Transcript of Jack McGuinness' Guest Appearance on Men of Abundance Podcast
Jack: Thanks so much for having me, Wally. I really appreciate it. I'm looking forward to the discussion.
Wally: Yeah. Me too, absolutely. When Dee introduced the two of us and showed me your bio and stuff, I looked at what you've got going on, man, I just dig it. Leadership, and then you've got the military background, ranger background with leadership. And just the pinnacle of leadership right there, so I know that carries over. We're going to have a great conversation today, man.
Jack: Looking forward to it.
Wally: Absolutely. Where are you at in the world?
Jack: I'm in Washington DC area at a place called [de Fez de 00:00:31] [Marrans 00:00:31]. It's a place right outside of DC.
Wally: Yeah. I have heard of it. I've heard of the area. I have not had the pleasure of being there myself yet but I do look forward to it.
Jack: It's a beautiful city. Unfortunately yesterday, I just read in the paper, it is now officially the worst traffic in the United States, and we can attest to that every day.
Wally: I'm sure.
Jack: Fortunately, I work from home. My wife has to deal with that every day.
Wally: Oh my goodness, I'm telling you, man, that's one of the things. I lived in Honolulu for a while ... for like 10 years actually ... and everybody talks about the traffic there. And while it is congested, if they cut you off, at least they throw you a Shaka and it's all good. You feel better about yourself, right? I've heard the horror stories about DC, man, and I've driven in LA and they could give a shit less. I mean, they'll take a bumper if they can. But is it like that in DC?
Jack: You know, it's not quite as aggressive as that. It's just really, really congested. And it's ... we've been here for 25 years, or a little bit more than that, and it's getting ... Yeah, it's a great city but it comes with its ... that's one of the challenges it comes with. It's just very congested.
Wally: Yeah. That's one of the things ... traffic is one of my things because I work from home as well. I do this from home quite frankly. So I get out in traffic if I have to go to the VA or take my son ... I had to take him to drop his car off the other day and I was like, "Oh my goodness. This is what it's like?"
Wally: But I don't have to deal with it. But my wife is originally from Panama, from Central America, and as much as I love Panama, man, I just cannot deal with the traffic over there. They're super, super aggressive over there in Panama. I won't drive when we go there. I just won't do it.
Jack: I've never been.
Wally: Oh, it's crazy. Absolutely crazy. So anyhow, I like to get started with an attitude of gratitude, man. What do you have to be grateful for today?
Jack: You know, I have to ... it sounds cliché but I am so grateful for my family. I have just an amazing core family and extended family on both sides. And particularly my wife of 26 years and my three children are just thriving right now. I've got a 22 year old boy, an 18 year old girl, and a 16 year old girl, and they're just good people that are curious and fun and just really interested in learning. I'm really proud of them and just had the opportunity to hang out with my son and his friends. My wife and I went out to visit him in college this past weekend and just so proud that he's surrounded with so many cool people. So yeah, that primarily, my family is a blessing.
Wally: Man, I feel you there, man ... and I really feel you. Because quite frankly, my wife and I have been married 26 years this last December and we have three boys ... 25, 19, and 9. So not too far off from you, man.
Jack: No, not at all. Yeah. It's just fantastic. And each year it just gets better. It's just different but better.
Wally: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, we've got a pretty large gap between our boys as well. It's always keeping us on our toes and just really exciting to see the oldest one progress in his career and the 19 year old just getting started in the workforce and stuff and doing what he's doing. It's just exciting to be a part of that whole process.
Jack: Yeah. My wife and I are kind of learning to like each other again. No, just enjoy each other's company. We spend a lot more time together and it's just been really fun.
Wally: Yeah, that is a fun part. I truly enjoy that. As we were talking, neither my wife or I work right now. And she's done with her degree and stuff like that and she's considering going back to work but I'm like, "I'm going to be terrible for you because I'm going to be asking you to play hooky and let's run down to Epcot or something, you know?"
Jack: Yeah, yeah, right.
Wally: But I dig it too. I dig being around the house all day. I don't know. I think she's getting kind of tired of me. That's maybe why she wants to go back to work.
