Growing with Purpose Podcast: "Leading with the Heart First" with Jay Wilkinson
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Note: This interview was recorded at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.
On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Jay Wilkinson, founder and CEO of Firespring, an inside-out marketing agency and Nebraska's first B Corp. Firespring is also a 2020 Forbes Small Giant.
With a team of more than 200 employees, Jay spends most of his time working on the culture at Firespring and helping leaders in other companies become purpose-driven. But in the early 2000s, Jay experienced a pivotal moment in his life and career when he was fired as CEO of his own company. In the wake of the September 11th attacks and the economic decline that followed, his board of directors wanted him to fire more than half of their staff. When Jay refused, they fired him from the very company that he built.
In this episode, hear how Jay recovered from that experience and managed to buy out the venture capitalists on his board and rebuild the company. Plus, hear Paul and Jay discuss how to care for introverts on your team, starting from the very first interview.
Tune in to Jay's story below.
[6:22] Getting Fired From Your Own Company
[12:46] Love in the Workplace
[16:06] The Two Worst Reasons to Promote Someone
[20:24] How to Care for Introverts
[26:58] Scaling Great Culture
[34:31] Modeling Heart-First Leadership
Book that Influenced Jay's Leadership: