Meet my instant new best friend on today’s episode! Michelle Johnston, PhD is an award-winning professor studying leadership and business communication, and her research has shown a clear link between a team’s effective communication and its positive financial performance. She serves as the Gaston Chair of Business at Loyola University in New Orleans, where she teaches in the graduate and undergraduate programs in the College of Business. We spent time discussing the highlights of Michelle’s recently published book, The Seismic Shift In Leadershift, including that caring and connection starts from within and then extends to fostering a TLE, or Team Listening Environment. She articulated why owning your calendar is such a critical aspect of connecting with your team in that it dictates HOW you spend your time. Specifically, the most effective leaders get away from their desk often, make “rounds,” and keep their finger on the pulse of what’s happening across their team and organization. Glowing praise for the book from one reviewer was it’s “for fans of Brene Brown and Adam Grant” – high praise indeed! Michelle also shared one of the best stories I’ve heard in a long time, about Juan Bautista Martin Alonso, Global President and CEO of KIND Bars (my favorite snack!). His primary KPI is generating 250 million acts of kindness across his sphere of influence, and they can be performed within the company or anywhere else. Yes, you read that correctly – 250 million! Every act of kindness creates seven more acts of kindness, so they can gain momentum pretty quickly. Also, learn about her new podcast, The Seismic Shift, on which her mentor Marshall Goldsmith was the inaugural guest. #impressive

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