Executive Briefings: FutureVault. Pioneering the Digital Collaborative Vault

The C-Suite is a vast audience of leaders who all have a little extra insight into their industry and the current business world. I sit down with these leaders to give them the opportunity to share that insight and give a glimpse to their personal stories as a business leader. I recently had the opportunity to interview G. Scott Paterson, media/technology venture capitalist and CEO of FutureVault.


Fintech is transforming the industry.  What is a FinTech business anyway?

The financial services world is undergoing the biggest transformation ever, and it’s a consequence of technology — but more specifically, it’s a consequence of what’s called software being available in the cloud.

In the cloud the actual bits and bytes, the actual servers, the actual hardware that people think about when they think about a technology, these are not hosted internally. They’re hosted externally.  What this has done is create this massive transformation.


You saw an opportunity in this transformation with FutureVault.

Yes, we did.  FutureVault is a very simple concept. It is a place to store and manage digitally, in the cloud, all of your personal, financial and legal documents.

Everybody needs this. We have children that have report cards, vaccination records, Social Security numbers, class lists, team lists for their sports, memorabilia that they save. We all have bank accounts.  Many have brokerage accounts, 529 college savings accounts, IRA accounts. Some people have hunting licenses, fishing licenses, the deed for your house or lease for your car or if you lease some possibly for your business, even, equipment for your business.

In the world of FinTech, we’re showing up with a solution that’s great for the customer but also great for the institution, because they can build a stronger relationship with that customer.”


I assume everything about this is secure.

Security is the first thing we addressed and we have built what we believe is bank-grade technology.  Documents are encrypted on the way in and on the way out. None of the information ever resides on your laptop.

It’s also why we’re partnering with financial services companies where there is already a high degree of trust.  Players like that that already have a trusted relationship with their customer.


One of the great things about this product, is that it helps families.  Here, you can set this up so that each family member has access to everything that matters, and it really simplifies their life.

A customer can create a contact for any of the “trusted advisors” in their life and each will get a unique email address with a PIN number.  Information is categorized and placed in specific areas that person can have access to.  For example, my accountants can havea access to all of my tax records. Then, when they file my taxes, they put in the electronic copy, and it’s there forever.


It can be used for business as well.  There is an advanced version for multiple businesses, so it’s a great tool for anybody in business, anybody in any walk of life, but particularly business people have lots of complexity. This is a great simplification tool.


We’re very excited. These are just a few aspects of what FutureVault can do. We’ve not built a minimum viable product here. We’ve built a Ferrari.



Find this and other articles on our Huffington Post page.

3 Chemistry Lessons – Gaining Conversational Intelligence

By Judith E. Glaser


We are all familiar with the ‘chemistry’ factor in relationships and the chemical attraction metaphor; however, we are now learning that our insights about the chemical nature of relationships and conversations are more than a metaphor—they are a reality!


For many decades, I’ve been intrigued by the chemical impacts—both positive and negative—that conversations have on us.  I married a biochemist and for decades we’ve shared lots of conversations about our work. When we first wrote about the “Neurochemistry of Positive Conversations” for Harvard Business Review and Psychology Today, we received confirmation that we were on to something important.


Positive comments and positive conversations provide a chemical “high,” and yet negative ones stick with us much longer. A critique from a boss, a disagreement with a colleague, or a fight with a friend can make you forget praise.  If you are called lazy, careless or unprofessional, you are likely to remember it and internalize it, making it not very easy to forget, and discounting all the times people say you’re talented.


Chemistry plays a big role in this reaction. When we face criticism, rejection or fear, when we feel marginalized or minimized, our bodies produce higher levels of cortisol, a hormone that shuts down the thinking center of our brains and activates conflict aversion and protection behaviors. We become more reactive and sensitive. We often perceive greater negativity than exists. These effects can last for days, imprinting the interaction on our memories and magnifying its impact on our future behavior. Cortisol functions like a sustained release tablet—the more we ruminate about fear, the longer the impact.


Positive comments and positive conversations also produce a chemical reaction. They spur the production of oxytocin—a feel-good hormone that elevates our ability to collaborate, communicate, and trust others by activating networks in our prefrontal cortex. But, since oxytocin metabolizes faster than cortisol, its effects are less dramatic and sustainable.


Chemistry of Conversations

This ‘chemistry of conversations’ is why we need to be more mindful of our interactions. Behaviors that increase cortisol levels reduce our conversational intelligence or C-IQ—our ability to connect and think innovatively, empathetically, creatively and strategically with others. Remember: behaviors that spark oxytocin boost C-IQ.


