people, gina, respect, talk, company, person, understand, designated hitter, thought, damon, absolutely, day, leading, workplace, idea, employee, love, big, organization, comments
Curt Anderson, Gena Cox, Damon Pistulka
Damon Pistulka 00:03
All right, everyone, it is Friday. And you know what that means? It is time for the manufacturing ecommerce success show. I am one of your co host Damon Pustaka. That pretty gentleman right over there is Curt Anderson co host. You just got you’re just glowing today, Kurt. Who are we talking with today? Let’s get this thing off. We’re gonna be leading with respect, man, this is gonna be That’s it leading. Leading with respect delivers powerful results. I didn’t get the whole title out at once. Sorry. Hey, man.
Curt Anderson 00:37
Amen. You did Hey, we that was an Oscar winning winning performance right there. So we give you we give you an A plus. That was great. So, man, I am just so excited. What a great week. It’s been I was in Chicago all week. Yeah, just I’ve been looking forward to this little shindig today for months. And what an absolute honor what a privilege to have our dear friend Dr. Gina Cox with us on the show, Dr. Gina? Happy Friday. How are you today?
Gena Cox 01:01
Oh, I’m really excited to be here. It seems like we’ve been planning this for quite some time, which just as an indication of how important it is. Because we had to prepare and no, I really appreciate being here. And it’s really a delight. And this is my first time getting to chat with Damon and it was nice that he you know explained to me the correct pronunciation his last name. I’m gonna challenge most of your listeners to say I know how to correct how to correctly pronounce Dave’s name. And I bet you don’t.
Curt Anderson 01:27
That’s a good you know what, that’s a great little breaking point right there. So I absolutely love it. Let’s we’ve got a bunch of things. So we’ve got an award winning author here. We just have a just leader, thought leader of the industry here. And we have so much to unpack so much to cover now. Dr. Jean, I want to go back in time just a little bit. Now first, Damon we’re here talking about respect. You know, I was gonna save this for the middle part of the show. Why don’t we dive in right now. So Damon? I we’ve been planning a duet for weeks now and we’re going to sing Aretha Franklin’s respect. Damon, are you ready? Are you ready?
Damon Pistulka 02:00
Curt Anderson 02:01
We’ll save it for later. We’ll save it for later. So today we are talking about our ad. Let’s see if I can I’m a horrible speller. Daymond. See if I can do it. r e s p e c t we are talking about respect with Dr. Gina Cox. Guys, drop a note in the chat box. Let us know is your future load. Dr. Gina, you absolutely want to connect with her on LinkedIn. Gina, let’s I know if I recall correctly, you have like a little bit of an international flavor. My close on that, Mike.
Gena Cox 02:31
I mean, you could say that I was born in England, I grew up in Barbados, I’ve lived in the United States. Now for 40 something years I’ve lived here longer than in any other place. And so from that person, and I think the other thing that’s relevant data is that most of my clients over the decades have tended to be in global companies. And so that’s been another opportunity to either work just work with people from all over the world or in some cases to actually get to visit them in the in the places where they did that work. The global perspective on our conversation is important to me, because it’s you The one thing I know as I have done all my work is that people are the same wherever we go. And that all of these differences that we perceive tend to do. And they’re really cultural differences often. But at the very least, it’s helpful for us to put it take a little time to kind of understand what the difference is not to judge it, evaluate it, but just to understand it, because it certainly helps us. Even if you think about that from a travel perspective.
Curt Anderson 03:27
Well, I absolutely love that. And as a as a let’s, let’s go, can we Damon, can we jump into the time machine for a second? Let’s go. So Dr. Jim, we’re gonna go in a little time machine for a second. Let’s go back in time, as a little girl growing up, whether in England, Barbados, as a little girl growing up, please share? Who was your hero? Who is a little girl
Gena Cox 03:51
growing up? Yeah, that person is still my hero, she just happens to be deceased. But that’s, you know, you know, doesn’t really matter. And that is my maternal grandmother. Because I had a maternal grandmother who had I guess, like in the United States terms, probably like a fifth grade education on paper, she did not have a very, very long formal education. But I think she could hold her own with anyone, anytime, anywhere. Because what I observed from her over the years was that as a child was that she kind of taught me first of all, how to deal with people how to, because she was always pleasant, very, very specific and clear about what she wanted, but also very easy to talk to. She was an entrepreneur, she was always coming up with some idea about some way, some new way to make money because that was something that, you know, was necessary, and she would figure out how to do those things. But the other thing about her that made her my hero was that she truly was just sort of a problem solver. And so I had this sense of comfort and, and not had to sort of worry too much about things because I’ve believed for a long time that if you have a challenge, and you sort of put your mind to it, you can probably come up with a solution and so that’s Why is my hero
Curt Anderson 05:00
can do attitude? Is that what? From
Gena Cox 05:04
grandma? salutely? Absolutely.
Curt Anderson 05:06
And I’m sorry if I miss Did you mentioned grandma’s name? What’s grandma’s name?
Gena Cox 05:10
Her name is barrel loves barrel, barrel. Oh, hey,
Curt Anderson 05:14
she’s looking down and just looking at her wonderful grandchild and really just super excited to push over your career. And so it’s great because when you see somebody with success, David we always love to say like, success leaves clues in yellow, there was somebody behind that success. And so we’re gonna Gramma today. So the absolute love that hey, guys get drop a note in the chat we got. You’re saying hello, Damon grab those hellos. We were saying, you know, Happy Veterans Day. So hey, God bless our veterans out there to Veterans Day, let’s say Veterans Day weekend. We applaud you. We salute you. Thank you for all you’ve done for our country. And so Happy Veterans Day to all of our veterans out there. Let’s keep it moving forward. So Dr. Gina, so you little girl growing up grandma’s your hero, you’re kind of what led you to organizational psychology, what like kind of when you went to undergrad? Can you go there? Like what inspired you to earn your PhD? I’d love to hear that?
