Keep Leading!™ Podcast Episode 009: Crisis Ready

Keep Leading!™ Podcast Episode 009: Crisis Ready

Melissa Agnes
Crisis Management Keynote Speaker, Advisor, Author of “Crisis Ready”
Crisis Ready

Author of Crisis Ready: Building an Invincible Brand in an Uncertain World, Melissa Agnes is a leading authority on crisis preparedness, reputation management, and brand protection. Agnes is a coveted speaker, commentator, and advisor to some of today’s leading organizations faced with the greatest risks.

As a strategic advisor and keynote speaker, Melissa Agnes has worked with NATO, Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense, financial firms, technology companies, healthcare organizations, cities and municipalities, law enforcement agencies, global non-profits, and many others, helping them understand risk and build invincible brands that can withstand even the most devastating of events.

In 2015, she gave a TEDx talk in Los Angeles where she discussed the secret to successful crisis management in the 21st century.

Agnes is the editor of the Crisis Ready Blog, the host of the Invincible Brand Podcast, a contributor to Forbes, and a go-to source for the press, with recent coverage including the Wall Street Journal, VIBE Magazine, USA Today, and many others.

As a university guest lecturer, Agnes teaches crisis management in university courses around the world, including at NYU and McGill, and her book and Crisis Ready Model continue to be adopted into undergraduate, graduate, and MBA courses around the world. Harvard University is one of the latest schools to adopt “Crisis Ready” as required course reading for its Crisis Communication course.

Website
https://melissaagnes.com

LinkedIn
https://www.linkedin.com/in/melissaagnes

Twitter
https://twitter.com/melissa_agnes

Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/melissaagnes/

Instagram
https://instagram.com/melissaagnes/

Leadership Quote
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” –Thomas A. Edison

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” –Mark Twain

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Transcript

This podcast is part of the C Suite Radio Network, turning the volume off on business.

Welcome to the Keep Leading Podcast, a podcast dedicated to promoting leadership development and sharing leadership insights. Here’s your host, the Leadership Excelerator, Eddie Turner.

Eddie Turner:
Hello, everyone. This is Eddie Turner, the host of the Keep Leading Podcast, the podcast dedicated to leadership development and insights.I think you’re really going to enjoy today’s episode. You want to listen to learn about crisis management. Now, why do you want to pay attention and learn about crisis management? Shouldn’t we just leave that to the legal department or the communications department? Well, Melissa Agnes, an authority on crisis management will help us understand why it matters at every level of our organizations and what we can do to get ready when that time comes. She’s going to share all that with us and more right after this.

This podcast is sponsored by Eddie Turner LLC. Eddie Turner LLC delivers executive and leadership coaching, professional speaking, facilitation services, and management consulting across the globe. Eddie Turner LLC also creates voiceovers, serves as a master of ceremonies, as a panel and event moderator, and provides national media commentary. Visit EddieTurnerLLC.com to learn more.

Eddie Turner:
Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Keep Leading Podcast, the podcast dedicated to leadership development and leadership insights. I’m your host Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator. I work with leaders to accelerate performance and drive impact as a leader.Are you prepared for a crisis in your organization? Since it’s not a matter of if a crisis will happen but when, it’s important for us to prepare ourselves and our organizations. My guest today helps leading organizations across the globe understand risk and build invincible brands that can withstand even the most devastating event. She is Melissa Agnes, the author of Crisis Ready – Building And Invincible Brand In An Uncertain World. Melissa is a leading authority on crisis preparedness, reputation management, and brand protection. She’s a coveted speaker, commentator, and adviser to some of today’s leading organizations faced with the greatest risks. You may want to also check out her TED Talk she gave in Los Angeles in 2015 where she discussed the Secret To Successful Crisis Management In The 21st Century. I am pleased to welcome Melissa Agnes.

Melissa, welcome to Keep Leading Podcast.

