Bold Journey Magazine Interviews founder Tamara Ghandour on Optimism and Life Lessons Learned

Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Tamara Ghandour. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.

Tamara, thank you so much for joining us. You are such a positive person and it’s something we really admire and so we wanted to start by asking you where you think your optimism comes from?
It’s hard not to be optimistic when you are the daughter of an entrepreneur, and the granddaughter of a holocaust survivor. My Abba and Savta (Hebrew for dad and grandmother) have always lived by the motto that you make your own luck and that no matter what life throws your way, you have the ability to persevere. They showed me early in life that anything is possible and most importantly, the determining factors of success are on the inside, not the circumstances around you. Through all the ups and downs of life, they never wavered in their optimism, and neither do I. I am very grateful that they instilled that belief in me and I hope to pass that down to my two boys as well.

Thanks for sharing that. So, before we get any further into our conversation, can you tell our readers a bit about yourself and what you’re working on?

My work is focused on human-centered innovation and can be seen in individuals, teams, and organizations across the globe. As the creator of the proprietary Innovation Quotient Edge (IQE) assessment and host of the popular podcast – Coffee with Tamara, I’ve had the honor of helping tens of thousands gain the competitive edge by unlocking the power of innovation.

Through the combination of neuroscience, brain mechanics, behavioral and social psychology, and 25 plus years of experience, I developed the IQE® assessment, the only tool that helps people discover their unique Everyday Innovator® archetypes so they can unlock their greatest asset in changing, crowded, commoditized times – their innovative mind.

My company, LaunchStreet, has become the go-to innovation partner for companies like Arrow Electronics, Schneider Electric, Disney, Red Robin, UKG, and US Army Research Labs when they need to foster innovative ideas and people.

As a kid in computer camp, I won the “I’ll try anything once” award – a motto I still lives by.

Looking back, what do you think were the three qualities, skills, or areas of knowledge that were most impactful in your journey? What advice do you have for folks who are early in their journey in terms of how they can best develop or improve on these?

I have the fortune of having a long and winding journey to pull my lessons from. I’ve had some big wins and some epic failures – all leading me to where I am today. The three qualities that I believe have allowed me to thrive through it all are the following:

#1 Believing the rules don’t apply to me: I’ve always been a rule breaker, even as a little kid. More often than not I find that rules are somebody else’s way of doing things, but they don’t need to be yours. In fact, taking on other people’s rules tends to hold you back. Believing that the rules don’t apply to me has allowed me to push boundaries and carve new paths.

#2 Being comfortable with failure: You can’t succeed if you aren’t willing to fail a few times along the way. Because I’m not afraid of failure, I’m also not afraid to go for the big win. And if I fail, I learn quickly, adapt, and move forward. I don’t love failure, but it doesn’t scare me.

#3 Listening to the right people: There’s a lot of noise out there and a lot of people offering their advice. I’ve found that if you find people that have already done what you are trying to accomplish, and listen intently to them, you’ll go further, faster. I’ve done a lot of listening over my career and it’s paid off.

Who has been most helpful in helping you overcome challenges or build and develop the essential skills, qualities or knowledge you needed to be successful?
I’ve always had a passion for learning. However, as my business has grown and my life has changed I’ve come to the hard realization that I needed to move from learning outside skills to inside growth. In order for me to get to the next level in my work and life, I’ve had to go inward and assess not only who I am, but who I need to be to achieve my goals. What’s really helped me grow hasn’t been one specific book or course. In fact, it’s been the absence of taking in new information and spending more time just listening. Listening to myself, doing exercises like hot yoga that block out the world, hiking without my headphones and latest crime podcast, even turning off the radio when I drive. It’s amazing what you find in the silence. I have found vision and clarity in a way I never expected.

 

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