Gena Cox 06:09
Oh, absolutely. First of all, when I was growing up, I wanted to be a reporter. I used to see these reporters on TV, it was the BBC. And you know, they were always very serious. And they had these big ideas. And they were all over the world. And I thought it would be the most glamorous thing. And I did have the opportunity for a couple of years right after what would be like a junior college here in the United States, I did have a couple a couple of years of opportunity to work as an apprentice with a daily newspaper. And that was a great experience, I got to work on the business beat. And so it was on the business beat as a reporter and in a small country, Barbados, where because it was small, the reporters really knew everybody and had access to everybody. And I would trail along with behind, you know, more experienced reporters. And that was when I got to think about something I had never thought about before, which is the workplace and all the dynamics that occur in that because it wasn’t something I would have ever thought about, I don’t think. And so I discovered that there are a lot of shenanigans that go on in business places. And that most of the time, when organizations were on the front page of our newspaper, often for something bad. It wasn’t something to do necessarily with their financial outcomes, they would still be perceived as successful organizations financially, but there would be a lot of stuff going on with the human element. So I kind of knew that I learned that I tucked it away. But when I started college, I decided I would study psychology for that reason. And then I met a woman from the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, actually. And she had a PhD in social psychology. And this woman, Dr. gaylene, parole, who is also deceased at this point is the person who introduced me to the idea of organizational psychology. And I was like, Wait a minute. It’s kind of like journalism, you get to study you get to explore and learn and get some insights and share them with other people. And it’s in the business environment. There we go. So that was how I started.
Curt Anderson 08:02
Well, absolutely love it. And you know, and again, we’re gonna dig into your Yeah, here’s writer, author for different magazines. And so we’re going to dig into that. Hey, fellas here today. So Happy Friday to you. And thank you for jumping. Hey, Whitney, thank you for the low note there. Appreciate that. Yeah. So then let’s, if you don’t mind again, I just want to give everybody a little bit of a background on who Dr. Gene is you’ve had like an incredible career of education, fortune 500 companies, Raymond, James, IBM, University of South Florida, just talk a little bit, you know, for Daymond I are huge girl. We’re proud girl dads. Yes. For young women out there, just you know, share a little bit of like your corporate climb education, how you kind of led your your path.
Gena Cox 08:45
Yeah, you know, so early on, like everybody else. I was sort of more stumbling through things and trying to figure out what’s what. So I figured, you know, that I didn’t necessarily have any plan or purpose in my career. Even after I finished a PhD. It was more like, okay, now I got this, let’s get a job and see where it goes. But I have to tell you, the one thing I learned, you know, my first job after my PhD was at Raymond James Financial, and I talk about Raymond James a lot. I’m a big fan of the company. And the reason is, I kind of stumbled into another company, it might have been a larger company, it might have been who knows what, it just happened to be this particular one. And that was because I did my PhD at the University of South Florida in Tampa. And Raymond James was headquartered down the street in St. Petersburg. And when they reached out to the university and say, we’re looking for an IO psychologist, I learned about it. And I said, Well, I might as well apply because I really didn’t want to leave Florida. Most of my colleagues were going to New York City, they were going to LA they were going to Chicago, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and so on. Tampa Bay was not considered to be the center of activity for IO psychology. But I went there and had the opportunity to be there at a time when the company was young enough that I could see and watch on a daily basis, how Tom James and his colleagues were building this company. And so you But at the time, they were like a little upstart in Tampa, Florida, St. Petersburg, Florida, competing against all the big, you know, 200 year old companies on Wall Street. And everybody was like, yeah, right, it’s sort of thing. And so what they believed what that company believes what Tom believed was that talent would be the competitive advantage that they would have over all these big companies, they really believe that. So they were looking for IO psychologists to help them create assessments that they could use, to do to identify the best talent that they bring into the organization for their entry level jobs, for their leadership, jobs, and so on. Because they couldn’t get people that come down from Wall Street, they had to build the talent in house. And so I learned from that first job that regardless, for those of you who are listening, and you’re starting out, it really does matter who you’re working with, and where you’re doing that work. So think carefully about the culture of the organizations that you join, at any point in your career, even more so than about the actual tests you’re going to perform. Because that’s what’s going to determine the impact it has on your life over time.
Curt Anderson 11:03
You know, thank you for that history, because I was fantastic to hear about, you know, as a little startup trying to compete with Wall Street. What an inspirational story that is. Yes, yeah.
Damon Pistulka 11:16
Go ahead. Go ahead. Sorry.
Gena Cox 11:17
I was just gonna say I remember being there at a time when the head of marketing suggested that Raymond James Stadium, they put their name on Raymond James Stadium. At that time, that was an unusual thing to do. But I think they did it because it was a way to get national visibility for a brand that no one knew. And there have been so many clever decisions I watch them make. It’s just been amazing to watch. Yeah.
Damon Pistulka 11:40
Wow. It is. And you talked about something that you they were doing there that in in that timeframe, they were probably just a handful of companies in the in the world really thinking about developing testing to really identify talent in first thing before, like you said, just identifying talent, and really in us, bringing in the best talented people. Right? That’s such as groundbreaking it though, in those days, really, because it was going in places where most companies were just trying to hire people and knew where you came from the right school, you got the right thing. But when you can really zero in on, this person has the values and personality traits that really resonate with us as the our highest talented people do. It’s a game changer.
