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Tri-Cities Influencer Podcast with Paul Casey

Dec 31, 2019

Richa Sigdel:                       The chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken. I'm Richa Sigdel, and I'm Tri-City Influencer.

Paul Casey:                         Great team leaders notice an imbalance in the team and have the ability to adjust to it, but again, don't attack the person, attack the problem.

Speaker 3:                           Raising the water level of leadership in Tri-Cities at Eastern Washington. It's the Tri-Cities Influencer Podcast. Welcome to the Tri-Cities Influencer Podcast, where Paul Casey interviews local leaders like CEOs, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit executives to hear how they lead themselves and their teams, so that we can all benefit from their experiences. Here's your host, Paul Casey of Growing Forward Services, coaching and equipping individuals and teams to spark the breakthrough success.

Paul Casey:                         Thanks for joining me for today's episode with Matt Sweezea. Matt is an independent financial advisor, and when asking him something interesting about his past, even though he's such a snappy dresser, he said he's got a lot in the farm background, and one time, he drove halfway across the country to Kansas City to pick up a cow. That's pretty interesting, Matt.

Matt Sweezea:                 That's right, that's right. It is.

Paul Casey:                         Well, before we learn more about Matt, let's check in with our Tri-City Influencer sponsors.

Neal Taylor:                        Hello, my name is Neal Taylor. I am the managing attorney for Gravis Law's Commercial Transactions Team. The CT Team helps business owners, investors, and entrepreneurs accelerate and protect their business value. Today, we're talking about employment law and alcohol and cannabis licensing. Josh Bam and Derek Johnson are both here with me now to describe those practice areas. Take it, Derek.

Derek Johnson:                 Thanks, Neal. I'm Derek Johnson, partner at Gravis Law. We find that many employers in Washington state simply don't have handbooks, employee policies, or any other written materials to protect themselves and their employees. Without having these types of policies in place, an employer can run into trouble by firing employees even if the employee isn't properly performing or are causing issues at work. Even if an employer fires someone for performance issues, for example, but fails to take the proper steps, they may run into trouble by inadvertently exposing themselves to a wrongful termination suit. We've built strong, predictable, and protective employee policies to protect our client's business.

Josh Bam:                            That's true. Thanks, Derek. And having employment policies in place when you're dealing with cannabis or alcohol licensing is especially important. We know that clean employment policies, clean corporate structure, and having an attorney that can work with the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board is critically important to protecting your business through licensing. The attorneys at Gravis Law have this experience. Visit us today,

Paul Casey:                         Thank you for your supportive leadership development in the Tri-Cities. Well, welcome, Matt. I was privileged to meet you--I feel like it's been about 10 years now at Young Professionals of the Tri-Cities, YPTC.

Matt Sweezea:                 That's right, that's right.

Paul Casey:                         No longer exists, but before we aired today I heard the whole story of how it began, and within three months, you were the president of that organization.

Paul Casey:                         And you did that for like four-and-a-half years as the president.

Matt Sweezea:                 Yes.

Paul Casey:                         So thanks for all you did to add to the young professional community here.

Matt Sweezea:                 Absolutely, absolutely. Thanks for having me on.

Paul Casey:                         Well, what did you aspire to be when you grew up, man? How did that morph then throughout the years until you got to where you are today?

Matt Sweezea:                 Kind of by chance. I have always been somewhat drawn, obviously, on the financial side. I mean, I think growing up in a lower middle income household, neither of my parents were college educated, and we really operated... As kids, we didn't really see what was going on in the financial side of things. But now looking back, I mean you realize how often we were living paycheck to paycheck and some other stories I won't get into today. But just seeing that growing up.

Matt Sweezea:                 The other side of it too is that my parents did keep us involved and engaged in the community growing up. We were, as you mentioned earlier, we were in 4-H as early as eight, nine, ten years old. Showing animals, being engaged. We had a hobby farm, and so we always had animals to take care of. We were always up early. Had to feed the animals before we went to school. Get home from school, and sometimes the animals were out. So we had to go chase the animals around. And so then moving into junior high and high school, my first jobs were kind of morphed into making some money so I could do some fun stuff with friends and get out and have some fun in the summer.