When we partnered with Qualtrics, the online survey software company, to analyze the frequency of negative (cortisol-producing) versus positive (oxytocin-producing) interactions, we found that managers appear to be using positive, oxytocin and C-IQ elevating behaviors more often than negative behaviors. Survey respondents said that they exhibited all five positive behaviors, such as ‘showing concern for others’ more frequently than all five negative ones, such as ‘pretending to be listening.’ However, about 85 percent of respondents also admitted to sometimes acting in ways that could derail not only specific interactions but also future relationships. And, when leaders exhibit both behaviors, they create dissonance or uncertainty in followers’ brains, spurring cortisol production and reducing C-IQ.


If you tend to tell and sell your ideas and challenge people to produce results, your negative (cortisol-producing) reactions could easily outweigh positive (oxytocin-producing) reactions. Instead of asking questions to stimulate discussion, showing concern for others and painting a compelling picture of shared success, you tend to enter discussions with a fixed opinion, determined to convince others you are right. You are not open to others’ influence—and you fail to listen to connect.




This graph is from our Creating WE Institute Research into the Chemistry of Conversations. Red bars = cortisol producing, Green bars = oxytocin producing. The highest red bar is “focusing on convincing others.” Not only is it done more often, its impact is 26 times that of the oxytocin producing behaviors—suggesting that this one act alone can cause a relationship or sales engagement to go south.


Chemistry In Leadership

When managers and leaders learn about the chemical impacts of their behavior, they tend to make changes—for example, they learn to deliver difficult feedback in a way that is perceived as inclusive and supportive, thereby limiting cortisol production and stimulating oxytocin instead.


As we become mindful of the behaviors that open us up and those that close us down, and their influence in our relationships, we can better harness the chemistry of conversations. Mindfulness about our conversational impact enables us to get on the same page with others, strengthens our relationships – and expands our potential for higher levels of engagement and innovation. Without healthy conversations, we shrivel up and die. Conversations are the source of energy that moves us out of our doldrums when we are sad, the power that launches transformational products, and the golden threads that enable us to trust others. But these threads can be fragile and also unravel, causing us to run from others in fear of loss and pain. Conversations are the way we connect, engage, navigate, and transform the world with others.


“The quality of our culture depends on the quality of our relationships, which depends on the quality of our conversations. Everything happens through conversations.” The most powerful ‘leadershift’ we can make is to realize that each person has the power to create the conversational space that creates deeper understanding and engagement, not fear and avoidance.


Three Chemistry Lessons

Remember these three chemistry lessons:


1. Be mindful of your conversations and the emotional content you bring—either pain – which closes the brain, or pleasure which opens the brain. Are you sending friend or foe messages? Are you sending the message “You can trust me to have your best interest at heart” or “I want to persuade you to think about things my way?” When you’re aware of these meta-messages, you create a safe culture that allows all parties to interact collaboratively, sharing perspectives, feelings, and aspirations and elevating insights and wisdom.


2. Conversations trigger emotional reactions. Conversations carry meaning—and meaning is embedded in the listener even more than in the speaker. Words cause us either to bond and trust more fully, thinking of others as friends and colleagues, or to break rapport and think of others as enemies. Your mind will open as you see the connection between language and health, and you’ll learn how to create healthy organizations through your conversational rituals.


3. Note that the words we use in our conversations are rarely neutral. Words have histories informed by years of use. Each time a new experience overlays another meaning on a word, the information all gets collected in our brains to be activated during conversations. Knowing how you project meaning into your conversations will enable you to connect with others and, in so doing, let go of much of the self-talk that diverts you from working together effectively.


Judith E. Glaser is CEO of Benchmark Communications, Inc., Chairman of The Creating WE Institute, an Organizational Anthropologist, consultant to Fortune 500 Companies, and author of four best selling business books, including Conversational Intelligence: How Great Leaders Build Trust and Get Extraordinary Results (Bibliomotion).  Call 212-307-4386, visit www.conversationalingelligence.com; www.creatingwe.com; jeglaser@creatingwe.com

Executive Briefings: Organizing People Management with Theories & Tools

by Thomas White, CEO of C-Suite Network


I meet business leaders from all over the world who have advice, stories and personal tips for the business world. Periodically, I sit down with these leaders and give them the opportunity to provide current business advice and share personal stories as a business leader.


Dr. Brian Glibkowski is the founder and CEO of sixQ Software. He’s discovered a way that lets you assess what’s going on with the people in your workforce. They call it a next-generation assessment platform. Dr. Glibkowski brings more than 15 years in the areas of organizational behavior and human resource management, as a professor, author and consultant with large companies by helping them be more effective successful. He specializes in assessment, measurement and evaluation.


First we must ask, what are the six Qs? They are the six questions we all know: what, why, how, when, where, and who. We learned them in kindergarten. We don’t really know them often times in a systematic way. I conducted some research on these questions. They’re basically a way to think through your important business models to make sure you ask and answer all the questions.


