In episode 25 of “Yates in Your Face,” Greg discusses the value of transparency in your leadership, even when it’s uncomfortable and vulnerable.

Growing up, books, TV, and movies would have us believe that heroes are superhuman. They are invincible and live a life above the mess that us “humans” have to go through.


That maybe the story they tell in the fiction world, but here in the REAL world we know that heroes are all of us. Heroes are first responders and those who serve our country. People that have lost it all, and came back swinging. Cancer survivors. Folks who dedicate their lives to the work of missionaries and spear head charity organizations. AND SO MUCH MORE.

We are heroes. And, I’ve not yet heard a story of a real life hero that wasn’t a little bit messy. Because, LIFE IS MESSY. And, we are human.

Mess and all, those stories need to be shared with out end. That’s how we lift each other up. That’s how we make a difference.


I’ve got a confession to make. This isn’t easy for me. I have a hard time letting go of my fears and my failures. I’ve learned a lot about leadership over the years because I’ve spent so many years living it. I thought I was…well practically perfect!

The first chapter in my book narrates the attitude I had about church and others when I was in the height of my circumstantial glory. The book title, interestingly, is called “Broken”.

Yea…you guessed it.

I was one of those guys who was pretty sure I was indestructible. You’ve heard the phrase…. Pride cometh before the fall. I was broken.

So now, here I am, looking in my rear view mirror at my life to see if something is catching up with me; my regrets are back there.

To be honest, I loved that guy at the time…and now I hate him. I see him for who he was. He got a lot of things right. But he blew it all up and that’s all I can remember.

Let’s be real.

Unless you’ve been broken, you want to believe there is a hero out there who can tell you a success story you can follow. You can get there without a scratch: three easy payments of $9.99. I was sure nobody wanted to hear about a guy who was broken. A sad story of a sad failure. The poster boy for fast and furious…crashed and burned.

Where was I? Oh yea…I have to confess.

Yea, that’s where I started, right? Confessing? I hate failing. I hate it. I hate feeling that for one second I would forget it and feel ok about myself. I don’t deserve to feel good. I don’t mind telling other people it’s ok and I understand… but when it comes to me, I don’t understand. It will NEVER be ok.

But, here’s the deal, right in the middle of this I’ve had the chance to talk with other broken people. I’ve talked with people who believe that if their hidden issues were public, they’d be hated too. I’ve talked with people so overwhelmed by fear and doubt they can barely keep their forcefields up, but they manage somehow…for now.

I’ve had people drive to my home from a distance just to talk to me after reading my book. They can’t believe it’s ok to talk about being broken. I feel like a priest as they unload. Why isn’t it ok for us to be broken?

WE HATE BROKENNESS. It’s weakness. It’s the disgusting admission of failure. Maybe it’s not sending you to prison but it’s swirling puke that feels better after you vomit. For a while.

I learned the hard way that brokenness is the first step to breakthrough. I don’t think you have to have catastrophic brokenness like I did, but as long as you’re afraid of the truth, you’ll never have breakthrough.

About Greg

Greg Yates has been a Chicago area businessman for over 30 years. He’s the author of the book, "Broken - How Being Broken Unlocked The Greatest Success of My Life". He has simultaneously owned 14 different businesses in a variety of industries; including real estate, manufacturing, payroll, and technology. Greg has also been an investor and a board member. He attended Olivet Nazarene University. He has a passion for flying. He’s had a pilot’s license for over 30 years and owned a variety of airplanes. Greg and his wife Vicki have been married over 37 years. They have a son, a daughter and seven grandchildren.

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