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Christopher Lochhead Follow Your Different™

Author: Christopher Lochhead

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Christopher Lochhead Follow Your Different™ Podcast is a celebration of people, ideas and companies that stand out. A leader in the category “dialogue podcasts,” it feels like eavesdropping on a surprisingly captivating, candid, insightful, no-BS and conversation. Lochhead features legends whose names you will know and everyday legends who you’ll love getting to know. New York Times Bestselling author Hal Elrod calls it “one of the best podcasts of all time”, NBA Legend Bill Walton calls Lochhead “an exploding star – a quasar across the sky", Fast Company Magazine calls him “a human exclamation point”, The Marketing Journal says he’s “one of the best minds in marketing” and The Economist says he’s, “off-putting to some”.
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Silicon Valley legend, Randy Komisar joins us today in a longer than usual episode, but definitely an information-packed conversation. He shares a piece of his mind to us especially on how to have a legendary career, what it's like to be dubbed as the Digital CEO and many more.Rare Opportunity Randy Komisar was a partner at VC pioneer Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. He worked closely with other legends like Steve Jobs and George Lucas. In fact, he has some very interesting stories he shared, being a former senior counsel at Apple and former CEO at LucasArts. “I don't like being disliked and I don't particularly try to be liked. I try to be valued, to create something constructive or positive in a relationship. But being liked is not, it doesn't cross my mind. I want to be respected, if I'm really lucky, I'd like to be admired.” - Randy KomisarThe Virtual CEOSilicon Valley CEOs dubbed him as a Virtual CEO. Randy served in that role for companies like WebTV and Global Giving. He had some compelling stories and opinions to share in what Christopher dubbed as “the business equivalent of the lunar landing.”He also served as the founding director of TiVo, which is a direct lineage of Netflix entering that category today. Tivo won one of the biggest patent damage claims of all time, way over billion dollars, and Randy recounts to Christopher what happened during that time.“I actually think, we should have sued earlier. we have the patent rights to all of these, the real question was, could we have coop these guys as partners.” - Randy KomisarUtopians Vs. LibertariansTwo significant and different technology demographics comprise Silicon Valley.He describes the 70's and 80's guys as the technology Utopians. Infrastructures were allegedly oppressive at that time which led the Utopians to utilize tools and come to technology to end this. Ultimately, they wanted to empower individuals.Furthermore, the Utopians had a sense of ‘a social contract.’ They felt they need to make the world better. These tools and the advantages that they had with these tools gave them the opportunity to challenge the status quo.In the advent of Facebook and Paypal, we move from technology utopians to technology libertarians.“The tools and platform that you build raise the creative endeavor. It's not to take-the-money- and-run situation. That money gets invested in more ideas, more vision. Yes you need to make a profit, but that profit can fuel creativity or consumption, you get to choose.” - Randy KomisarTo hear more about the Silicon Valley Legend Randy Komisar, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Randy Komisar joined Kleiner Perkins in 2005 and focuses on early-stage investing.He served as CFO of GO Corp. and as senior counsel for Apple Computer, following a private practice in technology law.Randy is a founding director of TiVo and serves on the Roadtrip Nation Advisory Board and Orrick’s Women’s Leadership Board. Additionally, he is the author of the best-selling book The Monk and the Riddle, as well as several articles on leadership and entrepreneurship. Furthermore, he is the co-author of Straight Talk for Startups, the insider best practices for entrepreneurial success, Getting to Plan B, on managing innovation, and I F**king Love that Company, on building consumer brands. Randy frequently speaks in the United States and abroad on such topics. Randy holds a B.A. degree in economics from Brown University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.Links:Amazon: Randy KomisarKleiner PerkinsBook: Straight Talk for StartupsThe Monk and the Riddle: The Art of Creating a Life While Making a Living Executives Launch Podcast To Pass On Lessons From Bill Campbell, Coach To Silicon Valley StarsNo Bull PodcastHarper Collins Speakers Bureau: Randy KomisarWe hope you enjoyed this episode of Follow Your Different™!
