Growing with Purpose

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February 10, 2020  

Tom Walter: “Change, Or We’re Leaving”

On this re-broadcast of the inaugural episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Tom Walter, serial entrepreneur and founder of Tasty Catering

Tom is a founding member of the Small Giants Community and has served as a Small Giants Leadership Academy facilitator to share his expertise with emerging leaders in the Small Giants Community. Throughout his life, Tom was a painfully shy, introverted person. He never wanted to be a leader, but he found himself thrust into the role time and time again. Despite his best efforts to remain #2, Tom became an entrepreneur when he opened his first restaurant business. Today, Tom is founder and Chief Culture Officer at Tasty Catering, and he has participated in the startup of 32 companies and acquired three others.

In this episode, hear longtime friends Paul and Tom discuss the most pivotal moments of Tom's career, including the moment when a group of employees confronted him about his leadership style and said that if he didn't change, they were leaving.

January 13, 2020  

Raman Chadha: Smarter, Healthier Leaders

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Raman Chadha, founder of the Junto Institute. Raman is a Small Giants Leadership Academy facilitator who shares his expertise on emotional intelligence training with emerging leaders in the Small Giants Community.

Most of us know that emotional intelligence is an important skill in leadership — but is it a skill that can be learned? Raman Chadha's life work is dedicated to answering that very question. Raman was the founding director of DePaul University’s entrepreneurship center where he was also on faculty. Today, Raman is the founder and Managing Partner of the Junto Institute, where he spends his time developing programs for growth-stage Founders and CEOs. Raman's teaching philosophies are rooted in purpose, love, and the belief that human beings have an unlimited capacity to flourish. 

In this episode, hear Paul and Raman discuss how much more fulfilling work is when you let emotions and purpose lead the way. Plus, hear Raman's practical advice for identifying emotional intelligence in others and how people can learn to be more effective leaders. 

January 2, 2020  

Adam Witty: Why Should Entrepreneurs Write Books?

Adam Witty is the founder and chief executive officer of Advantage|ForbesBooks. Adam has built Advantage Media Group, The Business Growth Company™, into one of the largest business book publishers in America, serving over 1,000 Members in 40 U.S. states and 13 countries. Most recently, Advantage has partnered with Forbes to create ForbesBooks, the first book-publishing imprint for the global media company. 

In this episode, hear Adam talk with host Paul Spiegelman about how he fell into the world of publishing and why he believes that all entrepreneurs should write books. Plus, hear Adam's perspective on how companies can grow fast without compromising on culture. 

December 19, 2019  

Bryan Papé: A Legacy of Generosity

A life or death ski accident dramatically changed Bryan Papé's perspective on life at the young age of 20. That moment created a ripple in his life that encouraged him to create his first business, the lifestyle products brand MiiR. It’s taken Bryan near and far: from Boise, Idaho to Buchanan, Liberia, where he’s been inspired by the joy and resiliency of those he has met.

In this episode, hear the compelling story of Bryan's accident and what it taught him, and the mission-driven lifestyle brand it inspired. Plus, learn Bryan's approach to corporate philanthropy and his advice for like-hearted entrepreneurs who want to do well and do good.

December 9, 2019  

Dan Sachs: If Company Culture Pays, Why Doesn’t Everybody Do It?

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Dan Sachs, a professor at DePaul University Kellstadt School of Business, where he teaches classes on Restaurant Entrepreneurship and Service Leadership. Dan is also the founder and owner of the BIN36 restaurant and wine brand. Recently, Dan published his first book, The Million Dollar Greeting: Today’s Best Practices for Profit, Customer Retention, and a Happy Workplace.

Dan Sachs started out with a push broom on the factory floor of his dad's manufacturing business. Not long after, he started working at Union Square Cafe, one of the restaurants owned by the famed, purpose-driven restaurateur Danny Meyer. Dan's time at the restaurant made a huge impact on him: the owners genuinely cared about each and every employee, and Dan felt inspired to treat every customer that walked in the same way. When Dan went on to open his own restaurant in Chicago years later, he took the same principles he learned there and used it to build a high-end, informal restaurant experience that people would love. Today, Dan is taking his lessons learned on building a service-oriented, purpose-driven hospitality business and teaching it to students, emerging entrepreneurs and peers in his field.

In this episode, learn Dan's principles for building a great culture and why he believes it to be universal across industries. Plus, hear Paul and Dan discuss Paul's own recent venture into the restaurant business and Dan's practical advice for building a sustainable business in the tough restaurant industry.