Gena Cox 12:28
Yeah. And they were definitely a pioneer in the history of, of testing and assessment in the United States, and basically, in the world started with the United States military, as they tried to select people to do specific military jobs, especially starting at World War Two. And we all know about the test that then eventually, all candidates eventually had to take. And then they would determine, you know, sort of what career path you would have in the military. So the whole idea of assessment for that purpose was something that I go, psychology started, why Tom James, and the folks that Raymond James felt so strongly about it, I don’t 100% know the origin of that idea. But I know that Tom’s dad, who actually founded the company, was the one who had this fundamental idea. And Tom had gone to Harvard Business School and been exposed to all kinds of things. So he just found me that way. He just found a way that to implement it to, you know, to sort of make it come alive. And so they definitely were able to get the competitive advantage that came from, you know, building talent in house they had, they had this concept as well, that was relatively new at the time, Raymond James University, where they said, you know, we know you’re not going to come down from Wall Street, but we’re going to train everybody who works in our company to really understand financial services. And to this day, I’ll never forget what they learned about compounding the effect of compounding from the training that they taught, that I participated in. was so
Curt Anderson 13:55
cool. And that is what that is such a fascinating story easy. Yeah, it is. Because you think about, you know, Tampa, Florida, you know, not necessarily, you know, the hotbed for financial, you know, brilliance, and just yet, what a brilliant strategy of like, you know, hey, we can’t compete with those guys. So it’s really kind of, you know, you think like, you know, I love when people talk about the American Revolution, and like, Hey, we’re gonna be swift and nimble, we’re not going to do the traditional tactics that everybody else is doing to take down the big lie. So I absolutely love that. So let’s tie it in here. Dr. Gina, you have if it’s time, I’d love to talk about your book. Oh, sure. You Is there one? Do I see little something over your shoulder, there’s
Gena Cox 14:33
my little book leading inclusion. So let’s go there. Let’s
Curt Anderson 14:37
talk so you know, again, vast corporate career and led you to write a book What inspired you to write a book and then let’s take a dive in? Share us, give us a little cliff note version? Because folks, you really need to go out and get this book. Talk about what led you what inspired you to write the book and let’s talk about the book. Well,
Gena Cox 14:54
I guess you could say I’m always wanting to write a book. You know, I’ve wanted to be a writer. I’ve always felt like this would be My domain, but the opportunity to write a book, it’s something that one has to consider very carefully. It doesn’t come along every day. And even though I thought about it, it was always an abstraction sort of thing. But in 2020, some things happen that completely changed my life. First of all, in March of 2020, Breanna Taylor was killed in the state of Kentucky. And I don’t know why, but it had a profound emotion with Comey. Well, I say I don’t know why, unfortunately, what I mean was, she had not been the first person to whom this unfortunate circumstance had occurred. But because she was younger, I think she could have been my daughter. In some ways. That’s how I thought about her. It really stopped me in my tracks and caused me to ask myself, Gina, what can you do, it’d be a part of the solution of this problem we have with our country where people don’t really seem to see each other as you would want them to. And then believe it or not, a couple months later, George Floyd was killed. Actually, I associate the Breanna Taylor event with, with my sort of Epiphany might sort of coming alive my decision to write the book, The March, the May event was just, you know, it just reinforced it. But I had spent, you know, decades studying human behavior in the workplace, I had spent decades working in organizations myself, and I fully understood this issue, I understood it, especially from the lens of an immigrant who had come to the country, you know, at 20 years old. And I remember thinking, when I came here, you know, I had left an environment where all kinds of people, including that grandmother barrel, would would say to me, oh, Gina, you’re fantastic, you’re gonna do really well, like that was my brand. That’s what I who I thought I was. But when I came to the United States, I say in the book that it kind of felt like a veil had fallen, because I began to notice that people’s reactions me in the in the United States, were very, very different than anything that I’d experienced before. And unfortunately, some of those reactions were negative. And so as I had my corporate career, I was always looking down on it. I was studying it. Yes, I was advising leaders. Yes. But I was also living my own personal experience. And so I clearly understood that there’s a problem here, there’s, there’s a problem, I call it, I use the word inclusion, I don’t get hung up on the words a whole lot. But I used the word inclusion in the title of my book leading inclusion, because when I say inclusion in the workplace, I’m just talking about the day to day experience that any one employee has, regardless of their characteristics. But of course, if their characteristics cause them to have a different experience, because of those characteristics, then that’s exclusion. It’s not inclusion. And so I this, this interest in this topic was something that had all along, but as I had been advising leaders for decades, it wasn’t something that got talked about. So I’ve always been a leadership impact organizational culture, and employee experience, focused advice. Those have always been my areas might, you know, my lanes. And this issue didn’t come up very often. And so after 2020, I said, let me sort of be focused on it. Let me be more willing to talk very directly and plainly about some of these issues. And that was what prompted me to write the book. And that’s why the subtitle is the book of the book is Dr. Chang. Your employees can see and feel because it’s all about day to day experience.
Curt Anderson 18:23
Gosh, I absolutely love it. So as we get a couple of comments,
Damon Pistulka 18:26
here, I’ll drop in here we got Wilson, how’re you doing? Wilson? Got a che. Asha, Asha and Tran dropping the other one. All right. Thanks, everyone. Wow, that’s just Yeah. I don’t even know what to say. All right. So
Curt Anderson 18:45
let’s, I want to keep digging into the book. So now you’re talking about leading inclusion. Now you and I had a wonderful conversation, just kind of like, you know, the preacher joining me and I want to talk about your company, kind of like, you know, how you make the world a better place. We’re going to talk about that in a minute. But you’ve shared you know, the topic of the title of our conversation today is respect. Let’s go into inclusion leading to respect let’s let’s let’s go there if we could,
Gena Cox 19:10
yeah, well, thank you for that. Kurt. You know, in the book, I talk about respect as primary about respect as being the primary outcome that I wished organizational leaders and any other human would really focus on when they think about inclusion. Because one of the things that I two things I’ve noticed one is that this so called D and I stuff is just a hot mess, right? People don’t understand. First of all, they think it’s only for certain people, it kind of creates a rift that is not intentional, but certainly can sometimes be reinforced by those people who want to reinforce rifts. And so there’s we got a marketing problem, but that’s not what brought me to this. What I knew from my years of working in corporate America, was that when I I know my own experiences, and then when I talk to people of color and ask them what is the one outcome, the one thing they wish they could have at work. The word respect was the thing they would often mention. They didn’t say equity. They didn’t say inclusion, they didn’t say a lot of the things that organizations focus on. They say, I want when I show up in this organization, and when I’ve worked with anyone in the organization, that at the end of it, I believe that they see my worth as a human on the planet. That’s what they crave. But we’ve ever talked about respect. So I’ve known about this. And I thought, well, how do I bring it to the floor? How do I make this a little bit more evident to people that they ought to focus more respect, in one of the things I learned in the black community in the United States, and they say, learn because as a person who didn’t grow up here, I had been sort of a student of the African American experience, and also living it myself in a way. So one of the things I learned is that it’s not coincidental that there’s a song called our ESP CT, I knew that black Americans specifically would say things often like, you don’t have to like me, but you will respect me. Or they would say, put some respect on my name. I mean, there’s a whole list of common language that is used, that I was very, I had gotten familiar with, and I, it was the representation of this craving for respect. So that’s why I focus on respect.
