Hidden Human Podcast Episode 14 Thumbnail

Dr. Troy Hall, Chief Strategy Officer at the South Carolina Federal Credit Union, joins the program to discuss why leadership matters and the impact that an effective leader can have on an organization. Dr. Troy shares some of the wisdom and life lessons that he learned from his parents, the difference between being a parent and grandparent, and the power of moving beyond black and white thinking. He also reveals the behaviors that define great leadership.

Episode Transcription

Speaker 1: Welcome to Hidden Human, the podcast where we explore the stories behind the business leader. Get ready to hear insights from business leaders speaking candidly about how they became who they are today and the lessons they learned along the way. Now, here’s your host, leadership coach and speaker, Kelly Meerbott.

Kelly Meerbott: Welcome to the space where we reveal our personal humanity to reconnect with our shared humanity. Let’s begin our conversation with somebody I’ve been anticipating for weeks, Dr. Troy Hall, Ph.D., Chief Strategy Officer for South Carolina Federal Credit Union. Dr. Troy, I am so excited you are here. Welcome.

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, thank you, Kelly, and it is a privilege and an honor that you have selected me to be a part of today’s show. I mean, I’m just really stoked about that, and I love what you do in getting to the inside of what people are all about.

Kelly Meerbott: Yeah, I mean, well … and I’ll just give our listeners a quick background. Dr. Troy and I have never met before. We talked for an hour after connecting on LinkedIn, and I will tell you that hour on the phone with Dr. Troy was like electric sparks flying between Philadelphia and South Carolina, and if we had had more time, we probably could have solved the world’s problems. Would you agree?

Dr. Troy Hall: Yeah. We would have gone … We have done something similar to what would happen in a contestant pageant programs where we would have solved world peace.

Kelly Meerbott: Okay, so let’s get back to you, Dr. Troy. Tell me in a way I can understand and pretend like I was a six-year-old child. What does the title Chief Strategy Officer really mean?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, interesting that you would ask that because I have five grand children, and often, they ask, “Papa, what Papa does?” I explain to them that I spend time working with people and talking with them about what they want to do and about … how they want to create something, and I said, “You know, like imagine when you take out your sheet of paper and you decide that you want to create your own picture, and you have your crayons, and sometimes you don’t have all the crayons you want. Well, people will look to Papa and say, ‘I need a different crayon color,’ and I’ll bring that crayon color to the table, and they’ll say, ‘But I need scissors,’ and I’ll go, ‘Great, let me see if I can find some scissors.’ Then, we’ll just work and create, and I will talk with them about how they want to create that picture.”
That’s pretty much how I explain what I do because as a strategy officer, my goal is to manage critical conversations every single day that drives the organization towards some sort of growth not only for the personal development of the individuals, but for the organization itself.

Kelly Meerbott: Dr. Troy, you know I’m an executive coach, leadership coach. We talked about that. In your opinion, why is what you and I do, because we share a similar field, why do you think it’s so important not only to the organization, but maybe to the world as a whole?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, because leadership is pivotal to getting things done. It is never about the task. It is always about the people, and I believe that you and I strongly represent the relational side of business, and when businesses forget that it is a people business, then they lose. When the business does not take care of its people, then it loses because that translates to the engagement of those individuals and how they then will connect with the consumer.
It doesn’t even matter whether it’s a manufacturing plant or whether it’s a retail establishment that’s connecting. You’re still connecting people in a process, and so what we do through our coaching, through leadership development is we are working on the character of the individual, and I like to think about that what we’re doing is like taking a look at leadership with an iceberg or a person as an iceberg, and the top 10% of it is just the skill development for the individual, and the other 90% is the character of the person, and so what we’re doing through our leadership, and our coaching, and expanding their thought processes is really helping them develop their character because that’s the part of the relationship that everyone connects to.

Kelly Meerbott: Absolutely. Let’s put it in hard numbers, I mean, because you work in a financial institution. I just read a statistic from PricewaterhouseCoopers that said leadership development and executive coaching when done properly contributes 524% directly to the bottom line.

