Difficult Conversations Podcast
Lessons I Learned as an ICU Physician
Episode 183 | May 1, 2023
You Got This Kid - Leadership Skills for Everyone
Senior Partner at Deloitte
Welcome to Difficult Conversations with Dr. Anthony Orsini. On this episode, Dr. Orsini is Co-hosting with Liz Poret-Christ. Today, they’re having a great conversation with Chuck Saia, who’s a Senior Partner at Deloitte and Member of the Quinnipiac University Board of Trustee’s, where he's the Chair of the Student and Academic Affairs Committee. In his thirty year career, Chuck has held various leadership positions at Deloitte, he’s a CPA, and holds an MBA from Quinnipiac University. He’s also the author of, YOU GOT THIS KID! Words of Advice for Young Leaders, YOU GOT THIS KID! Leadership Advice for Children, and is the Co-founder of YOU GOT THIS KID! Leadership Foundation, which focuses on teaching empathy and leadership to medical students. Chuck is a frequent keynote speaker at some of the largest companies and universities in the world. Chuck’s unique approach to teaching others about leadership is just one of the many wonderful things that we’ll be talking about today.
Chuck tells us his journey to becoming a successful leader and the importance of putting in the effort, being authentic, and having difficult conversations. He emphasizes the need to start with self-exploration, understanding what makes you special and different, and having enough thick skin to lead with your authentic self. He also discusses the impact of empathetic leadership and putting others’ interests ahead of your own. We’ll find out how he came up with the idea for his books, why he donates all proceeds to Lupus Research and Environmental Sustainability Studies, and how hisYOU GOT THIS KID! Leadership Foundation has had such a positive impact on his life. He also talks about the leadership training program he established for medical students at Quinnipiac University and how he thinks if we educate people more on the importance of team and mentorship to help people navigate through career and life, it might help in addressing burnout in the medical field. He shares his favorite part of the book about an eagle mom, and another part of his book with a caterpillar character that has a purpose. If you enjoyed this podcast, please hit the subscribe on your favorite podcast platform.
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Chuck Saia (2s):
I always say leadership’s a contact sport. It’s not easy. But the first thing that you need to understand is a bit about yourself and whether you can be your authentic self. And I often talk about your authentic self is understanding what makes you special and what makes you different. And that in addition to that, having enough thick skin that allows you to lead with that authentic self because not everybody is gonna appreciate who you are and how you lead. But if you’re secure in who you are and you’ve got a thick skin to withstand the contact and leadership you have the ability to have those Difficult Conversations and to be true to the people that you’re talking to.
Welcome to Difficult, Conversations Lessons I learned as an ICU Physician with Dr. Anthony Orsini. Dr. Orsini is a practicing physician and president and CEO of The Orsini Way. As a frequent keynote speaker and author, Dr. Orsini has been training healthcare professionals and business leaders how to navigate through the most difficult dialogues. Each week. you will hear inspiring interviews with experts in their field who tell their story and provide practical advice on how to effectively communicate. Whether, you are a doctor faced with giving a patient bad news, a business leader who wants to get the most out of his or her team members, or someone who just wants to learn to communicate better this is the podcast for you.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (1m 32s):
Well, welcome to another episode of Difficult Conversations Lessons I learned as an ICU Physician. This is Dr. Anthony Orsini and I’ll be your co-host Today. I’m lucky to have alongside me, Elizabeth Poret-Christ who will be co-hosting. She is the Director of Programing for the Orsini Way and I’m sure everyone agrees that when Liz is involved, it’s a much better episode. Today we have the absolute pleasure interviewing Chuck Saia. Chuck is currently a senior partner at Deloitte and is a member of the Quinnipiac University Board of Trustees, where he chairs the Student and Academic Affairs Committee In his thirty-year career Chuck has held various leadership positions at Deloitte, including being the former Chief Executive Officer of Deloitte’s Risk and Financial Advisory.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (2m 17s):
He is a CPA and holds an MBA from Quinnipiac University, and Chuck is the author of You Got This Kid, Words of Advice for Young Leaders, a newly released children’s book, You Got This Kid Leadership Advice for Children, and is the co-founder of the You Got This Kid Leadership Foundation. Chuck is a frequent keynote speaker at some of the largest companies and universities in the world, including providing workshops that allow participants to explore and document their leadership footprints based on the many animals in his book. Chuck s unique approach to teaching others about leadership is just one of the many great things that we will be covering today. Chuck welcome. We finally made this happen.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (2m 58s):
I’m so excited to have you here today.
