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This week’s show is all about well-being. Joining me is an expert in the well-being field, Dr. Laura Hamill. Laura is the co-founder, Chief Scientist, and Chief People Officer of Limeade. Limeade is a software company that elevates the employee experience and helps build great places to work. Their focus is on the whole person and the whole company, with tools and programs to support both.

Laura and I had a great conversation about what it means to be a whole, healthy functioning adult, plus non-toxic work environments and the actual work it takes to get there. Additionally, we talked about how to build a productive environment where people enjoy their jobs, respect one another, have boundaries, and actually can go home and enjoy their lives.

if you’ve ever thought about well-being and wondered if it’s just a fad, I think you’re going to love this episode, so sit tight and listen to this episode of Let’s Fix Work with my special guest, Dr. Laura Hamill.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  1. Limeade: who they are, what they do, and who they help
  2. Dr. Laura’s journey from the world of psychology and research to Chief People Officer and Chief Scientist at Limeade
  3. Burnout: the science behind it, why it happens, and how to prevent it
  4. The power of gratitude and recognition
  5. Dr. Laura answers the question, “Does it do gratitude and recognition a disservice when we create a formal program around it?”
  6. Laura shares what she is most optimistic about when it comes to the future of work
  7. The evolution of caring about people in the workplace

“There’s a lot of great research to say that the more gratitude you have in your life, the higher levels of well-being you have. This kind of overall quality of life is enhanced by being grateful.” ~Dr. Laura Hamill, Ph.D

“What if we thought about all these things we do in human resources from the perspective of the employee? Instead of thinking about… we have these benefits and we have learning and development and we have a recognition program, what if we really tipped all of this on its side and said, how do we show our employees that we care about them and how do we create an amazing employee experience?” ~ Dr. Laura Hamill, Ph.D

Resources from this episode:

Thank you to our sponsor: Ultimatesoftware.com/LFW

Connect with Laura on LinkedIn

Limeade Learn more about Laura

Laura is one of the top 100 HR tech influencers

Ebooks:

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We’re proud to be sponsored by Ultimate Software. They’re a leading cloud provider of people management solutions with a commitment to continuing education for HR, talent, and payroll professionals.

Ultimate Software is hosting dozens of free educational HR workshops around the country. Check out ultimatesoftware.com/LFW for more information on how to earn free HRCI, SHRM, and APA recertification credits.

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Are you a leader? If so, then you are probably accustomed to not only living and operating under sets of rules but most likely imposing rules on others. After all, we have to have order in life and business, right? While that is true, there are many principles that can be applied to exactly how we lead. Leading with love can create a powerful change in how leaders interact with others on a daily basis.

In a recent episode of Let’s Fix Work, I spoke with Kevin Kruse, founder and CEO of LEADx. Kevin is also a New York Times bestselling author of nine books. He has a brand new book hitting the shelves titled Great Leaders Have No Rules: Contrarian Leadership Principles to Transform Your Team and Business. In talking with Kevin about a “no-rules” work zone, we also discussed the role of “love” in leadership. That’s right, love. I know that may sound odd to think about applying “love” in leadership, but as you’ll see, Kevin makes some great points to consider.

Love others…we explored the idea that you don’t actually need to like someone who works for you or with you, but you do need to love that person. When you love others, a caring attitude is what comes forth. That is how you can truly connect with employees. Because then you are able to have conversations with employees explaining why certain policies are in place within the company culture. When employees are aware of the “why” behind certain actions, they are much more open to following the policies and happily joining in the company culture. Then the “rules” are not even necessary because there is a social policy that people understand and are happy to take part in as a member of the group, whether it’s in your family life at home or at work. It’s the idea that our behavior impacts others, and that behavior can be a “social contagion” as Kevin says. We must have positive directions in those behaviors so that a positive attitude can spread.

