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Be a Lighthouse: As a Company, a Leader, and Person

Every time we talk about business or team, we talk about what we think of as the ‘me’, the ‘we’, and the ‘business’. Today we’re talking about that in the context of a lighthouse.

When a leader operates as a lighthouse, they look left, right, up, and down at all team members and ensure that every team member can soar. People will give so much more when they believe in the thrust of a company, so lighthouse leadership is essential to your organization.

Join us this week and discover what it means to be a lighthouse and learn to shine your light brightly from the inside out. We discuss what happens when leaders aren’t working as a lighthouse and the effect that this has upon the rest of the team, and share some tips to help you think like a lighthouse in any area of your life.

If you find the concept of being a lighthouse intriguing and want to learn to shine your light, Susan is running an affordable invite-only program at the beginning of March. Email Susan for more details.

If you’d like us to speak at your organization about conflict, stress, team-building, or leadership, work with your team virtually, or coach you or leaders on your team, reach out to us!

If you enjoyed the show, please share the podcast with your family and friends, or post a five-star review on iTunes. Rating and reviewing the show helps spread the word, which means less friction and suffering for everyone, and who doesn’t want that?

Learn More:

  • How to be a lighthouse leader.

  • The importance of being your own lighthouse.

  • How to attract the type of people you want to your organization.

  • Why you must be willing to take risks and be uncomfortable.

  • Why fear stops people from being a lighthouse.


Full Transcript:

CrisMarie: Welcome to The Beauty of Conflict, a podcast about how to deal with conflict at work, at home and everywhere else in your life. I am CrisMarie.

Susan: And I'm Susan.

CrisMarie: We run a company called Thrive Inc, and we specialize in conflict resolution, stress management coaching and building strong, thriving teams and relationships both in person and virtually.

Susan: We are starting 2021 with a series based on our book, The Beauty of Conflict for Teams. We’ll be sharing tips, tools about how to make your team work more effectively especially in this remote and virtual environment. We hope you’ll walk away from this episode and this series with some fresh ideas that change your day, your week and even your life.

Susan: Well, welcome, this is Susan and we are here continuing our series on the Beauty of Conflict for Teams which is based on our book, The Beauty of Conflict for Teams: Harnessing Your Team’s Competitive Advantage. And this week, well, in general every time we talk about a team or a business we talk about what we think of as the me, the we and the business. And today we’re going to talk about that in the context of what we also think of as a lighthouse. And so CrisMarie is going to dive into this and this kind of starts off in chapter 23. So go ahead, CrisMarie.

CrisMarie: Yes, thank you Susan. So this is our fabulous book that we think you should buy right now. But we’re going to tell you about chapter 23 which is the start of the business section which is Why Are Some Companies so Successful? And we believe it’s based on their why. And Simon Sinek put out a TED Talk, Start with WHY.

Even the authors, Jim Collins and Jerry Porras, the authors of Built to Last found that successful companies really had a clear sense of their core purpose which means their core purpose beyond making money. Why we exist beyond making money.

Recognizing that all businesses want to make money, that’s a given. But you really want an inspirational, aspirational purpose that’s driving the hearts and minds of everyone, aligning the hearts and minds of everyone in the company. And it’s not a marketing message, it’s something that really maybe may never even be attainable but is really a thrust forward. I mean some of the companies that we use when we work with teams, because when we’re working at the executive level we help them align this core purpose.

And it’s really, they’re usually short, like 3M, not that we worked with them, but 3M, their core purpose is solving unsolvable problems. There is Microsoft’s old one was put a computer on every desk. Nike was experience the joy of crushing the competition.

Susan: I just love that one because you think of Nike and that can sound kind of harsh, crushing. But Nike is like that, if you look at their ads, if you look at some of the things. So they really have put something that the people that work there and often the athletes that are on their merchandising, they are about crushing the competition. They’re not looking at collective sports and things like that necessarily.