Chuck Saia (3m 0s):
Well, thank you Tony. I’m really excited to be here and I appreciate the time with you.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (3m 5s):
Well, I think you have a lot to offer and especially with respect to this podcast, Difficult Conversations And, we always talk about building rapport with our guests and building trust and so even though I just gave you that little intro, there’s nothing more personal than you telling us a little bit about yourself and get the audience to get to know you on a personal level and your journey to where you got to this point.
Chuck Saia (3m 27s):
Hello everyone. Professionally, I’m a senior partner at Deloitte, former CEO of the Risk and Financial Advisory business, one of Deloitte’s four businesses. Was a member of the executive team at Deloitte for about 10 years. In addition to my role at Deloitte, we’ll talk a bit about this I authored a book a few years ago called You Got, This Kid, Words of Advice for Young, Leaders and that started a snowball effect in a positive way where I met someone who said to me she was gonna help me with my foundation because I had decided that all proceeds of my book would go to Lupus Research and Environmental Sustainability research because when you remove toxins from the environment, it helps people with autoimmune diseases like Lupus.
Chuck Saia (4m 8s):
So I’m the co-founder of the You Got, This Kid, Leadership Foundation. I also am a member of the Board of trustees at Quinnipiac University On a personal level, I live in New Jersey. I have a home in Central Jersey. I also have a home on the coast of New Jersey, and I have my wife Allison and my two wonderful boys, Ethan and Matthew So. That’s me Tony in a nutshell.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (4m 30s):
So it’s a Jersey crowd today, and although I live in Florida now, Liz is on, she’s from Jersey. So you have to deal with three Jersey people for the next, gotta shout out some Brooklyn. That’s right. You’re originally from Brooklyn and now you’re from New Jersey, so, but Jersey’s strong, so that’s great. So I wanna talk about the books and the whole Leadership Foundation, how you came about, but in order to write that book, you rose up pretty high in Deloitte to a leadership role there, And. so you learned through I’m sure right and wrong in making mistakes and how to rise through that leadership to get through that book. We always talk about, and in my speeches and my keynotes, we talk about the role of good communication. I think leadership is really important right now because we’re losing a lot of people, you know, the great resignation, all that.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (5m 16s):
So tell us your journey when you started out as a young kid and what did you learn about leadership specifically with communicating and how you get to the top for that. And then we’ll talk about the book later.
Chuck Saia (5m 27s):
I’m often asked by in particular young leaders, how did you get to where you are? How did you learn things? And I always start with a basic, and I actually talk about it a bit in my book about when you’re given an opportunity, regardless of the task, you go with the, with the same level of interest and effort that if you love to task, you’re not gonna love everything that you do in life. and it, if you do that and you understand that you’re part of a broader team, it’ll open doors for you. And once you start to get those doors open for you, you have the opportunity. And like I have to have a lot of horizontal, what I like to say is horizontal and vertical moves over the course of your career.
Chuck Saia (6m 7s):
And when you make those horizontal and vertical moves, you get exposure to different leaders. When you get exposure to different leaders, you have the opportunity to pick and choose who you’d like to emulate or add into your own portfolio on the way in which you wanna teach people or the way you choose to lead people. So I always say start with that basic, which is put in the effort that will open doors. And then when it does open doors, don’t always take the linear path, go horizontal, go vertical, and you’ll get exposure to some really great people that will show you and lead you the way towards great leadership.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (6m 43s):
It’s really interesting that you said watch people along the way. One of the suggestions that we make when we’re speaking in workshops and we’re talking about leadership and communication is that I tell everybody to close their eyes in the audience and I want them to think about someone in their past that when they entered the room, everybody lit up. They were glad to see him or her, this person just everybody loved, they would walk through walls for this person. They never speak poorly of them. And then I tell them, try to think about what it was that they did. Many times it might be natural, but most of the time it’s learned and Liz and I always say steal from them, watch that person And. so was there someone in particular that you watched when you were young that you said gee, I loved that leadership style.