Dr. Troy Hall: I would absolutely agree that it is a very strong number. I have not read that particular report, so I can’t speak to the number nor have I done the research, so I don’t know how valid that number is, but I will tell you what the research tell us is the development of the individual is important because it is not only what is being required from the marketplace today, but it is how businesses become successful.
Going back to the research that was done with Jim Collins’ book, Good to Great, that research itself proved how influential it was for the leader of that organization to move it from good to great was in how the leader’s interaction was with the people, and the staff, and the individuals that are working with that organization, so we definitely know that there is power in that.

Kelly Meerbott: 100%. Dr. Troy, what was it in your soul that called you to do the work that you’re doing right now?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, I think in my soul, I’ve been a teacher at heart. I feel to some degree that my purpose where I’ve been led is to help develop others and to really take the knowledge and the information that I have and not just keep it and hold on to it for myself, but to be able to expand it to move it out. I have a little mantra that I use in my teaching platform, and it’s this simple message. It says that you don’t have to know everything. You just need to be teachable, and when you do that, it’s like your mind opens up to new information, and I love to find out new information and to help others.
Then, what I also recognized within our industry is that there was a crying out for young professionals who wanted to become seasoned experts, and they needed to know how they could create a path to go from apprentice to expert, and that just spoke to me to go, “Wow, it’s my way of giving back. It’s the legacy that I can leave to others is to help them develop and to focus on their career goals and their career development regardless of whether that did anything for me or not.”

Kelly Meerbott: Okay, so that is just a breathtaking answer, and of course, I’m sitting here smiling and nodding, and you can’t see me. If we had a camera on me, you could see how enthusiastically I am agreeing with you, but the …

Dr. Troy Hall: [Inaudible].

Kelly Meerbott: The question that’s popping in my mind is, how young were you when you began to develop people into the best versions of themselves? I’m looking between the ages of 8 and 14, so it doesn’t have to be in the context of what you’re doing now, but the first time that you started this path.

Dr. Troy Hall: It may be hard for me to say when was the first time that I cognitively understood that I was helping to develop people, but what I would share with you, if it’s okay, is what happened to me when I was 12 years old with my mom. Would that be a good place to start?

Kelly Meerbott: [Crosstalk]. Yes, please share that story.

Dr. Troy Hall: Okay, so first, some context is that we were from a very, very small mining town in West Virginia, and so my mom and dad knew each other for their entire lives. They actually lived about four houses from each other in this very, very small community, and so from a very young age, my mom and dad knew each other, grew up together, and eventually married. Having a very close-knit relationship, the funny story I tell is that when my mom and dad left the space, there were 250 people. When they left, there were 248 left. That’s how tight-knit and close the community was. A little bit of an exaggeration, but it gives you a mindset.
Knowing that we’re from this particular area and knowing also, two, my mom had a high school educational. My dad only had an eighth grade education, so now, understanding that. I was 12 years old, which was … if I do the math correctly, would be about 48 years ago, and during that particular time, my mom was diagnosed with cancer. In that space, it was finality. My mom thought she was going to die. The doctors did not have great hope for it and cancer … At that time, she had breast cancer, and it was full removal. It was called radical surgery, and they would take out any muscle, grouping any area that was close to it because they didn’t have the skills and the techniques that we have today.
That’s what she experienced, and because my mom thought she was going to die and because my mom was so considerate of things, she knew that there would be some recovery needed, and my dad could not do it because he needed to work. My mom and dad organized the surgery to occur right before school ended, and for the entire summer, I spent my time helping take care of my mom, get my dad up in the morning, getting his lunch packed, spending time talking with him at the kitchen table, which was exactly what my mom did every morning before my dad left. I tried to keep my dad’s routine as much as possible. I took care of the house, paid the bills, took care of my mom, and I spent a ton of time with her.
During that summer, my mom poured every bit of wisdom into me that she had. My mom was a woman of faith. She was a person who said, “I want to make sure that my son gets this information before I pass on,” and because my mom was a nurturer in her responsibility in the home, that was the agreement that mom and dad put together. Dad was the protector and the provider. Mom was the nurturer. Knowing that role, I mean, I just kept getting all this information.
Mom is the one who would tell me that it was who I am as a person that makes a difference and that people don’t decide that for me. I decide it for myself. She’s the person that said, “Circumstances do not control who you are. You just have circumstances happen to you, but who you are in those circumstances are all built upon the type of person that you are.” Those were the types of conversations that I had for an entire summer.

