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Leaders need to focus less on employee happiness and more on employee accountability. But wait, shouldn’t that sentence be reversed? After all, much of the popular leadership wisdom of the day says the complete opposite. In fact, this is just one of the many contrarian conclusions drama researcher and international leadership consultant Cy Wakeman has come to through her 25 years of research and experience. In today’s riveting episode of the TalentGrow Show with Halelly Azulay, Cy takes a wrecking ball to some of the most cherished yet harmful leadership myths, offering her own reality-based leadership philosophy over top of the rubble. She also shares some of her most effective actionable tools and techniques that you can use to transform and improve YOUR workplace culture. This episode could give you a whole new perspective on leadership itself. Don’t miss out!
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN:
- How did Cy go from being a marriage and family counselor to a drama researcher and international leadership consultant? (3:44)
- What surprised Cy once she entered the field of leadership? (4:34)
- Why does Cy say that leaders need to focus less on employee happiness and more on employee accountability? (Sounds shocking, right? Actually, her rationale is based on years of research and may very well instantly change the way you think about leadership) (7:45)
- Cy dismantles the popular leadership myth that says, “If I can perfect your circumstances, then you’ll give good work” (8:07)
- What should employee happiness and satisfaction be based on? (9:04)
- How focusing on employee engagement and happiness results in a situation where the leader takes on more responsibility than they should, and the employees take on less (11:16)
- Cy shares an actionable leadership tool: what she calls “engaged action planning” (hint: it begins by imagining you have 3 sheets of paper on the wall…) (11:35)
- Another actionable leadership tip: (hint: it involves asking an employee to come up with 5 ways they can have more impact) (13:33)
- What’s an important way to bypass the ego? What’s the ego’s way of trying to stop you from doing that? (14:07)
- What’s a mistake Cy sees many leaders making? (14:18)
- How many hours does the average person spend in drama? (14:25)
- “Leader’s don’t manage people, they manage ______” (14:58)
- How has Cy helped her client organizations rapidly increase profits by millions of dollars? (15:55)
- Cy shares a powerful question leaders can ask someone who’s lost in venting to ask themselves (17:05)
- Cy gives her take on what a leader’s role IS and what it ISN’T (18:02)
- What are some of the lies that the ego keeps us believing? How can self-reflection and accountability dissolve them and bring us back into happiness? (18:44)
- Cy defines ego. She clarifies some of the misconceptions about what it means, and brings into sharp focus exactly what it is (making it easier to defeat it) (19:20)
- What’s a technique Cy uses to side-step her own ego? (the ego hates it!) (23:34)
- What’s Cy’s final actionable tip? (hint: it involves an important distinction between sympathy and empathy) (27:23)
- Halelly asks a question to help make Cy’s final tip even more accessible (28:50)
- Pre-order Cy’s new book: No Ego: How Leaders Can Cut the Cost of Workplace Drama, End Entitlement, and Drive Big Results
- Check out Cy’s other two books: Reality-Based Leadership: Ditch the Drama, Restore Sanity to the Workplace, and Turn Excuses into Results and the New York Times bestseller, The Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace: Know What Boosts Your Value, Kills Your Chances, and Will Make You Happier
- Check out Cy’s website
- Follow Cy on Instagram
- Connect with Cy on Twitter
- Check out Cy’s YouTube channel
- Check out the TalentGrow Show on C-Suite Radio
- Like the Facebook page of The TalentGrow Show!
- Join the Facebook group – The TalentGrowers Community! Share your advice, your progress, your successes and your challenges and questions. Interact with other listeners and with me. Let’s support each other in becoming the kind of leader that people *want* to follow!
- Download the 10 Mistakes Leaders Make and How to Avoid Them free tool
- Intro/outro music for The TalentGrow Show: "Why-Y" by Esta - a great band of exquisitely talented musicians, and good friends of mine
ABOUT CY WAKEMAN:
A New York Times Best-Selling Author and former therapist, Cy Wakeman is a dynamic keynote speaker advocating a revolutionary new approach to work. She has helped hundreds of thousands of people learn to free themselves from frustration and find opportunities in every challenge they face.
