073: Be of Service to People Already in Your Network

073: Be of Service to People Already in Your Network

 

Strong for Performance Podcast

 

Want to know what service-oriented marketing and sales look like? My guest Robert Grabel explains his approach, which makes it easy for him to acquire new clients. You’re sure to get ideas you can apply to your own business development efforts! Robert created his firm Nonprofit Now! to provide organizations and their leaders with the support they need to change the world. Nonprofit Now! offers leaders customized services that nonprofits need to grow and thrive, such as Executive Coaching, Board Development, and Fundraising. In late 2020 Robert will release his first book, Just Do the Work: The Portable Nonprofit Coach.   

You’ll discover:

  • How Robert transitioned from cold-calling as a financial advisor to reaching out to people who already know, like and trust him
  • The email message that gets results for Robert when he invites his connections to have a conversation
  • Why Robert has 3-4 conversations instead of just 1 with a prospective client
  • The distinction Robert makes between consulting and coaching

Watch the episode:

 

Connect with Robert

Also listen on…

Connect with Your Team

Mastering the Top 10 Communication Skills

Strong for Performance

Create a Coaching Culture with Learning & Development Programs That Stick

042: The 5 Disciplines for Adding Zeros to Your Revenue and Profits

042: The 5 Disciplines for Adding Zeros to Your Revenue and Profits

 

Strong for Performance Podcast

 

042: The 5 Disciplines for Adding Zeros to Your Revenue and Profits

by Brad Sugars

If you’re a business owner who wants to expand your business dramatically, this episode is for you. My guest Brad Sugars is the founder and Chairman of ActionCoach, the #1 global business coaching franchise that he’s grown to 1,000 coaches in more than 80 countries. He’s also the author of 17 books, including the one we discussed in this episode: Pulling Profits Out of a Hat: Adding Zeros to Your Company Isn’t Magic. Brad Sugars reveals the most important disciplines you must follow if you’d like your business to experience exponential growth.

You’ll discover:

  • Common mistakes that entrepreneurs make…and what to do differently
  • The 5 disciplines every business owner needs to pay attention to continuously
  • How to create a mission statement that employees remember and live by
  • How to leverage and scale your business without sacrificing your life
  • Ideas that you can use yourself and share with clients

Watch the episode:

 

Connect with Brad

Get this free PDF.

Give it to the leaders you work with!

041: Serve Clients So Powerfully That They Can’t Shut Up about You

041: Serve Clients So Powerfully That They Can’t Shut Up about You

 

Strong for Performance Podcast

 

041: Serve Clients So Powerfully That They Can’t Shut Up about You

by Adam Kawalec

What if there were a simpler, easier way to acquire new clients? My guest Adam Kawalec is a Life and Leadership Coach whose approach results in 83% of his potential clients saying YES. These days, he invests no money in marketing his services. Instead, he asks for and receives referrals on a continuous basis due to the transformation his clients experience in their work with him. Adam is based in Sweden and coaches clients virtually around the globe. You’ll be inspired by Adam’s passion for his work and commitment to his clients’ success, and you’ll hear specific ideas for expanding your own business.

You’ll discover:

  • Adam’s alternative to traditional marketing approaches
  • What Adam does in his initial conversation with potential clients to cause them to want to work with him
  • An approach to asking for referrals that really works and doesn’t feel sleazy
  • The world’s simplest coaching model in just 3 steps
  • The role of curiosity, questions and genuine caring to connect on a deep level with a client

Watch the episode:

 

Connect with Adam

Get this free PDF.

Give it to the leaders you work with!

018: Acquire More Clients by Living Service

018: Acquire More Clients by Living Service

 

Strong for Performance Podcast

 

018: Acquire More Clients by Living Service

by Melissa Ford

Are you ready to shift from struggling coach to thriving professional? My guest Melissa Ford has walked that path herself. In her new book, Living Service: The Journey of a Prosperous Coach, Melissa describes the uneven steps she took on her way to establish a truly successful coaching practice. She shares the beliefs that held her back and how she broke through them to create more clients than she’d ever dreamed possible. Today, in addition to her own clients, Melissa works with other coaches to help them build a prosperous business.

You’ll discover:

  • How coaches can apply H.O.W. (Honest, Open and Willing) to themselves and to their work with clients
  • One sentence that can transform an argument into a profound listening and learning experience
  • The three stages of learning for a coach and how to avoid getting stuck in the first two
  • Why it’s important for coaches to have their own coach
  • Questions you can ask yourself to evaluate and revise your current client acquisition system

Watch the episode:

 

Connect with Melissa

Get this free PDF.

Give it to the leaders you work with!

Read the Transcription

Welcome back to another episode of the Strong for Performance podcast. I’m your host, Meredith Bell. And I’m really excited to have today with me a very special guest, Melissa Ford. Melissa, welcome to my program.

Thanks for having me. I’m happy to be here.

I just finished reading Melissa’s brand new book called “Living Service: The Journey of a Prosperous Coach.” And I’m really excited about talking with her about that today. But let me just share a little bit of information about Melissa before we get started. She is a Master of Business and life coach. She’s been in this work for 20 years and has experience working with both individuals and groups. She works with fast rising coaches, executives, entrepreneurs and career changers.

And she really does have such a wonderful style and approach in being of service to others. I believe Melissa really lives the title of her book, “Living Service.” And she’s going to make it more real for us today. The other thing she does that will be of interest to my listeners is she provides ongoing programs for coaches, where she helps them with things like business mindset, deepening their whole service mentality and focus and increasing their profitability so they have a really successful coaching practice. Melissa, let’s get started.

Right.

The first thing I want to do is ask you to just tell us a little bit about your journey as a coach and what it’s been like to be in this profession?

I started coaching really in the mid 90s. I started coaching back then because I struggled as a parent. I have a 30-year-old son, I have a soon to be 29-year-old daughter. I really thought parenting would be easy. I’m one of those people, I guess I’m kind of an outlier. I thought it would be easy, I thought I would just tell my kids what to do, they go with the program. That was not how it went down. I started coaching because I realized I needed to find another way to interact with my kids. I realized it came back to me so that’s where the journey started.

Back in the day when you would talk about limiting beliefs, people would want to know what religion you were referring to. It was that far back. That’s where it started and from there I for about a dozen years had a hobby, I didn’t have a business. And then after that I really made this decision. I was going to go pro and I hired a coach, you’ve had him on your podcast, Steve Chandler, and he taught me the way. He taught me about service, he taught me about being a professional coach, he taught me about learning and so many things. It’s been a long journey but it’s been really rewarding.

