A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

Jay Gordon Cone Ph.D. has decades under his belt working with leadership teams to build successful strategies and navigate challenging times. These days he is also focusing his considerable intellectual horsepower and passion on creating a “vaccine against mind traps and closed-mindedness”.

Jay believes if we can boost our immunity to chaos, we can respond with creativity and compassion rather than paralysis and tribalism.  Join us as we talk about bias, quicksand questions, and four disciplines for getting unstuck.

Show Notes

“If we were able to have a more productive approach to uncertainty and ambiguity, we actually might find responses that make things better. But we want the easy answer. And it’s our fascination with the easy answer, actually, that prolongs the chaos.”
– Jay G. Cone

Overcoming thinking traps

We often find ourselves stuck – both individually and collectively – as a result of chaos, uncertainty, and unpredictability. In such times, it’s common to gravitate toward the easy answer, regardless if it’s the best way forward. When we fall into these thinking traps, we may oversimplify the problem to create a simple solution. This need for closure creates hasty action plans that can entrench you further into the problem – getting your mind “stuck.”
Today Jay outlines tips for avoiding thinking traps and nurturing an “unstuck” mind that’s open to new possibilities. Much of it begins with knowing the right questions to ask (avoiding “What should I do?”) to forge a new way forward. Being able to adaptively respond to uncertainty is helpful, because expertise and learning from the past doesn’t necessarily provide a fail-proof roadmap for the future.

The importance of building mental stamina

[9:30] “[In chaos] the only responses that we have are based in the limbic system in the amygdala, and we want to fight or we want to flee. But if we can develop our stamina for thinking, when things are complicated or uncertain or ambiguous, then we’re not as susceptible to the same ideas and…closed mindedness and tribalism, that tends to paralyze us.”
[22:03] “And when you start focusing on simplistic answers, then you tend to hang out with people who have gravitated towards those same simplistic responses. And it gets to the point where it’s just too difficult to be open to new information, different perspectives, or to continue processing things.”

How to know you’re stuck

[11:22] “One very common experience … you’re really not clear on why it is that you can’t achieve this goal. You make up all these reasons for why this attempt failed…So if a pattern emerges, there’s a good chance that there’s something more to be uncovered.”
[15:59] “If someone expressed a point of view…and all of a sudden [you] have horrible judgments…if that’s a feeling you’re having, and it’s one you’re not particularly proud of or that doesn’t make sense to you, that might be a leading indicator of stuckness as well.”

Identify quicksand questions

[26:09] “One of the things that you can look at is the way people pose questions because the way people frame a question about a situation they want to change reveals a lot about how they’re thinking and feeling.”
[29:30] “All these things that we want other people to do, we just frame a question around them and we work toward altering the behavior – rather than trying to understand whether we as leaders, organizations, are complicit and whether there’s something other than their behavior that needs to change.”

Practice the 4 Disciplines for getting unstuck

[36:32 ] Jay has designed 4 Disciplines to use when you feel stuck.  We can use these disciplines in team and individual settings when we find ourselves overwhelmed or repeating familiar patterns with unsatisfying results.

Get in touch with Jay Cone:

https://unstuckminds.com/contact/

Resources:

Unstuck Minds website
https://unstuckminds.com/

Unstuck Minds Blog: https://unstuckminds.com/receive-periodic-tips-insights-and-ideas-
from-unstuck-minds/

Free Assessment: https://unstuckminds.com/your-thinking-to-action-profile/

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/unstuckminds/%3Fref=bookmarks

Twitter  https://twitter.com/unstuck_minds

Blindspot:  Hidden Biases of Good People https://www.amazon.com/Blindspot-Hidden-Biases-Good-People/dp/1491528869

To subscribe to the Rise Leaders newsletter for more resources:  https://mailchi.mp/426e78bc9538/subscribe

To discuss executive coaching, leadership development program design, and workshop facilitation, please visit: https://rise-leaders.com/contact-info/

I specialize in helping leaders and organizations thrive.  Reach out if there’s a way I can support you.

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A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

The Leadership Pause | Dr. Chris Johnson

The Leadership Pause | Dr. Chris Johnson

Dr. Chris Johnson’s background combines psychology, Aikido (she’s a 3rd degree Black Belt!) and mindfulness training.  The result is a powerful and pragmatic approach for moving wisdom into action.  We talk about Embodied Leadership and the importance of creating a Leadership Pause habit.

Show Notes

“Embodied leadership has an edge over anything conventional, because it allows us to access all of who we are…rationally, cognitively, analytically, our capacity for empathy, and to take effective action based on sound decisions that we tune into that are congruent with our values.”

– Dr. Chris Johnson

Physical awareness leads to authenticity and better decision-making

The world is becoming more volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA). For today’s leaders to stay ahead of the accelerated pace of change, it’s important to inspire trust and confidence in those with whom they work. Embodied Leadership practices help us achieve this.

