Show cover of Cascading Leadership - The Show

Cascading Leadership - The Show

Moving your career further, faster has been at the heart of Cascading Leadership since we launched early in 2022. We've brought forward stories of women, immigrants, and other members of the global majority who have risen to senior leadership and had them share their insights. The intent is to have the next generation of professionals accelerate their development and trajectory so they can achieve more in less time. Join us for lessons on organizational effectiveness, sales and marketing effectiveness, DEIB, talent strategy, and HRTech. We'll throw in some fun quick takes, foodie talk, book reviews, and all around sports chat as well. Take advantage of weekly conversations with some of the best leaders in business and leverage their insights to supercharge your career. If you're looking to take your career to the next level and pick up lessons they don't teach in business school, tune in and follow us. Tell a friend.


The Importance Of Allyship In Creating Diverse And Inclusive Sales And Marketing Organizations
The importance of allyship in creating a diverse and inclusive culture in sales and marketing organizations was highlighted in this conversation. Success is not achieved alone and members of underrepresented communities often feel isolated in their roles. This creates a gap in creating an environment that promotes inclusivity and diversity.This conversation covers the steps needed to become an effective ally and the role that allyship plays in fostering a culture of inclusivity. Empathy, active listening, and a commitment to learning about the experiences of underrepresented communities are critical to advance diversity within organizations. The benefits of allyship were highlighted, including increased employee engagement and retention. Additionally,  a focus on how to foster an environment that is more aligned with being an effective ally was covered in the conversation. Members of the majority should be intentional about advocating for those in underrepresented communities and creating space for their perspectives.Practical steps for creating an environment that encourages allyship include self-education, validating perspectives, speaking up, and holding oneself accountable. By creating an environment that encourages allyship, organizations can benefit from increased employee engagement, retention, and a more inclusive workplace culture.Chapters0:00:00The Importance of Allyship in Sales and Marketing Organizations for Underrepresented Communities0:01:08Fostering Effective Allyship in the Workplace: Practical Steps and Benefits0:05:04"Driving Innovation and Allyship in Sales and Marketing for Underrepresented Communities" Follow us at:
07:22 4/25/23
Shifting Focus
Quick announcement about upcoming changes to Cascading Leadership and it's content format.  Follow us at:
03:43 4/25/23
Trying to Create an Inclusive Sales and Marketing Culture? Does Your Leadership Look the Part?
The lack of representation and diversity in sales and marketing leadership positions was the focus of a recent conversation. Despite underrepresented groups accounting for almost 40% of the US population, they only held 20% of executive positions. Women held only 29% of C-suite positions.Promoting diversity and creating an inclusive culture would benefit business outcomes and performance. Promoting diversity in leadership positions would require setting clear goals and benchmarks and addressing biases that may be preventing underrepresented communities from advancing in their careers.Leveraging leadership development programs and sponsorship to elevate members of underrepresented communities is a critical part of your people development strategy that shouldn't be ignored.An inclusive culture would help to retain employees and attract customers who align with the company's values. Increasing diversity in leadership positions was crucial for businesses to remain competitive and relevant. Organizations need to set clear goals and benchmarks, address biases, and create an inclusive culture to promote diversity in leadership. By implementing these strategies, businesses could create a diverse and inclusive culture that would benefit both employees and customers.Timestamps0:00:00"Importance of Diversity in Sales and Marketing Leadership: Strategies for Implementation and Promotion"0:01:08"Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in Leadership: Strategies for Success"0:02:57Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in Leadership: Strategies for Creating an Inclusive Culture0:06:31The Importance of Representation in Creating a Strong Organizational Culture in Sales and Marketing. Follow us at:
08:49 4/21/23
Peer to Peer Mentoring: Career Accelerator for the Underrepresented Seller and Marketer
Peer-to-peer mentorship is an underutilized tool that can significantly accelerate career development, particularly for those from underrepresented communities in sales and marketing. Being both a mentor and a mentee can accelerate learning and provide new perspectives. However, there is a misconception that early career professionals may not have much to offer.To make the most of peer-to-peer mentorship, make sure to align to one's own goals and values and pairing up with someone who shares similar ones. Open communication, trust, and vulnerability were noted as critical to building a strong relationship. Setting clear expectations, balancing interaction, and holding each other accountable were also seen as important.Chapters0:00:00The Value of Peer to Peer Mentorship in Sales and Marketing Career Development0:02:12Creating a Successful Peer-to-Peer Mentorship Relationship: Tips and Benefits0:04:04Tips for Building and Maintaining Professional Relationships in Sales and Marketing Follow us at:
06:40 4/19/23
The Power of Mentorship for Early Career Underrepresented Sales and Marketing Professionals
Mentorship and having a board of directors are crucial for underrepresented individuals looking to advance their careers in sales and marketing.Mentors can offer advice and guidance based on shared experiences and perspectives, provide networking opportunities, and help accelerate careers. They can also offer the benefit of their experience in making better decisions and overcoming challenges.To identify potential mentors, the first step is to understand one's professional goals and seek mentors from the same industry or similar backgrounds. Attend industry events, use LinkedIn, and join professional associations or affinity groups to build a mentorship community.Finding mentors from similar backgrounds who can offer advice and guidance based on shared experiences and perspectives. This helps to ensure that the mentor understands the challenges and obstacles faced by the mentee and can offer effective advice.Once potential mentors have been identified, reach out to potential mentors with thoughtful messaging, be open to feedback, and maintain sustained touchpoints. It is important to show that you are committed to the mentorship relationship and willing to put in the effort to make it work.By actively building mentorship relationships, individuals can accelerate their career growth and help others achieve their full potential.Chapters0:00:00Accelerating Your Career as an Underrepresented Sales or Marketing Professional through Mentorship.0:01:26The Importance of Finding Mentors from Underrepresented Communities in Your Professional Career0:03:00Tips for Building and Maintaining Mentorship Relationships in the Professional World0:05:25The Importance of Cultivating Meaningful Mentorship Relationships in Sales and Marketing Careers Follow us at:
