The Great Resignation, or Not?

Check out these video snippets of Jen’s interview:

Jen’s Backstory and The benefits of a people-powered strategy

How do you plan for the future when hiring?

Where should you begin when it comes to talent acquisition?

What do companies struggle with when it comes to talent acquisition?

How do you ensure you find the right hire for the position?

The full transcript of the podcast is below.

0:00:03.6 S1: Thank you so much for tuning into Journey with Christian D. Evans Podcast.

0:00:08.0 S2: I’m your host, Christian D. Evans, the great resignation, or not. Now you are building a successful business, you’re doing great, you’re rocking wrong, you’re kicking butt, but then all of a sudden you start realizing, Oh shoot, we’re scaling and we’re scaling fast. We’re growing fast, we have incredible client acquisition, everything’s rockin and rollin. However though in order to take your business to eight, nine, maybe even 10 figures, you need talent acquisition, which is basically where you need high level individuals on your team that can help you facilitate that massive, massive growth. That’s the reason why we have this next guest on which we are extremely excited about diving into this, but also the leadership skills that it takes to have that future capability and growth, she is an expert in talent strategy, leadership, professional development over an exciting 20 plus years career as HR professional, she led international teams across Greater China, Mexico, the UK and the US, expanding into new markets, managing franchise retailers and developing key strategic partnerships, all while exceeding business objectives and financial results. She is the CEO and founder of 304 Coaching, the one and only Jennifer Thornton.

0:01:25.2 S1: Good morning. And thanks for having me. It’s gonna be a fun episode.

0:01:30.0 S2: Awesome. We’re really excited about diving into this because again, like I was mentioning in the intro here is… And a lot of companies are growing and scaling it, and they do very well in the marketing side of things, maybe even the fulfillment, but what they start realizing is that, Okay, I can’t rely on consultants anymore, I can’t rely on 1099 employees, I need to have employees established in my business contractors, I need to have employees established, but a high level individual that I’ve been there done that. And what’s interesting and what you’ve done is you’re able to come alongside a company, build that talent side of things, so that they can still focus on the fulfillment, but if you could just explain the trajectory on building this out, being an HR professional for 20 plus years if you can kinda give us a little bit of the back story before we dive into the process of the systems

0:02:18.4 S1: Yeah, so my back story is I worked for a large national retailer for many, many years, we won’t talk about how many… There’s no reason to lie at my age out of the bag, but one of the things I discover in working with a fast-growing organization, not only domestically but internationally, as our projects, our new brands or new markets, they either were successful because of the people who we hired or they were not successful because of the people we hired. We had a success XFL brand, we had a great product, we knew how to deliver a customer service and beautiful locations, but again, every time we succeed it, it’s because we hired and led an amazing group and went, fell… And it always came back to the people. So having that experience made me incredibly passionate about the talent strategy of an organization and helping businesses think about their business strategy, so they know this is where I’m going, but then thinking about How do I take a talent strategy and lay that on to top to ensure the business strategy comes to life, and so that passion has led me to what we do today, and over the last five years as an organization.

0:03:32.5 S2: Now a lot of our audience are six and seven-figure entrepreneurs, they’ve got something rock and roll on the kick-in, but the thing is though, it’s just like you were telling me, is like the talent acquisition is kinda what they focus on a little bit, so if you could maybe help me understand what do most companies… And I know that’s just kind of generic, it’s probably depend upon each company, but what are the one or two top like red flags that majority of companies just have the hardest time overcoming, whether that’s a hurdle, one of… That’s just a mindset situation, what is that?

0:04:02.7 S1: So what I find is, especially in fasting companies who are scaling, one of the things that happens is that early on when they start the organization, the person or people who started their skill set really is higher than the needs of the organization, and that’s how you get it off the ground, it’s because you’re pulling the business with you, you’re pulling it towards your experiences and your abilities and your knowledge, and then the business starts to take off, and when it starts to take off, everyone starts running around worrying about the marketing fulfillment service and all the things that are important, but what we don’t worry about very early on is how do we think about the team, how do we look at our current team and develop them to handle future business, and how do we think about hiring people who can handle our future business to often businesses are thinking about them now and trying to solve for the now and not the future, and what happens when we solve further the now and not the future, as the business continues to grow, what happens is the business will actually paste the skills of the people around you, or even your skills, because we haven’t focused on developing the talent as much as developing the business, and when that starts to happen, your best people are gonna leave because they’re not gonna wanna be in that…

0:05:20.8 S1: You’re kind of left with those people that are just gonna say, Yeah, sure, I’ll do whatever, and I call it the talent Cliff, and too often really fast growing companies are solving for today instead of the future, and eventually their business kinda goes off the cliff with it, ’cause they don’t have the right people and the right skill set to handle the business they created.

