Practicing Compassion with Seth Godin [Podcast]
Dr. Nathan Regier welcomes Seth Godin who has been a great inspiration for millions of people to think and connect with each other differently. He is a leadership expert, marketing guru, prolific best selling author, teacher, visionary, and blogger.
Seth has a consistent focus on authenticity, relationships, curiosity, and connection at the center of our lives, and in today’s episode, Dr. Nate is having a conversation with him about how all of these connect to compassion.
Compassion Mindset Highlights
- Consistency is more important than authenticity. Contrary to what we often hear, Seth believes that people actually care more about consistency than authenticity. The real question is can you show up as your best self when we need you to? As a society we need you to be clear about the change you seek to make, then consistently show up with compassion as the best version of yourself to make a difference in the world.
- Managers and leaders do different things. Managers have authority. They can tell others what to do and their job is to keep things the same. Leaders don’t have to have authority and sometimes, they actually don’t. So, they have to earn voluntary enrollment. They’re making change happen that hasn’t been made before.
- If you’re in the business of creating connection through compassion, the world is always going to be open to that. I love Seth’s abundance mindset about compassion. When you dance on the edge of infinity, there’s always enough because you aren’t taking it from anyone else.
VOICEOVER: Are you tired of the negativity and drama? Are you trying to make a difference, only to be drained by people problems? The world needs more compassion, not just more civility and empathy. We need in the trenches compassion that struggles alongside people, instead of against them. We need a radically different way to engage for breakthrough results. And now, here’s your host, NATE REGIER.
NATE REGIER: My guest today is someone who’s inspired millions of people, including me, to think and connect with each other differently. He’s a leadership expert, marketing guru, prolific bestselling author, teacher, visionary and blogger. I’m delighted today to have Seth Godin with me, someone I’ve admired and who’s inspired me for many years. As an entrepreneur and author, Seth’s work and wisdom have been a staple in my life and in our company’s culture at Next Element.
Here are just a few of his credentials. Seth has published 20 best selling highly acclaimed books, done five TED Talks and has been inducted into three hall of fames: the Marketing Hall of Fame, the Guerilla Marketing Hall of Fame and the Direct Marketing Hall of Fame. No wonder HubSpot describes Seth as one of the best marketers on the planet.
Seth is transforming how leadership and learning happen with his Akimbo Workshops, including their flagship altMBA program with over 5,000 alumni in 75 countries now. You can’t put Seth in a box, which is just how it should be since his gem is helping others think outside the box. What I appreciate most about Seth is his consistent focus on authenticity, relationships, curiosity, and connection at the center of our lives.
Today, I’m delighted to pick his brain and have a conversation about how all of this connects to compassion. Seth, I am honored to have you on my show. Welcome.
SETH GODIN: Well, thanks. That was very kind of you.
NATE REGIER: I’ll have to admit, trying to create an intro for you was really difficult because your interests and your impact are so multifaceted with so many different threads. So how would you describe yourself and how you show up in this world?
SETH GODIN: Well, on a good day, I think I’m a teacher. I’m certainly not somebody who you can count on to stick with all the details of a project for years in a row. I like to see things a little differently, but then explain to people what I’m seeing. So yeah, I’ll stick with teacher for now.
NATE REGIER: That’s wonderful. I subscribe to a lot of blogs, but I only read a couple of them religiously, and at the top of my list is yours. And at least, at least once a week, someone from our team at Next Element will forward a post saying, “How did he know we were struggling with this?” or “Was he watching us yesterday?” or “This perspective is so helpful for something we’re working on today.” And so often, the way you say something or the angle you take is so revealing. And I’m curious, I know you get asked this a lot, but how or why do you post every single day?
SETH GODIN: Well, those are two totally different questions.
NATE REGIER: Let’s do both.
SETH GODIN: I think everyone should write a blog post every day. I think going to bed knowing that tomorrow you need to say something to people who are interested that you can put your name on helps straighten out the way we think and notice things. And so, I would do it even if only four people read my blog. As for how I do it, it doesn’t matter and this is really important, that the kind of pencil I use or the software is irrelevant. And I would be a blogger if I was friends with someone in the 1800s who was a writer or 50 years from now when everything’s going to be, who knows, piped into our brain, the software doesn’t matter. It’s the act of doing it.
