Can you effect change in your company when you’re not a “leader”? If you’re towards the bottom of the corporate hierarchy, what will make people listen to your ideas?
Doug Lennick and Chuck Wachendorfer have been helping professionals develop and improve their lives for almost two decades.
They explain how everyone can step up to make change, the difference between being reactive and proactive in your workplace, and how identifying your key values will help you both to lead yourself and others
Doug Lennick and Chuck Wachendorfer of think2perform
Chuck Wachendorfer, President of Distribution at think2perform is a thought leader, internationally recognized speaker, author and executive coach who develops leaders to achieve record setting performance.
With a background in mechanical engineering, Chuck has attended Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota as well as Harvard Business School’s prestigious Advanced Management Program.
For the past 17 years at think2peform he has developed leaders, high achievers and cohesive teams to increase engagement and make a positive difference, while building and improving market share, increasing client and employee retention as well as improving the corporate bottom line.
Focus industries include financial services, real estate, technology, banking, healthcare and other service businesses.
As a thought leader in achieving record-setting performance, Chuck is in demand as an international public speaker and has been quoted extensively by major media, including: Investor’s Business Daily, Forbes, Fortune and CNN Money. He and his family currently reside in Denver, Colorado.
What you’ll learn in this episode
- [2:00] How think2perform helps people reach their potential.
- [3:30] The need for people to embrace leadership.
- [5:08] How to be influential if you’re not in a position of power.
- [6:35] The shifting definition of leadership.
- [8:00] The difference between being reactive and proactive at work.
- [12:35] How junior members can get the confidence to speak up about change.
- [18:25] The lessons you can learn if your suggestion is shot down.
- [22:04] How to enact change and what failing successfully looks like.
- [26:05] What a serenity prayer looks like and how to be your ideal self.
- [27:35] How to identify your key values.
- [29:00] Using the ‘Freeze Exercise’ to make more conscious decisions.
- [31:46] How to effectively reflect on your values.
- [33:40] The key to life and being happy.
Resources mentioned in this episode
Please note that some of these are affiliate links and we may get a commission in the event that you make a purchase. This helps us to cover our expenses and is at no additional cost to you.
- Don’t Wait for Somebody Else to Fix It, Doug Lennick and Chuck Wachendorfer
- Steven M R Covey
- “Be the change you wish to see in the world”, attrib. Gandhi
- The Serenity Prayer
Episode 167: How to lead when you’re not a leader - with Doug Lennick and Chuck Wachendorfer of think2perform
Jeremy Cline 0:00
How can you make yourself heard when you're not someone who at your company makes the decisions? If you're not someone who's in a position of leadership, but you can see something that needs changing, how do you make that happen? That's what we're talking about in this week's episode. I'm Jeremy Cline, and this is Change Work Life.
Jeremy Cline 0:34
Hello, and welcome to Change Work Life, the show where we're all about beating the Sunday evening blues and enjoying Mondays again. If you want to know how you can enjoy a more satisfying and fulfilling working life, you're in the right place. And to make sure you never miss an episode, all you have to do is hit the button on your podcast app which says Follow or Subscribe, or it might be a plus button. Just hit that, and you'll get each new episode as soon as it comes out. It's really easy to complain about where you work and tell your family and friends, and maybe your colleagues, everything that's wrong with it. What might be a little bit harder is taking steps yourself to make things better. And one of the reasons it might seem a bit harder is that you don't see yourself as the leader. Decisions are taken by someone else, not you. You don't feel like you have any influence. Well, if that's you, you might want to carry on listening as we explore what you can do with this week's guests, Doug Lennick and Chuck Wachendorfer. Doug and Chuck are, respectively, the CEO and President of Distribution at Think2perform, a leadership, coaching, consulting and business development firm, which sets out to enhance the decision-making skills and performance of individuals and organisations. Doug, Chuck, welcome to the podcast.
Chuck Wachendorfer 1:52
Great to be here, Jeremy, thanks for having us.
Jeremy Cline 1:54
Why don't you start by introducing yourselves and your business? Doug, why don't you go first?
