We all have different ideas of what great leadership is. But what does it really take to become a successful leader?
Dr. Tom Perrin’s client list is a who’s-who of elite performers: Geno Auriemma and UConn Women’s basketball, the Detroit Pistons, the World Cup Champion US Women’s National Team, Shaka Smart and Marquette University basketball, former NHL head coach Bruce Cassidy, and the US Men’s National Team.
With over 15 years of experience as a performance coach and consultant working in sports— and virtually every industry— Tom is the key that has helped numerous high performers to perform even better.
In this episode, Tom discusses his insights about leadership, its challenges, and the commonalities among successful leaders.
He also shares his thoughts on the role of failure in success, and gives tips on how to reflect on your own successes and failures to move forward.
Join me and Tom in this episode and discover what it truly takes to be a great leader. Hit play now!
If you don’t have time to listen to the entire episode or if you hear something that you like but don’t have time to write it down, be sure to grab your free copy of the Action Plan from this episode— as well as get access to action plans from EVERY episode— at JimHarshawJr.com/Action.
Download the Action Plan from This Episode Here
[00:00] Tom Perrin: There is an individual here, and they're not all the same, and there has to be an accounting for the differences among individuals. We're talking about players in sport. We could be talking about employees in business. You see, if you lose the individuality in organizational life, you lose the life in organizations.
[00:20] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Welcome to another episode of Success Through Failure, the Show for successful people and for those who want to become success. The only show that reveals the true nature of success. This is your host, Jim Harshaw, Jr. and today I bring you Dr. Tom Perrin. I can't believe episode 400 is coming up, 400 episodes of success through failure.
[00:45] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: All right, so here's what we're doing. We're doing a promotion. To promote that episode, we want to get everybody to listen to that episode. All of your friends and people you know. So here's what we're doing. We're gonna give away 10 success through failure. T-shirts. These are brand new hot off presses.
[01:00] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: They're pretty sweet. 10. Success through failure t-shirts are gonna be given away. Here's how you enter to win one. All you have to do is go to any of my social media profiles, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, and you'll find a post it's pinned to the top. All you've gotta do is like the post. Make sure you're following me and then just tag three friends in the comments.
[01:22] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: That's it, like the post follow me tag three friends in the comments, and you will get entered into the drawing. If you wanna have a bonus entry, go ahead and share the post as well. So that'll give you two entries into the contest. Listen, I'm not a huge influencer. I'm not Joe Rogan or Tim Ferris or something like that.
[01:39] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: So, You probably have a fair chance of winning a t-shirt by doing either one of these. If you do both of these, you double your chances. So again, go to any of my social media profiles, go to Jim Harshaw, just Google Jim Harshaw, or Jim Harshaw, Jr. And you'll find me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. Find that pinned post.
[01:56] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: And follow me like that post. And then tag three friends who you think would like the success through Failure podcast. Tag them in the comments and you'll be entered to win. Share it. You get a second entry. Here we go. First ever giveaway of the success through failure T-shirt. Check it out. Thank you.
[02:14] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: I've known Dr. Tom Perrin for about 25 years now. He actually helped me get over the hump and fix my mindset when I was an All-American wrestler at the University of Virginia. Our work together then led me to becoming an All-American, getting on the podium at the National Championships, and he's been a friend and mentor ever since.
[02:31] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Several years ago, we struck up a business partnership and now we're in business together. Tom has an amazing history of not only this kind of work working with companies and in corporate leaders, but also in coaching. He was actually a division one basketball player himself. He was at the University of Vermont.
[02:48] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: He played there, became a division one coach at the University of Virginia. He is part of a, a very successful run there as the assistant coach at uva. A while he was at UVA, he got his PhD. In sports psychology, and then he moved into sports psychology work full-time,as well as business consulting.
[03:07] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: And really, it's the same thing, right? It's maximizing their performance and helping people identify who they are, how they show up in their role, and in performing the best in their role in the sport world. He's worked with some of the. Really the biggest names in sport, NHL Head coaches, NBA head coaches and teams.
[03:28] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: He's worked with Gino Ama, if you know that name. if you're familiar with college sports at all, you, I am sure you do know that name. He's the head coach of Yukon Women's Basketball. They're arguably the greatest. Collegiate sports program of all time the won 11 national championships. Tom has been Gino's right-hand man for a long, long time.
