Second Crack — The Leadership Podcast

Can, Care, Do: How to Build Trust and Spark Action — with Jim Massey, CSO

May 26, 2023 Gerrit Pelzer, Martin Aldergard, Jim Massey Episode 22
Second Crack — The Leadership Podcast
Can, Care, Do: How to Build Trust and Spark Action — with Jim Massey, CSO
Show Notes Transcript

We are joined by Jim Massey, Chief Sustainability Officer at Zai Lab, and former global Vice President of ESG at AstraZeneca. Jim shares his experience as a global sustainability leader, and how he is using the Can, Care, Do model to lead transformation in the healthcare industry. Jim is also the author of the newly launched book "Trust in Action".

Listen and gain insights on how you can build trust: the foundation of all positive action and change. And as always, we end with a few reflection questions for you.

Can, Care, Do is a simple and easy-to-remember guide that you can use to build trust and spark action. And Jim shares stories and practical examples of how he has used the approach to lead change in two organisations under very different circumstances. At AstraZeneca, Jim lead the transformation towards sustainability goals in a large multi-national organisation. At Zai Lab, it is all about scaling sustainability from the start, as the company is growing. In both cases, trust is a fundamental component, but different elements of trust need to be addressed.

Key moments

[05:10] Trust in Action. Trust and action run in parallel.

[09:30] The elements of the Can-Care-Do model and how to use it.

[15:31] How Jim put the Can-Care-Do model into practice, as the newly appointed, ‘outside’ leader, of a highly qualified team of ESG specialists.

[20:17] The biggest challenge? To hold myself accountable.

[26:12] Growing and scaling a global bio-tech start-up, being planet positive from the get-go.

[31:07] Stepping into the BS. Addressing the systems that are getting in the way of trust.

[36:57] From all the things that needs to change, scope out something, and focus on that little piece.

 Reflection Questions: 

  • When reflecting, the most powerful actually sits in Can, as in why do I exist. For me as a leader, what is my why? Why am I here, and am I fulfilling that? Or am I distracted with so much of the Doing, that I’m forgetting my greatest impact?
  • At work today, did I feel I could be myself, and were there perhaps situations where I felt I couldn’t?  And reflecting on what to do about it: Is it about me to set the intension of behaving differently next time, or is it something ‘in the system’ that allows, or doesn’t allow, me to be my true self?
  • As I face a challenging leadership situation, or not seeing the action or results that are needed, how can I use this situation as an opportunity to nurture and build trust? Which of Can, Care, or Do is the area I need to work on?

Information about Jim and his book ‘Trust in Action’

You can find more information about Jim and his book at www.jimmassey.co

Or on LinkedIn Jim Massey

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Do you have any questions, feedback, or suggestions for us?  Would you like to explore how we can help you to drive results in your organisations through a company-wide initiative or individual executive coaching? Then email us at  hello@secondcrackleadership.com

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Gerrit Pelzer
Martin Aldergård

Second Crack – The Leadership Podcast
with guest Jim Massey (Episode 22)

This transcript is AI-generated and may contain typos and errors.

[00:00:00] Jim Massey: These environmental scientists were out to save the world, but they had been hampered by the organization saying, this is enough, this is enough. When I engaged them and said, guys, you have my, I have your back. We're gonna go further and we're gonna go from reduce, we're gonna change four letters. We're gonna go from reduced to remove. All we're doing is changing four letters and we're gonna increase everything you're doing. And then we're gonna have scope one and two, we're gonna eliminate this.

[00:00:39] Gerrit Pelzer: A warm welcome to Second Crack - The Leadership Podcast. If you are new to the show, this is where we explore everyday leadership dilemmas and paradoxes, and where we invite you as our listener to self-reflect. I'm Gerrit Pelzer, I'm an executive coach and I bring to my coaching a combination of Western science and Asian wisdom. I'm joined today as usual by my long-term friend and business partner, Martin Aldergard. Martin is a leadership consultant who focuses on change and transformation in organizations. And what we both have in common is that we always put people at the center of our work. So, hi Martin. Good to be recording with you again today.

[00:01:21] Martin Aldergard: Hi, Gerrit. Yes, excited as always to record. And we have a great topic, we're going to talk about trust and to that, to, to do that we have a new guest, Jim Massey. But before we introduce Jim, let's put a little bit of context around this. We know that trust is of course, the central element of leadership. We have spoken about this many times. And, and it, it's the foundation really of our ability to influence and inspire our teams. 

