active CEO Podcast Brian Sands - Solving Problems For Other People

active CEO Podcast #153 Brian Sands Solving Problems For Other People

active CEO Podcast #153 Brian Sands Solving Problems For Other People

On this episode of the active CEO Podcast, Craig Johns speaks with Brian Sands about solving problems for other people, how to manage a business through crisis, healthy people create successful businesses and you can’t wait for the crisis to finish.

We also delve into sliding doors moments, sandwich pressure of being in senior management, managing people from a different culture, stop the bleeding and simplify the complexity.

Brian Sands – Solving Problems For Other People

Brian is an organizational change specialist, independent advisor, living proof of how to survive and then thrive during crisis, and author of Stop The Bleeding – a mind shift through businesses crisis management. He is a wonderful leader who knows what resilience in the business world is all about, has a passion for thinking and doing everything differently and loves giving advice with impact through B1G1.

His education includes an advanced management program and a masters degree in Enterprise from the University of Melbourne, has completed an executive study at INSEAD, and a graduate of Company Directors Course from The Australian Institute of Company Directors. Brian’s career has included Managing Director at APM Group Australia, Regional Manager Victoria for Broad Construction, Non-Executive Director at 13th Beach Golf Links, has held interim General Manager and CEO roles at Arrow International, LSH Property Australia and Longevity Group Australia, and founded Sentiment and

Brian talks about

  • Creating something, making something and building something.
  • Managing a business through the stock market crash and recession.
  • If I could build buildings, I could build teams.
  • Parochial expertise will get you nowhere.
  • Where do you want to be and by when.
  • History shows that there are cycles in business.
  • Lean into the crisis moment to make something different.
  • Be the participant rather than a passenger in crisis.
  • I got a kick out of solving problems for other people.
  • Awakening about seeing and thinking about things differently.
  • Writing Stop The Bleeding.
  • Inspired by solving problems for other people
  • Strategy is a process of seeing, planning, thinking and acting differently.
  • People get caught up in the what rather than the why
  • How do I create a proposition out of a problem


“You have just got to get on with it. It is up to you. You are in control of your destiny, if you want to be successful.” Brian Sands talks about how to manage a business through crisis, on the active CEO Podcast. 

“If you overly obsess about tomorrow, I think tomorrow will get worse and worse until you get there.” Brian Sands delves into stop the bleeding and you can’t wait for crisis to finish, on the active CEO Podcast.

“It took me down for a while. There was only one choice, turn the lights off and put the key in the door and deal with everything that came my way or roll my sleeves up and fight.” Creating a mind shift during crisis with Brian Sands, on the active CEO Podcast.

Resources Mentioned in this show:

Brian Sands
Brian Sands LinkedIn
Speakers Institute Corporate
Craig Johns
Craig Johns
Craig Johns LinkedIn
NRG2Perform active CEO Podcast

Recommended Reading:

Stop The Bleeding Brian Sands

active CEO Podcast Mike Nishi Chicago Event Management Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race Craig Johns Speaker

active CEO Podcast #94 Mike Nishi Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race

active CEO Podcast Mike Nishi Chicago Event Management Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race Craig Johns Speaker
Mike Nishi – General Manager Bank of America Chicago Marathon

On this episode of the active CEO Podcast, Craig Johns speaks with Mike Nishi about Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race, risk and crisis management in mass participation events, closed loop environmental sustainability strategies and the power of collaboration.

We also discuss the Nike Breaking2 Project, partnering with Abbotts World Marathons, why he ran the Bank of America Chicago Marathon at the age of 13 years old, and why placing community at the center of event management decisions is so crucial.

Mike Nishi – Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race

Mike Nishi is the General Manager of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, a global leader in environmentally sustainable events, and is described as professional, highly organised and forward thinking leader. A dedicated family man, he is an avid runner and cyclist, completed his first ever Chicago marathon at the tender age of 13 years old, and is a board member for Girls on the Run Chicago

He started out as an intern, while at school, before becoming an employee for the Chicago Event Management company in 1989. Currently, his role is Executive Vice President of Business Development and Operations looking after the organisation of the Chicago Marathon, J.P. Morgan Corporate Challenge, Girls on the Run and the Nike Breaking2 project in 2017.

His role oversees the production of all Chicago Event Management events with a particular focus in event operations, emergency response and sustainability logistics. Over a decade a go he founded the Race Management Program, ten years ago, to provide an intimate forum for race organiser’s to share ideas and find solutions to create unforgettable event experiences.

