Duke of Digital

036 - The Secrets to Creating a More Efficient Team with Michael Robison

January 17, 2020 Brian Meert
Duke of Digital
036 - The Secrets to Creating a More Efficient Team with Michael Robison
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Duke of Digital
036 - The Secrets to Creating a More Efficient Team with Michael Robison
Jan 17, 2020
Brian Meert

Can’t seem to get your team on the same page? Raise your pinkies because in this episode, we’ll share the secrets to creating a more efficient team.

Michael Robison

Twitter & Insta: @michaelrobison

LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/in/michaelrobisond5



Brian Meert

https://www.linkedin.com/in/brianmeert

Duke of Digital
https://www.dukeofdigital.com/
https://www.instagram.com/dukeofdigital/

AdvertiseMint
https://www.advertisemint.com
https://business.facebook.com/advertisemint/
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https://www.instagram.com/advertisemint

Show Notes Transcript

Can’t seem to get your team on the same page? Raise your pinkies because in this episode, we’ll share the secrets to creating a more efficient team.

Michael Robison

Twitter & Insta: @michaelrobison

LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/in/michaelrobisond5



Brian Meert

https://www.linkedin.com/in/brianmeert

Duke of Digital
https://www.dukeofdigital.com/
https://www.instagram.com/dukeofdigital/

AdvertiseMint
https://www.advertisemint.com
https://business.facebook.com/advertisemint/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/advertisemint/
https://www.instagram.com/advertisemint

Speaker 1:

Can't seem to get your team on the same page. Oh, I get it. Raise your pinkies because in today's episode we're talking all about the secrets to creating a more efficient team

Speaker 2:

presented by advertisement. The juke of digital will guide you through the rapidly changing landscape of digital marketing, social media, and how to grow your business online. To submit a question for the show, text three two, three eight two one two zero four four or visit Duke of digital.com if you need an expert to fix your ads, the friendly team at advertisement is ready to help visit advertisement. That's M I N t.com or call (844) 236-4686 to grow your business. Here's your host, Brian Mitt.

Speaker 1:

All right. In the studio today, we've got Michael Robinson. Uh, what's up dude? Yeah, it's good to have you here. Thank you so much for being here. Absolutely, man. There is so much in, uh, that you've done and I'm excited to be able to talk about, uh, you've been, uh, you know, featured on NASDAQ, the BBC world news, CNN, uh, you were named one of entrepreneur magazine's top leaders in 2019. Uh, you run two different companies, uh, the [inaudible] group and stay share. Is that correct? I mean, I know that's it. I don't, you know, the, the reality is, is that, you know, like any other serial entrepreneur on the planet, um, what does the resume look like? Schizophrenia is mine. Yeah. I just, I, I struggled with just one and I'm like, man, it takes, so whenever I meet people, they're like, yeah, I've got multiple companies.

Speaker 1:

I'm like, man, hats off to you. Yeah. That's impressive. I think a lot of it comes down to, of course, we'll probably talk about this in a bit, right? Great delegation, good teams and high level communication. And you might be able to pull it off and we won't find, you know, we'll find out down the road every time I go through a season of, of iteration or growing companies or whatever you go, if it can feel good at times. Back in hindsight being 20, 20 are gone. What was I thinking? Like was I even capable? Like what delusion did I buy into? So what have I done? Um, okay, so now you were invited to speak at Richard Branson's home in Switzerland. Is that true? I want to hear the story behind this. Yeah. So you know, okay. I had the like the top five bucket list items for my entire life and um, Richard was number one.

Speaker 1:

Okay. I've just had a longtime admiration for Richard and you wanted to meet him or you wanted to speak in his home in time. It wasn't like I didn't want my photo op with Richard. Like I really wanted to have a conversation and get to know him. So, um, and you know, we'll talk about what I do today, but you know, I started doing that like working with teams and helping with communications and helping with team efficiency and all this stuff. And I found myself doing that for a particular team and now mind you, I want to, I really have to set this up the right way because the end of 2017 I failed at a company like it completely fell. It was like a $2 million Oh like major kind of one of those you get done and you're like, I don't think I'll ever recover from this.

Speaker 1:

Like nobody's ever going to like me. They're can't respect me, you know? So what every failed entrepreneur does, I start consulting, right? So cause I don't want to go get a real job. As a matter of fact, I actually tried because I have kids like you have, you know, you've got mouths to feed and all this. I even went back to Starbucks during that season. Like it doesn't matter how good you get. I mean, I had made millions, I've lost millions and you're like, what are you going to do? Um, I had stepped into consulting. I just happened to be consulting the right person at the right time, sticking with it. And I get a call one night and sitting in my kitchen and she says, Hey, I just shared all this stuff that we've been working through. Sir Richard is like really excited about it.

Speaker 1:

He's been looking through your material. She goes, we've got this event at Richard's place in March. If you're interested, I'll put you in touch with his assistant. Let's get you out there and have you do this. And I was like, no way. Hold on. Let me check my list of top five things in my life that I want to do it. Right. Yeah. And you know, normally you think in your bucket list, you've got to like, you're going to fund your way to it. You know you're going to save up money or whatever. You know, it depends on what's on that list. Right. But the, the crazy thing was the next day I get the call and they're like, we need all your information. We're gonna book your plane ticket, we're going to get you out here. You're going to stay at Richard's house here for the week.

