June 11, 2021

120 Emily Griffin: Play: Secret to Boost Innovation While Working Remotely

If you really want to innovate, you need people's hearts and minds, not just their hands.

My guest is Emily griffin. She led global programming for Xbox Music & Video at Microsoft before she started her consultancy to create creates vibrant experiences that enliven people and help businesses flourish. Her artistic, empathic approach is at the heart of her consultancy for leadership teams who want to re-energize their work culture with more joy and purpose.

We talked about...

  • 6:59 Why COVID accelerated empathy to become central at work
  • 7:30 Why empathy for others starts with empathy for ourselves
  • 10:43 Innovation is often the competitive edge for knowledge-based businesses. If this is important for you, ask yourself this question: what does it take to fundamentally innovate?
  • 48:55 Emily's purpose in life is to spark joy and aliveness so that people bring it back home and work. She tells her childhood story of how it ignited her fire for art and community.
  • 50:37 Why attempting to copy someone else's company culture is futile
  • 25:57 How her former DJ experiences brought unique superpowers to create group coherence to impact driven companies.
  • 54:30We talked about specific methods to cultivate trust and culture while working remotely?
  • 44:34 Finally, we wrapped up the conversation with a great case study: Cleo Barnett at Amplified exemplifies someone using the power of art to change hearts and minds.

Please enjoy my conversation with Emily Griffin



Wisdom Quotes

"If you really want to innovate, you need people's hearts and minds, not just their hands."


"with COVID and the collapse of a lot of the kind of boundaries that we all had. Empathy became central to how we were going to get through our days."


"Everybody talks about listening and the power of listening and, the need for centering ourselves, centering our experience, centering ourselves in listening at the margins, listen for underrepresented folks, and listen to the people that are actually doing the work."


"The extractive exploitive capitalistic kind of colonial model works because it keeps us too busy to slow down and ask questions."


"We were operating in a capitalistic system. We do have to show productivity. We do have to show growth. Hiring people just for their hands to check the box and to move the units that that does, that does serve a purpose. But if you really want to innovate, you need people's hearts and minds and the space and safety for people to speak up and to stand up and be part of the creation of the success of a company. Then innovation really can emerge."


"We are whole people coming into work. We are living and co-creating our lives together. Moments of celebration and moments of grief are all a part of it."


"Moments of connection and play are so crucial for creating that psychological safety for these other deeper, more vulnerable and real conversations to happen in the workplace because not everybody feels safe to bring their whole self to work."


"Environment of psychological safety is everybody's responsibility"


"Group coherence allows you to open up the intelligence of the heart and your gut and your presence will shift."


"Having a good vibe is possible when you have a sense of inclusion and safety"


"Microaggressions are, the unconscious behaviors that happen, that really undermines psychological safety, things people say or do that, that cut people that cut people down and don't acknowledge their humanness."


"Micro inclusions are the small behaviors that can add up over time to make people feel seen, included, and belong and belong to your crew"


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