The Lead Up Podcast
Episode 224 3 Ways to be an Empathetic Leader

Episode 224 3 Ways to be an Empathetic Leader

March 3, 2021

Empathy - the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Empathy is harder for some to express because it causes them to be vulnerable, others it comes more naturally. 

Mike shares how the recent death of his sister has really changed the way he wants to be as a leader. He shares 3 ways for leaders to be empathetic and create a better relationship with those on your team.

Compassion is the first way to be an Empathetic Leader. Compassion comes easier for some people, others really have to work hard at showing and feeling compassion for others. Stepping in and experiencing someone else's feelings and understanding their suffering even when it's uncomfortable for you can take your leadership to a whole new level. 

Availability is the second way, as opposed to select-ability. What he means is you can't select who or when you are available. You have to be available even when it may be an inconvenience for you. 

The third way is support. Stepping in and just checking on people when they are struggling even when they say they don't need anything. Most people won't ask for help or tell you when you ask that they need anything. But when you do step in, it is noticed and appreciated. 


Empathy worksheet 

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Episode 223 Mindset of a Sales Warrior with Jason Forrest

Episode 223 Mindset of a Sales Warrior with Jason Forrest

February 23, 2021

In this episode, there is gold when it comes to mindset no matter where you find yourself in life, leadership, or your sales roles you will learn a ton from our special guest.

Jason Forrest. Jason is a leading authority in culture change programs and an expert at creating high-performance, high-profit, and "Best Place to Work" cultures. The winner of five international Stevie Awards for his training programs, Jason is also an award-winning author of six books, including Leadership Sales Coaching – rated as one of Selling Power Magazine's Top Sales Books. In 2018, FPG earned a rare honor by being named to the Inc. 5000 Fastest-Growing Private Companies list for the third consecutive year, one of just 1,200 companies nationwide to achieve that honor out of a field of more than 7 million.

Jason shares that when he wrote the book Leadership Sales Coaching many years ago, he took the philosophy that a salesperson is an athlete, and should be coached like an athlete not managed like an employee. 

There are circumstances in life, and then there's the meaning we give it. Whatever charge you have in your life that's kind of holding you back, you're putting too much meaning into it, we've got to let go of that charge.

A warrior always finds the advantage. And so what's the advantage that I can do here? How can I leverage it? You know, how can I change my thinking around this?  I think that's the message everyone needs to hear is whatever, whatever charge you have in your life that's kind of holding you back, you're putting too much meaning to it, you know, we've got to let go of that charge.

P equals K minus L. So performance is what we do. Knowledge is what we've been taught to do. But then you have to minus out the leashes.

The second type of leash is a story. So a story is anything that you kind of blame on outside circumstances or something outside of yourself.

Because the power of duplication that is it? Is that what you do over and over again, you desensitize yourself with it? 

Jason wrote The Mindset of Sales Warrior, the book has 42 different strategies on how to remove the self-image stories you're locked into. The Mindset of a Sales Warrior will help you be a better husband, a better wife, a better teacher, a better speaker, a better coach, just a better influencer overall, in your general life, you can find that at To learn more about Jason you can find him on LinkedIn and FPG.


Episode 222 4D Leadership When Disruptions Come

Episode 222 4D Leadership When Disruptions Come

February 17, 2021

In this episode, Mike shares 4 ways to lead when disruptions come. 

Things don't always go our way and we have to learn how to redirect and focus on what we can control.

We need to be able to plan for disruptions. They happen and we can't always prepare but if possible we can take the initiative.

Delay- that is the second way to lead when disruptions occur. Sometimes, it is not necessary to deal with something right away. Delays can be the beginning of an adventure. 

Sometimes you may have something on your schedule that needs immediate attention that has been planned, in that case, you may have to delay something else.

Delegation- giving someone else the responsibility to take care of something. At times leaders do not like to delegate things they think they must address. But oftentimes we must trust the people we have mentored and lead to show up in the very way we have and have taught them. This can be a good thing. We can actually see leaders grow when given the opportunity and a relationship strengthened in the process.