[03:48] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: On the mindset and performance side. Tom has worked with Shaka Smart, who is probably most famous for taking V C U to the final. Four years ago, he was the head coach at Texas. Now, the head coach at Marquette, they had an amazing season. This year just ended in the March Madness in basketball national.
[04:06] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Toms also, he mentions in this episode he worked with Bruce Arena. Bruce is a legendary men's soccer coach. They won five national championships at the University of Virginia. He went on to coach DC United. He went on to coach the US men's national team, and he's coached some of the greatest soccer players in US history.
[04:24] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Claudia Reina, Tony Meola. I mean, these guys were under Bruce Arena's watch, and the guy who was guiding Bruce. The guy you're about to hear from right now. But Tom and I do a lot of work together, consulting with CEOs, c-suite leadership teams at companies, as well as with individuals in my coaching program in your path.
[04:44] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Tom's a great friend. He's a great business partner. This is the first of hopefully several conversations we're gonna have with Tom here cuz there's so much ground to cover here in the realm of leadership and performance and. How to perform your best day in and day out, how to be a better leader yourself and how to lead your organization.
[05:01] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: You know, whether your organization is your family or your company or your team, regardless of, of where you're at, whether you're at the top or the bottom, or somewhere in between, learning how to lead from wherever you're at. All right. So let's get into it by first conversation on this podcast with my good friend, Dr. Tom Perrin.
[05:16] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Tom, you've been at this for what, 30 years of consulting experience. What, in your opinion, is leadership really about?
[05:25] Tom Perrin: I would say leadership is really about two things, others, other people, and future. And what I mean by that is leadership is really about creating a better future for others. Now, that could be this afternoon, that could be this coming week, that could be over the coming season.
[05:47] Tom Perrin: For example, if you were, you know, working with or coaching an athletic team, it could be the coming fiscal year. It could be 10 or 15 years out, right? It could be trying to make a better future for mankind, but it's really. What you do for others? And creating a better future in that regard. And so what I would say then is things like influencing people, motivating people, inspiring people that so many people refer to and talk about with leadership are really all in service to that, right?
[06:23] Tom Perrin: The whole idea of, of inspiring and motivating and leading people is in service to creating a better future for them in some form.
[06:32] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: I thought leadership was about me. Isn't it just about me? The guy, the person, the leader.
[06:37] Tom Perrin: Well, it's about you in service to doing that.
[06:41] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Yeah. I guess what to think of leadership is like, okay, it's not about me.
[06:46] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: I feel like it's about me. You know, everybody's looking at me. I have to be the person. But when you switch it from like, like you just did, it's about others. I think that really takes the pressure off. It's, it's, it's not about me, it's about empower. Guiding serving others.
[07:02] Tom Perrin: Yeah. and so it's really a, just a matter of how you wanna look at, what I would say is, well, I think you're right.
[07:07] Tom Perrin: I think it's very much about you in service to creating a better future for others. You see, this leads us to the fact that. You can't make assumptions about that, then it gets very complex at that point because, you know, people are human beings, right? And so let, let's say leaders, whoever, in whatever form and are impacted by the experiences and circumstances of their lives.
[07:33] Tom Perrin: So it's no guarantee that one can actually, you know, follow through on the better future they're trying to create, right? Or sustain themselves. This is the challenge, right? I mean, it's one thing to have. An admirable aim. An admirable intent, right? I wanna make this organization more successful. I wanna help these individuals thrive and grow and succeed.
[07:57] Tom Perrin: But doing that is a far cry from the simple objective itself, right? It very much involves then your ability. As a leader to be able to make that happen. And there's a lot of complexity in that and nothing to be taken for granted. Why is it so hard?
[08:14] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Is it the complexity of people that makes leadership so hard?
[08:18] Tom Perrin: Well, people are impacted by their lives, right? And so, you know, sometimes we, we think of leaders as if somehow they're, you know, superhuman and we make assumptions that they'll be able to do what it is they aim to do. and my point is, you know, for my work, And you know this from the work we've done together, Jim, that people are impacted by the complexity of their lives, the circumstances and conditions of their lives.
[08:43] Tom Perrin: And so you might start off with a really good intent for an organization, but making that happen over time and sustaining that is a very different question. And so the challenge really then is, you know, this, this sort of backs up into a lot of the work that you and I are doing, which is focusing on the ability of the individual in leading an entity, whether it's an organization, manufacturing, banking, healthcare, highly competitive sport to really do that, to sustain that, to make that happen, right?