NATE REGIER: And some days, it’s one sentence and some days, it goes on and on, but you do every single day.
SETH GODIN: Yeah, the one-sentence ones take much longer to write.
NATE REGIER: Yeah. Yeah. Elegance and simplicity, a little more engineering probably goes into those.
SETH GODIN: Yes, so…
NATE REGIER: These days, people that have been reading your blog or following you, there’s lots they could be interested in. What are you involved in or what are you excited about these days?
SETH GODIN: Well, I have a new full-time job. I’m a volunteer 12 hours a day, seven days a week building something we’re calling the Carbon Almanac. And the Carbon Almanac is now 1900 people in 91 countries. Everyone’s a volunteer building a book that’s coming out in June that I hope will be the beginning of a movement. The movement is not created by us, but the idea is that 16 years ago, I wrote my first post about the climate and everything is getting worse. We’re not going to be able to solve this problem by quietly recycling plastic. We’re going to solve this problem by talking about it, by connecting and by creating systemic action. And so, I’ve assembled a crew of people or the book went to the publisher last week. It’s 97,000 words written by a team of volunteers. We didn’t make up anything. Every fact is footnoted on our website. And the goal is to give people the confidence to have the conversation.
NATE REGIER: Wow.
SETH GODIN: So, that is my work. Right now, I feel like I’ve been training for it for 25 years and it’s going really well.
NATE REGIER: Wow. Are there any main themes or discoveries or things you’d like to highlight that we can look forward to?
SETH GODIN: Well, I think the thing that surprises people the most, the two biggest fact-based surprises are, one, your carbon footprint was invented by British Petroleum working with Ogilvy & Mather as a plan to get people who happened to have been paying attention to take the blame for systemic industrial problems. And number two, plastic recycling is a sham. It doesn’t work and you shouldn’t do it.
NATE REGIER: Mm, wow, provocative and powerful. I’m excited for the book to come out. Wow.
SETH GODIN: Yeah. The people who worked on it all came in with great intention and we all had our lives changed by firsthand experience with what’s actually true as well as the privilege of working with each other in this intimate, but digital way.
NATE REGIER: It sounds like not only the content of this project, but the process of it is also in line with how you think about people showing up and trying to make a difference and putting themselves out there in new and creative ways.
SETH GODIN: That’s right. I mean we didn’t have a hierarchy. This young man, [Vivek 00:06:37], from India showed up and ended up writing 15 of the pages, [Michelle 00:06:42], who lives in Belgium provided an enormous amount of insight. We have [Blossom 00:06:47] in Nigeria, people who I’ve never met, probably never will meet who said, “Yeah, I’ll do this part,” and did, and then a crew of people who made it better. The design of the book is spectacular to look at. It’s just we have plenty of skill in the world. It just helps if people get organized.
NATE REGIER: Wow. Where should people go? Can we pre-order? Can we get signed up to be notified? We’ll put this in the show notes.
SETH GODIN: Yeah. If you go to the carbonalmanac.org, there’s everything you need right there.
NATE REGIER: Great. We’ll put that in the show notes.
SETH GODIN: Thank you.
NATE REGIER: And make sure people are aware of that. Well, so on to the main event, main topic. So at Next Element, our mission is to bring more compassion to every workplace and every relationship in the world. So why would I have a marketing guru on my podcast about compassion? Well, it’s because so much of your wisdom is about relationships and connection. It seems like that’s what you’re talking about all the time and authenticity. So, let’s talk about compassion. When I asked you to do this, you said, “Yes, let’s go.” So, where do you want to start?
SETH GODIN: Well, there are a bunch of things that I think I need to correct so that we have a shared platform for talking about this. First of all, I’m flattered if someone thinks I’m a marketing guru, I’m not. Marketing is misunderstood by a lot of people. I don’t play with the parts of marketing that are about hype and getting the word out and hustle. I think marketing is everything we do that makes a change in the world. And I’m better at asking questions than I am at being a guru. So I’m going to leave marketing guru to the side.
