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Leadership With Heart

Author: Heather R. Younger, J.D.

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Would you like to uncover how Leaders with Heart lead their teams and engage and retain them in the process? Join Heather R. Younger, J.D., the best-selling author of The 7 Intuitive Laws of Employee Loyalty and Founder and CEO of Customer Fanatix as she interviews amazing leaders from all over the world and all walks of life to find out what drives them to be more emotionally intelligent leaders.
99 Episodes
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In this episode, Heather, speaks with DeeDee Williams, Director of Human Resources at Davis, Graham and Stubbs LLP, about her leadership journey, her focus on compassion, her strong moral compass that she fights to maintain and a powerful story of when she was not the best leader she could be and what she did to come out of it. Key takeaways: Be a compassionate leader Don’t allow your circumstances to define who you are and how you show up Be available when employees need you, put the phone down and given them your attention Find a workplace that allows you to be the leader you want to be Show your people you appreciate them and they are important If a person feels valued, then they will do their best work
In this episode, Heather speaks with Cheryl Fullerton, EVP of People and Communications at Corus Entertainment, Toronto’s largest media company, about her leadership style, her super interesting focus on psychological safety for all and her unabashed belief in innovation. Key takeaways: See your role as a company and people builder Do the hard work to find out who you are and what you stand for Try to know the problem before you set out to fix it People need trust and confidence that they are going somewhere Embrace the idea of creating clear objectives for your people Challenge assumptions in a safe environment Choose what you want for your life  
In this episode, Heather speaks to Don Davis, County Manager for Jefferson County, Colorado. Don shares his leadership philosophy and vision with Heather. Don also talks about a time when he was not the best version of himself as a leader. He sheds light on the difference between helping people get the tools they need to do their jobs and then meeting their wants and needs. Don highlights the most important things: Key Takeaways: Leaders should help their people understand who they really are Vulnerability is not a weakness Have vision, write it down, post it and share it Manage things and lead people No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care
In this episode, Heather speaks to Cori Burbach, Assistant City Manager, City of Dubuque in Iowa about her what drives her to lead, a back drop to the type of leader that she is and a compelling story of a time when she was not the best leader she could be. Note this has racial undertones, but you will listen and be inspired. Key takeaways: Stand out: be the leader who rolls up your sleeves and gets into the trenches with those you lead Understand that what you do or fail to do and what you say impacts those you lead There are some workplace issues that cannot be fixed with reading an article or changing a policy Focus on doing organizational knowledge transfers so that your learning is not lost on you. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable if you want to lead Make your relationship with your people personal not robotic Figuring out what employees want and helping them is not just good to do, it is strategic, unlocking their potential helps to meet the vision faster Find a mentor or a coach on this journey
In this episode, Heather speaks to Jennifer Fairweather, Chief Human Resources Officer at Jefferson County in Colorado about her leadership style, her drive to lead, and her struggle to face conflict head-on while still show care for her people and coworkers. Key Takeaways: Give people space to come up with their own idea in a safe environment Be a vulnerable leader who invites the team in to help overcome obstacles You don’t have to do leadership alone Continue to work on you and fill you up first Be honest with your people. They want to help you
In this episode, Heather speaks to listeners about a personal story with her daughter that highlights what courage and authenticity really look like and how leaders need to be the catalysts to create environments that allow their people to discover their gifts. Then, allow them to use those gifts for the betterment of all.
In this podcast, Heather speaks with Brent Stockwell, Assistant City Manager, City of Scottsdale about his leadership style, his development and use of a personal purpose statement and a way he fell short in his leadership role and admitted his mistakes. Key takeaways: Create a personal mission statement to keep you focused A leader’s key responsibility is to model great behavior. Take responsibility for actions and do everything you can to make things right Help others be ok to fail and learn and grow from it Be approachable Be passionate Be open to sharing all you have. Don’t hoard.
In this episode, Heather speaks to Ron Alvesteffer, President and CEO of Service Express, about his leadership style, his very engaging way of meeting his team members where they are, some pearls of wisdom he leaves with listeners and also the one unique thing he does with his direct reports weekly that sets him apart and brings him closer to those he leads. Key takeaways: Spend time with your people Self reflect on who are you are as a leader. Do you inspire? Go to work for your people not the other way around Make sure your team knows that you care Lead with the relationship first and metrics and results second
In this episode, Heather speakers with Jo-Ann Robertson, CEO of Ketchum, in the UK. Jo-Ann shares with Heather the thing that drives her to lead, you unabashed desire to lead from the front, but with a team, a time when she was not the best version of herself as a leader and the one thing she thinks leaders need Key takeaways: All feedback is good. Take it. Challenge yourself to grow Leaders can change their styles to meet the needs of their people Leaders must demonstrate what they want before they speak it Just because someone has more commercial value or brings in more money, doesn’t mean that they are good for the culture
In this podcast, Heather spoke with Lon Southerland, Managing Director of Ion Biome at Saraphic Group, Inc., about his long history of leading for organizations like Marriott, Starbucks and 7-Eleven and how all of that informed his current leadership filter. Heather and Lon discuss some great leadership learnings on his part, and one piece of advice his coworker gave him early on his career. Key takeaways: 1. Leaders must be effective in working with and through others to get more done 2. Don’t forget where you came from 3. Stay connected with your team 4. The ones who are closest to the customer and the employees can move the business forward most efficiently. 5. Know that most people enter into a room with the best intentions. Seek the truth of the matter in every instance.