Melissa Agnes:
That was such a great intro, Eddie. Thank you.
Eddie Turner:
Oh my goodness, I have to. I have to also tell them I guess that you and I met about six months ago New York City. We met in New York City, I got invited out by our good mutual fan. Tony Chatman. He says “Hey, Eddie, there’s some people I want you to meet while you’re in town.” And I said “Great. Let’s go.” We hung out and I met you and Jack and Laura and I thought “Wow! What a great group of people!” And I thanked him for inviting me out. And with you I thought “What a nice lady! She’s brilliant!” just from our conversation. Later on I learned you’re not just a nice lady, you’re kind of a big deal, Ms. Melissa.
Melissa Agnes:
I don’t know how to respond to that but thank you. That was an awesome afternoon. That was such a fun afternoon.
Eddie Turner:
Yes, it was. And so everywhere I look, I see you popping up. So please tell my listeners a little bit about your background, who you are, and just some of the great things you’re doing.
Melissa Agnes:
Thank you. Yeah, okay. So I have a passion for helping organizations become what I refer to, what I call as being crisis ready. Crisis ready is, and it’s not just about the major catastrophic events, but it’s anything from the minute everyday issues that come up in business, which is a part of business on a day-to-day week-to-week basis straight through to those more catastrophic events that can actually impact the business, its people, its profit, its reputation on a long-term basis. And so crisis readiness, what I do is I help organizations implement or embed what I call a crisis ready culture and the whole goal is that whether it’s one of those minute issues straight through to the catastrophic scale crisis, you want your entire team, every single member of the organization to do three things very, very well intrinsically and in real time and those three things are be able to detect, so identify a rising risk, so is it an issue versus is it a crisis and what does that look like and how do we detect the red flags of it in real time so that you can have the best advantage to respond effectively. That’s the first thing. The second thing is to assess its material impact on the organization. So classify it – Is it an issue, is it a crisis, what does that mean? And once you are able to classify it in that way, you can then respond, and this is third piece, have a team that is able to take any type of negative event and respond in a way that actually fosters increased trust and credibility in the brand rather than depreciating from it. It’s like the ultimate goal and it’s my passion. And part of the work that I do, that I’m very, very blessed to do with organizations around the country, around the world and everything from the public sector, the private sector, government, law enforcement, the army, straight through to Fortune-500 companies.
Eddie Turner:
Yes, you’ve really covered the globe and you’ve even done some work with NATO, I understand.
Melissa Agnes:
Yes, I do.
Eddie Turner:
Yeah, you’re hitting some of the organizations that we know well as listeners and some that we may not know but you’re in some of those covert operations. And so we appreciate the service that you’re rendering.
Melissa Agnes:
Thank you.
Eddie Turner:
Now tell us also you’re a published person, you have your book obviously, but you are also pretty sought after in some prestigious journals. Can you share some of those.
Melissa Agnes:
Yeah. I mean, I produce content. It’s part of what I do because my mission is to help every organization out there become crisis ready. I really believe that if every organization were crisis ready for everything that being crisis ready stands for that the world would be kinder, safer, more balanced place. So, yes, journals. My book has been written about in academic journals. It was named top, I think it was six or seven, I can’t remember, but anyways Top Ten Business Book Of 2018 by Forbes. So, yeah, just a lot of getting the message out there in a way that hopefully resonates and inspires people to take action.
Eddie Turner:
Well, I have to let my listeners know you’re being quite modest. You’ve been featured in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Forbes and you run the Crisis Ready blog which I am going to suggest my listeners follow, and you have the Invincible Brand podcast.
Melissa Agnes:
I do.
Eddie Turner:
Yes, yes. So we would also encourage them to subscribe to your podcast and leave a review.
Melissa Agnes:
Thank you. I appreciate that.
Eddie Turner:
Now I do a lot of work at universities. And one of the things I was very pleased to learn, and once I got a copy of your book, I could see why, this book is just incredible. This is a thorough solid resource. It really is a how-to guide and you’ve made it so easy. You have so many tips and tricks that you have. I love these green boxes, these green boxes. My listeners can’t see me moving my hands and flipping through but you got to get a copy and check this out, folks. It’s required reading at the Undergraduate, Graduate, and MBA level at universities around the world including the prestigious NYU and McGill.
Melissa Agnes:
Yes, yes. So if I want every organization to be crisis ready, if I want … Being crisis ready is about putting people above process and bottom line. It’s about understanding emotional relatability and how that impacts incidences and situations and how you can use that to take any negative event and really resonate with those who matter most to your business and strengthen those relationships. It’s all of these powerful, powerful things in terms of just everyday business. So when I ask myself if I want every organization to become crisis ready, then how do I go about doing that, students are the professionals at the future. So my work with academia is just like my work with law enforcement, the two things that I really, really hold near and dear to my heart and mean a lot to me in terms of empowering today’s youth to really go in and lead by example and bring these must-haves into the workforce with them and use them as assets to their careers.
Eddie Turner:
And I like how you said that because it’s so true. You’re bending the arc early by starting with them now and they are growing up in a different world as they’re leaving school. And as I read your book, you hit me. I said “You know, there are a lot of things I consider to be life skills. Until I read your book, I did not consider crisis management to be one of them but now I do.”
Melissa Agnes:
Oh thank you, because it is. So I have a friend who asked me recently, he said “So what do your clients do when they’re in crisis?” And my instinctive response was “My clients don’t have crises because they’re crisis ready.” And the reality is that you cannot prevent every crisis. It’s not true that my clients don’t have crises. I mean I deal with some of the biggest companies in the world with the most impactful risk and crisis is a part of their business model. It is. And the whole point though in saying that is that these clients instinctively, and this is the part that just fills my heart, is they’ll have a catastrophic event or a potential catastrophic event and their team will instinctively know how to immediately deescalate it from crisis level to issue level and then from issue level to non-issue level. And that’s the goal and that is a life skill. We deal with issues on our day-to-day personal lives straight through to in the corporate world and our business lives. So, yes, thank you for saying that because I agree. I think it should be and it is. And, again, the world would just be a better place if everybody could do that.
Eddie Turner:
So you help your clients stay ready so they don’t have to get ready.
Melissa Agnes:
So that they are ready and so that they can instinctively deescalate it.Can I share a story?