[09:19] Tom Perrin: So it's not just a good.
[09:21] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: So how does that impact your approach, like when you're working with, you know, whether it's an elite coach, a professional team, or an executive team at a company?
[09:30] Tom Perrin: Well, I, I put a lot of emphasis on assessing and figuring out how well suited an individual is to do what it is they're trying to.
[09:43] Tom Perrin: It's not automatic that a person who says, I want to create a better future for this organization, this team, this individual, is automatically well suited to do that and make that happen. You know, the idea to do something is one thing. The ability to execute and implement and bring that to fruition is very different.
[10:04] Tom Perrin: And so all I'm trying to say is, You know, this is very much in the work that that we're doing with some of our clients is that we're not making assumptions about where people are in regard to what it is they're trying to do. We're actually trying to figure that out. Do you see, I mean, it's very easy to go from, boy, I'd like to.
[10:24] Tom Perrin: Create a, a better future for this program that I'm taking over. It could be an athletic program, right? A head coach in basketball, for example, and to assume then that that individual will automatically be able to do that. Right. That they've been hired to do it, it's what they'll be able to do. There's a lot of complexity and a lot of variables in between.
[10:45] Tom Perrin: The idea of that and the, and the fruition of that and the completion of that.
[10:51] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Yeah, I think a lot of leadership development is formulaic. It's, you know, here's what a great leader is. Here's what a great leader isn't, and if you don't fall into this mold, then you better change who you are because this is the mold of a great leader, but you don't see it that way.
[11:06] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Tom. You know, you're looking at the whole person, like, who are you? What experiences are you bringing to this? What characteristics do you have and how are those gonna help you? And where are those gonna create blind spots for you? So when you hear about, you know, some of these formulaic versions of leadership development, what do you think?
[11:24] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: and how's your approach different?
[11:27] Tom Perrin: I don't pay a lot of attention to 'em. that, that's just from my experience. The question that I ask is, how does this person lead? Right? How is this person gonna? That sounds pretty simple, but I'm just saying there's a lot of complexity in that. Yeah. Well,
[11:41] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: everyone's different.
[11:41] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Like there's so much complexity to an individual. They all show up with different wiring and different experiences, different education, different background, and everything else that goes into who a human being is and who they're going to show up as as a leader.
[11:55] Tom Perrin: Now what we know is if we think of an individual who's trying to take an, an organization from point A to point B, right?
[12:03] Tom Perrin: They're trying to create a better future for this organization. They're gonna need certain things to do that, right? I mean, they're gonna need to be able to envision a future and to lay the groundwork for how that happens, right? How are we gonna get from point A to point B when we actually have to implement that?
[12:22] Tom Perrin: We're not just gonna. One heroic jump, right? We're gonna have to sustain, we're gonna have to rally people. There's, there's a lot of needs in doing that, but the point that I'm making is, I mean, there are different ways to do that. I think the danger is when you start to. Create a sort of a narrow box of how people have to do it and what it means to be a leader and start to, you know, compare everybody against that.
[12:50] Tom Perrin: You can start to exclude people who can actually be quite successful and effective in their way doing it their way. I think this is really the art of what we're talking about here today, is who are you and how do you lead, right? How do you make that happen?
[13:05] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Are there people who you think are overlooked for leadership positions that maybe are more qualified than the hiring person may think they are?
[13:12] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Right? And then also maybe vice versa. Do you think there are people who are put into leadership positions because we think, you know, this person is assertive, so they're gonna be a great leader. Do you see that happening inside of organizations? Yeah. My
[13:25] Tom Perrin: experience is at the ladder, which you just described, the nice distinction you just made is much more common, and that is that what people do is they have a notion of what leadership should look like.
[13:38] Tom Perrin: They project that onto someone. If they see that in someone, then they make an assumption that they, they will do it. They should be able to do it. They would be a good leader, and that might be a good starting place, but it's a far cry from whether or not that'll work. You see, so it's, it's much more common from my experience that people say, I see something in him and so I, I know he or she will be a good leader, or they're the ones that we should, you know, promote or they're the ones for succession and then the danger comes when you just sort of conclude that without then staying with the process of really, you know, sort of assessing that and making sure so, So
[14:19] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: what's the focal point of your work then?