07:20 4/18/23
The Mindset Shift That Early Career Diverse Sales and Marketing Professionals Need To Make to Fast-Track Their Careers
Topics covered: Everyone is a free agent and to act accordingly. This means to take control of your career and act intentionally when presented with opportunities and offers from various companies. This is important to do in order to make sure that you are making the most of the opportunities presented to you and to ensure your career is on the path that you have mapped out.Adopting an owner's mentality. It is important to be aware of the incentives that leaders have, which can sometimes be different from those of the line level employees. Don't cede too much control  to others, as promises can easily disappear if the company changes or is acquired. Employees should take ownership of their career, as it is the only way to ensure that their long-term goals are achieved. In order to do this, employees must be aware of the incentives leaders have, and how these differ from the incentives of the line level. Timestamps00:00:00"The Benefits of Adopting a Free Agent Mindset for Early Career Professionals"00:00:58Discussion on Adopting an Owner's Mentality in Career Paths00:03:13"Maximizing Your Career Path with an Owner's Mentality"00:06:46Conversation on Career Progression and the Benefits of a CEO Mindset00:08:35Conversation on Career Advancement for Early Career Professionals from Underrepresented Communities Follow us at:
11:01 4/17/23
How Lack of Representation in Sales Leadership Crushes Your Diversity Initiatives
Representation in sales and marketing is extremely important for early and mid-career professionals. It is difficult for members of underrepresented communities to get interviews and job opportunities, as they are often labeled as not fitting the right culture. This conversation aims to explore the role that representation plays in the success of sales and marketing professionals. It is necessary to have inclusionary practices in order to create an equal playing field. Having more representation in sales and marketing positions allows for more diverse perspectives and ideas, which can lead to better outcomes. By promoting diversity and inclusion, companies can create a more supportive and successful environment for everyone.When considering a career in sales and marketing, representation is a key factor to consider. It is important to take a look at the upper levels of the organization in terms of diversity; if you are not seeing faces that look like yours, then this should be taken into account regarding your ability to succeed. This is especially true in times of economic downturn, as those belonging to underrepresented communities are often the first to be impacted. It is essential to have a diverse team in order to achieve the best business outcomes. When looking for organizations to join, it is essential to investigate and consider the diversity of the organization.This conversation is about the importance of representation and diversity in sales and marketing organizations. It has been proven through social science research that the more diverse an organization is at all levels of the organization, the better the business outcomes. Having somebody that looks like you, who comes from your background and experiences, is a source of inspiration and it is important for those in the early to mid career stages. Representation and diversity should not be seen as a nice to have but instead as a critical business imperative. Leaders have a responsibility to take inventory at all levels of the organization and see who is represented in the seats of power. This will lead to higher employee engagement and better organizational performance.Organizations need to take a comprehensive approach to promoting diversity, inclusion, equity and belonging in their workplace. First, they should develop a plan to promote underrepresented groups within the organization. This should include succession planning, positioning, mentorship and sponsorship programs, and allowing the underrepresented groups to take the lead in driving initiatives.Additionally, they should avoid taking a talent attraction approach solely focused on optics and PR, as it will fail if there is no representation beyond the manager level. Finally, they should make sure to commit to living the words they say, as candidates will be able to see if the organization is truly committed to promoting diversity.Timestamps0:00:00Topic: Representation in Sales and Marketing: A Discussion for Early to Mid Career Professionals0:01:17"The Reality of Representation in Sales and Marketing: What You Need to Know"0:03:11"The Business Imperative of Representation in Sales and Marketing Organizations"0:07:53"Creating a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace: Strategies for Talent Attraction and Succession Planning"0:10:39"The Benefits of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging in the Workplace" Follow us at:
12:34 4/16/23
What Early and Mid-Career Professionals Need to Know About Leveling Up Their Careers
Dr. Jim discussed the challenges faced by early to mid-career professionals from underrepresented communities. He noted that these professionals are often high-performing individual contributors but struggle to unlock their full career potential due to a lack of resources. With this in mind, Dr. Jim intends to explore the resources available to these professionals to help them gain a career edge. He believes that understanding the dynamics of the workplace and the opportunities available will help these professionals achieve success. He concluded that the conversations he has with these professionals will help them unlock their full potential.Dr. Jim shared key resources that are important to have on one's radar when it comes to career development and progression. He suggested that LinkedIn is a great platform for networking opportunities, mentorship opportunities and finding out what companies are really like behind the curtains. Jopwell and Diversity are helpful for connecting with companies that are committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. It is important to make sure companies are truly committed to DEIB by looking at the executive suite and senior leadership. Additionally, he suggested to look for resources that are unique to diverse communities.Dr. Jim discussed resources available for LGBTQIA+ professionals, people with disabilities, and women in tech. He recommended using Equal, the Job Accomodation Network, and Women Who Code to get support, resources, and networking opportunities. Additionally, he suggested joining professional organizations like the National Society of Black Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, Association for Women in Science, and Society of Human Resources Management to gain knowledge, tools, and connections. He encouraged the listener to reach out to him on LinkedIn or follow the Cascading Leadership handle for further questions.Timestamps00:00:50Heading: Leveraging Resources for Career Progression and Development as an Underrepresented Professional00:03:58"Networking Resources for LGBTQIA+ and Disabled Professionals"Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - RivieraFollow us at:
06:09 4/14/23
How Creating a Culture of Balance and Fairness Influences Employee Engagement
