Name: Bryan Richards
Organisation: BRIG Consulting
I have been in mid and senior level management positions in multiple industries since early 1980’s to 2019 when I opened a consultancy and a partnership business in logistics, as well as joining instructional staff at a local school of business hoping to share and give back some of what I have learned in 40 plus years
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?
Changes in attitudes and attitudes represented within the generations. From boomers to today, while we are all humans, in many ways we couldn’t be more different.
2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
I was always upwardly mobile and partly that I think is vanity and partly it’s ego. If you are competitive, you want to win and get ahead, and in business that means succeeding levels of management and leadership and if you are recognized as being capable, it becomes a ‘flow’ forward, sometimes without you even noticing.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
Waking is just an extension of night before as a plan is always under way so the waking is basically the initiation of that days plan, and to do lists, and milestones to be reached. Scheduled items play a role but the remainder is based on moving forward on achieving the goals for month or year as set out in the plan. So attending to what needs to be done in succession, is critical to path attainment. That provides the structure.
4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?
That everyone has a boss. That boss at a point in time may not even be an individual but a critical family or health issue that is dominant or sucking all the focus and attention at that point. And has to be recognized and respected for what it is, and dealt with in context and importance. One of my favourite sayings is “what interests my boss, absolutely fascinates me!” That is a way to get ahead and stay ahead, while always recognizing what’s important in todays context.
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?
“Sapiens” - the old saying that for those that don’t respect or understand the past, are doomed to repeat it! This book gives so much understanding of where we come from and the reality of our existence, and since leadership is really all about people, what better book than one that helps you really understand people, their past and what holds their interests.
6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?
Put yourself in every opportunity to 1) solve problems and be recognized for that capability and 2) take every opportunity to lead people, engage with people, be part of a team.
You can’t ascend if you don’t know how to supervise and lead people!
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?
The most rewarding is that staff or team members from 35, 25, and 15 and 10 years ago still tell people stories about their time with me and what they learned and that I was best boss ever. It happens often and is very rewarding.