Well, one of the things I admired about you in your book is your willingness to be vulnerable. I can’t say it was like one of these novels you can’t put down. But it was a compelling book that I did have trouble putting down because of the way you told your story, and how I related to so much of what you said even though I’m not a paid professional coach. I think anyone who runs a business can benefit, because as you talked about having these enrollment conversations, I was thinking about sales conversations with people. The focus on being of service and looking at how you can be helpful to them, to me was just profound.

I want us to go deeper with some of the concepts you talked about in the book. Because my goal really with our interview today is give people some specific ideas that they can take out and use, but also make them want to get the book. So they can really go deeper than we’re going to have time to do today. One of the concepts that you talked about that I really identified with was the acronym HOW, H-O-W. Would you talk about each one of those elements and why it’s important for a coach to know about?

Sure. The acronym HOW comes from the AA world. I had been involved in an intervention with a friend. A story came back to me about how he had asked a question about, how do I get sober? And the interventionist said, it’s easy. You just show up HOW, Honest, Open and Willing. That’s what you need to do. There isn’t any magic trick. But if you show up like that you can do anything. And I remember when I heard that I thought that applies to me too. If my friend can handle his addiction and live a sober life with HOW, well what could I possibly do with it?

I started using that acronym as almost like my guide. I would self coach, I would ask myself where was I being honest with myself on others? And often, it was unconscious. It was totally subconscious that I wasn’t being honest. I would reflect on that, I would really assess was I been open? Or was I just yeah, I know that, I know that. Close to it. I knew something but I wasn’t open to learning something new. Then the other part was willing. Am I willing to do whatever it’s going to take?

Not am I willing to protect my ego? Am I willing to be right? Am I willing to look like I’ve got it together? Am I willing to be the expert? No. Am I willing to do whatever I need to do? Often that question there’ll be some discomfort, because I know it’s not going to necessarily turn out how I want, but I will learn. That’s where it comes from. I just love it. It’s so simple, it’s so clean and it’s what I see as a really coachable mindset.

That’s a great way to put it. And I really want to ask you to tell the story related to the open part. Because Steve Chandler, as you mentioned he was on episode eight of my podcast, but he gave you a kind of a challenge and experiment to run and with a certain sentence to use. And I think that, that would be very enlightening for our listeners to hear about that story.

Yeah. Steve has been my coach for the last 10 years. Over time, the beauty of having a longer term coaching relationship with a coach is that you can just really get right to it.

Yes.

They know you very well, you know them. That’s how this experiment came about. I had showed up to a coaching conversation and I was thinking well, what am I going to bring to this. Now he coaches me in growing my business. But he has really shown me that when my personal life improves, my business life improves. I didn’t know that, when I first started working with him, I did not want to talk about anything personally, all I wanted to do was make money now. Help me make money now. If that includes service, I guess I’ll learn about that too but I want to make money. That was the whole point. Here we are in this particular session, I decided to bring up something I actually know he’s not going to be able to coach me on, it will be impossible.

I call it the Jab Fest. It’s this way that my husband and I have had with interacting with one another which is always seems to start at first, my husband. He’ll make a comment that feels like a jab or an attack or some slight, and then I’ll jab him back and then we go at it. Now there’s no name calling, there’s no swearing it’s just the mm-mm, pic-pic sort of thing. I bring this to the conversation because I’m sure Steve can deal with it. He says to me, which this is one thing I love about him, he knows my ego well enough that his comment to me is this, “Well you know Melissa I have an idea, but you don’t have to do it.”

I think why spend way too much money and I put in way too much time getting coached, are you kidding me? Tell me what it is. He says, here’s what I want you to do, the next time you sense your husband’s jabbing at you, stop doing whatever you’re doing, go over to him and listen to what he has to say. Now there’s a special way I want you to listen, I don’t want you to say anything. Don’t think about what you would say, don’t think about a comment. Don’t, just listen. When he’s done telling you everything that’s wrong with you, say to him,” you know I can be like that”.

Meredith, I hear this and I think are you kidding me? Like, this is the last thing that I want to do. I sarcastically say, yeah, well, that sounds fun. Anything else? And he adds, thank him. Like, okay, fine, I’ll do it. A couple of weeks pass. My husband comes home, he’s not in a great mood, I’m tired too. It’s eight o’clock at night, whatever it is. And I start feeling this familiar feeling of like, I’m under attack. And I all of a sudden it dawns on me, my gosh, it’s arrived, it’s time. I’m exhausted, I’ve worked all day long, he’s not in a great mood now, here we go.

I told my coach I would do it and I go to the back room and I sit next to my husband. He’s looking at CNN or ESPN, and he’s looking at the TV, and he’s looking back at me and back and forth, and back and forth. He’s telling me these familiar criticisms. Now I know that the challenge or the offering here by my coaches to listen. I’m listening and I can see the frustration and the exhaustion on his face. I can see he’s really troubled and he finally finishes. It really felt like my big old ego was dying but I said to him, you know I can be like that. From this very humble place because there were a few things in there so I knew there was some truth to it.

And he looks from the TV and back at me and he’s just, he’s got this incredulous look on his face. He says, “you know you don’t have to be so hard on yourself”. I just went, what?  I almost got up and left but I remembered I was supposed to thank him. I thanked him. I walked out of there, I was thinking, now what? And later my husband Brian, comes into the kitchen and he’s in a fine mood and he’s open up the refrigerator dancing in front of it. He looks over me says, “Do you need a hug? Are you okay?” I kind of took the hug, I took the hug. But what I really saw was that the only thing I had ever been reacting to was my thinking about my husband.

And in that moment, when I didn’t have any thought I didn’t have any reaction. I had was a lot of compassion, because I could see how consumed he was with what he was thinking about me, but it wasn’t about me. And I could have some compassion for because I’ve been in the same place. That was a major turning point for me because I realized the degree to which I would personalize things would be the degree to which I always suffer.

That is profound. And it is so true our egos jump in and get in the way and we feel like we’ve got to defend ourselves because what they’re saying can’t be true. We want to not think that we’re capable of that. And yet by you owning it, it totally disarmed him. He was expecting the typical interaction and didn’t get the same response he normally got from you.

Yeah, yeah, it’s very true. That is where transformation takes place. It doesn’t take place through reading a book but it really shows up when you’re willing, honest open and willing to go and do something and have the experience. I saw it and I have not unseen it since then. Since then I’m much more aware that the source of whatever’s going on for me is my thinking has nothing to do with my husband. It we our relationship is better for it, he’s also quicker to apologize, he doesn’t really go down that path. Honestly, we don’t do the Jab Fest anymore. It’s because of what I saw.