Damon Pistulka 21:23
Oh, just some great comments here too. So we got the Radley saying, Hello, Whitney, I’m with you there. That’s just not right. And then try and draft another comment. It’s like, you know, everyone, everyone.
Gena Cox 21:37
That’s the other thing about respect, right? Everybody wants it, everybody wishes for it. It’s not just something that causes you them to focus only one on one group of people. If you can build a respectful work, culture, everybody, including your clients, and you know, all the other people with whom your employees interact, will get the benefit of that, and you’ll get the financial benefit. Everyone, well,
Curt Anderson 22:02
let’s go here. i So i This might factor Gina, this might be the dumbest question you’ve ever been asked? You ready? Are you sitting down for this one? You might be so yeah. Okay. You feel do people? Are they intentionally disrespectful? Do you think it’s out of ignorance? Do you think it’s subconscious? Do you like, what do you think is causing the disrespect? And I guess that’s a very broad question. But I don’t know, how would you respond to that question? Well, you
Gena Cox 22:26
know, if you think about it at the, you can think about this, I think that the individual or one to one level, you can think about it at the societal level. But certainly what I believe is that you don’t get respect at the societal level, until you think about it at the individual level. And so at the individual level, what we have known just because of history and so on, is that there are certain groups in the United States, whether by race or you know, by LGBTQ plus status, by disability, or even immigrant status, a variety of ways that people vary. There have been groups in the United States that historically haven’t really been part of the mainstream. They’ve been present physically, but but they haven’t necessarily had access or experiences where all these groups work together, get to know one another, get to understand one another. The biggest issue, the biggest hindrance that getting together has been segregation. And while many people think that social segregation, let’s say, by race and ethnicity is a thing of the past, if you look at the data from Pew Research, what you will discover is that America is as segregated today, if not more so than it was in the 1960s. And I, that sounds like how could it possibly be, but it’s the reality, you know, we weren’t, we might work together, but we go home to different churches, libraries, Porphyry, stores, and so on. So what that creates is this lack of understanding, so whether people are intentionally doing it, which I do not think most of the time, people are saying, I will disrespect another this other person, I think what is happening often is that they’re just not even accustomed to sort of interacting with this other person in that meaningful way. It’s sort of like, what I think people who people of color in my states, for example, call it an invisibility. Right? So this invisibility idea, I think, is the foundation of the problem. Because when people say I want to feel respected, and what the research indicates is that, and I’ll be very specific about this research, there’s research that indicates that, for example, white Americans, and I’m calling out white Americans, because in terms of the historical power of that group, right, white Americans, when they think about respect, they think about being liked. And so you’ll have situations, for example, where an employee of color will say, I’m leaving this company because they don’t feel respected here. And the manager will say, Oh, my goodness, we were really good to this person. We liked them. There was hope we didn’t have any negative interactions, how could they feel disrespected? And the reason is what the literature says what the research indicates is that for a person of color, when they say respected, they’re not just talking about into personal mice disease, they’re not just talking about being liked. They’re talking about being heard and valued, believing that their efforts are and their ideas are acknowledged, believing that they get credit for those ideas, believing that they will have opportunities for access and promotion, and so on, of course, being recognized and rewarded, and so on. The point I’m making here is that the definition of respect varies, the impact or the significance of respect varies from group to group. And so if you’re going to be respectful, it’s always in the eye of the beholder, you have to have what I say have curiosity, so you can build connection, so that you can have comfort in that relationship, so that you can really understand what respect means for all the parties involved. Well, I
Curt Anderson 25:43
love that. And again, if you’re just on my I lost track of time during the hour, so sometimes we have people just joining us here, Dr. Gina, so I just don’t hate Bradley’s dropping comments here. is great
Damon Pistulka 25:53
in and you said it earlier to I think I think one of the things that happens is you can have no idea because of the cultural differences. Yes,
Gena Cox 26:03
absolutely. And so I, you know, like I said, I just came back from London. And wherever I go, I love I love to sort of, I don’t like to, like just have the Taurus experience, I like to sort of, you know, blend in and, you know, ride the tube and look at people and so on, so forth. And so as you do that you have, you begin to notice certain patterns wherever you go. And so a pattern that you might notice is that, you know, people only we only wear a certain kind of sneaker, or people don’t make don’t make a certain kind of contact with one another on the tube, which might feel very different in London than it feels in New York City. And so when you see these differences, you don’t you don’t say, Oh my God, those people don’t make eye contact, or, Oh, the people in New York are better at this because they do it this way, what you say is like, Oh, they’re different. They’re just, it’s just a choice. But because you were in that space in their space, you notice it, and you’re just sort of saying, oh, and then if you truly want to blend in, then you sort of go with that, right? But, but in our experiences where we’re so separate all the time, we never really observe those differences. And when we see the differences, we tend to have this approach of avoiding avoiding, if you look at the research about what it is that people of color, say that they like most in the in the workforce in the workplace, apart from the respect thing, which is a big idea is they say they don’t get feedback from their managers. And so about a year ago, I was giving a talk. And at the end of it, a wonderful young man came up to me and he wanted to ask me a personal question one on one. And he said, I have a black woman on my team, and I don’t know how to lead her. And I said, Well, what do you mean by that? He said, Well, I don’t know what to say. I said, Okay, let me just tell you the truth, who wherever you got your training, whether it was in school, or from whomever, they sold you a bag of goods, a black woman doesn’t need anything different than any other employee or your team. What you’re telling me is you’re avoiding her, and she knows it. And so here’s my big, profound advice for you. Talk to her. Talk to her. Talk to her maybe more now, because you never talked to her before. Like, you don’t need an MBA to do this. Yeah, so those those are the but that’s the behavioral consequence that happens when you see something that’s unfamiliar humans, we want to avoid it. And it gets perpetuated in the workplace situations. It’s kind of amusing, if you think about it that way. And I like to talk about it that way. Because people go, Yeah, I mean, really, that’s it
Curt Anderson 28:32
was a drop the mic moment right there? Oh, my goodness. It is because it’s, here’s psychology, right?