Second thing, I think authenticity is a crock and we can talk about why that is. And third, compassion and generosity does not mean you give everything away for free. Compassion and generosity can coexist quite happily with longterm value creation and showing up in the world and making a living. And often, people who think of themselves as useful, thoughtful human beings use compassion and generosity for a chance to do less, to put themselves out there less, to give things away.
And in fact, that’s not the way I’m coming at it. I think a compassionate thing to do is to offer someone dignity and tell them the truth. I think a compassionate thing to do is to see someone where they are and then, help them make an investment or time or effort or money to get out of where they are because we’re not talking about sympathy. We’re talking about how do you make something better?
NATE REGIER: Okay. So two big things, let’s start, let’s start with that. I love it. Let’s start with why you think authenticity is a crock.
SETH GODIN: Well, let’s say I woke up this morning with a little bit of a headache. The authentic me wouldn’t have shown up on this podcast. I am not here on this podcast as me. I am here on this podcast playing the role of me, the best version of me I can bring you and your listeners. And if you go to see Elvis Costello or Rickie Lee Jones in concert, you don’t want the authentic version of those people. You want the best version of those people.
And authenticity, there are a few people online who throw tantrums on Twitter and earn points for being authentic. The rest of us, we get out of bed and we put on our clothes and we go to work because it’s our job, not ’cause it’s the thing we felt like doing in the last 15 minutes. So, what I think people actually care about is not authenticity, but consistency. Can you show up as your best self when we need you to? As opposed to saying, “Yeah, nah, I just felt like being a jerk today. I was being authentic.” I don’t want that. I don’t need any of that in my life. Thank you very much.
NATE REGIER: I’m so tired of people, hearing say, “I’m just telling it like it is.”
SETH GODIN: Yeah.
NATE REGIER: So it sounds like you’re kind of identifying authenticity with just the truth, the reality versus authenticity is consistency in how you show up. Or maybe even could it be consistency with what you aspire to or what your values are or what your goals are?
SETH GODIN: Right.
NATE REGIER: Yeah.
SETH GODIN: They all fit together. What I’m getting at is a lot of the writing that I’ve seen in the last five years about being authentic, quit your job, decide that you’re entitled to a living with a Shopify site, speak up whenever you want, and if someone’s offended, well, screw them. And no one in our community needs you to do any of those things. What we need you to do is be clear about the change you seek to make and then, consistently show up to do that with the best version of yourself that you can muster.
NATE REGIER: What a powerful invitation, seek to be the best version of yourself and show up to make a difference in the world. Yeah. I hear you’re saying I’m not up for people just spouting off, but you’re big on people declaring their intentions, declaring the difference they want to make in the world.
SETH GODIN: That’s right. And you don’t always have to announce it, right? So if you go to the doctor and she says, “Well, we’re going to cut you open and fix your heart and you’ll live a happier life,” you don’t want a surprise surgery. You actually want the surgery to be something you know is coming. On the other hand, if you go out for a lovely dinner with your partner, you don’t want the maitre d’ and the waiters to be announcing throughout the whole meal, “We’re here for this to be a special evening for you,” right? You just want them to create that magic. So, we don’t always need a narrative.
However, when you’re among your professional peers, you got to be able to say, “What’s the change you seek to make? Who are you seeking to change?” If you aren’t clear about those two things, then you’re an amateur. And professionals talking to each other with peers need to be really clear about what that does.
What does the florist do at a hundred-thousand-dollar wedding? Well, it’s not just delivering flowers from the wholesaler to the venue. Lots of people can do that. What you do is you put on a show that makes the bride feel like this is truly her special day. What you do is use status and affiliation modeling to help that person build a memory, and those things have nothing to do with roses and everything to do with the way you are showing up with compassion for the person who hired you.
NATE REGIER: Yeah.
SETH GODIN: But if you’re at the convention with the other people in the wedding industrial complex, and you can’t describe how you do your craft, well, then you’re a lucky amateur.
NATE REGIER: All right. Thank you for your perspective on authenticity, and I really can align with that. And so, compassion, your second issue you wanted to set straight was kind of how you see compassion. And what I heard you start to talk about was that compassion doesn’t mean just giving things away. In our framework, compassion, we really look at the real word. Com means with and passion means to suffer, to struggle. This is a joint, this is a journey together.
