On Good Leadership: Being a Shepherd Leader for Others with Dr. Trevor Blattner

Leadership is a big responsibility. You don’t affect only your own life but the lives of those who look up to and follow you. Thus, good leadership means helping others grow, succeed, and reach their fullest potential. While everyone may have their approaches in doing this, there are common behaviors shared by the top leaders and backed by scientific evidence that you can apply in your life.

Dr. Trevor Blattner, business coach, author, and shepherd leader joins us in this episode to talk about good leadership. He discusses his book, Redefining the Top 1%, and how he applies it in his own life and business. He also dives into how the concept of shepherd leadership came about. Far from having reached his goal, Dr. Trevor shares how he has up until now continued to realize and seek the ideal version of himself as an individual and as a leader.

Learn and listen from this episode if you want to learn more about good leadership!

3 Reasons to Listen:

  1. Learn from Dr. Trevor’s experience in his path of leadership.
  2. Find out what being a shepherd leader means. 
  3. Discover the behaviors you can apply to exemplify good leadership.

About Trevor

Dr. Trevor Blattner is an endodontist, coach, shepherd leader, and author. He redefines leadership as an approach meant to support and raise others up. He is also a leading thinker on Shepherd Leadership. Backed by science and evidence, he shares with the public seven behaviors of leadership in his book, Redefining the Top 1%.

If you'd like to reach out to Dr. Trevor, you can contact him on his website.


Episode Highlights

[02:46] What Dr. Trevor Blattner Does

  • Dr. Trevor is an endodontist who started his business practice from scratch. This is where he realized the importance and impact of good leadership.
  • He also does business coaching to help others with their personal and business growth.
  • Dr. Trevor deals with his ADHD by being active and having many interests.

[06:16] Applying Good Leadership at Home

  • Dr. Trevor is a father to three daughters. 
  • He found that leadership at home is different from leading a business. There needs to be a different style of leadership to face more difficult challenges.
  • Dr. Trevor wanted to learn from experts about common leadership behaviors. That is how his book came to be.
  • As a researcher, all his information is backed by science.
  • Dr. Trevor admits that applying the practices in his book isn’t easy in daily life. However, knowing the ideal is the first step.
[09:12] “Taking [leadership behaviors] and using them every single day, actively, isn't necessarily an easy thing. It's an ideal we set up for ourselves and each of us individually have our own cross to bear in terms of the things that we struggle with, and the areas where we're not as strong.” - Click Here to Tweet This

[10:54] The Meaning of Character, Morality, and Truth

  • Character, Morality, and Truth are the words in Dr. Trevor’s mission statement. These values factor into his ideal world.
  • Dr. Trevor believes that there is one truth that is given by God. It teaches us how to live our lives.
  • He strives to achieve these ideals despite his failings. He envisions a better world for the people he loves. 

[13:21] Measuring the Ideals

  • These three ideals are measured subjectively.
  • Look at a person’s authenticity to measure truth. As you open yourself up to new ideas and knowledge, be curious and find proof about a stance.
  • For character and morality, their measurements are much more relative. In a way, we recognize them when we see them.

[15:54] The Current State of Leadership

  • Dr. Trevor thinks for quite some time our most visible leaders have also been lacking in character. 
  • Since we use them as a barometer for what is acceptable, we have a real problem on our hands. 
  • He sees the exact opposite in his community, where leaders of small businesses prioritize the people: their employees and families.
  • Our society has created a situation where our top leaders do not align with our long-term ideals.

[19:51] The Evolution of Leadership

  • Rick, Dr. Trevor’s father, started his own business from the ground up. He maintained a tough, authoritarian approach to leadership.
  • Rick’s style of leadership can be traced back to his father, who gave off an intense, alpha stance.
  • It’s only recently that the concept of servant leadership became popular. Many people responded well to the idea of the person at the top being the servant of the organization.
  • Shepherd leadership is an idea where leaders pave the way forward while protecting and serving their people.
  • For Dr. Trevor, the role of a leader has evolved into someone who protects and mentors their team.
[24:00] “[A shepherd is] someone that charts the course, sort of creates the path forward, and also protects... I think the role of a leader in this day and age is to be protective and be a mentor to those people on their team as far as possible.” - Click Here to Tweet This

[25:54] Shepherd Leadership

  • Shepherd leadership is not a commonly used term. It’s also a bit misunderstood.
  • Shepherds, like David from the Bible, are defenders. They are strong and willing to fight for their flock.
  • Dr. Trevor used this term because it’s the right fit for those he wants to reach. 

