Our mindset is a powerful tool, allowing us to find solutions when things get tough. Retired CEO, Johnny Sirpilla, shares how you can reframe your mindset during difficult times in your life and at work.

Johnny Sirpilla is helping people in reframing mindsets during difficult times.

Reframing Mindset

When things get tough, our mindset is a powerful tool that can help us find solutions. Retired CEO Johnny Sirpilla shares how you can reframe your mindset during difficult times in your life and at work.

He suggests that instead of thinking “I have to,” we reframe it to “I get to.” For example, “I get to go to the gym” or “I get to do this challenging project at work.” This small shift in perspective can make a big difference in how we approach difficult tasks.

When we think “I have to,” it puts us in a negative frame of mind and makes us feel like we’re being forced to do something. On the other hand, “I get to” implies that we’re choosing to do something, even if it’s challenging. This positive framing can help us approach difficult tasks with a sense of enthusiasm and possibility.

So next time you’re faced with a difficult task, try reframing your mindset from “I have to” to “I get to.” This small shift can make a big difference in how you approach the task at hand.

Your Character Carries Over from Work-to-Home

…and home-to-work, if we don’t take the time to draw a line between the two. It’s important to find a healthy balance that works for you.

One way to do this is to set aside some time each day to transition from work mode to home mode. For example, you might take a few minutes to put away your work materials, take a break from electronics, or do something relaxing before you start your evening routine.

This transition time can help you leave work worries behind and focus on spending quality time with your family and loved ones. It can also help you recharge for the next day so you can show up at work refreshed and ready to tackle whatever comes your way.

If you’re finding it difficult to balance work and home life, try setting aside some time each day to transition from one to the other. This small change can make a big difference in your ability to find a healthy balance.

I don’t believe that we can genuinely switch gears and be awful people at work, somebody who verbally and emotionally beats people up, then returns to their home where they’re nurturing or welcoming to kids and spouse alike–these are all part of one fabric: our character!

In This Episode

  • (0:00) We have the same heart and the same character in our workplace that we bring into our home place.
  • (2:27) What it’s like to get into a rut after being at the peak of your life.
  • (14:29) What are some practical guidelines to help you stay on the same page as a couple?
  • (19:31) The importance of work-life balance.
  • (31:23) You’re treating a whole person, not just an illness or a malady.

Johnny Sirpilla

Johnny Sirpilla, founder of Encourage, LLC., is an entrepreneur, passionate leader, a committed family man and the author of Life Is Hard but I’ll Be OK: The Power of Hope, Emerging through Pain and Learning to Live with Gratitude

A legend in the RV Industry, Johnny endured personal tragedies that led him to repurpose himself in his early 50’s focused on driving meaningful change in the workplace allowing employees to return home empowered. This passion inspired the creation of Encourage, LLC., a self-funded small family office with four divisions; Encourage Healthy Living, Encourage Leadership, Encourage Investment and Encourage Adoption.

Johnny has been married to his college sweetheart, Susan, for over 30 years and has three grown children, Beau, Bella and Stone … one of which is adopted but he can’t remember which one.

Resources and Links

You can learn more about Johnny Sirpill and his company Encourage 33 at Encourage33.com. There you’ll find information on how to book Johnny for speaking or consulting engagements as well as tap into the expertise of his team for topics and solutions around positive psychology, healthy living, and leadership.

Related Past Episodes of Beyond the Rut

Cliff Ravenscraft on Expanding Your Mindset on Your Value – BtR 279

Nancy Guberti on How Nutrition and Wellness Starts with Mindset – BtR 220

How to Improve Effectiveness at Work Through the Outward Mindset – BtR 161

Episode Credits

Host, Editing, and Production: Jerry Dugan

Transcript

Key Phrase: reframing mindset

Other phrases:  johnny sirpilla, difficult times, family mindset, 

Reframing Mindset During Difficult Times – BtR 325 (H1)

Our mindset is a powerful tool, allowing us to find solutions when things get tough. Retired CEO, Johnny Sirpilla, shares how you can reframe your mindset during difficult times in your life and at work.

Reframing Mindset

When things get tough, our mindset is a powerful tool that can help us find solutions. Retired CEO Johnny Sirpilla shares how you can reframe your mindset during difficult times in your life and at work.

He suggests that instead of thinking “I have to,” we reframe it to “I get to.” For example, “I get to go to the gym” or “I get to do this challenging project at work.” This small shift in perspective can make a big difference in how we approach difficult tasks.

