73: How to become a better leader by using Polarity Thinking with Laura Mendelow

How to become a better leader by using polarity thinking with Laura Mendelow on TalentGrow Show with Halelly Azulay

As leaders we are sometimes stumped by seemingly opposing pulls and blind to the downsides of our actions and intentions. Leadership coach Laura Mendelow explains how the concept of Polarity Thinking along with a helpful Polarity Map can help us manage the goals we often feel tugging on us in opposite directions as leaders. Plus, polarity thinking gives us a positive and constructive way to boost our strengths and manage our weaknesses. On this fun and interesting episode of the TalentGrow Show, Laura shares some great examples and actionable advice for creating balance and increasing your effectiveness as a leader. Learn how to use polarity thinking to discover and overcome your greatest challenges, such as balancing the need to connect with your team and avoiding feeling burned out. Listen now and share with others who could benefit from this shift in thinking about leadership! 


  • What is “Polarity Thinking” and why is it important for leadership development? (7:57)
  • Laura shares a real-life example of the upsides and downsides that come with having a close connection with your team, and how to overcome the challenges (10:29)
  • The downsides of being so close with your team, and what the solution means for your team’s culture (13:25)
  • Creating a more caring, connected culture without burning yourself out by doing all the facilitating (13:48)
  • Laura explains the difference between polarity thinking and “dilemmas” or “creative tensions,” and talks about what she calls the Polarity Map (18:08)
  • Laura outlines the Polarity Map (19:13)
  • Halelly summarizes and concretizes Laura’s explanation of the Polarity Map (21:51)
  • How to use the Polarity Map to become a better leader and rise out of downward spirals (22:54)
  • The importance of recognizing the downsides of our actions and intentions (25:15)
  • What’s energizing and exciting on Laura’s horizon? (28:22)
  • Halelly gives a cool suggestion to Laura about her upcoming books! (28:59)
  • Laura’s actionable tip to increase your leadership effectiveness (31:44) 

About Laura Mendelow:

Laura is the owner of Mendelow Consulting Group (MCG), a Leadership and Team Development company that believes “when you ‘get’ people, you get results.” MCG’s signature “Leadership Lab” cohort-based training program teaches leaders the psychology behind engagement and offers tools and strategies to help leaders effectively connect with their teams and achieve lasting results. Leaders at Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and non-profits have all benefited from her deep subject matter expertise and innovative approach to leadership. Mrs. Mendelow has a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a master’s in Organization Development, is a certified Leadership Coach and has been in the field of L&D since 1994.


Here is the visual of the Polarity Map Laura discusses

  • Check out Laura’s website
  • Follow Mendelow Consulting on Facebook
  • Connect with Laura on LinkedIn
  • The Polarity Map that Laura describes is easier to understand when you SEE it :)  -->
  • Although he’s written a book called UnMarketing, (which was what came to mind during our conversation), this is the actual book by Scott Stratten with the cool format that I (Halelly) recommended, which can be read from the front or the back if you flip it over! The Book of Business Awesome/The Book of Business UnAwesome by Scott Stratten
  • Check out the TalentGrow Show on C-Suite Radio
  • Like the Facebook page of The TalentGrow Show!
  • Join the Facebook group – The TalentGrowers Community! Share your advice, your progress, your successes and your challenges and questions. Interact with other listeners and with me. Let’s support each other in becoming the kind of leader that people *want* to follow!
  • Download the 10 Mistakes Leaders Make and How to Avoid Them free tool
  • Intro/outro music for The TalentGrow Show: "Why-Y" by Esta - a great band of exquisitely talented musicians, and good friends of mine


Episode 73 Laura Mendelow

Announcer: Welcome to the TalentGrow Show, where you can get actionable results-oriented insight and advice on how to take your leadership, communication and people skills to the next level and become the kind of leader people want to follow. And now, your host and leadership development strategist, Halelly Azulay.

