What does it mean to be a leader? What’s the best way to lead others in a way that empowers them to become leaders themselves?
Our CEO, Daniel McCollum, recently appeared on the podcast Leadership With Heart with Heather R. Younger to discuss his takes on these very questions. In the episode, he discussed ways of shaping your business around a set of values, aligning your work to match your passions and more.
Check out the full interview below, or skip further down to read 10 of the top quotes from the episode that highlight the values that make Torrent what it is.
(Note: If you'd prefer to listen to the podcast in iTunes, go here and select "View in iTunes" for episode 49.)
Empowering Employees to Lead — Inside and Outside Your Company
1. On his personal “Why”: “What I’m passionate about is raising up leaders, and giving that opportunity to all people regardless of economic status, race, religion, where you’re at in the world, all of these categories that get created. I’m passionate about raising up and extending that opportunity to all people so that together we can make an impact in the world.”
2. On the art of active empowerment: “I think of myself as someone who empowers others to lead, doesn’t leave them hanging. I’m not talking about abdicating but actually empowering others, which I think is a big difference.”
3. On being servant-oriented: “Leadership is about trying to figure out: How do I serve the people that report to me so that they can be successful? How do I enable them to be successful? How do I help them grow?”
4. On encouraging healthy disagreement: “Even as a servant-oriented leader, there should be conflict, there should be wrestling, there will be hard decisions to make along the way.”
5. On how he hopes people view him as a leader: “I think I’m pretty open, vulnerable and authentic about what our people are doing and the struggles that they go through and the celebrations they have.”
6. On helping others discover their potential: “Whether you’re 8 years old or 80, we all need people in our lives that instill in us our potential and tell us what we could look like as a leader in the coming years. And that’s a part of my job — to help people see that, give them the tools to get where they need to go.”
7. On being a part of others’ journeys: “I don’t expect everybody to come to Torrent Consulting and be here for 40 years and retire. This may be a leg of their journey. They may need to go somewhere else to advance in their leadership and skill development. We are not the end-all, be-all.”
8. On allowing employees to leave on good terms: “I meet with every person that leaves the company. Our people person does a formal exit interview, but then I meet to just thank them for serving at Torrent, being a part of it. I’ve had some really really rich conversations with those people.”
9. On living out your company’s core values: “I came to the realization that if I’m going to get up and talk about growing leaders, being servant-oriented, growing and developing, then I — as the CEO — need to be the one that grows the fastest, that serves the most, that leads the most in the company.”
10. On leadership being a privilege: “It’s a privilege that I have every day, that I get to lead other people. Not a right.”
Want to know more about the “secret sauce” that can help your company empower its employees to grow? Check out our culture checklist to understand what steps your organization can take next.