A Call to Lead podcast

Season 1 Highlights

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That’s a wrap! Season 1 of A Call to Lead is in the books.

We pulled together a recap episode for you this week, featuring short clips from some of the great moments in the podcast’s first season. We were fortunate to have incredible leaders from across industries, disciplines, and fields share their stories and perspectives on leadership this season – and we wanted to share them with you as we wrap up Season 1 and look ahead to the second season.

Share your feedback with us at acalltolead@sap.com. We’re hard at work planning Season 2 and would benefit from your feedback and perspective. 

Here are some of the guests and clips featured in this wrap-up episode:

  • Arianna Huffington (founder & CEO of Thrive Global) on how allowing for “brilliant jerks” on your team can create a toxic culture.” (2:10)
  • Gary Vaynerchuk, on how positivity is a strategy – not a delusion. (4:00)
  • Simon Sinek on the responsibility that businesses have to provide their customers and employees with a sense of purpose. (5:50)
  • Walter Isaacson (best-selling author) on one of Steve Jobs’ final insights – and why finding the right team is harder than the actual creation of an innovative product. (7:20)
  • Bianna Golodryga (award-winning TV journalist) on the importance of leaders setting examples within their organization and the impact it has on the rest of the company. (9:45)
  • Bobbi Brown (founder & cosmetics beauty icon) on going for it at any cost. (11:25)
  • Sukhinder Singh Cassidy (CEO of Stubhub) on her hiring strategy – and an operating principle that she calls “operating range.” (11:48)
  • Sir Richard Branson on why effective leaders have to be good listeners. (12:30)
  • Malcolm Gladwell (author, journalist & speaker) on the different kinds of leaders that exist and why it’s important to carefully define your leadership style based on the organization’s culture. (13:30)
  • Dr. Jill Biden (professor and former First Lady of the United States) on why teachers are the best example of lifelong learners – because they’re always open to new ideas and ways of learning. (16:10)
  • Jen Rubio (Co-Founder & Chief Brand Officer of Away) on remembering core values and how they should guide everything a company does. (17:10)
  • Laura Dern (actress) on why we need to be willing to be vulnerable – and how it’s time for us to say we’re ready to lead. (19:20)
  • Adam Grant (Wharton Professor, Award-Winning Author, & Psychologist) on how leaders should always be comfortable with feedback – and why power and status shouldn’t change that. (20:25)
  • Karlie Kloss (supermodel & philanthropist) on what drew her to coding and how she’s using Kode with Klossy to inspire young girls in STEAM. (22:45)
  • The Rt. Hon. Tony Blair (former UK Prime Minister) on why people love change in general – but hate it in particular. (24:45)
  • Sylvia Acevedo (CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA) on why your first sale always has to be to yourself. (26:20)
  • Julie Sweet (CEO of Accenture) on the value of staying calm in crises and how it’s the most important thing a leader can do. (26:45)

Otros episodios de "A Call to Lead"

  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Season 1 Highlights

    28:28

    That’s a wrap! Season 1 of A Call to Lead is in the books. We pulled together a recap episode for you this week, featuring short clips from some of the great moments in the podcast’s first season. We were fortunate to have incredible leaders from across industries, disciplines, and fields share their stories and perspectives on leadership this season – and we wanted to share them with you as we wrap up Season 1 and look ahead to the second season. Share your feedback with us at acalltolead@sap.com. We’re hard at work planning Season 2 and would benefit from your feedback and perspective.  Here are some of the guests and clips featured in this wrap-up episode: Arianna Huffington (founder & CEO of Thrive Global) on how allowing for “brilliant jerks” on your team can create a toxic culture.” (2:10) Gary Vaynerchuk, on how positivity is a strategy – not a delusion. (4:00) Simon Sinek on the responsibility that businesses have to provide their customers and employees with a sense of purpose. (5:50) Walter Isaacson (best-selling author) on one of Steve Jobs’ final insights – and why finding the right team is harder than the actual creation of an innovative product. (7:20) Bianna Golodryga (award-winning TV journalist) on the importance of leaders setting examples within their organization and the impact it has on the rest of the company. (9:45) Bobbi Brown (founder & cosmetics beauty icon) on going for it at any cost. (11:25) Sukhinder Singh Cassidy (CEO of Stubhub) on her hiring strategy – and an operating principle that she calls “operating range.” (11:48) Sir Richard Branson on why effective leaders have to be good listeners. (12:30) Malcolm Gladwell (author, journalist & speaker) on the different kinds of leaders that exist and why it’s important to carefully define your leadership style based on the organization’s culture. (13:30) Dr. Jill Biden (professor and former First Lady of the United States) on why teachers are the best example of lifelong learners – because they’re always open to new ideas and ways of learning. (16:10) Jen Rubio (Co-Founder & Chief Brand Officer of Away) on remembering core values and how they should guide everything a company does. (17:10) Laura Dern (actress) on why we need to be willing to be vulnerable – and how it’s time for us to say we’re ready to lead. (19:20) Adam Grant (Wharton Professor, Award-Winning Author, & Psychologist) on how leaders should always be comfortable with feedback – and why power and status shouldn’t change that. (20:25) Karlie Kloss (supermodel & philanthropist) on what drew her to coding and how she’s using Kode with Klossy to inspire young girls in STEAM. (22:45) The Rt. Hon. Tony Blair (former UK Prime Minister) on why people love change in general – but hate it in particular. (24:45) Sylvia Acevedo (CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA) on why your first sale always has to be to yourself. (26:20) Julie Sweet (CEO of Accenture) on the value of staying calm in crises and how it’s the most important thing a leader can do. (26:45)
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Michelle Yeoh

