In today's episode of 'Scale! with Predictable Success' our guest is
Founder/CEO, 4Sight Group
Jenni Catron is a writer, speaker, and leadership expert committed to helping others lead from their extraordinary best. Jenni’s passion is to lead well and to inspire, equip and encourage others to do the same. She speaks at conferences and churches nationwide, seeking to help others develop their leadership gifts and lead confidently in the different spheres of influence God has granted them. Additionally, she consults with individuals and teams on leadership and organizational health.
Jenni is the author of several books including Clout: Discover and Unleash Your God-Given Influence and The 4 Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership. Jenni blogs here and contributes to a number of other online publications as well. Outreach Magazine has recognized Jenni as one of the 30 emerging influencers reshaping church leadership.
A leader who loves “putting feet to vision”. She has served on the executive leadership teams of Menlo Church in Menlo Park, CA and Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN. Prior to ministry leadership, she worked as Artist Development Director in the Christian music industry.
Jenni loves a fabulous cup of tea, great books, learning the game of tennis, and hiking with her husband.
I first got to know Jenni Catron when two leaders I greatly admire each separately recommended that I read her excellent book 'The Four Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership'. Since then I watched with admirations as she built her now highly successful coaching and consulting company The 4Sight Group, successfully guiding and developing leaders in both for-profit businesses and in cause- and faith-based not for profits.
There aren't many folks who can straddle those two worlds with as much ease, grace and simple competence as Jenni, so I was truly delighted when she decided to join us as a Scale Architect a couple of years ago.
I really enjoyed this conversation, and you'll hear Jenni and I trade a lot of war stories as we explore the similarities - and crucial differences - between working with for-profit leaders and church leaders. Enjoy!
"Being a female leader comes with complexities that you have to figure out as well as overcoming the insecurities or doubts or fears that every leader wrestles with." @JenniCatron - CEO The 4Sight Group
In our interview today you'll hear share about:
- How taking a crazy, life changing pivot enabled her to achieve one of her childhood dreams.
- What the lightbulb moment was for her and her coaching and consulting practice.
- The challenges and opportunities that come with being a leader in the church space.
- How she uses the Predictable Success model to help clients of The 4Sight Group determine how to overcome the problems they face.
- What it's like to work for both for-profit businesses, and not-for-profit cause- and faith-based organizations. What's the same in all of them, and what differs.
- Her tips on tempering the drive of a Visionary Founder Leader.
- The key message that she wants to relay to the five-year younger version of herself.
"Enjoy the stage that you're in and not trying to, so ambitiously move on to the next. Because the next just comes with more complexity." @JenniCatron - CEO The 4Sight Group
On How Being A Female Leader in a Male-Dominated Environment Enabled Her To Achieve A Childhood Dream
I got the opportunity to go on staff at the church that my husband and I had been a part of.
It was a pretty fast growing church in the Nashville area and they were looking for an executive director - essentially the person who would run the day-to-day like leadership, staff, operations of the church.
This was a crazy pivot for me career wise, but I stepped into that role and that church grew from about five staff when I started to about 75 staff, 12 years later.
Being a female in church leadership (which is a little unusual in a lot of environment) opened doors for me to start talking about leadership and speaking and writing.
I got opportunities to write some books in the church space - as a little girl I'd always wanted to write a book, but I kind of killed that dream pretty early on, because you just kind of think that's an impossible dream.
Jenni Catron, Founder/CEO, 4Sight Group
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Les McKeown: Hi everybody and welcome back to Scale! with Predictable Success. That's the podcast in which we get to talk with people who either by themselves and/or with other people are achieving Predictable Success in their career, and in life.
And today I'm absolutely delighted to have with us, someone who's become a close colleague and friend as you're going to hear over the last couple of years. And that's Jenni Catron, who's the founder and CEO of the 4Sight Group. Jenni. Welcome.
Jenni Catron: Thanks so much Les. I'm excited for this conversation. We're always, working and talking y'all things, Predictable Success, but getting to have this conversation, it's gonna be fun.