[00:01:54] Gerrit Pelzer: Yeah, and at the same time we see often that it's, uh, kind of neglected in the corporate world. I think we had one episode, I cannot remember the exact title, but we spoke about the importance of trust-based relationships as the foundation for performance at work. So I'm, I'm really excited to have Jim as an expert on the show today. 

[00:02:17] Martin Aldergard: Yeah, and, and looking at all these challenges we're facing as society, all the corporate transformation, the sustainability transformation that we're facing, right, we need more dialogue, we need more collaboration, we need to build trust.

[00:02:32] And on the other side, it seems, at least to me, that there are bigger and growing divides. It seems like when we need trust the most, it seems to be on the decline. Perhaps we're forgetting how to build trust. And when I was thinking about this episode, I was thinking about my experience as, as a consultant and and guiding companies and leaders to start to take action on change. And I see kind of a little bit of a dilemma. On one hand, as leaders, we are trying to build trust. So to say, prepare trust, and have this account of trust that we can tap into, and then we start to drive change and expect action from the team. On the other side, let's stop talk about it, start to drive change, and then let our actions speak for themselves and build trust. So I see a little bit like a, it might be a chicken and the egg here. What comes first, trust or action. And I think for this, really happy to now introduce Jim Massey and say, welcome to the show. Welcome to Second Crack, Jim. Hi, how are you? 

[00:03:52] Jim Massey: I'm well, and I'm excited to be here. You, you had me when, when Gerrit was talking about putting people at the center of your work. Mm-hmm. Because that's foundational. I always say, even when you're by yourself, trust exists. You gotta trust yourself. And when you add other, trust is foundational to doing anything as a team. So I'm really excited to dive into this conversation with you both.

[00:04:13] Martin Aldergard: Yes, great to have you here. And let me make a short introduction to our audience of Jim. Jim, you're a corporate executive. You're currently the Chief Sustainability Officer at Zai Lab, a global biotech company. Previously you worked as the vice president of ESG at AstraZeneca, and where you among many other things, led the early adoption of science-based targets. So in your corporate career, you have been in healthcare from consumer marketing now to the head of sustainability, right. But beside this, you are also also an author, and this is how we got to know you. And you have published a book now that is really inspirational and, and also really timely. The title is Trust in Action. So where should we start, Jim, and what do you think about this analog of chicken and the egg? Trust first, or action first?

[00:05:10] Jim Massey: Well, I'll tell you Martin, I loved, I love it because the title itself, when I came up with it, what I love is it can be read both directions. You know, with the emphasis on trust needs to be seen in action. And there are times when we simply just have to trust in action itself. And that's how I landed on this title and what's fascinating to me, I've been thinking about that since I came up with it. You know, why did it sit, sit so well with me? And I think, you know, when you gimme the dilemma of the chicken or the egg, you know, it's, it's kinda like there is no answer. And for me, I think when it, when I think about trust and action, I really think it's more of, um, they run in parallel. Mm-hmm. It, it goes back to the, the analogy of people at the center of everything we're doing. It's, it's about one's actions and those impact on the other. And so for me it's kind of the, the idea that action and trust sit, you know, I almost think of trust as a feeling that we have that's very complex and very deep. And it sits, and it's very personal for the, the individual. And so the three of us are sitting here, probably have different concepts of what trust is, and yet we're all acting as we're talking and developing trust simultaneously. So for me, they, they coexist the same time as two very different actions, which makes it even more complicated. 

[00:06:31] Martin Aldergard: Mm. Mm-hmm. And I'm thinking you're a corporate executive, but you took the time to write a book of trust. And sharing also your stories from your career. So can you share a little bit with our listeners, how, what journey have you made as a leader and, and how did you come to this point that you want to share your experience?

