Culture At Work: The Importance Of Cultivating What You Want, with Winn Claybaugh

Dr Daniel Amen and Tana Amen BSN RN On The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

People need a reason for what they do. They need a “why?” that drives them towards their purpose. So what actions can you take to give a “why?” to yourself and those around you? In this episode of The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast, Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen are again joined by author and Paul Mitchell School founder Winn Claybaugh to discuss how philanthropy transforms relationships, and why modeling behavior can be key to effective parenting.

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Dr. Daniel Amen: Welcome to The Brain Warriors Way Podcast. I'm Dr. Daniel Amen.
Tana Amen: And, I'm Tana Amen. In our podcast, we provide you with the tools you need to become a warrior for the health of your brain and body.
Dr. Daniel Amen: The Brain Warriors Way Podcast is brought to you by Amen Clinics, where we have been transforming lives for 30 years, using tools like brain spect imaging to personalize treatment to your brain. For more information, visit
Tana Amen: The Brain Warriors Podcast is also brought to you by Brain M.D., where we produce the highest quality nutriceuticals to support the health of your brain and body. To learn more, go to
Welcome back. We are here with our good friend, Winn Claybaugh. And he's just ... You're so wonderful. Everything you do with the Paul Mitchell Schools, you're co-owner of the Paul Mitchell Schools. But, one thing I love is your philanthropy work.
So, you've brought philanthropy into work. And, in our last episode, we just, we talked about all the amazing things you do, your book, Be Nice Or Else. I mean, all that's amazing.
But, what I really want to talk about in this episode is, why. Why did you find it so important to bring philanthropy into work? And, we were at your event, and the event is spectacular. It's amazing.
Winn Claybaugh: Thank you, and yeah. The event is important, but leading up to that event was three months of fundraising, which, by the way, we do every single year. So, it's not just one weekend of a walkathon and how we raise money, and create that awareness for the charities and the organizations that we support. It's ongoing.
Tana Amen: So, it's a culture.
Winn Claybaugh: It has to be. That's the perfect word for it. Because culture is what you stand for. And anytime two or more people come together, there's a culture. Either you decide what that culture looks like and feels like, or it's going to be decided for you.
Tana Amen: Right.
Winn Claybaugh: We made the decision that that culture had to be about giving back for a couple of reasons. Number one, that's how I was raised, so ...
Tana Amen: Interesting.
Winn Claybaugh: Yeah, I'm getting emotional. I am my mother's son. So, that's how we were taught.
Tana Amen: Oh, wow.
Winn Claybaugh: Eight kids in the family, you couldn't think only about yourself, because there was people everywhere. And, you have to take care of the lady down the street. And, you have to take care of the neighbor who was sick. And, you have to reach out to your community. That's how we were raised.
Tana Amen: Wow, that's so special.
Winn Claybaugh: And, the good news is, I started my company that way 35 years ago, so back when we did not have the money to write out a five dollar check to make a donation, we knew that we had energy. We knew that we had time. And, some people are really good at writing out checks. And, some people are really good at just showing up and volunteering with their skills and whatever it is that they have.
But, we could go to the statistic side of this, that statistically, business who do give back, where they're just as interested as putting money and good works out into the community as they are with putting money into their own pocket, of course, customers are more loyal to that. I can choose to do business with this pizza parlor, or that pizza parlor. Why am I going to choose one over the other?
It's not just on price. It's not just based on quality. It's the culture. And, is it a culture that gives back? Meaning, do they take care of their people? And, when you find out that employees are mistreated in an organization, or that they're not supporting whatever's happening in the local community. Meaning that all they care about is profit, you're not attracted to that type of a business. And so, if somebody does not have that kind heart or that giving heart the way I was raised, just for business reasons only, you absolutely need to have a component of philanthropy and giving back.
Tana Amen: Mm, I love that.
Dr. Daniel Amen: Plus, how does it change the way people feel about what they do?
Tana Amen: Mm-hmm (affirmative), given the sense of ownership and pride.
Dr. Daniel Amen: Right.
Winn Claybaugh: Well, we try to break it down and make it real simple, that for people to feel connected, engaged, because when they're not engaged, they don't show up. About when, if people do feel engaged, to make it real simple, they need to feel that they are loved. They need to feel that they are safe.
Tana Amen: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Winn Claybaugh: They need to feel that they belong. They need to feel that they have a purpose, that they're making a difference. You could have two janitors working for the same elementary school. Same salary, same hours, same responsibility. One janitor looks at his job like, well, these brats make a mess and I have to clean it up. And, the other janitor says, I create a clean educational experience for the next generation.
Tana Amen: Right, right.
Winn Claybaugh: So, one has a job with a paycheck, and the other one has a mission.
Tana Amen: Right.
