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How Leveraging A Virtual Assistant Will Change Your Life

Marketing Podcast with Tricia Sciortino

In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Tricia Sciortino. Tricia is the CEO and Board Member at BELAY, Co-Host of the One Next Step Podcast, and Author of Rise Up & Lead Well: How Leveraging An Assistant Will Change Your Life & Maximize Your Time.

Key Takeaway:

Today is a new day and age where the remote work opportunities are endless. In this episode, I talk with Tricia Sciortino, the CEO and Board Member at BELAY, about how incredibly powerful it can be to outsource elements of your business to a virtual assistant. We dive into what mistakes most people make when hiring virtual workers and what best practices to follow to work most effectively.

Questions I ask Tricia Sciortino:

  • [1:28] What has your entrepreneurial journey looked like?
  • [3:04] Do you feel like your training has helped you excel in the position?
  • [3:50] Remote work has become very mainstream today, hasn’t it?
  • [6:30] If someone came to you who didn’t want to hire full-time staff, what are some of the key roles that you should outsource?
  • [11:02] How do business owners balance outsourcing social media with a virtual assistant?
  • [13:34] What are some of the mistakes you see when people hire virtual workers and what are some of the best practices that bring forth more efficiencies?
  • [17:21] How do you find the right person, and how do you dig deep enough to realize this person is going to work well for you?
  • [19:58] Do you think that something you should be looking for when hiring an executive assistant or virtual worker is someone who has routines and processes already put in place?
  • [21:08] If someone is interested in working with BELAY, what’s the process?

More About Tricia Sciortino:

Take The Marketing Assessment:

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

John Jantsch (00:00): This episode of the duct tape marketing podcast is brought to you by the MarTech podcast, hosted by Ben Shapiro and brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network with episodes you can listen to in under 30 minutes, the MarTech podcast shares stories from world class marketers who use tech technology to generate growth and achieve business and career success all on your lunch break. And if you dig around, you might just find a show by yours. Truly. Ben's a great host. Actually, I would tell you, check out a recent show on blending humans, AI, and automation. Download the MarTech podcast wherever you get your.

New Speaker (00:40): podcast. Hello, welcome to another episode of the duct tape marketing podcast. This is John Jan and my guest today is Tricia Sciortino. She is the CEO and board member at belay host of the one next step podcast and author of rise up. And Leadwell how leveraging an assistance will change your life and maximize your time. So we're gonna talk about virtual assistance and remote workers and part-time staff and all those good things. So Trisha, welcome through the show.

Tricia Sciortino (01:22): Hey, good morning. Welcome. Thanks for having me.

John Jantsch (01:25): You bet. So, so tell me what give me, I always like to ask entrepreneurs, what got you here? What have you done in your entrepreneurial journey that led you to starting the lake?

Tricia Sciortino (01:33): Wow. That's a really big question to start off with John .

John Jantsch (01:37): Well, yeah, Don, don't go back to second doing it

Tricia Sciortino (01:40): Well back in,

John Jantsch (01:41): In between.

Tricia Sciortino (01:42): Yeah. You know, it was a journey of, you know, I, I like to say happenstance almost in that when I graduated college, I got my degree in business and marketing. I wasn't really sure what I wanted to do with myself. And I, I at first was a mom and then I stumbled upon organically and accidentally, if you will, you know, kind of just took a first job out there, quickly rose through the ranks and realized leading people and leading an organization. Actually, I thrived in it. I loved it. I enjoyed it. And so when I came to belay back in 2010, when it was started, my journey started with me as a virtual assistant here at the organization, and then just continued to look to hold my skills really just wanted to lead people and lead teams and lead organizational excellence and operational excellence. And so that has just afforded me the opportunity to just year by year advance my career, to land me at the CEO position. Then again, you know, really honored to sit in that seat today.

John Jantsch (02:51): You know, it's interesting leadership is actually one of the toughest things for a lot of CEOs. I mean, they, you know, especially founders or companies, you know, they knew how to do the thing they did had the vision for it. And leadership actually is something that they quite often have to learn. Do you feel like that, that your training maybe was in that and maybe your gift or is it in that has actually allowed you to Excel in the position?

Tricia Sciortino (03:15): Yeah. You know what I, I would, I, I think, you know, at a very early age, you know, in my young 20 year old, my young 20 year old self had a lot of great leadership mentors who believed in me and taught me and mentored me to be a great leader when it was small and almost when it was quiet and nobody was really paying attention. I was invested in and I really got kind of the bug for leadership. So I think I've invested in my professional development since then. And I've had people who've helped me along the way. So I feel like I'm first a leader more than I am. Anything else,

John Jantsch (03:50): Let let's talk. As I promised about, you know, virtual assistance, remote work, I've actually, you know, I've been working virtually, I've done, you know, my team has been distributed for 10, 15 years. so it's really something that's been around for a while. But I, I think at one point it was almost thought of as like, oh yeah, certain kinds of businesses did that, but really very mainstream today that teams are being built with remote and, and even part-time and virtual staff. So I think,

Tricia Sciortino (04:16): Yeah, I mean, same as when we started bla 12 years ago, working remotely was not all too common. And really the thinking was there was only certain types of companies or industries or people that could even consider remote work. And I think, you know, the blessing and the curse out of 2020 is that a lot of, of industries and people who've never considered that there were things that they could do remotely. They didn't have a choice, but to do them remotely. And so now, today is, is a new day and age where the remote work opportunities are endless. They're boundless, there's so many, we've seen so many organizations, big organizations, you know, the bank of Americas and those, and those types of organizations really saying, we're not going back in office, remote work is here to stay. And so it's been really interesting and very cool journey to watch that evolve over the last two years, even though some of us have known it's possible, it's been possible for many more years than that.

John Jantsch (05:19): Yeah. I mean, I think to go right along with that, the idea that we have to be in a physical space, an office together, you know, that I think a lot of companies for a decade or so have let that go, but a lot of to it and certainly accelerated that idea that remote work could be done without us looking over people's shoulders. And

Tricia Sciortino (05:36): Yeah. And you think about, you know, you think about some of the traditional roles, like think of the role of a, you know, a traveling salesman, somebody who's on the road sounding, and let's be honest, that person who's been doing that. I mean, you're telling copiers back in, you know, the nineties, you were not in an office, you were on the road, you were out and about, right. So it has existed just not in a way that anybody thought about it would exist

John Jantsch (06:01): Today. Yeah. And that was my bonus. That was my promise career. And I think a lot to me seeing how he, you know, he did what he wanted, he had his own hours, he was able to come and go. I mean, he worked very hard, you know, travel a lot, you know, it, it seemed like a really nice lifestyle to me. And I think I probably had some, uh, subconscious, uh, impact on, on me choosing the career. Not,

Tricia Sciortino (06:21): Yeah, that makes sense.

John Jantsch (06:23): So if somebody came to us said, all right, we're thinking about maybe, you know, we don't wanna hire staff full time and bring them in, you know, what are some of the key roles that you're just like, Hey, no business should be doing this, you know, with a staff member, they should outsource of certain, are there certain roles that you gravitate towards or that you just think have become obsolete to have a, a dedicated person doing in an organization?

