Leadership and the Environment

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301: Does It Scale? My Modified Tesla Strategy

Ep. 301

If you've listened to this podcast, you know my Building Block---my technique to lead one person to share and act on his or her environmental values. You may also know my strategy to scale from influencing one person at a time to many.

Describing that scaling model has taken effort. A conversation with a friend this morning about how Tesla scaled suggested to me a way to describe how I planned to scale.

Today I describe what I'm thinking about calling my "modified Tesla strategy." I'm not describing a new strategy, but a new way to frame it and describe it. How one communicates influences how people understand and join a movement.

More Episodes

6/3/2020

343: Chad Pregracke: One River, One Piece of Garbage at a Time

Ep. 343
Many people suggest people as guests who are doing "environmental things". They don't know my strategy with this podcast, which I describe in my solo episode Clarifying my strategy. The crux is that I focus on leadership and bringing leaders to the environment before focusing on the environment. I consider our behavior the problem to change. Environmental degradation results from behavior.Most people are trying to make some process more efficient, like making cars electric or use less plastic in some process. That's management. It accepts the values of a system that pollutes, and generally augmenting and accelerating it: Uber doesn't decrease miles driven. It increases it.Chad started Living Lands and Waters, a non-profit where people get in the river and clean garbage. It started with just him and grew to huge. Here are some videos profiling their work.I looked at what Chad does and can see what others might: one person won't make a difference, even the organization won't, it doesn't scale. Silicon Valley wouldn't get it.Read former guest Anand Giridharadas's Winners Take All to get how sickening "doing well by doing good" is. Anand treats the problem of contributing to the problem while feeling you deserve thanks for acting like you're solving it. He on economic disparity, not the environment, but the pattern is the same.Chad shows the joy, community, and connection in doing the work---that is, he's changing the values we act on. You can tell because he works himself, with his hands. He doesn't tell others to do it instead, in part because he enjoys the work. He met the woman he married picking up garbage.I heard a guy doing what everyone says is tilting at windmills, enjoying it. He's changing culture by living the change and bringing others on board.In a world many people throw up their hands and lament that they can't make a difference, he's enjoying himself and cleaning the world, leading others to change. If you say, "But it's not enough," well, do your equivalent. He outperformed his expectation and he's enjoying himself.I brought him on because I envision a world where, like him, everyone does their part. That's cultural change. Cleaning the world and keeping it that way means changing culture. You can be jaded and holier than thou. Or you can get your hands dirty, work, and enjoy a life of stewardship, responsibility, joy, community, and connection.Living Lands & WatersSome videos profiling their work
5/29/2020

342: Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll, part 2: Sex

Ep. 342
For background, first listen to my first Sex, Drug, and Rock and Roll episode, part 1: Rock and Roll,how Bruce Springsteen's Broadway show motivated me at last to share some episodes about me. Listeners have asked to know me. I tried to put myself in the background, considering leadership and nature the important parts of the podcast, as well as the guests.Bruce sharing personal stories showed me the value of sharing, in his case about the man behind the music and in mine the man behind the podcast. In that episode, I committed to sharing more about myself and sank my ships, so, like Cortes, I couldn't retreat.Still, weeks passed without sharing. I shared my fear to act with leadership guru and past guest, Dov Baron. I talk about his episodes possibly most for his committing so fully.He said: "Here's the solution: I'm going to interview you as a guest on your podcast." I immediately saw he had the solution. Since seeing James Lipton being a guest on his show Inside the Actors Studio, I'd thought of copying the idea. I knew Dov would guest-host perfectly for why I loved him as a guest.Today's episode is the first of three episodes he interviewed me for, each delving into parts of me I've feared sharing publicly. I think you'll enjoy them. Within the first few minutes, he asked what politically incorrect views I held and what people misunderstood about me.Dov led me to share without my usual evaluating my words while saying them when talking about sensitive subjects. He spoke supportively, sharing about himself and giving views that enabled me to share what I usually protect.Only in the third episode do we reach my most poignant fears, but Dov laid the foundations in these first few minutes.This first episode is about my relationships with women, which I worked to change late in life in a deliberate, non-mainstream way. We cover how little intimacy I felt with them in my first few decades, then how my learning about vulnerability and support led to blossoming of relationships in all parts of life. My working on relationships with women contributed more to my leadership development than probably business school, where I took classes from top professors at one of the top schools for the field in the world.I talk about how following mainstream advice and learning from women led me to feel shame and hide my most important parts. I also talk about how I feared mainstream views about how I overcame prejudices that came from mainstream society, since I overcame them through what the mainstream called misogynist. They call it pick-up artistry, but my experience, starting late in life, nearly 40, was the opposite of the common caricature. On the contrary, I first learned to open up with women, then with everyone---family, coworkers, everyone I met. I'm still often socially awkward and restrained, but less than before.This first conversation with Dov is my first foray into conquering fears that people could hurt me, but also realizing it wasn't me they'd attack, but their misunderstanding of me. Listen to all three episodes to get the full picture. I thought the fears I mention in this episode were my big ones, but they actually set the stage for the ones in the third.I can't express my gratitude enough to Dov.I alternate between finding this episode cathartic from sharing deep, important things and obvious, like doesn't everyone have rites of passage. In any case, I feel liberated from having to hide these things.I'm also disappointed that I live in a world that demeans what led to some of the most important growth in my life while supporting what actually led to me being withdrawn while feeling full of myself. Relistening to the episode, I could sense a new beginning. I could sense fading the fears in the puritanical culture of people attacking me. But now I feel strengthened to continue being myself despite the fact that they get parades and I don't, that people celebrate their sexuality while they suppress mine.Still, the next two episodes go further.