When we think “I have to,” it puts us in a negative frame of mind and makes us feel like we’re being forced to do something. On the other hand, “I get to” implies that we’re choosing to do something, even if it’s challenging. This positive framing can help us approach difficult tasks with a sense of enthusiasm and possibility.

So next time you’re faced with a difficult task, try reframing your mindset from “I have to” to “I get to.” This small shift can make a big difference in how you approach the task at hand.

Your Character Carries Over from Work-to-Home

…and home-to-work, if we don’t take the time to draw a line between the two. It’s important to find a healthy balance that works for you.

One way to do this is to set aside some time each day to transition from work mode to home mode. For example, you might take a few minutes to put away your work materials, take a break from electronics, or do something relaxing before you start your evening routine.

This transition time can help you leave work worries behind and focus on spending quality time with your family and loved ones. It can also help you recharge for the next day so you can show up at work refreshed and ready to tackle whatever comes your way.

If you’re finding it difficult to balance work and home life, try setting aside some time each day to transition from one to the other. This small change can make a big difference in your ability to find a healthy balance.

I don’t believe that we can genuinely switch gears and be awful people at work, somebody who verbally and emotionally beats people up, then returns to their home where they’re nurturing or welcoming to kids and spouse alike–these are all part of one fabric: our character!

In This Episode

  • (0:00) We have the same heart and the same character in our work place that we bring into our home place.
  • (2:27) What it’s like to get into a rut after being at the peak of your life.
  • (14:29) What are some practical guidelines to help you stay on the same page as a couple?
  • (19:31) The importance of work-life balance.
  • (31:23) You’re treating a whole person, not just an illness or a malady.

Johnny Sirpilla

Johnny Sirpilla, founder of Encourage, LLC., is an entrepreneur, passionate leader, a committed family man and the author of Life Is Hard but I’ll Be OK: The Power of Hope, Emerging through Pain and Learning to Live with Gratitude

A legend in the RV Industry, Johnny endured personal tragedies that led him to repurpose himself in his early 50’s focused on driving meaningful change in the workplace allowing employees to return home empowered. This passion inspired the creation of Encourage, LLC., a self-funded small family office with four divisions; Encourage Healthy Living, Encourage Leadership, Encourage Investment and Encourage Adoption.

Johnny has been married to his college sweetheart, Susan, for over 30 years and has three grown children, Beau, Bella and Stone … one of which is adopted but he can’t remember which one.

Resources and Links

You can learn more about Johnny Sirpill and his company Encourage 33 at Encourage33.com. There you’ll find information on how to book Johnny for speaking or consulting engagements as well as tap into the expertise of his team for topics and solutions around positive psychology, healthy living, and leadership.

Related Past Episodes of Beyond the Rut

Cliff Ravenscraft on Expanding Your Mindset on Your Value – BtR 279

Nancy Guberti on How Nutrition and Wellness Starts with Mindset – BtR 220

How to Improve Effectiveness at Work Through the Outward Mindset – BtR 161

Episode Credits

Host, Editing, and Production: Jerry Dugan

Transcript

Johnny Sirpilla  00:00

And we have the same heart and the same mind, and the same character and the same integrity that we bring into the workplace that we bring into our home place. And I don’t believe that we can genuinely switch gears and be a awful person at work. Somebody that beats people up at work. You know, it’s tough on employees yelling, screaming harsh, and then cross the threshold at home and walk in and be kind, loving, nurturing, welcoming to our children to our spouse. I just think it were the same person at both places.

Jerry Dugan  00:37

Hey, Rutter Nation, welcome to another episode of beyond the rut, the podcast that shares encouraging stories and practical tools to help pull you out of your rut and into a life worth living. I’m your host, Jerry Dugan, and we’re going to be joined by Johnny Sirpa. Johnny was the president and CEO of camping world until 2017. He’s now the author of a book called Life is hard, but I’ll be okay. And he does a lot of speaking around reframing our mindsets, especially during tough times. So in this episode, we’re gonna have a conversation about the season that he and his wife had Susan, where they were trying to have a baby to create the family that had children in it, and the ups and downs that went and came with that. But we’ll also talk about how we bring ourselves to our family lives, also as the same person we bring to our work lives. So he’s going to talk about how you can run your business or your career with a family mindset and why that’s important. So sit back and relax unless you’re eating tacos while driving a tractor. In that case, yeah, I don’t know, maybe stop the tractor, eat the taco and then drive the tractor again. That’s just my thought. But other than that, let’s go. All right. Hey, Johnny, thanks for calling in from Canton, Ohio. How are you doing today?

