The Three Dimensions of Leadership EP 130



In a reflective discourse, the speaker, Alex, explores the complex nature of leadership, focusing on the concept of respect as a central pillar. He shares personal anecdotes, revealing his upbringing in a male-dominated environment and his journey through various all-male institutions, which shaped his understanding of respect. Alex proposes a triangular model of leadership, where respect, love, and fear form the vertices, and leaders should strive for a balance at the center. He argues that loyalty, sacrifice, and obedience (or buy-in) are the outcomes of navigating this triad effectively. Throughout the conversation, he emphasizes the importance of setting the tone for respect early, consistently sacrificing for the group, and living with integrity both publicly and privately. Alex also touches on the nuances of gender dynamics in leadership perceptions and the significance of owning one's flaws to gain strength and respect. He concludes by encouraging leaders to self-reflect on their balance of fear, love, and respect to enhance their leadership capabilities and influence within their organizations.

Summary Notes

Introduction to Leadership Dimensions

  • Speaker A introduces the topic of leadership, specifically the "three dimensions of leadership."
  • Speaker A is motivated to discuss this topic due to frequent questions about gaining respect from various people throughout his life.
  • Speaker A provides a personal backstory, mentioning his upbringing in a male-dominated environment and his attraction to similar settings throughout his life.

"I'm calling this the three dimensions of leadership."

This quote introduces the main topic of the podcast, which is an exploration of the concept of leadership and its various dimensions.

"How do you gain respect?"

This quote reflects the key question that has been posed to Speaker A multiple times, serving as the catalyst for the discussion on leadership and respect.

Speaker A's Personal Background

  • Speaker A was raised by a single Middle Eastern father, with no siblings, and has predominantly been in male environments.
  • He attended an all-boys school, joined a fraternity in college, and has an audience that is 80% male.
  • Speaker A's life has been driven by a desire for respect, influenced by his personal experiences and the demographics he has been surrounded by.

"I was raised by a single dad, and I had no siblings, and so my home life was just men, right?"

This quote provides context to Speaker A's comfort in male-dominated environments, which has shaped his perspective on leadership and respect.

"My primary driver in life has been respect."

Speaker A emphasizes that his life choices and interactions have been significantly influenced by his quest for respect.

Love and Respect in Relationships

  • Speaker A references the "Love and Respect" series, which he finds profound for understanding interpersonal relationships and influencing people.
  • The series, though focused on marriages, has broader implications for understanding the dynamics between men and women and gaining respect.

"It's a marriage series, but it's really just about men and women and the differences and the drivers of how to get people to do what you want them to do, right."

This quote highlights the relevance of the "Love and Respect" series to broader themes of leadership and respect beyond just marriage.

Defining Respect

  • Speaker A seeks to define respect beyond its dictionary meaning, exploring its relationship with fear and love.
  • He proposes that respect may not be a midpoint between fear and love but rather one point of a triangle that includes all three.

"Where's the teeth to respect?"

Speaker A is questioning the depth and substance of the traditional definition of respect, indicating a search for a more nuanced understanding.

The Triangle of Fear, Love, and Respect

  • Speaker A visualizes fear, love, and respect as points on a triangle, with leaders aiming to position themselves in the center.
  • He suggests that loyalty is the midpoint between respect and love, while sacrifice is the midpoint between fear and love.

"I think it looks more like a triangle. And so I think it's more fear, love, and respect that sit on a triangle, and we aim, as leaders, to be in the middle of that dot, right."

This quote introduces the idea of a triangular relationship between fear, love, and respect, which frames the subsequent discussion on leadership.

Gaining Respect Through Actions

  • Speaker A reflects on his history of leading male-dominated organizations and his focus on respect as a core value.
  • He emphasizes that respect must be given to be received and that setting the tone in initial interactions is crucial.
  • Speaker A mentions that pointing out minor instances of disrespect can raise the bar for relationships and foster a culture of respect.

"And the things that I've learned about respect is that it has to be given before it's received, and you have to set that tone in the initial conversation."

This quote underscores the proactive nature of establishing respect, which Speaker A views as fundamental to successful leadership.

Respect and Sacrifice

  • Speaker A believes that respect, especially among men, is often earned through acts of sacrifice.
  • He uses the example of fraternity pledging to illustrate how going above and beyond for the group can rapidly build respect.

