We had a beagle named Dolly. She was the sweetest dog. Dolly never met a stranger as she quickly made friends with everyone. When she was excited, she would produce an endearing little squeak that became her trademark. Dolly was near perfect, except for one bad habit. Hardwired in her DNA was the desire to get on the scent of things. When something caught her nose, she would pursue it with her head down and tunnel vision. Inevitably, she would begin to wander off in pursuit of whatever caught her fancy.
I think we all have a little Dolly in us – some more than others.
I recently interviewed Dr. Ethan Becker for the Leadership Lab podcast. Ethan is a communication expert and speech coach. He helps people to improve their ability to deliver messages. I can tell you that from talking to him, Ethan knows his stuff. I say this not only because the ideas he shared with me were insightful and relevant but because he has spent a lifetime perfecting his craft.
When I say a lifetime, I mean a lifetime.
Ethan is the CEO of The Speech Improvement Company. His parents founded the business in 1964. Listening to Ethan, I found myself equally interested in his speech coaching ideas (well worth the listen) and the story of his family’s business (also, well worth the listen). Ethan has the family business and speech coaching in his DNA; however, unlike my beagle, Ethan’s habits don’t cause him to get lost. On the contrary, they have caused him to find his life’s purpose. He and his family have spent over 50 years helping people improve their performance while simultaneously building a family business that was worth building.
Are you building something worth building?
You can start to answer that question by listening to my interview with Ethan, as it will provide you a sense of what it feels like to build something meaningful and enduring. You can then watch this video.
The footage is pre-COVID (no mask) in Nashville, TN. In the video, I take you on a quick tour of a few construction sites and encourage you to think about the career, team, and reputation. Then, put this leadership tool to use. The tool outlines seven areas you should consider as you are building your team: results, systems, knowledge, relationships, skills, experiences, and values. The tool is perfect for printing, posting, using, and sharing. Talk about it with your team, share it with a colleague, and reflect on it when you have some time to think and plan.
Now, go build something truly worth building.
Make it a great day!
Patrick Leddin, PhD is a speaker, global leadership consultant, and The Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Five-Week Leadership Challenge. Patrick is an Associate Professor at Vanderbilt University with a thriving leadership blog and podcast, and 25-years of leadership experience. He offers an unparalleled mix of academic rigor and real-world experience.