Chuck Saia (7m 28s):
I would say there were many, but one in particular, again, I write about him in the book, he was an empathetic leader and always put you ahead of himself. I actually write that in the book where I was given an opportunity to leave his organization within Deloitte, and the only person that it was gonna impact was him. And rather than him put himself first, he looked at me when I presented the opportunity to him and he said, this is a no-brainer. You need to go do it. It’s gonna help you advance your career. So when I, think of what you just said, I, think about him because he was empathetic and he also put you in front of his interests.
Chuck Saia (8m 8s):
And through that leadership style, people like to gravitate towards him and continue to this day to gravitate towards him because they know that he has their best interest at heart. So I would say that person is the person that had the biggest impact on me and an impact on me very early in my career.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (8m 27s):
One of the things that leaders have to do that we discuss on this podcast all the time, the name of the podcast is Difficult. Conversations is that along the way there’s no way that you’re going to escape a difficult conversation with an employee, with a team member. Or maybe you’re a young kid and you have to have a difficult conversation with your boss. Like it’s time, you know, why haven’t I been promoted? That kind of thing. Was this the same leader that kind of, you watched have those conversations and how did you evolve into the type of leader that you become to navigate through those conversations that are in inevitable?
Chuck Saia (9m 1s):
Yeah, he was and I, think of a few others that were similar. you know, I always say leadership’s a contact sport. It’s not easy. Love that, right? It’s not easy. But the first thing that you need to understand is a bit about yourself and whether you can be your authentic self. And I often talk about your authentic self as understanding what makes you special and what makes you different. And that in addition to that, having enough thick skin that allows you to lead with that authentic self. Because not everybody is gonna appreciate who you are and how you lead, right? But if you’re secure in who you are and you’ve got a thick skin to withstand the contact and leadership you have the ability to have those Difficult Conversations and to be true to the people that you’re talking to.
Chuck Saia (9m 50s):
So it starts with self exploration, understanding who you are, understanding that leadership is hard, it’s not always easy, and you have to have Difficult Conversations. And oftentimes, you know, we started the conversation, Tony, with the fact that this person who put himself in front of me, when you’re have the ability to give someone bad news, you’re actually helping them. You’re not just helping yourself, you’re helping them improve at times. You’re making it real for them. You have to have that ability to have those Difficult Conversations. Now I’ve watched you talk to the students at Quinnipiac and I, think your message on empathetic leadership is huge. And I do think it doesn’t have to be complete conflict, right?
Chuck Saia (10m 33s):
It can be an empathetic style on how you talk to an individual when it’s a difficult conversation.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (10m 40s):
People are so uncomfortable with Difficult Conversations. I read recently that 73% of leaders said that they deal with difficult situations by avoiding them altogether. And, that just festers, right? I mean that’s the worst thing you can do.
Chuck Saia (10m 57s):
It’s the worst thing you can do for yourself because you’re carrying that emotionally. You may not even realize it, but you’re carrying that with you emotionally, right? That you haven’t addressed a certain situation and it’s worse for your team and your individuals that you’re not helping them improve if you’re not giving them the difficult message that they need. So I’m not surprised by the statistic.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (11m 19s):
You see so many leaders hiding behind emails, And, so I talk about this in one of my workshops too, is that it’s been shown that let’s say Chuck is always showing up late and not doing his job. And the leader doesn’t want to have that difficult conversation with Chuck or Tony And. so he or she sends out an email saying everybody needs to be on time. Well the nine people all know they’re talking about Tony. There’s only one person that gets that email that has no idea they’re talking about it. And that’s Tony. That’s exactly right. And. so it just happens all the time, And. so I think we need to make people more comfortable doing that. So that’s great advice for
Liz Poret-Christ (11m 55s):
So Chuck, now that you’ve kind of fine tuned your own leadership skills, how did the idea of the book and the evolution of that project come about?