Organizations face a variety of challenges when it comes to keeping their employees engaged. To address this, tech and organizational leaders have put forth strategies to ensure employees remain engaged. These strategies focus on bringing one's whole self to work, building a culture of balance and fairness, and creating a sense of belonging. This helps employees to stay motivated and connected to the mission of the organization. Furthermore, organizations should strive to create an environment where employees feel valued and respected, as well as providing them with the tools to be successful. By focusing on these key areas, organizations can ensure that their employees remain engaged and motivated.Timestamps00:01:00Employee Engagement: Understanding What Makes Employees Well-Rounded00:03:00Incentivizing Decentralized Teams00:06:32Strategies for Employee Engagement in the Tech Space00:08:57Sales Rituals and Fairness in Reviews and Employee Engagement Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - RivieraFollow us at:
11:58 4/11/23
5 Key Actions Leaders Need to Take to Keep Their Employees Engaged
The conversation focused on the importance of employee engagement and how to retain employees. Leaders in the tech and organization space shared their best practices for creating a culture of engagement. It was highlighted that employee engagement is a critical factor for an organization’s success, as research shows that when employees feel engaged, they are more likely to stay with the company. Five key actions leaders can take to keep their employees engaged were identified, including creating a positive work experience, providing regular feedback, offering challenging opportunities, being transparent about key decisions, and recognizing and rewarding employees for their hard work. With these steps, leaders can create an environment of engagement and a culture of trust, ultimately helping their employees feel more engaged and invested in their work.00:01:00 Cheetung Leong, Co-Founder of Engage Rocket - How Leaders Can Leverage Data to Keep Employees Engaged 00:02:30 Shirin Nikaein, Founder of Upful AI on How Fair Assessments are Critical for Employee Engagement 00:04:00How a Vision for Success Helps Keep Employees Engaged - Tim Sackett  00:05:18The Roles Coaching and Employee Development Plays in Employee Engagement - Emily Farr00:06:29Open and Transparent Communication and Its Impact on Employee Engagement - Lisa First Willis Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
10:30 4/6/23
Creating Equity in Career and Leadership for Black Women in Corporate America
 Dr. Jim discussed the importance of building equity for Black women in leadership and welcomed a panel of guests to the show. TThe three panelists discussed the role of leadership in advancing black women into leadership roles in sales. Sertrice Grice has a background in industrial organizational psychology, and is passionate about allyship and inclusive behaviors. She and her business partner recently wrote a book called Inclusalytics and are also creating a training course on allyship .Dr. Jim asked Grice why it's important to have a data-driven approach to DEI. Grice explained that collecting data and hearing the employee voice is critical in order to drive DEI strategy, before beginning behavior change interventions. She also emphasized the importance of not just collecting data but also being transparent about it and taking action based on it. This is necessary to avoid the performative space and ensure that employees actually see changes being made.Wesleyne shared that many leaders have a similarity bias and don't look outside the box, industry, or what they know to find people with innate sales skills. Whitney Goins noted that leaders need to create an inclusive and diverse work environment and empower black women to take on leadership roles. She suggested that leaders should also provide mentorship, resources, and support to help black women in the sales field. They concluded that leaders should prioritize creating a culture of inclusion and opportunity for black women in sales if they want to create meaningful change in the industry.Whitnie Goins is a Global DEI Manager for a real estate investment trust company. She has had success in sales and marketing in multiple organizations, but she has always gone beyond the scope of her role to amplify the voices of historically marginalized groups. When she was working in marketing innovation, she noticed an opportunity to educate their commercial organization on how to approach communications during times of communal trauma and horror. This started her transition into DEI, and she loves her work. Her role involves going into offices and organizations to discuss what can be done better to make people feel like they belong and are treated equitably.Timestamps00:03:42Conversation on Leadership and Sales00:05:26Advancing Black Women into Leadership in Sales00:08:27 Benefits of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives in the Workplace00:11:22The Lack of Representation of Black Women in Leadership Positions00:16:55The Challenges of Advancing Black Women into Leadership00:21:09Exploring Strategies for Elevating Women and Black Women in Leadership00:25:46"Exploring Data to Improve Representation of Underrepresented Groups in the Workplace"00:31:26Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace00:37:36Empathy Training and Allyship00:40:09"Advancing Black Women in Leadership: Key Action Items for Organizations"00:45:12Black Women Leaders in the Workforce: Data and Actions to Drive ChangeMusic Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
50:27 3/20/23
Recovering From Severe Trauma on the Path to Reinvention and Achieving Career Success
Navigating the Career Path - Staying True to Yourself & Unlocking SuccessSUMMARY Dr. Jim and Natalie Coulson discuss the importance of staying true to oneself and why anonymity is not a virtue in the modern world. Natalie works with entrepreneurial thinkers to help them find their personal brand, no matter if they are still in a corporate environment or have made the transition into their own business. They discuss the keys to getting ahead in the modern world and how people should navigate their career path. Natalie encourages people to stay true to themselves and to not be discouraged by the corporate world. With her help, people can find their own personal brand and make the most of their career.She believes that getting their mindset right is fundamental, as it sets them apart from others and helps them feel better. Natalie has chosen this niche because it follows her own journey and she understands how transformative it can be. In the conversation, Dr. Jim digs deeper into why Natalie chose this niche and her experience with it.In this conversation, Natalie and Dr. Jim discuss the differences between the mindset of a corporate employee and an entrepreneur. Natalie points out that many people in her generation were taught to go to university, get a job and do as they were told. But this doesn't lead to either happiness or success - especially not in expensive cities like Sydney, where houses cost 3-4 million. To be successful, Natalie explains that having an entrepreneurial mindset is essential - one that is open to taking risks and embracing uncertainty. This means breaking free from the constraints of corporate life and being willing to take a leap into the unknown.Natalie and Dr. Jim discussed the concept of entrepreneurial thinking. They noted that it is not something that is taught in school and that it takes a certain amount of risk to embrace it. However, it does not have to be an all or nothing equation; it is possible to have a corporate job and still pursue entrepreneurial ideas. TIMESTAMPS 00:02:00  Empowering Corporate Employees to Elevate Their Brand and Move Into Entrepreneurship00:03:43  Mindset Shifts for Entrepreneurship00:10:44  Professional Journey and Highlight Moments00:12:10  Navigating the Financial Services Industry and Experiencing Stressful Workloads00:15:42   Mental Health Crisis and Breakdown00:17:07  Mental Health and Self-Belief00:21:32  Re-Building After a Breakdown 00:23:12  Embracing Failure and Quitting Things for Growth and Thriving00:30:36   Reframing Priorities and Learning to Say No00:36:00   Exploring Personal Branding00:40:14  Re-evaluating Traditional Paths to Success00:46:09  Finding a Mentor and Building an Attraction Model00:48:09 Own Your Story and Take Time Out to ReflectMusic Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