Doug Lennick 2:00
I am Doug Lennick, and as you mentioned already, thank you, I am the CEO of Think2perform. Our business is now 21 years old. We started it because we really wondered why people do what they do, and we really wondered if it was possible that people could really be who they would ideally like to be more often. And what we've discovered is, we can be more ideal more often. And it's a wonderful thing. So, that's our business, and we are here to help people think to perform.
Jeremy Cline 2:40
I'm relieved to hear you say that, because that's what I've tried to do with my coaching clients, as well. And Chuck, how about you?
Chuck Wachendorfer 2:48
Same, I've had the good fortune of working with Doug for the past 20 years, I got to think to perform as fast as I could. I have a background, like Doug, in financial services, mechanical engineering degree at a college. But I feel very grateful that I've had the chance to build this organisation to have the impact that we've had, really around the world, in helping people, as Doug said, be more ideal more often. And so, we're excited about talking about the book today. Our goal, I think, in writing the book was to reach anybody anywhere, with tools that they could begin using in their life.
Jeremy Cline 3:27
And what's the name of the book?
Chuck Wachendorfer 3:28
Don't Wait For Somebody Else to Fix It.
Doug Lennick 3:30
Yeah, obviously, in history, it doesn't take a genius to look around and see that everybody is pointing fingers. And so, it appears that we all are pretty gifted at seeing there are things that could be better. So, most of us are pretty good at seeing what could be better in other people, or less good at seeing what could be better in us. But we do see what could be better in other people, and a lot of people are sitting around hoping someone does something. And what we're saying is, we are the someone's. Whoever is listening right now, whoever reads the book, whoever doesn't read the book, everybody is one of the someone's, everybody should step up. This is everybody's opportunity. Everybody's a leader.
Jeremy Cline 4:16
Well, let's dive into that with a bit of a setup. So, I'm thinking about someone who, they don't necessarily see themselves as being in a position of having any influence, so maybe it's quite a hierarchical organisation, and they see the decisions being made by, if you like, the big boys. And I'm kind of loath to use the example of someone like a personal assistant, a PA, because I know from personal experience just how valuable and important they really are. But I also know from conversations that sometimes people who aren't in more senior positions don't feel like they can influence, that anyone's listening to them, that kind of thing.
Doug Lennick 5:07
Well, you know, what we find, though, is that energy in an organisation can come from anyone in the organisation. So, some of the most influential leaders have the least position power of everyone in the organisation. What I mean by that is, influencing is what leadership is about. And some of the most influential people have nobody that reports to them; they just bring energy. They either bring a bad energy, or they bring a good energy. But the truth of the matter is, their energy is infectious, and other people are influenced by them. Even if they don't want other people to be influenced by them, they are anyway. And so, each person in every organisation contributes to the energy of that organisation. And what Chuck and I have determined in our own careers is high energy, positive energy organisations, it doesn't mean you're pollyannaish, and you don't see things that are wrong, it just means you bring an energy and a commitment to make a difference every day. And every day, people can, in fact, make a difference in this world, just by bringing their best selves to whatever it is they do.
Chuck Wachendorfer 6:35
I think it gets back to what you said earlier, Jeremy, a traditional definition of leadership is decision-making and control. And we shift that definition to focus more, as you mentioned, on influence. And we are both influenced by other people, by what we read, what we watch, who we hang out with. And then, we are also influencing others. And so, if I understand, it's not about decision-making and control, it is, as Doug says, about influence, and I get to decide what kind of an influence I want to be. And that's something I can control. I can decide whether I'm going to be a positive influence, a neutral influence, or a negative influence. And I think that's one of the points that we make in the book, is that decision-making matters. Decision-making has twice the impact on our performance than talent and skill combined. I'm not saying talent and skill don't matter. They just don't matter as much as decision-making. And the decision-making starts with, who do I want to be? What kind of a person, what kind of an influence? And that, in and of itself, is leadership. I'm leading myself. And that projects positive influence or could project positive influence or the opposite, with those around me.