0:05:41.6 S2: So let’s talk a little bit about this. And you’re exactly right, because a lot of times it becomes this amazing culture and it’s like, Hey, we’re kicking by those individuals have been with you and then develop incredible skills, but they just don’t have the skills to take the business to the next level. And that’s a tough conversation with the employees that you have, but also it’s a tough conversation as the business owner yourself, to say, Hey, I don’t know what I don’t know, and realizing that there are pitfalls like, Hey, I don’t know what a successful CML position looks like, and actually find the proper individual, I would take my business the next level, so when you’re talking about these conversations, okay, filling these positions and filling this leadership, if you will, to take your business the next level. And I guess my question is, where should they focus on first, and it probably depends upon where they’re at, what business or what part of the organization their company is struggling, so maybe it’s customer success and maybe having a customer success manager or maybe like a team manager that our marketing side is kind of feeling or maybe a sales manager…

0:06:44.9 S2: I’m just curious, when you take a look at A business holistically, how do you identify, Okay, hey, this is what we need to optimize first, and they will go from there.

0:06:55.0 S1: So the first thing I look at is what part of the business in the next three to five years will be the most challenging to manage, and that could be different from what it is today, what it is today, maybe fine-tuning the actual widget, making sure the widgets, really great that you’re super close to that, and so in five years, maybe the issue actually is fulfillment or supply chain or those types of things, and so we really start to think about what will be our most challenging positions over time, and we start to work on those first, because if you’re close or there on many things, we’ve got to make sure that we’re projecting for the future, and back to your comment around, how do we know what a great CMO looks like? How do we know what a great VP of supply chain looks like? You’ve gotta get out there and start having conversations, you have to make sure that you are collecting knowledge from other people, and the way we looked at leadership, even 20 years ago, 10 years ago, further back, the leader was supposed to know everything the leader was supposed to have all the answers, but in today’s world, that’s impossible.

0:08:04.2 S1: The world moves too fast. And so you really have to think about, How do I get out there and gain knowledge, gain experience, and talk to people who are experts in that area, so I can start to learn what I might want, what might work for my business, but it’s really about crowd surfing knowledge, to build your capabilities to start to think about what you might want in your business, and in those conversations, you’re gonna hear a lot of what you think will work and you’re gonna hear a lot of what might not work, and both of those things are equally as important, as you start to build your talent strategy and who you wanna hire for these key positions, and I wanna look back around this so instant when you’re working with a company that’s not the most urgent one, where it’s like, Oh, they don’t even have a leadership position in this situation, they don’t have a customer success that you need, that it’s more of, Hey, five years from now.

0:09:00.6 S2: What is going to be the biggest time.

0:09:05.0 S1: Focus on… Will explain it a little bit further. For me again, yeah. So it depends on the organization. In general, organization, it’s growing and doing well, they probably have people in key positions, if there’s something that it’s a 911 on a fire, obviously we’d wanna address that, but if in general, the team is solid, but they’re really making sure that they’re built for the future, that’s when you start to think about your future positions and which ones will be the most critical to your business, and so we start to think about those because we either need to look at our current team and say, Can we build capabilities with a current team to handle that… Or do we need to go from the outside and start to hire people who can either handle that capability or we can build into that capability, but again, if there’s a 911 and something’s major, we would wanna address that first, but if we’re solid, but we’re worried about the future as everyone should be when it comes to talent, we really focus on making sure that we’re set up for the business that’s coming towards us.