50:55 3/12/23
Three Essential Tips For Successful Career Navigation
Dr. Jim discussed three key tips for career success. The first tip is to connect with purpose and mission in order to have success in one's career. The second tip is to have a limitless mindset in order to develop career success. The third tip is to embrace minimalism in order to achieve career success. This conversation was driven from a recent interview with Sonya Sepahban, CEO of OurOffice, who mentioned that a connection to purpose and mission was a driving factor behind her career. These tips are essential for anyone looking to succeed in their respective career fields. By connecting with purpose and mission, having a limitless mindset, and embracing minimalism, anyone can increase their chances of achieving career success.Dr. Jim discussed the importance of connecting with purpose and mission when considering career success. He highlighted the importance of forming a strong connection to one's work and operating from a 'why mentality'. He suggested that experimenting across or within functions may help to discover what one's purpose is. He also suggested having a limitless mindset which emphasizes the importance of having an open mind and not limiting oneself when it comes to career navigation.Dr. Jim discussed the importance of breaking away from the me versus the organization mindset in order to foster a sense of limitless possibilities. He suggested that individuals call out areas of opportunity where things can be done differently and work on solutions that could be beneficial to the organization. Additionally, it is important to build strong networks and have advocates within the organization as well as tying potential solutions to a business impact. Lastly, the conversation turned to minimalism and how it can help individuals remain agile and flexible enough to respond to change. This gives them an advantage over those who are not living a minimalist lifestyle.In this conversation, Dr. Jim  discussed how to have better chances of success when it comes to career navigation. The conversation offers valuable insights on how to move one’s career further and faster.Timestamps0:00:58"Navigating Career Success Through Purpose and Mission"00:02:43 Developing a Limitless Mindset00:06:26Career Navigation, Purpose, and MindsetMusic Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
08:23 3/6/23
How Aspiring to be an Astronaut Led to a Career of Breaking Barriers and Becoming a Female Tech Startup Founder
Sonya Sepahban is -  a minority of minorities -  in today's startup world. She is one of the few women in executive boardrooms and startup CEOs that get funded. Despite the fact that she was often the only woman in the room, she was able to navigate these situations due to the help and mentors she received from the men in power. Sonya rejected limits and focused on what she could do to make her voice heard. She believes that everyone has something to offer and that it is important to ask for what you need. This attitude allowed her to rise to the top and be successful in her career.Sonya is a talented leader in the tech and startup space. She has had a varied and successful career, starting out as a junior NASA engineer and progressing to executive roles with thousands of employees as well as public company boardrooms. Currently, she works with a small, talented team at a tech startup. In this conversation, Sonya and Dr. Jim discussed how purpose-driven living is the key to long-term success, why ignoring limits is the key to successful career navigation, and what role reinvention plays in life and career.Sonya is the founder and CEO of a company focused on helping organizations of any size create inclusive workplaces. She has a background as a developer and senior female leader in Fortune 500 companies, which has shaped her work in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Sonya began her career in NASA, and she explains that looking back she can connect the dots in her career to the work she is doing now. She emphasizes that being purposeful is an important part of her work, and she believes that her own experiences have helped to shape her current role. Her goal is to help companies foster productivity and belonging for all individuals within their organization.Sonya has been focused on purposeful work throughout her career, from joining NASA to now working in the corporate boardroom. She joined NASA with the hope of exploring space to better understand humanity and progress, then shifted to aerospace and defense to protect security, freedom, and the way of life. In her current role, she is focused on making the workplace a place where everyone feels they belong and can be productive. She believes that regardless of the business, it is important to be focused on the end user, and that this is similar to what she did at NASA: making people feel safe. In her heavily male-dominated spaces, she is determined to make a difference.Timestamps00:00:00"Exploring Purpose-Driven Living and Career Navigation "00:01:57Heading: Inclusive Workplaces 00:03:32Exploring a Career of Purpose and Mission00:10:22Conversation on Career Advancement and the Power of Belief00:14:23Overcoming Limitations and Achieving Professional Success00:17:30Conversation on Finding Purpose and Mission in Career Trajectory00:21:15Conversation Summary: Exploring the Pursuit of Perfection00:26:49Exploring Minimalism00:33:56Exploring the Impact of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace00:39:40Reinventing Yourself and Building Your Career00:44:11 Career Reinvention Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
48:24 3/2/23
The Slow Pace of Progress for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging is a Design Feature, Not a Bug
Dr. Jim discussed the topic of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) on his podcast . He noted that progress for the Black community has been slow and questioned whether this slow progress is a design feature or a bug. He has had conversations with members of the Black community about civil rights, representation and advancement, and how DEIB was brought forward to create a more equitable world of work and opportunity for the Black community. The conversation highlights the need to consider this slow progress and the importance of DEIB in creating a more equitable world. Dr. Jim talks about the level of frustration that comes up when discussing D E I B initiatives, and how they often don't do what they're designed to do. He references James Baldwin's debate with William F. Buckley and his later quote from 1980, which reflects the struggles of the Black community over the past 60 years. Dr. Jim concludes that if a fair-minded person looks at the slow progress of D E I B initiatives, they must conclude that the slow progress is a design feature. He encourages people to think about what other conclusion can be drawn from this.Timestamps00:00:00Exploring the Slow Pace of Progress for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB)00:00:58"Exploring the Impact of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) Initiatives on the Black Community"00:02:46 Examining the Effectiveness of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives00:04:59Conversation on Oppression and Initiatives to Address Injustice00:07:44Examining the Need for Sustained Focus on DEIB Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