Matt Sweezea:                 And that was, naturally, growing in a small ag community in the Yakima Valley, that was kind of the aspect there. Then fast forward, and started as an adult going through college and struggling with, "Do I get student loans? Do I pay for college? How do I manage this?" And so I ended up getting a full-time job right out of high school due to family conditions and worked full-time, paid for college around my full-time job. Went to night school, went first thing in the morning. Did all those types of things.

Matt Sweezea:                 Money was always kind of that, "How do I get ahead? How do I stop struggling? How do I figure things out?" And a couple of years out of high school, finishing up my AA, I was approached to take a look at the industry, and that was kind of the start there. I was motivated to make sure that the things that, somewhat shaped me obviously, but some of those things I didn't want to see my own family, as I was becoming an adult, getting married, having kids have to deal with. And then seeing just extended family too, going through lot of the financial challenges. So that really drew me to the finance side of figuring out, how do I help people around me, and how do I make a difference? So that sense of community and that sense of drive has always been ingrained in me, I would say, from an early age in one way or another.

Paul Casey:                         What core values were driven into you through all that hard work of growing up and all the farm work and some of the struggles it sounds like with family? What things just sort of got anchored in you?

Matt Sweezea:                 Mainly the core values, I would say, that I would lean towards is really just being self reliant and knowing that if I wanted it, I had to go to work for it. No one was going to get it for me. No one was going to just hand it over. And then that really, again, came full circle as I was heading out of high school. I had some partial scholarships to a four-year university and financially was not in a place where it was going to work out. Both sides were kind of struggling as far as financial aid and being able to go out and try to get private loans to cover the difference, and put me in a position to where I was just on my own, and so I had to figure it out.

Matt Sweezea:                 So that shifted me into a different gear, and I got exposed to some industries that I knew and some positions going out of high school, working really hard labor type things, just to pay for college. And knew that this was definitely not a route I wanted to be in, knowing where my parents were, and both of them coming from the blue collar backgrounds and whatnot. As far as core values that would go, I mean, I think it's just that discipline and drive to get after it and to be focused on always scaling up. I use that word a lot nowadays when I'm talking with students at CBC, or at some of my community outreach and stuff, but really focused on scaling up all the time.

Matt Sweezea:                 I've always put a lot of pressure on myself to make sure that I excel in everything that I do. And really try not to stretch myself into a bunch of different things. I know that, again, the more I'm spread out doing a lot of different things, the less value I'm going to be able to provide to those specific areas. So I think really it's just being focused on what's most important and going after it. And just continuing to know that I'm in control of where I want to go in life.

Paul Casey:                         That scaling up is so the opposite of entitlement, right?

Matt Sweezea:                 Absolutely. Absolutely.

Paul Casey:                         You had to grow up pretty fast.

Matt Sweezea:                 Yes, yes.

Paul Casey:                         Who've been your mentors, advisors, in your leadership journey? How did you find them? What did they do in your life?

Matt Sweezea:                 Moving back through my early exposure, I would say to leadership and influence and understanding that I had the responsibility to, again, map out my own goals and set my own things, was really when I got into high school. Being challenged at that time by my ag advisor, really pushing me and believing in me and knowing that I could move up in terms of leadership within the organization that I was plugged into back then was FFA, right. So similar to a lot of other programs, just with an ag focus on the vocational side. But I quickly moved up. I was chapter president and ran for state and all those different things back in the day.

Matt Sweezea:                 But that was one of my bigger influencers initially, and he pushed me to at that time, really dive into some individuals like John Maxwell, and so I've had a lot of mentors that I've never actually met. I've met John Maxwell one time. This is probably, yeah, several years ago. I want to age myself now, but met him several years ago. I've had spent a lot of time studying Napoleon Hill. A lot of the great kind of leaders from the industrial revolution and so a lot of my mentors really haven't been necessarily local people.

