Reframe & Reset Your Career Podcast

Episode 25. The Success Factor – Dr Ruth Gotian

Looking for insights into the four attributes that high achievers, like Olympic athletes, Nobel Prize winners and astronauts share and how this can help you improve your performance? Dr Ruth Gotian, discussed this, career development strategies and much more on Episode 25 of the Reframe & Reset Your Career podcast.

In this episode, we will learn about:

Her love of soccer from an early age and how she became the only girl on her soccer team;

How high achievers’ growth mindset helps them overcome challenges;

Following her passion to move from finance into learning and education;

The P.I.E. concept and how your exposure is significantly more important than your performance to professional success;

How Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan focused on the fundamentals and building strong foundations;

Discovering four attributes shared by high achievers: intrinsic motivation, perseverance, strong foundation, constantly learning through informal means;

Innovation & Creativity;

Being open to learning from the most appropriate person, even if less experienced;

Finding suitable mentors who connect with your learning style;

How a security guard helped Ruth find a mentor for her PhD;

Building your network through relationships and giving more than you receive;

Career development strategies including volunteering, especially outside your field and network and

Taking control of what you are able to control like Olympic athletes.

Ruth is the Chief Learning Officer and Assistant Professor of Education in Anesthesiology and former Assistant Dean of Mentoring and Executive Director of the Mentoring Academy at Weill Cornell Medicine. She has been hailed by the journal Nature and Columbia University as an expert in mentoring and leadership development and is currently a contributor to Forbes and Psychology Today where she writes about ‘optimizing success’. She also has a weekly show and podcast by the same name where she gathers high achievers to talk about their journey to success. In 2021, she was one of 30 people worldwide to be named to the Thinkers50 Radar List, dubbed the Oscars of management thinking and is a semi-finalist for the Forbes 50 Over 50 list.

During her extensive career, she has personally coached and mentored thousands of people ranging from undergraduates to faculty members.  As Assistant Dean for Mentoring she oversaw the success of nearly 1,800 faculty members at Weill Cornell Medicine. Currently, she researches the most successful people of our generation, including Nobel laureates, astronauts, CEOs and Olympic champions, in order to learn about their habits and practices so that we may optimize our own success.

Ruth was awarded the prestigious Thinkers50 2021 RADAR award and is the author of “The Success Factor” which is a great read.

Ruth received her B.S. and M.S. in Business Management from the University at Stony Brook in New York and certificates in Executive Leadership and Managing for Execution from Cornell University. She earned her doctorate at Teachers College Columbia University where she studied Adult Learning and Leadership and focused her research on optimizing success.

Ruth told me “Everyone thinks, I’m going to do a good job, people will recognise it and I will get promoted or recognised or whatever it is. The problem is that’s not how it works! There’s been a lot of research on this for over a quarter of a century and the needle has not moved on this … remember the word pie, P.I.E. … P is performance, I is your image and E is your exposure … the amount of your success that’s actually based on your performance … is only 10%, that’s it, 10%, your image is 30% and your exposure is 60%!”.


People & Resources mentioned

Tim Grover

Kobe Bryant

Michael Jordan

Dr Beau Lotto

Dr Robert B. Cialdini

Andy Lopata

Sally Helgesen

Marshall Goldsmith


Contact Ruth






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It would be great to hear from you, the listeners, and your thoughts about the podcast, YouTube channel or just to say hello, it’s always a pleasure to hear from you. I have had some great reviews but not had any way of responding. Thanks so much for your support and have a great week!


*Reframe & Reset Your Career, including any comments made by the host and guests, is for informational purposes only and does not constitute advice of any description, including but not restricted to financial, legal, investing or medical advice.*

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