Menttium Matters

In this episode, Al Johnson, Sr. Director of Supplier Management at Grainger, shares the lessons he’s learned on motivating and inspiring people to be their best, balancing the macro and micro aspects of leadership, developing a strong executive presence, and creating and executing a strategic plan. Al is an expert negotiator and reveals how a person can strengthen their negotiation and conflict management skills by changing their mindset going into a negotiation. He also offers tips for creating a strong multi-generational workforce. Al shares his habits for success, his advice to young professionals, and his favorite quote. Al’s recommended leadership books can be found on the show notes for this episode.

Video Segments: 

The value of negotiation

Al Johnson, Senior Director shares his perspective on the value of negotiation as a critical tool for conflict resolution. Seek to understand.

The value of a mentor

Al Johnson shares his perspective on the value of a mentor.

Advice for early career professionals

Al Johnson shares his advise with up & coming leaders including building connections.

Daily habits of reading and tackling difficult tasks early

Al Johnson shares daily habits that have influenced success in his career.

Strategic Planning & Goal Setting

Having a vision for where you want to go often starts when where you are at and where you have been. Then, create milestones that are executable. Hear Al Johnson talk about practical strategic planning and goal setting.

How to lead from a macro and micro perspective

Leadership is about influencing, connecting and inspiring individuals. Be visible, available and connected as a leader and that will help you be effective. Al Johnson is a Menttium mentee alumni and current mentor.


Being a good leader is about asking questions and being consistent. Al Johnson shares his insight into the little things that need be done consistently to be an effective leader.

Go together to accomplish big goals as a team

Ubuntu, an African Proverb, states that you can go faster together than you can go alone. Hear from Al Johnson as he shares how Ubuntu has become a mantra for his team.

Generational Gap & Commonalities

Al Johnson shares his experience with Generational ERGs and the benefits of understanding each others commonalities.