Learn more about Dr. Glibkowski’s assessment on managing people HERE.


Restoration and Growth Through Branded Community

by Shawn M. Miller


What if you could ignite a reboot and repair in your culture? Today, consumer culture is overwhelmed and divided by a distrust in companies. This results in companies believing they need to coerce and convince customers, making marketing expensive and ineffective. Let’s discuss the restoration and growth of brands through the branded community.


The cycle continues within each business.

• Employees don’t trust employers.
• Employers believe they have to control and cajole employees. And so, talent is hard to find and good employees are hard to retain.
• Supply chains are hammered with heavy handed tactics and laden with controls to combat lack of trust.
• Stakeholders struggle to get paid and manage combative companies.
Result = rising costs, stress, and negative company cultures


The overall result is a pervasive business climate of Us vs. Them. “Combat” with customers, employees, vendors, and stakeholders. This is unhealthy, unpleasant and unsustainable for the business and everyone dependent on the business. We all feel this, we all see it, and we’re all upset about it. But what can we do? While ethics and corporate governance are valuable there is another way to change this combative mindset through a tactical shift away from Us vs. Them, to a We Culture of community organized around a shared passion for your market.


For quickest impact, I’ll begin with marketing and your relationship to your greatest asset, your customers. By community, I don’t mean everyone following you on social media. My definition of a community is when the participants are empowered with ownership and engaged in real action for mutual benefit. There can be no command and control from a central source at your company. The community is also not strictly limited to the specific scope of your company but is passionate about the context in which you operate. Attempts to control will cause failure or limited success.


Don’t think On/Off Switch, think Volume Knob

Your job is to turn up to 11 the natural passion of your customers, employees, and stakeholders. You will need to champion this culture shift internally. This is not light-weight work, but it’s possible, and you can do it! In order to build this community you’ll need a brand advocacy strategy. Here are some benefits of building a strong advocate community.


The New Face of Your Brand

Your brand community will be organized around shared passion and you’ll ensure a positive culture for restoration through content co-creation vs. combat. What will your community co-create? Whatever they want!


Don’t worry, that doesn’t mean you lose control; you never had control. That was an illusion. Your marketing department has been trying to understand and communicate ‘what they want’ all along. The difference is now you’ll simply allow customers to reveal it!


This is where the business magic happens and where you’ll get the resources you’ll need.


This will create the finest pull marketing program you could dream of, as your engaged community will invite participation in a more influential way than you ever could. The result will be customers, employees, and stakeholders driving an authentic brand advocacy movement which fuels sustainable growth at almost no cost: A self-feeding and highly efficient community driven by a wave of authentic engagement and attraction. This influence grows exponentially and will quickly out pace even the finest 1-to-many campaigns.


The result to your business will be an ignition of passion, a release of pent up energy, about the market in which you serve and the purpose for which you exist. This cultural shift will trigger a reboot and repair to the combative mentality with consumers, employee relations and talent attraction, and supply chain struggles.


This is an opportunity for your company to be a cornerstone of change in the greater community in which you live, work, and play. Take it!


If you’d like to learn more about building an advocate community and transforming your business pick up my book “The New Face of Your Brand” available on Amazon.


Shawn M. Miller is an Entrepreneur, Investor and Advisor with over 20 years of international business experience specializing in marketing, customer service and training. As Chief Experience Officer at Smync; Shawn is leading development of User Experience on both the brand and the customer side of Smync hosted Social Brand Advocate Communities. Connect with Shawn on LinkedIn, on Twitter @ShawnMMiller, or on Snapchat (theshawnmmiller).


Time for General Managers to Step Up?

By: Jim Doyle

prime-time-front-coverIn my book, Prime Time: Transforming Your TV Sales Staff into a Sales FORCE, I write about the critical role General Managers play in high-performing sales staff. Frequently, the General Manager is the only person who can get the high level relationships we need to impact business. Even a simple phone call from the big boss to say ‘thank you’ can make a huge difference in the relationship with a client. And General Managers who are heavily involved with clients make a huge statement to their teams about the critical importance of customers.


Visibility of General Managers

Today, only a very few GM’s truly understand the role that they can play.  I recently asked a Top 20 market GSM about the visibility of General Managers in his market. He said that two came from news and were invisible. (Probably his prejudice, as I’ve seen former News Directors who are incredible at this.)  One was new to the market and was out on what he called “the apology tour” to try to fix some badly broken relationships. Only one was actively involved with clients. Is that market the exception? Sadly, it’s not. I think it’s actually pretty typical.

As leaders today, we’re looking at all these big things we can fix as we deal with a changing industry. And we should. But sometimes, the simplest thing can have the most impact, especially if you’re the station that does it first and best.