Les McKeown: Yeah, it did occur to me just as I was firing Zoom up for this, that if we had just stuck a microphone in on any one of the last half dozen conversations that we've had, you know, on bus ride or whatever it's been, that we would make a great podcast episode in its own right because as listeners are going to discover, we've got a lot of shared interests.
So in that regard, kickoff, just tell all the listeners about 4Sight Group. What is it? Why did you start it? What does it do?
Jenni Catron: Yeah, I started, the 4Sight Group a little over five years ago and we focus on helping develop healthy leaders and thriving teams.
So I have a real bias towards first, I want a leader to be healthy and thriving, and there's lots of history that we could get into of why that is so significant. And then, the dynamic of team I'm just really compelled by teams working effectively together to achieve a mission.
And so 4Sight comes along, executive leaders either via one-on-one coaching or executive team coaching using much of the Predictable Success model to help us kind of unpack all of that. And, yeah, I think, leaders, especially founding leaders have such a desire to achieve the mission that they started out with.
And oftentimes they find themselves stuck by their own limitations as a leader or the complexities of the team dynamic as the organization is growing.
And so my heart and passion is helping equip leaders in that space. So that's where we started. I kind of stumbled into it.
I had worked in the corporate world and then the nonprofit world and the church space and, the thread through all of that was again, this passion for healthy leaders and thriving teams.
And eventually as I was writing and speaking and getting opportunities for those things, it just kind of morphed into, I think it's time to time to do this myself and I think there's a little bit of that entrepreneurial founding leader spirit in me that felt like I had to do it myself. So here we are.
Les McKeown: And when did you do that? When did you step out and found 4Sight?
Jenni Catron: Just about five years ago. Yeah.
Les McKeown: Okay, cool. when you talk about having that sort of impetus within you, did any of that come from your family background? Did you grow up in a sort of a business environment? Were you sort of in and around and saw that? Or was that just something that grew as you grew older?
Jenni Catron: Yeah, you know, it's interesting because as I reflect on my family history, there definitely were entrepreneurs in our family.
So my grandfather who's 90 years old and still as sprightly as anything, he's a fascinating human to talk to.
He grew up in the inner city of Chicago and he had a grocery store, like a little corner grocery store in Chicago, that he and my grandmother ran for a number of years until their kids (my mom and my aunt) were like middle school age, they moved to Northern Wisconsin.
So my grandfather had several businesses. And then my parents dabbled in some businesses. They weren't very successful with it. So I will say this growing up, I didn't see very successful entrepreneurial efforts.
But clearly it's in the blood it's in there somewhere.
Les McKeown: A lot of effort with, not just the sort of success that it might or should have returned. So tell us a little bit then, about that corporate career that you mentioned. So you come out of college. What do you go and do?
Just track your path there and take us up and through to the point where you're starting to think, "I think I should do my own thing".
Jenni Catron: Yeah, yeah. As a little girl, I wanted to work in the music business in Nashville, Tennessee. So I had big dreams at a pretty young age. I think I was about 13 when I said, "I want to work for a record company in Nashville" and that was the goal.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And so that's what I set out to do. I went to college in Tennessee. I got a job at a record label in Nashville, and I didn't even know what I would really do there. I just knew that that's what I wanted to be a part of.
And so I got a job at a company called ForeFront Records, which was a division of EMI Music Group at the time. And, started out as an intern in the radio department and then became an assistant in the sales and marketing department.
And was on a pretty fast trajectory there within a handful of years, I was a director of Artist Development.
And so when the A and R Department would finish a record and finish the actual musical product. Then it came to me to help oversee from video to sales and marketing, to, you know, just all the nuances, the radio singles and all the pieces that went into the puzzle.
It was my job to help kind of orchestrate all of that.
And, it's just a fascinating job, but I quickly discovered how my leadership skills were lacking because you had to be able to, align a team that weren't direct reports of yours.
They were peers throughout the organization who you had to get kind of aligned with your vision for the artists you were representing.