Halelly: Hey, hey, welcome back TalentGrowers. I am happy to present you with a great episode this week. This is my friend and colleague and a woman I admire, Laura Mendelow, and we have a fun and fast-paced conversation about a very complex concept that I really wanted to introduce you to. I actually invited her specifically to talk about this, even though it’s not the only thing she talks about. Because I think it’s going to be so helpful for you. I loved learning about it from her. It’s called polarity thinking. And it’s not as complex as you think. You’re totally going to get it, but I think it’s going to give you new ways to think about old problems. So, she talks about how to think more holistically and acknowledge complexity around many challenges that leaders have. She shares a really great example, a really good story, so that we can really understand what she means through the story of one of her clients that she worked with. She talks to us about this thing called a wisdom organizer, also knows as a polarity map, and on the show notes page you can grab a picture of that, because we do some mental gymnastics on this episode where we try to describe it with audio only, and when you see the full picture of course it helps it a lot. But you can get it. You’ll totally get it, and it also will help make you smarter by thinking about it and trying. In the end, I give Laura an idea, using her own advice, back to her. So, I think that would be something that you might enjoy as well, how that came about. I can’t wait to hear what you thought about this episode. I’m Halelly Azulay, your leadership development strategist. Without further ado, here we go, Laura Mendelow on the TalentGrow Show.

Hey there, welcome back to the TalentGrow Show. I am excited to introduce to you a friend and a colleague, a mentor, a collaborator, Laura Mendelow. Laura is the owner/CEO/founder of the Mendelow Consulting Group which is a leadership and team development company. She is a coach, a facilitator, a trainer, and among many other things also an expert in something called polarity thinking. This is actually the reason why I asked Laura to come on the show today. I love the perspective that she brings to this, and I think that you’re going to really love learning from her. Laura, welcome to the TalentGrow Show.

Laura: Thank you. I’m so happy to be here.

Halelly: I’m really glad that you’re here too, and before we get started, I want you to describe to the listeners your professional journey, just briefly. Where did you get started and how did you get to where you are today?

Laura: Sure. It’s kind of funny. I’ve actually had a pretty straight and narrow path, and the way I introduce myself in training programs sometimes is I’ll say, “I’m a product of a mother who is a psychologist and a father who is an IT business entrepreneur.” He started his own IT company in the 1970s, where computers at that time were the size of the first floor of an entire house. So, he was very innovative and had a great business mindset. I always say that I’m a product of my mother and father, and I created a path for myself. Psychology in the workplace. What I tell my kids, often, is that I help people get along at work. It really did, though, start when I was young. Even when I was nervous to talk to a teacher in elementary school, my mom would coach me on how to be assertive or she would make some meditation tapes for me. I didn’t really know what it was at the time, I just knew it helped me relax and focus. So I’ve lived all of this throughout my childhood, and when I realized that there was a way to actually bring psychology into the workplace, and there’s a field called organization development, I was so happy. It was like that was what I want to do. So I started facilitating really early on, actually, as a teenager, and facilitating groups and I got real interested in group dynamics. That sort of led to background in the Outward Bound type work where you’re singing Kumbaya, climbing in trees, trust falls, that sort of thing was popular. Did some of that. And then I was like, “There’s got to be more to working with people than just team building.”

That’s when I got more serious and went more mainstream with organization development, and that’s what I have my masters in. Then I joined a big consulting, one of the big consulting companies, and really focused more narrowly on leadership development, and became certified as a leadership coach and then decided in 2012 to start my own leadership and team development company.

Halelly: Which is what you do now, right? And you work with a lot of different clients.

Laura: That’s what I do now, yeah. Exactly. I guess a big piece of my story is my first child was born in 2004 and really grappling with some of those parenting techniques and trying to figure out how do we want to be as a family and how do we manage a kid? There was high anxiety and behaviors that were sort of off the chart at times, and I really started embracing leadership at home, and so that stuck with me for a long time. As I worked on my relationship with my son, my oldest son, and as a family, I realized that I was just actually developing myself as a leader and that those skills, then, really leaked out into the workplace, and I became a more effective leader in the workplace. So when I left the more traditional working internally in a company, when I left my vision was actually to really support leaders across all domains, which means helping people at work with their teams, and their careers in a workplace setting, and helping leaders at home. In other words, parents managing and creating a meaningful family that they want to create.