The application of that story that you just shared is so profound to me that we can apply that in our homes with our spouses, children, but also with our clients. With anyone that we have a relationship with, that matters to us. Because it’s often that you think the people that are closest to us or that we feel closest to, that we give the most power to in terms of caring what they say and reacting to it because-

Definitely.

We just, there’s a history of interactions that comes into play. And so that, again, your HOW, Honest, Open and Willing to me all three of those really play into being willing to be more effective in situations like that.

Absolutely, and you’re right. This can be applied to clients, prospective clients, colleagues, friends, and what it really does is it, it blows up the scorecard. Like this three right, I got my score card. Well, if you put that down, you now have the possibility of engaging with someone in a really connected way human to human, and the scorecard is not there anymore. You’re not reacting to your scorecard. I agree, that’s great.

That’s good. Well, let’s move into another area that you write extensively about in the book related to learning and stages of learning for a coach or consultant. Talk about those a little bit and tell us a little bit about your own journey as you went through those.

I really struggled to create a profitable business. I didn’t know how to serve, I didn’t know how to have sales conversations, enrollment calls, I didn’t know how to do that. It was made even more challenging because of all of the self-judgment that I heaped on top and really honestly not even quite aware of how much. It was just kind of rumbling beneath the surface. I had stories about I can’t do something or I came to the game too late or I don’t have a business background, I had all of this going on which just muddy the learning waters. And what I came to find out after had been a little bit further down my learning path, about service and about creating clients. I discovered that there was a three stage process.

It’s actually something that Matthieu Ricard had come up with. He’s a Buddhist monk and I can get it a little bit into him later, but he said that there’s three stages to learning meditation. Well, my coach had said, hey, there’s three stages to learning anything. Stage one is where you jump in and you try something and it doesn’t work. And for me that was jumping in and really try to be helpful to somebody and then have them become a client. Well, it didn’t work. You might try again and I did couple of times. And then after a while you start to think to yourself either something is wrong with me or this thing doesn’t work. At that point, I decided something was wrong with the thing, with what I was getting taught. So I headed off in a detour and I started doing all kinds of things trying to sell my coaching that didn’t work either.

Stage one is you try something, and it doesn’t work out. Stage two is, you may have taken a detour but if you’ve gotten back on your learning path, you get to stage two and it’s a ball of chaos and confusion but this is where creativity resides. This is where you’re going to roll up your sleeves and you’re going to practice. You’re going to keep practicing and practicing. And over time, it’s going to get easier. And practicing means you’re going to make mistakes, you’re going to succeed, you’re going to make the same mistake again, you’re going to make a different mistake. You’re going to do all kinds of things. There’s a lot of ego bruising if you decide to go there.

Sometimes it happens but for the most part, you even get better at learning. Because now you’re on the field, you’re practicing and you’re doing whatever it is that you want to learn. And you stay with that. I think in the book I said it was like the old adage of the thrill of victory the agony of defeat. That’s kind of it’s the up and down long enough you’ll get to stage three. Which is mastery, which is it’s more natural, feels more natural. You it almost seems like you’ve been doing this your whole life. People might say to you, you’ve seen so natural at it. You are like no, you should have seen what it looked like before. And then there’s more learning there because learning never ends. You’ll see more, there’s more nuanced, there’s more possibility, you can up your game, you can get better as a coach in your coaching and in your service and in yourself selling them your services.

That’s for me it was really useful to know about the three stages because it took me out of this story of what’s wrong with me, why is this taking so long I’m in the Remedial group. I’m watching all these young coaches coach with less experience than me – remember because I coached back in the day, they’re taking off, they’re like these little airplanes doing certain tricks. I’m the 777 rumbling down the runway. It just took all of the personal out and it normalized what the learning process is. Then I just realized if I fall in love with learning, what’s possible. That’s what I offered in the book that helped me tremendously.

Yeah, I think that because I’ve been such an avid lifelong learner. But there has been that time when I think I ought to arrive, right? But you never get to the end of it. There’s always lots more to learn and there are mistakes that you’re going to make. I’m just curious though if you have any thoughts about, if someone wants to really accelerate their learning, so they don’t get stuck in stage one, stage two for an extended period of time. Do you have any tips or suggestions on how they could move more quickly to get to stage three?

One would be and this is just my preference and other coaches and consultants that I’ve seen, your growth can get accelerated if you hire a coach. And the reason being is because you can’t see yourself, you can’t see what’s going on. You’re swimming in your own little pool and you’re not aware of how you’re coming off. You’re not aware of a lot of people call your blind spot, you just can’t see it. The story I told earlier about I’m going to bring the Jab fest, Steve’s not going to be able to figure this one out. Well, it was really obvious to him. Now, but for that coaching I got to tell you, I don’t think I would have arrived at that place.

I’ve been coached for 10 years, is that I feel like in 10 years, I’ve grown 30. The growth is incredible. I can look back three months ago, six weeks ago, I’m not the person I am today. Now that’s freedom, that’s a liveliness, that’s expansion, that’s just this amazing self-expression. One would be get a coach. And I was somebody who was not going to get a coach because to ask for help was evidence that I wasn’t capable. And you have a growth mindset. That’s incredible. I showed up with the most fixed mindset there ever was, I truly feel that way.

I had to unlearn that. But that’s one thing. Another thing would be keep prioritizing your coach ability. What I mean by that is like I said earlier make it a priority that you’re going to stay open, you’re going to be honest and you’re going to go do things that even if there’s some discomfort there, you can handle emotion, it’s going to come and go, just go have the experience. There’s so much more I can do than I thought I was capable of, because I would stop myself. Those two things prioritize your coach ability or developing a growth mindset and get somebody to help you. Somebody in your corner that you’ll stay open to what they have to say and you’ll go and take what they’ve offered and go and test it out. Make it roll your sleeves up real learning.

Well, when you think about it someone who is coaching others a natural question from a prospect seems like it would be and do you have your own coach? It says no, then it’s like, well, then why do I need a coach? It seems to me that that’s an important aspect of being a coach or consultant to say to have another person who can serve as that sounding board and kind of growth accelerator and accountability person for you so that you stay on track and accelerate your own learning.

I’ll tell you to have somebody that’s not a family member or a friend, because I mean how many of us like to be told by our spouses or our children what we need to change.

