Game Changers with Molly Fletcher is our podcast designed to help you maximize your influence and unleash your potential. Each episode, we take you behind the scenes with peak performers to learn what makes them tick and discover how you can apply their lessons to your life. Join Molly each week to hear from her special guests— top athletes and coaches, transformative CEOs, brilliant thought leaders, and entrepreneurs and trailblazers from around the world. Subscribe now on iTunes or Google Play.

Recent Episodes


Cal Newport

In his bestselling books Deep Work and Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport explores our evolving and complicated relationship with technology. Technology has transformed the way we work and live- but at what cost? In a world defined by electronic busyness, we no longer value deep work. And in our personal lives, we have become addicted to our devices at the expense of human connection. On this episode, Cal walks us through a digital detox, an intentional decluttering process that thousands of people have used to simplify their lives. Learn how to make technology work for you— not the other way around.

Follow Cal: Website

 Show Notes

  • What sparked Cal’s interest in our evolving relationship with technology (1:48)
  • The definition of deep work (3:37)
  • Understanding the difference between shallow and deep work (4:20)
  • How context shifting hurts our work (5:57)
  • How people are confusing shallow work for productivity (6:38)
  • The average worker checks email or Slack every 5-6 minutes (8:55)
  • Why you should schedule deep work on your calendar (11:24)
  • How leaders can encourage deep work (13:00)
  • Defining digital minimalism (15:31)
  • Why Cal has never had a social media account (17:06)
  • How technology companies reengineered how we use our phones by creating social approval indicators (18:27)
  • How to discover the joy of missing out (23:03)
  • The 3-step digital declutter process (25:47)
  • Setting guidelines for technology use at work (27:47)
  • The habits that Cal has found powerful in his own life (29:30)
  • Two ways to approach technology and social media as a parent (33:24)

 

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Ian Morgan Cron

What is the first step to becoming a better leader? Self-awareness. Ian Cron, author of The Road Back To You, is an expert on the Enneagram and host of the popular podcast, Typology. Ian uses the Enneagram personality-typing assessment as a tool to help leaders foster self-awareness. On this episode, we dig into the nine personality types and the do’s and don’ts for leading each type. If you are interested in taking the Enneagram assessment, click here.

Follow Ian: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

  • How to use the Enneagram- and how not to use it (1:52)
  • Using the Enneagram as a parent (6:04)
  • How you can explore your Enneagram type (7:48)
  • Understanding your Enneagram type (11:33)
  • Healthy, average, and unhealthy ranges within your type (13:55)
  • The underlying motivations of the 9 types (18:39)
  • Type 1: The Perfectionist (20:10)
  • Type 2: The Helper (21:26)
  • Type 3: The Performer (22:40)
  • Type 4: The Romantic (23:55)
  • Type 5: The Investigator (24:44)
  • Type 6: The Loyalist (26:14)
  • Type 7: The Enthusiast (30:00)
  • Type 8: The Challenger (31:34)
  • Type 9: The Peacemaker (37:32)
  • Leadership starts with self-awareness (39:35)
  • How to use the Enneagram within your team (41:27)
  • The motivators behind each type (42:51)
  • Ian’s podcast Typology (45:49)

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Elena Delle Donne (NBAE/Getty Images)

Before she became the face of women’s basketball, Elena Delle Donne quit the sport entirely. Burned out and unsure of herself, Elena had to walk away to rediscover her joy and write her own story. Today, Elena is the 2019 WNBA MVP and a 6x WNBA All-Star.  But Elena’s story has always been bigger than basketball. Her biggest motivation is her sister Lizzie, who was born deaf and blind with cerebral palsy and autism. On this episode, Elena talks about her journey of self-discovery, how she stays mentally tough, and the two biggest keys to her success.

Follow Elena: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

  • Why Elena walked away from basketball as the #1 recruit in the country (2:00)
  • Rediscovering her love for the game (3:14)
  • What went into the decision to return to basketball (4:22)
  • Elena talks about her biggest motivation- her sister Lizzie (5:55)
  • Her leadership style on the Washington Mystics (7:18)
  • How she strengthens her mental game (9:00)
  • The importance of separating from what you do (10:12)
  • How she keeps focused amid distractions (12:05)
  • Embracing a learner’s mentality (13:25)
  • Learning to be comfortable and confident in who she is (15:00)
  • What she envisions for her life post-basketball career (16:28)
  • The two biggest keys to Elena’s success (17:43)
  • Her collab with Nike on the Air Zoom UNVRS (18:32) 

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Maria Taylor

From the college football sidelines to the basketball court and beyond, Maria Taylor has all your sports coverage for ESPN. Maria has quickly become a star broadcaster known for her versatility and drive. She is a co-host on College GameDay, sideline reporter for ABC’s Saturday Night Football, and is expected to be added to NBA Countdown this season. Passionate about paying it forward, Maria is the co-founder of The Winning Edge Leadership Academy which helps young women and minorities get opportunities in the sports industry. On today’s episode, we talk about the hustle it required to break into the industry, the lessons in failing fast, and how she got comfortable using her voice.