Damon Pistulka 28:39
I don’t understand. So I’m going to avoid,
Gena Cox 28:42
yes, that’s what but that is what humans do. I mean, that is what humans do. That’s a natural human reaction. But if you’re leading a group of people, I say, you know, you’re the designated hitter. If you’re my manager, you’re it right. There’s nobody else in the organization that makes less expect to come on to the field and have my back and be my advocate, but you and so to the extent that you do not do that, I perceive you as a weak leader, and I also perceived that you lack sophistication because you’re not opening your mind to be comfortable with the people you lead. So you’re still in the hot seat. And that’s the thing you’ve got to think this way this is just a part and parcel of effective leadership.
Curt Anderson 29:25
Okay, we’re gonna take a moment of silence right there Dr. Gina we’re just gonna kind of like that was just so much brilliance. Oh my goodness gracious. So we just we need we need to we Alright, so first off, if you’re Diane just joined us. So hey, everybody out there. If you’re just joining us, we have Dr. Gina Cox. Man is this amazing conversation right now this is truly mind blowing. If you miss it, please go back. Later. Hit the rewind button. You don’t want to miss this connect with Dr. Gina on LinkedIn. You want to grab her book leading inclusion. So A couple of things I want to unpack and then you shared with me a really profound. I feel it’s a perfect segue here. The gentleman, you know, and you know, I wanted to give a little credit to the guy for the humility to conduit, and like, reach out.
Gena Cox 30:12
Curt Anderson 30:14
I don’t know what to do I need help, right? Yes, absolutely. You totally like in you someday, you summarize it right on the spot. And, you know, like the sophistication like this. So let’s say like somebody just like in genuine humility, like, I want to understand and you use the term when you and I spoke recently, blind spot remover, if somebody whether whether it’s just, you know, lack of experience, lack of skill set, whatever that lack they I have a blind spot remover, like the gentleman, you know, kudos to him for coming up to ask, how, what are some tips, some strategies? How can we kind of overcome those blind spots that we have?
Gena Cox 30:50
Well, I think the first thing is you have to diagnose what’s going on here. So I’m thinking about this in the leadership context and the management context, right. And if you take your 10 people on your team, A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, or whatever to get to, then we get you the first question is you ask yourself, Do I have enough information about each of these 10 people as individuals, in order to manage them effectively? When you ask yourself that question, you’re going to get this feeling in the tummy in your tummy, because you’re going to know, well see not so much an E not so much. You’ll know this. And then the next question will be, well, what is getting in the way, what is getting in the way of you truly understanding enough about this person that you could be the effective meant the most effective manager? And so basically, it’s sort of self awareness. So once you get to that point, now you say, Well, what do I do? Right? What do I do about this, you don’t need to go and read some complicated actions about what you need to do to fix that problem. If you find that, right, because I’m not even assuming that this isn’t an inclusion issue, I’m assuming this is a leadership opportunity. The solution always is then to get closer to get closer to that person to person C and person II, you may already have the other, you know, the other eight, they might even be part of your inner circle, which is another whole issue. And so what do you do when you go to talk to Person C person sees now first of all gonna have their hackles up, because they’ve been watching you for two years, ignore them, or whatever it is, they haven’t been doing. So once you have that self awareness, right, you need to approach person see, with the vulnerability to say, You know what I have, I just have this sense in my in this feeling that we could have a stronger relationship, or whatever words you want to use, you know, those are my words. But what you’re saying is, you start off by saying, I am going to solve a problem that I identify, you’re not saying anything is wrong with the person, you’re not even you’re not, you’re not apologize, you’re not doing any of that, you’re just basically saying, I want to just talk to you, woman, to woman, man to women, whatever, and say, I feel like we could have a better relationship, you know, you find your words. And the reason that is so important is because this person is watching to see what you’re going to do. So if you come in pretending like nothing is wrong, or like everything is perfect, that’s going to make them more skeptical. If you come in with a hard hitting approach where you tell them something about, you know, here’s what I think I want to do, because I know we have a problem, that’s gonna make them more skeptical, because how are you going to solve a problem that you don’t even understand? Right, so all you’re doing is just talking to somebody and sort of creating a little bit of space that lets the person know, you know what I feel we can do better. And you can do this with a spouse, you can do this with a friend, you can do this with a relative, you can do this with a child, because the person already knows about the void, right about the gap. And so you just be vulnerable. Because if you do anything else to fix these kinds of situations, that person goes home, and they say to their, to their friends and their spouse. Guess what Tommy said to me today, he hadn’t told me this is how Tommy did for two years. And all of a sudden Tommy came anyway. So I’m magic one. And I’m supposed to trust Tommy all of a sudden. And actually, it creates a bigger problem. So you just start with a vulnerability. And this is for any conflict situation. It’s not unique to the workplace situations. Because now the other thing you do is invite that person, you say, Are you open for this? Are you Are you willing, and you put it, put the ball, put the bowling ball in their lap as well and give them a chance to kind of think about it and that person is going to say, yes, they’re going to say yes, they’re not good. So they’re not going to know where this is gonna go. They still have a lot of uncertainty, right? They’re not accustomed to this. But they know in their heart of hearts that this is all they’ve ever wanted. They just never knew how to get it and know you’re opening the door. You kind of let them kind of come along with you. And then they’ll ask you a lot of questions or not, they might get real quiet. They might not say anything, because this is all new. If they get really quiet here you want us here’s what you can say you can say, you know, Gina, I’m really glad that you know we’re gonna Be able to grip and work on this or if like, you know, we see that maybe there can be a chance for us to get a little bit closer. Let’s, you know how about we meet next week, Tuesday, you got time on Tuesday, or what is a good time for you next week for us to continue talking about this, you’re in effect, creating the partnership. And so this person is going to be leaving you, you said Tuesday at three o’clock. Now they have between now and Tuesday, at three o’clock to think a little bit about this to kind of watch to process their feelings, you’re not catching them off guard and just dumping stuff on their head. And then you come back on Tuesday, and you say whatever you have to say. And I think the thing to say is, I’m really glad we’re doing this, that’s all.
