The LeaderX Podcast with Lucy Barkas

LeaderX 4 questions every team should know the answer to

September 22, 2021 Lucy Barkas Season 3 Episode 44
The LeaderX Podcast with Lucy Barkas
LeaderX 4 questions every team should know the answer to
Show Notes Transcript

David Wheatley joins the LeaderX podcast to share his 4 questions which create the foundation of any great team.

David works with leaders who are engaged in transitions to new roles, new scope or improved results. 

Originally from Leeds, England, David is a former Scotland Yard police officer. He is a graduate of Hendon Police Academy in London and an honors graduate of Lancaster University’s education program. He earned a master’s degree in organizational management and is a Senior Fellow at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Policy. David has twice delivered at the International Leadership Association conference. He is co-author of 50 DOs for Everyday Leadership Lessons Learned the Hard Way (So You Don’t Have To), now in its second edition, and What Great Teams Do Great: How Ordinary People Accomplish the Extraordinary..


Hey, everyone, it's Lucy. And today My guest is David Wheatley of humanity. He's a leadership coach, trainer, speaker and podcast host with over 20 years experience supporting individuals and groups in leadership and building high performing teams. I think he may be my brother from another mother. So, yes, a David. He's worked with presidential appointees, CEOs, frontline leaders, co authored a 50 dues of everyday leadership. And he's just released what great teams do great. In 2015, he sailed the Atlantic in a 39 foot boat with his wife and two friends. So I'm sure he's got some great experiences and stories to tell us from that. So I welcome David to the show and to discuss teamwork, which is even more relevant now. That most teams are hybrid remote. Few have gone back to working normal hours, but you know what teamwork is and how we do it is changing. And I also just want to let you know he his tagline is business mission, which I loved, which was humanity, as an organization stands with people who strive to make the world a better place, or at least that corner of it. So welcome, David 

So welcome, David, thank you for joining us today. And I believe you're over the pond in Michigan.



I am and, and I get corrected or got corrected to call it Michigan to be a lot of time to get to that because we all grew up in England calling it Michigan.



But yeah, thank you for having me on.



Oh, no, I'm really excited. And especially as, as I introduced you, I said, You're like a brother from another mother. Because I'm, you know, the work that we do in the past that we've, we've followed have ended us in the same place, but there's always a different journey. And your journey will be very different to mine. So why don't you just tell me and the listeners a little bit about how you got doing the work that you're doing and why teams.



It's I'll do the short version, because we could be here for weeks otherwise, but I was a whitewater kayaker when I was at high school. And I taught whitewater kayaking at a summer camp up in the Lake District, North of England, and then went in the Metropolitan Police, which over here, people notice Scotland Yard. But over there, you'll notice that police force for London. And there's a couple of instances in the 80s, where the police were using the outdoors to develop leadership. And I got a call one day from one of these instructors saying hey, you've got the right Bits of paper, do you fancy a day on the river rather than on the beat? Because we've got these 10 or 12, senior leaders who are going out on the river, we've got a facilitator and we need somebody to do the safety and they need the bits of paper. And so it was like Sure, I'll take a day of doing that. And I did this a couple of times and found myself kind of listening to what the facilitator asked and thinking I could come up with a better question. And, and so then I left the police and continued some education and, and it was a hybrid of learning at one college and paddling across Lake Windermere to another college where I was doing leadership development, again, mostly based in the outdoors and with groups, and then came over here for a job in 1996. And that that outdoor stuff has transitioned mostly indoors. And most of it these days is over zoom. But it's still the same same route, which is you've got people looking to learn. And if I ask a good question, it helps move them down the path. And so it's just been a kind of organic trip down life's river, where I've stuck my paddle in every so often and paddled a little harder at different times. But it's all routed back to a blend of whitewater kayaking and being able to ask good questions.



Oh, that's so cool. And I must say in my own coaching, I use the water a lot, but I use it as a metaphor and analogy. And if we are outdoors, I'll always try and find some water. For there just gaze out up because when I'm sat side by side and looking out to the water, we've got the river seven here, that is a great place to go. But it just changes people. And and the other really interesting thing is I'm actually a scout leader. And so we're always doing out our bounty kind of stuff. And, and pre pandemic, whenever I have the opportunity, I would always take teams outside building something or making something or doing something, because I just love being outdoors. And so today it changes their geography. Have you noticed that?