Matt Sweezea:                 I feed off of local leaders, but I feel like I've been able to tap in more to some of the bigger influencers. And so in my professional career now, as I got started, one of the main individuals that I was introduced was Art Williams, who really took on the industry back in the 70's and made a huge impact on righting wrongs and educating families and households.

Matt Sweezea:                 And he's been able to extend his influence really across a lot of different platforms. Dave Ramsey gives him a lot of praise for what he did to help Dave early on. And so that's shaped a lot of Dave's values around personal finance, which continues to spread throughout what we do as well with our clients. And so, he would be another big one. And then I have several other influencers too that have been there for me as far as mentors and whatnot. But I would say those were probably a few of the biggest ones that I've had over my life.

Paul Casey:                         Now, mentoring from afar... If you don't have someone right in front of you that you can go to, you can have these mentors from afar. I would say John Maxwell's my mentor from afar as well. Been to a lot of his LIVE stuff, but never really had a conversation with the man. But he's influenced my life in a big way. Would you tell other Tri-Cities Influencers to take leadership positions if there was an opportunity? Because it sounds like you sort of lean into those, you don't shy... I mean, obviously you probably evaluate your boundaries and what you could take and what you can't. You're married, you have a family, but it doesn't seem like you've shied from those over time. Would you encourage people if you want to gain more influence to step up?

Matt Sweezea:                 For sure, for sure. I believe that we all have different skills and traits and values. There are opportunities out there that we all believe in passionately about, and we have to utilize our skillsets that we do have to help those organizations or help those causes move forward. Whether that'd be through volunteering or putting yourself in a position to take on a leadership role in a new endeavor or whatever you have it.

Matt Sweezea:                 There's a huge need, I think even more today than ever, for leaders. Not just here in the community but across the world. I mean, I think that that's something that we're lacking in a lot of different areas. Whether it's in the household, whether it's in the community or across the globe. It's always going to be a need. It's going to continue to be a need for there to be true leadership, stepping up into positions and casting that vision and getting people to follow and make things happen and diving into it full force and not being hesitant, not waiting for approval from a hundred different people before you take that first leap and you go after it. If it's in your heart, then you need to go after it and you need to make things happen.

Paul Casey:                         Yeah, in an age where people don't want to commit, that's really going to make you stand out.

Matt Sweezea:                 Yes.

Paul Casey:                         Love it. So you're an independent financial advisor, but you also probably are on a team as well. What's the best team you've ever been on, and what made that special, and what does it teach you about leading a team?

Matt Sweezea:                 Sure. In my current role, I do oversee a team, as well, of independent advisors across the Northwest. And so I've been at my professional career now for well over a decade. We'll leave it at that. I'm not quite knocking on two, but the team aspect of how I operate is really for an independent standpoint. It is from a true leadership standpoint. There is no management in the role that I play.

Matt Sweezea:                 There is a little bit of supervisory aspect to it, but the biggest takeaway that I've had over the last several years is really to make sure that you lead with your heart, that you lead with making sure that you're taking care of your people first. And that if you take care of your people first, then your people will take care of your customers. I've seen that go the opposite way so many different times on different teams that I've been on prior to diving into my professional career, and that was really... I think those early jobs that I had coming out of high school, seeing that dynamic and just no true leader within the organizations that I was in early on are the companies I worked for, while I was in college. It made a very unstable environment, and that ended up leading to that specific company that I worked for actually closing about three years after I left, and in selling and downsizing and those types of things.

Matt Sweezea:                 So I would say, I think the number one thing that I've always focused on with my team is really understanding their goals, understanding where they, what they are wanting out of the position that they're in, what they're looking for, and making sure that we lead with that when it comes to influencing them to move forward on their specific goals and tasks and delivering. Making sure that they understand obviously the bigger vision of what the company is focused on, but that they're also feeling a complete satisfaction and praise in terms of what they're doing day in and day out.

Paul Casey:                         Yeah, so you were just alluding to a situation where something fell apart. What was the dynamic there that just made it fall apart?