    40:24

    This new episode of A Call to Lead has me in Singapore, sitting down in front of a live audience with one of the world’s most respected and popular global movie stars. Michelle Yeoh grew up in Malaysia and England, gained her early fame in Hong Kong action films, and went on to star in mega-hits such as Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Memoirs of a Geisha, Star Trek: Discovery, and Crazy Rich Asians. Michelle played family matriarch Eleanor Young in that blockbuster romantic comedy. As a master of her craft, Michelle shared great advice that applies to leadership in business and life. Here are 5 Points that my team and I found particularly valuable.  Like every good leader, Michelle fuels her work with empathy. “Empathy plays a big role for all of us. If you can't empathize, how can you lead?That is how I approach the different characters they I played, like a geisha. I don't know anything about that world. It’s one of the most beautiful cultures, from Japan, and out of respect to that culture, I have to get it right.” Michelle speaks my language: lead with humility and vulnerability: “As a leader, a lot of the times you are personified in a certain way—be eloquent and give good advice and lead. God, that must be so tiring. Isn't it much more interesting if you can communicate and empathize and be able to have that moment of vulnerability? If I feel that you care for me—that you're vulnerable and you understand a loss of a child or a close family member—then I believe you will begin to understand me.” Never fear failure, Michelle says: “The more you fear that you're going to fail, you've already failed. Because you're just going to conform to something that you are comfortable with and probably just do it the same old way and regurgitate the same things. And there will never be an improvement.” Ask for help, she adds. “I'm never afraid to ask for help. I believe that I don't know enough. One of the reasons why I didn't use to come to these talks, apart from stage fright, was, ‘Oh my God, they're going to discover that I know nothing." And then I thought: It's okay to know nothing.’ If I knew everything, it's only downhill from there because then I would be so arrogant.” Practice self-control: “I was a squash player, and I had one of the best teachers. Once, when I lost a match and threw my racket across the room, he said quietly, "What was the point of that?" I never threw another fit again. To be a really good player, learn self-control. Respect when you fail. That's when you can get better. You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.  Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

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  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Mercedes Abramo

    35:56

    This latest episode features one of the smartest women in retail. Mercedes Abramo is the President and CEO of Cartier North America, and I had the opportunity to sit down with her at Cartier’s Hudson Yards boutique in New York City this past April. Growing up in a retail household (her dad was a senior executive at Lord & Taylor), Mercedes had her sights set on becoming a lawyer. She majored in political science, worked at a law firm, couldn’t stand it, got a job in a hotel—and found her calling. After graduating from business school in Paris, where she focused on luxury brand management, it was a natural leap to high-end retail. In this podcast, Mercedes shares plenty of career advice (“you really have to be flexible”) and business-building insights. Here are five of our favorite takeaways: I asked Mercedes what she learned as she rose through the hotel and luxury goods industries. Her answer is terrific and very wise: “Learning how to listen, learning how to hear what is being said, and picking up on both the verbal and the nonverbal cues is important. Because the first thing you're really doing is building a relationship with that person in front of you. It's not about what can I sell them right now; it's about how do I build a connection.” Leading a luxury brand company is about giving customers experiences as well as products. In her previous life as a hotel executive, Mercedes learned how to create extraordinary experiences: “There is so much similarity to retail. With a hotel or a spa or a vacation, you don't leave with a product—you don't leave with anything physical. You only leave with the memories that you created when you were there.” Mercedes gives great advice on changing a career path: “People struggle with wanting to find the perfect decision. There is no perfect decision. It’s about taking that leap and deciding what's a challenge that you want to embrace right now.” Get comfortable being uncomfortable, Mercedes says. “Embracing the unknown is where you grow and where you learn. There are going to be things around the corner every day that are going to challenge you, and the more that you exercise that muscle and you push through it, the more prepared you're going to be the next time.” How to become an authentic leader: “You can't copy yourself after somebody else, so I think you really need to learn the good parts of each person that you want to emulate and then figure out how to evolve your own style.  You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.  Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Sylvia Acevedo