Wally: So how would you describe yourself, Jack?
Jack: You know, I would describe myself as a pretty intense person that is pretty competitive but over the course of my career, my life, I've grown to kind of turn that competitiveness and that action orientation into really enjoying helping others be ... kind of become who they want to become. And that's the essence of the work that I do now but it's ... yeah. I just aggressive and competitive very much in the interest of helping other people get the results they're looking for.
Jack: I guess the other part of it is my kids would describe me as kind of goofy and fun and annoying and that kind of stuff. I'm out with my son this weekend, we're at the bar, and I make friends with the bartender and he's just like, "Oh my God, here he goes again." But that's just who I am. I like meeting people and engaging and stuff like that.
Wally: Yeah. I've just got this huge smile on my face because that's exactly how I am. Everywhere we go, my wife is like, "Why do you have to talk to everybody?" And the funny thing is is I don't talk as much as they do. I get them talking, then I'll come back and say, "Did you know this and this and this?" She's like, "How the hell did you get that much information out of it? You talked to him for like five minutes?" And I was like, "I just asked a couple questions. Get them going, you know?"
Jack: I get that same comment, "Why do you have to talk to everybody?"
Wally: Why not? Why not? I'm in an elevator and nobody's talking and I'm like I'll break the ice and say something. You know? All the stuff that you've done and I read through your bio and stuff and shared all that with the guys but my goodness, I just can't imagine that everything went absolutely perfect and so if you would, share with us one of those kick in the gut moments that really kind of took you to your knees, but at the same time, was a huge learning point for you and really make us feel that.
Jack: Yeah. So it's easy now. It's 10 years removed. But I bought a company with two partners in 2006 ... or I guess toward the end of 2005. And we went bankrupt in 2009. And so, that was a kick in the gut from many perspectives and I'll give you the backstory on why.
Jack: I was a management consultant for the first 13 years of my career in a small boutique management consultant firm. I had a great mentor and learned a lot, did some great work. And then, I got really burned out and I was looking for an escape and I left the firm too early. I think I left primarily ... looking back on it now ... I left because I was not only burned out but I was not as good as I once was at the work that I was doing. We had evolved some of the work that we were doing and I just didn't like it and I wasn't frankly very good at it. And I think I was looking for an escape. I wouldn't have characterized that at the time.
Jack: So, I frankly with a couple partners, I jumped into something. We did a decent job to start, and then, financial crisis hit and we got destroyed. But a couple things that I wasn't real proud of. I invested some money without confirming it with my wife. And so, she was really caught off guard by the whole bankruptcy thing and the backstory behind the bankruptcy thing in terms of how much money we had lost. And it wasn't personal bankruptcy but we were heavily invested in it.
Jack: And so, there's some stuff that I did that wasn't ... particularly with my wife ... that I wasn't real proud of. And we've obviously gotten through that, but it was a really difficult and challenging time in our lives.
Jack: I was able to pivot, not quickly, but I've been able to pivot. My wife is a Harvard educated attorney that was taking care of our kids at the time. She had taken, I think, seven years off or so. And she was able to pivot back into work, and thank God for that. But we've gotten through it. It wasn't easy. And I learned a lot about myself and I learned a lot about my own vulnerabilities and what ... avoiding stuff and being afraid of confronting some personal stuff. And I've learned a lot from it and I think it's helped me be a better consultant in terms of the type of work I'm doing right now with small to midsize companies.
Wally: Yeah. I definitely get that and I feel that, and I've been somewhat in that situation as well, specifically the part where I've invested money without consulting with my wife. And then, it went sour. You go into that expecting, "Man, I can't wait to share this with my wife that I invested this money and doing all this amazing things," when the money is just rolling into the bank. Right? And when it doesn't turn out like that, when you're left arm starts going numb and you're feeling hypertension and anxiety and not sleeping well at night, it's just building up and building up, I totally feel that, man. I've been there before.