Matt Sweezea:                 Really, the dynamic there was that there really wasn't local leadership within that team. It was more of a position where it was a younger manager who came from a family business, didn't have a lot of, I think, leadership influence beyond just working in the company. I think that's sometimes where smaller companies... And even advising smaller companies nowadays, I see that when you have these family dynamics, a lot of times you get into second generation, third generation. And there isn't the emphasis on the leadership side in understanding that it takes a team to keep that company running and a team to keep that company not just running, but growing successfully and being a positive impact in the community.

Matt Sweezea:                 I think that, sometimes you'll get... and it's not this case every time, but that was the specific dynamic in this place at this time. It wasn't necessarily on the manager's... it wasn't his fault. It was really kind of up the ladder, as far as putting them in that position and not giving him the training and experience that he truly needed to lead that office or lead that location at the time.

Paul Casey:                         Yeah, I'm totally into the show Restaurant: Impossible right now, Robert Irvine. A lot of these are family businesses, like you said, and zero leadership training or development. And he'll just come and get in their face and go, "You're the problem." He sort of yells at them, but they have not been developed. They just put their head down and keep doing things the way they've always been done. I think a lot of people that are great in their technical ability get promoted to leader, and it falls apart. And then everybody below them is hurt by that because they don't know how to care for their people or affirm their people or show them the vision. So it's always a sad thing to view.

Paul Casey:                         How would you describe leadership, Matt? Give me three words, in a nutshell, that you would say leadership is and why?

Matt Sweezea:                 That's a good question. I would obviously say, I mean, I mentioned it here just a few minutes ago. But number one is leadership is jumping first.

Paul Casey:                         Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yep.

Matt Sweezea:                 For sure. And making sure you're leading with heart, and that you're focused on pushing people up around you. As far as just three kind of talking points. But I would say, definitely, yeah.

Paul Casey:                         What does, "Leadership is heart," mean to you? Or, "Lead with the heart."?

Matt Sweezea:                 Right, leading with the heart. So many managers today lead logically. And they focus on the specific task getting done and delegating. And, "This is what needs to be done because it needs to be done," instead of really making sure that they understand where the team dynamic is coming into play, where that specific employee maybe is that day. The expectation of routine, I think sets in a lot of times with companies where people will just simply, "Hey, clock in, go do your work, clock out." And it becomes kind of this... And a lot of times, it's more as you get bigger as a company and you have multiple managers and multiple positions, and you lose a little bit of that communication.

Matt Sweezea:                 I think a lot of it stems back to, again, companies and even universities and those types of things, where they will focus on, it's, "Don't connect to your people. Don't get to know your people because they may not be here. They may move on." And so there's... I might butcher this up a little bit, but there's that saying that, if you train your people well, they might leave. But worst thing that could happen is if you don't train them-

Paul Casey:                         Don't train them and they stay.

Matt Sweezea:                 ... and they stay.

Paul Casey:                         That's right.

Matt Sweezea:                 But you got to have a heart connection with the people on your team. You've got to have the ability to identify when things are off. And be able to have that kind of conversation with them, rather than just jumping on them and saying, "You'll going to figure it out, or figure it out," kind of a thing. It's got to be beyond that. So I think that's really the leading with the heart.

Paul Casey:                         Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Matt Sweezea:                 And it kind of morphs into a little bit of the pushing up people aspect too, of really knowing where they're coming from and what their ultimate goals are. And making sure that they truly are going to be a productive piece of the overall organization, or what potential part they could play in the overall organization long term, not just short term. And making sure that their goals, their focuses, do truly align with your long term goals as a manager, leader, in the organization.

Paul Casey:                         Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah, I like that because I think that people do gravitate toward leaders who make a heart connection with them. I think that's magnetic, it's attractive. People will stay with that manager or that leader long term because of that, and people will leave one that's just sterile, cold, task. Of course, managers are a little more task, leaders are a little bit more people, and you need both sides of the coin. But if you have to err one way or the other, I think we're going to lean towards the leader. Well, leaders also have to see around corners.

