My guest today is Carin-Isabel Knoop, Executive Director of the Harvard Business School Case Research & Writing Group.
Carin has spent decades writing cases on managers and leaders all over the world across a wide array of functions and industries. In 2019, alongside co-author John Quelch, Carin published Compassionate Management of Mental Health in the Modern Workplace, a book that dove deeply into the relationship between work life and mental well-being, and suggested that managers act as “chief mental health officers” for their respective teams. In addition to publishing articles across Africa, Europe, the U.S., and Latin America, Carin’s writing can be accessed via her widely followed Medium page.
She champions diversity of thought, adaptability, and human sustainability at work while working closely with public and private organizations, student groups, academic institutions, and employee benefits organizations to promote Mental Health.
She has an undergraduate degree from the University of Texas and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
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Specific Questions and When They’re Asked
- (3:17) What signs should leaders look for that might be suggestive or predictive of burnout and the turnover that tend to result from it?
- (9:48) So how should CEOs think about prevention of burnout, both within themselves, as well as within their employee base?
- (17:25) Are subscriptions to wellness apps, temporary time off, and enhanced mental health benefits sufficient responses from a CEO? Why or why not?
- (27:39) How can CEOs maintain “high performance cultures” while simultaneously being careful to manage the risk employee burnout?
- (31:57) What are some practical strategies, practices or tools that one can use to prevent or mitigate the effects of burnout within themselves?
- (34:58) Are their any personality traits or early-life experiences that tend to be positively correlated with (or even predictive of) burnout?
- (43:03) How can CEOs separate their own sense of happiness and fulfillment from the success of their business at any given time?
- (50:28) How should CEOs balance the need to be supportive and empathetic towards employees against the risk of getting too involved in a potential legal/HR minefield?
- (54:23) With regards to M&A: What should buyers do during due diligence to ascertain the extent of these types of issues within the employee base that they’ll be inheriting?
- (58:46) What role do (or should) our academic institutions play in openly discussing things like founder mental health? How would you evaluate how they’re currently doing?
- (1:03:44) Are there any resources (books, blogs, podcasts, etc.) that Entrepreneurs and CEOs should be sure to check out if they’re interested in learning more?
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Links to Resources Discussed During the Episode
- Andrew Huberman: Associate Professor, Neurobiology, Stanford University (Host of the Huberman Lab podcast)
- Susan David, bestselling Author of Emotional Agility
- Victor Frankl
- Dr. Edith Eger
- Lex Fridman, Research Scientist at MIT and host of the Lex Fridman Podcast
- Carin Isabel Knoop’s Medium Page