    35:15

    Whether you're a Girl Scout or not (I am—once a Scout, always a Scout), my conversation with Sylvia Acevedo, the CEO of the Girl Scouts, is worth a listen. Sylvia has a remarkable path to success: As a young woman, she was discouraged from pursuing her interest in engineering. So what did she do? She went to school for engineering and became a rocket scientist at NASA. After stops at IBM and Apple and Dell, Sylvia is leading millions of Girl Scouts to places they've never gone before—teaching them to code and about cybersecurity and other need-to-know things in the workplaces of tomorrow. In an episode full of leadership wisdom, here are five points that my team and I found particularly valuable:  Having learned, as a Girl Scout, how to create opportunity and how to sell, Sylvia still to this day follows the advice that her troop leader gave her: "Never walk away from a sale until you've heard 'No' three times." Sylvia has spent her life ignoring naysayers and being her own best champion."The first sale that you make is to yourself. If you believe you can do it, then you can do it. But you have to sell yourself first." Why the Girl Scouts teaches coding and other skills that next-gen workers will need: "If you're prepared, you can be fearless. We want to have that generation of fearless girls." When Sylvia went on a book tour to promote Path to the Stars, her memoir for middle school readers, she found that boys raised their hands much more readily to ask questions. "I had to make sure that I'm only going to take questions if I'm alternating between a boy and a girl. Then girls would feel like they could raise their hands." Increasing the Girl Scout population would have a dramatic impact on the female talent pipeline, Sylvia says. "We're less than 8% of the girl population, but half of all female elected officials in America were Girl Scouts. In the recent class in Congress, 60% were Girl Scouts; 75% of the U.S. Senators are Girl Scouts. All three former Secretaries of State were Girl Scouts. Almost every female astronaut in space was a Girl Scout. And 80% of female tech leaders born in the U.S. were Girl Scouts. So, imagine if we could be not just at 8%, but at 10%. Imagine what that would mean to our talent pipeline." You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.  Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Sarah Hauser

    24:44

    On this new episode of A Call to Lead, I sit down with someone out of my world, and probably out of your world too. Sarah Hauser is a champion windsurfer who knows a lot about leadership and navigating your ideal career. Sarah talks about how a missed deadline forced her to delay her plan to pursue a math degree and gave her an unplanned year off to pursue windsurfing, which turned out to be her true calling. There are plenty of lessons here—such as, control what you can, embrace the moment, and adapt. Here are 5 points that my team and I found inspiring: Sarah describes windsurfing as "a finesse sport" where, as in life, it's best to go with the flow. She explains: "You have to play with the forces of the elements—the wind, the current, the waves. So all of that can be against you, and you can try and force yourself and your equipment to make it through, or you can use it if you understand how to place your sail. I can windsurf without holding my sail." When she missed the deadline to apply to school for a math degree, possibilities opened. "I went from seeing life as those rails for your train to drive on, and you have to pick one path or the other, and suddenly they all exploded and there was no track. It was just an open ocean. I felt a sense of freedom and all right, I guess I can try anything."  Success happens when you are present, aware, and flexible. "Look at what's thrown at you and use it, not try to impose. And with the wind, you use whatever is happening at that moment to learn some things." Like a wave, life is unpredictable. "The wave is going to last a certain time, and you're going to do different turns on this wave. Obviously you want the whole ride to be satisfying, to be what you're dreaming of. But you don't know what's coming on the third or fourth section of the wave. You're only seeing how it's shaping. You've got to stay think true to yourself." And as we accept the ocean for what it is, we should accept life with all its challenges. "The ocean is a good analogy, I think, because you cannot get mad at the ocean. You cannot just be like, "Why me? It's just the way it is. Shift your perspective and see this challenge as a new opportunity to use the powers that you have. You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.  Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Tony Blair