Today’s guest is David Rendall—a standup comedian, with a doctorate in organizational leadership and author of The Freak Factor—gives us a run-down on self-acceptance which benefits our personal and business life. He talks about how our weaknesses can become strengths and why finding people who are weird like you is a good thing.The Good and the BadTwiggy. Stickman. Ladder. These are some of the nicknames of David Rendall during his younger years. He was unusually skinny when he was young and was working odd jobs, something that most people of his age would not even bother to try. However, David turned his life around and embraced his inner freak.The word freak usually has dual meanings. If people dub someone as a control freak or a neat freak, it usually means they are overdoing it and they need to tone it down. On the other hand, being called a freak in a sporting context means you have outside of ordinary skills.“Freak is often a term we use for criticism but its also a term we use positively. I want both of those associations. I want it to remind people of something negative and positive at the same time.” - David RendallEmbracing The Freak in YouDavid encourages people to be different in a very specific way. People should be willing to be themselves and to disregard the idea that they need to hide their weaknesses. Most of the time, people suppress who they are because of the pressures from their parents, teachers, employers, friends, and society.“I'm trying to get people to see themselves differently and finding their strength in spite of that weakness and be willing to amplify and embrace those parts of themselves.” - David RendallOftentimes, David says that people sacrifice uniqueness for acceptance. In his book, he discusses the importance of affiliation. He defines it as finding other people who are a freak in their own ways.“Partner with people who are strong where you are weak. Look for the people who are different from you, but the other side of that is, finding the right spot and finding the right people.” - David RendallBe Weird and Different.As he encourages people to find others who are also weird, he reminds people to not expect acceptance, love, and connection from everyone. He advises people not to force themselves everywhere, instead, to find people who will accept them as they are.“You’re not gonna win everybody over. Ultimately it’s about finding people like youfor the weird person that you are, instead of ‘they’ll like you once you’ve changed.’” - David RendallHe also shares the reason why people get stuck hiding who they are: because they thought people around them know better than them. These people—parents, teachers, employers—are often bound by rules of success and they thought imposing these will also ensure success.To hear more about The Freak Factor, and more information about David, download and listen to the episode.Bio:David Rendall. Randall. Randell. Rendell. Reynolds. Whatever. No one knows how to pronounce his last name. David’s mission in life is to be hilarious and helpful. He’s a standup comedian with a doctorate in management. A class clown turned leadership professor, he went from disrupting classes to teaching classes to disrupting companies and conferences from Portland to Paris to Pakistan.After being criticized and punished his whole life for being hyperactive, he now channels his frantic energy to compete in Ironman triathlons and ultramarathons. He wears more pink than the average middle-aged man. Well, actually, he wears more pink than an eight-year-old princess. As a nonprofit executive, he built businesses to employ people with disabilities.During the last fifteen years, David Rendall has spoken to audiences on every inhabited continent. His clients include the US Air Force, Australian Government, and Fortune 50 companies such as Microsoft, AT&T, United Health Group,
Our guest for today is the CEO of the newly public, enterprise technology company PagerDuty, none other than Jennifer Tejada. This episode is the second part of the two-part series on IPO. Jennifer shares with us today how it is like to go public. This is a celebration of entrepreneurship and you’ll have fun listening to this long-free-form conversation.Legendary IPOJennifer had a legendary career in Silicon Valley. Various media outlets featured Jennifer due to the recent IPO of PagerDuty, a leading platform for real-time operations. In a moment of victory, what Christopher calls as “a celebration of entrepreneurship,” Jennifer recounts to Christopher the joys and pains on transitioning from being private to becoming public. “I enjoyed the process of being forced to refine our story and our value proposition for retail investors and laypeople. I think its really helpful for the business to