Jeremy Cline 7:58
So, that decision, in that context, is effectively how you show up to work. Are you going to be someone who is positive, who engages? Or are you going to be someone who sits solely on the corner, gets on with the work that you're given but doesn't really engage with team members and that kind of thing?
Chuck Wachendorfer 8:17
Absolutely, it's a position of either reacting to my environment, or being proactive. I mean, we all have stress in our lives, nobody's life is perfect, we have things that we have to deal with, and I can let that come at me and react to it, or I can choose and be proactive. Doug, what do you think?
Doug Lennick 8:43
Yeah, you said it. I mean, it's really like what the late Stephen R. Covey, Stephen M. R. Covey endorsed our book, but his dad endorsed a previous book that we were involved with and, and Stephen R. Covey would say, you either act, you are either proactive, or you are acted upon. So, you get a choice. So, life is going to happen one way or another. So, it's not like time isn't going to pass. We've done the research, there's 168 hours in everybody's week, you could research this if you want, but we've done it, and we found out there's exactly 168 hours in everybody's week. The question is, what do I choose to do with those hours? And in my life, I am going to be influencing people around me, and there's no way around it. We all are influencers, and Chuck made that point, and it's really imperative that everybody embraces the truth about themselves, that I may not want to be influencing you, but I am. Because just like me, I know you are influenced by that which you read, by the podcasts you listen to or watch. People are choosing to be influenced by you, Jeremy, by tuning in, and they're choosing to be influenced by your guests. So, by definition, we are influencing those that are listening to us right now. And so, the question isn't, will we influence them? The question is, how will we? And that's true if we're parents, it's true if we're not parents. You don't have to have children to be influential. Everybody is a child, or has children, were one or the other, or both. And the truth is, we are members of families, and as such, we are influencing members of those families. So, whatever role you play in life, you are a leader. And our very first essential of the eight essentials, the first one, and if you get this right, everything is fine - aim to be your ideal self. If you just aim to be the best Jeremy, best Chuck, best Doug, what we realise is, if we can get everybody or most of everybody to bring their best selves to work every day, we're going to have one heck of a business, if we're in business. We'll have one heck of an organisation if we're a non-profit. We'll have one heck of a school if we're a school. We're going to have one heck of a...
Chuck Wachendorfer 11:35
Neighbourhood, community, city, it doesn't matter. I mean, I think we talked about this three-bucket theory, everything in life falls into one of three buckets. Bucket number one is what we can control. And there's only one thing in that bucket, and that's my behaviour. Bucket number two is what I can influence. And there's only two things in that bucket, that's other people and my health. I can't control my health, but I can influence my health. Bucket three is everything I have no control over, work, weather, the economy. Successful people, and I don't mean successful purely financially, I'm talking about people who are fulfilled, people who are happy, focus on bucket number one, what they can control. The more I focus on my own behaviour, my own decision-making, the more my influence grows in bucket two.
Jeremy Cline 12:25
Okay, so I'd like to extend this idea a little bit and bring it back to this person who is, in hierarchical terms at least, perhaps a more junior employee somewhere, and they are seeing things, so they're trying to take these lessons, be a positive person, be a positive influence around others, not be someone that people want to avoid, because they're always sucking the positive energy out there, they're a net giver, and they're looking around, and they can see things that could be improved, but they have this perception of this hierarchical organisation where decisions are made further up the tree. And the concern is that they just don't feel like they have the status, if you like, to bring about a particular change. And maybe it's an internal mental shift, but what advice can you give that person to how they can get themselves into the mindset that they can speak to someone, and even if it seems radically out of character for the organisation, that they can go to someone and say, 'I've been thinking about this, I'd like to suggest we do things in a different way'?