Yeah, and I think working with someone that has those skills and the experience ha tuned in and trained to be tuned in to picking up little things and being able to provide insights. I mean, that itself is a real important skill for someone coaching. You can’t just ask anyone to be your coach, if you want to accelerate at the rate that is going to allow you to really be at your maximum. One of the other things because I’ve because I’ve worked with consultants and coaches for like 25 years as they’ve used our software and I’ve had lots of conversations around business development.

One of the things you talked about in your book that I know they will relate to is this fluctuation in income. You get a full book of clients whether it’s working in an organization or working with a lot of individuals, and you’re intensely delivering your services while you’re fully booked. And then you come to the end of the engagements. And now what? You’re stuck and it sounded like you went through that cycle a number of times, and then you figured out how to solve that problem. Would you talk about that a bit?

Sure. As an entrepreneur that’s a problem that you want to get a handle on. Because if you’re inside of a business, and again, it depends on how you’re getting paid. If it’s not just 100% commission inside of business even if you’re not, you don’t have a book of business and you have to ramp back up. You’re still getting paid, maybe being paid less but there’s still some money rolling in. What I discovered was that I was operating under this misunderstanding that If I got really good as a coach, then people would naturally want to hire me. Well, they don’t.

I had to get good also at the sales piece. And I started getting really good at that, I was improving. And then I got to a place where I had a book of business and I sat back and I thought, this is great. Money’s in the bank, I’m coaching the thing that I love to do, this is great. And then I would wake up exactly what you said to where is everybody? And I don’t have any money. This whole notion of inconsistent income started. Well, then what occurred was it happened so many times that I realized why did I stop having conversations with people? Why did I stop selling? And I realized that I thought, well, I had this myth that again, people would just naturally come to me and I realized I needed to set up my calendar where I had ongoing space on a weekly basis to keep talking to people.

And that if I could keep talking to people and deliver my coaching, then I could keep consistency in my business. I could stay consistent because I’m 100% commission based. Then I just got into that practice. And I created a system where even if I had X amount of clients, I also required that I had X amount of conversations per week. I just committed to it and I practiced that system. In the book I talked about, I called it my Sisyphus system where I roll the boulder up the hill, and I’m like, yeah, I’m killing it. Then everybody would finish with me and then I would be desperate and needy and I got to make money and then all the stories would start back up. I decided to take that regal out of it. Everybody can do that too. There’s questions in the book you can ask yourself-

Those are excellent, to me that’s worth investing in the book, the questions that you ask people about their current systems.

Yes. What I love about current systems is that it takes again the personal out of it. This isn’t about me, and then I’m a loser and why did I do it again? I should have seen it coming. How long is this going to take me? I need to tweak the system.

Yes. And I’d love that about your own journey, Melissa, because there were so many things you talked about in terms of the, like an undercurrent of self criticism and that self judgment and I could feel myself relaxing as I was reading what you wrote because I related to it. And I’m guessing a lot of folks who read it will also identify with that desire or need to get it right.

Yeah.

And yet it’s different for each person. So it’s what kind of a system do each of us need to create and stick to, in order to keep that the cash flow steady and the clients coming in steadily, so that you’re not sitting there from its feet. It’s not feast and famine.

Exactly. It doesn’t have to be there is this myth that there’s the ups and downs to business. Sometimes you get a windfall, sometimes the client leaves. But if you have the system in place you’re good to go if you keep practicing it. You’re right, it depends on the individual, what kind of business do you want? Then you can design that system and stay conscious to it because it is a living system. As you evolve, the system’s going to have to change.

I have a lot of people who come to me and they want to rework their system, they want to have more time on their calendar but they want to and fewer clients, but they want to make the same amount of money or more. Or they’ve been just grinding and grinding away. They finally say to themselves, why am I living like this? I’m not even enjoying my family, or the money that I bring in? How can I redesign this, so it truly serves me. Serves me, serves my business and the people who have hired me.

Yeah, that balance between serving yourself and serving your clients, I thought was also very effective. I’d love you to talk since the name of your book is “Living Service.” I’d like you to talk a little bit about what do you mean when you say Service? What does that look like in terms of what someone actually does with a potential client or with a client?

For me, service. When I first learned about it I was given this question, how can you help? Over time it evolved, it changed because if that’s where I started, how can I help? And it changed because I started to see things that I could change internally, that would make my service stronger. For instance, how can I help today might look like filling a small group for coaches. It is for a company called Intentional Prosperity for Coaches, it’s about this piece about serving your business and keeping your income consistent.

Well, today filling this group, there are coaches who come to mind and to be in service to say, a coach by the name of Dave, the highest form of service I can do is I can email him and told him about the program and tell him why I’m sending it to him. The focus is off of me when it comes to service and it’s on the other person. Whatever I can do to continue to increase that level of service, whether it’s my professionalism as a coach or knowing, being direct in a way that lets the person understand what I’m saying so they don’t have to connect the dots. I’m kind of being general here. I don’t have a specific but it’s more about how do I keep the focus on the other person and help them?

I continue to deliver in ways that I know are going to make a difference, and ultimately lead to the highest form of service, which is a paid coaching relationship. Because I can’t help you unless we’re working together, I’m getting paid your pain and you’ve got skin in the game. I don’t know if that answers that for you Meredith?

Yeah, but it also makes me think about this whole idea of mindset. And you write about some of the coaches that you have worked with, who feel like a Service means giving it away free.

Yes.

And what are some of the ways you’ve needed or you have found coaches need to adjust their mindset? In other words where they are and where they could be in order to have a really successful practice.

I see three areas, one is just really getting a firm understanding of what Service means to them. And it could simply be how can I help? That’s fine. Now where does your ability to help get diluted? What happens? Well, there’s usually two areas. One is you’re showing up much more social with the focus on you concerned about did they like me? How am I coming off? I hope I’m not offending anybody, I wonder if my fee is too high to low? Will they hire me after this conversation? So I’m solely focused that my Service now is kind of this hollow shell of whatever I’m doing, because I am so self-absorbed. Now I’ve prioritized me rather than helping you.

Coaches get caught in what I call social ladder, social self. And when they upgrade, and they learn how to be the authentic version of themselves in a way where they are professional of serving somebody else, they’re still warm, they’re still friendly. But the focus isn’t about them anymore. That is one area. That took me some time because my social self would show up in my emails and my texts, on a phone call. I had to learn how to develop this professional self. What was great about it was that my coach said, everybody has to learn that. I just thought again, that well, that person’s just really naturally good at it. They had actually mastered it. There’s that piece, and then the other piece is the coach’s relationship to money. That’s a biggie.

Yes.