Jack: I put my family at risk and I'll never do it again, but it was a tough time in our lives. And we have some ... yeah, we're on totally on the rebound and repaired. Unfortunately, my wife's job is kind of tough so she works a lot but thank God she was able to do that. And then, I've recovered as well and started another business and she afforded me the ability and the luxury to be able to do that over time. So I'm very grateful to her and my family and the ability bounce back.
Wally: Excellent. Yeah, I totally get that, man. So let's talk about what you're doing now because that's one of the things that really caught my eye in what you're doing because I absolutely love ... I'm all about business strategy. And there's so many nuances of just a well oiled machine. Now, none of them are perfect. I've never found one that's absolutely perfect but you can get them really close if you have the right strategies in place and the right mindsets and all that stuff.
Wally: So relationship impact, you partnered again with somebody else. You started another partnership but this was a classmate of yours from West Point. So, what are you doing with that and how did that all get started? Where did that all come from?
Jack: Yeah. I got really lucky during that crisis and that transition during that bankruptcy, a classmate of mine from college who I met when I was 17 and was one of my closest friends in college, and since then, but he was getting his PhD in leadership at GW, George Washington University, which is relatively close to me. And so, he moved back here from California ... from Los Altos, California ... and we sort of just put our heads together and said, "What do you want to do?" He had this idea germinating around a leadership development consulting firm. And so, I kind of joined him and we put together this firm that has morphed into ... It started more as a leadership development training and program, leadership program, kind of emphasis.
Jack: And what we've morphed into probably over the last five years is an organization that works with the CEOs of growing companies to help them untap the potential of their leadership teams. So what we do is we help CEOs and their teams build great leadership teams that in particularly in small to midsize companies can be really a catalyst for more efficient and effective way of scaling a company.
Jack: And so, it's been an amazing ride. It's been almost 10 years. And the partnership with [Gill 00:14:34] Brady had been phenomenal. He's an amazing man and a really, really smart, deep learner with a passion for helping others.
Jack: And so, that's what we do now. We work exclusively with the executive teams of growing companies to help them scale more effectively.
Wally: Now here's the thing. Many people out there will look at these and in your mind you're thinking, "This guy is a CEO. He's part of the executive team. They've got it figured out. They got there for a reason because they know everything they need to know to run a business." Right?
Jack: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Wally: And then, we hear about organizations like yourself, and there's many out there that do various types of things. Like I'm an Arbinger lead the lead type of trainer. And I know you probably know a little bit about Arbinger. So explain to the guys out there why that may not be true, that these executives have it all figured out. That's why they got to that point and where somebody like your organization comes in and says, "Hey, we can take you to the next level with relationship impact."
Jack: You know, there's some interesting studies and I'll just give you two of them. There was a study by McKinsey over the last five years or so that they surveyed the executives and basically, I think it was 80% said that their leadership teams were ineffective. And in another study ... I think act it was 75%.
Jack: And in this other study by a group called Team Coaching International did another big study that suggested that 80% of executives surveyed said their teams were ineffective. And the reason is ... there's a couple reasons for that. Number one is most executives, particularly of small to midsize companies, put together a leadership team based on the functional leaders that they have in place. You have CFO, you have a line of business leader or product development, whatever the key leaders are. And the expectation is that you put them together and that because they're experienced, functional managers that they're going to know how to work effectively as a leadership team.
Jack: And our experience is that that's just not necessarily the case. You might have a great CEO who is able to really step back and help build the structural foundation and the relational foundation that they need to thrive. But oftentimes, you have a CEO who is working their butt off on the business and doesn't necessarily take the time to step back or realizing that he or she needs to take some time to step back and focus on how am I going to turn this team from a group of individuals into a functional team that is clearly focused on what's most important?
Jack: And so, that's one of the biggest challenges. Throwing a group of people together and expecting them to function as a team. It's a myth and it doesn't always come to fruition.
Wally: Yeah. That's a very good point that you brought up ... many good points, quite frankly ... but one that I want to build on a little bit is hiring from within. You often see some of these big, huge companies like I had a conversation ... I had the pleasure of having a conversation with Lee [Cockro 00:18:21] who used to be the CEO or ... what was he? ... the executive VP for Disney World Resorts. And they hired him over from Marriott. He was one of the lead managers over there.
