Name: Bryan Montpetit
Title: CEO • Chief Strategist • Intl. Keynote Speaker
Organisation: Bryan • Growth Strategies
Bryan’s journey to success is a testament to his unparalleled understanding of digital marketing, business development, technology, and team leadership. He has not only excelled in C-Level roles but has also been the driving force behind numerous language industry triumphs.
Bryan’s remarkable journey includes the inception, growth, and sale of his own Language Service Company, cementing his status as a true industry titan.
From Lima, Peru, to Tallinn, Estonia, and across North America, Bryan has graced stages worldwide, captivating audiences with his profound insights and inspiring vision.
His captivating storytelling and real-life anecdotes seamlessly weave everyday situations into invaluable business and leadership lessons, leaving his audiences enlightened and empowered.
Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!
I hope Bryan's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!
1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?
Given that I've worked directly within the Language Services and Technology Industry for 20+ years, the most challenging aspects of leadership would likely revolve around the complexities of operating in a global industry that is misunderstood and undervalued by most outside the industry. Language is often taken for granted and not considered as a part of Global Change Management or Growth Strategies.
Irrespective of the industry, if you are leading global teams, diversity in culture, language, market conditions and geo-political circumstances require exceptional adaptability, communication skills, and strategic thinking.
These challenges are compounded by the fact that market expectations from those on the "Buy side" of language, often believe technology can simply replace human translators resulting in less value being attributed to Language Companies and the services they provide.
The challenge as a leader is then to be able to confidently navigate the culmination of the above while innovating the service offering and driving business revenue and growth.
2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
If we look to the definition of a leader, it's defined as, "a leader is an individual who guides, inspires, and influences a group of people or an organization to achieve common goals, objectives, or a shared vision".
I've always focused on my ability to listen, reflect and provide a path to action or resolution. Communication has really been a big part of what I worked on.
As an entrepreneurial spirit, I've always been a creative mind. Convinced I can improve on anything I'm tasked with. Part of being an entrepreneur/solopreneur is possessing the ability to take people on a journey with your vision.
This has helped me communicate objectives to teams and get alignment on how we'll come to accomplish the task to reach the objectives.
From very early on in my career, working in business development, I learned how to chat with people by taking an interest in them and what they value. A sincere interest.
That enabled me to create relationships with members of my teams, fostering trust. I would roll up my sleeves and work along side them to understand their frustrations and the difficulties established processes still had and then put resolutions in place to solve them.
I think as the years past, I simply improved my ability to work and communicate with diverse teams, which in turn earned me positions of authority and leadership. It was just a natural professional evolution.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
I tend to wake up early, around 5:00 in the morning. This gives me enough time to workout and have some much needed mental time during a walk or meditation.
From about 6:30 - 7:45, I usually take care of my son and get him ready and take him to school. This is my time to chat with him about the day.
From 7:45 - My day starts. Usually it starts with my daily video content posted on LinkedIn, where I take everyday situations or trending topics and turn them into business lessons, inspiring leaders, teams and entrepreneurs. This usually takes about 30 minutes at which point, I dive into email and prepare my day's outline.
I tend to eat lunch around 11:00 at my desk while working and continue on until about 16:00 when I have to get my son, and until 20:30 when I don't.
I'm usually working at a more casual pace in the evenings and don't oblige myself to "produce", during what I still consider after hours.
I'll pull myself away from the computer around 20:30.
I usually read or put on the TV in the background - don't usually watch it per se, and head to bed around 21:30.
4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?
One of the most valuable lessons I've learned is the importance of self-awareness.
Self-awareness is the foundation of effective leadership, as it enables leaders to understand themselves, their strengths, weaknesses, values, and how their actions and behaviours impact others.
For me, self-awareness has ensured that I never comprise my morals and values to achieve an objective.
I try to work on myself daily, to be better than I was yesterday.
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
It's really difficult to pick only 1 book as I feel with every book I read, I learn more, which enables me to refine skills I may have acquired in previous reads.
Make Your Bed - by Admiral William H. McRaven
The 5 Love Languages - Gary D. Chapman
and literally anything by Jon Gordon
Now, as I mentioned, it's very difficult for me to choose a single book.
Make Your Bed, really demonstrated that small seemingly insignificant actions can make a huge impact on the day to day. This has fostered my philosophy of the building block approach to change within teams. I don't expect things to happen overnight and try to ease change in over time through small but important changes.
The 5 Love Languages, although not a business book, really enabled me to understand that everyone's sense of value is sourced through 5 different languages, which is transferrable to business. What provides my team members a sense of being valued. Once I tap into that, the working relationships take a completely different (positive) dynamic.
Jon Gordon is an incredible author. Anything by him will provide insight and information that can be extracted and applied to team dynamics.
I do sincerely believe that reading is what enables leaders to excel.
6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?
Get comfortable with the uncomfortable.
Not everyone will like you and you don't have to be everyone's friend. Just do what you need to do and be a good human while doing it. Value people and listen to the message not the messenger.
Simple. Not easy... but simple.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?
I always promise every member of my team that I will help them with their career, whether it's with me on the team I'm managing, in the company or if it's somewhere else. I'll always be there to help.
I suppose a meaningful story is after having left a prominent role in a language company, I had many people reach out asking if I could still mentor them or if we could remain in contact. That was touching and meaningful to me because it meant that they saw the value I tried to bring day in and day out in my management style and actions.
I even had multiple members of my former team get together and provide me with unrequested testimonials in the hopes it would help me, should I need team references in my search for employment.
Here's part of one...
"One of Bryan's most notable attributes is his remarkable leadership style. He possesses a unique ability to motivate and inspire his team, fostering a collaborative and supportive work environment. Unlike many managers, Bryan leads with kindness, understanding, and empathy. He never manages through fear, nor does he resort to micromanagement or excessive pressure. Instead, he empowers his team members to reach their full potential by providing guidance, encouragement, and unwavering support. Under his leadership, I felt motivated to consistently deliver outstanding results."
Having anyone be willing to attest to these kind and flattering words mean so much to me. I am grateful.
And to them and everyone I've had the privilege of working with - Thank you.