Skip to content

CNLP 299: Patrick Lencioni on His Personal Leadership Crash, How He Moved Through It, and How to Check Your Motive as a Leader

Patrick Lencioni is a widely-recognized leadership and business expert who has sold over six million books. But none of that exempts you from your own personal challenges.

Today, Patrick opens up about a painful personal leadership crash he experienced 11 years ago, what brought him to that moment, and how he got through it. We also discuss why a leader’s motives matter so much and why most CEOs and senior leaders fail to really lead once they become the senior leader.

Welcome to Episode 299 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free.

Guest Links

Twitter | The Table Group | At the Table with Patrick LencioniThe Motive

Episode Links

Remodel Health recognizes the intrinsic value of keeping healthcare costs sustainable without sacrificing the level of care to your faith-based organization. Learn more about their technology-based, innovative solutions by visiting this special link here, and download their church buyer’s guide today for FREE.

What if, in 40 days, you could grow your small groups in your church by 40%? Based on Pastor Zach Zehnder’s book, The Red Letter Challenge is a 40-day turnkey church campaign that centers around making more effective disciples of Jesus. Go to RedLetterChallenge.com/Carey to find church packages ready to go for you.

The Five Temptations of a CEO by Patrick Lencioni

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

The Renovation of Our Soul by Don Wipf

Be Healed by Dr. Bob Schuchts

At the Table with Patrick Lencioni, Episode 2: Stop Hiring the Wrong People

3 Insights from Patrick

1. You can’t serve two masters

Eleven years ago, Patrick experienced a leadership crash. His addiction to success and avoidance of failure left him feeling empty. His joy was fading, and he was struggling to find peace. He notes, “Jesus said you can’t serve two masters, and I was going to prove that I could do both.”

Patrick realized he had a hole in his heart that he wasn’t allowing God to fill. Looking back now, he says that suffering is not without purpose. And had he not suffered, he would have never got to the other side.

2. Pride is the root of all sin

People think that greed is what motivates CEOs. But oftentimes it’s not greed, it’s pride. Patrick shares the story of a client who had falsely altered financial figures. But what Patrick realized was that it wasn’t because the CEO wanted to be rich or have a bigger house. The CEO came from a tough background. He wanted to be successful, and he wanted the people that worked there to be successful; he wanted them to have more money. He was falsifying the figures so he could be their hero.

The idea of failure for some leaders can be debilitating, leaving space for pride to take over. But leaders need to realize that our job is not to be our employees’ hero. Our motivation, as leaders, should be to love our employees and help them achieve their goals.

3. Not holding your employees accountable is selfish

Oftentimes, as leaders, we avoid confronting employees by telling ourselves, “I care about him/her. I don’t want him/her to feel bad.” But not holding employees accountable for bad behavior or poor performance is really more about making ourselves feel better. It’s one of the temptations Patrick outlines in The Five Temptations of a CEO.

Not holding employees accountable is not an act of love or charity or mercy. When we do hold them accountable, we may suffer for a little while in order to avoid them having to suffer for a long time.

Quotes from Episode 299

People think that greed is what motivates CEOs. It's not greed, it's pride. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

It wasn't that success was addicting to me, it was that the lack of it seemed intolerable. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

The best thing that happened to me by succeeding was realizing that it doesn't satisfy. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

Leaders who don't like to be vulnerable can only be trusted as far as they're open to their own mistakes. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

Suffering is not without purpose. And had I not suffered, I would have never got to the other side. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

Most organizations, the vast majority of organizations have far too little conflict because they've been taught in society that disagreement is uncomfortable and you should avoid discomfort. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

If you don't have discomfort in life, you're not going to actually learn. @patricklencioni Click To Tweet

Read or Download the Transcript for Episode 299

Looking for a key quote? More of a reader?

Read or download a free PDF transcript of this episode here.

Watch Back Episodes of The Podcast on YouTube

Select episodes of this podcast are now on YouTube. Our new YouTube Channel gives you a chance to watch some episodes, not just listen. We’ll add select episodes to YouTube as time goes on.

Didn’t See It Coming Will Help You Solve the Problems Most Leaders Miss

If you want practical help overcoming some of the biggest challenges leaders face, my new book Didn’t See It Coming: Overcoming the 7 Greatest Challenges That Nobody Expects and Everyone Experiences tackles the seven core issues that take people out: cynicism, compromise, disconnectedness, irrelevance, pride, burnout, and the emptiness of success and provides strategies on how to combat each.

I wrote the book because no 18 year old sets out to be cynical, jaded and disconnected by age 35. Yet it happens all the time.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Here’s what top leaders are saying about Didn’t See It Coming:

“Seriously, this may be the most important book you read this year.” Jud Wilhite, Lead Pastor, Central Church

“Powerful, personal, and highly readable.” Brian Houston, Global Senior Pastor, Hillsong

“Whatever challenge you’re facing, whatever obstacle you’re hoping to overcome, whatever future you dream or imagine, there is something powerful for you here.” Andy Stanley, Founder, North Point Ministries

“Uncommonly perceptive and generous…You have to read this book.” Ann Voskamp, NYT bestselling author

“Masterful.” Reggie Joiner, CEO Orange

“Deep biblical insight, straightforward truth, and practical wisdom to help you grow.” Craig Groeschel, Pastor and NYT bestselling author

“This book is sure to help you.” Daniel H. Pink, NYT bestselling author

Over the years, one of the things I’ve enjoyed most about being a public speaker is having opportunities to hang out with Carey…It’s not a matter of if you’ll run into these challenges; it’s a matter of when. Be prepared by spending a little time with a leader who has already been there.” Jon Acuff, NYT bestselling author

“Nieuwhof’s book provides expert guidance…with an accuracy that pierces the heart.” Nancy Duarte, CEO, Duarte Inc.

“A refreshingly transparent guide for all leaders in a wide variety of industries.” Bryan Miles, Co-Founder and CEO, BELAY

You can learn more and get your copy of Didn’t See It Coming here.

Subscribed Yet? 

Subscribe for free and never miss out on wisdom from world-class leaders like Brian Houston, Andy Stanley, Craig Groeschel, Nancy Duarte, Henry Cloud, Patrick Lencioni, Francis Chan, Ann Voskamp, Erwin McManus and many others.

Subscribe using your favorite podcast app via

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Google Play

Stitcher

TuneIn

Spread the Word. Leave a Rating and Review

Hopefully, this episode has helped you lead like never before. That’s my goal. If you appreciated it, could you share the love?

The best way to do that is to rate the podcast on Apple Podcasts and leave us a brief review! You can do the same on Stitcher and on TuneIn as well.

Your ratings and reviews help us place the podcast in front of new leaders and listeners. Your feedback also lets me know how I can better serve you.

Thank you for being so awesome.

Next Episode: NT Wright

NT Wright is a scholar, priest and prolific author of over 70 books. In this wide-ranging interview, Tom Wright talks about how atheism doesn’t need to destroy your faith, why he still believes the Gospel, and how his views on some things—including women in ministry—have changed. Tom also discusses podcasting, why he’s embraced online courses, and how the Enlightenment is still getting in the way of sound theology.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 300.

Leave a Comment





This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.