Put the needs of others ahead of your own…Kevin went on to explain that this is another way to express love for others. He said that regarding loving your team members, “It really is just saying you’re putting their needs ahead of your own, but not too many people are doing it. And I don’t know how you get somebody to realize that. I mean other than they’re going to end up in a place where they can’t get any higher because they didn’t bring people with them, or they’re going to succeed and feel really lonely and empty. It’s just so much more fun when you’ve got love and friends and…you’ve got this journey with so many other people.” It’s essential to focus on the importance of treating others well so that you can enjoy the experience of life together.

Now is the time to lead with love by personalizing your approach to others, at home and at work. What a powerful idea. It’s smart and interesting conversations like this one that keeps me excited about doing this podcast! So if you enjoy learning about the interconnectivity between love and work, leadership principles, or “no rules” work zones, join me for this conversation with Kevin Kruse.

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This week on Let’s Fix Work I am going to be talking about goals and goal setting. The topic is timely because I’m heading down to Atlanta to meet with my business coach, Jesse Itzler. I’m going to stand in front of him and my entire cohort of about 100 and I’m going to talk about why I didn’t achieve my fourth quarter goals in 2018.  Yes, it’s going to be hard. But, I am all about owning up to why I didn’t make things work and learning the steps needed to fix what wasn’t working.



In this episode, I share how and why I began working with Jesse. One of the things you will hear is about how Jesse coaches his clients using a system that prioritizes goals while focusing on your health, work, family, and creativity. When I began working with Jesse, I also wanted to layer that approach of prioritizing goals on top of a time management tracking tool and really learn how to spend my time doing the things that would move my life and my business forward. I wanted to put myself first.

At the beginning of the year, I took a page out of the corporate playbook and I got my head out of my ass. Once I started to have boundaries, I started to have goals. I began setting standards for myself and 2019 came into focus. I’ve been doing more writing, I’ve been doing more speaking and I’ve been doing more business development. But yet, I’ve been missing some goals because I’m human. Today, I also share insights and lessons about the best laid plans, because I’ve learned that even when you map it out and you create rock-solid systems, life happens.

If you want to hear about my successes and failures with goal setting, the importance of putting yourself first, and making an effort to at least try to attain a specific goal, then listen to this episode of Let’s Fix Work.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  1. My method for creating a system and plan for goal setting
  2. Writing a book proposal even if when I was scared and my pre-mortem told me I was sure to fail – but I got a book deal!
  3. Running life on your schedule and with integrity
  4. The importance of putting yourself first
  5. When to consider getting a coach or therapist

Resources from this episode:

Thank you to our sponsor: Ultimatesoftware.com/LFW

Jesse Itzler: jesseitzler.com/

***

We’re proud to be sponsored by Ultimate Software. They’re a leading cloud provider of people management solutions with a commitment to continuing education for HR, talent, and payroll professionals.

Ultimate Software is hosting dozens of free educational HR workshops around the country. Check out ultimatesoftware.com/LFW for more information on how to earn free HRCI, SHRM, and APA recertification credits.

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If the world is engaged in stalker-culture, it’s because companies started it.

At first, your organization was slow to embrace the internet. If you have time to lean, you have time to clean. If you had to have a computer, they sure as hell weren’t gonna let you shop on Zappos or check out your friends on Myspace.

But a funny thing happened on the way to late-stage capitalism …

Once businesses understood the power of the web to merge power and surveil its workforce, they encouraged everybody to hop on the internet and even bring their own devices to work.

We all know companies watch what you do; however, many employees and contractors don’t understand the depths. Legal, finance, IT, and HR can easily map the intricacies of your whole life into one large pivot table for cynical business folk to manipulate. Does it violate the law? Yes, no, maybe, who cares. Depends on where the corporation resides, where the worker sits, what legal precedent if any has been set, and the ruthless calculation of the cost of doing business.

Examples?  

You might come to work on Monday morning, open your laptop, grab a cup of coffee, read your email on your computer, check the New York Times on your tablet and book a flight on your phone. Some of that online behavior is monitored through apps and programs on your company’s IT equipment; your company may hook your badge up to a software that connects with cameras in the office and monitors your whereabouts and to analyze how work gets done; and, if you log onto your organization’s wifi with your own devices, you consent to be monitored and tracked.

Is that a big deal? Well, maybe.