[14:22] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: You know, you see people coming from all these different backgrounds and experiences and with all these different characteristics. So when you're working with an individual or a team or an organization or coach or whatever it is, what's the, what's the focal plan? I mean, what are you really focusing on in your work?
[14:40] Tom Perrin: Well, I think the consulting model is always this. This is what you know, you and I are doing together. It, it's fundamentally, What's the outcome? Where is a person now in relation to that or an organization, and then what do they need to go from sort of point A to point B? Right. I mean, to be frank, as simple as it is, it's never not that.
[15:03] Tom Perrin: It's always what does a person want? What does an organization want? What does a team want? Where are they now in relation to that? Are they close? Are they far away? What's the gap there? Right? And then what's needed to get them from where they are to where they need to be, right? From sort of a future.
[15:22] Tom Perrin: Right. And that really is fundamentally the basic consulting model that, that is at the center of, of what we're doing with people. I mean, that applies to an individual, a team, an organization. You see. I would say that though, in regard to that, that the work I've done, the work you and I are doing together is, has a very systemic.
[15:42] Tom Perrin: Focus to it. I mean, we're trying to create an alignment from top to go the bottom organizationally. Right. And the fundamental point is this, we're trying to set it up so the organization, the system, Can fix the problem. So it's dependent on us because at, at some point in time, like we always say, we're going, we're going home.
[16:02] Tom Perrin: We, we don't live here. And so the question is, how can you set up the solution, the fix, long-term systemically? And that really takes a full alignment from top to bottom of people and resources and needs and everything else. You know, it's very complex, but, you know, easy to say, but complex to do.
[16:22] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: You've talked a couple of times now, you've used the word sustainable and systemic. How do you, how do you do this? When you go into an organization, they bring you in or you and I in like we've been working together for a while now. How do we make sure it's sustainable and systemic and not a half-day leadership experience or something that's done once a year or a half day here, or a few hours here and there?
[16:43] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: How do you make it systemic and sustainable and not superficial?
[16:48] Tom Perrin: Well, by being very thoughtful. Very thorough. Not getting ahead of yourself, right as a consultant, not rushing to judgment and fundamentally starting top down. Which is, you know, the centerpiece of our work is sort of c-suite down, it's founders, business owners, presidents, c e o, their leadership teams and sort of cascading down throughout the entire organization.
[17:15] Tom Perrin: Because, I mean, the reality is if you, if you don't get this. Implemented and really internalized. We're talking about change, right? Internalized at a top level, such that it will cascade downward. It's not gonna sustain itself right when you leave. Do you ever
[17:34] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: see leaders who say, come on in guys, we need your help.
[17:39] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: They need your help. I don't so much, but they do. You know, they feel like they want to develop their team, but they're thinking, listen, I'm good, but my team needs fixed. Or These other leaders over there need fixed,
[17:51] Tom Perrin: but not me. Absolutely. And that's classic right there, what you just said. Right? And so when, when you hear, then when you hear that, then you know that's the.
[18:00] Tom Perrin: The problem is them, not me. And so the point I would say then at that point, the first thing you're working with is problem is not necessarily a bad thing, right? I mean, I mean, problem can tell you where you need to look and what needs to be changed but, but the point is, it first needs to be our problem.
[18:15] Tom Perrin: and fundamentally, quite frankly, if you have a really responsible leader at the top of an organization and something's not right, then they're saying this is on. Right. This starts with me. Right? That's what you're looking for. If you, if you have that, then you can do a lot of things. If you don't have that, you can't do much until you get it.
[18:37] Tom Perrin: You see, you've
[18:38] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: worked with a lot of elite coaches in sports over the past 30 years. Is there a common theme among them, whether it's sports or business, and is there a commonality? We've talked about the complexity of individuals and the differences, but do you also see commonalities among successful leaders who
[18:55] Tom Perrin: you work?
[18:56] Tom Perrin: I mean, I would say every coach has their system now. Not to get off track, but it could be that their system is the fact that they don't really have a defined system. Right. That's a problem. Okay. But, all of the good ones have a system. I mean, Tony Bennett has a system, and Bruce Arena has a system, and Shaka Smart has a system and et cetera, et cetera.
[19:17] Tom Perrin: That is the structure. It's the organization that enables a collective entity to work. Everything is built around that. Now, the point that I would make in response to your question is the fact that what I think great coaches do, from my experiences, the systems are not all the same. Quite, in fact, they might be quite different.