One of the big myths we try to alleviate or correct is compassion is not just about alleviating suffering. It’s not what I go try to take away your suffering. It’s really about making purpose in the suffering, creating something with it. So I’m curious, share some more. Talk to me about your view of compassion more as we’re doing this, we’re in this together and everybody has a role.
SETH GODIN: Okay. So there’s a huge spectrum we can… So let’s start on the professional side and then, we’ll move more into the community side. If you have a salesperson who’s working for you and they’re not closing any sales, and they’ve had trouble at home, and their career is tanking, it might feel compassionate to just float them a couple royalty checks, tell them to show up less, and make them feel better today.
Or you could look them in the eye, ask them if they want to be good at selling, and then tell them the truth about where they’re falling down on the job, help them lean in to the thing they’re afraid of, break through the barrier and become great at what they do, which is really what’s causing a lot of their suffering, is they want something that isn’t happening, right? And Zig Ziglar, my late friend and the teacher, that’s the origin story in his book, right, of how he became who he became because the sales trainer heard all his whining, heard all his complaining, and went past that to help them get to where they want to go.
But if I think about community, it feels compassionate to put a dollar into the basket in front of somebody who is panhandling, but it is probably more compassionate to do something to address the systemic mental health challenges in our systems to find out why is it that this person is standing outside in the cold looking for dollars, instead of sitting with a professional who can help them deal with the fact that their medications are out of whack, whether they have a substance abuse problem, which is a more compassionate path. And there’s a lot of retail fundraising that goes on in the United States. It’s all about give us 10 bucks or we’ll shoot this dog, and you give 10 bucks and you feel like you’re a good person, but in fact, the system didn’t get any better. You just bought yourself off a little bit.
And so, what I’m arguing is if you’re, I don’t know, somebody who wants to bring beauty to the world through work in oil painting, giving your oil paintings away is not compassionate. Figuring out how to create the conditions where the people who will appreciate your work discover your work in a way that they eagerly pay for it ’cause that’s part of the story, and it creates beauty in their life is probably more sustainable and more systemic. So I don’t have any room for the Milton Friedman, the market is always smart brutality. I think we need to give others dignity, but then what we need to do is see systems and fix systems.
NATE REGIER: You said something earlier about moving past the whatever it is, and what you were talking about is kind of the resistance, whether it’s excuses, whatever it is. And then now you just said, you used the word dignity. How do we move past whatever is being thrown up in front of us? So often as leaders, as relationships, we want to fight with the resistance. We want to create an adversarial thing or get into power struggles. How do you move past the resistance while preserving dignity and enhancing it?
SETH GODIN: So dignity is fascinating. And my friend, Jacqueline Novogratz said, and I’ve been talking about this for years, dignity isn’t something you can take for yourself all by yourself. People have to also give it to you. And I tell the story of when Leona Helmsley, noted tax felon, was having tea with her lawyer, Alan Dershowitz, noted ruckus maker, and the person she called the servant brought them tea and she saw that there was a drop of water on the saucer. And she picked up the teacup and the saucer, dropped it on the tile floor on purpose and made that person sweep it up. She stole dignity from that person because it gave her pleasure, ’cause it gave her status in that moment.
And I’m talking about the opposite of that and the opposite of that is how do I transact with somebody, whether it’s financial or not, in a way that sees them, understands where they are coming from and helps them get to where they want to go. And so I brought up Jacqueline at Acumen. So one of the Acumen investments is a company in Kenya called Juhudi Kilimo. And what Juhudi Kilimo does is they loan a farmer enough money to buy a cow and you pay off the loan by selling the milk. And after, I don’t know, five months of selling milk, you own a cow. And that interaction is not charity because Juhudi Kilimo now has enough money to do it again. But the dignity that was granted to that farmer who can now send their kids to private school, who can now build another room for their family, who can now stand up in a culture that, like it or not, is driven by capital is extraordinary.
And that’s the difference between the endless emergency of poverty, which is here’s another bag of rice. We’ll be back in a few weeks and the systemic change that compassion can bring to the table.