Yeah, and what does it mean? What if I charge X dollars and you say, you can’t afford that? What does that mean about me that I don’t help you. And maybe I charge too much or there’s just so much mental clutter, and I had it and it can still show up around money. I just want to become clear and clear about that. If I deliver value what I get in response, because this is the world we live in, is I get paid cash. I get paid money. That’s how it works. I don’t want to get caught up in that. I want to really look at what can I do to help? If they want more here’s what it costs? This is what we’ll do. Do you want to do that? It’s just developing those mindsets around those two things, me as a professional and my relationship to money.

Well, and it seems to me to the way you describe the kinds of conversations you have with people where you’re really looking for how can I help them in this moment, in a way that they feel served. We are looking out for them, then they are really inspired to want more of that. Because so few people have those skills and have the ability to give in that way. I think when you’re focused on them and not yourself as you said, and they sense that they want more of that. And so the next natural step is figuring, how can we work together?

That’s it. Something also that helped me was to realize that I want to be in service to other people, but I’m also running a business. So I’m in service to my business. A lot of coaches never reach that level, they reach this place of they give and give and give and give and give and then feel really disappointed if somebody doesn’t hire them or angry about it. It leads into this inappropriate over giving, and they get lost in now it’s personal and I’ve somehow, it means something about me that they didn’t hire me. If you slow it down a little bit, start to see, well you’re good at serving other people. What do all businesses that thrive have in common, they have a profit, they make a profit otherwise can’t keep their doors open.

I want to redirect coaches and entrepreneurs and consultants and say, “hey, you’ve got a business, be in service to the business which means it’s got to make a profit, you got to know your end game”. Which is making money creating clients, you need to be direct so that my husband would say you’re not playing footsies. Like they need to understand. And then you want to take more of the personal out of it because then if you the more personally you take out of any business, the more fun the business becomes. I am just, I’m learning that more and more. That’s my ongoing development. It is so much fun to see, if I run my business 5% more like a business. What’s the next thing I’m going to do?

Great question.

Right. I’m going to get on this podcast and not one that talks to people about their love relationship. So I guess I could, but you know what I mean, it’s just, it makes running a business so much more enjoyable. When I’m serving my business.

Yes, yes and that I think is an excellent question to ask in looking at choices, because we all have so many choices of how we can spend our time in the course of a day. And I know I’ve been guilty at times of being busy, very, very busy, but not productive. And so it’s the idea of is this action or this use of my time going to take me closer to what it is that I want to achieve or will helped me grow my business. So I love that question that you had. And as we closer to wrapping up, you touched on this phrase, slowing down. And I just love that because of course, Steve Chandler talks about that in his books as well. I liked the way you addressed it because you were clear about what it’s not slowing down in regards to and also what it is. So talk a little bit about what it’s not and what it is.

Yeah. Especially in the beginning, almost every other word out of Steve’s mouth. And I say the beginning when we started coaching was how can you serve? How can you help? That those were, those questions were going on. The other one was, well, let’s slow this down. Now in my mind, slowing down meant taking extended naps on the couch, it meant staring out the window and drooling. It meant, I don’t know what it, it’s having a spa day a bath with candles and chocolate. I’m like, I’m not into this. I don’t want to slow down and I was trying to make it clear to him. I realized what wasn’t clear to me. Slowing down for me meant slowing my mind down, relaxing my mind.

Because when I’ve got all this what I like to call noise pollution going on, all this thinking and I’m analyzing and I’m caught in my thinking all this is going on. I have no room for any kind of creativity. I have no ability to connect with anybody because I’m so caught in my head. Slowing down, was to relax and quiet my mind. Now a lot of people don’t want to do that. We’re taught about multitasking, we’re hearing now not such a great idea, because it’s not how our brains work. But people get so revved up that this notion of slowing down seems like it’s being irresponsible. I have a daughter who lives in New York and she was running an email by me for a potential sales conversation. The person didn’t want to get together because he had just too much going on.

He had a scattered calendar. That is everybody!. It is counter intuitive, “I am so far behind the eight ball and you want me to slow down??” That’s crazy. Well, what I’ve discovered and you have to be willing to test is that if you slow your mind down, and you just say just like you said, Meredith what’s the one thing right now that I’ve got a handle and all the mental clutter goes away, you can handle that easily, You’re engaged, you’re really into it, you get it done, and it takes less time. And you come out the other end calm and inspired. And what’s the next thing. That’s slowing down and anybody listening to this, if your first thought about that is boy that’s just not a great idea. Really slow down and experiment with it. Just see, I use it all the time. And it’s like a superpower now.

When we start feeling like I’ve got to do this and this and this and this and this. That is the very time, it seems counterintuitive that we do need to slow down. Because we’re overwhelming ourselves and feeling almost like a victim. I can’t do everything I need to do. And if we can slow down and realize what’s the most important thing to do. First, that relieves a lot of the stress we’re putting on ourselves. Because when you look outside it’s nothing out there that’s doing this to us. It’s all we do to our own health.

That’s it. So when I hear about stressful environments and this work stresses me out, all I can think of this, I wish I had a magic want and I could just get somebody to see it has nothing to do with that. It’s all self-imposed. And sometimes the thing on the list to do is if my mind is so revved, I did it the other day, I went for a walk. I had all this stuff to do and I’m like you know what, I need to chill out, I need to just settle down.

That’s great. Well, we could talk I know for another hour, but it’s time to wrap up. What I’d like to do is ask you to tell our audience how can they learn more about you, the services you offer and especially get your wonderful book, “Living Service.”

Thank you. Well, of course go to Amazon, right. You can just go over there and type in, “Living Service,” Melissa Ford. You can find it there. And if you want to know more about me, my website is melissafordcoaching.com . You can go on there, you can look at the best. And there’s also you can type in if you want to send me something a message and I’m happy to get back to you.

That’s great. Well, thank you, Melissa. I highly recommend picking up a copy of her book. It’s really wonderful. We just touched on a few areas of it. I think it’s something every coach really ought to own and review often because there’s so much richness there. Thank you again, Melissa, for being with me today. It’s been just such a pleasure to get to talk to you.

Thanks, Meredith. I have had a great time. Thank you.

 

011: The Tale of Two Cultures

011: The Tale of Two Cultures

 

Strong for Performance Podcast

 

What can go wrong if the leadership of a company changes and the new executives focus exclusively on the bottom line? My guest Mark Hinderliter, Ph.D., lived through this experience with two different companies. He came to understand the factors that can plummet a once-thriving company into one that struggles or goes out of business. As an external coach and consultant today, he describes the approach he takes to identify whether or not a prospective client is focused on these elements.