[19:38] Tom Perrin: But what all the great coaches do is they account for the individual within the system. They make an account for who the individual is inside of the collective framework that we have to have. I mean, understand the operation is not working if we don't have something that we all do. Right. I mean, all of these coaches are moving small armies of people along.
[20:00] Tom Perrin: Even a basketball program's got upwards of like, you know, 50 to a hundred people around every day that are making this thing go, never mind a football program. And so it, it needs a collective framework to do that. But inside of that, if you're not accounting to some degree for the individuality of players that make that up, this just becomes work.
[20:21] Tom Perrin: and as a coach, you become a boss. So my point would be, the distinction is in the difference between stuffing everybody into my system versus fitting people into my system. That distinction, I think, is very significant. It, it's a difference between, you know, everybody has to conform to the system.
[20:41] Tom Perrin: Well, there's certainly an element of that, but, but the idea of fitting people to fit the system is a very different approach and a different outlook. It's the idea that there is a person here, right? There is an individual here, and they're not all the same, and there has to be an accounting for the differences.
[20:58] Tom Perrin: Among individuals. We're talking about players in sports. We could be talking about employees in business. Do you see if you lose the individuality in organizational life, you lose the life in organizations? It is not my experience that organizations that really thrive where there's real culture, you know, where you would hear that it's a great place to work.
[21:19] Tom Perrin: You never find that unless individuals feel,accounted for based on who they are, as opposed to I'm simply one of a number in a robot, in a process here. I
[21:31] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: remember when I had a huge epiphany in terms of leadership and coaching when I heard Dan Gable speak. So in my world of wrestling, Dan Gable is on the Mount Rushmore of coaches, actually, he's, he's one of the greatest college coaches of any sport of all time.
[21:45] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: And the urban legend out there was always that Dan Gable just pushed all of his wrestlers so hard until they puked, you know, or the. Puking in every single practice, every single workout. And that's why they won so many national championships. And sure like they worked hard, but that actually wasn't the secret to his success.
[22:04] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: I learned. What I eventually learned from hearing him speak and hearing people who wrestled with him or coached under him. What I learned about Dan Gable is that his secret sauce is the fact that he actually treated everybody as an individual. He didn't treat them all the same. He understood the individuals and he understood their wiring, and he knew that he could walk over to one guy and just give him a certain.
[22:28] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: And he'd walk over to another guy, and this guy, he needed like a five minute talking to and maybe in a different tone than the next guy. Everybody was totally different and he knew that and he approached every individual as exactly that as an individual. And that sounds like what you're saying here, Tom.
[22:45] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Yeah, it's the
[22:46] Tom Perrin: art of both. Right. In Bruce Arena was very good at. You know, I was on the phone with Shaka Smart last night talking with him, and I think he's very, very good at this. Which is it is, it is both that we have to have something collective. We have to have a collective structure that we conform to, or this doesn't work.
[23:05] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: What do you mean by this? Do you talk about this system in structure? Like is this something that you see leaders really working on and developing? Are they scripting it out? Do they have a plan or does it kind of just happen? Talk to us more. Tell us more about this.
[23:19] Tom Perrin: You have some of these guys who are more explicit about it, I would say more planful and really could articulate this.
[23:29] Tom Perrin: Shakka Smart is like this. He's a planner. You know, he could probably walk into a room right now and sort of lay out the principles of what he does. You know, I, I think Tony Bend could do this. And then for others, it's more, I would say, in their head. It's probably not quite as formalized. They, it's more that what they do it than they can articulate it.
[23:50] Tom Perrin: But the point that I'm trying to make is it doesn't work without that collective. Organized structure, but inside of that, we also have to have,people as employees or players, for example, who, who feel like, you know, I matter as an individual. I'm understood as an individual and this is the way I would, I, I use these terms a lot in my work and sport, and that is it.
[24:15] Tom Perrin: What you're doing? Just can't, can't simply be a tell strategy. It's also got to be drawing out of people. and that's not just something that is a, a nice-sounding idea. No, I think it's very real. I mean, they're organizations don't work without telling people what to do. They, they just don't work. I mean, moving sport teams along, particularly in highly competitive, stressful situations, there has to be, a telling that goes on, but it can't be exclusively.
[24:41] Tom Perrin: That is the. Right. We've also gotta then draw out of people what is it that makes them who they are, you know? And your example about Dan Gable was very good. It's the time taken to approach, you know, people differently really matters. And I, I think really, really good coaches, really, really good leaders do that.
