Psychologist Dr. Nicole Lipkin Had a Bad Feeling But Hired Hope Anyway

Psychologist Dr. Nicole Lipkin Had a Bad Feeling But Hired Hope Anyway


Check out all episodes on the My Favorite Mistake main page.

My guest for Episode #153 of the My Favorite Mistake podcast is Dr. Nicole Lipkin, an internationally recognized clinical and organizational psychologist, executive coach, and keynote speaker.

Nicole is the author of two popular leadership books: Y In the Workplace: Managing the “Me First” Generation and What Keeps Leaders Up At Night: Recognizing and Resolving Your Most Troubling Management Issues.  

She is the CEO of Equilibria Leadership Consulting, a leadership and organizational development firm. In terms of education, she earned a doctorate in clinical psychology (Psy.D.), Master of Business Administration (MBA), and Master of Criminal Justice (MACJ). Nicole is also the founder and CEO of HeyKiddo, a company dedicated to helping adults gain better control over their children’s mental, social and emotional health through technology. 

She recently exited her first company, Equilibria Psychological and Consultation Services. Nicole is a regular contributor to and has shared her expertise on NPR, NBC,, NY Times Magazine, CBS and other media outlets. She lives in Philly with her husband, Matt, her toddler, Charlie, and her chunky cat, El Guapo Meatball (who makes an appearance in the episode!).

In today's episode, Nicole shares her “favorite mistake” story about having a “bad feeling” but hiring “Hope” (not her real name) anyway. Why was it a “punch in the gut” when Hope quit three months later? Did Nicole feel like she failed as a coach and as a leader? What lessons did she learn from these experiences?

We also talk about questions and topics including:

  • Is it a mistake to not follow your gut during interviewing or during the first month??
  • What keeps you up at night? How can we AVOID sleep trouble?
  • How do we build psychological safety? How much is the leader’s responsibility? 
  • Psychological safety – talking about it vs doing the behaviors??
  • How different is Gen Y?? Different influences and experiences?
  • Tell us about Equilibria Leadership Consulting — who is your ideal client and why do they hire you?
  • Tell us about HeyKiddo — building emotional wellness using technology

Scroll down to find:

  • Video of the episodeand a clip with her cat, El Guapo Meatball
  • Quotes
  • How to subscribe
  • Full transcript

Find Nicole on social media:

Watch the Episode:

El Guapo Meatball's Appearance (Clip):


"First of all, I wrote a book on managing millennials and I couldn't manage a millennial."
"Psychologically speaking, when your gut is waving all the red flags, it's not psychological frou-frou. It's based on wisdom, it's based on experience. It's telling you something. It's not always right, but don't just ignore it. I did."
"If you want people to be vulnerable, you need to be vulnerable [as CEO]. And I think that's interesting because one of the things   we've always wanted is for our leaders to be calm, cool, and collected. You know what, when you're too calm, cool and collected, everyone else feels weird when they're not."

Subscribe, Follow, Support, Rate, and Review!

Please follow, rate, and review via Apple Podcasts or Podchaser or your favorite app — that helps others find this content and you'll be sure to get future episodes as they are released weekly. You can also become a financial supporter of the show through

You can now sign up to get new episodes via email, to make sure you don't miss an episode.

This podcast is part of the Lean Communicators network.

Other Ways to Subscribe or Follow — Apps & Email

Automated Transcript (Likely Contains Mistakes)

Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus. He is also a Senior Advisor and Director of Strategic Marketing with the healthcare advisory firm, Value Capture.