Kelly Meerbott: Besides circumstances not defining who you are, what’s another guiding principle that your mom poured into you? I mean, I love that image. I have this image of a little Dr. Troy with his like mom reaching in, and opening up his brain, and pouring in all this knowledge, so tell me. What else did she share with you?

Dr. Troy Hall: They were life lessons, and so for instance, my mom would … She would tell me that it wasn’t important that people liked me. In other words, it wasn’t important that I did things so that people would like me. She said, “Just do things so that people don’t dislike you.” Her objective was always about me, the individual, and really teaching me to be the leader.
I remember one particular story that she would tell me over and over again, and she would say this. She would say, “Troy, just remember. On your way up the ladder of success, you’re going to step …” She says, “if you step on the people on you way up the ladder of success, on your way back down, you will see those same people.”

Kelly Meerbott: [Crosstalk].

Dr. Troy Hall: I took that in, and then she would say it again. She says, “Just remember, Troy. If you step on those people on the ladder of success, you will see them on your way back down.” One day, I said to mom, I said, “Mom, I’m not expecting to step on anyone on my way up the ladder of success,” and she said, “Great. Now, on to our next lesson.”

Kelly Meerbott: Oh, I love that.

Dr. Troy Hall: Yes. That’s the kind of woman that she was, and here’s the great news to the story. I want to make sure that our listeners hear this, and that is she lived another 40 years, 43 years beyond that time. Again, continuing to pour wisdom, and it was during the … A hardest part for me in the final separation of mom when she passed along was her final five to seven years, she was stricken with dementia, and so I lost my mom during that time. I didn’t get a chance to really be with her in the way in which I had before, but I relished all those years between then, and she would continue to be a great sounding board for me in my role in my organization.
There would be times when I would talk with her about things, and she could always speak to it because it was all about people. Sometimes, we overcomplicate these relationships in work because we think they’re tied to all sorts of other stuff, but she would always come back to the person, and she would say, “Well, what kind of person are they? Do you know? Are they pure at heart? Are they attempting to be mean or untruthful?” She would always be like, “Well, can you tell a little bit about that? How can you be that person, and what would you be in this situation?”
She would also ask me how was I accountable for whatever that situation was, how was I interpreting it. She would ask me what did I do as a part of that and how did I not only react, but am I responsible or accountable for any of that relationship? LIke she would really help me sort through. Was I being responsible for some of the situation that was happening, and what accountability would I take for it?

Kelly Meerbott: Wow. Well, that leads me into another question about your mom and actually your dad at the same time, and that is, what qualities do you get from each of them that you leverage today in the work that you do for South Carolina Federal Credit Union?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, thank you for asking me about my dad to include because I had a wonderful relationship with both of them, and I know it’s hard for people to understand this when you say it because it makes it sound like a fairytale and they go, “Well, this couldn’t possibly be real,” but I want to put this in perspective. I cannot remember a time when I argued or fought with my parents and for a couple of different ways and reasons, and that is because when you, as a family, are faced in a crisis situation where you think you’re going to lose the person that means the most to you, you change your perspective in how you deal with people.
From that, I always had a particular respect to say, “I was grateful for the fact that I still had my mom when I could have lost her,” so to argue and to fight over things were not important anymore, and the other thing that my mom and dad did is they gave me every opportunity to speak my mind. They said, “As long as you’re respectful in what you say, you can tell us anything you want. If you don’t like the punishment that we’re going to give you on that, talk to us about it. Tell us what it is. Tell us what you would do if you were the person that was going to need to correct that behavior. What would you do?”
It was just like awesome stuff. Realistically, that is my life. That is what I grew up with, and my dad was very process-driven. Even with his eighth grade education, he was a foreman in a steel mill, and he was able to design the … I don’t want to call it … the conveyor belts for mining companies or for those manufacturing plants where they were moving products from one space to the next, and he would help know exactly what was the incline, and he could do the math.
He had this wonderful mind with numbers, but my dad didn’t have parents that drove him to say, “Stay in school. Get your education. Further that,” so my dad really had to take that information and work it on his own. For me, I am a balance between this process like I love having processes and understanding how something works, and at the same time, I love working with people while we’re getting that all done.