go through that exercise.” - Jennifer TejadaNYSE FeelsJennifer shares that there was not much significant change in terms of their monthly operations. In fact, she perceives the preparation to go public as running two-jobs and she and her CFO vowed to make the most out of it. “It's very hard to describe the intrinsic rewards of looking down from the podium of NYSE at a group of people and just seeing this, sort of wonderment in their faces. They just can't believe, little old us got here, and that is one of the most rewarding moments of my career.” Jennifer TejadaJennifer also professed her admiration with her employees who went through this significant milestone with her. “I don't think there's enough of said or honor pay to the folks that bet their careers early on and take pay cuts and take on option risks, to see a company through multiple investment cycle and growth cycles and ups and downs.” - Jennifer TejadaExtending ReachJennifer describes IPO as a big-day-coming-out-party-to-the-world. Further, she mentions that one of the reasons PagerDuty went public is to extend its reach, to tap an enormous market opportunity. She believes being under the radar does not serve that big mission. “We serve the enterprise market and these enterprises are members of NYSE. They are traded in the NASDAQ. They expect the level of transparency around our performance and how our capitals are being spent and the long term viability of our businesses.” - Jennifer TejadaLikewise, going public can help create brand awareness and credibility because the company has to go through a lot of processes that will serve public market investors. “In my view, that rigor, and extra scrutiny is good for business. Hiding away in the private market just for the sake of staying away from that scrutiny is not a good thing because you can't survive with poor habits for a long period of time.” - Jennifer TejadaTo hear more about the Enterprise Tech Category Queen Jennifer Tejada, download and listen to the episode.Bio: Jennifer Tejada is the CEO and Chairperson of PagerDuty (NYSE: PD), a leading platform for real-time operations.She is a veteran software industry executive and business leader with over 25 years of experience, spanning mass consumer products to disruptive cloud and software solutions.Jennifer has a successful track record in product innovation, optimizing operations and scaling public and private enterprise technology companies.PagerDuty went through a strong IPO in April 2019 through her leadership.Prior to her role at PagerDuty, Jennifer was the CEO of Keynote Systems where she led the company to strong profitable growth before its acquisition by Dynatrace in 2015.Before Keynote, Jennifer was Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at the enterprise software company Mincom leading its global strategy up to its acquisition in late 2011 by ABB.She has also held senior positions at Procter & Gamble and i2 Technologies (acquired by JDA Software).
This is the first in a special two-part series featuring two CEO’s of two recent multi-billion IPOs—Jennifer Tejada, CEO of Pager Duty and billionaire, founder and CEO of Zoom Communications, the amazing Eric Yuan.Today’s episode features an insightful conversation about how Eric feels like to have a super successful IPO. Eric further shares Zoom’s culture centered on happiness and his motivation, mission and vision for Zoom and much more.Culture of HappinessEric Yuan guested at Christopher’s previous podcast, Legends and Losers Episode 032. As of recording time, Zoom Communications raised $357M in IPO and is a $20+ billion market cap company.“When I wake up, the first person I ask is myself. Do I feel happy or not? I encourage our employees to ask the same questions. Ultimately, if our employee is not happy, I’m pretty sure they cannot give happiness to our customers. That's why we keep the happiness culture here.” - Eric YuanChristopher cited some amazing data from GlassDoor. Employees rated Zoom 4.8, 5 being the highest. On the question “would you recommend Zoom to a friend, as a great place to work,” 95% said yes. Lastly, on CEO approval, 97% of the respondents said they approve of the way Eric runs the business.“I think based on that, I should focus on the 3% and plus the 5% why they do not recommend us too. Again, we always like all those feedback to help us become a better company.” - Eric YuanZoom: The Game ChangerChristopher admires how Eric runs his company and how he epitomizes everything great about entrepreneurship, technology, and innovation. He has changed the game in the B2B space in North American and now, internationally. As Christopher says, Zoom has made impossible, possible, such as the ability to work from home and collaborate with the team in different countries.