Rob Fazio on Leading Through Adversity with Resilience, Growth Mindset & Mental Toughness

Rob Fazio founder of Hold the Door open for others and author of simple is the new smart on inspired wisdom podcast with cynder niemelaRob Fazio, PhD Builds Resilience In People and Organizations:

On September 11, 2001, Rob’s dad, Ronald Fazio, was on the 99th floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center in NYC. Ron looked out the window that fateful morning and was one of the first people to see the North Tower hit.

At the time, Rob was a grad student. He recalls the next few days as he, his brother and mother searched for Ron. However, they learned that while Ron had successfully exited the building to safety, he returned to hold the door open for others. Tragically, Ron Fazio was killed that day.

On 9/11 Rob lost his dad in an act of kindness. What did he learn about himself and navigating challenging times?

Pay it Forward

Rob tells us how he and his family turned their dad’s tragic death into his legacy. They formed a not-for-profit agency called Hold the Door for Others. Their mission is to empower people to grow through loss and adversity to achieve their dreams. They teach the skills of resilience and strength to navigate loss and grief.

We all experience loss of varying intensities. It’s our shared human experience. However, we humans aren’t necessarily equipped to navigate loss in a healthy way. Rob gives us practical strategies for proactively responding to the wave of emotions that follow loss.



My interview with Rob will be of benefit if you want:

  • A structure for understanding what drives your people to better motivate them
  • A model for helping your employees find meaning and purpose in their life
  • To have more control over guiding your business and your life
  • A simple strategy to influence and engage people
  • Are doing what is expected of you and more; but, at the end of the day you are spent and feel you are on a never-ending treadmill

Highlights of my interview with Rob:

  • Mental Toughness: intentionally having multiple strategies for doing something with one’s emotions vs. being blind sighted
  • Post Traumatic Growth: you can have trauma and grow at the same time, but you have to process the trauma first to heal in a healthy way.
  • Hold the Door For Others: When people develop growth skills and strength, they are less likely to be impacted by adverse events like layoffs, business shut down, crisis, personal catastrophe. 
  • Growth Skills
  • Hierarchy of Loss
  • Leading through Crisis: creating resilience in people and organizations
  • Motivational Currency Calculator: A Simple Approach to a Complex Challenge
    • People are more engaged, loyal and productive when they are able to be re-energized
  • The healthy way to create disruption in the workplace
  • Simple is the New Smart: his book features success strategies gleaned from over a decade and a half of working with athletes, executives, and people driven toward excellence.


Listen to my interview with Rob by clicking on the green arrow below:


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Cynder Niemela hosts the inspired wisdom podcast on itunes

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Bio and Links

Rob Fazio founded hold the door for others with cynder niemela on Inspired wisdom podcastDr. Rob Fazio is the Managing Partner at OnPoint Advising specializing in global leadership and organizational success. His approach to advising combines original research on power, influence, conversations, and motivation as well as over 20 years of consulting to elite performers.

Based on his experiences in sport psychology and executive development, he teaches clients how to remove barriers to function at optimal levels. He has worked with executive teams and coached executives throughout organizations including the C-Suite, surgeons, and emerging leaders.

Dr. Fazio has contributed to Forbes, NBC News, NY Daily News, HER Magazine, CEO Magazine, Philadelphia Business Journal, and American Management Association. His advice on navigating turbulent times and politics has been featured in the NY Times and on CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, and local networks.

His book, Simple is the New Smart (foreword by Neil Cavuto), features success strategies he has gleaned from over a decade and a half of working with athletes, executives, and people driven toward excellence.

Recently, he developed the Motivational Currency® Calculator. This self-assessment reveals what drives people, how well someone can read another person’s motivators, and how effective someone is at using the best approach to tap into someone’s motivators.

He has developed significant expertise in advising Fortune 500 organizations globally develop, advise, and retain employees based on a future-oriented strategy, organizational values, culture, and person/position fit. He has worked internationally in a variety of industries including finance/banking, private equity, accounting, media, pharmaceuticals, hospitals, telecommunications, chemicals, retail, sports, public utilities, and nonprofits. Rob is often asked to be a keynote speaker or facilitator at executive offsites.

Dr. Fazio has served as a performance excellence consultant to a variety of organizations and athletic teams. He participated in the development and facilitation of the life-skills portion of the NFL’s Coaching Academy and the PGA’s 1st Tee programs.

He is the founder and President of a September 11th inspired nonprofit organization, Hold The Door For Others. The organization’s mission is to empower people to grow through any type of loss and adversity and achieve their dreams.

Prior to starting OnPoint Advising, he worked at Leadership Research Institute and Hay Group. Rob completed his B.A. in Psychology at The Pennsylvania State University. He earned an M.Ed. in Athletic Counseling from Springfield College and an MS in Counseling Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Dr. Fazio earned his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, with a subspecialty in consulting, and completed his clinical rotation at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Fazio is a Licensed Psychologist in the state of Pennsylvania. He lives just outside Philadelphia in Haddonfield, NJ with his wife Keli and daughter Reese.

Connect with Rob:

About Inspired Wisdom

Our mission is to bring together successful entrepreneurs, leaders, and individuals around a global campfire and help them design a fulfilling and prosperous life that engages their talents and passions. To that end, I am interviewing people from 100 countries who are working with heart and mind for positive social impact. I now have several great conversations produced and scheduled with people in Africa, South Africa, India, Indonesia, Asia, US, UK, and Europe. They are TED Fellows, leaders, artists, entrepreneurs authors, professors, and coaches.

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