Yeah, absolutely. I will tell I spend a lot of time working with people in offices and things like that. But it's not unusual to say, why don't you just go for a walk around the building, just go outside, have a walk, take a walk, I'm fortunate enough to live on 10 acres of woodland and we have a mile of trails out in my backyard. And, and so, three times a day, usually when I'm in the office here, I'll get out there with the dog. Sometimes the dog stays at home cuz she's getting old, but I'll walk in the woods and the Japanese have a great concept of forest bathing, which is meditational. And just to be out there and thinking and you know, in tune with what's around you and and then you come back feeling refreshed.



Yeah, I totally get that and my best ideas and always happen when I'm out walking. And it could be a five minute stroll or it could be you know, going for an eight hour hike. But yeah, I feel changed from doing it. And, and it's really interesting. I've said this a number of times to my clients, I don't do meditation, I find that really, really hard. But for me, I become really mindful when I'm walking and the times I know I'm in my own head is what I can't hear the birds singing. And then it forces me just to tune in and say right, I'm in my head. So yeah, I love the fact that you've got this activity in this nature base and can bring it in because it's something that I'm really proud About. So but your book, tell me about that, because it's all about teams. And yeah, so just yeah, it's your chance to promo the book, I guess. And then just tell me about, you know, why teams? Why is it so important for you?



Well, as you know, in this world, if you are working with clients to start to be some themes to the work and and quite often, it's our coaching work that generates some ideas as somebody has a problem. And you're asking them the same kinds of questions. And then you start to log those questions, and you start to see patterns. And lo and behold, two years later, a book is created based on some of these patterns. And, and so we've been doing the work over here for 25 years, and those patterns have emerged around what the difference is between a team that works in a team that doesn't. And there's a few important things that we've found that that are really essential. So it's not a very big book. It's a short, pithy book that just points out the bits that people tend to skip over. And, for example, one of them is taking time to set up the team, right? So and the setup asks four simple questions. Do we know who we are? And not just, you know, hi, you're Lucy, I'm David. But what you bring to the table, what your skill set is, what your preferences are, style is, you know, those kinds of things. So we actually know who we've got on the team. The second question goes to do we understand our current reality? Then the third question is obvious. What are we trying to achieve? And why? The fourth question is kind of interesting, because it's, it's a more unusual one, which is what are our non negotiable expectations for working together? And I try to get people to come up with between four and 10 of these don't go much beyond that, because you're getting into some of the details of the planning and things but but what are the expectations? And a great example of that is, came from one of my clients has no surprises. I said, Well, what do you mean by no surprises? And he said, Well, if people tell me something's going wrong, and they knew about it two weeks ago, we have a problem. So proactive communication is the other side of that, which is if something's going wrong, come and tell me. And maybe we can work together to alleviate the impact of that. But don't tell me after it's happened, because then we have a problem.



Yeah. Oh, I love that. It's so simple that principle, but the beauty of it is getting those people around the table to actually have those meaningful conversations. And in my work, I call it the the rules of engagement. Like what are the what are the boundaries? What's a hard? Yes? And what's a hard No, and the stuff that's a bit gray? Okay, how are we going to navigate this, because honestly, it saves so much time and energy later on down the road. And, and I really liked your point number one, which was actually just get the people to know each other. And often we end up having to do these team building sessions, what, six months later when things are fractured. And then people say, Oh, I never knew that about you. Like, what are you doing every day? Actually, if you do it from day one in that formation stage, and it just unites and builds that trust, and, and what you know, I suppose it's that peer, peer to peer pressure, almost, because I like you, I respect you, I'm not gonna let you down.



I don't have to like you, I just have to know you well enough to respect you and know that you're going to follow through on what you said, you're going to do. Yeah, and, and we can work well together. But one of my favorite quotes is the idea of we we don't make time to do it, right. But we always find time to do it over. And this really resonates for this, these four questions, because if we don't ask them upfront, and make the time upfront, we'll be forced to make the time to come back to it later. And it may be too late. Because if you've already started clashing with somebody, it's going to be really hard to get back aligned as to what the expectations are, and understanding and valuing what they're bringing to the table.