CrisMarie: Now, if you work at Nike and that doesn’t fit for you, you contact us and then put us straight because we want to know. Because we just use these as examples and signpost to help other companies figure out what is our thrust. I mean we have a core purpose and we’re a little tiny company.

Susan: We started off, our core purpose was to change the way corporate America communicates. And that is still a very passionate lens that we work with. And we added to it because we realized that really at the heart of it…

CrisMarie: Well, my personal core purpose is to really help people bring all of who they are to everything they do as a way of bringing more of themselves to the business, whatever they’re doing. But their relationship, their business and really when people show up more real it does change the way corporate America communicates.

Susan: What happens sometimes though is that a company, you can always tell, some companies have – we’ve worked in boardrooms like this, have a kind of what seems like an aspirational goal. But then we’re in there with the top of the organization and what we are talking about is how they’re trying to figure out how they’re going to sell the company.

CrisMarie: Yeah. We’re trying to actually get them to a core purpose, an inspirational core purpose and they have a marketing version of it. But you can tell it’s kind of hollow because really we’re looking for bidders. We’re looking for people who are going to buy us. And that’s really disheartening if you’re trying to do something different.

Susan: I do think that can be very challenging, especially if it is – you might have the top of the org maybe all aligned up. But people down in it are feeling like where are we going? What are we doing? Why is it?

CrisMarie: That’s exactly, yeah, because we have seen that. They’re like, “Well, why doesn’t the executive team give us our new goals?” And they’re so busy trying to find a buyer that the rest of the organization is like, “What?”

Susan: So again, and we have worked with companies where within their goal it does seem like they really are all about making money. But if they can align that in a way that drives people, that can still work. We try not to get moralistic about it.

CrisMarie: I think, yeah, I think we tend to be more transparent. And you can’t always be transparent if you’re selling the company. But the idea, let’s go back to really people are going to be inspired and it’s that magic ingredient. They will give so much more if they actually believe in the trust of the company and what the company is trying to do. And there is a company why. But then there’s also how do you align the personal why, my personal values, what’s important to me?

Ours line up for change the way corporate America communicates and brings me of who you are to everything you do. But everybody that joins your company you want them to be able to fit. I mean I was coaching a woman who was interviewing for different jobs. And one company that she was interviewing was Amazon who was very clear about their leadership principles. They’ve got 14 leadership principles. She was looking at them and she asked the interviewer, she said, “Well, who would fail at this company, at Amazon?”

Susan: I love that question. I think that was just a great question to ask. She was being a lighthouse in my mind. She was looking for some great feedback. But we’ll get there next.

CrisMarie: And the guy said, “Well, you know those 14 principles, if you read all of them and you go, “You know what? That’s me, I’m with it”, then you’re going to succeed. If you read them and you go, “There’s a few of them I don’t really quite like”, then you’re going to come to the company and you’re going to want to change those and you’re going to be disappointed and those are the people that don’t succeed and they eventually leave.”

Susan: So I loved it because I do believe this person, I remember you talking about it at one point, really took the time to do that and figured out, no, it wasn’t a good fit because of that, which I love. That’s a lighthouse.

CrisMarie: That is clarity. She was being a lighthouse. They were being a lighthouse and you know. And there’s no shame in that. There’s not a fit here. You want that level of clarity so people self-sort. So you’re bringing the types of people you want in the organization.

Susan: Yes. So it might be time to kind of talk about our next layer which one of the things that can happen in a company is – we talk about this concept of when a company gets into trouble because they start to create silos. Now, if you think about anyone who knows what a silo is, it’s that big round thing goes up and down, holds corn or something.

CrisMarie: Grain, yeah.

Susan: Grain of some sort, but there’s no great big light on it. So a silo is often when leaders get just focused on their part of the business, they’re a silo, they’re not a lighthouse. And you really want your leaders to be lighthouses. And what we mean by that is you want them to be aware. You want them to have that channel of clarity for their team and their department or whatever it is.

