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Signing the Declaration of Independence: The First Dysfunctional Meeting

The First Dysfunctional Meeting, 4th July 1776

The signing of the Declaration of Independence was the first dysfunctional meeting.  What can we learn about our meetings from how their meeting went?

Listen to the podcast here:    

“The First Dysfunctional Meeting”   

Karla Nelson:  And welcome to the People Catalyst podcast, Allen Fahden. 

Allen Fahden:  Hello Karla. 

Karla Nelson:  Greetings Sir. And Happy Fourth of July! 

Allen Fahden:  And Happy Fourth of July to you too. 

Karla Nelson:  Even though this is not really Fourth of July we recorded this before fourth cause we’re out watching fireworks and eating hamburgers and hot dogs, so…. 

Allen Fahden:  Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang. Was that convincing?  

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, there you go. But we definitely wanted to reach out and wish everyone a Happy Fourth of July. And as everyone knows, that July 4, 1776 was the signing of the Declaration of Independence. And it marks a, just a fortunate, you know we’re all fortunate that that date happened and we’re gonna talk a little bit about that and living in this country and having the freedoms that we do. The opportunities to pursue our dreams and one of them, you know the freedom of speech is pretty important for us, Allen. 

Allen Fahden:  Oh absolutely. We rely on that.  

Karla Nelson:  Especially for you. 

Allen Fahden:  We couldn’t do this podcast in several countries. 

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, no, good point, good point. So, very fortunate for this country and to live in this country. However, we are going to dive into some interesting thing in regards to the signing of the Declaration of Independence which we refer to as the first dysfunctional meeting.  

Allen Fahden:  Yes, and why was that a dysfunctional meeting? Well, think about your own meetings. Does everything go just perfectly well and everybody agrees and you’re done in about ten minutes and everybody’s excited about what you’re gonna do? Nah! 

Karla Nelson:  Oh come on…. 

Allen Fahden:  So, let’s go back to 1776 and only about a third of the people who were meeting on the Declaration of Independence were for the revolution. There were a third of them who were against the revolution, they wanted to stay with the British. And then there was 30, another third of the people, who just didn’t want their names mentioned anyway. I would say that’s a lot more like the meetings we have today. 

Karla Nelson:  Very true 

Allen Fahden:  So, I have a quiz for you, okay?  

Karla Nelson:  Okay 

Allen Fahden:  What day, what date is Christmas on?  

Karla Nelson:  December 25th 

Allen Fahden:  Okay. What day is Valentine’s Day on? 

Karla Nelson:  February 14th 

Allen Fahden:  And what day is the Fourth of July on? 

Karla Nelson:  Hahaha. Fourth of July?  

Allen Fahden:  Yes. No! 

Karla Nelson:  August 2nd.  

Allen Fahden:  August 2nd. I had you fooled there for a minute. 

Karla Nelson:  That’s what we’re gonna talk about today. I’m just kidding ya 

Allen Fahden:  Duh! Fourth of July. It’s actually August 2nd. 

Karla Nelson:  Well, we’re gonna talk a little bit about why and walk through that because most people don’t know these interesting facts about the first dysfunctional meeting, is that, and we’ll go through the timeline on that, so July 1st the colonies voted and it was twelve to thirteen because New York had to get approval from all the business people, which doesn’t really make a lot of sense, by the way. 

Allen Fahden:  That sounds like one of our everyday meetings today too, doesn’t it?  

Karla Nelson:  Oh, good point! 

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, I can’t do it. 

Karla Nelson:  And then July 3rd, they actually took two entire days, they might have done 24 hour days. I couldn’t tell by texts that we were doing with our research on this, but it seems like, they said they deliberated for two days and it was the early morning of the second day, so….Those crazies might have sat in the room and there were five of them. They put a committee together of five and it took two days to edit and then on, and then with those edits, they deleted and revised a whole bunch of the text and then it wasn’t until the ninth of July that New York actually voted cause they needed a 100% vote. And then on August 2nd, they finally, everyone signed the Declaration of Independence. So, Allen, why don’t you talk a little bit about the edits and you know, how it was written and what happened there.  

Allen Fahden:  So, Ben Franklin and John Adams made a lot of the edits. They left the preamble to the declaration alone but then they took especially about twenty percent of the declaration itself after Jefferson had written it, did a lot of edits and submitted the edits, two days worth, and then most of them didn’t get used. 

Karla Nelson:  Isn’t that a typical thing? We went in, and how does that make everyone feel? Now, of course, we’re using this as a real funny parody to a meeting, but how often does that actually happen in a meeting? Where you go in, you give people kind of authority, they had a committee of five, they spent two days, probably 24 hours a day maybe taking a couple naps here and there. And then you don’t use them. 

Allen Fahden:  Typical 

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, what I think is interesting about that is, didn’t Jefferson go back in, and he was the one that didn’t adopt, right? And he went back to the original writing of it, right?  

Allen Fahden:  It was a little bit unclear, but it pretty much seemed that way. Just a little aside, Jefferson and Adams didn’t like each other very much. And the irony was, you know what date they both died on? They both died on the same day. 

Karla Nelson:  That is so bizarre. And it was the 50th anniversary of the signing. 

Allen Fahden:  July 4th, fifty years later. They both died on the same day. They weren’t speaking to each other, I guess. And so, how ironic is that, that they both died on July 4th, fifty years later. 

Karla Nelson:  Interesting. What are the odds of that? Let’s talk a little bit about this, July 1st is the original vote and it’s not until August 2nd that the signings happen but, what’s really interesting is the two people that never signed it. 

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, and this is fun because one of them, Robert R. Livingston, was on that committee of five and he wound up not signing it. A whole bunch of, obviously. 

Karla Nelson:  He was probably ticked a lot of his edits didn’t get.. 

Allen Fahden:  Probably right. But it’s interesting because Livingston, on the Mover, Shaker, Prover, Makers was probably a Prover because his statement, when he didn’t sign was that “This independence from Britain thing was probably premature”, you know, meaning,  “it’s not really thought out. It’s got a lot wrong with it.” So that would be a typical kind of a Prover response. And the John Dickinson was the other guy and he wanted to stay with the British and he was just uncomfortable with the whole thing and he said it like, “I don’t even know why we’re doing this” and he wanted to reconcile with Britain because there had been fighting and so forth. So, that’s a typical kind of a Maker response which is like, “I don’t even want to do this. Why are we doing this? So much change. I’m getting uncomfortable here.” 

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, and as we know Makers don’t want to be in the meeting in the first place. 

Allen Fahden:  That’s right.  

Karla Nelson:  Just like, sit quiet, don’t make any sudden moves cause I don’t want anything to change anyway.  So, why don’t you review the timeline again cause I think this is a real fun and interesting fact. We learned a lot, actually, doing this. We wanted to reach out to the listeners and say Happy Fourth of July, make this a really super short podcast, and share some interesting facts. So, we’ve learned a lot, we hope you have too. But, Allen, if you want to review that quick timeline cause I think it’s so interesting.  

Allen Fahden:  Timeline, so, is actually Richard Henry Lee that proposed the independence from Britain and it wasn’t getting a lot of traction at the time, but all through June they debated it and they fought like cats and dogs. And so, when they met on July 1st, they voted. 

Karla Nelson:  Okay, you just brought that into the timeline too, so listen to this, an entire month actually happened before July 1st.  

Allen Fahden:  That’s right. 

Karla Nelson:  Does that sound like a typical… 

Allen Fahden:  And they voted twelve out of thirteen of the colonies voted to pursue independence and, of course, New York didn’t have permission so they had to kind of, they kind of had to wait until New York went back to delegation and got permission from the powers that be in your state. Ran home to mommy to get permission. Now, of course, it didn’t help that they had a hundred British warships in New York Harbor. 

Karla Nelson:  That could have had something to do with it. 

Allen Fahden:  So, on July 3rd, this is when they, Jefferson brought back his text that he’d been working on and that’s when they did two days worth of edits, at least a day and a half well into July 4th. So, then they had revised about a fifth of the text and then on July 4th they pretty much deleted the revisions and then they made plans to, you know they had to get the thing printed up. It was just all scribbled, Jefferson just scribbled the thing on a piece of paper, it was all messed up and so they had to get it hand lettered on parchment and that would take a couple weeks. So they went off to do that on the more like the original Jefferson version. And then on the ninth of July, New York finally voted it in and then they waited for the document and they got everybody together on the second. And John Hancock signed it first. 

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, everyone’s seen that one 

Allen Fahden:  They wanted, he was actually the president of the Continental Congress. He wanted the King George, with his weak eyesight, to see his signature. And then a bunch more of them signed it, I think four of five of them signed it later. And of course, Livingston and Dickinson didn’t sign it at all, so it went unsigned on their… 

Karla Nelson:  What a great story! And think about that incredible document obviously, you know, two and a half months….there’s a whole bunch of history obviously behind that that we won’t go into here. But we thought that was a fun parody of the first dysfunctional meeting, so 

Allen Fahden:  And they’ve just gotten worse today. 

Karla Nelson:  They’ve gotten way worse because they had a big why. When 70% of people hate their jobs, how big do you think that why is in that meeting room? We talk about engagement, well, they were really engaged. At least the 33% that were completely committed were. Just completely, and a big reason why it got voted in was, and we just did a podcast on Simon Sinek “Start With Why”, is that there was a ton of inspiration and they didn’t want to be repressed anymore and taxed by the British. You can go back and listen to that podcast as well and how that inspiration of desire of freedom. And we talk about employee engagement, well, you’re sitting in a stinking.. that’s freedom. We’re just sticking in a boring room talking about the marketing strategy or something. 

Allen Fahden:  Making the logo bigger. 

Karla Nelson:  Exact, making the logo, exactly. So, anyway, we just wanted to wish you a Happy Fourth of July. 

Allen Fahden:  Happy Fourth! Listen to those fireworks! Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang 

Karla Nelson:  And, by the way, if you want to go ahead and listen to a previous podcast that we recorded you can go to and look for episode 27. Happy Fourth my friends. 

Allen Fahden:  Happy Fourth or August, Happy August 2nd.  

Karla Nelson:  Happy August 2nd.  

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Happiness is Profitable

Happiness Is Profitable with Craig Handley

Happiness Is Profitable

Happiness Is Profitable with Craig Handley

Is Happiness really Profitable?  Can you measure and prove it?  Chris Handley did.  Listen in to see how it’s done.

Craig Handley is an author of a bestselling book called Hired To Quit, he is a musician who expects to write music for artists all over the world, a bit of a comedian who has done Stand Up on Broadway, and he moonlights as CEO of his company ListenTrust, which was named #1 in Business Products and Service (#27 overall) on Inc. Magazines 500/5000 list. He has cage dived with great white sharks and rappelled down Table Mountain in South Africa, driven the Baja 500 trail in Mexico, hiked through the jungles of Malaysia, and in Iceland he snowmobiled across a live volcano, swam in the Blue Lagoon, and dove in the famed Silfra Fissure which is the only dive site in the world where your dive is in the crack between two continental plates. He is also the 85th civilian in the world ever to jump out of a plane from over 32,000 feet.

After running a call center and employing close to 1,000 people, he has learned a thing or two about effective communication on customer support and sales calls.


Twitter: @CraigAHandley

LinkedIn: Craig Handley

Amazon: “Hired to Quit”

Listen to the podcast here:

Read Along as Karla and Craig Discuss How Happiness is Profitable

Karla Nelson:  And welcome to the People Catalyst podcast, Craig Handley.

Craig Handley:  How are you? Thanks for having me on. I’m super excited.

Karla Nelson:  We are super excited to have you, Craig. You have such a unique journey, this entrepreneurial journey. Your bio says it all. Share with us, what is your story? How did this start out with, and how did you end up building a company of more than 1,000 people now?

Craig Handley:  Yeah, I think a lot of it started when I was young. I’ve always looked for ways throughout my life to find alternative ways of thinking, so to speak. When I was a kid, I had a paper route. I was always getting the most new customers. I was bullied in junior high, and I think part of going out door to door and getting people to buy my newspaper, it was something that made me feel good. Every year, I’d win the trip to Florida, or I’d win the trip to the Red Sox game to meet Wade Boggs, who never showed up, so we met Paul Stanley instead. Bummer.

Karla Nelson:  Bummer. I was just going to add I love Wade Boggs. I might still have one of his baseball cards.

Craig Handley:  He stood us up. He was a rookie that year. He was supposed to meet us, and he never showed up. So, Paul Stanley came up, the Palm Ball pitcher there, and came out and met us as well. So, we had a picture with Paul Stanley, whatever. It’s one of those things where when you’re looking for ways to feel good, that was obviously it. Men. Even throughout high school and college, I was always instead of getting a job I would do a Sunday paper route which paid just as much as the weekly. That was a little bit of a life hack there.

Then I would disc jockeying. I would DJ. I would pay some money, which I ended up getting into weddings. Weddings paid more. You only have to work one day a week. I had time to do a lot of things. I picked up Umpire & Baseball, a baseball game. I used make $70.00 for every game. This was back a few years. Then I said, “Well if baseball’s good, soccer’s an hour.” That’s fixed, because baseball could go an hour and a half, or two hours, but not soccer.

Then I started just loading up on soccer games. $70.00 a game, I could make more as a high school kid working two hours a day than most people were making working 80 hours a week. I continued through college doing all these crazy things. I think I’ve always had that entrepreneurial spirit. I used to do door to door selling of insurance while I was going to music school. I’m a music major. Never graduated. But of course, that’s my whole business experience is going to music school.

As I was doing the insurance thing, after two and a half years being the top in my field, I realized they had probably capped my income. So, I ended up in a call center taking phone calls. Then I became really good at sales on the phone. People would listen to me on the phones. They’d actually record my phone conversations and write scripts from my phone conversations. Then they just started asking me to write scripts. And then if I would train them the way that I spoke in my scripts, then the agents would end up closing more.

So, people would ask me to write scripts and become a trainer. Other people left the call center I was in. They were like, “We got to get Craig Handley to come over and write our scripts and train our agents.” Next thing you know, I was going all across the country building call centers, writing phone scripts. I think I was probably the highest paid copywriter in the country for a phone script. Before the days of the Internet, I was the man, which nobody cares anymore.

That was what I was really good at. Then over time, I said “We might as well build our own call center, because I have all the tools and we know all the customers, so let’s give it a shot.” From there, we built the call center, and I built a few other businesses since then too. That’s my entrepreneurial journey into building the call center. As you mentioned, we grew three years to over 1,000 people, 7,000% growth year over year, mating 500.

We went from zero to over $15 million in client billing, and over $150 million a year in sales. We do do a lot of revenue.

Karla Nelson:  I love the name. Listen Trust, you got to share the background on that, because I think when you listen and you really understand where somebody’s coming from, especially the call actual center if you’re just… Right now, we can see each other. We can see each other and how we respond and all, but really that just being verbal on the phone, being able to listen to what somebody’s saying, and then build that trust by responding to what they’re saying, share with us a story behind that.

Craig Handley:  We were originally Listen Up Espanol, because it was Listen Up, same kind of concept around we’re going to listen and try to close sales. Then it was we’re primarily taking US/Hispanic phone calls. Over the years as the Spanish audience aged, the demographic changed. Because of Google and the Internet, a lot of young Hispanics would look at the English content over the Spanish, and if the numbers were… Even if somebody didn’t speak English, they’d end up calling the English 800 number just to go to the Spanish 800 number. Over time, our mix of business had to change. We went from 15, to 14, to 13, to 12. Then I’m like, “Well, this is a trend. We’ve got to fix this.”

So, we started adding English services. Even people that knew and loved us wouldn’t send us English business because we’re listed up Espanol. I said, “I think we need to do a name rebranding.” So, we contacted three or four companies and we got some proposals. We ended up working with a guy named Reed Perez from Branding is the People, who he really knew how to fit with a diverse bunch of personalities, kind of a comedic type. “My business partner’s a little bit stoic.” We have all these different personality types and we wanted somebody that could communicate with all of us. He went through a process of looking a lot of different factors, and we came up with Listen & Trust, because we not only want to listen to people, but we want to gain their trust.

Our format is different for most call centers. We actually personalized and disarmed the greeting of the post, just asking for a credit card. We’ve got a little bit of a different approach to our phone calls, but as a revenue generator, we make six times per seat than most average call centers because we do a great job with learning how to communicate with our customers. What that means is that our clients are making more per seat. A lot of times you might think if they pay a little extra, that it’s costing them more. Well, when they pay a little extra and when you perform as well as you perform, it saves them money. We typically are a profit center for companies and their customer service, their lead gen, whatever it is because our performance typically allows us to do things they’ve never seen before.

Karla Nelson:  Mm-hmm (affirmative), I love that Craig. It seems like you approach it definitely from a team approach. What are some of the things that you do with your team, and the training to then be able to go that extra mile with the customer?

Craig Handley:  We didn’t do this right away, but we started… What I started to figure out is that most people growing up didn’t want to be a phone rep. I don’t want them to just go through the process of answering calls and reading a script. I wanted them to be excited and proud of what they were doing. So over time, I developed a program within the center called Dream Trust. We have six pillars of happiness that we train people one. We do one pillar in January and June, one in February and July, one in… So, six pillars, and we focus on them twice a year. January is health, and June is health. Then February, Valentine’s Day, and July relationships. We have different things that we do there.

Then we have wealth, and time off, and happiness. We have all these different pillars where we’re trying to teach people how to be happy. We actually spend a couple days in training talking about happiness, and then we talk about what their dreams are. We have a dream board. We have everybody write down what their dreams are. When I was a kid, I wanted to be a musician. Most people don’t want to be a call center operator. They want to travel the world. They want to go Disney. They want to swim with Great White Sharks. So, I put this program together so people could learn how to dream. That’s where I wrote the book called Hired to Quit, because I literally spent two days training people to quit.

We have some amazing stories. A lawyer works with us for four months, and did a podcast. I showed him how to create his own podcast. He interviewed all the lawyers in town. What he did was he found out where the holes in the law are, and then he opened up a shingle and everybody he interviewed on his podcast referred him that business. He had a thriving practice within six months. I’ve got all these stories. This one guy, we taught him how to do a Kickstarter. We taught him how to find sponsors in the middle of town through some Facebook stuff and some programmatic media which is geo fencing. He built a gym for kids to teach them how to box. But he couldn’t have done any of that without all the tools that we provided.

So what we said is, “Anything that you want to do in your life is possible. The harder you work here at Listen Trust, the quicker you’re going to be able quit. Learn our sales process. Learn our core values and our culture. Learn everything that you can here, and then go do what you dreamed of doing all your life.” The reality is, that our turnover went down because most people dreamed to be treated like a human being, which is what we did. The easy thing is, they want a car, they want a house, they want to take a vacation once a year. Well, with our happiness training, we were able to talk to them about saving their wealth and making sure that we put a savings fund away from them so they could go on vacation.

We also went and negotiated properties: level one, level two, level three, level four, with a company that did some sort of contribution so they could go on a vacation each year. We went to the banks. We worked out deals with the banks that once you’re an employee for six months, automatic car loan. A year, automatic house loan.

Karla Nelson:  Wow. I love that. Can I come work for you, Craig?

Craig Handley:  That’s why most people don’t want play it, because they’re happy. But then the unicorns, they should quit. They should go after their dream. They should go out and do art. They should go out and learn how to dance. I don’t want anybody there that doesn’t want to be there. I want everybody to go start their own thing and to do what they dreamed of as a kid.

Karla Nelson:  Love that.

Craig Handley:  My COO quit and bought a golf course, and I’m like… I was kind of a hypocrite because here I am teaching everybody to follow their dreams, and I’m running operations on a call center. I was like one day it hit me, and I put the business up for sale. We’re now looking at potential mergers, acquisitions, whatever. I’d hired an operations team and I am on two Board calls a week as a call center. That’s my only involvement now because I’m going after my dreams.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah.

Craig Handley:  I’m writing a lot of music because I’m a musician. I’ve got a song with The Chainsmokers right now. I’m like one of 30 probably.

Karla Nelson:  I just love that because when you invest in your people, there’s so many… I think talks towards, oh talent management, and it’s so critical and important. We fall pretty short in corporate America really engaging and supporting the individuals that are making things happen within the organization. Gallup has a study they’ve done for the last 30 years, and within a couple of points, this is just a horrific number, 70% of people hate their job in the United States. If you go internationally, it’s 89%. So, just think of what that does to all those other things: their health, their finances, their relationships, all those other things. If you can just… Something as little as helping them be happy, my gosh, I mean how simple is that when we over-complicate that?

Where did you pull this from? Was it something that you just created or thought about? Or-

Craig Handley:  A combination. John Butcher has the Life Book out of Chicago. He’s in Bali now, but John Butcher created Life Book, which has 12 places of happiness. I thought 12 was a little complicated for presenting it to a workforce, so I wanted to simply it to six. If someone wants to go down deeper down the rabbit hole, you could look up Life Book and do that. Then I read Matthew Kelly’s book, Dream Manager, and Matthew Kelly’s got an amazing book about how he has a janitorial company, and how do you motivate people in a janitorial company. Mary… I met her now three or four times, she’s the one who’s the Mary in the book. She was like, “Why don’t we do this?”

They put this dream program together, and people started enjoying their dreams. I kind of put a combination of those things together because I know happiness. We did a study with Forrester Research, and when we paid people more money the performances improved. But they weren’t happier. When we gave money to charity, we gave it dollar per sale away to Build On, which is a children’s charity to build a school in Haiti. When we did that, the agents’ performance went up. It didn’t go up as much. It was for an upsell position, and it didn’t go up as much as the extra cash. It was like 15% increase instead of 17, so it was a little bit lower.

Then we did a 45 question survey alongside of it. Lo and behold, everybody was happier when we gave money to charity. When we went back and looked at the original closing rates, absenteeism, other factors, what we were able to determine is that because people were happier, instead of closing the primary sale at 55%, we closed it at 62. So, even though the upsell revenue only went up 15%, and with cash it was 17, because we had gained 12 points or seven points on the front end, we were able to prove that happiness is profitable.

Karla Nelson:  Wow, that’s a great story. That’s a great title for a book, too.

Craig Handley:  Happiness is Profitable.

Karla Nelson:  Happiness is Profitable. It’s so true, and it’s so… It’s such a basic human desire, and I think having strategies around being happy, it’s like an oxymoron almost in our minds I think. What are some of the tools? You named a dream board, and a two day training that you had put them through. How daily did that show up, because oftentimes you go in for a training for two days, and the adoption rate a lot of times, depending on what you’re training on, really slips off. How did you consistently keep that in front of their mind to continue that journey in their day to day work?

Craig Handley:  It’s marketing. It’s because the pillars that we have, the six pillars. When they walked onto the floor, if they were out there in February, we had relationship counselors coming in talking about how men should react to relationships versus women. We had separate trainers for men and women, so that the male trainer would come in and tell the men the six ways to stay in a longterm committed relationship. They’d come in and tell the women different things that they probably didn’t want to hear, but they probably need to know. They have things in the US, like the Men’s Weekend or the Women’s Weekend. Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, John Gray. There’s all these things and it happens to be true. I think sometimes this stuff should be taught in classes.

When I went to some of these classes it was shocking as to how obvious they were. You’re like, “I can’t believe I didn’t think of that,” or like-

Karla Nelson:  You know what, Craig? I think sometimes we miss the obvious so frequently. For me, even most recently with all of us being stuck indoors and doing way more video conferencing, and things like that, that I have done for well over a decade, I’ve been trying to pull others with me saying, “Hey, we don’t have to be face to face 100% of the time.” Then all of a sudden, it happened. Even learning the little things like how do you interact digitally on video? How do you mute yourself if you’re eating your bowl of cereal? We don’t want to look up your nose. These weird, weird little things, to me because I’ve been communicating this way, it was obvious. But our customers starting asking us, “Hey, can you put together a training on etiquette for video conferencing,” which to me I’d be like, “What?” Because it’s obvious.

Sometimes I think it’s the obvious that’s really critical to communicate, because you never know what the person on the other side knows or doesn’t know based off of their own circumstances and where they’ve been.

Craig Handley:  I love interesting conversations. I was doing a lot of my work by the pool. It was hot, so I’d jump in the pool. Then I’d come over to a Zoom call. The number of times people said, “Are you naked? They’re like, “You know, you should put a shirt on.” I’m like, “Is that the etiquette? Because I’m by my pool so I’m not wearing a shirt. Whatever.” You know?

Karla Nelson:  That’s hilarious. It depends, right? Who are you meeting with? Are you having an event? All of a sudden I realized how something that seems so simple could actually be quite complex depending on the context.

Craig Handley:  That’s right, you could be wearing sweatpants right now and nobody would ever know.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. Did you see the video of the guy that was being interviewed, and he accidentally moved and you could tell he had boxer shorts on? I was like, “That’s awesome.” That doesn’t bother me. It’s interesting that-

Craig Handley:  Well the number of stories where people actually brought their Zoom conference into the bathroom with them –

Karla Nelson:  Yes, the gal. Oh my gosh, she uses the bathroom… Because Zoom on your phone, not so much… I’m on a desktop now so it just stays kind of static, but on your phone what happens is it just goes to the person that’s talking. So, you think if you’re not talking that other people can’t see you. But the people that have the desktop can absolutely see you because it shows everybody. Yeah, she took her phone and was using the bathroom on a video conference call. I would have died. I mean, that thing went viral.

Craig Handley:  Yeah, I’ve enjoyed seeing some of the funny stories of people with Zoom.

Karla Nelson:  That’s awesome. Share with us a little bit more about Hired to Quit, and kind of how you put that together, and promoted it, and ended up kind of launching another company right alongside it.

Craig Handley:  Yeah, a couple of companies. That started to work. It lowered our turnover, and we did have the right people that were quitting. I ended up writing the book. I really wanted to… Oh, and by the way, in another part of the training, we actually have really extensive sales training. That was where I was brought up, I was going door to door selling. We spent another couple of days teaching people on up tones, down tones, voice inflection, hesitation, modulation, emphasis, you know, where do you emphasize, reading through punctuation and stopping and pausing in the middle of sentences to control calls, asking questions with a down tone so a customer feels like their part of the conversation, but really you’re basically allowing them to say, “Yes,” or “Okay”, and that makes sense, right?

Yeah, you just keep going but they feel like they’re included in the conversation even though they’re not. You’re basically dictating when they’re allowed to speak and when they’re not. So, we train people on all these amazing techniques on how to present benefits, whether it’s a feature function or primary benefit, what the differences are between the three, and how to close sales, and how to use rebuttals. A lot of real life scenario rebuttals around the Socratic method of getting a yes, which is having somebody say yes to three minor questions, which I’ve used many times in my life to meet women. Then of course there’s-

Karla Nelson:  Well, hey, sales right? I mean, marketing is marketing.

Craig Handley:  That’s right. Of course, there’s feel, felt, found, and all these common ways to talk to somebody about why they’re interest is there, but not to the point where they want to buy or whatever. So, all of the agents are trained really well in those things. Like I was saying, when I had my COO quit to buy a golf course, I was thinking I was being a hypocrite so I brought in an operations team, and I’m on two Board calls a week. I said, “What am I going to do next now that I’m going to grow up?” What I really want to do is write music. I do write a lot of music today. I started writing a lot of jingles for a lot of my friends who have offers and products, and it turns out I’m really good at it. So, they were able to lower their… I started making… A lot of people in the music world make money. I make $100,000.00 a year in music, but I want to win a Grammy.

