy on the road. I travel a great deal and food is one of my vices for sure. We talked about leaders having an organizational heart attack an organizations coming to a realization that they can’t keep doing what they’ve been doing is that new definition of insanity. 

 

And for me, I actually had a myocardial infraction in December ’93. I was working hard and I had a great boss and a cool environment and apparently the way I was eating and the way I was behaving, my heart kind of set me a shot a flare up. Back then they were not doing stents, I had three blockages and once I got done with the arthroscopic clearing of those I was mad, I was hungry but I realized that my life changed and that heart attack caused me to lose 30 lbs. to really be very, very intentional about exercise and about foods. And then I get busy with going out on the road again and feeling that at the end of the day I work hard and I can have that cheeseburger and all of the sudden I found I’ve gain back 20 lbs. 

 

My doctors are lovely, they’re driven, they are crystal clear with me but I had to come to the conclusion as you did, that the pain points that I was having, the energy, the gaps that I was facing day-to-day setting up trying to challenge people to change their behavior while I will be at 20 lbs. overweight isn’t necessarily a very credible platform to be on. So it’s literally only been about six years since finding a diet that would work for me at home and on the road. Unbelievable changes—lean proteins and veggies—it’s a Paleo slow carb kind of thing, but I had to get to the point where I realized that I was at risk again of having another heart episode of being too heavy. So the skeletal thing is going to push back and boy it’s going to win. But along with that discovery on my own and discipline it require, I couldn’t eat anything I wanted to anymore. I could eat as much as I wanted to of these healthy things, but men, I had to embrace that. The benefits are fabulous—new clothes are a little more expensive than I’d like, but for the energy and the optimism and the enthusiasm for this hard work, I’ve got to have the same focus to help leaders be disciplined about holding true to some of the behavior change that they’re going to need to shift their workplace from frustrating to inspiring. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Thanks for sharing that and I’m glad you’re still with us and heading in the right direction

 

Chris Edmonds:    So far I think I am. Woot! Woot!

 

Jim Rembach:    I like that way that you do the connection with what you’re referring to in regards to culture change and also the whole cost of waiting thing. The whole cost of waiting thing could be and it has been for a lot of organizations debt. 

 

Chris Edmonds:    Yeah. It really is. And what I found is that as a kind of fan of employee engagement and a fan of customer service, and a fan of servant leadership I look for research I want proof and so I look for research that extends that and deepens that and I so I grab it, I love it. And reality is that senior leaders have never been passed to manage relationships, to manage culture on they’ve been asked to do is manage widgets, products, services the very clear stakeholders, very clear expectations there. So they’re coming from this absence of true experience, of successful experience they’ve seen the change, a culture change work leading a change that’s a handful of folks that I’ve run into. 

 

So part of my challenge is that education of, it can be better, and you’re going to behave different, you have to invest you’re time differently, you’re going to have to focus on different things, you’re going to have to praise progress on things that you think should be common sense. Treating people nice is common sense, certainly it is, it just not common practice in the workplace. Once I got my arms around—these leaders aren’t dumb, they’re really not dumb, they’re really smart, they’re just not doing the best they can and I need to educate them so they can see that there’s additional responsibility that they need to invest time and energy in, and boy, they’re showing. 

 

And I know that leaders are very much looking for research as well, so let me give you a kind of a high level if you’re intentional with your team the really smart they just doing the best they can and I need to educate them survey can see that there’s this additional responsibility that that a need to invest time and energy and boy is it beneficial and you and I know that that leaders are very much looking for research as well some and give you can a higher level if you’re intentional with your team, your department, your region, your company, your multinational in creating an organizational constitution and being as intentional about serving others about values and behaviors as you are about performance you’re going to gain 30 to 35% gains in results and profits in 18 months, 40% gains in employee engagement, 40% gains in customer service, I see it every single time. The big number that people care about, I can’t get 30% in result, yes you can but it’s not a quick fix it’s not a flip of a switch this is intentional 70% shift the time, the managing, the quality of the work of course. 