Tricia Sciortino (06:45): Yeah. Well, and we've kind of done it with more than maybe most people are comfortable with, but some of the standouts are, are truly the ones that we wound up offering as an organization because we knew they were no brainers. You know, first and foremost is the virtual assistant. I mean, it's, it's what we're known for. That's, you know, every executive or leader could have, should have somebody working fractionally part-time, even if it's 10 hours a week, 45 hours a month, or whatever that looks like supporting you as an executive or leader personally or professionally, and that person doesn't need to be in the same space as you. So that, that one is the easy one. And then you think of things like bookkeeping, right? Everybody needs their books done. Everybody's our accounts reconciled. Everybody needs your transaction details and your expense reporting taken care of. But do you need your bookkeeper or your in your office with no, I mean, you can email reports back and forth this great systems where you can share logins. And so bookkeeping is another one that as an executive and a leader, I don't actually wanna know how to do bookkeeping. I just wanna work with somebody else who knows how to do bookkeeping. They don't need to be on staff. I don't need it full time. It's very transactional. It's an easy one. Especially small business startup, absolutely start with outsource bookkeeping support.

John Jantsch (08:08): Yeah. More than one, uh, small businesses got themselves in trouble because they can't do their reporting. They can't do payroll. They can't do all the junk. It's gotta be done and then come, you know, tax time, it's, you know, it's an absolute mess. And, uh, probably what they would pay a virtual birth keep for. They now are paying to their account to try to figure out their book.

Tricia Sciortino (08:27): Yes, yes, yes. And you know, and a book bookkeeper and accountant is, is two different things. And so you don't need the accountant level of the month to month, day to day part of your business. Cause that's a great opportunity to bring a bookkeeper in, to handle the day to day dispensing and things like that, that any business needs, regardless of what the business is.

John Jantsch (08:49): I have used a virtual bookkeeper for at least 15 years. And only because she was traveling through my city, didn't meet one time, but otherwise it is all vendor. In fact, she lives in Mexico now.

Tricia Sciortino (09:00): Fabulous. Right. Yeah, absolutely. So, you know, that's another easy one. And then there are a lot of marketing component jobs, which, you know, speaks to, to you, your audience and right, right. And what you guys do. I mean, we, we outsourced almost every marketing role until we felt the need to bring it out full time over the course of the last 10 years. And so, and we still work with outsource social media management and execution, so that one's a no brainer as well. Typically your small businesses, you don't need full-time 40 hour week staff member, maybe managing your social media angle or your LinkedIn it's, it's probably when you're small, a few good hours a week, great strategy and some good execution. That's something that can be very part-time and fractional and outsourced to somebody outside of the organization until you hit critical mass. And you feel like maybe it's time to bring that role inside.

John Jantsch (09:51): And now let's hear from our sponsor, you know, as a business owner, you eventually realize you can't do everything yourself, but hiring is complicated. And what if you only need part-time help your job is to be the visionary. But instead you spend countless hours on tasks that could be done easily and arguably better by someone else. And that's where the powerful multiplying effects of delegation are mission critical. Our friends at BELAY can help. BELAY is an incredible organization, revolutionizing productivity with their virtual assistance bookkeepers website specialists and social media managers for growing organizations to help you get started. Belay is offering their latest ebook, delegate to elevate for free to all of my listeners. Now in this ebook, you'll learn how to reclaim time to focus on what you can do by delegating to download your free copy. Just text tape to 5, 5, 1, 2, 3 that's T a P E to 5, 5 1, 2, 3, accomplish more and juggle less with BELAY.

John Jantsch (11:02): So let's talk a little bit deeper about the social media role, because I see a lot of business owners that they don't like social media. They, they maybe come to it begrudgingly because they think, oh, everybody's doing it so we better do it. And so they kind of advocate it. They go find somebody to post for, but you balance that. You mentioned the word strategy. I mean, where you're actually doing something that's effective, you know, that's, that's actually helping you advance towards your business goals without being involved in it.

Tricia Sciortino (11:28): Yeah. I think, you know, it's a lot of vision casting and a lot of inspecting what you're expecting. So, you know, that's your social, media's a great way to look at all of that is, you know, there's, you really need to immerse that person into who are we trying to be to the public? Who do we say we are? What is the service we offer? Where is our ideal client, who is our ideal client? Where does our ideal client hang out, you know, understanding some of those core principles. And it's a lot of testing and tuning, which I think a lot of people misunderstand when they get into social media as well. There's a lot of tune and tone and voice. And you know, the algorithms are changing all the time. So things that worked for you today, they might not work in three to six months from now.

Tricia Sciortino (12:15): So having somebody constantly having eyeballs on your social media presence, we find very important now where that presence is, I think is unique to your organization. And what you're offering is, you know, some organizations will thrive and Facebook is their community and they should just spend a lot of time and energy really honing what Facebook does for them. Others. It might be more Instagram, some it's LinkedIn. So I'm thinking, you know, understanding where your, your audience is and what platforms are on is key. And then, you know, cast great vision and inspect, you know, let that social media manager create their vision and strategy. And then you add, edit and approve that strategy to go to execution. So it might be something you're doing an hour a month versus, you know, an hour a day

John Jantsch (13:08): Or, or just not getting to

Tricia Sciortino (13:11): Or not doing it at all or not doing it, getting all. Yes.

John Jantsch (13:14): Yeah. So, so you started to describe an area I was gonna go into too, because I see a lot of people go, oh, for existent, you know, I could just pay somebody 10 hours a week to take all this off my plate. And then they get that person and they haven't really thought through, they don't know how to delegate they, they really don't know how to use that resource. I mean, what are some of the mistakes you see? I guess that's two part question. What are some of the mistakes you see when people do hire virtual, uh, workers, and then what are some of the best practices so that you actually get some efficiencies instead of cuz, cuz in some cases it's two steps backwards first, right? yeah.

Tricia Sciortino (13:49): It's absolutely to get

John Jantsch (13:49): Two steps back.

Tricia Sciortino (13:50): Yeah. I mean, you know, a big mistake we see is that people wait too long, right? So they wait until they are literally so up against a wall and everything is so out of order that for anybody to come in, it's gonna take a minute for there, to there, to be this feeling of relief and order because you've waited too long. So I always say, yeah, you know, like most hires, but especially a virtual system assistant, you know, hire them sooner than you think you need them. It's like anything else, proactive hiring is the best hiring we do. so regardless of the role, but the same for this role, you know, if you can forecast your business, you should be able to forecast your time. And if you can do that, then you know exactly when you need somebody. So bring a on student that you think that's the first thing.

Tricia Sciortino (14:38): And then as far as where to deploy them, cuz there's probably, we, we see a variety, I mean a ma a mass variety of opportunities on where a virtual assistant can help any or a leader, but it's gonna be, what is that right thing for you? I mean, we typically organically go for, you know, the customary, if you will, calendar management and meeting planning, I mean, believe it or not, you spend more time emailing back and forth about when you're gonna meet somebody and then sending out a meeting request and then change the meeting request and then put the links in the meeting request. And then following up to confirm the meeting, like, it sounds like no big deal. You do, you remove that for the 10 meetings a week you have, or whatever that looks like, and you've already saved time. Then you added things like email management, travel bookings, you know, hotels and flights.