So I did that for about nine years, fascinating job, amazing experiences. And then I kind of took a, kind of a crazy pivot. We went through a corporate merger that was a pretty radical shift in like culture and leadership. And, so the organization shifted quite a bit.
And simultaneously I got an opportunity to go on staff at the church that my husband and I had been a part of.
And, it was a pretty fast growing church in the Nashville area. And they were looking for somebody and the title was executive director. And essentially the person who would run the day-to-day like leadership, staff, operations of the church.
And so, kind of a crazy pivot for me career wise, but stepped into that role. And that church grew from about five staff when I started to about 75 staff, 12 years later.
Les McKeown: Wow!
Jenni Catron: And from 500 attendees to over 6,000 attendees. One location to six locations. So just a rocket ride of growth, I mean, both experiences were kind of incubators to my growth, but that crazy growth trajectory was, was really formative for me.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: So I was a female in leadership inside of the church space, which is a little unusual in a lot of environments.
Les McKeown: Sure.
Jenni Catron: And that opened doors for me to start talking about leadership and speaking and writing.
And so I got opportunities to write some books, you know, especially in the church space and was speaking at conferences in the church space.
As a little girl I'd always wanted to write a book, but I kind of killed that dream pretty early on, because you just kind of think that's an impossible dream.
And so here it kind of gets reawakened.
And that's really what began to open me up to this passion I have for helping leaders and teams really be effective and here are these additional opportunities for that to take place.
And so that began the rumblings of, "should I do that more full-time?" "I'm doing it kind of as my side hustle, but is that the thing that I should be doing?" and that passion just continued to grow until I finally took the leap.
Les McKeown: And was that a difficult torturous process? Did you anguish over it? Or was it like cold turkey, waking up one day and say, "okay, I'm doing that Monday morning".
Jenni Catron: Yeah, no, it was totally arduous. Like, you know, I'm wrestling through, "can I do this?". All the insecurities, all the fears, you know, and I'm just by nature an achiever.
And so the idea of, if I can't completely mitigate for failure, then I can be afraid to take the step.
And honestly Les, the thing that really kind of launched me into saying, "okay, I'm going to start this" was I had since moved on to another organization that just wasn't a good fit.
I had been at the church in Nashville. I ended up going out and serving at another church in California. And it wasn't a good fit for me. Wonderful people, great organization, but just culturally, wasn't a great fit for me.
And I was really just not thriving myself. And so that discomfort eventually pushed me to go, "okay, you know, I've been thinking about this for a handful of years, now's the time to do it". Yeah.
Les McKeown: And, you know, you'll have heard me say this a number of times, when a founder is in that phase, you know, all your friends and family sort of look at you and they say, "you're being very brave. This is a very brave decision". And what they mean is you're crazy. Right?
Jenni Catron: Yes, that's right. That's exactly right.
Les McKeown: You do have the added element that you've already mentioned, which is it's relatively unusual for a female to be taking leadership positions.
I don't mean it doesn't happen at all, but for-profits have their challenges in that regard too. But did actually putting your shingle on the wall as an external consultant and being a female and doing it in the church space, did that give you pause to think at all? And has that impacted how you show up in terms of your market?
Jenni Catron: Sure. Yeah. A great question. And it really did.
When I started out and launched 4Sight, I couldn't just stay in the church space because I felt there would be a lid there. I give lots of space for all the reasons why that occurs, whether I agree fully or not.
But I did, I anticipated, you know, what I'm going to need to not just stay in the church space, I'm going to need to consider stepping back into the nonprofit space. This was really a friendly space for me to step back into, more nonprofits.
And then back into the corporate space, which I kind of reignited a love for the business environment.
And so it's been a mix of all of those over the past five years.
But yeah in the church world, if you look at some of the organizations that I would consider peers or organizations, I aspire to be a peer with that are consultants in the church space, I'm one of maybe a couple of females that lead a consulting organization that works in a church space.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And, so yeah, it has its nuances. I've been in many ways pleasantly surprised in places I have been invited into.