[00:06:57] Jim Massey: I'm a practitioner, right? Um, I, I do, I'm at the front lines of business every single day, and I have been for more than two decades. And as a practitioner, I, I would often read management books. And I started to find that I would only take one or two nuggets from 300 pages of reading something. And so one of the things I wanted to do was to help executives as they found themselves in these turmoils, be able to get unstuck, get out. And I, so this is a model I created for myself, just reading tons of material, being coddled by some of the world's best executive coaches that, that, you know, companies could bring in. But I still had to just continually tweak and work and figure out what made sense for me. And so the reason I ended up writing the book is, as I was, um, transitioning out of AstraZeneca post Covid, you know, getting the organization ready to address how we get return workers to start working on the Oxford collaboration for the vaccine. I, I started getting calls and questions from other executives saying, Jim, we're not sure what's going on. You know, there this ESG seems to be taking off, sustainability, we're uncertain. I started seeing, they were questioning themselves. Mm-hmm. They were losing trust in themselves. So I thought, here's this model, over the last two decades since graduate school, my master's is an organizational development and I focused on individual accountability. And so I thought, you know, if this has been helping me, I would walk people through and like, oh, that's so helpful. It's quick and easy, it's down and dirty. And I can remember the model itself will get into is just Can-Care-Do, the elements of trust.

[00:08:34] And when I would share it with these leaders, it was transformative enough they felt they could start doing action on these concepts that were big and meaty. Everything from climate change, global heating, to diversity, equity, inclusion. If you remember, at that time, we were shutting the world down because of, of a public crisis, public health crisis. And in the US there was the murder of an individual named George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota. And it just took off, you know, race and equity discussions. So these big three things were just intersecting at the same time, and leaders didn't know what to do. So it was during this time I thought, I've got something that works for me. Mm-hmm. And when I was sharing it with others, they said it worked for them. And that's why I wrote the book. 

[00:09:17] Martin Aldergard: Mm mm-hmm. It's very timely. Very timely. Mm-hmm. And needed. And you, you, you talking, you mentioned already this Can-Care-Do. What, what is that model? 

[00:09:31] Jim Massey: So, you know, Martin, there, there were some models in the books I was reading that had nine steps. And I thought, you know, as the, at the time when I was global Vice President of ESG at AstraZeneca, I was responsible for 17 different topics. There are times I'd be talking environment, then I would come back and I'd be talking about access to healthcare and healthcare capacities in low to middle income countries. And I'd come back and be talking about gender pay equity in Europe. You know, like I was just in and out of all these topics. And, um, you know, I, I couldn't go through nine steps, you know, I, I wasn't able to take these. And so what I started to do is realize someone's not acting, something's not happening. 

[00:10:17] And so I quickly started to distill trust into these three buckets of Can-Care-Do. Can first, is the evaluation is: am I or is the person I'm interacting with, are they capable to handle what it is we're talking about? Do they have the skills, knowledge, and abilities? Can they do this job? Mm-hmm. The Care is: do they have my best interest at heart and do they feel I have their best interest at heart? Do they care? And then the final is does the individual actually Do? Do they act and walk their talk? And that's when I boil down, for me this quick Can-Care-Do. I'm always evaluating a scenario. But then there are times when some, you know, there, not all three may be present. So then I have to prioritize what's going to cause the action to form and I'll prioritize one of them. Because you, you know, it's just easier to start with one than try to solve all three at the same time. And so that's the, the essence of the model. And always evaluating as a leader, self-reflecting, if, if you guys, if I feel we're not taking action, you don't trust, I also have to reflect. What am I doing? Do they view me as I'm capable? Do they view that I don't care about them, or am I honestly not walking my talk? Am I just trying to get this done to move onto the next topic? Mm-hmm. And so, depending on where those are for self and evaluating those around me, that's how this model works. 

[00:11:41] Martin Aldergard: Mm-hmm. So it's like a, it's, it's like a toolbox for a leader, right. To, to look into not only talking or thinking about trust in a more intellectual way, but actually breaking it down into three simple components and then looking at it, which of these three components do I need to work on right now for this particular context or in this particular situation. 

[00:12:08] Jim Massey: Absolutely. And then of course I do as an OD guy, have to layer it and add some complexity. Because trust sits at self, within me. Do I trust myself? It sits at the team level. Those around me and team can scale. It could be me and two other people, or it could be me and the company, right. And then there's the system, the larger entity that we worry about. Mm-hmm. And that could be me, my ESG team, and the system could be the company, or it could be the ESG team itself within the company, with life sciences as the system. So, you know, it, it scales up and down based on where the leader or the individual may be operating. 

