Engaging Leader™

The Engaging Leader podcast is an audio program where Jesse and his guests share communication and leadership principles, and tell stories that illustrate putting those principles into practice. The podcast typically lasts about a half-hour and is published twice each month, but you can listen whenever it’s convenient for you. It’s a great way to keep your mind productive while you are driving, exercising, or otherwise occupied. You can subscribe to the podcast on your computer or mobile device with iTunes or Stitcher using the links below. Or you can subscribe with an app such as Downcast or Instacast, by searching the app’s directory for “Engaging Leader” or by entering the RSS address below into the app. Enjoy the show!

The home improvement store chain Lowe’s was named #1 among Fast Company’s 2018 Most Innovative Companies, for augmented and virtual reality, as well as #1 for innovation among specialty retailers on Fortune’s 2018 World’s Most Admired Companies. How did a company in a dusty, old-hat industry (hardware stores) suddenly become known as an innovator?

As founder and executive director of Lowe’s Innovation Labs, the company’s disruptive innovation hub, Kyle Nel was at the forefront of this dramatic business transformation. In this episode, Kyle joins us to share his story and discuss how the next level of storytelling — using unconventional tools like science fiction, graphic novels, applied neuroscience, and archetypes — can help you overcome human behavior barriers as you reinvent your company’s future. He shares tips to help you lead both small and large transformations in areas such as innovation, human resources, marketing, process improvement, business strategy, and more.

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When developing a communication strategy to drive change within an organization, we use various models and frameworks to help ensure we create a strategy that actually works. The Fogg Behavioral Model is a powerful framework for driving change.

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182: The Power of an Authentic Employer Brand and EVP | with Laurie Barnes

August 29, 2018

A strong, authentic employer brand is key to recruiting, retaining, and fully engaging top talent. The most effective companies build a differentiated employee value proposition (EVP).

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181: The Art and Science of Workforce Communication | with Laurie Barnes

August 21, 2018

You can’t achieve your potential as a leader or an organization without practicing effective communication. Organizations that communicate effectively with their workforce deliver better results. According to a study by Willis Towers Watson, companies with high effectiveness in communication and change management are 3.5 times more likely to significantly outperform their less effective peers. They: […]

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180: Performance Management Truth & Lies | with Michael Bungay Stanier

July 24, 2018

Boom! That’s the sound of performance appraisal processes being blown up across the country. There’s been a collective lightning flash of realization that the old way of doing it just isn’t doing it. But what’s really happening?

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179: Leading with Emotional Courage | with Peter Bregman

July 10, 2018

You have the opportunity to lead: to show up with confidence, connected to others, and committed to a purpose in a way that inspires others to follow. But great leadership — leadership that aligns teams, inspires action, and achieves results — is hard. And what makes it hard isn’t theoretical, it’s practical.

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178: How to Succeed at Work/Life Balance (Without Going Crazy)

June 19, 2018

Imagine life is a game where you are juggling five balls. Work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls — family, health, friends, integrity — are made of glass. ~ James Patterson The first secret to work/life balance is recognizing that it’s not about balance. It […]

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177: Meaningful Work: How to Do Great Business, Find Your Calling, and Feed Your (and Your Employees’) Soul | with Shawn Askinosie, CEO of Askinosie Chocolate

May 22, 2018

This episode is about a true story that is interesting and well told — a story that is important for all leaders and entrepreneurs … especially those of us who aspire to use business not only to make a living for ourselves but to help make the world a better place.

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176: Stop Networking — Start Applying Network Science to Transform Your Career and Leadership | with David Burkus

May 1, 2018

This is a conversation about a book that’s not like any networking book you have read (or ignored) before. In fact, it’s not about networking; it’s about how networks actually work.

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175: The Excellence Dividend | with Tom Peters

April 25, 2018

In the next two decades, nearly 50% of white-collar jobs are at risk, either to automation or artificial intelligence (AI), according to analysis by Oxford University. Every leader and every worker need to ask: What will be left for people to do that machines can’t do better or cheaper? If you don’t figure this out, […]

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174: Managing Willpower for What Matters Most

March 27, 2018

Willpower is the ability to control yourself to determine your actions. It allows you (and your team) to accomplish what matters most to you — solving a business problem, losing weight, cornering the market, getting out of debt, etc. To control many of your actions, you can use selected disciplines to build a powerful habit. […]

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173: Clarity First ― Improve Performance by Eliminating Ambiguity | with Karen Martin

March 20, 2018

Ambiguity — in the form of uncertainty or conflicting priorities — has become the default state for organizations of all types. It lurks in the background when leaders can’t explain what success looks like, or what aspects of performance matter most for achieving it. It saps energy from talented team members operating in the dark […]

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