Johnny Sirpilla  01:57

I’m doing great. Jerry. It’s great to see you. And I appreciate the opportunity to talk with you this morning. So if I got the background, right, you just recently retired as the president and CEO of camping world. I was the president and Chief Business Development Officer Business Development Officer, there we go. Now familiar with camping world because I’m a ultralight backpacker. And I keep I would keep going to camping world thinking that I was going to find ultralight backpacking gear. It’s like all these RVs and like, oh, oh, yeah.

Jerry Dugan  02:27

You would think I would learn after years of backpacking that. But anyway, I’d start shopping because, you know, eventually there’s a day where I won’t be able to backpack and or I just want to do it. Tim winters. I don’t know if you’ve met him. Tim wonders is a podcaster, who is a business coach. He and his wife sold all their possessions a few years back, and they actually live in their RV and they travel the country, they podcast from their country. I need to connect you to that. Okay. I noticed I’ve

Johnny Sirpilla  02:53

actually heard of him. And you can get so many things that can’t be more for your home and your RV, and certainly your outdoor lifestyle. So keep going back, Jerry.

Jerry Dugan  03:02

Yeah, I will. Oh, yeah. My wife just gets nervous when I go there. Because he’s like, Hey, what are you buying? Now I’m like, Y’all can’t see this. But in front of me is all my campaign. And my podcast studio. So at any given moment, I’m ready to go. But that’s not why we got you on here. Because your story actually has a lot of ups and downs to it. And a lot of lessons around was resiliency, and reframe your mindset. And, you know, some of the things that stood out to me is essentially like the beyond the right story. You married your college sweetheart. In college, you’re in a fraternity she was in a sorority, so you got boxes checked there. You You had careers that both paid, well, check, check. And then you had this this part of your lives where you wanted to have children. And then that was your biggest struggle. And one of the things I wanted to share with you in the audience, the thing that stood out to me in your book was this horrifying moments. It’s not the worst part of the book, guys. But for me, it was horrified because I stopped breathing for three or four pages. And it was when Susan is going in for a procedure to extract some eggs. And you’re in the lobby with your mother and your mother in law. And things are okay, you’re worried about Suzanne, you’re praying for Susan. And then the medical staff come out and they’re like, hey, it’s time for your contribution. I stopped breathing at that point, because that is like teenage Jerry’s horrors coming to life but like you lived it. And so I don’t know how you did what you did, knowing that they were out there knowing what you were doing. And so guys, you gotta read the book, if Well, for a lot more reasons than that seen, but it led to a very disheartening or sad point in your lives after that, because that moment led to triplets on the way and you wound up losing all three triplets. And that in essence was the roller coaster you both experienced for a long time. What was that like going through those ups and downs? together.

Johnny Sirpilla  05:00

So I like the way you phrase that because we definitely did go through it together. And you know, Jerry when any of us are in a rut, and I love the the title of your podcast, because so many of us fall into those ruts in different seasons in our lives. And we fell into a rut, after being at the peak of our lives. I mean, our careers are going amazing, you know, we’re, we’re madly in love. We have amazing friends, amazing family, I mean, everything’s going so well, that we were kind of pinching ourselves like, this is too good to be true. And then it wasn’t right. And it was, it was only good, too good to be true until it wasn’t and, and so for us, we did go through the entire journey together, as you just referenced, some of it was a little too much togetherness. When after years of keeping it secret that I insisted to my wife that we invite my mom and her mom to the egg retrieval at the hospital when we were doing in vitro. And I didn’t fully think through that Susan thought it was a bad idea that we should do that alone. And I just thought it was a great family experience. I don’t know who thinks their mothers should be at their conception of their grandchildren. But for some reason, it sounded right to me in a good togetherness moment. So So I blew that, for sure. I did not handle that. Well, it was almost like a Seinfeld episode. In that in that setting, when I had to get up and leave the room, while Susan was in surgery. But you know, beyond that, how we went through it together is, you know, we continued to have hope, and faith, we did become terribly desperate, as the time went on. And, and what we realized was, when we hit our low after Nicholas, Marian Peter died, we had two sons and a daughter, triplets, as you mentioned, and after they passed away, when we thought that we were at our low, we really went on to find that we did not get out of that, right. It was, you know, a long time behind us and a long time ahead of us, before this dark cloud was going to be lifted. And so we chose our very actively, to grieve together to not grieve apart from each other, we said that we’re going to remain committed to each other into our goal. But you know, you spend a lot of time at a cemetery and sitting close to your kids to just be physically by them to have that proximity in that connection to them. And you know, a couple grieves differently after child loss and different times in different days, we stayed pretty much on the same cycle. But then we’re understanding for the other when one was up, and one was down. One was trying to get on. And for me, so much of that moving on felt unnatural. It just didn’t seem appropriate to look for joy, to laugh to be happy, when really how we define success in creating a family. We were failing.