0:10:08.0 S2: I appreciate the extra clarification, and the reason why I wanna mention this is because what you’re basically saying is it’s assuming that you already have a system and people in place, you only got some things rocknroll, and now the question becomes, Hey, if we double our lead flow if we double our client flow are right now are we able to withstand that massive explosion, and a lot of times they say no, so then say how… Or who do we need to really withstand that next level explosive growth, and then that’s where you’re coming to more of the questions and saying, Okay, hey, now, when you’re talking about a customer success and you have those conversations is dialogue. Okay, so for me, for example, when I was building my business, and that’s why I wanna just make sure we build a little bit of the foundation when I was building my business, I love the marketing side of things, so that was my niche marketing sales, I loved it, I wasn’t really good in the operations and the finance side of things, so I hired someone else to do it. However, though, with being the finance side of things, I wasn’t the best, so anybody looked really better than I am, but it doesn’t mean that they were that position, so maybe you could kind of emphasize on that a little bit when you’re having these conversations, making sure that I’m aware that I need to be…

0:11:26.1 S2: I figured myself out, but I love to just talk on that a little bit.

0:11:29.8 S1: Yeah, that happens so often. So often as a leader, we look at someone and we go, Okay, I don’t know a ton, but they seem really smart, so I should totally hire them, or the other thing that happens, if someone shows up and they’re enthusiastic and they’ve got energy and they’ve got all these ideas, but they can’t deliver the plane if they had to, and that is an important piece of understanding the interview process, so one of the first things that you need to do to make a very good hire is create not a job description. Yes, check the box, do that. My HR hat says, Do it, ’cause as you’re supposed to, but what you really wanna do is create a score card, what is this position going to do and put some numbers around it, put some specifics around it, so for example, if you’re hiring a CFO, manage the financial budget would be on there on the job description, but on the score card, it would say, with the financial budget of 3 million and being able to project a budget of 5 million over the next three years, and that allows you to really think about what do I need this person to do the first 90 days for six months, a year, two and three years, and put down those specifics, ’cause then you can start to think about what skill sets would be needed to create that, also I would start to allow you to really hone in on questions that make a difference, questions that allow you to really understand, could they deliver…

0:13:03.5 S1: If you’re asking them to build a budget of 5 million over the last three years, and I’ve only ever touched a 1 million dollar budget, I don’t know if you’re… You’re a candidate, could they grow into it possibly, but if there’s a Canada out there that knows it or has done it or has come close to it, could they be a better candidate, and you’re only gonna know that if you’ve really done the work to create a score card, and the coolest thing about it, once you hire that person on day one, you can say, Here you go, here’s the score card I created when I went out to seek this position, you met this criteria, and here’s my expectations, and it’s a great day one conversation, when someone totally knows the details of all of your expectations…

0:13:46.2 S2: One of the things that I always love hiring a little bit is because I actually give them a problem that we are facing actually as a company, and that I’m able to basically push this out to some unable caliber people and get 5, 10, 15, 20 people to do one of those activities, have to have a conversation with them and I feel, Hey, this is the task. Complete what would you do? Give me kind of a assumption, whatever that may be, and then I actually get a lot of responses back. One, I can use selfishly, I can use that information, whoever is higher, but also that really is able to exemplify, Hey, are they… Do they know in more detail and so forth, I just can’t love to get your response, is that something that you work with a lot of companies and making sure that you facilitate that, right, like hiring processes, you…

0:14:27.7 S1: Well, I do, I do use the concept of projects or kind of… A case study as part of the interview process. It’s important for a couple of reasons, one, like you said, you start to figure out Could they help solve issues within your organization, but what I think becomes the most unique piece of that activity as you and that candidate get us set down and discuss their solution and what you’ll start to discover is, are we a good match when we’re problem-solving, if they come at it and you come at it, and you can tell there’s tension, well, then there’s probably gonna be a tension in the future, if you both come at it and you have this amazing energy and both of you are feeding off of each other and building on each other’s ideas, and you’re learning something and they’re hearing you, then the way of work is gonna be really strong, and so though you will find out if they can handle a problem, the beauty of it is you’re gonna figure out what is it like to actually work with this person day-to-day, and is their energy between the two of you and would that energy drive your business forward?

0:15:37.3 S2: And that’s kind of what you’re looking for, and that’s one of the things that I always found so interesting about personality test, as well as just like the synergy and the culture… Right, I’ve heard people wear, Hey, you’ve got amazing skill, but causally, you may not fit for whatever reason, or vice versa, it culturally, you’re really a good fit, but maybe you don’t have the full skill yet, so my question… ’cause I’ve gotten different responses, I’ve heard people, Well, hey, they may not have the full skill, but they have certain skills that I’m looking for, and then I’m okay with giving them more skills and teaching them and educated… ’cause then you don’t have to pay as much. Right. However, though I do lean more always toward, Hey, finding if I get all you’ll change, I don’t know, foramina find someone that’s already had a faith oil change that somebody… Done that, been there. I’m not gonna get some… Just a random guy that just works on Chevy and say, Hey, can you do an oil change? It’s like every other car… Well, no, not really. Right, so I just wanna put this in perspective, ’cause sometimes people, they just…

0:16:34.6 S2: It’s like they focus they too much heavily on one versus the other, and it’s kind of like a holistic approach and you have to put it in context a lot of times, so maybe just buying that might set a little bit when you’re walking through a conversation.

