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Understand what drives people! Host: Mike Sedam

Understand what drives people! Host: Mike Sedam
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Understand what drives people! Host: Mike Sedam






Crucial Talks Episode 61: Jill Christensen on Employee Engagement

Mike Sedam talks with Jill Christensen about employee engagement. This includes talking about the fact all people want the same things we always have: openness, trust, purpose, and a feeling of belonging. Put people first and the rest will follow. People that do not feel they are trusted will not go above and beyond. When employees are engaged, they trust their senior leaders and feel an emotional connection to those leaders. We can improve engagement by helping employees feel...


Crucial Chat: Building Capacity with Communication

Redundancy in systems helps maintain a level of service when failures happen. In this 7 minute Crucial Chat, Mike Sedam discusses the use of a free tool we all have (communication) to build capacity in our systems. Please visit to connect with Mike if you have any questions or comments.


Crucial Talks Episode 60 Brave Leadership with Kimberly Davis

Mike Sedam interviews Kimberly Davis about Brave Leadership. Kimberly has written a book called Brave Leadership. Kimberly also runs a program called OnStage Leadership. Kimberly talks about bravery, the role of storytelling, and tools to become an authentic leader. This entire episode of full of great tools to help build the capacity to lead, to connect, to be authentic, and to be brave.


Crucial Chat: Communicating from a Good Place. It Matters.

Sometimes people need to communicate negative information. This can be bad news, a mistake someone made, or discussing how someone can improve. Leaders deal with this all the time. We can come to these conversations from two different places. A good place or a bad place. People that come from a bad place feel that people are a problem to deal with. People that come from a good place feel that people are valuable. Coming from a good place gives feelings of trust and openness. The exact...


Crucial Talks Episode 59 Rick Grimes and Lessons on Decision-Making

Mike Sedam uses three clips from The Walking Dead to talk about decision-making. In this episode, there are three key takeaways about decision-making and a bonus takeaway. Bonus Takeaway: There are micro-learning opportunities in everything we do. Try to grow in ways that can help in everyday life and in our workplaces... even while being entertained. If we can learn lessons from a television show about something as ridiculous as a zombie apocalypse, we can learn from anything. Takeaway 1:...


Crucial Chat: Gratitude - Positive Social Emotion and Emotional Intelligence

Thanksgiving is a great holiday: turkey, pie, football, and...GRATITUDE. Gratitude is a strong positive social emotion. The more we practice gratitude, the more we and the people that experience our gratitude benefit. Gratitude can lead to higher levels of success, more loyalty, and increased happiness. Through gratitude, people can gain respect, earn trust, and motivate others. Gratitude also replaces and prevents negative emotions. Gratitude can prevent anger, meanness, and jealousy....


Crucial Talks Episode 58 Risk Tolerance and Building Your Personal Brand

In this episode, Mike Sedam, uses a short clip from remarks made by Gary Vaynerchuk to discuss Risk Tolerance and building a personal brand. The full video of Gary Vee's remarks can be watched here: or listened to here: Mike uses a presentation he gives to professionals in the gas and petroleum industry, power...


Crucial Chat: Antidote to Anxiety - Shift your Mindset

Mike Sedam talks about the antidote to anxiety. We all deal with anxiety. There are a bunch of tools that focus on our biology and physiology to deal with anxiety including getting more sleep, exercising, and breathing. They all focus on the physical. Shifting our mindset is a great antidote for anxiety because we are social storytellers that tell ourselves stories and because they come from such a great source, us, we believe them. We tell ourselves we aren't good enough and it causes us...


Crucial Chat: The WHY of The Crucial Talks Podcast

Mike Sedam reiterates and acknowledges the WHY of the Crucial Talks Podcast: To help people who are social storytellers that crave social belonging and social esteem. To help us experience the workplace and our lives in a way that impacts us as social beings. To help us tame the fast-paced world we live in.


Crucial Talks Episode 57 Jason Lauritsen on Unlocking High Performance

Jason Lauritsen joins Mike Sedam to discuss the workplace and how people can have a rewarding and fulfilling experience at work. Employee engagement is a cornerstone of the discussion. Jason talks about how he was driven to understand why a person would leave a job when he worked as a headhunter. He not only wanted to fill the position, but wanted to find out why the prior employee did not want to stay. The problem he saw was that he was trying to find someone who could merely survive...


