Podcast 923: Purpose Work Nation with Brandon Peele

It is with pleasure to do this interview with one of today’s best selling authors, the CEO of Unity Lab, and an expert in purpose, leadership + culture change – Brandon Peele. Brandon is also trusted as a keynote speaker, consultant and program leader by organizations such as Google, Johnson & Johnson, Stanford University, JDRF, Morgan Stanley, and many more.

In this podcast, we discuss one of his books entitled Purpose Work Nation: Leading Organizations in Service of Our Nation’s Powerful Purpose. It’s a guidebook for leaders who want to activate their purpose, leave a profound legacy, enjoy soulful connection, kinship and belonging at work, and play a critical role fulfilling the purpose of the United States.

If you’re interested on knowing more about Brandon, his amazing works and business, you may click here to visit his website.

THE BOOK

Purpose Work Nation (2022) is a guidebook for leaders who want to activate their purpose, leave a profound legacy, enjoy soulful connection, kinship and belonging at work, and play a critical role fulfilling the purpose of the United States.

The United States has a sacred purpose  – to be the first multicultural nation to achieve unity (E Pluribus Unum) and flourishing (“…life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”).

And yet these are increasingly out of reach for the majority of citizens: 97% of us are unhealthy, 78% of us are paycheck to paycheck, and 61% of us are lonely. And these are just the averages – life is much worse for women, BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ citizens, e.g., $.01 of black wealth for every dollar of white wealth.

Given the dysfunction of our nation’s politics, the low (25%) trust of government, our deeply segregated education system, the decades-long slide in religion, and the comparatively high trust in one’s employer (72%), it increasingly falls on enterprise to fulfill our noble purpose.

Purpose Work Nation illuminates a path for business to unlock cultures of empathy, trust, purpose and innovation, and in so doing, spark our nation’s renewal.

THE AUTHOR

Brandon Peele  is a Midwesterner, best-selling author, impact entrepreneur and an expert in purpose, leadership + culture change. Prior to founding Unity Lab, he worked at two leading social learning companies, ion and Imperative, to activate empathy, trust, belonging, purpose and leadership at scale.

He’s trusted as a keynote speaker, consultant and program leader by organizations such as Google, Johnson & Johnson, Stanford University, JDRF, Morgan Stanley, U.S. Marine Corps, University of California – Berkeley, LinkedIn, the U.S. Navy, Slalom Consulting, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the University of Minnesota.

He has written / co-written five books on purpose and leadership and his work has been featured by news organizations such as USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, and Forbes.

Brandon holds an MBA in Leadership from Columbia Business School, is an Imperative Certified Purpose Leader (TM) and a PGI Certified Purpose Guide (TM), serves on the Council of the Global Purpose Leaders, and the Leadership Council of ManKind Project San Diego.

You may also refer to the transcripts below for the full transcription (not edited) of the interview.

Greg Voisen
Welcome back to Inside personal growth. This is Greg Voisen and inviting you to listen to our latest podcast episode number 923. With Brandon peel about his new book entitled, purpose work nation, leading organizations in service of our nation's powerful purpose. This podcast number 923 is brought to you by Derrick research and author of a new book entitled go play the ultimate roadmap to winning at the game of life. If you want to know more about Derrick Richardson, his new book and his company called Richard's Mark Richardson Marketing Group, please visit his website at www Richardson marketing group.net. That's www r-i-c-h-a-r-d-s-o-n m-a-r-k-e-t-ing group.net. And now for our featured podcast please listen to my engaging interview with Brandon Peale about his new book entitled, purpose work nation leading organizations in service of our nation's powerful purpose. Happy listening. Welcome back to Inside personal growth. This is Greg Voisen and the host of inside personal growth. And joining us from my hometown actually couldn't be that much closer is Brandon Peale. Brandon has a book out called purpose work nation, leading organizations in service of our nation's powerful purpose. Good day to you, Brandon, how are you?

Brandon Peele
I'm good, Greg, thank you for having me on.

