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Advice for Better Leadership in a Crisis - Interview with Matt Sweetwood

By Jason Heckl - September 01, 2020

"You're not going to run a killer company unless all your employees are A employees"

Matt Sweetwood is a lifetime CEO with over 30 years of experience, and is currently the CEO of LUXnow and author of Leader of the Pack. Having spent the majority of his career in the electronics distribution and retail superstore space, Matt had to re-invent his business multiple times to keep up with digital transformation, which ultimately led to a successful exit for him.


On this episode of the Strategy and Leadership Podcast, Matt joins us to share his experiences as a CEO, some helpful leadership tips for young leaders and those trying to survive a crisis, as well as the story of his very challenging past, which ultimately led to the writing of his book, Leader of the Pack.


If you're having a strategic planning session soon, make sure you're asking the right questions:



Here's a breakdown of the topics we discussed:

  • His background, career and new company

Matt talks about his time running and eventually selling his electronics distribution company which he was the CEO of for over 28 years, all while raising 5 kids as a single dad. He also introduces his new company in Miami called LUXnow, which is a marketplace for luxury assets like autos, homes and yachts available for rent.

  • 3 most impactful lessons on leadership

Matt shares the three most important lessons he's learned from being a leader for over 30 years. Firstly, you need to fully understand your problems and the nature of your business (scope) completely. Next, he stresses the importance of getting out in front of any crisis, mentioning the fact that most business mistakes are made from overly conservative actions rather than overly aggressive ones. Lastly, Matt explains why you need to exert confidence as a leader, no matter how you're feeling.


  • Leading during a crisis

Matt explains that during a crisis, your people will look to you, the leader. Whether you're truly feeling confident or are feeling helpless inside, it's important to draw and project confidence to your people. If your people feel like you won't let them fail, it'll give them the confidence to push through. What helps Matt during a time of crisis is the 'this too shall pass' attitude. 

  • About his #1 best seller, Leader of the Pack

In his book, Leader of the Pack, Matt tells the story of his life that is full of challenges. He details his experience raising 5 children by himself, all while running a business and battling a Supreme Court case. He explains his decision making process and what he did to overcome those challenges and very serious situations.


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To connect with Matt, you can reach him on Twitter & Instagram at @msweetwood. Or, visit his website at msweetwood.com.

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