Now, one of the things that always intrigues me, with people like myself, and you who work in the team sphere, and we've generally had some experience of working in some brilliant teams, which is why we believe in this stuff, but also some really bad teams. Now, you mentioned, obviously, you worked for the Met. And so you'd have been thrown together with all kinds of different people in probably different projects, or missions, or whatever you call them. And you know, with different people all the time. But you also had to have that trust that you had each other's backs. So what did you learn from forming those teams really quickly, that can be translated into the real working world?



And I thought your question that you sent me earlier that kind of alludes to this and you're like where this one goes is that the the first real teams that I was engaged with? Were in my teens as a Sea Cadet, so I went I wasn't I wasn't a scout I but my dad ran the lead secret unit. And so I joined the secret that's when I was 12. Hold



on, let you know, we're sea scouts, so we're still wearing the hat. Yeah,



carry on. So the secret that's was my place from 12, to 18, where I did everything. And I grew up with a bunch of folks that I still have contact with, and more so than school in some ways. And that I played five asides, soccer and winter. And then I was on what they called a pulling team, which is rowing in the summer. And it was usually pretty much the same five or six to seven folks that, that were on those teams. And so you know, somewhat transition off and on at different years because of age. But we grew up on that team together. And so you look at some of those form questions that start the set of questions. We knew each other, we knew what made us tick, we knew what would make us go a little wild. When you how to motivate each other when you were each other wanted done. And so you knew which ones to shout out, and which ones to be quiet, which ones to be disappointed amongst each other. And, and so those are the formula of teams that really, I grew up. And that taught me how to be a team player, and how to value that the synergy that comes from a set that works really well. And we were fortunate enough, both with five besides soccer and rowing, to go to the National Finals on a number of occasions, because it ticked and that's really where that route comes from.



And there's nothing more satisfying than being on a team being a team member. When it feels like that when everything does just click together, and you start achieving success. And that's why I sort of alluded to that the people who believe in this work, have usually experienced it. And they know that it's not just about the results, people just feel better, they feel acknowledged, they feel a sense of belonging. And that's what gives me the joy through doing this work trying to help people achieve that. But it always there's always something in somebody's early life that you know, makes that like lightbulb moment even if they don't reconnect with it until many years later. And sport is often you know the thing because you've got a very clear goal. And



there's five guys in exactly the same boat next to you and five guys in your boat, exactly the same equipment. And you can literally pull away from them. And you wonder what the differences and it's that team being in tune with it you What if you lined us up, we weren't all muscular, toned. We all look the same. The difference was how well it worked together. And I've heard people say that, you know, you get a good team working together. It's like there's an extra player on the field. And in my mind, that's synergy. And that's what you get when the sum of the parts creates something bigger.



So just tell me I read on your I think it might have been on your website that you decided to sail across the Atlantic, with your wife and a couple of other people. How did that team dynamic go? Because I'm sure you had some beautiful sunrises and sunsets, that some pretty rough moments there too.



That was interesting. I talked about this on numerous places, but you know that you look at the crew. They were very different people. So the skipper was a guy I've worked at the summer camps with a he joined the met when I did. I actually lived in his house for a while. And and one of the reasons he said yes to me was because he knew he could live with me because he had done that before. He said yes to my wife, because he figured if she can live with him, I can live with her too. And then the fourth person, Tony had also worked at the Summer Camp, but has a different kind of character. He, he's I would always describe him as your stereotypical kind of 50s 60s British officer. And at sometimes he would tell the best stories ever. And and you'd wonder how much of it was true. And the more you get to know him The more you question that and, and one of the biggest issues was the difference between Tony and launder my wife, Laura had not been on a sailing boat before she got on that boat to sail the Atlantic. And, and there was this interesting growth, that she got the hang of the fact that he didn't always have the right answer, even though we might assume he did. And that, that Keith was the consummate teacher and coach, the skipper who would guide and and let people fail and let people learn. And I the thing I learned was to not fix things for her. Because that was a natural tendency. And one of the things that became obvious was that that wasn't helping. And so I had to get out of the way and and so we got a great picture of all of us about three quarters of the way across And you could see things were taking that there was some issues, but we dealt with it, partly because we had no choice. Yeah, there was no. Okay, it's time for you to get off. Now, it's a matter of we have to deal with this. And we have to make do and make the best of it to get everybody across in a successful way.



