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Welcome to the Fast Leader podcast where we explore convenient yet effective shortcuts that will help you get ahead and move forward faster by becoming a better leader. And now, here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert, and certified emotional intelligent practitioner, Jim Rembach.

Jim:
Okay, Fast Leader legion, today I’m excited because I have somebody on the show today who has developed an incredible system and framework, a great visual and great depth into understanding how to create a better engaged workforce. Glenn Elliott was born in the north of England in the UK, and has spent the last 25 years living in London. At school he was lucky to meet a physics teacher who taught business enterprise in the lunch break and that led him to run a number of businesses whilst a young teenager.

Jim:
Setting the seeds for his later career. He left school and studied computer science at university and became a programmer at the phone company, a 10 year career there saw him move into project management, leading teams of people, that’s where he started to learn how big companies disengage their people. And also, what environment people needed to be in, in order to do their best work. He dropped out of an MBA program after just one year, finding it too theoretical and leaning too much on how to be a good corporate manager, rather than how to start a business.

Jim:
Then he jumped ship from the corporate to start a series of businesses. His fourth attempt was largely successful, it was a design and marketing agency and that kept him occupied for 8 years whilst learning more about how to motivate, engage and inspire the people around him. But it was his fifth business that really made a mark. Reward Gateway, an HR technology business with revenues of over a billion dollars that counts everyone from McDonald’s, IBM, KPMG and many others as clients. He led that business as CEO for 11.5 years, growing it to 2,000 clients and 400 staff across 9 countries before stepping down last summer to a new non-executive role as founder.

Jim:
He has sold Reward Gateway twice to private equity investors and remains the company’s largest non-institutional shareholder. He’s most proud, though, of the environment he created at work and the culture that made Reward Gateway successful. His Glassdoor CEO approval rating was 99% and the company ranks on the great places to work list. And most recently was ranked the 13th best place to work for women in the UK. Glenn lives in London, UK with his husband Kristian and a dachshund called Wesley.

Jim:
Glenn Elliott, are you ready to help us get over the hump?

Glenn:
Yeah of course I am, Jim. Thanks for having me on the show.

Jim:
I’m glad you’re here. Now I’ve given my legion a little bit about you, but can you share what your current passion it so that we can get to know you even better?

Glenn:
Well my current non-work passion is health and fitness. So after 11 years and you know why is it a tough job as CEO, 20 years if I counted the company before that too, I’m having a real investment in myself. So I’m training every day, I’m eating really well and I’m in the best shape I’ve been in, in my life. So that’s my current kind of non-work passion, definitely.

Jim:
So you bring up a really interesting point about that whole potential burnout at work thing. And I see a lot of folks really dealing with that. And so well we’ll get into the engagement component and the things that you have in a book called, “Build It, The Rebel Playbook for World Class Employee Engagement”.

How much did you find, since you were talking about that being your passion, that that whole physical wellness was a contributing factor to the whole engagement aspects for your organizations?

Glenn:
It’s interesting. You know, if you want to do your best at work, you can’t do that from a position of exhaustion and burnout. I learnt that from Arianna Huffington, I was fortunate enough to see her speak at the Hubspot Inbound conference, in, I think it was 2013 in Boston. Where she was just kind of launching her book “Thrive”, and it was a keynote presentation that left a real mark on me.

In fact, I have a half-written blog article called “Arianna Huffington Saved My Life”. Because what was interesting, you know at the time she did, 2013, so it was like five years ago, I’d been CEOing for say seven years in this current business.

Glenn:
And I always put the business first, I put my people first, and I came pretty much last. And I was familiar with the language of work/life balance and I was thinking I was choosing to focus on work.

In Arianna’s talk what she said is, you know, it’s not about work/life balance, it’s about integration. And what she said is, that the key job of a leader is to kind of see what’s coming, what’s ahead. Be in touch with the zeitgeist and know what’s coming around the corner that your other stuff can’t see. And you can’t do that from a position of being exhausted and burnt out.

Glenn:
So the kind of light bulb that I got from Arianna was, if I want to be the best leader I can, and if I want the company to be as successful as it possibly could, I have to prioritise my own mental and physical health in order to do that.