"If you want someone's respect, you have to do things for them that they wouldn't expect you to do."

Speaker A conveys the idea that unexpected acts of service and sacrifice can be powerful in earning respect from others.

The Respect Playbook

  • Speaker A talks about creating a "respect playbook" based on his experiences.
  • He stresses the importance of acknowledging and apologizing for even minor instances of disrespect, such as being late.
  • Speaker A wants to further explore and impart these principles to the leaders and managers within his company.

"Whenever there's a little issue that comes up that's either disrespectful for me or them announce it, right."

This quote demonstrates Speaker A's strategy of addressing disrespect immediately to maintain a respectful environment.

"I can't tell you the amount of times that people are taken aback, and they're like, oh, thanks."

Speaker A shares the positive reactions he receives when he acknowledges his own shortcomings, reinforcing the value of mutual respect in interactions.

Sacrifice for Group Cohesion

  • Demonstrating a willingness to sacrifice personal time and comfort for the benefit of the group can earn respect.
  • Actions such as working weekends or late shifts without complaint can demonstrate commitment to the team's success.
  • Personal sacrifices are often recognized and respected by peers.

"Try and see if there's ways that I can sacrifice for the group. So if I'm on a sales team, right, I'll be like, guys, I'll work the weekends. I'll take the late shifts. Don't worry about it. I got this."

This quote emphasizes the speaker's proactive approach to sacrificing personal time for the betterment of the team, which is a respected trait.

Consistency Between Private and Public Life

  • Living the same way privately as one does publicly can prevent inconsistencies and garner respect.
  • Transparency and honesty in one's actions, whether seen or unseen, contribute to a solid reputation.
  • Acknowledging and working on personal flaws publicly can lead to greater respect than pretending they don't exist.

"If you try and live the same life in secret or in private as you do in public, then there's no inconsistencies between the two."

This quote highlights the importance of consistency in one's actions across all areas of life as a means to earn respect.

Gender Perspectives on Love and Respect

  • There appears to be a gender divide in preferences for love versus respect.
  • Many men prioritize respect over love, while many women prioritize love over respect.
  • This dichotomy may influence relationship dynamics and personal values.

"And it's like 80% of men say they would prefer to be respected and not loved. And, like, 80% of women are like, I would prefer to be loved and not respected."

The quote presents statistical insights into gender differences regarding the value placed on love versus respect.

Mutual Respect and Sacrifice

  • Respect is a two-way street that often requires giving before receiving.
  • Consistently sacrificing for the group can ensure the maintenance and growth of mutual respect.
  • Gaining respect through unnoticed acts of kindness or sacrifice can be more impactful than those seen publicly.

"And the way to consistently get it and keep it is to consistently sacrifice for the good of the whole."

This quote underscores the ongoing effort required to maintain respect through selfless actions for the collective benefit.

Identity and Private Posturing

  • Private actions, even if initially motivated by a desire for respect, can shape one's identity.
  • Engaging in respectable actions privately pushes out less respectable behaviors over time.
  • The respect one earns through private actions can be more powerful than any self-promotion.

"If you start doing the things almost from an external standpoint because you selfishly want to be respected, but you're doing the things in private in order to do that, then all of a sudden, you start to change your identity, because what you're doing in private is respectable."

This quote connects private behavior with the formation of a respectable identity, highlighting the transformative power of private actions.

Overcoming Shame with Transparency

  • Owning and discussing personal flaws can transform shame into perceived strength.
  • Publicly acknowledging one's shortcomings can lead to respect and diminish internal shame.
  • Transparency about personal challenges encourages others to view these admissions as courageous rather than shameful.

"But when you take the things that you're ashamed of and you bring them to the light, all of a sudden, what used to be perceived as shame is perceived as strength."

The quote illustrates how bringing personal struggles into the open can convert shame into a respected display of strength.

The Respect Playbook

  • The playbook includes principles such as setting a respectful tone, sacrificing for the group, and leading by example.
  • Owning one's flaws and making them public is a key strategy within the playbook.
  • The playbook is dynamic and may continue to evolve with further insights into the balance of fear, love, and respect.

"And so in the respect playbook, it's like, set the tone. Always don't disrespect people. Sacrifice for the good of the whole lead what you live, do the things in the backgrounds and in the shadows that people would think respectable and would talk about you."