Oh, no, it must have been an amazing experience. And, and I'm guessing some of those lessons that you and your wife learned, you're still using today. So you're not rushing in to fix her all the time. That's amazing. I



try my best not to. And we're eagerly awaiting Keith buying a new boat to do it all again?



Oh, definitely, you must, you must. Now, one of the things that's really interesting is obviously through the pandemic, a lot of people have started reading it, assessing their lives, and thinking about these big projects, like what you've just described, but the other side of it is the serious business of work. And, you know, for some people obviously have had to go into their workplace every day, and, you know, huge majority were working remotely. And you know, all the data is coming in, the employers want to go back to the old world, and the employees just don't you know, that they're happy with either remote or hybrid. Now, that causes some kind of friction for teams, especially when you've got some people in some people not and all that kind of stuff. So what advice would you give leaders trying to navigate teamwork in the New World Order,



I guess there's a couple of things that come to mind. One of them comes from one of my clients who have gone through every job in the organization. And I've defined it in one of four ways. And it's either it's permanently on site. It's, they call it mobile, which means that they're going to be around at various facilities that they have. It's what's the middle one, it's a hotel or hot desking. That means that and those, those second and third ones are something like a three, two hybrid at the office, not at the office. And then the fourth one is permanently remote. And and they've put that very clear. And it's basically if you're permanently remote, that's 95% of the time you're at home, and a couple of times a year that we have a team event, we may ask you to come in, if you're in those two in the middle, we expect that it's going to be somewhere around 6040 4060. And in some cases, there needs to be coverage. So you have to coordinate, but we're expecting that hybrid. And if you're mostly required at the office, then you will have a location. And we will give you a space to sit and do work. And that's your space doesn't mean you're 100%. Occasionally that opportunity arises. But it probably means that the role is more conducive to being on site. So a lot of my manufacturing people, you obviously can't be off site, if you're running a machine. In credit union banking, you can't be off site if you're running a teller window, and people are expecting to come up to you for cash so. So those kinds of things, that's the first thing is, by defining it, you're actually putting clarity to the role expectations. And then the second thing is to not be lazy. And I'm being a little contentious with that. But I think that being remote, being on zoom, everything that we've done in the last 18 months, we can replicate everything we have face to face with good intention. What happens is we get lazy. And so the excitement about being back in the office for some people is Oh, I can have all of those stopping organic conversations, where I just swing by your office and interrupt you to ask you a question. And if you break that down, you realize that in interrupting somebody, you're undermining their ability to get the work done. And you've wouldn't naturally. I mean, you might naturally do that, but it doesn't naturally add value. And so what you would do if the door was shut, you wouldn't swing by as burst in, you send them a note, say, Hey, we got five minutes, let's chat about something and leave them to it. Well, why can't you do that if you're remote, to just send them a slack or email, whatever texts and when you've got five minutes, sometimes a day, I'd love to set up a zoom. So we're gonna have the chat. And so that idea we can emulate those organic conversations being remote, but we need to not be lazy about it. We need to be intentional about it so that we can maintain that.



I think that's so important, this being conscious and actually being able to name those behaviors. And I think that's where going back to your four points, you know, what are their hard nose and hard yeses so to speak? These are some of the things that you can start bringing up in the conversations, you know, how do we communicate with each other? What systems do we use? You know, how do you like to work your morning personally better to have the meetings in the afternoon. You know, after you've had your long commute, what do you need in the mornings and having those kinds of relationships, getting to know your team members, regardless of where they are, is just going to mean that things just work better. And otherwise you do become lazy. You just expect everybody to, to work the way you do. And,



exactly, it's like you. And that's the key to any team and any leader is that the better you understand the people on your team, the easier it is to get the most out of them and the relationship.