Eddie Turner:
I’d love that.
Melissa Agnes:
It highlights at a little bit. So a couple years ago a client came to me, an organization came to me. This organization is a massive venue that within about a month every year when they’re on caters to 2.6 million people at their venue. And so at any given time there’s about 185,000 thousand people on their grounds. The risks that they’re dealing with are things like terrorist threats or a violent act of some kind or an explosion or a natural disaster. So they’re impactful risks. And they came to me when they said “We had an incident where we believed that there was an active shooter on our premise. It turned out that there wasn’t but we believed that there was and kids started screaming and cops started running armed and it just really amplified, escalated the fear that came, the panic that came with the situation.” And they realized post incident that they were not ready at all, at all. So they came to me and we had a very limited time of window opening to get them crisis ready in order to be crisis ready for the next event. That was a three-month period. So we did. We got them ready. We worked with the FBI. We did everything that we needed to do to get them ready. And then about a year later, so a few months ago they come to me and they said “Melissa, your definition of issue and crisis,” which is a big thing that I teach, “it doesn’t apply to us.” So the definition of crisis is a negative event or a situation that stops business as usual because it requires immediate escalation straight to the top of leadership and that’s because this incident threatens long-term material impact on one to all of the following five things. So, either people, the businesses in operations, the environment, the reputation of the organization, and/or its bottom line. So, people, environment, operations, reputation, bottom line – long-term material impact, stops business as usual. So that’s the definition and they came to me and they said “Your definition doesn’t apply to us because we had an incident. It required escalation straight to the top of our CEO because he had to get on camera, he had to talk to the media, he had to do everything that he needed to do but it wasn’t a crisis. It was an issue and issue management or issues do not stop business as usual and don’t require that immediate escalation because they don’t threaten that long-term material impact.” And all I could do was smile because this is an organization that came to me when they had a very serious incident and they didn’t know what to do. And here they are a year later saying “Your definitions are wrong” and my smile was due to my definitions are not wrong. So I got to congratulate this client and said “You realized what you did. What you faced was brand crisis but because you were crisis ready, because you’ve done the work that you have done with your team, the training, the protocols, all of it, what you were able to do was instinctively reflexively do what you needed to do, take the appropriate action and communication to deescalate it down to an issue level. So for you it wasn’t a crisis because you knew exactly how to deescalate it and you did. And so it’s not that my definitions are wrong. It’s kudos to you guys for the incredible work that you’ve put in over the course of the last year. Congratulations.” And to me, that’s the most rewarding thing that an organization can do that and that is the goal, that is the mission behind helping companies become crisis ready.
Eddie Turner:
Isn’t that something! What an incredible story. Thank you for sharing that story and thank you for giving us a definition of what a crisis is because that was going to be one of my questions to you because people define it differently as your client did. And then sometimes that may be why they don’t get ready because they’re thinking only about a terrorist scenario, as you mentioned, or they’re thinking about some type of a natural disaster but then there are also the front cover of the Wall Street Journal stories about improper conduct and so many other areas. So thank you for that definition.
Melissa Agnes:
Absolutely. My pleasure.
Eddie Turner:
Well, what I’d like to do at this time is pause for a moment for a word from our sponsors.