Speaker 1:

Um, you know, and I mean, like, it was not, they like rolled the red carpet out. I'm like, why? Like I'm not a somebody, but you've got me coming in here. And it was, it was absolutely an incredible experience and it very humbling. I mean, you know, you walk in and you're, you go, okay, you've got a couple of sessions, you go teach these sessions. And one of the students in the room is Richard Branson. And you're like, are you kidding? Like, what does this come from? But you know, and that room was full of, you know, some of the top entrepreneurs in the world, guys like Nuveen, Jane, and, um, you know, been able to develop great relationship with those guys as a result of it. And of course I'm the guy sitting in the room going, um, everybody in here has at least six zeros behind their, you know, their bank balance and whatnot.

Speaker 1:

And here I'm sitting, you know, still like climbing back out of my last failure, trying to get the world restarted again. And sometimes I think, you know, if we get hung on success and failure, right, we get hung in the wrong, we get stuck. You know, something one of my mentors taught me a long time ago, Brian, was that, you know, failure is a space you move through. So as you move through it, treat it like an art gallery, observe everything, learn what you can, but keep going and don't stand still. Oh, it's so true. You know, I had a business as well that failed and I remember it was working through that was really rough. Yeah. Because I'm like, this is it. This was my life. This was everything. This is what all my friends knew I was doing. And you know, for me it seemed like a huge mountain to try to get over and looking back, realizing like, eh, like whatever, keep moving. Like keep going. Like there are times people swing and miss and it's not the end of the world. And it's exactly right. But man, I learned so many valuable lessons through the failure process that have helped

Speaker 3:

me so much to succeed in the future that I would have never known had I only won and won every single time. It was, it was incredible to, to what I took from that to be like, Oh, that makes me such a stronger business owner moving forward. Having gone through that, that loss.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. You know? And that was actually, that's one of the biggest reasons that I've had such an admiration for Richard Branson all these years is he's one of those few ultra successful, like really awesome, you know, guys out there doing crazy stuff who always comes back and talks about his failure first before he gets to success. And I, you know, I realized as a matter of fact, I'm in the midst of a manuscript for a book that'll come out called the foundation of failure. And one of my friends, Terry Weaver, shout out to Terry if you ever watches this, but um, you know, most people wouldn't want to be introduced at a, an event. But you know, when I speak at his conferences and things like this, one of my favorite things, Terry always like, nobody fails. Like Michael, he's like, you know, and that's the thing is over the years, you know, you just go through it and if you're a risk taker, you've got the courage to step up and go for it.

Speaker 1:

You can do it. And I, you know, obviously, and this is something we'll talk about in a little bit that I would love to share with people and I think this is really important as you're developing your branding, your messaging, your purpose, your vision, your why behind what you do is that when it's completely aligned with who you are, feel like failure. You really are able to look at failure and go, it's just an education. You know, it's an opportunity to learn what I'm not going to do next time, how to do it better. Or you find out more about who you are as a person.

Speaker 3:

Oh, it's so true. It's so true. And I think there's so many lessons that can be learned through that process and what you kind of go through. Um, tell me, I wanted to make sure I take a minute to be able to hear your backstory so that user or the, the listeners understand, you know, what you do, how to be able to connect with you on. So can you take a minute really quick and kind of share what you're doing, um, on a daily basis and what your, your business does?

Speaker 1:

Absolutely. Well, I'll always preface this that, you know, when it comes to helping people move through and find organization to the chaos that helps people move through places to find clarity in their lives, I probably learned that lesson more than ever being a dad. Um, as you're, you know, you've got a kiddo Christmas baby, right? Number 26, that's absolutely amazing. Um, you know, but I've got seven kids, so you know, three are biological, four adopted. So you learn to kinda go through chaos even with wine.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. I am experienced the amount of chaos that goes on like seven blows my mind to be like, I can't fathom that. Yeah,

Speaker 1:

absolutely. Well, and it's crazy because my old and only through adoption because people, I say this and people look at me like I have six heads on my shoulders. My oldest, we, we, she came into our custody when she was a teenager. So, um, but two days ago she turned 31 years old. She's got two kids of her own. Oh wow. So, you know, it's an interesting journey that you learned. You know, you are, you learn to help your kids and you'll learn this as your, as your son, right? It's not, Oh, it's a daughter. Okay. All right. See, I scan social media and that's fine. We have a couple of outfits that are like just a neutral gray. Oh, that's messed up because no one has an idea what it is.

Speaker 1:

And you'll see as your kids get older, they get their own personality. But you know, that's one of the things too, that's the most valuable lesson I think you learn in life as a parent too, is you're going to help them identify who they are, communicate who they are and, and really, truly the greatest branding exercise, Brian, that you'll ever lead given what you do. And, and, and sharing that as helping your child express who they are and supporting them in the process. So I always start there cause that foundation, um, really I would say is part of it. But you know, I have [inaudible] group, which is my boutique consultancy, which again, it came out of a moment of failure. It was like, what do I do? Okay, I'll be a consultant. Um, but it's just kind of, it's been a great ride. I've really enjoyed it.