[00:12:52] Gerrit Pelzer: Yeah. And what resonates with me is when you said earlier trust is a, is a feeling. Uh, Martin and I spoke about, uh, a model by Paul Brown, with eight basic emotions. And trust is one of the emotions that is under the category of attachment emotions. And exactly as you said, we, we either know it's, it's there or it is not there, but it's often not so clear what causes it. So when I think of trust, um, whether that's at home or in, in a professional environment: do I get the feeling that I can see your true self, your authentic self? And in turn then can I be myself or do I feel like I need to wear a mask, pretend to be somebody else. And my experience is when people can be their real selves, that is when they are at their best. And in the corporate environment, that means then when we create an environment where people can be their best selves, then we have the foundation for creativity, innovation and performance, right. But then asking how do you actually build trust, we know trust can be destroyed in a second, but how can you build it? It's more complex than that. And I think how you explain it here, Can-Care-Do, gives, gives a very nice simple framework that everybody can remember and then see, well, how do I apply it? 

[00:14:25] Jim Massey: That's, that's my hope. And, and I think that's what I have seen is, when I'm in the heat of transformation and, and we can go through, uh, Martin, I appreciate you talking about, I, the book is based, it's, it's rooted in the model and I use storytelling from part memoir. So everything, I have a personal example of how I had to transform myself, to transform my team, to attempt to transform the system. I genuinely believe that that's how we're gonna get there, right, mm-hmm. Um, and, and, simplifying, remembering. I think the important thing I need to to share with everyone too is I, I'm a classically trained consumer market. I'm a behaviorist. Since the third grade when I was helping with my first political campaign, I have been taught to try to influence human behavior. It's just where I am at the stage of my career now. I wanna impact human behavior, and change it for both good and permanence and impact. And that's, that's where I sit today. But that's exactly, I, I, I Gerrit when you talk about the simplification, I love hearing that that's how it's landed. 

[00:15:31] Martin Aldergard: Jim, in our pre-call conversation here, uh, you share this example of where, when you came to the ESG team, when, when you were appointed the new head of the ESG team, and they looked at you as a consumer marketer. Can you, can you retell that story a little bit because I think it gave such a nice flavor of Can-Care-Do in, in practice. 

[00:15:59] Jim Massey: Yes. I, I can remember it as if it was yesterday. I had a leadership team that had a leader they'd been with for more than a decade, and they had just accomplished a major milestone. They were one of the first FTSE companies in the UK to have a science-based target approved by the Science Based Target initiative, in line with the Paris Agreement in 2016. Now, as a consumer marketer, they put me in compliance within the industry, to overhaul it and make people not hate the function. And so the reason they gave me the ESG is cuz I was successful at that. I came in and transformed all the attorneys and all these professionals, like, who's this guy, he doesn't know compliance. But I know individual accountability and behavior, and that's what compliance is at its essence. So I'm sitting there with this ESG team, like this consumer marketer comes in, transforms everything. Yeah, it worked there, but he doesn't understand our world. Mm-hmm. And someone's like, this is a mistake, you should not be here. So I clearly had feedback that, that while I'm going through Can-Care-Do, they don't believe I can. Mm-hmm. And so I knew right then and there, I had to start working on that. Because these were leading industry scientists on environmental protection and who was I?

[00:17:17] Mm-hmm. And so I would start having in one-on-ones learning a little bit, but then I also would leverage other resources. And it was fascinating because they were so excited on this whole concept. And at the time, the first science-based targets approved were in line to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with allowing the the world to heat 1.5 degrees. Mm-hmm. When I heard this for the first time, fresh ears and eyes, which is the benefit of diversity and ways of thinking, I thought that still feels icky. So everyone's saying I can still sin, just not sin quite as badly, or as much. And I didn't feel that if we were the first and we were gonna try to achieve this by 2030, felt like we were way behind, like action wasn't enough. Mm-hmm. And I actually said that. I'm like, so why wouldn't we just remove greenhouse gas? Oh, Jim, that's ridiculous. Those were the direct words. I don't know if you guys mind, but I'll go ahead and fast forward. I, I just went along to get along. It's like, okay, I've got, I, at the time I had 17 direct reports. I had more than a hundred people on my team. You know, the company was rocking and rolling on, on various aspects. And environment wasn't our main priority, but that gnawing feeling that, that didn't feel right, wouldn't go away. Mm-hmm. 