So yeah, it just comes with some complexity that you have to figure out how to walk through and overcome the insecurities or doubts or fears that every leader wrestles with it doesn't matter. There's always something we fill in the gap with.
Les McKeown: I'd like to come back in a minute or two and tease out a little bit about the difference in working in, let's call it a faith and cause-based world and the for-profit world, because you are one of the few people, and I include myself in that, who actually straddles those worlds.
And it's fascinating observation for me, the commonalities and the distinction. So I want to come back to that in a moment or two, but before we do that, you're five years in. That's a nice, it's not a run number at all, but it's one of those, sort of half important numbers.
So you're five years in. When you look back now at what you thought you were getting yourself into, hOW is it most different from what you thought you were stepping into?
Would you say to your five year old, younger person, "by the way, something you don't know is this is going to happen", or "you're gonna have to deal with this", or "it's going to be like this".
Jenni Catron: Yeah, that's a great question.
It's funny because the entire reason I called my organization 4Sight is I've always been one who anticipates and tries to like really, project what's coming.
I joke that I never didn't an all-nighter in college because I got the syllabus and I planned out my work. I mean, I'm just kind of a geeky kid like that.
But funny enough, I think, I didn't know what to anticipate even when I started 4Sight. So it was like this. I just kind of took the leap and figured I would figure it out as I went.
I think that there was some naivety and assuming that I would eventually hit a milestone where it felt comfortable. And I haven't found that yet. I don't know if some of that is just my wiring.
Jenni Catron: You can coach me on this Les. I don't know if some of that is just my wiring or if that's just the nature of founder leader in that there's always another hurdle.
And again, some of that is my ambition because I joke, we hosted a conference this past year, a digital conference, and initially had a goal of, I wanted 3,500 attendees to register for this conference.
So we hit the 3,500 goals. So now I'm like, "well, can we hit 4,000?" "Oh, we hit 4,000". And so I have to really temper that. There's again, lots of good coaching there, that Visionary side of things, but recognizing I can just be exhausting to myself and my team.
Jenni Catron: So I do think there's a little bit of probably going back to that five-year younger version of myself starting this and enjoying the stage that you're in and not trying to, so ambitiously move on to the next. Because the next just comes with more complexity.
Les McKeown: Yeah. And we have talked about that in the past. And you know, one of the things that I shared with you is, and you just, I think said it yourself, so I'm going to paraphrase a little bit.
So in our world, as you know, we talk about the Early Struggle phase and everybody knows that's going to be problematic. And, you know, you'd have to be a complete idiot to launch a new business and not know that you're going to have some problems.
And then you do the right things. You're one of the 20% and you get it to the first stage of growth, second stage, which of course in our world, we call Fun.
And I have on many occasions spoken with folks, my good friend, David Allen is probably the greatest example. I mean, here's a guy, biggest seller of getting things done. Biggest seller of productivity books and has a magnificent consulting company.
And I remember standing with him and his wife, Kathryn, who worked in the business with him and, we'd just done the full diagnostic process with him and his team, and he said, they all agreed that they were in Whitewater.
And I remember David saying to me, "Here's the thing, I don't remember one day of fun".
Jenni Catron: Yes! I can relate to that.
Les McKeown: And, you know, I just stood there for a moment or two and waited, and he looked at me and said "I think that says more about me though, doesn't it?"
But yeah, there are other folks too.
I had one client two weeks ago, who was convinced they're going through Whitewater. And we spent a full day together, just done in the National Harbor Hotel down in DC here.
And it was obvious just an hour into it. And I shared with them, "you're not in Whitewater at all, you're in Fun, but you're just huge overachievers so you're all constantly unhappy".
Jenni Catron: Yes! Yes!
Les McKeown: If you're a perfectionist, then Fun never gets to be fun because there's always something could be better. Right?
Jenni Catron: There's always something else. There's more, That is sincerely like a struggle for me. Because you have told me. we've talked about where 4Sight is right now.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And there've been times I'm convinced we're in Whitewater and you're like, "no, you're not there yet".