Speaker 1:

Um, and so what we do is we come in and we help you with communications and we start with the individual leaders first, let them kind of align themselves. Um, everybody's got a personal value. You've got business practices and you've got passions, right? And when you bring those things together, you really begin to understand yourself. Then when you do that with your team, you start to understand your team. So it's funny, I mean, you know, imagine walking into the office, like when you walk in here every day, you know, if you knew those things about your team every single day, you know, even if they make a decision that you don't like, if you understand them, you go, you know, I think that was the dumbest decision you could have ever made. But I totally understand why you made that decision. Yeah. And when they feel that way about you as the boss, let go.

Speaker 1:

Brian's crazy. But we get it. We understand. But then when you take all that together as a team and you do it as an, as, as an organization, what's really cool is you come up with that decision matrix, the communication matrix, you're able to really move with a lot more efficiency as an organization. So I have a lot of passion around that. I've led large nonprofit organizations over my career where you've got three to 500 volunteers in the organization. So when you're not writing a paycheck, it's a whole different way to motivate people to be a part of something and then hope that they are like on point. You know, that brand and that communication and the purpose behind what you do is on point. And so I really, it's a passion project more than anything to be able to help teams and leaders get there.

Speaker 1:

So, um, but I'm still an entrepreneur at heart. I still love to take risks. I still love to dream big and push hard. So this last year, uh, one of my best friends on the planet, Ross Hanson and I started a company called stay share, which, you know, I keep going into detail on that, but you know, bottom line, we work with the VA short term vacation rental, so Airbnb and all that good stuff and we process payments and what we actually do, so people are gonna love this cause they're gonna start seeing this more and more coming up is we basically help you split the payment. We're like Venmo before Venmo, right? You know, or before cash app. So instead of one of you throwing your credit card down and having to play bill collector for the three months through the vacation process, you do it at booking.

Speaker 1:

So we've set that up, we've got some incredible things happening and um, you know, sometimes I wish some of the ink was dry so I could just brag cause every entrepreneur wants to do that. But um, you know, God willing and things continue. We don't screw something up in the process. I think it's going to be a parabolic ride to, towards the center of the sun. I think, I don't know. We'll see. Um, but I love the process and you know, what's crazy is here I go and I help teams do what they do and align and everything. And of course I have to put it into practice every day. So you gotta practice what you preach, you know, so it's easy that I become the thought leader, the expert in this particular thing. But I think it's really important that we stay practitioners along the way.

Speaker 1:

Now, um, tell me about this. You, you, your, your resume is, you know, you're working with these major, massive companies. Sure. Uh, you're speaking it, you know, Richard Branson's house, you know, what is kind of the type of crime for listeners are out there right now. You know, do you only work with the big fortune 500? Do you work with someone that may have a startup or they may be an entrepreneur? The big things look great on paper, right? I mean, and they're there, but the truth is, um, those come fewer and far between. Yup. Uh, along the way. Now I've, I've got great relationships, but it's funny, I joke all the time that I have. Um, I basically exhausted my Rolodex, um, to be able to get in some of those places. Uh, most of the people that I work with are smaller organizations, you know, under 20 employees and actually sometimes a lot smaller in that because they're the ones that are really grinding through figuring out who am I, where am I going, what am I doing?

Speaker 1:

Um, and so for me, it's not, you know, obviously when we, when we get into, you know, brand building and things like this, it'd be nice to say, okay, I've got this roadmap to, I can show up and charge you, you know, $30,000 a day when I show up in the room. And I'm that guy. But the truth is, is that when I say it's a passion project, it truly is. So whether it's the solo preneur who's going to be watching this right now, is sitting at home trying to figure out what their brand is. They're listening to you to figure out how do I actually sell myself and market this and make sure P O find me those guys I love to work with. And I love, again, I've worked with teams. I mean my largest particular project was with Caesars entertainment out in Las Vegas back in 2014 and I help train their entire executive management team, which is 1200 individuals.

Speaker 1:

So over the course of a week you've got these guys getting into a room and I get them 300 at a time, you know, so every day, all week, four sessions in a row, two hours at a time, teaching the same material all day long, you know, to move them through. So for me it's, it's really irrespective because I really care about the heart level of what's going on because if I can unlock that, everything else kind of flows out of that. And so yeah, it's not, it's not, you know, respective of the particular team size. It's really respective of the passion that wants to flow out of the leaders and entrepreneurs. I love it. And this is the reason why I wanted to have you on this show was to talk about the elements and the secrets behind creating a more efficient team. And I think, you know, as you're talking about the entrepreneurs that are grinding out, especially

Speaker 3:

ones that are starting, I mean, one of the most critical things is getting a good team around you that understands the direction that you're going. It's moving together that are efficient at their jobs and what they're doing. And it's difficult because you're, especially as you're a small company growing, you know, under sub 20, you've got a lot of, of battles that you've got to fight every day. You're really a firefighter where you're, you're here, you're helping, you know, when, when, uh, I always say like when, uh, you're in a ship and when something happens, like a leak comes through, you've got to be there to help make sure you got to get your finger in and hold on, hold on to steer, steer the ship. Cause you're a CEO, you're running around and you've got all those things going on. And I've always said that, you know, getting a good team around you is essential. Like no one, everyone always hears the names, you know, Walt Disney, Elon Musk, none of those people are building these companies by themselves. That's right. It takes an entire team. And really the secret behind all those big companies is the team that they have.

