Are you a purpose-driven CHRO grappling with the intricacies of mergers and acquisitions in today’s ever-evolving business landscape?  As organizations traverse the shifting sands of talent management and business evolution, they must harness the power of adaptability. It’s a dance between staying true to one’s core values and embracing the winds of change. This intricate choreography challenges leaders to redefine their strategies, reimagine their roles, and foster innovation at every turn. My guest today, Claire, serves as your strategic partner and esteemed leadership advisor, specializing in providing tailored solutions to facilitate your success in this challenging terrain.

Claire Chandler is the CEO of Talent Boost, a company that helps businesses learn the exact moves they need to make to grow without failing. Claire’s expertise resides in delivering comprehensive strategies centered around talent retention and engagement, the cultivation of exceptional leadership, the facilitation of seamless change management, assurance of seamless HR integration, and the delivery of quantifiable outcomes.

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    1. What is Talent Boosts’ approach to empowering executives?
    2. How does Talent Boost align organizational growth and leadership development?
    3. What are the challenges in navigating talent management and business evolution?
    4. How do we balance change and chaos in an evolving landscape?
    5. How can leaders be more agile and authentic?

    The generations that are entering the workforce don’t necessarily want the same things as the generations that are leaving it.”

    Claire Chandler

    Founder & CEO, Talent Boost


      [04:09] Behind the Scenes: A Glimpse into Claire’s Personal Life and Passions

      [06:09] Unveiling the Essence of Leadership: Talent Boosts’ Approach to Empowering Executives

      [07:31] Aligning Organizational Growth and Leadership Development: Talent Boosts’ Holistic Approach

      [09:51] Navigating the Shifting Landscape: Challenges in Talent Management and Business Evolution

      [13:36] Balancing Change and Chaos: The Evolving Landscape of Business and Leadership

      [14:33] Claire’s entry into the LATTOYG Playbook

      [15:45] Signature Segment:  Claire’s LATTOYG Tactics of Choice

      [36:15] Signature Segment: Karan’s Take


      Claire Chandler is an accomplished and dedicated professional helping businesses navigate expansion while safeguarding their most valuable asset—their top talent. With a deep commitment to fostering sustainable growth, Claire is a trusted thought partner to purpose-driven Chief Human Resources Officers (CHRO). Her expertise extends to executive advisory services, where she provides invaluable guidance in shaping organizational strategies that drive success.

      A profound focus on culture building is at the heart of Claire’s approach. She understands that a solid and cohesive culture is the cornerstone of any thriving organization. Her skill set includes mentoring in the field of HR, where she imparts her knowledge and insights to emerging HR leaders, ensuring the next generation is well-equipped to meet the evolving challenges of the business world.

      Claire’s passion for preserving talent, her role as a thought partner to CHROs, her executive advisory prowess, and her dedication to fostering robust organizational cultures make her an invaluable asset for businesses looking to expand without compromising their most valuable resource—their exceptional people.



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      Episode Sponsor

      This podcast episode is sponsored by Shockingly Different Leadership, the leader in on-demand People, Talent Development & Organizational Effectiveness professional services, all designed to up-level leader capability and optimize workforces to do their best work.

      Click the plus button on the tab to access the written transcript:

      Episode 46 | Evolving the Authenticity of Leaders with Claire Chandler

      Claire Chandler  00:00

      It’s so interesting because it is difficult for the average employee to feel sympathetic toward a leader, right? Because a lot of times, on the outside looking in, leaders look like they have it all together, they have all the trappings. They have the big salary, they have the corner office and you have the nice car. And what they sometimes don’t give leaders enough credit for or cut them enough slack around, is the higher up in an organization a leader a sense, yes, of course there is compensation associated with the role, but it’s commensurate with the level of pressure, the level of decision making, the level of authority and the level of true responsibility for the health and the well being and the sustainability of the organization and the people within it.