And that, Arianna Huffington talk in 2013 marked a real change in how I approached my health. So I started prioritizing gym every day right back then. I just made it part of my thing, I decided to not be ashamed of it. I would say no to board meetings if they clashed with the gym, rather than canceling the gym because of a board meeting. Because you could put the board meeting at a different time of the day.

Glenn:
So I made the gym an immovable part of my day. And I found that combined with a little bit better sleep really made a significant difference in how I was able to perform at work.

Jim:
You know, I think you really bring up some interesting points and I was actually having a conversation the other day with an administrator of a school. We were talking about really setting a tone, being able to have boundaries and being able to set a vision to say, okay this may have been what we’ve done for the past 30 years, however, this is who we are and this is who we’re gonna strive to become and this is the path that we need to take in order to be able to get there.

Jim:
And immediately he came back to me with really a defense mode or defense mechanism which was about, well gosh we may upset some people. We may … And I’m like, if you always take that position of defense you’re never gonna fall forward and move forward.

Glenn:
Yeah, it’s true. I mean,I try in my life not to unnecessarily upset anybody. However, you can’t please everyone all the time. And I think you do have to make tough calls.

One of the things I learnt most about business actually in the last 20 years is business performance is a marathon not a race.

And I think there’s a lot of language around business about you know the kind of like bravado and about kind of like this bro approach to business about running through walls, like charging ahead as fast as you can, and take no prisoners, all that kind of like overly masculine kind of rubbish.

Glenn:
Which I just don’t buy into. I think successful business is about long-term sustainable performance across a large number of people.

It’s a marathon not a race. And I don’t believe that the company’s best output, in my business, the company’s best output occurs when all 400 people have exhausted themselves by Thursday and they have nothing left to give on Friday. So I kind of don’t buy that.

Jim:
I mean for me when you say that I start thinking about how a lot of people talk about give 110%. I’m like, uh, there’s only 100.

Glenn:
Yeah. That’s kind of like hyper-masculine desk thumping language and stuff. And it sounds cool for a second, but it’s exclusive for a start and there’s a whole bunch of people just feel uncomfortable with it.

So you learn that talent, you lose their best output too. And I just don’t think it’s the best way to work.

Jim:
I guess really what we’re talking about here does come into the part of the engagement bridge.

When we were starting to talk about one of the underpinnings. So the engagement bridge, you talk about connecting elements and themes and then you talk about underpinning elements and the rocks, the things that really have to be the stability components that you could build your bridge upon.

And you have 10 elements that are part of the engagement bridge, but one the underpinning elements is well-being. And we were kind of talking about well-being.

Glenn:
Absolutely.

Jim:
And then the other two underpinnings that you have are pay and benefits and workplace. So let’s get a little bit of clarity around underpinnings. What do you really mean by that?

Glenn:
So the bridge is a 10 element model, there are 10 things on it. And it’s not designed as kind of a 10 point recipe, you know, do these 10 things and bingo you’ll have employee engagement. If only life was that simple it would be lovely. But it’s not.

It’s a lens to look at your organization through to look at the relationship that you have with your people. And make your own judgment decision about where you need to do some work, things need to change.

Glenn:
So these 10 elements, if you look at the bridge, they run from side to side. But there’s three of them which don’t, they kind of sit as anchors at the bottom and they don’t cut across and that’s because I wanted to make the specific point that you cannot engage your people with those elements by themselves.

And it’s a mistake which has been purported by my industry actually for quite a long time. A big part of the HR tech industry is the employee benefits industry.

Glenn:
So over in the US it’s a huge industry largely dominated by healthcare. And I’ve been to a million conferences and presentations where people will say, you can engage your staff, you just give them some better benefits and bit of communication, then magically they will become engaged.

And of course they don’t because engagement is about understanding the direction and the strategy of the organization, the mission of the organization, and buy into it and thinking that is worthwhile. It’s about understanding how your role affects the success of that mission. And it’s about you feeling really connected and good towards the organization and passionately wanting the organization to succeed.