Doug Lennick 13:50
Well, I love that question. Truth of the matter is, anybody, and it's an interesting point, because the very question suggests that people don't actually realise, of course, they could if they wanted to, and that they were willing to access a little bit of courage. It's a little scary, and one of the things I find interesting is, life is fun in that, everybody, everybody overstates it, but most people want to think of themselves as, I'd like to think of myself as a courageous person. I'm a courageous person, that sounds good. Well, the problem with courage is absent fear, there isn't any need for it. So, absent fear, there is no courage. And of course, it's a little scary to advance an idea in a hierarchical organisation when you're a junior member, but how one goes about it, so how one approaches the topic. And we equip people with tools. The book, we wrote, Don't Wait for Someone Else to Fix It, is really a tool book. And Wiley, our publisher, it wasn't our idea, they did a wonderful job of coming up with a cover, and they have a picture of a tool, and a person's hand on the tool. These are tools. And so, we give people tools. An example of a tool to be used in the scenario you've just painted is five points of dialogue. So, let's say, Jeremy, you're my superior officer in my company, or in the military, if I'm in the military, which I never served, and I appreciate those who have, but I did not, but you're my superior. And I have an idea. And I ask for some time. And I use this tool, we call it five points of dialogue. Here are the five points, whoever sets up a meeting should have a purpose, should have a meaning in mind. I don't know if you've ever been to meetings, I've been to many meetings, walked out and gone, 'What the heck was that about!?' Somebody set a meeting, and it was not obvious to anybody what it was about. Well, whoever set the meeting should have a purpose. So, if I set the meeting with you, Jeremy, my purpose is, I have an idea that I think would be well served if the company considered it, and I wanted to share it with you, and I want to share with you my point of view. So, there's five points a dialogue, first point is purpose. Purpose is, I have this idea I want to talk with you about. Second point, I'd like to share with you my point of view. Third point is, I'd like to hear your point of view. Fourth point is, I'll share with you what I'm committed to doing going forward. And then fifth, I'd be interested if you're committed to doing anything, what it happens to be. Now, one of the things I liked about one of the great quotes Gandhi made was, be the change you want to make. So, one of the things that I might say is, I say, 'I think it would be a good idea if the organisation had a more formal mentoring opportunity for people. And I'm willing to even both be mentored by someone like yourself, or I'm willing to be a mentor, whatever it is.' And so, we advance ideas. Now, keep in mind, and this is another concept, almost nothing works always. There is no one thing that we can say will always work. But what we do know is that, if we influence people in a way that they receive the influence, and they can act on it, because effective communication is a function of both the sender and the receiver, so if both people are ready, if we have a pitcher and a catcher, I throw the pitch, you catch it, we're good, you throw it back to me, I throw it back to you, we're not playing the game, and all of a sudden, we've begun to change our culture.
Jeremy Cline 18:17
That last point that you mentioned about nothing works always, that leads quite nicely on to what was going through my mind, which is where you try this, and it falls flat. And I've seen this happen, I've seen someone make a suggestion about who it really was necessary to attend a meeting and that kind of thing, and one of the things that I observed was, there wasn't so much dialogue as what appeared to be coming from the other direction was more what I'd call mansplaining. And I could see the person who'd made the suggestion just getting more and more frustrated that they were effectively being mansplained at. So, kind of picking up on that, I'm interested to know what thought processes someone who has been mansplained at or has been knocked back, what they can kind of take from it?
Chuck Wachendorfer 19:11
Well, I think a couple of things. Number one, in order for me to grow, I have to be willing to get uncomfortable, and it gets back to what Doug was saying about courage. Number two, we have a saying in our business that, even in those that we work with, we coach leaders around the world, we work with the willing. And so, if somebody is really unwilling, it could be my delivery, it could be that they're just really not open to it. And then, I think I'm left with, well, where can I influence and work with people who are willing, who want to make a difference, and it may not be my boss, but it may be other colleagues. It may be the two or three people that I interact with that sit near me. So, I think, most people who are in leadership positions were leaders before they got those positions. Think about Nelson Mandela. Nelson Mandela sat in prison for 27 years. But he focused on what he could control, and how he could be a positive influence on those around him. That then enabled him to be and fill a more formal leadership position. And I think that's sometimes what we advocate; we're in a situation where we think, well, Jeremy is going to fix it. Jeremy is the boss, Jeremy is the leader. He's not open to it. So, what am I left with? And I think that's a great question, what am I left with, where can I make a difference, and maybe it's just in how I interact with people in the office every day. But there might be others who think like I do, where we could make a change and demonstrate the positive difference and open other people's mind to why this might be a great idea.