Speaker 1:

Exactly. Right. Yeah. And here's the thing, the crucial component about this starts obviously with the leader. I mean the, you know, the phrase that I, you know, we've all heard it in different cliche ways, but as goes, the leader so goes the organization, right? So really unlocking that. Here's, here's kind of where the realization came from. Me. I grew up, my father's a super successful entrepreneur. Um, actually it blows me away sometimes. Um, but what's interesting is to watch my dad is he runs his company. It's my mom, my dad, and two of my siblings. Okay. So it's a very small organization, but they're turning out almost, almost an eight figure company every year just with them. And it's, you know, blood, sweat, tears. But of course there's family dynamic, there's all these kinds of things. And so I, I've kind of, you know, I've got a direct case study right in front of me, uh, to do this and you look over the years.

Speaker 1:

Here's something that I realized though is that my dad had a previous career and what I learned in that is that so often our personal lives and our professional lives never find an overlay in alignment. So it's like we have two different lives going on. We have two different personalities. So you know, I'm thinking about it traditionally, although thank God the world is changing a lot. But you know, when you look back over history, these men that are executives would go to work every day. They come home at five, six o'clock in the evening and when they turn the keys off in the car and open that door to go inside, it's like they shut off one side of their life and turn on another and they don't realize that who you actually are. The core cross pollinates in those areas can make you successful. Both at home and work.

Speaker 1:

And so there are three primary things that I try to teach a the key leader and then the team, and I've already mentioned them. There's personal values. Okay, we have, okay, so let's say, so personal values can be any broad statement, right? They're the things that matter to you. So personal value could be the quality of life that you're leading, right? It could be the city that you live in or you know, the type of company that you work for or that you're building or whatever it is. It's, it is that kind of identity like this matters to me. Right? And so those values, and they can be at the heart level too, right? You know, family values, all you know, cultural values, different things like that. We need to know what those are because if you can't identify those, the problem is they influence your decision process all the time, all day, every day, right?

Speaker 1:

And so we want to boil those down and help leaders identify what is my real set of personal values that that happens for me. One of those things is just being able to have new experiences and you know, to kind of explore and take those risks. And so that's a, a big, big component to me. Now the second part of this thing is your business practices. Now what's really interesting, especially with like solo preneurs, okay, let's say that you are the, you've been the typical stay at home mom for a long time, but you finally realize like, Hey, I want to make my own money. I want to make my own Mark. I've got, you know, an internet business that I'm going to build. I'm selling this, I'm making my videos, putting them on Facebook, whatever. You have business practices underneath, whether you know it or not.

Speaker 1:

And I joke about this all the time. I've got an 11 year old son who, my ex wife, who is the most amazing mother on the planet, but she instilled one of her business practices in my, my child. I actually all my kids. Um, but what's interesting is they're bargain shoppers, right? We come from a big family. So, you know, we're not running down to Nordstrom's and Saks or whatever and outfitting for the kids. Even if I could, I wouldn't do it. It wouldn't make a lot of sense. Especially for kids. They destroy the clothes, outgrow them fast. So places like Goodwill became great places to go buy clothes with, you know, young kids. And it's, it's interesting to watch. Heck even my, my, well he's five now. My, my youngest, he was four, we were in Charleston. We're going through like the market, I gave the kids a budget, said you can pick a souvenir, whatever.

Speaker 1:

We get through it. And my youngest except me, he goes, when we leave here, can we go to Goodwill? And it's cause he knows his dollar goes further. So it's a business practice, right? Yeah. And we know how we're going to interchange back and forth with the world around us. So understanding those business practices is a really big thing. And for me, part of my business practices, how do we create a shared economy? It's funny cause that's kind of what I'm doing behind this other company that I'm building. But the reality is is I want to come to the table. If, if you and I are interacting in any kind of transaction, my first attitude Brian, is to come and say, is there a value that I can offer to Brian? Like when I leave the room, what do I leave behind? That makes it a little easier, a little better for Brian, what I've been there because I want that interchange of serving somebody else.

Speaker 1:

That's really an important thing to me. It's a business practice and it happens to be a personal value at the same time. Okay, nice. And then there's passions, right? Like we can't deny that. Now your passion could be hopping on the motorcycle and you just want to be able to get out and go ride the one, you know, all the way along the coastline out here or something like that. Or I'm, I just love adrenaline's type stuff. You know, I've been the guy that's, you know, rock climbing and then doing repellent, Aussie style face down, jumping out of airplanes, you know, finding the, the crazy risk risks. I took a, I'm not a documentary film guy, I'm not really, I'm a novice photographer and videographer. Okay. And I've gotten lucky. Some of my work's been featured in places. I think it's because of who I know.

