Leadership is a People Business

You’ve heard me say that leadership is a people business. That applies to every aspect of your organization. This includes hiring, onboarding, talent development, performance feedback, and succession planning. Many leaders, however, don’t take ownership and they try and outsource their leadership responsibility to HR. My guest today is Jennifer Thornton. Jennifer is a leadership coach and founder of 304 Coaching. She spent more than 20 years as an HR professional and in operations before starting her consulting business. Jennifer helps leaders and companies who are facing breakthrough growth and accelerated hiring patterns.  Today we talk about the importance of leadership in hiring, developing, and growing the people in our business.

So are you ready to dive in? Let’s get started. Welcome to Deep Leadership. Leadership is a people business. That’s the philosophy of your podcast host, Jon Rennie. As a former cold war submarine officer who spent 20 plus years leading businesses in corporate America before starting his own manufacturing business, he knows that leadership matters. Are you ready for some real-world actual advice from Jon as well as his expert guests? I’m ready, I’m ready. I’m ready. The show starts right now. Welcome to the deep leadership podcast. Today, I’m joined by Jennifer Thornton. Jennifer is a leadership coach and founder of 304 Coaching. She spent more than 20 years as an HR professional and in operations before starting her consulting business. Jennifer helps leaders and companies who are undergoing breakthrough growth and accelerated hiring patterns.

0:01:39.0 S1: She says that running a high-performance team always boils down to two things: adopting a perfect fit hiring process and developing each hire. I’m excited to have Jennifer on the show to talk more about the HR side of leadership. So Jennifer, welcome to the show.

0:01:54.3 S2: Thanks for having me. It’s a pleasure to be here.

0:01:57.2 S1: Well, I’m excited to have on the show, you’re the first HR professional that has been on the show, so this is gonna be kind of fun and we’re probably gonna have some back and forth dialogue, so I’m really interested in this, but as we started off, we talked a little bit, and you spent a long, successful career as an HR professional and in operations, so that’s one thing I didn’t know about you before we started, but you were also in operation, so you have both sides of the fence, you’ve seen kind of both things, but why did you leave that all behind to start your own business? What was the genesis for that?

0:02:30.9 S2: So I think that so often in our life, we have that moment where you can remember everyone in the room, you can remember the sounds and the smells, and I had one of those… And I was working for a large company, and I happened to be in Hong Kong and we had new executives and the person walked in the room and every piece of my being said, Oh, I’m done. This is it, this is just not the direction I wanna take my career. I was getting to that point in my age where I knew it was the right time to kinda go out on my own, and what I had fallen in love with and where my passion… Because like you said, I did operations for the first half of my career, so I woke up to my score card every morning, making sure the cells and payroll, and then I went to HR and did more of that deployment, that strategy and what I really found is that leaders were successful when they thought about their talent strategically, and when they thought about the relationships of those executives really strategically, and that it wasn’t just bodies and seeds and it wasn’t just people doing their job, it was a strategic deployment of talent, and it’s what I love to do…

0:03:45.4 S2: And so that moment, I was like, This is what I was meant to do, and I’m gonna fly home and do that, and that is what I did.

0:03:51.5 S1: Wow, so you just just said, That’s it, I’m done. I have walked out…

0:03:55.8 S2: Well, I didn’t completely walk out, but I would never do that on a job, much more professional, but I worked toward that, I was gone in six months.

0:04:02.8 S1: We… Okay, well, that’s good, but you put in your mind at that point, that was the beginning. That bit of it.

0:04:09.3 S2: Yeah, every bit of it. It was one of those moments I’ll never forget.

0:04:13.7 S1: So it’s funny, my moment is very easy to remember too, because I was working in a facility that had very low, low morale, I wasn’t the senior person on that tiger side, but my group… Part of my group was there and they had an annual meeting where they were doing all the goal setting for the year, and they said, We’re gonna give you a gift this year, that was the big thing. And then we all show up and the… Gives a button that said, I love my job. I love that, that’s a Teradata. At that point, I said, I don’t think I could do corporate anyway, I think I’m done with big companies, I mean that’s just kind of a crazy thing.