This quote summarizes the core principles of the respect playbook, guiding individuals on how to earn and maintain respect.

Fear, Love, and Respect in Leadership

  • Leadership involves a complex interplay of fear, love, and respect.
  • These emotions combine to influence loyalty and actions within relationships, including those with a higher power.
  • Understanding and balancing these elements is crucial for effective leadership and interpersonal dynamics.

"Trying to understand that triangle of fear, love and respect, and sitting in the dot in the middle, because there is an element of fear when it comes to leadership."

The quote reflects on the nuanced relationship between fear, love, and respect in the context of leadership and personal relationships.

Emotional Triangle and Behavioral Outcomes

  • The balance of fear, respect, and love is necessary to foster loyalty within an organization.
  • Lack of loyalty indicates an imbalance in respect and love.
  • Loyalty is earned when leaders make decisions that show respect for the company and love for individuals.
  • Being perceived as abrasive may deter certain individuals but can maintain loyalty if actions are in the best interest of the person.
  • Leadership is compared to parenting, requiring a balance of love and fear to foster growth and ensure accountability.

And so that's where you sacrifice. And when you have fear and respect, you're obedient.

This quote underscores the importance of sacrifice in leadership and how the combination of fear and respect leads to obedience, which is a key component in maintaining order and discipline within an organization.

And so if you're like, I feel like I have no loyalty in my organization, then it means that you probably don't have the balance of respect and love.

The speaker suggests that a lack of loyalty is a symptom of failing to balance respect and love, implying that both are crucial elements in building a loyal team or community.

And so I think you get loyalty because people see that you're making the decisions not only out of respect for the company, but also out of love for the individual.

This quote highlights the dual focus required for leadership: decisions must be made with consideration for the company's well-being as well as the individual's needs, which collectively inspires loyalty.

The Dynamics of Leadership and Influence

  • Leadership involves balancing love, fear, and respect to influence behavior.
  • Too much fear can create an environment of obedience but may stifle other positive attributes.
  • Authentic concern for individuals' best interests is critical for earning their trust and loyalty.
  • Holding oneself to a high standard is essential to maintain respect and influence others effectively.

And so if they don't feel like you have that, then you may have their respect, but not their love. And so then you don't have loyalty.

The speaker explains that without genuine concern for individuals, leaders may earn respect but not love, which is insufficient for fostering loyalty.

And if you have people constantly leaving your organization, that's what it is, right.

This quote suggests that a high turnover rate may be indicative of a failure to appropriately balance the elements of leadership, leading to a lack of loyalty among members of the organization.

And if you have people who don't respect you and talk shit behind your back and when you make statements and whatnot, they're like, they roll their eyes or whatever, then it means you might not have fear, right?

The absence of fear among team members can result in disrespect and undermine the leader's authority, as indicated by this quote.

Standards of Leadership and Accountability

  • Leaders must enforce rules to instill a sense of fear that is essential for maintaining order and motivation.
  • Caring for individuals is necessary to maintain loyalty; otherwise, they will prioritize their own interests.
  • Sacrifice by leaders fosters respect and sets an example for the team to follow.
  • Leaders must hold themselves to even higher standards than they set for their team to maintain credibility and respect.

If you don't enforce, then you have no fear, which is important because that's what moves people.

Enforcing rules and expectations is crucial for instilling a healthy level of fear that motivates people to adhere to standards and perform well.

And then the same thing with respect, which I think a lot of times comes from sacrifice, is that if they feel like you're not willing to do things for the organization that you're asking them to do, then they're not going to do it for the organization either.

The willingness to sacrifice for the collective good is a key driver of respect, as it demonstrates to others that the leader is committed to the organization's success.

And so if it's like, man, it seems so hard to balance all these things. I think it's true. That is hard, and that's why most people can't do it, and that's why most people don't lead.

Balancing the various aspects of leadership is challenging, which is why effective leadership is rare and difficult to achieve.

Triad of Leadership

  • The depth of each element in the triad of fear, respect, and love determines the extent of one's leadership and influence.
  • Leadership requires demonstrating potential for strict enforcement (fear), willingness to sacrifice (respect), and genuine investment in the well-being of others (love).
  • The speaker's personal example of not taking a paycheck to invest in the future of their industry illustrates sacrifice and commitment.