Chuck Saia (12m 4s):
So it’s two books now, right? But both with the same title, you’ve got this kid, one is Words of Advice for Young Leaders, and then the second is Words of Advice for Children. The first book, which was intended for young leaders. And I often say that no leader is old, so it’s intended for everyone. I was at an inflection point in my own career, I was rolling out of being the CEO of a 3.2 billion business with 22,000 people and I was being asked, what do I want to do next? And you know, through that inflection point, I decided to start writing a book because I thought I had something to say about leadership. And what I could tell you is that it was a exhausting, Tony, I’m sure you know this because you have your own book and when you write a book, it’s exhausting.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (12m 46s):
It’s like giving birth. I always say, not that I know what it’s like giving birth Liz, but I’m just saying it’s this what I could imagine. It’s like it’s just this arduous process and then finally it just pops out.
Chuck Saia (12m 57s):
It, you know, it is hard and it look, it’s a lot of self-exploration and it’s a lot of conversation with yourself. And for me, in this particular instance, a conversation and trying to fine tune in a short version book, I use animal analogies to compare the corporate jungle to the animal kingdom. So the book doesn’t take itself totally seriously, but the concepts are serious. And when I went through that self-exploration, identified the seven attributes of leadership that I thought were important, I actually became a better leader because I did that self-exploration and I started to understand what I did right and what I did wrong. But it really was the inflection point in my career thinking that I might have something to say to people that would help them learn.
Chuck Saia (13m 44s):
And therapy for me as I was trying to choose what I would do next. The benefit has been that, you know, I donate all proceeds from the book to Lupus research and Environmental Sustainability studies. And as I mentioned, it created a foundation which has just had such a positive impact on my life and hopefully a positive impact on those that we’re able to provide experiences for through the foundation.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (14m 9s):
Well, you kind of gloss over that, but that says a lot about you, right? So a lot of people write books and the fact that you decided that you wanted to give back and do it, first of all, how did you decide on the two things that you wanted to help? How did you decide on Lupus? Is that something personal or something you’d heard about, but take us through that. you know, that says so much about you. You’re like, listen, I don’t want the money from this. I wanna donate and I want to help out.
Chuck Saia (14m 34s):
So if you were to read the opening of the book, I say it, but I got the Environmental piece a little bit off and I, I’ll take it through that in a second. For Lupus, my sister-in-law has Lupus and it’s a debilitating disease and I’ve watched her struggle through that. And Lupus has a bent towards women and it has a bent towards underrepresented minority women, black women in particular. And generally when women find out that they have Lupus in a lot of instances it’s right after they give birth to their first child. And many don’t diagnose it the right way. They think it’s postpartum because some of the behavior is how tired and exhausted the young mom is. So I watched my sister-in-law go through that and for the last 21 years deal with it after she found out she had it.
Chuck Saia (15m 21s):
So I decided that I wanted to have a positive impact there, that the book would go there. I chose the environment. If you read the book, it would say, because I’m an environmentalist, I’m an avid fisherman. But I’ve since learned and the aim of the foundation sort of has shaped this way that when you remove toxins from the environment, you’re helping people with autoimmune disease. So those were the two lanes. Now the funny part of the book, Tony, I used to say my editor and I had two interns that were helping me with the book, college-aged students that were just helping me sort of on the business end. And a phenomenal artist who did all the drawings in the book. I used to say, we’re gonna sell one book, we’ll make all of $4 for our cause because my mom will buy the book.
Chuck Saia (16m 7s):
We’ve done a lot better than that bolt in fundraising and in book sales, but it is taken off. Thanks for asking.