Curt Anderson 35:40
Okay, that’s that’s moment, a sense. Number two, you know, we’re just like, what I just, I just like to give everybody just a moment to savor that before we dive into the next one. So that was just absolute pure gold. I want to slide in here for a second, what a thank you for a great answer, you know, and the thing is it the way you just described it, you know, again, for like the gentleman that came up to you, you know, and I like you know, for for people in general, like, you know, whatever, whatever situation is like, they want to be better, they want to do better. They want to build better relationships, but boy, we just can’t be for you know, though my mom thinks I’m for everybody. I’m just not, you know, I’m not for everyone, you know, just, you know, in hate and witness with little mic trap there. Yeah. David, did you have a comment? I’m
Damon Pistulka 36:21
gonna, you know, the thing is that you’re talking about Dr. Regina. We are not taught this, we are not born with these skills. And a very, I should say very few people even discuss these things. And it just the fact that you’re bringing it up so succinctly. And so it’s so common sense approach. I mean, it’s as listening this, I just get inspired by hearing it, because these are things that we could teach leaders everywhere. And they could, they could eradicate a lot of challenges in companies just by being simple. And with learning
Gena Cox 37:05
options. And I’m not suggesting that everything, anything I just said is easy, because it’s it’s an emotional change adjustment. It’s a change, it’s, it’s emotional. And that’s the other thing we’re not taught to do in the workplace is to sort of deal with our emotions effectively. But ultimately, the most effective managers are the ones who have a relationship with each of the persons on their team, all 10 of them, and understands enough that when that person shows up, it’s kind of like how you understand your spouse or your partner, your child, they don’t even have to say a word. You just know, they’re having a good day, they’re having a bad day. Imagine if you could have that sense with the people, you know, on your team.
Curt Anderson 37:47
Well, you know, Damon, that just struck another question. So I have a question for a friend a friend actually wanted me to ask, Regina, you’re reading a lot of those. Yes, this is coming from a friend. So let’s just say hypothetically, this friend of mine is suffering like maybe like old guy, or old dad, discrimination from his teenage daughter, where she got her driver’s license, and now she doesn’t want dad in the car anymore. And dad feels like it’s a little bit like, with any advice for that friend of mine, that I’m just kidding. We suffered a new civil rule that one so I’m,
Gena Cox 38:22
I have, I have never been there. But I have never had that experience. By the way I taught I refuse to to teach my daughter how to drive I let somebody else professional handle it, and they let them take over. There was just too much involved. But um, but you know, it’s, it’s all related to this idea that if you could really understand what’s going into what that person is feeling. If you had if you could think about what what is she or he feeling that would cause them to be reacting the way they’re reacting? Is it that they don’t love me anymore? No. Is it that they want to assert some independence? Because this is what people like you don’t you have to think a little bit about it. And then you have to decide, okay, it’s not about me, it’s about them. And, and that but that’s everything, right? Everything. It really is
Curt Anderson 39:10
exact. So this friend of mine, he’s having a little have a tough time where he’s out loud in the car anymore because she’s got to drive by herself, but I’ll talk to my friend and I’ve got some of that advice. Okay. Yeah, absolutely. So just teasing. So, let’s go. Let’s go here. You recently wrote an amazing article for Fast Company in one of your taglines that I love that you know, and guys if you miss any of this, please please please go back. Catch Dr genius book connect with her on LinkedIn. There’s just a wealth of information here. You use the line make workplaces thrive without disruption. You just give some wonderful tips. And you said this really? You really like to use word proud if I was you, I’d be very proud of that article you just put out in Fast Company. Let’s talk about that article that you just put out.
Gena Cox 39:53
Okay. Okay. Yeah, I mean, I wrote an article in Fast Company for Fast Company, and they intact I believe that the one thing leaders can do to sustain inclusion or something like that, but what we’re talking about is respect, which is the thing I like to talk about the most. And the main point of the article is that while most of us have heard the word respect ever since we were very small, and think we know what it means, most of us, number one don’t know what it means. And most of us also don’t realize just how much weight it carries. You know, we tend to confuse it with a variety of things like civility, like we talked about civility, if we were civil, we think that everything is okay. But civility is really about not being rude or disrespectful. That’s what civility is about. And leaders also confuse respect with trust. The thing about trust is that trust is sort of a long term phenomenon. Most people don’t trust any other person in the in the in the moment, right, it takes a while they happens, you watch what they do at bead, you watch what they do at sea, and over time, it’s sort of the emotion is built Do you either trust or don’t trust and trust is when trust is present, you know, you’re willing to be sort of vulnerable and open and so on. But the other individual respect is not the same thing. Because first of all, you can’t get to trust unless you pass through respect. And respect is one of those things that some aspects of respect are immediate. People are very adept at at judging whether they’re respected. And that’s in a nanosecond, right, there’s an aspect of respect of respect this immediate, there’s that right. And so one of the things I point out in the article that I know is the foundation of some of the gaps that we see when we talk about race, ethnicity, and so on in the country in this country, is that, that that individuals who are from traditionally underrepresented groups are highly vigilant for respect, they’re constantly scanning the environment to determine if respect is absent is present or absent. And if they get the smallest clue that respect is absent, it will never trust. And so you have to think about all of these things in that very complicated way. Also, remembering that respect, is in the eye of the beholder, regardless of who you are, regardless of what you look like. It’s not up to me to determine if I’m respecting you, it’s up to the person receiving your behavior to judge whether they feel respected. It’s kind of that sounds kind of like unfair, like a lot of burden. But guess what, it goes back to what we said before, if you’re talking to me, if we’re connecting with a communicating, and we have we can build that comfort in our relationship. It won’t be a mystery. It’s only a mystery when we’re not connected. Okay. Me.
Damon Pistulka 42:36
I know, as I see the comments, rolling drops. Yeah, yeah. Yeah, we gotta go back on this, because there’s so much here. And we got Gail came in too. So
Curt Anderson 42:46
yeah, Happy Friday to you. Yeah, it’s just, you need trust to get respect. And then a date. Remember this one, somebody got goosebumps on your, on your comment there so? And Whitney says, Yes, amen to all that. So again, guys, thank you for all the comments today. This is
Damon Pistulka 43:02
Yeah. Oh, oh, my goodness. Thank you. This is so cool. We’re
Curt Anderson 43:10
gonna start winding down here. Dr. Gina, so this question just hit me, I’m going offline a little bit. Are there any particular companies that you can think of that as like a really kind of leading the pack as far as like, your, you know, this, this respect of, you know, direction, this lead, you know, leading the charge with this? Anybody comes mining exploration?