      Voiceover  00:50

      Welcome to the “Lead at the Top of Your Game” podcast, where we equip you to more effectively lead your seat at any employer, business, or industry in which you choose to play. Each week, we help you sharpen your leadership acumen by cracking open the playbooks of dynamic leaders who are doing big things in their professional endeavors. And now, your host, leadership tactics, and organizational development expert, Karan Ferrell-Rhodes.


      Karan Rhodes  01:25

      Hey there superstars, this is Karan and thanks for joining another episode designed to help you better lead at the top of your game. You know, in order to excel as a leader, it’s important for you to first understand where you are now, and then figure out where there’s a great opportunity that is prime for you to tackle next. And while this may sound easy, I think we can all agree it’s not at all it involves a combination of identifying where there’s currently leadership needs or momentum for change, and then navigating the fine line between change and chaos that will naturally occur once you start executing. So I’m so thrilled to have on today’s show an expert who is known for helping her clients maneuver through such rocky waters. I affectionately think of her as a true leadership therapist of sorts. Claire Chandler is the president and founder of talent boosts a consulting firm that helps businesses align HR and talent strategies in order to achieve massive growth. And she has appeared as a guest on over 100 podcasts, and is the author of several books on leadership and business strategy. So definitely stay tuned for some of her tips and thinking through what it takes to be an authentic leader. And stay tuned for just two minutes after the episode to listen to my closing segment called Karan’s Take, where I share a tip on how to use insights from today’s episode to further sharpen your leadership acumen. And now enjoy the show. Hey there, superstars, this is Karan and welcome to another episode of the Lead at the Top of Your Game Podcast. I’m absolutely thrilled that you tapped into join us again this week. And boy, do we have a show for you all. I have a kindred spirit as a guest today, who also specializes in the people side of business and especially in the leadership realm. And we’re so happy to have on today’s show msis Claire Chandler who is the president and founder of talent Boost, which is a consulting firm that helps businesses align their HR and talent strategies in order to help companies achieve massive growth. So welcome to the podcast, Claire.


      Claire Chandler  03:47

      Thanks, Karan. It’so great to be here.


      Karan Rhodes  03:49

      Oh, it’s just an honor having you and we’re gonna have a fantastic conversation today. I have no doubt whatsoever. 


      Claire Chandler  03:58

      Love it. Let’s do it.


      Karan Rhodes  03:59

      Well, before we start off for as much as you feel comfortable. Could you give us a sneak peek into maybe your personal life or passions?



      Oh goodness, so personal. So I live in New Jersey. I have been married now. It’d be 10 years this year. New crazy. Time flies. I actually met my husband when we both worked in corporate many moons ago. And he’s still there. I you know kind of broke out back in 2011. And you know, started my entrepreneurial journey but we make our home in New Jersey and we have a wonderful chinchilla as our first baby. So he’s napping at the moment, but he might come over and sit on my foot at some point during our interview.


      Karan Rhodes  04:47

      Oh, you have to give him a rub for me. And my listeners are very familiar with my dog Poppy. He’s a constant companion on the is a podcast but he’s right outside the door right now might hear him or his bell trying to get in. But, you know, we’re, you know, for parents and we love to have our babies around. So 


      Claire Chandler  05:12

      That’s right.


      Karan Rhodes  05:14

      Well, thank you so much for sharing that, Claire. Well, one of the reasons why I’m thrilled to have you on the show today is because I wanted to have the listeners get an additional perspective of in the challenges that many leaders go through no matter if they’re in corporate America or corporate in throughout the world, or whatever country that they’re in. Or maybe they’re leaders of nonprofits or other organizations. But there’s a fantastic side of leadership. And there’s a challenging side of leadership as well. And professionals like us try to be those strategic partners, for our clients and those businesses. So could you tell us a little bit about the area focus of talent booths? And you know, what you all try to accomplish with your clients?


