Episode 52 – Dave McKeown | Author of The Self Evolved Leader

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In this episode I chat with Dave McKeown – the founder of Outfield Leadership plus author, speaker, leadership trainer and business advisor.

We discuss his new book – The Self Evolved Leader – and how it was designed to be applicable to anyone, with practical strategies to implement immediately. Dave guides us through his process of writing the book in a very short amount of time, plus some of his key leadership learnings, including the cycle of mediocrity, collective shared goals, and how to implement a change in perception.

Key episode highlights include:

  • It’s not necessarily those leaders who are functionally good at their jobs that have the greatest impact
  • You’re the only one who is responsible for your own growth and development
  • Leaders can often have an addiction to ‘saving the day’ – the heroism – that not only steals their time but ultimately prevents others from learning as well
  • Every interaction is a possibility to be a more effective leader.

Connect further with Dave over on his website, or order his book here.

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Murray Guest  00:01

Dave, welcome to the podcast. So looking forward to catching up with you and talking about your new book, the self evolved leader. How are you?


Dave McKeown  00:10

I’m just wonderful. Murray. Thank you for having me on. It’s good to get the we did a couple of months ago where you were with me.


Murray Guest  00:18

Yeah, I do remember that we had a really good chat with Becky around Leaders who Give A Damn and your podcast. And I’m looking forward to chatting about your book, how’s life in So Cal at the moment


Dave McKeown  00:30

It is going wonderfully where we are in a way, which means that I have a sweater on.


Murray Guest  00:48

Dave, Good morning. Welcome to the podcast. Looking forward to chatting to you about the self evolve leader. How are you?


Dave McKeown  00:55

I am just wonderful. Murray. Thank you so much for having me back on. It’s great to talk to you again.


Murray Guest  01:00

Yeah, I’d love to chat we had last time on your podcast, which is all about giving a damn in your leadership. How’s life in So Cal


Dave McKeown  01:10

Life over here is wonderful. We’re in winter, which means that sometimes I have to put a sweater on. But other than that, I can’t really complain.


Murray Guest  01:19

Well, I am looking forward to chatting to you not just about this book, but you have the gorgeous, amazing accent so I could listen to you talk for the next four hours, mate.


Dave McKeown  01:29

Well, I mean, likewise, you know, there’s I think, you know, foreign accents are always more amusing to somebody that doesn’t come from a place. So your wonderful dulcet tones are are equally listenable too?


Murray Guest  01:43

Well, maybe you are like me, I don’t go back and listen to the podcast too much, because I’d much rather listen to your voice than mine. But not, I actually want to just just want to understand a little bit about your background and share that with people. Give me the higher level your journey to this point. From a business and leadership perspective.


Dave McKeown  02:08

Sure, happy to share that. So I’m originally from Northern Ireland, as I’m sure you and your listeners are picking up. And I started my career many moons ago back in the UK working for Accenture it consultancy company, which is a big global company. And during my time there, I realized that it was not necessarily those leaders who were functionally good at their job that had the greatest impact on the team that they were leading. But that in fact, they had something else that this ability to set a really cool vision of where they wanted to go and then bring people along with them. And it sort of set about for me a lifelong desire, get a deep dive to be an excellent leader, and then ultimately help other people develop skill set to get there. And to move to the States about 10 years ago and joined the families this company called predictable success, or national growth consultancy company, and focused on on helping senior leadership teams create creativity and innovation that you need to grow up with the processes that you need to scale it and it gave me just a really good idea in what effects, an excellent leader like I worked there for years with a nice little size. And then I stepped away from that a couple of years ago book really was that we were doing the most senior leaders, I wanted to be able to do that at any level. Because I feel a number of of leaders out there who are just crying out for a memorial effector. And so over the last number of years of dedicated kind of my professional life to making that happen. And I guess the outpour of pouring of all of that past experiences the self evolve leader.


Murray Guest  04:12

Now we spoke a bit before about this book. And I’ve read the book, I’ve had a deep dive into it. And I think I told you I’m a little bit jealous, a little bit inspired.


Dave McKeown  04:25

Well Thank you. It’s always good to hear one of your peers that you hired tell you that?