 

Jim Rembach:    That’s huge. Okay, so I know, like we share you’re cranking out an amazing amount of content, you’re traveling, your help working with a lot of these organizations and we share a little bit about where you live, which just sounds absolutely gorgeous—

 

Chris Edmonds:    Gorgeous it is. 

 

Jim Rembach:    If you’re to stop and think about one thing as a goal, what would it be?

 

Chris Edmonds:    You know what, I am so blessed to have experienced—there’s a lot of us that have ideas and   the ease with which we can blog today and get some ideas out into the blogosphere right the Internet allows us to have a platform for telling people, what’s some of our DSR and what not, the benefit that I’ve had with getting published and having a hardcover book on shelves in bookstores is been a dream for a long time because ultimately my primary goal is to help leaders create workplace inspiration. And I know it can be done, this is not impossible but it’s that education, it’s that it’s the kind of constant chipping away at the belief system that my job as a leader the truly manage performance. 

 

My goal is to help more organizations get this. I would love to have small businesses embrace this because the bulk of our economies globally are built upon small businesses not huge, huge corporations. And small businesses aren’t always wonderful culture, so my target is of course—you talk about how much I travel, I would love to work, we’re locally here in Colorado with small businesses with leaders who realize their cultures could be a little bit better and to help them with that and to in essence try and make—if I can get 20 companies a year to embrace this, I probably work today with 10, but if I could get 20 companies a year of all sizes, shapes, colors, types etc. to gain traction on a more healthy, more higher-quality workplace culture that would be awesome.

 

Jim Rembach:    And the Fast Leader Legion wishes you the very best. Now before we move on let’s get a quick word from our sponsor.

 

An even better place to work is an easiest solution that gives you a continuous diagnostic on employee engagement along with integrated activities that will improve employee engagement and leadership skills in everyone. Using this award-winning solutions guaranteed to create motivated, productive and loyal employees who have great work relationships with their colleagues and your customers. To learn more about an even better place to work visit beyondmorale.com/better. 

 

Alright, here we go Fast Leader listeners it’s time for the Hump Day Hoedown. Okay, Chris the Hump Day Hoedown is the part of our show where you give us good insights fast. So, I’m going to ask you several questions and your job is to give us robust yet rapid responses that are going to help us move onward and upward faster. Chris Edmonds, are you ready to hoedown?

 

Chris Edmonds:    I’m ready to hoedown.

 

Jim Rembach:    What do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

 

Chris Edmonds:    The thing that holds me back is my fears. Absolutely my fears. I’m fearful of making mistakes, I’m fearful of looking stupid, I think that’s shared by a number of humans on this planet, we can get past that and try some new things actually it might make some traction here. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What is the best leadership advice you have ever received?

 

Chris Edmonds:    It’s not about me it’s about them. It’s about serving the needs of your team members who then can in turn serve the needs of customers, it’s going to make everybody way happier.

 

Jim Rembach:    What is one of your secrets that you believe contributes to your success?

 

Chris Edmonds:    I am a persistent little bugger who keep chipping away at getting these ideas out working on leaders, coaching leaders, pulling them back to the core it’s all about values and behaviors if we can change those expectations we can make this world a better place.

 

Jim Rembach:    What do you feel is one of your best tools that help to lead in business or life?

 

Chris Edmonds:    I am convinced that my sense of humor. I believe I’m hilarious, so if nothing else I laugh at my own jokes but I realize there’s times with some difficult conversations about getting companies to change, getting leaders to change, getting parents to change, that an injection of effective humor can really move things forward to help people kind of breathe a little bit again but I’m still going to hold on to—that the goal of the target that we’re driving for. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What would be one book that you’d recommend to our listeners, it could be from any genre?

 

Chris Edmonds:    I was immensely inspired as I was building this culture change process by Jim Collins, Jerry Porras’s, Good to Great, I still think it is one of the most fabulous books on the importance of values and behaviors in organizations, can’t recommend it more highly.