Tricia Sciortino (15:31): If you travel at your work, you add in meeting notes. For me, meeting notes has been a game changer inside our organization. We have a virtual assistant sit in on every single meeting we have just to take notes and pull action items and then follow up with those action items to ensure they've actually gotten done because then guess what? I don't have to, I don't have to follow up on the action item that's supposed to get done as the leader, my virtual assistant is taking notes, sharing them and then following up with those action items. So it's even an extra layer of accountability if you will, in that case.

John Jantsch (16:07): Yeah. I think once people start letting go of those kinds of things, because I do think with, especially with leaders, a lot of times that, you know, my neat man, like a, or my travel, I mean, these are very personal neat maybe, but I think that, and so I think sometimes leaders have trouble giving those things. I'm thinking, oh, well, nobody can do it like me, but I think you're absolutely right. Once you experience that there might actually be somebody that could do it better than you. Uh, it really gets a lot easier. Does it?

Tricia Sciortino (16:33): A absolutely. And, and that is truly the moment, the wake up moment, if you will, where you really do have to get to the place where you realize that somebody else can do this, maybe better than me or equal to me and even equal is a win because those hours you saved on that you are now dedicated to higher payoff items inside your business. You're now that's 10 hours a week. You now get to focus on growing your business, vision strategy, sales, Mar you know, areas of the business that are growth associated. You're an entrepreneur versus areas of your business that are highly administrative. You probably can do those things, but the question is really, should you do those things?

John Jantsch (17:20): Absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. So the, a question I get a lot of times is, you know, how do I find the right person? And so if I'm, let's just say we're the executive assistant, um, role right now? How does you know, how, how do you tell people to not just find, I mean, there are tons of plays you can find, how do you find the right person and how do you know it's the right person? And how do you, you know, how do you dig deep enough to realize that person's gonna work for you?

Tricia Sciortino (17:47): Yeah. I mean, we have found success by using a, a multiple, a multi-layer interview process. If you will. I mean, a, a resume is a great start in knowing things to look for and what looks like a great resume is important, but when you're past that point and you decided there's handful of people you actually want to meet with, you know, we would recommend that multiple different people interview, not even just you. So do you have a cohort or a partner inside your business or is it your, what? I mean, whoever it may be, right? Somebody else having a second opinion going into an interview is important and then interviews are, you know, and should be looked at as skills assessments, you know, even in an interview, were they on time? Was there camera working? Were you interviewing on a webcam? Did, how were they, how did they show up you, there is different things.

Tricia Sciortino (18:40): You're looking aside from the information you're getting out of the questions back and forth. It is like really looking at the whole scenario, everything that led up to that interview and everything after that, did they send, send a thank you note, how is the grammar in that note? So looking at all those things and then having multiple people do that. And then what I would say is regardless of the world, there should be some type of skills, assessment opportunity. So is there something they can do, whether it's a questionnaire that you send them, we, we will do that. We have 10 questions. Is there some type of sample work product you want them to mock up for you do a skills assessment, like for a virtual assistant, if they're gonna do heavy calendar management, then give them a fo meeting to plan for you or whatever that may look like. Or I plan a trip for you and, and send you a trip by itinerary. So assessing a skill is a great opportunity because an interview is words and skills assessment is action.

John Jantsch (19:39): So, so one of the things that I have found in many years of working with dozens and dozens of, of virtual assistant or remote, uh, workers, is some of the best I've worked with actually come with their own processes and own systems that, that allow us to go, oh, that's better than what we're doing. Yes. Do you feel like that's a part of the you to be looking for is somebody that, that actually has routines and processes and not is, and is not just looking for you to tell 'em what you do.

Tricia Sciortino (20:09): Yeah. I mean, to me, that's, it is a big relief for a leader. If your virtual assistant is extremely proactive and organized. And so I always tell my assistant that my goal for her is for her to be ahead of me. And so that, and that usually means 60 to 90 days ahead of me. And so that means that for example, today I'm emailing my assistant about meetings. I'm having in August and she's planning August meetings already. She's sending me sample menus. She's sending me meeting locations. She sent me flight options, you know, already, I haven't even thought about August yet, but she's very planned, very methodical and extremely proactive. So that is what makes it, you know, really helpful. Gives me peace of mind that I know for the next season of time. There's nothing that's gonna come by and blindside me side me.

John Jantsch (21:07): Yeah. Abso absolutely. Um, if, if, if somebody's thinking about to listening to this or they're thinking, well, gosh, this sounds like something I need to hear. What's the process of working with belay?

Tricia Sciortino (21:19): Yeah. So it's a fun process because John, we have a core value at belay and one of them is fun. The first thing you get, first thing I would say is you go to our website, which is belay solutions.com. We have a get started form that you would fill out that will get you in touch with one of our solutions consultants. Then you would have a conversation with one of our solutions consultants. Who's really just gonna help you determine, do you need a virtual assistant? What are you looking for? What kind of virtual assistant, how many hours possibly, what are you trying to get off your plate once that's figured out and you decided to join our team, you were then handed over to a client success consultant, which is your person for your duration at belay. They will take you through a discovery process and hone in on exactly the type of skill set and soft skills you're looking for in this person to match you with whether it's industry knowledge or application knowledge or specific time zone or products like you need somebody to use a Mac versus a PC.

Tricia Sciortino (22:18): They gather all that information. And then our placement team, we actually have a team of people whose job it is to find that right person for you do their search. We come back and present. We found your match. Then we have a kickoff call, which is all on, um, zoom. So your client success consultant to your new virtual assistant new, we have about ki a kickoff call. It's about an hour or so long where we get, you know, we get everything started the transfer of information. We send training documents, so you can help onboard this person. And then your client success consultant will check in with you on your new VA weekly and then biweekly, and then monthly as your engagement continues to make sure that everybody's getting the best value and use out of the relationship.

John Jantsch (23:05): Awesome. Well, you know, you know, I'm a fan. I mean, I've been doing, you know, this type of work and they're hired, you know, we have a, any number of specific team members now that do specific things on earth. So I, I really think it is a tremendous way for pretty much any size organization to go. I appreciate you, uh, stopping by taking time to stop by the duct tape marketing podcast. And it's belay solutions.com. Hopefully we'll run it to you one these days out there on the road.

Tricia Sciortino (23:31): I hope so. Thanks John.

Speaker 3 (23:34): Hey, and one final thing before you go, you know how I talk about marketing strategy strategy before tactics? Well, sometimes it can be hard to understand where you stand in that what needs to be done with regard to creating a marketing strategy. So we created a free tool for you. It's called the marketing strategy assessment. You can find [email protected] marketingassessment.co not .com .co check out our free marketing assessment and learn where you are with your strategy today. That's just marketing assessment.co I'd love to chat with you about the results that you get.

This episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network and BELAY.

HubSpot Podcast Network is the audio destination for business professionals who seek the best education and inspiration on how to grow a business.