“I truly feel we just started. We look at our user base and our customer base, compared to the number of knowledge workers worldwide, I think we just started. A huge opportunity ahead of us. How to connect workers worldwide, if you look at the total market, it's also huge. Look at our revenue, we just started.” - Eric YuanVision and Mission for ZoomIn the next 5 years, Eric candidly shares that he visualizes Zoom to give people a whole new experience in meeting and communicating, even aiming to replace the whole face to face meeting.“We truly believe data communication is the future, video is the new voice. In the future, no matter where you are, no matter which device you are using, just one click, you can talk with anyone in the world. You can speak on your language and understand with real-time translation.” - Eric Yuan Christopher also discusses with Eric the amazing marketing strategies that they employ, especially the huge advertisements in major airports in the US.“They should leverage our technology. Since it’s good for the family and good for society as well. Our goal is to make sure our existing customer is happy. Whenever they travel, [we remind them] you already have Zoom, why do you travel often?” - Eric YuanTo hear more about The Power of an IPO, and to learn more information about Eric Yuan, Founder of Zoom Communications, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Prior to founding Zoom, Eric was corporate vice president of engineering at Cisco, where he was responsible for Cisco's collaboration software development. Eric was one of the founding engineers and vice president of engineering at Webex. Between 1997 and 2011, he grew his team from 10 engineers to more than 800 worldwide and contributed to revenue growth from $0 to more than $800M.In 2017, Eric was added to the Business Insider list of the 52 Most Powerful People in Enterprise Tech. In 2018, he was named the #1 CEO of a large US company by Glassdoor and EY Entrepreneur of the Year in Northern California (software category). Eric is a named inventor on 11 issued and 20 pending patents in real-time col...
Today’s episode is a special re-issue with Dr. Sean Stephenson, “The Three-Foot Giant.” He’s a great example of turning obstacles into opportunities, transforming his life into a legendary one. This conversation with Christopher Lochhead is made even more powerful upon the recent passing of Dr. Sean Stephenson.Join us as we relive the inspiring story of “The Three Foot Giant” in this episode.A (Legendary) Life Well LivedDr. Sean passed away on the 28th of August 2019, following an accident. He was predicted not to survive at birth because of his rare bone disorder, Osteogenesis Imperfecta, which stunted his growth and caused his bones to be extremely fragile. When he was 18 years old, he has already fractured his bones for over 200 times. Despite his obstacles in life, he lived an inspiring life. He served as an instructive example of how to make your place in the world when you can’t find a place in the world. He worked for President Clinton and shared the stage with his Holiness the Dalai Lama and Oprah. He’s also the author of the bestseller: Get Off Your "But": How to End Self-Sabotage and Stand Up for Yourself.“I have decades and decades of education where I help people through their pains and their problems. But in some ways, I'm still learning to walk myself, learning to navigate this world, and I'm loving the experience of making mistakes.” - Dr. Sean Stephenson Staying True To OneselfEven after achieving his stature as a public speaker, Sean admits that he’s still growing. He was in business with his father for 22 years. His experiences at home were wonderful as he lived with his family until he was 31 years old. However, all good things must come to a challenging end, when he decided to step out into the world, leaving his father behind. “As of recent, I decided to “out” my true self, words and all. I kind of hid that over the years. If people knew that about me, they wouldn't respect me. I'm finding out the opposite is true, the more honest I am, the closer people are becoming to me.” - Dr. Sean StephensonBreaking the MoldTo continue his self-discovery, he would reorganize his life every five years or so. He wants to look back on the past five years to reevaluate and learn from his mistakes.