Liz Poret-Christ (16m 13s):
And I can personally say, having attended your first inaugural event, that more than one person was interested in the book for sure. And running a 5 0 1 C3and being involved in any kind of nonprofit foundation is not for the faint of heart. That’s a lot of hard work. You’re making it look easy, but that’s a lot of hard work, that takes a village.
Chuck Saia (16m 35s):
It’s incredibly hard. I didn’t realize what I was getting myself into, but it’s also con incredibly fulfilling. It also opens you up to a world of people that are amazing. There’s no other adjective, just people that put others in front of themselves, unlike how I met you two, right through the foundation and through the work that we’re doing together at the medical school up at Quinnipiac University. Just people that are selfless that just are willing to help to have a positive impact on the world. It has changed my world just being part of this. It’s been fantastic.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (17m 10s):
Yeah, not only are you doing stuff with that, we really got together, I guess you and Liz initially contacted and then we got to know each other and then you’re doing all this stuff with Quinnipiac and the medical school there and the program that you’re doing for Quinnipiac there. So that’s how we really got involved and got close with you. Tell us about that and how that happened.
Chuck Saia (17m 30s):
I mentioned I’m on the board of trustees at Quinnipiac. I’m a graduate of Quinnipiac and we’re doing several things. And, we provide immersive learning experiences, not just the students at Quinnipiac, but in particular at Quinnipiac for some Environmental study work. Where we have teamed up is through the medical school. We had this idea that you know, many corporations and many educators would say that we’re teaching students good hard skills, but we’re not teaching them soft skills and soft skills around leadership. So two years ago we established a leadership training course for the M one s medical school one s. you know that Tony, that’s a new term for me. M one s.
Chuck Saia (18m 11s):
So we established leadership training based on the concepts in the book, but we had this other idea that we would bring people out of industry to come and talk to the students, both doctors like yourself, people that are part of that sit around the medical community and nonprofits like yourself. And then lastly people in corporate. And what we have found is through that seven week course that the students are coming, they’re learning about Lupus and the Environmental impacts that toxins have on the medical community. They’re learning about leadership in particular when they meet with you, they’re learning about leadership and empathetic leadership and all the things that you have to say about Difficult.
Chuck Saia (18m 54s):
Conversations. The great news is that we’re going into our third year, the M one s and the M two s now. So medical school one and medical school two, we have learned that they are basically taking all of the leadership positions on campus and the school has come back to us and said, we need you to educate more students, not less. So this year’s M three s, you’ll see more people in the room when you come and give your presentation And. We’ll keep doing this because as long as we’re seeing that these students are having the ability and the drive to go take these leadership positions on the heels of our training, it’s just been phenomenal. It’s been great.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (19m 33s):
Liz, as Chuck is talking and hadn’t occurred to me until just recently about Chuck. There’s two big issues in healthcare right now. There’s patient experience which we’re trying to improve and there’s leadership. But the other one is really physician burnout. Physician suicide, which we’ve done many episodes on here over the last couple years. And the big joke is doctors are the worst businessmen ever. Doctors don’t know how to lead at a very core I, think all physicians And, we just wanna take care of patients, right? We just wanna take care of patients. But when you don’t have the skills when you graduate and you realize that’s not life, you’re not just taking care of patients, you have to take care of yourself, you have to feel some type of autonomy, you have to be a leader because, and in many ways a physician patient relationship is very similar to a leader and work person relationship.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (20m 30s):
So I think what you’re doing Chuck with this program, and I would love to see this just expand, is that yeah, you’re not only teaching them leadership and soft skills and all that, but in the end I think you’re preparing them for when they graduate to say, listen, I’m gonna give you the skills that you need So, that you’re not drowning over here while you’re trying to take care. Because what happens is in a void of leadership, people will follow anyone, right? And so in medicine, one of the biggest issues is that there’s not enough physician and nurse leaders. There’s administrator leaders. there’s nothing wrong with them, but we are so under-prepared to be leaders in the area and people who’ve learned from you.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (21m 13s):
Maybe now we can take more control, have more autonomy and I think it just occurred to me the way you were speaking I. think on a global level, we can do this nationally. I think you’re gonna have an impact on physician burnout and physician happiness. Really wellness.
