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Business Transformation of the World’s Largest 1-day Event Company

We he sat down with Angela Raub to discuss how her personal transformation has led to the company-wide transformation at Leadercast, where she’s CEO and President.

Here’s what we’re unpacking today:

  • Angela’s “heads down for a decade” mentality
  • How angela’s personal transformation led to company-wide transformation at Leadercast
  • Why you need a personal advisory board
  • Being vulnerable
  • Women’s leadership events
  • The myth of “work-life balance”

This post is based on a podcast with Angela Raub. If you’d like to listen to the full episode, you can check it out here and below.

‘Tell us a little about your upbringing?’

Angela Raub: My dad was a farm kid, and he really wanted us to experience farm life. He was a first-generation college student from his family, and he eventually became an executive in the auto industry. But he held onto that work ethic. My dad used to say, “You can love me, but you’ll never outwork me.” Whenever we were working, and we’d say something like, “This isn’t fun,” he’d reply, “That’s why it’s called ‘work,’ not ‘fun.’”

‘What’s 1 piece of advice you learned from your parents?’

Angela Raub: My dad’s advice to me at one point was, “Put your head down for a decade, and don’t worry about what other people are doing.” And it’s in that moment of that decade, where, if you just focus on your own work, not what is happening to anybody else, you’ll get there. My 30s were a decade with a lot of pain and a lot of growth, but it really was the decade that got me to where I am today.

‘Talk about your personal transformation and how that has led to your company’s transformation.’

Angela Raub: 10 years ago, I was running an MBA program and then going to school at the same time. One day, I literally thought I was walking in to being promoted, so I looked at a new car the weekend before. I didn’t need a new car, but I thought, “Why not?” After I walked in, within moments, I realized I was not getting promoted. I started off that decade thinking, “What the heck?” I had my whole plan of professionally what I wanted to do, how I was going to retire, and then I was going to consult. To me, it was written in stone.

But that juncture allowed me to leverage my MBA and hit corporate America. It’s been a growing process. I had 141 interviews in 12 weeks,m because I leveraged my network. I amassed one heck of a pipeline. So for 6 years, I was always getting recruited to different positions.

So I was moving up within those organizations, expanding my business development experiences, raising money, working in wealth management. It was fantastic, but I just wasn’t happy. I looked at the brokenness of myself and wondered why I wasn’t finding true joy?

I’m listening to a podcast right now that’s made me realize that pleasure comes from external things, but joy is what we have inside, and we’re responsible for that. I really learned that through that 3-year struggle. I was the common denominator in every relationship that I had, and that’s in work and in personal life. And I had to get some stuff figured out, and I’m so thankful for that because I think where I lacked esteem or self-esteem or perhaps some self-worth in some areas, I had to find that. It was really difficult, but it was beautiful.

When you look at how your professional struggles and your personal struggles get you to the moment you’re at today, it seems like a perfect plan. At Leadercast, we’re an 18-year-old organization that has an incredible community. Either you know us and you love us, or you’ve never heard of us. I say we’re an 18-year-old boy. Our voice is cracking, and our knees are achy, and we’re going to be beautiful when this thing happens. And it is happening. The team’s doing amazing.

‘What advice would you give to somebody who’s saying, “I just got passed on a promotion,” or “I just didn’t get what I wanted, and I don’t know how to handle it’”?

Angela Raub: The greatest advice I can give people — because I’ve done it — is if you’ve not formed a personal advisory board, then do it immediately. And what I mean by that is this: What area(s) is/are you weak in? Find someone who has that as their strong suit.

“Oh, you’re a CFO? Hey, this is where I really need to amp up.” So really amp up that personal advisory board, and diversify it. Also, make yourself so completely vulnerable to people that do not know you well. Because they will ask you questions that will out those areas you’ve tried to put your arms around and guard, and people that care about you don’t want to bring it up, and you’ve got to get raw with yourself.

I just asked one of the investors in my company to rate me from 1 to 5 in three areas. Because, if you’re not asking for that honest feedback, you can’t get better. 

A quick story about fear: Once, I had a friend who came over, and I cried all night. He slept on my couch, & the next morning when I came out from my bedroom he said, “Are you done insulting God?” 

“What?” I said.

“Are you done insulting God? If so, then show them the warrior I know you are.” 

From that day, I’ve had no fear.

‘Tell us about your women’s event?’

Angela Raub: We have a women’s event coming up on October 18th, and it’s our third year. We’ll grow at two and a half again, year over year. I believe our women’s event will eventually eclipse our flagship event because of the demand. Dr. Bernice King was on our stage for our inaugural event, and she repeated a quote that that mother, Caretta, says: “For the soul of a nation to change, it will take its women.” The vision I have is by 2023, we fill the Mercedes Benz Stadium with our women’s event, with women’s associations and organizations from around the world, who come together as one, from different faiths, different cultures, and different backgrounds to show unity.

Sangram’s Summary:

Sangram: 1: I love that you and your dad had a competition about who’s going to outwork versus out love, and he said, “You might out love me, but you can’t outwork me.” I think a lot of people have this hustle thing, and I think it’s not a hustle. It’s actually just hard work, and there’s a place for work, and there’s a place for family, and we need to know how to do both.

2: “Heads down for a decade.” I want people to make posters out of that and put it in front of them. I think people are changing jobs faster, and they’re expecting rewards faster, and they’re expecting results faster. For great things to happen, you need to invest a lot of time and effort. So “heads down for a decade” is hopefully inspiring.

3: The other part is having a personal advisory board that you just tap into, where you can be vulnerable. You can cry, you can talk, you can have these true conversations. I love that. 

Angela’s Challenge:

Angela: I challenge the leaders who follow this amazing man Sangram with 2 things:

First, I challenge you to ask someone right now, “What is it like to be on the other side of me right now?”

Secondly, I challenge you to consider someone you just don’t think you can forgive. For the next few moments, think about them, and forgive them. If you can’t forgive them right now at this moment, if it comes back to you, you need to listen.