Leading is often approached in a cognition-first or “top-down” manner: first working to analyze a topic, sprinkling in some emotional intelligence, and then taking action in accordance with that understanding. Conversely, embodied leadership draws from bodily awareness. In other words, we begin with a physical opening, calming and connecting with what we say is important, and then can take a broader perspective with more mental space. Tuning into physical sensations and sensory experiences can center us. This nurtures a connection between body and mind that enables congruence and authenticity between mind and actions.

My conversation with Dr. Chris Johnson today examines what embodied leadership is and how it can enable smarter decision-making, helping both the individual and the organization.

It starts with a pause

[13:16] “It might be a momentary pause, where I step back, take a breath, and in that breath, I can see and observe what’s going on between you and me, and I can feel into myself – like what’s congruent with my own values here? I can actually look at the broader horizon of work.

[13:46] “A pause could be momentary. It could be a short pause to create a deliberate practice of mindfulness. It could be a weekend pause… Those are the things we often think we don’t have time for, and we hit that point of diminishing returns.
“Reminding ourselves and taking that pause to say, ‘What’s the bigger commitment? What’s the bigger vision?’ Align around that instead of getting sucked into the details.”

Clear mind, clear path forward

[22:16] “This is where mindfulness also comes in to help. When there’s a lot of chatter [in the mind], it’s really difficult to be clear-headed, clear-eyed, and clear-hearted about what’s the most important. There’s a quote by Lao Tzu – ‘Can you be patient enough to let the mud settle so the right answer can arise?’…
“If we intentionally create the space, and if we commit to it, as a part of the leadership pause, it can allow all of that mud to settle. So that whatever shows up in this moment, as the next right action is the one we see and can move toward.”

 

Take care of yourself – and see a ripple effect

[10:33] “Organizations and businesses of all sizes reflect their leaders. When your energy is high, and your actions are congruent with your words, your presence produces trust…While you can’t erase the uncertainty your organization and people are facing, you do have the power to respond to their challenges with intention, integrity, and honesty.”
[30:15] “Awareness is key for all leaders who are aspiring to lead in this VUCA world and be really present to the craziness and how to stay present in it – and maybe even enjoy the ride.”

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The Power of Pause in the Mindful Leader magazine:
https://www.mindfulleader.org/blog/44061-the-power-of-a-pause

Episode 21: Owning Your Value | Key Elements for Authenticity and Personal Power:
https://rise-leaders.com/owning-your-value/

A Guide to Owning Your Value
Download Guide

To connect to Dr. Chris Johnson please follow:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/drchrisljohnson/
https://q4-consulting.com/

Dr. Chris on Resilience:  https://q4-consulting.com/resilience/

To subscribe to the Rise Leaders newsletter for more resources: https://mailchi.mp/426e78bc9538/subscribe

To discuss executive coaching, leadership development program design, and workshop facilitation, please visit:

https://rise-leaders.com/contact-info/

I specialize in helping leaders and organizations thrive.  Reach out if there’s a way I can support you.

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A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

Leadership, Ethnicity + Wellbeing | Renee Moorefield & Jane Cocking

Leadership, Ethnicity + Wellbeing | Renee Moorefield & Jane Cocking

Renee Moorefield and Jane Cocking share important findings from research they conducted on the relationships between leadership, ethnicity, and thriving. Based on data from 900+ leaders in the Be Well Lead Well® database, Black and Hispanic leaders who completed surveys about their well-being scored significantly higher than leaders who identify as white or Asian. To gain a better understanding, Jane and Renee interviewed 20+ leaders across a wide swathe of industries and ethnic identifications to unpack the data.

Episode 24   | October 13, 2020

Show Notes

 “I succeed when we succeed, so part of my job is to amplify the wellbeing, the effectiveness, the success of the people around me, and in particular, to help lift up my ethnicity.’”

– Interviewee’s feedback from Be Well Lead Well Pulse research

 

 

Race and the science of thriving

In the Be Well Lead Well® (BWLW) Pulse model, thriving is defined as ‘having the internal resourcefulness to meet external complexities and demands’. Renee Moorefield, the creator of the Be Well Lead Well Pulse wellbeing assessment, and Jane Cocking an executive coach and BWLW certified guide share important findings from research they conducted on the relationships between leadership, ethnicity, and thriving.

The research results were shocking. Based on data from 900+ leaders in the BWLW database, Black and Hispanic leaders who completed surveys about their well-being scored significantly higher than leaders who identify as white or Asian. To gain an understanding of how this could be, Jane and Renee interviewed 20+ leaders across a wide swathe of industries ethnic identifications to unpack the data.