Glenn:
And therefore, you’re willing to put yourself out, put the organization’s needs ahead of your own sometimes to make that happen. None of those things are affected by your pay and benefits.

They’re affected by things like leadership, by management culture, by corporate values, by honest and transparent communication, by recognition, by job design, by learning and development environment. They’re the things that actually create engagement.

Glenn:
But if you have a complete absence of underpinning elements, if you have a complete absence of pay and benefits, workspace and well-being, it can be really difficult to build that bridge on top.

If your entire workforce is stressed out and is barely coping, if they are unhappy with pay, which is interesting – everyone thinks that people are unhappy with pay because they’re not being paid enough. And that is sometimes true and that changes at different times of your life, because your needs change.

But actually the biggest issue that I see with pay is about fairness, about people feeling they are fairly paid compared to others that they see around them that they can compare themselves to. And it’s something which companies are quite bad at, about paying fairly.

Glenn:
So that’s kind of the difference between the underpinning elements and the elements that run across the top.

Jim:
So i think to me, when you start thinking about these elements that run across the top, I think you kind of hit the point. Is that it really gets into the particular elements that will amplify some of these things that we’re seeing as underpinnings, right? 

Glenn:
Yeah.

Jim:
And I would dare to say, you know you probably want to include as many of them as you possible can. I mean, now you say that it’s not a checklist or things like that, but I would dare to say that you really need to focus in on including every single one of these elements.

Glenn:
All the elements exist in every job. So like in every job there is a recognition culture. The answer might be, I never get thanked for anything. That’s what you get from a lot of people

In every job there is a learning culture which might be, I’m not developing, it’s, I’m going nowhere.

So these things exist, it’s whether or not you choose to prioritize and do something positive with them this year or next year, or you’re gonna leave it ’til later. And that depends on the organization. And it depends on, you kind of context where you’re at, what you’ve got control of, if you can make a difference. And that’s what’s really important.

Glenn:
And I think, like I said it’s not a 10 point checklist, start here, go there.

The slight exception to that is open and honest communication which is the longest element. If any of the listeners get to see the bridge, just Google it.

You’ll see that the longest element is across the middle, open and honest communication. And the reason that’s kind of important is its’ so closely linked with employee trust.

And there’s some really great data from Edlemann, a New York based research agency. They’ve been studying trust in the workplace for nearly three decades.

Glenn:
And what they find is that about half of people don’t trust their CEO. About half don’t trust their boss. And about half don’t trust their colleagues. And it’s difficult to imagine how someone who doesn’t trust anybody at work is gonna end up being described as an engaged employee.

You know, really bringing their whole self to work and doing everything they can to make the company successful.

Glenn:
While I haven’t really found any company worldwide that has made significant progress in employee engagement without tackling the culture of open and honest communication first.

Jim:
Yeah I think you bring up an excellent point about the trust piece. So I do a lot of work with frontline leaders and contact center environments.

You know there’s a statistic from a report that came out that said, only 33% of frontline employees actually believe that their frontline supervisor is effective. So that goes back into that trust component thing. So it’s actually less than the half that you’re talking about.

And so when you start thinking about that frontline person who’s really the one who’s impacting what happens in your company because their directly interacting with the customer, I mean that’s huge. I mean that’s a huge impact.

Glenn:
Absolutely.

Jim:
Okay, so the connecting elements are, like you had mentioned, the open and honest communication. Purpose, Mission and Values. Leadership, Management, Job Design, Learning, and Recognition. And I love what you had said is that, people may say, well we don’t have a recognition program. Like, yes you do, it’s call nothing.

Glenn:
Yeah, absolutely.

You know, and what’s fascinating about recognition actually, is it’s one of the areas where the most money is spent.

So in the States, over in the US, American employers spend $48 billion per year. It’s 2% of the America pay bill. $48 billion on employee recognition. However, when you interview employees, 87% of them don’t believe there is any recognition at work. And they’re figures from Bersin by Deloitte so they’re very trustworthy.

Glenn:
And it’s because the majority of money is being spent on tenure recognition, so long service awards, because it’s the oldest product in the industry. It’s the oldest form of employee recognition.