You’ll discover:

  • The two superpowers in any business that become their greatest liability if misused
  • Clues you can look for in determining if a client will be a good fit for you…or not
  • One skill that helps you create credibility in the first conversation and uncover ways you can be of service to a client
  • Questions to ask in your initial conversation with a prospective client
  • The weekly habit you can adopt on LinkedIn to build connections and followers

Watch the episode:

 

Connect with Mark

Get this free PDF.

Give it to the leaders you work with!

Mark’s website

ThirdWayInc.com

Read the Transcription

Hi, welcome to another episode of the Strong for Performance podcast. I’m your host Meredith Bell and I am delighted to have with me today Mark Hinderliter. Mark, welcome.

Thank you, Meredith. I’m delighted to have another great conversation with you. You and I have had many.

We have. I have known Mark now for 20 years. We go back a long ways. He is the founder of Third Way Inc. He’s also an executive coach and he is a unique position to talk with us today because he’s one of the few people I know that has been in the corporate world on two different occasions and interspersed with that was an external coach and consultant. So, Mark, as we jump into our conversation today, tell us about your journey. It’s a fascinating one.

Yeah. We all have our own journey. So, mine has really been two stops in the corporate world for significant periods of time and then two stops as an entrepreneur, as a coach, as a consultant. So, along that timeline, Meredith, the first 20 years of my career was in the corporate world as an HR director, vice president, and vice president of training and development. Then I left that corporate world to become an entrepreneur, a coach, a consultant, leadership workshop development pro. Then one of my clients hired me to come back into the corporate world where I was a senior vice president of human resources for a billion dollar global service provider in the oil and gas space. Then 10 years of that and I decided, “Okay, I think I’ve learned my lessons. I’ve done my time. This has been a great finishing school to go do what I really want to do and that is executive coaching, leadership and culture development.” So, that’s what I’m doing now.

There’s more to the story in terms of what happened. You’ve referred to it as the tale of two cultures. It’s fascinating to me that there were parallels in your first corporate experience and the second one. I think it would be very informative for our audience to hear the details of what happened in both of those situations.

Yeah. It was kind of this a movie and then that movie two, right? The sequel.

The sequel.

The sequel. So, here’s what happened both times, Meredith. So, in the first role I was telling you about 20 years, for 18 or so of those years, Meredith, it was a really outstanding company. Profitable, growth year over year and a great culture. Really, we were proud to work there. We were proud to work with each other. It was just … it’s kind of a cliché but it was really a family culture. It really was that where people spent most of their careers in this company. We were successful and proud and it was just the kind of career that you want to build when you’re young and so I did, but here’s what happened. That CEO, really high integrity CEO with a senior leadership team that was aligned with that, retired and new leadership came in and really destroyed the culture. Came in with a singular focus of profitability and running up stock price because this was a private equity group that really … I think their intention was to buy and sell.

I mean, their singular focus was ramp up the profits as much as possible, cut cost, and run that stock price up. So, what they did was ruin the culture and run this very good company out of business. I mean, out of business over a several year period. So, after a couple of years of watching what was happening, I just didn’t want to be a part of that, because I took so much pride in doing my part to build the company that I was really proud to work for. So, great company, growth, profitability, wonderful culture destroyed literally. First the culture and then the profitability and growth. Literally ran out of business. So, I did leave. That was my first entry into consulting and coaching and leadership development and then I did that for four years. Then I developed a great relationship with one of my clients.

They said, “We really want you to come to work for us.” So, I saw it as people I liked working with and I really had a pretty good insight to the culture because I was doing a lot of work with them. So, I did. I joined and was there 10 years. For seven of those years, it was like the first experience that I had … a great CEO and senior leadership team, people of integrity that had business savvy, outstanding leadership. They were great stewards of the business but they really respected culture and they really respected people and their contributions at every level. So, it’s a great experience for 7 of those 10 years and then, Meredith, the same thing happened. New leadership came in and tanked the culture by overly focusing on growing too fast with acquisitions that strategically weren’t sound and not integrated well. Then trying to implement an ERP system and employee resource platform all at the same time and it was just a train wreck.

The first thing that went was the culture and right alongside that was profitability and growth retracted. Today, it’s the same thing. The company is still in business but a company that had profitable quarters for 15 years, many of those before I got there, has a change in leadership and then not profitable quarters for three years. So, the pivot point was the change in leadership. The punchline of those experiences Meredith – and you’re right I call it the tale of two cultures – would have been part of a healthy culture where people were engaged and proud and really contributing. The profitability and the growth just went alongside that, twice, but the other side of the coin was just as true when the culture tanked and became first unhealthy and then toxic, the business performance and growth and profitability just slid down that hill along with the culture. So, that’s why I call it the tale of two cultures. So, my takeaway really from those experiences is there are two superpowers in any business. It is leadership and culture based on my experience. However, those superpowers can be kryptonite if leadership and culture aren’t tended to.

What do you mean by that for non-Superman fans?

Strong leadership with a healthy respect for a great culture is a great prescription for success in business in any industry. Actually, there’s a lot of research to support that. So, for the non-Superman that is kryptonite, it becomes your greatest weakness if it’s not strong leadership and smart leadership and savvy leadership with a healthy respect for culture. What could be your greatest strength can become your greatest liability.

Right. That’s such a powerful story and I think for the listeners here who are coaches and consultants themselves, some of them may have had the same experience of leaving a really untenable situation.

I hear it all the time, Meredith. When I tell people just almost offhandedly like I told you several months ago my tale of two culture story, I can’t tell you how many people have told me, “I’ve been through that. I’ve been through exactly that.”

So, it’s a powerful thing to recognize and it causes me to think of another question I’d like to delve into with you, because now that you’re on the outside again so to speak, I think you have your radar set to look for the characteristics or traits of a potential client that would attract you to work with them, that would be your ideal version versus someone that I won’t say repels you but you see yellow flags or red flags waving in the breeze and go, “Ooh, I’m not so sure about that.” Let’s talk a little bit about first, what are the positive things that would cause you to say yes to working with a particular client? I’m of the opinion that we who are in business need to evaluate our perspective clients from our own, not just financial potential success, but our own emotional wellbeing. Is this a client that’s going to energize me and I’m going to enjoy working with? So, from that perspective, what do you look for?