Greg Voisen
I say Good day because I never know exactly what timezone anyone's gonna listen to these in. So Brandon and I actually had an opportunity to meet and purpose which meaning purpose meet in person. And that was on purpose to prior to this interview, which is always great because it gives me an opportunity to know a little bit more about the person. And that doesn't happen when you have authors joining you from all over the world to actually come on the show. So thank you for doing that with me. I really appreciate it. I'm gonna give our listeners a tad bit of information about you. He's a Midwesterner bestselling author is that is website says. unifier activator, author, speaker, so that would really kind of sum up Brandon. He's a he's got a thing called Unity Lab, which we're going to put a link to. He's trusted as a keynote speaker, consultant and program leader in organizations such as Google Johnson and Johnson, Stanford University, Morgan Stanley, US Marine Corps, University of California, Berkeley, and the list goes on. He has written and CO written four books on purpose and leadership. And his work has been featured by news organizations such as USA Today, US News and World Report and Forbes. He holds an MBA in leadership from Columbia Business School, back in New York. It is an impaired he is on the imperative certified purpose leader. Counsel is that the tea Yep. And he's a PGI certified purpose guide. And he serves on the council of the global purpose leaders which we'll put a link to that in our blog as well. And is completed over 3000 hours of leadership coaching and facilitation training. Wow, you're a busy guy, Brandon. So we'll stuff. Yeah, there's always in the BIOS, there's always like, I love for those of you who want to learn more about Brandon, just go to Brandon POB RA and do n p e, e l e. And there, you can learn more about him. His work, Unity lab, everything. There's actually a cool picture of him. He has a side life, my life. He's holding his wife over his shoulder, at his wedding with a sword in his hand. So I'll give you the kind of kind of guy that he is. So Brandon, I've told our listeners a little bit about kind of your educational background and a little bit about who you've worked with, and your four books. But you have an interesting story about how you came about really getting involved with this purpose work, and why you're so passionate about helping organizations. And in this case, there's a bison on the front of it live our nation's purpose and our purpose, personal purpose as well. So can you tell people you know how you got here? Because for a lot of people, this is not a normal career path. You know, they just don't go down and say, oh, well, I'm going to be a guy that helps business businesses find purpose and live our nation's purpose on top of it.

Brandon Peele
So yeah, yeah. Well I mean, obviously, if your listeners are all kind of looking within, and I've been in that purpose inquiry for probably many years and decades, so I was not too dissimilar, too dissimilar, you know, very traditional business background to business degrees began my career in investment banking startups venture capital, and achieved an early amount of success. And that was, I think, a blessing in disguise because I got to see how empty just the basic purposeless success economy is all about. Yeah, just looking at the ladder, like I don't want to live like those folks. potbelly pushed around a lawnmower in the suburbs, like, you know, repeating my dad's life, and then cooking on a golf course somewhere. And so in my late 20s, I began the inner journey. And in my early 30s, discovered the body of work called purpose work. And there's a handful of schools who certify folks in empowering others to discover their own purpose, as well as the purpose of organizations. And so for basically the last decade, that's been my focus, it's just like, purpose for everybody. I believe it's a human rights civil right. And specifically, because when we're not connected to that part of who we are, all we have is our personality, our ideas, and most of those were formed by family, trauma, societal oppression, all sorts of things that really aren't us. They're just a personality structure. And when we get connected to purpose, we actually show up as who we really are. And this is what brings us into this conversation about healing the soul of our nation or saving the Republic, because we're divided, like, right, left up, down, black, white, gay, straight, I mean, you name it. And it's because we've been herded, we've been polarized into identifying with these things that aren't really who we are. And so this is where I think purpose can play a beautifully catalytic role in empowering individuals to transcend these differences around race, politics, sexuality, etc. But really fulfilling our nation's purpose, which, you know, as you know, is E Pluribus Unum from many one. So we, we diversity is our strength is basically what that means. Life, liberty, pursuit of happiness, all are created equal. And we work consistently to form a more perfect union. So those four things are woefully out of integrity myth, but I'll pause there. I've talked a lot.

Greg Voisen
No, no, that no, and I think it's important to for listeners to understand how you got there. Look, a guy from Illinois, with an MBA, falling into this work is a bit unusual. So there was a something at some disconnect for you, you might find this happen with somebody in psychology, but not always somebody with an MBA. Because your idea, as you said, you saw success early on, you didn't want to live the same life. And to get that there, there were these pains associated with seeing how people live their lives and you wanted, in essence, I say, for people to kind of wake up to what's possible. And you mentioned that the purpose of the United States America has four key parts, you just mentioned them. But in that, how do we affect your weight, our purpose during these times that we're living in? In conjunction with what you just mentioned, you know, a minute and a half ago, about those four parts of our nation's purpose because I don't think that as a whole, there's anybody out there thinking about our nation's purpose, right. It's not something on their mind every day. Yeah, very few. And our founding fathers who wrote that, right. You know, when you go back to those times, they were in harder strife periods than we are today. Okay. They were hard for sure. They were hard, maybe not harder. But look, it was difficult. So why the nation's purpose and then the connection to our own purpose and how do we effectuate this purpose? Given there's so much going on in our lives that we're just trying to keep the peace? The wheels on the cart?

