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Be Brave: Speak Truth to Power in a Respectful Way

Never corner an executive on an airplane.

I was furious and cornered the second-most powerful person in my company in an airplane, telling him what he did wrong and why it was the wrong thing to do.

Boy, was that stupid.

After licking my wounds and realizing my job was in jeopardy, I apologized and learned exactly why the C-Suite guys weren't talking to the rest of us.

They were deciding who to lay off.

I learned a few things:

  1. Senior leaders are working on projects that they can't discuss and they put great thought into them.

  2. Nobody likes being forced to talk when they don't feel like it.

  3. Treat everyone with respect, even if you don't feel like it.

While these might not be news to anyone reading... it can be hard to follow this advice in the heat of the moment.

Listen to the rest of the story and episode to learn a better way to confront the powerful people at your office, the ones who make decisions about your job, your department, and the strategy of the company.


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