About our Guest
Christopher Gomez is our show host and the CEO of Spirit Consulting with fifteen years of industry experience. Christopher also serves as a board member for two nonprofit organizations. In recognition of his accomplishments, he was honored as CEO of the Year by CEO Magazine and a Top 40 under 40 by Negocios Now Magazine. He is also a caring husband and father of two wild and crazy boys.
In this episode, we turn the tables on Chris; he is in the hot seat as our guest! Hannah Gomez, his wife, interviews Chris and learns more about his bumpy journey of humility that led to his current success. They say pride comes before the fall. In this case, humility came before the rise. As a leader, Chris discusses how personal healing is key to virtuous leadership.
Hannah: Thanks for watching our podcast here at Spirit Consulting, our services include business strategy and human resources consulting. In HR we offer executive search executive coaching and work psychology consulting. Please visit us at spiritmco.com, where we fulfill our client’s dreams virtuously. Enjoy your show.
Hannah: Welcome to the Leading Virtuously Podcast. Today, we are turning the tables and we are interviewing the interviewer, Chris Gomez, himself podcast, Chris.
Chris: Oh, welcome to my podcast. It’s really our podcast. So thank you for having me, Hannah, thank you for all the hard work that you do behind the scenes for the podcast.
Hannah: You’re very welcome today. I get to be in front of the camera, which you know, I love
Chris: And yeah, don’t mean to cut you off, but just wanted to say how pretty you are. And I’m so blessed to be able to have you as a business partner. And as my wife.
Hannah: Thank you. That’s very sweet of you. I feel the same way you don’t look pretty though you look handsome.
Chris:. Thank you. I don’t know. What’s that guy? Who’s like the Latinos singer who. I can’t actually so
Hannah: There’s Ricky Martin?
Chris: No, the bald guy who was like a rapper.
Chris: Yeah. Not like I just, that’s what that’s what I’m trying to put out into the world.
I’m just trying to be a pitbull doppelganger. Yeah.
Hannah: As long as you don’t sing, like he does, then you can look like him. You need the glasses though.
Hannah: Anyway, so I am dying to ask you these questions that I’ve been wanting to ask our whole marriage, questions. Like why do you wear your pants like that? And what’s up with the way that you make the bed, things like that. And I know that our audience is super excited to hear about all the. Just kidding.
I want to know the first question is who are you?
Chris: Sure it’s a, I always get so and then I always laugh when I ask people that question, because I don’t think a lot of people. Are you used to being at ask that director of a question, which just doesn’t really seem like it’s too deep in the question, but yeah, people it’s funny to see people’s responses.
So I, the first and foremost is I’m bringing out my identity as a beloved son of a king and of God. So from that source and power, I do everything in my life. I think probably the most important after that would be a loving husband and father of two darling boys that are eight and six years old. I am also the founder and CEO of a management consulting company, Spirit Consulting.
And we have. Roughly about, I think about 15 or 16 employees that work for us and the areas of consulting that we operate within our strategy and human resources. That includes executive search executive coaching and work psychologists. And then so that’s Spirit Consulting.
I also founded a nonprofit organization called Catholic sports camps where we serve 400 to 600 kids each summer, over six different sports camps. And then I serve on the board of directors for another non-profit called River of Light and we food rescue a million meals per year for the homeless. So that’s absolutely incredible.
I’m a podcaster. And as you can see back here over my shoulder, I am a guitarist and I get to rock out with my beautiful wife, doing praise and worship music and all sorts of fun stuff.
Hannah: I think we should insert a picture from your old band days, about here during the podcast.
Chris: Let’s reframe some inserting old photos of my band
I feel like this is our first date. This is great. Okay. So that’s like the high view. And then I’d love to hear more about your journey. How did you get to this current leadership position?
Chris: Sure. The boys, mom divorced me and poof like magic here I am in the position that I am today,
Just trying to make you uncomfortable. But as so yeah in my twenties, Just grew up in a home that was, had some dysfunctions in it. And that really just blended over into my leadership style and into which also is part of who I am as a journey.
And so that kind of came to a split in my early thirties that resulted in a divorce. And when I hired the attorney that was going to represent me He sold me on saying that it was going to take, six to nine months and about 10,000. It ended up being over 30,000 and over a two year process, even though we had just been married for about four years.
And so really this guy and like the divorce quickly ended as soon as our bank, our mutual bank account had just dwindled down to nothing. And so this attorney was a hundred percent margin over mission. And so that really rocked me to my core, which is really the foundation of our mission at spirit consulting, which is to fulfill our client’s wildest dreams while practicing virtuous service, which means that really that we do everything with love.