Murray Guest  04:30

Well, the jealousy comes from the fact that you have have invested the time and energy to put into this book and I’ve had a vision of writing a book for some time haven’t got around to it, but certainly something which you’ve inspired me to really do again, and even more. So when I read what you’ve put into this book, your lessons, your experiences, your understanding around leadership made is fantastic. I love the way that you’ve put it together. And you build as you go through the book to help people understand what being a self evolved leader means. And the other part is, I think it’s relevant, whether you’re a new leader, a leader that’s, you know, struggling or later, that’s actually doing quite well, that wants to do better. So it’s applicable for leaders of all stages of that development.


Dave McKeown  05:22

Yeah, and that was really my goal. You know, it’s funny, you pick up most leadership books, and they say this is this book is for leaders at any level. And actually, in most cases, that isn’t true, just because it’s kind of hard to write something that’s that’s applicable for such a broad audience. But it was one of the kind of core principles that I started out with, I really wanted to make it to be as accessible as possible for as wide a range of a group as possible. And I just also wanted it to have, you know, a balance between some interesting new ideas and philosophies on leadership that I think that that we need to adopt in our workplaces, but then also the practicality of what somebody can walk away and literally begin to implement some of the lessons right. And I kept thinking that somewhere between the poignant and the practical lies progress. And that was still in the book as I wrote it.


Murray Guest  06:17

How would you describe the process of writing a book?


Dave McKeown  06:23

It’s funny, so I give myself a deadline to do it a really tight turnaround time, because I knew that no matter how long I give myself, I would just, I would just fill that time. So I should give myself three months to write it. And actually, that boiled down to two months, because in the middle month, I got married. And so most of my time was kind of dedicated to making all of that happens. So I wrote the first half of the month, took a break and got married number, the second half. And it was just, I think there was something put in those constraints around me, that meant that I had to listen, this is gonna sound a little bit more mean it to but I really just had to listen to what the voice inside me was saying, and get it out on paper. overthink what I mean, and some high end just as magical way of all came together and stuck. And I look at it now. And I’m like, if I sat down to write that again, now, I don’t think I would do as good a job. It just sort of beautifully came together.


Murray Guest  07:26

Yeah, I can imagine those moments. And I’ve had those when I’m writing a blog or putting together some information for a client and in a way that feels like you’re channeling just the information just as coming from flowing out. And I can sense that in your writing in this book. It’s just, again, I think it’s fantastic. Now I’ve got to ask, Where did the name come from. 


Dave McKeown  07:49

So the name came, from a sort of belief over the last couple of years, as well, a belief in the observation all rolled into one, which is that across the world, we spend billions of dollars every year in an attempt to develop our leaders. So whether it’s workshops, or keynotes or webinars, or podcasts or books, and there’s a lot of great stuff out there. And I think that our organizations hope that their people will avail of it. But the reality is that those leaders who truly, truly move into excellence and, and high degrees of effectiveness, recognize and understand that they are responsible, and quite frankly, only them are for their own growth and journey and development. And so starting from this perspective of wanted, I am developing as a leader legacy that I’m building and the impact that I’m having on my people. And for me, that really is the crux of self evolution, because it’s not happening to you, you’re driving it, you’re you’re the engine of growth, you can happen. So that that was how, I kind of came around with that idea.


Murray Guest  09:04

So, and again, when I had to look through the book, and those levels of development as a self evolve leader from some of those foundations through to really sustaining that self of leadership, I was actually thinking about one of the models that really connected with me, and I’ve seen it so many times in leaders, unfortunately, that I’ve worked with, and I’m sure myself actually and that’s probably why it rang true to me when I’ve slipped into it as well. far from perfect as a leader myself, that’s for sure. And with leaders I work with now I often say and this is the cycle of mediocrity. Just want to tell us a bit about that. Because I think that that was such a great way for people to start to think about in the book when I read that what it means for them and how that’s showing up.