So, I’m like, “Yeah, I’m making money,” which is most musicians dream about is making a living writing music. I’m like, “Well that’s the easy part. For me though, I want to win a Grammy.” That’s my goal. I’ve been writing a lot of music, and then I kind of stumbled into this other business where in the last 60 days it grew from zero to 40 people and over a half a million in billing. I started needing someone to manage my own social media as an author as a musician, and I do some comedy, and as a business entrepreneur who does coaching. I wanted someone to manage all my social media, so I started looking for solutions. To repurpose old content was a big expense up front, and then $5,000.00-$7,500.00 a month. Then to manage my LinkedIn was five. Then do my community management was five. Then to do my… The company that booked me on podcasts was expensive. And, somebody to do one-on-one marketing through LinkedIn which has worked through Instagram. That was another expense.

It just was really expensive, so I just built it myself. I didn’t know it was a business until other friends asked me what I was doing in my own world, and I explained. They’re like, “Would you do that for me?” I had a friend post on Facebook, and there were 20 people that were following, so I turned it into a business and just offered it to a few people. Six people said yes within 24 hours, and they all referred three people each like this. Next thing I know, I had 40 people and trying to keep up, but 23 employees from zero, and a half a million in billing. I’m like, “I don’t know what the hell just happened,” but it shows no signs of slowing down. We’re doing some amazing things. We’re building up the content, and then we’re using one-on-one messaging to drive traffic back to the content to create engagement.

We’re using the marketing skills that we all have in the business, my marketing brain, to find unique ways to create conversion and sale through traffic. So Dave Asprey is a good friend of mine from Bulletproof Coffee. I did kind of a cartoon video for Dave drinking his Bulletproof, and Dave posted it. He got hundreds of thousands of people who viewed it, laughed about it, liked it. We did just one-on-one engagement, “Hey, go to and save some money on your order with this coupon code.” Those are the types of things we think about.

What’s funny about that is I told him how to do it, and then his sales team was too busy going into Costco and trying to get into other Targets and all these other retail stores, but they didn’t set it up that way. He got hundreds of thousands of views, and I was like, “Dave, why didn’t you just drive them to your store and save some money?” We’re going to do that in the next month, because I.

Karla Nelson:  Well, I can’t wait.

Craig Handley:  with that type of idea, you’re going to generate a million dollars in sales. Easy.

Karla Nelson:  Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Craig Handley:  There’s all these different marketing ideas that my brand kind of dives into that starts with good social media and then goes into great marketing.

Karla Nelson:  I love it. I love it. How can our viewers and listeners get ahold of you, Craig?

Craig Handley:  If they Google “Craig Handley” I’m pretty all over the… I mean, I don’t do anything with search, but I kind of come up everywhere. I’m always,

Karla Nelson:  And we’ll make sure your social media handles are posted as well.

Craig Handley:  I’m easy. I’m easy to find. You know, I don’t hide from anybody. I pick up my calls. I answer my Facebook messages. Even if someone’s not connected, I check the junk folders. Usually once a day I’ll kind of rifle through all the odd spots that someone might be trying to reach me, and I like to think I’m really grounded and humble. I like to help people.

Karla Nelson:  Fantastic. Well, Craig-

Craig Handley:  I mirror myself after Branson or Tony Shay. If you’ve ever met those guys-

Karla Nelson:  Down to earth, like the person next door.

Craig Handley:  Elon Musk, all these guys, they’re just down to earth. Paul Diorio, you could sit next to him. Jason Mraz, I actually hung out with Jason Mraz for two hours and didn’t know it was him. That’s something. That’s how humble that guy is. I’m sitting at a bar with him, and we’re talking about all these other crazy personalities.

Karla Nelson:  You know what, Craig? He probably appreciated the fact that you didn’t know and you’re just hanging out, right?

Craig Handley:  Oh, he’s such an amazing writer. I would have loved to have known it was him to talk about topics, about his music. That guy, just the way he writes is just genius.

Karla Nelson:  That’s awesome. Well Craig, thank you so much for your time here today and being on the show. We really appreciate it.

Craig Handley:  Yeah, I feel like we just got started. We could probably talk for another hour.

Karla Nelson:  I think so. We will continue the conversation for sure.

Craig Handley:  Okay.

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How to Lead Like a Boss (4 of 4)

How to Lead Like a Boss

(Part 4 of 4)

This is part 4 of the podcast series How to Lead Like a Boss, we discuss six different types of hazardous attitudes and how to manage them in your company.  

The 6 different hazardous attitudes are: 

  1. Anti-authority 
  2. Impulsivity 
  3. Invulnerability (aka bulletproof syndrome) 
  4. Macho attitude (aka disengagement) 
  5. Listen to your mentors 
  6. Get there-itis 

If you missed Part 1 of this series, where we discussed the sources of leadership power, you can listen to it here.
Listen to Part 2 of the series here.  We discussed the first 5 traps in working with people.
Listen to Part 3 here.  It was all about the next 5 traps in working with people.

Listen to the podcast here:

Listen in as Karla and Kevin Discuss How to Lead Like a Boss (4 of 4)

Karla Nelson: Welcome to the People Catalyst Podcast, Kevin Nothstine.

Kevin Nothstine: Thank you Karla. Happy to be here.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, glad to have you here and this is exciting. We started out doing one podcast and ended up doing a four part series because as we started looking at this, this is not only amazing information, there is a lot to it. Of course, leave it to the military to dump tons of paper cuts and then trying to figure out, okay, how do we communicate this in a way that is applicable. Then also not giving too much.

I love immersion. At the same time you also want to walk away with some bits of information that you can quickly apply in your business. I think I’ve learned just as much on this podcast as any. My goodness, it’s been fantastic. What we did is we started out in identifying the seven sources of authority.

Part one of this series was how to lead like a boss and then we moved into how to work as a team, like a boss. As we identified these traps, as Kevin said, or pitfalls in just human nature and how we respond to things and why it’s so critical and important to understand those 10 pitfalls.

Then working through those 10 pitfalls, we came about that there’s really one pitfall that is really, really critical and important in kind of a foundation for a lot of the other ones because it’s difficult if somebody has what they call a, well I changed it to bad attitude, but I actually went back to hazardous attitude. Especially after one of them I have that I’m totally happy to worry about where I want to go and what’s the itis called there Kevin?

Kevin Nothstine: It’s get there-itis.

Karla Nelson: Get there-itis. I’m like I’m happy to have get there-itis. It’s like I can see why they probably analyze the heck out of it and said, “Wait a second, bad attitude doesn’t exactly fit because I could be completely happy with this hazardous attitude of get there-itis.” It’s not necessarily just about attitude, but it really is about opening up your mind to be taught and to learn.

We’re going to dive deep into some of these anecdotes or how you solve, I love anecdotes. Of course, that’s what the military uses instead of solutions. Solutions to these hazardous attitudes that we talked about.

I’m not sure if everybody’s listened To the previous three podcasts, so I will take a moment to introduce our guest here today. Kevin Nothstine spent 21 years of active duty as an officer in the Air Force. He currently spends some of his time as a special ops air crew instructor teaching the same mission in an aircraft that he flew in Afghanistan and Iraq and my goodness, you did what, over a hundred combat missions there?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, around there.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Oh, that’s all, yeah. Basically this mission is to find the bad guys and tell the good guys where they are. So if you think about the Bin Laden raids, there’s something called a stack, and this particular aircraft, the MC-12 is that the top of the stack and then there could be a whole different blend of aircraft all the way down to the boots on the ground. Kevin is also one of the cofounders of the People Catalyst and he is a prover shaker.

Kevin Nothstine: Prover Shaker as opposed to Karla, the host of the People Catalysts Podcast, who is an uber mover who likes to move things forward and make them happen.

Karla Nelson: I get a little shaker, I’m a shaker.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, mover shaker. Yeah.

Karla Nelson: Every once in a while I come up with a good idea, but we’ve got Allen on the team. So it’s normally just minimizing his crazy ideas. Almost always the best ideas. Yeah.

Welcome to the show. We’re excited about this today because we’re going to talk about how to solve these, what they call hazardous attitudes in this crew resource management training. If you want to give us a little bit of a context around that, Kevin, we’ll start there and then we’ll roll right into these solutions to make sure that you don’t get into these areas as leaders.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, and podcasts in this series number two and number three, we actually broke it down. We had 10 different traps or these things that can cause problems in how you operate. And just real quickly, we talked about excessive professional courtesy. We talked about the halo effect, haster syndrome, hidden agenda.

Karla Nelson: Oh yeah.

Kevin Nothstine: All of these.

Karla Nelson: These are not my new names. I gave new names to all these. They were actually in English.

Kevin Nothstine: And multiple ones there. You can go back and listen to two and three without getting in any detail. One of the big ones, number nine of those 10, was hazardous attitudes, or bad attitudes, or hazardous attitudes. It’s having the wrong mindset about things because your attitude determines how far you can go.

We wanted to dive a little deeper into this because there are some rough attitudes that you can have, but there are solutions to those attitudes as well. If you recognize them in yourself and the parts that can cause some issues and the negative aspects, there’s ways to look at them a little bit differently to try and overcome them for you or for your team members. It’ll work with your team to come up with how to fix these attitudes. We can all think of it and you can always say, “Oh, he’s got a bad attitude,” but we actually give names to some of those bad attitudes.

Karla Nelson: You know what’s kind of interesting, I didn’t think about before, doesn’t the plane when you fly, I guess I’ve been hanging around with you long enough that I’ve learned enough about, I would never want to actually… You would not want me to fly the aircraft, but I’ve learned a lot. Isn’t there a term for the attitude of the plane even?

Kevin Nothstine: It’s a different definition of attitude.

Karla Nelson: Of course but isn’t it?

Kevin Nothstine: But you do have some planes that… You know what? You’re kind of right about that. I fly a fleet of multiple planes and sometimes the planes, they don’t fly right and some of them fly a little bit more crooked than some of the others do.

Karla Nelson: You don’t actually think about that, but that is kind of interesting. Like the attitude of the plane and well it made me think about it because your attitude determines how far you go. It’s just so foundational and there’s so many very similar things, not only in the foundation but then also the training that goes into that. Both on you learn how to fly aircraft, but then also running companies and being a leader. There’s so much about what the military teaches and their training is so extensive. Companies should really pay attention to that.

Kevin Nothstine: Karla, that really does bring up an entirely different subject that could be a whole different podcast that we have one day. The plane is a tool. It’s a tool of what you use to be able to accomplish the mission. As you said in the introduction there, the mission that we do in the plane that I instructed in, the MC-12, our mission is to find the bad guys and tell the good guys are where they are and protect the good guys and to make things happen in that realm.

The aircraft, the MC-12, is a tool and just like any other tool, you have to know… one, you have to have the right tool for the job and two, you have to know how to use that tool. Sometimes if you think of a tool chest, you have a couple of different screwdrivers that are in there and you could have one screwdriver that it’s kind of bent or has a little problem with that and when you use that screwdriver, you’ve got to know how to use that tool effectively.

Karla Nelson: That’s so funny. That actually makes me think about the WHO-DO method, Mover Shaker Prover Maker. They all excel in certain things and not in another thing. So Allen always tells a really funny story. He loves baseball, he loves it so much, and he’s done a ton of work in that realm, but they put him in the finance area of it and it was like, are you serious? Like what are you? “Oh well, there’s this space and you love baseball, right?” I mean it’s like you have to understand how a shaker excels, a mover excels, a prover excels, and a maker excels so that you can utilize that tool or even the one are that we don’t talk about very often because 100% of the work is made for one percent of the population that are imbalanced across all four.

It’s like your utility infielder, right? They’re not super awesome at first base, but when that guy gets hurt, you can put that guy in and so understanding is, and of course we don’t want to identify people just as tools, but in business when the object of the exercise is to get something done, it’s critical that you understand your team or as you say, crew, right? And the mission that you fly. It’s understanding where you can put them in so that they’re going to excel to the maximum or understand where they might be miscast and you’re asking them to do something that they’re really, really stinky at.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. And your examples is, you’re exactly right when you’re talking about your role versus your passion. You know, you can be passionate about baseball, but if you’re passionate about baseball and you love being a pitcher and now all of a sudden we have you playing shortstop, your role is completely miscast even though you’re passionate about baseball.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. So I like that. I like that, thinking about what the attitude is and how that rolls into those different parallels. So, okay, so we’ll go ahead and let’s get started. How many of these solutions or anecdotes as the Air Force would say?

Kevin Nothstine: We’re going to go through six different hazardous attitudes and we did have the 10 different traps and inside of the 10 traps we have hazardous attitude is one trap. And there’s, it’s just layers upon layers of stuff.

Karla Nelson: It’s amazing guys, you guys, if you ever want, it’s the best training. They’ve obviously deduced this, the provers have eaten it alive and made it to the, you know, it’s awesome. It’s just really interesting because the language is all, it’s like the longer you can make the word, the better.

Kevin Nothstine: They’re trying to be as precise as possible.

Karla Nelson: Yes, there you go. See, the prover. So the prover says precise as possible, which by the way, I have to agree. When I said no bad attitude, it’s like you could be totally happy being the macho person. You totally could, or all those other ones that we went through before so you can be happy, so it’s not necessarily that it’s a bad attitude. It’s a hazardous. It could contaminate the team. Right?

Kevin Nothstine: What you’re talking about is leadership is both an art and a science, and the art is, “Oh, it feels right and we can do it this way and paint it that way and put these things together,” and they’re trying to boil it down to a science because you’re trying to take a multitude of individuals and teach them. If they’re not an artist in this area, we’re trying to give them the tools available, so to do that they’re trying to boil it down to a science and that’s why we have 10 different traps and one trap, we have six different.

Karla Nelson: I love that though because we’re a process, process, process, process, process, process, focus. 94% of failures, process failure, not people failure.

Kevin Nothstine: You know what? That really does bring up the first of these hazardous attitudes because you can have certain people and the first that hazardous attitude, the first one is anti-authority. Believe it or not, there can be people in the military and everywhere else even though they try to beat it out of you in basic training and everywhere else, you can have an anti-authority attitude and to put it in a nutshell, anti-authority is, “Well don’t tell me how to do it,” and as you might imagine, a few air crew or pilots might have a little bit of that anti-authority

Karla Nelson: Dun dun dun dun, pilots. No. No.

Kevin Nothstine: I actually had one pilot that I was trying to train and he was a pretty experienced individual and the instructor that worked with him before identified that he had not been doing some of his work on his checklist of knowing the checklist as well as he needed to. And so I had that piece of information going into a training session with him and it was specifically on checklist procedures. Well, this individual came to me and I very quickly identified, yeah, he hasn’t done it enough on it. And I was telling him, “Okay, you need to know the checklist to this level of detail. You need to have this part of the checklist memorized. You need to do it this way.” Well, that didn’t jive with what he wanted to do and he just had a very anti-authority attitude about going into this. And it ended up being a very confrontational training session and I don’t think the student got a lot out of it as a result.

Karla Nelson: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Well, of course, yeah. Now you’re closing yourself off and it’s why we wanted to dive deepest on the solutions to this because if you’re starting out that way, you are a threat to yourself and everyone else. If you have a hazardous attitude, you’re contaminating the team basically.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. This particular individual, he actually contaminated a team. That was about two years ago, that we had this incident with him. Well, his anti-authority attitude continued, and let’s just say it has led to not the best situation and he’s no longer a part of that team.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. And that can happen, right? So because we all have to follow processes and procedures, especially in the military. My goodness, you guys are the father. But outside of Edwards Deming, the military would be definitely the next place that there’s a process for everything and a procedure for everything, right.

Kevin Nothstine: And of course their antidote to this hazardous attitude, would they like to teach is follow the rules. They’re usually right.

Karla Nelson: That’s what they call it the rules.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. It should be follow your procedures. It’s not just rules. There’s a whole bunch of items that are not rules.

Karla Nelson: Yep. Well, we love process and procedures. I’ve already said 94% of failures, process failure, not people failure. Edwards Deming, he’s considered the father of manufacturing. I quote him all time because it’s so, so critical in business to have a process, a process by which you identify the decisions, what are we going to do, ideation, implementation, how are we going to do it?

And it reminds me of a friend of mine who, gosh, I’ve known for a very long time and most of you guys would probably know the name of the company that he sold a couple of years ago and we had the fortunate opportunity of doing his financing way back in the day when I was in the world of finance and he was a small gig set up at the time and had a couple of retail stores and when we walked in to do the financing, he pulled out the largest set of instructional manuals I probably have ever heard.

Now guys, this was before you could do it digitally and have it in the cloud and do all this stuff. So it literally was like, clunk. I remember looking at it and my associate at the time looked at it and said, “Oh, this guy is going to be really successful because he has got every process and procedure written down in how he was growing this,” and he ended up selling his company I think somewhere around $640 million. So, and this is a retail small chain that ended up going, I don’t even know, I don’t know if it was international, but it was a huge brand and so you know, it’s important. Process and procedures are absolutely critical.

Kevin Nothstine: Now, those processes and procedures and not only having them but training people to follow them.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Oh, training. Imagine that.

Kevin Nothstine: Which brings up the, I’m sorry, go ahead. What were you going to say?

Karla Nelson: I was just saying and the military is the best at it because they not only have process, they probably overkill, right? They kind of go the other way sometimes probably where innovation is squashed out, but the military is awesome about this because everybody shows up and they train and they train and they train. Right? And so we can’t spend 100% of the day training. Right? We have to balance that out with doing other things, but explaining the process and procedures and then put, I hate to say a process around the process, but that’s what the WHO-DO method actually is because contextually you can apply it in any other area, right? So just, yeah, it’s not only critical but then using contextually over that, right, how you run that process and procedures. Not only communicating it like you said, Kevin, but communicating in a way that the team builds the process and the procedure together as well, if you have to start at ground zero.

In the military, I’m going to guess you get told a lot of stuff, especially after a lot of the bugs had been worked out. In corporate America, it’s a little bit different in the sense that if everybody can put their fingerprint on the process, if it’s starting at ground zero or look at it because everybody looks at processes and procedures differently, right? Shakers want to break the rules. Movers want to interpret the rules. Provers want to make the rules and makers want to follow the rules. So those were rules. That’s exactly what the anecdote just said. Follow the rules, they’re usually right. Well guess what? You got four sets of dang people that follow the rules differently.

Kevin Nothstine: And those rules can mature over time. You talked about in the military you run things through a process. I’ve got a great story that’s going to go with the next one that talks about how we used to do things that we’ve learned from and gotten a little better at how we do them now.

Karla Nelson: Awesome. Go ahead and lead us through. Ready to go.

Kevin Nothstine: Before we tell this story.

Karla Nelson: I got get there-itis. Come on.

Kevin Nothstine: Before we go into the story, the first one, well the hazardous attitude here is impulsivity. Do something quickly. Okay. Ah, it’s the knee jerk reaction. It’s this happened. I need to do this. Oh, this happened, boom, I’m going to do this and jump right into it without doing a good analysis of understanding exactly what’s going on. So that’s a hazardous attitude.

And the story on this and it’s actually not my story, this is a story from my dad. My dad was a flight engineer on T-29s so this is a story from a long time ago. The plane he was flying had two engines and he was a flight engineer so he’s sitting between the two pilots and at the time in the Air Force, the way they would train for an engine failure is the instructor pilot would actually shut down the engine and then it would go through the procedures. Okay. How do you deal with this engine that you just lost?

Well, the first step was to pull what’s called the T handle. You’d reach up high and you’d pull this T handle and it would shut down the engine. Well, nowadays we’re a lot better and before you pull that, you would verify with the other person that in the plane that, “I’m going to move this T handle. Yes, the left engine failed. I have the left one. I’m going to pull that T handle and shut it down.”

Well, when my dad was flying, they had not worked through those processes yet and the pilot would just reach up and grab the T handle and pull it. So he’s in the plane. The instructor pilot shut down the left engine and his student goes, “Okay, first step is to pull the T handle for that engine.” And he reached up and grabbed the wrong handle.

Karla Nelson: That would be bad.

Kevin Nothstine: He grabbed the right handle instead of the left one.

Karla Nelson: No way, he shut down the other engine?

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. So now this two engine plane has both engines shut down.

Karla Nelson: So now it’s not like in the previous glider, right? Because remember the other guy in the other example.

Kevin Nothstine: In the other example, he just shut off the electronics and the planes still flew. This particular one my dad was on.

Karla Nelson: So now you’re a glider at however far in the air.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. Now they’re able to restart the engines and able to recover.

Karla Nelson: Thank goodness.

Kevin Nothstine: But it was that impulsivity. Somebody just said, “You know what? I know what to do to respond to this emergency situation. I’m just going to do it without any analysis and just jump right in with both feet.”

Karla Nelson: Yeah. You might want to read what side of the aircraft to a shutdown first to be able to restart that one and not shut down the other one. But yeah, exactly, and this happens in business a lot.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. In flying, we say that the antidote or the solution to that is no fast hands or not so fast. Think first.

Yes. And the process can help you with this guys, you’re provers, you’re provers, you’re provers. When you run the process, ensuring that you know we need you all, we need you at different times. And there is a previous podcast, Alan and I actually go through ideation and implementation, the exact steps because of the same players, it’s a different process and understand that your provers can help you so much in thinking through it.

Now when you’re flying an aircraft, obviously you have to move super fast. In business, we’ve got a little bit more time when we’re making decisions. But when you run the process, having your provers be a part of the process, they can help you think this through. I would even say the shakers as well can help a lot of times when for them to overcome the obstacles, the provers are really great at bringing up and then the shakers really great at innovative ways to overcome those. So I love the think first. The only problem is that’s only the really the provers and the shakers that naturally will fall back on thinking versus doing, right? So, but leverage those other people in the process so that you’re thinking through it and before you take action.

Kevin Nothstine: Before you turn your aircraft into a glider.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, exactly.

Kevin Nothstine: All right. Here’s the next one. The next hazardous attitude on ones is, okay. Well, the official term for this in Air Force speak is invulnerability. Okay.

Karla Nelson: What? I guess vulnerable, not vulnerable.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. Invulnerable.

Karla Nelson: I’m going to rename this bulletproof.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. Yep, yep.

Karla Nelson: Superman syndrome.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. It can’t happen to me. Yeah, this can happen to other people. It won’t happen to me. I am bulletproof. Okay. And a good one on this, you may have heard of,this is a, heck, it was probably 15, 20 years ago now, had a B-52, an air crew flying a B-52 for an air show up in a Washington state and the pilot wanted to put on a great air show and well he didn’t think it would happen to him that the plane could actually mess up. Well, he pushed the plane well beyond its limits and he was known for this. He was known for having this attitude to the point that the leadership would not let anybody else fly with him except the highest people.

Karla Nelson: I wouldn’t want to fly with him. Geez. It’s kind of like a little far in the sky to have this invulnerability or bulletproof syndrome.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. And he took a B-52, a very large airplane that the maximum you’re allowed or the maximum bank angle is 60 degrees and bringing it way up and that’s actually pretty high. They usually never even reach that. But for the air show, he brought it up to 90 degrees.

If you know anything about flying or if you’ve seen a plane, there’s no lift, there’s nothing keeping you in the sky at 90 degrees. Well, it was a rather tragic result that when he did this thinking, “Oh, it wouldn’t happen to me,” well, physics doesn’t care what you think. Physics is physics and the plane fell out of the sky and it destroyed the aircraft and the four people inside of it.

Karla Nelson: Gosh, I’m not even a pilot and would realize, no, you might like the wings kind of are important. If you bring it to a 90 degree angle, there’s nothing underneath of you. That’s crazy. How sad. So yes, bulletproof syndrome, not good.

Kevin Nothstine: And the edit on that is to realize, ah, it could happen to me. You know, what you think is the most tragic thing, that just very well could happen.

Karla Nelson: Well, the other thing that makes me think about is, especially on innovation, businesses especially, it’s easy to talk about today because there’s so many examples of it, but it reminds me of GM and Chrysler. So GM actually created the minivan. Most people don’t know that, but they did not want to roll the minivan out into the market in fear that it would take over their station wagon market, right? And yeah. Yeah. And so Chrysler obtained the intellectual property, rolled out the minivan and everybody, I mean how many minivans do you see on the streets today, right?

And then as soon as the SUV came out, when was the last time you saw a station wagon? Right. It just decimated the station wagon business. But yet they don’t have the minivan business. I’m sure they’ve come out with their own version of it.

Kevin Nothstine: Of course, they didn’t think it could happen to them. They didn’t think that they would fail.

Karla Nelson: Not only that, you would still crush the IP. Why would you sell it off? Kodak did the same thing. Right? They created the digital camera, but in fear that it would compete with their other products they sold it. Why would you sell it? Yeah. Now at least don’t sell it to somebody else, but it could never happen to them because they’re the big guys on the block. So, yeah. Okay, go ahead, Kevin.

Kevin Nothstine: The same thing with vacuum cleaners. Forever, they wanted to stick with vacuum cleaners and they wanted to sell vacuum cleaner bags. So all the big names, Hoover and the others refused to switch over. Then Dyson came in and had a bagless vacuum cleaner.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. And Dyson’s the best. And they made it swivel for goodness sakes, because you couldn’t with the bag, right?

Kevin Nothstine: The other companies didn’t think they’d be able to fail, but lo and behold, Dyson took over major market share.

Karla Nelson: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Awesome. All right, what’s the next one?

Kevin Nothstine: Okay, next one. That’s invulnerability. It can’t happen to me. Well, the next one is kind of, it’s the other side of the same coin a bit and that’s the macho attitude. That’s the, “I can do it, dump it on. I will make it happen. I am full on capable of doing this with no problem at all.”

And just to quick little story on that, I was flying with a guy, he was a CEO of a very successful company and he’s a great guy, really good dude. But what made him a very successful CEO did not transfer well into the cockpit and to fly in a plane. He owned his own plane and he was flying it and I was flying with him and we’re flying into a runway at night in the weather and he had the autopilot coupled up and was letting it apply and I told him early, said, “Hey, you probably want to disengage the autopilot early and just to work with your hand flying and get back to flying the plane, playing yourself and being comfortable with it.” And he’s like, “No, I can take it. I can take it later on. I’ll be no problem at all and I will be able to fly the plane with no problem.”

Well he let the autopilot on for a long time and then as soon as he kicked the autopilot off and started hand flying, well, it was very tight tolerances and he didn’t stay within those tolerances and I ended up taking the plane from him. We had to go around to keep the aircraft in a safe situation and come back and do the approach again.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. That’s why I would be a horrible pilot, although with the right instruction and training. All right. Okay, so what’s the next one?

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. The next one and the big correction to macho is instead of, I can do it, a sometimes taking chances can be foolish or a better way to put that, listen to your mentors.

Karla Nelson: And trainers. Listen to your trainers. Go back to your training, right? The process. Go back to the process. You always use the process.