Brandon Peele
Yeah. Well, I'll just tell it like a quick story that brings me into this conversation basically. So 2020 I just had a whole year of heartbreak just moved to San Diego and was talking with homeless folks talking with my neighbors. And it was just different from when I lived in the Bay Area. Folks are hand to mouth here. And as I discovered this is pretty much a nap. phenomenon in VR is very kind of one of the precious, you know, you must have

Greg Voisen
been living in a suburb of the Bay Area, because downtown San Francisco has more homeless, anybody. But I get it. It's kind of a perspective. Yes, we, we do in San Diego, I've lived here most of my life, I have a huge issue with homelessness. And I know you told that story about the Black Lives Matter thing and the police. I thought that was, is that the story we're going down?

Brandon Peele
So, you know, at the outset of 2020, I'm like, Okay, I can't take any more heartbreak. I just want to serve. And of course, it was working with great clients and had a great team and all that. And I just started watching our democratic primary season. First impeachment, Supreme Court. Confirmation. And then of course, George Floyd's murder. And all of these, I've just felt like I was in the ring with Mike Tyson, like, wow, we are. We're falling apart. Just seeing the conversations in my own life. And confronting folks in my community who are hand to mouth. And as I started to realize that this is a nationwide phenomenon, like Mayo Clinic says 97% of us are unhealthy. So there goes life, liberty, pursuit of happiness. 61% of us are lonely, and that was before the pandemic. And we all know that depression, anxiety, isolation is like tripled, during the pandemic. And then political polarization and racial unrest. E pluribus unum is out the window, and just started to hit me like, Whoa, now I know why I feel upset, even though I have I have a connection, my own personal purpose, I'm living in this place that makes purpose that makes life living the pursuit of happiness, very difficult for the majority of its constituents. So that's really how the inquiry began for me. And when I launched unity lab in 2020, it is a vehicle a company, that that heals the soul of our nation, by activating individual purpose and creating diverse connections and relationships within organizations. Now, the reason why organizations matter is that our government, you know, I'm not probably telling anybody, anything they don't know, but full of polarization gridlock, lots of great legislation just dead on arrival in the Senate. And trust in government has slid from 77% in 1964, to a quarter to 20 25% of people right now trust the government. And less than half believe in the American dream, even though, you know, probably only 5% of us are realizing. So, government isn't going to solve our problems, we can't wait for DC to come in just like sign into law, there's just too much dysfunction and corruption happening. And similarly, with education, religion, journalism, those have also been on a multi decade long slide. And so the only sector of society that is healthy enough, that has the self interest, to activate individual purpose, we'll go into that in a second. And also requires there be peace and democratic norms for them to even operate. Because in a autocratic state, those things get nationalized, and turned into crony capitalists. Enterprises really quick saw what happened in Russia in the 90s. So

Greg Voisen
how much do you How much do you lay wait on, you know, I'm a bit older than you and social media wasn't around. Right? So this instantaneous ability to communicate with the world has been good. amazingly good to connect to people, but amazingly, crazy about dividing people, especially during these times. You know, George Floyd that you're talking about, you know, Trump, you know, you name it. I mean, it just seemed like it came in one after another after another after another. How much do you believe that decline that you just talked about in our belief in government on our belief, and, you know, everything really, we started questioning, everything came from the fact that we were so connected and had such an ability to communicate with one another, that we started questioning all these things versus in the past. We didn't have that instantaneous communication, and we were fed propaganda. And we're still fed propaganda. The question is, we're all trying to figure out what's propaganda and what's true.