Her groundbreaking ideas are featured in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The New York Post, The Washington Post and SHRM.org. She is a significant thought leader and a favorite expert blogger on FastCompany.com and Forbes.com.
In 2017, she was voted #15 on the Global Guru’s Top 30 List of the World’s Best Leadership Professionals!
Cy has written two books—Reality-Based Leadership: Ditch the Drama, Restore Sanity to the Workplace, and Turn Excuses into Results (Jossey-Bass, 2010) and The Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace: Know What Boosts Your Value, Kills Your Chances and Will Make You Happier (Jossey-Bass, 2013).
Announcer: Welcome to the TalentGrow Show, where you can get actionable results-oriented insight and advice on how to take your leadership, communication and people skills to the next level and become the kind of leader people want to follow. And now, your host and leadership development strategist, Halelly Azulay.
Halelly: Hey, hey, TalentGrowers. Welcome back to another episode. Before I introduce my guest I just want to make sure that you know that very easily, you can download a free tool called The 10 Mistakes that Leaders Make and How to Avoid Them. Just go to talentgrow.com/podcast and right at the top, you just put in your email address and your name and I will send you that download, but I will also send you updates on new blog posts, on new episodes for the TalentGrow Show, on new offerings for things you can learn from me. I create a lot of content, most of it is free for you, and this is a way for you to stay in touch. I keep the newsletters really short and upbeat and informal. I always have a tip or a learning opportunity. So let’s connect and let’s make sure that you always know what’s going on and ways to learn from me, and so let’s get started with this episode.
I give the full introduction to my guests, New York Times bestselling author and drama researcher Cy Wakeman. She has incredibly actionable advice for you and we talk about a lot of the myths that are going on about how to create employee engagement, employee moral, employee happiness. Cy just takes a wrecking ball to a lot of those myths and gives us the real deal about how we can start to banish drama from our workplace and, in fact, save millions of dollars in the process. She gives super actionable advice for us as leaders for how we can create higher accountability, higher engagement, higher morale, with our employees, with really great ideas for things you can do right away. I cannot wait for you to hear this episode, so without further ado, here is Cy Wakeman with me on the TalentGrow Show.
Okay, welcome back to another episode of the TalentGrow Show. I’m Halelly Azulay, your leadership development strategist and this week I have Cy Wakeman. And Cy is spelled C-Y, you’ll see that in the show notes and the title, I’m sure. She is a dynamic international keynote speaker, business consultant, a New York Times bestselling author and a global thought leader with over 20 years of experiencing cultivating a revolutionary new approach to leadership. She is a certified speaking professional, which is one of those special designations in the world of professional speakers and she’s President and founder of Cy Wakeman Inc. We’re going to talk a lot more about her books. She’s a blogger on FastCompany.com, Forbes.com, Huffington Post, she’s been on the Today Show, the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Business Insider – the list goes on! Cy Wakeman, welcome!
Cy: Thank you Halelly. You make me sound so fabulous. I hope I live up to that.
Halelly: Well, I think that you are fabulous and I am really looking forward to having you share some of your wisdom with our listeners. I met Cy at a conference recently. We are both members of the same organization of CEOs and leaders in our industry, and it was so fortuitous that I was able to sit next to you and talk to you and learn a little bit more about you and as soon as I did, I knew right away that we need to have you on the show. So before we get started with some of your insights about leadership, and some of the myths about leadership that I know you’re going to share with the listeners, I always ask my guests to tell us a little bit about their professional journey. It’s really helpful to think about where did you start and how did you get to where you are today?
Cy: It’s interesting, because I never intended to be researching or writing about drama or leadership or talking about that topic. I actually started out as a counselor, a marriage and family therapist, and I worked with families, many times that had addictions in their lives or in the lives of their children, and never really intended to get into leadership. But as I worked with couples and families, I gained a great deal of skills in bypassing people’s ego and really helping people find their best selves and do their best work. And when I got promoted into leadership, I was surprised that so many people didn’t really know some of the basic things that we taught people in therapy and people who are working to really evolve in their lives. And so my path then, I was a counselor and then I led a behavioral health center, and I went on and my masters is in health care administration. So I led clinics and hospitals and large teams in academic medical centers, and spent most of my career in health care.