It's so funny because I've spent the better part of the last handful of years studying Predictable Success and like trying to learn and, and, you know, obviously facilitating it.
But sometimes even diagnosing yourself, I'm like, I'm convinced, I'm like, "oh, we're". And then of course I'm trying to anticipate and avoid Whitewater, which is not possible.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: So I think there've been times where I've been trying to like mitigate for the anticipation of that stage and you just squeeze the fun out of it.
Les McKeown: Right. And you put your finger on that. You do not want to bleed the fun out of Fun. It's okay to not be the sort of person who's always happy Aunt Sally.
But you do want to take some time and celebrate the successes that you brought, you know?
Jenni Catron: Yeah.
Les McKeown: So that's fascinating. By the way, not just for you in our conversation here, but for listeners in general. One of the ways that I have been able to help folks who are maybe puzzling about that. "Am I genuinely in Whitewater and having these massive growth problems or am I just, you know, constantly dissatisfied with how things are and that's just the way it is?"
One of the things I share with folks, is you'll know you're in Whitewater because some of the things that are happening will either actually cause or you will be fearful that they will cause reputational risk.
Jenni Catron: Ah!!
Les McKeown: If you're not experiencing that, if you're just teed off or frustrated or disappointed, or you made a couple of mistakes, that's not Whitewater.
Whitewater has got a magnitude that it either already has, or you're fearful that it's close to causing reputational risk.
Jenni Catron: Yeah. That's a good distinction. Yeah.
Les McKeown: That you start losing clients or whatever.
Jenni Catron: That's a helpful distinction. That's good.
Les McKeown: So I want to come back just to this crossover between the faith-based, cause-based world and the for-profit world.
And I want to ask you about something that I've been, struggling is not the right word, but I've been sort of investing some time in.
I don't typically read business books or listen to business podcasts or anything like that. Mainly because I work at it all day and I don't want to listen to it all day.
Jenni Catron: That's right.
Les McKeown: But I also happen to know that I become a plagiarist very easily without knowing that that's what I'm doing.
And, you know, I read something that's a really good idea. It sort of pops up three weeks later and I've convinced myself I've come up with it.
Jenni Catron: Yes!
Les McKeown: But one of the most impactful, as it turned out, podcasts about leadership, I don't think it's set out to do this, maybe it did, that I've listened to this year, is about the Rise and Fall of Mars Hill.
Jenni Catron: Mars Hill. Yeah.
Les McKeown: Which for our leaders in its most simplistic terms is a real life story about the collapse of a church in the Seattle area because of failures in leadership.
There's a lot more going on there, but that's essentially what it is.
And one of the things that I've been, dwelling on is I know that work quite well, both from personal experience in a previous life where I helped found and was an Elder in a fast growing mega church.
And also because like you, a large number of my clients are in that world.
And one of the things that I find it easy to do in the for-profit world is to come in and challenge a dysfunctional culture.
In fact, that's almost always a high element of what we do. Now, it may be dysfunctional for quotes, "ethically neutral reasons".
Jenni Catron: Right
Les McKeown: We haven't got that right, so it's dysfunctional. Or maybe it's dysfunctional because people are doing, you know, questionable things from a behavioral standpoint.
Do you find it harder to challenge dysfunction in the church world because of all of the undercurrents of, you know, "we're good people, we love each other" and also there's the get out of jail free card, "God told me to do it".
Jenni Catron: Yes, yes, yes, yes. It is interesting. And I've had the privilege of working with some phenomenal leaders in the church space.
And then I've also just seen some really unhealthy dynamics in leadership in that space as well. But I do think that because the church is such a people oriented organization, there's an assumption, "we're good at leadership, people, management, culture, et cetera".
And oftentimes I find churches to be some of the most toxic work cultures.
Now I'm not using data for that statement. That's a perception statement.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: But yeah, sometimes in the church world, we can have a tendency to assume it's all good. And we haven't really developed some good practices and good organizational behaviors in how we operate.
