How to Disrupt with Integrity and Accountability
How can you use integrity and accountability to create positive disruption in your market and in your business? You’ll learn from Dr. David Gruder the four critical elements that foster an environment where your customers trust you to deliver, creating a compelling competitive advantage, especially with executives.
Dr David is widely recognized as a highly regarded speaker, trainer & executive coach in the areas of leadership, entrepreneurship, organizational development, and personal development.
He has authored The New IQ: How Integrity Intelligence Serves You, Your Relationships, and Our World, and Transcendent Thought and Market Leadership 1.0 with Bruce Wright, along with other books and publications.
Dr. David Gruder, PhD, DCEP
America's Integrity Expert & Culture Architect
Keynotes | Trainer | MacroMentor | Author
Music: The Lachy Doley Group, Gonna Make it Up
from the album Conviction | Used with permission
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Engineering, editing, post production: Mark S A Smith
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How to Disrupt with Integrity and Accountability
Dr. David Gruder
Mark S A Smith: David Gruder, I met at an executive forum and was immediately blown away by his ability to sum up challenging ideas in very short sentences and ways that really penetrated my thought and said this guy, this guy is disruptive. He’s widely recognized as a highly regarded speaker, trainer, executive coach in the areas of leadership, entrepreneurship, organization development and personal development. He has written The New IQ, the I in this case isn’t intelligence, it’s integrity. It’s how integrity intelligence serves you, your relationships and our world. That is disruptive and he most recently collaborated with Bruce Wright on Transcendent Thought and Market Leadership 1.0. That is a disruptive idea. Welcome, welcome, welcome David, so glad to have on the Selling Disruption Show.
David Gruder: Well, thanks so much for having me Mark. I’ve been looking forward to this.
Mark S A Smith: Thank you. Tell me how is it that integrity can be so disruptive in the market place today?
David Gruder: Well, it’s ironic and in a way it’s kind of sad that integrity is disruptive but in this age where there is such a profound and extensive abuse of power or power phobia, shirking power, running away from power because people don’t want to be the corrupt versions of power that they see, the possibility of integrity becomes more and more remote. On top of that, when we have this culture in which there are certain people who are certain that in order to be profitable, you have to sacrifice personal integrity, cherished relationships and social responsibility and life integration, life balance. There’s another group that insists that in order to preserve personal integrity and social responsibility and cherished relationships and life balance, you have to sacrifice profits. This is a climate that is a hotbed for integrity deficits.
Mark S A Smith: The reality is both of those are false.
David Gruder: Equally insane in opposite ways.
Mark S A Smith: I love it. I love the concept of power phobia. I see that on a consistent basis with the clients I work with where they are giving up power in an attempt to be nice or family friendly when the reality is they’re not being nice and they’re not being family friendly in their culture.
David Gruder: Yes.
Mark S A Smith: I love that concept. We need to as leaders, personal leaders, professional leaders, regain our power and power right way. How are you helping people do that?
David Gruder: I’m people do that by equipping them with skills and procedures that translate their values and intentions into effective action. The reason that is so important is because like it or not, leaders and their teams build ventures, businesses, non-profits, organizations, at the level of their self development limitations despite their highest intentions.
Mark S A Smith: Oh, absolutely. Limitations, that’s it. How can we disrupt those limits? One of the challenges that I experience with a lot of leadership experts is leadership feels good but it’s an attribute. You cannot call yourself a leader. Other people have to call you a leader. It’s an attribution.
David Gruder: Mm-hmm (affirmative). There’s an old saying around that which is a king or a queen never crowns themselves, they are always crowned by others.
Mark S A Smith: I love it. It’s such a great way of summing that up. The challenge with a lot of leadership programs is there’s no way to really make the rubber hit the road. How can we take leadership principles and turn them into money, turn them into something we can use to advance our causes and to improve our lives and our families lives and our communities lives? That’s one of the things I really like about you. It’s about translating intentions into action. Give me an idea of how one might do that.
David Gruder: Sure, because this is done on so many different levels, but I’ll give you one example of that translation. In businesses that really value integrity and social responsibility and accountability, those values are spoken of and sometimes they bring inspirational, motivational speakers in to talk on those topics and not much more than that. That makes those concepts true but not useful.