November 11, 2019  

Chris Stakich: Walk in the Direction of Your Passion

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Chris Stakich, CEO and Chairman of the Board at Rustic Pathways. Chris is also Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board for Thinking Beyond Borders, the global leader in gap year programs.

After graduating from Harvard University with a degree in economics, Chris felt compelled to get out into the real world and make an impact. In 2002, he abandoned his previous plans to start a career on Wall Street and instead took a job at Rustic Pathways, a global leader in community service travel for students. Charged with opening the company’s first program in Costa Rica, Chris transformed the new site into its most popular program, and worked his way up from there. After serving the company in nearly every capacity, Chris became CEO of Rustic Pathways in 2014.

In this episode, hear about Chris’s model for building a high-performance, impactful culture that all team members rally around. Plus, hear Paul and Chris discuss the benefits of taking a gap year before college, and the importance of following your passion, one step at a time.

 

October 7, 2019  

Steve Palmer: Our Growth Is the Story of Our People

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Steve Palmer, Managing Partner of Indigo Road Hospitality Group.

The Indigo Road Hospitality Group operates more than 20 restaurants across the Southeast region of the United States, and in 2019 it was named one of Forbes' 25 best small companies in America. Palmer's career in hospitality began at the age of 13, when he washed dishes at a local Chinese restaurant. From there, he climbed the ranks and worked in several other restaurants and positions — which led to a problem all too common in hospitality: substance abuse. After battling an alcohol and cocaine addiction for ten years, Palmer went to rehab and found the road to recovery. Now 18 years sober, he's made it his life's mission to change the conversation in the restaurant industry and create space for others to find sobriety. 

In this episode, hear the deeply personal story of Steve's substance abuse support group, Ben's Friends, and the sobriety movement it has inspired in ten cities. Plus, host Paul Spiegelman talks to Steve about his own recent venture into the restaurant industry and the challenges and opportunities of building positive cultures in hospitality.

September 16, 2019  

Camille Nicita: Overnight Owner

When Gongos' beloved founder, John Gongos, passed away suddenly in 2012, Camille became the new owner literally overnight. Having joined in the launch of Gongos Research in 1991, Camille's s forward-leaning posture is establishing a new north for the company. Staying true to the company’s core competencies while nurturing new talent, Camille operates under the belief that people realize their full potential when put in the right seats. Her grounding vision is to foster a culture where innovation, transparency, and vibrancy shape a company fit for the future.

Nobody can be prepared for loss, but Camille's leadership and compassion helped employees, customers, and the community cope and find a new path forward. In this episode, hear how Camille used values to navigate those challenges, and the customer-centric strategy that is driving Gongos' success today.

 

August 12, 2019  

Ty Hagler: Changing the Current

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Ty Hagler, founder and Principal of the industrial design firm, Trig

As a teenager volunteering at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, Ty was exposed to the sport of flatwater kayaking for the first time. That was the start of what became a decade-long career: Ty eventually grew into a world-class kayaker and was even an Olympic hopeful in 2004. But there comes a time when every athlete must retire, and when Ty hung up his paddle, he decided to return to earlier passions that he'd abandoned. An introvert with a passion for art, design, and engineering, Ty founded Trig in 2008. After years of running the business solo, he shifted his focus to building a team of aligned, inspired individuals and committed to a 100% virtual model. Changing the current isn't always easy, but it's a life skill that Ty has mastered better than most. 

After a decade as a world-class athlete, Ty realized that the same principles of discipline, processes, pragmatism, and persistence that are required for sport can also be applied to teams that lead innovation results. In this episode, you'll hear how Ty's lifelong curiosity allowed him to build an award-winning, virtual design firm. 

July 8, 2019  

William Vanderbloemen: Create Your Own Party

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with William Vanderbloemen, founder and CEO of the Vanderbloemen Search Group.

After more than 15 years of ministry experience as a Senior Pastor, William Vanderbloemen came up with the idea to bring the best practices of executive search to faith-based organizations. Prior to his founding Vanderbloemen, William studied executive search under a mentor with over 25 years of executive search at the highest level. Realizing that many churches struggled to find and retain leadership, he brought the idea to his faith community and challenged them to do things differently. But bringing new ideas to the church isn't always an easy process — hear how William created buy-in and built what would become a 2018 Forbes Small Giant: Best Small Companies in America.

In this episode, you'll hear William's early lessons learned from an arch nemesis on his paper route, the nine cultural values that define his company, and William's lifelong habit of blowing stuff up.

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