Speaker 1:

But I took with my, my friend Jacob a few years ago, we took an opportunity to go film some documentary stuff right in the middle of the Syrian refugee crisis to go hang out in the Syrian refugee camps. It'd be right on the borders with the war and all that because I want him to go see it. I wanted to see it for myself. So for me, that's that, that discovery component of just going in. I want to, I need that kind of edge to get, just get right to the edge there. So, but those things just, they really determine how I make decisions. You know, what business business opportunities I'll take, what relationships I build, how I communicate. And so what we do in the process that I help, you know, organizations and leaders go through is boil that down to three words. And that's it.

Speaker 1:

Because I want it to be simple, repeatable. You know, and memorable, which we can talk about. This is where you get to the why and the branding and the message and all these things. Because when you can boil it down, it's easy for people to understand you, but to remember why they understand you. So for me, my three words boil down to discover, serve and grow, right? And they all support each other, right? Cause that discovery thing, you know, learning, growing new experiences, you know, seeing the rest of the world, all those things that they're tied up in discovery that and that applies to business. How's, what's a new way I can do this? What's a new method that can happen when I'm in the process that serving, just like I said, it's a shared economy. I want to serve my team, I want to serve my customers.

Speaker 1:

You know, in a, in a huge thing that I think we often forget, I'm sure you probably give this to a lot of clients, is it's great to sell a product, but people don't buy products. They buy desired outcomes, right? So if I'm serving, I'm able to provide an outcome through the process, right? And then for me growing, so I love to learn, you know, I'm in process, I'm getting ready to start learning my fourth language just because I'm partially now I, I'm strategic, right? I want to learn Arabic. This is my new, I don't, Oh wow. But I think there's 1.7 billion people on this planet that speak Arabic and a large chunk of the world economy is sitting in Arabic speaking countries. And I really want to tap into that, right? So it'd be great. It's great that I speak English and we think, you know, American mentality so often it's like, well, you've got to speak English.

Speaker 1:

It's like, well that's not true when you leave, you know, and you go out to the rest of the world. So, um, you know, growing for me is growing, growing as a dad, right? Growing as a spouse, growing as a human being, growing as a leader. And so for me, that discover, serve and grow, it is my decision matrix for myself. It's my communication matrix for, for what I do. And it applies to the companies that I lead. And so coming in and doing that with a key leader or you know, a solopreneur or the guys leading 20 people, right? Once your team knows all those things about you, like I said, they can start to, they understand why you make the decisions you make. They even know how to help you make decisions. And if you're good at it, you know how to hire that team.

Speaker 1:

That is so crucial to getting past the beginning, getting through the middle and actually moving towards growth and scale, right? Because now you can go, Hey, these are the values that that matter to me. And then when you do this practice as a team, this is what I do. A lot of it is I get around the table with the three, four or five key players in a organization. I help them do it for themselves. And then how do they take that together in their, their leadership matrix for the team. So now you can go in and say, Hey, when I start hiring and scaling up and having these other team members and they know that this is my matrix right here, they can make these decisions and I can delegate. I can trust them because they know. And if I ever, if they make a mistake, we can go back and we have a standardization to make, you know, to make an assessment of this, to make decisions.

Speaker 1:

And so it's easy then to hire a team and go, listen, when you come in, if you work for me, if your decision doesn't support at least two of the three, preferably all three of discover, serve and grow, then the answer's always no. And if you can't, show me how you might make an idea of discovery, right? So maybe it's a new technology or marketing platform or you know, the new algorithms, cause I know this is what you guys deal with all the time. The algorithms are always in shift, right? So what is the hashtag strategy? What is the alt tag strategy? What is all this stuff that's happening behind the scenes? Right? So we discover it and we can use it. But again, if that piece, that one piece doesn't support the other pieces of the organization, the answer should always be no, because what happens is that's how you start to get vision drift and you, you know, you're, you're, you, you start leading a six headed animal, right.

Speaker 1:

So can I ask you this then? What I mean I love this and this is exactly correct. What do you do when a fire drill happens? It's a completely outside of we're headed in this direction and a wheel falls off the plane. Or if something implodes in a business or a big client leaves, like, you know, you're running trying to, cause I feel like that's generally what I've noticed. A lot of times people get sidetracked from is an external, something happened and they're headed in a direction and then there goes a right turn or about they just kind of go crazy. I is this, does this help people get back to kind of that compass or that North star on that direction. We're going. This thing thing is that actually even in those fire drills, if, if you've done the work to kind of set the matrix right and you've cast the right vision and you've set the right leadership tone and yes, you're delegating and with delegation, listen, leaders, when you delegate, it's risky.

Speaker 1:

I don't care how good your team is, if it's your baby, it's always going to feel risky when you delegate. But if you've done a really good job of it, even in those, you know, those fire drill moments, you actually pause for a minute and go, Hey, somewhere in this one of two things happen. We didn't adhere to the matrix, right? We, we, we compromise somewhere. Maybe not big, but we compromise somewhere. So let's take an assessment of that. Or it may actually just be that that client or that situation never fit in the matrix to begin with. You know, and I think a lot of times, listen, we know this, you can get started right in the, in a comes along and says, you know [inaudible] you see that client, you know, and you think, okay I can get them because I can get this kind of a retainer or I can make this kind of money or it bolsters my brand or whatever.