09:34 2/27/23
Making a Mid-Career Switch Without Ever Submitting an Application
Dr. Jim and Lawrence welcome Stephanie Davis to Cascading Leadership to discuss navigating a career change as a mid-career professional. Stephanie speaks from her own experience on how to switch functional areas of expertise and what factors to consider when making a transition in a career.Dr. Jim transitions to talking about the difficulty of transitioning from one career to another, especially when compounded with issues of race and gender.Dr. Jim interviews Stephanie, a former financial services professional, to discuss her transition from finance to her current career. Stephanie had always been interested in money and business and decided to pursue a degree in economics and finance. She started out in financial services and eventually transitioned to her current career. She talks about the challenges she faced navigating the change and provides advice to others who may be looking to do the same. She encourages people to take opportunities and be open to possibilities, while also reminding them to take time to understand the industry they're entering and build relationships. She also emphasizes the importance of knowing yourself and your strengths and weaknesses.Timestamps00:00:00Navigating a Career Change as a Mid-Career Professional00:02:00Navigating Career Transitions and Overcoming Challenges of Race and Gender00:04:00Navigating Career Change and Her Experience in Business and Economics00:07:32Early Career in Finance and Technology00:12:27Conversation on Transitioning from Buy Side to Sell Side of Financial Services00:15:34Conversation on Career Transitions and Relationship Building00:20:00The Power of Relationships and Networking in Achieving Success00:27:48Navigating a Career Switch with Stephanie Davis00:32:00Conversation on Navigating the Buyer-Seller Relationship for Career SuccessMusic Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
37:06 2/23/23
How a Strong Purpose is Critical to Leadership Success
 Dr. Jim discussed  the importance of leveraging technology properly to ensure success and avoiding the mistake of viewing technology as a standalone solution. A combination of people, process, and technology is necessary to solve any transformation initiative. In order to properly leverage technology, there needs to be  a conversation between stakeholders, develop a comprehensive plan, and consider the long-term impact. He concluded that a well-implemented technology strategy is key to advancing any inclusion initiative.In order to ensure a successful initiative, a strong alignment and understanding of the purpose is essential. Organizations should do a current state analysis to get an honest assessment of where they are currently. This is important because it can be easy to get sold a product which paints a picture of a much more advanced future than the current state. Companies should also ask themselves hard questions about the current state in order to properly plan for the initiative. Technology can play an important role in the success of the initiative, but it is important to focus on the purpose and the current state first.Dr. Jim discussed how organizations can create a successful talent strategy. He suggested focusing on aligning the organization's purpose and asking hard questions to gain a better understanding of the current state. This allows for the evaluation of people and processes and the creation of an appropriate solution. Technology can be used as an activator, but should not be the only solution. Additionally, organizations should look at the big picture and avoid focusing on one problem in a vacuum when creating their talent strategy. John Graham's conversation on how to create a talent attraction flywheel was also discussed, with the emphasis that organizations should focus on the entire picture and not just the talent attraction side.Dr. Jim and John had a conversation about how to solve talent strategy issues. They emphasized the importance of having an honest assessment of where the current state infrastructure is before trying to attract more people to the organization. They suggested evaluating the existing infrastructure to make sure it's optimized for retention and development, as well as getting feedback from the existing team on areas that cause them issues with job satisfaction. This is important to prevent filling a leaky bucket and to make sure that employees are positioned for success.Timestamps00:00:00"Exploring the Role of Technology in Driving Inclusion"00:02:00"Aligning Technology Initiatives with Organizational Purpose for Success"00:03:37Exploring the Framework for Successful Technology Transformation and Talent Strategy00:07:00"Evaluating Talent Strategy"00:08:25Strategies for Successful Talent Attraction and Factors Influencing Leadership Success00:10:26On Practicing Leadership Effectively"Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
17:49 2/20/23
Millennials and Generation Z: Your Leadership Skills Need to Be Practiced for Career Success
SUMMARY Bryan  Bennett is the Chief Leadership Innovation Officer for the Elite Leadership Academy Company and an adjunct professor at Northwestern University. He is the author of the Path to Elite Level Leadership, a philosophy of leadership based on the way athletes train.  Lawrence Brown and Bryan discussed the similarities between leadership and team sports, and Bryan shared his own origin story as a nerd before Nerds were cool. He believes that leadership should be approached in the same way that athletes approach their craft, with a continual focus on self-improvement.Bryan grew up with three brothers and had two parents who provided a great family environment. His mother was very educated and had graduated high school after two double promotions and was still valedictorian of the class. His father was more hands-on and they both worked hard to keep the family in private school. As a child, Bryan didn't participate in many extracurricular activities. However, this experience helped him to find himself and be brave enough to step out in front when he had to. Bryan was involved in nerdy activities like the science club, chess club, and National Honor Society.His father had an inspiring work ethic that he was exposed to from a young age. His mother also had a strong work ethic, and the family would often welcome any guests to join them for breakfast on Saturdays. Bennett went to Butler University for accounting and then worked for three years at Coopers and Lybrand in Cincinnati. He then moved back to Chicago to attend Northwestern's Kellogg Graduate School, majoring in marketing, finance, information systems, and management policy. Afterwards, he began working for Amoco in their financial analysis department. Bennett's journey demonstrates his strong work ethic and his drive to