Dave McKeown  09:52

Right and it’s a pattern that I see happening all the time, which is that in today’s day and age because we’ve given Anybody the ability to interrupt us in any time in any way and in the way in which they deem appropriate, we’ve essentially made everything in front of us urgent, everything needs to get attended to right away. And we don’t spend enough time thinking about the truly important with long term direction of our team and development of our people. When we’re walking around with a mindset that everything’s urgent, it means that everything becomes some sort of an emergency or crisis that needs to get dealt with. And for a lot of leaders, the fastest, most effective response to that is, well, I need to fix it. So he comes with a team member comes with a problem and you say, Or you say, ‘I’ll just handle that for you just leave it there, I’ll, I’ll fix it’. And what happens and it starts from a place of good intention, which is, I know that I can probably do that quicker or more effectively than you you’re it, you know, I’ve got the the tools at my disposal to do that. But over time, as you start to lead through these acts of heroism, which is the ultimately our die making the diving catches, you’re saving the day happens in bottleneck because everything just ends up with your brain you tick on more and more. And then the reverse of that is people aren’t developing, they’re not learning, but you’re not given the opportunity to do that. And so they develop learned helplessness for a period of time, although some in this question of saying anytime that there is a challenge, they’re faced with snow, my boss is gonna kill it. So I’ll just go and say, “Hey, boss, here’s another, you know, to your list, and causes you as a heroic leader to, to save the day even more”, because more and more items are left at your door, and it gets a video call an appointed or a bad leader. Definitely not good leadership, but keeps very much good in the weeds at the runway level, and doesn’t allow us to elevate our focus towards that stuff that’s truly important.


Murray Guest  12:09

I also think about that sense of heroism, and being the hero and the rush of endorphins that happens when you’re saving a day. And you’re saving that and I think there can be a bit of an addiction to that happening sometimes in in our leadership, because we’re the ones that are doing all the good work and showing up and saving the day solving the problem. And we feel good about it as well. And so we get into that soil


Dave McKeown  12:39

100% and it feeds our teams dependent upon you then it feels the moment. And so we do it again and again. And also there’s a set that that’s where a lot of that comes from, you know, I’ve been through this organization knew the answers because I do solve problems, things. And at some point you kind of have to miss shift the wave to recognize and understand when your more harm than good. And you’re not giving yourself the head to think creatively you’re robbing your people of that opportunity to develop comes from is quite often, once in any aspect of your life and leadership is no day can can be in so tough that we’re talking about at times the most See, whereas chasing the most recent your crisis. Because I can actually, you know, I can go in and save the day and Effie. And and part of the message in the book is that if you if you really want to build a legacy, excellent leadership, so you got to do stuff that just bit more mundane, a little bit more boring?


Murray Guest  13:52

Yeah, I am. I’ve had conversations with leaders that I’ve been coaching over the past year, which certainly, I’ve noticed, and they’ve noticed that they’ve slipped and slipped into this process slipped into this sort of mediocre cycle of mediocrity. And the thing that I was thinking about, and this is something which I’m sure you cover in your programs, as well is once we’re changing our approach as leaders, we need to actually talk to people about that, because the people around us have been expecting the same behavior. So once we start to make the change, we actually need to let everyone know that what that means for them and bring them on the journey.


Dave McKeown  14:34

Now, huge, it actually there’s a line philosophical shift that’s happening in leadership, which is, you know, we used to uphold our leaders who was so sure on the direction that they’re going in and we’re all in line and bushwhacking through the jungle and just never, never aeverine for from our oil and you know, I think back into that notion of heroic leadership and heights that’s filled into our organizations. But the reality is, in today’s day and age, the world is too complex for me to be completely sure of anything, really. And, and I think that people recognize that lie. And so what we’re looking for from our leaders actually is, is a bigger or higher degree of vulnerability that says, you know, what, I don’t 100% know that this is the direction that we should go in, it looks good to me, based on my experience, and what I’ve gone through in the past, what thing do you want to go with me on this journey? I think it would be awesome, I think we can really achieve a lot of good stuff, but just being a little bit more vulnerable in that, and into your question, which is when as leaders where we are going through a period of growth or development, or we’re trying something new, you know, the worst thing that you can do is go back to your team and just start using a whole bunch of jargon or new vocabulary or a new model, and your team will look at you and go, who are you and what have you done with my manager. And I think that that, that tying those two things are going back to your team with a bit of vulnerability and saying, hey, just read this book, or have gone through this program, I’ve got a lot of value out of it. And I actually think it could really help how you and I interact with each other, and how we work together, here are some things that I learned and hear things, some things that I’m going to try with, with you over the next couple of weeks, will you let me know how it’s going for you and and what’s working in here and what’s not. And when you do that, then you’re making your team co conspirators into success in your own success of your own development, which can really help push it through and maximize the gains that you’re getting from.