NATE REGIER: Wow. I grew up in Africa. My parents were missionaries and one of the things I observed my father, he learned agriculture. He went to an ag school. He wasn’t a preacher. And his whole thing was what he called back in the day, he used the word sustainable and he used the word appropriate technology, which is just what you’re talking about.
Probably, that experience influenced me, but we talk about compassion as having these three switches. There’s a switch of value, capability and responsibility, and all three must be present, that the human value is inherent, but we also then must treat people as if that’s true. And then, the capability part is that we don’t remove their capability. In your story of the cow, we trusted and enhanced that person’s capability by asking them to do things like raise a cow and milk it and learn to do this, but also responsibility, that they’re accountable for their part in this relationship, that it’s not a give. But yeah, I’m just curious about your perspective on that these, all three, are really critical for these transactions to work.
SETH GODIN: Yes. And also when we think about teaching, teaching is not a financial transaction, but teaching is a great example of this. Sometime around when someone turns six or seven, they will encounter the incompetence that organized learning creates because you cannot learn something until you are momentarily incompetent. In that moment, you realize there is something to learn and that you don’t know it. And in that moment, you either lean through that zone and come out on the other side or you start a pattern of I don’t know how to do things.
And this learned incompetence, if you look at adults who are… When I worked at Yahoo, the number one thing people searched on in the Yahoo search engine was the word Yahoo, that there are people who don’t know the difference between a browser and a search engine, right? These are adults living in one of the wealthiest countries in the history of the world, using technology every day that they don’t understand at all because there’s a learned incompetence.
And the compassionate thing to do is to say, “Where are you going? What are you trying to accomplish? Would you like to feel more competent? Would you like to have more leverage and ability? Well, if the answer is yes, then let me call you out on the fact that you are telling me you can’t learn this and instead, teach you something if you’re ready to learn it, the same way you learned how to drive a car.” If people had to wait until they were 40 to learn how to drive a car, no one would know how to drive ’cause we’d all say, “Ah, it’s too late for me,” which is nonsense.
And so as a teacher, my impatience as fuel is to realize that people are afraid of incompetence and express it in lots of ways, which sound like great excuses. And I acknowledge the excuse and I acknowledge their feeling. And then I ask them if they want to get out of that spot because if they do, if they’re enrolled, I can help them learn something. And if not, you have every right to wallow, but wallowing will not get you out of where you are. So, it’s worth making a choice. And I’m going to give you the dignity to make that choice.
NATE REGIER: I’m guessing when you said the word enrolled, you don’t mean it like a traditional institution.
SETH GODIN: Right, right. So the word enrolled has two meanings, just like the word sanction has two meanings. The word enroll might mean you are required to attend like public school, but the real word, the way I use it means you have voluntarily signed up.
So, somebody who gets into baseball isn’t a baseball fan ’cause they studied the baseball encyclopedia, know who Abner Doubleday was, have taken the tests and is now allowed to go to a game. When you become a baseball fan, you learn the statistics ’cause you want to. That’s enrollment, enrollment in that journey. They don’t have to persuade you to go watch the Yankees. And that’s how we learn everything is we decide, maybe we’re trading it for an A, but after you’re 20 years old, you can’t do that anymore. So what are you doing? Well, you’re trading your momentary incompetence for something else and you are enrolled in that journey.
And this is the challenge of the industrial economy ’cause people go to work to trade their time for money, but most of the time they’re saying, “How little can I do to get the money?” And what makes a great organization are people who are trading their time for the feeling of forward motion, for the feeling of being part of something. And that’s why the carbon project is so fantastic ’cause 20,000 hours into it, not one person has made a dollar. No one’s trading for money. They’re trading for meaning. And when people are enrolled, you don’t have to hustle it.
NATE REGIER: Yes. You mentioned earlier questions. You’re a question asker, not a marketer. And throughout this whole, our conversation so far, every time you’re sharing a story, you’re asking questions, asking questions. What are some of your favorite questions that listeners could write down, hold onto that advance compassion?
SETH GODIN: Okay. So I think the thing that is missing from lots of corners of our culture, but probably not among your listeners, is what is this person afraid of? And as soon as you can ask that question, so many issues around hot buttons in our culture become much more clear. The person who you’re disagreeing with, the person you’re misunderstanding might not be evil. They might simply be afraid. What is it that they are afraid of?