Brandon Peele
I know it's implied possible. You know, so to answer your question, Greg, I think social media and also just mainstream media decay, that's responsible for about two thirds of where we're at right now. The fire was really lit in the 70s, when Neo liberalism, neoliberalism took off, wages stagnated. And $50 trillion of wealth was siphoned from the bottom 1%. To the top 1%. For folks to folks who don't need it. And when the Fairness Doctrine was not renewed in the 80s, that allowed all of our TV news folks to essentially say whatever they wanted to amp up viewership, because now there are tons of channels, and they needed to be hyperbolic and extreme and move us towards anger and outrage. And then come here from social media in 2007, that now anybody can say anything without any need to fact check any need to backup what they say. So I view the fairness doctrine, and then the Communications Decency Act, Section 230, that allowed social media companies not be responsible, those are just like gasoline thrown on the fire, but the fire started burning in the 70s. So here we are today, we've got all of our major institutions, with the exception of the private sector, completely hobbled. With integrity issues, business model issues, corruption issues, dysfunction issues, and private sector right now is the only sector that that's actually functioning relatively well. And because of their tight relationship, the lobbying k-street When they want something done, it gets done.

Greg Voisen
Well, the only thing that I would say is that still the challenge is the division of wealth. You know, we I was listening this morning to somebody that said, Elon Musk could buy Twitter for $40 billion. And that was his last month's increase in net worth. And you know, when you when you hear things like that, because he invested big time in Twitter today, and it drove the stock up, and you see what's happening, you have to start questioning, you know, this disparity, this inequity that's occurring between us when they say India has classes, you have a very high class, which is 1/3, and a middle class, which is trying to get there and a very, very, very poor class. What, how does that contribute to, you know, organizations, in this case, attempting to come together to solve this problem? If that's our own last bastion of hope here, because everything else is dysfunctional? Right. But then you look at the organizations and I know, there's a long winded question, but, you know, you look at the ones that really have power, like the Google's of the world, and the Facebook's of the world, the Amazons of the world. And, you know, and it's very small content in the Microsoft's of the world. Very small concentration of power, again, the power and the power to control lots of things, right. So when it comes down to your E Pluribus Unum, we have put our faith and trust in $1 it's right on the dollar. Okay. Right. And that's where I question this. Yeah. Right.

Brandon Peele
Well, yeah, exactly. No, in a cohesive, coherent society that takes care of everybody. Things like a Tesla, and an Amazon and Microsoft, are not bad things, you know, folks, especially when they're when they're providing tools that are liberating and empowering, like, Where would I be without Gmail and Google Docs? Where would I be without? Link? Did like,

Greg Voisen
great. But the government's the government is trying to stepping in again, like it did against Microsoft, to say there's an antitrust. Now you say, Well, is there antitrust at all of these companies? Are we gonna go after Google? Now? We're gonna go after Amazon now. All of them. Now they lost against Bill Gates the first time if you remember in the 80s. Right. But you know, and I don't think our government is strong enough to actually even attack these companies, because these companies are bigger than our government. Okay.

Brandon Peele
Yeah, yeah. They do have a case because the airwaves are part of the commons. The Internet, at least the portion that we surf around in here is part of the commons. And right now it's not being steward in stewarded in the interest of the people, it's being steward in the interest of essentially advertising. So whether they use any trust, whether they use they reinstitute FCC fairness, or revoke section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, they need to do all that. But anti trust is just one of the things they think they can maybe get done. But the real interest is in protecting the commons for all Americans really

Greg Voisen
Well. So it really comes back down to, as you said, in the book, that this book is for an evolved leader, for the dam giving evolutionary leaders, your say, your book is attempting to bridge two worlds of haves and have nots, and close the gap on the inequality in the world. And what must happen to our individual and collective consciousness and the souls to live on purpose and to close that gap? Because that at edits point, I want to state this because I think it's important. I interviewed Steven Kotler, I can't tell you how many times and he has one coming out in two weeks called the Devil's Dictionary. And he says, there's only one thing that's actually going to change society as we see it today. And I thought this was and it was empathy and compassion. And he said, if we don't have the empathy and compassion, and it's actually a story, he tells in the Devil's Dictionary, and I think actually written the Devil's Dictionary, you know, in, you know, could you comment on that? What do we have to do these consciousness in the souls of people in the world to wake up to live on purpose to live in conjunction with, as you call it, the nation's purpose? To rectify that the challenges that we're faced with? Yeah, how much of us can wake up? because not everybody's going to wake up? But do you believe that enough, could wake up to shift us globally?