And there is a little bit of that. There's a tension that exists because in the church world that Lead Pastor or Senior Pastor or whatever the title might be, has that calling, that anointing from God to be the leader of that organization, that sometimes doesn't allow for the same measure of accountability and feedback that I think is typically more prevalent in the corporate world.
You can have exceptions to any of that. But yes, it quite surprised me going from a corporate environment and then into the church world full time.
I found myself quite surprised by how some of the things that were more of the behavioral norms of how we operated and treated one another inside of the organization that I was a part of. Now caveat to that is that I started at that company, at the record company when I was 20 as an intern.
And it was my first real work experience. And what I didn't know is that I was in a really fantastic organization with great culture and staff training and so forth.
So I kind of got a really experience right out of the gate.
But I was quite surprised going into the church space, how much of those skills were way underdeveloped.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And it wasn't as much of a concern. So yeah, it's a unique thing. I'd be curious to hear more of what you experienced there Les as you're working on both sides.
Les McKeown: Having worked as you said, on both sides for a long time, one of the things that I feel, most contributed, now I've got to put all the caveats in that you did. There are many, many fantastically well led churches; incredibly healthy.
And I've been very privileged to work with many of them. And we've had a number of precisely those types of leaders here on the podcast with Jason Mitchell on from LCPC, who's just literally in the last week, I think taken on the baton from David there.
Jenni Catron: That's right.
Les McKeown: Just wonderful folks. Great team, very good, so forth.
But where it has been problematic. First of all, it gets more problematic than it does in the for-profit world, for reasons of transparency. And we don't have time to go into or of that today, but if you're not a quoted company, if you're a privately owned or family owned, for-profit, you can hide an awful lot of dysfunctional behaviors or quotes "get away with them".
Jenni Catron: That's right.
Les McKeown: But the other thing is that, I've come to believe that the lack of succession planning and bench strength development is a major contributor to it.
Jenni Catron: Yes!
Les McKeown: And the reason is this. Something happens, which is exactly the same as in the for-profit world, and which is good for the early stages.
You plant the church and you're struggling through Early Struggle to get traction. You're trying to get up to a hundred. You're trying to get up 250. You get past 250, you get into Fun.
At that point in both for-profit and not-for-profit, there may be a team that's called a management team, or the leadership or Senior Pastor or whatever it may be, but they're not really leaders. They're enablers. They're there in the good sense of the word right, they're there to enable the vision of the Lead Pastor.
And the same thing happens in for-profit. There's a Visionary Founder, and, you know, until you get close to Whitewater and through it, any group that's called a leadership group is essentially a group of enablers; they're water carriers.
Jenni Catron: That's good.
Les McKeown: And everybody else is there to help.
Jenni Catron: Yep.
Les McKeown: Churches are terribly bad at making the necessary shift away from that to truly leadership groups or people who are genuinely leaders, where they're being developed as leaders and where they have a strong challenge function.
And you know, people are being challenged on some of the precepts of what they're doing.
And so that rolls into the whole area of succession planning where if you're not actively looking, I mean it's just literally, and you'll have to forgive me, it's just, the son or one of the kids and that's about as far as it goes.
And not doesn't bring the light and air and transparency that happens whenever you're developing a succession plan.
It may seem very separate, but I think lack of bench strength in succession feeds into these, let's just call them poor quality cultures
Jenni Catron: Yeah. Yeah.
Les McKeown: And would help a lot with it.
Jenni Catron: Yeah, that's really well said. I completely agree with that.
Les McKeown: Let's just a shift over for a minute, to the for-profit world and then we'll take a little look at where maybe you think 4Sight is going to be in five years from now when we next talk to you on the podcast.
Jenni Catron: Sure.
Les McKeown: Just so the folks know, it was a couple of years now ago, you became a licensed Predictable Success practitioner, a Scale Architect.
Jenni Catron: Yes.