Mark S A Smith: Right. Exactly, you get a lot of this you need to be accountable. Okay, how I do that when I don’t have responsibility? They’re like you need to have integrity. How do you do that when you know somebody in the organization is ripping off their customers or their employees. That’s the challenge that motivational speakers have is I get fluffed up and I can’t do anything with it.
David Gruder: Exactly. That’s why those who specialize only in motivational speaking, that’s why they do that because they either don’t have the patience to do the implementation, training and mentorship and things like that or they don’t know how to bring about the highfalutin ideas that they’re preaching.
Mark S A Smith: Yeah and on the other side of that, they’re sometimes, organizations don’t want them to. It’s putting lipstick on a pig and quite frankly, the world of motivational speaking with that phrase is on a decline although there are people that ask for motivational speakers. In general, it’s way more moving to informational, actual implementationable, it think I just invented a word there, speakers. How do you approach this?
David Gruder: I do consider myself an activational speaker and trainer.
Mark S A Smith: Oh, I love it. Better yet.
David Gruder: Let me give you one example. With accountability, accountability can be distilled into four very specific step by step, fully integrated procedures that turn accountability from an abstract concept or value into day to day actual actions and activities that make integrity profitable.
Mark S A Smith: We have enough time to go through those four steps if you’re willing to share those.
David Gruder: Sure.
Mark S A Smith: Thank you.
David Gruder: Maybe what I can do to front load this is give you and your listeners a definition of accountability that they likely have never heard before.
Mark S A Smith: Bring it on. I love the disruption.
David Gruder: Okay and this is disruptive. Accountability is taking responsibility for the impact that the choices I make about how I spend my life energy have on those to whom I’ve made commitments.
Mark S A Smith: Beautiful.
David Gruder: Now that’s a long, run on sentence and that’s on purpose because I wanted to capture all of the key elements of what real accountability is all in a single sentence.
Mark S A Smith: Great and this will be available as a meme on the show page.
David Gruder: Super. That’s great. Unpacking that into four specific procedures, the first is that when we engage, whether it’s about hiring someone or someone who’s already on the team and you’re working on a project discerning who’s doing what in what sequence, there is always the issue of creating agreements that are accountability capable in the first place. There’s a massive confusion unfortunately in the business world, in the non-profit world, in the government world and even in people’s personal lives around the difference between a good intention and an agreement.
Mark S A Smith: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yes.
David Gruder: A good intention is simply I’ll take care of blank, I’ll do blank. A commitment is I will get these specific deliverables provided to these specific people no later than this specific time frame.
Mark S A Smith: Well, this really is an important concept in the world of sales because often times we’re talking to people who have good intention to purchase and never make the commitment and of course that’s frustrating for anybody in the world that’s trying to create an agreement. I love the concept of creating an agreement that are accountable capable so when we’re selling, we need to make sure we’re talking to somebody that can take accountability for the agreement versus somebody who is just being nice to get us to take them to lunch.
David Gruder: Yes. That’s the first ingredient. That’s perfect, accountability capable agreements. The second ingredient is upgrading, constantly upgrading best practices through doing regular debriefings. This is proactive. This is before things really fall apart which I’ll get to in the third ingredient. What this ingredient is about is regularly reviewing what’s working well and why that matters. The reason that why that matters, matters is because most people have very low impact intelligence. They don’t really recognize the extent to which the impact of those behaviors and non-behaviors have. These debriefings are first of all about what’s going well and why that matters so that people’s motivation increases because they see they’re having positive impact with those things.
The second part of these debriefings is about making sure that people up-level themselves out of gripes and complaints into even better ifs. Meaning that there’s brainstorming about what could be done even better than what we’re doing right now, the way we’re doing things right now and discovering what the even better if would be that has the greatest chance of really elevating our best practices in a practical way and why those elevations matter so that there’s the motivation to implement those so that’s the second ingredient.
Mark S A Smith: Awesome. I love that. Two parts here that really struck me as, Captain Oblivious, we have Captain Obvious and then we have Captain Oblivious where they have no idea what they’re doing and they’re just leaving a trail behind them and those are people that we have to get to wake up or move them out to some place else. The other idea of looking for better ifs, upgrade to better ifs. I love that concept. There’s another meme for us.
David Gruder: Yes.