      Claire Chandler  06:09

      Yeah, you know, it’s, it’s so interesting, because it is difficult for the average employee to feel sympathetic toward a leader, right, because a lot of times, on the outside looking in, leaders look like they have it all together, they have all the trappings, they have the big salary, they have the corner office, they have the nice car. And what they sometimes don’t give leaders enough credit for or cut them enough slack around, is the higher up in an organization a leader ascends. Yes, of course, there is compensation compensation associated with the role. But it’s commensurate with the level of pressure, the level of decision making, the level of authority, and the level of true responsibility for the health and the well being and the sustainability of the organization and the people within it. Right. And so knowing all of that, one of the things that I sort of chose to specialize in when I went out of my entrepreneurial journey, was helping leaders at all levels, but in particular, executive leaders step into that power a little bit more authentically, and more naturally, because I’ve been in their shoes, I’ve been within the walls of corporate I’ve been, you know, an HR executive. And it’s not all glamorous, most days are extremely difficult and very stressful. And a lot of these leaders don’t really have anywhere to go with their fears and their anxieties and their frustrations, and what truly keeps them up at night, in real and authentic ways. And so I really do specialize in being that thought partner and that therapist, if you will, to executive leaders in particular, to help them just be as successful as they can as leaders, but in ways that feel natural to them.


      Karan Rhodes  08:03

      I love that. And I’m curious, do that in the context of the challenges that they’re facing in the world of work right now? Or do you do it if they’re come to you in self improvement mode or a mix of the two?


      Claire Chandler  08:18

      Yeah, I’m a big believer in meeting people where they are right, I’m sure you’re the same. Yeah. And so typically, when I work with a with a leader, the initial engagement or the initial connection is around something at the macro level. So something organizationally, where either there’s something not quite broken, but starting to show some cracks and fissures, it might be, you know, a situation where, in a lot of cases, it is an organization that is relatively large, but growing is relatively complex. And they’re at the point of growing or becoming more complex, whether that’s through a merger and acquisition, a change in focus or a need to, you know, sort of revisit or rebuild or re envision their strategic plan. So typically, those engagements in that connection starts at that more organizational help us build how helped us combine help us merge cultures, in ways that continue to support our momentum, rather than derail what we’ve already started.


      Karan Rhodes  09:24

      And, you know, in your experience, Claire, what are some of the biggest fears that leaders are grappling with or biggest challenges that they’re grappling with as they’re trying to manage, you know, talent and the core business, or whatever the core business or organization offers as far as their core work? You know, what are some of the common trends that you’re seeing that, that leaders are really grappling with?


      Claire Chandler  09:51

      Yeah, so, from a talent perspective, it’s some of the things that we hear every day, right? It’s not just the great resignation. It’s the it’s the competing for talent. In its, you know, industries, not every single industry seems very sexy or innovative or compelling. So a lot of the bigger organizations and the more well established brands are really struggling with, how do we differentiate ourselves in this market where we’ve gotten new generations, that aren’t terribly impressed by the fact that we’re 100 years old, or several decades old, or are a stable brand that they can grow with the generations that are entering the workforce don’t want the same things as the generations that are leaving it, right. And so there is a lot of that sort of push and pull in terms of how do we continue to sustain the growth and the great brand reputation that we may have built over years or decades, etc. But do it in such a way where we attract the next generation of talent, because that’s the only way we’re going to stay competitive, stay innovating and continue to evolve, Evolve is a very key word as well, especially with the HR leadership, they are very much grappling with, how do we evolve the operating model within human resources, that it is not just sort of advancing alongside business, but truly is a strategic enabler of all that the business is trying to accomplish. And I think even at the business level, the big challenge is, we have finally emerged through the darkest points of this pandemic, right. So now we are I don’t want to say back to business, but we are now at a point where there is this renewed sense of urgency, right around making up for lost time making up for lost ground, and doing it in ways where we can get back out ahead of our competitors, but also in ways where we don’t leave behind our best employees. So there’s a lot, right, there’s a lot of challenges, a lot of challenges individually, within HR within the business. And then of course, just just globally as well,