Jerry Dugan  08:05

Yeah, yeah. And I remember that part of your lives where he just lost the triplets. And a couple of comes out of the woodwork like some acquaintances. Like they weren’t close friends, it sounded like, and they came up to you, they gave us some very valuable advice. Could you share that with us?

Johnny Sirpilla  08:24

Yeah, you know, they taught us so much, it was truly an acquaintance couple that we eventually became close to. But they came to our house uninvited, the night before the funeral. And, you know, we opened the door, and they’re standing there, and we’re a little surprised, but their boldness and their boldness and love, their boldness and compassion really just blew us away. I mean, we were so moved by it. And they explained that they had lost a baby at a week old, and their son died about 20 years earlier. And they talked to us about their marriage, they talked to us about how others might view the situation, oftentimes, infant death is different, is looked at differently than death later in life. And we came to understand that and have respect for any stage that you lose a child. But some people didn’t have an understanding of what it is like to lose an infant. And so, you know, we learned from them, that compassion really doesn’t know limits, and with a good heart, and following that heart, you know, it helped us to be more bold with others in reaching out. And really, it shaped the course of my business career. I mean, a simple setting like that, where someone just took such a big step to show up at someone’s house the night before a funeral after a tragic event. It was really just a beautiful gesture.

Jerry Dugan  09:54

Yeah. And they’re the ones who shared with you the importance of grieving together and staying together and being proactive about I’m getting through the season together. And you didn’t mention this statistic in there, but it is high the number of couples that end up divorcing after the loss of a child is staggeringly high. I think it’s around the 85% range, give or take a few points. So now that compels me to have to go find the actual stats, I can put in the show notes, guys, I’m sorry. But it is high. And so to have somebody reach out to you through compassion, and and let you know, the hardest part is actually coming forward for the two of you. And this is why it’s important for the two of you to be together. And, and, and you mentioned in your book, that wasn’t just advice you applied to yourself, but you find yourselves paying it forward for other couples. So your pain in a way became a ministry to others. Would that sound accurate?

Johnny Sirpilla  10:48

Absolutely. I mean, you know, I think when you go through a tough time when life is hard, right? The title of my book when life is hard, but I’ll be okay. When you go through a tough time. You know, you’re you’re asking yourself, How am I going to survive this? And that’s probably the appropriate initial question to ask. But if you continue to ask yourself more questions, and go deeper in it, and start the reframing process. And we can talk a little bit about that, you know, I went deeper to say, you know, what, am I going to learn through this? How can this situation improve my life? And that’s a strange question, because the situation nearly destroyed our lives. Yeah. And, you know, we couldn’t get out of bed in the morning. And so, you know, we had a hard time getting through a work day, and, you know, not going to the cemetery everyday after work or before work. And so literally, to say, how can this situation, improve my life? How can Nicholas, Mary and Peter dying, be something that I can be a better man for be a better husband? Hopefully, someday a better father? How can this situation make me better? And, you know, can I get this situation to allow the tragedy to serve as a foundation of growth that my wife and I can springboard off of, and all of that reframing really began to happen, and then it gave us clarity and purpose for number one, what we needed to do to reframe their lives as not just a tragic event, because that seemed disrespectful to them. I can remember just using the term disrespectful so many times, then because I could feel that, you know, some might disrespect the severity and the pain of the situation, through their well intended comments of, well, at least you didn’t know them very well. And at least you didn’t, you know, have a lot of time together. So that would have made it so much harder. And technically, maybe it would have been much harder to lose a two year old versus a newborn. But we also didn’t have two years of joy, or us losing a 10 year old or a 20 year old, we also didn’t get those years of joy. So it at the time, we couldn’t quite understand that. As we did go on through very complicated and extenuating circumstances to have other children. You know, we saw a different perspective there. So we can understand the spirit of what they were saying. And it still stung as they said it. But we really realized that. You know, for us, it needed to be something that they were not disrespected by the time between their birth certificate and their deaths death certificate, we’re going to quantify the significance of their life. That felt disrespectful to me. And so whether your life is a day or 85 years, there’s meaning and value in it. And so for us, we needed to fill that rut, fill those holes, with the joy and the genuine joy that we did experience while they were alive. Because God did give us a grace. During that time. Where we were, we said it then and we say it now we were the happiest people in that hospital. Ultimately, intellectually, we knew what was going to happen, but it hadn’t happened yet. Yeah. And so they were still breathing. They were still we were still holding them and loving them. And you know, for that we saw a lot of beauty and we received the gift in their birth. And we’re not going to see it in any other way.