“Maybe there's a wrongful belief out there that the version of you will always be the same as you get older but I don't agree with that. I'm constantly breaking the mold and starting over and trying new things and figuring out what do I believe in.” - Dr. Sean Stephenson To hear more about how to make your place in the world and more relevant information about “The Three-Foot Giant” Dr. Sean Stephenson, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Dr. Sean Stephenson was predicted not to survive at birth because of a rare bone disorder that stunted his growth and caused his bones to be extremely fragile (fracturing over 200 times by the age of 18).Despite his challenges, he took a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world.Since 1994, his powerful message has been heard at live events in nearly all 50 states and in 16 countries.Sean has presented at hospitals, universities, prisons, and to companies such as Nike, Whole Foods, Zappos, Walmart, and Sharp Healthcare. He’s shared the stage with U.S. Presidents, billionaire business moguls, celebrities, and his Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama.Sean has appeared on everything from The Oprah Show to Jimmy Kimmel, in addition to online videos with tens of millions of views.The Biography Channel produced an hour-long feature on his life called, Three Foot Giant.Mindie Kniss & Sean Stephenson his international best-selling book, Get Off Your “But”,  has been translated into over a dozen different languages.As a board-certified therapist, and doctor of Clinical Hypnosis, Dr. Stephenson used to see clients in a unique 12-hour session that gets to the root of their fears,
Our guest today, Jaime Masters is an entrepreneurial coach and podcasting pioneer. She hosts “Eventual Millionaire” and she shares with us today some fun, practical and insightful learnings on what it takes to become a legendary entrepreneur. She is an engaging business thinker who has her own quirks (love for costumes) and an amazing mother of two kids who are budding entrepreneurs.  From Tardy to MastersJaime Masters hosts the podcast Eventual Millionaire, where Christopher was once invited to promote his first book Play Bigger. She has interviewed close to 500 millionaires and she shares them through her book of the same title, Eventual Millionaire. Jaime shares with us some funny and serious experiences she had when she started using her maiden name again. The name “Jaime Masters” is now a brand and she admits that she has no further intention of changing her name again, even when she remarries.“It was something like, looking out when I'm 60, which person do I want to be? Which brand do I want to be building on my life?” - Jaime MastersHer Kids Attend Entrepreneur SchoolIt was a fun and admirable part of this episode when Jamie shared that her kids, a 12 and 10-year old, go to Entrepreneur School. The school has no homework and grades. They also do not have teachers, instead, they have guides. The school maximizes gamification for their modules.“They're learning 2x faster also, which is another thing the school wants. They learn life skills. My son video edited for my clients and is better than the editor that has been with me for 8 years.” - Jaime MastersPart of teaching life skills, they are set to become entrepreneurs early as they are encouraged to sell products and services during their summer vacation. Jamie’s son went door-to-door with his pressure washer business and her daughter went to sell rosemary to neighbors. “To me, the best thing about the school is, it’s about grit and pushing you out of your comfort zone. Teaching that at such a young age, not teaching memorization.” - Jaime MastersConcerns and Motivations of SolopreneursHaving interviewed around 500 millionaires, Jaime shares the inability to decide whether or not to hire a team is a common concern for them. Jaime further shares her process of assessing and diagnosing her clients’ concerns because sometimes, it is not a “team-problem” but an “owner-problem.”Furthermore, she acknowledges the fact that most entrepreneurs want progress in their business. She reminded, however, her personal experiences of failing due to the wrong reasons. “Knowing yourself really, really well is the best thing in entrepreneurship, even though it's shitty. There are millions of holes that open up but thankfully, the holes to fill it are not achievement and materialism, which you'll find out if you're long enough in the game.” - Jaime MastersTo hear more about what motivates entrepreneurs and more relevant information about Jamie, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Jaime Masters is a podcasting pioneer, host of the popular "Eventual Millionaire”, a Business Coach, Keynote Speaker, and Best Selling Author.She’s been featured on:CNNMoney, Yahoo's homepage (6x), Business Insider, Inc, CNN Newsroom, Entrepreneur, Fox Business News, Success Magazine and Christopher Lochhead Follow Your Different.Links:Eventual MillionaireTwitter: @eventualmillionLinkedin: jaimekmastersWe hope you enjoyed this episode of Follow Your Different™! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and subscribe on iTunes!
