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Mike Vannelli on How To Navigate Uncertainty.


Mike Vannelli, Creative Director at Envy Creative


Could you please share a bit about yourself, your background, and the journey that has led you to become an entrepreneur? What makes your perspective unique on the subject of leadership and navigating uncertainty?

Thank you for having me. I'm excited to share my journey and insights on leadership. I started Envy Creative 10 years ago as a video production freelancer and have grown it into a thriving agency. My background in filmmaking gives me a unique creative perspective for navigating uncertainty in business.


You and your business have presumably faced some interesting challenges and changes over the years. Can you describe a key moment when you felt uncertainty was at its peak?

A key challenging moment was at the start of the pandemic when productions halted. I focused on open communication and honesty to guide my team through the storm. We got creative pivoting our skills to new mediums.


From your experience, what are the core principles or values that guide a leader during uncertain times?

Core leadership principles that guide me are transparency, adaptability, and empathy. They've helped me make difficult decisions balancing various needs.


How do you cultivate a culture of resilience and adaptability within your team? Can you share a practical example where this culture made a significant difference?

I cultivate resilience by encouraging experimentation and cross-collaboration. When budgets dropped, we started working on our backed workflows and involved more of our staff in our ongoings, keeping spirits high.


Many aspiring leaders struggle with the fear of failure, especially when the path ahead is unclear. What strategies or mental frameworks have you developed to overcome this fear and embrace uncertainty as an opportunity?

To overcome fear, I frame uncertainty as an opportunity for innovation. I research multiple scenarios and solutions so I feel equipped to pivot.


In your opinion, what are the most common mistakes leaders make during uncertain times? Can you offer a real-life example where recognizing and avoiding such a mistake led to success?

Common leadership mistakes I see are resisting change, micromanaging, and poor communication. I once pushed ahead on a project despite team doubts, leading to failure. Now I listen openly to critique.


Looking towards the future, how do you plan to continue evolving your leadership style to meet new uncertainties and challenges? What advice would you give to others looking to do the same?

Going forward, I plan to deepen connections with emerging leaders and continue learning, while staying grounded in my core values. My advice is to stay curious and don't be afraid to take smart risks.


You've clearly demonstrated a willingness to learn and grow through experience. Are there any books, mentors, or resources that have particularly influenced your leadership style? How would you recommend others to approach their leadership development journey?

I'm heavily influenced by Simon Sinek's leadership books. I recommend surrounding yourself with mentors and being proactive in your development through courses, books, and experiences.


For those who want to learn more about your leadership philosophy or explore the products and services offered by your company, what's the best way to connect with you or find out more about your work?



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