December 20, 2022

A Rebel’s Heart & A Leader’s Mind with Allison Minutillo

by Hacker Valley Studio

Show Notes

Allison Minutillo, President of Rebel Interactive Group and Host of the Rebel Leadership podcast, joins the Hacker Valley team this week to talk about her journey from individual contributor to company leader. With a leader’s mind and a rebel’s heart, Allison wants Rebel Interactive Group to break down barriers and say what needs to be said. In this episode, Allison talks about intuition vs insecurity, practitioners vs leaders, and burning out vs staying invested and engaged in the world around you. 

 

Timecoded Guide:

[00:00] Shifting from an employee to a leadership mindset 

[07:44] Getting real about leadership struggles on the Rebel Leadership podcast

[13:24] Rebelling for the great good of your company & yourself

[19:40] Finding career inspiration as a business owner & company president

[25:41] Struggling to realize your full leadership potential as an individual

 

Sponsor Links:

Thank you to our sponsors Axonius and NetSPI for bringing this security podcast to life! 

Life is complex. But it’s not about avoiding challenges or fearing failure. Just ask Simone Biles — the greatest gymnast of all time. Want to learn more about how Simone controls complexity? Watch her video at axonius.com/simone

For more than 2 decades, NetSPI has helped companies discover and remediate critical security issues through its platform-driven, human-delivered security test. NetSPI is much more than a pentesting company, bringing you the most comprehensive suite of offensive security solutions. Visit netspi.com/HVM to learn more.

 

What went into that mindset shift from individual contributor to the leader for you? 

Leadership was an appealing concept to Allison, but stepping into the role of President at a company was beyond her wildest dreams. Being close to Bryn, the former President of Rebel, opened her eyes to the qualities of leadership she wanted in herself. However, the true mindset shift from contributor to leader came from Bryn’s understanding of Allison’s skills. It wasn’t until he brought up her being his successor that Allison saw the leader she knew she could be. 

“I set my sights on what I thought was high. I started over-talking to [Bryn, at Rebel] because I was so nervous, and he said, ‘No, I'm talking about you being my successor, about you being president of Rebel.’ I instantly stopped everything I was saying and it became crystal clear.”

 

What exactly is Rebel Leadership and how does it relate back to your philosophies?

The term “rebel leadership” is a concept that existed before Allison’s Rebel Leadership podcast began, but it embodies what Allison hopes Rebel Interactive Group represents for all of its clients. Being a rebel isn’t just about breaking the rules or telling it like it is, it’s about making a difference. Being a rebel leader is about challenging the status quo for the greater good of your clients, your employees, and your industry.

“It's not rebelling for rebels' sake, it's that we're not good with the status quo. We're not okay with it, but we're not careless. We rebel with purpose. It's informed. It's data backed, it's compelling, it's precise, it's meaningful. We are not afraid to state what needs to be said.” 

 

What do you say to those leaders that approach leadership almost like being a martyr? 

The hustle and grind of being a leader can feel like endless amounts of hard work. However, in Allison’s experience, overworking yourself and refusing to disconnect maximizes the pain, but minimizes what you gain. Burnout is real, and cybersecurity practitioners definitely know burnout can be fatal for your career. Allison advises resting and giving yourself the time to reflect at the end of a long day, instead of forcing yourself to be a martyr. 

“Doing that next ‘to-do’ list on your couch at 10:30 pm when you're spent and you're drained is not going to make you the leader you want to be tomorrow. It's going to make you frustrated and tired and not able to perform at a high level the next day.”

 

How do you differentiate the good advice of intuition from your inner echo chamber of not-so-good advice?

It’s easy to get caught up in the eternal inner echo chamber when trying hard to learn and reflect on your experiences. Allison has had this happen to her, too; getting caught up in reading online comments and letting self-doubt control her thoughts. However, Allison explains that the grit of a true leader can drive you through the setbacks of criticism, whether that criticism comes from outside or within. What matters most is choosing to believe in yourself as a leader. 

“That's when grit and will come in, in those moments where you're at the bottom of the barrel. Do you believe in yourself? Are you going to choose to believe in yourself, or are you going to choose to believe the comments?” 

---------------

Links:

Keep up with our guest Allison Minutillo on LinkedIn

Learn more about Rebel Interactive Group on LinkedIn and the Rebel website

Listen to the Rebel Leadership podcast

Connect with Ron Eddings on LinkedIn and Twitter

Connect with Chris Cochran on LinkedIn and Twitter

Purchase a HVS t-shirt at our shop

Continue the conversation by joining our Discord

Check out Hacker Valley Media and Hacker Valley Studio

Read more

Listen Now

test
A Rebel’s Heart & A Leader’s Mind with Allison Minutillo

December 20, 2022 Hacker Valley Studio

00:00:00

Recent Episodes

January 24, 2023
by Hacker Valley Studio

In this episode of Hacker Valley Studio, Rob Wood, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at CMS, discusses the challenges of data silos within organizations. Rob explains that security teams often operate in silos, with different departments focu...

January 17, 2023
by Hacker Valley Studio

Taylor Lehmann, Director of Office of the CISO at Google Cloud, has made it his mission to make healthcare and life sciences more secure and strategic for everyone. Joining our security podcast this week, Taylor talks about how security and strategy ...

January 10, 2023
by Hacker Valley Studio

Maxime “Max” Lamothe-Brassard, Founder of LimaCharlie, brings a tech-focused community perspective and a history of working at Google to the Hacker Valley security podcast this week. Inspired by the internal motivation to empower others and build wha...

January 3, 2023
by Hacker Valley Studio

Brian Haugli, Founder and CEO of SideChannel, brings his CISO expertise to the security podcast this week for a discussion about strategy and leadership in cybersecurity. Working alongside CISOs and fractional VCISOs, Brian has seen his share of lead...

December 20, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Allison Minutillo, President of Rebel Interactive Group and Host of the Rebel Leadership podcast, joins the Hacker Valley team this week to talk about her journey from individual contributor to company leader. With a leader’s mind and a rebel’s heart...

December 15, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Cody Wass, VP of Services at NetSPI, brings his near-decade of experience to the pod to talk about longevity, development, and leadership. It’s no secret that cybersecurity is in need of people. Cody’s journey from intern to VP at NetSPI has shown hi...

December 13, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Brad Liggett, CTI Intel Engineer Manager at Cybersixgill, puts on his improv hat and joins the pod ready for anything. After COVID pressed pause on daily life, Brad kept himself sane and gained some new skills by returning to his improv roots (a hobb...

December 6, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Richard Rushing, CISO at Motorola Mobility, brings his decades of experience to the show this week to talk about leadership, communication, and perhaps most importantly of all: prioritization. After joining Motorola through a startup acquisition, Ric...

November 29, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Kenneth Ellington, the Senior Cybersecurity Consultant at EY and Founder of the Ellington Cyber Academy, achieves his goal of being on the Hacker Valley Studio this week. From working at Publix in college to becoming an online course instructor, Kenn...

November 22, 2022
by Hacker Valley Studio

Lesley Carhart, Director of Incident Response at Dragos, takes some time off mentoring cybersecurity practitioners, responding to OT incidents, and training in martial arts to hop on the mics this week. Named Hacker of the Year in 2020, Lesley’s impa...