Yeah, absolutely. And you know, this, yeah, was my first year of actually hiring through remote leading through remote. And to this day, Jeff still not met the team members in real person. And it taught me so much about how to actually, you know, create that team in that environment. Because I've done, I've done the hybrids, and I've done that face to face. Now I can say I am, you know, a remote leader. And, well, I've got to say I found it really, really easy. But I think it's because I did those four things that you described, from day one, even actually, in the interview process, we were discussing, how do you like to work? Tell me about yourself? What's a hard no and hard? Yes, for me, and I was sharing mine. And we realized, actually, that this could work together. So I think it's even you know, before that team formation, I think it's part of what you understand this approach to teamwork. It's thinking about it in the recruitment process, the hiring process to



expand your thinking, we just hired a new business and marketing manager. Previous person is retiring. And we're based in Michigan, most of our work is probably in the the greater mid kind of Midwest area with a few shootouts here and there. And our new business marketing manager lives in LA. And one of the challenges was, well, should they be in Michigan so that when we go back to having team meetings that they can come? Because we don't have an office were completely remote organization now? And the question was, well, why? Because Are we really going to go back to having monthly team meetings in our location? Are we going to stay on zoom for most of them, where it's it's working, and maybe twice a year, we might try and have a gathering where everybody comes to the same place. But then that's a ticket from LA and a hotel night. And, you know, if we're expanding our potential pool, maybe we'll get much better candidates by that expansion. And rather than having a poor candidate, because we don't want to pay for a plane ticket and hotel night,



you see for me, that's, that's the beauty of this kind of work. If you get it right, then there's only upsides. And yes, there are some downsides. But there's always a solution to help you get through that. Everything else is just upside, especially when you're trying to attract the younger generations. who, you know, they've sampled it, and they're just thinking, why would I want to work any other way. And I think it's only going to get even more impactful, maybe 510 years from now, where you've got a whole generation, you've actually done that education at home. And that's just completely, you know, knock down all the walls about how we teach how we learn how we bond. And, you know, my daughter would be there like doing her class. And she'd have one of her best friends who was in our class on her screen there. And they would be chatting, and then they'd be sending each other messages and listening to the teacher and doing assignments. And I just thought, wow, these people when they enter the workforce in another 510 years, they're going to really transform it, and they're not going to think you know, what, we have to have a desk and we have to be Saturday, and we have to behave like this is exciting.



And the flip side of that goes back to where we started, which is I think they're also going to need more space to meditate and disconnect. Because, you know, the the quality of the attention to the professor, while chatting back and forth, isn't as good as it would be if they were just focused on the professor. And so that buisiness in that sense, needs the kind of yin to the Yang.



That's what I kept telling her. She wouldn't tell the kids today anything, can you? But yeah, so this it does excite me. But I think you're absolutely spot on. I think there's still so much that our generation and maybe you know, even the millennials, who will be their leaders, by the time they come in, can teach them about this is this is how we do work and still being playful and curious, but also, you know, being able to be their mentors and their coaches and their guides to



it's just the intention, again, is that that rather than just swinging by and saying how you are, I need to schedule that time to swing by and say how you are and set up a zoom in order to do it. But you know, just getting to know people that way. And it's been interesting seeing the evolution of people's backgrounds on zoom. Yeah. And how People have more personalized it. Some people have gone to, it's plain that people that started off with the artificial background of the beach, have gone away from that to something that's more curated. You know, and what they want to share and what they want to show. And you know, I'm selling my office here with outside this window, it's a mess. But I, I plan this window knowing that this is the view and I do the same thing. When I am doing one on one coaching, I'm always want to have a look and say, Oh, you got that looks like a little one on the window ledge. You know, let's talk about who the little one is. Is this granddaughter daughter what's going you know? And yeah, and you make the connection that way. So you get to know each other? Let's have a look at your books, things like that. Whatever you obviously got there.