[00:18:30] And as I developed my Can and became as well-read and understood the parameters of environment, I moved into Care. These environment, environmental scientists were out to save the world, but they had been hampered by the organization saying, this is enough, this is enough. Mm-hmm. When I engaged them and said, guys, you have my, I have your back, we're gonna go further. And we're gonna go from reduce, we're gonna change four letters, the marketer in me came in, we're gonna go from reduce to remove. All we're doing is changing four letters. We're gonna increase everything you're doing, and then we're gonna have scope one and two, we're gonna eliminate this. That action and, and encouraging them that I, I had their best interest at heart, I knew what they really wanted and I was gonna give it to them. Mm-hmm. Over a year we were able to do that, and we actually started generating one of the first net-zero programs, that by 2019 we had fully funded, approved through the executive team and the board, to launch in 2020 at the World Economic Forum. And we're one of the first seven publicly traded companies in the world to have that, while working with science-based targets, and then also establishing the new standard that's out today. Had I not learned to trust myself, I would never have transformed my team, to literally transform the global system on how we look at what companies should be doing to reduce, and remove greenhouse gas emissions.

[00:20:01] Martin Aldergard: Mm-hmm. I think that is such a powerful story. In this journey then, what would you say, what was still the most challenging thing? I mean, even if it ended with a big success, there must have been challenges down the road. 

[00:20:17] Jim Massey: I may shock many people with this. The biggest challenge was always holding myself accountable. It was me. It was taking the action. You know, another story that I love to tell is we had 17,000 vehicles, and one of the big things we needed to do was convert them to meet and re, you know, to remove greenhouse gas, we needed to convert them to electric vehicles. And I was getting ready to present to the executive team, and I realized that I'd be one of two Americans out of 20 people in the room. And one of the executives had already given me the feedback. He's like, you Americans will never get out of your gas guzzling SUVs, these large vehicles that we all need to have for our families of three and four. Right. It's ridiculous. Mm-hmm. And guess what I was driving? A gas guzzling SUV. I was not walking my talk. And so I ended up that year in 2017 going out and getting an electric vehicle so that I would understand what I was asking the 17,000 employees around the world to be doing, what behavior needed to be changed. And it was fantastic when I went in to present, the executive and I had not followed up. And so when I'm presenting, we do this, he's like, listen, I, I have the North America, Jim, you're an American, you Americans will not give up your gas guzzling SUVs, tell everyone what you drive. I'm like, I, I'm in an electric vehicle. Mm-hmm. And it got very quiet. He's like, well, there goes my objection. Within 15 minutes, I had their commitment and we're one of the first organizations to commit to EV100, which was converting all electric vehicle, or all of our fleet to electric. And so, time and time again, when you ask me that question, I always come back to self-doubt. The idea that I Can, I Care, I Do, any of those elements, sometimes all three, were not in existence for me. And so that's where the trust and action go do. Go lease a vehicle. If you're not doing it, then go do it, learn about it, go back to the Can, and that's when it would start to transition for me. Mm-hmm. 

[00:22:25] Gerrit Pelzer: When, when I listen to these stories, I feel reminded of our latest podcast episode where we talked about self-awareness and every, everything you described, Jim, makes me believe that you have very high self-awareness and that congratulations because we discovered with, uh, professional in the field that this is the foundation for high leadership effectiveness. So what I'm wondering then, when you said initially you noticed that when you, when you came to this other company, that others did not trust you. And I'm wondering, cuz one aspect of this, um, self-awareness discussion we had, was also how do people receive feedback. So my, it comes, it boil down to the question, how did you sense that people were not trusting you? And then along the progress that you described, how did you get the feedback that you could realize, ah, you know, they start trusting me, trust is increasing and now I'm somewhere where I think it's, it's good enough. 

[00:23:38] Jim Massey: Wonderful question. And I think it's, um, I'm gonna go back to that first interaction where literally the leadership team, the, the self, um, promoted leader, they had already talked - Jim's not qualified. So when the individual said, he actually was sitting there circling my face, I'd gone to visit the site. He's like, this is a mistake. I said, I, I apologize, it's weird, this may be a cultural thing, but when you were using your finger to circle it, almost as if you were circling my face saying I'm the mistake, and he said, that's exactly what I'm doing. So there's so there's direct feedback for me, right, so I knew trust wasn't there. Something switched in me, and, and Gerrit, I do agree with you. I do have very high self-awareness. And I said, so two things I want to do. I'm gonna call time out. Doing what you just did is in violation of our code of conduct, that we respect each other. It honestly is one of the rudest things that I've ever experienced. So I wanna re, I wanna re, re reground us in our code and our values and what matters to all of us sitting at the table. We're on the same team. You may not be happy that I'm your new leader, but this type of behavior will not be tolerated. So I'm gonna allow all of us to take a 10 minute break. I'm gonna return and we're gonna start over again. We all took a break, we come in, and I said, okay, let's get started. And we just started talking and, and that there was a minor little tweak where I was able to use the authority given to me through the power structure of the organization, but also bring us back to we're on the same team, we have the same values as a company that we all agree to. We started the conversation. Post that meeting, when, when the group think and the wolf pack was divided, someone came in and said, I've never seen a sign of leadership. Like, I thought I got one. And then I realized I just had to continue to believe enough in myself in, in, in, in continuing to lead the way we, as the company, wanted leaders to show up and, and so I over-indexed on Do, in demonstrating my consistency while developing the Can and learning the environment. And so that's the feedback that's always planned and how you navigate through the three pillars of, of trust. 

