Episode #51: Culture, leadership, and social Legacy

Guest: emily chang

Having served in executive leadership roles with some of the world's most recognizable companies, this week's guest brings a unique perspective to understanding the importance of human-first experiences. Join in the conversation this week as host Shawn Nason talks with Emily Chang, CEO of McCann Worldgroup China, to discuss culture and leadership as well as the role that social legacy plays in the business world.

About Shawn Nason

shawn@mofi.co | ShawnNason.com | @manonfiresocial

Shawn Nason, founder and CEO of MOFI, best-selling author, and former Walt Disney Imagineer, lives his life with a commitment to create radical relationships with everyone he meets. Armed with the gift of discernment, he has the uncanny ability to walk alongside people and organizations as they struggle to connect with their deepest passions and engage their most debilitating demons. He challenges the world around him to be fully present, get real, and lead with empathy.

Prior to launching MOFI, Shawn was the chief experience & transformation officer for Healthways and served as the chief innovation officer for Xavier University. He also spent six years at The Walt Disney Company in various capacities within Walt Disney Imagineering and Disney Cruise Line. He’s an in-demand speaker and coach, the author of two books, Kiss Your Dragons: Radical Relationships, Bold Heartsets, & Changing the World (2021) and The Power of YES! in Innovation (2017), and the host of The Combustion Chronicles podcast.

About emily chang

CEO, China McCann Worldgroup

Seasoned Marketer with 20 Years Experience

Previous Senior Roles at Starbucks, IHG, and Apple

About mofi

A human-obsessed boutique design firm passionate about reimagining Experience Ecosystems™.

hello@mofi.co | mofi.co | @mofisocial

Businesses are more than org charts, strategy documents, and mission statements. They’re living, breathing ecosystems filled with people and people-driven processes that make an impact on the world.

At MOFI, we refuse to look at one piece of the puzzle (customer service, employee experience, vendor relationships, leadership, culture, marketplace awareness, etc.) without engaging your entire Experience Ecosystem as we tackle the biggest and hairiest experience, innovation, and culture challenges that you can send our way. Why? Because we we’re more interested in long-term results than innovation theater.


Customer & Employee Experience—Increase your revenue and market share by aligning, equipping, and empowering the people in your Experience Ecosystem to create game-changing experiences.

Consumer-Centered Innovation—Move at the speed of your customers by harnessing the mindsets and processes of human-centered design to dream up, test, and launch fresh ideas into your business model.

Organizational Transformation—Position your organization for long-term sustainability by shifting the mindsets and heartsets of the people who represent your brand in the world.

Episode Takeaways

  • To bring experience to life, organizations must deeply understand how to merge an online and an offline world, how to create an integrated experience that surrounds their customers.
  • The power of "and" means synthesizing two incompatible ideas, which requires the suspension of cognition in order to realize the possibilities.
  • To start shifting towards a people-first company culture, leaders should start with the end in mind and determine who they want to be. Then, find the right people to bring their vision to life and create practices that foster the culture they want to have.
  • When people approach projects with a mindset of “I want to do something that is good and useful for the world,” things tend to flow more smoothly than when people approach projects with the mindset of, “I'd really like to do something that furthers my selfish ambition.”
  • No matter the size of the company, it's important to play to the company's strengths. Smaller companies have the opportunity to think differently about solving problems because they get to start from scratch.
  • Leaders must prioritize helping people in their company feel valued and create initiatives that demonstrate that their employees matter.
  • Hiring people with a learning mindset is the key to finding the right people to represent a company's brand.
  • Embracing "3D Leadership" means being willing to stand in front of the team and both block and lead when they need to, come alongside the team and roll up their sleeves and work together when needed, and stand behind the team and give them credit.
  • To leverage micro-influencers, brands need to look at the three tiers of content (branded content, professional-generated content, and user-controlled content) to determine the role that you want micro-influences to play in brand development.
  • Companies that exploit their core competencies tend to burn out and companies that explore their core competencies create new ways to thrive. But the best companies, like Google, bring the two together.

emily's Book

The Spare Room: Define Your Social Legacy to Live a More Intentional Life and Lead with Authentic Purpose

Now more than ever, social purpose has become an urgent leadership imperative. The Spare Room will help you identify your Social Legacy to live a more intentional life and lead with authentic purpose.

[Overheard on the Podcast]

“Now more than ever, social purpose has become an urgent leadership imperative. To be successful, each of us, regardless of industry or functional expertise, must lead with authenticity and purpose. After all, it's tough to lead a socially responsible business if we aren't socially purposeful leaders.” 
"When you... say, 'I want to do something that is good and useful for the world,' I think things tend to flow a little bit more smoothly than when you say, 'I'd really like to do something that furthers my selfish ambition.'”

[Overheard on the Podcast]

"Nothing tells our social purpose or our priorities like our calendar."
"When your ambitions exceed your resources, you find yourself in a sweet spot as well because it forces you to be creative and think laterally."
"If you only had people [instead of product], what would you do differently? If we really want to put people first, I guess my job makes it very clarifying because my people are how I make profit. It is the only way I make profit by finding the right people, engaging them, helping them feel cared for, supported, and co-creating."

[Overheard on the Podcast]

"Everybody's talking now about how are we going to go back to work, you know, where do we put the hand disinfectants, how many people should we have on every floor. For me, the question isn't how are we going back to work, it's why are we going back to work."
"We have to orchestrate [employee experience] not to a point of being overly formal, but we want people to be cared for, and that requires a degree of intention, of thought. They deserve it. If we're gonna do it, we're gonna do it well."

Selected Videos


Created with images by Fabrizio_65 - "microphone vintage cromatic" • byuppi - "darts purpose accuracy" • Myriams-Fotos - "ballpoint pen appointment calendar writing tool" • lukasbieri - "youtuber blogger screenwriter"