Brandon Peele
Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. And I totally agree with Steven Kotler. I'm a big fan of his work. So empathy and compassion, are very difficult to just like wave your magic wand and say, Okay, everyone start to feel and act more towards the collective. You can't mandate it's not a top down thing. But it can be cultivated through consciously structuring relationship. Now, what this kind of keys in the work that we're doing with Unity lab, so how does an organization both activate individual waking up organizational flourishing, and protect and save the Republic, they get really have to do two things. One, they have to recognize that they themselves are pretty much a sovereign entity, with a culture education functions, healthcare functions, environmental functions, policy functions, and that internally, they can cultivate behaviors and beliefs. And once you get to 25% of a population, that's a tipping point. So the work that we do is we put people into small diverse learning groups, so groups of four that have as much diversity in those groups as possible, and move them through a series of programs that have themselves reflect on their own purpose and values, take new actions at work that express those. So these are actions that are pro social, oftentimes, including empathy and compassion, and then sharing their experience in these small, diverse group discussions following a discussion guide. So empathy and compassion and trust, build across difference, because these folks are meeting five times once every two weeks, and building these relationships and sharing what's really true for them, not their identity, not their opinions, not the race, not their ideology, but sharing really, who they are their own humanity.

Greg Voisen
And, but aren't Brandon. I don't know what the number is you know more about the findings and statistics than I do. So maybe you can enlighten my listeners and me. You know, I just finished that interview with Steven Kotler on trust and inspire. And you know, the whole premise of the book is to move from command and control in corporations to trusting and inspiring, easier said than done because I believe 90% of our corporations, even though they may espouse some of this stuff are still command and control. And, you know, if that's the case, we got a long way to go. Did it really is a mindset shift. Trust and inspire is a great way to move folks towards that I think my book is as well. purpose driven organizations by Carlos rea. But there is a mindset shift that like what got us here, this command and control, extract exploit relationship or you know, orientation is not going to be where we need to go lead any further organizational growth. And it's also not going to lead our survival, because our three largest stakeholders, investors, employees, and customers all demand this more conscious way of doing business, they want living wages, they want trust and transparency, they want more humane people practices like parental leave, they want Cradle to Cradle supply chain. So business has every incentive to do this. That's why I wrote this book for business leaders is that you will win by the measures of the old game, and you'll also activate all the potential, that's just latent waiting there, like 80% of the world's workforce is disengaged. So think about that.

Greg Voisen
Yeah, but if you look at the mammalian brain, you know, how it how it actually works. It's, it defaults to time as money. It does, yeah, right now, and it doesn't really want to give people the time to make the investment into what is here now. And that is one of the things we're up against, is how this between here and here actually works from a psychological standpoint, to get those leaders to let go. So that they can people can have more autonomy, there can be more trust, you know, at and I really appreciate your perspective, you speak about the racial unrest and the impoverished state of many of the black Indigenous and People of Color, as well as the BLM Black Lives Matter movement. And you, you know, you spent some time talking about George Floyd's murder, and this racial divide, how can defining and living on purpose, help us to ameliorate these problems that exist in our country, because that problem stems from that mammalian brain, where the guy leaned on George's neck for eight minutes and 26 seconds, or whatever it was, because he had no compassion, no empathy, no nothing to just get up, and say, hey, look, you know, just handcuff the guy and take him off versus kill him here this way, is stupid in front of cameras running and whatever. But my point is, is so much of that exists. And I don't want to blame the police or enforcement agencies. What I want to do is look to the leadership of these organizations to transform and I know the police of all people right now are trying to get your work. They're really trying. I mean, if you're not working with, you know, enforcement agencies of any type, something's wrong, because you should be. So my question is, is how do we? How can we define living on purpose? How to ameliorate these issues?

Brandon Peele
Yeah. So all the research on what purpose does to human behavior and beliefs, the science of purpose.org I just want to pull out a couple areas it say it again, science of purpose dotwork,

Greg Voisen
really, so we want to put a link to that science of purpose dot o RG. Okay, I'm gonna write it down.

Brandon Peele
But I just want to pull out a couple of key pieces here is that when individuals connect to their own purpose and values, they have a 4x reduction in anxiety in diverse environments. They also have high levels of compassion, empathy, other centeredness, generosity, it's because basically, the purpose journey connects us to our true nature. And that's who that's who we are really, we just living in systems that incentivize other behaviors around selfishness, achievement, you know, cya getting ahead, all that kind of stuff. So when you activate purpose, you're actually bringing out people's humanity.