And the problem is, it’s completely ineffective. They’ve been running for years, many many companies feel that they can’t withdraw it because they worry that someone approaching their 25th anniversary, they’ll be disappointed that they don’t get the, whatever it is.

But it’s a complete waste of money because for a start, our young millennials and generation following them, Z, aren’t staying in jobs long enough to get anywhere near the employee tenure award anyway.

Glenn:
But if you think about they’re completely indiscriminate awards that’s kind of like, regardless of your performance, regardless of how you live our values, regardless of what you do for your customer, if you just sit still for five years and avoid getting fired and don’t leave, we’ll give you $50 on a gift certificate or something.

So it doesn’t do anything to reinforce values or reinforce what you’re trying to do.

Glenn:
My co-author, Debra Cory, her analogy is like, your husband doesn’t tell you that he loves you, apart from every five years where he says, I love you darling, but just because you haven’t left me yet.

Jim:
I think you bring up a really valid point. I mean a lot of times people are saying, gosh I wish they would just leave.

Glenn:
Yeah.

Jim:
Okay, so I think it’s really important for us to point out here because while you were founding and still now have the founding non-working title of a company called Reward Gateway, I had Susan Fowler with Blanchard Company for many years, and she’s the author of a book called “Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work, and What Does”. And she was actually episode, what was it? 72 on the Fast Leader show. But she talks about a lot of these types of, you know you’re talking about HR solutions, HR tech that focus in on rewards and all that other stuff. She talks about it as junk food.

Jim:
And I would dare to say that after going through and looking at your book and looking at Reward Gateway and what the work that you’re doing there is that, to me I see where almost any type of tool could be used for bad. Also it could be used as a potential substitute. So meaning that okay if I’m in an organization I’m saying, well open and honest communication, purpose, leadership, ah well just give them some stuff, right? And let’s use a company like Reward Gateway. And to me I think that’s what may turn it into junk food.

Glenn:
I completely agree, it’s interesting, we talk about this a lot at work. You know, it’s fundamentally if you want to improve employee engagement or culture you need to fundamentally look at how you treat people. And that’s hard.

Well, it’s actually really easy, and it’s also very cheap because you’re normally changing policy rather than buying something. But people find it hard because of organizational inertia. And what they find it easy to do is to buy a tech product and kind of stick it on the side and think, hmm will that do the job?

Glenn:
And of course it won’t. You know, I mean my company, Reward Gateway, sells all sorts of employee recognition products and that’s lovely, and they’re great tools if you want to use them. But I always say to people, if you want to start on employee recognition, you can start this afternoon

Like go to the card store, buy a box of thank you cards and some stamps, get HR to give you access to people’s home addresses and start thinking about who am I grateful is here in this organization?

Glenn:
You know they haven’t got to have done something awesome yesterday. But just who do I think … I wanna make sure they know how valued they are and that they’re seen and that they’re visible. And I’m just gonna write them a little note saying, hey John, I just wanted to let you know what you do for us in really important and I see you and I’m really grateful for it. Best wished, Glenn. Stick it in the mail. That’s it.

And you will change that person’s week, you’ll make their month. They’ll keep that card for the rest of their career. And it’s gonna cost you the price of a stamp.

Glenn:
It’s an attitude. You know I think, we see recognition programs fail all the time because people buy the tech, but they don’t invest the time in talking to managers or the exec team and seeing what they’ve bought and why and how to use it and why it’s important?

And you’ve got to overcome the fact that some managers and leaders don’t understand why they need to say thank you and be appreciative. And they need to be trained because they’re wrong. They need to be trained.

They need to be explained that as humans we perform much better when we are seen and when we feel that we count. And if we feel that we’re invisible, if we feel that no one really knows or cares if we’re here or not, our performance suffers. It’s that simple.

Jim:
A great point. Now what we’re talking about here, I mean when we refer to engagement, when we refer to doing those things as far as showing appreciation and all that, there’s a whole lot of emotion wrapped up in it.

And one of the things that we look at on the show are quotes to help hopefully spur some emotion and get us going in the right direction. Is there a quote or two that you like, that you can share?

