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EP:16 – A Conversation with Adrian Gostick

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Adrian Headshot

Adrian Gostick is a New York Times best-selling co-author of The Carrot Principle and All In, which are sold in more than fifty countries around the world. He is the cofounder of the global training firm The Culture Works, with a focus on Culture, Team Work and Engagement. As a leadership expert he has been called “fascinating” by Fortune Magazine and “creative and refreshing” by the New York Times. Gostick has appeared on NBC’s today show and on CNN and he is often quoted by the Economist, The Wall Street Journal and Newsweek. In addition, if you google the 30 Top Leadership Global Guru’s he is ranked number 3, behind Tony Robbins and in front of Simon Sinek. I was thrilled to host him on the Game of Teams Podcast Series.

Show Notes

Podcast episode summary: This show illuminates the five disciplines Leaders need to deploy on teams for high performance. Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, NY times bestselling authors for their books “all in “and “the Carrot Principle “researched over 850,000 engagement surveys to determine just what is takes to drive performance and improve engagement in organisations. Adrian shared many vignettes and stories to reveal the new proven methods leaders can use to build productive teams despite the distractions and challenges every business is facing. Managers and Leaders need to embrace the “soft stuff”

The Five Disciplines revealed from the Book the Best Team Wins include: 

  1. Understand Generations–There are real differences in how generations like to be motivated that is perilous for leaders and organisations to ignore. 
  2. Manage to the One. This might sound counterintuitive to organisations and leaders that for ages have been treating people as the same. In todays’ world especially for Millennials and for Generation Z they want to know that their motivations and needs are met. 
  3. Speed Productivity means helping teams and new people work faster and smarter
  4. Challenge Everything it is important the everyone has a voice and is able to inspire innovation through healthy discord. 
  5. Now, don’t forget your customer which is really about creating alignment around serving them. This breaks down silos and reminds people who the real customer is. 

Adrian described his work and the work The Culture Works is asked to do for organisations. He was quick to point out that there is a lot written on teams, work that is still very valid and relevant, but he and his co-author Chester Elton wanted to find out what was new and different given the VUCA & digitised world, we live. They wanted to understand how engagement could be improved on teams to drive productivity. He spoke to the five disciplines described above and how deceptively simply they seem on paper but how often they are not practiced in reality. He urged managers and leaders to be comfortable and intimate with the soft stuff. 

Adrian and Chester have just completed their latest book, a title on Gratitude in Business. They found some new science to show how a leader’s style can be improved by some very simple yet profound techniques. 

Resources: the following include the resources we alluded to over the course of our conversation

  1. Gostick, A. Elton, A. The Best Team Wins 
  2. Gostick, A. Elton, C. The Carrot Principle
  3. Gostick, A. Elton, C. All In
  4. Deloitte Human Capital Trends 2018, citing the percentage of Millennials in the workforce. 
  5. Hackman, J.R. Leading Teams 
  6. Lencioni, P. The five dysfunctions of teams 
  7. Googles Project Aristotle, 5 keys to team Success 
  8. Edmondson, A. Teaming, Extreme Teaming, and the fearless organisation 

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