Today, we have a super fun conversation with Brian Schulmeister, the co-host of Grumpy Old Geeks podcast. We shared stories about music and what it was like doing websites for top bands and names in the industry. Of course, we got our grump on! We talk about what’s in the news: undersea data cables, A.I, data breach and many more!Websites For Music ArtistsBrian Schulmeister is the co-founder of Slender Fungus, a design company working primarily within the music industry. His vast experience in building websites landed him projects with big names such as Goo Goo Dolls, Alanis Morisette, Green Day, Coldplay and Rihanna, among others. He started his career way back in 1996 and he shared some interesting points on how he went on to pursue clients on his own. He also commented on the music industry at the present time and how consumers are consuming it so poorly. “The generation now and the way people experience music now is so shallow and disconnected from the artist and its singles. Spotify playlist through horrible headphones, it's just bad.” - Brian SchulmeisterGrumpy, Angry and Too DepressedBrian Schulmeister is the co-host of the podcast Grumpy Old Geeks, with Jason DeFelippo. The podcast, which is included in Christopher’s Top 5 list, has originally started as a joke but the hosts later realized they were admittedly angry about a lot of topics. Brian admits he is angry and still is but they try to pepper the episodes with humor. “The funny thing is at one point I literally wanted to quit the podcast. I felt I was getting too grumpy, too angry, too depressed. I really did. It was shortly after the birth of my child and I started to realize that I really need to have a better outlook in life right now.”  - Brian SchulmeisterLet’s Get Our Grump On!In relation to technology topics, Christopher says that it is easy to be cynical and be fun and grumpy on technology but the reality is, technology has made the world a better place. It has created more opportunities and breakthroughs in the lives of human beings. “We are at a tipping point right now, at least for technology. We can very easily lose control of sh*t right now. There are some important movements going on right now, the whole data and human rights.” - Brian SchulmeisterChristopher discusses some topics that are on the news such as the 8000 undersea data cables from Hong Kong to Los Angeles, or the data breach at Capital One that allegedly also compromised another 30 companies. They also shared a good laugh about different kinds of farts and shared their reactions about a man collapsing his lungs after a 2-hour karaoke session. To hear more about the Grumpy Old Geeks Co-Host Brian Schulmeister, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Brian lives in Venice, CA, frequents Toronto and London and has spent a lot of the last 10 years happily living out of a suitcase – and a large backpack filled with laptops, cords, wires and various bits and bobs that bloop and bleep.  He’s the co-founder of Slender Fungus, a design company working primarily within the music industry.  He is also the co-writer with Rob Takac of the Goo Goo Dolls in Amungus, an electronica based music project that’s released an EP and played a few festivals.  Brian started with technology at the dawn of time, even running his own BBS at the age of 13, and has stuck with it since then.  And as the co-host of the wildly popular Grumpy Old Geeks Podcast, needless to say, he’s quite grumpy.Links:Grumpy Old Geeks LinkedIn: Slender Fungus Topics discussed in this Oddcast:National Security Concerns Threaten Undersea Data Link Backed by Google, FacebookEverything We Know About the Capital One Hacking Case So Far: A new indictment against alleged Capital One hacker Paige Thompson includes a few fresh details about the case.Too Much Karaoke Sent a Man to the Hospital with a Collapsed Lung
Languaging Master Lee Hartley Carter joins us today for a riveting conversation about the power of language and the art of persuasion. She discusses today how language shapes everything in our lives and how to use language to convince people when facts don’t seem to matter.Marketers and non-marketers will surely learn a ton from this conversation about communications, language strategy, and persuasion.The Power of LanguageLee candidly shares with Christopher that she never thought about a job opportunity which involves words and messaging. When she was younger, she considers herself as obsessed with words.  For her, language is the means in which people can connect with other human beings and convey thoughts, feelings, and perspectives. Language is a powerful tool with every word, having its own meaning. “That change in language changes thinking, which ultimately change social beliefs and norms and potentially laws and governance approaches. It can change a lot of things.” -  - Lee Hartley CarterLanguage Strategy in MarketingLee further cites examples of how the smallest change in language can have a huge impact. She cited differences in words such as estate tax/death tax, or global warming/climate change, or used vehicles/pre-owned vehicles. A simple change of words can reshape how people think about the message.Lee also shared the common mistake marketers make in conveying a message. Oftentimes, marketers tend to “speak louder” — to share more facts to try and get the point across. This doesn’t end well, as people get turned off with the over-communication.