Wally: Why would you hire somebody outside the organization? They don't know anything. Somebody coming from Marriott doesn't know a darn thing about Disney World Resorts and managing like 12 different hotels and restaurants and the whole bit. They don't know much about the organization. But it's the skills that they bring and I mean, he's one hell of a leader to begin with beside from that. But it just seems logical in some people's mind to hire within because they know the business inside and out. He started in the mail room, for instance, and worked his way all the way up. But that's not always the case. Why is that exactly?
Jack: That's hard to ... I mean, I don't know. My perspective or our perspective is that it doesn't matter if you're from inside the organization or you come in from outside of the organization. What we often see sometimes is folks coming in from outside the organization that are bringing their frame of reference and their point of view and their perspective that is valuable but maybe just doesn't necessarily fit the environment of the new organization and they try to jam their philosophy in on the new organization and it sometimes backfires.
Jack: For us, the bottom line is a team taking some time to focus on how it's going to build itself into a great team. What does a great team feel like to them and how are we going to get there? And so, there's basic blocking and tackling things that need to be put in place. We call them structural things like what are the most important things that ... what's the purpose of this executive team? Is it just a functional reporting mechanism or is it ... are we going to gain the collective wisdom of the eight to 10 people on this team and focus on what's most important for the next 12-18 months? How are we going to meet? When we meet, are we going to make sure we're maintaining most of our focus on the future versus the rear view mirror. Do we have a set of expectations for each other in terms of how we're going to behave together?
Jack: And then, importantly on the other side of the structural ... there's two sides of the coin. There's a structural side and then a relational side. Do we have a sense of trust among our team members? Not so much do they like each other, but do they trust each other's intent enough so that they can be vulnerable with each other and confront each other and challenge each other well on the most important things that need to be focused on and actually hold each other accountable to those things?
Jack: So it doesn't take an inordinate amount of time. It takes some level of focus for an executive team to really determine what it is it ... what type of team do we want to become and how are we going to get there? And how are we going to hold each other accountable to that?
Wally: Very cool. Yeah. Yeah, very cool. So what do you two do? What do you and Gill do that when you come in and you're working with some of these teams? I'm assuming you do some sort of an assessment and get an idea of where the team wants to go. And then, what kind of format do you guys work with to get the team to where they want to be?
Jack: There's a couple things we do very quickly up front. Typically, we're hired by a CEO. Sometimes by a Board, but most of the time by a CEO. And so, one of the things that we try to discern in the sales process is does the CEO believe he or she is a part of the team or part of the successes and the challenges related to that team or do they view is as fix my team type of scenario? And we kind of avoid those, right? And really try to get the CEO's head wrapped around the fact that they're part of the successes and the challenges associated with the team. So if they believe the team's dysfunctional, do they recognize they're part of that dysfunction most importantly?
Jack: And if they do, then the two things we do to start off with an engagement are first of all, we don't do anything for less than four months because most of what we're doing is dealing with adult behavior change. So that takes more than a couple work sessions, right? So we focus first on making sure that the CEO is ready to engage in dialogue in a little bit of a different way with his team. And what I mean by that is they're going to receive some feedback. And how they receive that feedback is really important to how the start that the team gets off on with our engagement.
Jack: So for example, if they receive some feedback because what we're trying to encourage is some more open dialogue and more open feedback is ... and if they receive some feedback and they get defensive or they lash out, then it really has a reverberating effect on the work. So we really prepare them to hear some stuff potentially that they maybe don't want to hear and be more curious about when they hear stuff that doesn't make sense to them or they feel defensive about, get curious versus react.
Jack: And so, we spend a good amount of time with the CEO or the team leader upfront with that. And then, we also spend some time individually with each member of the team to make sure that they recognize that this is ... we're hired by the ... we view ourselves as hired by the team, not just the CEO. And so, any efforts we're working on with this team are really focused on helping the team become as great as it can be versus any one individual.
Jack: And so, that's just through dialogues, through getting to know the individual members of the team a little bit better. And really, serving as a sounding board and listening and helping them just really disclose what's working well and what's not.