Crucial Talks Episode 56 Mark Gober on Consciousness and Ending Upside Down Thinking

Mike Sedam interview Mark Gober about consciousness and his book, An End to Upside Down Thinking. In this episode, Mark introduces his ideas surround consciousness preceding reality. We get a different lens through which we can view our worlds. This expands our thinking into an area that relates to people as social storytellers. Mark views the brain as a "filter" that allows us to experience reality. Communication may also be happening at a non-physical level and lets us consider the...


Crucial Talks Episode 55 Isaac Tolpin Trust, Engagement, and Employee Development

Mike Sedam interviews Isaac Tolpin about the work he is doing on employee education through the concept of microlearning ( Isaac has even provided a free gift to all Crucial Talks listeners. One of the important concepts of the Crucial Talks Podcast is that we learn from each other. Isaac talks to us from his lens as a futurist who not only understands technology, but applies human behavior to...


Crucial Talks Episode 54 Amberly Lago Perception, Tribes, and Triumph

Mike Sedam interviews Amberly Lago about her journey of triumph over tragedy. Amberly has written a book called True Grit and Grace: Turning Tragedy Into Triumph. In this interview, Amberly talks about how changing her perception allowed her to overcome tragedy after a terrible motorcycle accident and how her perception allows her to deal with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Amberly also talks about the power of social networks and how her "tribe" helped her through tragedy. This is a...


Crucial Talks Episode 53 Kevin Murphy and the Three Rooms

In episode 53, Mike Sedam interviews Kevin Murphy about his book The Three Rooms. For more about Kevin or his book you can visit: The conversation about this book lets us look at the power of perception. We also get tools to use to help us be more mindful of where we are. Are we in the past, the present, or the future. These are the three rooms Kevin explains we can be in at any one time. Kevin's premise is that our experience of life is not what we do or what we...


Crucial Talks Episode 52 Cheryl Rice the You Matter Marathon...No Running Required

Cheryl Rice is interviewed by Mike Sedam about the You Matter Marathon. No running is required (thank goodness) in this marathon. Visit: for more information and for your 30 free cards to hand out. The cards are the size of a business card and simply say "You Matter." Cheryl's motivation is to provide people with opportunities to connect. Something all of us as social storytellers need and crave. In this fast-paced world, we are social animals that require...


Crucial Talks Episode 51 Jackie Stavros and More Conversations Worth Having

In this episode, Mike Sedam interviews the second half of the dynamic duo that wrote Conversations Worth Having. Jackie Stavros talks to us about appreciative inquiry and how flipping the conversation can have a positive impact on how we deal with situations. She gives us two stories: one from an organization she helped and the second from her own personal life. These stories help us understand the concepts of appreciative inquiry and the tools that lead us to conversations worth...


Crucial Talks Episode 50: Nate Regier, A Sherpa of Conflict, on Compassionate Accountability

Mike Sedam interviews Nate Regier, the author of Beyond Drama: Transcending Energy Vampires, and Conflict without Casualties about how his company, helps people deal with conflict in positive ways. Nate talks to us about conflict and how people can spend energy on drama or compassion. He explains the difference as: Drama is to struggle against. Compassion is to struggle with. People can do more together than they can apart. Nate describes the 3 parts of the...


Crucial Talks Episode 49 Three Degrees of Influence: My Friend Bob Sakamano

In this episode, Mike Sedam talks about the three degrees of influence that was written about in the book Connected by Nicholas Christakis and James Fowler. Mike uses an example from the show Seinfeld to explain how degrees of separation impact influence people can have on others. This is important when we are trying to make changes in our organizations or communities. Mike uses his knowledge of social networks, people as social beings, and the role of identity in decision-making and...


Crucial Talks Episode 48 Karen Jaw-Madson on Culture Your Culture - Designing Work Experiences so People and Business Thrive

Karen Jaw-Madson is interviewed by Mike Sedam about culture and her book Culture Your Culture: Innovating Experiences @Work. Karen talks about developing a plan so that work experiences can be designed in a way that both people and the business thrive. Culture has been a huge part of Karen's life and she learned to be aware of social structures which lead to her exploring culture at a societal level, then applying what she has learned and experienced to organizations. Karen saw that there...


Crucial Talks Episode 47 Seinfeld vs. Costanza: Changing Conversations to Remove Conflict

Mike Sedam uses an episode of Seinfeld to discuss how our beliefs affect how we see the world around us and how that impacts our decisions. In Seinfeld, Episode 12 of Season 9, George has a huge wallet where he keeps everything. It is so large it causes him pain. It is also so large it give Jerry a lot to make fun of him about. We use it to better understand the book, Conversations Worth Having, by Jackie Stavros and Cheri Torres. By listening to the interactions between George and Jerry,...