0:04:47.9 S2: Yeah, that’s an interesting gift, but all of those things people think about leadership and those small things you think, Oh, we’re just gonna give people a button, but we don’t really think about what that means and how may impact someone’s decisions at work and… It was that turning moment for you and who knows who else in the room…

0:05:08.3 S1: Yeah, I think it was… A lot of people do that. So you deal with helping companies in their hiring process and doing it strategically and making sure they build up a… They think strategically about their talent, I really like this because I really do believe that leadership is a people business, and you gotta put the right team together if you’re gonna be successful, so… What are some of the biggest problems you see in most companies hiring processes, what’s the biggest challenges today that you see…

0:05:37.8 S2: So I think there’s a few things, and one of the things I see most often is we don’t get clear on the work, we’ll do a job description, right, and we’ll list out the things. But really, what is the work that needs to be done? And how does that work impact others and really, before we hire someone, we have to stop and pause and think about the work. And I also see, especially in fast-growing companies or when someone companies in stress, they’ll say, Oh, that team’s overwhelm, just hire someone for them, but they don’t really stop and say, Is there work that needs to be moved off the plate, is there work that someone else can do, Are they overwhelmed because we are not communicating to them well, and so it’s really about getting clear on the work and how are we setting up people to be successful and not work. Then once we do work through that process and we get really clear on the work when we go to hire, interviewing people is really interesting, ’cause you can interview for experience and knowledge and skill set, and those behavior-based interviews and all that stuff we’re supposed to do right, you can do all that, but usually what’s missing is a really good high validated EEOC-Compliant Assessment, because we’re not self-aware enough as humans to really understand our traits, and so I think that’s one of the pieces that’s missing with most of the processes is a validated tool to make sure that we’re covering all bases, ’cause you really can’t interview for work behavior traits and decision style.

0:07:20.6 S2: That is so true. It’s interesting, one of my observations in big companies is that we did spend… It seemed like we spent a lot of… A lot of time interviewing and trying to find the right person for the job, but then… And we gave them, we hired this really the start, they had all of the pedigree, the experience, and it was the perfect fit. Right.

0:07:46.6 S1: And we were bringing in the organization and we’d throw them in a cubicle and say Good luck, and there really wasn’t any… I would say just talent development or even talent connection, we didn’t grow new hires, and over time those are higher… Those new hires who were rock stars, they wanted to do great things, got frustrated and they moved on to other opportunities.

0:08:08.4 S2: So I think you even mentioned it in my opening, I talked a little bit about the opening, that it’s about not just to hiring the right people but also developing the talent once they come in the organization is that, right? Absolutely, and onboarding is an important piece because when you onboard people in a way that helps them acclimate to your culture, it helps them understand who their key business partners are, who their support is, no one goes into a cubicle and high… It’s like, you know, you don’t… And so you have to know what’s around you, and so I think so often we don’t put the upfront work into a great onboarding plan, and we either teach them nothing and hope they figure it out, or we teach them too much in the first week and they can’t remember anything, you have to work people into it, and then it is about that ongoing development, people, we’re humans and as humans growth and taking our brain and using our brain, all that is important to… And if an organization doesn’t allow someone to expand their mind and grow and develop, even if they’re in an individual contributor job that they wanna do forever, you still have to be able to expand your mind inside of that, and I think that’s a big piece that we miss is we don’t really think about how to help people get that learning and that stuff that they’re really craving to grow and to stay really satisfied within their job.

0:09:39.6 S1: Yeah, I see that a lot, and I see that where we hire somebody for their talent in their brain, and we tell them that you’re not allowed to do anything, you have to get my permission first, which is like drives me crazy, like this guy is a rock star of this, this girl’s a rock star, let her do what she’s gonna do, it instead, they can put them in a box and we say, You can’t do anything without our permission, and then we frustrate these people and they all start their own businesses eventually. I think so.

0:10:06.2 S2: Absolutely. And the other thing that happens when we don’t let people make decision, then they stop doing it, and I get a call from a CEO and they’re frustrated with her talent at first, I always say, Tell me what’s making you crazy about your team and on the list mostly is they don’t make decisions on their own, and after they give me the list, the next question and I always ask is, tell me what about your leadership creates this environment…

0:10:28.7 S1: That’s perfect, that’s perfect. ’cause usually it’s the case where they’re not allowed to make a decision and that’s why they don’t make a decision, so… Yeah, absolutely. You touched on a little bit, the hiring process and bringing in talent and talent development is… Now, would you say it’s a critical part of building and maintaining the company culture?

