Brett M. Cooper and Evans Kerrigan on “Solving the People Problem”


My guests for Episode #398 of the Lean Blog Interviews podcast are Brett M. Cooper and Evans Kerrigan, both co-founders of the firm Integris Performance Advisors. Brett is the President and Evans is the CEO.

They are co-authors of a book with a provocative title: Solving the People Problem: Essential Skills You Need to Lead and Succeed in Today's Workplace.

Brett Cooper & Evans Kerrigan

When I first heard about the book, I challenged them a bit on the title — is this really a “people problem” or a “systemic problem”? We have a really good conversation about all of that today and they ask a question that resonated with me: “The problem begins with you?” meaning that leaders have to go first…

You can learn more via the book's website or Amazon:

In the episode, we talk about the DISC-EQ model of emotional intelligence and you can take a free personal assessment via their website, use code LEANBLOG.

They also answer questions including:

  • Why do you say “leadership is a relationship?”
  • What are the “essential skills” that leaders need, at a high level?
  • What's “the right kind of disagreement” in a workplace?

The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity and healthcare industries. Learn more.

You can listen to the audio or watch the video, below. I hope you enjoy the discussion.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


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