But you also want them to be looking right to left, 360, shining a light in the organization from their letting the organization know what their team is doing, getting the information from above, and below, and around, that’s the lighthouse part.

CrisMarie: I know we were working with one organization, this was a couple of years ago and they realized, they were one team a part of a larger organization. And they realized they weren’t being a lighthouse because they weren’t broadcasting, “Hey, this is what we do and how we interact with all you other departments.” And so nobody knew, so they weren’t utilizing them, they weren’t linking them in when they needed to.

So it’s that shining out, broadcasting within the organization. And also looking left to right, maybe I could actually work better with my peers, the team because sometimes when the upper leader isn’t shining as a lighthouse, making clear about what our direction is. What tends to happen is people focus on what they know which is their own area and that’s how silos are created.

Susan: I wanted to mention, yeah, so there was another executive that I was coaching and they were really struggling. And they got feedback that they were not looking left to right. And I remember in our coaching session that that was a big thing because they were like, “I don’t really get it.”

CrisMarie: What do you mean?

Susan: And well, one thing, I was like, “When you got that feedback did you ask?” Because that’s also an important part, when somebody above you gives you feedback like, “You’re not doing this.” To be willing to ask the question, “I don’t really get it.” And so many times leaders don’t. So in our session we began to kind of break that down. What does that really look like going left to right? It means you really have to be paying attention to other parts of this business even though you don’t have time, even though it might be uncomfortable.

And recognizing that that’s going to be critical, more critical really for your success, your people below you are going to be much happier if you’re doing that than if you don’t.

CrisMarie: We talk about this even at any level of leadership. Most people focus on the team they lead. And really for an organization to cascade and create alignment all the way through it’s really the team you’re a member of that you want to be lockstep with your peers even though they’re in different areas.

Because it’s kind of like for the people down below you, whatever level you’re at, if you’re not in lockstep it’s like you’re – let’s say you line up your team, the team you’re a member of and you have this big light behind you. And if you’re not shoulder to shoulder with your teammates, that light is going to blind everybody. They’re not going to see you. They’re going to just see the light. But if you actually cinch up closer, go shoulder to shoulder, you block out that light and you’re surrounded by the light, they see you.

And that’s the metaphor for being in alignment really helps because then you folks are working together, you’re saying the same things. So everybody below in your peers’ department, in your department is hearing the same thing. And that, oh my gosh, that solves so many problems at an organizational level.

Susan: So when you’re leading your team your job in the organization is to be a lighthouse looking left to right with your peers, looking up, looking down. Not just focused in on your own team.

CrisMarie: And I just have to put in this fable here, I’m sure you’ve heard it. But it still is, because we haven’t talked about what a lighthouse is.

So there’s a US ship and they see a light out there and they say, “Please divert your course 15 degrees to the north to avoid a collision.” And there’s a Canadian reply that says, “Recommend you divert your course 15 degrees to the south to avoid a collision.” The US ships says, “This is the captain of a US navy ship, I say again divert your course.” The Canadian reply, “No, I say again you divert your course.”

It escalates a little higher, “This is the aircraft carrier, USS Coral Sea, we are a large warship of the US navy, divert your course now.” The Canadian reply, “This is a lighthouse, your call.”

Susan: I do love that and of course you listening folks, somebody I’m sure is going to tell us, “You know that’s a myth.” But it’s like a fable in my mind. It’s some very important information. And I think sometimes people try to be aggressive and loud and a warship. And sometimes to get their point across, I am doing what I am doing. And people sometimes in an organization can feel like they’re getting bowled over by things. That’s not the really the lighthouse approach, that’s just kind of bullying.

CrisMarie: That was one of our other episodes you can listen to, earlier.

Susan: But when you’re really clear, and this is what’s cool about a lighthouse, it’s not running around trying to bully people or save people. It’s just shining on an island, it’s just shining.