Kevin Nothstine: Now if you do that, do some other things too much, you know what? You can end up with the next big, bad attitude, which is resignation. Resignation is, you know what’s the use? Nothing’s working. This isn’t going to work well. This is Eeyore.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, I’m going to call this engagement because employee engagement, right? Or disengagement. We’re going to write the whole handbook over again.

Kevin Nothstine: And so if you or obviously not you, our podcast audience is a lot better and of course they would never be disengaged, but other people might be disengaged.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. That’s why our number one post always have to do with how much it costs for turnover and 70% of people hate their jobs in the US, 89% internationally. There are tons of people out there doing things every day that they don’t like. And so we talked about this earlier, is the recent Gallup study and how many people not only are actively disengaged, but then just disengaged. So if you add those two groups together, it’s 53% were disengaged. 13 actively disengaged. This means they will do anything to ruin what it is that you are up to. So when 66% of your workforce is disengaged, what do you think that does to a business?

And on top of that, I think what we missed in the scenario is everybody disengages for different reasons. You know, shakers disengage if it’s not their idea, movers disengage because I’ve got another project and something to do anyway and nothing ever comes of these meetings. Provers disengage because there’s too much wrong with it and makers disengage because they need to get back to their desk and do some real work. So we have to approach disengagement from different aspects.

When you’re using a process and letting them shine in the piece of the work that they do, again, both in ideation, what are we going to do? Implementation, how are we going to do it? Then it’s an easier way to understand why people disengage.

I had before learning the process, many times would be in a meeting, if I was not running the meeting, taking the notes, telling everybody what to do after the meeting, coordinating it, I just sat back and didn’t say a word. I had other things that I wanted to do, right, and that’s how a mover disengages and I think we don’t necessarily take that into consideration of you can’t just tell somebody, engage, engage, engage. I mean it’s just ridiculous. You can’t bring in the speaker to speak for an hour and tell people how to be engaged. It doesn’t make any sense when the object of the exercise is to get something done. So they obviously have to do the part of the work that they excel at, right?

Kevin Nothstine: And you know something that the WHO-DO process really teaches is we need everybody just not at the same time. So when do I really want you engaged? At the right time in the project. So as a leader in a different, as you go through the process, it’s getting the right people with that engagement.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Awesome. Love it. Love this one. That’s a great one. And finally.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay the last one. Get there-itis.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. I got something to do. I think I’m going to have to end the podcast now.

Kevin Nothstine: Sounds like a hidden agenda going on there.

Karla Nelson: That’s a good one. And that’s actually funny because it’s one of the 10 that we went through as far as the traps. Yeah.

Kevin Nothstine: The get there-itis is, in flying, it’s like I must get there tonight. I just need to get to this destination. We want to make it happen and get on the ground or if you’d ever done a long road trip, I have got to get to grandma’s house now or that kind of item. And it can lead to having, for whatever reason you need to get there.

We actually had a time. I was in Guam, we had two C-130s in Guam and we had that day we were going to fly from Guam to the Philippines and back across the ocean. Well my crew, we all, we were staying in the same hotel as the other crew. We checked out of the hotel, we packed all our bags, we had all of our bags and we’re sitting there in the lobby of the hotel about to catch the bus to where the planes were.

Karla Nelson: Even though you’re going back to Guam?

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. We’re coming right back to the same hotel at the same place that night. And the other crew was looking at us and they’re like, “Well, why are you guys doing this?” And we said, “Because we’re flying a C-130 that was built in the early 1960s to another location and shutting down the engines. So just in case, we’re going to do it,” and they’re like, “Yeah, okay, whatever.”

Well, both planes flew to the Philippines with no problem. Well, guess what? The other plane, lo and behold, their plane broke. They had some issues with the plane and they were not able to take off. Our plane, we had no problem. We went back and we had to check back into the hotel and everything, but that plane that broke, as they were going through their decision making process, it could very, very easily saying, we want to get back to Guam because that’s where the hotel were checked into. That’s where all of our clothes are.

Karla Nelson: That’s where our dinner is.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. And all of that. And so they could very easily have some get there-itis that could lead to making bad decisions. They were willing to accept things on the plane and push it. Now they didn’t. They maintained the professionalism, but I know they really did want to get home.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Being aware of that. Super important. That reminds me of a client of ours, and this happens frequently. So you’ve got your early adopters, your movers and shakers, you got your later adopters, your provers and your makers, right? And which one do you think probably has get there-itis the most? Probably the doers, I would say. But even shakers, like shakers and movers get together and then it’s like, woohoo, here’s my idea. Yay, that’s a great idea. Let’s do that. Ooh.

And so what can happen is this particular company ended up spending a lot of money and investing it into technology and it was a great idea. It actually was a good idea. And the problem was they didn’t think about people actually using the technology that they put millions of bucks into. And so now all of a sudden you just invested all this money, but you didn’t figure out all the things that could go wrong about how to get your return on investment, because the way this company works for every user they’re already paying for and they’re giving it to them to a mass, mass reduced amount, right? It’s not like they wanted a profit margin but they didn’t want to invest so much money that it was like sink in the company and putting it in the red and they didn’t think about it. So we were actually brought in to help that process.

And when you think about technology, this happens frequently. And this was seven different ones integrated with each other by the way. So how do you break that process down into its simplest form in order to then have somebody actually use it? I mean all of that stuff you have to run through the process before you make the decision. I think some, get there-itis, we need technology, we need to go, we need this in place. And they did need all of it. And the problem is when you start watching that video on the first technology, you’re excited about three minutes into it, five minutes, you’re like, oh, and then 30 minutes into going through all the features and benefits when you don’t even need all of them, you need about 20% and not breaking any of that down. And they had already been trying to kind of shove this down everybody’s throats for a year and they weren’t swallowing. So you have to think through that process and get there-itis can really get you in trouble when you make a decision without engaging all different core natures of work.

Ask me how I know it, because get theire-itis is my definitely go to on the hazardous attitudes and I said that instead of bad attitude again because I’m happy with get there-itis. What happens is then you hit a wall you can make and you’re not taking everybody with you, right? So the object of the exercise in leadership and working with a team is we all go together and as Kevin said, we need you all just at different times. It’s absolutely critical and so well, awesome.

Okay, so anti-authority, don’t tell me what to do. Impulsivity, do something really fast. Invulnerability, which I renamed bulletproof syndrome. It can’t happen to me. Macho, which is dun, dun, dun, dun, I can do it myself. Resignation, which I changed the name to disengaged. We call it employee engagement frequently and then get there-itis. Awesome. Those are definitely six things to take a look at to ensure that you have a healthy way of communicating not only internally with yourself but externally with your team and also helping your other team members identify those hazardous attitudes that can really get you into some trouble.

So any last words, Kevin, before we sign up off for the podcast?

Kevin Nothstine: It’s been a great series. I’ve really enjoyed going through this and working through it. You know, we started off this whole series of four of talking about what your sources of authority are in leading a team and then we talked about the 10 different traps that can mess up with people and we did a deep dive into one of those traps of those bad attitudes, so or hazardous attitudes. So overall, I think it was a great series and a lot of lessons to learn and I’m glad we reviewed it. It helps me to be a better leader and to work with our teams better as well.

Karla Nelson: Fantastic. Well, I’ve enjoyed it. It’s definitely been an amazing leadership series. And until next time, remember we need you all, but we need you at different times.

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How to Lead Like a Boss (3 of 4)

How to Lead Like a Boss (Part 3 of 4)

How to Lead Like a Boss

(Part 3 of 4)

How to Lead Like a Boss (Part 3 of 4)

In part three of this series of How to Lead Like a Boss, we discuss how to work as a team like a boss. There are 10 “traps” in working with people and we discuss the last 5 this week!

If you missed Part 1 of this series, where we discussed the sources of leadership power, you can listen to it here.
Listen to Part 2 of the series here, where we discussed the first 5 traps in working with people.
In Part 4 we discuss 6 Hazardous Attitudes and how to manage them.

The 10 traps in working with people:

  1. Excessive Professional Courtesy
  2. Halo Effect
  3. Passenger Syndrome
  4. Hidden Agenda
  5. Accommodation Syndrome
  6. The Accident Zone Model
  7. Strength Of An Idea
  8. WHO-DO Method
  9. Hazardous Attitudes
  10. Error Chain

Listen to the podcast here:

Listen in as Karla and Kevin Discuss How to Lead Like a Boss (3 of 4)

Karla Nelson: And welcome to the People Catalysts Podcast, Mr. Kevin Nothstine.

Kevin Nothstine: Hello, hello.

Karla Nelson: Hello sir, how are you today?

Kevin Nothstine: I’m enjoying life-

Karla Nelson: Pretty fantastic. I’m really enjoyed this podcast series. So just to give all of our listeners a little bit of a background, we decided to have Kevin on the podcast to talk about the seven sources of authority and how to lead like a boss. We had so much fun, we decided to add on a couple of other podcasts and this is now a four part series. And the part two we just went through was, how to work as a team like a boss. And for today we are going to discuss and finish up. That was a total of 10 steps, so we had five more to go. We did five on the last podcast because it’s hard to take in all 10 in just a 25 minute session where we try to keep our podcasts app so they’re digestible from your drive, from home to work or wherever you’re headed.

So we’re going to finish up, how to work as a team, like a boss. And if you haven’t heard the previous two podcasts, just to let you know a little bit about Kevin Nothstine. He was an Officer in the Air Force for 21 years, he was active duty. He currently still teaches his special ops groups and aircrew how to fly the same mission that he flew in Afghanistan and Iraq. And basically these missions are how to find bad guys and tell the good guys where they are. So if you think about the bin Laden raids, they’re this thing called the stack and the MC-12 the particular plane that Kevin, instructs and teaches others on is at that top of the stack. He is also one of the co-founders and a master trainer of the People Catalysts. And so he lastly is a prover shaker, so he does have a secondary shaker but he leads with his prover. So thanks so much for your time today in joining us on the show.

Kevin Nothstine: It’s my pleasure. I love to teach and I greatly appreciate the opportunity to do that here on-

Karla Nelson: Awesome. Okay, let’s jump right into it. We already went through the first five. Did you want to go through the first five? Just a little bit of an overview just to give those who might not have listened to that podcast. We won’t go into depth but maybe just identify them and sum them up really quickly. If you want to go listen to the previous podcast, you can find it right there on the website and take it away, Kevin.

Kevin Nothstine: All right, thank you much. That’s as good idea to put it in some context. Now the big picture on what these are the special ops community calls this is, human factors traps and these are the traps that differently states if somebody can-

Karla Nelson: And we did this in on the other podcast, English. We came up with a couple of different names, I can’t remember what they were.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. These traps they’re mistakes that people can make. Its common mistakes that can lead to an unhealthy team. As Karla said, there’s 10 different ones and in the previous podcast we talked about those first five, they were excessive professional courtesy, which is basically saying, “That’s the boss and he said so therefore I’m not willing to challenge the boss.” And nobody’s willing to tell the emperor that he’s not wearing any clothes. That’s just the classic tale there. The next one was a halo effect and that was, “This person was outstanding over at this other position. So obviously he’s going to do a good job in whatever new position we put them in.” And well that doesn’t always happen the way that you hope it would. The third one then was the passenger’s syndrome or the copepod syndrome.

And that’s where somebody else has got it. Somebody else is doing a great job and if they are, it’s really easy just to sit back and coast and not be fully engaged with your job. And not have that employee engagement just because you have somebody else that is running with the ball. So that was the third one. The fourth one was the hidden agenda, and that hidden agenda is saying, “I’ve got something else in my mind, a reason when I’m making the decisions based on.” And it may not lead to the best decisions. You’re sitting there in the meeting and you’ve got your kid’s recital that you want to get to. So you’re willing to accept whatever they say just to get out of the meetings. So you can go watch your daughter go play the piano or something like that.

And then the last one is the accommodation syndrome and that’s what, “It’s really high risk business for us to go and do whatever event.” Buy a new building or buy a new business or something like that. And the first time you do it you’re like, “Wow, this is a lot of risk involved here.” And then it works. Okay, “Let’s do it again, let’s do it again.” And each iteration, each time you go and do that same thing, it’s just as risky but you don’t… You’re desensitized to how much risk happens on it over time. So we had good examples of those in the first podcast, so that’s the accommodation syndrome. That’s our first-

Karla Nelson: Awesome let’s jump right into number six.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay, number six. And this one… Where that last one we just talked about the accommodation syndrome. That’s more of a strategic, that’s a long range and over time, “We’ve done it so many times and over the last couple of years we’ve done this. It could never bite us in the butt.” Okay, well this next one is called the accident zone model. And this is a little more tactical. This is more… “Okay, I’ve got this meeting that’s been going on, I don’t have any hidden agenda, so I’m willing to be in this meeting for the long haul.” But after two to three hours of being in this meeting. Well, fatigue starts to set in and you get tired-

Karla Nelson: Everyone’s been in that meeting.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. Our co-founder Alan, likes to put it, set meeting and where it’s like, “It’s 12 o’clock, it’s one o’clock, it’s two o’clock, it’s three o’clock, it’s three o’clock, it’s three o’clock.” And the clock doesn’t seem to move when you’re longer into the meeting. Well, when you get to that phase in flying airplanes after you’ve been flying a plane for three, four or five sometimes seven and nine hours or… Some of my friends and flown missions for 24 hours in the same. But when you’re in that meeting or you’re in that mission or you’re in the zone for that long, you’re going to get tired and you could very easily make mistakes as you grow into that-

Karla Nelson: Yeah. What that reminds me of is, are we going to come up with a different name for the accident zone model. It’s how fatigue and stress can make you make mistakes, there we go. We’ll, have to send that one into the air force. It reminds me of the story-

Kevin Nothstine: Spoken like a true prover.

Karla Nelson: It reminds me of the story that we went into… And we just love this story because it’s representative of every other stink in meeting everyone has been in and knows. Everyone always laughs when we teach and train this piece because they I believe they can’t change it so they just deal with it, right? And this is the meeting that Allen was the lead on and basically hired in an innovation meeting to sit there, be quiet and see what happens. And so that happened and it was like two and a half hours of ridiculousness and we always say it’s like a skeet shoot, right? Anybody ever seen skeet? Idea, bang, idea, bang, idea, bang, idea, bang. Just going back and forth and back and forth and Allen’s just sitting here, he’s dying in this meeting and all he’s doing is getting paid to be there and listen to it.

And at the end of the meeting, the gentleman who hired us said, “Okay, so what’s the report?” In his report, that’s easy. He says, “37 to 36.” And the guy looks at Allen like, “Are you nuts? What are you talking about? 37 to 36, what report is that?” He goes, “There was 37 ideas, 36 of them got shut down, and everybody was so fatigued and tired from being in that meeting that they picked the most mediocre last idea that came up, so that they could escape from the meeting.”

Kevin Nothstine: Exactly. They were deep into the accident zone.

Karla Nelson: Yes.

Kevin Nothstine: And you think that, that idea actually had any chance of success.

Karla Nelson: And the other thing is, it’s interesting because when you think of it as flying an aircraft that… It’s super, you’re going to crash and you could kill everybody and yourself. But you think about that in corporate America and it affects even your relationships with other people. It affects doing those types of things affects, how people show up in a meeting rolling their eyes. Are they engaged? Are they not? I mean, that piece, if you’re not aware of all of those different stimulus that basically… Being tired and stressed and how it affects everything else. And so I always say culture is what you do. You can’t create culture. You can’t make them.

Kevin Nothstine: Well, to add to what you always say, it’s not what you do. It’s what you do every day.

Karla Nelson: Yes, exactly. Okay, this is great. Let’s move on to the next one.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. The next one. This is the strength of an idea.

Karla Nelson: That’s not too bad of the title.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. No, not at all. Unfortunately I don’t… I’ve got an example of this and we’re going to talk about and it’s not quite as fun to laugh at those. It’s a bit of a serious one that there’s sometimes serious you can have some rough things that happen. Now, first off what the strength of an idea is, and that’s when you have an idea and you’re like, “This is the way things are.” And you have just such a strong mindset that you think something is going on when it is not what’s going on at all and it’s so strong in your mind and you’re not willing to question your own thing. Everybody’s just, “Hey, let’s just go along. Yep. This is the idea, that’s what we’re going to run with.”

Karla Nelson: You never hear that in business.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. I’ve got a pretty rough example of this that you may have heard of. A lot of people have heard about this, a couple of years ago in Afghanistan we had a military aircraft called an AC-130 gunship and these planes are extremely good at… Well, what we like to call, bringing down the heat. They can unload some serious amount of heat on something and they can destroy the bad guys like you have never seen before. It’s a very impressive piece of machinery but when this particular example on this day. You may have heard about it, there was a hospital in Afghanistan and the crew on the AC-130 miss identified a hospital and there was some miscommunication. There is some miscommunication where the guys on the ground said, “Hey, we’re being pinned down, we’re in a fire fight, we’re taking fire from this location.” And there’s a lot of details that went into this.

Without getting into the details, the bottom line they were given one set of coordinates and said, “Hey, right here is where the hospital is” or excuse me. “Right here’s where the bad guys are.” And when you look at the coordinates, that they’re given a set of coordinates at one place, the bad guys were not exactly there was a little bit off where they were, the guys were being shot at that sent the coordinates. So you can miss, it’s really easy-

Karla Nelson: The previous one, the accident zone model, the stress was… the ability to handle stress well, in the stressful situation, right? And we just learned about that one.

Kevin Nothstine: You know what, that’s a great point because the guys on the ground had been there for four days. Four days of constant fire, constant things going on and now all of a sudden they’re taking fire from another location and it was in the middle of the city and sometimes in the city it can be hard to find things on the ground. And the aircraft, there had been some people shooting at them, so they were actually nine miles away. They’re a lot further away than you normally are and at lower altitude and it gets into some of the technicalities it can be hard to find things on the ground and they’re given coordinates that weren’t exactly right. But the coordinates they are given, unfortunately, the way the camera was looking from those coordinates in the background, they saw… Is at night and they saw this large lit up compound.

They’re like, “They’re taking fire from somewhere.” We’re looking at this area, what we see in our camera from the court and say gave us, is this nice compound that’s very lit up and really sticks out amongst everything else. That must be where the bad guys are. So then they get eyes on the compound and they described the compound of the guys on ground and said, yep, we see a T shaped building with a bunch of people and it’s pretty well lit. And the guys there goes, “Yeah, that’s your target, everybody there is bad they’re shooting at us.” And we teach people how to avoid this. And then they didn’t follow any of the standard protocol and this, they messed up a lot of things. So there were a whole bunch of the air

Karla Nelson: We had number six definitely drove number seven.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, yes it did. That accidents on model of number six drove the strength of an idea in number seven. And their idea was that compound they’re looking at was the hostiles, it was the bad people. Well, it turned out it wasn’t hostiles, it was a hospital. And they did what the AC-130 gunship does well. Which is bring the heat and they… It’s unbelievable the amount of fire power that they brought onto there because they were being told by somebody incorrectly that, yes those were the bad guys, engage. You’re cleared to engage and take them all out. And unfortunately there were 37 people that died.

Karla Nelson: That’s horrible.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. And not just that, and not just the desk, but just the international things and then the briefing wasn’t present.

Karla Nelson: Well, and not only that, that first is an accident and it’s like, “Yeah, that’s why war stinks.” And in business of course that is definitely not to… I would almost venture to say never the case unless somebody gets hurt, right? People do get hurt at work and look, the crab fishermen’s, right? I mean, they probably could learn from this because that is the… What did they call that? The deadliest catch. It’s the most… More people die that are fishing crab in Alaska than any other job. And so in most things in corporate America, that’s not the case, but it’s still really important that you understand that the strength of an idea and really how that perception of what’s happening in your decision making and how those two things can really mess things up, right? In your business.

And that’s why you’re trained to this guy by the way, that’s why we’re going to the podcast series with this, is because there is no better training than the military. That’s what these guys do day in and day out. And look, they can even mess it up, right? So, and boy, four days on the ground, I don’t know they should have probably taken those guys or gotten them out somehow sooner than that. That would be so disorientated I don’t even know how I could do that. And then all of a sudden you’re already scared. You’re already disorientated and now all of a sudden calling in coordinates for getting help. Well, obviously you want to get help. It’s just a really tough situation. But so proactively we can learn from those exact things in business. Okay, onto-

Kevin Nothstine: Business is the strength of an idea but what you want to have to counteract that is a healthy skepticism. You look at something, we’re about to do some serious… Something that’s a serious nerve we’re going to go and purchase.

Karla Nelson: That’s our approvers.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes we’re going to buy $100 million office building. Yep. That’s the right thing to do. Let’s go and do it. Let’s go and do it. Let’s go and do it. The environmental survey said that there’s something going on with the foundation of this area. You know what? That’s what we’re going to do. Let’s run forward and do it. I had a friend of mine that happened to and he ended up over a year that he was tried to settle the environmental issues with a property they had to buy.

Karla Nelson: Exactly. So you got to do your due diligence, get your details. There’s this wonderful process we actually teach for the strength of an idea, if you want to check it out, it’s called the WHO-DO method. So, okay. Let’s move on to the next one, number eight.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. Okay, this one’s the wild card. This is a little bit of a wild card of what are the traps or one of the mistakes people can make. And it’s just a sudden loss of judgment. And you know what? Every now and then and for lack of a better term, I’m sorry I’m going to use something that’s not completely comfortable but it’s the term you can call this a brainfart.

Karla Nelson: Everybody knows that. Hey, there you go we just renamed number eight.

Kevin Nothstine: Brainfart.

Karla Nelson: That’s funny.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay, and I will give you just a simple little example. This is your sudden loss of judgment where you’re going along fat, dumb and happy. Everything is okay but all of a sudden from out of the blue, you make a stupid decision and you just do something that’s not smart or somebody else does. Of course, you wouldn’t. I would never do that and I and Karla and all of our listeners here. No, they would never do something like that. But somebody you work with may go and do something like that. And I’ve had somebody that I worked with, I wasn’t on this flight but we had a pilot. He was flying from one country to another. He had a about a two hour flight over the water, so there’s no airports or anything else around and it’s actually a pretty benign, nothing’s going on. They got the autopilot on and the guy actually happened to be an Uber approver and he’s deepened thought and he’s analyzing what’s going on and he started thinking about things.

Well, he got so lost in his thoughts that he had a sudden loss of judgment and he started wondering about the system and he was going, what would happen if I did this? Well, what did he do? He’s at 28,000 feet over the water and he reached over and shut off all electrical systems on the plane.

Karla Nelson: What, on purpose?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, just out of blue. Kind of. When you look at it, it is… Yeah. He reached over and hit the switch and just turn it all off.

Karla Nelson: Well, think about how would you guys do simulations and trainings for certain things. I mean, he’s just sitting there, when you’re cruising up there, there’s not much to do and there’s plenty to look at. It’s pretty, but it looks all the same for the most part up there.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. And he’s at over the ocean and just not a lot to see or do with his whole process on thoughts and reach over.

Karla Nelson: Did he have a co-pilot with him?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. And I’m surprised he’s still alive after the cop-

Karla Nelson: So what are you doing? My gosh, did he recover from it? This is-

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, yeah, they did. A Plane will still fly without electrical power, it’s going to keep flying with no problem.

Karla Nelson: Like a glider?

Kevin Nothstine: No, both engines are still running everything is still flying. The list is still being provided. Everything’s still working.

Karla Nelson: So you just flip the switch back?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah.

Karla Nelson: Okay. That’s a good one.

Kevin Nothstine: So just that sudden loss of judgment and that’s… There’s a lot of things that can lead to sudden loss of judgment. That brings us to number nine on this list. And some of the things that can lead to that sudden loss of judgment are hazardous attitudes.

Karla Nelson: You know what? We could just call it a bad attitude. Bad hazardous.

Kevin Nothstine: Hazardous, yeah.

Karla Nelson: Hazardous attitude, it’s a bad attitude.

Kevin Nothstine: You got to show your vocabulary to them. All right and there’s a lot of hazardous attitudes there. And in fact, this is actually probably worthy of its own podcast of getting in depth into some of these, but just to highlight at the top level what they are. Just some of them anti-authority, lets just not dig at the boss. Resignation, well that’s e or is all about the resignation this is the way it is.

Karla Nelson: Well and that’s also engagement, right? If there’s so many things that could have somebody in that similar to passenger syndrome. Listen to me. My gosh, I’m learning a whole bunch of stuff on here. But it’s also… Everybody resigns for different reasons and that’s the crazy part about this, shakers resigned because it wasn’t their idea. Movers resigned because nothing’s going to happen anyway and I’m not in charge of being able to facilitate this with a process. Approvers resigned because there’s too much wrong with it and makers resigned because they got real work to do back at their desks. So what’s interesting, and we will wrap up the last podcast. I’m going through each of these because I think attitude, it’s like if you could fix that one, people are open to training, they’re open to learning more, they’re opening themselves.

So this is a super important piece that we’ll be doing a full podcast on. Solutions for those different issues with bad attitudes because some people start out with a bad attitude because they have a bad attitude, okay? I would say most people end up with a bad attitude because of an experience that they’re having that is a negative experience. And then that leads to whenever… What were their percentages of the employee engagement when we did on the last podcast? 53% of employees are disengaged. 13 are actively disengaged. Basically working against you, thats 66% are unengaged. And 70% hate there job in the U.S. 89% worldwide. And that’s Gallup. That’s not me saying it. And so I think resignation is a really interesting and we’ll dive deeper definitely into that on the last podcast to give you some solutions for the attitude challenge. Because I think we label it attitude. Bad attitude but that could be an outcome, not somebody who’s natural.

If you tell somebody, approver every single day, “You’re Debbie Downer and write a book about how to deal with them.” That they’re e or that they’re negative Nelly. All of these things, how do you think that’s going to make them feel? They’re not going to want to be engaged. You’re not allowing them to do the thing that they’re brilliant at, right?

Kevin Nothstine: I’m going to let the cat out of the bag just a little bit. And one of our future podcasts we’re going to be doing is something that we developed called the 10 rules of business.

Karla Nelson: That would be a good one to do.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. And rule six without talking about the others right now, Rule six, your attitude determines how far you’ll go.

Karla Nelson: So true and that… My goodness, you know what I’m thinking of? Now going back to the first podcast in this series, we talked about influenced authority, and so go back to the first podcast if you listened to that. All of these pieces are all parts of a bigger puzzle and they drive every other piece. So we really encourage you, make sure you listen to all or parts of the podcasts that are created in a way that are easily digestible and you can see how they drive each other and also, how you can use the WHO-DO method within the situations to be able to. First, figure out how you get that authority, how you’re positioning yourself as a leader and moving between those different authorities and then the kind of authorities. And then going through how do you coordinate a team and make sure that you don’t make mistakes when you’re working a team. These are all designed to interact with the WHO-DO method. So go ahead, you have a couple more here on the attitude.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. Yeah. Some of those bad attitudes or the hazardous attitudes, in vulnerability or a macho or machismo, impulsivity-

Karla Nelson: That never happens in the millitary-

Kevin Nothstine: Heck yeah. But my bad one, impulsivity.

