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To succeed in today’s ever-changing business climate, it’s imperative that C-Suite leaders become keenly aware of their customers and the changing face of the consumer. As the United States grows more diverse, we must be equipped with the tools and skills to be constantly changing and evolving to keep up with the modern consumer.
Our first guest, Glenn Llopis, is a noted entrepreneur, author and speaker, as well as the founder and CEO of the Center for Hispanic Leadership. Glenn stresses the importance of having an “immigrant perspective” on leadership and becoming keenly aware of the disconnect between the changing cultural demographics in the U.S. to better understand how they are reached and represented by brands. Leaders, he says, must be willing to adapt and develop new strategies for the evolving marketplace and rise of multicultural groups not only in the consumer role, but in the workforce as well.
Our second guest, Tony Alessandra, is a prolific author, entrepreneur and speaker who specializes in sales, communication skills and behavioral styles. Tony is a strong advocate for constant education and self-improvement beyond the classroom walls. Education is essential for C-Suite leaders to maintain relevancy, understand their customers and truly be at the top of their game. Tony emphasizes the Platinum Rule: Treat others the way they want to be treated. This is key to truly connecting with both employees and customers and creating lasting relationships at all levels.
With so many fantastic opportunities for continued education, C-Suite leaders can now reach customers and grow their businesses in powerful new ways. A willingness to adapt and evolve is essential. New tools for learning, coupled with a deep understanding of the changing consumer, will guide the C-Suite, and their companies, along the path to success.
As executives move their way up the ranks and into the C-Suite, they must not forget the journey that brought them there. Many C-level leaders start out with humble beginnings, and their drive and determination to achieve greatness have gotten them to where they are today. From manning the cash register, to taking the leap and starting your own business, anyone can develop the leadership skills required to move into an executive role.
Our first guest, Paul Carbone, is a living example of an entrepreneur who worked his way up to the C-Suite. Paul serves as Chief Financial Officer at Dunkin’ Brands, and his journey to this role was certainly not that of a traditional CFO. Paul says his experiences working in the produce industry, and later founding his own businesses, have given him a unique perspective on running a business. Entrepreneurs, he said, have a certain “get it done” mindset that C-Suite leaders can adopt in their own positions of leadership.
No matter the titles of those you work with, a culture of mutual respect is absolutely essential. A leadership team may not always agree on the many facets of running a business, but a sense of alignment, even after a heated discussion, will sustain a company through thick and thin.
Our second guest, Tom Asacker, author of “The Business of Belief,” says people are pushed and pulled by their environments, and it’s often difficult to get to the root of their beliefs. It is beliefs, after all, that can hold us back or propel us forward toward our goals. To get a better sense of a person’s belief system, we must look at their actions. For leaders to motivate their teams and create a unified culture, they must walk the walk. Motivation starts with movement, and progress can only occur when we take that first step toward our goals.
When we think of this definition of success, we tend to leave out an essential component: Happiness. If we do not truly enjoy the process toward our goals, we fall into habits that only breed negativity and deplete our energy. As C-Suite leaders, it’s common to become reserved and put your happiness on hold while waiting for results. Taking control of your own happiness, and viewing the future as a place full of possibility and innovation, give executives the power to lead better and become prolific in their impact on others. On this encore episode of Business Matters, we welcome Jaycen Thorgeirson and Steve Rizzo to the program.
Jaycen Thorgeirson is the Founder and Chief Stand Out Expert at UviaUs, where he helps the biggest and brightest brands cut through the “clutter” to ensure their brand message is delivered and remembered with their proprietary offering, Uvideo. Jaycen started UviaUs in 2006 with the vision to deliver online and offline solutions that would stand out and get noticed. He’s led efforts for many Fortune 500 companies interested in making an impact with their marketing collateral, such as, Nationwide Insurance, Century 21, Yale University, Mercedes, HP and more. Find him on Twitter @JaycenThor.
Steve Rizzo is more than a Funny Motivational Speaker. Don’t let the laughter fool you! What Steve brings to the table is his captivating ability to engage the attendees with laughter as he challenges them to SHIFT their focus and way of thinking to discover greater enthusiasm, increased productivity and new levels of success. Steve has been Adjusting Attitudes in organizations throughout the world such as AT&T, Prudential, State Farm, LaQuinta and even the CIA (yes, he even had them laughing!) since 1994. Find him on Twitter @SteveRizzoPHB.