 

BELAY is an incredible organization revolutionizing productivity with its virtual assistants, bookkeepers, website specialists, and social media managers for growing organizations. To help you get started, BELAY is offering its latest book, Delegate to Elevate, for free to all our listeners. In this ebook, learn how to reclaim time to focus on what only you can do by delegating. To download your free copy, click here to claim or text TAPE to 55123. Accomplish more and juggle less with BELAY.

How To Build Great Leadership Teams

Marketing Podcast with Jack McGuinness

In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Jack McGuinness. Jack is a management consultant with over 35 years of experience. After serving with the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division, he helped build a successful boutique management consulting firm where he served as COO for 13 years. In 2009, he co-founded a new firm, Relationship Impact, a consulting firm focused on working with CEOs to unleash the potential of their leadership teams. He has a new book called — Building Great Leadership Teams: A Practical Approach to Unleashing the Full Potential of your Teams.

Key Takeaway:

Leadership teams have an enormous impact on their organizations. Dysfunctional teams hold their organizations back but great leadership teams accelerate their health and productivity. In this episode, I talk with the co-founder of Relationship Impact, Jack McGuinness, about what a great leadership team looks like, how it feels to be part of one, and what it takes to build a great one.

Questions I ask Jack McGuinness:

  • [2:45] What is this book going to bring to the leadership genre?
  • [3:40] Why is being a leader such a challenge for entrepreneurs sometimes?
  • [7:31] How do you start looking at who should be on the team?
  • [10:47] When you see teams break down, what’s the single greatest factor in the demise?
  • [12:13] Do you think that it’s a good idea for teams to intentionally seek diversity?
  • [13:23] Is what you’re talking about just as much a retention and recruitment tool as it is a productivity tool?
  • [15:30] What is the leader’s job in a team?
  • [17:52] So if I’m a leader or I’m on a team, and I’m thinking I need to pick up this book, what am I going to find in the book?
  • [18:59] Where can people find out more about your book and your work?

More About Jack McGuinness:

Take The Marketing Assessment:

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

John Jantsch (00:00): This episode of the duct tape marketing podcast is brought to you by the female startup club, hosted by Doone Roison, and brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network. If you're looking for a new podcast, the female startup club shares tips, tactics and strategies from the world's most successful female founders, entrepreneurs, and women in business to inspire you to take action and get what you want out of your career. One of my favorite episodes who should be your first hire, what's your funding plan, Dr. Lisa Cravin shares her top advice from building spotlight oral. Listen to the female startup club, wherever you get your podcasts.

John Jantsch (00:49): Hello, and welcome to another episode of the duct tape marketing podcast. This is John Jantsch and my guest today is Jack McGuinness. He is a management consultant with over 35 years in the business. After serving with the us Army's 10th mountain division. He helped build a successful boutique management consulting firm where he served as the chief operating office served for 13 years in 2009. He co-founded a new firm with west point with his west point classmate called relationship impact a consulting firm focused on working with CEOs to unleash the potential of their leadership teams. And today we're gonna talk about is newest book called building great leadership teams, a practical approach to unleashing the full potential of your teams. So Jack, welcome to the show.

Jack McGuinness (01:36): Thanks so much for having me, John. It's good to see you again.

John Jantsch (01:39): So the 10th mountain division, did you learn to ski when you were, uh, yeah,

Jack McGuinness (01:43): No, it was roughly cold. I, we were, it was an upstate New York on the foot of lake Ontario or tip of lake Ontario. And it was people from the sixth infantry division used to come in for, for cold weather training. It was that cold, but it used to used to be in Colorado

John Jantsch (01:58): And, well, that's what I was gonna say. That's in fact, there's a whole system of huts and things that they've kept up in the mountains and refurbished, and now you can, you know, cross country ski and hiked to 'em and, and ran 'em out in the winter. And, and I just BEC I've gone to a couple of them and I read a pretty fascinating account about the, that division's, uh, role in world war II and heck pretty fascinating.

Jack McGuinness (02:18): Pretty fast. Yeah. In, in Italy, I think they have

John Jantsch (02:21): Yeah, exactly.

Jack McGuinness (02:21): A big role. Yeah. And they played a huge role in, in the first Gulf war too. Is that right? For sure. Yeah.

John Jantsch (02:28): So I have to start on the cynical side first from a questioning standpoint, there are a lot of leadership books of late. It seems like more and more of late for dysfunction of a team who moved my cheese, you know, turn the ship around. You can all these kind of pop titles that are out there. So I I'll let you tell me why does a world need another leadership book? What, what is this book gonna bring to, to the genre if you will. That makes it significant.

Jack McGuinness (02:55): You know, I think the reason I actually wrote it, cause I agree with you. There's a lot of good stuff out there too. It's not just flaky stuff. There's some flaky stuff too, but there's some really good stuff out there. There's not a lot on building leadership teams. There's a lot on teams. There's a lot on, you know, leadership in general, but on building leadership teams, not so much. And so that's really why I, I, I, I felt like I had something to say after doing this for 14 years,

John Jantsch (03:25): You know, a lot of entrepreneurs, uh, start a business and with an idea and then it grows up and all of a sudden they find themselves being a manager leader right. Without maybe without any desire to be so yeah, but also, you know, kinda realizing that's the only way to make this thing bigger. So why for particularly for that group of people, is this such a challenge?

Jack McGuinness (03:47): Yeah. So, so it's, it is a challenge for them. No question about it for, for a lot of them, but it's what, what I found is that it's a challenge for those that have, you know, started in a managing training program and grown up the ranks in a mid-size company and building a leadership team is hard. And it's, it's, you can't just throw a group of talented individual players that are good at their individual function, sales, marketing, CFO, operations, you can throw 'em together. And that's what most firm companies do. And some have a lot of success with it. And others often struggle with the dysfunction that re results from not stepping back and really thinking through what does a leadership team need to be doing for this organization at this time in its journey?

John Jantsch (04:44): Well, I imagine one of the challenges is that as a comp, particularly as a company grows and they start having teams plural, it, it really, you know, it's not like somebody sat out and said, let's poof build a team, right? I mean, a team sort of assembles and doesn't that make it, doesn't that dynamic alone, make it difficult to have everybody get along. so much

Jack McGuinness (05:04): It does. It, it, it absolutely does. And that, and thus the premise behind the book is very much leadership teams are critical for the health and productivity about an organization, because everyone looks up to the leaders in the organization to see how well they're working together and holding each other accountable, not so much how much they like each other, but how they're holding each other accountable. Right. And in order to do that, well, you have to have a good structural foundation for your team, like blah, the blocking and tackling things that are elemental for, you know, running a meeting. Well, for example, a bit, you know, the most basic of things that often are, is not well done. And you have to really set up the right relational dynamics and just step back and say, Hey, look, all of us are different. We've all come from different places, journeys.