    19:45

    Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair recently sat down with me at A Call to Lead in Orlando. And on this week's podcast, we bring you the enlightening conversation. When the Prime Minister, who urged me to call him Tony, talks about the world or recalls his own experience as PM, he dispenses loads of wisdom about leadership. There's plenty in this episode. Here are just 3 points among many that make this show a terrific listen: No matter what field you're in, the mark of a leader is the same, Tony says: "The thing that distinguishes someone who leads is that you step forward and other people step back. If you're going to lead, you've got to understand you're going to step forward." PM Blair reflected on the inherent contrast between governing and campaigning, saying “One of the things you learn about politics is that running for office and governing are two completely different things. One is about communication and persuasion, the other is about executive capability.” The hardest thing about leadership is making change, Tony says: "What I've found about change is that everyone loves it in general. They just hate it in particular. And when you first propose it, people tell you it's a bad idea. When you're doing it, it's hell. And when you've done it, you wish you had done more of it. So it's important to have people around you who are good and capable, but also prepared to challenge you, to make you think innovatively. Because keeping that spark of creativity around, whatever you do, is incredibly important." You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.   Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Karlie Kloss

    29:10

    On this episode of A Call to Lead, you'll meet Karlie Kloss, a 26-year-old wonder who is building on her success as one of the world's top fashion models to expand her leadership platform and scale her social impact. She is teaching young women how to code at Kode with Klossy, her tech summer camps across the U.S. She is helping to discover the next generation of fashion designers on Project Runway, where she is the new host and executive producer. And she's constantly looking to hone her own leadership skills. Here are a few highlights from my interview with Karlie: Karlie explained why she learned to code: "I really wanted to understand what all of these tech entrepreneurs, primarily men, knew that I didn't know. That was this kind of mysterious, hidden, secret language that the people who knew it were able to build ideas into billion-dollar enterprises. I felt like I was just seeing the world be transformed by technology and by these technologies built by a small handful of people. I was really inspired but also confused. Why weren't more girls being encouraged to see opportunities in that direction?" Here's why she started Kode with Klossy: "I was really inspired by the idea of being able to problem solve...to use coding to build solutions to problems. And to be able to help other young girls realize that they could learn that, even if you're not a guy in a hoodie." Karlie talked about her summer camps to teach young women to code: "Kode With Klossy is a drop in the bucket, but it's still an important drop. And I hope it inspires more people and particularly young women to realize that they can and should pursue [tech careers]. Even if they don't see as many women as there should be, it doesn't mean they can't be." What is Karlie's favorite coding language—Ruby, JavaScript, HTML, CSS or Swift? "Ruby, because it's very intuitive. It's an easier beginner language and it was the first one I learned, so I think I have a soft spot in my heart for it." Karlie was inspired by Michelle Obama's book, Becoming. "Michelle Obama is the most incredible, classiest, smartest, most just inspiring human being. And yet, she's super vulnerable." You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com. Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Adam Grant

    46:57

    We got a lot smarter after talking with Adam Grant on this new episode of A Call to Lead. You may know Adam from his best-selling books including Give and Take and Originals, and his hit podcast, WorkLife. Professor Grant's classes at Wharton are also wildly popular, which isn't surprising because he is one of today's smartest, freshest, and, yes, most original thinkers on leadership and success. Adam and I tackled these topics from all angles. Here are 5 Points from this show that my team found especially compelling:   On a recent episode of WorkLife, Adam talked about how to remember things. I asked him about that. "If you want to remember specific things, I think there are three things [you should do]: The first one is, you should not reread stuff, or highlight it, or do any of the things that probably you did in college. What you want to do actually is quiz yourself on it, and what that forces you to do is practice retrieving the information. Second, you should summarize it and share it with somebody else. The third is, it's much easier to remember anything if you can connect it to experiences you've previously had."   The best leaders solicit feedback on their strengths and weaknesses. "Early in your career, your biggest challenge is to understand your own strengths and weaknesses, and figure out how you can help people work most effectively with you. There's a practice I love that a growing number of leaders are using, which is to go to the five to 10 people who work closely with you and have them write a manual for how to work better with you for."   The problem is, veteran leaders tend to stop soliciting feedback: "When leaders are new, they seek a ton of feedback because they're orienting themselves to the role. They want to figure out whether they're meeting people's expectations. Then, as they get comfortable, feedback seeking starts to wane. And that's when they start needing it the most, because the less they ask for it, the fewer signals they're sending out to people around them that they're open to it. And then they gain more power and status, and people become more and more fearful of speaking truth to power."   The best team-builders nurture givers: "The higher you climb, the more your success depends on making other people successful. This is one of the reasons I think it's so important to train people to think like givers early. By the time you get into a leadership role, if you don't understand how to help other people succeed, then your accomplishments are totally dependent on the amount of time you have available in the day."   Culture wins, especially when it’s practiced and modeled when no one is looking. "It's really valuable for a leader to be clear about what the culture is and tell the stories about it from day one. If you're not clear, your firm's performance suffers. And if at some point you realize, 'Gosh, we have the wrong cultural blueprint' and try to change it, you're even more likely to fail. It creates cultural upheaval. There's some evidence that the best stories are junior employees upholding the culture without anyone having to tell them what to do, and the worst stories are senior leaders violating the culture." You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com. Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Laura Dern