Les McKeown: Just share a little bit of where did Predictable Successful home into view for you? How did you get to know about it? Why did you think it would be useful for you and how are you incorporating at the moment in your practice?
Jenni Catron: Yeah. Yeah. Great questions. I stumbled on the book initially. So I stumbled on the Predictable Success book somewhere in one of the church roles that I was serving.
I think I was just trying to study and diagnose what are the challenges we're navigating. And then our mutual friend, Casey Graham introduced me to Predictable Success.
Les McKeown: Oh, good old Casey!
Jenni Catron: And he's given that book to everybody.
Les McKeown: He has, I think!!
Jenni Catron: Yeah. So, he kind of resurfaced it for me right around the time that I was launching 4Sight.
And, you know, so again, I kind of deep dived into it again. I think what I found so helpful is, again, it's such a complete tool, it's just endless.
The more that I dig into it as a Scale Architect, the more that I'm like, there are just so many layers of this model that you have built that are just phenomenal. Like it's just endless, the resources, and the tools that you can take to help leaders and their teams.
But what I loved so much about it and the way that I use it inside 4Sight is that when I engage with an organization, and, you know, because that leading edge is the coaching of the executive leader or the culture dynamics of the team, I still come first with, what we call the diagnostic session in Predictable Success in coming in with a, "Hey let's, let's take a look at where is your organization in the Lifecycle? We need understanding and visibility of what's going on with the organization in this season”.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And then my interpretation of it is then what's required from us as a leader and that's where we use the VOPS profile to understand, "okay, now what, what is required of the leader?".
And that's where it becomes so fun for me. And I think has always been, what's resonated so deeply with me, is that at different stages, the organization needs something a bit different from the leader and the leadership team.
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And so that I feel like just helps illuminate "where are the challenges, where are the problems, why are we feeling stuck or unable to move through Whitewater or wherever we may be?"
And so that's how we use it inside of 4Sight. And it's just so incredibly powerful.
And oftentimes when I'm working with an executive team, we start there and then, the 13 imperatives, you know, lie within that as part of the framework for the model.
And we just start digging in and again, just continues to build on and help those leaders get greater awareness of "what do we need to be focused on? What do we need to grow?"
The leading edge for us is that leader feeling stuck or them feeling frustrated by team dynamics. And yet we come in with Predictable Success and it just illuminates "Okay, where do we begin? What do we need to focus on first?"
Les McKeown: Yeah, it just lovely hearing that.
And, I was just sharing with you before we hit record on the podcast literally just like 45 minutes ago, that I'm just back from being just outside of Nashville actually, with a client that if I use his name, most of the folks that are listening would know them and they work, in an area, not on adjacent to what we do, they help other organizations get aligned and so forth, and, to spend a day with their leadership team and to have them, say the things that I get the privilege to hear over and over again, starting with "seriously, do you have a web cam in our offices?" "Seriously have you been watching the last year and a half play out?"
Jenni Catron: That's exactly right. Yeah.
Les McKeown: It confirmed in me something that, you know, one of the joys I have about this thing is, I didn't design this model, I just uncovered it.
I spent time as a serial entrepreneur and just wrote down what I saw happening over and over again. It's a natural organic model. And so I find out stuff that's new all the time, myself.
And you and I were at an event a while back and Scottie Ritzheimer, who's the CEO of Scale Architects, helped me see something I'd never seen before.
And you've just echoed it.
That one of the things I believe that, in your practice having Predictable Success that you're now able to help people with, that really no one else does.
There are lots of great model growth models out there. We help people with "the when".
Jenni Catron: Yes.
Les McKeown: It's not just "the what", it's not just "you need to do this", but “when? What's the sequence? There's like 50 things I need to do. So what's the chronology of this?"
And that's the bit that I've been rolling around in a little bit since Scottie shared that. And it's so very, very true.
And it helps a lot with consulting gigs because you then know how to set out the stepping stones of implementing.
You're not just throwing a bunch of stuff against the wall, to see what sticks.
Jenni Catron: Yeah, it's funny, you know, when Scott did give us that perspective on "the when" piece of this, it was a light bulb moment for me.