This podcast is sponsored by Eddie Turner LLC. Organizations who need to accelerate the development of their leaders call Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator. Eddie works with leaders to accelerate performance and drive impact. Call Eddie Turner to help your leaders one on one as their coach or to inspire them as a group through the power of facilitation or a keynote address. Visit EddieTurnerLLC.com to learn more.

This is Dave Sanderson. You may know me from being the last passenger off US Airways Flight 1549, The Miracle On The Hudson from the movie Sully and you’re listening to the Keep Leading Podcast with Eddie Turner.

Eddie Turner:
We’re back. We’re talking today to someone who I’m just totally impressed with, Melissa Agnes. She’s an authority on crisis management. She’s the bestselling author of the book Crisis Ready. It’s mandatory reading it at many universities. And she’s a keynote speaker and just one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.
Melissa Agnes:
You just make me smile, Eddie.
Eddie Turner:
Melissa, I’m just enthralled with this explanation that you gave us before the break about what a crisis really is and how people define it as different. You gave us that definition but can you also tell us what it really means foreign organization to be crisis ready and why that’s so important?
Melissa Agnes:
Absolutely. So really what you’re looking at is, again, I said it earlier, whereas there is the everyday issue management straight through to the catastrophic crises which are less common, thankfully, but when they happen, so what you’re looking at there is the most likely high-impact negative event. So to your point earlier where you said you might only think about the big catastrophic events or you might not kind of dig down into what a crisis means for your organization, maybe you’re a solopreneur, maybe you’re a small to medium-size business, you have one to a hundred employees or maybe you’re a mega corp or government or whatever it is but the reality is that every single business has a handful of most likely high-impact issues and crises that you’re the most prone invulnerable to. There is not a business in this world, there’s also not a human being in this world who is not vulnerable or prone to some subset of high-risk scenario, so most likely high-impact scenarios. So when you want to be crisis ready, what I strive to do is you want to create a culture that is able to, again, identify, assess and respond to any type of negative event in a way that fosters increased trust and credibility in your brand. And that is when you can look at it and say “What are our brand crises?” or “What are our brand issues? And what are the incidences that threaten the hard work that we have spent years putting into developing this great reputation and these relationships with those who matter most to our business?” And one of the reasons that I’m able to work in, I’ve almost worked in every industry now, almost, not quite yet but almost, and the reason is that business, no matter what it is, whether you’re the army, whether you’re NATO, whether you’re a law enforcement agency or another government entity, whether you’re a nonprofit, an NGO or a for-profit mega corporation or a small to medium sized-business, mom and pop shop, whatever the case is, every successful business relies on the relationships that it creates and that it fosters to run that business successfully. So business is about people, in other words. And crisis management is about those very same people. It’s about when you are tested, whether it’s a small issue to a catastrophic crisis, when something negative goes wrong that threatens the brand that you’ve worked so hard to build, you want to be able to instinctively know precisely what’s expected of you by those who matter most to your business and come out of that situation with increased trust and credibility. You want them to say “Wow! When it counted most, they really met our expectations. They really showcased and lived their values which are the values that connect me emotionally to that brand. And at the end of it is yes, maybe something happened, maybe they were wrong, maybe they weren’t, maybe it’s a long-lasting impact but when it comes down to it, I’m still going to stand by this brand because they’ve proven themselves to me.” And that’s ultimately the goal.And I’m going to stop talking so I can let you talk.