Jack McGuinness (06:00): And that's great, but what do we need from each other at this particular juncture in this organization's journey? And, and if you don't step back and do that, you put structure in place that sometimes causes some relational strife, right? We'll put, you know, and, and, and not necessarily intentionally even, but we'll put structure in place like that. We'll define roles. And we'll assume that everyone knows what the marketing Del, you know, delivery focus folks are supposed to do. And the sales folks are supposed to do. And it's the gray areas between those roles that gets teams in trouble and then bleeds down to the rest of the organization as well sometimes. And so it's really that Def helping, you know, build the right structure and just talk about what the structure should look like. It, it, it, it saves so much pain on the back end because we're not pointing fingers at as much at, at each other for stupid things. Look, people are gonna argue, people are gonna, you know, get into confrontations. And that's a good thing if they're fighting about the right stuff.

John Jantsch (07:17): So one of the very first steps, of course, which makes a ton of sense, but probably people don't think about it enough is a lot of times we think in terms of, oh, we have to fill this function or this job on the team, as opposed to who would be the right person.

Jack McGuinness (07:31): That's right.

John Jantsch (07:32): So, so how, you know, how do you, and I'm, I'm guessing it's different for every company cuz every culture's different, but you know, how do you start looking at who should be on the team?

Jack McGuinness (07:43): Well, of course, you know, the functional business unit leaders are, you know, are the natural, you know, people that people, you know, that CEOs point to. Right, right. And that's fine. It's a great starting point. The challenge is we have to step back and say, what are the unique capabilities that these individuals need to have to be a really good leadership team member? Things like the ability to think beyond today to, to think beyond today's problem or the next three months and help the organization help the team think a little further out than that. And not, I'm not talking about a strategic planning effort. I'm talking about just the foresight necessary to how you know, what's going on in my environment. That's gonna, you know, gonna impact how we're operating today. It's things like managing complexity, you know, can do we have the ability to deal with all this stuff that comes with rising in an organization.

Jack McGuinness (08:43): And now I'm not just a functional player, but I have more things thrown at me, more discussions I'm having about broader issues. Can I take that, those things in and deal with the complexity and make sense of it and more importantly, help the folks under me make sense of it and perhaps more important than anything is, do I have the innate capability to have a, an organization focus or what we call a greater good focus rather than a functional focus. Right? And so we, we know that not every leader has those innate characteristics to start, right, but identifying that they need to have some development on those characteristics is very important and it's a missed opportunity. We find often.

John Jantsch (09:29): And now let's hear from our sponsor, you know, as a business owner, you eventually realize you can't do everything yourself, but hiring is complicated. And what if you only need part-time help your job is to be the visionary. But instead you spend countless hours on tasks that could be done easily and arguably better by someone else. And that's where the powerful multiplying effects of delegation are mission critical. Our friends at belay can help. Belay is an incredible organization, revolutionizing productivity with their virtual assistance bookkeepers website specialists and social media managers for growing organizations to help you get started. Belay is offering their latest ebook, delegate to elevate for free to all of my listeners. Now in this ebook, you'll learn how to reclaim time to focus on what you can do by delegating to download your free copy. Just text tape to 5, 5, 1, 2, 3, that's T a P E to 5, 5 1, 2, 3, accomplish more and juggle less with belay.

John Jantsch (10:40): I should just ask you this, but I know the answer to it already, but yeah, when you see teams break down, uh, what, what is the, what's the single greatest factor?

Jack McGuinness (10:51): Oh, it's the, the greatest factor is the inability to have tough conversations about or productive conversations about the most important things that they're facing, not about trivial crap focus on what's most important. And what that means is that we have to disagree with each other sometimes because we come at things in from different perspectives and the

John Jantsch (11:15): It's, it's tough to, it's tough to disagree if you don't trust. I mean, that's what I was really,

Jack McGuinness (11:19): You know, so, and so the relational dynamics here are really important is do we trust each other enough where we can have those tough conversations without being judged, without being shut down without having my colleague go talk to the CEO after the meeting and tell 'em how, what a stupid idea it was. And then ultimately, you know, we've never really gotten to this, but we aspire every team we work with. We, our aspiration is that they are able to hold each other accountable without just the power accountability in their room. Now that's a heavy lift. That's a hard thing to get to for any team, but when you can move towards and move the needle towards it and even be spastic as you're getting towards it, that progress really helps build the fibers amongst the team members.

John Jantsch (12:11): Do you think that it's a good idea for teams to intentionally seek diversity? And I'm not just necessarily talking about race or ethnicity, but I mean, diversity of ideas, diversity of backgrounds. I mean, do you think that plays a role or does that make it harder?

Jack McGuinness (12:26): I, I, it makes it harder. It makes it harder for sure. No question about it, but it it's absolutely crucial. Like we, we see often CEOs that will hire people or promote people that are just like them. Right. You know, she grew up in the organization very similar to I did and a sales role and then went to a marketing role and she's got a very, you know, people oriented approach to her. So I'm gonna put, I'm gonna bring her up and that's great, but not everyone can have the same or shouldn't have the same way of thinking. Look, it happens. And, and that's fine, but you have to compensate for it. You have to ask yourself questions. Like, what are we missing here? Because we all think about this the same way. Right, right. It's just, it's the step back type of things you have to do.

John Jantsch (13:20): So the hiring environment, even retention environment right now of employees is, is as we, we all know is, you know, a much top talked about topic in the news. So how do you, I mean, is what you're talking about is much a retention tool and a recruitment tool as it is a productivity tool.

Jack McGuinness (13:40): Well, I think, you know, there's no question about it because a look, the CEO's job is a big one and it doesn't matter what size of the organization. Obviously it gets more complex and more, you know, as the bigger you get and the more span of control you have, but the CEO's job is really to create the conditions for his or her team to build a productive and healthy organization. And those things are always, not always, but often in conflict with each other. And, you know, and, and it's a hard job, but when you do that, well, the downstream effects on the people that are mid-level managers and below is dramatic because they're like, look, the leadership, team's not perfect, but man are, they are really, they got our backs and they're pushing us. They're pushing whole, I'm working with a bank right now started by a construction guy about 17 years ago.

Jack McGuinness (14:46): And it's, you know, it's grown like crazy. The, this is a great place to work and it's not perfect. There's chaos. They, you know, they attack problems with, with vigor and it leaves a trail of dust behind them sometimes, but they're able to repair because the intentions are there that they're trying to build something really cool. And while they're doing it, they do take care of their people. It might be after the fact, but they do take care of their people. And, uh, I think that balance of PR product productivity and health is really important.

John Jantsch (15:22): Most teams of some sort of a, maybe it's a rotating, but it's an appointed leader. W would the analogy of a sports team kind of be the same where the, the leader of a team's job really is maybe more like a coach? Or let me just ask you directly, what is the leader's job of a team?

Jack McGuinness (15:40): Yeah. I mean, ultimately, um, ultimately, and if you, if you go back to the, the, my aspiration, our aspiration of the teams, we work with that they hold each other accountable. When you're working towards that CEOs naturally evolved to be being more coaching oriented than directing oriented and much more oriented to be working with the, their leadership team to set the picture, to set the foundation, to identify what the most important priorities are, and then let people go now, again, that's a Nirvana state too, you know, no question about it, but if you're aspiring to get to something like that, much more likely to have greater success. So the CEO, you know, we started this thing again 14 years ago and our aspiration was like, you know, teams are really leadership teams are so important that it shouldn't matter what the CEO's role is on a team.