Jeremy Cline 20:54
It goes back to what you were saying at the beginning about control, and one of the things you can't control is other people. You can seek to influence them, but you can't control them.
Chuck Wachendorfer 21:05
Sometimes I have to see it to believe it. So, in other words, even if I come across as unwilling, because I don't believe what you're suggesting, you might need to show me. And then, all of a sudden, I'm able to see it. So, if I can see the positive influence you're having on your colleagues and people that maybe you don't even lead directly, it might open my mind. So, I wouldn't give up on your first try. In fact, the five points of dialogue that Doug talked about, it's a great tool, but when I try something new, I'm learning to play the guitar right now, when I learn a new song, I don't play it well the first time. It takes me many times, lots of practice.
Doug Lennick 21:48
That's that old Aristotle quote. Aristotle, what was it he said? If you want to learn to play the flute, you have to play the flute. It's an interesting thing and one of the things that Chuck is describing is, you can't learn to play the guitar in the classroom. You actually have to pick up the guitar. You can't just watch someone play a lot. If you want to learn to play, you got to play. And when you play, sometimes you're going to fail. And we introduce concepts that we call failing successfully and succeeding successfully. But what does that look like? Well, oddly enough, it looks to same. Failing successfully means I did something, it didn't work, and I'm going to continue to proceed towards my journey anyway. I'm going to do what I need to do again, anyway, even though it didn't work.
Chuck Wachendorfer 22:45
And learn from that, learn from each failure. Because failure is only permanent if I allow it to be.
Doug Lennick 22:52
Yeah, and you fall down, you get up. And you know, these are simple things to say, but these are not easy to execute. So, we recognise that simple and easy are not synonyms. The advantage to simple is it makes it more clear what I ought to do, but I still have to do it. There is a big difference between knowing and doing. There's a gap. Most of us know some things, like people who smoke cigarettes, they didn't need to read on the pack this could be hazardous to your health. Like, no kidding. Right? I mean, it's not like I don't know that. The difference is the doing. And we tell the story, you've got five frogs sitting on a log, now frogs, remember, are adult tadpoles, that means it's summertime. So, they grew up, and it's summer, and it's hot. And these frogs are sitting on this branch, this tree fell down, and it overhangs this lazy river. And these frogs are all sitting on this branch overlooking the river, and it's hot. And they're all on this branch, and it's hot, it's so hot, and they look down and they see that there are critters in the water that seemed to be enjoying the water. And one of the frogs thinks to himself, 'You know, I'm going to jump in.' And the frog decides to jump in. And then, the frog looks around, and then, after the frog decides to jump in, how many frogs are left on the log? And the answer is five. And the reason there's five is the frog who decided to jump in didn't jump, because the frog that decided to jump looked around and noticed the other four frogs weren't jumping, and he thought, 'Well, maybe they know something I don't know.' So, they just stayed out of the water. They stayed there, and they just boiled on the log. So, what we're telling people is, knowing I should jump in and jumping in are two different things. And it takes some courage to face that fear. And that is what we help people give themselves, it's the courage to try to be their ideal selves. So, we equip them with the tool. Aim to be your ideal self, know who you are ideally, but then know who you are really, that's the second essential. Who are you really? And then, when the real you and the ideal you don't match, then as Chuck said, you get to make one of those 35,000 decisions. I get to make 35,000 decisions every day. And if I notice my real self is not the person I ideally would like to be, I get to decide to change. And then, I get to change. Deciding to change isn't enough. I have to change. So, I use a serenity prayer. The Serenity Prayer is famous, I do a modified version. I say This to myself, 'God, grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, courage to change the one person I can change, and the wisdom to know that one is me.' And Chuck said it earlier, that's who I got. I got bucket one. So, if I want to change the world, let's start with me. Be the change you want to make. I'm Looking at the Man in the Mirror, Michael Jackson. Be that guy.