Speaker 1:

Right? And you have to take the step back and like with them building stay share. Right now your brand new company, I mean there are literally three of us on the team. We've contracted the development side out to, you know, multiple team members and yet right now I've got a couple of contracts knocking on the door that have the potential to be billion dollar contracts year over year. And that's amazing. But I'm literally at the stage where I have to go. I can probably land the contract, but if I do it now, will, is it good for us or is it bad for us? Will it drive us? So again, we run those through the matrix of where we want to go. Just because I dream big doesn't mean I'm ready for big and such. That's such a good, um, a good point. You know, there's times that I've taken on clients that 100% seemed like there wasn't a good fit with the type of companies we like to work with her or the type of process that we like to do back and forth.

Speaker 1:

And I probably two to three examples that would come to mind, but I remember thinking, Oh, this is all his money, but it's not really what we're trying to do. And it's w we normally wouldn't maybe work with this type of company. And I remember every time that we veered off, it's always come back to where like eventually we're like, Hey, we're going to need to set up ending the relationship that wasn't the right fit. You know, I stepped in in, in 2014. It's really interesting. I just come out of another one of my failures and it's an interesting story. That'd be a whole nother episode. But I had a business partner, which again, it's not an unusual story. Embezzle bezel. Every dime I had and leave, man, I'm talking dead broke. Um, after probably one of the most successful seasons of my life. So I made a change in life.

Speaker 1:

I, I even moved my family back closer to home to, to be back in our hometown at the time. And I called a buddy of mine and said, Hey, um, he, he was kinda does what you do. He's in, he's marketing and technology agency and I had hired him a million times to help me get my stuff off the ground. So I called him and I said, Hey, I'm looking for a leadership position. You've got all these clients. Surely somebody in your, you know, maybe I'm a fit for one of your clients. Well, like two hours later he calls me back. He said, if you'll take over my, my strategy and development, I need you to start tomorrow. So I went in and started working for him. And it's interesting he was shifting in my job, obviously it was then to go get the clients and kind of lead that client relationship.

Speaker 1:

And then the strategy workshops to do a lot of what I'm talking about right now. And it's interesting because they were shifting the type of client that they wanted and wanted to expand the organization. So over the two years that I was running that part of his organization for him, we grew from about 3 million a year and a moderate sized organization to somewhere around 14 15 million a year over two years. It was a great scale up. But along the way we'd had those moments where we had to test it because we were shifting some of the older values into the newer values and the way we ran company. And there were plenty of times that, and here's the interesting thing, when you've done the work to understand who you are as a, as a leader, who you are as a company, who you are as a team, when you bring those clients to the table, you can actually step back and it's a lot easier to say no to a client.

Speaker 1:

And actually people don't realize how easy it is to actually fire a client. And that's one of those conversations that doesn't happen often. Yeah. But the funny thing is is that I've gotten more referrals over the years after I have fired a client because hindsight being 2020 most of those clients come back and say thank you. You know, they were committed to the relationship. They would have written that retainer every month, but they realize that I couldn't deliver for them and nor could we work together the right way. So it's really inefficient for them. So when I'm honest with them and I go back, it's really interesting is all of a sudden I'd get eight 10 12 emails in a small period of time saying, but I do think this could be a good client for you and we'd land those contracts and so I might've replaced a 1520 $50,000 a month retainer with a client and turn around and replace it with $150,000 retainer.

Speaker 1:

I just think it's awesome because the process of saying no or setting boundaries or setting limitations generally creates more yeses because people like, I understand exactly what you do, the service you provide, the products value. You know, a lot of times people, you know, and I've seen this with kind of early stage, uh, entrepreneurs is they're like, I want to do anything that's right. Especially in the marketing world. It's almost like, Hey, can you do landing pages? Yeah, I'll figure it out. Like, let's go. And the truth is, you know, maybe they're not the best at it. And ultimately what happens down the road is they're frustrated because it's taking more work to maybe get to learn something that they're not specialized in and the client's kind of unhappy because like, just taking long, maybe the results aren't good. Um, and so to be able to be like, no, no, no, we just do that.

Speaker 1:

That's right. We just do this one thing a lot of times can, can help. Well, I mean, listen, the movie, the Patriot with Mel Gibson, there's a line in that movie that I still adhere to when, you know, after they've gone through your kind of a tragedy and the homes burn it down. And so, you know, Mel's in the woods with his two young kids and they're trying to get his oldest son back, right? And they've got him captive and the British soldiers are coming through. And so he sets him up to have this ambush in the woods. But he says, what did I tell you? And the kids repeat to aim small Ms. Small. That's right. And when we do that in business, in anything that we do, it really does work. It's amazing. And you know, over the years I've, I still learn that cause I, you know, no matter you get moments where you feel good, especially if you're exuberant, you know, outgoing, extroverted leader like I am, you have a tendency to go, yes, I can do that.

Speaker 1:

We'll do it, we'll figure it out. But you know, it's interesting is that I've finally realized that the digital marketing side, I kind of understand it. And for myself, I kind of do enough, probably not great. Um, I used to think I could do things like that for my clients. What I figured out is I can help them figure out who they are and what they want to accomplish. And now the experts who can take that and translate it into good advertising marketing strategies, go do it. I've got a good buddy of mine in Phoenix, Arizona. He is a, I think he's one of the most successful solo preneurs I've ever met in my life. He lost he, he was a infusion soft, which you know, is kind of, they've changed a lot over the years. He was the original guy in their sales department. Okay.