[00:26:09] Gerrit Pelzer: Very nice. That's wonderful.

[00:26:12] Martin Aldergard: Moving further on now to Zai Lab, and what you're doing today. What, what is, what is your purpose today and in with Zai Lab, and the positive impact that you are trying to do? Because I learned, for instance, the net-zero, the net-zero reduction is not really a relevant target for you, you're, you're aiming for other things. 

[00:26:32] Jim Massey: Spot on. Now, so when I was working at AstraZeneca, it was an amazing opportunity to transform the legacy of a former chemical company more than a hundred years ago, into a company doing good today. At Zai we consider ourselves a global startup. Mm-hmm. And so what I'm wanting to do is lay the groundwork for those mid-level career leaders who are looking for what's next. If they go to a startup, I always, and when, anytime I talk to someone, everyone's like, well, how are we gonna reduce our greenhouse gas? I'm like, we're not. We're growing. So it's important that we grow green. So many of these standards that I talk about, like science-based targets, they're intended for these large multinational conglomerate, conglomerates have been around forever, to reduce their bad. When you're trying to scale and grow, I'm talking about being planet positive from the get-go. Um, one of my favorite examples is when I joined, we had exponential growth. And one of the things I wanted to highlight is, we must have gender and pay equity at all levels. We don't get to grow and then applaud ourselves for fixing how we weren't aware of what's the standard. And so it's fascinating because the, the raters and rankers looking at our sustainability program want to know, well, what's your target to get there? Oh no, our goal is to maintain, we have it. We were intentional to build our organization right from the start. So if you look at our levels from vp, director, manager, and individual contributors, we have pay equity around the world, and we have gender equity at all levels. And I actually had one of the raters and rankers say, you can't do that, you need to have a target by 2030, you'll achieve it. Like, you need to catch up. You can continue to penalize me, I'm doing what, I'm walking the talk you ask. And, and they really struggled with that. And so what I'm trying to do is lay the groundwork and then also emphasize, you were talking about greenhouse gas. We know we need to grow responsibly, but we're a healthcare company. We don't extract, we're not in oil and gas, we're not agriculture. So we're not continually using or raising livestock with greenhouse gas emissions. We don't, we aren't in transportation or distribution, yes, we use those services, but we aren't the ones doing it. Those are the ones that are the biggest violators that are contributing, there's about a hundred companies within industries that are, mm-hmm, about 80% of greenhouse gas emissions. Where we make our greatest impact and where I want companies to focus is, where is your priority? Ours is in transforming healthcare.

[00:29:09] We are an infectious disease focused on one of the top five risks to humanity, according to the World Health Organization, with antimicrobial resistance. We are looking at oncology increasing because of the environmental impact on human health, respiratory disease, lung disease that re end result is lung cancer. We're expanding that portfolio to help humans there. So as we focus where we can have our greatest impact, priority was never meant to be plural. So I double down on SDG 3 - Health and Wellbeing. And then what I say is, how and what we do to achieve that cannot be bad. And that's where the other things roll around.

[00:29:47] And so I'm, I'm trying to lay the foot, the, the, the foundation for companies to focus on the one area where they can have the greatest impact to cause the greatest sy systemic transformation. And then acknowledge everything else must be good as well. So you get one priority as a company on social purpose. Ours is health. And so I want future leaders to be that focused cuz that's the only way we have to divide and conquer the multitude of issues we face today. Mm-hmm. 

[00:30:16] Martin Aldergard: Mm-hmm. That clarity that helps everybody be razer sharp on the priorities. And also then make the right decisions, what the fastest way to get us there. And then what I recognize as well is perhaps, is I would say all this noise around, what are you doing about this, what are you doing about that, how come you don't have a target- it's not relevant for us. And this, bring it back to trust, this, this, uh, this confidence of yourself, your team, your whole company to focus on that, that really focused purpose and vision that also helps you to filter out and stand back against all the noise, all the requirements, all the questions you are getting.