Yeah, the really interesting thing was, that was one of the first things I did when I realized my whole life was gonna be remote meetings, was I realized I needed to decorate my room and just go plain white. But the one thing that people always notice is, and in my office in my book library, they're all really ordered, and they're color coordinated. And, and it's really interesting, because that's not me, but I think that was me at the start and lockdown when I just felt I needed some order. And I needed some clarity. I'll just step out. today. That's not me either. Isn't it funny how things changed? And yeah, cuz my the rest of my life, it's just full of, you know, spontaneity and everything. But yeah, I think that is a reflection of where I was at the start of lockdown. And that even itself is a great opening to a coaching style conversation, isn't it?



Exactly. You trying to make it more personal so people can have conversations about things that they want to key in on things? Not so distracting, but it's, it gives people that, that personality, if you like,



Yeah, no, I love it, I love it. And yeah, back in the day when people are in the office, and you just don't get to see that side of them that personality, especially when people will be hot desking. And they have to clear their desk away at the end of the day. So we have to find ways to have that human conversation and maybe even learn how to do small talk intentionally, again, because it's a skill that maybe we've lost, who knows. So just tell me a little bit about your, your business mission or, and I read it in the the introduction, but I love the fact that you stand by people who strive to make the world a better place. I mean, that's huge. But tell me a little bit more about the feeling or the intention behind that.



I think you know, we're in the leadership business, and kind of one liner is that the world needs a new kind of leader. And we think it's you because you have the capability and it really comes around, you have the capability and are you aligned to a greater good. And if we're thinking greater good, then we're thinking about the team, the stakeholders that work with us that. And then in that case, we're being a leader. All too often we see examples, both on your side of the pond and minor of leaders that it feels like they're all about themselves. Or they're all about a small subset of themselves. And we see this a lot in in the states where some of our politicians are their professional politicians, and their job is to get reelected. And they'll do and say whatever it takes to get reelected, rather than as a really old Jim Stewart film called Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, which is back in the day when some just everyday Joe would go to the Washington to the Senate and truly been looking in reference looking after a representing the people. And and that's where we see leadership as if you're a leader, you need to think about the people that you're connected with. And that's your job is to make sure that everybody within that set is successful. And as you probably find as well, we'd be talking to somebody about a manufacturing job or you know, finance where it wherever it is. And they'll say, Oh, I could use this with my kids. And when they say that I just the sparks go off in my heart kind of warms my heart to that that say if you're going to go use this with your kids that's outstanding. I was talking to a client last week who's I think working through the Seven Habits with his grandson. And he chose the Seven Habits of Highly Effective teens. And he said we're going to work on this together. We're going to meet once a week, we're going to do X amount of chapters and if you complete it, and they got the workbook version, if you completed I'll give you 100 bucks. And he said so I've got an incentive but it says the incentive is less important. To him, then the relationship with a grandson and talking about some solid principles for life together and and I thought what a magical moment that is somebody who's taken some principles that they've learned or studied at work, and taking it home to a relationship that that grandkid will remember grandpa talking about that? And you never know, maybe he'll do the same thing with his his grandkids. It's a legacy, isn't it? Exactly, yeah. And so what goes beyond, you're making nuts and bolts, let's make more nuts and bolts to your building relationships, and you're a leader in a whole set of places in the world, make sure that you're the best that you can be in all of those places.



Oh, I love that. No, that is amazing. And you know, for me, my tagline or search is to create a leadership ripple effect. And then I go on to say that impacts people's work their lives, communities, and ultimately the world. And because that's how I see it, when you learn how to lead and be the leader yourself. You can't stop leading, you don't suddenly say, right, I'm at home, and now I'm at work, I'm a friend, you're actually the same person, because you're, you're just authentic, you're just completely balanced. And this is who I am. And they're the kind of leaders that we do need that who are honest, who are grounded who have values driven. And like you and I have a mission.



Yeah. And that mission involves that people who are naturally connected to, yeah, unfortunately, these days, those kinds of people don't get elected.



