Daniel Duckworth is a leadership professional. He works primarily as a transformational teacher to transform the leadership performance of executives and managers, and also as a transformational consultant to facilitate strategic execution of major change initiatives. He is affiliated with the University of Michigan Center for Positive Organizations. After a decade in Michigan, he returned to Utah, where he founded Crux Central, LLC in 2019 to facilitate his new mission to learn to make deep change accessible to the masses—not just to the executives.

Dan Duckworth

Highlights

07:00 Deep change for all: work experience is sucking the life out of people, and they can’t bring their best selves to their families and everything outside of work, such as church. His purpose is to help people get to the point where their work builds and motivates them instead of draining them.
09:30 Found these problems in Utah just as he had found everywhere else

  • We need to change
  • Utah doesn’t prioritize leadership development, despite a high-tech startup environment that claims to subscribe to a positive organizational culture
  • Nice guy syndrome: the ego shifts people’s true priorities and leads to poor leadership, micromanagement, and a negative cultural dynamic

18:40 Caring what other people think about you interferes with your ability to be a transformational leader
20:40 Church leadership creates subtle culture with hierarchy, but this is holding us back
22:35 Robert Quinn’s four strategies to change:

  • Telling
  • 24:30 Coercion
  • 27:45 Participation
  • 29:20 Transformation: transformational leadership lets go of control and focuses on building relationships while setting a vision and high standards

30:10 Example of the ward cleaning specialist: how can I get this person to do what I want them to do? Defeating assumptions that come with that question:

  • The task becomes more important than the relationship
  • There is one right way to complete that task, and it’s my way (church culture is the same everywhere: not a good thing)
  • If you don’t do it my way, there’s something wrong with you: people are problems

34:35 These assumptions limit your leadership and tools: let go of control and focus first on building a perfect relationship with the custodian

  • Get to that euphoric experience with the cleaning specialist first, and not from a hierarchical perspective: minister to the one and transform the relationship
  • Example of the ward and stake leaders cleaning the building before an apostle visits
  • This transformation is palpable and draws people in

42:15 Example from newsletter article of a phone call from the bishop/executive secretary

  • 46:30 Defies the culture and lets go of control
  • Jesus Christ defined transformational leadership
  • Trust in the personal line of revelation and the relationship
  • 50:35 Negative example of Relief Society President who was sent back seven times, and positive example of bishop and priest giving sacrament prayer with a speech impediment

54:00 Start with positive deviance: there are normal leadership behaviors that the culture enforces which reinforce mediocrity
57:00 The performance standard is the covenant path: we can both set that high expectation and also draw people in through transformational leadership
59:20 Break the cultural rules, not the commandments or the policies: peel back the cultural layers and look for opportunities to create a more powerful culture with better outcomes

  • Experiment, reflect, and learn: study how you can become better

1:04:00 Examples of individuals who created programs through positive deviance: pornography self reliance group, Primary, scouting
1:07:45 Why don’t people make changes through positive deviance? Other people’s reactions paint them as laughable, unusual, or simply wrong.
1:11:50 Dan’s moment of self awareness: list of things he wants to be (not do)

Links

Deep Change for All
How to Design a Perfect Ward
How to Lift Your Missionary & Unify Your Family Through Letters | An Interview With Robert & Shauri Quinn

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