Halelly: And I believe that right now, a lot of your clients are also in health care, probably because they can totally connect with you.
Cy: Absolutely. About 50 percent of the people we work with are in health care. We do a lot of research. I research drama, which is a workplace kind of emotional expense, emotional waste in the workplace, and health care is a wonderful place to work because when we do get leaders leading differently, there are so many metrics that they measure daily that you can really see how the changes affect things right down to the patient experience or the patient outcome. So, it’s really a great place to do research because there’s great data available.
Halelly: And of course you do work in other kinds of industries as well, not just in the health care industry. I know you’ve spoken and led workshops all around the world, probably, with the ideas you share about how to ditch the dram and turn excuses into results.
Cy: Absolutely. I work with high tech companies, banking companies, wherever people are involved with this thing called the human condition, and a big part of a leader’s role is to help people overcome their own humanness at times. Without dehumanizing them. But our humanness sometimes gets in the way of us doing really great work and being collaborative and innovative. Wherever there are humans, there’s predictable human behavior and we can either be operating out of our ego or out of kind of our better self and that’s what I do. I teach leaders to ditch the drama and bypass people’s egos so that they can really help people to greatness.
Halelly: I should tell people that your books, your first two books – which already gained you the title of New York Times bestselling author, which is really not easy to get, I have to tell you as an author. Many people don’t realize how hard that is to get. They are Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace: Know what Boosts Your Value, Kills Your Chances and Will Make You Happier. That was your book that came out in 2013 and before that, your book was A Reality-Based Leadership: Ditch the Drama, Restore Sanity to the Workplace and Turn Excuses into Results. And I know that you have another brand new book that is in pre-order right now on Amazon, which of course we’ll link to and will be coming out in the fall called No Ego: How Leaders Can Cut the Cost of Workplace Drama and Entitlement and Drive Big Results. One of the things I know you have been saying is that we need to reinvent leadership thinking, because you’re saying that leaders, or people that teach leaders leadership, are overly focused on employee happiness and employee engagement and what we really need to focus on is accountability. So, let’s talk more about that.
Cy: Yes, and sometimes people are shocked when I say let’s worry less about people’s happiness and more about accountability. And they take that as a harsh message, but what I mean by that is in our research that we know that engagement without accountability creates entitlement. As leaders, we’ve really over-rotated toward engagement and there’s a misconception that if I can perfect your circumstances, then you’ll give good work or that there’s a direct connection. What we know from the psychology side, from positive psychology from brain science is that doesn’t necessarily play out in the science. That your circumstances really aren’t the reasons you can’t succeed. They’re the reality in which you must succeed, and happiness isn’t necessarily correlated to your circumstances. It’s correlated to how much accountability you take for your circumstances. So happiness really is a choice and it comes as a derivative of accountability. So we want leaders to focus more on helping people get into a state of high accountability and then happiness is a natural byproduct. But, leaders, we can’t make other people happy. It’s an impossibility. Happiness is their choice.
Halelly: It’s almost like you’re connecting happiness back to – this is my words, I don’t know if that’s how you see it – but it’s like connecting happiness back to accomplishment and achievement, so that it is based in reality rather than based in some kind of altered state of euphoria that doesn’t really connect to any results.
Cy: You’ve got it. And so my happiness, my satisfaction, is based on knowing I had impact and not being coddled and not being protected from reality. And also, I’ve been challenged and I’m growing and I’ve been able to overcome some things. That’s really where people, when you feel impact, you feel satisfaction. A lot of engagement is just focused on moral, helping people feel good, rather than motivation, which is really what turns your talent and the talent of others into results and productivity. And so it’s a very different place. When we think about engagement, we start to distort or corrupt our data, because like an engagement survey, everybody’s vote counts the same. If someone is Vicky Victim, or someone is Debbie Driver, we get answers from both of them and the same behavior won’t please a high accountable as a low accountable, and so what is frustrating about that is when we survey everyone, most of the time our investments are made in trying to perfect our circumstances to please low accountable people who are not going to be made happy by investments in their circumstances. They’re just simply not connected. Did that make sense?