Are Your Customers Important?

It comes down to a pretty fundamental question. How important are customers in your life? Important, you say? Well, how does your calendar this week reflect that? How much time have you spent interacting with customers? How many clients have you called to say thank you?

And, how engaged are you with client results? We have to become new business machines, and the big miss in new business is how often a client comes on one time and goes away because the campaign didn’t work. That’s horrible… but it can be fixed.

It really comes down to whether you, as a General Manager, are going to be facing outward toward the market or facing inward. Are you focused exclusively on your product or also focused very much on your customers?

We’ll be in sad shape if the top leaders of our stations don’t know the people in their towns who are their largest customers. When a huge spender in a market tells me they have NEVER met a TV station General Manager, I find that astonishing. Yet, I hear it all the time.

The General Managers who do this well have a huge impact. When my friend, the late Ray Schonbak, came to FOX in San Diego he announced to his team, and to the market, that he would meet 100 clients in 100 days. What a huge statement that made. Ray was always out with clients. I recently met another GM who did something similar when she moved to a new market. She made a lot of friends.


Product or Customer Obsession

But isn’t it sad that the majority of GM’s might not have met 100 clients in their entire tenure in a market? Does that say something about us as an industry, when our leaders are more focused on the product than on customers? I think it’s a symptom of a bigger problem. We continue to act like our business is back in 1995. In times of abundance, growth and high demand, being obsessed by the product probably made some sense. Today, great leaders are still obsessed by the product, but are also obsessed by customers.

We need more of those kinds of General Managers. A lot more!

— See more at: http://www.jimdoyle.com/blog




Jim Doyle began his broadcasting career as a TV sales rep in Portland, Maine. During 30+ years in advertising and broadcasting, he has owned an advertising agency, been Director of Sales for a TV station group, and General Manager/part owner of a radio station. Jim has served as Chair of the TV-B Sales Training Committee. In 1991, he founded Jim Doyle & Associates, a sales training and management consulting firm, specializing in helping television sales reps and managers build successful partnerships with advertisers and significantly grow revenue. Jim has presented marketing workshops for business people in more than 500 cities, nationally. In addition to Prime Time, he’s the author of Don’t Just Make A Sale… Make A Difference: How Top Achievers Approach Advertising Sales; The Leaders Edge, a weekly coaching newsletter for television sales managers; and numerous audio and video programs, including UPGRADE Selling®; The ADvantage – Producing Ads that Renew; Significantly Increasing Dealer Ad Impact; and TVSales.101 – Succeeding in The Digital Age of Television – a basic selling program for new and veteran AE’s. He is a Certified Speaking Professional with the National Speakers Association.

The Pushes and Pulls in the Retirement Decision

By: Rob Pascale

When we’re faced with the decision as to whether or when to retire, virtually all the factors we have to consider can be looked at as having either “push” or “pull” qualities. Some things that occur in our lives pull us to retire, while others push us out of the workforce. Whether we’re pushed or pulled into retirement can impact on how well you adjust to that lifestyle.

As a general rule, pulls are good and pushes are bad. When you’re pulled into retirement, you’re enticed by the lifestyle; retirement is seen as the logical next step and something to look forward to, and you usually take that step by choice. Being pushed into retirement means the decision is often forced upon you, regardless of how you feel about your job. You are essentially thrown out of the workforce without much choice in the matter.


Here are some examples as to what we mean. Two of the most important considerations for retiring are money and health.

  1. Financial security works as a pull factor. Once we have achieved financial critical mass, we’re no longer obligated to continue working. So if we decide to retire, it’s because we see its benefits. Those who retire without the means to afford it, on the other hand, are almost certainly pushed in that direction.
  2. Health is mostly a push factor. While some people might consider retiring because their good health allows them the mobility to live well, the reverse is more often the case. Individuals suffering from serious illness or functional impairment may no longer feel they’re capable of doing their jobs, and so retirement becomes the only feasible alternative.

Personal factors, such as values, aspirations, and thoughts about how life would be like outside of work can be one or the other. Personal issues act as pulls if they have a positive tone, such as when retirement is seen as an opportunity to pursue new goals. However, negative feelings, such as wanting to retire because we dislike our job, operate as pushes.

Leaving a bad environment just to “get out” is a very different proposition from moving to a new environment because you expect benefits.

Many retirees who have been pushed into retirement tend to run into adjustment problems right from the start. They often have little advance warning, so they’re mentally and emotionally unprepared for the event. Without the right mindset – to become retirees in their heads — they’re less likely to make the psychological break from their careers. Furthermore, they’re likely to feel angry, resentful, unappreciated, and abandoned as a result of their circumstances, and these feelings might interfere with their ability to develop a new lifestyle.