0:16:49.3 S1: You’re right. So often when we go out to find someone that again, why square card’s important, we’re actually looking for these unicorns, you’re looking for someone who can write with their left and right hand equally as well, and that does not exist in the world, or they’re very few… Far between. So one of the things that’s important, if you want to ensure that you’re bringing people on that have, say, 75% of the skills where you need it, then you gotta make sure you did not design a job where… That’s impossible. And that happens a lot in small companies, ’cause you’re like, I need someone to help me with marketing, and I need someone to help me with cells, and I need someone to help me with production, I’ll hire one person and they’ll do all three… Well, that’s… They’re gonna be a failure in at least two of those, and so that’s how you wanna pause and look at it, if you are hiring someone and you want them to have most of the qualifications, you have to be in a position to hire them and have enough work for them to set in that if you’re in a position where you wanna hire someone doing three jobs, I wouldn’t suggest it, there’s a lot of solutions, it, but I see people do it every day and I unravel it every day when I’m working with clients, you’re gonna be disappointed.

0:18:02.6 S1: You’re gonna go out there and be like, Man, this person can only do 25% of what I hired them to do, and you’re gonna be mad at them. Do not be mad at them, be mad at yourself, you created that, you created an impossible job, so really think about what you want this person to do, really think about is it a holistic job, does all these pieces matched together, and if they do, you can usually find someone who has 75% of that, and then you can build into the 25% if you find that 100% out there. That’s amazing, but at the end of the day, we’re pretty excited if we get to 75%, but again, prioritize at 75%, make sure it’s the most important… 75%.

0:18:44.1 S2: So when you’re looking at working with culture as well, how much emphasis you put on culture, it’s like, hey, they have these skills, but they don’t fit culturally, do you give them the benefit of the doubt and say, Maybe they’ll lean over to culture, because I do know that when you run in the Mid-entire business, you’re really building that culture, and in order to scale that 8-90, you need to really build that DNA of the company. So how much do you emphasize or rely on culture culture fit, if you will?

0:19:12.7 S1: I would say it is as important, if not more, than the actual skills they bring to the table, especially at 7-10 million, the amount of people you have won’t be probably less than 50, so every single person and how they collaborate and how they connect is incredibly important. And how we do the work is as important as the work that we do. And when someone does not fit the culture, when someone is disruptive, because if you don’t fit the culture, you’re disruptive to the culture, you get to be one of those two things, and disruptive individuals because they wanna work in a way that is different than what every way everyone else works, it is to disruptive and it causes noise and it causes people to be distracted, it causes the little whispers of everywhere, and instead of people talking about, Oh my gosh, we could do this. They’re talking about, Oh my God, can you believe he did that? And you have to think about what you want your people talking about during the day, I want them to talk about what they could do, not complaining about their co-workers…

0:20:22.0 S2: Yeah, I had a situation one time, and I won’t mention too much of this, but I had a situation where I had one of the best sales people that I had, he was closing remarkable amount of stuff, and I had a point where he wasn’t doing things ethically, culturally, a fit. And this was… He was working with him for six, eight months, and so it wasn’t like we saw that right off the bat, but then we started seeing that sprinkle through a little bit and some of his deals and whatever. Anyways, and so we had to remove him even though he was one of the best performers, and it was tough because it was a revenue decrease, but long-term, I knew Cathal that it would be the right fit long-term and beneficial. So it’s just having those tough conversations, even with yourself as the business owner, so I just appreciate you sharing that and how much you emphasize culture verse, just the skill set side of things, so… I’m glad here. Talk about that. Now, let me ask you this with personality test, I always find this very train because not only do you work with the personality test of like, Hey, that’s what I’m looking for.