 

Jim Rembach:    Okay Fast Leader listeners you can find links to that and other bonus information from today show by going to fastleader.net/Chris Edmonds. Okay, Chris this is my last Hump Day Hoedown question: Imagine you were given the opportunity to go back to the age of 25 and you have been given the opportunity to take your knowledge and skills back with you but you can’t take everything you can only choose one, what skill or piece of knowledge would you take back with you and why? 

 

Chris Edmonds:    Boy, there’ so many things I would love to go back and change. From my 25th year on this planet I’d still like to go back to when I was a supervisor at that stage, it was the early stages of being a boss for the first time, you did a bunch of really dumb things best of intentions, mind you, and I go back to demonstrating the values that I wanted others to lead and live, I would held us all defined behaviors that we can agree to that would’ve made those years way more fun, way more effective.

 

Jim Rembach:    Chris, it was an honor to spend time with you today, can you please share with the Fast Leader listeners how they can connect with you? 

 

Chris Edmonds:    Absolutely, you can find me online at drivingresultsthroughculture.com. I am on Twitter@scedmonds, first name is Steven so I go by Chris anyway, scedmonds is where they’ll find me on Twitter. You’ll also find links to Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus etc. on my website and of course you can (30:49 inaudible)high up there for my bi-weekly newsletter and be able to stay in touch with the episodes on my podcast, and my blogs, and all that stuff. 

 

Jim Rembach:    Chris Edmonds, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom, the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump. Woot! Woot!

 

Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links from every show, special offers and access to download and subscribe, if you haven’t already, head on over the fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster. 

 

END OF AUDIO

 

 

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013: Gerry Barber: We were dysfunctional

Podcast Show Notes with Gerry Barber

Gerry was fortunate to learn a valuable lesson as a young leader that helped to change his path. Being an eager and confident leader he volunteered to lead a team in a business simulation as part of a leadership development program. Gerry thought he knew a lot about leadership, but he didn’t know what he didn’t know. His first day was a disaster and they were pretty much dysfunctional as a team. Listen to Gerry as he tells his story and the epiphany he had that caused him to turn things around so you can use his experience to move onward and upward faster.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Check out Gerry Barber getting over the hump on the @FastLeaderShow Click to Tweet

“Leadership and learning are indispensable of each other.” JFK told by Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“If you stop learning you are not going to be a leader for very long.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Change is absolute and change is happening so rapidly today.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Social media is the future of interactions for our world.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“When you learn together you become stronger together.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Leadership is about influence.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Realize your team brings something to the table.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“To be a great leader you need to be able to give each team member the time they need.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Sit down and write your leadership point of view.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

“Keep business simple.” -Gerry Barber Click to Tweet

As a young leader, Gerry got the got the opportunity to participate in a four-year executive management program. The group of 30 people was split into separate teams that would compete against each other in a simulation to run all aspects of a business. Being eager and confident Gerry volunteered to lead his team for the first year. He thought he knew a lot about leadership at that time, but he didn’t know what he didn’t know. That first day he had a very difficult time. He was telling people what to do and was asking folks to do this and that and wasn’t doing some of the things that he really should do as a leader. When the team convened that day they were pretty much dysfunctional as a team. After a long night of reflection about all that went wrong he finally came to the realization that leadership is not about telling people what to do or making decisions.

Leadership Epiphany

Leadership is not about telling people what to do or making decisions, it’s about influence.

Advice for others

Realize your team brings something to the table and while you are the leader it’s a collective experience.

Holding him back from being an even better leader

Limited time to spend developing others.

Best Leadership Advice Received

You need to sit down and write down your leadership point of view.

Secret to Success

Living as a servant leader and putting my people first.