In our survey of 1400 retirees, one of our respondents, a police chief who was forced to retire, described how he was prevented from enjoying his retirement because he could not come to terms with the events that led to it.  According to Charles,

“I was consumed with the way my career ended. I was running the work lives of a number of people and now I had nothing. This was not just a job to me; it was my life and identity. It was just too much for me to accept, because I didn’t come to that out of my own choice. It took me years to finally give all this up and start living again.”

In contrast, those retiring by choice have the benefit of knowing in advance when they will retire. They don’t have the stress of an “off-time” exit, so they have a better opportunity to plan their futures, as well as adopt the right attitude. They often begin distancing themselves from their careers while still in the workforce. They use the last few months at work to break away from their worker identities, while building up their connections to the retirement role.

In our own survey, we found choice retirees (i.e., those pulled into retirement) have more going for them than just time to prepare. They are motivated and passionate about things they want to do in retirement. They believe these activities will be rewarding, sometimes even more so than their jobs were. Those forced to retire, in contrast, are much less enthusiastic about how they will spend their time. It’s not uncommon for them to feel they cannot find interesting things to do and just don’t know what to do with their time.


What really differentiates pulled and pushed retirees, and successful retirees from less successful ones, is a positive attitude. Retirees do better if they maintain a positive frame of mind and are proactive in developing a fulfilling lifestyle. A negative attitude, in contrast, deters us from seeing the benefits of retirement and limits our motivation to create a personally meaningful lifestyle. Unfortunately, that’s often the attitude held by forced retirees.

To be sure, there are forced retirees for whom the situation is not so dire. They like their job and don’t intend to retire soon, but have a sense that retirement may be thrust upon them. When it happens, they’re not completely caught off guard. Some may even have come to terms with the inevitable before it actually happens, and have already started mentally preparing themselves for leaving the workforce. Because they made the right mental adjustments, they’re better equipped to handle the retirement experience


If you’re a forced retiree, you can best serve your own interests by coming to terms with your circumstances as soon as possible. Assuming your financial situation makes retirement a realistic option, the first step is to acknowledge that your retirement’s a done deal and you have to get on with your life. Dwelling on how badly you feel about being thrown out of the workforce serves no good purpose whatsoever. It will only inhibit your ability to move forward.

Once you’ve accepted your fate, you need to embrace the idea of retirement.

Begin the process of breaking your emotional connection to your job by thinking of yourself as a retiree. At the same time, work on developing the right frame of mind, by imagining the positives of the retirement lifestyle, such as freedom from stress and schedules. Turn your attention to how you will live in retirement, thinking about future opportunities. Work on making specific plans for your future, because these are critical for success.

Of course, none of this will guarantee that your retirement won’t have its downturns and disappointments, or that it will be as satisfying as your career. But it does put you on the right path so you won’t start your retirement in a mental state that will slow your adjustment down to a crawl.




Rob Pascale, PhD, founded Marketing Analysts, Inc, a quantitative market research company, in 1982. Dr. Pascale retired from full time responsibilities at MAi in 2005 at the age of 51. Throughout his 25-year tenure as president of MAi, Dr. Pascale was directly involved in over 5000 research studies for more than 50 of the largest corporations in the world, and has polled well over 2 million consumers.

Don’t Chase Relevance – Find It!

by Dan Negroni


I am stoked about the debut of Chasing Relevance. It took two years of writing, research, content development, speaking, coaching, and training more than 5,000 amazing people by me and my colleagues at launchbox. But our systems, curriculum, and book are ready – ready to bridge the gap between non-millennial and millennial generations in the workplace and marketplace to help your business achieve real, BOLD results.


Here is what we learned: Houston, we have a HUGE problem.


  • Thirty percent of organizations lose 15% or more of their millennial workforce annually.
  • It costs companies $15,000 to $25,000 to replace each millennial.
  • 71% percent of organizations report that the loss of millennial employees increased the workload and stress of current employees.
  • Workload and stress combine with disconnection to breed disengagement: Seven of ten employees report being “disengaged” or “actively disengaged” at work.
  • The estimated cost of this disengagement is $450 billion.


Yes, millennials are a HUGE problem. They have taken over as the largest generation, and they don’t just want the power – they are the power.

They will decide what businesses succeed and which ones will be left behind. Those that want any chance of succeeding need to figure out how to win with millennials.


Yet only 22.9% of organizations have a plan in place to engage millennials and future generations.



Oh yes. But it isn’t a problem that needs to be solved. It’s a problem that needs to be embraced. Yes, I said it… we need to be bold and generous and embrace millennials. Because the way most managers are dealing with it now – mainly complaining – is not working.


