March 15, 2017

S2|E9: Leah Rathbun – On taking personal responsibility and making a difference

By Tom Davidson

Leah Rathbun is the Regional Biometrician for the Pacific Northwest Region of the National Forest System. She discovered forestry after being incredibly unhappy at her role in retail management. So Leah decided to quit her job and go back to school, where she could find a career in the great outdoors. It was the best decision she made! In today’s interview, Leah discusses the importance of taking personal responsibility and not letting people get away with making offensive or degrading comments about others. She says to stand up for what’s right, and don’t be afraid to walk out of the room in protest to bad behavior and to not tolerate it when the subject of the remark is no where around! She also points out that talking about important subjects like diversity in forestry may be uncomfortable, but “When where we’re uncomfortable is where we learn the most.”

Key Takeaways:

[2:50] How did Leah discover forestry?

[6:15] Not all of us have a straight line when it comes to discovering our careers.

[7:15] What kind of mentors has Leah had in her life?

[10:55] What was Leah’s first leadership position like?

[14:35] What advice does Leah have for those who want to be better leaders?

[18:25] What is Leah most proud of in her career?

[22:00] In Leah’s experience, foresters have a lot of pride in the work they do.

[27:40] Just because you haven’t experienced what your co-worker has experienced, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

[34:05] What’s next for Leah?

[37:45] What advice does Leah have for new professionals in the field?

[48:00] Tom’s Leadership Tip of the Week!

Mentioned in This Episode:

Leah on LinkedIn
Ted Talk on Everyday Leadership and Lollipop Moments: http://www.ted.com/talks/drew_dudley_everyday_leadership
Crucial Conversations – https://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Conversations-Talking-Stakes-Second/dp/1469266822
Hidden Figures
Game of Thrones

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