036 How Leaders Can Uncover Their Blind Spots with Jason Treu


If you’re a manager today, the difference between you and someone else is going to be your ability to lead, develop, manage and retain your people versus anything else that you can’t do. If you’re not great at that…good luck! You will not be able to get to where you want to go. – Jason Treu


Hi everyone! Welcome back to today’s episode: How Leaders Can Uncover Their Blind Spots. We’ve all seen leaders who are fully aware of those blind spots, and we’ve seen leaders who are not aware of those blind spots and the impact that can have on their people and their organization.

My guest is Jason Treu. He’s an executive coach and best-selling author of Social Wealth, a how-to guide on building extraordinary business relationships. He’s been a TEDx Speaker, where he debuted his team-building game, Cards Against Mundanity, and he himself is the host of the Executive Breakthroughs Podcast where CEOs, entrepreneurs and experts share their breakthroughs and breakdowns.

In this episode, we also talk about:

  • The importance of making time to build relationships,
  • Psychological safety
  • Asking for feedback
  • Understanding the fundamental patterns sabotaging your success, and a whole lot more.

Don’t forget to subscribe and rate us on Apple Podcasts!

Make Time to Build Team and Client Relationships

I had to get everyone to buy-in on the team by getting to know them. Just trying to show a great plan or getting some results wasn’t enough to motivate people. I really have to understand and learn a lot about them.

The same thing happened on the client side. I had to build a lot of relationships with people, and then I had to fundamentally understand their business from top to bottom, so I not only could give them marketing advice, but also business advice.

Patterns that sabotage your success

In life, what happens is that you start learning as a kid and over time, you become an adult. Some of the things you learned as a child, no one tells you to stop learning over time. Your parents might tell you, “Don’t talk to strangers” when you were ten because they don’t want you to get into trouble and get abducted or something. But what they don’t tell you when you’re 18 and going off to college is you have to do that to meet people.

What ends up happening is a lot of the things that end up helping you or keeping you safe are now sabotaging your success.

One simple example is, let’s say there’s someone who’s a poor listener and they’re having problems. People around them are telling them they’re not good listeners, they don’t seem engaged, they don’t care about them. When I go back to their childhood, they’ve lived with very large families. They grew up with quite a few siblings and they had to yell over their siblings to get their parents’ attention.

I was working with someone and they wanted to go to a school function back when they were in fifth grade. I was like, “What did you do?” and they were like, “Well, I elbowed my sister and brother really hard, simultaneously…and they fell off their chairs. And then I yelled across the table at my Mom and Dad and told them I needed them to go to some school function. And they said, “Yes.”

Then I asked them, “Could you have gotten them to go any other way?” And they were like, “Probably not, because I wasn’t that loud or overbearing, so it was really hard to get their attention with everyone around, so I was really worried I couldn’t.”

They learned at that point that listening wasn’t helpful, and it would not have gotten them what they wanted. Well, they carried that trait through their entire career, and now it’s killing their success and the people around them are frustrated and won’t talk to them.

Look Inward to Find Your Blind Spots

Change and great things start inside of you, not out. I always say that that’s the place you ultimately have to start from to learn, and that helps you learn about other people. If you don’t, these blind spots will end up crushing you because you’ll unable to see them but everyone around you will.

Links and Resources

Connect with Jason: LinkedIn


Social Wealth: How to Build Extraordinary Relationships By Transforming the Way We Live, Love, Lead and Network by Jason Treu

Cards Against Mundanity

Insight: The Surprising Truth About How Others See Us, How We See Ourselves, and Why the Answers Matter More Than We Think by Tasha Eurich

Project Aristotle

The Fearless Organization: Creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace for Learning, Innovation, and Growth by Amy Edmondson

The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work by Shawn Achor

The Making of a Manager: What to Do When Everyone Looks to You by Julie Zhuo