0:21:23.0 S2: If I want a sales guy, I know that they have these kind of personality traits, they’re aggressive, they wanna go out there, close date, are incentivized to do certain things. And so with the certain personality tests, you can be all say, Hey, do they fit in that criteria, same thing with a CMO, I want more detailed oriented, blah, blah, blah, this, and there’s more of like operation, there are certain traits that are more emphasized versus others, you don’t want a aggressive operations person versus… Whatever. So my point is, is how much do you sprinkle that in when you’re doing the hiring process.

0:21:55.7 S1: So I do use an assessment… I use the OAD assessment and you’re absolutely right. In some positions, you need high service, you need high social communication, some positions you’re gonna need patience and high detail, if you’re hiring an international tax account and the cells person, you’re gonna need very different work traits, and there’s a lot of assessments that will give you that information, but where I think the rubber starts to hit the road and performance, and it starts to feed into culture, as you also have to look at an assessment that tells you someone’s adaptability, right? So if you’re a fast growing company and you hire someone who doesn’t have high adaptability, they’re gonna struggle, they’re gonna come in and do great that first few months, but then when you change processes because you’ve grown, they’re gonna be like, Hold up, I’ve already learned this. I don’t wanna learn anything new. You also wanna look at decision style, and so when someone makes a decision, Do they… Are they heavy on analytics or are they heavy on emotions, how I might feel someone else might feel, because how we make decisions are very culturally driven, and then the other thing that I think is important through decision-making is how creative someone is, and this isn’t like…

0:23:09.2 S1: Paying a pretty picture. Creative, this is when problems are coming at me, do I like a pragmatic approach the way I’ve always done it and it’s always worked, or do I like to break what works to see if I build a better will and really understanding how people adapt and how people make decisions, we’ll let you know how they will fit into your culture and fit into your way of work… Yes, traits are important, but the most important thing is understanding how they make decisions, because that will tell you how… Be it your culture.

0:23:43.6 S2: Oh, I love this, I love this. I’m so glad you do. I just take a ton of notes on this adaptability rate, I think that’s golden right there, because you’re anticipating the future, you know that with growth and scale, you’re going to naturally pivot, I just move forward. And so you wanna make sure you have a team that can pivot in a according to the gills as well. I love that. And that is included with the assessment you just mentioned… Is that correct?

0:24:10.5 S1: It is, yes, it is, correct. And there are positions in a fast-growing company, you want want low creative your payroll, if you have someone who only processes payroll, I’m gonna want them not to get too creative with my payroll, I’m gonna want him to follow the rules, I want… The date is always to be the date, I’m gonna need them to be a pretty solid player when it comes to consistency, but if you’re hiring your next heavy sales person or your CMO and you wanna be progressive and you wanna be out in front of your competition, you better hire someone with high creativity because they’re going to be thinking in ways that other people haven’t bought, and that’s where they’re gonna get their joy, their joy is gonna come from, Hey, no one else has ever done it this way. So we’re gonna do it this way. And to lead the industry, you gotta think that way.

0:24:56.2 S2: So the reason why I wanted to share this with so much going on right now is because it’s like a puzzle piece, and sometimes you do have a puzzle piece that look very similar and it could fit in that spot, but then you look at the actual design of that, or you look at the picture on it and you realize, Oh, that’s not the same… Same flow of color. So nationally is not a good piece. And so forth, so on. And so the reason is so many people… They look at it like, Oh, I’m just gonna hire a CFO. Okay, cool. No, there’s just so much more that goes into it. And obviously, when you run a mid-seven figure and you wanna scale, a lot of times you do, you just don’t know that, and so you’ve made hires, you may at hires because it’s like, I have this pain, I don’t wanna do it anymore. And so I just wanna hire someone that… You know the who that knows how I’ve read that book. Cool, wonderful. No, I figured it. Right, there’s just, there’s so much more that goes into it. And I think that’s why it’s…

0:25:41.8 S2: I really appreciate this conversation also, coming back to decision-style analytics versus emotion, naturally, you want more analytical, however, you also want emotion it… You don’t wanna over one over the other too much, is it like an 8020? Is there a consistent or is it just depends upon that business owner and the DNA of that company…