Glenn:
Oh, first quote that comes to mind is probably appropriate. It’s a Maya Angelou quote, she’s an amazing woman. I could listen to her or read her all day. She says, “People will forget what you said, they’ll forget what you did, but they’ll never forget how you made them feel.” And I think it’s that thing about, when you’re doing employee recognition, like it’s about how you make someone feel.

It’s not about the gift or the size of the gift certificate or what you buy them. In fact, so many recognition programs are ruined by the money. Because what happens is, as soon as an employer decides that they’re gonna attach money or a gift to thank yous, suddenly there comes this horrific bureaucracy of sign offs and approvals, which drags the whole thing down.

Glenn:
I learnt this when I was at the phone company where I did a special project and my boss’s boss thought it was great and he thanked me for it, and I felt really proud and really pleased. And he said he would put me forward for an innovation award and a year and a half later I get a letter from HR, like someone I’ve never met before, saying that I’d won. And I’d forgotten what the project was by then, you know?

And the fact that it would take them a year and a half to give me a gift certificate made me feel less valued than when the guy just said thank you.

Glenn:
So you know if you want to attach gifts and money, fantastic, but like only do it in a way which doesn’t turn this into a bureaucratic nightmare.

Jim:
I think that’s a great point. I’ve even tried to do some of that type of instruction and coaching to my kids, for like father’s day. I’m like, do not get me anything. Don’t buy me anything, I don’t want anything. I said, I want you just do something for me. You know?

Show me that you appreciate me. I mean, trying to get them to understand that recognizing people for whatever reason isn’t about getting them a gift card or buying them something. That’s not what it’s about and unfortunately in our society that’s what we have come to use as our default.

Glenn:
You know it’s not, it’s the message.

What my favorite is probably the personalized thank you card a stamp. But frankly a telephone call is just as powerful. If you’re working in an organization and the CEO or director or somebody unexpectedly calls you up, and you think, what do they want?

And they say, hey John, I’m just calling just to let you know that I think you’re doing a really great job, and I’m really really grateful for it. And I just wanted to let you know that it’s seen and it’s not taken for granted.

Glenn:
I mean that call takes a minute to make, and you will change that person’s world.

Jim:
Totally. Okay, so I am sure on that when you start talking about this journey into where you are today and talking about the multiple startups and going through and finally getting to your fourth, which by the way, if you only had to go to your fourth to find some positive gain and benefit, that in itself is extraordinary. ‘Cause many go through 40 and 50, but I’m sure you had a lot of humps to get over that actually has caused you to be where you are and set you in the direction that you are going.

Jim:
So is there a time where you had to get over the hump where you can share?

Glenn:
Oh I mean there were so many humps as you start.

You know, in our early months, years, we were five people. You know we started with an idea, we had such a lot to learn, you know getting your first customer is a major milestone. Getting your second one is a milestone, getting the third and the fourth.

Getting your first customers that are actually gonna pay you a decent amount is often a separate milestone. You know just to get your first big corporate name on the board you’ve often gotta do some pretty creative pricing.

Glenn:
I think they’ve been so many, working out our pricing policy was tough

I think probably the biggest hump I got over in my early years though was actually working out how to build a sales team. And it was funny I was just thinking about this yesterday because I was talking to a CEO, she’s got a business also, she’s a few years younger than us.

And she was just about to set up her first sales team, or hire her first sales person. And I remember how tough it was for us, you know I must have had six false starts. You know, six different people who I hired and they couldn’t do it. You know I’d hire the wrong person, I’d do the wrong setup, I had them in the wrong structure, given them the wrong tools.

Glenn:
It wasn’t just their fault it was mine too. It took a good year and a half before I met the first guy who actually could sell for us. And I can remember in his job interview he said to me, what would my target be?

And I was like, jeez, targets, that’s a great idea, we should have those. You know? Which is kind of, feels ridiculous now that I was doing that then, but yeah that was a big hump.

Jim:
So when you think about going through that particular process of learning, what is something for you that kind of, or really caused you to pivot and make a change? Because you talk about several different iterations. I mean, what caused you to finally say, ah, I need to turn.

Was it something significant? Or, was it something that was just like a gradual, kept nudging and finally getting in the right direction?