Speaker 1:

So he Rose up the ranks. I mean, he was the guy, he knows the strategy, all this stuff, and then had a passion project on the side. He walked away from a $200,000 a year job with the stock hold and the company and started this little thing out of his garage. But you know what he's good at. He's the best email marketing guy I've ever met in my life. And within a year he parlayed a $20,000 investment, this little business to $440,000 and doing it by himself in his garage. And now that's translated to, you know, ten five, eight, eight, nine, 10 figures in the long run for and multiple brands. And really he's done the whole thing out of his neck. The passion that he's good at, which is this product he creates, you know, his personal values, which is be home, you know, enjoy my kids and his skill set, his business practices.

Speaker 1:

He's a great email marketer and every time he starts a new thing around those, he wins every single time. And it's fun. Like, he's one of my favorite people to go back and forth with and just talk to because you know, we kick around ideas of doing this businesses together and he's the first person I call him. Like, Tyler, you're going to run my email program cause I'm not even touching. I'm not writing copy, I'm not doing anything. I'm going to give you my scratch notes from whatever I'm doing. And you've made them great. I love it. Now when it comes to, you know, once you kind of go through the, the matrix you were talking about, you determine the three, um, what are some of the benefits of once you are in alignment with teams? So I mean once you kind of determine that you work with the teams to say, here's where we're going.

Speaker 1:

And I mean a analogy I would use is maybe like a dog sled. Sure. I want you to get everyone lined up with a lead dog and you're going in the same direction. You can win races, you can get where you need to go as opposed to if anyone has, you know, several dogs, they know that generally they run in all different directions. Um, but like what happens in terms of efficiency and what should people expect once they line up on these three areas? Well, let's think about this. Like if you're the key leader, that's really the point of view that's going to see the most impact immediately, which is once you've created that matrix and it's there, you're able to ease much more easily communicate. Like when you say, Hey, here's our next goal, here's our next product, here's our next vertical, you know, whatever.

Speaker 1:

And you can say, let's go do it. But if you communicate it to your team, you don't have to spend as much time going, okay, here are the, here are the most important things I need you to execute. Or here's how I need you to execute because that's there. There's going to be an assumption. And so now you basically get to oversee it, not micromanage it at that point. And I think that's one of the biggest deficiencies that we see. The other side is to the team members who are doing that for you, who are your leadership who are holding, holding you up in that process. When it gets hard is they have a lot more satisfaction because they can do their own measurement to see their own success and they know whether or not they're meeting the Mark. Because when that matrix is in place, they're not sitting around going, is he, is he going to be okay with this?

Speaker 1:

Is he or she happy with this? Do they like what I'm doing? Because if they can look in and confidently say, Hey, I've checked off the things in the matrix, they at least even if they miss the Mark and screw it up, they can go confidently into the conversation to assess it and go, well, here I believed that I was in fact doing these. And what's interesting is what happens is you have a lot less turnover in a team because even when mistakes are made, you have a lot more teachable moments too. Because if you've missed them, you know, missed the point in the matrix and you do have that conversation and I come to you, if you're my boss and say you have a Brian, listen, I thought that I was, you know, these were the three things and this is why I made the decision.

Speaker 1:

You actually changed the way you respond to me. You go, Oh, you were really trying to honor the vision and the purpose that I have behind this thing. You did listen to me. Yeah, you made a mistake. That's our, I can invest in you. You believe in this thing because culture and chemistry, Trump, everything else, right? And the thing is is that we have to get to a place as leaders, one of the most important things is building a process for the people, not hiring people into the process. Now, that doesn't mean skill sets aren't important, but the truth is, I bet if I spent five, six days here hanging out with you and your team, those things that I know are weak in my skill set to understand advertising. You know with Facebook and things like that, you probably teach me and make me pretty good at it in a short amount of time. You could give me the skillset. The thing is is do you have the rapport with me to be able to lead me to develop the skills?

Speaker 3:

Oh I love it. We actually have a little chair with the matrix plug that goes in and it's like, I know come food. I know Facebook ads. It happens in about 10 minutes. We get them up to speed. I love it. Um, now you had a story that I wanted you to share about the eat, eat, going to eat fresh with your son. Can you, I want to share that with listeners.

Speaker 1:

What's really interesting is years ago we were, we were living in Minnesota, which I don't recommend. It's like unbelievably cool. I'm complaining this morning cause this is what, 55 degrees here in Los Angeles. But, um, anyway, when my kids were little, um, and I, I would I say this as a parent, I don't recommend this. We had our TV on one of those low boy entertainment centers, right? So my two and three year old sons at the time, you know, of course all I'm doing is griping cause they're putting their fingerprints all over my brand new plasma TV and I'm ticked off, right? But you know, far be it for me to be smart enough to put the TV up. But anyway, but you know, they're seeing TV all day in between the commercials are going and everything and you don't think that your, your kids are paying as much attention.