Jack: And then, we do have ... we use a team diagnostic instrument that measures seven dimensions of relational performance and seven dimensions of structural performance related to effective teams. And we use that as a vehicle for getting the discussion started. And so, that's a validated instrument by a group called Team Coaching International and it's been around for about 15 years or so and it's just a great instrument to provide a baseline for how the team sees itself as a system versus how any one individual ... it's not an individual assessment tool. It's a team assessment tool. So it gets the conversation started about, "Huh, when we look at the results and we see we don't really see ourselves as really effective at making decisions, and we also don't see ourselves at constructive interaction." There's something between those two elements potentially that could be getting in the way. Right? And so, what is that?
Jack: And so, we just keep asking questions like what do you think that's all about? Right? And it could be the CEO dominates the discussions and doesn't let people talk. It could be people are afraid to hurt each other's feelings. It could be that there's not a clarity of focus on what the team is supposed to be working on together. And so, we just it's an opportunity for the team to look at itself as an entity.
Wally: I don't know that I've heard of that specific tool but I've heard of and used various tools throughout my career in the military and otherwise and they're very effective. At least, like you said, to get people thinking about where we could make improvement and what may be the problem.
Wally: So some of the stuff that you're doing, I've never heard anyway. From my understanding, this stuff isn't taught in your average MBA program out there at any colleges or universities or whatnot. Where did you get all this information from? Where did you learn this from?
Jack: You know, from an early age, I've been interested in teams. I played basketball in high school. I actually played basketball in college. And so, I've been on good teams and bad teams from a very early age. And then, as a junior military officer as well, I experienced ... I had some great wisdoms from a couple of sergeants that worked for me, but I actually felt like I more worked for them and learned so much from them on how to build a great team.
Jack: And then, practically, when I started my first consulting career, I was one of the first people hired by this partner from Deloitte who was starting his own consulting firm. And a lot of the people that were hired in after me were much more focused on the organizational behavior side of things and on ... so we had a PhD in psychology. We had masters in organization behavior. And I learned ... I'm an MBA with an engineering degree ... I learned another side of the brain kind of and how that really contributes to helping organizations work effectively. You come up with a great plan. You can have great process and structure, but if you can't get people engaged in that structure and process and strategy, it often doesn't go very far.
Jack: And so, I learned it a lot from my consulting career and working with many, many organizations across many industries about how to build ... what a good team looks like and what a bad one looks like. And so, Gill and I both had some passion around working with teams and so that's where that focus came from. And he provides a strong theoretical construct to the work that we do as well from his PhD.
Wally: Excellent. Very cool. So what are some good news stories coming out of the work that you guys are doing?
Jack: You know, I think the biggest ... they're kind of intangible ones, but the biggest ones we see are the individual breakthroughs that people make that really, the adults make, that are 40, 50, even 60 years old, that have been doing things one way for a long period of time. And all of a sudden, they realize that, "Wow, all I have to do is tweak my behavior a little bit and not act like I know everything, listen a little bit, and I can get even better results than I've been getting by being the know-it-all." Right?
Jack: And so, those little moments of, "Wow, I can do some things differently that are going to even accelerate me and my team more that are very powerful.
Jack: Yeah, then there are the broader experiences. I'm working with a construction contractor right now ... a $25 million construction contractor. And this CEO builds this company from nothing about 10 years ago and as a lot of growing companies do, they just did stuff. You know? Then, they hired more people and then they set up department X and then department Y. And then, all of a sudden, they're managing way too much and trying to scale a company by themselves or with one or two people. And what we do is help them put some structure around the good work they're already doing and build the team so he can delegate to that team and be the CEO he really wanted to become.
Jack: And so, that required some prioritization, some figuring out how to delegate effectively, figuring out how to project plan a little bit more effectively, and to repair some of the relational fractures that came from growing a company very rapidly and people stepping over each other and making assumptions about why he's doing this and why she's doing that.
Jack: Now we fast forward a year, and certainly we're not taking all the credit for this, they have really strong people there. But we provided a framework for them. The last four or five executive team meetings over the last four or five months, this is well-oiled machine. This is a group of people that is now focused on what's most important, forward focused most importantly, and really thinking about how we're going to scale the company as effectively as we can.