Murray Guest  16:42

I think that unfortunate cycle of buisiness, that I think a lot of leaders feel that they’re on that they, what I’ve experienced is I don’t have time to have those conversations, I don’t have time to talk through these. So we’re just gonna get on with it, I’ve got so much to do. But it’s those conversations, which change the culture which change the way they work. And it’s changes the the interactions that people are having. And I love how the book, and your approach is about actually you got to stop and actually have those conversations, because then you’ll get the bigger impact about actually what you’re trying to achieve.


Dave McKeown  17:17

Yeah, and I think part of the reason why leaders are hesitant to quote unquote, have those conversations is because whether you’re talking about having a coaching conversation, or a difficult conversations conversation, or a feedback conversation, or you know, a new approach to leadership conversation, we sort of feel like we’ve got a store everything done until the next time that we have a big long one on one where we’re together for 45 minutes, or 60 minutes, or whatever it is. And we talk through this stuff. And the reality is, that’s just not a very fluid way to do it. There’s a great book called the coaching habit, which was written by a friend of mine called Michael bungay, stanier. And his perspective is, if you can’t coach in 10 minutes or less than you’re never going to coach, and that you have to view every interaction that you have with your team as an opportunity to be more coach like, and I think that extends to all areas of leadership. Like if you don’t have the the, you should look at every interaction that you have as the ability to be building a stronger culture to be to be building your leadership, strengths, your skills, your behaviors, to be investing in the people that are around you. So that you don’t have to feel like you need to wait for a big, lengthy meeting to do just every every interaction is an opportunity to be a more effective leader.


Murray Guest  18:36

So if someone’s listening to us talking, which I hope they are. And I’m sure they are what’s your, your message then for people that are listening to this and they’re thinking, you know, what, I’m just got so much on my, my plate, you know, I’m juggling so much in my leadership role, I don’t actually don’t have time for this, what would be your first recommendation for them to consider?


Dave McKeown  19:04

I think that a big overarching perspective shift that needs to happen is to be ruthlessly focused on what you can control and don’t focus on what you can’t. And often that statement of I’ve got too much on my plate, it lives in the world of what you can’t control if people pass it off. And they pretend like it lives in the world of what I can control. But, but I think it’s it’s more people slide more into that sense of victimhood, which is I’m just too busy. I’ve got so much going on and start to think about, well, you know, what would it look like if you had the time? What would a leader who has the time to do the things that we’re talking about how would they structure their day? What would that look like and, and just to pick one or two things that you can do to slowly make that happen? For me, all of that start With the overarching mindset shift, as all good behavioral shifts tend to do, and I talk in a book about a new leadership mantra, which is this. And I think if you just adopt this into the way you lead, it can be really helpful to start to make the shift. My focus is to help those on my team achieve our shared goals, and in doing so to help them become the best version of themselves. And the reason that I like that so much is the focus is to help our team achieve our shared goals. So if I succeed, and you fail, then I fail, if I succeed, a couple of other people in our team succeed, and you fail, I fail. It’s about collective shared goals. And, and, and using that word coconspirators, again, making your team co conspirators in that success. And then the second part of it, which I think is just as if not more important, which is to help them become the best version of themselves as they’re achieving those goals. Because that means that it strips out any room or any space for those acts of heroism, because you know, you’re not helping your team develop into the best version of themselves. And the greatest thing that you can do in any of this, once you adopt that mindset, is just to begin to just pause for a split second before you rush to action on anything. And just think about that mantra, how do I best do that in this moment? How can I help my team achieve their shared goals? and become the best version of themselves? Pause, think about that. And then approach whatever it is that’s in front of you, rather than just rushing to action right away?