    29:18

    Today on A Call to Lead, you'll meet Laura Dern, one of the world's great actors. Laura knows leadership. In films like Jurassic Park and Wildand TV shows like Enlightened and Twin Peaks, she has captured the complexities and vulnerabilities of strong women. In HBO's Big Little Lies, Laura's award-winning performance as Renata Klein is a study of a tech CEO who is also a fierce and frightened mother. Laura and I covered a lot of ground including leadership, parenthood, and gender equity in the workplace. Here are 5 Points that my team and I found most interesting and relevant to what we do to succeed. To portray tightly wound Renata in Big Little Lies, Laura talked with female CEOs who, she says, worked harder than most men "to even get invited into the room." I asked Laura what surprised her about these women. "I think there is a common theme of....how we work with integrity and protect ourselves and find a tribe in order to do the work we need to do." Laura believes that news and social media beat the drum too hard about women alone driving a fairer environment for women. "We should be "us-focused," she says. "It's about community. It's about changing things for the better of everyone. And that's a job that men and women have to do together." On the similarities between leading and parenting: "Great leaders and great parents ask questions constantly, are willing to learn every day, are willing to learn from their child, their followers, their staff—because it's a collaboration." Laura says we're in an era where anyone can step up to lead. "I think it's time for all of us to say, 'I'm ready to be in the position of power'—power meaning willingness to be vulnerable. And a willingness to lead with the strength of an interesting collaboration and insight into doing it differently than it's ever been done." Laura says she's learned about a different kind of leadership from her co-stars and colleagues on Big Little Lies. "One aspect to leadership that I never saw growing up was a kind of leader who can be even-toned and respectful while incredibly strong. Respectful and calm while saying 'No, I don't agree, I need something different from you.'" You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com. Where to Listen: Subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. --- Jennifer Morgan is a member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and President of SAP’s Cloud Business Group.
  • A Call to Lead podcast

    Jen Rubio

    28:14

    Today on A Call to Lead, I talk with Jen Rubio, the inspiring co-founder, president, and chief brand officer of Away. Jen co-founded Away on the notion that luggage—holding many of life's most important things when we travel—had become commoditized. Away injects style and community into travel. Jen and I talked about building great brands and thriving cultures, and about leveraging mistakes to learn and grow. Here are 5 Points that my team and I found particularly useful as we all work to build our own businesses: Having worked at Warby Parker earlier in her career, Jen knew that core values are key to building successful startups. She and her colleagues crafted Away's core values bottom-up: "We waited til we had maybe 30 or 40 employees. We were on a fun team trip in Nicaragua, and we split up into groups and asked people to describe what they thought our core values were. That set the stage. Our core values include being thoughtful, being iterative, being customer-obsessed, being empowered, being accessible in terms of having all the context that you need." Now that Away has nearly 300 employees, Jen and her senior team constantly reevaluate: "Core values are very precious and they should guide what you do. But it's important to take a step back and say 'hey, the company's growing really quickly, do these still ring true? If they don't, what are the things we can be doing to make it feel true? And if we don't want to do any of those things, should this still exist as one of our values?'" Jen and I believe in creating workplaces where it's okay to fail and make mistakes. Jen tells her team: "If you don't do it because you're scared, you're for sure not going to get it." And learn from each other's mistakes: "We encourage everyone to publicly share what they've learned from mistakes or failures. And we're constantly iterating. So we say, 'If you aren't making any mistakes, then you're not thinking big enough or moving fast enough." Jen smartly notes that brand-building happens from the customer's perspective: "When you're building a brand, it's so easy for people to be like: 'This is our brand book, this is who we are, this is what we're doing.' But nobody really cares what a brand says about itself."   You can learn more by visiting: www.sap.com/acalltolead. And you can subscribe and listen to episodes on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, and Stitcher. We welcome your feedback on the pod! Tweet me @JenniferBMorgan and use the hashtag #acalltolead or e-mail us at acalltolead@sap.com.

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