CrisMarie: I just have this visual of this lighthouse on an island running around trying – it doesn’t do that, it stays in one place and it shines its light.

Susan: And you know what’s interesting is that not only is this relevant within companies. But it’s so relevant for you personally to kind of look at and consider your own lighthouse because you actually want people in your company to be lighthouses. And when something is off, if you’re really the leader of an organization you want to pay attention when someone is being a lighthouse and giving you a signal that hey, something isn’t right and hear it out.

CrisMarie: Because I think so often people when I start to coach with them they’re like, “Well, I can’t disagree. It’s just I have to do it their way, it’s just no use to say anything.” And their light has dimmed. And so you have to be careful because that’s when people start to – it could be an ethical line that they start to cross. It could be they’re just not bringing their A game to the job anymore because they feel so beaten down that nobody really cares what I do, I’m just going to kind of get by here and that’s easy. So you want to recognize and support people being a lighthouse.

Susan: I was thinking, I mean I have talked to leaders before when they realize, well, I didn’t realize how numb I had gotten. And the equivalent of that to me in a lighthouse analogy is it’s like there’s been a fog and you’ve been drifting in the fog of information without paying attention to lights that might be trying to tell you something isn’t right here. And you kind of keep letting that fog dip and you’re down. And hopefully you can start to be that lighthouse and give feedback because even a big organization, I don’t think it’s helpful, it’s kind of like the Titanic.

You don’t want to be the Titanic even, and you know, that was a great ship but it went down.

CrisMarie: And so I mean this is true whether you’re an individual in an organization, you’re in a relationship or you’re even in a medical situation and you’re dealing with all these smart doctors. Whatever you’re facing, it is important to recognize hey, your opinion, what’s going on for you, how you feel actually matters, it’s very important. And so many people have talked themselves into, no, it’s not, I just have to do it their way. This is what my doctor’s telling me. This is what my spouse is telling me. This is what my boss is telling me.

Susan: I mean I think one of the saddest things – I am very passionate about working with people, especially who are in medical situations where they – and I hear it all the time, “My doctors don’t listen to me.” I also have worked with physicians who were telling me, “I don’t know how to listen.” I have worked with doctors and I get that they have a hard pressed job. They’re being asked to see people for 15 minutes. So I get there is an issue there, there is a reason.

But boy when I hear about somebody who’s being treated for cancer or dealing with something that is really hard and their medical team is like, “No, that’s a dumb idea, don’t do it. No, I’m not going to look into that.”

CrisMarie: Well, Susan, didn’t that happen for you?

Susan: Yeah.

CrisMarie: So just tell the listeners about that.

Susan: I always think of this is because I was young. But I was young and I had made a decision because they had told me I had six months to live and because they didn’t have a treatment that really was an option for a longer life. It was more sort of a pain free life and a short one at that. And so I had started exploring everything. And at one point one of the programs I really wanted to take was this program up in Canada. But I was on a wait list for three months and it involved going with my sister.

CrisMarie: I bet you didn’t tell them, “I have six – they’ve given me six months to live.”

Susan: I don’t remember how I got on that wait list but it could have been the program, now knowing that center really well, who knows. But what happened was I was determined that I was going to go. And I remember talking to my doctor and my doctor was like, “That is ridiculous and you are going to come back here and you’re going to be on your deathbed and you’re going to be complaining.” And I just remember I was so furious. I was like, “Yeah, if I come back and I’m dying. I probably am going to complain.”

But it’s still me, I’m going to do that, this is what I’m – you’re not giving me any better options. But that’s what I mean. I don’t know that everybody would do that with their doctor. But I was loud enough. And I did. And so I went and that actually was that program, Come Alive, The Haven.

CrisMarie: The place is The Haven.

Susan: That was an incredible lighthouse and transformational for me.

CrisMarie: Well, I want you to tell the rest of the story, but just so you know, it’s at The Haven up in Canada and the program is Come Alive.

Susan: Yes. And so I just was very clear, I’m going to go. And I did go.