[25:03] Tom Perrin: No, they need to do that and more than that, really want to do it. I don't think, you know, this is an aside, not to get off track, but I don't think leadership works very well. It doesn't sustain if, if one is doing something that they think they should and need to do versus I really want to do it right.
[25:22] Tom Perrin: I mean, as simple as it is, I understand the simplicity of of this, that there's a big difference between I'm going to engage others because I feel that I should, versus I really actually do care.
[25:33] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: This is a podcast about success through failure. What are your thoughts as it relates to leadership and how failure relates to.
[25:44] Tom Perrin: Failure is an indispensable part of success because we're all going to experience it. Right. And as you well know is that that, you know, success is very much made up of, of failure at some point. Right. But there's, there's really two critical elements I would say, that failure.I would say can offer, doesn't necessarily it, it really depends on, you know, the individual that, that can help lead to success and that is learning.
[26:15] Tom Perrin: And motivation. I mean, everybody knows the value of failing as a motivating source leading to success, right? This is classic in the world of sport, right? We, we lost in the championship game last year and it motivated us to do it this year, right? And, you know, since I deal a lot in the world of college basketball with coaches, you know, I mean all, all of these guys are in conferences where they're playing, you know, teams twice and they're in situations where they lost the first game and they were motivated to win the second, right.
[26:46] Tom Perrin: So it certainly can offer that, but the learning is critical. And I think this is a lot of what you're doing in your work as well. And it sort of undermines, underlies, I would say, excuse me, what we're doing together. And that is. Failure is a wonderful source of learning for improvement if you can go there and extract the learning and bring it forward.
[27:09] Tom Perrin: And this is a really critical point. I mean, when you're working with people, either with someone else or yourself, right? Cuz many people on this podcast might be working on themselves, right? You know, you have to be very sensitive to the ability of an individual. Yourself or others to go back into failure?
[27:32] Tom Perrin: Take what's needed to learn from that, come out of that and go forward. Right. I mean, in an ideal world, if I could give someone an approach to failure, it would be a somewhat detached objective. Logical, rational, look back at a failure, perhaps my own, where I can see it for what it was. Take the learning from it and bring the learning forward.
[27:57] Tom Perrin: But for a lot of people, that's not a given. I mean, they either can't go back because it's too painful or if they go back, they'll get stuck in it. Right? I mean, it is a big mistake as you and I have talked about many times in the consulting world, to take someone back into an experience that was not good.
[28:14] Tom Perrin: If then you conjure up and relive a lot of very significant emotions that then now get a person stuck in those unable to go forward with the resources they need. Right. So there really needs to be a sensitivity around if we're gonna go back into failure, what's our capability to handle that, take from it what we need, get get back out of it and going forward again.
[28:39] Tom Perrin: Right? Because the ultimate aim is to go forward. It's not to go back into live in failure. Failure but could be very useful in what it can teach us if we can learn from it. And again,
[28:49] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: this goes back to the complexity of people, right? Everybody's going to come to this differently. Some people can go back and watch the film and revisit the failure and take the learning from it and move on pretty easily and quickly, and other people were gonna get stuck there.
[29:02] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: I interviewed Michael Chandler a couple of times now in the podcast where he, he's one of the top fighters in ufc, one of the top mixed martial artists in the world. He was a college all-American wrestler. And he said, and I quote, he said, I move forward with complete disregard for past failures, complete disregard for past failures.
[29:22] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: He approaches his next goal with complete disregard for past failures. That's not easy for a lot of people to
[29:29] Tom Perrin: do. That's a wonderful ability on his part. It tells you he won't get stuck in that, right? But to assume that everybody wouldn't be like that is a mistake. I think failure is a means to an end.
[29:42] Tom Perrin: Right. Failure is not an end. It's a means to an end provided that you can account for, you know, the complexity in dealing with it. That's all, you know, whether it's yourself going back or helping someone else go back, right? It just, it requires some thought as to what we're doing so that we can get turned around and moving forward again.
[30:02] Tom Perrin: So,
[30:03] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: yeah, and find a way to use it for future success. So Tom, based on everything we've talked about here today, we've covered a lot of ground for the listener who's bought in to what we've been talking about here today, the complexity of people, the different approach to leadership. What would you suggest is an action item, something someone can do to take something they learn from what we talked about here today and move forward?