Mike talks about:

  • Running my first Chicago Marathon in 4hr 25min, as a 13 year old.
  • 3 decades working with Carey Pinkowski at Chicago Event Management.
  • Growing the Chicago Marathon from 5,000 to 45,963 finishers.
  • Safety and security being the number one priority following 9/11.
  • Planning for the unknown and unexpected is very challenging.
  • Creating a forward command facility to protect the safety of athletes and the community.
  • Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race.
  • Creating sustainable partnerships with Abbott World Marathons.
  • The Bank of America Chicago Marathon environmental initiatives.
  • Closed loop sustainability program with compostable cups.
  • Using storytelling to share the journey of recyclable products.
  • Bamboo cups and Nike t-shirts made out of recycled plastic bottles.
  • Nike Breaking2 project to break the 2hr marathon mark in 2017.
  • Sponsorships Nike, Gatorade, American Airlines & Bank of America.
  • Aligning partner’s values in a collaborative arrangement.
  • Race Management Program to support the event industry.
  • Celebrating mistakes not on the outcome, but what you learnt
  • Incorporating Pilates and mediation in his daily routine.

Active CEO Performance Tip

SINGLE-task Not Multi-task For Productivity – If you try and multi-task, our brains move too fast, we lose focus and take on too much. In fact, the brain can’t actually multi-task and what it actually does is task switching. If you are task switching to often or too quickly, it slows down your response time and prevents you from completing tasks quickly, if at all. Break down your work into single tasks and block your time accordingly to the highest priority tasks. First, write down all your tasks. Second, prioritise your tasks according to low, medium and high priority. Third, schedule time specifically for high priority tasks first, in your calendar. Then delegate all medium and low priorities where possible. Plan your day so that you can single task to get the best productivity and performance as a leader.


“It is hard to plan for things that might not happen and things that you just don’t like to think about, but have to do, whether you initiate or not.” Mike Nishi talks about crisis management, on the active CEO Podcast.

Resources Mentioned in this show:

Michael Nishi LinkedIn
Michael Nishi Instagram
Michael Nishi Twitter
Michael Nishi Facebook
Chicago Event Management
Bank of America Chicago Marathon
Craig Johns
Craig Johns
Craig Johns LinkedIn

Recommended Reading:

Fuel Your Body For Leadership Performance Read Article
How Exercise Enhances A Leaders Performance Read Article
Four Basic Fundamentals Of Being A High Performing Leader Read Article
How To Be A High Performing Leader In 2020 Read Article
active CEO Lessons In 2019 Read Article
Four Ways To Overcome CEO Loneliness In 2020 Read Article

Recent active CEO Podcast Episodes

#94 – Mike Nishi (Chicago Event Management) Chicago Marathon Beyond The Race Link
#93 – OWN Your OWN FREEDOM Link
#92 – Lisa Tamati (Author of Relentless) Relentless Leadership In Life Link
#91 – 8 Ways To OWN Your OWN Influence Link
#90 – Jason Treu (Unstoppable Workplaces) Building Trust For Transformation Link
#89 – How Many CEO Performance Habits Link
#88 – Kate Maree O’Brien (SHE Conference) Tenacious Spirit Of An Entrepreneur Link
#87 – Have You Got CEO Presence Link
#86 – Chris Tabish (Comediology) Leadership Effectiveness With Comediology Link
#85 – Raise Your Energy Bar With CEO Periodization Link
#84 – Catherine Molloy (Auspac Business Advantage) The Conscious Leader Link

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active CEO Podcast Bill Coletti KIth reputational resilience and transformation

active CEO Podcast #66 Bill Coletti Reputational Resilience And Transformation

active CEO Podcast Bill Coletti KIth reputational resilience and transformation
Bill Coletti – CEO Kith

On this episode of the active CEO Podcast, Craig Johns speaks with Bill Coletti about reputational resilience and transformation, crisis preparation, opportunities that arise from adversity, and the 7 Levers of Reputation from the book Critical Moments. We also delve into being involved in political campaigns and elections, Bills time in Bulgaria as CEO of the American Chamber of Commerce and advising the Prime Minister, Kith approach to crisis management, and the speed of response during a crisis.

Bill Coletti – Reputational Resilience And Transformation

Bill Coletti is a reputation and crisis guru, who has more than 25 years of global experience managing high-stakes crises, issues management, and media relations challenges for both Fortune 500 companies and winning global political campaigns. Bill is the CEO of Kith, a best-selling author of Critical Moments, has a passion for safe-guarding reputations, is a Wall Street Journal Risk & Compliance panellist, and enjoys sailing, riding his bike and unwinding through yoga.

He studied a BA Political Science and Government, Communications at Florida State University and an AA General Studies at St Petersburg College. His career has included co-leading the Global Risk Management and Crisis Communications Practice for Hill+Knowlton Strategies; Executive Director of Bill McCollum for US Senate; served in the Republic of Bulgaria as a senior advisor to the prime minister, Council of Ministers, and the Labor minister; and was the first ever executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria. Through his various roles, our special guest has worked with major corporations such as AT&T, Target Corporation, American Airlines, The Home Depot and Xerox, as well major universities and global NGOs.