      Karan Rhodes  12:05

      You know, you’re so spot on on that. And I last year, I spoke at a talent conference, on the future of work at Gallop’s Headquarters in DC. And they brought me in to talk about some of the mega trends that were going on in HR in the world of work. And one of them was just exactly what you’ve mentioned, around, you know, HR leaders, in conjunction with their business leaders are really rethinking how to structure their people strategies, or people teams and how to be more agile, and supporting their businesses, and they’re creating different models and approaches, then, typically had been in the past or looking at more hybrid things. And instead of having something uniform throughout the organization, there may be some business units that need a decentralized model, and others need a centralized model. And, you know, they’re doing a lot with, you know, blended workforces, you know, having your internal staff and, you know, supplementing that with contract staff as needed, and you know, when appropriate. So there’s a lot that’s going on in the people side of business right now, and a lot of leaders are struggling to kind of manage through that in a way that helps the business versus hurts it. Are you seeing that as well feel free to throw stones at that if you’re not seeing that.


      Claire Chandler  13:36

      I’m absolutely seeing that. And there’s such a there’s such a fine line between change and chaos.


      Karan Rhodes  13:41

      Yes, yes!


      Claire Chandler  13:43

      There is not one organization in one industry or one size that has the luxury of just staying the course return embracing the status quo. Because to quote Marshall Goldsmith, what got him here is not going to get them there. So every single organization from the very well established behemoths in the industry, to the startups have to get more agile. There’s a couple of you’ve mentioned that word a couple of times, and I think it’s so right on, I think, organizationally, functionally and even as leaders, we all need to be looking at how we can be more agile in you know, the, the phrase I used earlier in meeting people in meeting talent in meeting businesses and in meeting customers where they are.


      Karan Rhodes  14:32

      Absolutely. And it’s tough leading through all those the that bit of change as well. And I know, you know, leaders sometimes have a hard time being vulnerable through this because they feel that they have to project which they do in since confidence and knowledge and to help their teams not get have a large amount of anxiety around what’s going on. But we forget our leaders are People to sometimes Right? And how have you found…how do you coach leaders to be more authentic and vulnerable as they’re carrying out their day to day roles?


      Claire Chandler  15:10

      Yeah, as the great Brene Brown has said, and does such incredible work in this particular space, right. I mean, she’s like my spirit animal. She’s just so brilliant in getting leaders, at the highest levels of organizations to embrace vulnerability. And to understand, first and foremost, if you’re going to try to project that you are invulnerable, that you are somehow somehow perfect and flawless. Your employees know the truth. And they know that you are human, whether you want to act like that or not. That’s right. And so vulnerability, but truly authentic vulnerability, is not just a nice to have, it is an absolute business imperative. So I think that’s really important. How to do that, in an authentic way starts with deep self awareness. One of the ways that I work with leaders is to help them to understand, you know, almost hold the mirror up to them now through 360 degree feedback. I’m a fan of that when it’s used appropriately, but it can be very risky to use it if your organizational culture is not ready for that type of situation. Right?


      Karan Rhodes  16:18

      I agree.


      Claire Chandler  16:19

      And starting with the leaders just reflecting on themselves. What would make them more authentic? Well, it starts with being deeply, deeply self aware of what comes naturally to them in terms of strengths and skills and perspective, what they are motivated by, uniquely because I think, again, leaders forget, and we don’t give them enough credit for needing certain motivation, they need to be able to refill their cup, because as we say, you can’t fill from an empty one. So if leaders are feeling drained, if leaders are feeling less than engaged, they’re going to project that to everybody else, the biggest impact on the culture of an organization is the behavior of its leaders. So if the leaders are faking it, if the leaders are projecting something they don’t actually believe, do you organization is going to sense that feed off of it and respond in kind?


      Karan Rhodes  17:12

      You’re so right. I don’t curse but we all excuse my friends have that BS meter where we know when someone’s being authentic or not, it’s just our internal intuition and gut and we can read through when somebody’s being inauthentic and inauthentic behavior, in my experience. So those seeds that you don’t want to grow, you know, when people start questioning you or not, they don’t have confidence in your leadership or what have you. You want to sow the right kinds of seeds. Yeah, I’m sure. Yeah. I don’t know if you’ve experienced this recently, but in the leaders that you have been working with, and coaching through and advising, in your personal opinion, and what is one of their biggest success inhibitors? What is one thing that they just really do that they shouldn’t be doing? Or it may be a blind spot that you sometimes have to remind them to stay conscious of? I’m just curious, like, what, you know, what different, you know, experts experience with their, with their clients, is there the one that pops for you?