Gena Cox 43:30
Yeah, I mean, there are companies that have sort of clearly defined this into their value system and the way they do things and you know, a company like Microsoft, American Express comes to mind. These are American Express, as an example, is a company that you might not know a whole lot about, which is probably intentional, their financial services, they keep a low profile, but they’ve had this respect value, documented in the way that they run their business forever. And you what happens with a company like that, is that, okay, it might not be maybe the most fun company or the most, I don’t know, there might be other things about the company that you would say, you know, you wish it had. But the one thing that always has is that it always has this respect at foundation. There’s a European company called Nestle. And I don’t know if you’ve heard the name Nestle, most people have, it’s not, you know, especially with regard to its consumer products, and so on very big in Europe. And literally, they use this concept of respect as the primary factor that drives their entire business. I mean, this is the thing they focus on. And both of the companies I just mentioned, American Express, primarily, you know, very familiar to Americans and Nestle, maybe not as more familiar to Europeans as examples. Both of these companies are without doubt, extremely successful. Companies have been able to sustain their business model over decades and decades and are highly admired not just in the street and in Wall Street, but also by their employees. The payoff of respect a focus for an operating a business is that it takes away some of the stress and pressure that acts like a hindrance to performance. It takes away the things that get in the way of me just showing up and doing my job to the best of my ability, and then leaving at the end of the day and going, Ah, I did the job.
Curt Anderson 45:20
That will thank you. And I know, we weren’t prepared for that question. So that was a great answer. And you know, and again, you know, might be easier said than done. And like you said, you know, boy, it’s simple. It’s just not always easy to do, right? It’s simple to, you know, try to implement these things. But you know, we are target or, you know, smaller companies, smaller manufacturers. And so whether you’re a five person, company, 10, person 20, you know, when you start at the top, you’re really intentional, you’re gonna make mistakes, you know, we all make mistakes, we’re all gonna say dumb, dumb, goofy things or maybe offend somebody hurt somebody’s feelings. But boy, when you when you show that you care, like you’re saying, Hey, can we talk next Tuesday, when you show that you care, and I raised my hand, I want to understand I wanted to better boy, just look at the opportunity and the possibilities that can happen. From that respect, respect standpoint, Damon, what do you have? Well,
Damon Pistulka 46:08
and you you brought up manufacturing Kurt, and let’s be honest, manufacturing is a melting pot of diversity. I mean, it really is it’s from you can you can walk in, you can find people from around the globe in the smallest companies. And we’re talking about not just not just the fact that we grew up in different places, we’re talking about English as a second language with the could be not just one second language, or people that we’re talking about with different primary languages to in the same in the same facility, oftentimes. So this is so much, it’s so prevalent in manufacturing, and in the common sense advice that you gave Dr. Gina, it’s just, you know, get to know these people and ask them, you know, and just talk with them and understand them. It’s, it’s, it’s so relevant.
Gena Cox 46:58
And here’s a little cheat sheet that I would offer to anyone who’s listening, because this is these are ideas that I think are applicable in groups of two all the way up to groups of 100,000. And in a whole country, for example, you know, the way that I defined respect, as I said to you before, is it really has this whole to do with this whole idea of do I feel that you’re, you know, valuing my humanity, you know, my worth just as this human on the planet. And so there’s really three elements, this is the checklist, you know, do I feel seen, you know, like, this is where some of the interpersonal niceties, you’re acknowledging me are making eye contact, I don’t feel as if you know, I’m invisible when I’m in your presence and that sort of thing. So I do I feel seen, so I feel heard. Do you ask them ideas? Do you use my ideas? Do you value the ideas that I share? Do I feel like you know, that I make a difference in whatever little thing that I do. And if we have time, remind me to tell you a story about this later. So being heard is really important. And then being valued. First of all, it’s not just about money. It’s not just about compensation. It’s about recognition as well. It’s about saying, Gosh, Gina, I saw you I saw you do that thing. Yesterday, I went to Publix and I ordered a philly steak sandwich in Florida. And I watched the the gentleman who was making a sandwich and he was real particular about what he was doing. And then I said, Would you please cutting in half and I did all these things that he did it just so and at the end of it. I said, I saw what you did there, I saw the care that you put into making the sandwich, you really wanted to get this right, didn’t you? That would be an example of recognition, where now for that minute, hopefully for just that minute, he feels like I did a good job. And now I can go on and make my next sandwich. And I intentionally say the words when I see the opportunity I don’t ignore so record recognition and compensation. I’ll tell you the other story very quickly, I want to work for a company and I was walking down the hallway by the by the mailroom, and everybody in there was laughing. And so I stuck my head on like what’s going on in here what’s, you know, gloomy in? And they say, Well, okay, these, this company was acquiring another company that was in another state. And every day they sent packages back and forth during the due diligence process. Okay, so they’re sending all these FedEx packages, let’s say each company is sending 50 packages a day coming from different departments within this one company. And they were saying we just got our are 2pm Bunch of packages, and we’re less laughing because like, why couldn’t somebody just consolidate those at Company A, consolidate them at Company B and maybe do a 10am to 2pm mailing twice a day, save all this money? And then when the stuff comes in, you know, we can just get it to the right places. I said well that’s a great idea. Well, why are you laughing? Oh, we’re never gonna tell anybody buddy about this and like why? Because they don’t want to hear us right? We don’t feel seen heard and valued and so this opportunity to do a process better to save money while doing the process to make people feel like they’re getting their information to flow more quickly because we have more control these packages. We’re not going to give you that Mr. business owner that business advantage You’re gonna miss that because we don’t feel respected
Curt Anderson 50:06
moment of silence number four I think we’re five I lost track. That was great. That is a great point you know creating that environment
Damon Pistulka 50:15
that was so I read two pages of notes ready we’ve got
Curt Anderson 50:18
it same here I’ve got it all right here we’ve got a respect to trust to powerful things for success. And all it takes is one person to hear you always make the effort and put myself out there 10 meetings and speak up. That was okay, we’re coming. I know I’m keeping you longer than I’m supposed to Dr. Gina and this I could keep you here all day. This is just pure, pure gold of just how to create just a vibrant, safe work environment. You are just doing amazing work. Again, guys. Connect with Dr. Jeanne on LinkedIn, grab her book, Dr. Geno’s or any other thing they want to share with you how people can connect with you any other opportunities, any events coming up anything that you want to share, for folks to learn more about you.