[00:31:07] When you're leading younger executive, when you're seeing, uh, uh, uh, younger leaders growing up through the organization, what, what are they struggling with, or what might be getting in their way, when it's coming to building trust, hmm, and, and, and creating impact and, and contributing to this purpose that you've been talking about. 

[00:31:33] Jim Massey: I'm gonna start a little bit big and then bring it back. One of my favorite chapters in the book is Chapter 10, stepping into the BS. And what, what the BS stands for there, in western, US language, BS stands for a dirty word. Um, but I'm referring to it as a little bit of a play on words, cuz I'm referring to it as Built Systems. There's the natural system which connects us all and when allowed to work is amazing. But as humans, we try to create a sense of understanding through the chaos and create these built systems. These built systems are government, education, religion, business. And so one of the biggest struggles I see mid-career leaders today trying to address these issues are the legacy built systems, that truly are the bad word. They are the BS. They generally help very few, these systems were created predominantly by western white men, and so many leaders are struggling to be the authentic leader they want to be, but they may present as female, a person of color, and these current existing systems are saying, no, you don't belong here. And they're, they're struggling to be, you know, you were talking about trust exists when I can be my authentic self. If the current BS, the built system you're operating in is saying you don't get to do that, but the world is telling you you must, so that you can show up and be the brilliant mind that you are. And the problems we face today, we've never solved for, but as humans, we look backwards to figure out through learning agility, how to solve for them. We need more diverse perspectives that aren't beholden to the old ways. And so it's like we, we are at this intersection and that's what I'm seeing current leaders struggling with is how to show up. Someone may choose to be non-binary, but their HR system requires them to select male or female. Mm-hmm. Who cares? I need what's in between your ears, and I need your heart to be there. So you're in this fight with me, pick other, pick non-binary, but let's talk about the problems we're trying to face. But the current built systems don't allow them to show up the way they need to. That I think, is the biggest struggle, and it's why I love chapter 10, stepping into the bs. We all have to step into it to fix it so we all can show up and, and start to address what really matters. 

[00:34:05] Martin Aldergard: And Gerrit, what's on your mind. 

[00:34:10] Gerrit Pelzer: Too many things. I mean, this subject is seriously, I mean this, this subject is so rich, I think we could have an another 10 episodes. Yeah. On, on this. When we talk about dilemmas, paradoxes, the challenges, so I see there are on on multiple levels. So when I think of just the concept of Can-Care-Do, I think, Jim, you mentioned, can I trust myself, and I said, we are usually at our best when we can be ourselves. And so maybe I'm already starting to go into our reflection questions. Uh, you know, I can look at myself and say, well, you know, at work today, did I feel I could be myself? And where were there perhaps situations where I felt I couldn't. And then we, we go to the, the last step to do what can I do about it? Is it, was it more about me that now I, I just don't have to behave in that way, it's just me setting the intention of doing it differently next time. Or is it where Jim, you gave again, the example of the system, where can I then influence the system, that it allows people in general, because it's probably not only me, that the, the system, it sounds so abstract, allows people more to be themselves. I think that is, for me, one of the, the most critical points. Mm-hmm. And then in terms of, uh, building the trust with other people, I think it comes back to the self-awareness. Um, do other people trust me? What, what feedback am I receiving? In other words, what evidence do I have that people trust me or they don't? And then again, what can I do about it? And, uh, this would be some, some of the key aspects that came to my mind.

[00:36:13] Maybe should we start with the reflection questions? Yeah. So for, for our show, we, we tend not to give oversimplified how-to advice. Because the how-to often doesn't work because each person is an individual and they have to find their own solutions. But we have seen that it can be very powerful when people reflect. Usually people are very busy and they don't do it, and so what could be some reflection questions that either help to built trust. Um, what reflections could we discuss in terms of the Can-Care-Do model? 