Best Resources in Business or Life

Books and CIAC certification, memories, mentors

Recommended Reading

You Don’t Need a Title to Be a Leader: How Anyone, Anywhere, Can Make a Positive Difference

Leading at a Higher Level, Revised and Expanded Edition: Blanchard on Leadership and Creating High Performing Organizations

The First 90 Days: Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter, Updated and Expanded

Contacting Gerry

email: gbarber [at] deloitte.com

Phone: 615-882-7792

More Resources

54 Emotional Intelligence (EQ) Competencies List: Emotional Intelligence has proven to be the right kind of intelligence to have if you want to move onward and upward faster. Get your free list today.

Show Transcript: 

Click to access edited transcript

013: Gerry Barber: We were dysfunctional

 

Intro: Welcome to the Fast Leader Podcast, where we uncover the leadership like hat that help you to experience, break out performance faster and rocket to success.  And now here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert and certified emotional intelligent practitioner, Jim Rembach.

Jim Rembach:   Thanks Kimberly. Okay Fast Leader legion, I am blessed to get the opportunity to introduce to you the person that I get to introduce to today. Gerry Barber has been a longtime friend and I always link to him to help me get over my own hump. He’s full of wisdom. He’s full of reserve energy that is rare and greatly appreciated, I don’t know, maybe he got that from living and growing up on the South side Chicago where he played a lot of baseball, and that’s one of the connections that we have together. I don’t know about the rock ‘n roll drummer that he was trying to be able to become but he had to grow up just like we all do. 

 

He moved into what I would refer to as operational excellence and he work with a lot of organizations and retail customer care and support and has built leaders throughout his own career. Today, he lives just outside of Nashville, Tennessee with his wife Jenny of 38 years and has two grown boys. Gerry Barber, are you ready to help us get over the hump?

 

Gerry Barber:     I’m going to take you up and I’m going to take you over. 

 

Jim Rembach:     Awesome. 

 

Gerry Barber:     Let’s go.

 

Jim Rembach:     Alright. I’ve given our listeners a brief introduction but can you tell us a little bit more about what your current passion is so that we can get to know you better?

 

Gerry Barber:     I’m very passionate about what I do in my work which relates to contact centers and shared services. I have fun every day at the office but when I’m away from the office there are many other things that I like to get involved with. One of those is putting my top down on my little Miata and riding the back roads of Tennessee. It’s a great stress reliever and a fun way just to get lost on a Saturday afternoon, I can’t wait spring is coming and so I should get a lot of days coming up be able to do just that.

 

Jim Rembach:     Thanks for sharing that with me. I appreciate what you had referred to as far as the therapy associated with that and wish you sunny days. So, here on the Fast Leader Show we are always looking for inspirations that will help us get over the hump. And we like to focus in on leadership quotes or passages to help us do that. And I know throughout the course of your career you probably had several that you had to lean on in order to help you. But, is there one that stands out that you’d like to share with our listeners?

Gerry Barber:     Jim, yes. There’s one that throughout my career keeps on being in the forefront of my mind. Leadership and learning are indispensable of each other, that’s a quote by our late great Pres. John F. Kennedy, and simply put that, if you stop learning you’re not going to be a leader for very long. Change is absolute and changes are happening so rapidly today that that quote in itself is more important than any other that I think about on a daily basis.

 

Jim Rembach:    There’s some really important information that we can glean from that. But for you, how do you apply the meaning of that quote in your life today?

 

Gerry Barber:     That’s simple. I subscribe to servant leadership. Servant leadership means simply you put your people first. And when you put your people first that means you want to find the ways that they can grow. Grow in their career, grown in their lives and get satisfaction from what they do. So, I invest a lot of time in my team members and my people to insure that they grow as leaders.

 

Jim Rembach:     You had mentioned something to me before that I stood out when you started talking about having people that are better than you working for you. There’s  so many of us that live in fear and we don’t want transfer what we know to somebody else because—they may take my job—how do you overcome that fear so that you can thrive? 