You will want to listen to the entire episode to learn more about each of these and the 4th way to handle disruptions. 


Links to the planner and webinar Mike mentions in the podcast are below. 

The Daily Compass Quarterly Planner 

Overcoming Perfectionism Webinar


Episode 221 Communicate Like a Pro with Roddy Galbraith

Episode 221 Communicate Like a Pro with Roddy Galbraith

February 10, 2021

In this episode, Mike talks with his friend Roddy Galbraith. Roddy Galbraith is a personal development thought leader and speaker trainer. Roddy is honored to serve as faculty in The John Maxwell Team - providing public speaker training for over 24,000 elite coaches and trainers all over the world. He is passionate about the art of public speaking and believes it's a skill everyone can (and should!) master.

Roddy shares 5 steps you want to keep in mind to be effective at influencing people. Your clarity as to how you can help them or the organization is key to influencing your audience. 

The first thing you have to do is grab their attention, and hold it until the end. The best way to influence is by thinking through what you want to achieve. 

The second step is to connect with your audience. You need to make them feel like they know you and can trust you. They need to feel a rapport in order to receive the message. Understanding who you're talking to makes an enormous difference.

Listen to the entire episode to find out more ways to communicate like a pro.

You can find out more about Roddy on Facebook, JMT, and LinkedIn

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Episode 220 4 Reasons Why Leaders Should Rise Early

Episode 220 4 Reasons Why Leaders Should Rise Early

February 3, 2021

In this episode, Mike talks about the advantages of rising early. 

If you give yourself an extra 30 minutes a day, that impacts your productivity. It will add 14 hours to your month of productivity. Many people struggle with getting up early, but you can create new habits.

Another reason you should get up early is to enjoy some peace and quiet and to focus. Planning your day early will give you peace throughout the day. It will help you to approach your day with a mission. You should try using our Daily Compass Quarterly Planner to help you take action. It is a great tool to keep you on track and accomplish those goals you have set for yourself.

Getting up early, eating well, and getting exercise are all good for your brain. In Episode 209 with Dr Daniel Amen, he discussed how these habits can affect your brain and reflect in your leadership. 

Listen to this episode to find out other reasons to rise early. 

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Episode 219 Results That Last with Quint Studer

Episode 219 Results That Last with Quint Studer

January 27, 2021

In this episode, Mike talks with his friend and mentor Quint Studer. 

They are discussing Quint's book 'Results That Last'. Quint talks about why he wrote this book and how he wanted healthcare to be seen by those who were non-healthcare.

Quint shares the importance of creating systems that maximize what you are trying to accomplish. And if you don't get the results you are seeking, you step back and reevaluate the process to make it better. There are times when we do make adjustments based on the situation and that adjustment is something we do forever.

Quint says, "you've got to get the top right to get the rest of the organization right." He shares that compliance is so important in order to get the consistency you are looking for. 

Mike has created a tool to help you achieve the consistency you are needing, The Daily Compass Quarterly Planner. This planner will help you stay on task and create good habits. You can go to and order yours today. 

Quint shares his thoughts on communication and accountability and how these help you to achieve your outcome. 

Quint also shares some great resources with us on how to assess stress and trauma. These things are of great concern after 2020 and making sure we can move forward the best way possible. 

Show links: Stress and Trauma Video with Quint Studer

Resilience & Well-Being in Stressful Times

Episode 218 Leaders Must See it Before Others Buy Into It

Episode 218 Leaders Must See it Before Others Buy Into It

January 20, 2021

In this episode, Mike talks about having a vision for your leadership.

When a leader has no vision for themselves, their team or company they have no choice but to fall in line with others vision. Your future will be like your past if you don't change the way you do and see things.

Are you working toward a vision you have? Are you sharing your vision with others? You need to make sure you are focusing on your vision and goals daily. Try The Daily Compass Quarterly Planner to help keep you on track to making those visions a reality.