Greg Voisen
And that wasn't it always instilled in us again, I'm gonna break in here because we are thought of less than men. Men want to talk about men's group men. When we are not striving to succeed or to be something or whatever, to be a compassionate, empathetic man. I've had people say that about me. It's like, man, you're one of the most compassionate understanding you have both equal men. male and female. And you know, that's why I say, you know, because we need a female president, we need a female board of directors, right? Because there's something about the feminine side that we all know, has compassion and empathy built in it. There were mothers, that's what they do. Right? So I'm just wondering, how do we reprogram these males out there, that's when you talk about and I read it, probably more than once. You even said it kind of about your dad, but these white male dominated. You know, I see O'Connell up there, and I'm like, holy shit at some years old speaker of the house. What the pardon me fuck, you know, this guy does not belong there. This is, uh, you know, and then I could say that about so many political leaders today. I mean, I'm sitting here looking at going scratching my head. Where's the diversity? What happened here? How did these guys get control of this?

Brandon Peele
Yeah. So I'll pardon for the long No, no,

Greg Voisen
dissertation here. But I'm, you know, actually gets me upset when I speak about it.

Brandon Peele
How sacred is being desecrated in real time, we're watching it every day on the news. So to put a finer point on what's going on with men, there's great research on when children are shamed out of their emotions. And for boys, it starts very early, like four or five. Yeah, so what do you want to call that feminine? What do you want to call that just our emotional intelligence, it happens to women much later. And, and we've all seen, you know, lean in type folks in organizations, female who acts very much like a wounded men, you know, so it's not male, female. But one of the things that that men need, and really all people need is a safe space to actually share what they feel. And that's the work that we do in the mankind project, helping men discover who they really are giving them access to their emotions. It's the work we do in Unity lab, by having folks meet in these small groups with very tight agreements like confidentiality and safety, where they actually get to share for the first time, really what, what their experience is. And I'm not saying that it's the, it's the fix all, like, we all need to do trauma work if we've had childhood trauma, if we've emotions, neglected, abused, rejected all that stuff. But right now, what we're witnessing is traumatized leadership. This is like just looking at Vladimir Putin, like this guy just needs a hug. Right, let's sing, and some healing work. And he'd be like, Oh, my gosh, I'm such an idiot, I can't believe I killed all those people, because I didn't get enough hugs. So that's a piece of it. Now, speaking to that mindset to get them to do something about it, I always just lay out the ROI for every employee that is connected the purpose and as a sense of belonging, they add $20,000 in productivity a year. So the average tenure is four years. So it's, it's an $80,000 return by activating purpose and belonging within your organization. And your deal app does that at scale, like we can turn that on next week, right? And the investment is, is like, a 10th of that right? To be able to, to do that. So from a, like I said, the traditional metrics of the old game, you'd be a fool not to activate purpose and belonging,

Greg Voisen
what you're dealing with deep seated beliefs, Brandon with inside the individuals in the organization, whether male or female, and the pressures of the organization that's been put on these people to perform. And the question is, how do they give a damn that now there's a new layer here? Right? You cited great statistics. It's not that I disbelieve them. It's like, how do I break this fundamental belief that's running inside of the individual first, then in the collective body of people, to have them come together in unity lab and have Pardon me, but I'm hoping it is a kumbaya, right? It's like, I gotta kumbaya outmoded, I wake up and I go, Hey, my purpose is going to make me feel better. I'm going to be healthier. I'm going to be more productive. I'm going to want to work more. And I think the word work is really overused to be honest with you. Because every time I think about the vernacular work, it's like, if you love what you do, it's not work. Right? And if you're on purpose, it's not work. Right? It's like you and I doing this podcast here. We probably could talk the rest of the day. But the point is, is that, you know, you cite that we're a diverse I didn't nation, the result is 74% of us don't have any friends from different ethnicities. 69% of us don't have friends from different generations and 63% of us don't have any friends with different levels of education. He stated that when we divide and blame each other, we miss, point the finger out there, three fingers are pointing back at you. We miss the deeper dehumanizing narrative of our story. How do you recommend that we rewrite the story? And this goes back to what I just said. It's the stories we're carrying around with us in the unity lab. How do we rewrite the story, so we create a society that has more inclusion, compassion and acceptance for one another? Because that is the key. We got all these stories. And it doesn't have to be one unified story. It has to be a story that has certain values that I believe in, that can be expressed, how do we rewrite that?