“Instead, what you need to do is to not speak louder but speak smarter. The way that speaks smarter is by slowing down and really saying ‘you know what, this isn't about what I want to say. This is about what they need to hear.’” - Lee Hartley CarterCrisis CommunicationsIn an interesting turn of the conversation, Lee and Christopher discussed crisis response. Lee laid out her step by step advice on companies facing a crisis. First, she says that freaking out is a natural response to a crisis. However, she noted that it's important to understand what your target audience is thinking or is feeling at that moment. “Who are you trying to convince right now that you're okay, is it your shareholders? is it your customers? What are they afraid of right now? What value have you just betrayed in them?” - Lee Hartley CarterThey had a great dialogue on crafting emergency messages as Christopher had his own fair share of stories to tell, with regards to crisis communications and response. To hear more about Persuasion and more relevant information about Lee Hartley Carter, download and listen to the episode.Bio:After a crushing loss in a student council race in the 6th grade, Lee learned the importance of getting the story right from the beginning.In the 7th grade, when she ran again, she ran on a story that was driven by some middle school polling techniques she employed among her classmates.And, she won.Ever since she has had a passion for language. For the message. For the story.And she brings this passion to her role as partner at m+p, a research-driven language strategy firm that specializes in finding the right language and messages based on one simple idea: it’s not what you say that matters, it’s what they hear.A member of the executive leadership team, Lee oversees a diverse range of language strategy work for Fortune 500 companies and non-profits in the U.S. and abroad. To do this, Lee has conducted, overseen, and analyzed countless instant response sessions, traditional focus groups, brainstorming and strategy sessions. and surveys in more than 15 countries. She has worked with clients in a wide range of industries including financial services, energy, automotive, sustainability, hospitality services, food and beverage, technology, and consumer products. And,
In this episode, the CEO of Athena Alliance Coco Brown talks about how to build a legendary board of directors. Coco is an entrepreneur and an advocate for women. She tells us why boards need to have fresh talents and why they need diversity on skills and people. Also, she shares why the old model of creating a board is worn out.The Athena AllianceCoco Brown is the CEO of Athena Alliance. It is a global community of women business leaders, committed to driving diversity on company boards and developing new women leaders. “We're essentially bringing the top-tier women together in a digital ecosystem that provides us a lot of opportunities for them across disciplines.” - Coco BrownCoco describes the community as in-part-Linkedin — with a portion of coaching and networking — and in-part-Bumble, because of matchmaking activities.Male CEOs and The Outdated Board of DirectorsAthena Alliance serves as an agency. The group is in contact with male CEOs who wish to expand their network with women.Coco further shares with Christopher how outdated most companies are, in terms of the composition of their Board of Directors. In the past, the board is ultimately responsible for long term shareholder. Oftentimes, it is the reason why CEOs tend to stay long in their position, up until retirement. “The board room needs a lot more empathy, connection, communication and understanding of the marketplace. If you look at the old board — seated with former CEOs and financial experts — the average age is 63, the average tenure is 8 1/2 years.”  - Coco BrownBuilding A Legendary BoardIn the past, the committees are largely about CEO compensation, equities, and succession.  Historically, committee topics are financials or risks. In the new world, these financial experts try to squeeze in other pressing corporate issues into those committees.“So you’re starting to see this need for a much wider range of skills set in the board room. People who understand consumers. So good market strategists and leaders.” - Coco BrownMoreover, she suggested to bring in more sets of people in their 30s or 40s. Ideally, she suggests contemporary professionals who are experienced with the operations. To hear more about building a legendary Board of Directors, and more relevant information about Coco Brown, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Coco Brown leads “change and transformation.” She is responsible for accelerating multimillion-dollar growth through vision, strategy, technology, and people leadership. She held leadership roles including CEO, COO, President, board member, and advisor—partnering with F1000 companies, start-ups, and nonprofits. Through her leadership, she has delivered successful outcomes for Apple, Cisco, eBay, Facebook, Silicon Valley Bank, and many others. Currently, she is the founder, CEO, and board member of The Athena Alliance. The company is a game-changing executive firm helping to position the top 10% of executive women for advancement and board opportunities.Since founding Athena in the Spring of 2016, she has led the organization to a network of over 1000 C-Level women, VCs, and CEOs from over 150 companies. These companies include Accenture, Cisco, Microsoft, Intuit, Autodesk, and Alphabet / Google. Within two years, we have overseen 20 board placements and have secured $2 million in income through corporate and investor service offerings.Links:Athena AllianceLinkedIn: Coco BrownTwitter: @cocobrown1020We hope you enjoyed this episode of Follow Your Different™! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and subscribe on iTunes!