0:10:52.3 S2: Yeah, absolutely, you have to think about the people you’re bringing in, because not only do you have to think about what work they’ll do, you also have to think about how do we do that work? And so sometimes organizations are very traditional and that’s right for their business and they wanna traditional more formal approach, and so you may hire someone that has all the experience and knowledge you need, but how they wanna do the work doesn’t match your culture, so they become disruptive. You get the reputation for not hiring well, the person’s not happy, and as leaders, we can’t forget every single time we hire someone, we change the course of their life that is on their resume the rest of their lifetime, and we have to take that really seriously and so if you wanna hire someone, don’t just stop at skills, really think about how do people work that are successful in your culture, and then how do you look at your candidates and ask questions so that you can ensure that they’re gonna work that way too, because we hire people for skills and knowledge, but we say goodbye to people of how they actually did the work, and that’s the piece that we miss out in the process.

0:12:12.0 S1: So… True. So true. You mentioned something about going back and asking the leader the question, What in your leadership to how might be causing this problem, but what are some of the biggest challenges you see in company leadership today, what are they missing out on when it comes to talent and talent acquisition and development.

0:12:34.3 S2: So one thing that I always find that’s interesting about leaders is when you think about starting a company, no one wakes up and says, I’m just gonna grab a bunch of really smart people and I’m gonna lead the heck out of them. No, no one does that. Everyone wants to start a business and then you have to hire people to run that business, so leadership isn’t a business, but it’s the critical action to create a business, and I think we always need to start to remind ourselves of that. I think that the current trend that here we are closing out the end of 2020, and one of the things that I’ve seen in fact, had a conversation with the CEO just last week about this… At the beginning of the year, we had to do a lot of crisis management. You shut down closures and crisis management is buildings on fire, get out. No questions, no discussion, just do as I’m told. And I think our leaders gotten a little bit of a habit of crisis management, and crisis management only works in a crisis and it’s really dangerous to an environment outside of a crisis, and so what I’m finding is that people are in that mode and now they’re really damaging their team dynamics because they’re crisis managing outside of a crisis and we have to stop them.

0:13:53.0 S1: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, I think when we talked about… I had a lot of guests on in the early stages of covid, and it was really important that you manage through the crisis, and what I was kept talking about was being present, we have to be present as leaders as our people are trying to go through this major shift and change, and it didn’t matter what you did, what kind of career you had, you went through some sort of a change during this period, and so I always talked about being present, but even as we come out of this thing and we get into some level of normal operations. I think being present as a leader, it’s still an important part of it, is being there, being present even if you’re doing Zoom calls it, but at least you’re there and in connecting with people. So I think one of the sad things I saw on the early part of the crisis is that people were trying to manage it with the emails, trying to manage their people through emails and dictates, and it’s just… He can’t do that, you gotta be present, you gotta connect with people, even with the challenges that we have, so…

0:14:53.6 S1: Yeah, I think you’re right, we’re getting back to… We’re out of the crisis motor, we’re moving out of the crisis, but we’re in a new… Or operating our business in a new way, but… So we gotta get back to the basics again. You can’t be… We can’t be just running around, the building is not on fire anymore, right. So we gotta be… Gotta get going. So that’s a really important thing. So I wanna touch on some… You wrote some pieces and you’ve had some discussions about this idea, and I want them to talk to you about it, ’cause I saw it a lot in the companies I work for, it’s this idea of companies or people being addicted to being… Right, so what is that all about? I really liked it when I heard it, ’cause I’ve been in those meetings where we just argued and argued about who was right versus what we really needed to do.

0:15:42.8 S2: You can get those people that will argue what color the sky is, and they’re convinced it’s purple and you’re like, No, it’s really blue. So what’s interesting about the human mind, and a lot of the work I do is around the neuroscience of the mind, how it takes in language, what are the chemicals that fire off and then how does that impact our relationships and therefore our business… And so one of the things that we know from research is that when you are right, you get a dopamine hit, ’cause it feels good to be right, you’re like, Yes, I was smart and made the right decision and it went well. My boss told me I was awesome. And you get this dopamine head, well, that’s the same dopamine hit you would get if you were addicted to shopping or sugar or alcohol, it’s that chemical reaction in your mind, and if you hooked your brain up to all the little electrical things and you gave people that were addicted to many different things, including being right, and you looked at a screen and you gave them their substance of choice, it would fire off the exact same way when you’re addicted to being right.