And that we have high integrity and, lead with values, which is a little bit different than most organizations. But I also tell that story because yes, it’s the foundation of Spirit Consulting and our mission, but it also is part of my healing journey. Like when I got through that basically like…
When the Sheriff knocked on my door. It was like an eyeopening moment for me and anyone that has gone through like major sufferings and trials. Know that it’s really an opportunity to either grow or to regress. And for me, I’m really like at that point, I was already into the fixed mind or the growth mind state where I always wanted to like, improve and get better, et cetera.
So I just took it as a learning opportunity and it to encourage myself, I wrote out a list of 20 traits that I was looking for in the future spouse. And I would look at this list from time to, to motivate me, to encourage me that you, through these hard times, that I knew that there was a greater plan and that it was coming, I just had to be patient and faithful.
But then also the challenge as you do that is to then look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself am I the man that this person would actually want to be with. And if the answer is no, then you know, that you’ve got growing to do. And as I started going down the healing journey, I went to different retreats.
I’ve been a part of a men’s group for over the last five years. And really like in, in doing that accountability work was able to see the dysfunctions that I had grown comfortable too. And by shedding that really able to just have outstanding relationships and to, get outside myself and not be the self-centered person that I was, but to really be able to look for the good in all people and find win-win strategies that set me up for the success that I’m in today,
Hannah: I love hearing your story. Even though I’ve heard it quite a few times. It’s beautiful.
What do you think you learned, from your consulting career that most people don’t?
Chris: So I was ending on that note and, like for the longest time, I really while working for the prior management consulting company that I worked at before, launching spirit consulting a couple of years back, like we really just worked within the vertical of executive search and namely.
We may not have had the vision to be able to expand beyond that, but then also when you’re dysfunctional and you’re working in a toxic environment, like people don’t want to work with you. And so by being able to get healed and to have outstanding relationships where. Where you’re able to share feedback and to love the other person and recognize that conflict management is just a part of the relationship journey that allows you to be able to expand into other service lines if the opportunity is there.
And so that, that allowed us to progress beyond just executive search, into work psychology and having a PhD or two of them actually that enter into the recruiting process. To give extra data pre hire and then also to help on the back the end of the hire for onboarding. But that also opened my eyes that okay, if I could work with these other professionals and bring them into the consulting work that I’m doing, then why can’t I do that a couple of times?
And so that allowed me to look at my network and see other people that I’ve been working with or had known previously and set up other relationships to be able to provide the work psychology or sorry, the strategy and executive coaching that we’re doing beyond just, executive search and work psychology.
So that’s kinda one takeaway that I have from that. And then the other one is I don’t know, I was just kinda thinking about this and I don’t know if this is like the most loving thing to say, but I’ll just say it’s like when you’re in consulting. I think a lot of consultants will agree to this.
It’s like we do a lot of the heavy lifting. But then at the end of the project, like the client wants to take all the notoriety for the work. And so that’s just a part of the journey of taking the back seat and being a servant leader and wanting the best for your clients. But that also plays into, especially around like the recruiting phase.
Like anytime that we have, like these high. Paying positions. Like everyone wants to be your friend, but then three months after the search is over. When you call people up to be like, Hey we need to take on some new work, we’d love to partner it’s, you can’t get anyone to return your call.
And I don’t know if that’s just like human nature of people want what’s in it for them, but then when that opportunity passes on there and then they don’t operate the same way.
Hannah: What have you learned from that experience that you’re able to bring into business and into life?
Chris: I think it goes back to my first point, which is you have to just love people and you have to. Be different in that way, because like in this society, everyone is so overworked and over-scheduled that the fast, the first thing, like the easiest thing to basically like trample on our relationships to just be like, okay, I’m going to reject this person.
This person just invested like three hours into this interview. I want to send them some scrappy, garbage email. That’s going to just completely squash their hopes and dreams, like just terrible stuff instead of okay, this person invested the time. I want to set up calls with them and I want I’m we’re going to be committed to obtaining that feedback.
So I can share feedback from my own interview process. And then for our clients, if I can get feedback from them and be able to give it to the candidate, that’s only going to help them to grow within their career. And then also, which helps you stand out comparative to other people that aren’t loving and aren’t considering it in the process.
So I it’s, I know I’ve heard someone communicate that as if you think about baseball cards, the free steak of bubble gum that you get, like everyone is in, especially in executive search and like specifically talking about that versus strategy or the other service lines.