It’s almost a description of a client that I have now, Meredith. The CEO said to me, and I’ve seen him say to his leadership team, “We’re a really good company and we should be proud of what we’ve accomplished. We’ve grown. We’ve had a lot of success, but here’s the thing. If we’re going to keep growing and be successful, we have to be willing to be humble. We have to be willing to look with very clear eyes about what we’re not good at. We’re good at a lot of things, but we’re not good at everything. So, we have to look at things with very clear eyes and just accept we’re not great at it and be willing to roll our sleeves up and get better.” It’s that mindset that I really love working with, that successful companies know that success is not permanent and are really willing to roll their sleeves up and get better at the things that really matter and drive the business to include leadership development and culture development. So, that one client that I have, I have other clients too, but that’s the one that describes what really attracted me to work with that client.

That’s great. It sounds like they’re willing to invest in developing their people.

They are and in many ways, Meredith, invest in developing their people through executive coaching, what I’m doing, willing to invest in leadership development for their managers that are frontline managing their business or middle levels managing their business. This client does a unique thing where I am coaching some of their regional leaders to run projects that are outside their day job so that they can scale some things inside the business. I found that kind of project coaching is a great way to invest in your leaders and actually create value inside the company.

So, that you’re tying in additional skills they’re learning by the company investing in other opportunities for them beyond the basic skillset they use on a day to day basis.

That’s exactly right. That happened to me in my corporate career. My first corporate career that was the best development I ever got was to lead a cross functional team in a project that was important to the board. So, I did and six, eight months later after we reported back to the board, I realized I developed some very higher level skills in collaborating, in leading a team of people that I wasn’t their boss and framing strategy and evaluating opportunities and threats. I developed a higher skillset, a different skillset as a result of that project and then the coaching I received to help run the project.

That’s great because I think again the listeners of this program, one of the takeaways is, what are some other opportunities that you can see when you’re working with a client that will help them develop the healthy culture, the healthy leadership that’s needed? Because sometimes we go in with a focus on what we got hired to do and we stick to our knitting on that one thing and yet there are many other ways that we could be of service and benefit to that same client that sometimes get overlooked.

Yeah. That’s really up to me, Meredith. So, another client I’ve just got to tell you about. I started out doing executive coaching for the CEO. Then, the CEO asked me to do executive coaching for the VP of finance. As I was having a lot of conversations with the CEO and just uncovering issues that were challenges for him as the CEO, I just saw more opportunities where I can help. Developing that relationship with my client and really listening to what they’re saying, not just to respond to it but to really listen to their needs that might be beyond the initial engagement and then coming back and offering solutions based on just some good old fashion listening to what they’re challenged with.

I think that’s really critical when we think of growing our businesses. Where are the additional opportunities to make an impact with the same organization? So, let me just flip the switch a little bit and get you to talk about the things that would be a waving yellow flag or red flag for you when you’re talking with a prospective client that would cause you to say, “I’m not the right person or they’re not the right organization for me to work with.”

Yeah. I think it’s an organization that is just only bottom-line oriented. I have a healthy respect for in business we have to be profitable. In businesses we have to grow and we have to grow in healthy profitable productive ways, a healthy growth. Some businesses are just solely short-term oriented to squeeze the last nickel out of the revenues. Not for me because I don’t see building happening there. So, I think I would discover that pretty quickly in a conversation.

The other thing that would be the biggest red flag of all that may take a while is they have core values and it’s on the website and it’s on their coaster and they talk about it, but the reality of it is their core values are a joke from the perspective of their employees. I’ve had employees tell me that where I was doing leadership development inside that organization. So, those would be the two big red flags for me, singularly focused on the bottom line without really wanting to invest in growing the company and growing their talent. Then lacking integrity when it comes to things that matter, core values particularly.

What are some signals that you get recognizing that when you’re first having these initial conversations with a potential client, they’re not going to offer to you that they’re bottom-line oriented only or they don’t live their values? What are some of the clues that you watch or listen for since you wouldn’t have had access at that point to employees to hear their perspective?

It’s really two things. Well, it could be three things. One would be – we’re in this network of leaders in the work that you and I do – is just talking with people who might know this company. As you and I grow our network, we’re more connected. That’s one opportunity without even talking to the company. So, that’s an early hurdle that I always jump over. The second one is just having a conversation, an in depth conversation with that executive or executives and really finding out their priorities and their pain points and those kinds of things in just a pretty informal conversation. I may get to that and I may not in the first conversation. It may take a couple. Then the third is really just have an organizational assessment that would ask senior leaders to fill out. It’s a standard thing about what their priorities are and what their values are and compare those. If it’s a senior leadership of five or six people, there are a lot of clues in that.

Yes, you can see the difference. Those are really helpful tips because one of the things that we all have a limit of is time. So, we want to spend our time in front of the people that are going to be the best match for us, that really are interested in having us help them. So, I’m curious, what is different about your approach when you go to work with clients? How do you set yourself apart?

When I get in front of a client, Meredith, I find it’s relatively easy. I have the advantage of having a six at the beginning of my age. So, that’s one thing. They see my credentials really before I even meet with them. I’ll send them my credentials. I have a PhD in organization and management. I have 30 plus years of experience and I call that the fusion of … the school of hard knocks and some pretty extensive academic work, real world and academic. I usually go into conversations with quite a bit of credibility. They know that I’ve been there and done that corporately and as a coach and a consultant. So, that earns me a lot of credibility. Then my first conversation, I’m not selling anything. I am having a conversation and I am really listening to what results they’re looking for, what challenges they’re experiencing. I never make a proposal until I’m very clear about what their needs are. So, I think it’s my approach helps me a lot in closing deals.

There’s the whole business development side – getting in front of enough of the right people – and then there’s once you’re in front of them. It sounds like you’re saying that, once you’re in front of someone, your combination of experience and credentials gets them listening to you as well.

Yes, ma’am. Yeah.

I’m curious, what have you found to be some of the best questions that you ask that help you get to the root of the problem they’re dealing with? Sometimes I think people are reluctant to ask really penetrating or deep questions too quickly for fear of putting somebody off. I’m curious what your approach is to question-asking.

Yeah. So, question asking usually starts with positive. What is it that you do here that people in the organization are really proud of? What’s your track record look like for the last five years or so? What’s the best thing going on here at your company that you love to tell people about, investors about? We all like to talk about our businesses and our kids and our grandkids and the things that we’re proud of. That’s really where I start. Then I switch gears and I’m pretty upfront about that. Like, “Meredith, I’m switching gears now. Help me understand maybe the key couple of barriers to getting to where you want to be to grow, to be profitable, to sustain success that you really want to have? What are the few things that are getting in the way or slowing you down?” So, that’s my general question after the positive stuff that all companies are proud to talk about. I tell them I’m switching gears and I go right at it, “What’s slowing you down? What’s standing in the way?”