[28:50] On Redefining the Top 1%

  • When thinking about the Top 1%, most people imagine those with massive wealth.
  • Dr. Trevor wants to spin this concept in a different direction. 
  • He believes we need to reach for the Top 1% performance bar in our lives and reach the best of our God-given abilities and talents. 
  • Once you establish and secure yourself, you are better equipped to reach out to those in need.
  • The book doesn’t focus on money. Instead, it centers on learning and incorporating the behaviors of the top leaders to maximize your potential.
[30:20] “I think we can all understand that if we're unable to take care of ourselves, financially and otherwise, we really aren't equipped to do things for others in a powerful way.” - Click Here to Tweet This

[33:08] Faith, Money, and Success

  • Dr. Trevor is an Enneagram 3, a successful achiever. So, he makes sure that financial achievement isn’t his top priority. 
  • The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all evil. If we make money our top priority, we can breed a lot of evil. 
  • Dr. Trevor believes that money is a resource. As such, you can either use it either positively or negatively. 

[36:48] Battling Anxiety and Self-Doubt

  • Dr. Trevor recognizes that we are all going through unique challenges.
  • He himself has been diagnosed with generalized anxiety and ADHD. He acknowledges that these conditions have contributed to many of his struggles. 
  • ADHD in adults manifests through unhealthy coping mechanisms, difficulty finishing projects, and poor social interaction.
  • Our struggles don’t have to define us. Instead, we need to face them and do what we need to overcome them. 
  • We shouldn’t be embarrassed about the crosses we need to bear. These situations are learning experiences.  
[40:14] “Don't be embarrassed or ashamed by [your struggles] because it's not a coincidence that that's the particular cross that you have to bear in your life. There's some sort of reason and some learning experience from it.” - Click Here to Tweet This

[41:10] In Pursuit of Success

  • For most of his life, Dr. Trevor has always been chasing after achievements and rewards to fill a void.
  • He later realized that something wasn’t right. He had to reevaluate how he lived. 
  • Many of what Dr. Trevor wrote in his book was based on self-reflection. It served as a guide for both himself and his readers.
  • Authors learn much in the process of writing. Dr. Trevor reckons that many of them do this to write to themselves.
[45:22] “I'd be curious to know, in the deepest part of [an author’s] heart, how many of those were writing to themselves? In many ways, like, you're famous, and you're successful, and you know these concepts, and you're teaching them, but how much of this is also for you?” - Click Here to Tweet This

[48:47] Good Leadership Behaviors

  • Embrace radical responsibility. Good leadership means that you need to accept every outcome that happens to your team.
  • You may not have created the situation, but you’re responsible for how to move forward from it.
  • And so, good leadership requires you to have a mindset that embraces responsibility.
  • Be still and know. Good leadership is knowing that there is a bigger picture.
  • A leader should have a spiritual side that recognizes a greater power and the limits of humanity.

[52:18] Who Redefining the Top 1% is For

  • Anybody that aspires to be in a position to lead or influence others can learn from the book.
  • There are many exercises that can help readers apply their learnings.
  • The book’s content is based on scientific evidence and literature.

[56:26] Seek, Go, or Create?

  • Dr. Trevor currently resonates most with “seek.” 
  • Our big mission is to grow the Kingdom of God by honoring Him and treating others well.
  • So, Dr. Trevor is currently seeking the next move for his personal and professional life based on God’s calling.  

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Seek Go Create is for anyone seeking excellence, moving towards success, or creating something new. We share topics, stories, and conversations that allow us to rethink how we live, work, and lead.

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About the Podcast

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Seek Go Create
Redefining Success in Leadership, Business & Ministry

About your host

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Tim Winders

Tim Winders is a faith driven executive coach and author with over 40 years of experience in leadership, business, and ministry. Through his personal journey of redefining success, he has gained valuable insights on how to align beliefs with work and lead with purpose. He is committed to helping others do the same, running a coaching business that helps leaders, leadership teams, business owners, and entrepreneurs to align their beliefs with their work and redefine success.

In addition to his coaching business, Tim is also the host of the SeekGoCreate podcast and author of the book Coach: A Story of Success Redefined, which provides guidance for those looking to redefine success and align their beliefs with their work. With his extensive background, unique perspective and strengths in strategic thinking, relationship building, and problem-solving, Tim is well-suited to help clients navigate through difficult times and achieve their goals.