0:16:50.1 S2: And what we know about addictions is you need more and more of that dopamine to get the same level of high, so therefore, that person you worked with, it was an up and comer and always right. And got tons of accolades, and now you can see them 10-15 years later, and you’re like, Who is this person? They don’t listen anymore, they’re not open to new ideas, they don’t collaborate, they’re just not who they used to be, and it’s because they are in their addiction and they have to be… Right, so any time that someone else tells them a different viewpoint, then it takes away their drug of choice, and that’s a problem.

0:17:28.2 S1: It really is, and it’s funny ’cause when I started writing a leadership, one of the first analogies I tried to talk about was I’m a former submarine officer, I was in the military, and we always said that the enemy was outside the hall on writing, whether it was… It was a Drenthe cold or whether it was the Soviets or thousands of pounds of sea water trying to get in the boat, the enemy was outside the four walls, we had to operate as a team to be able to make sure the enemy stayed outside of the hole, right. And when I worked in Corporate America, it was sort of just the app, it seemed like the enemy was inside the four walls, it was always marketing fall, or it was engineering fall, or sales promise something, or QA rejected something, and it was always this fight amongst each other and about… And then when it came to budgeting, who was gonna get all of the funding for next year, is it gonna be the European team, the US team, where it was always just arguing, fighting, and I saw a lot of people fighting for just to be right or just to protect their little kingdoms, and at the end of the day, we weren’t focused on the enemy being our competition that was taking our share, taking share away from us and affecting our livelihood.

0:18:42.1 S1: So I think it’s… I see this, especially in big companies, that the bigger you get, the more you get these kingdoms and you have the heads of the kingdoms fighting for their little piece of turf, and it’s this fight sometimes, like you say, just to be right. Yeah.

0:19:00.7 S2: It’s just to be… Right, and it’s that situation, you put 10 executives at the table and they’re all fighting for their kingdom then no one’s fighting for the greater good of the organization, and I see that all the time, and they then protect their teams are not honest with team performance or not willing to help out. And if your executives around the table act that way, how do you think your directors will act, wherefore, how are your managers and your individual contributors, they hear and see how you talk about the other groups, so therefore they’re going to go, they’re gonna follow you. They’re the leader, they’re gonna follow your way of work and believe what you tell them to be true, and I think it’s one of the biggest failures in corporate is that we fight for our own team, we don’t fight for the greater good.

0:19:58.9 S1: Yeah, and honestly, I tried to fix it. I was in corporate America, I was always the guy trying to find the compromise and try to find a… Find a situation where you win, I win. And the company wins, I was always trying to find those opportunities. And in some cases, people took offense that I was actually trying to be a peace maker and trying to bring together ’cause I thought I was, well, you’re just doing this just for you, or something like that, I was like, No, actually trying to focus on being successful as a company, not so much about my department, and that was always… I don’t know, it’s a very strange thing to me, and maybe it’s ’cause of my background in the military, but I just never could quite understand the finger pointing and the inviting and the politics that went along with large companies… Yeah.

0:20:50.7 S2: A lot of it comes from fear, and when we are in fear, our primitive brain takes over, and that part of our brain was created to keep us alive, and how we did that in our early emphasis, it kept us in the cave and it kept us in a try, because we could not survive by ourself without shelter and what… You couldn’t do it all by yourself. We all that shows up in today’s world is you’re still tribal, and so if you feel like your tribes messed up or you feel like you’re gonna get voted off the tribe, your fear kicks in and you do finger pointing because if I blame someone else and clearly I’m faith in my tribe, right? You make decisions around a leader because, hey, the tribal leader said, don’t like those departments, it’s marketing fall, not our fault, so therefore your brain believes it, and so it’s really interesting when you think about how our brains were created to keep us alive and to keep fear as the mechanism to keep us from dying, how it actually shows up in the workplace, and you can just see it everywhere, and it’s really just how the human brain was created, and that’s why I spend so much time working with people to teach them how does the brain actually works so that you can lead with the brain and not against the brain, because we really…

0:22:17.2 S2: The 20th century leadership was fear-based, and so we create this fear and we put people in the state of where they really can’t do their best work because their permanent brain has over there. Thank you. You