What I find most curious is, how put-off and deeply frustrated many leaders from previous generations are by millennials. They paint a completely negative picture of “them,” as if millennials are a monolithic group of apathetic, disrespectful, unmanageable brats. They whine that millennials are spoiled, entitled, lazy, disloyal—all they want is power and all they think about is themselves.


Of course, complaining about the next generation is nothing new. But the way this millennial generation grew up? That is new. They had helicopter parents, got trophies for showing up, and had days filled with activities. They were encouraged to question, had a seat at the table for making decisions, and were told they could be anything they wanted to be, and are used to being connected to everyone, everywhere, every minute of the day.


And the world is different too.  Think of where we’ve been and the changes that have occurred in the last 30 years. We’ve gone from information in encyclopedias and microfiche to a crazy ass digital world where we can get any information, whenever and wherever we want. Millennials grew up “wired” and “wireless” and have never known a world in which technology did not impact, consistently change, and
 repeatedly shorten timelines of obsolescence. They know no other way.


Millennials came out of the #womb. And when they did, they disrupted all of the traditional timelines.


We follow the patterns of previous generations. We complain or throw up our hands in frustration and do nothing. As a result, all we do is chase relevance with them, often never finding it.


My book, and our business, have a better way. Our solutions will change your life, their lives, and your businesses.  Guaranteed.


And here is how you start:


Stop doing what you are doing. Realize that the place where youth and experience meet is the best place on earth.


The combination of raw, unbridled enthusiasm, curiosity, questioning and unlimited perspective is pure MAGIC when combined the right way with knowledge, time served, learned failure, and history.


Chasing Relevance answers the question we get asked all the time:  You really think we can connect with the next generation with the huge differences? ABSOLUTELY.


We all need to shift our mindset and trust ourselves.  When we shift our focus to connecting and delivering value to others, we win with our clients, employees, spouses, partners, kids … we become guides and mentors of the next generation and ourselves.


We have a choice: Embrace the opportunity millennials offer by pushing ourselves to be better leaders and coaches, or continue to ignore and dismiss the generational divide. The answer is clear: embrace opportunity.


That’s what our book, our business, and this blog will help you do.


Let us help you stop chasing relevance and make it happen. To learn more about the topics in this blog, get your copy of Dan’s new book Chasing Relevance: 6 Steps to Understand, Engage, and Maximize Next-Generation Leaders in the Workplace TODAY.



Dan Negroni, Esq and Author, is the Founder and CEO of launchbox. Dan is a business management and talent development consultant and coach. He addresses today’s critical cross-generational issues. He helps companies’ bridge the gap between managers and their multi-generational workforce. In turn, that bridge creates next generation leaders and increases employee engagement, productivity and profits.


C-Suite TV Talks Customer Service, Making Change Happen and the Inside Out Approach

NEW YORK, NY–(Marketwired – Aug 17, 2016) – Best Seller TV and Executive Perspectives, two of the top online business shows on C-Suite TV, have announced their broadcast episodes for August. Best Seller TV will feature in-depth interviews with leading business authors Adam Toporek, author of Be Your Customer’s Hero: Real World Tips and Techniques for the Service Front Lines and Joy Marsden, author of Keep Stepping! Essential Ways to Lead Yourself and Others Through Challenge and Change. Executive Perspectives features a sit-down interview with Alan Fine, founder and president, InsideOut Development, talking about the core principles that make success possible.


 Best Seller TV

In his book, Be Your Customer’s Hero: Real World Tips and Techniques for the Service Front Lines, Adam Toporek wanted to take a conversational approach to customer service that could be digested as a reference book, aimed at front line employees. Toporek states that front line employees — those who work directly with customers, whether via phone, email, or face-to-face, tend to skew younger and don’t have time for fluff, but still want to learn to be more effective when working directly with customers.

Toporek helps clarify the distinction between customer service and customer experience. Customer service is just part of the one-on-one interaction with a customer; whereas customer experience refers to the entire journey a customer has with an organization, including marketing pieces or emails from the organization. Toporek’s book aims to motivate front line employees, making them more confident in using the necessary tools and techniques to provide excellent customer service.

Joy Marsden, author of Keep Stepping! Essential Ways to Lead Yourself and Others Through Challenge and Change, talks about why people need to constantly move forward after challenges in order to achieve their goals. She states how a person’s initial response to a crisis is to stop or stand still but stresses that, “If you want to achieve, you have to move.” In order to achieve more, one must shred behaviors — which she defines as taking stock of things we need to let go in order to move forward.

Marsden says that successful companies share one important trait: they stretch boundaries. By stretching boundaries, they become agents of change and continue to move forward, no matter the obstacles ahead.

All episodes of Best Seller TV will air throughout the month on C-Suite TV and are hosted by TV personality, Taryn Winter Brill.