Kelly Meerbott: This is Kelly. Thanks so much for listening to Hidden Human. We love having you as part of our audience. As a thank you gift from us to you, click to kellymeerbott.com/downloadables to download our free whitepaper, Seven Insights on Leadership From 20 Years of Coaching Executives. That’s K-E-L-L-Y-M-E-E-R-B-O-T-T.com/downloadables. Thank you so much for being part of the Hidden Human family, and make it a great day.
I have to know though. What was the best punishment you negotiated for yourself? Give me a concrete example of that because I want to hear about Dr. Troy in action on how you negotiated your punishments.

Dr. Troy Hall: Again, some of these … Okay. It’s like once you tell the magic trick, it’s no so magic anymore, but the one thing I would say is that definitely, when I took responsibility for what I did, and again, I had to do it from a genuine perspective because there was … Listen. It was very challenging to pull one over on my mom anyway, and even when I thought I might be pulling one over on her, she would know the difference. She might let me get away with it, but she would use it as a story later on to let me know that she knew that.
One time, I was not going to be allowed to drive the car, and again, we had a single Ford car family, so getting the privilege to drive the car was like real important, and I had not completed some chores that I said that I was going to be responsible for doing, and like the normal teenager, I was putting them off until the last minute, and so as a result, I wasn’t going to get to drive the car.
Driving the car was like real important, so I built a very strong case for how that punishment would be more to the other young folks that I was going to pick up and take to the event, how it would create such a hardship for them and for their families that we should institute another type of punishment that would not impact other people.

Kelly Meerbott: Were you able to negotiate that?

Dr. Troy Hall: Absolutely. Absolutely, because mom …

Kelly Meerbott: That’s amazing.

Dr. Troy Hall: See, the whole point was this. The whole idea behind this was to teach a lesson, and if mom knew that you had the lesson, then you could move forward with it. You didn’t have to get stuck in it, and the good news is I tended to learn from those lessons. Again, I think it’s because they created such an open environment, and that’s what my wife, Vicky, and I try to do today is to create this open environment for our children.
One of the things that we never did as parents was we never said to them about being good or being bad. Interestingly enough, I can remember from even our children, focusing on them being leaders and asking them, “What type of leader are they going to be today?” I can go back, and I remember a time when I was coming out of the bedroom, and it was a little bit later at night, and this light was coming from the kitchen, and it’s because our daughter was standing there with the refrigerator door open.
I heard her brother, our son, say to her, and he says, “Ashley, what are you doing?” She says, “Well, I’m looking for something. Blah, blah, blah.” He goes, “You better close that refrigerator door,” and she’s still opening … She got the door open, and I’m listening to the background to see what’s happening. They have this whole dialog back and forth, and so finally, he looks at her and he says, “Look, if you don’t close that refrigerator door, then I’m going to have dad examine your ears just like he does mine.”

Kelly Meerbott: That’s so good.

Dr. Troy Hall: Because what I would do is … Because when they wouldn’t listen, I would examine their ears, and I go, “There has to be something wrong,” and they would go, “What do you mean?” I go, “Well, because you are bright and intelligent children, I don’t understand what is it. My words aren’t getting through, so is there something in there that’s causing my words to not get through?” You always feel like as a parent that your work is done whenever your children are repeating your words.

Kelly Meerbott: Absolutely. Let’s go back to a moment in time when you … The first moment is … Who was born first, your daughter or your son?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, our son was born first, and of course, the joke in the family is he’s so level-headed that had our daughter been born first, he may not have been around.

Kelly Meerbott: Okay, so your son is born, you’re standing in the delivery room next to your wife, they put him in your arms for the first time, and you looked down and realized it’s no longer just your wife and you. It’s your son, and you’re now a father. Tell me about that moment.