Chuck Saia (21m 28s):
Yeah. And as you’re saying that, I’m thinking of two things. One, on day one, when I address the students, cause I’m the first one to address them, and then we bring in the guest speakers, I tell ’em that they’re leaders. They’re leaders the minute that they graduate in the eyes of their patients, that alone, you need to understand the second thing we teach them, And, we had this brilliant moment. you know the book is broken into two components. It’s about you, that’s about your authentic self, your thick skin, your need to continuously learn And, that it’s not all about you. And those are the external things that are less in your control. And that’s about mentorship, your team, diversity of thought and scorpions that are out there in life that might try and take a bite outta you.
Chuck Saia (22m 11s):
So make sure you have that sort of thick skin. But we had this brilliant moment when we were talking about mentorship, which is my favorite part of the book. It’s a story of an eagle mom. And eagle mom raises two chicks, which is unnatural in the animal kingdom. They usually raise one because sibling rivalry ensues. But I say not in my book, it’s the only story where I fabricate a little bit. I say that she raises both. She wants to see them both soar and we had this brilliant moment in our first session two years ago where we asked everyone to write down who their mentors were. And there was a young lady in the back of the room that raised her hand and said, I don’t have any mentors, And.
Chuck Saia (22m 53s):
we immediately said, you do now And. we started to have her be mentored by professors and by me. And now she has people in the industry more appropriate than me that are mentoring her. And I think if we can educate more people on the importance of team and mentorship to help you navigate treacherous waters, help you navigate not only your career but your life, you might be able to address that burnout that you’re talking about because you have the right people that you’re able to lean on and talk to about things. You’re gonna be better suited as a doctor and as an individual you have to believe.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (23m 29s):
I agree, like this is huge.
Liz Poret-Christ (23m 30s):
One thing I think is Tony and I have seen thousands of residents in the past 10 years, thousands. And what always strikes me as a layperson so strongly is that they come to us with absolutely no previous training in how to have Difficult Conversations, how to take care of themselves while taking care of others. It’s just something that they’re expected to know. So then they’re in their residency program, first year, third year, whatever, and they’re like, no one ever taught me how to do this And. That’s such a shame. So that’s another reason why we love being part of your program because we’re seeing them at the beginning of their career, not as they’re already finished with medical school and they’re establishing these skills that are really going to help them avoid this burnout.
Chuck Saia (24m 18s):
Yeah, yeah, absolutely.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (24m 20s):
The best part about the program, Chuck, when I give the lectures and I’ve done ’em remotely, but we have a camera and I get to see the young faces is that when I show my Ted talk to them and then we talk about empathy, we talk about reminding everyone why they’re going into medicine in the first place. The incredible faces, right? Liz, they’re
Liz Poret-Christ (24m 42s):
So excited. Yeah,
Dr. Anthony Orsini (24m 43s):
They are so into it, so excited. They’re because they haven’t been exposed to like the business of medicine yet. But when someone talks to them about what it’s like to sit down and have a personal relationship with each and every patient that you see Chuck, it’s the most rewarding thing for us. Worth more than any money to see these kids. And the first time we did it, Chuck, we wondered why we weren’t getting any questions and then everybody’s hand went up and they all wanted us. It was really quite an amazing thing. I told Liz, I’m like, that was great.
Liz Poret-Christ (25m 12s):
But because of the foundation that you laid for them, Chuck, they are questions were so insightful and they’re so eager to do better and to learn more, that it really was a pleasure to be there. And, we were like, oh, Maybe, it was just a one off. And then year two, it was exactly the same level of excitement and intensity.
Chuck Saia (25m 31s):
I think your message is incredible and that’s why they’re so engaged with it. And I’m very proud of those students. Like I said, we’ve got the ones and twos and now we’re going to the threes. I’ve learned that the twos are going to residency. This is all new to me, so we’re gonna send them off the right way. I have to tell you that, and I think I mentioned this to both of you, but I wanna make sure I mention it here. Part of my book talks about continuous learning. There’s a character in the book, it’s William, the Art student, and the other intern I had named him, William So, that’s the name William. It’s a caterpillar. and it talks about the difficulty of going from Caterpillar to butterfly and it only 10% of caterpillars make it to flight.
