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    Dan Foxx is an executive coach, keynote speaker, author, and the founder and owner of Unlock Your Leadership. He has coached over 5000 top executives from America’s finest companies; from high techs in the Silicon Valley to promising startups. His most recent book, Confessions from the Heart of an Executive Coach, is a collection of Dan’s observations and stories based on notable experiences throughout his career. He joins Marcel Schwantes to share insights he has gleaned from his 23 years of executive coaching.

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    Show Notes

    • Marcel asks Dan why he wrote the book. “Most people are striving to matter, be accepted [and] get respect,” Dan begins. “They want to be successful in their heart, and what holds them back is fear.” His aim is to help leaders understand the psychology behind leveraging outcomes, and how they can use that psychology to their benefit. [6:35]
    • Shifting your perspective about failure is key to achieving true success, as it is a necessary tool for learning how to improve. Most people look at failure in a negative light because it affects their self-esteem. However, Dan has observed that every success story has had its share of setbacks. “Failure is the foundation for success,” Marcel sums up. [12:13]
    • Dan shares that his entire approach to business changed after meeting someone he looked up to, who gave him valuable advice: that all his clients had one common need, and that need is love. He incorporated more compassion and kindness in his interactions with his clients, and his business began gaining traction as a result. “[Everyone] is craving to matter to someone, to be able to be vulnerable… and not have to put up a facade,” he says. [15:55] 
    • Marcel has observed that openness and vulnerability transfers to clients when coaches are willing to first take the risk. In these trusting environments, more impactful work is done and issues are tackled at the roots. [23:41]
    • Dan shares practical ways in which members of an organization can show love to one another. These include small but meaningful acts of appreciation, like personally greeting each other and expressing gratitude for each person’s unique contributions to the organization. [25:12]
    • “Almost everyone is suffering from past emotional wounds that they keep buried because they don’t know how to reconcile themselves to it and heal,” Dan claims. “It creates a hole in their heart that is supposed to be filled by human connection, relationships, and a sense of being valued and appreciated. So when they are given that, they want more.” [30:02]
    • A leader loves by first acknowledging that a position of leadership is not a position of privilege, but a responsibility of service. The higher up you are in the chain of command, the more people you are in service of. [35:28]
    • Fear is what usually drives our lives. Dan comments that the more we focus on our fears, the larger they become. In order to overcome our fears, we must shift our focus to love, which pushes fear to the corner where it doesn’t dominate our attitudes and decision-making. [42:12]

    The Book


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    About Marcel Schwantes

    Marcel Schwantes is the founder and chief human officer of Leadership from the Core, a global leadership training and executive coaching boutique aimed at developing great leaders and great cultures through Servant Leadership.

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