Certain themes emerged…

Resilience

The respondents gave striking insights on how inner strengths were built naturally – a byproduct of not living in the dominant culture:

[19:18] “We heard that a lifetime of challenges for leaders who identify as Black or Hispanic have enabled them through the hardships they’ve had in this dominant culture, whether that’s a door shut in their face, whether that’s discrimination, or whether that’s microaggressions. You can think of all the things we’re hearing about in society that have enabled them to build a level of resilience within themselves, coping mechanisms to just live in this culture. It’s also enabled them to build a sense of identity beyond the white dominant culture of success.

“So it’s a way of seeing themselves that goes beyond this culture. And it’s also built within them a connection to their internal capacities.”

[25:43] “… Under stress, growth occurs. In the situation of these people we were talking about, they would say, ‘The reason I got to where I am as an executive, is because I drew from all of those experiences – me knowing who I am and what creates wellbeing for me enabled me to become and grow as a leader’.”

Not everyone’s version of success is the same

[17:19] “Overwhelmingly, we heard, no matter the race of the person, that we are all living in a white model of success…

“The white model is that you have to be productive, you have to achieve, in order to be successful. If you’re not productive and successful, then maybe you’re lazy. Acquiring wealth is important, the status of your job title or where you live or what car you drive – the status and very much a ‘me’ culture.”

These individuals have a story

[34:43] “’What I would love everyone to know,  what I believe about myself is that I’m fully human and humane. And as a black executive, when I operate in the world, I often don’t get treated as fully human, I get treated as an asset or sort of marginalized voice.’”

[38:33] “The people I talked to who identified as black or Hispanic knew a lot about their own history, their story, they had a connection for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years back.”

I’m so grateful for the work being done and the lessons being learned through the conversations Renee and Jane are conducting. They are engendering humility and a newfound appreciation for the significant lives of others.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Be Well Lead Well Pulse Well-being assessment:

https://www.bewellleadwellpulse.com/

Episode 6: An Essential Link: Wellbeing and Leader Effectiveness

https://rise-leaders.com/essential-link-wellbeing-leader-effectiveness/

Renee on Star Coach Show, Episode 141 Be Well, Lead Well

https://starcoachshow.com/141-be-well-lead-well%ef%b8%8f-renee-moorefield-ph-d/

Connect to Renee and Jane:

Renee Moorefield https://www.bewellleadwell.com/renee-moorefield/

Jane Cocking https://www.linkedin.com/in/jane-cocking-a9695b3/

To discuss executive coaching, leadership development program design, and workshop facilitation, please visit:

https://rise-leaders.com/contact-info/

I specialize in helping leaders and organizations thrive.  Reach out if there’s a way I can support you.

 

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A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

Taking a Collective Stand | Achieving a Bold Stakeholder Vision

Taking a Collective Stand | How to Achieve a Bold Community Vision

This episode is being re-published because the content feels incredibly relevant given our political and social environment.  In the mid-1990s Jennifer Touchet and a group of committed citizens took a clear and unified stand against a powerful and complex system and won!  They used positive political strategies based on a win-win-win approach and intentional inclusivity.

Show Notes

In the beginning, the vision was something for the community, and truly nothing more than that. That’s what held us together. We wanted to bring the community together.
–          Jennifer Touchet

The Power of Your ‘Why’

In episode 21, I discussed owning your value and the key elements to unlocking authenticity and personal power. This week we take a deep dive into the first element, “Know what you stand for,” as embodied by my guest, Jennifer Touchet.

Holding true to the vision and the “why” of the community was indispensable during her bid to establish a nature center in the urban neighborhood of Oak Cliff in Dallas, TX.

While some wanted to erect a high-end, gated community on that beloved spot of land, much of the neighborhood knew and loved it for the nature and recreation it provided. What followed was a years-long project requiring passion and persistence. Enjoy learning some key pointers from our conversation.

[3:12] …BeBe spoke so passionately and it was clear that she had a bigger vision for who should benefit from … this jewel that was in our community. So afterward, I connected with her and … asked her if she wanted to work together to try and bring the community voice to what’s really going to happen. And she wanted to…

Be Empowered by Your Beliefs

[9:32] “One of my core beliefs is that local communities that are closest to problems are also closest to solutions…”
“I firmly believe that the community can come up with what’s best for itself. I kind of believe that in general, that the communities that live and work and play where they are, that are closest to things know also how to make it better.”

Know the Stakeholder Environment

“If you want to get anything done, you have to look at all the different factors that will affect your ability as a person or as a group to get that done.”

Know When to Relent and Know When to Relax

Knowing your stand is important. But there often comes a time when compromise needs to occur.  Originally Twelve Hills was 20 acres of land. To achieve their purpose, they had to scale back and negotiate. As Jennifer said, “To win doesn’t mean winner take all.”
[16:08] “We had to go back and change our plan, and negotiate with our city government, the school district developers to come up with a different vision. Twelve Hills today is just over five acres…But there were some people that felt like we gave up too much. But at that point, it felt like it was going to be if we fought for all, we were going to get nothing.”