Halelly: I think so. I want to hear more about what you would like leaders to do instead. So, obviously you’ve written three different books about it so you’re not going to be able to tell us everything you want leaders to do instead, but give us a couple of really clear, actionable nuggets that you think are behind some of this myth-busting stuff that you’re teaching.
Cy: Let’s parlay off of the engagement discussion, because that’s a really actionable item and I’ve got a couple of other things I think leaders will really be able to take away from our podcast today. Many times, when we’re focused on people’s engagement, we’ll have meetings with them and we’ll say, “What would you like different in your workplace?” And we make a large list and then the leader walks away with the list as if it’s the leader’s responsibility to create and fix those issues so that people can be happy and productive. So, a different way to do that is called engaged action planning, where imagine you have three sheets of paper on the wall and sheet number one, we lead a discussion as a leader that says, “What would you like your workplace to be? What type of environment do you want to create?” And we make the list listening to our employees.
Then the second sheet is what are you willing to do, personally, to make that happen? And this is where you add in accountability. It’s not just list number one that the leader takes away. List number two really gets people self-reflecting on what they could do to contribute to the type of environment that they want, that’s not just the leader’s responsibility. It’s shared responsibility. And many times, employees struggle with making that list at first, because they’re like, “Wait for it or I’ll be here when you get back,” and they want to be empowered. But what I tell people, syphon the power you already have, which is really impacting your own work environment.
The third list, that third sheet is a list what can we do as leaders to help support the work that you all want to do as employees to create the environment that environment that you want to create? What that does is it puts the power back in the hands of the people, which is true empowerment, but it’s a little bit of a shift on engagement. And it really starts that shared accountability for the workplace environment. People really step up to that, they feel really good about that.
Halelly: I totally hear the empowerment in that, and probably you get some of those people that might be stuck in the victim cycle really resisting that, but I would imagine it’s the leader’s job to help them recognize that that’s what they’re doing and help them move out of that cycle? Or just move out of the –
Cy: Of the organization, yeah. And most are good one-on-one topics, where I saw you struggle with your own accountability-ness and so we believe in keeping feedback very short and self-reflection long. So it might be if I saw you struggling in that group session, I would ask for some of your time and I would keep that very short. I would say, “I saw you struggling with contributing to what I consider a very important list of how I could impact this, and so what I would like you to do is over the course of the next couple of days is come up with five ways that you could have impact and we’ll meet on Thursday and you can present some of those to me,” and give people time for reflection. Because we know that self-reflection bypasses the ego, and that venting is actually the ego’s way of avoiding self-reflection.
That’s another mistake I see so many leaders make. The myth is that people need time to vent. And we know that the average person spends two and a half hours a day in drama, pretty much venting, gossiping, resisting change, questioning strategy, kind of walking around and going, “This is sick and wrong.” Two and a half hours is an amazing opportunity for leaders, because if you think about that for headcount, if you could recapture two and a half hours a day, per headcount, and put that back into serving your customers or your patients, it’s an enormous up-cycle and an enormous conservation and redirection of energy. I say a lot, leaders don’t manage people, they manage energy. A lot of energy is venting about why we can’t or why we shouldn't have to, and one thing leaders can do is move away from that and talk about what we want to create and then bring the group into how could we, instead of why we can’t. Let’s focus on how we can. It’s just an energy shift that really changes movement and work that happens in groups of people.
Halelly: Wow, I mean, that statistic of the two and a half hours just blows your mind when you think about what a huge waste that is. That certainly impacts people’s happiness. Just stop doing that and you’ll be happier.
Cy: Exactly. And we were shocked. That’s how I became known as a drama researcher, because I actually first quantified the amount of time people spent in drama, and I did that through observation. We did that through a series of surveys both for leaders and employees and the HR leaders, and when we have helped organizations and we can help them measure, when drama diminishes – we’re even talking 20 minutes less of drama per day per headcount – has equaled millions of dollars in a quarter for our client organizations. It’s an incredible waste in the business, but we’ve accepted it as the cost of doing business and it really doesn’t have to be.