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, that is so interesting. There’s several little things that happened. I’m an experiential guy because of relationship, so for me, one of the most important things that I remembered when holding my children for the first time was the smell of their head, and it was after they had a bath.

Kelly Meerbott: I love that.

Dr. Troy Hall: I loved the smell of their head after a bath. There was just something about the snuggling part as you were getting close and you were breathing that in, and that created such a great thing. For me, when I held my son for the first time, it was what I declared as my happy moment, and so I’ve been inspired in many ways with different messages and different things, and something that I was reading talked about how you should declare happy moments in your life so that you can imprint them, so that when you don’t have a good day, you can go back to your happy moment. 38 years later, our son remains my happy moment, and the happy moment for me is … That is when Peter Pan was able to fly was when he had a happy moment.

Kelly Meerbott: [Inaudible].

Dr. Troy Hall: What sustained him was his happy moments, so for me, that’s my happy moment.

Kelly Meerbott: Okay. I’m choked up. You’re choked up. All right, so I’m going to take a step further. Tell me how that moment was different when the first grandchild that you had was put in your arms and now you’re a grandfather for the first time.

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, the pressure is off. I’ve often said this. If I knew how much fun grandchildren were, I would have started with them first. All the pressure is off. It is this entirely different sort of experience because you are … you’re holding … First of all, you’re not the first to hold. Remember? Now, you’re going to be several down the line of the holding part, and certainly, Nana had a lot of holding that she was going to do, and then Papa gets his chance to hold there, but it … I mean, you do. There’s a bonding that’s created from it.
I never understood this in the beginning with children because my work and my Ph.D. came later, and what I understood from my work in social behavior is that there’s a great sense of belonging that occurs with humans when we are born. It’s one of the things, especially as mammals that are born from a warmblooded scenario, that there is this innate desire to be connected, and to be close, and to be held, and to be nurtured, and so that is just …

Kelly Meerbott: Yes.

Dr. Troy Hall: The experience is like a second or third level removed from what it was with my son, but it was still such a great moment because what you’re seeing is you’re seeing life go for another generation.

Kelly Meerbott: Yeah.

Dr. Troy Hall: I firmly understand the concept that we are always one generation away from extinction.

Kelly Meerbott: Yes.

Dr. Troy Hall: By having that generation, it gives me hope, and so when I hold the child, it’s like, “Yes, this is hope for the next generation.” The other thing that’s different is, is that I believe that I will not make the same mistakes with the grandchildren that I made with the parents and that I have been given my second chance. For me, holing each and everyone of my grandchildren is my second chance that I’ve given life to try to do it right.

Kelly Meerbott: Oh my god, what a breathtaking story. See, this is why I love talking to you, and I love talking to people and really delving into who they are as a human because what you do is not who you are. It’s just a function of your job. You’ve shared so many powerful stories and experiences today. How do you believe you leverage your collective experience as you are right now in the work that you do for South Carolina Federal Credit Union?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, one of the ways that we’ve been able to do it is through the Real Talk with Dr. Troy teaching platform.

Kelly Meerbott: Can you talk … Yeah.

Dr. Troy Hall: We created that platform to be able to allow these, what we call teachable moments to then exist beyond the moment so that we’re capturing them. We know how powerful not only the spoken word is, but also visualization. Research confirms that you can actually create marketing advertisement from pictures only that will give a stronger sense and essence of the organization than when you put on words, but together, both the words and the visuals then create a very powerful statement.
Video is one way in which the legacy lives on, and it’s a way to capture these teachable moments so that others can then use them as springboards for future conversations or for a way in which they may want to delve further into the topic and maybe understand a little bit more, so we created the Real Talk with Dr. Troy as a way to promote a teaching platform through our subsidiary that we can then offer to other companies and organizations from a speaking or from a workshop or consulting standpoint.