Eddie Turner:
No, I’m enjoying listening to you. That’s why we have you on the Keep Leading Podcast.Some of the leaders listening maybe thinking, “Listen, I understand what you’re saying, Melissa, but I’m just the IT guy. I’m leading the IT organization” or “I’m leading some other aspect” or maybe “I’m just even on a different level in the organization. Should you not just leave this up to legal department? They worry about crisis or the communications folks, that’s who needs to worry about this.”

Melissa Agnes:
Wouldn’t it be a sad place if we lived in a world where everybody said “You know, this is important but it’s not on me and I’m going to let somebody else take care of it.” What if every single person said that? What would get taken care of? And I can’t tell you how often I get contacted by those people who are like “Well, I’m not senior management,” or “I’m not senior leadership but I know that we’re vulnerable and I know that leadership either isn’t taking this too seriously or it’s not on their radar” and there are ways that you can take ownership of this that you can lead by example for your organization in your capacity as well as start bringing it to the attention of the decision makers who will then work to implement this type of crisis ready culture. I believe that we all have a responsibility in this. And the whole thing about crisis management is that it’s not siloed. It tends to be that status quo the crisis management plans, which is a term I really dislike, are created in a siloed fashion and crisis management is cross organizational. And no matter where you are within your organization, you have no idea of knowing who is going to be the first to detect something. Your frontline needs to know how to detect when an incident has a high likelihood of garnering unwanted attention. They need to understand the flags that say “Hey, this is something that needs to be flagged and I need to raise this to my manager’s attention because something’s off here and maybe this might escalate.” That manager needs to know what to do with it. They need to know who to bring in to further assess what the material impact is, so is it an issue versus is it a crisis. And then leadership, once it’s brought to them, if it is flagged as a potential crisis, needs to lead by example and needs to be able to lead and provide directives and communicate internally and externally and take the right actions in order to sustain that trust that you’ve built so hard. So it really is cross organizational. It is the responsibility, in my opinion, of every organization to become crisis ready and to take these initiatives. And then it becomes a responsibility of everybody within that organization to feel empowered and to empower themselves and to empower others to be able to foster increased trust and credibility when it matters most.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. Well, I want to let the folks listening know that your book, as I said earlier, it’s an amazing work that you put together and it’s almost 300 pages but you’ve made it easy for folks. You said something very interesting on Page 9. You said that it should be deep rooted and a cultural part of organization but you kind of take people off the hook. You said that you don’t have to read the entire book. You kind of gave three categories. You said “Leadership and decision makers will benefit from reading the book in its entirety. Those tasked with creating the crisis ready program should read the book twice.” And then you said “All employees will benefit from reading Chapters 1 through 5 and Chapter 10.” So there’s a little bit of something in here for everybody. And then somebody else you put in here that I thought was really cool. I’ve already talked about the green boxes but the CRISIS acronym that you created that when people have a pessimistic view of what a crisis is and then because you’re the ultimate optimist, you’ve given acronym for what CRISIS is in a positive way, optimistic way for people to look at it. And then you begin to break it down for people. So tell us a little bit about that.
Melissa Agnes:
Yeah, absolutely. So that came about, that was actually somebody, a contact of mine that contacted me on LinkedIn. So he came and he posted publicly and he just wrote “This is why ‘CRISIS’ is bad word.” And so he used the acronym CRISIS. And so C is for people Create their problems, R is people React by blaming others. They Infer that all will be okay. They Secure themselves behind false claims. Independent, Eddie, comments of working as a collective. And Sue to protect the little honor they have left. And I thought “My goodness! If that was true, what a sad place this would be. And if that’s the perception, we need to work to fix that because that is not what CRISIS should stand for.” And so I changed that and I said “Listen, let’s do it this way. C is for Communicate. R is for respect. I is for initiate. S is for Show. I is for Issue Management. And S is for sustain.” And really what you’re doing here is communication. So in order to effectively manage, successfully manage any crisis, you need to simultaneously do two things very, very, very effectively and that is take the right course of action to right the wrong and fix whatever’s happened and simultaneously you need to be able to communicate effectively with those who matter most to your business both internally and externally. So communicate is about living truly your values and showcasing what you’re doing and showing the people who matter most to your business that they matter to your business and that you care and all of these things. Respect is in terms of validating their emotions. And one of the things is in order to deescalate a situation, especially when it’s emotionally charged, I have a crisis ready formula that enables you to do that because one of the crisis ready rules, which are those green boxes you keep mentioning, Eddie, is that you will never overcome emotion with logic. So if we will never overcome emotion with logic and a highly emotional situation occurs, how can you put your team, your frontline in a position to understand that and communicate in a way that does overcome that emotion? And that is by taking your logic, so taking your rationale and wrapping it in, first you need to validate their emotions. And when you look at it from a human perspective, just in relationships or just as human beings, what do we want, what do we care about when something matters to us? We want to be heard. We want to be validated. And so when something happens and people are upset against your organization for whatever reason, if you hear them and you validate those emotions, that goes a long way in then giving their hearts the opening to give you space to reach in a little bit further. And the second part of that equation, so once you’ve validated, is then to take that and relate to them on emotional level. So you’re saying “We hear you. We validate you” and you’re actually showing them that. You’re not just telling them. You’re taking the action sexually hear them and validate them. And then you’re saying “And what matters to you also matters to us.” So you validate, you relate, and then you can prove how that’s true. So Respect is really looking at a kind of a high level of that.Investigate. So now we get into the actions that need to be taken. You need to understand what happened. What happened? Where did it go wrong? Why did it go wrong? What were the gaps? What were the vulnerabilities? What were the exposures? What was the mistake? Whatever the case is, investigate and get to the root cause of the problem so that you can then strengthen it, improve it, and not let it happen again to the most of your capability.