Karla Nelson: Yes. And working with a prover and a thinker, by the way on both sides, the thinking aspect of it. The prover and shaker because they’re in their head. They can go. It’s funny because when we have meetings, Kevin in the Island and I frequently, we weekly have meetings. That is one thing I’m like, “Okay guys, focus I love you, but your skippity duda are skippiting out, right? It’s time to get something done. Which then leads to my biggest challenge with hazardous bad attitudes. I guess I call it hazardous that is good… Hazardous is actually better than bad because an attitude of wanting to get something done, you’re right. Mistakes can happen, but if I called it a bad attitude, I’m typically happy when I’m tried to get something done, it’s not a negative thing to me, right?

Kevin Nothstine: Now this last one that, what Karla is talking about there, get something done. Is the sixth hazardous or bad attitudes you can have and well, my bad one is impulsivity. A very dear friend, a member of our group it’s get there AIDAS. in flying airplanes. That’s, I’m here at location a and come hell or high water at the end of the day I want to be at location B and I want to just get there get it done. So inclined sometimes you’re willing to make that mistake, and the business world that get there AIDAS. We’re going to talk about this more in the next episode is I just want it done. We got to get across the finish line. Well, once he gets across the finish line, there’s another finish line and then another one but get there right. So Karla, did you know anything about that?

Karla Nelson: No, no, no, not at all. Just kidding, it’s my worst definitely on all of those. I would say I’m pretty great on the other ones but that one I have… Just today, I could probably tell you that, that… And the problem with, get there AIDAs that I’ve learned and we’ll go again, as Kevin said, deeper in the next podcast is when I realized I was a driver and I had get there AIDAS as a mover.

And so you could just leave dead bodies behind you if you don’t understand it and you don’t understand first the authority you have with people and then you’re a driver and you’re in charge and you have get their AIDAS, you could make all mistakes. It’s about engaging the team. We need everybody, we need you at different times but we need everybody and get there AIDAS is really… You’re going to see that way more with the mover and the maker but they have a different form of get there AIDAS, right? so yes, we’ll go deeper into the podcast because your attitude is super, super important and it drives all of these other things because when that’s not happening, you’re opening yourself up to listen, to hear and to learn. So, okay, take us home with number ten.

Kevin Nothstine: Karla, before we jump into that one, I do get to say you’re doing an outstanding job. I teach this for a living. Well, and The People Catalyst is one of the things I’ve done for many years that I’ve taught this for a living.

Karla Nelson: We can’t, couldn’t take. We couldn’t pry Kevin out of an airplane if we try and he has to include it in his in training. He loves training people, so yes. See, although we’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the military teams as well, which is super cool and overlays the WHO-DO method quite frequently with it. So yeah, we would not want to take Kevin out of that completely because he would not be happy.

Kevin Nothstine: It’s not what I do, it’s who I am.

Karla Nelson: That’s funny.

Kevin Nothstine: Now the reason I bring this up is I have taught these principles and concepts to hundreds, if not thousands of air crew members over the last 20 years that I’ve been teaching a lot of these concepts. And your ability to pick this up and connect the dots between the different aspects of this, of talking about if we connect this one with that one, it is truly impressive.

Karla Nelson: Thanks. It’s like I’m a trainer or something, right? Well, do you know what? And this is a good thing to actually talk about for a second is, you never want and think you know so much that you become a danger to yourself and everyone else around you. Because the more that I learn, the more that I learned that there’s so much I don’t know. And I think when it comes down to training, the military is definitely the detail on… I mean, they could kill you with the paper cuts, right?

But at the same time applying this, they’ve been doing this a long time. Their job is to train every single day. There is a lot that we can learn from that. And then also opening ourselves to continually learn and how we can do this and teach this to the teams so that they’d have a tool in their toolbox, right? So if somebody is having a hazardous attitude, that you can say, that’s like this and it looks like you’re doing this and let’s have a conversation around that because what happens is, it empowers everybody to keep everybody else in check so it’s super cool. I love it, thank you. I appreciate that.

Kevin Nothstine: No, my pleasure. Okay. And then the last one, error chain. Now, the error chain. Well, We’ve all seen-

Karla Nelson: So we are talking about like one mistake compiles on something else?

Kevin Nothstine: Exactly, exactly. And a good example of this as we talked earlier about that example of that C-130 in Afghanistan… The the AC-130. Do you think that was the only mistake of the night where the only thing that happened wrong was they miss identified that location. No, not at all. There is a whole series of mistakes or small little things or different things that add up over time and it, one mistake, and it can start from, “Hey, you did a wrong little checklist item here or on that same sorority on that one earlier in the day. One of their pieces of equipment, is a very important communications equipment, their satellite link back to their support group personnel broke. And so they lost a satellite link back home. And they also had some miscommunication that happened with the crew at another part and they had another piece where somehow, there’s one crew member that-

Karla Nelson: Wow, that’s like on accident zone and then the strength of an idea, not passenger syndrome. I wouldn’t say that one, right? Because they weren’t just sitting around, eating Bonbons, that’s for sure. So yeah that happened to

Kevin Nothstine: But there’s a lot of mistakes that happened that lead up on and that’s the error chain, that can lead to that big mistake of that company having to declare bankruptcy because of a whole multitude of mistakes that happened along the way.

Karla Nelson: Yep. So you’ve got to break that chain somehow when it’s happening for sure. Awesome. All right. Well, Kevin is there any last comments that you’d like to make before we wrap up of the third part of a four part series in how to lead like a boss. Even though this one is how to lead a team like a boss?

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. On this one. This was all about those errors that you can make yourself or recognize in other people and just knowing that these all exist and now you want to create a culture and think about avoiding each of these different traps that can pull you into a bad situation.

Karla Nelson: Awesome. Well, thanks again for being on the show and make sure you check out the first and second part of this fourth part series and we’ll be wrapping up the final series next week where we’re going to dive a little bit deeper into number nine, which was hazardous attitudes. Thank you again, Kevin.

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How to Lead Like a Boss (2 of 4)

How to Lead Like a Boss

(Part 2 of 4)

In part two of this series of How to Lead Like a Boss, we discuss how to work as a team like a boss. There are 10 “traps” in working with people.  We discuss 5 this week and another 5 next week!

If you missed Part 1 of this series, where we discussed the sources of leadership power, you can listen to it here.

The first 5 Traps are:

  1. Excessive Professional Courtesy
  2. Halo Effect
  3. Passenger Syndrome
  4. Hidden Agenda
  5. Accommodation Syndrome

Listen to the podcast here:

Listen in as Karla and Kevin Discuss How to Lead Like a Boss (2 of 4)

Karla Nelson: And welcome to The People Catalysts Podcast, Mr. Kevin Nothstine.

Kevin Nothstine: Hello, Karla. Happy to be here.

Karla Nelson: Hey, so glad to have you here. We had so much fun on the last podcast. We kind of dove down a little bit more into these… If you haven’t heard the first podcast, it’s how to lead like a boss. And we talked about the seven sources of authority, and I’ll just take a moment here to introduce Kevin, and give you his background, and the reason why we should be listening to what he says on this particular topic. He spent 21 years in active duty as an officer in the Air Force, and he worked with the special ops aircrew that flew a mission. It was the same mission that he flew in Afghanistan and Iraq, and now teaches these other special ops teams and aircrew how to find the bad guys and tell the good guys where they’re at.

So if you think about the Bin Laden raid and how they have the stack, is what they call it, his particular aircraft, that he flies and trains as an instructor. The crew, the mission crew is called an MCS-12 and that is at the top of the stack. And so he is also one of the co-founders of The People Catalysts. And Kevin is a prover shaker. And what that means is main prover, if you notice out loud I said he’s an Über prover, but he also has a secondary core nature of work as a shaker and likes to come up with ideas. He’s his own worst enemy in his brain sometimes. “Idea! Bang! Idea! Bang!” Right?

Kevin Nothstine: And we contrast with Karla, who is the Über mover, who wants everything done yesterday.

Karla Nelson: No. Yes. All right. So for today, what we’re going to be talking about is how to work as a team like a boss. And now there are 10 pieces that Kevin’s going to walk us through on this. And it would have been too long of a podcast. So we are going to break up … We will do five here today, and then next week we will go through another five just to make it digestible, so that you can use these 10 different ways to work as a team like a boss. All right, Kevin, take it away.

Kevin Nothstine: All right. What we’re going to do on these 10, where this comes from is Crew Resource Management, is what they call it in the military. And of course the military has to have specific names of everything, and these ones are the Human Factors Traps.

Karla Nelson: You just got to love how the military names things, right? It’s like, it’s got to have some secret way of knowing this and needing an acronym. It’s hilarious. I’ve had a lot of fun going through some of their training manuals.

Kevin Nothstine: So this particular one, they call them traps. And basically it’s challenges to people working together as a team. And it’s things that you can identify-

Karla Nelson: It doesn’t always work out? What do you mean? We would be out of business if it did, I guess.

Kevin Nothstine: Sometimes you got a problem. Every once in a great while, somebody might have one of these 10 issues going on.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, yeah, exactly.

Kevin Nothstine: And as we get into it, and we’re going to have some stories and talk about different ones and some from the military and some other places. Hopefully we’ll have a lot of fun doing this. Well, the first one we’re going to talk about is what we like to refer to in the Air Force, they call it Excessive Professional Courtesy.

Karla Nelson: There we go again. I love these names. This is great.

Kevin Nothstine: And what is it that’s going on? You don’t have a willingness to call out the boss when something is wrong. And they’re actually saying, in the military, we try to teach the pilots, “Hey, when you’re flying an airplane, just because they’re the boss, you should still be able to call them out.” And I guess a real good example of this from the flying world, and I’m sure you can think of something from the business world as well, but from the flying world, I had one day, I was a young copilot, a young guy first starting out. And I was in the right seat of a plane called the C130. And on the ground, my supervisor, my direct boss, happened to be the aircraft commander that day. So he’s in the left seat of the plane. So I have me sitting there, my boss in the left seat. Now we’re flying as a formation, and the aircraft in front of us that was leading the formation had what we call the group commander. This is a bird colonel. It was my boss’s boss’s boss’s boss

Karla Nelson: They have a lot of bosses.

Kevin Nothstine: It’s the hierarchy, just like corporate America. So basically, we have the COO up there in the lead plane, and I’m the mail clerk down in my plane.

Karla Nelson: That’s a good way to put it.

Kevin Nothstine: So, we’re flying at night. We’re doing a training mission. We do a lot of training. And we’re training of how to do an airdrop of people out of your aircraft at night. Now instead of people, we actually had sandbags this night. So we had a 15-pound sandbag that we’re going to simulate people jumping out of the plane. Well we’re flying along directly behind our lead aircraft at night. And to do the drop, we had to descend, we had to go down almost 2,000 feet to get to a lower altitude so we have an accurate drop going over the drop zone. Well, lead aircraft initiates it and says, “Okay, time to descent. Let’s go down.” And we start our descent. Well the lead plane, with the equivalent to the COO, the bird colonel up there, he only went down 500 feet, and he leveled off exactly a thousand foot higher than what he was supposed to. So we were continuing down-

Karla Nelson: And you guys are both dropping bags?

Kevin Nothstine: Yes.

Karla Nelson: That would be bad.

Kevin Nothstine: We’re planned to. Now, we always brief up. We had provisions what we call a no drop to say, “Hey, there’s something wrong. Don’t drop.”

Karla Nelson: Mm-hmm

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. So, we continued our descent, and we get down close to drop altitude, and I look at the plane in front of us, and we could see him. It was a nice clear night. I said, “Hey…” I’m in the right seat. I’m talking to my supervisor next to me. And I said, “Hey-”

Karla Nelson: Okay. Tell us what being in the right seat means, because some people might not know what that means.

Kevin Nothstine: The copilot or the first officer. And the man in charge is in the left seat. That’s the aircraft commander. And so here I am the copilot, doing other duties while he’s flying the plane. Well I brought it up and I said, “Hey, lead leveled off.” He goes, “Yeah, I think they did.” I said, “They’re not coming down any further and they’re about to drop.” And he goes, “Yeah, I think you’re right.” I said, “He’s about to drop a sandbag, and we are now out of position and well below him, and we’re about to have a sandbag come right in one of our engines.”

Karla Nelson: Like good-bad scale. That would be bad.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, that would be bad. And he said, “Yeah, we’re going to go ahead and climb back up.” So he climbed back up to his altitude. We matched his. But we didn’t say anything to them. Now he’s just dropping a sandbag. But it could be dangerous if we were actually dropping personnel. We could put them in the wrong place if we’re dropping them from the wrong altitude. But we didn’t say anything to the plane in front of us. And they went across, and they dropped their sandbag. And we called a no drop and didn’t drop our sandbag, because we weren’t in the right position.

Well, after the sortie, we get into the debrief. And the group commander, the, the man in charge of everything, was going around the room, and we went through. It got to that point. He goes, “Now, you guys no dropped. Why did you no drop on that?” And still, my supervisor isn’t saying a word about it. And I’m looking at him, and I was just wondering, “What is going on here?” And that finally I spoke up, and I said, “Well, sir, you were exactly a thousand feet above your drop altitude.” And, at first he didn’t believe it, and then his navigator says, “You know that makes sense based on our drop score and where the sandbag fell.” And right after that, the commander said, “Well, why didn’t any of you tell me something was wrong?” And the answer was Excessive Professional Courtesy. My commander, my aircraft commander right next to me, was showing excessive professional courtesy. He didn’t want to call out the boss for this potentially dangerous situation.

Karla Nelson: Wow. I bet you that might even be a little bit harder in the military than it is, just because the formalities, than in business. But somebody that can utilize this, I mean you just effectively sync your entire team if you are using that Excessive Professional Courtesy. And the other side of it is you have to agree to it. That’s why we’re going through all of these different steps. Because if your team is trained in, you are trained, you can actually just point at that and say, “This is the pitfall that you ran into that was keeping our team from working to its ultimate performance.”

And so when you understand that these are the 10 things that you need to take a look at that are going to affect your team negatively and or positively, and what I mean by that is if you know it’s Excessive Professional… That needs a better name. You don’t want to call out your boss on something, then you have to have the agreement that it is okay to call out the boss on that thing. And so you have to go both ways. If you’re focusing on, hey, why didn’t you call me out?” It’s like, well yeah, that would probably, depending on what the culture of the company is and what’s going to happen if you call out the boss, right, that’s just as important to manage before you’re in that situation instead of getting upset that somebody didn’t call you out.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep. You’re exactly right. You have to create that culture where people understand that it is okay to call people out when something is potentially wrong.

Karla Nelson: Yes. And accept there’s a way to do it. And my dad used to always say, “You can tell me anything Karla, but you better mind the way you tell it to me.” Right? So like for instance, if you know you need to call someone out, it doesn’t mean you call them out in front of 50 people. Every scenario is going to be different, right? But what he was saying is, “You can tell me I’m wrong, but think about how you’re telling me I’m wrong.” Right? Or have a process by which you do it. There’s this really cool process we teach. Okay, Kevin. Next one.

Kevin Nothstine: Next one. Halo effect. This is another item that can mess things up, but you have to watch out for it. Actually this isn’t strictly to the military. There’s a book that came out in 1920 that first talked about this halo effect. And what it is is when somebody does really great at one thing, so you assume that they’re going to be great at something else. They said, “Oh, they flew this plane really, really well and now we’re going to transition them over to a different air frame, and we assume that they’re going to do an awesome job in this air frame based on their past performance in something that may or may not be related to the same type thing.”

Karla Nelson: Yeah, that can also be for the perception of companies. Allen and I did a review on Good to Great, what was awesome about the book, but what was missing because the companies didn’t do that well, but when that book was written, everyone was like, “Wow.” And the title of the podcast, if anybody wants to go back and listen to it, is Good to Grave. Because the companies that were identified, I think there was like 13 of them, a lot of them did really horrible. And even Kodak was one of them and a few other ones that went away completely. But the one that I think of when we did the research on and I read the book was Cisco Systems. So they were huge and they were just growing like gangbusters in the 90s during that tech boom and all the reports on Cisco Systems were, “Oh my gosh, you’ve got a masterful strategy and your acquisition ability to grow by acquisition and you have a superb customer. I mean everyone was like, “Invest in this company, invest in this company, invest in this company.”

And then the tech bubble hit. And literally the same exact people were like, “They have a horrible strategy, right? They don’t know what their customers want.” And it’s like the same people had the exact opposite thing to say, right? And of course Cisco Systems did turn around and they’re still a big tech company today. However, they were the same company, right? So you have to think, I mean it was the same company. So that halo effect that happens that says, “Oh, you’re wonderful, you’re wonderful.” It can also happen just in the shift of your perception of a product of a company as well. So there’s a lot of ways to look at the halo effect.

And one of the other things that makes me think of is the iPhone. Everybody said, “Oh, the iPhone is going to be the best thing since sliced bread because why? Because the i…” What was that thing called? iPod.

Kevin Nothstine: Because the iPod did so well.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, the iPod did so well. And so there’s different applications. So contextually you can apply the halo effect to of companies’ products, a company and looking at their strategic plan and what they’re doing. Then you can also be selling yourself on one of those things on either side of it, by the way, right?

Kevin Nothstine: Yep.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. I bet you that’s really interesting. In the military when you’re a pilot, everyone thinks, “Oh, you can fly that plane so you can fly any plane.” It’s even more than that because the missions are all different.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, and I can go even deeper than that, but we don’t have time for that.

Karla Nelson: I’m sure you can. Mr. Prover. Believe me, Kevin can always go deeper and go into more detail without even thinking, but that is why he is our lead prover on the team. So, okay, what’s next?

Kevin Nothstine: Next one. Passenger syndrome. Passenger syndrome.

Karla Nelson: Okay. Layman’s term. So sitting around doing nothing. Twiddling your thumbs.

Kevin Nothstine: Yep, exactly.

Karla Nelson: Okay, there you go. Twiddle your thumbs syndrome.

Kevin Nothstine: It can also be called-

Karla Nelson: I’m going to rewrite all their training books.

Kevin Nothstine: Well, we talked earlier about another name for this is what we sometimes refer to as the copilot syndrome. Well, earlier you were asking about right seat versus left seat. In an airplane, the right seat is the copilot or the first officer in the civilian world, and the left seat is the aircraft commander. Well when you’re in that right seat, if you get somebody that is running the show and they’ve got it all taken care of, or if they’re kind of overbearing personality and just an Über driver and doing stuff-

Karla Nelson: Well that reminds me of when you told me a story about when the fighter pilot, which is a single person aircraft typically, then you have to then put them into the crew world and then the mentality of… Just tell the story. You probably have a whole bunch of them, but I think that’s really interesting to think about. Even moving culture to culture within a division of a company, there could be an issue with that.

Kevin Nothstine: Well, the story that I think you’re talking about there is actually a little more halo effect where a guy was like, “Hey, I’m great at this other air frame and I’m moving into a crew aircraft, and I’m teaching the guy crew, crew, crew.” At the end of the day, he goes, “If I’m the one that’s flying a plane, why do I need to brief anybody else about what I’m doing?”

Karla Nelson: That’s hilarious. It wasn’t that one. It was something about like going a whole sortie and never saying a word or something like that.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, that’s a whole other topic. That’s a whole different one.

Karla Nelson: So just share with us then the mentality of the crew versus the fighter and why that is so… It’s not just, “Oh, you’re a pilot.”

Kevin Nothstine: I’ve got a good one that’s going to work on this passenger syndrome and actually it’s one that when I was flying one day, if I would have been in the passenger syndrome, it could have been bad.

Karla Nelson: There you go. That’s good.

Kevin Nothstine: And what happened? We’re doing a takeoff and we’re training like we do a lot of times. We’re training if we were taking off from a short field. Now to put this in perspective, we’re flying a C130 and it weighed about 130,000 pounds. Now a normal a takeoff role for a plane like that. You have a runway that’s about a mile longer, one to two miles long. Well we are practicing. What if your runway is less than a half mile long and you have to take off in that situation? So we’re on this runway that is actually about a half mile long. And so we run the engines up, we’ve got full power and holding the brakes, and it’s kind of like a race car sitting there at the starting line waiting to go, and we call it break release. And we’ve got full power and the plane starts rolling down the runway and it’s moving-

Karla Nelson: That’s got to be fun.

Kevin Nothstine: It is. To be blunt, it is. On this day, the pilot, the left seat that was flying the plane and doing this, all of a sudden his seat, its position, the tracks gave loose, and his seat slid all the way back. And it slid so far back and he’s holding his arms straight out as far as he can and he couldn’t even reach the controls of the plane.

Karla Nelson: On a good, bad scale, that would be bad because the two things… What are the two times that are most risky? When you’re taking off and when you’re landing probably.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. Yeah. That’s the most risky parts of the plane. And here we are taking off on this half mile long runway, and all of a sudden the pilot can’t touch the controls. Now, if I would’ve been doing the passenger syndrome and just sitting over there going, “Oh, he’s got the plane, everything is fine,” it could have been catastrophic. We could run off the side of the runway or something like that.

Karla Nelson: That seems awfully short for 130,000 pound plane.

Kevin Nothstine: That’s what we train to.

Karla Nelson: See, guys, this is why training is really important, right?

Kevin Nothstine: On that one, I was in the seat and I actually had my hand on the yoke, my right hand on the yoke, my left hand on the power levers. My feet were on the rotor pedals. So as soon as he slid back and he’s got his arms stretched out, looking like Frankenstein, the very next words that all he said was, “You have the plane.” I was just sitting there doing nothing, and now a heartbeat away, I’m the one that’s flying the plane.

Karla Nelson: Wow. I would have been probably puckering up a little bit in my seat on that one though. In the corporate world we have this word for it, acronym we’re talking military stuff, is employee engagement. And I actually really can’t stand the word even though its realities are very serious, especially in corporate America. We consistently talk about how they’ve done this Gallup poll every single year, and typically somewhere around 70% of people in the United States, 89% worldwide hate their jobs. Not just like not hate them. They hate what they do every day.

Now, if you break down those numbers, they did another study of engagement specifically. And 53% of people are actively disengaged and 13% actively disengaged. Think about that. That’s the group that now is working against you. They hate being there so much, right? So 66%. what does that do to a company’s ability to succeed?

And to me the passenger syndrome that you’re talking about and disengagement is more of an issue because they’re not being either trained properly or most importantly, it’s why we teach the WHO-DO™ method because you can apply the WHO-DO™ contextually to every single one of these things. And so, this is kind of what I like to say, the soft skills, right? To be aware of something so that you can proactively work around it. But when 66% of people are disengaged in their work, how do you get anything done? Okay, you can have the soapbox now. I don’t feel passionately about that at all.

Kevin Nothstine: No. And you know what? We’re going to move on to the next one I think.

Karla Nelson: That’s good.

Kevin Nothstine: Next one is the hidden agenda. And what this is, you have a reason for doing something that you’re not sharing with the group, and it is not in line with the goals of everybody else. You have some hidden agenda, and this could be a very large one. You can think of corporate espionage and those type things, but even on a much smaller scale, on a simpler scale, this could be, you got a late afternoon meeting, you’ve got a three o’clock or four o’clock start time on a meeting, and you want to get home to your kid’s recital, your kid’s doing a piano recital. So in the back of your mind, you don’t care about that meeting. You don’t care about choosing the best solution. You don’t care about making the best things happen, right? You just want to do whatever you can to make that meeting in so you can get home to go to your kid’s recital. And that’d be a hidden agenda.

Karla Nelson: Yep. Yep, yep. Yep. That happens all the time probably. And that’s one of the great things I actually do love about the military. Everyone on the call here are listening on the podcast has been around military individuals or are a military brat themselves. My dad was in for 24 years. My father-in-law was in for 30 plus years. Kevin. I just have a lot of people that I know that are in the military. And actually two of my bonus kids are in the military as well. And so I love how they let you then say, “Hey, my kids has something and family time.” Well, in corporate America it depends on the culture.” That would be looked down upon if you had to get to your kid’s recital. And that’s not every company. It’s gotten so much better even than when I was younger. But if you talk to our parents about that, you could have a whole bunch of people with a hidden agenda because they don’t want to speak up to say, “Hey, I’ve got this thing.” Right?

And so that again is about opening that culture up, and the military is the best I think at that when if you got a sick kid, people understand, right?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah.

Karla Nelson: If you need to get home to your family, people understand, which is pretty cool.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. Last one we want to talk about today is what we call accommodation syndrome. Okay. And this one’s a little more in depth, a little harder to understand than the hidden agenda. Now, the accommodation syndrome and what this is about, it’s your decreasing arousal to a stimulus because-

Karla Nelson: Okay. English please.

Kevin Nothstine: You accommodates something. Okay. What happens as you continuing to do something that’s risky, the more you do it, the more times you do something that has some inherent risk, the more you…

Karla Nelson: The more you’re willing to do it, like it doesn’t feel risky anymore.

Kevin Nothstine: Exactly. You don’t perceive the risk near as much because you’ve been doing it several times.

Karla Nelson: Ooh, a lot of people did that back in the crash in 2008. They were so used to buying these big commercial buildings and this and that, that never, they couldn’t lose. They did it so many times. And then all of a sudden the timing of the market, they just went down because inherently buying a hundred million dollar he used the property is risky. After you’ve done it 20-30 times and you’ve made money, it seems like it’s less risky, right?

Kevin Nothstine: Exactly.

Karla Nelson: Makes sense. Well, this reminds me of the innovation area of doing this. There are so many different companies out there, especially right now with the decentralization that technology has brought companies where whoever had the most money always won before. Now it’s whoever takes care of your customer and can build an app, can takeover. Look at the hotel industry. AirBnB dominated that and they don’t own one piece of real estate, right? And I think of companies like Kodak who created the digital camera, but they didn’t want it to take away from their other business. So they sold off their IP. Well that’s why they are gone, right? Taxi industry. Uber did the same thing. Taxis were expensive. The process was horrible, right? And then all of a sudden they take that industry.

And not only do they take it over, they grew it. So they launched in San Francisco. And the taxi industry was $1 million per year, and they grew it to an industry that was 10 million per year utilizing Uber. And so they not only changed the course of the industry, they actually grew the market, which is kind of unique because we always talk about TAM (Total Available Market) and… I won’t get into all that. But to actually have something that’s so valuable that it grows in industry because of innovation.

So the accommodation syndrome, yes. It definitely can be used that hey, you’ve done this, it’s risky, it’s risky, it’s risky. And your inherent thought of it is, “Oh, it’s easy and so I can just keep on doing it.” But if you look at Blockbuster is the same way. With innovation, they thought they were too big to fail. So they had had their 10,000 stores forever. And guess what, there’s one open, right? We teach this in our training that the way they stayed open was an innovative way of staying open, which is you can only go and rent DVDs that you can’t access streaming live. And so I think innovation is a really good one to look at in business for the accommodation syndrome and running businesses are like, if you’re growing by acquisition, I’ve seen that. Or if you do a turnaround, people that go in and do turnarounds and they’re fixing something up. Even a house for sale that do flipping homes after they’ve done it so many times they think, “Oh, you know what?” They don’t take into consideration $100 million sounds like funny money. It just sounds like some other different day, right?

Kevin Nothstine: If you want a real good example of that, just look at the United States government. A billion here, a billion there. And pretty soon you’re talking about serious money.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, definitely. That’s awesome. Well, these are so good. I know we can’t get through all 10. That’s why we are breaking this up into a four-part series now, and we’ll go through the next five. And then what we’re going to do is we’re going to pull some solutions out in the final part four of this four-part series. So, thanks so much, Kevin, for your time here today in how to work as a team like a boss.