C-Suite leaders today are struggling with an issue that has put many organizations out of business their employees out of work. They accept what is average instead of pushing their teams to take risks and disrupt their industries. The current state of our economy is enough to worry anyone, and many business leaders are willing to settle with what is comfortable because they are afraid to rock the boat and possibly lost it all. But it’s these uncertain times throughout history that have allowed the greatest achievements to blossom.
Our guest this week is Grant Cardone, a noted entrepreneur, speaker, subject matter expert in the C-Suite Academy and best-selling author. Grant’s no-nonsense approach to motivating leaders to get out of their comfort zones has earned him top honors and a loyal following. Grant believes the middle class is a myth with such a large majority of people in the United States working paycheck to paycheck. The reality is, there are many people struggling in this country, and it’s up to each of us to keep our dreams alive and change our situation.
Until we are able to change the laws, policies and state of the economy, we must improve the areas of our lives that we can control. Grant says the only person who will resent this idea is the person who has given up on his or her dreams already. Instead of settling, we must be courageous enough to confront difficult situations.
We work the hardest when facing the biggest challenges. True struggle allows us to test our strengths and rise to the occasion. C-Suite leaders who embrace the entrepreneurial spirit and hire people with the same passion they share for their companies will be the most successful. Now is the perfect time to face our fears head on and develop breakthrough solutions that will change our company, and our world, for the better.
C-Suite leaders hear a lot about work-life balance, and there’s no shortage of advice available on the topic. Rather than balancing the many roles that define who we are, it’s important to embrace each of them and decide what we want to focus on at any given moment in our lives. As we travel along the journey of success, making deliberate decisions about who we are, and what we want to do, will give us the courage to move forward. Determining where priorities are during each new beginning will allow us to seize new opportunities. Breakthroughs happen when we let go of our old ways of thinking, embrace changes happening in the world around us and adjust our focus accordingly.
Our guest this week is Lisa Stone, co-founder and CEO of BlogHer. Lisa has had an impressive career as a journalist before establishing BlogHer, Inc. with Elisa Camahort Page and Jory Des Jardins in 2005. The company was recently purchased by SheKnows, a digital media company, to become the No. 1 women’s lifestyle community. Lisa has risen to success in the business space because of her skills developing online communities and passion for giving a voice to individual readers and writers.
When entrepreneurs begin to experience success, the adventure of business becomes both exciting and overwhelming. As the company grows, it’s important to always view your product or service in the eyes of the customer. When you think from their perspective, it becomes easier to deliver a high-quality experience that exceeds expectations. A company like BlogHer thrives because it gives a voice to its readers and uses the strengths of its leadership team to build a platform that people can relate to. Staying ahead of trends and focusing on the solutions you can offer to consumers’ challenges can turn your startup into a success.
C-Suite leaders today are looking for new ways to bring the spirit of entrepreneurship into their businesses. We’ve learned that playing by the same old rules isn’t going to lead to revolutionary disruption and long-term success. Having the courage to take risks, fail and start again is what allows entrepreneurs to fulfill their dreams, and that same perspective can help all business leaders get ahead of trends, discover challenges early on and clearly define the opportunities that lie ahead. What used to be safe is now risky, and establishing a culture that supports entrepreneurship will ensure the entire organization is prepared for the exciting changes and breakthroughs that are happening in the blink of an eye.
Our guest this week is Randy Gage, a Hall of Fame speaker and author whose life has been full of risk-taking as a means of survival. A high school dropout and former dish washer, Randy became a self-made millionaire by honing his critical thinking skills and setting clearly defined goals for himself. “Quiet confidence and loud ideas are sexy,” Randy says, and revolutionary ideas can come to fruition when conventional thinking is thrown out and new perspectives can take their place. The C-Suite Network will welcome Randy on stage at the C-Suite Network Conference Nov. 16-18 in Marina del Rey, California, to shake up the room with his bold perspective on risk taking in the modern age.
