The Culture of Things

This is a podcast where we talk about all things culture, leadership and teamwork across business and sport.

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January 24, 2022 01:23:10
67. Ex-Google Employee Shares Culture Perspective

67. Ex-Google Employee Shares Culture Perspective

Taras Kobernyk is humble, professional, and articulate.  That’s what makes his intriguing situation and actions much more believable.  After being fired by Google for questioning some of their policies on diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism, Taras found it quite difficult to find another job. When asked why he wrote his now-famous document “Questions about Google’s anti-racism actions,” he says he just wanted to start a conversation, just wanted to point out some contradictory, hypocritical behaviors and sentiments that Google leadership was pushing on its employees, particularly on software engineers like himself.  Google’s continued refusal (or inability) to address these points has not wavered since the document was released and began a very public media blitz on the subject. Join me as we talk to Taras about his experiences– from his excitement about moving to the U.S. from Ukraine, getting hired by such a massive tech giant, and the subsequent disintegration of his time there, leading to his being fired for questioning Google leadership on some tough topics. Discussion Points Taras’ introduction/background Getting hired by Google and finding out the internal downsides to his position What did you see that made you write the document? How did things go after writing it? Can you detail the timeline from the writing of the initial document, through your firing? Were you ever told your performance was subpar? How would you respond to people who think you’re simply a disgruntled former employee? What can you tell us about ...

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January 14, 2022 00:49:59
End of Year Wrap (2021)

End of Year Wrap (2021)

In this episode, we review the most impactful takeaways from the 27 episodes we aired in 2021.  From deep listening to self-mastery, join us as we review the top ten pearls of leadership wisdom (plus four bonus nuggets) we gained from these inspiring guests.   Every episode this year had valuable lessons and inspiring speakers, but these were some of the standouts that you can go back and listen to if the topic piques your interest.   Discussion Points   Episode 41: “The Art of Self-Mastery” with RJ Singh Takeaway: Leaders focus on the art of self-mastery “I encourage leaders to start small.” - Brendan  Episode 43: “How to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking” with Kate Purcell Takeaway: Leaders lead with vulnerability “Vulnerability is what creates trust.” - Brendan Episode 45: “How to Create Magic at Work” with Amy Lynn Durham Takeaway: Leaders connect with people “Spending time investing in people is super-important.” - Brendan  Bonus Episode 53: “The Story of My Broken Soldier” with Kaz and Matt Page Takeaway: Leaders face challenges head-on This was the longest episode we ever did, and very emotional. “HOPE– Help One Person Every day” - Marc Episode 48: “Culture of the Living Organisation” with Norman Wolfe Takeaway: Leaders must understand and work with context “The context of the situation is what creates the variation.” - Brendan  ...

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December 27, 2021 01:07:26
66. Championing Courage to Drive Meaningful Change

66. Championing Courage to Drive Meaningful Change

Martin Stark has earned the title of “champion” in a multitude of fields including boxing, human rights, and gay rights. He is courageous and speaks up for what is good and fair. In today’s episode, I get a bit of a peek behind the curtain of the immense pressures and fears that people in the LGBTIQ+ community face in simple everyday life experiences. Martin is an eloquent speaker and speaks openly about the difficulties he faced as a gay teenager in a world where gay slandering and “homophobia” were the norm.  Martin is passionate about opening the eyes of sporting authorities around the racism, sexism, and homophobia that exist in their systems, and to that end, he is organizing the World Gay Boxing Championships, scheduled to take place in Sydney Australia in February 2023.  Martin is an inspirational human who makes it his mission to change the world, one speaking opportunity at a time because he believes that helping people understand each other is the key to ending hatred.  Discussion Points Introducing Martin Stark Making connections with people Martin’s tattoos Martin’s health struggles and courage Life before coming out as gay What is “homophobic”? How can we make a difference as heterosexuals? The people around Martin  Why boxing? The important skills Martin uses to advance discussions about discrimination  What does LGBTIQ+ stand for? The importance of ...

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December 13, 2021 01:05:44
65. Inside the Mind of a Goalkeeper

65. Inside the Mind of a Goalkeeper

Mark Birighitti is a professional footballer and plays goalkeeper for the Central Coast Mariners. He has had a great career in football, playing for clubs all over the world. He thrives on that pressure of being the only one responsible for his team’s win or loss often in the final moments of a game and exactly how he pushes through to be successful and often even perceived as cocky!  He shares some of the thoughts that go through the mind of a goalkeeper on and off the field, how he has learned to cope in difficult moments and to recover quickly from setbacks and disappointments. Mark shares his insights into, now, leading this team of younger players as the captain and what he expects from these players when he retires one day. He opens up about what it takes to be a father and husband (sweetly gushing about his wife more than once) while being a professional football player in such a competitive environment.  Mark is as down-to-earth as you get and I have really enjoyed chatting with this football legend today. He makes a few predictions about how he thinks the football season will go - listen to the end of the episode to find out if he was right...   Discussion Points A bit of Mark’s background Things that Mark has done to strengthen his mindset Mark’s 2015 serious injury and reflecting on returning to play earlier than he should have Mark as team captain - leading a young team Being a Goalkeeper ...

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November 29, 2021 01:08:52
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64. The Importance of Listening Skills

Oscar Trimboli is on a quest to create 100 million deep listeners in the world. He is an author and host of the Apple-award-winning podcast, “Deep Listening”. He is passionate about using the gift of listening to bring positive change in workplaces. He consults with large organizations and shares the transformational impact it can have when leaders listen beyond words. Oscar is based in Sydney, Australia where he contributes to helping first-time runners and ocean swimmers conquer their fears and contributes to the cure of cancer through his support of the Cancer research foundation, Can Too. In today’s episode, Oscar has me do some introspection on my own listening skills and we delve deeper into what actually makes a great listener. I really enjoyed my conversation with Oscar and I hope you will take away from it as much as I have.    Discussion Points An introduction to Oscar Listening and Culture The difference between listening and hearing The 5 Levels of Listening The 125/900 Rule The impact of listening leaders The Listening Quiz Types of listeners Hacks to help you improve your listening Tips for asking questions What makes a great listener? The person who made the biggest impact on Oscar The story about the Figure 8   Resources Brendan Rogers Website Brendan Rogers LinkedIn ...

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November 15, 2021 01:25:36
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63. Leadership Observed and Actioned

My guest in today’s episode is Michael Crutcher - he’s the founder and CEO of a company called 55 comms. The focus of 55 comms has been to help clients tell their stories in a rapidly changing world. In the 8 years since starting the business, Michael and the 55 comms team have helped many companies, non-profits, and government departments to communicate better and achieve their goals.    Michael was also appointed the editor of the Courier Mail -  Queensland’s largest news and information source. His role as a respected journalist has offered him many opportunities to mix and mingle with legendary leaders both in sport and in politics making him privy to seeing leadership actioned in many different ways. An avid rugby league fan and outside of 55 comms Michael is also the director of the Norths Devils Rugby league football club.  I am privileged to have grown up with Michael and I was excited to catch up with him and learn more about his interesting career journey. He shares with me, his thoughts on what he believes it means to be a good leader based on what he has seen from some of the very best leaders in the world.   Discussion Points Michael Crutcher introduction Michael and Brendan’s childhood Leaders Michael has worked with and learned from Differences between sporting and political leaders Leaders Michael admired Michael’s thoughts on male leaders vs female leaders Top three observations by Michael of good leaders ...

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