Episode Archives

109: Celebrate Accomplishments BIG (and Not Lose Momentum) | Larry Olsen

Larry Olsen, is an international speaker, author, podcast host, executive coach, and the CEO of Aperneo, an achievement acceleration company. 

Larry has years of experience working with Fortune 50 companies, championship teams, and entrepreneurs to establish their vision and sense of purpose. He is passionate about providing quick, actionable guidance on breaking ingrained, ineffective habits that hold individuals back. His best-selling book, Get a Vision and Live It, help people learn how to change their attitudes to align with their visions.

In this episode, Larry talks about recognition in different forms, sustaining momentum without slowing down, and the importance of a clearly communicated vision.

Truth You Can Act On:

1. Know the Difference Between Praise and Recognition
Supporting Quote
Larry Olsen:  “The difference between praise and recognition is one is very global and the other is very specific. So when I say, ‘Thank you. You did a great job today.’ That goes in one ear and out the other, but if I say, ‘On thatjob, the way you articulated how we were going to resolve their situation was just spot on. You’ve really got talent there. Continue that.’ And the reason behind that, if you get into the psychology, praise is something that we’ve heard our whole life. Recognition is where we really get into kind of the Skinnerian philosophy, and that is that reinforce the behaviors that you want to continue to see in your organization. And that’s why it’s so important that we’re talking about what we’d like about what they did as opposed to where they fell off.”

2. Thoughts Become Predictors
Supporting Quote 
Larry Olsen: “If we learned a bad attitude, we can learn one that brings out the best in others and is in alignment with the values of the organization. And pretty soon what happens is all of the correction that’s made in the company is relative to what the organization decided it wanted to stand for relative to its treatment of others and how it stands out in the community. That’s the whole answer to this whole celebration when I have the right attitude.”

3. Regularly Communicate a Clear Vision
Supporting Quote
Larry Olsen: “When you go now corporately and you take all of these individuals who are trying to figure their life out, and you as a company, create something greater than itself. And that’s the accomplishment of this vision and what it’s going to do. It’s going to allow each individual to fulfill their sense of purpose and their vision. And this is where onboarding and alignment comes into play is now they get to ask themselves, can I fit in this company? Because the company is clearly articulated. Here’s our sense of purpose and here’s our vision, and unfortunately those words have gotten a negative attitude because most people use them and don’t understand what they mean.”

4. Wallow in Your Accomplishments, Not Your Shortcomings
Supporting Quote 
Larry Olsen: “Why is it when things go right we don’t make a big deal about it? Because we expect it, don’t we? We expect it was supposed to go that way. And so what we have to do is we have to unwind all this conditioning of going through 12 to 18 years of education on how important the right answer was. When we were little in school, we get the papers back and they had everything circled in red. So as adults we end up focusing on apparently to get better in life you focus on what’s wrong. Well, that is not the case at all. Once we understand the biology and physiology of the human species, that that is absolutely backwards. And so when there’s an accomplishment, we’ve got a wallow in it.”

5. Rest is Critical to Keeping Momentum
Supporting Quote 
Larry Olsen: “Most of us aren’t in a position where we can do any meditation at work, but all meditation is is doing something other than thinking, and we need to do that so that we can refresh. We know that we can’t work out for an hour straight without being a little exhausted. We take little breaks in between the different exercises, but someone will sit in front of a computer all day long and not even breathe. So structure it for the individuals in the organization, but have them be the ones who design it for you. Don’t you get this great idea and then throw it at all your people. That’s a big mistake that leaders make, and the thing for leaders is to take those time outs.”

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Monday Fire Takeover: Growing, Even When It’s Hard with Jason Cochran

Hi again, everyone! This is Jason Cochran with Dulead. 

Wouldn’t it be great if we all could just grow and develop when life is mostly rainbows and unicorns? If that were the case I think we’d all sign up for that reality right now! The truth is that sometimes our moments of transformational growth occur after bad things happen to us in life.

But don’t just take my word for it. This concept is an actual psychological phenomenon discovered by two renowned psychologists, Richard Tedeschi and Lawrence Calhoun, in the mid 90’s. 

They called it Post-Traumatic Growth.

Simply put, it’s positive psychological change as a result of adversity and other challenges that leads to a higher level of functioning. 

And believe it or not, it can actually change our DNA….like flipping certain switches on or off. We now know this through epigenetic studies.