Speaker 1:

Now let's even think about this and you know this, you probably tell this to your clients a lot, Brandon, we're always all paying attention. So repetition theory really comes into play. But when you create a message that memorable, that is repeatable and that is easily understandable and you, and it gets shared enough, it sticks in places you never imagined, right? So this was back, you know, let's see, what year was this? Like 2006, seven, somewhere around in there. So subway was, you know, they were still at their prime. They're coming off the whole Jared, you know, all that stuff. Everybody's had their good advertising campaign, but that's when that jingle, subway eat fresh, you know, it was like, and of course I think it's still there. I think they still use it. I don't think so. Yeah. Hardly turn the television on. I wouldn't know.

Speaker 1:

But, um, but anyway, I remember that we were in the car and driving and he was like three years old at the time. Three or four years old. And my son, no, I looked out the window and he goes, look mom, it's eat fresh because he saw the subway sign and he remembered the tagline. And so that's, I think that's one of the most important things. You know, I used to run, um, a chain of brick and mortar jewelry stores. That's how I got my start in business and made my climb. I love the jewelry business. I hate retail, which is why I've kind of left that world. Um, but you know, the number one most famous and successful advertising campaign of all times slogan is from two beers, which is a diamond is forever. So when you study advertising, everybody goes back. So that is the phrase, right?

Speaker 1:

So here's something that I challenged a lot of entrepreneurs with. It's, it's kinda that, that um, you know, quote good artists copy, great artists steal, you know, and so that's what we did in our company with, with my jewelry stores is we said a diamond is forever and we make forever affordable. And people could always remember that because they knew a diamond is forever. That's been ingrained. Now at this point, almost every living generation on the planet knows that phrase, right? So how do we leverage that in a way that spoke to the brand that I was bringing to them? I wanted people to know they didn't have to spend $100,000 to have something amazing, right? So, granted, I want them to spend $100,000 but you know, we wanted everybody to be able to shop with us. And so, you know, you create those moments, whether it's the eat fresh moment, whether you're, you're using and leveraging something that somebody else has already put the blood, sweat and tears into.

Speaker 1:

And you can truly own it for yourself. Do it where people can easily remember it and easily repeat it. Because once that happens, and this is true of that matrix you create for your company or the brand that you create, the advertising that you're putting out there, it will work. It will work every time. Oh, I love it. I love it. You know what's crazy is I heard Alayna Cardone who's a, a famous speaker and she was talking exactly about what you were talking about today, but with her family. And she was like, we have a family vision. We have a family values, which is, this is what's important to us. Um, and she was going into examples being like, if, um, you know, we, do we have to change schools or move somewhere? It's okay because our purpose and our vision is these are our values.

Speaker 1:

Are these things over where we live? Well, yeah, you going to say those, that matrix and in life and business and everything can't be based on situation. It actually has to be based on who you are as a leader and who everybody else is as a team. So yes, that applies to family too. As parents, you know, we're leading, right? And our kids are our team, right? So when we do that, yeah, it makes life a lot more flexible. It makes the journey a lot more fun because I don't feel stuck, you know, I don't feel like I'm in a rigid place where I can't flex. And you know, I think it's just absolutely incredible when you do that because you know, for me that discover, serve, grow in a, when I got the phone call this summer for my friend Ross and said, Hey, let's start this day share company.

Speaker 1:

Like I don't come out of that industry. I don't, I mean the most I think about the vacation rental industry is when I need to book an Airbnb and go on vacation. Right? Which, so it matters to me, but I don't know the industry, right? He does. That's what he comes from. But I was able to talk to him and go, if I can take these values, these things are true about me and they support division that you have and we can do this together, then it's cool. I can go do that. You can teach me the skills I need to know in order to be effective in the industry and I can come in and do what I'm good at. And then look in that example, like it's discovered, like you have the component of, there's something new and area that I don't know about.

Speaker 1:

I'm going to get to explore and learn new skills and traits. I need a serve. You're helping people, um, with the process of ranching now and grow. There's an opportunity to grow something bigger than what it was before. Absolutely. I love it. I love it. Well as we, as we kind of come to an end of this episode, are there any kind of last words or tips or advice that you would give to other business owners that they should know about? You know, building an amazing team. Yeah, I think it starts with being a healthy leader. You know, the truth is, you know, and I don't care where you're at in an organization, you could be the solo preneur, the entrepreneur with a small team, you could be middle management, you can be mom at home with the kids, you know if, but you're in a leadership position.

Speaker 1:

We all are whether we recognize it or not. So when we become healthy as individuals and leaders and we have a healthy perspective of what is driving us, it really does flow out to the things that we're leading. So I tell everybody, you know, we, we preach this mantra in today's culture all the time. Self care is number one, take care of yourself. You know, make time for yourself. But it's popular and it feels good to say those things. The question is, are we really going to get off our rear ends and do it for ourselves? And so I would say the most important investment you'll ever make is make sure you know who you are and why you do what you do. I love it. Such great advice, Michael. Well, thank you so much for being here today to share your wisdom and thank you guys so much for listening in. We'll catch you on the next episode.

Speaker 2:

Thank you for listening to the Duke of digital podcast with Brian Mitt, one to network with other business owners. Join our exclusive group at facebook.com/slash Duke of digital fancy the Duke. Leave a five star review on your favorite podcast app. And you could be mentioned on the show. The Duke of digital was produced by advertisement and recorded in Hollywood, California.