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How to Lead Like a Boss (1 of 4)

The People Catalyst Podcast Episode 113

How to Lead Like a Boss

(Part 1 of 4)

The People Catalyst Podcast Episode 113_Facebook

Did you know there are seven sources of your authority? In this episode, we dig into what those sources are and how to tap into them.

Listen in as we explain how to lead like a boss using seven steps of your authority.

Listen to the podcast here:

Listen in as Karla and Kevin Discuss How to Lead Like a Boss (1 of 4)

Karla Nelson: And welcome to the People Catalyst Podcast, Mr. Kevin Nothstine.

Kevin Nothstine: Hello Karla, happy to be here.

Karla Nelson: We’re happy to have you sir. This is really going to be a fun podcast and as you guys may have known, Kevin has been on the podcast a couple of times before. Kevin is one of our co-founders at the People Catalyst and he is a prover shaker. That means he is mainly a prover but he has a little bit of a secondary shaker in his core nature of work and Kevin spent 21 years as an officer in the military, specifically in the Air Force and currently still teaches some special ops peer crew in the same mission that he flew in Afghanistan and Iraq. So he’s also been an instructor pilot so although he’s a master trainer with the People Catalyst he is, I’ll tell ya, training somebody on a combat mission that basically this mission is like to find the bad guys and tell the good guys where they are.

So like the Bin Laden raids where they have what they call “The Stack” all the way from what they call the MC-12 to the top to the boots on the ground and there could be many different aircraft and then they get there early and they do a whole bunch of secret stuff that I have no idea, but I know that it’s pretty intense and they have some of the best training ever. And a lot of times when we take a look at training, who’s the best at training? The military is amazing. Their job, Kevin’s job for years and years was to go to work and train and they simulate training over and over again because in business most of the time, I would venture to say, it’s not life or death. You guys have to figure out how to make sure people don’t die and also that you know, mistakes are going to happen and when they do they’re really, really significant in his line of work.

So a lot of times we like to take a look at the military’s training because it is so good and then apply that to business. And what we’re going to talk about here today is how to lead like a boss. And so there are… what was the actual military name, I can’t remember?

Kevin Nothstine: Where we’re pulling this from is a thing called crew resource management. But this particular section of it, the military title for this is aircraft commander authority power basis. So that’s their long handle.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Say that three times fast. We’re just going with how to lead like a boss.

Kevin Nothstine: I like it. I like it.

Karla Nelson: And there are seven sources of this authority.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, definitely. And there’s parallels between how we teach this in the military and what’s happens in the civilian world as you’re going to see throughout the day here, throughout this podcast. So first one we’re just going to talk about is a very obvious part of authority and what this is where your authority comes from as a leader or as a boss. The training we do in the military, this is as an aircraft commander, as somebody that’s leading a crew to go and accomplish a mission. And wherever you have that crew, you’re going to have several people, depending upon the size of your crew, it can be anything from two up to, I’ve seen some aircraft that have a crew of 70.

In one aircraft at one time, you have one person that’s in control of that. Well that one person that’s in control of it, in the military, it’s very obvious, when we set those crew orders, we identify the leader and on the actual orders they have a little place for codes and they put the A code next to that leader. And that A code says, “Okay, for this sortie this is the person who is the commander, the aircraft commander up there.” And there’s a lot of power in that word commander because in the military it’s actually legal, it’s your legal authority of it. But once you have that A code, once you have that legal authority, well what we refer to that is legitimate authority and the legitimate authority-

Karla Nelson: So now let me just say, now we’re going into the first of the seven steps, right? Is that where you’re bleeding necessary?

Kevin Nothstine: Yes.

Karla Nelson: Okay, just wanted to confirm. I’m trying to soak it all in and also learn as we go because I think this is not only amazing and fantastic, but authority is a very important thing in business. And of course in military it’s even more critical. And so go ahead Kevin. Tell us about this legitimate authority.

Kevin Nothstine: And you’re exactly right. As a prover, I do like to jump into the details very quickly. So thank you for putting that construct on that context for us.

Karla Nelson: Well, and this is like second nature for you, you’ve been utilizing crew resource management for the better part of 25 years. So it would make sense that what is easy and just you can flow through for you is definitely… And it is details, my goodness, I’ve never seen training in such detail, it’s incredible in the military. I mean, it doesn’t matter if you’re pushing papers or flying an aircraft, there’s a lot of rules to follow.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh yes, very much so. But yeah, you’re right. And just a little bit more context on this, we’re going to talk about these seven sources of your authority, that Karla had mentioned. Now you flow in and out of these different sources of authority and we’ll probably talk about this at the end just a little bit more, but there are these different ways you have authority, but as a good leader, you have to understand that your leadership ability comes from all of these. And there are different times where each one is a good tool to use as part of your toolkit.

Karla Nelson: And they can be overused and underused.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. On both of them. So yeah. Thank you. So that puts it a lot more in context, what you’re talking about. Now of those seven that first that we started to mention is that legitimate authority and that is when your power is based on the position held by the leader, that’s when it comes in and tell you that, “Okay, this person, they write the check or they’re the ones that are identified as the boss.” So they have that position of authority. So when they speak, somebody’s going to listen to them, they’re going to have that influence over their team by the fact that they are the identified leader.

Karla Nelson: Interesting. You know what this makes me think of? Every meeting that a CEO walks into and derails everything, which we’ve actually happened to have that happen to us in the beginning of training so many times that we had to come up with these 10 rules to follow and the agenda doesn’t even get derailed with the CEO, they have to trust the process as well. And Kevin, you’ll appreciate this, this was with a military group and they were working with the government and they are contracted with the government but this very, very, very, high authority, big kind of ego group of people. And they have us sit down and kind of strategize how they’re going to deliver a cut of a third of all of their pay and still keep the entire team intact. And so, of course, the leadership just wanted to walk in and say, “Here you go, we’re going to cut your pay by a third. Good luck.” How’s that going to work out? Right? And so we’re like, “No, there’s a better way to do this. Let them solve their own problem.”

And so definitely legitimate authority is important. I would venture to say in the military it’s really important, but then also the balance of that is to say that just because you have the authority, you have to think about how you’re delivering different things at different times in different ways. I mean there’s only one answer to this problem, but if you walk in and you’ve already solved it because you’re put in authority there and you just tell somebody instead of utilizing the team to come about certain answers, it just can go both ways on these things, right? So you can under use it and over use it. And I think it’s that balance of the two and knowing when to use it that there’s a lot that goes into that.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, definitely. And it’s easy to see as a parent as well, when you have your child doing something, how many times have we heard, “Well go and do this.” And these kids says, “Why?”

“Because I’m the parent. I said, so.” Well you just practiced legitimate authority.

Karla Nelson: I hated that one as a child, but it’s true. Right? And your parent does need that authority. At the same time, you have to balance the two out for sure. Okay, let’s move on to the next one. I’m excited.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. Next one. A good one here is a your expert authority and this is the fact that you can have influence over a group of people, by the fact that you are the expert in any given area. Your skill or your knowledge, when you know something better than anybody else in the room that now gives you that respect and that authority and that power base to be able to influence your team.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, and is a lot of training companies are built on what somebody knows about a certain problem and how to solve it. So, for sure, That’s definitely…

Kevin Nothstine: When you talking about the training companies, that really does highlight the fact that you know, as a leader, if you don’t have the expertise in an area, well, where can you get it from? Well, you can bring in somebody else to help out if you don’t have that expert power, if you don’t have the that authority with a team. But the fact that you bring them in, that’s a great way of exercising your expert authority. It could also be you acknowledging the fact of your lack of expertise.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, that’s a good point. Both ways. On all of these it seems so far. All right. What’s the next one?

Kevin Nothstine: Okay, next one is information authority. Okay. You can also have influence, just the fact that you are in possession of or you have access to some information that everybody else perceives as something of value. If you know something that’s going on, if you know something that’s happening in your culture or something is happening with your company or if you’re in touch with the right people with the right information, other people will acknowledge you as a higher authority figure just because of the fact that you do have that piece of information and they would like to be able to have access to your information sources.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, so you know what’s going on in the company. You know where all the… Movement, where we going?

Kevin Nothstine: Skeletons are buried.

Karla Nelson: I was going to say that and I thought, “Should I say that?” That’s kind of true though, right? Because you’re balancing, for instance, when we were working with mid market companies and building them up to sell, one of the biggest things here was, and it’s how actually I met Allen, and you would go into this company and they’re like, “Why are you here?” Well, you can’t deliver to them, “Hey, we’re here to build this company up to sell in a couple of years.” Because, hello, they’re going to wonder if they’re going to have a job next week. Right? Which the goal almost never was to reduce the amount of people that were in the company, but what happens is then now, as the leader, the trainer, the person walking into it, you actually do have a lot of “information authority” instantly, even though, then you have to balance it out with some of these other ones you talked about expert authority.

I will probably get to other ones as far as like building relationship because that’s why we would then run the process to figure out who was on the team and what pieces of work they could do in order to build this company up. But it was interesting because I never thought about information authority because now all of a sudden they’re like, “Oh they’re sitting down with the leadership and they’re not in the company per se.” And that really did lend a lot of authority like, “Who is this person that they brought in?” Not only expert but information, like you’re the one who knows what’s going on around this place. Interesting.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, definitely. And then the next one on this one, now in the military, they like to call this one reference authority. I don’t like that name at all. I think a better name for this is really influence, you have your influence authority. And what that refers to is just the fact, personality traits. Are you a likable kind of person? Do you pass the beer test? And you know that’s going to give you some authority.

Karla Nelson: Who ever came up with that, the beer test? I think that was that Dennis

Kevin Nothstine: Or I guess we’re assuming everybody knows what the beer test is. So what’s the beer test?

Karla Nelson: The beer test is, do I want to have a drink on Friday with you after work?

Kevin Nothstine: It’s that simple. And you know what? If it’s somebody that you can get along with that is a source of authority that you can have. And I’ve got a really good story on this, just kind of showing leadership, if we’ve got the time for it?

Karla Nelson: Sure. Yeah, go ahead.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. Well I was at an organization, this is overseas and as part of the military of course, this is a major part of my background, and we had a real culture problem at this one base where I was stationed and it came from just the mindset of the senior leaders that were practicing their legitimate authority and these senior leaders, for lack of a better term, it could be called a bit of an elitist and somebody that he did not pass the beer test. In fact, he was very stringent in the fact that he told all of the leaders right beneath him that they will not hang out or have a beer with the lower ranking people because that promoted fraternization and fraternization is wrong. And that was their mindset. So in this environment we got to the point we’re having monthly meetings and they’re like, “You know what, we have a culture problem, so let’s have a meeting once a month and bring everybody in and let’s talk about the stuff that might be nice and that’s going to help our culture.”

Now what’s really funny is how they conducted this meeting. The senior leader, the Colonel that was in charge of the whole base, so several thousand people under this guy, equivalent of a CEO of a very large corporation would hold this meeting once a month with all the officers. So you have 10% of the people, the officers or the leadership of the whole base and bring them all together and they’d all be in the room and they had it at the officer’s club at a ballroom right next to the officer’s club, so it’s next to the bar. And the first thing they would do is everybody’s in the room waiting for the senior leader to walk in. And we walked in, it was a standard military type thing where he would come in the same door and he’d open the door and somebody would call the room to attention and everybody would pop to attention and standing there nice and rigid and looking straight ahead. And then he would walk from the back of the room all the way up the center aisle through the crowd and wait until he was all the way at the front of the room. And then he would tell everybody, “Take your seats.” And everybody would take a seat.

And then they would go into thing and somebody would try and do something funny or whatever the presentation for the month was, but just right there, the beginning of it was just a culture crusher. And then when the meeting ended and they would schedule them on Friday afternoons, it’d end at 4:00 on a Friday afternoon at the officer’s club…

Karla Nelson: Yeah, because you put the meeting on Friday, then it makes it fun and we can solve a culture issue. It’s ridiculous.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah, exactly. And what happened as soon as the meeting’s done at 4:00 on a Friday afternoon with everybody at the officer’s club, they would scurry like rats fleeing a sinking ship.

Karla Nelson: That’s a new one. I haven’t heard that one before.

Kevin Nothstine: Five minutes after the meeting was done, the place was a ghost town and the couple hundred people that were there are now disappeared. Nobody wanted to hang out and nobody wanted to do anything. And they’re intent of trying to work on the culture, they actually hurt their initial intent with that. Well, the reason I tell that one, that’s the negative aspect, but we had a good leader in there, a new Vice Wing Commander, the number two guy that came in. Without giving his name, he went by PJ, we’ll call him PJ.

Well, on one of these meetings, the senior leader, they Colonel that set all this up, wasn’t there. He wasn’t going to be there that day, he was traveling, and PJ was going to be the senior leader on this particular meeting. So everybody’s in the room, they’re waiting for the normal thing and they’ve got somebody stationed by the back door, so as soon as PJ would walk in the door, they’d call the room to attention, everything. Well, PJ knew a little bit more about culture and had an understanding and he snuck in through a different door. So it’d be like your COO sneaking in through an entirely different door and he comes in, snakes in and puts his head around the corner and he yells out to the room, “Hey! We’re going to get started in about five minutes here, but before we get started, I’m going to go to the bar and grab a beer and if anybody wants to join me, you’re welcome to.”

Karla Nelson: The only difference is I’m not sure that you probably want to serve beer at a meeting that was on the clock in the private sector. It’s one of the cool things about the military though.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. But it’s a Friday afternoon and look at how many times when you go to a conference or something and how many times they have alcohol there at the conference. But it is-

Karla Nelson: So tell me then, how did everybody react?

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, this was the funny part. All the younger guys, the lieutenants and captains, all the young guys are like, “Oh, we can do that. All right, it sounds like a good idea,” And they headed over and they go walk into the bar, “This is good.” All of the more senior folk that had been around for a year or two and had seen the culture were looking at each other confused, like, “What? Can we do that? Is this a trick? Is this a trap? What’s going on here? I’m not sure if we can do this.”

Karla Nelson: I bet you that was funny. He sounds like fun, I’d love to meet him.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, he was a great guy, just an outstanding individual. Just a really good leader, and he understood the influence and that influence authority that you have on an organization and everybody respected him for that.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, just somebody that you like, that’s likable, that wants to get things done, but not trip over themselves along the way.

Kevin Nothstine: And that truly was the definition of the beer test with him.

Karla Nelson: Cool. Okay. What’s next?

Kevin Nothstine: Okay. Next one is a coercive power. Now this is one that normally we can associate this with the negative parts. The coercive power or coercive authority, it’s your ability to influence people because you can punish them. You can give them some type of punishment that’s-.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Like fire him?

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. You can fire them or give them a bad review or something…

Karla Nelson: Demote?

Kevin Nothstine: Right. Exactly. All those types of things. And I kind of liken this one, it is a power that as a leader that sometimes, unfortunately, you have to use. Now I like to liken this one to a flying analogy. When you’re flying an airplane and you’re coming in and you’re trying to find a runway and you’re in the weather so you can’t see the ground and you have instruments that are telling you where to go. Well, you want to be on a specific track, you want to be on on course, on glide path is what we call it. And that’s left and right and up and down and the right speed and everything as you’re coming in to find the runway so that you can land safely when you pop out of the weather. Now, if you get a little bit off course, you want to hear somebody saying, “Hey, you’re a little bit off course. You need to get back on the right course here.” And then if you get a little further off course, “Hey, you’re well off course, you need to correct ‘this much’ back over.” Then the ultimate, the coercive power on this is, “Hey, you’re well out of course, your too far, I’ve got the airplane, I’m going to take it away from you and we’re going to go around and try this again.”

Karla Nelson: Yeah.

Kevin Nothstine: And that’s that…

Karla Nelson: I could see how that would be really important to understand and balance that one. It’s like you don’t want to be… They have to learn, right? Especially, if it’s in an instructor situation. At the same time, so you have to let them get a little off path, but then when it’s dangerous, you have to step in then.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes, but it’s the same thing in business. In business, if somebody is not performing where you want them to be and your other sources of power are not influencing them to be able to accomplish what you want done, then sometimes you do need to use the stick in the carrot and stick approach of leadership.

Karla Nelson: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Got it. All right. What’s the next one?

Kevin Nothstine: Well, the next one is the carrot. It’s actually…

Karla Nelson: First we went with the stick, now the carrot.

Kevin Nothstine: Yeah. The carrot. And that’s your reward authority. And by having the ability to reward somebody, it’s the opposite of the coercive, you can reward them with promotions, you can reward, reward them with bonuses. If you have that ability to provide a reward for something, [crosstalk 00:20:31]…

Karla Nelson: Yeah. Even recognition is a good one there.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes. Yes. Very much so.

Karla Nelson: Because, as a leader, really recognizing… And in learning the Hoodoo method and all the different types of work that we do with companies so many times, and I’m really, really, really guilty this because I am uber mover and I am a DI internally and an ID externally when I’m working with customers. So you can leave dead bodies behind you and all sometimes people need is to be recognized for what they’re great at. For whatever reason, in society, we focus on what’s negative and what’s bad about, for instance, a shaker. I could tell you 10 words we call them that are negative words. And the only positive word I’ve ever heard is shaker, right? Because what do we call them? Squirrel.

In the military it’s chief idea fairy. And we call them, “Gosh, your head’s always in the clouds.” And so what happens is that we’re focusing on when somebody isn’t instead of just recognizing them for what they are. People, if you can tap into that and identify what they’re great at and bring that reward piece out, they will actually take that over pay. I can’t remember what the stats are, it’s been a long time since I looked at it, but especially the younger generation, the millennials.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, we could have a whole conversation on that. Just you start talking Maslow’s Needs Hierarchy and if somebody has already met their security needs or their safety needs and they’re looking for those higher levels of acknowledgement, then yes, there’s a lot of ways that you can reward somebody.

Karla Nelson: Yeah, very cool stuff. I love that one. All right. What’s next?

Kevin Nothstine: Well the next one is actually another way that you can reward somebody, but it’s a very specific kind of thing and we like to call this connection authority. And what that is…

Karla Nelson: Ooh, I think I like that one.

Kevin Nothstine: Oh, you’re definitely going to like this one, you have this one in spades and I’m going to tell somebody about your ability on this. Now what this one is, by the connections that you have, you have authority with a group of people if they perceive those connections as power for them. If they want access to your friends, you know certain people and they want to know those people, well by knowing you, they can do that. You can be a channel. You know, in LinkedIn they practice this. “Oh, are you a first connection or a second connection with somebody?” And it tells you, “Oh, I’m connected to this person and this…” You know, if you look somebody up on LinkedIn and it’ll say, “Oh, you have 11 mutual friends.” Ah, if you want to know that second a level of person, then you look at one of those connections between the two of you and you say, “All right, I want to work with this person.” And that gives you that connection authority in a group of people.

Karla Nelson: Good stuff. I love that one. And by the way, a friend of mine, I don’t need to do this, jeez louise, connection authority, but she wrote the book How to be a Power Connector and it ended up being a bestseller and she’s fantastic. Her name is Judy Robinett. If you want to read a great book on connection authority, she was an introvert and learned this later on in life and has just gone on to crush it. Her new book is Cracking the Funding Code too because she’s worked with a lot of startups, raised capital for those startups. So again, How to be a Power Connector, great book if you want to discuss connection authority. I think we could do an entire podcast on just that authority. Maybe we will take a look at these and see how we can break them down to give different pieces and points of how to balance yourself through that. Because connection authority is absolutely one of the most powerful and probably the easiest one of these, which is, “Hey, I just took the time out…”

Kevin Nothstine: The easiest for you.

Karla Nelson: Say that again.

Kevin Nothstine: The easiest for you.

Karla Nelson: Oh that’s a good point. Oh, that’s so… And then I’m going to send you to another book by Matthew Pollard, which is Introvert’s Edge and he talks about introverts thinking that they can’t sell because they’re introverted and he says use a process. And that’s exactly what is in Judy’s book is a process for connection. Which I think you’re right, for me, it’s second nature, right? So it’s easy, it happens and my goodness, I just did it on accident right now talking about it. Right?

Kevin Nothstine: I’ve got to tell a little story with you just to really bring this in. And this can be a teaser too because we can deep dive into any of these subjects and I know you really would love to deep dive into this one, but I’m going to tell just a surface story just to teaser on this about you. Okay?

Karla Nelson: Okay, great.

Kevin Nothstine: Okay, well just a little background on when this story happened, you know I was in the military for 21 years and my last two years I was was training people in this new mission in the Air Force, this new aircraft. And we had 16 new students, in a three or four months syllabus, 16 new students every Monday for two years.

Karla Nelson: Wow. That’s a lot.

Kevin Nothstine: Yes.

Karla Nelson: For what you guys go through, I mean the amount of training guys that they go through to be a aircraft commander, let alone… and Kevin’s instructor as well, so he instructs all the other air crew on what to do. It’s intense.

Kevin Nothstine: Well, a big lesson that I learned from those two years, now, we brought people from all across the Air Force and just to show an example, it’s very different if you have somebody that’s flying a cargo plane or an aerial refueler versus somebody that’s flying an F-35 or F-22 fighter plane. Those are very different mindsets and that have been trained different ways. And we had students from every platform across the military that would come together and then we’d try to get them to fly as a team on this one new aircraft. And I learned one of the most important things that every time I would sit down with a group of students or have a meeting with people, the most important part of that meeting was the introductions. And in that introduction of learning their background and learning who they are. Now, we’re going to tie this into that connection authority. Now, I had been doing that for a couple of years and then I met Karla and I ended up going to a meeting with Karla and she started it off, we had a couple of good friends of ours, Adam Ferling and Jim Pelli and myself and some others sitting around the table and we’d never met before, but Karla was sitting there and she was the glue that brought us together being the connector.

Karla Nelson: No. Imagine that we were attending a training? And I actually was facilitating that training, but I try to learn and train just as much as everyone else. We need it, we need it. Okay, go ahead. I’m still wondering what you’re going to say.

Kevin Nothstine: Well, the way that we sorted this out, and we were actually this was after the training or a little bit more and we’re sitting around actually having a glass of wine, passing the beer test there, and before we did anything at all Karla started it off and she went around the table and said, “Hey, you guys haven’t hung out before. Let me go around and I’m going to introduce who you are.” And she talked about me and talking about my time in the military and after she talked about me, I’m like, “Holy cow, who are you talking to, I want to meet this guy? He sounds pretty awesome.”

Karla Nelson: That’s because what you do, you don’t think it’s so cool, but everybody is super cool in their own right, usually, and have done some amazing things. And the last person who wants to say it is the person that you asked to do the introduction to.

Kevin Nothstine: And she went around the table and each person just… Now, it was a good group of guys. Well, while I say that now and why do I believe that? Because Karla told me. Karla had that influence, that connection. But she sat there and said, “Oh, this guy, he started designing websites for companies when he was 13 years old.” And Oh by the way, this gentleman was old enough that was in the dawn of websites and he contacted a ski company out of the blue and told them, “Hey, you need to do this on your website, it’ll make it better.” And they hired the guy they didn’t know he is 13 years old.

Karla Nelson: That was a good one. And that’s awesome and it’s-

Kevin Nothstine: So it was just everybody. And you were able to build that authority of yours by your connection. And that is a true power that somebody can have to get influence over a team.

Karla Nelson: Yeah. And it’s super cool. I mean I know it’s easy for me and I really enjoy people and everybody is different. However, that skill, if you can use it, is not only an amazing powerful skill to build authority, just the trust comes with that authority as well. And when people know, it’s the know, like, and trust piece. And if you’re interested in others then they find you interesting. So that’s awesome. Well I think we’re going to have to wrap it up on that last one, that was really super cool. I can’t believe that there’s actual training in the military that talks about connection authority. That’s awesome. I love it. And again, those two books, How to be a Power Connector and Introvert’s Edge are both really great books on how to do that. Especially if you are, I’m obviously an extrovert, but if you are not, because you can still build your network and your authority when you’re not as extroverted.

Kevin Nothstine: I’m going to try my hand at that connection in the introduction, very briefly, we talked about Judy Robinett, she’s an outstanding author and a bestseller and everything else. Judy started out, she drew up and I think she’s still listed to this day in a town in rural Montana, a town of 300 people.

Karla Nelson: Oh no, that’s where she grew up. She between Idaho and really she was in Utah in Salt Lake, but yeah, her home town was the hometown of Napoleon dynamite. What a great story that is. That’s funny. Yep, exactly. And she didn’t launch her first company, I don’t think, until she was like 40, she opened a restaurant and it almost went under. And it’s a great story, it’s actually how she starts out her book. Well, Kevin, this was so awesome. Fantastic. Thank you so much for bringing your brilliance here on the podcast today with how to lead like a boss.

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Ideation Implementation-part 2

Ideation Implementation part two with Allen Fahden

Ideation Implementation-part 2

Ideation Implementation part 2 with Allen Fahden

33 Percent of an employee’s salary.  That’s the cost of turnover.  Not to mention the lost time and production.  Does your employee underperform? Are they a bad hire or are they misplaced?

This is part two: “Implementation.” How are you going to get $#!T done?

You can listen to Part 1 at

Listen to the podcast here:

Join in as Karla and Allen Discuss the Ideation Process

Karla Nelson:  Welcome to The People Catalyst podcast, Mr. Allen Fahden.

Allen Fahden:  Hello, Karla. I’m excited. It’s part two, and part two is always more fun than a part one.

Karla Nelson:  Especially for us that want to wrap something up and get onto the next thing, right? Us movers.

Allen Fahden:  Exactly.

Karla Nelson:  Well, it’s so exciting to share this today. Really, we broke this up into a two-part series, and it is about why people leave bosses, or that people leave bosses, not companies. Even though we know this inherently, we’re approaching work with a 19th century mentality when it’s the 21st century, and this has been going on for as long as, well, probably as long as time.

  Gallup has done a really great job, Forbes, there’s tons of research that we actually went through and what we’ll be communicating with you is that, even though we know this is a huge ginormous problem, and we know that the two biggest costs to any business are turnover and a bad hire. Okay?

  Obviously, we’re not talking about a bad hire here today. We’re talking about turnover. Forbes just recently did a study that the cost associated with turnover and a lot of reasons we give this corporate word, buzzword to employee engagement, and then they leave you, is 33% of the salary of an individual. So if they make $100,000 a year, the cost of them turning over is $33,000 and that’s directly to the bottom line, the tangible.

Allen Fahden:  And then there are the intangible costs. Number one, the performance drops. If you’ve got a bad hire in there, there’s a missing link in the chain, and everybody’s performance goes down because they can’t depend on this person they’re trying to depend on. Secondly, it’s the longer that person stays, the more negative thought comes in that drains your energy and kills your momentum, so it’s a very, very destructive destructive thing. Ultimately, the whole company can start going down. The other thing is, if you’re their boss, and you’ve got to a bad hire and you’re part of the problem, that impacts on your career, your reputation. That research, by the way, about the people leave bosses, not companies, that comes from Gallup once again, and 50% of the people less their job because of a bad boss.