Follow Maria: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

  • How she broke into the sports industry (2:20)
  • The power of saying yes (4:34)
  • Pushing through doubt and discomfort early in her career (7:28)
  • Be so good they can’t take you out of the game (9:42)
  • How she builds trust with high-level coaches and athletes (11:13)
  • The life lesson she learned from Nick Saban (13:04)
  • How she prepares (15:54)
  • How she manages her energy to avoid burnout (17:56)
  • Learning to say no and don’t try to prove anything (19:33)
  • The on-air mistake at the Rose Bowl she had to learn from (21:18)
  • How being a two-sport student-athlete prepared her for her career (23:23)
  • How she has navigated being a woman in a male-dominated industry (24:54)
  • The advice she gives young women on pulling your seat up to the table (25:55)
  • Why she started the Winning Edge Leadership Academy (28:58)

 

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Kim Scott

Every leader has to know how to get, give and encourage feedback at work. Former Google and Apple executive Kim Scott’s book, Radical Candor: Be a Kick Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanityis a New York Times bestseller and inspired a management revolution. Radical candor is a simple idea: to be a good boss, you have to care personally and challenge directly. On this episode, we talk about how to create a culture of feedback, build a great team, and get results. This simple framework will guide every conversation you have and help you build better relationships.

Follow Kim: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

  • Radical Candor = Care Personally + Challenge Directly (1:46)
  • The three responsibilities of a boss: create a culture of feedback; build a great team; get results (2:58)
  • The difference between caring personally and getting personal (3:43)
  • The four quadrants: radical candor, obnoxious aggression, manipulative insincerity, and ruinous empathy (6:53)
  • The difference between the culture at Google and Apple (11:00)
  • The guidance Sheryl Sandberg gave Kim that illustrates radical candor (15:30)
  • The four steps to solicit feedback (27:01)
  • How to handle feedback that you disagree with (33:12)
  • Why the best feedback is usually impromptu and immediate (34:46)
  • How leaders can create trust in moments of guidance (37:55)
  • The difference between rockstar and superstar mode and why we undervalue rockstars (40:06)
  • The difference between talent management and growth management and the problem with labeling people as low or high potential (42:05)
  • Tips to start implementing radical candor (47:50)

 

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John O'Leary

At age 9, John O’Leary suffered burns to 100% of his body after a gasoline explosion in his family home. He was given a 1% chance to live. John not only survived, he made it his life’s mission to inspire others. Today as an author and keynote speaker, John shares the lessons he learned through his experience and celebrates the everyday heroes who stepped into his life to help him on his journey. On this episode, we talk about tackling challenges with joy, owning your story, and living with intention.

Follow John: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

  • The accident that changed John’s life at age 9 (1:46)
  • The hard truth his mother gave him in the hospital (4:15)
  • Choosing joy and gratitude in moments of adversity (8:13)
  • The everyday heroes that changed John’s life (10:59)
  • How he masked his reality for years before making a change (17:28)
  • How his parents’ book forced him to confront and then take ownership of his story (20:45)
  • How to say yes to life (22:48)
  • How to lean into adversity with perspective (26:22)
  • Leading with brokenness (36:30)

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David Epstein

Our culture today is all about getting a head start. Start early, focus intensely and rack up as many hours of deliberate practice as you can. But what if that’s actually not the best path to success? In his new book Range, author David Epstein argues going broad—not narrow—is the best route to success. On this episode, we talk about the dangers of early specialization, the value of breadth of experience, and how this all applies to the way you think about your career, your hobbies, and even the way you parent.