Winn Claybaugh: We want to create a mission, a purpose for people. It doesn't matter what they're doing. It doesn't matter what they're selling. People need to have a mission. They need to have a purpose.
Tana Amen: It starts with why.
Winn Claybaugh: Their why. It's what, you need a legacy.
Dr. Daniel Amen: And also, where you bring your attention determines how you feel.
Winn Claybaugh: Yes.
Dr. Daniel Amen: So, just the examples of janitors, where they bring their focus determines how they feel. Talk about some of the organizations that the Paul Mitchell Fund Raiser supports.
Winn Claybaugh: Okay, as you mentioned, today we've raised 21 million dollars. And, I'm proud to say that we have given away 21 million. And, that's always important, because some people raise the money, and then they have high overhead and how they, and that's just not us.
So, we've given away 21 million. We have zero overhead in how we raise the money.
Tana Amen: Wow.
Winn Claybaugh: But, we support Food For Africa. We've given them over a million dollars, and provided 26 million meals in the last 10 years.
Tana Amen: Wow.
Winn Claybaugh: So, every single day, we're feeding, clothing, and educating 10 thousand orphans every single day in Africa. We have partnered with Gary Sinise and his foundation to build smart homes for triple and quadruple amputees, true war heroes. We are supporting Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, which supports 170 hospitals around the country. We've given them 1.4 million dollars.
Tana Amen: That's awesome.
Winn Claybaugh: We support ... Oh my gosh, No Limits, Kathy Buckley's organization, that provides education and support for low income families who have deaf and hard of hearing children.
Dr. Daniel Amen: [crosstalk 00:06:08]
Winn Claybaugh: And so, it just goes on and on.
Dr. Daniel Amen: Yeah, some of the stories [crosstalk 00:06:11].
Winn Claybaugh: Can I tell you, it's very grass roots, though. Because you know, raising 21 million dollars, people think that we're getting these thousand dollar donations, and we're not.
Tana Amen: Right, right.
Winn Claybaugh: Our average donation is 10 dollars.
Tana Amen: Wow.
Winn Claybaugh: Yeah, we're not getting the big donations, it's 10 dollars.
Tana Amen: So, you have a lot of people helping.
Winn Claybaugh: A lot of people. Well again, it's ... So, every single day during that three month campaign, every one of my schools is doing some type of fund raising event. So, they're doing a bake sale that will raise 50 dollars that day, because they stayed home and made cookies the night before.
Tana Amen: That's amazing.
Winn Claybaugh: Or, they're doing a car wash in the parking lot. Or, they're doing a cut-a-thon. Or, they're doing a fashion show and charging tickets for it. But again, the average donation is 10 dollars. Can I just tell you ... And, they're very creative. So, our school in Orlando held a topless car wash. So, they advertised this topless car wash.
So, everybody showed up. But, what it meant was, they didn't wash the top of your car. If you wanted a top wash, you had to pay extra for that. And, they raised 15 hundred dollars in a day.
Tana Amen: That's hilarious.
Winn Claybaugh: Isn't that great?
Tana Amen: That is so great. That is so great.
Winn Claybaugh: Now, you can imagine how engaged those people were.
Tana Amen: Oh, my God.
Winn Claybaugh: My students, my team members are so engaged. You know, I'm going to work today, and what am I doing? I'm doing a car wash today, to raise money for something that I'm passionate about.
Tana Amen: But, they sound funny and fun. And, they totally took ownership of that.
Winn Claybaugh: Right.
Tana Amen: That's fun. Yeah, that's awesome.
Dr. Daniel Amen: So, in my book, Feel Better Fast, And Make It Last, there's a section about purpose and pleasure. And, we have pleasure centers deep in our brain. And, it gets dinged when the phone buzzes, if you're watching things you shouldn't be watching. For things like cocaine. And, but, are you going to stimulate your pleasure centers in a way that wears them out? Or, in a way that makes it last? And that's Feel Better Fast, And Make It Last.
And my sense is, the stories of giving never get old for you.
Winn Claybaugh: No.
Dr. Daniel Amen: That they always give you that sense of joy. And, at the fundraiser, there's just non stop joy with the stories.
Tana Amen: Yeah.
Winn Claybaugh: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Tana Amen: And, what I loved was some of the people who were on the receiving end of that, and it was just so great to see some of these stories, and how these people went on to, themselves, have very purposeful, meaningful lives that made a huge difference in the world.
Winn Claybaugh: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Tana Amen: It was so cool.
Winn Claybaugh: Well, and, although our students and our team members raised a ton of money, for the most part, they're not going to meet the people that benefited from that. They're not going to meet these 10 thousand orphans. They're not going to meet the people who had a smart home built for them. But, it's important to tell those stories, because I believe the best teachers, leaders, mentors, are story-tellers. And, the more we can tell stories that engages people to bring them in.