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0:23:35.7 S1: But I’m gun is offering a discount to the listeners of deep leadership, go to bottom gun coffee company dot com and enter the discount code deep at check out bottom gun coffee. The taste that’s qualified. What do you think about… Who’s responsibility? Is it really to develop people, is it HR’s responsibility or should the leader be developing their people…

0:24:12.5 S2: Absolutely, the lion’s share of that work is the leader, and I think good HR departments are talent strategists, and they’re there to support the leader to be a great leader, they’re not there to do the leader’s job, and they’re not there to deliver the bad news when the leader doesn’t have the guts to be honest, and so often, even when I was in that seat in a corporate environment, I get a phone call, Bob, we didn’t do his job today, I want you to go down there and tell Bobby to do his job, and I’m like, Yeah, I’m gonna pass on that, but I’d be more than welcome or happy to role-play with you and we can talk about how you can tell Bobby to do a job and really pushing back and helping, but I think a lot of times leaders don’t do it one, because they are in fear, they don’t know how to… And I always… With my teams, I was like, It’s not about helping them fight the fight, it’s about giving them the confidence and tools so that they can go and have those conversations, they can go and develop their team and you’re providing guidance and competence and safe space to work through it, you’re not actually doing it.

0:25:31.5 S2: And I think really strong and where really a progressive HR team needs to be, is that that place helping leaders be great leaders, and HR should be a Challenger when a leader is doing something and they need a safe place to think about options or they need to hear the truth. HR should be a person who can come and keep that confidence, but be very honest with leaders and say, You know, I know, here’s the decision you brought to the table, I’m gonna help you play these out, and I think so often HR professionals aren’t willing to tell the truth, because again, their fear of their job, that they tell the truth, but when I see really strong executives to take HR into their realm and create this partnership in this honesty and allow someone to just kind of be there as your second voice in your head, that’s when it becomes really powerful, and that’s when leaders start to grow and then they lead their teams, it’s not pushed off to the policy police. I’ve never been a policy police HR person, but there’s a lot of them out there, and some organizations want that, and that’s up to them, not how I would lead a business on how I would do the job, but I think that when you invite them in and allow them to be a business strategist with you, that’s when the relationships really great.

0:27:01.3 S1: I agree. So I had a question, and this could get us in trouble, but… Oh, God. In about performance reviews? Oh

0:27:09.5 S2: My gosh, performance review, I have a lot of opinions about them, I think that they are a lazy way out. I think that there needs to be some kind of mechanism, if your company does merit, there needs to be some level setting, but of these people who once a year, everyone has to go and do their performance, everyone’s data and everyone’s complaining about it, you’re not… It’s just an exercise like, who cares, you’re not making progress with the business, and so when I think about the effort that goes into performance reviews one or two times a year, what if we took that and we spread it across 12 months, and that we really worked with leaders to give continuous feedback, ’cause if you gave continuous feedback, you don’t need an end of year surprise… Got you. Performance review, and if you do do a traditional performance review, it shouldn’t be a surprise, anyone who is surprised at their performance review at the leader owns that the leader had or did not have honest conversations, and it’s really unfair on that person. Don’t show up and tell me 12 months later, you don’t like what I’ve been doing, I’ve been more than happy to change it along the way, but I think in today’s world because we’re busy or overwhelmed, all that stuff, we use it as a crutch.

0:28:33.1 S2: And when I use it as a crutch donor…

0:28:36.4 S1: That’s the right answer, by the way. Oh, good, I either writing or in my head and you got it, which is… Yes, I

0:28:43.2 S2: Would have happened if I had given them a one

0:28:45.3 S1: Or a five, I feel the same way about it just it got to be where it was such a corporate top-down kind of thing that we did, and it came from on high that your distributions look a certain way, you can’t have a certain amount of people that say you’re grading one to four, the only I could have like 2% of your people who are a four, you should have 25% as a three, you should have 20… You know that it was like, Well, wait, I actually have rock stars here, I did a really good job hiring, I did a really good job. Talent Development, I did everything you told me to do. I have a rock star team, and yet I have a distribution where I have to have a certain amount of people that are basically on the low end and potentially not getting a raise, and I just… I never could quite understand that. And then when you bring it up to the HR department, they’re like, Well, we’re just following orders from corporate, and that’s the distribution curve we’re supposed to have, and it’s like… I don’t know about that.