[30:27] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: What's an action item you'd recommend? I think
[30:30] Tom Perrin: from my experience, in this consulting world, my, my advice would be for an individual to really. Figure out with accuracy and sophistication, who they are, how it is that they're effective at what they do, and how it is that they're not, and really be able to work with that.
[30:51] Tom Perrin: That is not a simple, know your strengths and know your weaknesses and what have you. My point is coming from this, the longer I go on talking to. It is profoundly clear to me that getting older is no guarantee. That one will have a very good understanding of, of who they are and how it is that they're good and where they trip up, et cetera.
[31:14] Tom Perrin: I think life can teach us more about ourselves if we look. But one really has to be introspective and reflective to do that. And many, many people are living their lives out in front of them with where they're going and what they're doing, right? If you have a very busy life, I mean, days are full with what I've got to do today, right?
[31:32] Tom Perrin: many, many people are not stopping to turn inward in a very reflective and introspective way to look at, okay, connecting the dots here and what does this really mean and who I am and how is it that I'm successful and where do I keep tripping? I mean the fundamentals, and you and I have had a lot of conversations about this.
[31:50] Tom Perrin: I mean, the fundamental, most significant learning from very successful people in my work is around, I would say, blind spots and what people don't see in themselves. I mean, blind spots is kind of a colloquial term that everybody throws around loosely, right? I, I think really what it is accurately is okay.
[32:12] Tom Perrin: as an individual in whatever field that you're in, you know, people are successful and they're thriving. They're trying to be successful at whatever it is that they're doing, whatever their enterprise. But with every one of us, yourself, myself included, I mean, there are ways that we shortchange ourselves, right?
[32:30] Tom Perrin: Inadvertently, unconsciously, unintentionally, right? It's not intentional. It's very unintentional. These are, mechanisms that, that are not necessarily conscious to ourselves, right? We're, we may not be aware of. And without getting a handle around that, you know, you find people who will say, well, I can't quite get there.
[32:47] Tom Perrin: I can't quite get over the top. I don't know why I keep sort of coming up. Right. I can't, I can't make the next step. I think for people who are trying to be successful, which, you know, we might assume that everybody listening to this podcast is trying to do that in whatever their enterprise, right? I think they have real clarity around, you know, who I am and what that means in terms of.
[33:12] Tom Perrin: You know, the efforts that I'm making to be successful, and particularly on the side of what I don't see in myself and how that might impact or limit my ability to be successful is a really big deal. I'm not saying this is the only focus, right? I'm just saying that. You know, and because, because the question really is around what, you know, what one thing might you leave someone with.
[33:35] Tom Perrin: I'm just saying that a lot of, of my work, and I know this undermines what you and I have been doing together. The, our, our work keeps coming back to the fact that very successful people, that they don't have a problem with aspiration and motivation and drive and energy succeed. The challenge really is in how they shortchange themselves, how they, how they trip themselves.
[33:59] Tom Perrin: Inadvertently and unconsciously, and that's not something one can see by themselves or, or people would do something about it. So where can you get that, that help to find that and see that? Yep,
[34:12] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: yep. It doesn't just happen automatically and for the long time listeners. You note exactly what I'm gonna say.
[34:18] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: This comes down to the productive pause, the short period of focused reflection around specific questions that leads to clarity of action and peace of mind. And in this case, it leads to better understanding, a better understanding of who you are and how you show up to other people and how you show up as a leader.
[34:35] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Tom, thank you for your wisdom. Thank you for sharing today. Good. Thank you,
[34:41] Tom Perrin: Jim.
[34:44] Tom Perrin: Thanks
[34:45] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: for listening. If you want to apply these principles into your life, let's talk. You can see the limited spaces that are open on my calendar jimharshawjr.com/apply, where you can sign up for a free one-time coaching call directly with me. And don't forget to grab your action plan. Just go to jimharshaw jr.com/action.
[35:04] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: And lastly, iTunes tends to suggest podcasts with more ratings and reviews more. You would totally make my day if you give me a rating and review. Those go a long way in helping me grow the podcast audience. Just open up your podcast app. If you have an iPhone, do a search for success through failure, select it, and then scroll the whole way to the bottom, where you can leave the podcast a rating and review.
[35:29] Jim Harshaw, Jr.: Now, I hope this isn't just another podcast episode for you. I hope you take action on what you learned here today. Good luck, and thanks for listening...
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