What you don’t know is that all of this data can be collected and analyzed using natural language processing and sentiment analysis to understand if these are predictable patterns of behavior, if you’re about to leave the organization, if you’re depressed and about to commit suicide, if you are a candidate for financial wellness programs based on your internet shopping, or if you’re swinging by Janet’s workspace every morning — just like she complained to HR — and harassing her.

And we’re just getting started.

How many times a day do you use the toilet? For how long? Where do you go after you pee? What sites do you visit after lunch? Where do you go when you block off “creative time” on your schedule? Does your calendar match your physical location or are you blocking time off to nap in the lactation room? Are you sharing files on Slack to foster inter-departmental collegiality or are you trying to sabotage a project? Where do you go for lunch? Who’s going with you? Are the two of you leaving for lunch together? Are you having an affair and putting the company at risk? Are you giving away corporate secrets to competitors? Did you take this job for the intended reasons you stated in the interview? Are you only working there to bump up your salary and rebound to your prior employer? Does your criminal history match what you shared? What about your ongoing activities — are you employed at this job while running a small cannabis ring from your house?

Some of this data needs to be reverse-engineered when there’s an HR complaint, but that’s so very 2015. Much of this data can be collected and analyzed in real-time by sophisticated technology and third-party vendors who monitor a spectrum of activities to ensure that you’re not a risk to the organization by lying, cheating, stealing, leaving too soon after being hired, giving away company secrets, getting too fat, harassing your colleagues, or, honestly, being depressed enough to bring a gun to work.

UR being watched.

Stalker-culture exists because we’ve fetishized work as the ultimate form of purpose and given over our lives to corporate overlords — founders, C-level executives, business consultants — who don’t fetishize work and have second and third homes in tax-free locations throughout the United States and find meaning and faith in accumulated interest and capital gains earnings and not “growth opportunities” or “feedback from colleagues.”

So, what can you do if you don’t want to be surveilled by your employer?

• First, understand the depths of the surveillance. Find a friend in IT, risk management, finance or even HR and ask good questions. Go back and read your employment agreement.

• Think about where you sit on the corporate hierarchy and get promoted. Just because we live in a stalker-culture in 2019 doesn’t mean you can’t change things.

• Go work in HR. The one department that might fix all of this is often staffed with people who don’t know, don’t care, or don’t understand what’s going on in the enterprise. There’s no more significant opportunity to fix work than to work — and get promoted — in HR.

The answer is not to work for yourself. Running away from a problem never solved anything, and, also, the problem still follows you. While there’s less monitoring of your activity as a small business owner, you still abdicate many of your rights and freedoms while working with corporate clients.

We fix work by fixing ourselves. Get smart, get educated, and get promoted. There’s no cavalry coming to solve these problems. Want to change the way corporations act? It starts with you.

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stalker culture

The internet is a strange place.

Instagram tells me that I might be interested in following your cousin. Facebook thinks your colleagues are my friends. And Twitter shows me snippets of conversations you’re having with strangers I’ve never met.

Why is this happening? How did we get to a place where conversations are public, relationships are measured in avatars, and connections mean nothing at all?

Welcome to stalker culture, where algorithms show you photos of your co-worker’s girlfriend or encourage you to connect with your neighbor’s inlaws.

Or maybe that’s just me.

I’ve come to understand that mobile device and internet usage mirrors Chernobyl — once exposed, you’re altered. The only way to fix your brain chemistry and get back to the real world is to ban the devices and minimize contact with the social web.

But I’m writing a book, and half of what constitutes “writing a book” in 2019 is marketing. So, here’s what I’m doing to participate a little less in stalker culture and make my exposure to my phone and social media a little less toxic.

Use the browser instead of apps.

I don’t have any social apps on my phone, right now. If I want to use Instagram, which has a horrible browser experience, I download the app for a moment and then delete it when I’m done.

Block, block, block.

It’s tough to beat the algorithm, but maybe we can collectively influence its thinking by blocking inappropriate friend requests and muting content recommendations. If your mom comes up in my feed, I’m now blocking your mom. To be honest, I don’t think she’ll notice.