No. And it's it's, yeah, they're all there for the next four years. What promises Can I make for the next four years? And, and yeah, that's why us as citizens, as workers, as communities, need to raise our voices. And this is something that I'm seeing, again, we're talking about the younger generation, actually, they are very vocal. And we've also started to see even, you know, some employee activism, where they're calling out on social media, and their employers and saying no more. And at the moment, it's Amazon. A few weeks ago, it was brewdog, we're being called out. And so yeah, leaders are being held to account, we just need to make sure that we do it for those who are in our biggest institutions.



My youngest son, Joe lives in Bingley in the north of England, and he's a labor lawyer. And, as in works for the union. And, yeah, he's just been working for the last year or so to get pay parity for a NHS derivative, because they spin off a hospital and, and paid them less because they weren't the formal NHS. So these people have been doing the same job as their colleagues for less money, all through the same time as we've been standing outside applauding them for being the essential workers. And he's just got them to agree to, to parity that that pay, in my mind, that's leadership is taking a stand on something like that, not being first that grandma disagreed with him pushing it towards a strike. But saying, this is the right thing for these people. And I'm willing to stand up here and be counted. And I'm going to keep pushing and, and if I lose my future job, because this doesn't work, then so be it. But his belief in the people he was working for, in my mind is what what the legacy of leadership should be all about.



And and really interestingly, I was looking at LinkedIn, and somebody had done some,



some more of these LinkedIn polls, and it said, What are the biggest qualities that you want from your leader? And the the most people chose the courage to take bold action. And and that's exactly what your son has demonstrated. true leadership really is. It's about saying, yes, this is not the easy route, but it is the right route. And that's why we're heading in this direction. So I salute you as a parent, and I salute your son for being so awesome. And so just tell me then, obviously, you've got the book that's out there. And but what else is your focus right now? what's what's going on for you and your, your team members?



Well, we're busy onboarding our new business and marketing manager of course, but and really getting out here and and Hawking the book a little bit. Because what grating to great was released in April 2020, which was the worst time possible to release a book can be hoping to go out and be doing book tours with it and things like that. But then what also happened is not long after the release, we got approached by a local nonprofit organization here saying we think you've missed an opportunity. And it's like, Okay, tell me more. And they said, You Not in any place. In this book, I addressed the impact of race and power. And it was like, holy cow. No, we haven't. And so I sat down with a number of di leaders of the diversity, inclusion equity, and said, how's this look, and, and so in June last year, we released chapter nine, which is the dynamics of race and power on what great teams do great. And that's available for download from our website, And then the next thing that happened in the fall of last year was, it was kind of interesting what's happening with remote teams now. And, and you didn't address it in your book. And so we sat down and wrote chapter 10, which is what great teams do great and being remote, and how to lead remote teams. And that's available if people send me an email. So I will respond with a copy of that book. If they send an email to me We'll give them the 10th chapter.



I'll, I'll make sure those are all in the show notes as well, so people can get in contact with you. So that's a great offer. Or I just want to just reflect on there just for a second is what you've just talked about there is the reality of leadership right now, which is you are going to be working in our leading in a volatile world and uncertain. One, which is an add on us, and you might put something out there and then have to go back and edit it and re redo it. And you almost have to just let go of what's been before and just say, Well, okay, this is the new challenge. Let's Let's do it. And you've demonstrated that beautifully. Yeah. And that's the reality of it, isn't it? You know, because who knows what's going to come out next year. And you might need to write another chapter. But hey, whoa, let's just go for it.



Exactly. It gave us the opportunity to say let's, let's not get discouraged. Because you know, we still want people to buy the book. And it's still absolutely worth it. But let's make sure that we're addressing these issues and getting them out there. And both those extra chapters say, please read the book first, because it will make more sense. But, you know, we could wait for a second edition, but it's all going to be out of date by then it's kind of kind of like where people say when should I do team building because I've got one person leaving, and I've got the next person joining for six months. And it's like, you can't find that perfect time. So just do it. And then as things change, do a little refresher, because when anybody leaves or joins a team, the team changes. And so do something again at that point, but don't wait for that perfect moment because it'll never happen.



Totally. Oh, it's been so wonderful talking to you. And I'll make sure like I said, the links to the book and to the your email address for that extra chapter are all put on there. But yeah, it's been wonderful to talk to you and enjoy the rest of your day. Thank you. You too.