 

Gerry Barber:     This is a question that’s a difficult challenge for one zig, alright and many of us leaders have somewhat of an ego. I’m going to be honest here, I’m in the twilight of my career, meaning that retirement is only a couple years away. And recently, I have worked very hard to help my team become the best they can be but I’ve also added a team member who I firmly believe has a greater chance of taking our contact center to an even higher level of performance over the years. One of the things that this particular individual brings to the table is a great and deep understanding of social media. Social media is the future of interactions for our world and with her here shall be able to help us move forward. I don’t have that fear anymore, I in fact been embraced the fact that will take the legacy of what we’ve built here and enhance it even more for the new social world. 

 

Jim Rembach:     I guess there’s maybe some struggle that some folks. If there’s somebody who has a particular skill or knowledge and you really develop their skills even more, how do you help that person do just that?

 

Gerry Barber:     One of the things that I’ve used, I was going to talk about it later in our  discussion but I’ll bring it up now, is that I’ve built a lot of learning on having book clubs. And so we’ll take a book and I don’t just sit there and teach, everyone who is part of that book club for the period of time, usually it is six weeks and we meet once a week, we take a chapter or two or three at a time to discuss. Each individual who becomes part of that book club will take a chapter, and the books are great book on leadership, on business or on contact centers. Whatever the flavor of the day is for us to grow we do it together. When you do it together you learn together and you become stronger together.

Jim Rembach:   Oh, some really sage and powerful advice there. However, I know that getting to the point to where you are now and being somebody who’s probably producing leaders at a much faster rate than you did at your youth you had challenges, we all have them, we have humps that we need to get over. Can you think of a time where you had to get over one and that kind of shape and guided you to really where you are today, can you share that with us please?

 

Gerry Barber:     Let me share a story, and you’re going to have to bear with me because this maybe a little drawn out here but I want to get some of the facts out. It’s circa 1983, I was very young leader, and I have been working with Quill Corporation at Lincolnshire, Illinois at that time. I got the opportunity to participate in a four year executive management program put on by the American Management Association. This program was built to meet once a year for a full week and then have homework and deliverables in between the year. So, it was it was set up where we were broken up into five teams of six people, so there’s roughly 30 people if my math is right, participating in the program together for all four years. We came together and on the first morning of the first day I think I had one of the best leadership lessons I could’ve ever had in my career. So, on that first morning we broke up into teams and six of us came together as a new team. 

 

Each of us came from a different business, different business model even maybe a different part of the country, because this was not just exclusively regional, there was folks from L.A. as well as Chicago and Boston and in other points in between. So we got together, and heady me, raise my hand and said I’d like to lead the first year, because he had to name a leader for each year, and I said I would be a leader for the first year. And so there we went on our first day and the object of the of the four years is through simulation run a business, everything from HR management, manufacturing, development and producing a products in paper and theory in this in the simulation all the way to managing profit and loss and managing the business. And at the end of four years, each year you would get rated as to where you were at against the other teams. 

 

So, I took that leadership position, I thought I knew a lot about leadership at that time but I didn’t know what I did know. And so, on that first day I had a very difficult time, I was telling people what to do. I was asking folks to do this, that and wasn’t doing some of the things that we really should do as a leader. When I left that day we were pretty much dysfunctional as a team. I went back to my hotel room and had a lot of time to think about all that went wrong and at the end of the day, and in the beginning of the morning, I came to the realization, and this is my Aha moment, that leadership is not about telling people what to do or making decisions for the larger group, and in fact with this group which is different than what I had managed before, these were all peers. They came from different organizations, they were probably senior managers of this or director of that. And so—why would they listen to me? They didn’t have to. They didn’t have any fear, I wasn’t paying them as would happen in my job before? And thus it occurred to me and that hump that I had to get over was, I had to learn that leadership is about influence that is the lesson that I learned. When I  so when I figured that out, and it’s probably two o’clock in the morning, I got a couple of hours of sleep and we met back again at 8 AM at the facility and I simply apologized to the team for my actions of the day before and that I wasn’t really displaying a leadership view. I was humble about apologizing and that I want to listen and engage and see where we could take it. Well, the good news is that I think alone my humble apology helped influence a change. And from there in the first year we came in second, the five teams. But had I not had that realization, and had I not kept that all these years, I don’t think I’d be the leader I am today. 