0:26:01.7 S1: It depends on the business owner, the DNA of that company and also ends in the position they’re in, and if you have someone who is… In tells you actually what I have found over time. A moderate amount of emotion and decisions actually help sell people out because they can connect with how someone feels and they care about how they feel during the sales process, if they’re super analytical and assertive, everything else, right. But they’re so analytical that they kind of just don’t understand the emotions of the purchase, they only wanna go after the facts of the purchase, sometimes that doesn’t balance out well, and so it really just depends on the position. A lot of times people think, Oh, my HR person, I need them to be very emotional in their decisions will actually in HR, because you have to make so many difficult decisions, you actually might want someone much more analytical. And if you are a leader and you are high analytical and you sometimes forget to think about your decision and how they impact people, whoever is your left and right-hand person, one of those individuals needs to be a little bit more emotional in their decisions, because they need to balance that out because you can’t have a culture that’s a 100% robotic, it works good for the individual decisions, but overall, it can create a culture that people think you don’t care, and so you have to have a balance of that.

0:27:35.3 S1: Most people do lean on one side or the other, very few people are truly in the middle, and so you have to balance your leadership out with that to ensure that your team comes along with you emotionally. We see.

0:27:48.5 S2: And I appreciate you emphasizing is because it is all dependent upon obviously the DNA of the company, the business owner and so forth, but there are good conversations to have because I didn’t… Honestly, don’t you think about the HR example that you just gave. Oh, emotional, because you’re dealing with a lot of your employees and so forth in that department, but like you said, you want more analytical maybe like I said, just say, Hey, look at the data, A, to rely on the data more so than making these emotional-based decisions very interesting how you say something here throughout your whole company here, using the neuroscience and the brain to build better leaders, and I wanna pay it a little bit. What does that mean for you? If you could unpack that for us.

0:28:31.5 S1: Oh my gosh, it means so much, so I will unpack my carry on and not my full on suitcase. So at the end of the day, when we look at the history of leadership, it was very… It was very processed. Especially here in the US, we were built on the factory system, everyone did the same thing over and over again, and it was very fear-based, it was about, I’m the boss, you are not… I hold the control, you better just be happy enough to show up for work and you’re so lucky you get a paycheck from me, and it was very fear-based, and even some of our best practices that we’re told in leadership, when you start to look at them they’re incredibly fear-based. So when we think about the neuroscience of leadership, the core of that is the more you reduce fear in the workplace, the brain has more capacity to access their prefrontal cortex, and that’s where the good stuff happens, that’s where problem solving, emotional control, ideas, learning, all of that happens in the prefrontal cortex, but as your fear rises, it starts to diminish your access to that because your primitive brain will take over, and back in our early evolution days, permanent brain was, don’t vote me out of the tribe ’cause I can’t survive alone, ’cause you couldn’t survive alone back into our little early, early billions of years ago, but in today’s world, that still happens in our brain, if you get voted out of your tribe at work, you start to think, Oh my gosh, no one likes me.

0:30:01.3 S1: Oh my gosh, I’m gonna lose my job. How am I gonna pay my mortgage? How am I gonna feed my kids? And that fear starts to cycle really quickly, and so at the core neuroscience, leadership, it’s about the reduction of fear through your leadership style, through your language, so that people on your team had one, they’re gonna be happier in two, they have more access to what you need to drive your business.

0:30:26.8 S2: Wow, this is some good stuff. I just took some amazing notes because once you understand that it was facts, and you were telling me something a little bit about before this podcast, which I really wanna bring up, and I thought This is just really, really neat, because the evolution of leadership from the past to the present, to the future, and what you need to anticipate, it’s always about anticipating, it’s always about optimizing and growing otherwise, doing it… And so if you could just unpack that a little bit, you guys done now a lot of research, which is really cool, what if you guys have seen the transformation and that matter evolution.

0:31:02.0 S1: So when we know, when we look at leadership over the last 150 years, even earlier than that, when you think of Colony creations and heavy wars, what we know is world events impact how we have to lead in the future. The very first leadership concept that came out was called The Great Man, so that starts to tell you how people thought about leadership back then. After the great man, people had determined it could be a male or female, but you had to be born with things if you weren’t born with them. So sorry, you can’t have it. Then we started to see World War II where women started entering the workplace and a way they never had before out of necessity, because a lot of the men were off to war, so women had to go to work to ensure the company or the… Ensure the country and the military had everything they needed. Well, what that showed is the assumption that you had to be born with something and couldn’t learn something started to change, then you go into the world of competencies. Korn Ferry came on, they did a lot of competency work, and that still holds true today.