Executive Perspectives

Host Jeffrey Hayzlett talks to Alan Fine about his journey from athletic coach to business coach and how both industries share a core set of principles that make success possible. As a former tennis coach, Fine turned his coaching style from outside in, to inside out — which encourages athletes and entrepreneurs alike to remove the roadblocks that are focused on an internal dialogue.

Fine tells Hayzlett that tuning out the noise is “simple, but not that easy” to do. He says that people tend to choose what they listen to, which is why high performers can easily tune out the noise. Fine also lists the fundamental principles of the inside out approach: knowledge, faith, fire, and focus and adds that focus is the most important of all the principles because, “If you want to change a belief, you need to start on something different.” Everything starts with our choice of focus.

All episodes of Executive Perspectives are hosted by Jeffrey Hayzlett and can be seen throughout the month on C-Suite TV.

Best-selling author, speaker, and former Fortune 100 CMO, Jeffrey Hayzlett, created C-Suite TV to give top-tier business authors a forum for sharing thought-provoking insights, in-depth business analysis, and their compelling personal narratives.

“The dog days of summer are here and so are some of the best episodes of C-Suite TV. Best Seller TV has two incredibly insightful authors in Adam Toporek and Joy Marsden talking customer service and being able to constantly move forward. I’m a firm believer in adapt, change or die and I think these two authors definitely fit that bill,” Hayzlett said. “My interview with Alan Fine draws useful parallels between the world of sports and business that can be applied to any business industry, at any level.”

For more information on TV episodes, visit www.csuitetv.com and for more information about the authors featured in Best Seller TV episodes, visit www.c-suitebookclub.com.


C-Suite TV is a web-based digital on-demand business channel featuring interviews and shows with business executives, thought leaders, authors and celebrities providing news and information for business leaders. C-Suite TV is your go-to resource to find out the inside track on trends and discussions taking place in businesses today. This online channel is home to such shows as C-Suite with Jeffrey Hayzlett, Executive Perspectives and Best Seller TV, and more. C-Suite TV is part of C-Suite Network, the world’s most powerful network of C-Suite leaders. Connect with C-Suite TV on Twitter and Facebook.


Jeffrey Hayzlett is the primetime television host of C-Suite with Jeffrey Hayzlett and Executive Perspectives on C-Suite TV and is the host of the award-winning All Business with Jeffrey Hayzlett on the CBS on-demand podcast network, Play.It. Hayzlett is a global business celebrity, Hall of Fame speaker, best-selling author, and Chairman of C-Suite Network, home of the world’s most trusted network of C-Suite leaders. Connect with Hayzlett on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ or www.hayzlett.com.

Leadership – A Sacred Relationship?

By: Lance Secretan


After spending a lifetime as both a leadership practitioner and an advisor and coach to leaders I have learned that approaching the subject of leadership in our traditional ways may have contributed more to our current crisis of leadership than to any leadership successes.



Classical physics invites us to measure matter and energy in a manner familiar through observable human experience, analyzing the separate parts, and this is largely the way we explain science and technology today (see my book “ONE”). We measure and teach leadership in a similar way, using these classical approaches. Without getting into too much technical detail here, we have learned that these concepts do not adequately describe the universe, and that, in reality, the newer science of quantum physics informs us that there are no separate entities—everything is connected. Indeed, the concept of “quantum entanglement” describes the phenomena in which the act of measuring one thing determines the possible quantum state of another.



The outdated approach of classical physics, and therefore “the scientific method”, is what we have been using to study leadership—as a subject consisting of separate parts—leaders, followers, organizations, contexts, goals and more (see my White Paper on why this has failed us and what is next). We have even succumbed to the false belief that behavior displayed and exhibited within an organization is separate from, and sometimes not even appropriate for, life outside the organization—for example, at home. But this is an illusion—everything is connected and everything is one, which is evident in my work every day coaching leaders who are seeking to rebuild their domestic partnerships AND reach their professional goals.



The sacred energy we invest in our marriages and personal relationships, is, in reality, exactly the same energy we need to invest in our work life and our organizations. My own list (everyone will have their own take on this) of practices and behaviors needed for a successful marriage are: personal growth and mutual learning, being fully present, curiosity, freshness, spiritual passion, maintaining individuality AND (paradoxically) oneness, vulnerability, intimacy, humility, empathy, devotion, love, rituals, transparency, trust, reliability

These, when practiced with sacred energy, lead to sacred and inspiring relationships. Since everything is connected, and one—it stands to reason that these necessary conditions for an inspiring relationship will lead to inspiring relationships anywhere—at work, with nature, with each other—even with God. Clinging to the illusion of separateness gets in the way of our potential. To raise our game we need to create inspiring relationships—everywhere.