CrisMarie: And what happened when you came back? That’s what I wanted you to tell.

Susan: So basically part of the reason my doctor was so mad was they were going to do this surgery to remove these tumors that were in my abdomen that were creating a lot of pain and blockage and that was going to be helpful. And I said, “You could schedule it after the Come Alive.” So they scheduled it for two days, the day after I flew back from the Come Alive. And so I went to the Come Alive and I came back and had another doctor who noticed that I looked different. And said, “Maybe we should check, find out whether we should do this.”

And I knew something was fundamentally different. And they went in and the cancer was gone and they removed my appendix at the time.

CrisMarie: Because?

Susan: Because there was insurance coverage.

CrisMarie: So they take your appendix to cover the surgery because there’s no tumors now.

Susan: And what was interesting even about that was even after that most of my medical team was not interested in what had happened. They right away went to, “Well, obviously this is not possible.” And no curiosity about what could have transpired because I had not been doing their treatments for three months and nothing. And that always blew me away. So I really got – I often think the medical model is better now. I sometimes hear stories from clients of mine and things that are going on where it’s like, oh no, I don’t know that it is. I’m sure there are individual doctors.

Just like in my care there was that one doctor who said, “Maybe we should listen to her.” And actually was a genuinely rock star person. So anyway I’m saying this because I do think you need to learn how to self-advocate even in situations where you don’t believe you will be heard. And I have a lot of passion about helping people do that. It does not mean it’s going to work out. It just means you are self-advocating and bringing your voice forward so you have a chance. You don’t know that it won’t work out.

CrisMarie: I think that’s very powerful. I think it’s powerful in the medical model. I also think it’s powerful at work. So many people think well, like I was saying, well, I’m not going to say anything, why bother, she won’t hear me. He won’t hear me. They’ll discount me. And I have often thought that may be true. You may not be able to influence the outcome at work or even your doctor. But if I don’t say something then I’m giving up on myself.

I’m colluding with the environment rather than saying, “Well, yeah, this may not fit for you, the rest of the team but I don’t think that’s a good idea.” Or “I’m uncomfortable with what we’re doing.” Or, “This is what I would like to see us do.” You’re at least putting your voice out. And I think people get so afraid that oh my God, they’re going to look at me like I’m the problem, or sensitive, or whatever. And so they don’t bring their voice forward. They’re not being their own lighthouse. They’re not being their own lighthouse for themselves.

So we’re not saying when you’re a lighthouse you get your way. We are saying you shine more brightly inside out.

Susan: I’m smiling because CrisMarie, I’m reminded of two stories that I personally love of yours. And one was when you went down to the dock to try out for rowing.

CrisMarie: Do you want me to tell that story?

Susan: Well, I think it’s such a great little lighthouse moment of yours.

CrisMarie: I know what you’re talking about. Okay, I was trying to locate it. So what you need to know, I’m an Olympic rower, I competed in the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea. But I never was really an athlete in high school. So when I was getting ready to go to the University of Washington in Seattle, I saw this made for TV movie about – and it was a love story and it had a rower in it. And I was like, that’s neat, I like romance, I’ll try out for the rowing team.

So I show up the first day of school, University of Washington, 20,000 people, oh my gosh, it was great. I go down to the docks to try out for the rowing team, there’s a 110 other women there. And these women are big and tall, and they’ve been athletes, they are strong. But I didn’t worry about that too much. And I walked – the coach actually walked up to me and she said, Jan Harville, she said, “Do you want to be a coxswain?” And I said, “No, I want to row.” And without a word she turned on a dime and walked away. But you know what? I didn’t let that bother me.

Susan: That’s such a great lighthouse moment. You went on to the Olympics as a rower, not the coxswain.

CrisMarie: Yes, I know, yes. And yeah, and maybe it was just kind of youngness but I was like, “No, I want to row.” What was the other story you were thinking of?