Tana Amen: Yeah, but you had some pretty powerful testimonials there. It was really cool.
Winn Claybaugh: Thank you.
Tana Amen: Yeah.
Dr. Daniel Amen: So, what I'm learning is that, your mom modeled giving.
Winn Claybaugh: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Dr. Daniel Amen: And, as a leader, you model giving, and you actually have a seven year old daughter.
Winn Claybaugh: Yeah.
Tana Amen: She's so cute.
Dr. Daniel Amen: And, she has been part of philanthropy. Why is that important to you?
Winn Claybaugh: Again, I want to raise a beautiful daughter that is focused on the right thing. And nowadays, little girls, young adults, grown adults, can be focused on absolutely, the wrong thing.
Tana Amen: Mm-hmm (affirmative), oh my gosh, yeah. I have a daughter, too. I know that battle.
Winn Claybaugh: Gosh, it scares [crosstalk 00:09:50].
Tana Amen: Social media, and it's just crazy.
Winn Claybaugh: Oh, just things like, we have made a decision that she will not have an iPhone until she's 18 years old. And, I know that that's going to be a struggle. And, I have all of the facts and the write ups of why this is a good thing. And, I'm committing with other parents, you're committed to that too? Because if my daughter doesn't have one, but your 10 year old daughter does, we're going to have a problem with that.
Tana Amen: Right, it's hard, yeah.
Winn Claybaugh: Yeah, so there's so many other things, what gets blasted at people. I never watch negative reality shows.
Tana Amen: Yeah, me either. I have them.
Winn Claybaugh: It just, I have to stay away from that. I divorced myself from that, because I know what I'm capable of in a negative way.
Tana Amen: Like, Fox News, and CNN.
Winn Claybaugh: See, I can't go there, because I'm very, very energy sensitive.
Tana Amen: I can't either, me too.
Winn Claybaugh: Yeah, I have to stay away from it.
Tana Amen: He saw me screaming at the TV one day, and I'm like, "All right, I have to stop watching the news, because it just ... "
Winn Claybaugh: Oh, you can't.
Tana Amen: I get so angry, so I can't.
Winn Claybaugh: So, that's why I want my daughter to focus on other things. And so, I love it that she wakes up and says, "Daddy, let's go pick up trash." Can we have breakfast first, sweetheart?
Tana Amen: Mm-hmm (affirmative), that's amazing.
Winn Claybaugh: Can we please have breakfast first? You know, but the whole ...
Dr. Daniel Amen: But, you're modeling. I mean, this is so important for you and your children. You are modeling health, and you're modeling philanthropy, or giving. Or, you're modeling being self-centered. And when you focus on just yourself, that's when people get sad. They get mad. They get depressed. And, teenage depression in girls has sky-rocketed in the last 30 years.
Did you know, cancers actually decline 27 percent since 1999. Suicide has gone up 33 percent. And so, we're making all these great technological, medical advances, but we're not doing it for psychiatry. Because one, we ignore the brain, which is why we do this podcast. But, two is, we're just focused on the wrong things. So, what you're doing with Sophia is just so special.
Tana Amen: Yeah, I want to add one quick thing to that. So, I have a teenage daughter, and she's just so special and she's so cute. But, she's at a tough age, because in our society, just like you said, she's very involved in church and all that really helps. Like, she gets involved. But, the thing that made the biggest difference was, she's at this point now where, initially it starts because kids have to get involved in community service for ... You know, they got to figure their community service hours.
Winn Claybaugh: Right.
Tana Amen: But, she decided, well, I at least want to do something that's meaningful to me. So, she got involved in Girls, Inc., which is a great organization that helps empower young girls who are at a disadvantage, basically.
Winn Claybaugh: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Tana Amen: And, she fell so much in love with it, and it really helped her attitude so much, that actually, she's now getting involved at a different level, not because of school. But, it's just, it's such an important thing to your point, to take your focus off of yourself, especially in this society.
Winn Claybaugh: Well, you exposed her to that. So, I want to expose my seven year old daughter to that, but I also want to expose, as a good leader, I want to expose my team members. I want to expose my customers to that. Because some of them did not come with that element. Some of them were not trained by Mom and Dad that, hey, you have to give back and raise money for causes that are important to us.
Tana Amen: Well, some of them are trying to survive themselves, let's face it.
Winn Claybaugh: [crosstalk 00:12:59] especially in the world of arts, which is what I'm in.
Dr. Daniel Amen: So, when we come back, we're going to talk about how to use your brain to build a better business, and a better life. Stay with us.
Tana Amen: If you're enjoying The Brain Warriors Way Podcast, please don't forget to subscribe so you'll always know when there's a new episode. And, while you're at it, feel free to give us a review or five star rating, as that helps others find the podcast.
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