Karla Nelson:  Isn’t that crazy? That’s just crazy to me. You had said bad hire even though we’re talking about turnover, but you actually prompted me to think that’s two sides of the same coin and a thin coin. Because think about it, they could say bad hire because you didn’t do the work. Think about that for a second. I’ve never thought about it that way. How are you classifying it because 94% of failure is process failure, not people failure. We’ve talked about that all the time from Edward Stemming, so we call people a bad hire but they could just be miscast, and then all of a sudden that leads to turnover. I’ve always thought of those as separate, but actually the top to costs to any businesses are completely enfolded in each other.

Allen Fahden:  Absolutely true. If you don’t fit, that’s a big problem, and we’re going to talk about that again in part two here that the key to all this is is fit and sequence. Bad hire? Maybe they just don’t fit. Maybe they’re miscast.

Karla Nelson:  Think about it. I mean, there’s obvious reasons, right? That you just shove them over to a bad hire because, you know. But most of the time, I bet you those are completely entwined in each other. And the society of what is it … Human Resources Management. Everyone calls them SHRUM, even though … SHRM. They call it SHRM. One of those acronyms you forget after using it for so long, but 77% of the cause of turnover is preventable.

  So if we know we have this huge problem, we know that what we have done isn’t working. We know that 70% of people hate their jobs. Like, hello, what are we going to do about it? And it reminds me of that. Also Harvard Business Review identified that we spend almost $400 billion worldwide on training, and at the end of this really great report, awesome report, it identified that, oh, how you fix it? Systems and processes. Good luck. It was like, well, give me a system, give me a process. Because they’re correct, right?

Allen Fahden:  Knowing is the booby prize. Just because we know it, it doesn’t mean we can do it.

Karla Nelson:  Yes. And that’s what we are talking about today here. Implementation. Part one of this podcast was about ideation. What are we going to do? And it walked step-by-step through the process that you can use in order to figure out what to do. For this podcast, we are going to talk about implementation. How do we employ it and how do we do it?

Allen Fahden:  Interesting, there was a Fortune Magazine article about CEOs who get fired, and 90% of them lost their jobs because they couldn’t get a new idea done in their own company. And I can’t tell you or anybody else, the amount of times that we’ve been in a company and done a bunch of ideas, and somebody pipes up and says, “Oh, we had that idea 20 years ago. We just couldn’t get it done.” Okay, is there a problem here?

Karla Nelson:  No kidding, and that’s exactly the “throw people under the bus” piece, right? Without the process and the system in order to get it done, that’s what corporate America does is they start pointing fingers. I couldn’t believe that stat, though. 90% of CEOs get fired because they can’t get an idea done because, just like you were saying, Simon Sinek, 10% of any market are projected more in Crossing the Chasm. There’s a whole bunch of different research you can look at there.

  You can trip over 10% of the market just by being someplace at the right time. So if 90% of them are getting canned because they can’t get the idea done, look at the balance of the 10%. It’s kind of interesting if you think about it.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, 10% accidentally got an idea done. Well, there’s some pretty interesting examples of that too. For example, Chrysler, Lee Iacocca turned the company around by inventing the minivan. By marketing the minivan, an extremely successful product changed the way transportation worked. But the funny part of it was that Chrysler didn’t really intent the minivan. It was GM, General Motors. I can see the meeting. Somebody sitting in a meeting and saying, “Well, nice idea to do a minivan.” And they got everything right except for one thing. That’s going to kill our station wagon business.” And they were right about it. It did kill their station wagon business, but because they didn’t have the minivan.

Karla Nelson:  The didn’t have the minivan.

Allen Fahden:  So not only does their station wagon business get killed, but Chrysler, instead of General Motors, got all the revenue from it.

Karla Nelson:  Man, the minivan really did decimate the station wagon. I know we’ve talked about that before. It’s been a while, but you’re right, it just crushed the station wagon and still, the minivan is the most popular types of vehicle.

Allen Fahden:  And after that, the SUV then came along too, and that buried the station wagon, one might say.

Karla Nelson:  One was just a shallow grave. The other one was ten feet under.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, that’s right. The other great example of that is the digital camera. Basically digital put Kodak under because why? They were a legacy film business. They didn’t want to give up their film business. It was extremely profitable. They owned all the stuff, the silver and all that, but they are the people, actually, who invented the digital camera. So they’re responsible for not coming up because they kind of said, “I don’t think we’re going to put that out. Do you know what that’s going to do to our film business?”

Karla Nelson:  No kidding. Well, you can’t have a digital camera. Remember we had all those Polaroids and all those really fun things with flashy lights that you’d buy the crystal to stick them. We’re dating ourselves here. We actually know what those are. By the way, the Polaroid actually has come back recently. Kids are running around thinking it’s the coolest thing ever that they can click on it. I was like, okay guys.

Allen Fahden:  Well, there’s a whole other story we probably shouldn’t get into about that, but the opposite of any truth is oftentimes an even greater truth, according to Niels Bohr, the Danish physicist. IBM sold their Electric typewriter business to some former employees and they ran that business profitably for about 20 years after the invention of the PC. So go figure. There’s always, you know, for everything the opposites always true, too.

Karla Nelson:  And that’s true. Well, I was just noticing today as I walked by one of the desks that the mail was sitting on. Remember when it went down to almost nothing? Well, now all of a sudden everybody’s marketing via mail again because everyone’s going electronic. So now what was old is new.

Allen Fahden:  The funniest part about that, I think, is that whenever you want to get something new that’s digital, the killer of the mail business, how do you get it through the mail? Everybody orders all their digital stuff so they can do all their emails, but if they get it through the US mail, from Amazon, for example.

Karla Nelson:  That’s hilarious when you think about it, and actually, we’ve got a really great process for that on another podcast, but we’ll have to put that on the list of things to do.

Allen Fahden:  Absolutely.

Karla Nelson:  Opposites. And so, wait. We have to tell one more story about you, and how you invented the jumbotron. This is amazing to me. It just blows me away. But this happens every day. Great ideas are killed every day and that’s what we’re going to talk about, how to still get a good idea done using a process. But you’ve got to share this story, Allen.

Allen Fahden:  Just think about this. If you want to invent a great product, just think about what annoys you. I happened to be in a time where they had just gotten instant replay on television, and I had season tickets to an NFL team. And so if I stayed home and didn’t pay for a ticket to the game, I could watch replays, which were great, but I couldn’t watch them at the stadium because there was no way to do that at the time.

Allen Fahden:  So I came up with an idea of let’s build a giant TV screen, and I know a technology company who can do this. They were just doing a lot of imaging and digital technology way back then, and so we put together a few people and decided to pursue this idea. We’re going to put jumbo TV sets in every stadium in the NFL.

Allen Fahden:  Now, the beautiful thing about that is that in the television advertising, it’s very hard to reach wealthy males. Well, guess who was at the football games at the time? Mostly wealthy males. And there were also two products that couldn’t advertise on television at the time, and that was cigarettes and liquor. So how much would the liquor companies pay to get in front of an audience like that, with the persuasion of a television commercial. Same thing with the tobacco companies. I had no morals at the time, so we put together all the right people.

Allen Fahden:  We got an all the way to Pete Rozell, the commissioner of the NFL, and he said no. And we said, well, why? And he said, well, okay, because if we put replays in the stadiums, think about that they’re in the stadiums today, he says people will kill the referees.

Karla Nelson:  I bet you used the prover.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah. And if we’d have had our process, then we could have just simply said, well, you know, be selective about which replays you show. If it’s controversial don’t show it. That’s pretty much what they did. They show almost everything today, but in fact they’ve got the guys changing the plays now if the replay shows the referees were wrong. So anything like that can be solved in a very short time, but we didn’t have the process at the time. And so, 10 years later, at the Superdome in New Orleans, I think they introduced the first jumbotron, with instant replay.

Karla Nelson:  Crazy. You know what this reminds me of, too is, we hire trainers, consultants, right? You have people in your team that you assembled to go get research and all of this stuff, and when somebody has absolute power, it’s even worse. I mean, we talk about the skeet shoot meeting, and that’s exactly what this is. You threw out the idea, commissioner of the NFL goes bang. Right? So it’s idea, bang.

Allen Fahden:  Shot down.

Karla Nelson:  It’s crazy. And what happens is, and this is actually why we have an agreement when we do training, because absolute power is the old way of doing business, and these millennials are running so quickly from it because they know that if I can just walk in and say no, because I said so, it’s like that’s just not the facilitation and what they want to be a part of.

  They want to be a part of putting the dent on the universe, not just being the minion which, by the way, is what schools were actually created for way back in the day. Think about it. They were creating manufacturing workers and that’s a whole other conversation we can go off forever. But this absolute power thing is a big problem for people that leave their bosses.

Allen Fahden:  Oh yeah. The old quote from Lord Acton. “Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

Karla Nelson:  So true.

Allen Fahden:  We talked last time about the average millennial stays at a company for 18 months. They have the dream. They go into the company to change the world, and after two months the dream is crushed, and so the rest of the other 16 months they’re out interviewing.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah.

Allen Fahden:  By the way, you can tell because they come to work dressed up, and that would be the only time, probably, a millennial would come to work dressed up because how the hell are you going to play ping pong or air hockey wearing a suit coat or a dress?

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. That’s so true. And so the solution to this is the relay team and what we’re going to talk about today.

Allen Fahden:  Yes. And it’s a place where people just haven’t looked at this. They don’t know what they don’t know, and so what do they do? They try to sophisticate all the old ways of doing things.

Karla Nelson:  And the other piece is so many of the large companies have the big budgets to be able to use and implement this process. But I’ll tell you, it’s necessary for all. I don’t even care if it’s trying to get your house built or anything. This process can be used in implementation with anything. But instead of doing a relay team, you get people crashing into each other running down the track instead of staying in their own lane. I mean, can you imagine doing a relay and you were skipping down half the time, and kicking at other people? Better yet, all four people running down the track at the same time. Doesn’t that sound like a really great idea when you’re trying to get across the finish line, right?

Allen Fahden:  Especially if they’re all holding onto this tiny little baton, tripping over each other, and then somebody falls down, you kind of have to drag them the rest of the way. It really slows you down.

Karla Nelson:  Exactly. But yet, that’s exactly how we run our meetings. That’s exactly how we try to implement is this juggling effect of just, okay, this is where we’re at. This is what we need to do, but the truth of the matter is we need you all, all four core natures of work. However, we need you at different times, so the solution is to use the process.

  Now again, there are two parts to the process and they are different. They have the same players, movers, shakers, provers and makers. However, the process is different, and what we’re going to talk about today is the second part, which is the process in regards to implementation. How are we going to do it?

  It starts with fit and sequence with the relay team.

Allen Fahden:  Absolutely. And it’s interesting because implementation is quite a bit, just look at the results. Implementation’s a lot tougher than ideation, but what you do is the whole thing kind of moves over one core nature. Whereas an ideation, it’s the shaker, the mover, and the prover, and the mover’s the point person that’s running everything. Once you get to implementation, it starts with the prover who runs everything and who actually takes the idea and gives the instructions to the maker who can implement it into the process.

Allen Fahden:  The mover is part of that as well. The mover’s monitoring it, looking for breakdowns to make sure that the prover and the mover don’t get frustrated or uncomfortable, and go and change the plan back to what they were doing before because that can happen all the time.

Karla Nelson:  Because, remember, the mover’s output is the plan. They hand the plan off to the prover, and then they create the instructions to hand to the maker and then make the rules and follow the process. The mover is a part of the process, but a very different part of the process in implementation than ideation.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, because their input with instructions, and then their output is reality. That reality can come in a couple of ways. One is the reality is making the whole new plan work and be installed as part of the processes of the company, but then it can also be they can be in a meeting and like the prover who generates reality and then ideations, a mover can generate reality during implementation or, excuse me, maker. Thank you.

Karla Nelson:  I got your back.

Allen Fahden:  Thank you. Right. I appreciate that. Oh, fell down again … it can generate reality just simply by saying, well, you know that’s a really good idea and everything. If we get real detailed about it and say, well, we’ve always shipping things out at the loading dock but we’ve never taken anything in it before. Where are we going to put it?

Allen Fahden:  So they’ll fly it about 50 feet up and they’ll see things nobody else saw, and so then you’ve got to still work it out and oftentimes the prover can work it out by just changing the instructions, but then it’s something maybe the prover can’t solve. Then it kicks back up to the mover and the whole thing could kick right back up to ideation. If the obstacle problem is big enough to solve, then you need an ideation back on it, so it’s tricky.

Karla Nelson:  It is, and it’s a dance between the two and that’s why we did two separate podcasts. But understanding that it’s a science and an art because you have to be able to understand when you have to go back to ideation, if the challenges are so large that you move back to ideation, right? Or it could be just a meeting that now all of a sudden the maker kicks it back to the prover, the prover doesn’t know how to exactly adjust instructions, goes back to the mover.

  Now the mover can also just go find the shaker and say, hey, give me some input. Take it back to the prover. Poke all the holes in it, and that dance, again, if you want to learn that process, go back to part one of this series where we go through it in detail. And then what happens is, as you shift to implementation, you have to know when that is.

  All right? So there’s a big trust there and that’s why the mover must check in on the process. You can’t just go, good luck. We still need you all. We need you at different times. We need you at different amounts of time at different parts of the process, even. That dance between ideation and implementation is so critical, and I think one of the biggest obstacles we talked about earlier, Allen, is the commitment that you need from the prover.

  So let’s talk about a couple of the pitfalls. When you’re utilizing the process, in implementation you’ve got your prover as the point guard, because remember he got handed over, or she, got handed over the plan. They’re going to take that plan. They’re going to create all the instructions that need to be handed over to get to the point of replicating it, which is what makers do extremely well. Okay.

  However, what happens, Allen, when the prover doesn’t commit to this because we’ve seen this happen all the time. It’s one of the biggest pitfalls. We’ll talk about some others, but this is a real big one. If you don’t have that.

Allen Fahden:  Its huge and it happens all the time, and there are several of you out there who are maybe listening right now and reaching up to your head and lining up the large clumps of hair in your hand quite separate from your head over this. It’s the prover who says, “Yeah, we kind of tried, but we really couldn’t make it work. I know that Eugene was getting upset about all this because it kind of messed up his routine.” And so what happens is that it’ll put people in a place where they’ll make enormous decisions about the company and the company’s strategy and their execution in the future and all that. They’ll change the whole course of the business because somebody is uncomfortable. It’s a tragedy.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. Essentially all during the trade, right? It’s altering. And it’s even worse if you’ve got a prover shaker because their secondary core nature of work is just to come up with the idea and fix it and sometimes change it completely. And now all of a sudden, we call this culture, or we call it personality differences. Right? We give all these labels to it, but the truth is you just abandoned your process.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah. And it can be a disaster for the company if they’re depending on making a big change to something. If somebody makes a change just single handedly and doesn’t tell anybody, you may not even realize what they’re doing for days or even weeks.

Karla Nelson:  So that’s why the mover must … They’re in charge of the project as far as the plan and facilitating it. They have to check in. So either having a regular, hey, how’s that going? Or a lot of times there’s even project management, base camp and asana.are all used. There’s tons of them, but I would have to say they are not overlaying the core nature of work to then check in. Right?

  We have a game we play with this and it’s hilarious. It’s the most absolute ridiculous thing in regards to project management when you don’t use the process, and I don’t identify as somebody with a core nature of work, it just falls back, then, on what their title is and what we deem they think they should be responsible for or not responsible for or even were silent. It goes to the complete different way where everybody’s trying to control everything, and you have to get approval from 50 different people to even make a decision. Right? There’s a whole other side of it if the company and the entire team isn’t engaged in adopting the process.

Allen Fahden:  That’s a knee-jerk reaction is, an old friend of mine used to say rules are people you don’t trust. And so, something bad happens and what happens? Manically cracks down and puts in more stage gate innovation processes where you’ve got to get permission to do everything, and the company will calcify, become bureaucratic, and that can be the end of the company too.

Karla Nelson:  Absolutely. Believe me, everybody knows the story. I love it. We were doing a training one time and Allen, you said, we’re just putting words to what’s already common sense and known. The unfortunate is we’ve also heard that common sense isn’t so common. It is a dance, like we were saying, and it’s an art and a science.

  So it’s super simplicity on the other side of complexity but at the same time climbing to the top of Mount Everest is really, really simple. Put one foot in front of the other. But there’s a reason why there’s a whole bunch of people died trying to accomplish it because it is not easy by any stretch of the means. Right? So we have to make sure we get this commitment because this is a big pitfall. Make sure the mover’s checking in so you don’t shift back to the old way of doing things. And, remember, it’s a dance between ideation and implementation. So then the other piece is, that leads to what we call the run home to mommy factor that Allen was talking about. Just going back to the old way. Going back to what was comfortable because change is, again, easy, or simple, but not easy, right? Until we’ve used the process over and over again.

  I would venture to say with that pitfall, Allen, the best way to overcome it, make sure your movers are trained and make sure that they know the process. Take the time to get them up to speed, and give people the ability to lead. Every one of them. Your shakers need to lead in the way that they do best. The movers, the provers and the makers. Leadership is for everybody. When the object of the exercises to get something done, you must hand that baton Baton off and give them the power to do that and not even let the CEO come and say, I’m just going to blow it up. Right?

Allen Fahden:  That’s right.

Karla Nelson:  I felt like I was on a soapbox there.

Allen Fahden:  I like that, and I’m going to edge you off the soapbox and say one more thing, and that is in order to accomplish that, there is a person who should be running the process. They should have the authority to run the process and to make sure that everybody stays on it, and that best person is the mover because the mover is most easily able to straddle both worlds of ideation and implementation.

Karla Nelson:  And the reason why is because, and as a uber mover, it’s because we don’t have a dog in the fight.

Allen Fahden:  Correct.

Karla Nelson:  Remember, 15% of the population will say yes to an idea. That’s it. 15%, and the reason why is because they don’t have a dog in the fight. Shakers will say no if it’s not their idea, right? Provers say no because there’s too much wrong with it. And makers are like, “I just cleaned this place up two months ago. I just cleaned this place up two months ago. No. You are not coming in and messing this up when we just got to the point of being able to replicate this process that we talked about.” And so it’s really critical … Go ahead.

Allen Fahden:  You remind me of a meme I saw the other day online and it said, kind of a parallel thought, it said, “You know, I dusted the house. It came back. I’m not falling for that again.”

Karla Nelson:  That’s really funny. It’s a good one. I got to try that one out because it does come back, right? And the crazy thing is that, although this has been used by 25 plus of the Fortune 100 and these big corporations and people that in the past would have had a budget. Obviously, technology has helped us in getting this into … we’re even working with our certified trainers in startups, brand new startups, right? And those guys, your whole focus is to use momentum and get to profit as quickly as possible so you don’t become a statistic of 96% of companies failing within the first 10 years. So this is important.

  Remember, it doesn’t matter if you’re a huge company. It doesn’t matter if you’re thinking about starting a company, and I would even venture to say, Allen, that if you were starting it and you started using the process from the day of launch, or at least, get an agreement. Sometimes we’ll work with VC’s that are putting money into companies because they want to make sure they’re protecting their investment. An agreement is “you’re going to use this process. You’re going to be learned in this process.”

  That’s probably easier, don’t you think Allen, that sometimes when we go into these large companies, because they’re just not nimble. A lot of times there’s a lot of past issues. We call it culture, but it’s basically not having a process. It’s all this stuff in this, as you would say, junk in the trunk that you have to deal with. So with those earlier stage companies, not only do they need it to survive, but they also can be quite effective and nimble when they’re implementing it.

Allen Fahden:  Absolutely. Their problem in the startups, oftentimes, is that nobody’s shutting them down, and so what they’re doing is around focusing. They’re trying to do eight different things at once. So then, the other side of the coin of calcification, is you’re not going to get anything done that way either. Just as you won’t get anything done if an authoritarian shuts everybody down and it has to be done their way. So how do you deal with that? You don’t use that coin anymore. You throw that coin away because it’s not doing anything for you.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, I love it. And in any company … I love this Allen. I don’t even know if this is written anywhere, but what Warren Buffett said. Allen was speaking at Fortune’s Animation Forum and Warren Buffett gets up to the mic and goes, “I don’t know why I’m here. I hate innovation.” I can imagine the audience when he said that, right? The number one investor in the entire world goes, “I don’t know why I’m speaking here. I hate innovation.” And you know why? Because you got to get to printing money. You have to get to the repeatable process and everybody-

Allen Fahden:  That’s right. He just buys companies later on. They’ve already established that replicable pattern.

Karla Nelson:  Exactly. And then that reduces the risk when you want to get to the point of repeating the process. And what they’d like to call them, business printing money, you’ll never get to printing money if you don’t repeat a process. And if you don’t know how to do research and development and be innovative and agile, you’ll never keep printing the money because somebody will come and eat your breakfast.

Allen Fahden:  And your lunch.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. And your lunch. And your dinner. Awesome.

Allen Fahden:  And this is why everybody’s overweight.

Karla Nelson:  Or they’re overweight because 70% hate their jobs and they have to comfort food.

Allen Fahden:  Emotionally eat.

Karla Nelson:  Emotionally, do something because, and again, we’ll just end it with that. 70% of people hate their job. That’s what Gallup has reported in the past 30 years they’ve been doing this study. Numbers are almost equal across the board. We are on a mission to revolutionize the way work is done because think about what that does to people’s finances, their wellbeing and health. Their relationships, especially with their family. We spend more time working than we do anything else in life. And so go back, listen to part one of this series in regards to ideation. What are you going to do? And then, hope you enjoyed this series, part two Implementation. How are you going to get it done?

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Ideation Implementation

Ideation Implementation with Allen Fahden

Ideation Implementation

Ideation Implementation Allen Fahden with

33 Percent of an employee’s salary.  That’s the cost of turnover.  Not to mention the lost time and production.  So how can you keep the good one’s around? Your ideation process may very well be the answer.


This is part one of a series.  First up is “Ideation.”  In part 2 we will discuss “Implementation.”


Listen to the podcast here:

Listen in as Karla and Allen discuss the Ideation Process

Karla Nelson:  And welcome to the People Catalyst podcast, Allen Fahden.

Allen Fahden:  Hello Karla. We’ve got a good one today.

Karla Nelson:  This is really fun.

Allen Fahden:  This is going to make you rethink your rethinking.

Karla Nelson:  That’s good. That’s a good point because this is… What we’re going to be talking about today is how people leave their bosses, not their companies. And this has been a huge issue for a long time and everybody knows it’s a problem. It’s not like its new news, except for, it’s interesting. There’s no real fix to the problem. We just dump more money into training.

Allen Fahden:  Yes we do. And we waste it, don’t we?

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. It’s really actually quite a staggering how much money we waste on training and how much it costs, how much we’ve invested for, how long and the absolute dismal ROI that pops out on the other side. And this is so critical. There’s both tangible and intangible challenges with this and to the business. The number one and number two cost to any business are turnover and a bad hire. And that was Forbes, I was just recently reading that the cost is 33% of whatever the individual’s salary is. That just came out in 2019, and so for the purpose of this podcast we’re going to be talking about turnover because a bad hire is a whole other conversation. But turnover is a big…

Allen Fahden:  Yes. However, it’s really interesting because when you look at those numbers, and let’s go back to the title, 50% of the people left their job because of the boss. So people leave bosses, not companies. By the way, that’s a Gallup study from a few months ago. And the intangible costs too is, I think, an important part because not only does it cost you money to make a bad hire and replace a person. I think what it does, the whole process of leading up to firing the person brings fear into the company, performance goes down, not only that person but other people. And then of course the whole energy and momentum of the company, the division or whatever is trashed. And so the damage goes on and on and on. Those intangibles are hard to measure, but they usually account for a lot more than the tangibles that you can measure.

Karla Nelson:  No doubt about that. And that’s definitely has to be why then 70% people hate their jobs. I mean, there’s a direct correlation, and that’s Gallup. We quote that all the time because they’ve been doing this darn study for 30 years and the numbers are almost staggering across the board. I think it reduced a little bit this past year and they identified the reason why was because unemployment was so low, not because the percentage of people truly shifted their thinking about hating their jobs and what they do every day, but just simply happy that they had a job. And the sad thing about this, Allen, is what this does do people’s…

Another intangible, their health, their relationships, their finances, every other thing. We spend more time at our places of work, regardless if… and I’m going to venture to say even more if you’re the business owner or the CEO or in some upper levels, you’re even spending more than the typical eight hours a day minimum that most people spend doing whatever it is that they do. And the challenge or the sad part about this is with this turnover and all these people hating their jobs, specific to turn over, the Society of Human Resource Management. I believe that’s what SHRM name stands for.

Allen Fahden:  Yes.

Karla Nelson:  I can never remember the acronyms after you’ve been using it for so long and 70% of the cause of this turnover is preventable. There are ways to… And that’s just the turnover. Today we’re going to talk about a process by which you can prevent it absolutely in regards to your company. But 70% of these intangible issues that are popping up and reasons people leave their job and costing 33% just of their tangible costs. Allen just identified a ton of intangibles that you could probably argue cost even more than the tangible, it can be prevented. This is an epidemic that’s preventable. I mean, why wouldn’t you prevent it?

Allen Fahden:  Yep.

Karla Nelson:  I mean, I know you mentioned the 50% of people left the job because of their boss and that Gallup just recently did that study. And we call it all these different words, and the one that really bugs me is leadership, but we’ve got change management, we’ve got culture, we’ve got all these different things, but after 50 years of not moving the needle, it’s just insane that… It’s the definition of insanity, right, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. And really, the crux of this is that everyone is a leader. So we use the word leadership, but everyone’s a leader. We’re just leaders at different times. When the object of the exercise is to get something done, you have to let people lead and do the work that they are great at so that they are seen that leadership role throughout the entire company, not just teaching them standing up at the front of a room. Okay, here’s a leadership strategy of listening. You have to be a better listener, right? I mean, I could go on and on, Allen.

Allen Fahden:  Yes, and I think it’s a really important part because it’s like, a lot of bosses and leaders don’t understand it, but they are unknowingly harming themselves and the people who report to them by not knowing a big piece of this, and that’s what we’re really here to do. And maybe one of the best ways to do it is just to say, “Hey, if we don’t change the fundamental way work is done, putting people in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing, then we’re doomed to just repeat it, this whole behavior.” And probably the best metaphor we have for this is, imagine work today is like a three-legged race.

You’re trapped with the other person and so you’re trying to get something done and as your running the race, they’re slowing you down by questioning what you’re doing, by doing something that they promise to do but doing wind up doing a different thing or being late, and the people just don’t fit together very well. But if you were to take that three legged race or that sack race that’s so difficult to do and where people trip all over each other and change that into the fastest kind of race there is, which is a relay race where everybody sprints a much shorter time and then hands off to the right person. When you do that, we’ve been doing this for 25 years, things change dramatically. So if you have a boss who just went to leadership training, I mean, basically, we’re just saying don’t be a jerk, be nice or whatever the latest fad is.

If we don’t change the way we work together, the well-meaning leader is still going to be hypothetically a jerk because they give people the wrong work, get them doing something they hate, they get them sitting through long meetings where nothing gets done. In other words, the system is broken, the people aren’t.