Mark S A Smith: Excellent. I love it.
David Gruder: That’s also unfortunately, disruptive and you know Captain Oblivious.
Mark S A Smith: It’s fortunate that it’s disruptive.
David Gruder: Yes, well it is fortunate that it’s disruptive. I’m saying that it’s sad that it has to be.
Mark S A Smith: Yes.
David Gruder: This should be business as usual and it’s not.
Mark S A Smith: It’s not.
David Gruder: Captain Oblivious is generally the power abuser. Captain Obvious is generally, interestingly, power phobic.
Mark S A Smith: Very interesting so we just created the captains at the two extremes. I love how we can invent stuff in this spot David.
David Gruder: I know. I enjoy that with you as well. That’s the second ingredient. Do we have time to go on to the third and fourth?
Mark S A Smith: Yes we do.
David Gruder: Let me do these briefly. The third is where you do have breakdown. The third ingredient in comprehensive integrative accountability in procedures is implementation breakdown repair where it’s not about guilting and shaming and adding to the conflict because of how the break down is talked about but instead, it’s a very specific set of four steps for identifying the breakdown, taking responsibility for my unintended role in that and you taking responsibility for your unintended role in that, I’m assuming people of good will here. The third step is taking responsibility for the unintended impact that my unintended role had.
Mark S A Smith: Yes.
David Gruder: The next ingredient is about what I’m going to do to repair my part in the breakdown to the extent that repair is possible and sometimes that’s not very much. I mean it’s water under the bridge. It can’t be undone which leads to the final step which is really very crucial which is what my plan is for handling future similar situations, a realistic step more effectively, than I knew how to this pass time around. That breakdown repair leads to increased collaboration rather than more deterioration in the culture.
Mark S A Smith: This is absolutely brilliant, executive level concepts that are never discussed outside of the boardroom.
David Gruder: They’re all trainable. That’s the part that is mind blowing to me. People do learn this. I see it over and over again, from the boardroom to work teams and everything in between. Then the fourth ingredient if I can move on to that, is performance reviews that only focus on the review of these ingredients that I was talking about. How are we doing with the engagement agreement? How am I doing with implementing the upgrades in best practices? How am I doing in implementing the plan that I committed to for handling situations more effectively in the future? Then the last ingredient is what are my growth edges between now and the next performance review? The big lie is thinking that you can do performance reviews once a year or twice a year. That’s misusing or abusing performance reviews as control and punishment tools. That is not accountability.
Mark S A Smith: Absolutely. It was interesting. One of my colleagues who will be on this podcast, pointed out that performance review time, annual review time, is the time that you can poach a person because the performance review usually has some negative aspect that leaves them with a bad taste in their mouth and that’s the time that you can go in and steal them away from their company. You can find out their anniversary from LinkedIn.
David Gruder: Yes.
Mark S A Smith: Absolutely brilliant so we’ll have some fun talking with her about that in a future podcast.
David Gruder: Yeah. Great. When you have all four of these procedures integrated with each other, then you have true accountability, accountability at the level where the rubber meets the road rather than this highfalutin, abstract intellectual concept, and noble value.
Mark S A Smith: How can our listener learn more about this approach to management and disrupting their organization for the good?
David Gruder: Well, here’s what I would be more than happy to gift to your listeners. That would be a summary of these four ingredients in integrative accountability, collaborative accountability.
Mark S A Smith: Go to the show page, we will provide you with a link where you can get this information from Dr. David. Awesome. Thank you for this. If you’d like to get a copy of Dr. David Gruder’s book, The New IQ, go to the show page, where we’ll take you to a link, to Amazon.com and then make sure that you click through the link to get a copy of the workbook that goes with that. It’s not very expensive at all.
David Gruder: Very good. That sounds like a great plan.
Mark S A Smith: What a great show. I love this idea of setting up accountability to create disruption inside the organization as well as outside of the organization and boy we need to create this accountability with our team and we need to create this accountability with our customers. We need to create this accountability within our family.
David Gruder: Absolutely so and for me, this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how I translate high values and good intentions into step by step procedures covering the entire range of leader development and team effectiveness in creating corporate cultures that actually work and are fulfilling.
Mark S A Smith: I love it. Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom and your insights, look forward to more from you, Dr. David in the future.