Take it less seriously.

Just because LinkedIn or Facebook thinks I know someone doesn’t mean I know someone. These commands are suggestions, not requirements. And I don’t think anybody gives a shit if I mute them — or block their kids — because I don’t want to see private, intimate conversations.

Be true to your values.

People confuse politeness for connection. For me, I’m done with manners. The moment I feel uncomfortable, the relationship is over without explanation or apology. I’ve been on the other side of that equation, too. Being dropped is hard; however, it’s the kindest thing you can do to someone who has no place in your life.

Let’s end stalker culture.

Stalker culture exists because we let it happen to our society. Maybe it’s too late to turn back time, but we can make an effort to modify our behaviors and avoid undesirable exposure to the toxic elements of the social web.

But please stay tuned — and click on all the links and sign up for the newsletter — for my upcoming book, okay?

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In a recent episode of Let’s Fix Work, we had the opportunity to examine being authentic at work. That’s a really important topic to consider. We all have different roles in our lives, and it’s so important to be true to who we really are. But how do we do that at work? We need to be professional and deal with situations as they arise… but the key is to not lose ourselves in the process.

To help us navigate being our authentic selves at work, I was very happy to welcome Rana Stanfill-Hobbs, the Director of Insights at Ultimate Software (our fantastic show sponsor). She is also a very busy mom, step-mom, singer, songwriter, and, as she says, consummate learner. She is also the founder of Compass Credo, a website that helps people achieve their best lives and live according to their own set of values. How do you actually achieve the goal of being authentic at work? Rana has some great insights.

It is essential to have an open dialogue with people at work. Everyone is coming from different backgrounds and experiences. For example, if someone is trying to introduce new software at work, it’s important to know who the employees truly are so that their response to the new system can be anticipated. Rana notes that what is important is, “really creating the best environment so that people can flourish in whatever they’re doing.” Some people are very creative at home, and it is possible to be creative at work as well. This is the idea of recognizing what you are good at and how you excel. If creativity is your thing, then that needs to be expressed at work. When that is realized at the office, you will be able to do your best work.

Rana says that it is vital to recognize your imperfections and be honest with yourself; be willing to bring your entire self to the office as opposed to leaving part of your personality at home. That kind of separation is very difficult and taxing.

When you bring your whole self to work, you will be more relaxed. Often your impact will be seen not just in big things but the little things as well. Rana points out, “I think that if you put yourself into leaving people better or find a personal vision credo or mission statement… like an action thing, what do you want to do every day? I think that you then start to see the meeting is always in the minutia. It’s always in those tiny interactions, and that is how you make your role have impact. That is how your day starts to feel really important. And then you want to bring your whole self there.”

I am so thankful for my time talking with Rana. Our conversation brings up some very positive aspects of personality and good reminders to be who you are.

You are special.

You are an individual.

And your contribution at work is important.

As Rana says, “The more that you can be human, more authentic, and the more holistic you are thinking about life and the work that you’re doing, the better you can navigate all of this. The more powerful the connections are that you have with your customers, your colleagues, and with people in general.” So stay focused and true to who you are in your life, and that energy will have a positive impact at work too.

Ready to listen to my full conversation with someone who is an expert in the technology field, an incredibly strong woman, and someone who lives an authentic life? If so, listen to my conversation with Rana on this episode of Let’s Fix Work.

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I am so excited to share this episode of Let’s Fix Work with you! My guest this week is Kevin Kruse, founder and CEO of LeadX. Kevin is also a New York Times bestselling author of nine books. He has a brand new book hitting the shelves titled Great Leaders Have No Rules: Contrarian Leadership Principles to Transform Your Team and Business. I have been following Kevin’s career for around ten years, and it is wonderful to finally have him as a guest on the show.

