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    Stephen Van Valin: The Keys to Amplifying Meaning at Work (Ep #189)
    Stephen Van Valin: The Keys to Amplifying Meaning at Work

    Steve Van Valin designs winning cultures and employee engagement strategies for Fortune 500 corporations. He’s the author of The Search for Meaning at Work. Steve proclaims his purpose to be a positive force that forever changes the work experience. Everything he does is anchored on creating cultures rich in meaningful positive, and deeply fulfilling relationships.


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    Show Notes

    • “I see purpose as being the engine that drives meaning”. [15:48] There is no transcendent singular purpose in life, there are many levels, for example, transformative and transactional, like in our work and relationships. Stephen Van Valin, author of  The Search for Meaning at Work, explains how as we make progress toward these purposes, a sense of meaning kicks in, furthering motivation towards the purpose. 
    • “How do you become friends with your co-workers when you gotta get stuff done!?” [27:00] Co-Host Robb Holman asks this facetious question when it comes to one of the 11 amplifiers of meaning, a work partner. Steve says creating relationships needs to be purposeful; we need to make connections, whether we’re virtual or in the office. He has some great personal and work questions to get those connections going, like, what gets you stressed at work?
    • “Clear goals, hardstop deadlines, and being communicative and recognizing when they happen will set you up for success when you have even bigger challenges the next time.” [33:41] How do you amplify the team? Steve compares a work team to a sports team, showing how they rally together and galvanize toward a common goal. The bottom line is doing the job together while having fun and enjoying each other to be unified. 
    • “It’s about managers realizing that people wanna please them, and then being able to play that back to people… by really thinking about what difference did it make that will help people feel like they matter in this equation.” [39:53] So many of our listeners are leaders in their organizations, so really tune into the manager amplifier. Steve brings up a popular phrase, ‘catch people doing good’. So many employees want to be noticed, given respect, and appreciated. By catching the good managers, they are perpetuating and continuing that winning behavior. 
    • “You can’t just check your soul at the door and come to work for someplace that is not aligned with your values.” [44:55] As Steve says, the spirituality amplifier guides all decisions in our lives. If it’s not at least in alignment at work, those with a strong tie to spirituality or faith will be the first to leave. 
    • “Step outside yourself as a leader and think about the purpose of those people within your purview and the purpose they have for their life whether it’s transactional, transformational, or even transcendent and then how you can amplify that back to them to help them feel the meaning at work.” [50:43] Challenging you to step outside yourself, Steve explains that by amplifying your employee, co-worker, and team’s purposes, you are not only getting a lot done but also creating a sustainable relationship in the workplace. 

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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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