achieve success.Bryan  is a leadership expert who found his footing in his career when he became a database marketing executive. His job involved using his quantitative skills to analyze data and his strategic skills to consult clients on the strategies they should employ. His role required him to lead teams and this experience helped him transition into a leadership expert. Bryan attributes his leadership skills to his upbringing and his parents who led in different ways.TIMESTAMPS 00:01:58  Exploring Family Dynamics and Extracurricular Activities and Influence on Future Leadership 00:04:27   From Database Marketing Executive to Leadership Expert00:07:50  Leadership Development and Career Advancement00:12:00   Leadership Fundamentals: Vision, Living, Reflection, and Coaching00:14:21   Conversation on Leadership and Followership00:17:53   Leadership Assessment, Data Analysis, and Decision-making 00:20:31  Leadership Coaching and Managing Across and Upwards00:23:45  Generational Leadership Perspectives with Bryan Bennett00:25:10  Benefits of Having a Mentor and Sustained Relationships00:28:27  Message to Millennials and Gen Z on  Career Advancement and Finding an Advocate or SponsorMusic Credit: Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
33:50 2/16/23
Inclusion, Talent Strategy, and Leadership Highlights
This episode features key takeaways from the conversation with Jiquanda Nelson - How to build an inclusion culture How to set up a strong foundation for DEIB strategy How DEIB benefits organizations Additionally, this episodes covers highlights form the conversation with John Graham Jr. How to have constructive conversations about DEIBHow to move beyond the talent attraction hamster wheel How unconscious bias impacts the hiring processAdditionally, a sneak peak of the  upcoming episode of Cascading Leadership featuring Brian Bennett, a leader with a unique perspective on how to build strong organizational leadership cultures. Brian has spent time in the healthcare and IT spaces, implementing systems and helping organizations level up their leadership capabilities. This episode, along with the others released in February, will be beneficial for those looking to increase their talent management and talent strategy capabilities. Timestamps00:00:00Heading: Cascading Leadership: February 13 Promo with Dr. Jim and Jaqua Nelson00:01:00"Exploring the Benefits of D&I in the Workplace with QUANDA and John Graham Jr."00:05:00Heading: Leveraging Unique Perspectives to Level Up Leadership Capabilities Follow us at:
07:15 2/13/23
If You Want to Be a Destination Employer, Stop Treating People as if They're Disposable
Summary/AbstractJohn Graham Jr. joined Dr. Jim for a conversation about creating a talent attraction flywheel and how cultural intelligence for the C-suite to recruitment is critical for sustained success. They discussed the importance of the question who benefits and the need for everyone in the enterprise to own the A-word if they want to solve turnover.  The conversation provided insights into how to create an effective talent attraction flywheel.John is a specialist in employer branding and recruitment marketing. He helps organizations reflectively hold up a mirror to their culture and employees' lived experiences, and then articulate this experience to attract, engage, and retain talent. Employer brand is important because it is the way that people experience and perceive your organization. When candidates are looking for a place to work, they are exposed to your employer brand through a multitude of touchpoints and it speaks on your behalf before they even get to a recruiter. Therefore, it is important to shape the narrative and the story of who you are.John and Jim discuss the importance of understanding the needs of marginalized talent in the job market. Graham Jr. is the author of the book Plantation Theory: The Black Professional Struggle Between Freedom and Security, which examines the daily experiences of black professionals in the corporate world, as well as the epigenetic programming that affects their autonomy and control over labor. The book encourages better conversations and provides better questions to help shape better outcomes for marginalized communities.John and Jim discussed the importance of advancing constructive conversation in organizations. To do this, John suggests that executive leadership must confront their own insecurities and be willing to address them in order to make substantial change. Timestamps00:00:00"Interview with John Graham Jr. on Creating a Talent Attraction Flywheel"00:02:16Exploring the Importance of Employer Branding and DEI Initiatives 00:05:44Conversation on Advancing Constructive Conversations for Meaningful Change00:10:38Moving Beyond the Attraction Hamster Wheel00:14:57Exploring the Challenges of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace00:21:58"Exploring the Impact of Unconscious Bias on Hiring Decisions"00:23:40 Building Cultural Intelligence and Increasing Representation of Marginalized Communities in the Workplace00:30:11"Creating a Culture of Inclusion and Employee Advocacy"00:37:28"Creating an Inclusive Culture Through Accountability and Authenticity"00:42:27"Creating an Inclusive Recruitment Model"00:47:29"Creating an Attraction Model for Talent Acquisition: Key Considerations for HR Leaders"Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
51:55 2/9/23
Advancing Inclusion Through Technology, Community Engagement, And Personal Growth
Jiquanda Nelson was the guest on this episode of Cascading Leadership. She is the CEO of Diversity Window, a technology organization that focuses on diversity, equity, and inclusion. She is  a mother of three, a distance runner, and an avid community activist. She also serves on many boards, including the PTA president. Jiquanda discussed her background and origin story, which included her passion for wanting to help the younger generation navigate organizations and environments where they may be the only one that looks different. She also discussed her role as the ultimate hype woman and how she likes to make people feel seen and heard.Jiquanda shared her experience growing up in a small, diverse town where she was the only black student in the gifted program. She had many friends and was a very sociable person, but still found it difficult to fit in at times. As she grew older, she understood how much her different experiences had shaped her. She realized that the education experience of black students was different and that they often did not get the same opportunities or access to resources as other students. Through her experience, she was able to learn the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion and how it can create a more equitable educational system.Jiquanda grew up in a family that emphasized the importance of taking care of the community. This mentality has been with her throughout her work in diversity, equity, and inclusion, and she feels it is her responsibility to speak up when she sees someone suffering. Family has been an integral part of her views and values, and has been the foundation for her work.Timestamps00:00:00 Exploring the Origin Story of an Ultimate Hype Woman and Diversity Advocate00:03:19 Reflections on Growing Up in a Small Town and Experiencing a Culture Shock at a Historically Black College and University00:06:37 The Impact of Family on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Work00:09:17Conversation on Experiences of Growing Up and College Life at Florida A&M University00:14:48Reflection on Working with At-Risk Youth00:17:46 Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategies with Jiquanda Nelson00:23:00Mentorship and Sponsorship: Keys to Advocating for Yourself00:25:57Conversation on Communication, Feedback, and Managing Upwards00:29:35Conversation on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Strategies for Business Success00:35:49Conversation on Building an Effective D&I Program00:39:38Conversation on the Benefits of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Workplace00:45:17Building an Inclusive Organizational Culture00:50:21Key Leadership Takeaways for Career Advancement00:53:28Heading: Creating a Space for People to Show Up at Their Best: The Importance of Doing the Work to Understand ExperiencesMusic Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