Halelly: I’ve really enjoyed following your path, because I’ve known you for, I guess it turns out, I’ve known you for many years, because I remember when you started developing these ideas and sharing them and changing your business to be more about the whole leader and thinking more holistically about people as leaders both at home and at work. So it’s been really interesting and fascinating and I'm sure we’re going to link to some of those kinds of resources in the show notes for people who are interested in learning more about that aspect. We’re not going to drill into that today. Maybe we’ll have another show where we can talk about the connection between being a leader and being a parent. That should be interesting. But I do want to talk to you more about polarity thinking.

I had come across polarity thinking previously but I didn’t really ever dig into it, and recently you and I collaborated as we have in the past. We help each other with our businesses and our clients, and you did such a great workshop for one of my clients on polarity thinking and I was like, “I love the way you explain it! You need to come on the show and explain it to me,” first of all, because I want to learn more about it! Selfishly. I always love to share what I learn, so this is such a great medium for me to do that. It’s one of the reasons I have this podcast is I get to learn and share at the same time. So, tell us, what is polarity thinking and why is it important to leadership development?

Laura: Polarity thinking is really helping people navigate through complexity, with whatever that means for that person. At the most basic level, when you talk about polarities, there are two interdependent pairs, or poles as we describe them. What do I mean by that? What do I mean by poles? What I mean by that is, a leader might be saying, “How can I be honest, and be empathetic toward people? How can I remain responsive to my clients and step back and be strategic?” There’s a lot of people that I work with, if their company is going through a hard time, they might say, “Laura, how can I be honest with people of what’s really happening, and share some bad news with them, but also at the same time be hopeful for the future and inspire them toward what the possibilities could be later on?”

When polarity is basically these two poles, candor and diplomacy. Responsive and strategic. Margin and mission. So the list goes on and on. The importance, to me, is that often when people are forced with decisions or complexity, they feel the need to choose one side. And polarity really helps people see it more completely. It allows people to see a problem with the complexity in it, and to hold both. So, the outcome is that you’re leveraging the upsides of both poles.

Halelly: You know, it’s so interesting because even before I came across the term – or maybe after and I just didn’t realize it was the same thing – I kept noticing that in my work too, where I felt like leadership is so complex, and this is what I do, I develop leaders, but often it’s like we make contradictory asks of them. We tell them to be 2,000 at the same time, and that’s really hard for us to do. So, this theory, this concept, is about helping people manage both. I’d love for you to help us understand how can that be? How can you be both things that seem to be opposite at the same time?

Laura: I would say, well, let me actually give you an example of something that just recently came up. I was working with a client and he took a long time to build his team. And the way he built his team was really to dig deep into focusing on people, and caring for people. And he works within a large organization and literally people are lined up, wanting to join this guy’s team. He is doing things such as he told me there was a woman who unfortunately got into a car accident on his team and she was in the hospital for many, many months. Once a week he would stop at the hospital and just visit with her, once a week on his way home. So I mean, this guy, he went above and beyond. It’s that kind of guy. He knew about everyone and everyone’s name and their family and what people were doing and their hobbies. So because he had such a close connection to people, people gravitated toward him. They loved that about him. He was really, that was his identity. He was like the people manager, the people guy that everybody loved.

So when I started working with him, he was part of this high potential program and he was being groomed to get promoted. One of the things he was really scared about is that if he was promoted to the next level up, he wouldn’t be able to spend that one-on-one time with his staff anymore. He wouldn’t actually be able to show that he cares about them. And he was really concerned that people would see him as he’s just climbing the ladder, or that he’s really a fake, that now he promoted and, “You don’t care about me anymore?” Like, “You don’t send me flowers anymore!” But this was a real concern for him. He was struggling with this. On the one had, he did want the promotion, definitely, and on the other hand he just couldn’t figure out how to make this work, where he could send the message that he cares for people, but also people wouldn’t view him as distant and not caring. What was actually happening, he was viewing the situation of caring for others, just the upside of caring for others, and he was looking at the downside of being promoted or really working through his managers, delegating things to his managers. That’s really what the other side was about. If I delegated things to other people, I become more and more distant to my staff, right? So this tension for him was, “How do I show that I care for others and work through others, scale up, because I can’t do it all myself?”