It’s time to stop playing it safe and learn the new rules for taking risks, thinking differently and working like an entrepreneur to create real change and solutions to the unique challenges our modern world is facing. We must be prepared for the day when artificial intelligence surpasses all human knowledge. Identifying hard, soft, linear and cyclical trends, coupled with critical thinking, will help us stay ahead of the curve and lead our companies toward world-changing breakthroughs and lasting success.
It’s no secret that the ways in which we conduct business have evolved drastically thanks to rapid technological advancements and new ways of communicating. As discussed previously on the program, the fundamentals of selling our ideas, our products and our services really haven’t changed; what we have now are new tools that can help us transform how we deliver solutions to customers and how we sell our ideas to board members and our employees.
The key to successfully expressing our thoughts is having a clear structure of how we will communicate our message,and understanding that it is always, ultimately, about the person receiving those messages. When we share stories and ask questions, we open the door for an emotional connection with others that helps us effectively sell what we have to offer.
Our guest this week is Patricia Fripp, executive speech coach and subject matter expert in the C-Suite Academy. Patricia is a noted Hall of Fame speaker with more than 25 years of experience guiding business leaders through the fundamentals of professional speaking and delivering powerful, persuasive presentations. Patricia says the key to connecting with an audience and effectively selling your idea is telling a colorful story that engages their senses and leaves an emotional impact. Using “you-focused” language and asking others for specific examples that illustrate their own challenges and needs will help C-Suite leaders successfully deliver solutions.
People generally forget what they hear but remember what they see and feel. When we can paint a vivid picture in the minds and imaginations of those we speak to, we break down barriers and become more human. Preparation is key to giving powerful presentations, but telling good stories and using you-focused language will guarantee our messages are heard loud and clear.
Many successful leaders have amazing stories inside of them that are just waiting to get out. The idea of putting years of experience and wisdom down on the page can seem thrilling, until it’s time to actually start writing. It’s universally agreed that great leaders are exceptional communicators, but when the idea of writing an entire book becomes a reality, these great speakers may not know where to begin. The key to skillful writing is putting the reader first and being motivated to pass your skills on to others rather than basking in the glory of seeing your name on the shelves.
This week’s guest, Jeff Haden, has had a prolific career ghostwriting bestselling books by top business leaders. He has such a keen understanding of his audience because he has been in their shoes. Like most C-Suite leaders, Jeff’s career makes for an interesting and inspiring story: He rose the ranks from a forklift driver to the manager of a book printing plant, and he eventually found his true passion in writing books of his own. Jeff has since been masterful at tapping into C-Suite leaders’ natural ability to communicate and craft captivating stories from their conversations.
Jeff says the best reason to write a book is having an authentic desire to help others and teach them the lessons you wish you had knew as you climbed the ladder in your own career. The worst reason to write a book, he says, is for the fame or fortune. Being outwardly focused and genuinely caring about the success of others will translate to the page and grab the reader’s attention.
In business and in life, we must understand the reality that most people put their own needs and desires ahead of others. As we advance in our careers, it’s important that we let go of the notion that our worth is determined by how much money we make or our job security at that present time. What we must instead focus on is the value we bring as individuals at every stage of our lives. When we begin to view ourselves as a business that provides solutions and services to others, we become one step closer to fulfilling our dreams and never letting great opportunities pass us by.
Our guest this week is Geoffrey James, award-winning blogger, contributing editor for Inc and author of “Business Without the Bullsh*t: 49 Secrets and Shortcuts that You Need to Know." In his latest release, Geoffrey educates readers on the true simplicity of business and the idea of a so-called “complexification industry” that tries to make leadership more complicated than it actually is. Geoffrey says good business boils down to the relationships you have with a small number of people and determining how you can help motivate them to be more successful. When leaders are able to view the world with a clear, realistic lens, it becomes easier to create value and sell their ideas.
Despite the many technological advances that alter society today, the basics of selling really haven’t changed. Selling has always been about guiding others with the tools and knowledge to find a solution rather than peddling a product to them.Recognizing our own strengths and the value we can provide to others will help make other people’s dreams come true. When we feel empowered by our own strengths, we are better equipped to help others to recognize the value they bring to their own careers and lives.
