Welcome to Authentic Leadership for Everyday People, the podcast that investigates the connection between effective leadership and authenticity. Today, Dino is sitting down with speaker, author and catalyst, Dr. Steve Yacovelli, a.k.a. “The Gay Leadership Dude.” Steve is the Founder and Principle of Top Dog Learning Group, a firm that provides guidance and solutions in leadership, change management, diversity and inclusion. Steve is an expert practitioner in leadership, change management and diversity and inclusion, a published author, and a sought after keynote speaker. He’s worked one-on-one with some of the most prestigious global firms and institutions, including Disney, IBM, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and The Ohio State University.

In this episode, Steve opens up about how he came to embrace his identity as LGBTQ+ and the impact that had on how Steve showed up to work. Dino and Steve talk about trends Steve has noticed in twenty years as a leadership trainer in Corporate America, the value that equity, diversity and inclusion bring to an organization and the connection between authenticity and courage.

 Key Takeaways:

 01:28 – Dino opens the episode by sharing his connection with today’s guest, Dr. Steve Yacovelli, who speaks to discovering his true authentic self and the role that equity has in the workplace

08:07 – What led Steve to focus on training and development

10:10 – Steve expounds on The Top Six Leadership Competencies he helps his clients develop

14:26 – Steve provides insights and advice on leadership

16:37 – The significant shifts in leadership that Steve has observed throughout his career

18:15 – Steve speaks to equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging in the workplace

22:13 – Advantages to having a more equitable and diverse workforce

25:44 – Steve talks about the conscious choice to brand himself as The Gay Leadership Dude

32:31 – The connection between authenticity and courage

39:04 – How Steve built up his own courage

42:19 – Practical steps that can be taken to enhance the voices of marginalized groups

44:51 – The business phrases that drive Steve absolutely crazy

45:48 – Steve shares some food for your soul

49:01 – Dino leaves the audience with ‘Let the Music Deliver Me,’ a song written and performed by his wife, Susan Cattaneo 

Tweetable Quotes:

 “I started spending my focus trying to help folks really see that leadership is important – regardless of if you’re an army of one or an army of a thousand – and what can you do to be more effective in that leadership journey that you’re on.” (09:56)

“The number one strategy that I share with any leader, regardless of the level that you’re at, is your job is to cultivate the garden.” (14:51)

“Several studies show that if you have diverse Boards of Directors and C-Suites, your profits are better.” (25:02)

“If you focus on these competencies that I identify, which are authenticity, courage, empathy, effective communication, relationships and shaping culture, you’re gonna be just awesomely inclusive and really successful.” (30:02)

“To be authentic is to be courageous and to own it and to be yourself.” (34:23)

“If you’re a rock star at what you do, where you live won’t matter.” (37:43)

“I could take my three hundred and fifty-six page book, put it to one page, one word. And that’s trust. Best, authentic, effective leaders have trust with those around them. And that’s not just direct reports, that’s 360.” (40:11)

Links Mentioned:

Dino’s Email

Dino’s Instagram

Dino’s Twitter

Authentic Leadership for Everyday People Website

Authentic Leadership for Everyday People Facebook

Dr. Steve’s Website

Dr. Steve’s LinkedIn

Dr. Steve’s Book 

Dr. Steve’s Instagram

‘Let the Music Deliver Me’ by Susan Cattaneo