CEO BrainFood

007 Scalable Leadership

Episode Summary

Welcome to CEO Brain Food, a show aimed at providing key insights, fresh perspectives, and proven tools that CEOs can apply to build enterprise value, generate higher profits and develop the talent needed to succeed in their businesses. In this episode of CEO Brain Food, Michael broaches the topic of building and scaling leadership within organizations. Michael provides steps for scaling leadership that include performing a talent assessment and presenting a clear and articulate perspective of strategy, among others. He speaks to the importance of a strong leadership development process that is centered on alignment, execution and renewal. Finally, Michael identifies the attributes that comprise a great leader and challenges the audience to continuously improve and hone their own leadership skills.

Episode Notes

01:12 – Introducing today’s topic, How Do You Scale Leadership
03:43 – Michael recalls a leader he met early in his career
08:18 – The value Michael places on humility
09:55 – Michael speaks to a recent article he read from Harvard Business Review
11:00 – The Simon Sinek Video
13:47 – Leadership is a choice
14:23 – What makes a great leader
15:04 – Defining leadership through alignment, execution, and renewal
15:55 – Leading through behaviors
18:42 – Michael provides steps for scaling leadership
18:49 – Step One: Perform a talent assessment
20:25 – Step Two: Present a clearly articulated perspective of strategy
21:12 – Step Three: Identifying who needs to be involved and actively engaged in the leadership program
21:38 – Step Four: Ensure all systems that are in place support the change effort you’re looking to make
21:57 – The Great Game of Business
23:06 – Michael leaves the audience with some questions to reflect on
23:34 – Michael teases the topic of the next episode of CEO Brain Food


“What got ya here won’t get ya there.” (01:31)

“It’s not the leader’s job to be friends, but it’s the leader’s job to understand the comings and goings of his or her people that are reporting to them and to lead them.” (06:37)

“It starts at the top. Poor leadership creates a very toxic culture. The good news is great leaders can have a positive influence on outcomes, especially in a shifting strategic environment.” (08:57)

“Leadership is a choice, not a rank.” (13:47)

“Behavioral accountability precedes results.” (16:03)

“Most companies do not articulate their strategy and do not teach their strategy to their people. Their strategy is something that is held in the minds and hearts of the CEO and leadership team. And even then it can be confusing.” (20:44)

“Leadership is like swimming. You cannot learn it from books. Ultimately, you must get in the water.” (23:00)


Michael’s LinkedIn

Michael’s Website

Jim Collins' Website

The Future of Leadership Development Article

Circle of Safety Simon Sinek Video


Leadership at Scale: Better leadership, better results

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable


The Great Game of Business, Expanded and Updated: The Only Sensible Way to Run a Company