Natalie interviews personal development gurus and inspiring people from all over the globe on her super popular online show!

Episode # 486   Neel Raman - How to Awaken the Leader in You

About The Episode:

Leadership is one of the most powerful qualities a person can have - and you don't need to be a politician or CEO to reap its rewards. Effective leaders have the ability to empower, inspire and mobilize people around them… which is a terrific superpower to have no matter what you do in life! But are truly great leaders born? Or are they nurtured? And more importantly - how can you awaken the leader in you? On this brand new episode of The Inspiration Show, business trainer, coach and #1 best selling author, Neel Raman, reveals the surprising answer to these questions and unveils the 5 crucial questions that allow the natural leader in you to flourish.

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EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION

Episode # 486 Neel Raman - How to Awaken the Leader in You

Natalie:

Hi, everyone. My name is Natalie Ledwell and this is The Inspiration Show. Today on the show, my special guest is going to be talking about leadership. Not just in a team situation but personal leadership as well, which is something that we all want to master in our lives. But,  before we get into the juiciness of our interview today, I want to remind you that if you are watching this show on YouTube, make sure that when you’ve finished watching the show, that you click on the link below this video so you can take my 30 second quiz and we can figure out what's holding you back from success- and be able to clear that for you. So please welcome my guest today, Neel Raman. How are you Neel?

 

Neel:

I am good, Natalie. How are you?

 

Natalie

Good. Now you're coming to us all the way from Melbourne or Sydney, which one?

 

Neel

Sydney...

 

Natalie

Sydney, yes. Excellent!

 

Neel

From down under.

 

Natalie

Yes, exactly. From down under, darling. From my home island. Now, we're talking about leadership today, like we said, not just in a group situation but also in personal leadership. So I know that you have a book coming out, which is called Ignite the Leader. Ignite the Leader?

 

Neel:

Yeah...

 

Natalie: And a summit coming up as well. So why don't we start, first of all, with your background and what attracted you to these projects.

 

Neel:

Yes. I pretty much followed the traditional route of going to Uni, of going to school, going to Uni, getting higher education so I ended up with an engineering degree. I spent five years of my life doing that, which I totally hated, surprisingly. But, funny thing is, during my five years of university studies, I hardly learned anything about myself. It was all technical skills, all about, I guess the analytical side so… When I started working, my early career was in manufacturing. As the years went on, I started getting promoted and started having leadership roles, whether it was as a team leader or a supervisor. I recognized that I wasn't doing an effective job being a leader. Most of the challenges I had with my team were all people-related. The fact that I didn't know much about myself was obviously a clue that I needed to learn a few things about myself in order to be able to lead others more effectively. That's when I started doing some personal development training programs and learning more about who I was, what made me tick and what were some of the things that I could do better, which in turn will help me lead others better. That kind of… That journey has never stopped. It’s been over a decade since I've been into personal development that started with the likes of Bob Proctor, Jack Canfield, Brian Tracy, Tony Robbins, just some of the names that I've learned from. By me learning more about myself, I just automatically saw that being translated into how I was leading others. Just being able to recognize some of the challenges people were going through and how to deal with it, rather than just seeing that as a company issue or a resource issue, it was more about “how do I deal with people more effectively?”. So I think that's where the personal leadership aspect is very important, just being able to lead yourself first in order to leave others more effectively.

 

Natalie

Absolutely, I agree. I think that when we come from a place of self-love then it's easy for us to attract love. If we come from a place of self-mastery, or self-leadership, then it's easy for us to step into that role as well.

 

Neel: Totally.

 

Natalie: So tell me, what were some of the insights that you had about yourself that helped you to become a better leader?