We teach tools like ego bypass. Like if someone is venting, I was taught as a leader to let them vent. Venting feels good and it seems like you’re being helpful and people are sharing feelings, but venting really begets more venting. There’s a lot of research that shows there’s neuro-pathways formed when you’re venting that then need fed. They’re itchy. They need more venting to kind of keep that neuropathy satisfied, and we really believe that venting is the ego’s way of avoiding self-reflection. So when someone comes into vent to me as a leader, I ask them a question to move them beyond venting, which is the ego’s work, into self-reflection. We just bypass that ego.
So a great question leaders can use is, let’s say I have someone venting about their partner in IT and they just aren’t doing what we need them to do and they’re screwing things up. I’ll say, “Oh my gosh, it sounds like our partners in IT are struggling. What are you doing to help?” That really just stops the venting and people start to self-reflect. They’re like, “What do you mean what am I doing?” And in my company, we have a non-negotiable. It’s called stop judging, start helping. Even on the back of our badges is written, “How can I help?” I personally, as a leader, rather than hearing you vent and then go fix the problem with IT, I would say, “Why don’t you come with me?” I would find the person you were venting about and I would say, “Tammy, Karen was just in my office, sharing her love and concern about how your project is going in IT and she has a question for you. Go ahead, Karen.” Karen would say, “What can I do to help?” A leader’s role is not to over-manage and go fix things and work on perfect circumstances. It’s to really help people grow and upgrade their skills so they can live skillfully in their current circumstances and it’s not venting.
Another great question is, “If you were great right now, if you were being great – your best – right now, what would great look like?” And everyone knows what great looks like, because it’s what we judge other people on. So great might be, if Karen is in my office, “I wouldn’t be here tattling. I would be reaching out to Karen and we’d be working through this together.” Everyone knows what great looks like. I as a leader simply say, “Then go be great.” But ego keeps us believing that the world is skewed against us, that we’re at the mercy of our circumstances, that we have very little impact or control, and with that view of the world we’ll have very little happiness. That’s why accountability can bring us back in the happiness, because it’s really the death of the ego.
Halelly: I really appreciate that you have so many very specific pieces of advice there. That is awesome. We’ve mentioned ego and bypass the ego and that’s the ego’s way, so I think that we would be remiss if we didn’t define, just in general, for those of us who don’t have a psychology background or aren’t sure, how you do define ego and what’s so wrong with it?
Cy: That’s such a great question, because ego sometimes is confused with confidence, and confidence is really, I have confidence in my ability to collaborate with others and to crowd source and to be resilient and overcome tough challenges and bring value to the table. Ego is different. Ego is this narrator that is always going on in the frontal part of your brain, and it narrates the world from kind of a victim perspective. It distorts your view of reality. It’s like a set of prescription glasses that you put on, but they’re the wrong prescription. And so an ego sees insults many times when there isn’t any, and egos create stories to justify when you didn’t step up and do what you knew would be great to do. Because egos can kind of eat anger for lunch, and so to stay alive, they need to be angry about a lot of things. And people don’t realize, when your ego comes out to play, so for instance, if you just after this podcast get quiet and just listen to the thinking going on in your head, it’s not you that’s doing the thinking. When you wake up in the morning, you don’t say, “I’m going to start thinking.” You’re already being thought, and that thinking is this narrator that I want to teach people to disengage from and to observe, so that they have this freedom of choice to stop believing everything they think.