Chuck Wachendorfer 26:47
Well, a lot of times, change, we expect, is got to be some dramatic change in our lives, or we've got to be perfect. And I think that assumption or expectation often keeps us from changing. And so, as Doug said, in order for me to be my ideal self, I got to know who my ideal self is. And so, we talk about a values exercise. But knowing your top five values is important. Because now I get a chance to see how my behaviour lines up with what I say is important to myself. So, when you ask people, do they have values, they act kind of insulted. Like, 'What do you think? I don't have values? What?' But the second question is, 'Well, what are they?' And that's where it gets kind of fuzzy. You hear things like family or honesty, integrity. If I want to be my ideal self, I have to know specifically what my values are. And so, we talk about an exercise where you can go through and identify your top five values. You can do it on our website at think2perform.com for free. Once I know my values, I can't unknow that. So, what I start to notice is when I'm aligned with my values and when I'm not. So, when I have that bowl of ice cream, or I have that extra piece of pizza, and one of my values is health, I'm aware of what I'm doing. Whereas most people aren't aware. And I can make a decision. Do I have that extra slice of pizza? Do I have that extra scoop of ice cream? Or not? That's a decision. But I get to decide am I going to align my real self with my ideal self. Now, I love pizza and ice cream, just like everybody else, but it's how much, and the decisions I make every single day that either move me closer to that value of health, or away from that value of health. And that's knowing my real self. So, it's knowing my values, and then practising self-awareness, so I can begin to align my behaviour with who I hope to be. But I got to know who I hope to be, and then I got to practice self-awareness. We're talking about an exercise called the freeze exercise, which is, what am I thinking, how am I feeling, what am I doing, and most of us, back to the 35,000 decisions that Doug mentioned, make these choices on autopilot. We don't think about them. 40% of what we do is automatic every day. That's a lot, but it's not even most of our decisions. 60% are conscious. And so, if I'm paying attention to how much sugar am I putting my coffee, am I eating desert, am I getting exercise, those are things that I can begin to slowly shift over time. I don't need to go to the gym for an hour a day, six days a week, but maybe I take the stairs instead of the elevator. Maybe I take half as many cookies or biscuits as I do normally. Those are incremental changes on a daily basis that begin to move me in that direction of who I hope to be.
Jeremy Cline 29:57
I'd like to link this back to something we were talking about earlier, so the Junior who's now plucked up the courage to make some suggestions at work. And maybe they've been knocked back. And so, they're kind of thinking, 'Okay, Doug, Chuck, yeah, I've heard everything you said, I've done the values exercise, I know much more about myself and who I am and that kind of thing, and I've made this suggestion at work, and I've been knocked back, and I can't relate all this stuff about values and that kind of thing to what I do with this, where I go next, because at the moment, I'm feeling a little bit frustrated and downhearted.' So, how does all this stuff link to that kind of situation and influence at work?
Chuck Wachendorfer 30:50
No, I can say, I think it's always coming back to decision-making. And I don't want to pretend that, again, back to what Doug was saying, nothing works always, so I don't want to pretend that I would understand and appreciate what everybody's going through in each of their different situations, but it's decision-making. So, do I want to change jobs? Can I make a positive difference outside of the workplace, that would minimise how I feel at the office and make it better? Are there things that I can do to help myself feel better while I'm at work, even though the situation may be not what I hope it to be? Are there people who think like I do, that maybe aren't the boss, or aren't the formal leader, where we can compare notes and actually begin to influence where we can, without the formal leader's support?