 

Jim Rembach:     So many pieces of insight. What you’ve learned that we can leverage to help us get over the hump much faster than we would otherwise. And that epiphany that you shared with us, we called them epiphanies, a lot of times here on the show, I think I’ve even been through myself, but when you look at many different pieces within that story and our Fast Leader Legion having the challenges that they have, what advice would you actually give them to help them move forward faster?

 

Gerry Barber:     Realize that your team brings something to the table and that while your leader assigned or unassigned whatever it is, and you don’t need a title necessarily to be leader—I love that book incidentally by Sanborn—that it’s a collective experience and the idea of trying to come to some clear vision with and for the team is extraordinarily important to success but listening first before doing.

 

Jim Rembach:   Oh, I love that, thank you for sharing that with us. When you start talking about what really excites you today with the work that you’re doing, what is it?

 

Gerry Barber:      While I mentioned I’m in the twilight of my career, I’m having more fun now in my career that I’ve had in all the years prior. I’ve had such tremendous opportunity to really become the leader I wanted to be and to act on that. After six years of leading the Lloyd’s contacts and our operations, I was given the opportunity and responsibility to lead now a full transformation of our expense management operations, which I am so excited about at this point time in my career because I can do all the things that I’ve learned and put them into practice again even at this late date, and I’m enjoying every minute of it. 

 

I’ve been into it a year now, it’s a cultural transformation, it’s a technology transformation, and it’s a process transformation. And while I’ve been in it for a year there’s still a lot of things that we need to do. The cultural side of it I think has been improved and were moving along with the great solid organization with a clear vision and the right strategies in place to be successful over time and take us from good to great and so, I’m excited. Now comes all of the technology and the process improvements that we’ve measured and have said, these are our strategies to the affect transformation. So, now I get to see and be part of a team who will unleash those transformational activities over the next two years before I say goodbye.

 

Jim Rembach:     The Fast Leader legion wishes you the very best. 

 

Gerry Barber:     We’re having fun.

 

Jim Rembach:     Alright, here we go Fast Leader listeners it’s time for the—Hump Day Hoedown. Okay Gerry the Hump Day Hoedown is the part of our show where you give us good insight fast. I’m going to ask you several question and your job is to give us robust yet rapid responses that are going to help us move onward and upward faster. Gerry, are you ready to hoedown?

 

Gerry Barber:     I’m going to try, try my best. 

 

Jim Rembach:     What do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

 

Gerry Barber:     That’s very simple. My time is at a premium and to be a great leader you need to be able to give each team member the time they need to improve themselves. I’m finding it harder and harder with having multiple responsibilities, contact center and the expense management of organization, to give the right amount of time. Hopefully I see my way clearer in about six months where I can really then begin to devote my time to individuals versus just the transformation.

 

Jim Rembach:     What is the best leadership advice you have ever received?

 

Gerry Barber:     Actually it came from a book. And in that book it said: You need to sit down and write your leadership point of view. I think for your legions you’ll understand that it really talks about who you are and how you got to the point of the leader you are, what your expectations are for yourself, and what your expectation is for your team members and your peers in which you do business with or interact on any life situation? And so, that has been very dear to me. 

 

When I came first I had read the book, and the book incidentally, I know you’re going to probably ask me what’s my favorite book, this is it it’s called ‘Leading at a Higher Level’ it’s by the Blanchard group, it’s a copulation of everything they’ve done in the business world on leadership for a good number of years and it’s really great shelf reference as well. It walks you through thinking about and developing your leadership point of view, as well as part of the book. And so,  right before I came to Deloitte I had found that book and was using it as research in my role with CIAC, The Competency and Certification Group that was part of ICMI, and utilize a lot of thought processes from that book as we build competencies work [inaudible 16:34] our leadership.