And the degree to which you lead and the size of the organization that you're able to lead, or the size of the movement that you're able to lead, I think, is directly proportional to how deep each of those three roots of the triangle run.

This quote suggests that the effectiveness and reach of one's leadership are directly related to the strength and balance of fear, respect, and love that the leader can instill and maintain.

How hard do people think you can go from a fear side? Like how much judgment day do they think that you can dish out, if it came to it?

The speaker implies that the perception of a leader's ability to enforce discipline and consequences (fear) is a key factor in their ability to lead effectively.

When we talk to our gym Lords community, and I say we haven't taken a paycheck and we're putting everything into building what we think is going to be the future of the gym industry, it's not semantics. We're doing that, and it's not doing it to gain respect. It's doing it because I think that's what's right.

By sharing a personal example, the speaker illustrates the importance of sacrifice in leadership and the impact it has on earning respect and leading by example.

Growth Through Word of Mouth

  • The podcast grows exclusively through word of mouth, with no ads, sponsorships, or sales involved.
  • The host requests listeners to share the podcast in the same manner they discovered it.
  • Sharing is seen as a way to generate good karma, particularly for entrepreneurs.

The only way this grows is through word of mouth.

This quote emphasizes the importance of personal recommendations and organic sharing in the growth of the podcast.

Expectations and Self-Improvement

  • There is a discussion about the pressure of expectations, particularly from someone in a higher position.
  • By considering the resources and opportunities we're given, it can shift our perspective on self-expectations.
  • This shift allows for raising personal standards beyond average capabilities.

And if you feel like someone else above you is always expecting more from you than anyone else, right?

This quote reflects on the pressure of external expectations and how they can influence our own goals and self-improvement.

The Triad of Leadership: Fear, Love, and Respect

  • Leadership requires balancing fear, love, and respect within an organization.
  • Each department, such as sales or marketing, responds differently to leadership styles.
  • True love for people within the organization involves tough love and sometimes making decisions that are not immediately popular or understood.

But truly loving people isn't being soft, you know what I mean?

This quote highlights the complexity of leadership love, which involves caring deeply but also making hard decisions for the greater good.

Leadership and Honesty

  • Effective leadership sometimes entails being honest with team members about their fit within the company.
  • Leaders may face moments of being disliked for making tough decisions that are ultimately beneficial.
  • The leader's role includes delivering experiences that foster growth, whether individuals remain in the organization or not.

So it's like, I care about you, and in this point in your life, you may or may not believe me, but I know that later on you may gain the perspective to see what I'm doing right now, and you'll thank me for it.

This quote conveys the idea that a leader must make decisions with a long-term view, even if they are not immediately appreciated.

The Concept of Obedience and Buy-In

  • Obedience is a controversial term but is used to describe the necessity of following directives within an organization.
  • The preferred term might be 'buy-in', which is more socially acceptable.
  • Obedience stems from respect and admiration for the leader's vision and sacrifices.

But I like the word obedience because I think it carries. It's real.

The speaker expresses a preference for the term "obedience" due to its directness, despite its potential negative connotations.

Military as a Model of Respect and Execution

  • The military is admired for its clear structure and the understanding that each member may not see the whole picture but must execute their part.
  • Military organizations exemplify respect, loyalty, and sacrifice, often more so due to their predominantly male composition.

That whole organization is run off respect.

This quote illustrates the fundamental role of respect in the effective operation of military organizations.

Leadership Self-Assessment

  • Leaders struggling to gain respect and execution from their team should assess their leadership style.
  • They should consider if they lack enforcement of expectations (fear), if they are asking for sacrifices they wouldn't make (respect), and if they genuinely care for their team members (love).
  • Evaluating these aspects can help identify deficiencies and guide improvements in leadership.

Am I lacking the enforcement from the fear side? Have I set expectations and said, this is where we need to go, and then not followed through and not had repercussions when we didn't hit it?

This quote suggests that leaders should critically assess their enforcement of expectations and the consistency of their actions with their words.

Conclusion and Engagement Request

  • The host shares thoughts on leadership, which is not the usual topic of the podcast focused on business and money.
  • Leadership is crucial for executing business goals with a team.
  • Listeners are encouraged to engage with the content through likes, comments, tagging, and reviews.

If you found this valuable, throw a, like, throw a comment.

This quote is a call to action for listeners to engage with the podcast and provide feedback on the content.

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