Let’s say I walk in my office today and I get a call from my manager and he says, “How are you coming on our main project?” And I say, “I’m a little behind,” and he says, “I’ve noticed you’re behind on quite a few things.” And I’m just honest and say, “You know, I am behind on quite a few things and I would love your help in working on priority setting.” So far there’s just no pain or stress, just dealing with reality. I’m working on priorities and trying to get caught up and I’m being honest with my leader. There’s no pain. But my ego’s narration of that is very different. My leader is a micromanager. He doesn’t trust me. He treats me like a child. He calls me up and the reason he’s doing this is because he wants to cut this project and I’m going to end up not being available for promotion because this project is very visible and I’ll eventually lose my job and my kid’s in medical school and he’ll have to drop out and he was going to save kids in Uganda … and now children in Uganda are going to die. And I exaggerate that, because I want people to just listen to how often their ego is narrating their world, and if they would just listen and be very careful with what they believe, they could come back to reality, which our reality isn’t what causes our stress. It’s a story we make up about our reality and our egos are the most wonderful storytellers in the world.
If I'm operating off the ego, I act evasive with my boss, I get defensive with my boss, I really co-create that which I fear. But if I just come back to reality and I say, “What do I know for sure?” I know that my boss checked on my progress. I know that I gave him a status report, and I know that I asked for help. Then my behavior around my boss is going to continue to give him good updates, change priorities and get caught up and show my boss that I can take great feedback and work through things very quickly, which is all co-creating some really good stuff. So our ego is really not to be trusted. It distorts our view on reality. But most people really believe what they think, and they don’t separate out who they are and the choices they have o edit the stories that are being fed through their minds on a daily basis. Did that help clarify?
Halelly: It really did, thank you very much. Instead, are you saying just ignore it? Shut it down? Argue with it? Put in some new narrator?
Cy: Yeah, I’d like none of the above, except for be aware of it, and question it. Edit what you think. Take out what assumption, assignment of mode, of judgment. One way I do this is I take a pen and a paper and I write out with no censoring, just my boss is a micromanager and he treats me like a child and he’s unsupportive and I’m not going to get promoted … I just write out on paper. The ego hates it when you make things visible, and then I go back to every sentence. I go, “My boss is a micromanager. Is it true? Can I possibly know that to be sure?” And I think of all the times that I’ve done things he hasn’t checked up on. I have to cross that out. And he treats me like a child. Well, he’s entrusting me with a million dollar budget, so I have to cross that out. So when I question, it’s just inquiry. It’s not argue with, it’s not replace, it’s not positive thinking. But when I question it, the truth reveals itself and the truth is simply that I had a status update with my boss. And that truth is very easy to then work with. And so you don’t have to really work on even thinking positive. You have to realize that most of what you’re upset about never even happened.
Halelly: And it sounds like in that particular story, it sounds like it might have stemmed from feeling guilty about being late on a few different things?
Cy: Exactly. And if you self-reflect, you start to realize that nothing is about anyone else. It’s al projection. That when we’re upset or stressed, when we usually are the source of our anger is some anger with ourselves, for maybe not following through or being disciplined. We want to be gentle with ourselves, but take accountability that the real reason I’m upset about this is that I didn’t stay on target with this particular project. And that’s where development comes up. I self-reflect, then I can go, “gosh, I really need to work on being better organized. So I’m going to go crowd source and ask people for help. Three people I know are super organized. I’m going to ask them for their best tips and I’m going to improve in that area.” And life becomes just peaceful and more effortless. Leadership becomes just the act of helping people self-reflect, the power of a leader isn’t what you tell them, it’s what you get them thinking about. And the more people self-reflect, the more they evolve and they more they grow and the more capable they are. And the more incredible results we can produce together. Self-reflection is the core of accountability because without self-reflection, we can never find our peace in it.
Halelly: That’s fantastic. You have given so many really, really good, actionable ideas. Thank you so much for that. We always end with one really specific action item that people can do right away. But before that, I know that you’ve got the new book coming out. I don’t know if that’s what’s new and exciting for you, but is there something on your horizon that’s got you super energized these days?
Cy: You know, we do have the new book No Ego, and that’s available for pre-order, but what we’re super energized about and you and I talked a bit about this is that we are really flooding Instagram and our You Tube channel, Cy Wakeman and reality based leadership, with tons of great content and we’re just very abundant. It’s all for free. It’s not salesy. But I think if people are into social media and they hit us up on Instagram and You Tube and Facebook, they will love the videos that we’re putting out and we go all over the world to interesting places and we talk about leadership and leadership lessons. And I think they’ll really enjoy that.