What we talked through together is what were some of the downsides of caring for others, and he really recognized, “I’m burned out. By the time I get home, I barely have time for my family and I am just really, it’s so time-intensive to meet with people individually, one-on-one,” so he was feeling really burned out himself. So we talked about how do you then scale so that you can still be seen as someone who cares about people, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be you doing all of the work all of the time. Or you connecting with people all of the time. What he actually came up with were things like, “I don’t think I ever expressed that to my managers, that this is really important to me, about our team’s culture, is that we take care of each other.” So one of the things he realized is he never made that explicit. That was just all on him. He took that upon himself to be that person, and what he realized in order to scale, if he’s looking for that promotion, and probably even if he’s not getting promoted, it’s just healthier to have a culture where everybody is operating in a way where they’re caring for each other. That was one of the things he did. He also would train people on how to have one-on-one conversations that were more meaningful, rather than let’s just do a checklist on what did you get done today? What are you doing tomorrow? That kind of a thing. So he was really training them to ask more thoughtful questions, to really get to know the person that he felt was so important to him.

That’s one way to show how you can do both. He doesn’t necessarily have to always be the person caring for others, but he can train others and he can create a culture that then helps others feel that they’re still connected.

Halelly: I love it. It’s almost like he’s focusing on the end result that he’s seeking, which is that people feel like people care about them at work, like their managers care about them, but he’s involving more people so that he doesn’t have to do it all himself. It’s just such a smart solution.

Laura: And you know, the other thing is that there is a lot of fears that he had about being distant or fake, and some of that just comes from not communicating what’s happening. What he realized is he needed to also have not just conversations with his managers, but staff, who were used to his time, to say, “Look, I’m now, I have other demands, and I’m going to need to be more strategic and my attention is going to be on some other things and it might look differently to you. It doesn’t mean I don’t care, and my door is always open for you, but I wanted you to know our relationship is going to change based on the new roles and responsibilities. And your role is going to change too, because I’m going to rely on you more as well.” It was also just bringing out some of the fears that he was experiencing and having a conversation about that with others.

Halelly: So using authenticity and vulnerability to actually create more trust in something that he worried about hinder trust.

Laura: Exactly.

Halelly: Love it. Cool. That’s a great example. Thank you for sharing that and good for him – I totally get why the people would be banging at his door to try and get on his team, because unfortunately –

Laura: It’s a rare find.

Halelly: Exactly. And it shouldn’t be, but you and I are trying to change that in the world. Hopefully.

Laura: Kudos for the males too, to really invest in people. He’s really a special manager that definitely understands the benefit when you really invest in your people.

Halelly: Love it. So let’s talk a little bit now, this is where polarity thinking – and we’re going to include some background information or links or something in the show notes so people can see it – but you and I were talking a little bit before the show about how it’s kind of hard to explain it without having the visual along, because it is such a visual model. There’s this sort of picture that goes along with it. But I’d love, if you could just try to describe it. It’s kind of one of those team-building exercises where one person tries to describe the triangle and the other person tries to draw it. All right, Laura, we’re turning the tables on you.

Laura: Got it. You sit back-to-back, right? I know exactly, that’s funny. I think the difference between polarities and other people might have heard things like dilemmas or creative tensions or there are other words you hear floating around. Polarities, really, it differentiates itself because there is what we call a polarity map. There is a visual – and other people call it a wisdom organizer – and all that means is that you can take a complex situation and then map it out in this polarity map. Then it helps you make sense. You see a more complete picture and it helps you make sense of the dynamics going on, and everything that’s happening. So there is a component just like dilemmas or tensions where you talk about, instead of either/or thinking, you use “and” thinking. Polarities would say it’s a supplement to either/or thinking, that either/or is also valid for certain situations and there is a time also, especially with more complex situations, that you use “and.”

The way we map it out, if you could imagine a two-by-two grid. So you have four quadrants, basically, and if you look at the horizontal line, you would have an oval on the left-hand side and oval on the right-hand side.