About the Author

Dr. Lance Secretan is one of the most insightful and provocative leadership teachers of our time. He is the former CEO of a Fortune 100 company, university professor, award-winning columnist, poet and author of 15 books about inspiration and leadership and a recent memoir (A Love Story). He coaches and advises leaders globally (he is ranked 26th most influential executive coach globally), and guides leadership teams who wish to transform their culture into the most inspirational in their industries.

Why Do Managers Lead with Fear?

By: Peter Stark


I am currently working with a manager who told his team, “If this campaign isn’t perfect when we launch, some of you will be looking for a new job.” Yikes. That’s almost as inspiring as telling your team, “Terminations will continue until morale improves.” Although the manager didn’t share his threat with us, several of his employees did.

The Big Question Is…

Why would a manager feel the need to manage with fear? It’s tough to get a manager relying on fear to self-examine and admit this, but in most cases this strategy results from the manager projecting their own lack of confidence and fear. When these managers lack confidence and are fearful of potentially failing, they may not even realize that they are projecting their own fear onto others.

When team members operate in fear and focus solely on survival, they no longer have their primary focus set on executing the mission and making decisions that are in the best interest of the organization. Even worse, great employees seldom stick around a fearsome leader. Employees who produce stellar results earn reputations that put them in high demand by other manager and organization, and they won’t hesitate to leave for an organization with a healthier culture.


In addition to his threatening words, this manager exhibited several other characteristics that helped solidify the culture of fear he had created.

Blamed others, but claimed the credit. When things went wrong, this manager was quick to blame his own team members or team members in other departments. When things went well, however, he would immediately point out all the things he had done to make the outcome successful.

Trash talked. This manager had a habit of talking poorly about almost everyone in the organization. This left anyone who ever interacted with him wondering, “What does he say about me behind my back?”

Used threats. When this manager told his team they might be looking for new jobs if their next campaign was not successful, this manager conveyed to team members that they were not qualified for their jobs. By using threats, he also made it clear that mistakes were not acceptable.

Withheld praise. For whatever reason, this manager did not acknowledge the excellent work often done by his team members.

Withheld information. This manager chose to communicate with employees strictly on a “need to know” basis. Very few team members had all the pieces of the puzzle, which made it difficult for them to make decisions. With a lack of honest, direct and timely communication, everyone wants to play it safe for fear of making a bad decision.

Didn’t delegate. Because he didn’t trust his team to get the job done the way he would do it, he spent his time on day-to-day operational tasks instead of working on strategic projects that would have the greatest impact on the team and organization.

Can a manager known for leading with fear change their negative reputation? The good news is that with a significant change in their leadership style, yes, they can. The bad news is that is takes consistent repetition of positive leadership behaviors over a long period of time to earn a more positive reputation.




The following 7 actions were ones I recommended to help this leader build a positive reputation and take his leadership skills to a higher level.



Collect feedback to better understand your strengths as a leader and where you have opportunities for development. This will help you craft a leadership style that will maximize the number of people who are highly engaged and love coming to work to help you and your team succeed.


Most people want to work for a manager with a positive vision of their organization’s future. Employees want to know what goals will turn that vision into a reality, and what they are contributing to the realization of the vision.


Goals are all about “I think we can.” When you take action and accomplish your goals, you develop confidence because you feel you are in control and have mastery over your organizational life.


When things go wrong, great leaders are quick to take responsibility for ensuring that the problem is fixed and doesn’t happen a second time. Great leaders may not say they are personally to blame for the problem, but they are quick to say, “I take full responsibility for ensuring this doesn’t happen again.”


Almost everyone has a high need to be valued and appreciated for their contributions. Great leaders know that providing people with recognition for their successful contributions is a significant part of building strong relationships with employees.


Hold quarterly meetings with each of your direct reports to review their goals and to determine what they are working on to help them grow and develop. This will most likely mean that you are encouraging your team members to be willing to take a risk. Encouraging risk is also encouraging people to be comfortable with the sometimes-scary possibility of failure. Taking a risk, however, is the polar opposite of paralysis by fear.


Trusting others and being able to appropriately delegate is the key to your next promotion. Communicate the desired result, and then put the appropriate safeguards in place to follow up and ensure its success.


Managers who lead with a strategy of fear may be feared, but they will never be respected. When a manager utilizes fear as their strategy, I can guarantee one thing will happen: team members will eventually band together to undermine their manager. In the military and law enforcement, we call this getting hit by friendly fire. These seven tips, when put into action and consistently practice over long period of time, will help you be the leader who instead earns a strong reputation for building a culture of trust and the ability to produce significant results.




About the Author

Peter B. Stark, CSP, AS, is the President of Peter Barron Stark Companies. He and his team partner with clients to build organizations where employees love to come to work. Peter and his team are experts in employee engagement surveys, leadership and employee development, team building, and executive coaching.