 

Neel

So I guess one... Like, I'm naturally an introvert. Being in a position to lead others was always challenging for me initially. In my manufacturing career, I ended up managing a 25 million dollar factory, or manufacturing site, which had over 70 employees. One of the things I regularly had to do was to give an update on how the company was performing. So that was always challenging because, being an introvert, I would just rather be in the corner and not worry about anything.  So being able to learn and, I guess, communicate from a place of being authentic and being able to say, “hey” whenever questions came up, just to say “I don't know the answer yet, but I will find out and get back to you”. I think those were things that I had to learn because typically a leader is expected to know everything and that's not true. No one can be expected to know everything. One of the things I really had to learn was that it's okay to say “I don't know”, but also don’t just accept that oh, you “don't know” and don't do anything about it. I had to make sure that there was a follow-up to it. If I made a commitment, that I would find out something and get back to a person. I made sure I followed through. A lot of it came back to how I was behaving, which in turn helped me to lead others in a better way and be more authentic.. And just being myself really and letting people know, “Hey. I'm still the same person who was not a manager before, but I have learned a few things, which in turn can help you do your job better as well”.

 

Natalie:

Yeah. Yeah, I believe that with leadership as well... Like... First of all, not acting like you know everything is great. Saying “I don't know. I'm being honest”... like…  “yeah, I really don't know, but I'm going to have to find that out” is a big deal. I also believe that being authentic and real and honest and open with everyone, especially because I don't think, again, we’re talking about vulnerability, and I know you and I have discussed this before. I think that vulnerability is not necessarily a sign of weakness, but it can be a way of connection and ensure that you can show up in that way. So, with the people that you've worked with, what do you think is a common blind spot for people when it comes to personal mastery or personal leadership?

 

Neel:

So, in my experience, one of the biggest things just working with people in a normal work environment.. Most people aren’t self-aware. They were how I was before- just going through school, they may potentially get some higher education, end up getting a skill but they barely learned anything about themselves- their passions, their values, how they relate with others, what were their drivers in life. One of the things I definitely noticed was that lack of self-awareness, which personally I think is one of the most important leadership aspect or personal leadership aspect we can have, is just to learn to have a high level of self-awareness. I certainly say that not knowing themselves was probably the biggest thing I saw working with people. How that played out was conflict, just not being able to do their best work, being disengaged. So some of these signs that we see that's very important in corporate, in terms of some metrics, a lot of that came back to people not knowing themselves at a deep level.

 

Natalie

Yeah. It's exceptionally important that when we have that self-awareness, like we said, the vibration that we're giving out, because we know about law of attraction, is what people are picking up on. So that if you have this self-awareness and then you have this self-governance with the self-leadership, then you can do it from a very grounded and empowered place... Which is awesome.

 

Neel

Yeah. Also the terminology “vibration” and “law of attraction”... Some of these concepts aren’t mainstream in corporate, right? So it comes back to dealing with personal change or dealing with conflict, taking personal responsibility. Those were the things that were more accepted in terms of corporate language. As my work as a trainer, one of the things that I tried, especially working with teams, is to integrate some of these so-called “soft skills” into helping teams perform better and ultimately leading to better actual technical skills and better competencies, but it came down from the foundation was always, always personal development.

 

Natalie

Yeah. So what role does fear play with when people are trying to step up in a leadership role?

 

Neel

Yeah, it's interesting. Motivational speaker, Les Brown, he has a really interesting quote where he says, “The cemetery is one of the most valuable places on earth”. That's where you have crushed dreams, books not written, businesses not started and they just died with the person. Fear is one of those things that plays out in so many ways. We all have it… And the way it plays out is lack of action, lack of ambition, not willing to take the risk, not willing to step up and get outside your comfort zone. Fear plays out in so many ways and, I guess, in terms of being able to address for you one of the things... I think the starting point always has to be that acceptance. “Hey, I'm afraid right now”. You may not use the language of “I'm afraid”. It could be some level of discomfort and just being able to question it. Where is this coming from? What’s triggered this? There's always something behind the fear. So fear is always regarded as this huge blanket, right? It’s just this generic term that's thrown out. It's almost like an excuse, like your “get out of jail” card, but behind fear there’s always something that people have not been willing to look at that’s still lingering in the background. I guess a great metaphor to use is... If you’re using a computer and you have many programs opened, but you’re only working on one. You're only working on Microsoft Word. You’ve got Excel, you've got your emails, you've got your browsers all opened, but you’re still working on one. With all the programs running in the background, those will have an effect on how the computer’s performing. That’s one of the things with fear as well. So we've got all of these things from our past that are lingering in the background. They're just running as minimized programs, but naturally they will have an effect on how we behave, how we perform and how we act. Fear definitely needs to be addressed. I can go into some techniques, into how to address fear, if you like?