Halelly: Kind of like a number eight sideways?

Laura: That’s the infinity loop that you’re talking about. So there would be an infinity loop around those two poles. You have a pole on the left-hand side that’s in the middle of the quadrants. There’s an upper left-hand quadrant and a lower left-hand quadrant. The pole is actually right in the middle there. And then on the right-hand side the same thing, you have another little oval where it’s the second pole – so if we did candor and diplomacy, candor would be on the left-hand side and diplomacy would be on the right-hand side. Both poles have upper quadrants, which we call the upsides, and they both have lower quadrants, which we’ll call the downsides. Then what you’re describing, if you picture like an number eight on its side, we call it the infinity loop, and this infinity loop goes around these ovals, the poles. They go around the poles, so you go into the upside of candor and then it takes you down in the figure eight into the downside of candor, and then the natural flow is to go to the upside of diplomacy and then you go to the downside of diplomacy, which then takes you back to the upside of candor. So there is a natural flow through this energy, in this infinity loop. The piece that is bringing them all together is there is this spiral, this connecting the upsides of both, toward a greater purpose. So what is my greater purpose of, for example, focusing on margin and mission? For the purpose of what? The purpose of organizational success. I don’t think I could have organizational success if I don’t have bottom-line numbers and my employees are happy. So were focused on our mission. There’s a spiral that connects the two going upwards, and unfortunately there’s a spiral going downward too. So you can just be in this vicious cycle of only tapping into the downsides of both, and there’s a vicious cycle going down.

Halelly: Interesting. Let me test my understanding – if we went back to your example with the manager, I guess the spiral up toward the purpose would be for people to feel connected and being engaged at work, right? And love coming to work.

Laura: Exactly.

Halelly: And so his tension between becoming a leader of a higher level and being more strategically involved and furthering his reach and his impact and drawing on the upside of that, and also drawing on the upside of his interest in really knowing each person and having each person feel like they are cared about.

Laura: Right, right. The greater purpose could be creating a culture of support and productivity. Because that’s what he achieves by both. If he only focused on caring for others, he would burn himself out and probably not be that productive.

Halelly: We don’t have a lot of time, but let’s quickly think about, let’s imagine we have the map – hopefully people didn’t totally get confused when they’re thinking about this, especially if they’re driving. Don’t be trying to draw it out when you’re driving, do it later! But, let’s imagine that we’re holding that vision in our mind and we’ve got the ovals and the polarity and the infinity loop and upward spiral and downward spiral – whoo! – so what are you doing with that? How do you help people hold all of that at the same time? Because it sounds intense.

Laura: Yeah, it is. It is intense. And there is a lot to it. There is a lot of depth to it. On the surface level it seems, “Oh, okay, you want me to do both. I should consider both sides of a situation or I should behave in a way that I’m tapping into two areas of strength.” It seems simple, but what the polarity map does is it allows you, and the way I use it personally, is it allows you to have a picture in your mind to know at any given point in time, “Am I on the upside of one side or the other? Am I really leveraging both? Or have I gone to the downside of one or the other? Where am I?” And then this pathway that I call the path to recovery. What I find so powerful about this is often, when we do make mistakes or when we get stuck, we sort of stay there. And we are very self-critical, judgmental, and we just can’t get out of it. We’re stuck. It feels like damned if I do, damned if I don’t and you don’t know how to get out of it. By mapping it out, there’s actually a place for action steps and these things we call early warning signs.

There’s a way to start recognizing, “Hey, when am I dipping too low? When am I going into the downsides? How can I start recognizing that, being more aware for myself? And what do I need to do to recover, to go back into that infinity loop, follow the path, to the other side? What do I need to do to recover? That’s what I find is powerful. It’s observing without criticism and knowing where to go. It’s very solution-focused.

Halelly: Very cool. If somebody were to try and do it yourself, I think maybe we didn’t spell this out, but earlier I think when you were talking about how you map it out and by thinking about it on paper, or just sort of making explicit something like this, it helps you really see it, and see what the upside is and the downside. So do you have people sort of brainstorm, what does it look like when I’m on the upside of this quadrant? What does it look like when I’m on the downside, on either side? Then that generates that awareness? Because they’ve already thought out what are the options on either one?