And then, the questions which get broader pretty quickly are, well, this change I seek to make, who is it for and what is it for? And is this person who’s in front of me who’s in fear, are they willing to enroll in a journey to get out of fear if they believe that it’s going to work? And then I just ask, what do they believe that I don’t? What do they see that I don’t see? Because the fact is if two rational, well-meaning people see the same thing and believe the same thing, they will come to the same conclusion. But if they’re not coming to the same conclusion, it’s either ’cause they don’t believe the same thing or ’cause they don’t see the same thing.
NATE REGIER: Fantastic. For leaders out there, a lot of my listeners are leaders that are trying to transform their relationships with the people that they lead to get them to enroll the right way.
SETH GODIN: Right.
NATE REGIER: Are there any great questions that leaders can ask their people to start that conversation?
SETH GODIN: Well, I would ask these leaders, first, are you a leader or a manager? And both are high status jobs, but each is very different. Most people who think of themselves as leaders are actually managers. Managers have authority. You get to tell other people what to do. Management is important, that’s why every McDonald’s has a manager. Managers make sure people show up on time. They get done what needs to get done, hopefully, faster and cheaper than yesterday. And leaders don’t have to have authority, in fact, sometimes don’t. And leaders, because they can’t tell people what to do, have to earn voluntary enrollment. And leaders are making a change happen that hasn’t been made before. And if that’s the case, then the honest leader says, “I’m not sure this is going to work. We’re going over there. Who wants to come?” And that is a fundamentally different way of showing up at work every day.
So if you’re managing your people, the conversation is are you here to do your job? And let’s acknowledge that I have authority and also responsibility for getting this job done. Here are the instructions. Am I being clear? And if we do this together, will you be getting what you want? But if I’m a leader, it’s a much more complicated conversation ’cause I can’t tell you what to do. I can just describe where I’m going and describe how we might get there together, right? So the Reverend King didn’t have a lot of employees, but it’s pretty clear he wasn’t manager, he was a leader. And we see them all over now in our culture because social media has given people who wanted to lead way more of a voice without them having to have authority.
NATE REGIER: Man, I love that distinction about leaders have to earn voluntary employment. And I wonder how often leaders or anyone in a position, ostensibly a leader, they get things are going well and then, they get desperate. They don’t get what they want, people aren’t doing what they want and they have to make a choice at that moment, do I want to upscale to lead or do I just want to manage and do what I’ve always done before or leverage the tools or the levers that I have at my disposal to make people do things? I’m definitely going to use that definition. Love it.
We’re rounding the bend. I would love to continue to hear your views on a lot of things. I’m curious if there’s any other, any last thoughts you’d like to leave with us about compassion?
SETH GODIN: Like connection, we’re never going to have enough of it. And there’s so much scarcity in our world, not just scarcity of clean water or energy, but scarcity of attention, scarcity of certain kinds of resources. But if you want to flip that on its head and you decide to be in the business of creating connection through compassion, the world is always going to be open to more of that. And that’s thrilling because as we discovered when the internet was young, dancing on the edge of infinity is a really cool place to be because you’re not taking it from anybody else. And getting out of the industrial mindset of scarcity is really freeing and is worth a try.
NATE REGIER: And anybody who wants more perspectives on that, there’s so many resources at Seth’s blog and Seth’s website that we will put on the notes. Seth, I’m curious, there was actually another topic I just thought of. Do you have time for one more topic?
SETH GODIN: Let’s go.
NATE REGIER: All right. Conflict, so how does conflict fit into this mix? What’s your view on it? ‘Cause we got a lot of that in the world right now also.
SETH GODIN: We do. It’s interesting. There are very few people who have a conflict with gravity because gravity isn’t just a good idea, it’s the law. And by that, I mean it’s not up for discussion. When you wake up in the morning, you’re going to weigh exactly as much as you weighed last night and there are no anti-grav options. And in times of change, conflict is much more likely to occur because laws seem much more flexible.