It turns out there are 4 primary factors that often lead a person to experience post-traumatic growth:

  • Brutally honest optimism – this is having a reduced sense of helplessness by confronting the most brutal facts of your current reality
  • Perception of Control Over Events – this is regaining control through primary control (taking action to change a situation) or secondary control (changing your orientation to the situation)
  • Coping Style – the best approach is acceptance and positive reinterpretation
  • Strong Sense of Self – this is making sense of your story, even the parts that suck

So why is this topic so important to me?

Well, I’ve experienced post-traumatic growth in my own life. When I was 10 my grandpa took his own life. This set me on a path to become a psychologist.   Three years ago I came up a day short of delivering a hand-written letter to my mother before she passed away from cancer. I had the letter written to give her at our Christmas celebration…but she slipped into a coma the night before I saw her. The letter now sits on my desk as a reminder everyday to not be a day late in doing what’s most important. This inspired me to help co-found a software company called Dulead that focuses on helping people become the best version of themselves, including showing appreciation on a daily basis.

I still live with the grief and regret every single day. But those four factors (brutally honest optimism, regaining control, accepting and reinterpreting, and making sense of my story) all helped me to take that pain and do something positive with it.

It’s my small way of trying to help folks not come up a day short like I did with my mom.

Whatever your story is, we’re all unique in how we adapt and respond to traumatic events. But there are some common signs that often point toward post-traumatic growth in your own life. Here are a few:

✅ Deeper appreciation of life

✅ Deeper relationships with others

✅ Seeing new possibilities in life

✅ Discovering personal strength

✅ Spiritual change

I challenge you today to pause, be thankful, and reflect on the #growth you’ve experienced during some challenging times in your life!

After all, the hardest times can often lead to the greatest moments in our lives!

Monday Fire Takeover: Why Work? 4 Principles of Connection with Jason Cochran

Hello again, everyone! This is Jason Cochran with Dulead.

Do you ever wonder why humans work in the first place? Yes, we all need a certain amount of money to do things, but that’s not at the core of why we get up in the morning to offer our best efforts most days. And it’s not because of perks either. In their book, The Why of Work, Wendy and Dave Ulrich state that people find meaning when they see a clear connection between what they highly value and what they spend time doing.

So it turns out we really aren’t that complicated. We’re all hard-wired to desire meaningful, purpose-driven work. Leaders – this is why we need to get ridiculously simple in order to become more effective with our people strategies. And the 4 Principles of Connection model I helped create gets to the core reasons for why people want to work and offer their best.

The 4 Principles of Connection™️  model focuses on healthy connections to self, others, role, and the organization. And there’s a core rhythm of employee and leadership experiences which help strengthen these connections leading to #fulfillment, #meaning, and #purpose from the work people do.

Let’s briefly go through each principle and some example experiences for each:

Principle #1 – Connecting to Self:

  •  People want to work for organizations that help them develop as a whole person – not just in the rote skills of their job
    • Examples:
      • Dream Manager programs
      • 20% Autonomous time
      • Pursuing and achieving goals
      • Wellness programs
      • Encourage personal branding

Principle #2 – Connecting to Others:  

  • People want to work where they’re accepted for their authentic selves and where they experience a level of connection with the leadership and their team that creates strong bonds
    • Examples:
      • Mentor programs
      • Onboarding experiences
      • Frequent, meaningful recognition and appreciation
      • Essential Skills Coaching (Empathy, Humility, Emotional Intelligence)

Principle #3 – Connecting to Role:  

  • People want to work where there’s clarity around their role and importance in the ecosystem and that their contributions matter
    • Examples:
      • Stay Interviews
      • Advancement Paths
      • Opportunities for Professional Development
      • Role mapping including target behaviors and alignment plans
      • Special projects

Principle #4 – Connecting to the Organization:  

  • People want to work where they know the greater whole, of which they’re a part, is doing important work in the world – especially their own communities
    • Examples:
      • North Star/Core Identity
      • Service projects
      • Employee Stock Ownership Programs
      • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion experiences

And here’s the beautiful part of the 4 Principles of Connection. It isn’t just the right thing to do for your people – it’s the smart thing to do for your organization. In doing so you’re moving the levers which drive employee engagement, hone your culture, and strengthen your employer brand.