Susan: I probably should have done these in reverse because I was also thinking of the time where you really got; I don’t ever want to be here again, where you weren’t a lighthouse.

CrisMarie: Yes, okay. So where I wasn’t a lighthouse, this is when I was working at Arthur Andersen, I was a consultant. And I was leading a team of six other consultants at a large software company and we were doing this project. So we were just starting the project and coming up with our strategy.

So we’d mapped out how we were going to solve the client’s problem. And my senior manager from Arthur Andersen came into our meeting and we said, “This is what we’re going to do.” He’s like, “No, you’re not, you’ve got to do”, and he just changed the whole thing. “You’re going to x, y and z.” And I was like, whoa, that’s not going to solve the client’s problem. That was a bubble in my head. But because I grew up with a colonel I never really was going to be that bold. So I just asked a question which is my strategy for skirting around the issue.

I said, “Well, do you think that’s going to solve the client’s problem?” And he said, “Yes, get to work.” And I was catapulted back to my dad’s dinner table and I shut up, got to work. Led this team for six months knowing we were really not solving the client’s problem. But we got to the end of the project and we did not solve the client’s problem. But Arthur Andersen, the partners wanted to garner more work at this business, at this company. And so the six partners came in at the client site, they brought this; it was a corporate Vice President in at the time.

And all us project managers are sitting around the room, so I’m one of them. So they’re saying, “How are we doing? How can we help you more? What’s working, what’s not?” And he goes, he literally pointed at me and he said, “Well, you know that project CrisMarie led, that was a disaster, a complete disaster.” And I have to say I felt so much shame and humiliation. And I was like I am not going to fall into this trap again.

I want to learn how to speak up and be my lighthouse and say to my senior manager, “No, that’s not going to solve the client’s problem, we need to figure this out.” As opposed to shutting down, being quiet and doing what I’m told and not having it be effective.

Susan: I think that was a pretty critical moment. And the difference between the two when you were rowing you said, “I don’t want to be a coxswain, I want to row.” And then that one you just said, you asked the question which is very interesting. A lighthouse will usually make a statement. They may find out you agree or disagree. And we all do it. And most of the time we do it from a place of fear for whatever reason. And all too often in companies what starts to dimmer, well, in life I think, fear.

I mean I think of the clients, the people I work and help, the reason they don’t speak up to their doctors, they’re afraid of what they’re facing in the first place and oh my God, this is the only hope I have.

CrisMarie: That’s true. They feel very vulnerable, plus there’s this big authority figure and they should I know. And if I counter them, oh my gosh.

Susan: And I think in your situation later, you were in a situation where you…

CrisMarie: In Arthur Andersen?

Susan: When your senior manager came in it was probably fear, where you didn’t…

CrisMarie: Oh my gosh, yes. So it was like this is the first time I’m leading a big project and I want to please him and so no, I’m not going to disagree.

Susan: But I always try to remind you that you realized you were in that big situation and that guy whoever it was, person, of the big organization.

CrisMarie: The Vice President.

Susan: Pointed at you, did not point at the actual leader. Now, isn’t that an interesting, you know, pointed at you. So somehow you had a light in there, although you hadn’t known it yet. But anyway we bring all that up because I think fear is such a vital part of what stops people.

CrisMarie: I agree.

Susan: And I think, well, that’s interesting. So this idea of fear, just recently I heard a woman who was – did a program on fear and shifting fear. But she told this great story.

CrisMarie: Like a fable.

Susan: A fable, yes, and it had to do with this kingdom. And this particular kingdom when somebody was found guilty of treason and convicted they had a choice. They could either be hung, like hung h.u.n.g.

CrisMarie: Yeah, like a rope.

Susan: I’m just saying that because it gives you the clarity of it.

CrisMarie: The town square, hanging up there.