And one of the things we failed to acknowledge, and I was on the internet before just about anybody, is we got all excited about all the frontiers that the internet was opening up. But we forgot to have a thoughtful conversation about how will people who see all these things in their lives changing deal with the fact that so many things seem flexible? And in our culture right now, it’s really problematic for me that people think the scientific method is up for debate, that the acceleration of mass on the planet earth is up for debate. It’s not, right? And so, we end up with conflict in places where we’re not used to it because there’s a bunch of things that are true that people who are approaching it with goodwill and less fear can see that it’s true. But there are other people who are showing us their fear by expressing it in the form of a kind of conflict.
It feels to me like when we bring compassion back into the situation, we have the opportunity just to come back to first principles and to say, “Who exactly do you want to be affiliated with? What do you want to be part of? And where do you see yourself on the status hierarchy? Is that status hierarchy fueling you going forward or is it enervating you and slowing you down?” And if we can get back to these first principles so we can have enrollment on a mutual journey, then I feel like we can dial down conflict.
The other thing that I would throw into the mix is if you encounter a troll, and trolling is now much more of an art than it used to be, almost everything we just talked about goes out the window. A troll wants conflict. That is their goal. They get something in return. And reasoning with a troll doesn’t work because when a troll discovers someone reasoning with them, they realize they can just troll them more and get more of what they came for.
And so, what we’re going to have to do as a culture is figure out, just like the great Supreme Court case that says you can’t yell fire in a movie house, is there’s no room for trolls in this organization. There’s no room for trolls on this website. There’s no room for trolls on this podcast. And trolls, sooner or later, fear isolation. Sooner or later, their goal is affiliation. And when trolls see that trolling isn’t helping them get those things, my hope is that we can tamp that down and get back in sync ’cause we have a lot of work to do. And we’re right now, as David Suzuki said, our car is going off a cliff and people are arguing about which seat they’re sitting in, and I’m not sure that that’s the best plan forward.
NATE REGIER: Yeah. Wow. I’m curious how this conflict in Ukraine changes people’s perspective on what matters and what we should be questioning and arguing about.
SETH GODIN: Right.
NATE REGIER: Yeah. Seth, thank you so much. The last thing I would ask you is now we have to title our conversation because it’s not going to be called Marketing and Compassion anymore and we’re not going to call you a marketing guru. What shall we call what just happened?
SETH GODIN: Well, first, I want to thank you showing up on the regular with a podcast on a topic like this, when you’re not hustling, when you’re just teaching, it’s work for the tireless and I hope you get enough positive feedback for the way you’re doing it ’cause it’s important stuff, and I thank you for that.
NATE REGIER: Very much appreciate it.
SETH GODIN: And in terms of the title, you can title it anything you [crosstalk 00:35:41].
NATE REGIER: Okay. That sounds great.
SETH GODIN: You have my full blessing on that one. Thank you for taking the time.
NATE REGIER: Seth, thank you. It’s been a real pleasure.
SETH GODIN: Thanks. Do well.
NATE REGIER: Here are my three key takeaways from this compelling and insightful conversation with, the one and only, SETH GODIN. First, consistency is more important than authenticity. Contrary to what we often hear, Seth believes that people actually care more about consistency than authenticity. The real question is can you show up as your best self when we need you to? As a society we need you to be clear about the change you seek to make, then consistently show up with compassion as the best version of yourself to make a difference in the world.
Second key takeaway is that managers and leaders do different things. Managers have authority. They can tell others what to do and their job is to keep things the same. Leaders don’t have to have authority and sometimes, they actually don’t. So, they have to earn voluntary enrollment. They’re making change happen that hasn’t been made before.
Finally, if you’re in the business of creating connection through compassion, the world is always going to be open to that. I love Seth’s abundance mindset about compassion. When you dance on the edge of infinity, there’s always enough because you aren’t taking it from anyone else.
VOICEOVER: I hope you enjoyed this episode of On Compassion with Dr. Nate. If you found new hope or guidance for your life, will you share it with your tribe? If you know someone who could be a great guest, please let us know. Are you ready for a practical way to bring more compassion to your organization? We have a solution. Visit www.thecompassionmindset.com. Check out the show notes for links and contact information, and remember to subscribe, rate and give a review on iTunes. Thanks for listening. Until next time, keep your compassion mindset engaged.