Bill talks about:

  • Reputational resilience and transformation.
  • Leadership by stereo with comments from both the left and the right.
  • Becoming the first ever American Chamber of Commerce Bulgaria in 1995.
  • Honing negotiation & communication skills while Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister.
  • Building the structural requirements & a communications strategy to join the EU.
  • The key personality characteristics as a crisis and reputational management expert.
  • Reputational damage hurts more personally when it is an individual.
  • The mindset and behaviors that separate the leaders that perform best during a crisis.
  • The key differentiator between good and great in crisis management, is speed of response.
  • Impact on a crisis is very often finite.
  • Build a reservoir of goodwill as the market place will be more willing to accept.
  • Crisis management is more than just getting back to normal.
  • Needing quiet quality time to think and process what is going on.
  • Love to solve the question of how to cure cancer.
  • Why aren’t more people happy?

Active CEO Performance Tip

Conditions Will Not Be Perfect – Our environment changes from year to year, month to month, day to day and minute to minute. As leaders we need to be prepared for the conditions not to be perfect. We need to be agile and ready to adapt at a moments notice. It is our responsibility to utilize our wide range of experience, skills and expertise to deliver our best performance no matter what is in front of us.


“The nature of your character was more important than the size of your car.” Bill Coletti describes life in Bulgaria in the 1990’s, on the active CEO Podcast.

“The crucible of crisis doesn’t develop your leadership it reveals it.” Bill Coletti discusses leadership during crisis, on the active CEO Podcast.

Resources Mentioned in this show:

Bill Coletti
Bill Coletti LinkedIn
Bill Coletti Twitter
Kith Consulting
Craig Johns
Craig Johns LinkedIn

Recommended Reading:

Critical Moments The New Mindset of Reputation Management

active CEO Podcast #52 Francesca Boase Building Trust In Crisis Management

Francesca Boase – General Manager Edelman Australia

On this episode of the active CEO Podcast, Craig Johns speaks with Francesca Boase about building trust in crisis management, storytelling as an art of communication, leading change, the Edelman Trust Barometer and being a great mentor. We also discuss personal development, being a custodian of peoples careers, the pain of accepting feedback, workplace wellness, and managing her energy and performance.

Francesca Boase – Building Trust In Crisis Management

Francesca Boase is an experienced global corporate communications specialist who is committed to the community, health, fitness and wellbeing. She is known for building strong relationships, impressive personal development programs and competing at the world triathlon championships.

A genuine people person, she is passionate about mentoring, facilitating and leading teams. Her focus in corporate and financial communication, media relations, reputation management and strategic counsel, has given her the necessary skills to thrive in her current role as Managing Director of Edelman Australia, the world’s largest independent communications agency.

Educated globally, she went to Island School, Hong Kong; studied Journalism, Film and Broadcasting and completed a Post Graduate Diploma Public Relations at the University of Wales, Cardiff; and attended the Australian Graduate School of Management. Her previous senior executive appointments have included roles at Sharman Networks, PPR PR Agency and Sefiani Communications Group.

Fran talks about:

  • Growing up in Hong Kong in the 1980’s surrounded by many nationalities.
  • Acting and then communicating with absolute integrity.
  • Honesty and transparency are absolute fundamentals to building that trust.
  • The most important elements when it comes to being proactive in crisis management.
  • We are in constant state of change.
  • What’s its going to take for you to say yes.
  • Fear accompanies change or uncertainty.
  • What makes a really great mentor.
  • Strategies to use when determining your teams internal motivations.
  • Managing stress and the importance of wellbeing in a fast-paced environment.
  • Having high standards and integrity as a leader.
  • Noticing and recognising the cultural differences of the generations coming through.
  • Businesses increasingly have a role to play in building the trust of Australians.
  • Talking about workplace wellness and not actually doing enough about it.
  • Recognising people as human beings in a holistic sense.
  • Really have to take care of yourself first and then come in and tackle the day.
  • Managing competitiveness in a healthy way and figuratively in a healthy way.
  • How to help young people really appreciate and value themselves.

Active CEO Wellness Tip

Motion Call – Stand up and go for a walk when you receive a phone call rather than stay seated at your computer. It reduces distractions and ensures you get the value of motion leads to emotion when you are walking. You will be surprised how much exercise you can do and how productive your calls become.


“Being able to effectively communicate means you can build trust, address issues, you can form an organisational and business point of view, and build a narrative and a story which is a very important part of engaging whether it is your target audiences, your staff or your customers.” Effective communication with Francesca Boase, on the active CEO Podcast.

“The bottom line is that people don’t come to work to achieve a business result. People come to work to be with other people. My experience is that being a leader and being able to communicate on a very human level is critical. Its critical to managing staff, it is critical for great client relationships. It is very important when you are dealing with very difficult situations.” Francesca Boase on communicating at a human level, on the active CEO Podcast.

“You genuinely need to have that recovery time. In terms of performance in a role that is very demanding, having a break and taking some time out is as important a lesson to learn to learn as is learning how to respond to a client or developing a communications strategy.” Francesca Boase talks about the importance of recovery with purpose, on the active CEO Podcast.

Resources Mentioned in this show:

Francesca Boase LinkedIn
Francesca Boase
Craig Johns
Craig Johns LinkedIn