August 24, 2021

167: Cultivate a Culture of Love with Mohammad Anwar and Frank Danna

Love in the workplace may seem like a big no-no, but when applied to the organization’s culture, it’s surprisingly appropriate. A culture of love puts people first which is not only good for morale and engagement, it’s also good for the bottom line.

Today’s guests are Mohammad Anwar and Frank Danna. Mohammad and Frank are co-authors of the Wall Street Journal Bestselling book Love as a Business Strategy. Mohammad is the CEO of Softway and in his spare time, he enjoys fitness, watching college sports, and butchering American idioms.

Frank is Director of Culture at Softway and in his spare time, he writes children’s books, makes silly videos, and also enjoys fitness.

Frank, Mohammad and I talk about the idea of love in business. What love is, why it matters, what they learned applying love as a strategy in their own work, and how you can adopt a similar approach.

Five members of The Modern Manager get a free copy of their book Love as a Business Strategy. Get 50% off additional copies until September 7, 2021. Learn more about membership and join at

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Read the related blog article: Lessons For Managers From Love As A Business Strategy


LinkedIn – Mohammad:
LinkedIn – Frank:
Seneca Leaders:

Key Takeaways:

  • Love as a business strategy works when we maximize profits by prioritizing our people. To do this, we need to create a culture of love based on six pillars.
  • The first pillar is inclusion; making sure everyone has a voice and seat at the table. Inclusion of both visible (like race and gender) and invisible (like educational background and personality) diversity elements is critical.
  • The second pillar is empathy; putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. It is a skill that can be practiced and developed, not a trait.
  • The third pillar is vulnerability; taking ownership for your mistakes. This leads to greater trust.
  • The fourth pillar is (unpredictive) trust; believing our staff can handle what they haven’t yet tried.
  • The fifth pillar is empowerment; setting up your staff for success so they can own their projects and succeed.
  • The sixth pillar is forgiveness; letting go of the past. Without a culture of forgiveness, we will feel wronged, lash out, and create divisions and cliques.
  • Leading a culture of love requires introspection. Reflection is thinking about what actions you could do differently. Introspection questions your mindset itself and asks why you feel the way you or how you could interpret things differently.
  • Empathetic leaders are better than sympathetic leaders, because they not only acknowledge the pain, they get involved in collaborative problem-solving.

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