Point The Thumb, Not The Finger

By Chester Elton|10-11-2021 | 1 Min Read
Source: Vector image from freepik.com
Empower Your Talent At Every Level
"Point the thumb, not the finger!”

That’s a phrase my new friend, Tom Finn, loves to say when talking to people he coaches about accountability and the lack of progress most leaders make in empowering their talent.

Today’s talent rightfully demands more than good benefits (like medical, dental, and parental leave). They want personalized support, mental health care, and professional development opportunities. He calls this the Talent Empowerment movement. 

“I tell everyone I work with you are the CEO of YOU. You are in charge of your career, how you treat your customers, partners, and colleagues. My role is to support you, to empower you, and to help you grow,” Tom told me on our latest episode of the Anxiety at Work Podcast. 

His main message is that we all need to take action to empower our talent at every level. And if work triggers anxiety for you, there are ways to take back control and reevaluate your career plan and who you spend most of your time with. Thankfully, Adrian Gostick and I find managers and companies out there who genuinely care about employee well-being, rather than using it as a buzzword, and for them we are grateful.

Tom has worked in the employee benefits world his entire professional life. But the lack of real progression didn’t hit him until his career—defined by leading a team of 75 with $1.3 billion in business—left him with nothing to write in his gratitude journal.

“I was in my 20’s and I was completely over my skis,” he said. “I couldn’t tell you how nervous I was all the time in dealing with people significantly older than me and feeling the imposter syndrome. You just have this feeling that you’re not good enough to be doing your job. And with little support and help from the company at the time, despite my asking, I was left with severe anxiety, not gratitude, for my job and so-called success.” 

Tom did eventually receive help to manage his work-related anxiety and imposter syndrome feelings in the form of a professional coach.


“The coaching experience truly transformed and changed my life. I can’t stress that enough. I felt empowered to take hold of my well-being, my happiness, and my career. I became the CEO of me.”

Today, Tom is the CEO and co-founder of LeggUP. He’s working to make professional and mental health coaching the next big transformation in employee benefits. He is a big believer in moving away from talent management to talent empowerment and from workplace hierarchies to inclusive experiences. Like Adrian and I coach the executives we work with, Tom’s office is a safe place to talk about anxiety and mental health at work. He encourages his employees and everyone to follow three main principles: Connect, Engage and Grow. Connect with communities who bring you happiness, engage in a lifetime of learning in topics you love, and find your purpose so you can continue to grow.

Listen to my latest podcast episode with Tom Finn. And check out LeggUP, which helps companies empower their people through an integrated professional coaching and mental health platform offered to all employees as an inclusive benefit called Talent Insurance.

On the podcast we dive into how we often self-sabotage ourselves when we feel a loss of control at work. And we talk about how culture is the ultimate company game changer.

Every great athlete has a coach. Every great business person can benefit from coaching as well.

You may like this: 14 Coaching Principles All Managers Should Practise

Do you have a coach—a friend, mentor or professional to help you through the challenges of your working life? If not, what’s your plan to find someone to help you?

This article was first published on Chester Elton's LinkedIn.

Be the CEO of YOU. Take your power back and take charge of your well-being and career! Watch this empowering video, brought to you by Leaderonomics Media.

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Chester Elton is the Author of "Anxiety at Work" & "Leading with Gratitude", an Executive Coach, Keynote Speaker, and Founder of the #findyourgratitude Community. He has spent two decades helping clients engage their employees in organizational strategy, vision and values. In his inspiring and always entertaining talks, Elton provides real solutions for leaders looking to build culture, manage change and drive innovation. His work is supported by research with more than a million working adults across the globe, revealing the proven secrets behind high performance cultures and teams. Elton is co-founder of The Culture Works, a global training company, and author of multiple award winning, #1 New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestsellers, All In, The Carrot Principle and The Best Team Wins. His books have been translated into 30 languages and have sold more than 1.5 million copies.
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