Bear in mind, the most important customers are your internal ones…your employees. It all starts with them. They decide every day whether they’re bought into the organization and what it stands for and the work that is accomplished.

So leaders – let’s make things ridiculously simple and focus on the levers that matter – the 4 Principles of Connection. When you get it right for your people, they get it right for the organization and the external customers.

Let’s go forth and nurture these healthy connections in your organizations!

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Monday Fire Takeover: Creating a Burnout-Proof Culture with Jason Cochran

Hello everyone! This is Jason Cochran with Dulead.

What if I told you that burnout is a disease. Not in a figurative sense…but in a literal, clinical sense.

If you’re like me when I first heard this – you’re probably shocked. Maybe even in denial. How, exactly, is burnout a disease?

Well, it’s listed in the ICD-11 which is the International Classification of Diseases 11th edition, and has its own code [QD85]. Here’s the actual definition: 

Burn-out is a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed. It is characterized by three dimensions: 1) feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion; 2) increased mental distance from one’s job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one’s job; and 3) reduced professional efficacy. 

The good news is that it’s preventable and treatable when organizations and people take the right steps!

Leaders, here are 6 things you can do to create a burnout-proof organizational culture: 

✅  Ensure sustainable workloads

✅  Offer autonomy in people’s work

✅  Frequent rewards and recognition for effort

✅  Establish psychological safety as an expectation for interactions

✅  Create fair practices

✅  Provide the why and purpose for your people and their role

In addition to organizational changes, here are some things people can do for themselves to prevent burnout:

  1. Determine the triggers: Is it the job, a co-worker, the profession, the leadership or something else that’s leading to burnout for you?
  2.  Evaluate your options. Discuss specific concerns with your supervisor. Maybe you can work together to change expectations or reach compromises or solutions. Try to set goals for what must get done and what can wait.
  3. Seek support. Whether you reach out to co-workers, friends or loved ones, support and collaboration might help you cope. If you have access to an employee assistance program, take advantage of relevant services.
  4. Try a relaxing activity. Explore programs that can help with stress such as yoga, meditation or tai chi.
  5. Get some exercise. Regular physical activity can help you to better deal with stress. It can also take your mind off work.
  6. Get some sleep. Sleep restores well-being and helps protect your health.
  7. Mindfulness. Mindfulness is the act of focusing on your breath flow and being intensely aware of what you’re sensing and feeling at every moment, without interpretation or judgment. In a job setting, this practice involves facing situations with openness and patience, and without judgment.

Here’s to your health and living a burnout-proof life!

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Healthcare Series: Practicing Intentional Leadership in a Virtual World | Dr. Scott Rissmiller

Dr. Scott Rissmiller is the Executive Vice President and Chief Physician Executive for Atrium Health, an integrated nonprofit health system with 42 hospitals and over 1500 care locations.

Scott is passionate about people and culture, which manifests itself into the way he interacts with his team. In this episode Scott shares insights on how Atrium Health has supported employees and patients during the COVID crisis, as well as small practices you can utilize to help make intentional leadership a part of our daily routine. 

Truth You Can Act On:

1. Fail Fast
Supporting Quote:
Dr. Scott Rissmiller: “I believe the culture we had put in place allowed our teams to come together rather than fragment and allowed them to focus on the patient and really work together. There was trust there that we were going to do everything we could to take care of them and to take care of our patients at the end of the day. And I’m also a big believer in setting the direction, putting up some wide guard rails, and then getting out of the way to let our leaders lead and make decisions. Sometimes we’re going to make mistakes. That’s okay. Learn from it, move on, dust off, and let’s get back at it.”

2. Practice Intentional Leadership
Supporting Quote
Dr. Scott Rissmiller: “When we’re in person, we can read body language better, and we can see people’s expressions. You miss that in virtual calls, so you really have to double down on being real and really demonstrating and showing that you care. We have really focused on making sure in our meetings that we are checking in on each other. We’re asking those sensitive questions that might connect in different ways with people and really focusing on giving that encouragement and positive feedback because people are isolated. They want to do really good work, but they don’t have the interaction that they normally have that gives them that reward. So really double down on the positive feedback and encouragement.”

3. Over Communicate
Supporting Quote
Dr. Scott Rissmiller: “Over communicate. You cannot over communicate. So when you think you’re ever communicating, do it more and do it multimodal, whether it be virtual or emails or other things, make sure it’s consistent, and make sure it’s frequent.”