Laura: Yeah. Just this example, what often happens is that when we’re on one side of the fence, or we really value something very strongly in ourselves, we can usually only see the good intentions or the upsides of what we bring to the table. It’s like, “I know that I care for others, and I only see that as good. Even if I overdo it and I recognize that I overdo it sometimes, it’s for a good intention. It’s because I really care about people.” So I only see myself in the upside. However, I see the opposite or the other pole, I see the other pole in the downside. So, in that example that I gave, this manager, he viewed himself as I have such good intentions and I don’t want to be seen as a fake. I don’t want to be seen as distant. What’s happening is that he can’t see the upsides. It’s usually the blind spot. He can’t see the upsides of actually leveraging his staff. Why would I do that? Because then it’s just pulling me further and further away from staff. Until he can see, “Oh, let me separate this out. There are some downsides that I don’t want to become. I definitely don’t want to become too distant. However, there are some good things that I can really start leveraging by tapping into my staff.”

So usually we’re just blind to it. Until you map it out, you don’t even know it exists. Sometimes people don’t even know the other pole exists. It’s like I’m just the type of person who cares about people. I’m really invested in people. And I believe that’s the way you should lead and manage. And I don’t even tap into the right side, because that’s not my value. And so that’s the power, that you start recognizing, “Oh, okay. There is some benefit. I don’t have to live out my fear of what it’s going to look like, but I can do it in a different way.” How can I scale up and stay connected? That’s where the “and” comes in.

Halelly: Very cool. Thank you. I love it. I think that makes a lot more sense and I hope that folks listening will check out, we’ll include some extra resources in the show notes so that they can get a better idea.

Laura: We’ll draw it out for you, for everybody.

Halelly: Once they park the car or get off the treadmill or whatever it is they’re doing. So Laura, I definitely always close out with a really specific action tip. But before that, what’s energizing and exciting for you these days?

Laura: What’s energizing? Let’s see. I am in the process of writing a book, actually two books which is quite the challenge.

Halelly: The overachiever!

Laura: I know! It’s really about some key polarities around how to engage a team at work. That’s the one book. The other book is really how to apply those same leadership principles to the home. One is more about parenting, and one is more about the workplace.

Halelly: Can I give you an unsolicited piece of advice? Only because what you just said completely brought up an example in my mind of another way.

Laura: Please. Great.

Halelly: You think about you have two books – two different things – I’m going to throw your own thing at yourself. There’s a book by a guy called Scott Stratten, have you heard of him? He had a book called UnMarketing. He has a book and I’ll include it in the show notes in case I’ve just botched this because I’m going from memory and it stinks. His book was like, you turn it upside down and the first page is on both sides. So his book is written in one book, totally like your polarity map, Laura.

Laura: Oh my God, that’s so cool.

Halelly: His whole book is produced so that half of it is written in completely the opposite page layout as the other.

Laura: I love it. That is so neat. Wow. Okay. This has got me going in a whole different direction. We’ll see what happens.

Halelly: Anyway, I’m stealing the thunder from you. That idea just came, poof! I love connecting ideas and people, so that just happened. All right, so you’re writing two books. That’s a lot of work, I love it.

Laura: And you know, I love that concept too, because I think so many of us, if I think about applying that concept of the different pages, flipping it upside down, so many of us just separate ourselves at home from work. And I know, I was never really like that. I was never really so strict. I felt like I pretty much showed up the same in both domains, but I will say when I started working through those leadership challenges, or the parenting challenges with my son, that’s when it became so crystal clear on how much I can really apply to both, and it’s almost like picking the book up and turning it in a new perspective. That’s what I’m thinking, when you’re talking about that book, and it’s like, “By the way, everything that’s happening in your home life leaks out at work, and you’re really just working on yourself as a whole person.” So I love that. You’ve got me down this creative path now, and I’ll let you know what comes of it. Maybe it will be one book! We’ll see. I love it.