      Claire Chandler  18:26

      There is actually as you are forming the question, I was starting to, you know, sort of think about several different ways I can answer that. But I do think that goes back to this key word of, of authenticity. I think the biggest inhibitor of especially executive leaders is to be inauthentic. What’s interesting is I talk to executives all the time. And when I get them one on one, and provide a little bit of that sort of leadership therapy, they can get very vulnerable with me, right when they’re not standing on a stage at a town hall where they feel like they have to project only confidence and only, you know, charisma. And a lot of them have a common complaint. And they will say to me, you know, the biggest thing that I worry about is that my team does not believe that I am being authentic, that they doubt my genuine commitment to the organization or to the purpose that we all share, right? And what I’ve seen trip them up is not that they’re not aware of that because they actually are, it’s that they are trying to model their own style after others that they see around them that they admire. And there’s nothing wrong with admiring other people.


      Karan Rhodes  19:40



      Claire Chandler  19:40

      But I’ve seen this turn into disaster, where you know, a C level executive has to follow in a town hall for example. Somebody who is super charismatic, natural born storyteller can say things off the cuff can have a sense of humor that is, you know, at an appropriate level. And they see that and they see the effect it has on their people and they go, Okay, I’m going to copy that, because that’s what gets noticed. And as you’re shaking your head, you know how this story is going to end, right? The problem is, you know that one of the biggest worries of executive leaders is those who are not charismatic. They say, How can I inspire people? And my answer is always the same. It’s not to go learn how to be charismatic, or God forbid, pretend that you are by following somebody else who has that natural style. The best way to get people to follow you is by being authentic to who you truly are. That’s right. If you’re introverted, lean into that, if you’re vulnerable, lean into that, if you’re flawed, we all know it anyway. So acknowledge that. Don’t be somebody you’re not because that’s what people that’s what disengages people, it’s what turns people off, and it what it is what makes them start to fracture your culture. If you don’t have a strong culture, you’re not going to have a strong business.


      Karan Rhodes  20:58

      You’re not at all. It’s going to crumble at your feet. Totally. Oh, goodness. Well, I’m curious. You Claire, one of the questions I love to ask my guests is, as you know, I wrote a book on leadership execution and, and I love to ask my guests, and I which that the text is really jumped out at them and you were so kind to share that leading with courageous agility really resonated with you. And audience. If you don’t remember leading with courageos agility is all about having the courage and fortitude to do what you think is right. And take that next step, even when the feature is unclear, you may not know the end game and where it’s going. But if it’s right in your gut, is having that courage to dip your toe in the water and take that first step. So, Claire, I’m just curious why that one, particularly resonated with you as it relates to leadership.


      Claire Chandler  21:53

      Yeah, there’s so many reasons why, you know, in that in that four word phrase, leading with courageous agility that I just love first, because it kind of feeds off of what we were just talking about, right? It takes courage to be your authentic self is not only at the executive leadership level, it feels like it’s the Safer Choice to just model your style, your leadership, philosophy, in your, in your executive presence, after somebody else that you admire. And if it is not in alignment with with who you naturally are, and what you truly believe people are going to, are going to pick up on that I think it is far more courageous, to step into your authenticity, and to be beautifully flawed, in terms of what you know what you can do and what you can’t write what your blind spots are used that phrase. But you know, this, this other component of it, being able to take the next step, even when things are not 100% clear. I love that because I always say to people, the size of the step is not that important. It’s the direction of the step, right? So I don’t care if you take a small step, just make sure you’re taking a step forward. Because when is the last and I say this to executives all the time, when is the last time you had 100% of the data that you needed to make a fully informed decision, never the same way and that’s the truth, especially the higher up you go, right? You have to know how to be decisive amidst uncertainty, you have to know how to be that calming presence in the midst of the storm. And one of the ways you do that, in addition to being courageous, in addition to being agile, is to truly understand the difference between conviction and convincing anything too many leaders say, you know, they have these town halls or they have these road shows, that’s my favorite, right? We’ve got we’ve got new core values and a new, you know, brand and we’re gonna go out and we’re gonna sell it to the business. Well, you don’t do that by trying to convince them to buy into your vision. You do that by by truly and authentically and genuinely committing to the purpose in the course that you’re on. And standing in that conviction when you talk to employees, because that commitment, and that passion and that dedication to a shared purpose are what are going to build a following not you being slick, being charismatic and trying to sell somebody on something because people are super savvy, and they are going to resist that