Karla Nelson:  There you go. Yeah, and there you go. Deming, right? 94% of failure… or Deming’s. I always say Deming. Demings, Edward Demings, Edwards Deming actually. 94% of failure is process failure, which processes is a system, not people failure. Yet the first thing we do is blame when things go wrong. And at the end of the day, if you don’t have a system to figure out what you’re going to do, ideation, that’s what we’re going to talk about today, and we will do a part two, which is implementation and how use this system and process in the next podcast, because it often gets confused. There are two parts of the system, which is what are we going to do? How are we going to do it?

So ideation, implementation, and the answer is in both to run sequentially, even though they look slightly different, same players moving in a little bit different process. So I think about those, Allen, and it’s like, gosh, even using the system, work is difficult enough and we complicate it… It’s crazy. I mean, it reminds me of if anyone has ever driven in India. It’s ridiculous. There’s no traffic signals and everybody’s just pushing each other through. When you were talking about the three-legged race, how hilarious is it to watch. You sit on the sidelines and you’re laughing. Yet that’s exactly what we do in business every day, single day. So if you don’t have a system and a process for making decisions, ideation, in implementing them, implementation, the challenge is you never overcome that, what Edward stemming says, 94% of failure is processed failure, not people failure. And what is the study? How many percentages of CEOs? It was so high that get fired because they can’t get things done.

Allen Fahden:  Well, they estimated at the time, that was Ron Sharon, estimated at the time is about 90% of CEOs get fired for not being able to implement something new in their own company.

Karla Nelson:  And then 90% of businesses fail for the same exact reason. Right?

Allen Fahden:  Absolutely.

Karla Nelson:  And look at the correlation of those numbers between what Deming said, the CEOs being fired and businesses fail. They’re all right, pending they’re at 90 to 94%. And I would even venture to say that Deming, at the 94%, you always have the lucky one that’s in the right place just because of timing or whatnot.

Allen Fahden:  Well, I liked that Simon Sinek said, you can stumble over 10% of the market. Well, it’s the same way. You can stumble over doing 10% of the work correctly or having the right person. You just skip somebody who hold task, and probably a 25% of it is going to be something they love to do and they’re good at. And then they do it so fast, it only takes up 10% of their time because they do it way faster than everything else. So there’s your 10%. You spent 10% of your time doing good work and 90% of your time struggling through jello.

Karla Nelson:  That’s so true. Yes. And so we know that work is broken. We work with the 19th century work strategy system.

Allen Fahden:  In the 21st century.

Karla Nelson:  Exactly. I was having a conversation with my bonus dad yesterday about education and you look at, in the last 100 years, look at how our phone has changed. Look at how our TVs, they didn’t exist. Look at how cars have changed. And we were talking about how education hasn’t changed, but even though training… Training and education or two sides of the same coin, but it’s a very thin coin. Kevin, one of our leaders, always says, as parents, do you want to have your kids to have sex education or sex training. There’s the difference. It’s a really good way to look at it. And so the education and training are really close. But if all of those technologies changed, systems, processes, because they’re all interlinked, have changed in the last a hundred years but the way we do work hasn’t changed at all, how is that possible?

Allen Fahden:  That’s right. And it’s all about, if you want to remember anything from this podcast, take a look at fit and sequence. How do your people fit together end to end so that when I finished a job or a task, I know who to go to for the next step and about 75% of the time, left on our own, we go to the wrong person and we have bad results and the trash is there at work. So the part of that is to know how people fit together and put them in the right sequence. That is the missing piece.

Karla Nelson:  Yes. And we have previous podcasts also about personality and behavioral training too, which again, great stuff. I mean, we work with some of the largest resellers of disk in the nation and you can add both in. However, the object of the exercise is not to sing kumbaya. It’s not the potluck on Friday, nor the air hockey table in these break room. And what we do… And I like what you said there, Allen, how we go to the wrong people and we break it down as if we have to like each other in order to get something done. Right?

Allen Fahden:  Yeah. Its problem is the minute they reject your work, you don’t like them anymore no matter how much air hockey you play together.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. And hanging out on the weekends is a lot different than being on a team that’s running through and trying to get something accomplished. And so the relay race and fit in sequence. I love that. If you’re going to walk away from this podcast with to two things is always think about a relay race and how fit in sequence with your people. So let’s break this down, Allen, in ideation. Again, part two, we’ll talk about implementation because these often get confused. So we’re separating in a two-part series for the podcast. With ideation, what you… and let’s talk about the process, Allen. Let’s back it up because you can do ideation without doing the brain dump sometimes. Right?

Allen Fahden:  Sure.

Karla Nelson:  So what I mean by that is we’re going to walk through. I’ll let you do the big picture process and then we’ll break it down with the pitfalls that you can have with the shakers, a mover and the prover as you’re running the ideation process. So walk us through the process.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, so basically it’s the shakers who are the idea people and what you want to do… I mean, every job starts with either there’s something, a goal you want to accomplish or there’s a problem you want to solve. So everybody generates ideas. But oftentimes the most novel ideas will come from the shakers. Let’s say you get a whole big list of ideas, and you’ve done that a million times and everybody has, but it’s what you do with the ideas that makes the huge departure and makes all the differences. So instead of a getting rid of every idea that has something wrong with it, well, the problem is every idea is born grounding. Instead, what you do is you keep all the ideas, and it’s the movers who are natured to pick the best idea and set priorities and design a launch plan.

So the mover takes the all the ideas, picks one, makes a quick plan for it and immediately goes to the prover who is either in the first meeting or not allowed to talk brainstorming. But what you do is go to the prover and you say, “Poke every hole you can in this idea. Rip to shreds. Tell me everything that can go wrong.” And then instead of killing the idea, you collect the what can go wrong and then bring it back to the shakers. So you keep the shakers and the provers apart because they tend to argue with each other and they don’t fit together. But they do fit together when they have a mover in between them.

So the mover is like the point guard on the basketball team that brings the ball down and designs the play. So once the provers say what can go wrong, then the shakers get a chance to come up with ideas to solve the problem. And so between those two it’s about three times faster and everybody gets to imprint the idea without blowing up the other person’s results. It’s all forwarding. It’s a way you can take all these steps and never move backwards.

Karla Nelson:  Yes. And then of course, the shaker being able to overcome those obstacles and running the process and running this process until the process does not end until the prover says, I can live with that.

Allen Fahden:  I can live with that, yup.

Karla Nelson:  I can live with that. And then, because remember the shaker… And then we call, this is another buzz term that I can’t stand, employee engagement. Although it is a challenge in a process or a situation, it can be fixed just by this process. Okay? And the reason why is because the shaker says no to an idea if it’s not their idea. So they get quote unquote disengaged if they can’t imprint the idea. The mover gets disengaged because things aren’t moving forward. And we were in this meeting last week, I wasn’t in charge and we didn’t facilitate anything of an outcome, so I got other things I want to work on.

That’s how they get disengaged. The prover gets disengaged because they’re sitting there rolling their eyes thinking about all this stuff these yahoos aren’t thinking about and is often not allowed to even poke the holes in the ideas at all because they’re seen as negative, naysayers, Debbie downers. And so they get naysayed because they’re just sitting back thinking, gosh, these yahoos aren’t going to get this done anyway. And so this is how you engage everyone at the right time. And I think we could break this down to… Let’s go through the input and output piece of this and then we’ll move on to the pitfalls, if you want to take that, Allen.

Allen Fahden:  Yeah, good idea. Let’s say you start a project with either something you want to accomplish or something that’s a problem and needs fixing. Well that’s perfect. That’s reality. That’s the way things really are and that’s the perfect input for the shaker. The shaker wants to know exactly what’s going on and exactly where we want to go, get the details so they can take that reality and generate ideas to change the reality. It’s the shaker’s nature to want to change what is the status quo.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, shakers want to break the rules.

Allen Fahden:  Break the rules, break the mold, do something that’s never been done before. So a shaker will come up with a great idea, fall in love with it but really won’t know one idea from another. They can have six ideas and I don’t care which one we do as long as it’s mine. So the shaker’s output is ideas and that matches the mover’s input, which is ideas. So it’s like an outbox and an inbox. You line them up, shaker ideas, output, mover ideas, input. The mover takes all the ideas and decides which one is best, what the biggest priority ought to be and then makes up a plan for it, and that’s the mover’s output is the plan.

Now the plan, the output of the mover, happens to be the plan, the input of the prover. So again, fit in sequence. They’re all lined up perfectly. You have the mover deal with the prover. The other reason you have them deal with it is because they’re not going to fight. They sort of have a professional respect for each other and create value from each other. So the output of the mover is the plan. The input of the prover is the plan because the prover is dying to make new rules, which is to critique the idea, to tell you what’s going to go wrong, to warn you. And so the prover takes that input to the plan, and their output is reality.

It will work because of this and this and this and this. So that output of reality then is the input of the shaker. But you do not want the prover to deliver it directly to the shaker because those are what we call red light relationships. No shaker wants to hear from a prover what’s wrong with your idea. So the mover then takes that reality and delivers it to the shaker. The mover says, “Loved your idea. Only three obstacles we’ve got to overcome.” So instead of saying, “It’s a bad idea or we’re going to kill the idea,” which is usually the message that the shaker gets, no matter how nice the prover tries to be. Instead, the mover says, “Here’s the challenge for you, overcome these three obstacles and we got a go.”

So the shaker comes up with what? They take that reality and come up with ideas once again, deliver the ideas of how to overcome the problem to the mover. Mover makes a new plan, accommodating their best idea, and turns that into a plan and gives it back to the prover because that’s their input and says, “Now, can you live with this or is there anything else we haven’t thought of that can go wrong or is there any trade Offs in the new ideas, things that can go wrong with the new idea we haven’t considered, or can you live with it?”

So that’s the output from the prover, and it usually takes one round of this where the prover says, “Oh no, that looks pretty good. I never would have thought of fixing it that way.” Another is the provers are good at saying what can go wrong, but they’re not very good at fixing it. So they’ll go to an overdone idea to try to fix it and oftentimes it’s something that hasn’t worked before. So this is a way to put everybody in their strength and everybody in a fir and sequence that goes three to eight times faster with better results.

And just to give you an idea of that, one of the companies we work with is a giant telecommunications company. They had a group of salespeople and they started using fit in sequence, and not only in their sales group but with their customers as well, putting the right people in the right place. And in two years they went from 20 million to 60 million, and fast. Well, by the way, while the rest of the company was flat, had no growth at all.

Karla Nelson:  Okay, so remember shakers, they want to break the rules, movers interpret those rules and provers want to make the rules. And this is an ideation. So you could obviously utilize the assessment. You can find it on our website to be able to identify if somebody is a mover, shaker or a prover. Now we have not brought up the maker guys, and the reason why is because they don’t want to be in this meeting. So these will show up later. It’s the person that for years can come to the same weekly meeting and never have a unique thought. That’s what we usually look at them for, and it’s like you ask them who even wants to be in this room? They’re the ones that say, “No. I’ve got to go back to my work on my desk. I’ve got real work to do. You guys can… “

Allen Fahden:  Real work.

Karla Nelson:  You guys messed this place up two months ago and I just got done fixing it. Okay? So there’s no reason to have them in this meeting. Now, to have them learn the training, that’s one thing. We usually do keep them in the room, but as soon as we start actually running the process, we just let them go back to their desk because it doesn’t make any sense to waste whatever they’re being paid for them to be in a room that they don’t want to be in. Right? And so the pitfalls of this, let’s talk about a little bit before we wrap this up, Allen, which is, and you mentioned one which is stay in your own lanes. Okay, oftentimes you have to separate. You have to always separate the shaker and the prover, but sometimes they can’t even be in the same room. And the reason why is because when the shaker is making or creating the ideas, they might not open up because they’re too worried about somebody saying what’s wrong with it.

And by the way, with staying in your own lanes, this can happen live. If you are not facilitating it, it just can go instantly back to people talking over. They can’t help it. They blurt it out. It happens every single time, even when you’re playing games. So the mover has to make sure they know the process, or whoever’s facilitating it, because you can facilitate it. It’s just the mover is the most ideal person because they don’t have a dog in the fight. They love to balance fit and sequence and balance the team, and they love the system because now they’re fully engaged. They’re actually moving this process forward and getting something done. So stay in your own lanes. Separate if necessary. And one of the unique core natures of work is when you have a secondary and primary or a 50/50 of a shaker prover. They’ll do it right live. I mean, they’d have to know where they’re being cast because if they are in the lane of coming up with ideas, they’ll shoot their own idea down live when you’re just coming up with ideas.

Allen Fahden:  It’s like Mr. Subliminal on Saturday Night, or the, hey, what a great idea. No, it’s not. Wonderful idea. It sucks. Greatly, mentally shutting your own ideas down.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, and they’ll do it on both sides, right? So if you are coming up with ideas and they go, “Oh, this is the idea, but that’s not going to work,” the mover, you have to make sure you’re facilitating that and say, “Hey, that’s great.” And what you do is write it down. You can give that to the movers so when the provers have something going on, you can… The mover is the one who is the movement between separating those lanes so that you’re focused and you’re using the process instead of going back to the old way of doing meetings, which is idea, bang, idea, bang, idea, bang. Everybody’s tired. They’ve been in there forever. Nothing’s going to get done anyway, so let’s just get out of here.

Allen Fahden:  I think it’s really important too, just to stress that once more, is that not only should it be the mover, and you talked about them taking action. And the action, as you said, should be as immediate as possible because things deteriorate so fast, even if it’s the CEO. I learned the hard way, had a CEO who was a shaker at a meeting and they kept derailing the meeting. And if a mover would have been running the meeting, which is not me, I’m a shaker, the mover would have said, “That’s fine. But we have a commitment to stay with the process. Not in the process, so write that down. Table it and let’s keep moving with the process.”

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. This has happened pretty much every meeting for 25 years, every training, and it got derailed so many times. We came up with the 10 agreements and we review them in every, single training because we have to remind the team that there is a system and a process they have committed to, and it gives us the ability to then facilitate that. And I would venture to say it’s gotten better in the aspect of, hey, don’t even let the CEO derail it because the old way of doing business was, I’m the CEO and I said so. So I don’t even care if I’m paying you to be here to fix our problems, I’m still going to derail the training, the meeting, whatever. So we actually, one of our agreements is don’t allow anyone to derail the system in a process, not even the CEO. And we review that and teach our certified trainers that because it’s critical. I think that’s a really good point, Allen.

And the other aspect that I think is unique in different in this change in the way we do work, or at least the mentality of realizing it, and the millennials are really driving this, right? The numbers are just dismal. You hire them, they’re engaged for two months, then they become disengaged and spend 16 months looking for another job. And they just turn them and burn them. And with the low employment rate, it’s getting even worse and a much larger cost over time because then you have an employee that, yeah, you need somebody sit there to do something, but they’re spending 16 months out of 18 months looking for another job.

And my other point about this, Allen, and I’ll let you chime in here before we wrap up, about HR. We have for years, and are told this probably weekly, “Wow, you guys should really focus on HR and the HR leaders.” HR by default has been focused on reactive. They’re their later adopters, right? It’s about not getting sued, typically. And now I think that’s shifting, the mindset at least, that we need to invest in our people partially because this really low unemployment rate. But then the millennials are saying, “I don’t want to work that way. Sorry. And I’d rather just travel the world and I’ll live on $20,000, $30,000 a year doing some online something versus this of corporate America history we’ve had for quite some time.”

Allen Fahden:  So true.

Karla Nelson:  And it’s very rare that HR brings this in. When they do, Oh my gosh. So there’s a video, we’ll put a link to it in this. It was Disrupt HR. It’s a five minute video, but Disrupt HR is all about, well, hello, disrupting HR. And we did a little bit of a training on it. Even though the training or the… I’ll never forget doing this video because you had to do, what was it, five minutes, 15 seconds a slide, and then move forward?

Allen Fahden:  Exactly. The slide changed at exactly the same time every second. It was the most absurd thing.

Karla Nelson:  They don’t give you your clicker.

Allen Fahden:  So a bunch of people cheated it by putting the same slide in so it would change every 15 seconds, but it would be the same slide.

Karla Nelson:  It was the same slide and they could just give their five minute talk. I know. We were not the ones that cheated. Allen and I worked pretty hard on that one, but it was funny. It was like HR is late adopters, so let’s disrupt HR, but let’s create a process because you will not… A prover had to have created that process because they want to make the rules. You’re not going to go over five minutes.

Allen Fahden:  Right.

Karla Nelson:  It’s hard enough to have anything in five minutes, let alone be pressed that quickly to know each slide, and you don’t want to memorize it too. So we’ll put it in the link to this podcast so you guys can check that out too. And lastly, I just want to wrap up with, Allen and I were talking too, Harvard Business Review. Everybody knows HBR. We were just reading about how much money is being pumped into training. It’s something like $400 billion, and that’s globally. In the US it’s a huge chunk of that. Probably, I would say, 300 billion or so of the total that is pumped into training. And after this entire long read, which was a great read, this big huge problem where we’re getting no ROI on our training. How to fix it? Systems and processes.

Allen Fahden:  That’s right. So what that means is not getting better donuts in the training. It means doing it completely differently.

Karla Nelson:  Yes. Instead of the way we have done it. And Allen shared with me a saying I hadn’t heard in a while that we’ve not tried a different way to fix it, but when your only tool is a hammer, everything’s a nail.

So that was the wrap up and make sure you join us for part two next week where we talk about implementation, because we went through the process in ideation. And then we will break it down after you figure out what to do, how you’re going to get it done.

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Your Scrum Play Book: It’s Poker, Not Chess

Your Scrum Play Book: It’s Poker, Not Chess

Your Scrum Play Book: It's Poker, Not Chess with Fabian Schwartz

90% of corporations know they need to become agile in today’s environment.  Only 10% are.  Fabian Schwartz is a leading author and speaker on Agile and Scrum.  Listen in as Karla and Fabian talk about Scrum and how it’s not just for tech anymore.


Fabian Schwartz is passionate about helping his clients achieve their goals and improve performance through leveraging agile approaches.  He has more than 17 years’ experience in the tech sector as a developer, tester, trainer, project manager, program manager and executive.  He was an early adopter of Agile and became a Certified Scrum Trainer and public speaker.  For over 13 years he has taught Project and IT Management at Universities across Europe and South America.  Fabian founded two companies focused on consulting, coaching, and training in all areas of agile development and project management.

Fabian’s website:

Fabian’s LinkedIn profile:

Fabian’s Twitter feed:

Listen to the podcast here:

Karla and Fabian discuss Your Scrum Playbook

Karla Nelson:  Welcome to the People Catalysts’ Podcast, Fabian Schwartz.

Fabian Schwartz:  Hi, nice to be here.

Karla Nelson:  Oh my gosh, it’s so nice to meet you, Fabian. I’m really super excited about today’s podcast. You’ve got a really awesome book that’s coming out that we’re super excited to hear about, and we’ll hear a little bit about how we can find it. But it’s your Scrum Playbook: It’s Poker, Not Chess. You’ve spent a lot of time studying Scrum and now you’re bringing it to the private sector, correct?

Fabian Schwartz:  That’s correct, yeah.

Karla Nelson:  That’s super exciting and all the listeners are going to be like, “Oh my goodness, Karla’s been saying this on…” Allen Fadden and I did a podcast on this specific thing in regards to Scrum and how it’s our favorite project management strategy. And of course, Agile is the big umbrella and Scrum is one of the vehicles based off being Agile. I don’t know if you know this, Fabian, but there’s a study that came out and it was something like 77% of Fortune 500 CEOs know that Agile is important, and only, it was like 10%, know how to actually be Agile. I’ll have to make sure I get that to you because it looks like you’ve got a nice groove of individuals that are looking to figure out how to be Agile. They know the importance of Agile, but then everybody kind of stands around and looks at each other. It’s like, “Hey, let’s be Agile.” Right?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah. I’m not surprised by that number though. It sounds about right.

Karla Nelson:  Can you share with us a little bit about, well, let’s go back to just Scrum and its framework to start with. Then we can go into some questions associated with Scrum and then how we can apply it in all areas of business. So, if you’d like to give us just the history of Scrum and a short version of all the different people on the team and how it works.

Fabian Schwartz:  Okay, yeah, sure. In the early ’90s, Dr. Jeff Sutherland was working in Easel corporation and looking for better ways to do the work and he came along our business review article from ’86, from Takeuchi-Nonaka. They were talking about companies, actually some of them hardware companies they had analyzed, and they were talking about self-organizing teams and some other stuff. When they came along this article that sounded pretty close to what they were doing then and they decided to call their way of working Scrum.

Actually, as I understand it, they asked themselves, “How should we call our leader?” So, they decided to call them the Scrum Master. So that’s where the terminology came from.

Karla Nelson:  That’s super cool. And by the way, Fabian had the amazing opportunity this morning of being with Dr. Sutherland, the founder of Scrum. I was telling the Fabian just before we got on the podcast here, is that I am not a jealous person, but I am a little bit jealous that he go to spend some time with Dr. Sutherland. Fabian, can you break down those roles in Scrum for the listeners, so that when we start, we can talk about the Scrum Master and then the other teams that are put together with the strategy in Scrum.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yes. Sure, sure. In Scrum we have one role, it’s called the product owner. It’s basically the person that tests the product vision and the person that tells us what to do, what is the direction we’re going.

Then we have the team, and the team, I guess we have a cross functional team. They can develop a product in twins, and they’re responsible for how they’re going to build that vision. We have the Scrum Master, which is basically the person facilitating Scrum, or making sure that Scrum works. Then the guide, the Scrum guide, is called the servant-leader. The idea is that he helps the team to use Scrum and to get better every time.

Karla Nelson:  Love it. Love it. We did a podcast on Scrum, specifically in breaking that down and then also looking at the roles and responsibilities and overlaying our method, the WHO-DO method, too. We’ll make sure we include that as a link, as well. With that being said, Fabian, how do you empower cross-functionality, in these high-performance teams? You kind of lent into that, with what the team is responsible for, but how do you empower that and have these high-performance teams working with the product donor to then make that vision and implement that vision?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yes. That’s a really good question, because it’s not that easy as it might sound. There are several points to take into account. First of all, you obviously need the right skill levels. You need people with all the skills necessary to create product in twin. Here, we’re talking about T-shaped people. We want people that are experts in several topics, but not only experts; they also should be able to have general knowledge of the other work done in the team so they can help each other out. That way we don’t have bottle-necks and we don’t have people with idle time, but also for example, we believe we need a strong purpose for the team, like a strong vision that usually comes from the product owner and that has a lot to do with motivation and focus.

So if you just give people tasks to do, they don’t really understand what’s that for, what vision that fits in. Did that create temporary motivation? New issues? Another important point, it comes from the Google study that probably, everybody talks about it; psychological safety. We want team members to be safe to take risks. If they make a mistake taking risks and it doesn’t work out, well we don’t want to punish them immediately because that doesn’t work very well for us.

Karla Nelson:  Oh, of course. Because then you have a team that’s worrying about pushing the boundaries, which is exactly what Scrum is stating, right? You’re going to potentially make a mistake too, and fail fast.

Fabian Schwartz:  That’s correct, yeah.

Karla Nelson:  Fail quickly. Fail faster.

Fabian Schwartz:  Fail faster, yeah.

Karla Nelson:  That’s exactly Agile. That’s what it basically says. It says, “Hey, get to what’s not going to work quickly enough that you can get to what does work.” Right? I love that, psychological safety. That’s fantastic. Can you also share a little bit, how you can use the Scrum framework for management so that you can increase the productivity that we’re talking about and then allow a team to create and provide the value, much more quickly.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah. That’s another interesting point. Many, many of our clients have already some kind of Scrum implementation. They had to have a couple of pilot teams working with Scrum and if they have done it right, it has a very high performance increase. They have high performing teams, but at the end that’s the local optimization. You still have just one team of high-performance, but would you want someone who will assist them, a whole company of high performance.

At the end, what you do is, basically, you use Scrum to save Scrum and what you do on the team level, you can also have on the management level. With Scrum, we are talking about something called the backlog, which is basically a prioritized list of the things that you have to do and the team can do that, but also management can do that and they can prioritize the projects so it’s not only them, really focus on the most important projects and get them done. Well, we see a lot of this. Companies with 80, 100, 200 projects at the same time, they all execute them at the same time, but at the end of the year they have two or three projects done. We try to…

Karla Nelson:  That’s typical, right? I mean that is… It’s interesting because I completely can see that. It’s like when you try to focus on 200 things at one time, even though we were taught, if you chase two rabbits, they’re both going to get away. It’s like, okay, well let’s try and chase 200 right?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah.

Karla Nelson:  Let’s see how that one works.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah. So yeah, that’s a big issue, and Scrum can help you with the need to focus.

Karla Nelson:  I love that. In focus is, fantastic too and how can you also use Scrum, Fabian, to help your organization react quickly to those changes, both the stimulus within the organization, but also the changes that are happening real time as you’re developing whatever strategy technology? Again, we’re talking about using Scrum for project management, even outside of that, but how can you then use it to react quickly to the changes that are happening in your strategy?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah. I think we can all agree with that the business context is changing really fast right now, and it’s probably going to change even faster and that’s huge. The challenge for the companies is to change its direction, probably faster than your competition, because otherwise you’re out of business. If you imagine the company as a ship, and your task is to turn that ship around, and you have a really big ship, then it’s probably difficult to turn the ship around. If you have one monolithic hierarchy company looking like a big army, it will take very long to change your strategy and change new business opportunities. But if you imagine your company is separate, small Scrum teams, and they’re all in smaller boats, but they’re all somehow connected following the same big goal, well you can change the direction of those small boats way faster than you can with one gigantic, better ship, let’s say.

That’s more or less how Scrum works. You have several small teams, they must be connected but they’re small, independent teams, they can develop stuff end-to-end, and if you have to chase a new opportunity, you can do that a lot faster with one team, or with several of these teams than with one very big team.

Karla Nelson:  I love that. That’s awesome. If you could, Fabian, because I kind of lent into this and I know your book talks about how you can use all of these strategies, because Scrum, everybody always thinks technology because from the point it was created, it was utilized to develop technology. And Dr. Sutherland, that’s his background, right, is technology I think… Wasn’t he involved in the original technology that created the ATM machine? I’m pretty sure, that’s…

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, he was, he was, yes.

Karla Nelson:  So, his background, and he was in the Air Force, he was a pilot and this guy is amazing. I can’t believe you spent your morning with him. Make sure you tell him Karla Nelson says hi.

Fabian Schwartz:  I’ll do that, I’ll do that.

Karla Nelson:  Outside of technology, Scrum and its methodology can be utilized in any type of business. Can you share with us a little bit how the methodology of Scrum is not just to develop tech because technology, they’ve always adopted this Agile methodology and Scrum being one of the ways to implement Agile, but it’s not just for tech.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, sure, sure. That’s what we are doing right now and we’ve done the last years. I think there’s a big part of that way of thinking that’s only for technology comes probably from the vocabulary we use at the moment in Scrum, which talks about the development team, etc. But at the end, if you apply that outside technology, this is just the same thing.

