Kickin’ it with Sidekick: Tasha Gideon
Celebrating awesome entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs just like you. Learn from others’ stories, successes, advice, and actions.
Tasha is a holistic business strategist and consultant specializing in total business alignment. Her work helps highly ambitious visionaries translate their original concepts, bring their world-changing ventures to the marketplace, and realize the full potential of their big ideas.
Working as an equal parts business therapist, investigator, and strategist, she is not afraid to tackle what others haven't understood. She works to excavate the true essence of the venture, reveal hidden pitfalls, and develop insights between leadership, team, and customers to pave the way for healthy growth.
Tasha's consultancy, Intravivid, delivers incisive business, brand, and marketing consulting. Founder-led companies gain refreshed thinking and a solidified approach. Intravivid uses proprietary frameworks that deliver extraordinary value in record time. Flat fees, transparency, and candour are hallmarks of their work.
Tasha shares her practical and insightful advice from her ethos, lessons learned, and more. She is a trailblazer, leader, and innovative thinker. Read more to hear from Tasha!
1. Do you have a personal ethos that helps guide your decisions and choices?
I rely heavily on my intuition, which is just a way of saying I trust my gut. I've gone through periods in my life where my intuition had a lot of static around it. I couldn't identify what was static and what was my inner wisdom. I've worked on that a lot, and it has become my sole advisor over time. That said, my inner wisdom says things like, "He's right. You should listen to him." So, it doesn't preclude other inputs. But if you don't have confidence in your intuition, you're a background actor in your own life and career.
2. What is the most important lesson you’ve learned on your journey so far?
Be kind to the earlier, stupider version of yourself. Be grateful for your body and all the cool stuff it does for you. If you're lucky enough to have options, work with people you respect and who respect you. You don't even have to like them, but that is ideal.
3. How do you encourage innovative ideas and disruptive thinking? How do you develop a culture that embraces this?
I consult with clients on this, so I have much to say about it. First, create a culture of emotional and practical safety. So many companies set "innovation" as a key priority, but it's not professionally - and sometimes personally - safe for staff to take a risk there. Innovation means experimentation, and experiments fail. Otherwise, it's just photocopying a photocopy. Eventually, your outputs become muddy and pale.
Leadership has to show people the value of flops, missteps, and weird ideas by creating clear guardrails and frameworks. If something flopped, have a thoughtful retrospective so people see how to glean value from something that didn't work. Normalize trying things out within the company. Set risk parameters. If you don't have a budget for failed experiments, you don't have an innovative company.
Spend real money on outside consultants who will help you correct systemic issues in the way of women, PoC, and others for whom risk-taking has higher stakes. Look for consultants with a reputation for truth-telling and solutions-oriented recommendations. And make sure leadership is up to the challenge of making real adjustments. It is excruciating for staff to go through the planning stages of change without substantial action. Expect issues of morale and turnover if you go halfway.
Happily, this is an area where companies can start showing how to innovate by embracing failure. "We made a mistake thinking we could just ask people to think outside the box without doing all this other stuff to support you. Here's our plan for updating our approach..." The CEO should say it, not HR or an SVP. That's huge for culture. 4. What advice would you give to future entre/intrapreneurs looking to make their mark on the world?
Nobody but you wants your thing to exist. That's a harsh way of putting it, but no matter how much family support and market indicators you have, it may not be for you if you don't thrive in adverse conditions. If you have a defiant streak or something to prove (for one client I worked with, it was to a 5th-grade math teacher who wasn't even still alive at that point), that's a great start.
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