[00:36:57] Jim Massey: So as we transition to reflection, one of the things I always talk about is, we know as a society we're losing trust in the systems, and I defined the systems, the the built systems we were talking about. What I always want people to do, and I think as we move into reflection, what I, one of the analogies that's so vivid that many people respond to is, I want us to be standing and instead of thinking of white noise around us, think of all the white noise, social media, 24-hour news cycle, all the struggles that we have with family, friends, work, as a, a lake beneath us. And we're, we're on a bungee platform, and we sit there and say, all of this white noise must stop. Working on my greatest impact, and I encourage everyone to dive in, to the white noise pool, with a little cup and scoop something out and bring it with you, and just focus on that little piece. Mm-hmm. Where you can start to influence that either through yourself, through your team, or through the system. And, and that for me, Gerrit, when you ask that question, I, I could give you a litany of things I'm worried about, but I'm not able to solve all those. So I've got to jump in. I've got to break that white noise so that I can focus and think.

[00:38:11] Gerrit Pelzer: I'm very glad you brought it up. Um, we had a conversation with Paul Lawrence also on systems. And often again in organizations, leaders often have the illusion that they can control outcomes, they can control the system, but the reality is, and you used exactly this term, we can only influence the system. And I think even when I, I have a similar perception as you, when I look at the world, the big picture, I think o dear, you know, where are we heading? It's, it's all hopeless. But where we can influence the system is through our own behavior of mm-hmm. Yeah. I'm, I'm reluctant to use, uh, this, this old saying, but it is really be the change you want to see in the world. So you, and it comes back to walking the talk. So role model, the behavior that you want to see in others. And then this little scoop, that's our daily contribution, and step by step, I still have hope that we can change it. 

[00:39:16] Martin Aldergard: Hmm. That is so wonderful. I, I think we need to squeeze in a few reflection questions and then end here because this is, this is the high note. I think we found, I think we found something that, that went much deeper, but actually kind of closes the whole loop of our conversation when we started. I was talking about this chicken and the egg -trust or action. And I think we have explored this from, so to say, both sides. 

[00:39:48] On the, on the reflection question, one, the question that I bring with me and that I'm of course going to ask myself is, in this situation that I'm facing, what can I use in this situation to nurture and build trust? How can I, how can I harvest an opportunity to build trust. And, and, and then a subset of that question, now I learned this Can-Care-Do model that will help me to look, to answer that particular question.

[00:40:22] Jim Massey: I think for me, when I talk to people about trust, everyone focuses primarily when they go to define it on the Do. I know when trust exists, cuz someone says, you know, they do what they say they will. For me though, on reflection, the most powerful actually sits in the CAN section. And in Can I talk about, why do I exist and whether that I is me, my team, or my company, what is it that I am put on this earth to do? And so in this reflection for any leader where no matter where you are. What is your why? What, why are you here, and are you fulfilling that? Or are you distracted with so much of the do, and proving that you'll walk your walk, that you're forgetting your greatest impact? And I think if we continually ground ourselves in that on a daily basis, it just continues to break through that white noise so much that we can really focus on what drives us, and what we need to be driving for the change we want to be.

[00:41:35] Martin Aldergard: Gerrit?

[00:41:37] Gerrit Pelzer: I was about to say, wow, you see both of us speechless. That was very profound. Uh, I, I can't possibly top that, um, from my side, and I had some reflection questions before, uh, I have really nothing to add there. I would say it's probably time to, to wrap things up. So Jim, yeah. Thanks. Thanks you so much for being on the show today. Uh, if people want to explore more, how could they reach out to you and perhaps most importantly, where can they find your book - Trust in Action? 

[00:42:11] Jim Massey: Yes, absolutely, I'll start with that- Trust in Action., You can purchase that on Amazon, right, and, and where books are sold. Um, and then, you know, if, if you want to continue the conversation, I'm on LinkedIn as Jim Massey, and then also I have a website, www.jimmassey.co. And, uh, my information and an email are available there. I would love to hear from you.

[00:42:34] Martin Aldergard: Wonderful. Thank you so much Jim, and thank you Gerrit. It has been a great conversation today. Thank you so much. 

[00:42:43] Gerrit Pelzer: Thank you too. And this concludes then today's episode. If you like the podcast, remember to subscribe on your favorite platform so you don't miss out on the latest episodes. And if you would like to help us grow the show, we will really appreciate it if you tell a friend about it, post on social media, or leave a positive comment or rating.

[00:43:03] More info about Martin and myself and our work is also on our website. That is Secondcrackleadership [dot] com. That's all in one word. And also we would be very happy to receive your feedback, your questions or comments, and the address for that is Hello [at] Secondcrackleadership [dot] com. 

[00:43:25] Bye for now and until next time.