4. Share Authentic Stories of Impact
Supporting Quote
Dr. Scott Rissmiller: “It’s even more important today for leaders to show up with positive energy and optimism while we tackle these tough problems. And be real, just like with our courageous conversations, don’t shy away from the things that might be a bit uncomfortable, because again, in this time of virtual, it’s easy to just stay at the surface level. Dig deep, make it consistent, and build people up. Then connect back to why we went into this to begin with. There is a practice that is just incredible, which is called connect the purpose, where we start every meeting, and I mean every meeting, with a patient story of how we have delivered incredible care, and what we meant to that patient.”

Book Recommendations:

Sponsors Resources:

  • Wambi.org Wambi is about human connections. We view feedback as the fuel for interpersonal growth and are always striving to achieve the highest versions of ourselves and to lift others up along the way.
  • HCAHPS Case Study – Learn how University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health used Wambi to improve employee engagement and patient experience, and found that the Wambi platform is an early predictor of the HCAHPS. Download the case study here.

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Monday Fire: Live a Hell Yes Life

Happy Monday! Every Monday we drop some #MondayFire to help you get excited about your week. Here we go!

Our question for you today:

What are your foundational phrases?

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108: Eliminating the Ego and Focusing on the Mission | Alex Tyink

Alex Tyink is the President of Fork Farms, a company that believes anybody can be a farmer. They deliver this message by engaging deeply with their customers to help them build strong relationships with fresh food.

While the focus of their company is meaningful connections with customers, Alex is committed to helping his people feel the company mission. 

In this episode Alex shares insights on getting team members to buy into the mission. It’s not easy, but he firmly believes the key to success is making sure everyone feels the impact of their own work.

Truth You Can Act On:

1. Hire Right
Supporting Quote:
Alex Tyink:  “I think it’s more of a practice personally than it is a silver bullet. I think for us, it starts with the hire. I think when we hire the right people that fit the culture, fit the energy that we’re trying to build, that have the collaboration potential, you know, that gets you a fair amount of the way. I think I’ve found when you don’t have that, it’s really more of an uphill battle.”

2. Eliminate the Ego
Supporting Quote
Alex Tyink: “It’s training up the leaders that we’re lifting up into these different critical roles and helping them understand that this is the way they’re going to be able to drive the most impact through the organization. It’s not about ego and who reports to who. It’s really about what’s best for the company, what’s best for the mission, and what’s best for the entire team. I think building a culture around humility and consciousness of our own ego, it’s tough to do, but those are some of the toughest conversations that I think we’ve had with our people.”

3. Focus on Employee Wellbeing 
Supporting Quote
Alex Tyink: “For us, consciously stepping back, looking at what results we’re trying to drive, and reminding ourselves the key activities we really believe are going to drive those results, and making sure that we’re really prioritized in the right place. I think it can be really healthy to have resets periodically where it’s okay for the team to shift course a little bit and to make sure that they redirect and reprioritize their energy. Those resets, I think, can be refreshing and they can make sure that the team stays connected to the mission.”


Book Recommendation:

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Monday Fire Takeover: The Definition of Optimism with Dr. Renee Thompson

Happy Monday! Every Monday we drop some #MondayFire to help you get excited about your week. In this episode, CEO & Founder of Healthy Workforce InstituteDr. Renee Thompson, takes over to give some advice. Here we go!

Our question for you today:

How can you redefine optimism?

Subscribe to get your Monday Fired up.

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Monday Fire Takeover: Changing Your Environment with Dr. Renee Thompson

Happy Monday! Every Monday we drop some #MondayFire to help you get excited about your week. In this episode, CEO & Founder of Healthy Workforce InstituteDr. Renee Thompson, takes over to give some advice. Here we go!

Our question for you today:

How can you change your environment from negative to positive?

Subscribe to get your Monday Fired up.

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Monday Fire Takeover: The Negativity Bias with Dr. Renee Thompson

Happy Monday! Every Monday we drop some #MondayFire to help you get excited about your week. In this episode, CEO & Founder of Healthy Workforce Institute, Dr. Renee Thompson, takes over to give some advice. Here we go!

Our question for you today:

How can you be deliberate about acknowledging the positive?

Subscribe to get your Monday Fired up.

Subscribe to Gut+Science