Susan: Yeah, or they had a choice, they could go through this dark doorway, ominous looking doorway and they got to choose. And all the time, I think a 100% of the time people chose the rope. And there was this one man who chose the rope and before he was going to be hung, right before he was going to be hung he was talking to the king. And he said, “What’s behind the door?” And initially the king was like, “I’m not telling you and I don’t tell anyone.” He’s like, “But who am I going to tell? I would be hung.”

And the king said, “Okay, freedom.” Yeah, I mean I hope you pause on that one because most people don’t realize that what’s behind the fear. Fear is a doorway. A lot of people don’t choose it. They choose the rope. Now, fortunately, most of us are not going to be hung.

CrisMarie: I think it’s a slow death, when I stay in a place and continue to dim my voice and not speak up it makes it easier not to speak up again and not to speak up again. And I start to die a slow death because I’m not supporting me. I mean this is so prevalent right now, even with diversity and inclusion conversations. If people don’t speak up and say, “Hey, this isn’t okay, what we’re doing or how we’re doing this.” We become, like when you were talking about being numb, we get used to the water, well, no, you don’t bring up that and you don’t bring up this.

And the new person usually shows up and says, “Well, why aren’t we talking about that?” And then people are like, “Uh oh. I’ll tell them after the meeting, you don’t bring that up.” And that’s just so wrong, that’s choosing the rope, the rope, the rope.

Susan: Yeah. And you think about some of these issues we have to face and talk about, the idea isn’t that you can’t make it. It’s not going to be comfortable. So you have to be willing to take the risk and get uncomfortable and potentially make somebody else uncomfortable when you’re shining your light. And that is the nature of this.

CrisMarie: I think sometimes just a little bit on that diversity inclusion, and this is a whole different podcast. But sometimes companies are like, “Well, we’re going to do a lot of diversity and inclusion training”, thinking that’s a really nice way to do it. But really the rubber meets the road when it’s those uncomfortable moments.

Susan: Yeah, because – and I don’t know, I’ve heard this and I have some friends who do diversity training, that’s really their core job. And some of them have left it because it’s like wait a minute, nobody really wants to change. They want me to come in here and make this comfortable for people to talk about racism, or social justice, or sexism. And when I say yes to that I’m actually being complicit. It’s kind of like you know that’s not going to work to actually get at the real issue. So that is an uncomfortable situation.

CrisMarie: Another thing just around this whole idea, people get afraid and not speaking up. And even when there’s something – well, a lot of times I’m coaching people who are looking for a new career opportunity. And I always think when you are changing job it’s the best time to ask for everything you want. And they’re like, “No, no, no, I can’t be greedy, I shouldn’t do that.” These people want you and so what would it take for you to say yes to the job, make a list, what’s your dream thing and then give them the opportunity to say no. That’s one way to shine your lighthouse.

Lighthouse, yes, your light. Now, the reason this is also such a big thing, why we’re doing this currently is Susan, you’re launching a program to help people shine their light, become a lighthouse, right?

Susan: Yes. I mean one; I do what I call lighthouse coaching or lighthouse leadership coaching which is on this theme. But I really decided I also love groups of people because I think that’s such a profound way. There’s a lot of lighthouses in the room then.

CrisMarie: Learn from other lights.

Susan: Yes, learn from other lights. And so I am doing this Be Your Own Lighthouse program. And I’m really excited about it. It’s going to be six weeks. Because I know not everybody likes group work, so you’re going to get some power sessions with me.

CrisMarie: Private one-on-one time too.

Susan: Yeah. I’m excited about it.

CrisMarie: Because I think you have helped me shine my light over and over again, and larger, kind of like bigger lighthouse, a bigger lighthouse. And one of the things that I think, because of your experience with the medical model and coaching strong leaders, and one, helping them recognize when their light is outshining, or squelching other people’s lights. You really have a great input.

Susan: I call, it’s not a lighthouse. It’s they’re actually a car with super high beam lights chasing after people. That is not a lighthouse either. You’re trying to run them over. You are not a lighthouse, you’re something else.