Jerry Dugan  14:29

Yeah. Oh, man. And it was such a beautiful way that you had told that in the book as well. And it’s that is something valuable for everybody to remember is how precious life is and how short it is, how fragile it is. And I think in some ways, if we remember that we start to appreciate the time we have right here in front of us as opposed to I’ll get to that later. Or someday I’ll you know, it’s when it comes to like pursuing your dream or your purpose you always hear folks talk about someday I will do You blank, and I refer to it as Sunday. I like Sunday Island. And just yeah, enjoy the people around you, the ones who matter the most, which everybody’s got value. So what are some of the things that you would do to I think you mentioned them that like the questions you would ask to help reframe your, your mind set on a situation, you’ve actually been sharing that up to this point. But then, going back to that part about going through the process together as a as a couple, are there some practical guidelines that you both held to that helps you stay on the same page or get to the same page or get through those those moments where it was just hard for either one or both of you?

Johnny Sirpilla  15:41

Well, you know, one thing that comes to mind when you ask that question, Jerry is the fact that in our vows that we wrote for each other. And so we scripted our own vows, we did not use the conventional vows. And one of the vows that we wrote was, I promised to see your viewpoint in all, as you must see mine, yes. And so it was a promise to each other, and also a statement to each other that you must see mine, right. And so I was very aware of that, that statement that Susan made to me, you must see mine. And so, you know, a man and a woman go through a pregnancy and a loss differently at times, of course, Susan’s going through it physically. I was inducing the drugs into her, I was injecting those into her daily. And so I had that side of it, that felt unnatural to me, it felt my anxiety got going of worrying about what the chemicals I’m putting in her in the hormones. And could this lead to cancer at some point in her life, you know, things that that scared me. And so when in her early 40s, when she needed a double mastectomy that there was something in me that said, you know, a seed was planted that I was worried about something maybe that contributed to her tumor that she had in her breast or maybe not, I don’t know, and we’ll never really know. But I know that that was something that I thought about. And so in promising to see each other’s viewpoints. We clung to that vowel. And, you know, we really never realized how significant that vow is going to be. And so in loss in trying to move forward, you know, you might have viewpoints that the other doesn’t have. I had a greater guilt after we adopted. I don’t want to ruin too much of the books. Yeah,

Jerry Dugan  17:32

I only got to the point where you’re about to meet Beau. Yeah. So yeah, spoiler alert

Johnny Sirpilla  17:38

there. That’s, that’s our guy bow. And, you know, I do. I’ve always told the kids that, you know, one of them is adopted, and I don’t remember which one but now I have a book that proves which

Jerry Dugan  17:50

one right yeah, you documented here.

Johnny Sirpilla  17:55

And so, you know, that I felt more guilt associated with being happy than Susan did. And Susan couldn’t identify with that she, she appropriately and I think my wife appropriately deals with things better than I do. In general, with less anxiety, less active thoughts conflicting in her head. She’s got a calmer mind and just a much easier tone about her always and naturally. But she understood the guilt that I was feeling when I was so happy and holding our son. Yet, just my heart was breaking feeling like you could so easily move on and replace them with another, those things just didn’t feel right to me. And so she understood my journey in that and when we were in therapy, and we saw an amazing psychologist, Dr. Bob Fordyce, who’s a dear friend today and a business partner and we do a lot of public speaking and corporate engagements together. And we literally spent that much time in her office that she got to know me so well that you know, she said we couldn’t be good business partners because we took the learnings that she gave and we really brought it to life and brought it back to her with proof that her teachings of cognitive reshaping can work in the cognitive behavioral therapies that she she walked us through so you know we put those to use and to good work and we got out of that rut of their death only to be followed by lifestyle and heart and new ruts. Yeah,