Doug Lennick 31:44
Well, one of the things that, I'll use myself as an example, there's a tool that Chuck and I were taught by one of our mentors, a guy by the name of Roy Gear, who's now deceased, who thought this goal achievement tool. And interestingly, thousands of people are doing the values exercise every week for free, that Chuck mentioned, thousands of people every day are doing the freeze game. We send out freeze reminders every day. I mean, thousands of them every day, for free, all over the world, just to remind people to pay attention to themselves. What are you thinking? How are you feeling? What are you doing? And you think about your values, mine happened to be family, happiness, wisdom, integrity, service, health. Now, our game calls for five, and if you're counting, that's six, but it's our game, so I can have six. Anybody can have as many as they want. But what we encourage people to do is not just get in touch with them, but as they reflect on them throughout the day, put verbs in front of them. So, here's how it goes. Love your family. Now, when I'm at work, and I have a miserable boss, can I still love my family? I think so. Be happy. Can I still be happy? Yeah. Happiness is a state of mind, not a state of affairs. I can choose to be happy, but that happiness hinges on me aligning my behaviour with who's inside of me, my ideal self. So, I can still be happy. I have a jerk for a boss. That's okay. What's the ghost of Christmas past, remember? I mean, the family was happy; Scrooge was a dirt ball. But the family was happy anyway. Happiness is a choice. And they were happy because they were living in alignment. And they had just a lump of coal. It's not about stuff. So, love your family. Be happy. Seek wisdom. Wisdom, to me, is the intersection of insight and judgement. Seek wisdom, Doug. Love your family. Be happy. Seek wisdom. Behave with integrity. Do something of service for somebody else today. Go on Jeremy's podcast. That'll do something for somebody. If somebody gets something out of it, that'll be great. And then, make healthy choices. And to me, water represents a healthy choice. So, here, so far this morning, here are my beverages. I got two waters, they're done. I have one Diet Coke. I'm halfway through it. Now, I know this isn't so good for me. I know these are. That's why they're done. I actually need another water. But every time I drink water, I can reflect on my values. So, what we do is, we say, even if you have a miserable boss, you can bring your values to work with you every day. I can love my family every day. I can be happy every day. I can seek wisdom every day. I can personally behave with integrity every day. I can do something of service today, even for my boss. And I can make healthy choices. I can do all that, even if I have a miserable job. So, what I have to be willing to realise is this is my life. It's not anybody else's. And I owe it to myself to take advantage of this gift I've been given called life and do something with it, and not wait for somebody else. And that's what we're saying. This is your life. Don't wait for someone else to fix your life. It's your life! Don't wait for someone else to fix it. Fix it! Aim to be your ideal self, know your real self, do all the things that we suggest. It'll actually work. And it takes time. It takes time. It's unfortunate, it takes time. We'd like to do the right thing in the morning and get the pay off in the afternoon. Sometimes it takes years. Last year, Chuck and I were excited, our whole company was excited, after 20 years, we were an overnight success. Twenty years into the business, our revenue went up 20%. Like, whoa! Well, we would have liked to have done that every year. But you don't every year. But it's pretty nice in the 20th year, 20 years old, your revenue goes up more than 20%. That's good! So, we're pretty excited about that. But it took us 20 years to get there. And so, it's not a quick trip, but it's an enjoyable trip. Once we recognise it's our journey, it's our life, and it's kind of exciting. But a lot of people just kind of stumble through life. They don't realise they've been given life, and they should treat it as such, a gift.
Jeremy Cline 37:17
Doug, Chuck, this has been an extremely thought provoking conversation, which I think, probably with the setup, has gone in directions which people might not necessarily expect, but I think a little bit of reflection will, well, certainly for me, I think it'll start to make a lot more sense, as I reflect on what you were saying, and what we can control and what we can't and all that kind of thing. I mean, you've mentioned the book, you've mentioned the company, if people want to find you, where's the best place that they can go?
