Sunday, January 2, 2022

Q&A with Susan Kushnir and Barbara Sucoff


Susan Kushnir



Susan Kushnir and Barbara Sucoff are the authors of the new book Decoding Executives. Kushnir has held senior leadership positions with various companies, including Sterling National Bank and S&P Global. Sucoff is the founder and president of Focused Consulting, a boutique consulting firm. 


Q: What inspired you to write this book, and how did you collaborate on it?


A: Sue had always wanted to write a business book based on the learnings she had over the years. (Her first book had been a textbook). Barb had been a training partner at a firm where Sue managed the Learning & Development department. We had a great collaborative relationship and a tremendous amount of mutual respect for one another.

Barbara Sucoff

When Sue got serious about writing a business book she reached out to Barb and asked if Barb would collaborate. Of course Barb was honored and said yes... which leads us to where we are today! 

Q: What do you consider the most important elements of communicating with executives?


A: It's most important to pay attention and to recognize that one size doesn't fit all. And even when you think you have the executive figured out, it is important not to remain static with that their company changes, market conditions change, competition changes, the executive will likely change as well.


It’s also key to not only ask really great, not so obvious questions, but also to demonstrate that you are listening to the answers and providing insights or feedback based on the answers to the questions. 

Q: Who do you see as the ideal readership for the book?


A: There are a few populations who would benefit from the book.


First-time workers - those who are just entering the workforce. This would provide them the opportunity to understand the potential “landmines” before they step on them.


People who have been in the workforce for a long time and have gotten a little too comfortable in their approach.


Anyone wanting to influence an executive - a sales person trying to sell something to an organization or some internal meeting with a high level executive.

Q: What do you hope people take away from the book?


A: We hope they are better prepared for their next meeting and meet their objectives, buy lots of books, and bring our training into their organization!

Q: What are you working on now?


A: We have a lot of exciting ventures heating up including:


Barb and Sue are creating Microlearning videos and training programs to support the concepts in Decoding Executives.


Barb is writing a sales book.


Sue is launching Quantum Leap Consulting, a consulting firm specializing in Talent, Training and Coaching. She also toys with the idea of writing a romance novel.


--Interview with Deborah Kalb

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