Right-Brain Leadership with Left-Brain Results
Over the past several years as the job market has tightened, executives and hiring managers have struggled to attract and retain top talent in their industries.
Companies have made serious efforts to understand the needs of the large and productive Millennial generation in order to reduce turnover and harness their creative talents. But the reality is, we face a tightening labor pool nationally. Unemployment is extremely low, wages are rising, and labor forces are increasingly mobile. The battle for talent has never had higher stakes.
What if we told you that a simple shift in your thinking could position your business to win the war for talent once and for all, regardless of generation? What if it was as simple as choosing to do the right thing for your people? What if in the process you could become more competitive, more profitable and introduce more joy to everyone you touch?
The idea is simple. It begins with leaders embracing a right-brain approach to leadership. Most leaders are trained to utilize the left-brain; logical, analytical and strategic thinking take center stage. We have found that people respond much more positively to the intuitive, right-brain leader. These leaders have the gift to bring compassion, creativity, emotion, vulnerability, and selflessness into the work environment, building meaningful relationships based on trust that lead to enthusiasm and personal and professional reward.
Definition of Right-Brain Leader:
Creates a vision that others can connect to. Thinks big, takes chances.
Shares freely, positively, often, and is regularly accessible to the group.
Compassionate, empathetic and aware of social nuances.
Visually represents vision, leads innovation, idea generation. Has FUN.
Humble, transparent and willing to be held accountable. Trusts and is trustworthy.
Supports professional, personal, financial success, and takes delivering the plan personally.
Welcomes others in the planning and decision processes, leads with decentralized accountability.
Meet The Unmistakable Team
Mike Novakoski is the president and CEO of national-award-winning Elzinga & Volkers Construction Professionals and the EV Group, and is a founding Partner of Become Unmistakable LLC. Mike has 30 years of construction industry experience and a special gift for innovative thinking, visioning, communication, and motivation in his organizational leadership roles. In addition to authoring two books, Mike is a nationally recognized speaker on the subjects of “six-pack abs” culture, the power of VisCom (visual communication), breaking out of the commodity mindset, innovation at all levels, and “right-brain-justified” leadership.
Mike has been a member of the Young Presidents Organization since 2007. After serving as an officer on chapter and regional levels, he was elected to serve on the International Forum Committee of this 25,000-plus member organization. YPO often calls on Mike’s expertise for global training, assisting in the development of new organization-wide programs, publishing articles and videos, and speaking at international events to inspire thousands of other CEOs.
Mike is a lifelong learner who holds a BS in construction management, an MBA with an emphasis in finance, and an Innovation Management certification.
As a founding Partner, Rob brings over 25 years of executive leadership, business ownership and consulting experience to the Become Unmistakable team. With a focus on improving culture, driving growth, and increasing profitability, Rob has led and advised executive teams across several industries including manufacturing, distribution, and business and financial services. Most recently, he served as president of the state’s largest public and investor relations firm before departing to dedicate his time solely to business and leadership consulting. He previously served as CEO of The Bank of Holland prior to its sale to Chemical Bank. Rob also founded and led Strength Property Partners, a private equity firm based in Birmingham, and spent 15 years in various management roles in the banking industry in major markets including Detroit and Chicago.
Rob earned a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Michigan and an MBA from U-M's Stephen M. Ross School of Business. He serves on the boards of directors of Grand Rapids Label Company, West Michigan Community Bank, Midwest United Football Club, and Midwest United Foundation. Rob has been a member of YPO since 2013.
John Parker has served alongside Mike Novakoski and two other partners at Elzinga & Volkers Construction Professionals since he completed an undergraduate degree in facilities management and architectural technology and is currently a Partner with Become Unmistakable LLC. John has also earned his master’s degree in business administration, as well as an Innovation Management certification.
John is an expert in the use of visual communication and narrative to improve the way leaders communicate with their teams. John also helps teams find and make the connections between right-brained leadership and left-brained performance excellence. John is passionate about team building and leading change in organizational management. He spends most of his days leading project teams through the early stages of project development, and regularly joins Mike in public-speaking engagements and leadership consulting. With his feet planted firmly in Become Unmistakable and the operations of a thriving construction business, John is a great link between the theory of right-brained leadership and it’s practical application.
Director- Unmistakable LEADER
Leslie Lynch is a multidisciplinary business executive with an eye for innovation and creativity and a passion for people. With experience in several industry sectors (financial services, manufacturing, healthcare, and higher education), Leslie has held executive-level leadership positions in public, private, and family-owned companies. She has served in revenue-generating roles as well as operations and administration. Leslie's expertise and love is in organizational change, leadership development, and high-performance talent management. Leslie has a deep interest in people's behavior and its effect on a company's financial and non-financial results. She holds Bachelors, Masters, and Doctoral degrees, all in business, and teaches business and accounting courses at the collegiate level. Leslie and her husband split their time between Grand Rapids and Houghton Lake, MI. She enjoys anything that has to do with water and runs a few triathlons from time to time.
Morgan Weaver is the Experience Manager at Become Unmistakable LLC. Her responsibility is to provide an unmistakable experience and leave each person that we come in contact with smiling. Morgan began her career in project administration at Elzinga & Volkers, but quickly applied her leadership and organizational skills to integrating the employee-centric vision of Mike Novakoski and the E&V leadership team.
Morgan is a graduate of Grand Valley State University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and also holds an MBA with an emphasis in Human Resources from Davenport University Morgan also holds a certificate in Innovative Methods from the New North Center.
Morgan specializes in managing all aspects of the employee and customer experience.
Implementer. Trainer. Guide.
Danielle Bouwhuis is responsible for implementing the Become Unmistakable software tools for our clients and partners. She trains and guides management teams and implementers in the use of our software and constantly searches for ways to improve and enhance our tools. Danielle brings 1o years of experience in teaching and technology to the Become Unmistakable team. She began her career as a teacher but quickly developed a passion for leveraging the power of technology in the classroom. She has served on technology committees and as a technology coach, instructing teachers on software integration. Most recently, Danielle served as Instructional Technology Specialist for Catholic Central High School in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Danielle is a graduate of Grand Valley State University where she earned a degree in Integrated Science with an emphasis in Education. She has also earned her Masters Degree in Educational Technology from Western Michigan University.
Along the way, our approach has helped us pick up a few pieces of recognition:
Here are some of the awards and accolades that Elzinga & Volkers has received using the Unmistakable mindset.
Best & Brightest Companies to Work For – 11 years running, including 8 Elite Awards (more than any company in our region) and 4 National Awards.
Small Business of the Year – awarded nationally by Best and Brightest, and recipient of the top Elite Award nationally (out of thousands competing) for Employee Enrichment, Engagement and Retention.
Recipient of the top national safety award (2018) given by the Associated Builders & Contractors (ABC), from among 21,000 members.
ABC West Michigan Chapter top safety award for multiple years running.
Chosen Michigan Contractor of the Year twice (2013/14 & 2016/17) by the American Subcontractors Association of Michigan (ASAM) from thousands of contractor nominees.
Leadership in Business Award (top annual award) bestowed by the West Coast Chamber of Commerce (2017).