Chuck Saia (26m 13s):
And I parallel that to only 10% of people in corporate America make it to the highest level of leadership. It’s very hard to get there. What I missed, and I changed it in my children’s book by the way, but what I missed was a conversation about purpose. And Tony, when I watched your Ted talk, for me it was you were given a gift by your mentor that you were gonna have a purpose and your purpose was you were gonna change the way in which people were gonna have Difficult Conversations and you were gonna add empathy in into leadership. And frankly, it’s what drove me. you know, my board on the foundation asked me to write the children’s book, but it sort of drove me to sort of make up my mistake that I didn’t talk about purpose in the Caterpillar story.
Chuck Saia (26m 59s):
And now Caterpillar, William is the star in the children’s book because of you. He has a purpose. His purpose is to become a great butterfly leader, to pollinate the world because that helps the environment. And look, you did that for me. I’m sure the students connect with that also, cuz we talk about that now, this unbelievable purpose that you’ve been given that has just helped me redefine the way in which I have conversations about leadership and the importance of purpose.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (27m 28s):
That’s a great point. When you talk about purpose, and again, back to the physician burnout, I mean, in my opinion, there’s few solutions that solve a bunch of problems, right? So bringing empathy and leadership solves more than just turning out good leaders. It solves the problems of physician burnout. It makes us happy. You have a purpose when you go to work every day. If you don’t like your job, it’s gonna be tough, right? You’re gonna grind it out. And there’s many people that work nine to five. And there’s also people like physicians very commonly will tell you, I loved my job, now I’m 15 years into it and I have no autonomy.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (28m 8s):
I’m busy. I feel burned out. So remembering your purpose, I’m glad you mentioned that cause that’s a great message. Yeah, it really is, really is
Chuck Saia (28m 16s):
Yes, it really Is.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (28m 18s):
All right, so there’s so many great things that you’re doing and I’m gonna put all these notes about You Got, This Kid Foundation and the book and all that. But Liz, did you warn him?
Liz Poret-Christ (28m 28s):
I don’t remember if I warned you, Chuck, there’s a question we ask….
Dr. Anthony Orsini (28m 31s):
We warn him about, did we warn you?
Liz Poret-Christ (28m 32s):
Did I warn You Chuck? I don’t remember.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (28m 35s):
Wait. This is also a way of seen if our guests listened to previous podcasts.
Liz Poret-Christ (28m 40s):
You might already know. If you’ve listened, you might know the question.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (28m 44s):
We always end each podcast with asking the guest to think about the most difficult conversation that they’ve ever had. and it doesn’t have to be super personal. It could be the type of conversation and you know, give some words of wisdom from someone who’s been a leader, who’s been to the top, who’s done some great philanthropy, what you thought your most difficult conversation was, and how we can give some advice on how to navigate through that to our audience.
Chuck Saia (29m 10s):
On a professional level, in one of my senior leadership roles, I had somebody that was on one of my teams that was underperforming, but more than underperforming, was very disruptive, wasn’t the type of individual that should be part of the team. And I think as leaders and as people, we try to rehabilitate, which might be the reason that we don’t like to have the Difficult Conversations, we’re constantly trying to rehabilitate people at rather than cut bait, so to speak, with the wrong individuals that are having a negative impact on the broader group and the broader team. It took me a while to get to that place where I needed to have that conversation.
Chuck Saia (29m 53s):
Honestly, I was, avoiding the conflict, I was a young leader and I was avoiding the conflict. And as a result of that, I was probably losing part of my team. My team was looking at me a bit differently cuz they knew I needed to deal with the individual. There were some really bad allegations and some things that individual was doing that I should not have accepted for as long as I accepted it. When I finally had that conversation with the individual, I hit it head on. Part of that was my frustration at myself for trying to rehabilitating that person. And part of that was I just had it that at that point, and I had the conversation because it had progressed so badly, there was no way to keep that person on the team.