Kelly Meerbott: That’s amazing. That’s amazing. I’m going to read a quote to you, and I would love for you to attribute it to the person that said it, and then tell me where it comes from. “You may never reach your true color if you’re only using a black and white marker.” Whose quote is that?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, that is my quote, and it stemmed from a conversation that I had with individuals in our workspace who were so process-driven that everything about them was black and white, and that they were strangling the people they were working with because they kept focusing on the process instead of trying to see what color the individual was bringing to the table. What could they do that was different? If you’re not achieving the results when you were just doing it from a complete black and white because I don’t believe life is black and white.
Life is with color, and people, to have their full expressiveness, sometimes needs to get wild with a red marker, and you need to let them go a little bit, but you give them some area of direction, but let them experience themselves. Let that come full force, and when you’re trying to accomplish something, if the leader thinks that the only way they’re ever going to do it is that the leader defines the plan in black and white on a piece of paper and hands it out to folks, they’re going to miss the opportunity, and it also goes back to the whole teaching platform that you don’t have to know everything. You just need to be teachable.
That’s how we developed that particular … and I will tell you. I had work, so I had others who helped me create that sort of message. As I began to develop some quotes, I asked folks, “What do you think this means if you hear this? If you hear me say this, what does that mean to you?” That’s how I developed that particular quote.

Kelly Meerbott: I love that. I love that. I love that. I love that. Do you mind if I pop my coaching hat on for one second, Dr. Troy, because I’m just really curious about something from my coaching perspective?

Dr. Troy Hall: Let me say that for you, you may have multiple seconds with your coaching hat on.

Kelly Meerbott: Oh, thank you. Okay, so where in your life and business you feel like you’re not reaching your full potential?

Dr. Troy Hall: In my life, I am somewhat distracted I think in the … sometimes, in the home environment because I spend so much time on the outside. I’m not a nine-to-five guy. I don’t work just nine to five, so I have what we consider work-life balance, and I think that there are some times when I become overzealous at home in my ability to connect with people, and to help them, and to work on them that I can sometimes be distracted, and that is why my wife is such an important partner in what I do because she will remind me. “Oh, you think that I get life lessons from mom? I got life lessons.” She is the one who grounds me and reminds me that I have been spending a little too much time over here. I need to come back, and that would be one of the areas.

Kelly Meerbott: It sounds like she’s the love of your life.

Dr. Troy Hall: She is.

Kelly Meerbott: Good.

Dr. Troy Hall: I married my high school sweetheart in 1977.

Kelly Meerbott: Wow, that’s incredible. Well, congratulations. I mean, I love to hear things like that. My husband and I just hit our 10-year anniversary, so it always encourages me when I talk to people like you, so I’m going to ask one more leadership question. Then, I’ll probably wrap with four rapid fire questions. Just to wrap the leadership discussion, what behaviors do you believe define great leadership?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, in the leadership initiative programs that I’ve put together and I ask people to think about, there are seven specific characteristics or attributes of leadership that I think make individuals to be effective because what you want from a leader is to be able to model good behavior. You want behavior that is going to then be replicable for others or have others repeat that or imitate that in their work environment because then it creates this great culture of individuals and like-mindedness in the way they behave and act.
The first one is to be teachable. I think that individuals need to make sure that they include information from others, that it is okay to have a vision and an idea of where you want to go, but you should be including information from others, and don’t feel like you have to do it all on your own. I think it’s important to extend compassion and grace, and to have that within yourself when the two of those elements are working in tandem with each other and create the proper amount of empathy that you have.
I think effective leaders need to be able to walk in other people’s shoes. They need to have empathy, not sympathy. It is important in life to have some sympathy, and you will have it, but for a very different reason. Empathy is when you create the emotional path between you and someone else. Sympathy is when you have the same emotional path as the other person, and that can be experienced sometimes when you have a loss of life. In my situation with my brother and I losing our parents, we had sympathy for each other. When I go to another event where this has happened in another family, I have empathy because I can understand where they come from, but I don’t have the same sympathy that they have.
Those characteristics are important. It is important for the leader to be a truth-seeker. All leadership should focus and source from truth, not from what the leader thinks, but what the leader knows, and there is an opportunity for a difference. It is okay for the leader to speak, “I think,” without making sure that … but without making sure that it’s grounded. Then, they lose because it should be sourcing from truth.
Then, humility is another great aspect to have and purity of heart. What are the intentions? The last of it is to be a peacemaker. I really and truly believe that leadership requires you to focus on peacemaking, and the way peacemaking work is from compromise, common promise, and …

Kelly Meerbott: Okay.