57:42 2/2/23
How Problem Obsession and Service Mindset Fuels Your Innovation and Sales Engine
In this episode of Cascading Leadership, Dr. Jim welcomes Ali Al Jabry, the founder of Kwema, to discuss the most important thing to consider as a founder of a startup and why building lifelong relationships is critical to startup success. Ali explains that he is Kenyan and Saudi and has lived in five different continents, mainly the Middle East and Africa, for about 10 years.He provides insight into why having strong relationships is essential for success and emphasizes that the US isn’t as safe as some may think. Ali highlights the importance of understanding the local market and culture in order to succeed. He advises that founders should be patient and persistent in order to succeed. He emphasizes the importance of understanding the local market, the local culture and the need to build relationships with people who have a good understanding of the region. Finally, he advises founders to always be learning and to stay current.Ali  is a tech founder motivated by his experience in two very different worlds, the Middle East and Kenya. He and his co-founders came up with the idea of Kwema,  after one of their network friends was kidnapped on her way from the airport to her house. Through his journey with Kwema Ali has learned about safety and security, having lived all over Latin America and the US. Kwema, a safety technology company that has developed a badge reel device with a hidden panic button. When pressed, it notifies a user's security team, corporate security team, emergency management team, or 911 of their situation. He shared his story of how the company evolved from an idea that was sparked from an experience of being in a dangerous situation. Ali has lived in many places throughout his life - this has allowed him to talk to people about their safety and has opened his eyes to the need for safety technology. He has received a lot of traction for Kwema in different industries in the US. Ali's story of innovation is rooted in a terrifying experience, . His immigrant background has helped him stay open minded and venture out of his own community. He believes in investing in cultures and being as local as possible.Timestamps00:00:00 Exploring Innovative Leadership and Disruptive Strategies00:05:00 Exploring the Impact of a Global Life Experience00:10:58 Professional Growth and Ambition00:15:50Lessons Learned from Winning a Startup Competition00:25:36"Exploring the Challenges of Launching a Hardware Product00:34:21Exploring Solutions to Workplace Violence00:38:49Conversation on Building Relationships and Putting People First in Business00:47:27Exploring Solutions to Healthcare System Challenges Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
51:39 1/26/23
Civil War, Assimilation, Immigration, and Career Navigation - The Journey to Talent Acquisition Leadership
Summary/AbstractDr. Jim welcomes Hamid Bangura to the show to discuss the importance of access to opportunity being the true foundation for success, rather than talent alone. They discuss how it is important to not confuse what makes sense with what drives one to make a difference, as well as why one cannot KPI their way to success if their product is people. Hamid reveals that he has been an independent contributor as a technical recruiter, covering a wide range of skill sets primarily on the IT side, ranging from engineering to executive recruiting. Hamid  is a recruitment manager who has been in the staffing and recruiting industry for  years. He has worked in management, director and national roles, and has traveled to other countries such as India to help build branches there. His current role is working for Amazon AWS, where he deals with high-level software engineers and software development managers. He is also responsible for offers and interacting with the business. Hamid immigrated to the United States from Sierra Leone when he was young, with his parents, in search of opportunity. They settled in a small town in Central Illinois.Hamid Bangura's parents made the decision to immigrate to the United States from Sierra Leone. In Sierra Leone, the quality of education and access to basic necessities like consistent power had been declining, making life there increasingly difficult. Therefore, they decided that the US would offer a better future for their family. He and Dr. Jim also discussed the similarities of their immigration stories, as both of them immigrated at a young age from their respective countries. Hamid shares his experience of life in Sierra Leone during the civil war. Hamid's family were still living there at the time and they relied on short wave radio for news. The war lasted 11 years, had a devastating effect on people, and the family tried to help in whatever way they could. Hamid only returned to Sierra Leone in 2017, and saw first-hand the extreme poverty and lack of resources. He also saw that people were still enjoying life and being resilient despite the difficult circumstances. He noted that there is no middle class, only those with money and those who struggle, and that the open-air markets are selling mostly goods from Asia. Lastly, he pointed out that many people lack access to clean water and food, making life even more difficult.Timestamps00:01:54Conversation with Hamid Bangura: A Journey from Sierra Leone to Amazon AWS00:06:11Heading: A Day in the Life of a Sierra Leoni During Civil War Conflict00:09:17Conversation on the Impact of Civil War and Underdevelopment in Sierra Leone00:15:14From the DC Area to Charleston, Illinois00:18:29 Navigating Cultural Identity in Central Illinois00:25:31Conversation on Immigrant Experiences and Educational Achievement00:30:00 Career Paths and Human Capital Management00:36:00Adjusting to a Career in Staffing00:39:17 Reconciling Metrics and People in the Staffing Industry00:40:49"The Benefits of Focusing on Outcomes in Staffing"00:44:00 Achieving Success in the Staffing IndustryMusic Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
48:38 1/19/23
Terrance Cooley: How Eating Out of Trash Cans Influences Your Leadership Mindset