CrisMarie: But this is for people who are either in an organization and they want to shine their light, even dealing with a medical situation and having a hard time dealing with their doctors and staying in their own. Or even in relationship issues. So all these things all apply to kind of come back to yourself and figure out where you stand.

Susan: Right. So if you find that intriguing and you would be interested in being invited to the Be Your Light, I have decided because I’m really not the type of marketer I probably should be. I love this idea, putting ideas out there. It’s going to be via invitation only. So let me know you’re interested. And I’ll tell you more.

CrisMarie: And it’s going to be a small group and it’s starting in the beginning of March ish timeframe. And you can reach out. And it’s actually a really good affordable, for like if people were going to work with you it would be, for that amount of coaching it would be several thousands of dollars. So this is going to be a more affordable version, so, if you want access to Susan, which I get all the time and I have benefitted from.

Susan: And sometimes though I am running you over versus the lighthouse. But it’s always good to know.

CrisMarie: Well, you can find out more if you write us at thrive and Susan will respond to you.

Susan: I will.

CrisMarie: Hopefully you found this helpful. If you ever want us to talk about a topic you can write that same email address and we’d love your ideas. If you have questions or have tough conversations that you’re struggling with let us know. And if you’d like us to speak in your organization on conflict, stress, team building, leadership, we’re happy to do that. Or work with your team, we are working with several teams virtually, kind of making team off-sites doable online.

And building both the smart and the healthy side of that, or coach you, or join this program, you can reach out to us again at thrive@thriveinc And hopefully you enjoyed this. If you have please go over to iTunes and give us your review, we love honest reviews, so let us know.

Susan: Take care.

CrisMarie: And be your lighthouse.

Susan: Be a lighthouse.

CrisMarie: Did you want to say how they could be a lighthouse, give them a little tip? We did. A little spoiler.

Susan: Well, first off, one of the quotes I love the most is, I’m not going to do it justice but you won’t see a lighthouse running around an island trying to save people. And so sometimes when you feel like you need to run around, you need to grab hold of a lighthouse, or you think you’re a great light and you’re running around grabbing people.

CrisMarie: Or your lighthouse is dimming.

Susan: Think like a lighthouse, pause, drop into your body, drop into your core, breathe, breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out. Let your light start to shine because your light is going to shine when you can pause, re-center and then go out.

CrisMarie: I mean, Susan and I were on a meeting and we both got off thinking, we’ve got to do all this stuff. It was very inspiring. And kind of frenetic energy, and so we took a five minute break which I know might seem really long to you. But we’ve been meditating so we’ve developed our stamina. But we paused for five minutes, I put a little timer on and just settled, felt our feet, our seat, took deeper breaths, very different response when we both ended that five minutes. So that’s just a little tip.

If you’re wanting to connect to your own light you do need to pause and settle in, turn inward and breathe deeper. So that’s a little tip. You’ll get many more if you join Be Your Lighthouse. Bye.

Susan: Wow, CrisMarie, I have sure been enjoying doing this series for teams and utilizing our chapters from our book The Beauty of Conflict: Harnessing Your Team’s Competitive Advantage. It’s been fun to go back and review the material and apply it to virtual teams.

CrisMarie: It’s true. And it’s so much good bite sized material in these chapters, I mean if I do say so myself. And if you want us to speak at your organization, or work with your team, yes, virtually, we’ve been doing that, team sessions, or coach you or leaders on your team, please reach out to us. You can check us out at our website, that’s or send us an email, write to us directly, we’re happy to chat,, that’s Okay, take care.


CrisMarie Campbell and Susan Clarke

Coaches, Business Consultants, Speakers and Authors of The Beauty of Conflict

CrisMarie and Susan work leaders and teams, couples in business, and professional women.

They help turnaround dysfunctional teams into high performing, cohesive teams who trust each other, deal with differences directly, and have clarity and alignment on their business strategy so they create great results.

Download the eBook, How to Talk About Difficult Topics, today!

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