Brandon Peele
Yeah. And that's why I lead with the purpose of the nation, because these are very sacred ideals. Yeah, in our story, to come up with these in our story to actually make them real, making progress not fast enough by any account. But like, I think, I think actually the story of our nation as like one of a of a covenant that is built on ideas and laws and not about people and not about culture. like Russia, for example, perfect example, like Putin is trying to create a national identity around land in history, not ideals. And Putin and his allies are winning now. 68% of humanity lives under autocratic rule that's up from 48%, just 10 years ago. So democracy itself, like a liberal society, constitutional democracy, those things if we care about. And this is really the call to action for leaders, like, if you want to spend the next 20 years just hopping around trying to amass a pile of chips while the Republic falls, go for it. This is not the book for you, the book for you, this is a book for you, like I need to do whatever I can right now to effectuate democracy, our national purpose in house and also use our market power brand and our voice to take a stand and protect those ideals at home and abroad.

Greg Voisen
But not just this guy, Putin, many people are failing the test of money and power. Yeah, okay. They're using their power inappropriately, they're using their money and appropriately. Okay. And so, I don't know how you want to say that. But would you agree with that statement? Oh, absolutely. Okay. So it's like, okay, I'm a philanthropist. I want to give money someplace, you know, if I'm, if I'm Elon Musk, I have plenty to give away. If I'm Jeff Bezos, I have plenty to give away to make a change. Or no, I look at it, I employ enough people that I'm really contributing back to society. I just think that there's a whole mindset shift that needs to occur there, around party money and power. And you state that if we are to do if we are to fulfill our purpose as a nation, and understand the role of the organization, which we've been talking about, have it to be fulfilling it, then we'll have to surface the underlying myth that has driven our nation for centuries. What's the myth? And how do we start to elevate the consciousness to bridge the gaps in inequality.

Brandon Peele
So it's essentially hyper individualism, or what the Cree Nation calls wedeco, like a parasitic selfishness. Even though our stated purpose is anything, but it's like, it's beautiful, it's about all of us winning diversity is our strength. But what's actually been driving us, especially in the private sector, is this sense of individual achievement, wealth accumulation, and now, of course, Bezos in most of the world are standing on top of their gold with everyone else feel like I'd like to eat. So,

Greg Voisen
but fundamentally, Brendan, isn't there the fundamental things is fear. Well, yes, level because everybody out there you were talking earlier about, you know, we live in San Diego in a society which is got a lot of impoverished people. You know, when Maslow did that study, way back when the basic level things aren't being taken Karev. So, you know, you say, Well, how does crime rise in a city? It rises by the people who don't have what they need in most cases, and they weren't brought up in a normal structure. So instead, well, let's go just take it from someone else. Right. And so I know I'm kind of off the track here, but not really where I'm going with this is that, fundamentally, at the basis of this is fear. Putin is afraid. Many people are afraid that that structure in which we live is going to shift and they're not going to get their piece. Yeah. Right. You know, it's like, well, this whole thing is going to shift and when it does, how much am I going to get keep? Right, right.

Brandon Peele
And then you have folks on the other side who have realized that they don't want to die with their money. They don't want to set up generational wealth, they actually want to improve society. Yeah, folks, Buffett and Malin Burnham, and

Greg Voisen
lots of them. Yeah. I've worked with lots of them. So yeah. And there's lots of small ones too. But, you know, that myth that you talked about, and to elevate consciousness, when I say elevate consciousness, I say the same thing as Steven Kotler. It's like, hey, look, we've got to be more empathetic. And we've got to be more compassionate, if we're gonna resolve these issues. Right. Now. You have a picture of a bison on the front of the book. And you speak about the bison way, would you have a little bit but not in gone in depth with it? About the bison and the ethics of courage, care, inclusion, play independence, protection and redemption. And I think I missed one. I did. But those, I didn't even know that, which thank you for awakening me to that. What is it about those descriptors that if everybody lived that way, we would have a more unified, fulfilled life. And we could move in unison as a one nation.

Brandon Peele
Yeah. So I juxtapose the bald eagle and the bison bald eagle is parasitic selfishness, right. And it also being a very terrible choice for our stated purpose. Whereas our national mammal, the bison was only ratified in 2016, by a bipartisan coalition comes with a much more inspiring and inclusive set of ethics, that, you know, implied ethics, just looking at their behavior, like Oh, wow. So they share space intimately with other species inclusion, they're courageous, they've run into a storm to move through it quickly versus like cattle who run away, generativity and sustainability, they lead the environment better than they found it, just those three, we don't have time to go through all eight. But just those three would radically change organizational life, civic life, community life, and our national character agreed. And so the ethics of the bison can then be adopted by organizations should they so choose and activated very quickly, within literally two quarters, you could activate purpose and belonging, and see individual flourishing the flourishing of your organization and know that you did the best that you could to protect our democratic ideals and our nation's purpose in house and out in the market.

Greg Voisen
And in your company. Yeah, you know, agreed. And I think it's so important, and I'm gonna say to my listeners, you know, get the book. It's, it's not only filled with great advice, but you know, he gives you questions at the end to think about and also stats, you know, a lot of people will fundamentally place their importance on statistics, you know, percentages. And I think it's great because it tells you how we're moving. There's an analytic in the book that shows you how we're moving. And in some cases, you know, Brandon points out, we're moving in the wrong direction and other cases, he points out, we're moving in the right direction and you, as a company wants to move in the right direction, and you call for some very decisive action and state that our flight plans are useless. That we must turn all of our cards face up and start playing a new game. We need to embrace the current reality rethink everything with the bison ethos in mind and heart. What does this look like? And where should leaders start in developing a new flight plan?

Brandon Peele
Yeah. So the first piece is just recognize that we are in a VUCA times volatile, uncertain, chaotic, ambiguous, no executive team, I don't care how many Harvard MBAs are in that room are smart enough, they haven't figured out all in advance, we need what Colin was talking about. Trust, agility, transparency, we need individuals to be solving problems and creating new solutions that they can't in a command and control organization. So the first is just understand that command control is useless. Like you're just going to be responding to fires, if that is your only orientation. Whereas what you can do right now is activate the purpose and belonging of your organization, at a, at a cultural level, at a behavior level, at a leadership level, and empower people to bring their wild ideas, their dissenting opinions, and start to shift how things are done in the organization to meet the evolving demands of customers, employees, investors who all want sustainability and equity. So that's, that's not going to happen by a CEO having an AHA on the golf course, that those are 1000s of not hundreds of 1000s of decisions that need to be made newly and you can't do that unless you empower folks. So what we get to in the back half of the book is how do you actually do that. So first, you activate purpose and belonging in your organization. And then you move that into a broader discussion of Okay, now that we know who we are, who is our organization for the world, so we have a deeper dive in our organizational purpose and values. And then we set up the business, restructure the business to fulfill on those in a way that a meets the market demand the things that employees and customers need. But be actually has us feel fulfilled and knowing that we're shifting an organization to be a steward of not only the organization's mission and values, but the nation itself is activating democratic ideals, empowering egalitarian ideals on a day to day basis.

Greg Voisen
So would you say a good example of that might be Patagonia Chouinard,

Brandon Peele
I would I would put him on that list that list and put Eileen Fisher on that list. I even put Microsoft, frankly, Microsoft.

Greg Voisen
Yeah. Well, the new CEO is Yeah, exceptional. Yeah.

Brandon Peele
LinkedIn. I love those folks. They're doing well.

Greg Voisen
They're owned by Microsoft. Yeah, well, you know, in small businesses today to take this on through unity lab. And this is my plug for unity lab. And for Brendon, you guys can go to unity lab.co. And you can learn more about what he's doing. You can go to his website, which I already said, is Brendan, b, r a n d, o npele.com. And I encourage you to do that. And if you want to just take a, you know, a pass out it, just get the book, we'll put a link to Amazon on that. He's got some pretty cool videos up there as well, that you watch. And you can you can watch them at his website, and you've got a YouTube channel as well, right? Yeah. So encourage all of you go check out the work that he's doing. Because if you really want to shift, creativity, innovation, inclusion, profitability, everything that you might want to do, while at the same time having social impact. And I think this is important, because, you know, we don't do this alone. So the social impact part of it is really, really, really important. And I think every organization if they had a social impact, over and above them selling their product unless their product was going to have some great social impact. Great. Right. So it's been a pleasure having you on the show. Brandon, thanks for taking the time. Speaking with my listeners. I could have talked to you a lot longer and I did I skip some of the questions, but it was it was a great dialogue. Namaste to you. Thanks for taking the time to be on. You gotta take care. Thank you for listening to this podcast on inside personal growth. We appreciate your support. And for more information about new podcasts, please go to inside personal growth.com or any of your favorite channels to listen to our podcast. Thanks again. And have a wonderful day.

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