You have the person that gives you the priorities and has a product vision. You still have a team that works on how to get this done and you still have the Scrum Master making sure the team that improves all the time. I think the only thing you probably have to really think about is, two things probably. What’s the cost of change in your product, on your development and what’s the uncertainty in your scope? Scrum is really good for complex environments. Any complex environments are just software, so every time you have high uncertainty in your scope and that can be oil and gas, that can be a retailer, that can be marketing, wherever you have high uncertainty in your scope, Scrum is perfect because it helps you to learn fast and reduce this uncertainty.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, I love that. Just breaking it down into a team that can move quickly together and I can’t even remember the mathematical term for this, but it came out of Microsoft and they basically said every time you add somebody to the team, it increases the complexity by a certain amount. That’s even without having the strategy of utilizing something like Scrum, which gives you a playbook, right? That you’re saying, “Hey, you’re on first base, you’re on third base and we’re going to coordinate in this way.” That’s so true is that, understanding how many people are on your team, how you need to move quickly, and how you’re taking the scope of uncertainty. That’s really an interesting way I haven’t heard that put, which makes a lot of sense that Scrum is… It helps you be agile. How do you fail fast, fail quickly and get to the meat of where you need to be as a team in order to make a quick impact and do it as quickly as possible? Fabian, can you also share with us then when Scrum can fail?

Fabian Schwartz:  Okay. Yeah. At the end, what you want to be, probably, so you want to be more Agile and Scrum is one way to become more Agile, but you have to be a little bit careful. You’re not Agile, just because you’re using Scrum. Scrum doesn’t make you Agile if you want to call it this way. Scrum just tells you where you are not, so Scrum is a way of doing things. It says age old way of doing things. When we worked with Scrum teams, at the beginning, it has lots of problems, which is totally normal. That’s the way it goes. These problems, we call them impediments, are basically the points were where the team was not Agile and the biggest mistake, we see teams or companies or clients making, is not fixing those impediments.

Forcing the team to use Scrum and seeing that there are problems, but don’t address them, don’t fix them. Well, yeah you use Scrum, but you will probably never would be Agile because you don’t fix those problems. What really helps, is to have a strong sponsor that has the authority and the impact in the company to help fixing those impediments.

Karla Nelson:  That’s great, I love that. One of the other things working with, well… Previously we worked with… Much of the People Catalysts’ background is working with really large organizations, because they spend a lot of… They have a budget for R and D, and for sales, and for innovation, and our methodology, the WHO-DO method, we… In the past, that’s really been the types of companies that we’ve worked with and just recently we’ve started decentralizing that and getting it into the hands, and this information to smaller companies and certifying other trainers. One of the things, things we hear all the time, Fabian, is “Well I only have 50 the employees or we’re a small startup.” Can you share a little bit about why it’s probably even more crucial for them to actually use a process and understand Scrum and they can utilize it at any business size and how you need to utilize it at any business size in order to make a big impact?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, sure, sure. Probably first and foremost, Scrum is designed for Scrum team and the Scrum team is usually three to nine people so you can use that with very small companies. You also can scale that and you can use it for very big companies. So what’s the difference? Bigger companies usually have more money and can afford to take longer to fail and spend more money in their failures. While smaller companies usually can’t do that, so they need to fail fast and cheap and learn, basically, fast. We talk about failing fast, but what we actually want say is to learn fast.

To get the uncertainty balance fast, so you identify basically what’s your strategy? What’s your way? What’s the way? Which way works? If you’re a small company, you don’t have the money to spend years doing that and failing several times or failing and taking a long time to learn. I think Scrum is really crucial for small startups and-

Karla Nelson:  Yes.

Fabian Schwartz:  … it can always be done with small teams.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. That is such a good point, Fabian. We’ve been teaching our methodology too, and what was the biggest “aha” that we’ve found in working with smaller companies is they can be more Agile. They don’t have to get the approval of how many people and make this work and do all these things. You’ve got the stakeholders sitting right in front of you. They’ve just got $500,000 or 1.5 million or some of them larger of investment that they’re trying to then move the pup forward and how actually the ability to be Agile and then use Scrum as a project management strategy is much easier for them, these large corporations and or governments.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, for sure, for sure. They don’t have to follow all these policies and rules that the big companies have in place. It’s usually easier.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. It’s really interesting to see because we were… Again, they don’t have the big budgets, but at the same time, the decentralization and the ability to find your book, and read your book, and listen to things like this, and all the information out there that they can utilize in order to bring it back to their team and make their shareholders and any stakeholders in their company with a smiley face, we want to keep them happy, right? They’re funding our startup or if we’re funding our startup, or even if you’ve been in business for a long time.

The other thing I found, Fabian, is if you start with the culture. There is actually a culture of doing this, and so if you’re in business for 10 years, then all of a sudden, “Hey, we’re going to utilize Scrum.” That’s a little different than if you start out from day one or day, early in the venture and can you, as we wrap this up just chat a little bit about the culture?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah.

Karla Nelson:  The culture that it creates in your organization, because I think we’ve created that word and used that word in so many different ways and in our minds culture is singing kumbaya together and you know, the potluck on Friday. Culture is actually your boots on the ground. Culture is like to do. Can you, as we wrap this up, share the culture and the outcome of utilizing Scrum and how that positively impacts culture in the organization.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, sure, sure. Okay. That’s a really good question because what we see a lot, as you just said. People talk all the time about culture and Agile and Scrum but some of the group drifts a lot in these places. We all have to be happy. Everything is about happiness and they hurt the productivity. Dr. Sutherland has designed Scrum, developed Scrum to make his teams more productive and attractive. Okay. That doesn’t mean they can’t be happy doing that, but the initial purpose was to become more productive. And you’re totally right, it’s a cultural issue. People usually try using Scrum as they want to be more Agile so they want to have a more Agile culture.

In the end, it is a cultural shift and that’s really something. What we see is really difficult. The different approaches to that probably has to see a little bit what culture actually is. You have several layers of culture. You have values, you have your beliefs, you have your behavior, for example. Some of that you can’t see and some of that you can. You can see behavior but you can’t see values. Many people when they talk about a cultural shift is they want to talk about changing values. I think changing there is probably the most difficult thing, because-

Karla Nelson:  Yeah.

Fabian Schwartz:  … at the end you go to somebody and tell them, “Okay, your values sound good, these values are better.” You can say that in a very nice way, but at the end that’s the message you send. There are a very few people reacting very well to that. There are several studies that have also confirmed that it works the other way around and many people like easy definitions of culture, for example, culture is how we do things around here. It’s actually behavior. If you start changing the behavior for us, which is easier than changing values and use these new Scrum HR behavior for sufficient time, place, then after a while, you…

Karla Nelson:  You start realizing, Oh, people are different.

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah. You become wiser.

Karla Nelson:  We respond differently. I’d like to see how your part of the work works and how long it takes, what you have to put into it. It’s interesting, we were training a company, we were talking about this, as well as how the things that we do and it opens your eyes, then you can, affect the fact of how people see things. I think that’s what you’re talking about, is like what… And Edwards Deming, I’m not sure if you’ve done any research on his body of work, but, it was like 35, 40 years, he was focused on the manufacturing industry and out of his body of work, he came up with 94% of failure is process failure, not people failure. Yet what is the first thing you do when something doesn’t work, is we point fingers.

Fabian Schwartz:  Punish the people.

Karla Nelson:  Exactly! If you have a process like Scrum, that changes the behavior, that then works backwards to then change the value. That’s a lot better than walking in and saying, “Hey, we just want you to be engaged, be engaged, employee engagement. We’re going to talk about employee engagement.” Right?

Fabian Schwartz:  Right.

Karla Nelson:  This has been so amazing, Fabian, again give Dr. Sutherland a high five for me. I’ve been singing his praises for years and Scrum is fantastic. And your new book, I’m super excited to read it. It is going to be out in what the beginning of March you were saying?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, correct, the beginning of March.

Karla Nelson:  Awesome. How can our listeners get a hold of you, Fabian, or look up your book or where can we send them?

Fabian Schwartz:  Yeah, yeah. Go please to, everything about the book will be published there.

Karla Nelson:  Fantastic. Well, we’re super excited to hear about it, Fabian, and we’ll also include the link to the overview of Scrum that we did with the WHO-DO methods since all of our listeners have been utilizing the method for a long time and how you can overlay Scrum as a tool in your toolbox in order to affect your culture and then increase productivity and have happier people in the meantime. Thanks again Fabian, all the way from Bogota, Colombia, and we’ll be in touch.

Fabian Schwartz:  Thank you Karla.

Karla Nelson:  Thanks.

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Mindset Performance – Part 2

Mindset Performance - Part 2 with Jarrod Haning

Mindset Performance

Part 2

Mindset Performance - Part 2 with Jarrod Haning

Jarrod Haning allows you to access your next breakthrough on demand by learning to think at a higher level.  He is an award-winning speaker who was featured on Nightline and has 4 TEDx talks to this credit.  Karla and Jarrod dive deeper into the Nobel-nominated MindScan.

Listen to the Podcast…

More information about Mindset Performance and WHO-DO™

Jarrod Haning on LinkedIn:

MindScan Review Call:

WHO-DO™ Assessment:

The Mindset Performance Discussion…

Karla Nelson:  And welcome to the People Catalyst Podcast, Jarrod Haning.

Jarrod Haning:  Great to be here.

Karla Nelson:  Well, you know, you have to have the … What was the world’s greatest tickler in the five-year-old category?

Jarrod Haning:  I am the world champion tickle champion.

Karla Nelson:  The world tickle champion. That’s fantastic. I know your son’s nine now, but I was sold at that point. Talks a little bit about positioning and branding, which is fantastic. And so we’re so excited to have you on the podcast today, and talk about … You have the most fascinating background, in the fact that you know, for 18 years you were a violinist in the South Carolina Philharmonic Orchestra, like 18 years, and then all of a sudden … You’ve got to share with us what happened.

Jarrod Haning:  Ah, yes, yes. So, in a previous life, in a previous career, many, many moons ago, I was a profession-

Karla Nelson:  Which is so super cool by the way. And my hometown is Charleston, South Carolina. So …

Jarrod Haning:  Yay. Palmetto State.

Karla Nelson:  Yay.

Jarrod Haning:  So yeah, I was a professional musician, classically trained, playing concerts and all the stuff that goes along with that. Both my college degrees are in music, and I’ve spent half my life in a cave with no windows, perfecting and practicing hours a day on end, sore fingers, all that stuff. Yep. And, it’s wonderful. It’s very fulfilling. It taught me to think differently about business, for example. Because when I was out, I got frustrated that I’m working and it seemed like 50,000 a year was my ceiling. But I rethought the way I solve those problems, I made three changes. All of them involve taking my time out of the equation. How could I teach, without my time being the limiting factor? How could I play concerts without my time being the limiting factor, and how could I open up avenues to receive more income streams without my time being limiting factor? So I made those three changes and it took me from 50,000 a year to 100,000 a year, but making 100,000 a year, only working 20 hours a week. So I would encourage anybody-

Karla Nelson:  They could do more tickling.

Jarrod Haning:  That’s right. And then that. I get the tickle factory going. So yeah, I would encourage anybody, wherever, whatever business they’re in, how can I take my time out of the equation and get the same results. But yes, I was Principal Viola. I was Principal Viola with that orchestra for 10 years. I played with that orchestra for about 18 years. And I’ve probably played with about 14 different orchestras throughout the classical tenure until I moved over to performance coaching and speaking and training and the world I’m in now.

Karla Nelson:  Which is so similar by the way. And it’s funny you say, just today my son was learning patterns in math and his dad looked at it and he loves the piano. Oh my gosh. I can’t separate him from it. And he was explaining the pattern by the melody for each, like it was a trapezoid, it had the same melody, right, the square, the same melody and all of a sudden, he got it instantly. How the pattern actually works, and so you know, really when you think about it, like everything is math and music is math, right? So business really at its core, has this, mathematical underlying, and I was always like to say, “It’s science and it’s art,” right? And so, the coolest part about business is that you can have the science of business, but you also have the art. So it’s that space between the notes, right? That you can put your dent on a universe, and I think that’s super cool, as far as your background, and then how you have that background, to be able to speak into the world of business.

  And I want to talk a little bit about, there is a sector in the MindScan that talks about something that I think everybody should be aware of, which is the four quadrants of being unconsciously incompetent, consciously competent and unconsciously competent. And those four quadrants I think speak to a lot of different areas of business. But I think we kind of like, can of shush them away a little bit and not realize, in saying, “Okay, if I need to shift or I need to pivot my business, what am I consciously competent in? Or what am I unconsciously incompetent in?” And I think the MindScan, it kind of like, it shines a light on those things that you’re unconsciously incompetent at. And so, if you could speak a little bit to that in regards to MindScan, I thought that was a brilliant aspect of the overall profile.

Jarrod Haning:  Yeah. So the bridge there, between music and the work I do now, is some people don’t know this, but when you’re engaged in making music, whether you’re singing along to the radio or clapping your hands at a concert or something, in that moment, you are using more of your brain than any other time of your life. More different areas, more contrasting areas, more cross connections. This is different than other areas where we use our brain. So say for example, athletic performance. In athletic performance, it’s completely the opposite. The higher a level that you’re performing or that’s your body is engaged in that activity, the less of your brain you’re using. Your brain enters kind of a meditative state. It becomes very quiet, because glucose is a very precious resource and it needs to be going towards the muscles, so your brain kind of quiets down.

Well, the cool part is, what if there was a way where you could access different parts of your brain on demand, and that’s one of the things that the MindScan makes possible. So, talking about conscious and unconscious competence, and why that makes a difference, no matter where you’re at, there are three things that are happening in that situation. If you’re trying to overcome an obstacle or reach a goal or whatever it is, I’m going to tell you these three things and you’ll see why it’s true that there’s not really any such thing as working smarter. Working smarter is an illusion. It’s the same thing as working harder, also an illusion. Both of those are dead-end roads and we’re going to look at that here shortly.

So the first thing is you are already doing everything that you know to do. If you’re trying to reach that goal, cross that bridge, whatever it is, pat yourself on the back. You’re not a slacker, you’re doing everything you know to do, if it makes … And the second thing is, the things that you’re doing to solve that problem, they seem like good ideas. They make sense. Like, you know, duh. You know, you’re not going to do stupid stuff. Of course they make sense. What that means is a breakthrough in your situation, the actual transformation. And this is where we get into the those four quadrants that you mentioned earlier. The true transformation will at first, not make sense. It’s going to sound like a bad idea.

Karla Nelson:  And not only that, this is so crazy, Jarrod, that you’re saying that, because I was watching one of my mentors and colleagues, and they talked about cognitive dissonance, right? Like we cannot hold two opposing ideas at the same time. So your mindset is that you, whatever it is that you believe, is, say for instance, oh I’m coming up against an issue or a challenge or a problem, your mindset is either, I can fix it or I can’t, or it’s I can, you know, this is a good idea or this is a bad idea. Right? So it’s the mind that’s holding that, right, based off cognitive dissonance, that, and it made me think of you actually, it’s kind of funny you brought that up today, because the mind and it’s inability to hold two different thoughts at the same time, is exactly like oh wow, that’s going to seem like a bad idea, at the time.

Jarrod Haning:  Yeah. The illustration I give there is, when you’re five years old or however old it was, when you’re learning how to ride a bicycle, in that moment where they took off the training wheels and you didn’t have it yet, of course you don’t want to fall down because that sucks. You don’t want to get hurt. And in that moment where you hadn’t experienced balance, your crazy aunt Jenny comes by with some advice, and she says, “What you need to do is go faster, because when you go faster it’s easier to balance.” And you think to yourself, “Now I know why they call her crazy Aunt Jenny.”

Karla Nelson:  Maybe I can’t even like to go at this speed.

Jarrod Haning:  Yes. Are you nuts? But then notice what happens, the moment that you experience balance, your brain goes, “Oh my gosh, now I get it.” Now before you felt the difference, no amount of explanation made a difference. But after you felt the difference, no amount of explanation was needed. And what that shows us, is the breakthrough in your situation isn’t going to come from your understanding. It’s not going to come from the things that you are consciously aware of, that you are competent in. It’s going to come from that area that you’re not even aware of, exists. And that’s what the MindScan makes possible because we can print those thinking patterns up on paper and get you access to that unconscious competence right away.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah, I love that. That’s so fantastic. And I love, you know, we were talking about, and Peter Drucker’s one of my all time, if I could ever meet somebody, I know he passed away several years ago, but I love him. I love if you read his work, he was such a visionary and he knew where the puck was going. And one of the quotes I know we talked about was, success in the knowledge economy. Because that’s where we’re at, right? It’s like the knowledge economy. It comes to those who know themselves, their strengths, their values, and how to best perform. And I mean that just speaks completely to the work we do. Right? That’s based off 110 years of marketing research. How do you put the right people in the right place at the right time doing the right thing?

  And by the way, Peter Drucker was the same guy who said, “Innovation is easy. Just put teams together. The problem is that nobody knows how.” Right? And so, but the first part is to understand yourself, and then it’s, how do you put teams together? And I love that the MindScan, it breaks it down. Really, what I saw, and you can correct me if I’m wrong here Jarrod, these four specific areas, which is, how are you thinking, what are your strengths, what are your areas of weakness? And then, what am I going to do about it? Right? And so if you could speak to like first, you know, you’re thinking like, what’s … The biggest challenge all of us face actually is the thing between our two ears, anyway.

Jarrod Haning:  Yeah. So it measures a couple of different things. It measures your natural understanding. You know, some people are really good with music, some people are really good with math. Some people were really good with sports, measures natural understanding. This is surprisingly important. I have lost count of the number of people that were not aware, that they were not aware of their strength, of their sweet spot.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. That’s because it’s so easy, right Jarrod? The thing you’re like brilliant at, you’re like, okay, you can play the violin. Okay. And you just go, you know, you just do it. Right? And it’s brilliant. Well, everybody else looks at it and goes, “Oh my gosh, that’s the most incredible thing I’ve ever seen.” Right? But we take advantage of the things that we’re most brilliant at. We don’t value them, and necessarily even lean into them because, oh my gosh, it’s just so easy, right? Duh.

Jarrod Haning:  We do. Now imagine what happens when somebody becomes aware of what that sweet spot is. Had a guy who’s making 400,000, he’s in the financial space. You’d think at that level, what are you going to teach him that he doesn’t know? He takes the MindScan and sees right there that he didn’t know what his sweet spot was. He didn’t know what his zone of genius was. So we take them through some mindset push-ups, so he gets clarity on that, on the thing that makes the biggest difference, that moves the ball forward, the biggest difference, he starts to schedule his day around that, starts to structure his day around that, and that clarity takes him from 400,000 to 1.2 million over the next year and a half. I have another lady, she’s a high executive of a nonprofit and as you know, working at a nonprofit, it’s like hurting cats because yes, you’re dealing with volunteers and all this other stuff, right?

So here she is in the thick of that all, you know, just the stress that comes with hurting volunteers and can we just get cats instead? And I mean you, just that mess, right? And you know, we don’t have the money to outsource this and so we have to do that ourself. And so now we are wearing hats that we don’t need to be wearing and shooting ourselves in the foot. Well, takes the MindScan, same thing. She’s already performing at a high level and one of the things that showed was that she wasn’t nearly as clear on her strengths, her sweet spot, her zone of genius as she thought she was. So we were able to take her through some mindset push-ups, rewire the way her brain solves those problems, get her brain thinking at a higher level. And that took her earning power to $5,000 an hour. Now, because she is very, very clear on which task produces that, and how to do more of that task during the day, now hiring qualified people is no longer a problem.

Karla Nelson:  Now, that’s supercool. Yeah, so it’s like, okay, this is your thinking, but you know, be focused on your strengths and that totally speaks to what we do because, it’s all focused on what’s your core nature of work, how can you move from your weak work, which is the stuff you’re not good at, to your peak work, which is the things that you do naturally and easily and faster with greater ease and greater effectiveness. And so then also, the MindScan identifies those areas of weakness, right? That, and you kind of touched on that a little bit, Jarrod, in regards to, you know, that if in an area weakness could be, “Hey, I don’t actually understand my strength.” Right?

Jarrod Haning:  It is a really interesting area of weakness, that this is a total blind spot for a couple of people. Not everybody, but, is overvaluing your strengths. And so the illustration there is like if you’re going on a hike in the woods, imagine that you have a trail map. Well if you hold that trail map on the end of your nose so that it’s all you can see, you’re overvaluing it. So you’re going to hit a lot of trees. At the same time, you can have the most perfect trail map and people do this all the time. They have the most amazing genius buried in their mind, and they stick it in their back pocket and they never pull it out, and they have no idea. This hidden gem, it’s such a missed opportunity. And the MindScan gives us the ability to pull that out. So their brain is using more of its powers it wants. It’s pretty cool.

Karla Nelson:  That is super cool. And I like that. It’s like, “Oh, you could overuse your strength.”

Jarrod Haning:  Overuse it. Yeah.

Karla Nelson:  That’s kind of interesting, because you know, you never typically hear that with, it’s almost like, “Lean into your strength, lean into your strength.” It’s like, “Oh wow. You could actually overuse it?” I mean that’s kind of juxtaposing pretty much, you know, every assessment that is a strengths assessment, you know, out there. I think that’s pretty interesting. Do you have an example that you could share? I love the, you know, in the woods and, but like a specific, so, you know, people can visualize that, because I can actually see, in my life how, as soon as you said it I was like, “Oh my gosh, that is my strength.” But how could I overuse it and how could that work against me at some point?

Jarrod Haning:  Work against you? Oh yeah, happy, golly. I’ve got so many examples that I want to think of. So, I’ve got three, hopefully we have time for at least two of them.

Karla Nelson:  Yes, I think we do.

Jarrod Haning:  Imagine somebody that is really, really clear on what life is calling them to, really clear on their future. Somebody that has a high commitment to honoring that calling. We want people like that. The problem is, if they become too committed, then life stops working. And an example of that would be, there was one girl, she was 22, she takes the MindScan. At that time in her life, she was a single mom. One kid, she’s living with her parents. Now, she had perfect clarity on what life was calling her to. She had total commitment to honoring that. In her life, what that looked like, is she wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, and for her it was stay-at-home mom or bust, nothing else.

The way that have played out though, is she refused to work. She refused to go to college, because in her mind, from the lens she was navigating life through, those look like the antithesis of being a stay-at-home mom. Why would I want to do that? This is what I want to do. But somebody from the outside looking in would say, you dummy-

Karla Nelson:  You don’t have to not do that to do something else.

Jarrod Haning:  Right. Or even more, so, if you want to be married, going to college is the fastest way to meet a husband.

Karla Nelson:  Oh, there’s a good one right there.

Jarrod Haning:  Here’s another one. Here’s another one. Some people are super ninjas socially, they have the ability to build rapport just amazingly well, and relationships amazingly well. Their ability to read people is just, you know, there is no second to it. They’re super ninjas. The problem is, sometimes they get into leadership and because they value so much how people feel, it works against them. So they find people being irritated around them and they can’t understand why. They say, “Oh, here, here, let me, let me help you with that.” In their mind, they’re being kind by helping, but it gets interpreted by the other person as, “You don’t trust me to do my job.” Because they’re overvaluing that lens. I got one more, one more. If we have time for one more.

Karla Nelson:  No, throw it in, throw it in. Just roll up with the action plan, for sure.

Jarrod Haning:  Before we wrap up. Here is-

Karla Nelson:  This is so interesting. I love it.

Jarrod Haning:  All right. All right, so a lot of business owners and leaders that I have the joy to work with, when they first come in, they pride themselves on getting things done. They’re achievers, they’re action takers, pride themselves on checking things off their to-do list and just real go getters, but then if we pull an aside afterwards and say, “Hey, do you, does it ever feel like there’s more on your to-do list than you have time to get done?” They’re like, “Oh my God, all the time. How did you know?” “Do you ever try working harder and faster to fix that?” “Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely. That’s the way you fix it.”

Okay. When you get to the end of the day, does it feel like you spent most of your day doing little stuff that someone else should be doing? They’re like, “Yeah, all the time.” Well, when we look at their MindScan, what we find is the way their brain solves problems is by taking action, which makes sense on the surface. The more action you take, the more results you get. The problem is because their brain solves problems, it over values action. Their brain just looks for more things to do.

Karla Nelson:  Activity does not equal productivity.

Jarrod Haning:  Correct. Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Karla Nelson:  So true. And it’s so, I think, and it’s interesting because with our method, the WHO-DO method, it identifies, are you a doer or are you a thinker, and they value those differently. Right? Doing and making action and taking action versus thinking like, “Are you in your mind or are you on your feet?” And it’s interesting because there’s a balance of the two. But as a leader, you don’t have to be in the bullpen the entire time, right?

Jarrod Haning:  Leader’s job is not to do, it is to cause. And they do that with systems and people. If you are doing the work, your business is falling behind.

Karla Nelson:  I love that system. So Peter Drucker, we’ll come back to him again, because I love this man. He, oh actually Deming is a probably better focus on this one is, you know, 94% of failure is process failure, not people failure.

Jarrod Haning:  Amen to that.

Karla Nelson:  Yeah. If you’re a leader, you need to understand the process by which you fill in the blank. Like what is the process? Because what happens is, is that something fails and we want to point the finger at somebody else, but as a leader, it’s actually the process that’s the most important. Now, that’s not saying that we don’t value people, it’s just saying that how they come to a conclusion of ideation. What are we going to do, or implementation, how are we going to get it done? Having a process and understanding, and as we started this out, knowing yourself, right? Because that’s what Peter Drucker said, the definition of success basically was knowing your strength, your values, and how you best perform. So how can you insert yourself into that, is absolutely critical. And I think as leaders understanding how to help people along that road. And I love what the MindScan does in, it’s really interesting because it’s extremely short and you’re wondering why and how you could get that much data and information.

Jarrod Haning:  It’s so weird.

Karla Nelson:  Out of just such a, you know, I think it took me all of seven minutes maybe, right? And then it’s like, okay, that’s totally me. So, and at the end it creates an action plan, right?

Jarrod Haning:  Yes, yes.

Karla Nelson:  So, what are we going to do? How are we going to take a look at this? And of course you know that’s the end result of any great assessment training or whatnot, is like what are we going to do about this? So Jarrod, can you share with the listeners like how they can get ahold of you, how they can, you know, see the MindScan, get some information.

Jarrod Haning:  Yeah, I would be happy to get another person, their breakthrough map. Oh my gosh., if you go there, I’ve got a little short explainer video, so you can see some pictures of MindScans and other thinking patterns and the difference it made in their life. Short little application. If you’d like to take the MindScan yourself. If it looks like it’s going to be a good fit, I’ll send you right over, so we can get your breakthrough map. And Karla is absolutely right. It’s very short. Most people take seven to 10 minutes, 15 minutes at the longest, and it’s a very different-

Karla Nelson:  That’s if you’re a thinker, because I’m like … I just like went through it real quick and I was like, yeah … But if you’re a thinker and you’re like working through all the little aspects, it might take you up to 15 minutes, but it’s super short. Super cool. And the results are fantastic. So thank you so much for being on the People Catalyst Podcast. Jarrod, I really love what you’re doing and look forward to hearing more.

Jarrod Haning:  Thank you, ma’am.