Murray Guest  21:35

Yeah, I was I actually loved the mention of having a pause and the power of the pause in the book, and how powerful that is, you know, the business that I’m sure lots of leaders feel, I felt in the past, that we’ve just got to get on to the next thing and got to jump in there. But when we actually stop and think, you know, is this the best use of my time? Is it the most valuable thing I could be doing? How does this impact the team, just considering some of those things? And like you’re saying, think about what what’s the impact on our shared goals? Just has such a great reset of the way a leader is going to invest their time in that moment, and the flow and a focus on that as well.


Dave McKeown  22:19

Yeah, and it just it helps to strip out the signal from the noise. You know, I think that in the buisiness of our world with, we just react to all of the new ways and taking a pause, just for a split second to say, okay, is this a conversation that we should have now? Or could we deal with this in our next one on one? Is this an issue that I need to jump in on? Or can I empower you to go go fix that? Is this just something that you know, is going to subside by the end of the day, and we actually don’t need to do anything about it or not just taking that moment and evaluating what’s in front of you and what the appropriate reaction is, to achieve that overarching mantra. It can be huge, it it, funnily enough, you would think that taking a pause would take time away from you. But what it does is it gives you much more focus time on the things that are true to spend on the things that are truly important, rather than getting stuck in what what you deem to be urgent.


Murray Guest  23:17

The other part that I love that is an underlying sort of approach through all of this is it’s making the COVID over, I think so often in in life. And in business. There’s lots of assumptions that are just running. And we think people know or understand that having these conversations, having these pauses, brings all that to the surface, and just makes it clear, and everyone’s on this on the same page.


Dave McKeown  23:42

And I think it’s hugely important. We overestimate the appeal to an individual or a group to have Well, we overestimate the ability of a group to have a discussion and come to a conclusion. And walk I completely aligned on what that conclusion was. And again, back to that whole notion of well, we just got to keep moving. The problem is that, you know, a typical example happens, a team has an issue that they need to solve, they get a bunch of people into a room, they have a discussion, they agree what they’re going to go do. And the leader thinks that everyone’s aligned, and they’re going to start implementing, but everybody in that room has got a slight nuanced understanding of what it was that was just agreed and what their role in it is. And so as a result, there’s a whole bunch of slightly different interpretations on how we’re going to solve this problem. And if you take a pause right at that moment, and I love that phrase, make the couverte overt, so just getting a shared getting everybody to share their understanding of what we just agreed in their limit. It’ll take you two to three minutes, but it’ll save you all the time in the world whenever you go to implement. And I think that’s part of a job of a leader today is taking the time to ensure that everybody in the room understands what all of the positions are in the room that we don’t have a nuanced understanding whenever we go out To work,


Murray Guest  25:00

Hmm, I actually remember years ago, I was in a meeting. And a leader came in and talked to hold about a whole range of things and then left, and we looked at each other. And we said, well, I don’t know what I’m doing. We just went


Dave McKeown  25:14

or, or even just, this happens all the time, you know, a group will leave the room and go, that was a great meeting, you know, we’ve got some really good progress done. What did we actually agree on? But what are we gonna do? And, you know, it’s, it’s just hilarious to just say, well, it would be funny if it wasn’t such a waste of time to then have to come back together again, and actually say, Okay, what did we agree on? What are you going to do? And what are you going to do by and how will we know if you have achieved? And what do you need from us to support you and your success? Like just those four questions, we’ll see if you all the time in the world on in on implementation, you know, slowing down your decision making process, just a hair can really accelerate the implementation side of it, because you do have true alignment at that point.


Murray Guest  25:59

And for everybody listening at the back of the self evolve leader book, Dave has provided some guides, some frameworks for you to actually look very practically at how your meetings are structured, what’s their purpose was a frequency having a look at those to make those more effective. And, mate, I love how you’ve done that.


Dave McKeown  26:18

Yeah, thanks. It’s a basically a sum total of a lot of the work that I’ve done with leadership teams over the last 15 years and trying to iron out some of the issues and obstacles that I see. And what I wanted to do, you know, it’s funny in in our sphere, a lot of times somebody will write a book, and then 12 months later, they’ll write the field guide, or the workbook, you know, companion. And I mean, to me, that’s just, it’s a nice marketing ploy. But I wanted to, I wanted to give the readers everything so that they truly can implement what I’m talking about, and put it into practice.