Chuck Wachendorfer 37:47
Our website's the easiest, think2perform.com. And as Doug and I mentioned, you can discover your values for free on our website, it takes about 20 minutes, I think, to discover your top five values. So, you can go there and visit, I think we've had about 60 or 70,000 people complete the values exercise in the last six months. So, it is something that people want to discover. It's incredibly valuable for children. We were talking about kids earlier. I've done this exercise with 12-13-year-olds, 15-16-year-olds. And so, it's incredibly powerful, as children get older, for them to understand what's important to themselves. Because if you're a parent, what do you hope as your kids get older, they make great choices. Well, part of making great choices involves me knowing what's important to me, knowing my values. So, go to think2perform.com. If you want a copy of the book, Don't Wait for Somebody Else to Fix It, you can buy it on Amazon, you can go to Barnes & Noble, a lot of the big online, Porchlight books, you can access the book that way, on Kindle version, and there's an audible version, you can buy a hardcopy. So, there's any number of ways to access our material. And I think, as Doug mentioned, you don't have to use all eight essentials to see an impact in your life. But you do have to use something. Right? So, we wrote this book, took us four and a half, five years to write the book, so back to delayed gratification, we had the book idea probably in 2017-2018. It took us four, four and a half years to write the book. Then, we had to get it published. Now, we're marketing the book. So, this is a journey that we've been on, but we designed the book to be a workbook, something that people can use, and you don't have to use all eight essentials, but you do have to use some of it.
Doug Lennick 39:48
Well, one of the endorsements, in fact, as you said that, it reminds me of this endorsement, it says, if you're looking to grow leadership skills in all areas of your life, this book is a high-powered combination of critical thinking skills combined with emotional competencies. These eight leadership essentials work together in a magical combination to produce unlimited positive outcomes for today's leaders. You can use them any way you want. Mix and match, pick any one. And to Chuck's point, it's designed to be a workbook. We want people to actually use the book. I have several books that I actually use. And we want this to be one of the candidates for your audience to have this be one of the books they actually use, not just have on the shelf. Use the book.
Jeremy Cline 40:42
I will certainly put links to it in the show notes for this episode. Doug, Chuck, as I said, fascinating conversation. Thank you so much for coming on the podcast.
Doug Lennick 40:52
Thank you, Jeremy.
Chuck Wachendorfer 40:54
Pleasure to be here. Thanks for having us.
Jeremy Cline 40:57
Okay, hope you enjoyed the interview with Doug Lenick and Chuck Wachendorfer. A first for me, because I've never had two people on at the same time on the podcast. I think Doug and Chuck took things in a slightly different direction to what I was expecting. They focused much more on the self-leadership, rather than necessarily interactions with colleagues and leaders. But it kind of made sense. The first step towards doing anything which might be described as leadership in nature is really getting inside yourself and leading yourself. If you decide that something is quite simply not your problem, or that you don't have capacity or authority to deal with it, and that is up to whoever you identify as the leader to sort things out, well, then that's kind of all on you. It's your kind of internal thought process. And so, I think that's what Doug and Chuck were getting at when they were talking about leading yourself. And it's never going to be easy, and sometimes it won't work. But what I took from Doug and Chuck was that it's the internal attitude that matters much more than the results. For the show notes and links, you'll find them this week at changeworklife.com/167, that's changeworklife.com/167. And one thing you can do for me this week, which would really, really help me, that's leave a review. Ideally on Apple podcasts. But if you don't have Apple podcasts, but you have another app which enables you to leave a review, that would also be really helpful. But Apple podcast is really the one that counts. I'm really grateful that you've taken the time to listen to this episode. And you know, maybe you're a subscriber, but I know just how much competition there is for ears, and so a review is your way of telling other people that, hey, you know what, this podcast's worth listening to. Now, the question of identity and how that's wrapped up in your job is quite a big one. And that's probably even more the case when you look at some of the what you might call helping professions. I'm thinking nurses, teachers, doctors, policemen, firemen and the like. These are stressful but vital jobs. And they're also jobs in which it's easy to burn out. But if you're in one of those professions, and you're looking to do something else, it can be really hard to figure out just what it is that you could do, especially when so much of your identity is wrapped up in that profession. So, what can you do? Well, in two weeks' time, that's exactly what we're going to be talking about. So, if you haven't already, do make sure that you're subscribed to the show, so you don't miss this great interview we've got in two weeks' time, and I can't wait to see you then. Cheers. Bye.
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