But like in executive search, everyone’s focus is to fill the job, right? If you don’t, if you don’t ha find a candidate and fill the job, you don’t exist in the market. But our free stick of bubble gum is that we’re going to do it in a loving way, and we’re going to help both the client and the candidate and our vendors, and everyone that interacts with us to be able to grow and develop by know sharing feedback, and being telling the truth.
And you’re doing it during the little things that is more relationship focused.
Hannah: So practically speaking, let’s say you’re stressing. You get deadlines or whatever that you have and and you need to inform someone that they didn’t get a job. Let’s say taking your example. How do you not just write that really quick email and how do you, like, how do you stop yourself and pause and find the time to do that?
Chris: Yeah, tangibly it’s pretty easy. I think there’s two, two ways that I would go ahead and recommend that you do that either a delegate to someone else to set up the appointment for you, or be used a calendar automation tool to send it to them and saying, Hey, really want to share feedback.
Let’s set up a call when you’re available and then that way they have to schedule it for. And since they are someone who’s rejected, it doesn’t need to be, this is not one of your highest ranking priorities. And so they can just schedule it at their leisure. Okay. You don’t say that they’re rejected them.
They’re instantly obviously going to follow through,.
Hannah: Yeah. They’ll probably schedule that really quickly.
Hannah: I would like to, you made a really good point that That people are just overworked and stressed out in our culture. And it’s not that they don’t want to give you their time.
It’s just that they’re there. They’re overworked and they’re over-scheduled. And it made me think of actually today when we were eating lunch earlier together and I was just tired from the morning and I just wanted to vege out and not really talk. And and I wanted to give you more of my attention and effort and focus, but I just didn’t have it in me.
So I try to keep that in mind when I’m in, in business interactions myself and I’m thrown off by someone’s attitude or are they just seem they’re just not interested in talking to me or whatever that it might just be. Something like that, that they’re just tired. It has nothing to do with me.
And just to have empathy like that. So anyway, I just wanted to that just stuck out to me and I wanted to circle back on that. Similarly, where has business in virtue intersected for you?
Chris: Yeah, so I’m a human being and yes. And as I mentioned, Grew up with a lot of dysfunctions around me.
So I feel like there’s still a lot of, one of our show guests Leticia Nicole, she, I would say to quote her, she’s a continual work in progress. Like I feel that’s like a, such a perfect summary about leadership because the further that you go in management and leadership, the further you’re able to see and see the ways that you aren’t really the best leader, that there’s opportunities.
Improve. And so with like virtue in particular, there are, I’m not going to lie. It’s not I’m always like, okay, let’s do the thing. That’s going to work perfectly for the other person. And it’d be like the best strategy ever for all parties. No, I am like, I’m, I can be very evil, have my struggles too.
So there’s periods where I’ll start going down the wrong path. And then it really requires me to either have another person, call me out on that or to, while I think one of the things that I learned to it was just go back to the divorce.
I hate to keep hitting the D word, but anyways is I learned that oftentimes in life you don’t need to have an immediate answer. And it’s really great to also hit the pause and be like, you know what? I’ll get back to you on that. And so it’s if you have that heated email where someone is like, Hey, will you do this?
Like, how dare she asked me to do that? And is she just out of her mind? Crazy. Not even consider it at all of our organization like this isn’t where, it was like, you’d be like, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Writing just a wrong email. And then. Taking that time out.
Okay. I’m emotional right now. I should not be like writing this email at all. Sorry. Someone’s bugging me here shutting that down. So I, maybe I should not be sending this email at all in the moment. Maybe I should take that time out to, to cool down. And it’s then when you’re able to, for me, because I am a Catholic and a Christian, like that really means prayer for me, but maybe other people.
That are atheist or don’t believe in God, being able to spend that time to, go take a walk, to meditate, to calm down, to get centered again. So that you’re not just, taking those actions that are, really self-centered and so that happens, frequently and yeah, and I think, honestly, to give you an example of you’re like, okay that’s can you give me an example of that?
Hannah: Does it involve me?
Chris: Yeah my beautiful wife and darling, I think he recognized this frequently, but no no I’m drawing into a business scenario. We had an issue where I candidates basically six months into the job. She was absolutely crushing the position.
But due to a family situation had to opt out. And because we put a guarantee behind our, all of our placements for a year, if we don’t use work psychology or two years if our work psychologist works into the process we were just not upholding our standard. And so obviously the virtuous thing is to jump back in and up, do the things that you say that you’re going to do.