That’s great. Well, let me back up then. What is it that you’ve done in advance of having that initial conversation? How have they learned about you? What are some things that you’ve been doing?

Yeah. So, you talked about business development. Going from corporate to doing what I’m doing, there’s a learning curve. When you leave corporate world that you’ve been in for a long time and go out to be an entrepreneur, the biggest learning curve is business development. It has been for me. It has for people that I talk to. So, when I talk about business development, there’s two pieces of that. There’s the back end making a proposal and closing the deal. I find that pretty easy for me to do just because of my experience. The front end of that is marketing, putting potential clients in the funnel. I’ve taken some courses. I’ve gotten really busy on LinkedIn.

So what are the things I do on LinkedIn? I post a leadership tip of the week and I built a following from nothing a few years ago to over 4,000 people following me. One of the things I’m doing is branding and giving value. Leadership tip of the week is a two minute read every Sunday. People get it that, “I think this guy knows what he’s talking about and now I’m aware of him.” So, that’s absolutely one thing. Then I will reach out directly to folks on LinkedIn after they’ve followed me for a while and have seen some of my leadership tips. I don’t like to just go out there too early without any kind of relationship.

I’m pretty heavily on LinkedIn. Because I’ve been in business for a long time, I do a lot of networking with people that I know and people that I’ve worked with. So working in the network that you already have. I’ve done that with some success. I have a major client as a result of that. So, I’ve gotten business, Meredith, two clients from LinkedIn that reached out to me. One major client from just networking… two clients from people that know what I do. I’ve worked with them and they respect what I do. So, it’s the combination of LinkedIn and just networking and making connections.

I think that both of those are really powerful because you can use a platform like LinkedIn to establish your credibility and get people to trust you because they see that you are a credible? Is that what you’re doing, writing weekly articles?

Yeah. I write a post. Every once in a while, I’ll do a short video, Meredith, but it’s mostly a couple of paragraph tip that is just very practical. It’s not academic. It’s not consultant speak. It’s…here’s a tip I’ve learned from the school of hard knocks. That’s what I do every week. That’s really grown my followership. I get people connecting with me from all over the world. I have no idea who they are, but it’s grown my network.

That’s great to hear, because one of the key things you’re mentioning is you’re saying weekly which equates to consistency and I think that’s one of the things that’s often missing. We hear the latest new idea and say, “Oh, I’m going to try that.” So, we do it for a short period of time and then we’re off to something else because that doesn’t give us immediate results. The fact is, you’ve been writing these tips you said for almost three years now?

Probably about a year.

Okay.

I’ve been on LinkedIn for about three years but I’ve consciously written tips for about a year now.

Okay. There’s a discipline there.

Yes, ma’am.

I think that it’s like anything else that we commit to do, whether it’s getting better shape physically and work out or eat right or with our business development, what are the things that I’m doing on a daily or weekly basis that are going to over time get me known to the audience that I want to be known by? I think a key element there is being clear who your ideal target market is. So, for you, who is that? What does that look like?

Anybody who’s a leader, it’s my hope that I give value to in my tip of the week. My ideal client is a senior executive likely with a medium-sized business. That’s what I’m comfortable with. That’s where I’ve grown up. I found that companies that are too small often don’t have the budget to do what you and I do and companies that are these mega corporations often have the resources in house. So, it’s really a CEO, a COO, a senior executive of a mid-sized company that is really trying to grow a great business that they’re really proud of.

That’s great. As we get to the end of our time together, are there any other thoughts, tips, ideas that you’d like to share with your colleagues out there who are consultants and coaches like you?

You said it, so I’m going to echo what you said. Business development is about consistency, but so is leadership development. I really learned that from you and Denny Coates all those years ago. So, I’m quoting your focus-action-reflection model. So, leadership development is done every week. You focus on something to develop a skill or a strategy. The action is you put it on your calendar and you do it, right? Then at the end of the week, you just take a few minutes and reflect on how did that go? Did that go really well and I feel like I’ve got that skill right and I can go on to another one? Or did that not go quite as well as I wanted it to, and that may mean a coaching session or some leadership practice and reflect on it, so that I can do it just a little better next time. So, that’s how I do coaching and leadership development, where we set some goals, we’re clear about what we want to get better at and then there’s this consistent drum beat application – focus to action to reflection. Over time, we get results. We always get results with that focus, that action, that reflection and then the consistent application of that practice.

That’s great.

That’s what I found gets results.

I forgot to mention this right in the beginning. Mark has worked with us on both products that we have. Our 360 survey software along with our Strong for Performance development tool for leaders. I appreciate you bringing that up because it IS that consistency in a leader doing the work that’s needed to be done not just the consistency of a coach or consultant doing business development. For any behavior we want to make a habit, it does require the commitment to be consistent.

Yeah. Here’s what I’ve learned that doesn’t work, Meredith. We learn that way too, right? I have delivered so many really terrific, not bragging, but really terrific dynamic and formative two day workshops all over the world that didn’t have much effect, because that’s not how we learn. We don’t learn by having a bunch of good stuff dumped in our head and then we leave and go back to our day job. We learn by consistent, disciplined application of the skill that we’re building whether that’s business development or leadership or communications. So, I learned how not to do it before I learned how to do it.

Yes. It’s so helpful to have a coach along the way who is giving you the guidance as you try things and the support because when we’re trying something new, it is not easy and we fall back on our old way of doing it. Having somebody who is there to support and coach us along the way is really critical.

Yes. Leadership is a team sport. Leadership development is a team sport. The more we are surrounded by people that will encourage us, coach us, guide us and then somebody that hold us accountable for staying the course, just practicing until we get it right. That’s a really important part of leadership development..surrounding ourselves with people that will help us along that journey.

That’s great. Mark, you shared so many great insights and tips from your number of years. We won’t say the number. Yell people how they can connect with you and find you, so they can follow up if they’d like to have a conversation with you and learn more.

Yeah, I appreciate that opportunity. I have a website but I think what I’d really like people to do is connect with me on LinkedIn. Just go to Mark Hinderliter, and then you’ll see my smiling face. Just connect with me and I’ll accept the connection. Then once you do that, follow me. Read my weekly leadership tip. Go back and read several weeks max so you get a flavor for what I’m talking about. If my style appeals to you and you feel like we can do some business together, then just direct message me. That’d be great. If you just feel like you just want to read my tip and get value from that, I’m delighted to do that, too.

Great. Thank you so much Mark for being with me today. You’ve provided some I think a lot of good data and information to stimulate the thinking of our listeners. I appreciate you very much.

Thank you, Meredith.