      Karan Rhodes  24:27

      They are they are that is a biggest gem. Listeners if you don’t get anything outside of this podcast member that statement right there because that is so so true. That clay you came you know you’re a former executive as well in corporate and have moved on to you know, starting your own practice, but I’m just curious, how do you lead at the top of your game? Because you’re having to lead your own company right now. You had to lead probably, you know, a team of people In corporate, but what does it take for you to lead at the top of your game?


      Claire Chandler  25:04

      So I’m going to tell a very quick story to explain my answer to that, which is, I had to learn how to own my own walk. Because it’s it’s so in line with everything we just talked about in terms of being authentic. And you know, in sort of being super self aware, back when I was in corporate, probably a year or so before I left, I was an HR executive, I was traveling all the time. And it was walking back to my office, from the ladies room, I think I probably had like a two minute window between meetings. Right from like, try not to run down the hall, right. And as I’m walking back to my office, my boss stopped me now he was a C level executive. And he stopped me in the hall and he said, You need to tone down your walk. What I pretty much said that I go, and he goes, you know, your, your walk, you said it’s too, it’s too bouncy, it’s too happy. And you know, people, people in HR are gonna are gonna think you’re up to something like, you know, something they don’t? Hmm, okay, thanks for that. And I went back to my office, and I didn’t, I didn’t turn down anything, right. And I found that call out to be So emblematic of what is wrong with many corporate cultures. We advertise for people who have unique personalities who want to bring their full authentic selves to work, who have entrepreneurial spirit. And then the minute they walk a little bit differently from what we have convinced ourselves is the corporate ideal. We call them out on it. And we don’t recognize their uniqueness, and call them out and say it but not like that. Right. And I didn’t recognize it at the time that it happened. But in hindsight, clearly, it has stayed with me all of these years, that that was a sort of thing that I had been told to do my entire corporate career. And, you know, to to go back to an earlier comment you made about, you know, organizations, future focused organizations, looking at agility in all areas, right? How do we bring on talent in ways that are not necessarily full time employment? Right? How do we embrace the gig economy? How do we help people to learn and to grow and to develop in a hybrid environment? It’s all of those things. And if we just continue to focus on getting people to conform to our corporate ideal, we’re never going to solve those problems. And if we don’t solve those problems, we’re going to be left behind. So it’s a very long winded way to answer your question is really, I had to learn how to own my walk. And I did that by literally walking out the door of my corporate career and striking out on my own, even though I didn’t have a plan. I didn’t, I didn’t know what I was going to specialize in, or how I was going to go about it. But it’s been a journey, not a destination. And it’s been an experience that truly has fueled my passion and my energy every single day.


      Karan Rhodes  28:07

      See, that’s why we’re sisters from other mothers, you know, because the same thing with me, yes. And, you know, I had that similar to incorporate as well. But my coaching to my younger self and my mentees is that if you are in that, if it’s part of your personality, not to want to stay in a box, and to walk your own walk and be entrepreneurial in within a company be intrapreneurial, then one thing you also can do, as you look to move around for your next role or next opportunity, ensure that that opportunity is matched with a leader or a boss that welcomes that diversity of perspective and that personality and and will allow you to bring yourself to work because it’s no good to be in a role that has the right name, when you’re forced to conform to you know exactly what bullet points they set out for you. Right, it has to be a win win for both you and the organization. Do you agree?