Murray Guest  26:49

So what’s your hope for the book,


Dave McKeown  26:54

my hope is that it’ll have impact. And by that, I mean that when somebody picks it up, I am them to just have two or three really clear things that they’re going to go put into place. And, and, and implemented. And I can do that on whatever scale or, you know, I, I know that I’ll have succeeded, and I’m already starting to hear people write in either on their Amazon reviews, or send me an email to say, Hey, I really find this book valuable. And I’ve been able to put it into it right away. And my response is always, that’s awesome. Like, go do that next six months, or three months and return to the book, because then there’ll be another Golden Nugget in there for you to take away. I really do think that if people refer to it again, and again, over time, it will take them on a journey that they can just continue to grow and evolve.


Murray Guest  27:51

Yeah, and I think you raise a really good point there, which is quite often people are looking for what’s the perfect solution, and I’m gonna wait till I’ve got that to implement something. And in leadership and in life, let’s just try something. Let’s just start something and review it.


Dave McKeown  28:08

Yeah, definitely. I mean, there’s Don’t let perfection become the enemy of progress. If you just put something out there, see how it works, evaluate, you know, ask people around you, what didn’t? What should we do differently? Again, just goes back touches on a lot of those themes in talking about, you’ve got to have the vulnerability to do that. You’ve got to have openness and transparency with your people, and you’ve got a high level got to have a high level of trust with them that they’re going to, you know, take for with which it was intended.


Murray Guest  28:40

Yes, my total agree this has been so valuable to chat and to talk through this. I feel like you and I have got a lot in common in the work we’ve been doing and the people we work with, and and our line of thinking. And when I was reading the book I just saw Yep, I understand that I get that. I can see how leaders get so much value from the practicalities that you bring in the book. So again, well done on the launch of the book this year. Thank you very much. And I think to that, you know it The truth is truth is truth. Right. And so what you’re seeing and experiencing over in your part of the world, what I’m seeing experiencing here, you know, I


Dave McKeown  29:22

think there is just an underlying truth of the of the overarching shift and transformation that we’re trying to our leaders develop and get through. And, you know, I kept going back to this thought that we know what, what came before us doesn’t work anymore. We’re not 100% sure what the future looks like in terms of leadership. But we know we’ve got to shift our leaders the some way along that path on that spectrum. And, and so my hope and goal is that the self evolve leader will will help help leaders do that.


Murray Guest  29:55

Yeah, yeah. So I also want to ask Dave, what does 2020 look like for you.


Dave McKeown  30:04

So I’m kind of smack dab in the middle of promoting the book. And I’ll continue to bet for the next couple of weeks through various podcasts like this and other bits and pieces, which are fun. And then for me just to continue the work that I do with my wonderful clients, you know, one of the things that I feel very grateful for is I get the opportunity to work with leadership teams, and see firsthand how all of this stuff comes together and the impact that it has. And so I’ll continue to do that over the next number of years and episode X number of months. And I got married last year, as I said, in the middle of writing the book, and that meant that we weren’t able to take a lengthy honeymoon. So hopefully at some point towards the back end of the year, we’ll the to do that.


Murray Guest  30:49

Fantastic. I mean, I think that should be one of the big rocks that get in the calendar before it’s too late.


Dave McKeown  30:55

Yeah, I think that’s a good idea.


Murray Guest  30:58

Yes. So I have love talking to you about the book, but also just to help people understand in the work that you do, what else can they do with you? What’s the type of work around self evolve leader?


Dave McKeown  31:13

Sure. So when I work with a leadership team, I typically start a process where we’ll come in, we’ll do a diagnostic on the strength of the leaders, the leaders in the room and the leadership team as a whole. And we’ll take a look at how far along the team is towards making the shift towards becoming a self evolved leader. And there’s usually then one of three camps that we that we need to focus on. Either we need to spend some time with that team, helping them craft a compelling vision for where they want to go and what that means for their team and their organization. Or they need to get better at building that implementation rhythm, which is, when do we meet? For how long? What do we talk about what are we review? How do we bring clarity to our decision making? And then the third aspect is how do we develop the set of disciplines that we as a team need in order to navigate that process and starts for the one one and a half day session? And do those in high sales who do them publicly? Twice a year. And you can find out the details of all of them. If you go to self evolve leader.com there’s a bunch of information on the public workshop on the in house workshops.