One of my team members years ago, she would just call me sequencer because she was like, "you're always trying to do things in the right order to help us achieve what we need".
And I was like, I just can't not!
There's a part of me I'm just hyper efficient. So I'm always looking at what's the most efficient way to accomplish what we need to accomplish.
And so I resonated really deeply with that one when Scottie brought that perspective to it. Cause it's like, yeah, it is. It's so much about the win.
And I think, again, what I find so powerful when I introduce clients to Predictable Success is the, just be, "Wow! Okay, there is a roadmap. There is a way to address the things that I'm feeling or sensing".
And just the hopefulness that creates.
It's just "is there a webcam in our office because how do you know exactly what we're...?"
"Well, it's because it's predictable. Every organization is going to experience this at these different stages".
Les McKeown: Right.
Jenni Catron: And I think what I hear so much from clients is "so I'm not the only one? "I'm not crazy?" "This isn't just me?"
And I think that's where my compassion for senior leaders, founding leaders comes in, is that, you know, they get so frustrated and discouraged when they just feel stuck because they don't know what to do when, and, again, the model is just so powerful for that.
Les McKeown: Well, to stick with chronology for a moment or two, as I say, we bring you back five years from now, you'll tell us everything that's wonderful has happened with 4Sight. What are your dreams, hopes, visions for your business moving forward?
Jenni Catron: Yeah, that's a great, that's a great question. Sometimes I get a little stuck on that, in that, I want to do everything...
Les McKeown: No! Seriously?
Les McKeown: You?
Jenni Catron: Right. Can you believe that at all, Les? I want to do it all.
And I'll never forget this. I was doing a strategy session with one of my team members and this was probably two or three years ago. This is so typical founders like curse, right?
But, we're white boarding out, like all these things. And she said, "Jen, those aren't just like 20 ideas. Those are like 20 different businesses".
Jenni Catron: I was like, okay, timeout, timeout. I love straddling both the corporate and the faith-based nonprofit areas. I do love it. And there's some of that that I'm like, "should I pick a lane?"
But I find that I love serving both. And so I think I'd love to see that continue to expand.
I really have a deep passion and heart for organizational culture.
And I know that that is, you know, it's a hot topic kind of everywhere, but I think it's a really key topic.
Especially with all of the upheaval we're seeing in staffing dynamics and you know, the war on talent and the great resignation and people really rethinking, "why do I do what I do?"
And I think it just puts more onus on leaders to create cultures where people are engaged and thriving.
And I think I would love for 4Sight and I would love to continue to be a thought leader in that space, helping organizations think really intentionally and deliberately about that.
So I think that success for me in another five years is, we've continued to help, influence and shape the health of organizations and their teams. And, and then I've got a great team of people working alongside me to do that. So we can just serve more leaders better.
Les McKeown: Right. And, folks that have been listening here, if they think they want to talk to you a little bit more, let's do the usual stuff, tell everybody where they can go find out more about you.
Jenni Catron: Yeah. Our website is Get4Sight.com. You can find all kinds of information, great resources, blogs, podcasts, the whole thing there.
And then I'm just @JenniCatron on all social media accounts - LinkedIn, Instagram, whatever social media account you're on. I mean, I am there as @JenniCatron, and I'd love to connect that way.
Les McKeown: And, just to be clear for everybody that's Jenni with to "n's" and Catron is C A T R O N. Jenni Catron.
Jenni Catron: That's correct.
Les McKeown: Well Jenni it's been an absolute, genuine delight and pleasure to have you come into, first of all, the Predictable Success ecosystem, and then to get to know you personally. I have great admiration, and respect for what you do. It's been a delight to have you here and, we'll get you back in five years and we'll find out which of those 20 businesses you launch.
Jenni Catron: That's perfect. Les, thank you so much. I'm so grateful for your voice and influence and the opportunity to keep learning from you. So thanks for this opportunity as well.
Les McKeown: Thanks Jenni.
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