      Claire Chandler  29:19

      I do and it goes for executives as well, right? Like we were talking about too many executives put this pressure on themselves to model their style after somebody else and it’s not natural to them. So even if the if the executives are telling themselves, they can’t be natural and authentic to who they are. Well, then of course the rest of the culture is going to be one that enforces conformity.


      Karan Rhodes  29:42



      Claire Chandler  29:43

      So how do we break out of that? Right? Because I don’t know anyone who you know, wants to, not just conform, but wants to be somebody they’re not. It’s interesting when I first went out on my own, I was focusing on employees in general And I was doing workshops around how to reignite your passion for your job. And they were really great sessions very powerful, very empowering. And then what ended up happening was I was sending these people back into their corporate environments, and the leaders that I was sending them back to were not as enlightened. So we now had this sort of, you know, generation of people getting really like, amped up to go have a good conversation with their boss about how to bring some agility to their role and bring some flexibility and bring it into greater alignment with what they believe and what they love. And the leaders were going, What are you talking about, we can’t we can’t change your job description. Yeah. So that, to me kind of signaled my pivot toward focusing on leaders themselves at the highest levels of an organization, because if I can’t convert them, if I can’t get them to understand that they have to be more authentic, and more natural and more self aware, and all of these workshops, getting their employees jazzed up without doing that are all are gonna hit a dead end. So that was a very significant pivot for me in terms of where I focus and who I focus my work on.


      Karan Rhodes  31:07

      Yeah. And, you know, back when me and my team are leading the high potential program at Microsoft, that was the biggest complaint of those that were in the program is we got them. We had fantastic development experiences, we got them hyped up, we had ideas out the white hoozy that would help the company. But those leaders who and we did encourage and leaders to put time down to get a download, you know, give them specific time for them to share what all they did, and thoughts that they had that came out of our development experiences. And those leaders who did that saw a great deal of success and growth, are there individuals and those leaders who didn’t attend our briefing sessions and help them you know, we were trying to help guide them on how to have these conversations. Those who either didn’t prioritize it, or didn’t have them really lost a lot of trust in their direct reports. And these are the you know, your key talent, those that you want on the lifeboat with you, if the boat is sinking, right. And if our executive leaders are not doing what it takes to listen and retain and be open to ideas, you can’t wait. And they know you can’t do every single thing that they’re proposing. But it’s having a conversation around it and seeing what is achievable? And what can be folded into the organizational processes or products or services or what have you. That’s really important. So yeah, the direct managers and executive managers are hugely important. That’s an important pivot that you made with your consulting.


      Claire Chandler  32:50

      Yeah, well, and there’s a I really want to key in on everything you just said was so brilliant, and so on target. And there’s one key word in there that I think is so central, which is trust.


      Voiceover  33:01

      Oh, yes.


      Claire Chandler  33:02

      Culture is foundational to the success and health and growth of a business. And without trust, that culture is going to fracture, and it’s ultimately going to lead to the death of your business. Maybe you won’t go out of business, but you’re going to rot from the core. Right? And I think, again, that is part of why it is so business critical that leaders, yes, demonstrate vulnerability, but do it in an authentic way. Yes, try to inspire their teams, but do it in a way that feels natural. And yes, demonstrate vulnerability by admitting what we already know, which is you don’t have all the answers. You don’t know all the, you know, all the answers, but we’re going to move forward anyway. And we’re going to do it together. And so those conversations that I have offline with executives who say, you know, I’m afraid that my team doubts that I am being authentic, that part of the conversation will ultimately go away, because they will have worked on building of trust.


      Karan Rhodes  33:59

      It would have by that time. Absolutely. Oh, my gosh, Claire, I blinked and time has gone. I told you the beginning and we could talk for hours. But you cannot get away without letting our listeners know where to find you how to get in contact with you in case they need some services or want to talk to you about a situation? How can folks find you,


      Claire Chandler  34:25

      I highly encourage your audience to do that. And they thank you so much, not just for this platform, but for for facilitating such a wonderful conversation. The easiest way to get a hold of me is to go to my website, There you can learn more about my work kind of my philosophy and my approach with with my clients and there’s an opportunity to to contact me and see if there are there ways that we can work together or at least have a great conversation like the one that we just did.