Consultants often advise C-Suite executives on the best ways to navigate and simplify the complexities of their organizations and industries. Many leaders are convinced they need help sifting through the complicated details of business in order to untangle the web and get back to basics. The fact of the matter is, complexity means cost, and there are many companies dealing with unnecessary spending that can be avoided with the right processes in place.
Our guest this week is Peter Philippi, CEO and founder of Strategex, Inc, a Chicago-based research and consulting firm that focuses on supporting businesses toward sustainable and profitable growth. Peter has more than 30 years experience working with leaders to drive change and focus in their organizations. At the C-Suite Network Conference in Marina del Rey, Peter will join host Jeffrey Hayzlett on stage to uncover the keys to true profitability using the 80/20 Rule. He says most businesses treat all customers equally and strive to deliver an exceptional experience to each and every one. The truth is only 20% of a company’s clients create 80% of the profit. When businesses are able to identify their star customers — whom he calls “raving fans” — they will become better aligned to create and sustain profitable growth.
Change begins in the C-Suite; when leaders are open to new policies, strategies and structures, they will truly transform their businesses. Paring down resources is the first step, and empowering a small team to drive the change necessary will increase profits. Once the right rules and policies are put in place and practiced regularly, companies will grow, brand loyalty will soar and raving fans will support the organization through and through.
When we think of the world’s most innovative companies, tech giants and social media trailblazers are at the forefront of our minds. These businesses are revered not only for their world-changing products and services, but also for their unique and flourishing company cultures. A company like Facebook nourishes its top talent by building its extraordinarily special culture around a core mission. When all employees deeply support their company’s goals and feel that what they do makes a true impact on society, groundbreaking ideas will surface. And as consumer expectations grow and habits rapidly change, the importance of a strong, accountable team is essential for delivering outstanding customer experiences.
This week’s guest has had a remarkable career serving in leadership positions at some of the world’s most successful companies, including Disney, MTV and Microsoft. Carolyn Everson now works as the Vice President of Global Marketing Solutions at Facebook where she is known as the ad chief who has played a crucial role in changing the way advertisers and marketers view the social network.
Every employee at Facebook believes connectivity is a human right, Carolyn says, and the company strives to connect people all across the globe. The company works hard to leave an impact on society that goes beyond day-to-day operations. Internally, there is no hierarchy, and the company works hard to eliminate politics and encourage employees to have accountability at every level of the organization. Not a day goes by where employees aren’t challenging themselves to do things differently.
Social networks play a significant role in consumers’ lives, and it is up to C-Suite leaders to support cultures that inspire innovation and put customer needs and concerns at the forefront. Becoming as successful as Facebook requires a core mission each and every team member can stand behind.
Competition is a natural part of life and business, and it can have positive or negative outcomes depending on the situation and the actions we take as it occurs. Younger generations, especially, enter the workforce with a fiercely competitive attitude that stems from the guidance of parents who encourage them to be the very best at what they do. A rugged, individualistic spirit can certainly drive employees to get ahead and soar up the ladder of success, but there is an essential component missing. As leaders, we must establish a culture of collaboration and teach our teams the lessons of teamwork.
This week’s guest is Margaret Heffernan, entrepreneur, five-time CEO, keynote speaker and author of noted works such as “Willful Blindness” and “Women On Top.” Her most recent book, “A Bigger Prize Why Competition Isn’t Everything and How We Do Better,” explores the all-consuming desire to win and why competition so often breeds corruption, lies and cheating. Margaret explains the alternatives to competition in business – the most prominent being collaboration and helpfulness. As the days of the heroic soloist slip further into the past, the C-Suite must embrace a new model of leadership — one that nurtures and guides a team of shining stars. She advises leaders to practice silence and sharpen their listening skills to allow their team’s creative and innovative ideas to surface.
The best leaders surround themselves with talent and creativity. Successful executives are willing to hire those who will be unabashedly honest about what they could do better. When we allow ourselves to absorb feedback from a team of vigorous collaborators, we take the first steps to redefining success. It is our job to create a system where each leader and employee is encouraged to help each other, and we must reward helpfulness instead of competitiveness.
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