0:32:17.1 S1: There are competencies that we can develop, and then you start to look at how the Internet impacted the mat of information we now have, the supervisor used to be able to create the story and create reality with the invention of the internet, that’s no longer true. You can’t create a story or create a reality, you have to be really honest, and that’s where the authentic leadership came in and being honest with your team started to show up. And if you fast forward to what we’ve been through the last two years, we’re going to have to lead different any time there is an event that changes the way the entire world cease things, leadership evolves. And what we’re looking at in today’s world is, because of what we’ve all been through over the last few years, there is more fear than we’ve ever had in the workplace, and remember, fear diminishes your ability to do great work and learn. We also know with a great resignation, with a shortage of people, the expectations growing, there is so much pressure to perform that it’s overwhelming when people have too much pressure, they don’t perform better, they actually perform worse, which again, goes back to how we were taught to lead if your salesperson wasn’t getting it, you should yell at them, you should tell them they gotta get at a lab where you’re just creating more fear, it’s not gonna happen.

0:33:38.4 S1: And so there’s all these pieces that have started to come out of the last two years, and as leaders, we’re gonna have to think about how do you adapt, how do you reduce fear, how do you manage the right amount of pressure, and then how do you start to accept uniqueness of people and accept the different viewpoints, ’cause that’s a big piece of where we’re going in leadership also.

0:34:01.4 S2: So this is really good. Okay, and I appreciate it. I think that was a really good kind of transition going for the fear and explaining that as the basis and realizing, Okay, in this culture, in kind of environment, I should say environment right now, there is that certain factors that are engaging the fear, which of course we understand will decrease activity in your business because of course, they have those kind of planet of seeds in there. I’ve heard a lot of companies, they are starting to do a lot of lay-offs, you started to see in Tesla as well, doing a lot of Malden parts of the world, a lot of different companies are starting to kind of head that direction. We’re starting to see a recession, economy slowing down, which again, people are gonna tighten up a little bit, money supply and so forth, so with that being said, a lot of individuals are having that conversation, we’re also seeing… We just discussed a great resignation in whatever my question is, is as a business owner, what should they do to keep the culture and to keep the consistency, if you will, of their activity as a culture, as an environment to make sure, Hey, plant the seeds of saying Hey, you’re not gonna go confidence really saying, Hey, you’re not gonna get fired, we’re gonna be alright.

0:35:18.3 S2: We’re to be building this… What are certain things that business owners can start facilitating to book the right environment to make sure that they can remove that negativity and that fear out of their workplace?

0:35:29.1 S1: So there’s a lot of different things you can do. One of them is the easiest, that sometimes the hardest is have really great conversations, and so having conversations and maybe not with your direct reports, but your people that are closest to your customer or closest to your product, having round tables with them and we can’t promise the future, so a lot of times people will say, We’re not gonna do… Layoffs are financially fine. No one has a crystal ball. And so I think moving that language to base on today’s business based, how we’ve projected our business, we don’t foresee an issue. If that changes, I’ll let you know. Because again, we can’t predict the future, we have to be honest and let people know more information is coming if needed, there are things you can do around how to look at the work, and so… Sometimes there’s so much work that you don’t even know where to start. And so as a leader, get really clear with your team on what work needs to be super amazing, knock it out of the park, and what work just needs to be a passing grade, oftentimes we, through our language and expectations, expect people to be straight A students everywhere and adults were not built for that, and so you have to say, Hey, this project or what we’re doing here, just get it across the finish line.

0:36:52.5 S1: As much as you can, this is where I need your energy, this is where I need your creativity, this is where I need your enthusiasm, because if you expect it to happen everywhere with today’s pressure and workload and fear, it’s not gonna happen. And you’re gonna be disappointed. And so there’s just so many different things around being clear on work, being clear on where the company is going, having relationships with people, so you can hear and listen to them, all of that starts to make a big difference.

0:37:21.9 S2: This is an interesting concept, and I wanna look back on this and kind of take her time and unpack this a little bit, ’cause I’ve implement certain weekly cadences where, Hey, you know what, these are the tasks you need to complete, this is what we did last year, wonderful. How much… How much did we need to roll over, but what you’re basically saying is taking those tasks, those projects, and then even making it micron saying, Hey, your energy and I want this to be an A plus kind of project, this… It really doesn’t matter, it’s not an Berthe structure of the business or whatever, so Hey, I just want you to complete it, get it done, whatever. Right, and do you have some sort of baseline or is that baseline just create or is it dependent upon that leadership that says, Hey, there should be A B and C, and then that employee knows, Oh, that’s where out of the attempt they have in the bandwidth, that’s what they should be focusing their time and energy on.