Halelly: I think so, and I’ve been following you since I met you and this is what I told Cy before we started recording, “Man, you are just a content machine!” It’s really amazing to behold how much you’re creating, and it really is all good stuff. I will link to all of your social media outlets in the show notes for sure, so people can follow and learn from you. And so, what’s one specific action that our listeners can take today or this week that can help them ratchet up their own leadership effectiveness?
Cy: Oh my gosh, I have many. But, one I think is to watch out for when you’re using sympathy versus empathy. Sympathy is when I hear that someone is in pain, but I go on to agree with them and collude with them that they’re at the mercy of their circumstances. Empathy is when I see you in pain but I call you up to greatness. Let’s say we have new software. You come in my office, you’re complaining about the software. I go, “I know, I hate it too. It’s really hard. We weren’t consulted.” That’s all sympathy. Empathy is, “It seems like this has been a challenge for you, so one of the things I think you could do is to jump online and take some additional training so that you could get fluent in this,” and that’s the call to greatness. We have new software. I noticed you’re suffering. It seems you need to get more fluent. What are some action items you can take to do that? So stay out of sympathy and colluding with your group and blaming circumstances and get into empathy, that you just need to ask where the person needs to grow next so that this reality wouldn’t be painful. And I think that’s a good tip for you to notice how often you go back and forth between the two.
Halelly: Awesome. What’s the trigger? How do you notice that you’re in sympathy so that you can shake yourself out of it? What’s a clue?
Cy: When you jump in and start agreeing with people, and you join the venting session. When you jump in and you’re like, “I feel that way too.” People came to you for leadership, and we give them collusion. If I went to the emergency room and I’m having chest pains, and the doctor comes out and he says, “What’s wrong?” And I go, “I have horrible chest pains,” and he or she goes, “Oh my gosh, me too!” Right? It’s like I came in for medical care and now I’m just getting someone with the same symptoms. The first sign is when we jump in and we do the, “Me too, or I hurt more.” Instead of just saying, keeping separate. I see that you’re suffering. Let’s think of a place you could grow so that this wouldn’t be painful for you. Where can you grow your skillset so you’re immune to this particular pain point?
Halelly: Awesome. That’s really great. Cy, thank you so much. It’s been fun talking to you and I really appreciate how extremely actionable you are, just by nature. I think everything that you’ve shared is something that people can both relate to and understand and do. I hope that listeners will want to stay in touch with you. I believe that they will, and I will link to your books in the show notes and you said Instagram and You Tube and I know you’re on Facebook. Anything else that you’d like people to do to keep in touch with you?
Cy: We’ve got our website, RealityBasedLeadership.com, but all those other places, we’ll just make it easy for them to get content. I’m so glad we met and I look forward to a long relationship and thank you so much, Halelly, for having me on the podcast today.
Halelly: It’s been my pleasure completely, and I believe listeners will also agree, so thank you. Thank you for your time, Cy, and everyone listening, go take action.
So actionable, right? And mind blowing. I love it when I have guests who come on and just give us so many truth bombs and stuff we can actually use. I hope that you’ve been inspired to take action. I’d love to hear what action you are thinking of taking or what action you already took, and what effect it had. Any questions, any troubles, anything that you want. I really would love for you to let me know. You can just drop a comment in the comment section on TalentGrow.com/podcast/episode61. That’s where I have all the show notes, the links to everything we discussed, to Cy’s sites and books and everything else. You can also drop me an email. I am always here for you. It’s email@example.com, and that would make me really happy, for you to engage with me in a conversation. Let me know what you want to learn about, what you think about what I’m putting out. Let me know what you think about this episode. Let me know. And in the meantime, check us out on the C-Suite Radio Network, C-SuiteRadio.com. That’s where there is a bunch of highly-selective, business-oriented podcasts, and the TalentGrow Show, as you know, has been selected to be one of those featured podcasts on the C-Suite Radio Network, so we’re very proud of that and thankful. And you, I hope you make today great. I’m Halelly Azulay, your leadership development strategist, and I appreciate you.
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