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Owning Your Value | Key Elements for Authenticity and Personal Power
https://rise-leaders.com/owning-your-value/

A Guide For Owning Your Value:
https://mailchi.mp/d37649fa5f04/own-your-value
A downloadable worksheet for defining and voicing your value

To learn more about Twelve Hills please visit:
https://twelvehills.org/

To connect to Jennifer please visit:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jennifer-touchet-0437571/

Sign up for Rise Leaders newsletter:

https://mailchi.mp/426e78bc9538/subscribe

To discuss executive coaching, leadership development program design, and workshop facilitation, please visit:
https://rise-leaders.com/contact-info/

I specialize in helping leaders and organizations thrive.  Reach out if there’s a way I can support you.

Sign up for Rise Leaders newsletter:

https://mailchi.mp/426e78bc9538/subscribe

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A Vaccine Against Closed-Mindedness | Jay G. Cone PhD

Social Impact | From Idea to Enterprise with Suzanne Smith

Social Impact | From Idea to Enterprise with Suzanne Smith

Organizations committed to sustainable change bake it into their business model.  There are a host of labels and designations for those that “do good”: conscious capitalism, social impact, social entrepreneurship, BCorp, etc. In this episode, we explore the differences and how they function. Suzanne Smith, founder & CEO of Social Impact Architects and adjunct professor at Pepperdine University and the University of Texas at Arlington unpacks it for us.

Show Notes

“[As a social entrepreneur] You don’t always do things (directly) connected to your bottom line, you don’t always have to get an immediate benefit out of something, because it’s part of who you are and your ethos – baked into your DNA.”

– Suzanne Smith

The nuances of doing good

We hear a lot of labels today around “doing good” in business: conscious capitalism, social impact, social entrepreneurship and more. But what are the differences and how do they function in the business world?

Today Suzanne Smith – an expert in social impact who works with nonprofits, foundations, socially responsible businesses and individuals – unpacks it all. She founded Social Impact Architects back in 2009 with a goal to reshape the business of social change, and she teaches on these topics as an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University and University of Texas at Arlington.

Looking differently at social change

We discuss how social change exists in a middle space between the business world and government where neither has entirely tackled it head-on. Historically, the business sector hasn’t created enough of a market for social change, but in recent years brands look differently at how they engage. Creating change has become much deeper than charity donations and volunteering. With such a surge, it’s important for brands and individuals to rely on research-backed methods and best practices without reinventing the wheel. But it’s also important to not lose sight of what you can uniquely bring to the table.

Social entrepreneurship, charity, conscious capitalism

[8:40] “So the traditional notion of charity is the whole idea of ‘I’ll give a man a fish,’ if we want to use that analogy. Social entrepreneurship changes that narrative and says, ‘You know what, let’s teach a man to fish. Let’s figure out how to do that to scale.’

“We leverage the toolkit that businesses established to create market-based solutions.”

[12:22] “Social innovation is about the idea, social entrepreneurship is about the mindset, and social enterprise is about the business model.”

[21:55] “That’s where I would put the conscious capitalists, those are the people who are hardwired around the idea of, we want to, we want to do a better job of creating social change. But typically, they’re looking at it more from a business practice perspective, it’s part of their ethos.”

The difficulty of effecting social change on a grand scale

[10:58] The danger of starting from scratch: “Leapfrog innovation, which is yes, we want to create change, but we want to give ourselves the best chance at creating impact. So we want to build it on a solid foundation of best practice research, problem, ideation, etc. So that way, we get as much impact as we possibly can from that innovation.”

People are drawn to social change

[30:15] “I consistently look at what I purchase, and I vote with my dollar…if you look at some of the research that’s been done, those companies who perform better time after time, are the ones that are socially conscious. People running those organizations are making more thoughtful decisions, they’re making less decisions that are in the short run, the better decision versus the long run being the better decision.

“Companies have to start thinking about these issues. It’s not just about them creating the product or service anymore… Do their employees have appropriate daycare? Are they moving their employees up in a career pathway?”

Her recommendation to students

[37:40] “Find that thing that they’re uniquely passionate about, marry that with the thing that they are uniquely God-given from a talent point of view,”

Resources mentioned in this episode:

https://socialimpactarchitects.com/

https://www.linkedin.com/company/social-impact-architects/

https://www.linkedin.com/in/suzannesmithtx/

https://twitter.com/socialtrendspot

https://www.instagram.com/socialtrendspot/

https://www.facebook.com/SocialImpactArchitects

Sign up for Social TrendSpotter blog:

https://socialimpactarchitects.com/newsletter-signup/

Sign up for Rise Leaders newsletter:

https://mailchi.mp/426e78bc9538/subscribe

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