Jack McGuinness (16:45): And boy were we abused of that, that notion, you know, it's critical, it's absolutely critical the role they play. They have to model a whole bunch of stuff like the values that are espoused, the, you know, the, how the, he, or she wants the team to operate. And they have to have a strong role in set in, in establishing directing direction. And sometimes they have to play a heavy hand role, but most often what they have to do is push back when the lobbying happens. And I know that sounds like a trivial issue, but we see it all the time. Like you'll have a great meaning, see, meeting a seemingly great meeting about an important issue. And then the CEOs getting calls, getting knocks on his door, telling him or her why those ideas were such bad ideas and why these ideas are good ones. And so, and the ability to say, Hey, wait a minute, we had this conversation, go talk to Jerry, go talk to Bob, go talk to Sue and figure this stuff out, and then let's have a conversation about it, but I need you guys to figure this stuff out. Yeah.

John Jantsch (17:50): So if I'm, uh, a leader or I'm on a team, maybe even, and I'm thinking, I need to pick up this book, what am I gonna, is there a road? Is what am I gonna find in the book? Is it gonna be a roadmap, you know, start here, do then do this UN unpack it in the two yeah. Two minutes or so we have

Jack McGuinness (18:06): A few things it's it really does. I think it does a pretty good job of talking about why a leadership team is so important in the impact it has on an organization. Number two, it talks, um, a lot about the structural and relational foundation necessary to build a good team mm-hmm and then it get, it does provide a bit of a roadmap on what are the things you need to do to either repair or to build. And, you know, I'm pretty proud of that. Part of it. It's pretty practical. There are a lot of other books out there there that are, that I believe are really good and inspired me in the work that I do. But I think what we did was got into another level of how do you do this? Yeah. And why is it so important?

John Jantsch (18:55): Much, much needed. So tell people where they can find, uh, the book and find out more about your work, Jack.

Jack McGuinness (19:00): Yeah. So, so relationship impact.com is my website for my firm, but, uh, great leadership team. book.com is the books, companion website that I stole from you. I stole the model and this is my first book. So I've never done this before. And I was like, wow, I gotta get one of those companion sites.

John Jantsch (19:23): awesome. Well, jacket was great catching up with you. And, uh, hopefully, uh, we can run into each other one of these, uh, days out there on the road. Next time you're visiting your son in, in Colorado.

Jack McGuinness (19:33): I will do that, John. No, no question, Matt, thank you so much for, for the opportunity. I appreciate it.

John Jantsch (19:38): Hey, and one final thing before you go, you know how I talk about marketing strategy strategy before tactics? Well, sometimes it can be hard to understand where you stand in that what needs to be done with regard to creating a marketing strategy. So we created a free tool for you. It's called the marketing strategy assessment. You can find it @ marketingassessment.co not - dot com - .co check out our free marketing assessment and learn where you are with your strategy today. That's just marketingassessment.co I'd love to chat with you about the results that you get.

This episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network and BELAY.

HubSpot Podcast Network is the audio destination for business professionals who seek the best education and inspiration on how to grow a business.

BELAY is an incredible organization revolutionizing productivity with its virtual assistants, bookkeepers, website specialists, and social media managers for growing organizations. To help you get started, BELAY is offering its latest book, Delegate to Elevate, for free to all our listeners. In this ebook, learn how to reclaim time to focus on what only you can do by delegating. To download your free copy, click here to claim or text TAPE to 55123. Accomplish more and juggle less with BELAY.

Rolling Out The Red Carpet For Your Employees

Marketing Podcast with Donna Cutting

In this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I interview Donna Cutting. Donna is the Founder and CEO of Red-Carpet Learning Worldwide and works with mission-driven leaders to help them create cultures of happy, engaged people who deliver exceptional customer service. She’s the author of three books including: The Celebrity Experience: Insider Secrets to Delivering Red-Carpet Customer Service and her new book Employees First! Inspire, Engage, and Focus on the HEART of Your Organization.

Key Takeaway:

The world is changing and it’s time to take care of the people who take care of your customers. How do we get an hourly employee who has never received red carpet customer service, to give it? The answer is obvious, isn’t it? You roll out the red carpet for them, of course.

In this episode, Donna Cutting joins me as we talk about how giving your team members a voice in your company, supporting them with knowledge and training, giving them purpose and equitable pay, translates into higher productivity and happier customers. We dive into core concepts from her new book Employees First! and share strategies for honoring the very people who make your company what it is—your internal customers—your team.

Questions I ask Donna Cutting:

  • [1:18] Would you say that in a lot of ways you writing a book about inspiring and engaging with your employees is a derivative of customer service?
  • [6:11] How do you get people to think about this as a journey?
  • [9:54] Would you talk a little bit about the messaging that you’re seeing that really attracts the kind of employee that’s looking for something meaningful?
  • [13:06] Similarly to buyer’s remorse, sometimes people experience remorse after taking a new job — how can we keep that experience as high as everything that attracted them?
  • [15:54] What are you finding in that channel as a way to attract new employees?
  • [17:17] Do we need to change the way that we think about women and diversity in the workplace?
  • [19:50] Where can people find out more about the work that you do?

More About Donna Cutting:

More About Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network:

Like this show? Click on over and give us a review on iTunes, please!

John Jantsch (00:00): This episode of the duct tape marketing podcast is brought to you by the salesman podcast, hosted by Will Barron and brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network. Look, if you work in sales, wanna learn how to sell, and frankly who doesn't check out the salesman podcast, where hosts will Barron helps sales professionals learn how to find buyers and win big business ineffective and ethical ways. And if you wanna start someplace, I recommend the four step process to influencing buying decisions. Listen to the salesman podcast, wherever you get your podcast.

John Jantsch (00:43): Hello, and welcome to another episode of the duct tape marketing podcast. This is John Jantsch and my guest today is Donna Cutting. She is the founder and CEO of red carpet learning worldwide and works with mission driven leaders. To help them create cultures of happy, engaged people who deliver exceptional customer service. She's the author of three books, including the celebrity experience. And one we're gonna talk about today, a new one called employees first inspire, engage and focus on the heart of your organization. So welcome back, Donna.

Donna Cutting (01:15): Thanks, John. It's good. Always good to be here with you.

John Jantsch (01:18): So, you know, in a lot of ways you writing a book about treating your employees or inspiring engaging is really just sort of derivative of customer service, right? I mean, because guess who's delivering customer service.

Donna Cutting (01:32): Yeah, exactly. I actually love that. You put it that way because so many people will say, oh, you're switching now, you're going to a place I'm like, no, I'm not switching it all. We're talking about your internal customers. And in many ways it's the book I should have written first.

John Jantsch (01:49): Well, I mean, it's all just positioning because I mean, a lot of, I know in your previous work, a lot of customer services is about, I mean, your people are probably treating their customers about as well as you're treating your people. Right. So, I mean, there, there's definitely, you've definitely written in red carpet really about the idea of getting engaged, you know, people involved in the purpose. I mean, so it's really in a lot of ways, it's not that different, is it?