Glenn:
Yeah I think it’s the build up of knowledge. I think you know, I’m pretty resilient and so I can kind of control the disappointment when things don’t work out. And I think what’s important when you’re building a business … Because the thing about building a business is you’re building a business but you’re also building yourself as the leader and entrepreneur behind that business.

So, I mean when I think back to how little I knew when I started Reward Gateway, it’s almost comical that we were ever successful. Because I’ve learnt so much since.

Glenn:
But on the sales team, you know I had never ever hired a sales person before. I mean I had no idea what I was doing, I didn’t know what one looked like really. And so I just had to learn quickly. And you learn by just failing, falling flat on your face and getting back up again. And by not beating yourself up too much about it. You know, you have to get on with it and stay resilient.

Jim:
Well and I think a couple things that you had said too, also probably contributed to that, is that you had other people influence you and other people that you convened with, other people that you counseled with. And that was all part of the knowledge game. So one of the things that I’m finding more and more is that even though we as individuals may not particularly recognize it, but it’s our community that helps us to advance to greater levels of performance. You know, more than going to a particular event or an activity like an MBA program or something. It’s those experiences, it’s the knowledge from others, and so we have to be more proactive and intentional in regards to creating those types of communities and environments for us.

Glenn:
Yeah I think that’s a really interesting point actually. I mean it’s 12, 13 years since I started Reward Gateway, and we’re fortunate now there is a much bigger community available. I mean we barely had podcasts 13 years ago. If we did I wasn’t listening to them. There’s a massive amount of online resource, opinion, YouTube channels, some great books about. And I think, all about different aspects of business, sales, building your business, entrepreneurship, whatever it happens to be.

Glenn:
And when I think about all the advice I’ve had, and this is since I’ve started my career, I’m pretty certain that all of it has been given with the best intentions. You know I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who deliberately tried to lead me down the wrong place. But that doesn’t mean that a lot of the advice wasn’t wrong. ‘Cause it was. And I think it’s that thing about you know people will generally they’ll give you their honest, best advice, from their perspective and from their context of what they have learnt and what they have seen. And that might not be, and in fact, often isn’t your situation. And I think the answer to that is, you know, to immerse yourself in lots of different viewpoints.

Glenn:
You know so if you read widely and if you listen to lots of podcasts rather than just one. You know if you follow several different people on Twitter or whatever you’re on and get their views. And then your mind’s very very good, I find, at kind of sifting out the stuff which is really relevant to you when you find upon it. And I think that’s a real thing which you can do now.

Jim:
Yeah that’s a very excellent point, so I’m actually coaching an organization right now and their CEO, it’s a tech company. He was asking me if there was just something cookie cutter that he can take and place within what we were talking about, which had to do with a marketing and sales communication flow. And I said to him, no. I said, I’ve been studying this for a long time. I said, there isn’t anything that you can just say, cut, paste. I said, I’ve taken elements from all of these different sources and now knowing more about your organization, are able to mold that and give you some suggestions and ideas on how you can therefore go and create it yourself.

Glenn:
Yeah, completely. And I remember in my previous business, the design, the web building and marketing agency, I was desperate for someone to give me the answers to how to make it more successful. You know I got it to like 20 staff and about, I don’t know, a million and a half dollars revenue. We broke even, we didn’t really make any money, we just about scraped by.

Glenn:
And I was convinced that I was making a mess of it, and someone else would know what to do with it. And I found a guy who had been chief exec of a much much much bigger agency and then he’d gone to be chairman and he’d retired. He was a young guy, he did it in his 50s. And I found this guy and I was like, he’s the answer to all my prayers, he knows everything, he’s done this before, he’s brought an agency to several thousand people. And I hired him to be my chairman and kind of advisor and mentor, thinking he would have all the answers. And he was the most expensive person I’d ever considered hiring, buy him a house. And I nearly bankrupted us just to pay his bill.

Glenn:
And of course he didn’t have all the answers because what he had was he had what worked for him and his situation then. And it was 20, 30 years later and the context had just changed. You know? He was really an advertising agency guy and I was running a digital marketing business. And they’re actually wildly different. The whole economy was different. So it didn’t really work, it didn’t really help us.