Jerry Dugan  19:31

oh yeah, you’re always like one after the other after the the triplets power why I don’t want to give away too much for those who haven’t read the book yet you gotta get the book guys because you go to Paraguay to adopt that doesn’t work out. You have a pair of twins on the way they they miscarry and and again, whatever happens from Chapter 11 On I did skip for it. I needed to know like how I got to see the pictures at least. So I do know that there There is a happier ending to this. And and you have gotten through a lot of those hurdles. And, and you’re, you’ve heard it here so far. I mean, they, they’ve done things like working on reframing, they held on to their vow to see the other person’s point of view and also expect the other person to see their own point of view. And that’s, that is huge. Now, your personal life, though, also influenced your business life in a positive way, you know, I’m a firm believer that we, we don’t necessarily separate our character, to have two sets of character, like the business character and the family life character, like you are the same person in both, and your character is there. And so you’re going through all this with Susan, trying to have a family with children. And you get this moment where you’re back at the workplace. And you found out that this family owned business that your dad started, is now it has now developed a toxic environment. And you’re able to apply a lot of what you’ve gained from reframing and hardship and seeing you and your wife at your worst. How did that lead towards forward focus in that program? So shifting gears here from family to now this business application, this leadership application, tell us about, you know, Ford Focus and how your life experience has led to this business transformation.

Johnny Sirpilla  21:23

So I’m really not a believer, Jerry in the work life balance. Yeah, because as I see that we have, it’s just life, right. And yes, we have our work life, and we have our personal life. But that falls under the heading of life. And we have the same heart, and the same mind, and the same character and the same integrity that we bring into the workplace that we bring into our home place. And I don’t believe that we can genuinely switch gears and be a awful person at work. Somebody that beats people up at work, you know, it’s tough on employees yelling, screaming harsh, and then cross the threshold at home and walk in and be kind, loving, nurturing, welcoming to our children to our spouse, I just think it were the same person at both places. And it may be recognize that as unhappy, excuse me, and happy and lost, as I was at home, when I got to work, I felt the same. And it made me start looking at my company that I was leading. My dad was retired at that point, he got cancer and had to stop working when I was 28. And it was all on me. And I realized the culture that I allowed, all for the desire for business success. And I realized that I had a responsibility to our team, to create a culture at work that ultimately makes them better for their real purpose in life when they go home. Mother, father, sister, daughter, husband, grandmother, whatever it is, right? Friend, caretaker, whatever your role is, when you go home, that really, really matters. And I’m never saying that our work life doesn’t matter. It does. But then the thing that kind of gives us nourishment to fill up to go back to work the next day, because it’s really a cycle, right? You know, have a wonderful home life, get nourished and energized to go into your workday, have a fulfilling and completing workday that you could be energized and ready to go back home, and have that great cycle working and have a good flow there. And I had let them down by allowing a culture that just perpetuated disrespect teams criticizing each other. And then ultimately, and most importantly, that affected customer service. Because I’ve always said that my employees and I, we are not actors. And so you could not, you know, come out of a meeting or a sales meeting where the sales leader beats you up. And then you walk out there on the floor and see the first customer and just be genuinely offering great customer service. Yeah. And so, you know, for me, I saw that as an opportunity to say, I’m going to take this post traumatic growth opportunity, the trauma we just experienced at home. And I’ve got to look forward, because when I look back, it’s too painful. And so I created Ford Focus. And Ford Focus is what I liked about myself and my solutions. And the great people around me that can help bring things better my talents, my skills, all that’s in forward thinking and backward thinking is my weaknesses, my insecurities, the problems, sit there, blaming others, it’s there. And so from that I, you know, went on a year long journey, and told the employees that at the end of this year, everyone’s employment is up for re evaluation. And this is the culture that we’re going to work in might not be what you’re looking for, no worries, I respect that. It’s just that you’ll need to find employment somewhere else, or all encourage you to do that. And that’s all Ultimately what was done. And at the end of that year, I relieved about two people from a team of about 70, that the others really absorbed it, no one hit perfection because none of us can. But they had a commitment and a desire to recognize doesn’t mean that they still didn’t make mistakes at work, or they weren’t harsh at times. But that we had a culture established that we said, Wait a minute, not here. That’s not how we do things. And they knew from instruction from reading materials they were given from our company newsletter, for me speaking twice a month at company meetings, they knew how we do it. Right, I did clarify that I showed them what conflict resolution looks like. And I’m a believer that insecurity is the root source of all workplace conflict. So we were able to talk to people about when they’re lashing out, that they have an insecurity, that they’re now projecting on to someone else in another situation. And we’re going to get to the bottom of that, and we’re going to talk about it.