Gena Cox 51:00
Yeah, absolutely. Check me out on LinkedIn, because I’m very responsive. If you reach out to me, I’m gonna come respond to you look for my Fast Company article, if you really want to understand some of these ideas in greater depth. This company, Gina Cox, it’s also right there on the front page of my LinkedIn, it hasn’t even made it to my website yet, because it just came out. And that would say, I really want to, especially for your audience, you know, I want to encourage everyone to say that the things that I’m talking about are about you’ll notice they’re about the employee experience, that’s really my focus. And so think about your job as your as a manager or as a as an entrepreneur, or what however, you you know, whatever role you play, think read, just remember that you need to be that designated hitter. There’s nobody else that comes onto the field, or you come on to the field at the time that no one else can can do the thing that you can do. And so remember, you’re the designated hitter, with like a target in the middle of your forehead, where the 10 people on your team are the two people on your team, you’re it. And so too, every time that you do a little bit more, you hit that ball or you do whatever it is that you were supposed that they’re hoping you will do you get extra points. It’s like magic, you know, and so move forward move towards your employees, rather than, you know, sort of pulling back.
Curt Anderson 52:17
Amen. And so I Damon, you know, she sounds like Dr. Gina might be a baseball fan. I’ve heard Yeah, I
Damon Pistulka 52:23
feel good hit.
Gena Cox 52:25
I know I you know, it’s so funny that you say that, I wouldn’t really say that I’m a true baseball fan. I do go to spray live in Clearwater, Florida. So I do get to some spring training ice. And our Tampa Bay Rays. They’re nothing to sneeze at. You know, they’re pretty good. But, but I grew up with cricket. But what I discovered as I was writing my book, I started using this language as I was writing the book, and I was really looking for language that most people, more people would would remember and would resonate. And the designated hitter. I almost went with power player because I love the power play hockey. I thought why doesn’t every professional sport have a power play, you take one person out and you had to get the team like to be that’s the ultimate measure of like the pay of a penalty. But but on the other side of it more positively, I thought the designated hitter, you know, comes out and does a thing, and that only that person can do and that is what a manager is.
Curt Anderson 53:18
Well, that’s fantastic. And I love Tran dropped this comment here. Dana be the first to make the change that you want. I absolutely love that line. So Dr. Jane, let’s close it out with this. I have a little one little last question for you that I’d love to ask before we let you go for the day. So being that we are jamming about baseball, Dave and I are big, huge baseball fans. And you mentioned Hey, you raise your razor, nothing to sneeze at. Right? Is that the comment that you made? Right? So hypothetically, let’s just ask another question here. Let’s say that it’s the bottom of the ninth. Tampa Bay, it has Barbara the ninth It’s Ty score. And there’s somebody on second base, vitamin night two outs somebody on second. We need to run like we need a base hit the designated hitter needs to get a base hit to bring well actually you know what, we don’t care for the designated hitter. So we’re gonna go to a pinch hitter and the manager of the raise looks down the bench and he says Hey, Dr. Gina grab a bat get up to the plate and hit in this winning run and end this game for me. Will you please so you start up you throw in your helmet you grab your bat as you’re walking to the plate. What is your walk up song? Oh
Gena Cox 54:27
my gosh, it probably it’s probably either going to be our ESP CT because you know I have to say that but it’s this girl is on fire there you go. That’s awesome. That’s gonna be that
Curt Anderson 54:44
might number 10. So how this girl is on fire and a little our
Gena Cox 54:50
Alicia Keys Alicia Keys.
Curt Anderson 54:52
That’s right. Yeah, those were two things. i You’re You’re right on the spot. So that’s fantastic. You’re a great sport today. So Hey indicating here yep what a great move toward the team notably from them so, guys, if you are leading man if you’re leading just one person or even just leading your family or just you know an organization, someone in your community, whatever it is in your walk of life, boy I strongly encourage you invite you welcome you. Check this comic check this show again, go back for your pure gold. iron sharpens iron Damon, I just feel like a better person just being here to catch all this, I almost feel guilty that we got all this information. So doctors, you know, this was just such a gift. It’s
Gena Cox 55:36
been absolutely a pleasure and just chatting with both of you is a hoot. I mean, you know, this, I think this is why your audience comes back they come back for the content, but it probably also come back for the for the feeling, you know, the experience, and actually goes back to what I always say, we got we talk a lot about customer experience, we need to talk about employee experience, because all any human wants is that feeling. You know, that’s That’s great. That’s great. In that in
Curt Anderson 55:58
that recognition, you know, that you know, like, hey, that a boy that a girl and so grab her book, connect with Dr. Gina on LinkedIn. And so guys, thank you for joining us today. Thank you for the comments. We’re going to be back here on Monday with another wonderful, amazing, incredible get guests. Have a great weekend. Again, Happy Veterans Day to all of our veterans out there, Damon, thank you for your service. Thank you for everybody that served out there. And just you know what I love to say just go out there and just be someone’s inspiration. Just like Dr. Gina was for all of us today. And before we wrap up, David How about you know, if you’ve been sitting around for the past 56 minutes we’ve been going it’s a great opportunity to stand up and give a big standing ovation for Dr. Gina for just dropping pure gold for almost a Yes. Dr. Gina Thank you. Thank you. Appreciate you. God bless everybody out there. Damon take it away brother.
Damon Pistulka 56:52
Wow, Kurt what and what a show. Thank you, Dr. Gina, so much, so much. Great stuff you shared with us today. I want to thank everyone that was dropping comments today. Katie and Tran and Whitney and Gail and all my goodness faith and Babu, Ethel written IVs there’s just so many people they thank you. I have gone trying to go back to Guinea say it. But thanks so much for showing up with us every week and listen to these awesome people that we get Dr. Gina nothing short of spectacular today. And if you didn’t get this from the beginning, like we said before, go back and start this thing over because there are some great actionable things that you can do to help create more respect with the people you’re around within your organization and just make a better place. Thanks, everyone. We’ll be back again next week.