Glenn:
And I think if I was doing that again now, I’d be better immersing myself in all of that stuff which we’re able to find on the internet.

Jim:
So talking about direction and where you’ve been and all that stuff. We have the book, you’re now a founder. But I’m sure there’s a whole lot of things you’ve got your hands in and that you’re dabbling on. But when you think about one goal that you have, and we also talked about the physical aspects and getting your body stronger and more healthy. But if you’re to talk about one goal, what would it be?

Glenn:
So yeah we’ve been working hard launching the book, which came out in February, February the 28th. A little bit later in the States. So that’s good. And it’s selling well, it’s selling well every week so we’re pleased about that. My next big goal is we’re starting our own video podcast series in a couple of months. I’m just in a meeting about it this morning. It’s gonna be a daily show, it’s five minutes every day. It hasn’t got a name yet, can’t tell you what it’s called. But it’s basically five minutes of informed opinion, brutal honesty every single weekday on business topics and relating back to people.

Glenn:
So I’m quite excited about that, that’s my kind of next big business piece.

Jim:
And the Fast Leader legion wishes you the very best.

Jim:
Now before we move on, let’s get a quick word from our sponsor.

Jim:
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Jim:
All right, here we go Fast Leader legion, it’s time for the Hump Day Hoedown. Okay, Glenn the hump day hoedown in the part of our show where you give us good insights fast. So I’m gonna ask you several questions and your job is to give us a [inaudible 00:33:51], give rapid responses that are gonna help us move onward and upward faster.

Jim:
Glenn Elliott are you ready to hoedown?

Glenn:
I’ll give it a go.

Jim:
All right. So what do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

Glenn:
Oh, what’s holding me back from being an even better leader? Being more comfortable with being vulnerable.

Jim:
What is the best leadership advice you have ever received?

Glenn:
The best leadership advice, be vulnerable with your people. Yeah, best leader I know is a woman called Shelley Packer, and she’s incredible with her people on her team. Gets by instantly and she’s just really good at being really honest and open with them. And I’m not bad at it, but she’s just 10X better than me.

Jim:
What is one of your secrets that you believe contributes to your success?

Glenn:
My secrets? Work hard, council widely and then make up your own decision, decide yourself what to do.

Jim:
What do you feel is one of your best tools that helps you lead in business or life?

Glenn:
My Mac.

Jim:
What would be one book that you’d recommend to our listeners? It could be from any genre, of course we’ll put a link to Build It, the Rebel Playbook for World Class Employee Engagement on your show notes page as well.

Glenn:
I think my favorite book for business, from a people perspective right now is Patty McCord’s “Powerful”. Patty McCord was chief talent officer at Netflix for 14 years and “Powerful” is the incredible story of the radically different culture they built at Netflix.

Jim:
Okay, Fast Leader legion you can find links to that and other bonus information from today’s show by going to fastleader.net/glennelliott. Okay, Glenn, this is my hump day hoedown question. Imagine you were given the opportunity to go back to the age of 25, and you’ve been given the opportunity to take the knowledge and skills that you have now back with you. But you can’t take everything back, you can only choose one, so what skill or piece of knowledge would you take back with you? And why?

Glenn:
What would I take back? Take back to 25, I would take back tolerance and acceptance of people who don’t think the same as me. Because I think when I was 25 I was pretty black and white about the world. And if someone didn’t think the same as me, I kind of wrote them off as someone that wasn’t interesting, I didn’t want in my life. And as I’ve grown older I’ve really seen the value of having people in my world who think differently. I’d take that back.

Jim:
Glenn, it was an honor to spend time with you today. Can you please share with the Fast Leader legion how they can connect with you?

Glenn:
Yeah, sure you can find me on LinkedIn it’s Glenn Elliott with two N’s, two L’s and two T’s. The book’s website is rebelplaybook.com. And you can download the first two chapters for free there, you can also find me on Twitter at Glenn Elliott.

Jim:
Glenn Elliott, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom, the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump.

Jim:
Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links from every show, special offers and access to download and subscribe if you haven’t already, head on over to fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster.