You’re not a leader if no one follows you.
This course is about helping you build the muscles you need to show up as the magnanimous person people want to follow. Consider it your leadership gym. If you’re looking for quick fixes and tricks to get more out of your team this is not your class. This course is about digging deep, showing up, pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, and developing a hunger to be a better person and by extension, a better boss.
Over the course of 7 weeks, Val will help you understand 7 core strengths of magnanimous leaders and how to build those strengths for yourself while dodging tempting pitfalls along the way.
What you will learn:
- The difference between management, motivation, and mobilization
- The importance of LOVE in the workplace (yes, we said the “L” word)
- Why selfishness is vital to being a good person and a great leader
- How to make losing employees (whether you fire them or they quit) work for you
- Why craving respect is essential and craving approval is dangerous
- The lifesaving importance of not majoring in minor shit
What you will get:
- Weekly live class sessions
- Weekly group coaching calls
- Clarity about your direction
- Seven weeks of tools and exercises that you can come back to again and again
- Lifetime access to the #startwithyou course material (and all course updates)
Course runs every Tuesday at 12P Eastern; bring your lunch (or breakfast, West Coasters)
“Val makes the impossible achievable.” “Val can be kind of scary, but in a really good way.” “We secretly call her the Entrepreneur Whisperer.”
What do you do with more than two decades of these kinds of quotes about yourself from clients, colleagues, and former bosses? I know I’m not a typical leader, I’m a disruptor in the most neutral of terms; it brings me joy to take things apart and put them back together better than ever. With a 12-year career in the arts, a combined 15+ years in philanthropy, and 2 businesses, I’ve had a lot of opportunities to study and practice leadership in nonprofits, for-profits, and government. I created Blaze in 2017 to distill that knowledge into tools, coaching, and strategic council to help our clients bring big ideas to life.
Solid career wins gave me the confidence to make this entrepreneurial leap, including rewriting my job description seven times and getting promoted as a result six. I found my first dream gig at Woodruff Arts Center and launched an arts career that culminated in an appointment to Deputy Director of Fulton County Arts Council where I oversaw more than $4.5M in programs. I worked in philanthropy at Foundation Center (now Candid), starting as the regional director for the Southeast, later adding the New York-based Education Department, and then taking on the role of Head of Domestic Strategy and Innovation. In the years between, I worked on projects like the Brand Atlanta campaign – representing the City at Sundance and serendipitously presenting to film investors who would later take Georgia up on its new tax incentives.
I’ve had the good fortune to meet some larger-than-life leaders, mostly through board service. I’m grateful to National Council of Nonprofits, Atlanta’s Center for Civic Innovation, Art Papers Magazine, Spelman Museum, TechBridge, Georgia Tech’s Ferst Center, and GSU’s Nonprofit Studies Program for allowing me to serve on their boards and to learn some of my greatest lessons while doing so.
I have a B.S. in Economics from Georgia Tech and a M.S. in marketing from Georgia State but I’m a lifelong student: curiosity led me to study governance at Harvard and get certified in conflict resolution at Cornell. A fellowship at Coca Cola’s Diversity Leadership Academy, a 2014 Leadership Character Award from the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership, and recognition by Business of Giving as one of the top 25 Philanthropy Speakers in 2017 encouraged me to be an even more vigilant, humbled student of leadership.
Each week, Val will cover one of the seven core attributes of great leadership. For each attribute, you’ll come away with an accompanying mindset, skill, knowledge, and language. See below for the schedule, and check out Week 1 for an example of the takeaways:
INTRODUCTION (VIA EMAIL) // HOW TO BE A BOSS WITHOUT BEING A B!TCH
Leadership is a Sport: Train Accordingly
WEEK 1 // AUTHENTICITY: WHAT DO YOU WANT?
The Path to Altruism is Paved with Selfishness
Mindset: In a World Full of Variables, Be Your Own Constant
Knowledge: Your Life Can’t Be Your Side Hustle
Skill: Finding Hidden Agendas
Language: Seriously Happy
WEEK 2 // CURIOSITY: THE LOGICAL CASE FOR LOVE
Empathy is Overrated; Love is King
WEEK 3 // MAGNETISM: FEAR IS FOR PUNKS
If No One is Following, You’re Not Leading
WEEK 4 // FOCUS: (DRAG)
Eyes on Your Own Paper
WEEK 5 // DETERMINATION: F=MA
The Only Wrong Move You Can Make is not Moving.
WEEK 6 // HARMONY: MAKE ROOM FOR WHAT MATTERS
Even Saints Sleep and Prophets Play
WEEK 7 // HUMANITY: FINDING COMMON GROUND — AN UNCOMMON PRACTICE
What You See Is the Problem; What You Don’t Is the Solution