0:38:16.1 S1: So it should definitely be specific to that organization, so if I take my own organization for an example, if we’re producing work for a client, everyone knows that’s a plus work, it is work for a client, we are service-based industry, and our work is our future, and so we know that’s a plus, but there’s a lot of sea work that we do see work is our social media… I mean, 90% of our clients come from referrals. Do I need to be on social media? Do I need to be top of mind? Absolutely, but we just kind of get it there… We do what we have to do. We only use LinkedIn, I don’t care about Instagram and tiktok and all those other things. It’s a work… Our social media plan is getting across the finish line. We need it, but it’s not the most important thing we do. And so because of that, when I work with my copywriter on my design team, and I was like, We have this leadership program that we’re designing for X company, and I know that we’ve gotta get social media this week. Here’s what I want you to do, I want you to do some basics, I don’t want anything very fancy, just spend five, 10 minutes on this, but then I want you to come over here and through all your energy into this program, because if I didn’t say that and I said, social medias do, and this leadership program we’re custom designing for this big organization, they’re both do this week, they’re gonna be trying to do it all in a way that is gonna rob what’s really important.

0:39:50.5 S1: And so you have to tell people what’s gonna be C work and if you don’t, they’re gonna waste their energy and places that aren’t gonna impact your business, and you’re gonna lose out where it’s really important. And I just, I love this so much because I think we as even business owners, even at the top level, we focus so much on all these things, and the reality is what has actually moved to what is the highest leverage activity, and that’s what my whole goal with this podcast is focused on certain activities, I actually produced the biggest result, and like you mentioned, Everybody’s tiktok, free tiktok everything, tiktok will, wow, let’s do it. And the reality is, that may not be the best acquisition channel and the platform right now, certainly you can spend some time on it, but only spend 20% of your time and energy and the team’s energy.

0:40:38.2 S2: Maybe even 1% without the end of the day. So now may be a long play, so anyway, I just… I think that’s so important for our audience to listen to because you know, majority of them are focusing on all these things that they need to focus on, they need to do this, we need to do… So we need to do that and all of this, like you said, social media, but the reality is you don’t only focus on the highest leverage activities and then sprinkle that even into your own culture for your team and say, Hey, this project is really not that relevant, like you mentioned, a high priority of court, anything fulfilling of our clients, because that is our work, and that’s what we do, and that’s what we shine on, which is really awesome, Jen, I just appreciate the immense value that you brought today, just talking a little bit… I’m just so much just from systems and process, hiring process on red flags to some things that you need to be aware of, and obviously implementing like a contextual process with leveraging the personality test versus… Obviously, culture and as well as the skill set.

0:41:36.1 S2: And then obviously, just this micro-level of projects and what to focus on in the bandwidth of there, I think that’s just brilliant. I love that I’m packing that. Jen, how can our audience reach out to you be part of what you got going on, and for those that are listening that are scaling and growing and that are anticipating a massive growth, how can they reach out to you?

0:42:01.2 S1: Find us at And as I just said, I’m only on LinkedIn, so you can continue the conversation with me on LinkedIn, and we have a resource page on our website where we have all types of exciting downloads to help you reduce fear with your teams and different projects we have that you have access to to training videos, to case studies and all those resources for at 304 coaching dot com, and we hope you access them.

0:42:33.0 S2: Awesome guys. And those links will be in the description below. So make sure you stop what you’re doing right now and you just reach out the gym because as you start massively growing acquisition in which a lot of people are not amazing revenue, you need to anticipate what’s going on in the next seven, eight next quarter, next eight months or so, and I anticipate the right leadership to be able to withstand that massive growth in… Is there any last words of wisdom that you would like to share with our audience before we let you go?

0:43:01.2 S1: Oh my gosh, last words of wisdom, what I would say is that to be an incredible leader in today’s world, you have to first reduce your own fear, and then you can reduce the fear and your team and really really manage your own fear, ’cause no one can lead fearlessly. When they’re full of fear.

0:43:22.4 S2: Oh, that’s good. My friend, The one and only CEO of 304 coaching Jen Thornton, guys that is Journey with Christian D. Evans podcast. Be uncommon, if you can.

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