“I think at the end of the day, people want to work for good people” – David Blake.
Interview with David Blake
David Blake, a certified executive coach, has a Professional Brand- “Building Forward Now”.
The tagline is Dream big. Plan smart.
David analyzes a business and develops a customized plan with the tools needed to take a business or practice to the next level. He crafts a personalized work brand and vision together with the company leader to help define a purpose and connect to future career choices and direction to add life’s balance for both the leader and employees.
David Blake points out that if you have an office of 5 people or you have an office of 100 people, each is a fundamentally different individual and unless you get the time to understand what is driving them and what is motivating them as individuals. Off-the-shelf solutions don’t work.
David customizes it to the needs of the leader, and most importantly to the needs of the organization and the people that work there.
He asks the leader whether he’s wanted in person or virtually. Some are content with Zoom. He leaves it up to the leader. David likes to travel and enjoys getting to know people. You get a different sense of things in 3D, not one-dimensional.
“You learn more at the water cooler than you do at a business meeting”
People will tell you things when you are face to face that they may not tell you online. People pull him aside into the hallway and say “I didn’t tell you this but”…
He feels that it’s important to speak to everyone in the office. “You learn more at the water cooler than you do over a business meeting. You learn a lot in the hallway conversations.”
He offers a signature strength program on his website based on an assessment called Disc.
This is designed to see what your passions and motivations are and how to communicate within your team based on what is important to you. Once a group goes through that, the information is shared with the group.
“The Blueprint of Engagement”
David wants to use the information to structure work built on people’s strengths. Don’t pound people over the head with things they don’t do well. They will never do well. As a leader, structure the work and team based on the things that they are passionate about called “The Blueprint of Engagement.”
That allows a program creation where everyone is involved. The leader is given very important diagnostic data based on the team that he or she may never have thought of.
David Blake says “I never try to make someone into something that they’re not but I do try to find out what they are good at and capitalize on it. That’s what a leader does. He brings out the best in people. Ask people what they are passionate about. When you get up in the morning, tell me what excites you. Im not saying give up your day job, but if you don’t feel that that part of your life is fulfilling, then what is another part of life that we can focus on that will give balance?
An example is a guy who sold life insurance. He was very good at this but he hated it and wanted to make a change. Asked if you could be anything, what would it be? He said, “well, I’ve always wanted to write music. I’ve done this before and people would always say that it’s good and that I should monetize that.” David then asked how he would monetize it by going through a process with him. He’s still selling life insurance and he’s still very good at it but now he has set up a small biz where he writes jingles for companies. So, now he has balance.
People ask, how you make work fun and sometimes you can’t but people are looking for that balance. People say they go to work and then home and keep working. That’s an indicator that balance is lacking. When you get out of balance, it’s like having a dizzy spell. You have to sit down for a moment and let everything settle out.
You have to have balance. David found anyone who is successful is involved in a lot of different things that give them a sense of fulfillment. Many times, it’s not about making money.
David says “My dream job ever since I was a little boy was to be a railroad engineer. Well, guess what? There aren’t a lot of railroad engineers out there anymore. I have a profession and I love a profession that pays me well and I’m happy. Sometimes it gets on me a little bit. I told a friend that I always wanted to drive a steam engine.” He said, “well, you know there is an antique railroad in the city right next to us.”
David went over there one weekend and met the guys that run it. He asked if they would teach him how to run this. They are all mechanical engineers and they have technical minds. Now Mr. Blake is a licensed steam engine engineer. On weekends, he gets great joy at going over there and meeting with families and kids, showing them how these old engines run. His grandson thinks this s the greatest thing ever and that his grandpa runs a train. He thinks he’s an engineer. He doesn’t know that he is really a consultant. But that’s the balance. That’s his outlet. It’s helped a lot and it gave him his dream and that’s the best thing ever because he’s doing something he loves.
It’s important if you are stuck and you’re not sure where to go, to come to that realization and do something about it.
David will spend 30 minutes on the phone with you and won’t charge you a dime but hear you out. Then he’ll tell you what a good approach is. For him, a lot of it is about giving back. He feels that he has been immensely blessed in professional life and had opportunities galore. The best people he’s ever worked for gave back to him. So he tries to do this too, especially small organizations that really struggle to be able to do things. You know what your challenges are. Take 30 minutes and connect with him and let him spend some time telling you what you might be able to do.
He might say “I’m not the right guy but if I am, I might be able to give you some options that are available to you and discuss what works best.”
People like you can come in and change the flow and interaction of employees from night to day. People say there’s got to be a better way and he says, there is. There are many approaches, but it’s not one size fits all. Anybody that says read this book ad then you’ll be good to go won’t work. You need things to be customized for you.
Being in the military has shaped how he approaches things. Regardless of how dangerous a job is, we learn that we always need to look out for each other and give back to each other, to take care of each other. The concept of paying it forward or building forward or leadership is fundamentally who he is at his core.
People underestimate some of our greatest leaders. They learn to sacrifice and be accountable without blaming it on someone else.
Contact David Blake for free resources where he helps give you clarity, discover purpose and determine a direction. You will get help with a strong work brand that is carefully cultivated for you. Visit his website for additional information.