Jerry Dugan  25:58

Wow, yeah, I’m gonna have to write down insecurity real quick. Yes, my day job, by the way, is doing leadership development team building. For a healthcare organization. I never thought about that insecurity, though, be in the root of some of these, these limits

Johnny Sirpilla  26:13

the root root of all work, place chi, I’ve seen it, Jerry, at every income level, whether I had associates making 50 grand a year, or 100 grand a year, $2 million a year, that when they lashed out, when they got aggressive, there was an insecurity in them. They were trying to protect their territory. So maybe their insecurity was, if someone else is shining, they might take some of my responsibilities, they might take some of my upward career mobility, no camping world, I was blessed to lead and be part of an executive team leading over 10,000 employees. It was, you know, a $4 billion a year in annual sales company with, you know, stores in 38 states, we were all over the country, and growing and building more stores. And in that upward mobility and growth environment, it was so prevalent to see insecurities of someone’s future career plans, and then we would see how people would act out in ways that would create conflict at work. And as leaders, we can look at that and say some of that we’re creating, because we’re allowing that insecurity to surface, we’re not providing security for them, so that they see a clear career path moving ahead. We’ve perpetuated and allowed a culture where someone can take their insecurities lash out at others, but because of, you know, maybe avoidance not desiring to deal with conflict resolution, it just becomes rampid. Yes. And you know, you have a big company, small company, it’s it’s very common there as well. But you have a big company, and then you can have 1000s and 1000s of insecure people.

Jerry Dugan  27:55

Yes, yes, and, and people playing it safe and disengaging, so they don’t get wounded in their insecurities. And especially in a time and age, we need your staff to take risks, to feel safe enough to take risks to take care of your customer to take care of each other. And, man, oh, wow. All right. That was the that was for me. Were nice of admission right there. On top of everything else we talked about.

Johnny Sirpilla  28:19

There’s so much that you can apply there in your work in the healthcare space, because I’ve been on the board of a large health system for 20 years. And you know, I’ve seen firsthand where leadership impacts quality of care. Yeah, right. So in my business, we were in their recreation business, right, we were creating and fulfilling dreams for people for their leisure time for their family time. So that was super fun. Take that into a health care setting where it’s life and death. Yes. And leadership can impact the quality of care, just like it impacts quality of customer service. Yeah. And some might say, oh, that’s that’s not true. Because the quality of care will always be a priority. I challenge that because when someone is treated poorly, and their mind is in another place, when their mind is recounting how their boss just ripped them apart, and tore them down, maybe publicly, those thoughts are swirling through their mind as they need to be administering drugs, and having just an interaction with a patient. So the quality of care doesn’t have to be something along the extent of malpractice in a bad surgery. It could just be in the quality of compassionate care when you’re interacting with a patient that as we know, today, we’re Medicare payments can be based on the quality assurance scores that hospitals get based on the patient’s, you know, filling out surveys, you know, those surveys are important and people they’re gonna assume that you’re giving them the right drugs, right. That’s a standard that you have to do. But do you do it with compassion and care and I think about a nurse that when my wife had her double mastectomy And she came in and my wife had in her hands a clinging cross, I had rosary beads in my hand. And we were sitting there, you know, at six in the morning waiting for the IVs to be put in. And she comes in and sees that we’re clearly a faith based couple. And she was going to start the day with the IVs, before Susan went into pre op, and she just saw how troubled we were. And she asked us, if we if she could pray with us. And it Jerry, that it changed the start of that day. Yeah, where that level of compassion of care was put there. And then the nurse in the pre op area that literally helped me lift my kids off their mom saying goodbye to her, and then me and walk us out of the pre op area, who stopped and hugged me and said, you know, you need a hug before you go back and rejoin with your kids. You know, you talk about quality of care. That’s, that’s over the top. And I did not have concern. For the surgeon. I knew he was world class, he was going to do an amazing job in that double mastectomy. But our hearts were breaking. And we were fearful of what those biopsies would show. That’s what we need it. Yeah. And so I you know, I get really excited about that conversation. Because it’s a game changer. It’s a difference maker.

Jerry Dugan  31:23

Yeah, cuz we’re not just treating a an ailment or a malady, you’re treating a whole person. And that whole person comes with emotions, fears, concerns, hopes, dreams. And, and this applies outside of health care. I mean, it’s people who lead teams, you are leading people, and, you know, maybe they’re going through a tough time, maybe they’re going through a great time. Are you able to celebrate and be there with them when they they have those moments of pain, and suffering? And, you know, can you bring your human self, it goes back to what we were talking about earlier that, you know, there is that connection of who I am as a person that’s with me, when I’m at home and with me, when I go to work, like there is no switch flipping that. And if there is I mean, people got asked, you got to ask yourself, like, Am I happy doing this? Do I feel like an honest person living in an honest life and chances are, if you got a different personality at work than you do at home, you probably hate yourself in some way, shape, or form because you’re not living an authentic life. And Johnny, so far, we’ve talked about the struggle that you and Susan had gone through trying to have children, the importance of working together, grieving together, seeing each other for from the other person’s point of view. We’ve talked about Ford Focus, you know, leading the whole person setting culture, letting go those who don’t want to be a part of that team culture, and then providing that sense of safety. So that people can be themselves, take risks for the organization, take care of customers, that kind of thing, learn from their mistakes, and so on. And folks, Johnny’s book is Life is hard, but I’ll be okay. And he got that title from a speaking engagement he had done somebody asked him a question. And his answer was life is hard, but I’ll be okay. Where can folks find this book? And if they want more, they want you to speak at their organization. They want you to run a workshop. How can they get more Johnny? Sir Pilla?

Johnny Sirpilla  33:20

Thank you, Jerry. Yes, my book. Very, very proud of the book right now and how it’s doing it has hit number one international bestseller on Amazon. In 14 categories. It’s currently the number one hot new release in 19 categories on Amazon. So it’s available, of course on Amazon, other online book retailers as well. It is available on my website, www dot encourage 30 three.com. So that’s the name of my company is called encourage. So encourage 30 three.com on Instagram at Johnny sir Pilla, also on LinkedIn, Facebook, and my website is a great way to email me as well. My email is Johnny, at encouraged 30 three.com

Jerry Dugan  34:12

Nice, John. And before we go, any final words of wisdom for our listeners?

Johnny Sirpilla  34:17

Well, you know, I want to comment on the one thing that you said, because when you were talking about those nurses, and how they’re treating that patient, you know, I see that even an extension of that Jerry, those nurses were treating the entire family. The doctor was treating the patient and the entire family. And they recognize that that that nurse, the doctor who was phenomenal as well, the surgeon, that was that same goodhearted nurse at home and she brought that right into work with her she didn’t have a division in that space and in personality leaders lead the employee and they also lead their mindset that when they go home, that leader can have an impact on a family that leader can have an impact on if that mom or dad goes home from work and is abusive at home, where they can take out their power because they were abused at work, they were treated poorly at work, they were talked down to, they were belittled, they go home where they have authority and power. And they can take that out there. And as leaders, if we allow that we are part of that cycle, just like that nurse was treating the entire family, we as leaders, when we allow that at work, we are treating mistreating that entire family. And so I challenge people to think about that. Because it is it is real. There is an authority and a responsibility that comes with being a leader. And when you accept that title for your own career growth, for your paycheck growth, I want to challenge people to realize that it’s not all about you. And there’s a responsibility that goes with that. And that’s thinking about those that you’re leading, and then ultimately who they impact because you impact them too.

Jerry Dugan  35:57

That’s the perfect way to end that. Tony, thank you so much for being on here, Johnny.

Johnny Sirpilla  36:00

Appreciate you.

Jerry Dugan  36:01

Now, if you like everything you heard in this episode, just one thing you could do to help say thank you, and that is to hit the share button and send this to a friend, a family member or coworker, or even that neighbor across the street, whom you feel would also appreciate Johnny’s story. So again, hit that share button. Go ahead and do that right now. And send it to somebody right now. Unless you’re driving, then don’t do that. That’s not safe. Now, you can also go to the show notes at beyond the rut.com/three to five. There you’ll find a link to Johnny’s website, you’ll find some related episodes to this conversation that we had, as well as some other resources. Now, I’m glad you joined me this week and I look forward to joining you again next week. But until next time, go live life beyond the rut. Take care. Bye

Reframing Mindset During Difficult Times – BtR 325