Unlabeled Leadership

004: Judy Hale and the Brown Suit

Jan. 12, 2021

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I invite guests to share personal stories about small acts of leadership that help shape their lives.

In Episode Four, Judith Hale talks about how her parents’ words and actions contributed to developing guiding principles.

Judy consults with organizations across all industries. Much of her current work focuses on assessment for qualifying people. Judy earned her Ph.D. from Purdue University and has various certifications. You can find her full bio on her website at the link below.

00:06 Prologue: Behind the Curtain

When you meet Judy Hale for the first time, you might underestimate who she is and what she has to offer. Anyone involved in performance consulting, international standards, a corporate training function, or school administration should get to know Judy. I might be so bold to suggest that when you look up stewardship in a dictionary, the definition should include Judy Hale.

02:33 Part 1: Innovation is the New Currency

Companies need a brown suit in the room. Why? Judy’s father explained to her how the brown suit at a company symbolized the openness to divergency.

04:54 Part 2: Is it Lip Service or Genuine Commitment?

Like her mom, when Judy observes discrepancies between what is said and what is done, she speaks up. Doing so is part of Judy’s character. A word of caution: there’s an art to calling out incongruent behaviors while not antagonizing.

12:13 Part 3: Raising Our Awareness about Opportunities

Opportunities are around us, but we mostly don’t see them. It’s like walking down a long corridor full of doors that are locked, unlocked, cracked open, or fully open. Yet, we don’t see them until something happens in your life. Judy has advice for finding opportunities.


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No transcript available (future enhancement)

Episode links

Hale Associates Center

About Judith Hale

Two webpages from Ben and Jerry’s:

   Why Black Lives Matter

   We Must Dismantle White Supremacy

Black Musician, Former Imperial Wizard of the KKK, and Great Friends (includes a link to Daryl Davis’ TEDxNaperville talk)

Baldrige Performance Excellence Program

Gary DePaul's website

Gary's books:

   What the Heck Is Leadership and Why Should I Care?

   Nine Practices of 21st Century Leadership

Background Music

You can find all the musical tracks at Envato Elements.

00:00 Theme music: Inspiring Uplifting Corporate by mixer_drummer

03:22 Lovely Gipsy Jazz Ballad by Remstunes

09:15 One in A Million by pinkzebra

20:20 Mystic Desert by JBlanks

29:14 Fun and Flirty by BrownHouseMedia

Lead on!

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