Dr. Troy Hall: It works when two opposing forces move to a space that neither person previously occupied. Then, you have peacemaking, and I believe that a leader should take those characteristics and embody those characteristics, and they will use different pieces of them like tools in a toolbox at different times.
You won’t just always use compassion. You won’t just always use pure of heart. You won’t just always use peacemaking. You will use all of them together, and they will create a combination of you as a leader, and they will allow you to then interact with people in a way in which you will model a behavior that others will go, “Yes, I want that. I want that servant leadership attribute. I want that spiritual. I want that authentic. I want that transformational leader. That’s what I want to do.” When you embody those characteristics, you have access to all of that.

Kelly Meerbott: Oh my god, that is just so, so well put. Thank you for that. Okay, so rapid fire questions. These are really … I mean, they’re not hard. First is what’s your favorite comfort food?

Dr. Troy Hall: Favorite comfort food is pizza.

Kelly Meerbott: Pizza. Okay. Any toppings on that or just plain pizza?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, I like non-red-sauce, so it’s got to be a garlic or an olive oil base, and then I like to to have chicken, broccoli, and ham on the top.

Kelly Meerbott: Yup. Oh my gosh, I haven’t eaten lunch yet, and I already want that. Okay. What books are on your nightstand?

Dr. Troy Hall: The book on my nightstand today is the bible.

Kelly Meerbott: What songs are in your playlist?

Dr. Troy Hall: Okay, so I am a crazy guy. I love all kinds of music, so from rap to country to classical, and so I have this very eclectic sort of playlist, but I will say this. For soothing … and most of the time, because of my work, we end up doing a piano dreamers sort of music where there’s no vocals. It’s just the piano music in the background. That’s the music that I love.

Kelly Meerbott: Oh my gosh, and your playlist sounds like mine. I have everything from Barry Mani low to Eminem to Post Malone. I mean, it’s all over the place. Okay. Final question. What are you most grateful for in this moment right now?

Dr. Troy Hall: I’m grateful that you gave me a chance to honor my mom and dad.

Kelly Meerbott: Oh my gosh. Now, see. You’re making me choke up again, Dr. Troy. If somebody who is listening to this wants to connect with you as an amazing human, how would they do that?

Dr. Troy Hall: Well, the easiest way is to go to drtroyhall.com.

Kelly Meerbott: Okay.

Dr. Troy Hall: Then, they have a connect link, or they can sign up for the teachable moments. It’s real simple. It’s right there on the homepage. They just simply go to the “Receive my complimentary teachable moment. Go.” They get a screen that pops up. They fill in their first name, email address, submit, and the rest of it then happens automatically, and they will get these extended teachable moments. They’re like three minutes or less, and it’s where I take complex leadership principles, and I make them simple and easy to understand, and give great dialog for teams to be able to listen to those messages, and then they can have great conversation. They can then interact with me through all social media. You can find me everywhere, @drtroyhall.

Kelly Meerbott: It’s just spelled the way it sounds, T-R-O-Y-H-A-L-L, correct?

Dr. Troy Hall: Yes, and the doctor is D-R-T-R-O-Y-H-A-L-L. It works out, and so a funny story I’ll tell you. I think this is really interesting. When I became a doctor, the grandchildren said to me. They go, “Papa, will you be able to fix our boo-boos?” I said, “No, honey. Papa is not that kind of doctor,” and so they said, “Well, what kind of doctor are you?” I had to think for a minute. I said, “Papa is a doctor of words, so he can talk it to death.”

Kelly Meerbott: That is fantastic. Dr. Troy, thank you so much for your real talk with me and with our listeners. Of course, to our listeners, it’s our intention that this conversation inspires you to go out and have an authentic conversation to deepen the connections in your life. Thank you so much for listening and make it a great day.

Dr. Troy Hall: Great. Thank you so much.

Speaker 1: You’ve been listening to Hidden Human, the stories behind the business leader. If you’ve enjoyed the episode, please subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. To learn more about Kelly and the services she provides, visit youloudandclear.com. Thanks so much for listening, and we’ll be back soon with a new episode.