Last but not least, how are you communicating this vision to those around you? We are hosting a webinar on January 29th called Identifying Your Leader Language. Just click here to register and reserve your spot and learn more about how to communicate better to achieve your vision.



Episode 217 Breaking Average Leadership with Paul Gustavson

Episode 217 Breaking Average Leadership with Paul Gustavson

January 13, 2021

In this episode, Mike is joined by special guest Paul Gustavson where the topic is perseverance and why it is so important.

They talk about Paul's book Breaking Average : The 7 Critical Factors to Team Strong Leadership, where Mike is a contributing author.  The book is wrapped around the idea of victory.  They discuss how we are all called to break average and be more than we are now. It's team strong leadership, it's breaking average teamwork that makes the dream work. 

Paul shares how we need to cast a vision, we can't leave that to somebody else. You need vision but it has to be backed up by values. Start with a value inventory.  What are your values? Then you can get clear on your vision.

If you need help getting clear on those values, you can email Mike at and he will be glad to guide you through defining your values.  

Paul shares, "if we want to make an impact if we truly want to add value, that means we've got to be something more than we currently are today."

The resistance that we feel is actually an indicator that you're probably heading in the right direction and we got to take that head on the wind that's in our face, move forward, and persevere.

We all want victory at the end of the day, and we want sustained victories, not just one-time victory, it's continual impact, we continue to do that. And that's what breaking average is all about

Paul Gustavson has a passion for what he calls full spectrum innovation, which is centered on personal, technical, and corporate growth. In 2000, he helped cofound SimVentions, Inc., a technology firm that delivers engineering solutions for today’s military. SimVentions is frequently recognized as one of Virginia’s Best Places to Work and was named by Inc. Magazine as one of “The 50 Best Places to Work in 2016”. As the CTO, Paul leads in identifying and contributing to the company’s capability and influencing the strategic vision. Paul is an author of the recent book Breaking Average and Leaders Press On. Paul is also the co-host of the Breaking Average Podcast. As a leader with an engineering background, he is also an active member within the simulation and virtual reality communities. Paul and his wife Barbara live in Virginia.

About SimVentionsSimVentions tag line “Imagine. Create. Explore. Discover.” represents a culture centered on employee ownership, customers, and community. They are a technology firm supporting today’s military with innovative engineering solutions, and currently have over 300 employees across four locations. The core values for SimVentions include Customer Passion, and Continuous Development among others, and their purpose is marked with a commitment to operate using biblical principles. SimVentions is headquartered just south of Washington D.C. in Fredericksburg, VA, and you can find them on the web at


Episode 216 Realization to Transformation

Episode 216 Realization to Transformation

January 6, 2021

In this episode, Mike challenges you to have a transformational 2021.

What are you listening to? What are you feeding your mind on a daily basis? What are you consuming? 

As leaders, we must be diligent in leading and lifting others up to a common cause. 

The realization is we cannot add value to others unless we are willing to add value to ourselves. 

We must stop waiting on someone else to change, our circumstances to change- we must start the change with ourselves. We have to be conscious of what we think, watch, and say. 

Start today, get our new Daily Compass Quarterly Planner to keep track of your priorities and goals. Follow this link The Daily Compass Quarterly Planner to get yours today.

We have several resources to help you take charge of your year.

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Episode 215 4 Ways to FLIP the Script and Create Your Best Year Ever

Episode 215 4 Ways to FLIP the Script and Create Your Best Year Ever

December 30, 2020

In this episode, Mike shares four ways to flip the script and create your best year ever in 2021.

Fix your mind on what you really want is the first way to creating your best year and life your want. 

Leading yourself- not just in your mindset but in your relationships, health and fitness, and all areas of your life. By leading yourself well you gain the respect of others by leading by example.

Insulate yourself from outside negativity. This can be from relationships to social media, news anything that can cause you to change your mindset from positive to negative. 

Finally, the last way to ensure you have your best year is to plan daily. Our Daily Compass Tool is a great way to start. We just released The Daily Compass Quarterly Planner to help you plan longer-term and have it all conveniently in one place.

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