      Karan Rhodes  34:53

      Awesome. Well, you know, anyone that doesn’t have you go into that website right now. have you on speed dial, I have to wonder if they really want to late at the top of their game. But seriously though, listeners, we will have all the links to find Claire in the show notes. She gave you information here as well, but we’ll make sure that you have the information you need to get in contact with her. But Claire, thank you so much for your gems of wisdom on this episode. We appreciate it.


      Claire Chandler  35:23

      Thank you appreciate you very much.


      Karan Rhodes  35:27

      Awesome! And listeners, thank you again for listening to another episode, at least at the top of your game podcast. As you all know, I just have one ask for you. I just ask that you like or subscribe to the podcast and to share it with just one person so that we can extend our reach throughout the world to help leaders just like you lead at the top of your game. Thank you again for listening and see you next week. Bye. Well, I hope you enjoyed our conversation today with Claire Chandler, president and founder of Talent Boost. Links to her bio her entry into our leadership playbook and additional resources can be found in the show notes both on your favorite podcast platform of choice and on the web at leisure game And now for Karan’s take on today’s topic of leadership authenticity. You know, according to a study in the Leadership and Organizational Development journal, employees perception of authentic leadership serves as the strongest predictor of job satisfaction and positively impacts work related attitudes and happiness for professionals like you who are aiming to advance their careers and make a lasting impact on their companies. Investing the time and effort into becoming an authentic leader can be immensely valuable. And you may be wondering, what are the characteristics of authentic leadership and why is it a worthy pursuit? Well, I want to share with you five traits of authentic leaders shared by Harvard Business School professor Nancy Cohen. But first let me share with you how she defines authentic leadership. She says Authentic Leadership is a leadership style exhibited by individuals who have high standards of integrity, take responsibility for their actions, and make decisions based on principle rather than short term success. I think leadership’s key differentiator is the motivation behind it. And authentic leaders strive to create a meaningful relationship with their team as they work towards goals related to their organization’s mission and purpose. And not just the bottom line. And she shares the five traits of authentic leaders are number one, they’re committed to bettering themselves through investments, which will further sharpen their knowledge, skills and abilities to they cultivate self awareness by gaining insight into their emotions and beliefs. Three, they’re disciplined about living up to their promises and commitments for their mission driven with a passion to lead a team with a collective purpose. And five, they inspire faith by gaining colleagues trust and influencing them to believe in and mobilize the mission at hand. So as you work on becoming a more authentic leader, practice your new behaviors. You know, sometimes you might find roadblocks in your way and it might feel uncomfortable or strange, but that’s okay. Just make sure that you avoid doing anything that doesn’t mesh with your values, your ethics and your intentions. Building a more authentic leadership image is not about creating a false picture of yourself, but about recognizing genuine aspects of yourself, that should be coming across to people every day. Well, that’s all for now. Thank you so much for tuning into this episode. And please be sure to follow me on LinkedIn or on X, which used to be Twitter, or on Instagram, usually can easily be found there. And also please remember to subscribe to the podcast and share with just one friend. Because performing this one selfless act will empower you to help others to also lead at the top of their game. Thanks so much for listening and see you next week. And that’s our show for today. Thank you for listening to the lead at the top of your game podcast, where we help you lead your seat at any employer, business, or industry in which you choose to play. You can check out the show notes, additional episodes, and bonus resources, and also submit guest recommendations on our website at You can follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn by searching for the name Karan Rhodes with Karan being spelled K a r a n. And if you like the show, the greatest gift you can give would be to subscribe and leave a rating on your podcast platform of choice. This podcast has been a production of Shockingly Different Leadership, a global consultancy which helps organizations execute their people, talent development, and organizational effectiveness initiatives on an on-demand, project, or contract basis. Huge thanks to our production and editing team for a job well done. Go

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