0:29:42.2 S1: So

0:29:42.5 S2: Yeah, it’s interesting you say that until that story this year, I worked with a really large communication or global communication organization, and one of the things we did is we looked at their performance review process and re-did it and blew it up and put it back together, and we did put it together and something that felt a little traditional, but the thing… One of the things that we did is we removed the bell curve, that idea that 10% and 50, and that you had to have these because… And how we looked at it is there will be years where you will have a rockstar team, but then the next year you may not, because maybe some of those got promoted in this next year, you may have teams that are kind of finding their way and new and so you may not have that, you may have some on the lower and heavy, and so instead of forcing a bell curve, we have them really think about their team collectively and what was the stage of that team and where they truly… In that moment of time of excellent performance, or were they in a moment of time of building and maybe the team wasn’t great, but that’s okay, because maybe they were great last year and again they got promoted or changed around, but it was that one of the pieces that we took out was the force bell curve, and then we asked leaders to really get honest, and it will be hard, it’ll be hard for them because not only do they have to get honest, they have to get honest, telling someone their performance…

0:31:12.2 S2: Right.

0:31:12.6 S1: Well, that is the part part, yeah, and the other thing is the person above them has to know enough about them and their team to be able to say, wait a second, you’ve got all top performers on your team, and how come you’re not performing your department or your business is subpar performance, so having someone enough to push back a little bit and say, Okay, there’s no F for bell curve, but yet you’re giving everybody the top rating, but yet I’m not seeing the performance out of your team now, what is it, you… Is it you the leader is the problem, or what is the problem? Because I think we have to be able to question that if we see something… See something that’s unusual. But I always frustrated with when you do everything right, you hire right, you develop right, you build really good people, and then you were told that 10% or 15% have to have the lowest rating, and I was always just like, that doesn’t really make a lot of sense in my mind. So

0:32:08.8 S2: It’s a reward way to look at it, and

0:32:10.9 S1: It’s made it really hard to lead when you couldn’t lead the way you wanted to leave, and I think that’s probably some of those things that drove me towards starting my own business and doing it the way I wanna do it. And by the way, I don’t have performance reviews in my company, good, ’cause I talk to my place every single day, and if you’re doing bad, I let them know and if they’re doing great, I be the same. So

0:32:32.1 S2: That’s right, right now, and I think it’s so powerful when you get used to having those conversations because then it’s not like, Oh, oh, I got in trouble for my boss today, it’s like, Oh, here’s an opportunity for me to grow. I also find the organizations that celebrate failure, they grow faster because it says… ’cause the opposite of innovation is kind of failure, so you can’t innovate if you’re not comfortable with failure, and so I love when I talk to people and I wanna really innovative team and I’m like, Fantastic, when they screw up. What are you gonna do? Well, they got or not, I’m like, well, then they’re not gonna innovate. And so when you have those constant performance conversations, it… Growth becomes, okay, and it becomes celebrated, and then you’re building a culture of growth because people are honest about how they’re doing or how their peer is doing, and it just really changes the culture that way.

0:33:26.4 S1: Absolutely, I’ve seen the culture where we had a CEO that said, Move Fast fixing along the way, and he said the worst thing you can do in my business, it’s not making a wrong decision or making the right decision. It’s not making a decision, he said, Make a decision and fix along the way, and he had an organization that was very nimble, we had a very corporate staff, and we were growing like crazy, and it’s because he gave the power as low in the organization as possible, and he had grace and forgiveness for when you made a mistake, he said, fix it, if you make a mistake, admit you made a mistake. And fix it, that’s what I pay you to do. And I loved working for this guy was my first CEO coming out of the military, and this guy like he got it, he understood how to run a global organization, we were running hard and has a young general manager, and I felt like… This was fun, I had my own business, I was running my business, I made all the decisions on my own, I didn’t have anyone from corporate looking over my shoulder, and we set records in growth and profitability, and then that same company culture, 10 years later was all top down and metrics, and you had to get permission for everything, and if you failed, you were let go, and so I, in the cold culture changed in that company just by the change in CEOS over the years, and it was really disappointing to see that.

0:34:47.6 S1: But one man could make a difference, a one CEO, one leader can make a difference in organization by just that culture they put in the entire organization, so… Yeah.