 

I had used the leadership point of view as my letter to my new teams here at Deloitte when I arrived and I can tell you that it closed a lot of gaps that people normally have like, who the hell is this guy? And what’s he’s going to do us? It was all there in black and white, where I came from, what I believe in, what I expect from myself, and what I expect from them and where we might go as a team together, and it was great. I use it again when I took the leadership role of our expense management organization just a year ago, to also introduce myself and move quickly from ‘we don’t know this guy’ to ‘hey, we’re part of a team. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What do feel is one of your secrets that contributes to your success?

 

Gerry Barber:     I mentioned it earlier and that’s living as a servant leader and putting your people first and making sure that we work together to have a clear vision and chart the right strategies for our journey. That journey continues in the contact center and in our expense management organization. 

 

Jim Rembach:    What do you feel is one of your best resources that helps you lead in business or life?

 

Gerry Barber:     My best resource is always to go to books and I use that leadership at a higher level as a Bible, so it’s a great desk reference, I think I mentioned that earlier, and I go to that. I also believe in the competencies in the art and science of contact center leadership. So, I utilize the developmental manuals that were built for the CIC certification as my guide too in leading contact center. Beyond that its memories and interactions with a couple of great mentors that I had my career. One that comes to mind is Jack Miller who was the patriarch of Quill and got it started and let it for a good many of years before it was sold to Staples. He always told me in business keep it simple. If I’m going to sell you a pen, here’s what it is and here’s how much it cost and you make the transaction and you go on, so keep business simple.

 

Jim Rembach:     Great advice. So, you already mentioned your favorite book were going to take that and give links to that on our show notes page where you’ll be able to find at fastleader.net/Gerry Barber. Alright Gerry, the last Hump Day Hoedown question: Imagine you woke up tomorrow morning and you were 25 years old again, you’re supposed to now manage a group that is underperforming and are disengaged but you’ve been blessed you get to retain everything that you’ve learned up until today. So, you get up in the morning, you head out to work, what you do now?

 

Gerry Barber:     In a way that happened to me last year. No, I didn’t go back to 25 and wasn’t able to run a fast 40 a yard dash, but it really is that scenario, I was moving into an area of our operations that I didn’t have a lot of subject matter expert for expense management, expense audit card management, if you will for our organization. I was asked to bring my leadership skills to the table to help in this transformation of group, I won’t say that they were disconnected, they were doing good work, didn’t have the right technologies didn’t have the right processes and sorely needed the right leadership.

 

There’s another book that I will share and that’s called ‘The First 90 days. It was a book written by Michael Watkins, it’s a Harvard Press, I believe, but don’t quote me on that. It’s a book I used when I arrived at Deloitte and it’s a book I used again when I took on the responsibilities for the transformation. Basically in that book it helps you understand how you should go about taking on that new responsibility, that new transformation, that new organization that needs to be improved. And in that first 90 days, it’s so crucial to be listening to help people understand who you are to begin to craft an understanding of what is needed and then to rally people around a clear vision to go into the future for that journey that you’re about to take together. You should not make rash judgments and decisions in that 90 days just to appease your boss or some other group who wants to see the transformation done the week after you get in there, you got to resist those type of things. Following the guidance in the First 90 Days book is absolutely a wonderful way to go about tackling the scenario that you talk about. And so, I would encourage anyone who is starting a new job, starting new roll or taking over a transformation of another part of their organization to read that book and let that book guide you through the process.

 

Jim Rembach:   Gerry Barber, it was an honor to spend time with you today please share with Fast Leader listeners how they can connect with you?

 

Gerry Barber:     That’s easy. Again I work with Deloitte, I could be found at GBarber@deloitte.com or you can give me a call at 615-882-7792 be happy to chat with anyone who wants to talk about leadership anytime. 

 

Jim Rembach:     Gerry, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom, the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump. Woot Woot!

 

Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links from every show, special offers and access to download and subscribe, if you haven’t already, head on over the fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster.

 

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