So Show – this first S is to show that you have strong emotional intelligence in your leadership and that is, again, action and communication, communicating with emotional intelligence and all of these things that I keep talking about. I is for Issue Management. So I talked about the difference between issue and crisis. And Issue Management is one of those beautiful gifts. So we deal with issues on a day-to-day basis or on a week-to-week basis within our organizations. Business is about issue management, amongst other things. That is just the core of business. And when you are faced with an issue from teensy tiny customer complaint straight through to something that may garner unwanted attention, doesn’t matter, issues present two possibilities. The first is that you can mismanage the issue. And what that does is it probably won’t escalate to a crisis level right away but what it will do is it will chip away at the trust and credibility of your brand over time. And that amounts to something massive that actually amounts to a cultural crisis, which is one of the most challenging types of crises to overcome or when an issue presents itself, you can respond to it and manage it in a way that actually increases the trust and credibility in your brand. So making deposits into what my friend Capt. Chris Hsiung from the Mountain View Police Department says making deposits into your bank of stakeholder trust. And what that does is it gives you a bank of trust and credibility and goodwill that when something more catastrophic does happen, you gain the benefit of the doubt. And that is this beautiful privilege, earned opportunity where people say “All right, this is happened. Here’s what the world and the media is saying about it but you know what, that brand has never done wrong by me. That brand has always lived and showcased their values. They’ve always tended to me the way that I needed them to tend to me. So I am going to give them the benefit of the doubt and I’m going to wait to hear from them.” And that gives you this beautiful window of opportunity that is a luxury in this day and age to then space and time to then come out and do what’s right, so take those right actions and communicate effectively.

And then the final S is for Sustaining your business. And being crisis ready then goes to that brand invincibility piece where you can manage any type of negative event in a way and come out of it in a way with increased relationships, strengthened relationships with those who matter most to your business.