Besides talking about a “no rules” work zone, we discussed the role of “love” in leadership. That’s right, love. We explored the idea that you don’t actually need to like someone who works for you or with you, but you do need to love that person. It’s smart and interesting conversations like this one that keeps me excited about doing this podcast! So if you enjoy learning about the interconnectivity between love and work, leadership principles, or “no rules” work zones, join me for this conversation with Kevin Kruse.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  1. How rules can get in the way of relationships
  2. Success and understanding that can develop when leaders connect with employees, explain the company culture, and the “why” behind certain actions
  3. Leadership is a superpower – not a choice
  4. The importance of the “close the open door” principle and the power of creating a sense of psychological safety in others
  5. The “crowd the calendar” idea and the importance of scheduling open-office times and your work
  6. How to personalize your leadership approach
  7. The reasoning behind not over-investing in one person but rather leveraging the talents of top performers
  8. Kevin’s perspective on why leaders must lead with love by putting the needs of others ahead of their own
  9. That whatever rules you have, it’s important to have a conversation about them…then the rule will be strengthened because of the relationship that develops

Resources from this episode:

Thank our sponsor: Ultimatesoftware.com/LFW 

Great Leaders Have No Rules: Contrarian Leadership Principles to Transform Your Team and Business: amzn.to/2U59biV

John Wooden Quotes www.success.com/27-quotes-by-john-wooden-to-motivate-you-to-be-better/

Kevin’s website: www.kevinkruse.com

Kevin on Twitter: twitter.com/kruse

Kevin on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/kevinkruse67

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We’re proud to be sponsored by Ultimate Software. They’re a leading cloud provider of people management solutions with a commitment to continuing education for HR, talent, and payroll professionals.

Ultimate Software is hosting dozens of free educational HR workshops around the country. Check out ultimatesoftware.com/LFW for more information on how to earn free HRCI, SHRM, and APA recertification credits.

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I recently welcomed Max Yoder to the Let’s Fix Work podcast. Max is the Co-Founder and CEO of Lessonly, an online service that provides bite-sized learning with big impact to today’s trainers, managers, and subject-matter experts. I have to tell you, Max is a CEO who’s trying to get it right.  He’s not just a CEO who’s concerned about the numbers. That has always left such a positive impression on me. What has also left a positive impression on me is Max’s mission to help professionals do better work. In fact, we discussed his philosophy at length on the podcast. Some of what he said is worth mentioning again.

This is what Max had to say about doing better work, “‘Do better work’ is our mission at Lessonly, if we can help people do better work, they will live better lives. If we can teach somebody how to do their job a little bit better, 1% better, 2% better, they’re going to feel more confident in their role. They’re going to feel more competent in their role. That’s not just going to go away. When they walk out the door to go home, they’re going to have a feeling of levity and a feeling of assuredness that they take home to their friends or their family. So when you think about doing better work, we think that’s a direct impact on you and your job. But it also walks home with you and we think that’s pretty darn special.” That is pretty darn special, Max.

Alright, so how do we actually do better work? Well, Max believes that clarity and camaraderie are key. “Clarity is all about understanding what works, why it works, and how to do it, “ he says.

He goes on to say, “If we have a better understanding and we have more clarity on a team, that’s a really good thing. You measure that with camaraderie or you match that with camaraderie, and you gain a mutual trust and respect. When we have clarity and we have camaraderie, we’re going to make a lot of progress.”

Translation: when we have both clarity and camaraderie in the workplace, we can do better work.

When you think about it, it makes so much sense. Yet, disconnect, low morale, and lack of focus is still often found in the workplace, among teams and leaders.

I leave you with this question: what can you do today to begin to build camaraderie and clarity in your organization? We all should strive to do better, be better, and work better. Figure out what steps you need to take to move towards a better tomorrow.

Want more from Max? We flex our Midwestern accents and talk about training in the workplace, vulnerability, leadership, and nonviolent communication. Not bad for a kid from Goshen, Indiana, right? Head over here to listen!

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This week on Let’s Fix Work, I am excited to introduce you to Rana Stanfill-Hobbs. She wears many hats, including Director of Insights at Ultimate Software (our sponsor), mom, step-mom, musician, and consummate learner. On today’s episode, Rana and I talk about enterprise software and technology, of course.  We also talk about her journey from someone who recognizes patterns to an individual who’s living a full and authentic life at work.