Donna Cutting (02:15): No, it's not. And there's always been, uh, it it's, it's definitely not because it all works together, right. It's how you treat your team member versus it is how they treat your, is how they treat your customers and all of that stems also from the culture that you're creating. So, and there's always been you're right. There's always been a chapter, a theme throughout both of my other books that focused, uh, perhaps more on traditional customers, but that you had to re really look at how you treat your employees as well. But this one is dedicated specifically to employees

John Jantsch (02:52): And we're really not just talking about, uh, foosball tables and cappuccino machines. I mean, you know, as like, oh, give 'em lots of perks. I mean, really at the heart of this is the idea of giving them a, a purpose or something to believe in, isn't it?

Donna Cutting (03:05): Yeah. It's a lot of different things cuz we're going through so many changes right now. And you can imagine John, it was such a daunting task to write a book in, in about the employee experience in a time when are going through, uh, such incredible chain, but yeah, really looking at what is it that people really want, you know, and one of those things that keeps coming up again and again is, and especially after, you know, having gone through what we've been through in the last couple of years, just really looking people are looking for meaning in their work and you know, what am I, what am I giving to that gives me a purpose that's beyond a paycheck and the paycheck's important. Don't get me wrong. It, it's probably more important than we've believed it to be in the past, but, but beyond the paycheck, what, what am I doing that is contributing to something that's greater than myself, that's making a difference in the world.

John Jantsch (04:05): Yeah. And that's maybe that's a bit of an attitude change. I, I, it certainly is something that's associated say with millennials and the next generation, but I think it's actually, as you said, we keep pointing to this, you know, with all the change we've gone through, I mean, a lot of feel 50 year olds are resigning from their possessions and looking for that, that meaning all of a sudden, I think that's probably a bigger, uh, sea change maybe than just kind of a generational change.

Donna Cutting (04:32): Yeah. There's a couple of things. Well I think all of us, right, or many of us I'll say many of us because I got called out on LinkedIn, by somebody who said, you know, they've always held to their values and nothing about them has changed since the pandemic. So we'll say many people, many people I think got really clear about what really matters, you know, in their life. And so that's, what's driving their choices. So if they choose to continue in you working work, life balance is going to be a huge part of the discussion, a part of their decision about where they want to work. But I think you're right. That's where we're seeing a lot of people who, you know, in their fifties, early sixties retiring a little sooner than they anticipated. They would in many cases because they've decided no it's time to, to move on, to really focus on what matters in my life. And this is a huge change because there are so many more people in that age bracket than even, you know, millennials and the generation Z. So that's causing a lot of a little disruption in the workplace right now.

John Jantsch (05:48): So one of the things that I've been, um, preaching for years is this idea of an end to end customer journey that, you know, that attracts the right people that, you know, really has them see you as the logical choice that retains customers that turns them into evangelists. And really, I think in a lot of ways for hiring, we're talking about the same kind of journey, right? I mean, there is an attraction component. There is a great experience, you know, component, there is a retention component. So, you know, how do you kind of view that end to end? Because a lot of people, oh, I need to run better ads on indeed, you know, as hiring. Right. So how do you get people to think about this as a journey?

Donna Cutting (06:23): Yeah. And you're absolutely right. It all works together and I think what's happened. You know, I think, I don't think we're talking about anything that people haven't heard before, but I think what it, what happened in the workplace before was a lot of like short term bandaid thinking the I've got to run a better ad on a indeed, you know, and, and really, I think the organizations that are gonna come ahead that are going to attract the best people that are going to are the ones who are going to look at the whole journey and say, really look at their organizational culture and ask the questions. Like, are we really making people feel valued? Are we really, are they clear even what the expectations are and what, you know, going back to, to traditional customer service? Like what does that even look like? And are we giving them the tools that they need and you know, are we supporting them in the way that they're excited and, and inspired and feel like they have some personal professional development that can happen in the organization and this takes time, it takes planning. It takes commitment. Yeah. But the organization know leaders that are willing to look at that journey and really commit to it are the ones five years, 10 years from now are gonna come out ahead.

John Jantsch (07:45): Yeah. And I think you, you missed a key. It also takes investment, you know, for a lot of organizations, but I use the word investment as opposed to cost because it, the theory is, uh, there's going to be a return on that investment.

Donna Cutting (07:57): There's gonna be a return. And also I think, you know, it's amazing to me, even with my own customers, when I ask the question, you know, have you put dollars and cents to what it's costing you to all this employee turnover that you have. And very few of them have, like, they know it's costing them money, but they don't know exactly how much. Sure. You know. Yeah. And I think if you people really looked at the numbers, the amount of money that they were spending because of this, you know what I'm calling bandaid thinking like quick fix thinking and not committing to that whole journey, they would find that the resources to be able to do it, or there is just shifting a focus from, you know, short term thinking to long term strategy.

John Jantsch (08:43): And now let's hear from our sponsor, you know, as a business owner, you eventually realize you can't do everything yourself, but hiring is complicated. And what if you only need part-time help your job is to be the visionary. But instead you spend countless hours on tasks that could be done easily and arguably better by someone else. And that's where the powerful multiplying effects of delegation, our mission critical our friends at Belay can help. Belay is an incredible organiz revolutionizing productivity with their virtual assistance bookkeepers website specialists and social media managers for growing organizations to help you get started. Belay is offering their latest, e-book delegate to elevate for free to all of my listeners. Now in this e-book, you'll learn how to re name time to focus on what you can do by delegating to download your free copy. Just text tape to 5, 5, 1, 2, 3, that's TAPE to 5, 5, 1, 2, 3, accomplish more and juggle less with Belay.

John Jantsch (09:54): So let's break down a couple of components. You know, one of the first one is, you know, messaging that attracts, we work with a lot of clients that now we've shifted to, you know, helping them attract folks in their marketing. Right. And you know, we were working with a contractor looking for skilled liper folks and you know, their ads are all about, here's the benefits you get, you know, here's what you can expect. You know, here's why this good job. And we changed their message and they were getting nothing with, and we changed their messaging to be something around the idea of, are you getting the respect that you deserve in your current job? And all of a sudden it's like, boom. You know, they got attention. And I think that's a part that a lot of people are missing. People. People don't necessarily change jobs for $2 an hour, you know, more it's they leave a bad situation. So talk a little bit about, you know, the messaging that you're seeing that really attracts that kind of player that's looking for something meaningful.

Donna Cutting (10:47): Yeah. That's so interesting. It's funny. My friend, Steven Tweed who's in the home care space, he did a, a study with caregivers in, in the home care space. And one of the things they found was that putting a number like putting a salary or a wage on the ad was actually beneficial in attracting people, but it doesn't keep people. So what keeps people is exactly what I think you just said is, are people feeling, uh, respected? Are they, you honestly, John, this is, this is all of what I talk about. It's really about whether you're talking about traditional customers or employees or just people in general. We wanna be seen, we wanna be heard. We want to feel like we matter, right. That's, that's the bottom line of what we're talking about. So when people feel like they're not seeing, they're not her, they're not respected.