Halelly: Cool. I look forward to seeing and hearing more about it. Give us on specific action that listeners can take today, tomorrow, this week, to help ratchet up their own leadership effectiveness, especially given this perspective that we just shared.

Laura: I was thinking about this and I know people love tools and something really concrete to walk away with. I think a lot of the power behind polarities is to view situations differently. I think even at the most basic level, when you can think of issues or problems that you’re really struggling with and you’re thinking, “It’s either this or that,” think of the situation instead using “and.” And reframe it so both sides are neutral instead of you’re looking at the upside of your point of view and the downside of the other point of view. See if you can understand, what would the upsides of both look like? And replace “or” with “and” and try to see what possibilities come up with you. The more you practice it with yourself in your own situations, the more that you’ll see it when problems are presented in meetings, perhaps, or even at home, or with other people when you’re doing performance reviews. You’ll start seeing strengths overused and then to think about, “What is the other pair? What else is going on in with system?”

I think the one action, the most basic one, is start to think about problems. We say is it a problem to solve, or a polarity to manage? And so really think about, “Is this just a problem, is it an either/or?” Sometimes it is, a really basic either/or problem that you can just handle. Or, are you really getting stuck and you see it over and over again, then it’s probably a polarity. So pause there and say, “What would the ‘and’ solution look like? What would both upsides look like?” That’s what I would challenge your listeners to be thinking about.

Halelly: Very cool. Thank you. That creates a lot more self-awareness, which of course is the first step to change. It’s not sufficient, but it’s required. How can people keep in touch with you, learn more from you and about you Laura?

Laura: The best way actually is just to visit the website, MendelowConsulting.com. One of the things that we’re doing is we have monthly reviews of the latest leadership book that’s out there. We call that In the Know. We want people to be in the know on the latest and greatest. So on the website you can sign up. It’s totally free. We meet in person in the D.C. area, but then we also send out summary of the discussion and the notes and we really incorporate a lot of the polarity concepts as well into those discussions.

Halelly: Very cool. I didn’t even know that you did that. The way that we met is through a book discussion club that you organized for an association that we both belong to.

Laura: I forgot that’s how we met. I love it. I love hearing about new concepts, Radical Candor is the next book that we’re going to be covering, and so Intelligent Disobedience was another book.

Halelly: That’s episode 15 of the TalentGrow Show!

Laura: Awesome. So a lot of the polarity concepts come up, and I love highlighting that in the discussions as well.

Halelly: Wonderful. Good. I hope that people do sign up and stay in touch with you, because you’re a smart and interesting lady and I appreciate that you spent some time with us today, sharing with us about your work and about polarity thinking. Thank you Laura.

Laura: Thank you, appreciate it.

Halelly: What did I tell you, right? She’s smart and funny and fun, so I love talking to Laura. I was really glad she agreed to come on the show and talk about this really complex thing called polarity thinking, and I hope that you enjoyed this concept and that you will take value and of course take action as she suggested. Start thinking this way about more of what you’re facing each day. I think that will really add a lot of benefit to you. And of course, stay in touch with Laura and join her list. I get those emails and they are always really actionable and interesting.

By the way, speaking of emails and actionable and interesting, are you getting my weekly newsletter? Because wouldn’t it be cool if every time a new podcast episode came out you wouldn’t have to think about it? You wouldn’t have to remember it. It just would land right in your inbox, ready for you to play. And that’s what my weekly newsletter will do. It always will keep you abreast of the new content I’m creating, plus tips and actionable ideas and it’s always short, a little bit informal, and fun. So I hope that you’ll join. By the way, if you join, you get a free tool called 10 Mistakes that Leaders Make and How to Avoid Them, and we don’t want you making those mistakes. You’ve got to download that.

It’s all free, it’s all on the show notes page, which is TalentGrow.com/podcast/episode73. I’m Halelly Azulay, your leadership development strategist here at TalentGrow, and I thank you for listening. Until the next time, make today great.

Announcer: Thanks for listening to the TalentGrow Show, where we help you develop your talent to become the kind of leader that people want to follow. For more information, visit TalentGrow.com.

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