Rana is also the founder of Compass Credo, a website that helps people achieve their best lives and live according to their own set of values. I love it!  It’s not often that I speak to someone who’s an artist, singer, and songwriter, as well as the Director of Insights at a technology company. Rana’s background and expertise are really fascinating. If you love strong women, technology talk, and learning how to live an authentic life, then sit tight and listen to this episode of Let’s Fix Work.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  1. The influences of creativity and understanding how to create the best work environments
  2. Recognizing what you’re good at and how you excel
  3. The importance of having an open dialogue with customers to determine where they are in their journey, everyone is at different experience points
  4. Balancing the excitement of introducing a new technological platform in a company and why it’s important to slow the pace when onboarding
  5. Moving towards an honest conversation about imperfect solutions that can help move an organization forward
  6. How technology can help with positive conversations such as continuous performance management
  7. How to be your authentic self at work

“The more that you can be human, more authentic, and the more holistic you are thinking about life and the work that you’re doing, the better you can navigate all of this. And the more powerful the connections are that you have with your customers, your colleagues, and with people in general.” ~ Rana Stanfill-Hobbs

Resources from this episode:

Thank our sponsor: Ultimatesoftware.com/LFW

Rana Stanfill-Hobbs on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ranahobbs

CompassCredo on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/compasscredo

CompassCredo on Facebook: www.facebook.com/pg/compasscredo/

Compass Credo www.compasscredo.com

***

We’re proud to be sponsored by Ultimate Software. They’re a leading cloud provider of people management solutions with a commitment to continuing education for HR, talent, and payroll professionals.

Ultimate Software is hosting dozens of free educational HR workshops around the country. Check out ultimatesoftware.com/LFW for more information on how to earn free HRCI, SHRM, and APA recertification credits.

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Do you feel powerless or worthless to affect change in your organization? I mean, what can you do? How about just go and get a tall macchiato from Starbucks and drown your sorrows? That’ll feel great, right?  

Ah yes, that is a perfect example of someone who has hit rock bottom in the workplace. In fact, I was that person, not too long ago. In a recent podcast interview with Jeanette Bronée, I asked,  “How do we get people out of the “Starbucks, I can’t affect change” cycle before they hit rock bottom? And she offered some great advice, which I would like to share with you today.

Jeanette Bronée is a performance strategist, culture coach, wellness advocate, and founder of Path For Life, Inc.  Jeanette helps leaders and companies rethink performance by asking “The Right Why®” so they can lead themselves and their people better and achieve sustainable success. She is passionate about how we can create a culture of care by unlocking what truly drives performance, engagement, and motivation from the inside out.

Now back to the question at hand, how can we avoid hitting rock bottom at work?

Jeanette had this to say, “I’ve really gotten to see the insights of the human struggle in terms of not being appreciated at work and what it does to a person.” She believes that self-care is part of the answer and the ability to change within. Of course, that’s easier said than done.

She offers up this advice, “Have self-kindness or self-compassion for that moment and say, ‘What I really need right now is to take a walk so that I can just get away from this toxic environment and remind myself that I actually do matter.’”

Jeanette believes that self-care, self-connection, self-awareness, and self-expression are a big part of building the muscle that helps us see ourselves for what we’re really worth rather than what we believe we’re worth.

When she talks about self-care, she is not referring to being pampered, having massages, or doing yoga. Instead she means being very active and engaged by taking charge of our day and taking charge of our performance. “What I look at is, what do we need so that we can be at our best rather than hanging back and feeling all cozy at work.”

We go to work because we want to matter.

We want to create change or we want to be part of something.

The reason we get frustrated with work is because that doesn’t happen for us. And then we stumble down the mountain and hit rock bottom. So the next time you are teetering towards the edge and reaching for that frappuccino with double whipped cream, remember Jeanette’s advice, take a deep breath, go for a walk, and realize that you matter. You matter and your work matters. And, you guessed it, you fix work by fixing yourself. Self-care is one small step towards that goal.

To hear more of my conversation with Jeanette, where we talked about the intersection of wellness, well-being, culture, leadership, and performance, go here.

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