Jack: And so, those are the moments that it's like, "Wow, I feel really good about that." Here's a company that was doing well, no question about it, but now is poised to do even better and to grow even more with some tweaks.
Wally: Yeah. A lot to take away from that right there, Jack. I mean, one of the biggest things is just the individuals you're talking about who sit back and go, "Wow, if I actually sit back and realize that I don't know it all, quit acting like I know it all, I can actually learn a few things and progress in my mindset and just make my personal life and this team and this business so much better." It's tenfold.
Jack: You know, there's a great book by a guy named Marshall Goldsmith. It's called What Got You Here Won't Get You There. And in a nutshell, it's got these 20 habits of ineffective leaders and there's just ... it basically just says, "Yeah, you built a company to this point, but are these same characteristics going to help you get it to this point, to the next point?"
Wally: Yeah, absolutely.
Jack: And looking in the mirror ... it's basically just looking in the mirror and saying, "Hmm, maybe I want to adapt and change and evolve a little bit."
Wally: Yeah. I've heard of that book and I think I actually have it on my bookshelf somewhere because that book's been around for a while.
Jack: It has.
Wally: But sometimes, it even takes looking at look, this is my baby. I built this from the ground up. And you know what? Sometimes you're not the one to be the CEO.
Wally: It's just the way it is. You're a great builder. You're a great starter, but somebody else needs to step into do those other things. Right?
Jack: That's hard. That's really hard. That's really hard.
Jack: I give that book to every CEO I work with.
Wally: Yeah, very important, absolutely.
Jack: It's fantastic.
Wally: So, we're at the point, Jack, we're going to pay it forward to our abundant leaders. Are you ready to do that?
Wally: Excellent. So share one to three actionable steps that men of abundance can take today?
Jack: I'd say the number one is step back and really be more self-aware. And what I mean by that is there's a great book by a woman names Tasha Eurich. She's a young organizational psychologist who wrote a book called Insight. And it's really all about self-awareness and there's two parts ... she characterized self-awareness as two parts. The first is self-awareness about how I see myself and what do I see as the good, the bad, and the ugly of myself? Right? And then most importantly is garnering some input from others about how they see me. And what are the gaps around how I see myself versus how others see me?
Jack: To me, that's kind of the glue to growth. If you really can't do that and you really assume that you know, then you probably are missing something. So I would step back, it's a great book. You could use it as a resource. She's got some articles that are simpler to read that talk about the same stuff, but really self-awareness is huge. It's just a huge tool.
Jack: And I guess another step is thinking about things from other's perspectives. Right? Again, I think this is related to self-awareness but when you're confronted with something at work or home or whatever that is annoying to you or frustrating to you, be curious to start rather than maybe your ... my typical reaction is to get annoyed or frustrated or defensive. Right? And so, when I get defensive now, I try hard ... I don't always do well at it, believe me ... but when I'm defensive because that's one of my natural reactions is I try to be a little bit more curious and try to say what's causing that defensiveness? Is it about ... it is me or do I feel like I'm being attacked or my values are getting questioned?
Jack: So, I think those two things are really big. They're obviously related to each other. But try to take some time to step back and be more self-aware and then, try to when confronted with things that are challenging to you, be curious first.
Wally: Yeah. That's very important, the second one. Well, they're both very important specifically but one of the things from my background also as an equal opportunity advisor to two star generals throughout my career, learning a lot about different cultures, but then, also some of those team group and personality type tests lets you know that there's many different people on your team. And you want people on your team that are different from you. If you're laid back like I am, you want somebody who is more analytical who is going to be in your face and be like, "Hey, you've got to think about this." And I'm like, "Oh my God, you're killing me." But there's a reason for that person being there, right?
Jack: That's right.
Wally: I've had a couple of those on my teams. And then, of course, you've got to know the different personality types and all this kind of stuff so that you can go, "Why is this individual acting this way at this point in time? I've got to explore that because I've got to use this somehow, not try to push back against it." Right?