Murray Guest  32:21

Thank you, Dave, so much for talking through that. I love that it’s a process. I think too often people think their leadership or their team is in a place. And it’s like, oh, let’s go and tick the box. We’re done. Right. And it’s the client I love working with where it’s actually a reality around, if we’re going to make some changes, we’re going to develop as leaders or change our team culture, there’s a process, there’s a series of things we need to do to get there because we didn’t get here overnight. And where we’re going is going to take longer than just ticking a box, that’s for sure.


Dave McKeown  32:55

Absolutely. And as you know, that the that you face as a business and as a growing business, you know, they enjoy over time when there are challenges that you need to face. And you know, as Marshall Goldsmith book, got you here won’t get you there. And I think that the saddest thing that you can see as a leader or leadership team who have had a period of past success, and just rely on that they’re just so comfortable with that. And they say, Hey, we’re done. We don’t need to continue to grow and evolve. And the most exciting group to work with is a leadership team that says, hey, we know that there’s always room to grow and to better ourselves.


Murray Guest  33:35

Yeah, totally great. Totally. Great. Now I want to ask a couple last questions. Dave, first thing is tell me a bit about something you like to do. That’s not to do with anything we’ve been talking about, and putting the vulnerability spotlight on you.


Dave McKeown  33:51

Sure. So two things that I love to do. One is cook, cook a lot. Whenever I can at home with my wife, we both love cooking. And particularly like just trying to think of something imaginative that I want to make and then go and find a bunch of different recipes and kind of bring it together into one. I also play the guitar just learn to play the drums. So that’s kind of interesting and fun.


Murray Guest  34:21

Fantastic. I’ve been learning the drums for some time. And I would unfortunately admit I don’t practice enough.


Dave McKeown  34:33

It’s interesting. I think that one of the key things that is really going to help leaders as we continue to evolve as a species and the workplace changes is we’ve got to get really good at learning how to learn and being able to take that learning process from one part of our life and apply it to another. So you know, learning how to play the drums. Okay, well, how do we take that and then apply it Learning how to surf or learning how to be a better leader or learning how to be a better parent, the end of the day, it all comes down to a couple of key characteristics, one of which is right. And no matter what you’re doing, if you want to get better at it, you want to master it practicing. And I think it’s it’s, it’s for the whole reason why I’m kind of going through of these things that I’m trying to learn is just to get a better sense of what that means and how it the process and apply it. So


Murray Guest  35:31

yeah, I totally agree. And I think with the access to so much information at our fingertips and just jumping to get the answers, whether it’s Google or whatever else it is that our ability to learn. And how we learn is, is getting lost. So I think tapping back into that and our own preferences and styles of learning, and understanding that and and doing the work. Oh, definitely. Yeah. My other last question, Dave. So this is the inspired energy podcast, I just want to check your definition of inspired energy, what would you say that is?


Dave McKeown  36:08

I would say that inspired energy is committing to make the most of what you have in front of you every single day. So just making that choice to own those things that you can control and not worry about those things that you can’t like, think for me that will be inspired energy.


Murray Guest  36:31

And for our listeners, I’ve just thrown Dave a curveball on this one. So you’ve done awesome answering that one on the spot my friend. Now, either, thank you. Now, as you mentioned earlier website, their self evolved leader.com has lots of great information about the book about you about your programs. So if you want to check that out, go there books also available in lots of bookstores, and online. Of course, you can buy it. Dave, it’s been fantastic talking to you today really appreciate the chance to talk about something we’re both passionate about around leadership. And again, congratulations on a fantastic book that is a really valuable, much needed resource for leaders.


Dave McKeown  37:21

Thank you so much, Murray. It’s always nice to talk to a kindred spirit and really appreciate the chat.


Murray Guest  37:26

Yeah, thanks, Dave. And now if anyone if you’ve got anything from today’s podcast, please don’t hesitate to share that online. Make sure you tag Dave and myself and share that and go and check out the self of of leader and have a great day.


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