May 28, 2020

In lieu of our spring in-person gathering, the ScalingUp Summit was delivered virtually. Although the timeframe was condensed, the content was robust and delivered on its intent to “reignite.” Much of the content focused on the pandemic and its impact on people and organizations. Here are my top takeaways:

Taking care of ourselves and our people

“Sawubona!,” Susan David, Harvard Medical School psychologist and author of Emotional Agility. (“Sawubona” is a South African greeting for “hello,” which more accurately translates to “I see you.”) “And by seeing you, I bring you into meaning. When we are in a time of chaos and complexity, we need to remember to see ourselves and to see our teams and the people who are struggling because it’s only in doing that that we’re able to move forward.”

“Begin thinking of yourself as your chief energy officer.”  ~ Tony Schwartz, founder and CEO of The Energy Project and author of The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working

Understanding the challenge

“Diagnosing is a very critical piece that most sellers do very little of. Diagnosing is asking the right question, in the right sequence, of right person.” ~ Jeff Thull, strategist, advisor and author of Mastering The Complex Sale

“This is such a total reset, everyone has the opportunity to venture into new territory and change the game. This is where you have to really communicate honestly and authentically.”
~ Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, one of ABC’s sharks on Shark Tank, and author of How to Win at the Sport of Business

“Everyone thinks crises are unpredictable. Two things make crises predictable: human nature hasn’t changed, and the law of supply and demand hasn’t changed.” ~ Christo Popov, founder and CEO of FastTrack

Finding the solution

“We cannot go back to business as usual. We need to create a new path for business… We need to think of growth in a different way. It’s not about power, ego and money. It’s ‘I’ve got a business that makes people’s lives better.’ (We) need to manage every business to heal.” ~ Raj Sisodia, co-founder and co-chairman of Conscious Capitalism and author of The Healing Organization

“Rigidity in the face of complexity is toxic.” ~ Susan David

“Focus on what’s small enough to change and big enough to matter.” ~ Kat Cole, president of Focus Brands (Auntie Annie’s, Carvel, Cinnabon, Jamba, McAlister’s Deli, Moe’s Southwest Grill, and Schlotzky’s)

“The answers aren’t going to come from the same places we’ve always heard from.” ~ Mark Cuban

Lastly, I was drawn to Susan David’s powerful statement that “discomfort is the price of admission to a meaningful life.” This perspective reminds us to find hope and resolve as we navigate forward.