Jack: Yeah, it's hard. But there's another great article in Harvard Business Review in the middle of the last year. I think it's called The Case for Curiosity. And it just, yeah, it basically just talks about what we were just saying. Just be curious, man. When you get emotional, start by being curious.
Wally: Yeah. And it's a tool. It's a muscle that you have to build up. it's not something you can do overnight.
Jack: For sure.
Wally: It takes some time.
Jack: Yeah, just ask my wife. I'm not real great at it all the time, that's for sure.
Wally: Yeah, absolutely. We do drop back once in a while.
Jack: Oh boy.
Wally: What are the biggest rituals that make the biggest impact in your life, Jack?
Jack: You know, I'm a pretty organized guy but as I get older, I have gotten less organized. I'm not quite sure why. I should probably analyze that a little bit. But I focus on a to-do list every day. And I know that sounds like trivial stuff but if I don't do that and I organize it into some buckets. Client stuff, marketing stuff, personal stuff. And I use the reminder tool on my phone to do that. And I live by it.
Jack: The other thing I do is through LinkedIn. Really, this is kind of a marketing thing for me in terms of how I market my business. I really use LinkedIn and Facebook quite a bit. But it's forced me to read a lot more. I'm a pretty voracious reader to begin with but it's forced me to curate some other people's articles and information from multiple sources and those sources have been great catalysts for me in terms of my own learning and the work that I do with the teams that we work with.
Wally: What are some of those sources?
Jack: Just Chief Executive Magazine, Inc. Magazine, Forbes, All Business. There's just ... I just get them from looking through LinkedIn and Facebook. I just scroll down and I look for good articles and then I share them. It started as my marketing firm was like, "You've got to do more of that. We've got to get your guys curating more." And I was like, "Okay, I can do that." But also, the benefit of it became even greater learning for us as well.
Wally: Excellent. Well, along with the articles and some of the other stuff you just mentioned, what else are you reading or listening to that you would recommend to our abundant leaders and why?
Jack: Yeah. I just I'm halfway through a book called Dare to Lead by Brene Brown. She's got some great books on leadership out there but it's just a great resource for having ... as a leader, how to reinforce having the difficult conversations that you need to have in building a company. And to be a catalyst for others having those tough conversations as well. It's great. It's a really good book.
Wally: Excellent. And I'll have the linked up in the show notes as well.
Jack: But the two I would recommend though, man, are Insight by Tasha Eurich ... and I'll send you the links to these, if I haven't.
Jack: Tasha Eurich and the What You Here Won't Get You There book as well. It's really good stuff.
Wally: Excellent. Yeah, great stuff. I'll have those linked up in the show notes. Yeah, send me those links and then I'll put them in the show notes, guys, so you don't have to worry about writing that down right now. I know you're probably driving and working out or doing whatever it is that you do listening to these amazing conversations.
Wally: So Jack, what do you feel holds most people back from living a life of true abundance or even in your case, in your industry, from taking their business to that next level?
Jack: You know, I think particularly people that are ... this is kind of a generalization maybe ... Baby Boomer generation and I guess the GenZ's too. Just feeling ... I think we grew up feeling like we needed to know everything and so, I see a lot of leaders still feeling like they have to have all the answers, and I think in today's world and the environments we work in with the pace of change and the technology associated with it, it's just hard to know everything, so stop acting like you have to. That's why you have teams around you. That's why you should have good teams around you. And then, listen. Listen to the folks that you bring to the table. I think those two things are really important.
Wally: Yeah. If there's one thing that's aggravated the heck out of me in the past is a leader asking for my input, or even any of the team's input, and then, not taking heed to any of it. It's just so aggravating. So what does being a man of abundance mean to you, Jack?
Jack: I hope I am. I don't know that I am or not necessarily but I'm more than I was than when I was younger anyway. It means having a perspective that's beyond your own and being someone that's much more interested in learning and engaging with others. And ultimately, not just being in it for yourself but helping other people out. I really enjoy doing that in my professional life and in my personal life too. I love helping others get connected with other people in my network that some kid's looking for a job or someone lost their job and they're trying to get ... I enjoy doing that kind of stuff.