leadership training by geek guru brings clarity and focus

Someone calls you a “geek”… is that a good thing or a bad thing?  From time to time, you call yourself a “geek” – if only jokingly (?)

  • What is a “geek” anyway?
  • A person totally excited about technology?
  • A person so introverted they can’t give anyone direct eye contact?
  • A person who is very smart in a given field?

Robert Donnell from P5Marketing asked our founder, Dr. Stephie, for an interview about exactly these questions. Watch out – we had some fun with this one!

Here is the podcast as well as the transcription of it. Enjoy! And please follow us on LinkedIn and Facebook and contribute your experiences to this conversation. Thank you!

Here is the interview (podcast):

Want to read the interview? Great! Here it is:

Robert: Hi. This is Robert with P5 Radio, and this is part of our continuing series of conversations with people who are making a difference and people we think you might want to listen to.
This weeks’ guest is Dr. Stephie Althouse, of Top-Notch CEO. She’s the CEO and founder of this company, which specializes in working with geeks. That’s actually the topic of today’s conversation: Geeks, leadership training, and helping geeks and business people work together for mutual profit. Welcome, Dr. Althouse.

Dr. Stephie: Thank you. Let’s have some fun.

Robert: All right. Yeah, because I got … I have a smile on my face. I don’t know if anybody can see it on the radio, but maybe it would be good to define “geek”, I think, in the 2017 terms. How do you define “geek”?

Dr. Stephie: Well, geeks are people who are extremely passionate about a subject, whichever subject that may be. It may be a technical subject or something else, and they’re very, very good at that particular subject. They’ve invested a lot of time in getting trained on it or acquiring knowledge about it, and it has nothing to do with socially awkward, or anything like that.

Robert: Right. You mean it as very high praise, obviously.

Dr. Stephie: Totally.

Robert: Totally. We could play a little game. This would be like geek standup humor.

Dr. Stephie: Awesome.

Robert: Because, I’m reminded of Jeff Foxworthy and his, “You Might Be A Redneck If …”, so we might do a little takeoff on that. I’ll just say, “You might be a geek if …” and then you just reply with what comes into your head. So, to help people identify if they are geeks, we might say, “you might be a geek if…?”

Dr. Stephie: You are immersed in a technical subject that you love, or another subject. Not necessarily technical.

Robert: All right. You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You know more about that subject than most anyone else knows – and let’s face it, you’re smart.

Robert: You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You’re an innovator, a visionary, an entrepreneur, and executive or professional with a mission.

Robert: You also might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You are driven and you won’t give up until you achieve what you envisioned, come heck or high water.

Robert: You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: Of course, if you like to geek out with others.

Robert: You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: As a kid, you thought Lego was the coolest toy ever and maybe you still do.

Robert: I happen to know that as a child, you brought a fair amount of Legos to the United States from Germany, and I believe you still play with them?

Dr. Stephie: Yeah, well, actually, I brought them over to this country when I was 23 or so, or a little bit later, but these are my childhood Legos and also those Legos of my sister, who
didn’t care about them nearly as much as I did. Yes, now our 9-year-old son has been providing many years of perfectly great excuses to still keep playing with them.

Robert: All right. Let’s keep playing. You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You torture, I mean entertain, your friends with clever puns or dry humor.

Robert: You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You don’t take information sight unseen. You examine it, even if it drives others nuts.

Robert: You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: You always love to learn new things, and if it makes sense, you put it into action.

Robert: You might be a geek if …?

Dr. Stephie: You can figure out just about anything.

Robert: Two more. You might be a geek if …?

Dr. Stephie: When you do something new, you can’t help but continuously talk about it.

Robert: Yeah, that one rings home. You might be a geek if…?

Dr. Stephie: If you think Roger, our talking frog, is pretty cool. And, by the way, if you have not met him yet, it’s about time.

Robert: I do want to let our listeners know that if you go on Dr. Stephie’s website, topnotchceo.com, she has a standing invitation for a private consultation if you want to talk to her about identifying if you’re a geek, or if you’re a geek that might benefit from some additional information.

But, the side benefit is if you do a Zoom meeting (video conference) with Dr. Stephie, she’ll introduce you to Roger, the talking frog. That alone is probably worth the time for the conversation.

Dr. Stephie: Absolutely.

Robert: Anyway, my little pitch for Roger is kind of over, so …

Dr. Stephie: Roger that. (haha)

Robert: Yeah, I think we’ve pretty well defined whom you consider a geek. I know that when we were talking before the show you mentioned it was really kind of hard for you to bust out there and describe your audience as geeks, but tell us a little bit more about that, then we’ll close the show.

And, we’ll come back next week and we’re going to talk about, “Okay, you’re a geek, how can you best leverage your skills and some business learning, and really knock it out of the park?” Tell us a little bit about how you came to be comfortable with the term “geek” and geek guru?

Dr. Stephie: Right. The term “geek” could, of course, also have different connotations than what we are defining here, and that’s what I was debating.

What makes us different is that we do speak “geek,” and that means we have that humor, we have that understanding of what it looks like and feels like to work in high knowledge environments, high-tech, or high-knowledge, high-talent types of environments. We know how a lot of times these people think because I am one of these people.

Basically, we created Top-Notch CEO because I saw the need for more leadership understanding and more business understanding in a really pragmatic, very practical way myself, and I had to go and gather it.

This wasn’t a simple gathering. It was a lengthy process. And what we’re here to do is make that a lot simpler so that the geeks don’t have to stop “geeking out”, working on their geeky work, and making an impact with their geek knowledge. But (instead) they can actually continue to do that, and all the while very conveniently and very expediently, pick up the things that they were never taught in geek school. That’s it!

Robert: Perfect. Okay, like we said, we’re going to come back next week. We’re going to have an additional conversation on how to leverage geek skills for success in business, and on how business can learn how to better leverage their geeks. So, with that, we’re officially geeked out and going to call it a day.

Dr. Stephie: We can never be geeked out, but besides that, ciao until the next time.

Robert: Okay. Thanks for joining us.