Paul Casey:                         What do you do to look ahead for your business and envision that future?

Matt Sweezea:                 I spend, I shouldn't say I spend, I invest a lot of time.

Paul Casey:                         Good word, good word.

Matt Sweezea:                 I invest a lot of time beyond the normal scope of a day. Really taking a look at what other companies are doing inside and outside of my industry. I plug into a significant amount of continuing education. If there are national conference calls from some of the largest companies in my industry, being product base or what have it. As they're on the leading edge, you take some of the biggest names that you can think of in the world. As far as global financial companies, I do have access... because of the way my platform is set up, I have access to jump on conference calls, literally three, four, five days a week if I wanted to.

Matt Sweezea:                 I don't do that just because of time, but I am able to listen to replays. I'm able to listen to all that, and I feel like that gives me a competitive advantage to not just better lead my team, but better lead my clients with their goals and their dreams. And so, really, I mean, that's the other side of this too, is my clients are a part of my team as well. And their success is my success, just as much as my team's success is my success.

Paul Casey:                         Yeah, so find people who are doing what you want to do, who are where you want to be. Plug into that. Utilize all continuing education possible, and, Tri-City influencers, so you can go to that next level. You can service your clients better because you're on the cutting edge. I always love it when a doctor says, "I've been reading lately." Not every doctor says that, but I really like it when mine does because it's like, "Wow. He's still learning."

Matt Sweezea:                 Right.

Paul Casey:                         That's good. Well, before we head into our next question on Matt's leadership rhythm, let's shout out to our sponsor. Jason Hogue, American Family Insurance. Jason, what is the biggest pushback you get about life insurance?

Jason Hogue:                     Hey, Paul. Yeah, one of the biggest pushbacks I get from a life insurance is from folks that are single. They usually ask me, "Why do I even need this? I don't have kids. I don't have any dependents or a spouse. Why do I need this?" Ultimately, whenever you pass on, there's going to be somebody there to pick up the pieces. There's going to be somebody to deal with your affairs. I would say it's your responsibility to make sure that there is funds, that there's money there so that person can take the time needed to go through it properly, and not make it their responsibility.

Paul Casey:                         Awesome, Jason, so tell us, how can our listeners get in touch with you?

Jason Hogue:                     You can swing by our office on Road 68 in Pasco, or give us a call at 509-547-0540.

Paul Casey:                         So, Matt, let's talk about your leadership rhythm. What is your ideal day look like? You may not hit it every day, but you're shooting for that.

Matt Sweezea:                 So my day is... Most people may call me a workaholic when I tell you what my day is, and my wife might agree with you too, but we do get a lot of quality time in as well. But I typically am up early, and early being 5:00 AM, and hitting professional development right away. As soon as I'm up, I'm writing goals. I'm identifying my short term long term and hitting the gym most days. And getting my day started.

Matt Sweezea:                 So I'm usually up two to three hours before my real day starts and focused on engaging my mind and getting myself ready for the day and then getting after it. And so usually by 8:30, 9:00, I do take time to drop off the kids at school most mornings if I'm in town. And so make sure that I get my quality time in with my kids. My family is super important to me, so I do that.

Matt Sweezea:                 And then it's hitting it for the day after that. So from nine until... some days it could be 9:00 AM until 9:00, 10:00 at night. Some days where I'm on the phone with clients, I'm working with my team. There's a lot of different aspects day-to-day for sure. Luckily, calendars and reminders and those types of things come into play. And then we definitely do a schedule in our blocks of time to take, again, make sure that we're investing time in our kids, and with my relationship, obviously, with my wife and doing those types of things.

Matt Sweezea:                 But the morning is really the biggest aspect, I would say, for me to make sure that I'm getting myself moving in the right direction and focused on where I need to go. And then at the end of the day, I do the same thing. I actually write my goals out again at the end of the day before I shut it down for the night and feel that I'm not going to be restless all night thinking about what I need to do the next day. So I've already got the next day mapped out. The next several days typically are mapped out for me, and I know exactly what I'm doing every hour of every day.