So adhere to the contractual terms. And so we did that. And the second candidate that we ended up getting hired I think her, your take-home was 20% more than the first candidates in our, and our contracts are structured on a total con first year’s total compensation. So on that basis, I have the legal right to basically ask the client to pay more money.
And I did
Hannah: And I donated it back to them I didn’t ask for it.
Chris: No, I did. I asked her because he was contractual terms. So I felt cause another thing with, at least for me as a leader is to follow that piece and to follow that that inner dialogue that you have do I feel peaceful about this?
And I did it right. I didn’t just like immediately go, okay, this person is make more money. You need to pay me. It was going to like, let me think about it. Okay. This makes sense. That’s it. So ultimately, but it was in the middle of the pandemic and the client was really struggling and she was just kinda left it up to me.
Like we’re not our division, isn’t doing the greatest. I know we’ve been able that you’ve been a long-term client contractually. Yes. Like you can do it like you let me know basically via an email. And so I just, I really just kinda took it to pray. And I was like, okay, is this what, what should I do?
Really is the question I was asking a prayer and what came back is okay can I provide is your whole future going to rest on this small amount of revenue? And is, and then also is this client worth it to basically forgo it for the future state of the relationship.
And the answer was like, yeah, clearly. And so I decided to say you know what, forget it. You guys have been so good to us. I know that there’ll be more work, et cetera. And what was funny about that is I think a month after we ended up taking four additional projects with that specific client, not in that division, but other divisions, but I’m just like the whole element of just it’s like, when you just continue to just keep doing the next right thing, just you just taking care of.
Hannah: So yeah, it always works out. I would love to hear the answer to this next question. What would you say to your 22 year old self?
Chris: I don’t know if I would say so much as just punch him in the head, like just your list that would
Hannah: You know that would affect you in the future too then you ended up just hurting, you feel the pain yourself?
Chris: But no, I think it, I think we’ve talked a lot about this and this in this episode, and I really wanted this to come across, which is just get here. Life is too short to be living in a dysfunctional and toxic way.
And if you find yourself speaking negatively about other people and you find yourself having emotional blowouts a lot, a couple of times per month, like maybe you need to like, check yourself to be thinking like, huh, is there something more here? And there’s so many beautiful accountability groups.
Alcoholics anonymous or Alanon or adult children of alcoholics, or if you go, that’s more slightly on the secular lens, but if you go into churches, then they have either like men’s groups or women’s groups, et cetera, where you can just do life with people and really be able to share what’s really going on in your life.
Because for me, growing up as an adult child of an alcoholic, like I hated conflict. Because back in back, growing up with that, whenever there was conflict, it just meant that there was going to be yelling and screaming going on. And so I just avoided it at all costs, but as a leader, good luck. You avoid conflicts, that’s going to go.
So yeah get healed and I think the second one too, which I didn’t really get to. Talk to a little bit about was like through that healing journey, I realized that I was like being the savior to, to my parents. And that really by being able to get free of that and to recognize that like they are their own people and they have to take accountability for their own lives that I don’t have to like, be there to say.
That really freed me up to, to be able to go off and start this company and do all the amazing things that we’re currently doing, which, prayerfully is blessing other people.
Hannah: Is there anything else that you wanted to share that we didn’t get.
Chris: Yeah. But I think that with the timeline that we have for each podcast episode, I think we’ve hit it.
And I, I also suspect that I’ll probably have more episodes down the road too, but for now I feel good about where we’re at for the episode. Yeah.
Hannah: Christopher, thank you so much for being with us. It’s great to have you on your podcast. And then I’ll see you in a few minutes at some other meeting, Where can people find you?
Chris: Yeah, so our organization is Spirit Consulting. You can find us at www.spiritmco.com as in management and consulting organization.com. And then you can find the nonprofit that I founded at www.catholicsportscamps.org And for the organization that food rescues a million meals per year for the homeless, you can find that organization at riveroflightchicago.org.
And and then you can find me on LinkedIn and all sorts of social media platforms. So look forward to continuing the dialogue.
Hannah: All right. There you have it. We have interviewed the CEO, the interviewer, and my husband, and I hope you all enjoyed it. Thank you, Chris. And we’ll see you next time.
Chris: Thank you, Hannah.
Hey, Chris here. Hope you enjoyed the episode where we discussed all things going bald, just joking, the leading virtuously podcast. If you enjoyed the episode and the podcast, will you please subscribe on YouTube or apple podcasts or Spotify, or you can also share it with a friend that would be tubular. I hope you have an awesome day.