 

Natalie

Yeah. We’ve got time to look at a couple of them.

 

Neel

Ok. I'll go through one and this is probably a very simple one. It comes from the work of Byron Katie called “The Work”. One of the first thing she says is to actually question the fear, or question the belief that you have. So one of the first questions is, “Is it true?”. If you have a fear or a belief about something, the first question is, “Is it true?”.  Just being able to stop and pause and question that is quite important. The next question is, “Can I absolutely know that it's true?”.  Again, we’re going another level deeper to find out, “Hey, what's behind it? What's actually behind my belief, my fear?”. The third question is, “How do I react when I think that thought?”. Ultimately, whenever we have a belief or a fear, it's just a combination of thoughts playing out, right? It's like, “how do I behave?” or “how do I react when I have that thought?”. The final question is, “Who would I be without that thought?”. If I didn't have that fear, or I didn't have that belief, how would that be? What will I be doing differently? Then comes a turnaround, which is just pretty much the opposite of the fear, or the belief, that you have and just being able to come up with, “Hey I'm afraid of speaking” as an example. “I'm afraid to speak in public”. Once you go through the four questions and.. Being able to speak in public is just another skill I need to love… live. You suddenly turn that fear around and reframed it, pretty much.

 

Natalie:

Yeah, awesome. Now, I know that you have a summit coming up, so tell us a little bit about the summit. I think this is for anyone who is looking to, who is in a leadership role, or wanting to get into a leadership role or at least have some kind of self-mastery, I think this summit is going to be fantastic for that.

 

Neel:

Yes, we have a leadership book coming up called “Ignite Your Leadership”. One of the ways we thought we could add value to people, in terms of getting more word out about the topic of leadership, was to interview different experts from around the world on the topic of leadership. Amongst myself and my co-authors, we interviewed over 30 experts, yourself included Natalie. With regard to... One of the foundations of the interviews was all around igniting one’s leadership, what ignites a person's leadership. We have some great content that we’ve accumulated through these 30+ plus interviews and it's all about how do you lead yourself better first in order to lead teams better, lead organizations better, and ultimately lead your communities and make a bigger difference and a more positive difference in the world. These leadership experts include the likes of Jack Canfield, Jim Bunch, Terri Levine, Lolly Daskal, yourself Natalie Ledwell, just to name a few. We're very excited about it. I'm looking forward to helping get the message of leadership out to a bigger, wider audience.

 

Natalie

Yeah. Well I don't think there is a better time than right now to be talking about leadership and self-governance, especially with the crazy stuff that’s happening in the world and in this country right now, to be able to just step into that role. So guys, if you are watching this online, if you click the banner to the side there, you'll be able to go through straight to Neel’s website. If you're watching this on the app, you can click the better underneath and it will take you straight through there. It's a free summit so you can register on there and there's some fantastic speakers. It's not like they’re long interviews. I think they’re only about 20-30 minutes.

 

Neel:

Yeah. Yeah, absolutely.

 

Natalie:

It's incredible and it's free, so I encourage you to do that. So Neel, thank you so much for joining me today. It has been great chatting to you as always.

 

Neel:

Thank you, Natalie. I really appreciate the opportunity to come out and connect again.

 

Natalie:

Wonderful. So guys, I encourage you to share this video and you could do that by clicking the Facebook and Twitter share buttons on this page. Also, don't forget, if you're watching this on Youtube, just click that link underneath so you can take my 30 second quiz to see what's holding you back from success. If you're watching this online, make sure that you leave your email so I can send you The Manifesting With The Masters e-course for free. So until next time. Remember to live large, choose courageously and love without limits. We’ll see you soon.

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