One of the most prolific and important writers in the world and our most regular guest Dushka Zapata, joins us today. We had a heartfelt conversation about mending broken-hearts, why grief is worst when you’re young, why discipline is better than inspiration and many more! Writing Beautiful Answers at QuoraYou may find Dushka lounging in Question and Answer site Quora, where her writings receive 140 million views. Her life-affirming, fun and powerful answers have garnered her quite a following, including Christopher himself.During this conversation, she shared a wonderful passage where we can learn a thing or to about mending a broken heart. She shares a story about a big, crowded yoga class she attended. The intention was to heal the physical and non-physical aspects of the person ⁠— whether a sprain, a wound or even sorrow, anxiety and loneliness. “At this point, I sneaked a peek. I opened my eyes and slowly panned the room. I would say that 97% of the people on the room had placed both their hands over the left side of their chest." - Dushka ZapataShe left a powerful message to readers, reminding everyone to tread very carefully in this world because, in reality, almost everyone is desperately trying to mend a broken heart.Grief is Worse When You’re YoungDushka shares another question lifted from Quora about a young 16-year old who wanted to marry her girlfriend. She crafted a very creative and wholehearted response: she affirmed what the young lad was feeling and then informed him that this feeling is temporary. "Feelings  ⁠— real and deep  ⁠— change. Feelings change and the fact that they do is what breaks me. The fact that it changes, saves me and it will save you too." - Dushka ZapataShe concludes that the younger you are, the more confusing things are because you don't know you can survive them.  Discipline Matters More Than Being InspiredDushka shares to Christopher about some days in her career, where she counts on being disciplined, rather than inspired., which she believes is the secret to anything. “I don’t think there is such a thing as motivation. I think that you just do it because, you said you are gonna do it every day.” - Dushka ZapataMore on this Oddcast, Christopher, and Dushka discuss the importance of being an amateur. She also conversed about her new book, You Belong Everywhere and Other Things You'll Have to See for Yourself.To hear more about Legendary Writer Dushka Zapata, download and listen to the episode.Bio:Dushka Zapata is one of the most prolific and popular writers working today. On question and answer site Quora her work has been viewed over 140 million times.She’s the author of eight best-selling books.Dushka has over 20 years experience as a senior communications executive in Silicon Valley. When she’s not writing, she serves as a communications executive at tech juggernaut Zendesk.Links:Quora: Dushka ZapataNew Book: You Belong Everywhere and Other Things You'll Have to See for Yourself Twitter: @dushkaamateurLinkedIn: DushkaWe hope you enjoyed this episode of Follow Your Different™! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and subscribe on iTunes!
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Comments (1)

Niclas Daniels

I don't like the swearing by the host. However, interesting topic and it relates to grit, facing failure and growing.

Apr 23rd
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