Welcome back to our ongoing #MeetTheTeam series, introducing you to the great team of instructors we have here at RBLP. This week, it’s none other than our VP of People and Program Development – Jason Politte, RBLP-T!
Hi Jason! Thanks for chatting with us. Tell us a little about who you are and where you’re from.
Hi Nicole, thanks. I was born in Riverside, California and raised mostly in Papillion, Nebraska. I grew up in an Air Force family, my grandfather (Chief Master Sergeant – Korean Vet), father (Senior Master Sergeant – Vietnam Vet), and brother (Major – OEF Vet) are all Air Force veterans. Needless to say, I caught some slack joining the Marine Corps! It was the best decision I ever made – structure, discipline, leadership, travel, friendships – all the things a man needs in life! Best of all, it led me to my beautiful wife and our sons. I love every moment I get now being with my family and friends. I would be remised if I didn’t mention that I am a die-hard Nebraska Cornhusker football fan. Growing up in Nebraska in the 90’s spoiled me with witnessing how dominate a team can be when they are firing on all cylinders. I am always supportive, and looking forward to seeing what Scott Frost and the team do in the future.
What can you tell us about your education and career background before you started working with RBLP?
I spent a semester and a half in college right after high school, but quickly realized that it was bad timing for me. I joined the Marine Corps in 1997 and immediately knew I did the right thing. One of the first mentors I had in the Marine Corps was my Senior Drill Instructor, Sgt. Maj. John Armstead, who is still the ideal image and example of what a Marine should be.
Being a simple guy from Nebraska, I never thought I would be living and working in places like California, Hawaii, and the Pentagon. I worked at the highest levels of the Marine Corps, supporting the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps during and after the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. Shortly after that I volunteered to be a Marine Corps Drill Instructor which really ignited my passion for developing others. Right after leaving the drill field (and with the support of my wife) I decided to go back to school. While I was deployed to Iraq in 2006-2007 I was interviewed and selected to work in the 16th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps Office – we later coined the term “Team 16” because of the relationships we built. After being promoted to First Sergeant, I requested to serve in with the infantry, I went to 1st Battalion, 5th Marines where I met some of the bravest men I have ever met in my life. When you meet people like Justin Clemens, Eric Galvan, Robert Dominguez, Teddy Garcia Jr., Mike Hodge, Kyle May, Regan Jones, Michael Vecchia and so many more, it is a humbling experience. I learned what trust and camaraderie really meant, and how important it is for an organization.
Who is a role model that you’ve interacted with in your life that inspired you toward this career trajectory?
I could list quite a few. My grandfather, father, my brother, Carlton Kent, John Armstead, Damian Moreno, Scott Burton, Todd Colwell, Michael Barrett. All of these men are important to me because they believe deeply in the development of others. They are some of the most unselfish men I have ever met. They alway say that you can tell what kind of person someone is by the company they choose to be around. I enjoy being around men like this because they challenge me to be better tomorrow than I was today.
What drew you to the role that you’re fulfilling with RBLP as a certification instructor?
I met Dr. Gene Coughlin in early 2019, and he introduced the Resilience-Building Leader Program to me. After a few discussions, going through the certification process, and hearing his vision, I immediately knew that this program aligns with my values. Starting off as a certification instructor and now focusing on the overall program development has helped provide a purpose that is exciting to wake up and do every single day.
In your mind, what is the best definition of “resilience” for those who might be unfamiliar with the program that RBLP offers?
When I think of what we do as a part of the program, we are showing leaders how vitally important it is to build resilient teams in the workplace so they can adapt and grow now matter what they are facing. Like our slogan says, we are truly Stronger Together!
What are the three most important components, in your opinion, that you try to convey to every team that you train under the RBLP certification program?
In my opinion – providing purpose, creating a psychologically safe environment, and promoting a shared vision are all key points. But I always like to add that you never know the impact that you (as a leader) are having on those around you. Always try and leave someone with something positive and encouraging, you never know what type of day they are having or what they are going through.
What is one of your own best personal experiences in your career that has influenced or inspired you in your certification training?
If you are blessed enough to receive feedback from those you have impacted it gives you a sort of “aha” moment that what you are doing is working. I have had a few folks that said thank you for something that I did that really impacted their life. The lesson that I try to explain to others during training is that you should let people know how you feel and if they made an impact on your life. It is meaningful in so many ways. Treat everyone how you would like to be treated – you never know what impact you could have on their life.
In your time as an RBLP instructor, what is one of your best memories of a training program that you’ve accomplished with a company and why?
I love sharing this program with clients, to me it is about the realization of how important collectively resilient teams are. When you focus on people you will make a huge impact on them and their organizations.
Pivoting a little bit from the program – tell us a little about yourself outside of work! What other activities or hobbies do you love?
I love hanging out with my wife and children, going on walks, playing football, BBQ’ing, going to baseball games, camping. You name it, if family and friends are involved, we love it!
Can you give us a quotation that you feel really inspires you to continue inspiring others?
All it takes is a catalyst for positive change – so be that catalyst!
RBLP leadership certifications are about Building Resilient Teams™ that overcome adversity and then can adapt and grow together! As always, we are #StrongerTogether.
Learn more about the requirements for the RBLP Certification program.