0:34:56.4 S2: I know it’s so interesting when you talk to people and they expect perfection from their employees every single hour of every single day, and I’m like, That’s a lot of pressure on someone, and if you expect perfection, you’re never gonna… You’re just not gonna see anything new and eventually it will burn out, and I think my team today and my team in the past, internationally, you had to get really used to messing up ’cause a lot of stuff got lost in translation, and so you would direct a team, and then you go and you’d be like, Oh, okay, that’s… And I would say that you said, and I’m like, Yes, that word in English has four definitions. I picked this one. You pick that one. Not a problem. Now we know, and this is what it’s gonna look like. So you had to get just really comfortable, mess it up and give yourself grace and given people grace around you, and then it became okay, and therefore people were more open and honest.

0:35:56.8 S1: I like it, I love it a lot. Well, very good. So 304 Coaching… What is that all about? What do you do in your company?

0:36:03.2 S2: So at 304, we focus on talent strategies, and we come in and when you look at your business… We help you with your business strategy. You figure out where you’re going. And what does that mean for your team? And so we make sure we have a grade hiring tool OAD, we have leadership academies, and we do executive and med management coaching, performance development coaching, so a full suite of just talent strategy, and we have a really great time and do you like…

0:36:31.9 S1: Excellent, so what are you working on these days? What’s on the slate today?

0:36:35.8 S2: Oh, what I’m working on right now is a leadership academy for directors and above that’s focused on Conversation Intelligence, which is about understanding our language and the neuroscience of the mind, and when I think about where we’re going in the world, we have to… We have to get smarter with how people actually work and then get the most out of them and really helping them understand that, so we’re working on a new academy, we’re really excited and putting the research into it. It’s gonna be a lot of fun.

0:37:10.6 S1: Wow, sounds great. I think it’s really needed today too, so… Excellent, so how can people find out more about you, your company, and all your coaching programs.

0:37:21.0 S2: So you can go to 304 Coaching, we have lots of resources you can download for free there, and then love to connect with your listeners on LinkedIn at Jen Thornton ACC.

0:37:31.7 S1: Okay, and we’ll put all the links in our show notes so that everyone can find it. Okay, well, this has been good. This has been a great conversation when we first booked it, and you’re the first HR professional on the show, I was wondering how it was gonna go since some of us in the leadership community or in the HR community, sometimes there’s no jive, but I think you touched on a lot of the right things is that it is really true that the hiring and the development of your talent is absolutely critical to the performance of your business and to maintain your culture. It’s one of the number one things I do as a business owner, is managing the group of people that I have working there and being really careful on a… Add to that. That’s really, really important. And so I think you hit on the right things and you have the right answer when it comes to performance review… So you pass the test.

0:38:23.8 S2: I got a dopamine hit for that, by the way…

0:38:25.8 S1: Yes, you want it?

0:38:27.0 S2: Yeah. Oh, really good. I’m gonna try to be right later on too. Yeah.

0:38:30.9 S1: And I like that whole discussion about being… Being addicted to being right. And the downfall of that is that… Well, if you might be ripens, not the right decision for the company. And that’s a bad thing. So I think you left us with a lot of things to think about, and I think you gave us a lot of good insight today.

0:38:51.0 S2: Well, thank you so much, and I’m honored to be the very first HR professional on your podcast.

0:38:56.5 S1: Absolutely, absolutely, and I’m sure someone’s gonna point out there with somebody else, but I’m pretty sure you’re the first, so…

0:39:02.3 S2: I’m gonna go with it, I’m gonna stick with it as I

0:39:04.2 S1: Am too. I’m going with it as well. So very good. Well, Jennifer, thank you very much for being on the show today.

0:39:10.6 S2: Thank you for having me. It was a ton of fun.

0:39:13.0 S1: Well, that’s it for today. Thank you for listening to deep leadership. If you like this podcast please subscribe and share so we can continue to build a world with better bosses till next time this is genre and he’s saying Take Care and lead well thank you for listening to deep leadership thank you thank you

0:39:34.8 S2: Thank you thank you thank you for all you do

0:39:36.7 S1: We hope you enjoyed today’s episode for more information and updates please visit our website at www deep Leadership Podcast dot com for John S Reno until next time take care

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