Eddie Turner:
Fantastic. Well, you have definitely given the Keep Leading Podcast listeners something to think about when it comes to their view of crisis. And one of the things that I think you’ve really highlighted for us is that crisis readiness is cultural and it doesn’t have to be complicated and it doesn’t have to be negative and it’s everyone’s responsibility.
Melissa Agnes:
It really is. When in doubt, if I could just give one piece of advice that can stand the width of time and prior to doing any of this work to become crisis ready, when in doubt, when faced with something challenging, if you empower your team to choose the lens to ask themselves “How can I respond to this? How can I manage this in a way that will strengthen the relationship with those who are impacted or those who matter?”, if you always use that as your guiding beacon, you will take your organization in the right direction.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing these tips with my listeners. Everyone on the Keep Leading Podcast is interested in continuing to develop as a leader. What words of wisdom would you have for our leaders listening to this podcast?
Melissa Agnes:
So there’s a quote by Thomas Edison that I love as an entrepreneur myself, I don’t know, I just kind of always keep it in my back pocket, which is “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” That’s just something that resonates with me as an entrepreneur, as a leader, because we all get into those moments of “Are we doing it for the right reason?” or “Are we not doing it for the reason but should we continue?”, “Is it worth it?”, etc., etc. So I always kind of liked that quote.
Eddie Turner:
I’m going to share that because that one is definitely hitting me a different way right now. Thank you.Any other quotes that you wanted to share with us?

Melissa Agnes:
Sure. This one is really personal, I suppose, to me and it’s by Mark Twain and it’s “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect.” And I think that we can relate that actually even, Eddie, to your question earlier where you said “What if somebody’s in the organization and says it’s somebody else’s responsibility and I don’t have to worry about it?” I don’t believe in inconformity. I don’t believe in not having our own mind to really truly, not always challenge everything, but when things need to be challenged to challenge them for the greater good and for the greater purpose. And so that quote speaks to me for that reason.
Eddie Turner:
Those are two beautiful quotes and our leaders would benefit from having those and thinking about those as they continue leading.Where can my listeners learn more about you, Melissa.

Melissa Agnes:
Absolutely. MelissaAgnes.com is the hub and there’s so many resources there. There’s podcasts and videos and free downloads to help you do all of these things as well as a link to my book which you’d get on Amazon, which is Crisis Ready – Building An Invincible Brand In An Uncertain World, as well as the blog and all kinds of things. It’s limitless really, speaking of limitless, resources and information that you can use to help you begin down your path of becoming crisis ready.
Eddie Turner:
Well, if I ever have a crisis, I know exactly what I’m going to call and now my listeners do as well. We’re going to put this in the show notes so that they can know how to connect with you, follow you, get a copy of your book and stay connected.Thank you again for being on the Keep Leading Podcast and sharing your insights with our leaders.

Melissa Agnes:
Thank you so much for having me, Eddie.
Eddie Turner:
And thank you for listening to the Keep Leading Podcast. I’m Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator, reminding you that leadership is not about our title or our position. Leadership is an activity. Leadership is action. It’s not the case of once a leader, always a leader. It’s not a garment we put on and take off. We must be a leader at our core and allow it to emanate in all we do. So whatever you’re doing, always keep leading.

Thank you for listening to your host Eddie Turner on The Keep Leading Podcast. Please remember to subscribe to The Keep Leading Podcast on iTunes or wherever you listen. For more information about Eddie Turner’s work please visit EddieTurnerLLC.com.

Thank you for listening to C Suite Radio, turning the volume up on business.

The Keep Leading!™ podcast is for people passionate about leadership. It is dedicated to leadership development and insights. Join your host Eddie Turner, The Leadership Excelerator® as he speaks with accomplished leaders and people of influence across the globe as they share their journey to leadership excellence. Listen as they share leadership strategies, techniques and insights. For more information visit eddieturnerllc.com or follow Eddie Turner on Twitter and Instagram at @eddieturnerjr. Like Eddie Turner LLC on Facebook. Connect with Eddie Turner on LinkedIn.