Donna Cutting (11:43): That is when they're more likely to start looking around. And right now they have a lot of different options. And I think, you know, I've been doing a study with hourly workers on what makes them feel valued. And a lot of times, I think, again, what we do in organizations is the quick, like we'll do employee appreciation day, right. Or the pizza party, or we're just gonna thank everybody, you know, the hero side, all of those wonderful things. I'm not putting them down, but none of that is coming up in my conversations with hourly workers about what makes them feel valued. It's more, you know, somebody individually noticed something that I did that I contributed, right. Or somebody saw something in the, my boss saw something in me that I didn't even see in myself. And now I've grown professionally, you know, as a result of that. And then just people knowing them, knowing their names. Yeah, yeah. You know, knowing what's going on in their life and then caring about their work life balance is really huge.

John Jantsch (12:52): So let's go to the next phase. You know, a lot of people probably have stories, listeners, I'm sure where they, you know, got a new job. They're all excited about, they showed up on day one and it's like, nobody greeted them. Nobody really made 'em feel welcome. And I know you have your red carpet onboarding. So maybe talk a little bit about some of the ways, I mean, that's the customer experience, right. Buyers remorse happened, you know, I took the job that's of alert of buyers remorse. Right. And so, you know, how can we keep that experience as high as everything that's attracted

Donna Cutting (13:19): From day one? And I think, I mean, this is so great for you too, because one of the things I think is that human resources and hiring managers could be working with people and marketing professionals. Right. Exactly. To really look at that experience. But one of the things that because of, uh, staffing shortages, yeah. You know, something that I'm seeing is people, you know, they bring 'em on board. They give 'em whatever education, they need to complete whatever compliance, you know, depending, especially in healthcare or financial services or whatever. They're like these compliance ribbon training, you know, education they need to have. And then they get 'em out there as soon as possible because they need people out on the floor and they're losing them within three days. You know, not sometime I've even heard. Some people say they ghost them in the middle of orientation.

Donna Cutting (14:10): Right. Like they start the day and then they leave at lunch. And so, so really being intentional about, yeah, what are you creating an orientation and an onboarding process that introduces them to your culture that connects them to coworkers that, um, communicates and clarifies all of those little things they need to know to really start the job effective. And yes, then those compliant activities. But then are you partnering up with someone who is well prepared to be able to mentor them through, you know, the first few weeks of their job? Are you looking at like, you know, how would you roll out the red carpet for a customer on their first day? And are you generating ideas around, around that as well? Like literally roll the red carpet. Sure. But are you sending note cards? Are you staying in touch? Are you checking back in with them? Is there a sign, you know, with their name on it, when they walk in the door, there could be any number of ways to do that. The focus is how in, and of course I share many of those ways in the book employees first, but it's really about acting with intention instead of just like bringing people in as quickly as possible and then throwing them out there because you have a need.

John Jantsch (15:33): All right, let's move on down the journey. One of the, probably most effective ways to get new employees is a happy employee, says, I've got a friend who ought to join us, but I hear time and time again from employees, they just can't get 'em to do it. Uh, they can't get, they don't get the referrals. They think they should, they make offers, they give money, they give bonuses. What are you finding in that avenue or that channel as a way to attract new employees?

Donna Cutting (16:00): Yeah. I, I mean, I'd be questioning why that is. Yeah, yeah. Right. You know, that's the thing because, and money and bonuses is one thing. Again, I see that a lot, like referral bonuses, I also, and on bonuses that it's a, a short term strategy though. If you have a group of employees who are really thrilled to be working at your company, they're, they're going to tell their friends they're going to recruit their friends. So one of the best things I think that employers can be doing right now is to really focus on ask what's our, our listening strategy. Like how are we really listen, you know, asking the right questions and listening to our employees without getting defensive, without jumping in with solutions, but then collaborating with people at all levels of the organization to create whatever that employee experience is going to be. That's gonna want, make them want to bring their friends to, to come and work with them.

John Jantsch (17:05): So couple things that are going on, you know, we already talked about the, how higher tough it was hiring, but one segment of the work force really dropped out during the pandemic. And that's, what do we need to do? We need to change the way that we think about women in the workplace, given what went on. Do we need to think differently about diversity in the workplace in general, and, and particularly for companies that, that just hasn't, I mean, right or wrong at just, hasn't been their thing, you know, how do they now start thinking we have to change? Or how do they start changing?

Donna Cutting (17:40): Yeah. So the answer to all of that is, is yes, because people's priorities are shifting. And I think people are less, less people in general are less likely to just accept the way it is. You know, they want something different. And so women, not just women, but families, right? Looking at mater maternity and paternity leave, looking at, you know, childcare, like all of those different things. And I'll go back to what I said at the last question is if you want the answers to, what's gonna be attractive to, to the women, you know, in your workplace. So the families in your workplace is to start asking them really, to sit down and say, you know, if this were an ideal workplace for women and families, you know, what would that include? And, and then start working towards bringing some of those elements in flexible scheduling, remote work, and some organizations, some positions remote work is not possible, but are you more flexible in your scheduling?

Donna Cutting (18:43): You know, all of those different things. And then going back to the second part of your question, which was about just diverse of the inclusion and equity in general. Absolutely. What I think needs to happen is much more, much deeper conversations around what that looks like in the workplace. What, what we've done again, that, that bandaid quick fix, like what we've done in the past is, oh, let's have a session on diversity in the work place. And then check that box when it's over. And I think, you know, this is gonna be something people are gonna be looking for, you know, how diverse are you, how inclusive is your organization? And that means taking a look at all of your language, who's gotta seat at the table. What is your website look like? You know, what kind of respect you know, is happening between coworkers and that's a much deeper conversation than, um, what many leaders have been willing to do in the past.

John Jantsch (19:42): Yeah. It's kind of a compliance versus culture. Exactly. Conversation.

Donna Cutting (19:46): Yeah, exactly. That's it.

John Jantsch (19:48): So Donna tell people, uh, where they can find out more about your work at the learning world or red carpet learning worldwide. And then obviously I pick up a copy of your new book.

Donna Cutting (19:58): Yes. Yes. So red carpet learning.com is the website. And always, you can connect with me on social, like all the social, LinkedIn, all of it. But employees first inspire, engage and focus on the heart of your organization by me, cutting available, amazon.com, Barnes and noble.com, Hudson book sellers, all those places where books are sold comes out April 1st. So depending on when you're listening to this podcast, you can either pre-order or order it then. Awesome.

John Jantsch (20:27): Awesome. Well, Don, it was great catching up. You, I appreciate you taking the time to stop by the show and hopefully we'll run into you. Uh, one of these days out there on the road again.

Donna Cutting (20:36): Thank you, John. I hope so, too. Always good to talk to you.

John Jantsch (20:39): All right. So that wraps up another episode. I wanna thank you so much for tuning in and you know, we love those reviews and comments. And just generally tell me what you think also did you know that you could offer the duct tape marketing system, our system to your clients, and build a complete marketing consulting coaching business, or maybe level up an agency with some additional services. That's right. Check out the duct tape marketing consultant network. You can find it at ducttapemarketing.com and just scroll down a little and find that offer our system to your client's tab.

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