Thomas Pfanner Dad Edge Podcast

Thomas Pfanner – Dads Who Lead

Thomas Pfanner is the Founder and CEO of Dads Who Lead which aims to help dads dramatically improve connection and leadership within their families. He is also a Licensed Health and PE Teacher in Oregon Western University.

In this episode of the Dad Edge podcast, Larry Hagner interviews Thomas Pfanner, who shares his unique journey into fatherhood. Thomas Pfanner talks about how he unexpectedly became a father at a young age and the challenges he faced. They also discuss the importance of leadership in fatherhood and how becoming a father changed his perspective on life.

The Power of Parental Support

One of the key themes that emerges from the podcast is the importance of parental support in navigating the challenges of unexpected fatherhood. Thomas Pfanner shares his experience of telling his parents about his impending fatherhood and the profound impact their support had on him. When he told his mother about the situation, she responded with calm and support, assuring him that they would figure it out together. This simple yet powerful response gave him the confidence and reassurance he needed to face the situation head-on.

Proximity and Presence: The Pillars of a Father-Son Relationship

The focus shifts to the subsequent years of the father-son relationship. Thomas discusses pivotal moments and lessons learned during this time. He shares how he made the decision to move away temporarily to finish school but returned once his son started kindergarten. This decision demonstrates his commitment to being present in his son’s life and providing him with stability. Thomas’s wife also plays a crucial role in supporting their relationship. She recognizes the importance of proximity and encourages the move back to be closer to the child.

The Father’s Journey: Self-Reflection and Adaptation

The father’s journey demonstrates the importance of self-reflection, taking ownership of one’s flaws, and adapting one’s leadership style to meet the needs of their child. Through this process, the father was able to strengthen his bond with his son and provide him with the guidance and support he needed to thrive.

Larry’s Takeaways

  1. Allow freedom for natural growth.
  2. Confidence attracts, expectations limit. 
  3. Encourage independent thinking and leadership.

What You’ll Learn

00:08:33 Supportive parents are crucial.

00:12:05 Fatherhood requires perseverance and sacrifice.

00:19:24 Rewriting leadership for stronger connection.

00:24:29 Allow freedom in parenting decisions.

00:34:37 Strong direction and love.

00:38:50 Own your results, lead confidently.

00:45:24 Lead with curiosity and appreciation.

00:52:40 Connection is key in parenting.

01:00:25 Give kids low stakes decisions.

01:05:43 Connect with dads who lead.


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