Follow David: Twitter | Website

Show Notes

  • Early specialization vs. generalist: what’s the most common pathway to success? (1:32)
  • The Tiger vs. Roger effect (3:38)
  • How David’s own generalist background led to a career as a sports science and investigative writer at Sports Illustrated (7:16)
  • The importance of match quality in navigating your career choices (9:26)
  • LinkedIn research: the best predictor of who will become an executive (12:20)
  • What we’re getting wrong about grit (14:42)
  • The dangers of early specialization (21:26)
  • The importance of breadth of experience (25:20)
  • Why generalists thrive in changing and uncertain environments (29:05)
  • Why leaders should drive accountability towards both outcome and process (34:23) 

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Beth Comstock

Navigating change is hard, particularly inside of organizations. Most people are resistant and afraid. Yet we all have to confront change- personally and professionally- and the pace of change is faster than ever. Beth Comstock led companies like NBC and GE through periods of transformational change. Her book, Imagine It Forwardencourages people to become change makers by leading with imagination. In this episode, we talk about embracing smart risks, challenging convention, and reinventing what’s possible.

Follow Beth: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Show Notes

  • You have to give yourself permission to change (1:36)
  • The imagination gap (2:04)
  • How to deal with change that is forced on us (3:17)
  • Build on small steps to move forward (8:34)
  • The painful personal transformation that helped Beth learn to embrace change (9:06)
  • The advice she would give leaders who are trying to lead change inside of their organizations (11:18)
  • Using humility, vision and teamwork to overcome fear (12:24)
  • How her transition from NBC to GE sparked her creativity (16:04)
  • How she led the culture transformation at GE by bringing an outsider mentality (18:38)
  • Why you should invite conflict to spur innovation (22:20)
  • How story mobilizes people around change (26:10)
  • How to help people fail forward (27:24)
  • How she became a CMO with no marketing experience (33:20)
  • “Take the job no one else wants.” (36:01)
  • The business case for diverse teams (37:49)
  • Advice for leaders on how to manage introverts (39:06)
  • What she wishes she knew earlier in her career (41:49)

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Shawn Askinosie

Why would a successful criminal defense attorney leave a lucrative career to start a chocolate company? That’s the incredible story of Shawn Askinosie, founder of the award-winning Askinosie Chocolate. In his book Meaningful WorkShawn shares his insights into doing work with heart and creating a business with a soul. Named one of the 25 best small companies in America by Forbes, Askinosie Chocolate sources 100% of their beans directly from farmers and shares profits with them. On this episode, Shawn shares how to find your calling, what to consider when contemplating a career move, and why businesses thrive when work is meaningful.

Follow Shawn: Twitter | Facebook | InstagramWebsite

Show Notes

  • Why he decided to leave his career as a successful criminal defense lawyer to start a chocolate company (2:08)
  • How he discovered his calling (3:50)
  • The bridge between idea, action and plan (5:30)
  • Shawn’s advice for people who want to transition in their careers (6:18)
  • How to find meaning in your current work (8:45)
  • How Shawn was able to transfer his skills to a new career (11:33)
  • The biggest challenges in starting his own business (15:50)
  • What makes Askinosie Chocolate different (18:16)
  • The problem with making philanthropy and charity a silo within a company (19:16)
  • 2/3 of people at work are disengaged (21:46)
  • The problem with the one-for-one business model for giving (26:02)
  • The difference between direct trade and fair trade (28:40)
  • The impact Askinosie Chocolate has made on the communities they work in (32:40)
  • The value of reverse scale: “get better at staying small” (34:49)
  • The difference between being and doing (37:56)
  • The role faith played in Shawn’s journey (41:05)

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Carli Lloyd

Carli Lloyd is one of the most accomplished soccer players in the world. She’s a three-time Olympian, two-time gold medalist, and two-time FIFA Player of the Year. This summer, Carli co-captains Team USA in her fourth World Cup. But her journey to the top of the soccer world was hardly conventional. At one point, Carli almost quit the sport. On this episode, we dig into how she rediscovered her passion and developed the work ethic, competitiveness, and mental toughness that have defined her career since.

Follow Carli: Twitter| Facebook | Instagram | Website

Show Notes

Resources / People Mentioned

  • The moment Carli almost quit soccer after being cut from the U21 team (2:05)
  • How working with James Galanis changed the trajectory of Carli’s career (4:47)
  • How she shifted her mindset and started to believe in herself (9:20)
  • How changing her work ethic re-built her confidence (11:35)
  • Carli’s “Empty the Tank” mentality (13:59)
  • Why she loves the big moment (15:43)
  • The missed penalty kick in the 2011 World Cup Final that changed her preparation (18:33)
  • How Carli works on her mental toughness (22:00)
  • “Be better than you were the day before.” (24:07)
  • The three characteristics of a great teammate (25:16)
  • How she manages her mental energy (28:53)
  • How playing sports shaped her as a person (31:10)
  • Carli’s advice to parents of young athletes (32:57)
  • Carli’s advice to young girls (35:10)
  • What she wants her legacy to be (35:49)

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