Summary/AbstractIn today's conversation, Terrance Cooley discusses how resilience, adaptability, and a minimalist lifestyle is the key to seizing opportunity and success in life. Terrance is  chief information security officer (CISO) and the CPO for the US Air Force.  In his previous role, he was a cyber threat hunter for the Air Force. He has also worked as a IT systems program manager for logistics in Europe. In his current role, he is responsible for the security of the  information systems and ensuring that they are compliant with regulations. He is also responsible for the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) program.Terrance talks about how he is responsible for driving the culture of the organization and ensuring that it is aligned with the strategic mission. He has extensive experience in leadership and management, and he is passionate about creating a positive and productive culture within the Air Force.Terrance  talks about how his early life was very challenging, with his family moving around a lot and him having to restart his life multiple times. He also talks about how his mother had to bring him to her college classes in order to continue her courses. He talks about how he attempted suicide when he was 12, but it failed and discouraged him from trying again. He talks about how he eventually got more comfortable with change and found his own happiness.Timestamps00:00:00Terrance Cooley: A Resilient Life00:02:00A Career in Technical Management and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion00:03:29The Air Force's Approach to Innovation and Culture Change00:06:35The Power of Outcomes00:08:36The Importance of a Good Foundation in Life00:09:52Terrance Cooley's Journey from Survival Mode to Success00:12:47The Importance of a Mentor00:18:17My Struggle with Toxic Masculinity00:19:43Experience with Depression00:21:20Failed suicide 00:22:50 Finding His Voice00:24:44The Best Years of Your Life? Terrance Cooley Disagrees00:28:58The Importance of a Good Work Ethic and Quality Character in the Workplace00:30:40The Air Force as a Stepping Stone for Success00:31:53The Importance of a Diverse Education System00:33:27Career Navigation Lessons00:37:06The Career Path 00:38:35Leadership Development in the Military00:45:19The Air Force's Approach to Maintaining Technical Proficiency00:46:37The Benefits of a Minimalist Lifestyle in the Workplace00:47:59The Power of Change: Lessons from Terrance CooleyMusic Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
52:07 1/12/23
Ashley Brundage: How Losing Your Career Allows You to Lead Others to Empowerment
Summary/AbstractAshley Brundage discusses her experience in the restaurant industry and how it has influenced her career in leadership development. She talks about her early days working as a server and how her first manager taught her the importance of being a good leader. She also talks about her experience in the restaurant industry in terms of recruiting and retention, and how she has had to reinvent herself in many ways since losing her job in 2008. Ashley chats about the foundational elements of empowerment and how to move past the performative empowerment culture that exists today. She also talks about how to build the confidence and resilience necessary to overcome any obstacle. Ashley also talks about her unique approach to leadership development, which includes a focus on intersectionality. She explains that her program is designed to help people understand the different ways that people can lead, and how to create a lasting impact.Ashley  discusses the importance of incorporating diversity, equity, and inclusion into leadership development programming. She emphasizes that it is important to have a variety of people delivering the educational programming, and that the model should be one that connects with all people. Ultimately, this will help to bring people together and improve team dynamics and outcomes.Timestamps00:00:00Ashley Brundage - Empowering Differences - S3 E 10000:02:19Leadership Development Programs: A Conversation with Ashley Brundage00:03:59The Importance of Diversity and Inclusion in Leadership Development Programs00:07:30The Impact of Diversity in the Workplace00:10:07The Impact of High Turnover in the Restaurant Industry00:11:44The Importance of Cultural Respect in the Restaurant Industry00:14:00Transgender Inclusion in the Workplace00:15:38Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace00:17:03Transgender Woman's Journey to Employment in 201000:19:59How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Success00:21:25Ashley Brundage's Journey to the Top of the Banking Industry00:26:00The Importance of Inclusion in the Workplace00:27:38The Importance of Internal Capital00:29:04The Power of a Vision00:34:00Dr. Jim and Ashley Brundage Discuss Career Navigation and Personal Branding00:36:44The Importance of Being Pot Committed in Your Career00:39:53The Power of Personal Branding in Your Career00:41:20The Power of Empowerment00:43:00How to Create an Impactful Message00:48:08Networking and close down Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
51:34 1/5/23
2023 is the Year that Google Dies
2023 will be a really interesting year for a lot of reasons. The year will begin with us being 6 months into a recession and some geopolitical events that could deepen that recession (the potential consolidation of BRICS will be really interesting to observe). The emergence and acceleration of AI in the workplace will have profound impact on the world of work. Since everyone is making predictions about 2023, we figured this would be our opportunity to make a bold prediction. 2023 will be the year that signals the beginning of the end for Google and traditional search engines as we know it. This episode will talk about the relationships between Chat GPT, Microsoft, Azure, Linkedin, Google, YouTube, and TikTok and how the shifting sands will signal the end of Google search. What do you think of the bold prediction? What's your bold prediction for 2023? Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
08:52 12/31/22
Stop Getting Hung Up on - How to Improve Sales Outreach in 2023
2022 was a horrible year for sales effectiveness. The volume of outbound outreach ramped up significantly but the results were terrible. The response to all of that poor outreach showed up with most reps (close to 70%) failing to meet quota. 2023 is going to be a year where there are significant economic headwinds and an AI emergence that could signal the end of many entry-level sales roles. So what can you do to not only improve your skills but also to drive results? The steps discussed in this episode provides an actionable framework for reps to use. Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
10:08 12/31/22
Your Hustle Culture is Crushing Your Employees. Let's Solve Employee Burnout.
In today's mostly remote, distributed, post-pandemic environment, it's quite common for employees to feel burned out. Many organizations experienced record-breaking productivity during the pandemic but it came at the cost of an almost "always on" work culture. This obviously led to employee burnout and all the great resets, resignations, reshuffles, etc we saw in 2022. This episode covers 5 steps that employers and leaders can take to create a more engaged workforce. Let us know what you think. Share this with a friend. Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
07:17 12/31/22
70% of Your Sales Reps Are Failing. Here's How to Fix That in 2023
70% of sellers will have missed quota in 2022. Doing the same motions in 2023 will yield even poorer results. This episode will cover 5 actionable steps for better sales outcomes in 2023. Check it out and share it with a friend.Music Credit: Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera Follow us at:
10:14 12/31/22
Want Employees Who Give a Sh#t? Follow this Framework for Improving Employee Engagement
US Employers lose 550 billion dollars a year due to poor employee engagement. The 6 steps discussed in this episode will allow employers to deploy a framework that will build an engagement culture. Check out the episode. Tell a friend.Music Credit: Maarten Schellekens - Riviera  Follow us at:
06:52 12/28/22