Paul Casey:                         I'm glad it's not just me that works till 9:00 or 10:00 at night once in a while. That entrepreneurial lifestyle, not proud of it sometimes, but I love how you start your day two to three hours early with mind and body preparation. I mean, they have books on what successful people do before breakfast, and you maximize that so you're not running to work with your hair on fire. You are completely grounded as you go into your day, and even though you're working beaucoup hours, sometimes, you have intentionally carved out your family blocks of time. I have date night with my wife on Friday nights, and I want to be at my kids' open house, and we have the flexibility in our schedules to be able to do that, which is awesome.

Matt Sweezea:                 Right.

Paul Casey:                         And then I love the double goals to start the day, end the day with goals, so you can go to sleep, have a hard stop, and know tomorrow's plan.

Matt Sweezea:                 Right, absolutely. It was one time brought up to me that if you write your goals morning and night, that's 730 times that you'll write your goals throughout the year. Whereas someone who sets their goals on January 1st and never looks at them again, right?

Paul Casey:                         The odds? Yeah.

Matt Sweezea:                 The odds, yes. Yeah, that's why New Year's resolutions are not goals, but it's true. Just the writing of the goals, they say, you start leaning into them, and there's better chance for you to accomplish them. So if you write them twice, you're doubling that impact.

Matt Sweezea:                 Yes, yes.

Paul Casey:                         So you have to recharge your batteries. You mentioned exercise. What else so you do on a regular basis to pump you up?

Matt Sweezea:                 I focus on plugging into conferences when I can. Some of these conferences, I definitely mix in some fun. I also, my family, we do travel a couple of times a year. We try to get out of town and get away and recharge the bodies, and do that type of thing. And then I have a few hobbies here and there, try to get out and golf and play a little basketball, and do those types of things when I can. So definitely keeping the physical game as up as much as possible.

Paul Casey:                         I see Matt Sweezea at Mariner and Seahawks games on Facebook. So I think you're there a little bit too.

Matt Sweezea:                 Yes, we do try to sneak away as a family from time to time and have fun when we can. Yeah, it's just working hard and making things happen.

Paul Casey:                         As leaders, we have to change in order to keep growing. What's your view of change? How do you handle that? How do you help others maybe handle change, whether those are clients or team members?

Matt Sweezea:                 The fundamentals, I think, of all businesses and fundamental structures, I don't believe those change a whole lot. But definitely the climate, the environment, the economic climate, I should say, and the environment is always changing. It's changing every day. We try to stay away from the 24/7 news. But the reality is it creeps in. And if you are not focused and writing your goals out all the time, then it's easy to drift, and it's easy to find idle time, and it's easy to get yourself in a position where you can be unfocused.

Matt Sweezea:                 And that's, I think where the problems start to kind of seep into leaders' lives, and managers' lives, is if they allow that drifting or slowing down of not looking at ways to... It's not necessarily that you've got to continually look at ways to change every single thing. There shouldn't be a flavor of the month when it comes to your leadership. You should always... I think a lot of it is going back and revisiting the foundational things that you were really driven by when you first started, whatever it was that you started, whatever you're pursuing, whatever you were chasing.

Matt Sweezea:                 Those are never going to change. If they change, then I think part of it too is that are you still doing the thing that you should be doing? As far as change goes, I think sometimes that comes into play, more often than not, when you get to that point where you start drifting a little bit or you get off track with what it is that your main purpose was. Obviously, your business model may need to change as time goes on. Technology and regulatory, and there are a lot of different things that come into play when you're running a business or running a team that can influence how big your team is.