In this episode, Heather speaks with Joe O’ Neill, CEO of G & D Integrated about his unique approach to providing psychological safety in the workplace. How he engages with his front line and uses orientation to do it. He discussed a time when he was a detached leader who stepped away from the active role of CEO and what he discovered in the process. Key takeaways: Have a “I work for them” attitude and not the other way around Ask your people to judge you and hold you accountable Have honest and truthful conversations with your employees When you don’t speak the truth to someone you manipulate them and show disrespect Your people need you for guidance and to be present even if it seems like they have it all handled Detached leadership does not work Nothing replaces human interaction in relationships It’s ok to fail as a leader. Don’t become complacent about it though.
In this episode, Heather speaks to you about milestones, recognition, and moving past barriers that can make it difficult to be the best leader you can be. Heather shares a couple personal stories focused on recognition of the milestones her children has experiences this past week. She talks about how she responded to the milestones and a fumble of the past. Key takeaways: Pay attention to the greatness inside the people you lead or they will go somewhere with people who will Don’t see obstacles in your way to being the best leader you can be at permanent. They too shall pass. Employee recognition helps them feel seen. Be the gift bearer of that type of positive gift
In this episode, Heather updates listeners on the book that will come out based upon the podcast. She also talks about the importance of leaders building resilience in the face of adversity. Key take-aways: Leaders must first build resilience in the face of obstacles before they can help their people do the same. People all around us are in a struggle. How quickly they can rebound or bounce back from those struggles will make all the difference with efficiencies, productivity improved emotional well-being. Leaders everywhere must make a choice. How quickly are you going to get up when you fall down?
In this episode, Heather speaks with Alex Smith, Chief Human Resource Officer for the City of Memphis in Tennessee about her leadership style, all of the ways that leading with heart has driven amazing business results for the City and it citizens and employees,  structuring the employee experience to maximize momentum and a time when she was not the best leader she could be. Key takeaways: Just because you are a leader with heart doesn’t mean results aren’t important The collective thought is better than the individual thought Turnover can be good if the people are growing and developing Don’t think you have to be the smartest person Don’t do it alone Make sure to clarify your true north for being a leader Have wise counsel to help you Be humble and vulnerable and admit when you need help Take care of yourself Connect with Heather Younger on LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/heatheryounger
In this episode, Heather speaks with Cynthia Grant, Chief Clinical Officer at AllHealth Network, about her surprising and traumatic background, the lens that he sees the world and thus engages with her people and a time when she was not the best leader she could be. Cynthia shares tremendous tips for leaders, but just listening to her is inspirational. Key takeaways: Caring for your team as a leader is a responsibility not a nice to have Our past cluttered with adversity can be the biggest gift of all for our team Show others how to be resilient as a leader Shift to a people-first strategy and your business will see the results Take care of your people in consistent and caring ways The goal is to never becoming disconnected to your team Create a culture of connection Make sure your people’s voices are heard Allow yourself to care and be authentic even if you might be knocked down Bring your whole self to work This episode is gem! Connect with Heather Younger on LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/heatheryounger
In this episode, Heather speaks with Shawnte Cox Holland on her leadership style, her unique view of why she leads the way she does, a time when she was not the best version of her and what she did to become more enlightened and some insightful pearls of wisdom. Key takeaways: Be the leader who pursues the art of what is possible and ask what is missing Recognize your employees for a job well done Take a step back & figure out the value of being a leader Focus on leadership excellence all around Take time to play and connect with your team Continue to learn how to be a better leader Be candid, develop and coach your people
In this episode, Heather speaks with Sarah Pierre Louis, Sr. Manager Marketing Team Development for Tableau Software (recently acquired by Salesforce) about her leadership style, her fascinating approach to helping her team come up with their “why” and their own solutions. She talks about a couple times when she got in her own way when leading a team and how she made her way out of it. Key takeaways: Ask our people what they want or what they are trying to accomplish to help them answer their own questions Ask yourself what your people need from you on an individual level. When things are crazy, and you want to make a decision, pause first Think of three things every day that went well to help in re-framing and moving past stuck
In this episode, Heather speaks with Howard Behar, former president of Starbucks and author of The Magic Cup and It’s Not About the Coffee. Howard talks about his perspective no servant leadership, shares some Starbucks insights, accountability as a leader, introduces the idea of a board of directors in the context of our different mindsets. He also shares a time when he was not the best version of himself.  Key takeaways: Read about people who are your role models and don’t be afraid to emulate Don’t always have to be original, find out how others do it Focus on Conscious competency so that you can know it and teach it. Don’t have to be expert You can practice servant leadership in your small team Be willing o bet your job everyday on the things you believe in  
In this episode, Heather speaks with Phil Burgess, Chief People Officer of CSpace about his leadership philosophy, the messiness that happens in the workplace, a time when he was not a shining example of leadership with heart and what he did to move out of it and some amazing pearls of wisdom. Key takeaways: It’s up to leaders to embrace the mess that is all of us at work Leaders must model the change they are seeking Leaders are more effective when they invite feedback from direct reports and act upon what they hear by making small tweaks Spending time with your people helps to connect the dots about them and about areas that need attention in the business As a leader we cannot always make everyone happy Be who you are as a leader and not a copy of someone else Let yourself off the hook. Have conviction in what you are doing Seek out safe spaces where the leader can be vulnerable Catch yourself doing things right Remember, that everyone owns the culture
In this episode, Heather speaks with Rhoda Banks, Head of Talent for Rabo Agrifinance about her unique and caring leadership style, a time when she was not the best version of herself an what she learned from it and some jewels for pearls of wisdom we can all learn from. Key takeaways: The ultimate reason for a leader is to help their people reach their fullest potential. If you care about your people give them honest feedback Employees mimic what they see in their leaders It is the leaders responsibility to lead with heart Forgive others and allow them to make mistakes Remember you why for being a leader Remember you purpose for being a leader You will enjoy this one for sure.
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