Chuck Saia (30m 40s):
Likely, if I had it earlier on, I might have been able to rehabilitate, but I didn’t. So I had the difficult conversation and you asked what the impact to me was. It was broader than the impact to me. It was like the entire team took a breath. It was able to say, oh, thank goodness we’re able to move on. For me personally, you know, a day went by and I felt a lot better. I didn’t realize the weight. I was carrying by not having that conversation. And you always look back and you say, I wish I would’ve had it sooner. you know, I’m a bit older now. I’m much more willing to have those conversations. I don’t let them fester. I know what they do to my mental health and to me personally, even my physical health.
Chuck Saia (31m 24s):
So I won’t carry that weight anymore. I’m willing to have those Difficult Conversations. And as we talked about on this earlier, you’re actually helping the individual by having it sooner rather than later. So I guess that would be my response. And that’s the one that comes to mind without naming anyone, without telling you where I was and what organization and all of that.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (31m 44s):
That’s great advice. And that’s step one, show up, have it. The first rule is to have the conversation and not avoid it. Cause as you said, it was worse for him, it’s worse for you, it was worse for your team. But as human beings, no one wants to be in a situation that they’re uncomfortable in. So as you get older, you get better at it, you watch your mentors do it, and then now you’re not avoiding it because, all right, I know what I’m doing here and I, and you’ve convinced yourself so I think that’s just amazing advice, And, that you hit the nail right on the head. Chuck, thank you. So even without warning So, that was, you hit it outta the park without any practice swings. So Chuck, thank you so much. I mean, what you’re doing is amazing. Liz and I both feel blessed to know you and to continue to work with you.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (32m 26s):
We hope, and I hope what you’re doing with the foundation and what you’re doing at Quinnipiac, really, I’m just praying that someone looks over at Quinnipiac and says, why aren’t we doing that? And because I think you’re really gonna make a difference. And I think you’re gonna see the difference in these M one s, the M three s that you’re training I think you’re gonna see the difference even 10, 15 years down the line when these people are just happier, more productive physicians. So you’re making a real change. You’ve been, you’ve given us some great advice about leadership And. we really appreciate all the great things that you’re doing for everybody. So And, we appreciate you being on this podcast. Well
Chuck Saia (33m 2s):
Thank you. And the same goes to you for the impact that you’re having. I really appreciate it. This was a lot of fun and I look forward to our collaboration in the future. Yeah,
Dr. Anthony Orsini (33m 10s):
We’ll go ahead and put all the links on your foundation, the books, all that. We’ll put those links on the show notes, but you wanna just tell everybody the best way to get in touch with you or through the foundation, just in case they’re driving and they just want to hear it.
Chuck Saia (33m 24s):
You Got This Kid Leadership Foundation. We have a website. Everything is sort of there. We have the other social media platforms where we have marketing intern that handles all of that. And both books can be bought on Amazon. And like I said, the proceeds go to the foundation so we could have an impact.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (33m 41s):
Fantastic. Thank you, Chuck, thanks
Liz Poret-Christ (33m 43s):
For being here, Chuck,
Chuck Saia (33m 44s):
Dr. Anthony Orsini (33m 44s):
Thanks for being with us and we’ll be in touch real soon. We’ll do some lectures together or something at Quinnipiac, so.
Chuck Saia (33m 49s):
Yep. Sounds great. Okay, thank you.
Dr. Anthony Orsini (33m 51s):
Have a great day everybody.
Liz Poret-Christ (33m 54s):
Announcer (33m 55s):
If you enjoyed this podcast, please hit the subscribe button and leave a comment and review. To contact Dr. Orsini and his team, or to suggest guests for future podcasts, visit us at the Orsini Way.Com. The comments and opinions of the interviewer and guests on this podcast are their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and beliefs of their present and past employers or institutions.
Dr. Anthony Orsini
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