Matt Sweezea:                 There are certain companies that are streamlining and so you maybe have a leaner team trying to do the same things that you were doing, three years ago, five years ago, 10 years ago with a bigger team. And so those adaptations are... You have to adapt, obviously, to those scenarios as they come your way. I think those can be the most challenging things that come a leader's way, is as you're maneuvering around those. It's really, again, I think making sure that you're keeping the main thing, the main thing. And the Eisenhower Matrix, actually sent that to a client of mine today as they were having a challenge with what's most important, what's least important. And to kind of help them with deciphering, what they need to handle. And so I think that's a great way too, to kind of identify as you're moving through change. Are these things most important, least important? Where do they fall in that scale? Are they really something you need to worry about or not.

Paul Casey:                         I love how you said the writing of the goals prevents drift, and that's a good quote. That's a tweetable moment there for Matt Sweezea.

Paul Casey:                         Well, Matt, let's wrap up with some advice that you would give to new leaders and emerging leaders, or anyone who wants to keep growing and gaining more influence. What would you tell them?

Matt Sweezea:                 For younger leaders, new leaders, I really emphasize on scaling up daily and making that a part of your goals. When I write out my goals, it's not just financial goals or kind of the general, it's really a full scale. I encourage new leaders to get out there and really dive into some goals that are... or some books that are designed around goal setting, or taking a look at resources around, "How do I stretch that? How do I look at these specific areas of my life and really focused on scaling up?"

Matt Sweezea:                 I think that's the biggest area for new leaders is to continue to grow, continue to get better, to continue to refine their skillsets. And it's more so the soft skillsets than the technical skillsets that I see in that area. So I would say that's one of the biggest recommendations I would throw out for leaders is to continually look at, "How can I improve?" And really my communication skills with my team... that would be the biggest area that I would recommend for newer leaders or leaders that are moving up the scale, that are jumping into new positions. That maybe they've worked for a company for a bunch of years, and they've been great at their skillset, and now they're leading a team.

Matt Sweezea:                 They may need to learn to adapt that. There are other ways to do their job than the way they've done it for the last 20 years. And that they've got to be able to learn to communicate in a way that isn't overbearing or overzealous in terms of, "You're not doing it the right way." Instead of figuring out how to ask questions and create dialogue to help this team that they are now leading, actually become the type of person that they are.

Paul Casey:                         Fantastic. Matt, how can our listeners best connect with you?

Matt Sweezea:                 The best way to connect with be would be through social media for the most part. You can follow me on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram, Twitter, it's @Matt Sweezea and-

Paul Casey:                         Spell your name.

Matt Sweezea:                 M-A-T-T S-W-E-E-Z-E-A, and so @MattSweezea on Twitter, on Instagram, on whatever social media platform is out there.

Paul Casey:                         You're on it.

Matt Sweezea:                 You'll find me @MattSweezea. So that would be the easiest way to reach me.

Paul Casey:                         Well, thanks again, Matt, for all you do to make the Tri-Cities a great place and keep leading well.

Paul Casey:                         Let me wrap up our podcast today with the Tri-Cities resource to recommend, usually it's a leadership one, but you might have seen some people around town here in the Tri-Cities with a Love The Tri shirt or hat. I'm like, "Hey, I want one of those. I'm proud of my community." So I have ordered one. If you want to look that up, it's They have hats and shirts for men and women, and if you want to show you're proud of the Tri-Cities, look it up.

Paul Casey:                         Don't forget to consider patronizing our sponsors of Tri-City Influencer: Gravis Law, and Jason Hogue, American Family Insurance.

Paul Casey:                         Finally, one more leadership tidbit for the road to help you make a difference in your circle of influence. It's simple advice from William Blake. He says, "Think in the morning, act in the noon, eat in the evening, and sleep in the night." Keep growing forward.

Speaker 3:                           If you enjoyed this podcast or it piqued your interest in learning more about leadership and self-leadership, you can continue to glean from Paul and his Growing Forward Services. Check out Paul's blog and the products, tips, and tools on his website at, and opt into his Target Practice inspirational E-newsletter. You'll get his 33 top tips for becoming a time management rockstar when you subscribe. And consider buying one of his three books, the most recent one being: Leading the Team You've Always Wanted.

Paul Casey:                         This podcast has been produced by Bonsai Audio at FUSE Coworking Space.