CEO Confidential
The Customer Service Revolution - John DiJulius - Episode #009

The Customer Service Revolution - John DiJulius - Episode #009

July 29, 2021

John DiJulius, a successful entrepreneur of John Robert’s Spa and The Di-Julius Group, joins host Alex G to discuss creating a unique customer service revolution. After his workforce walked out on him due to substandard employees, John shifted his company’s vision. Instead of compromising his business culture for sales, he established a strict hiring system that brought him passionate and dedicated workers.

 

Takeaways:

  • Ensure that the employees that you hire have the same vision for your company. You need passionate workers that are dedicated to your vision as an entrepreneur
  • Do not compromise your business goals and values for sales. This puts your company in a position of inevitable failure.
  • Good customer service is essential. John made the mistake of hiring employees that lacked effective communication skills, making his company suffer. Not investing in good customer service will destroy your company and its financials.
  • Have a strict hiring process. If you make the mistake of hiring an employee with poor performance, do not keep them in your company. Avoid compromising your company culture for employees that are not qualified for the position.
  • The entrepreneur should be the least valuable short-term asset a company has. If the business owner is the most valuable asset, then they are the company and therefore have no company.

 

Links:

 

Ways to Tune In:

Business of Delegating - Bob Coppedge - Episode #008

Business of Delegating - Bob Coppedge - Episode #008

July 22, 2021

It can be difficult to manage working both in the business and on the business. Bob Coppedge, CEO at Symplex IT, walks us through how he transitioned to working entirely within his business and its operations, to working on the business by developing a system to plan for the future. He discusses the importance of failure as a learning lesson, and optimizing your time and money by delegating the things you do poorly.

Takeaways:

 

  • It is important to know from day one that scaling is important. Only working in the business will take up a lot of time and limit a company’s ability to scale.
  • Failure has a bad reputation. In reality, failure is vital because it promotes learning and growth. If you don't fail, then where is the risk?
  • You have to have an understanding of what your employees can do better than you. Slice things off your plate by delegating the things that you do poorly to your employees.
  • In your business, there is what you envision and what actually happens. You have to ensure that there is a connection between the two. 
  • Transform your limitations into assets. Bob was able to use Asperger’s Syndrome to his advantage in his career. 
  • Having a strategic planning system allows your company to have a framework that puts everyone on the same page.
  • It is important to have both visionaries and integrators in your business.

Links:

 

Ways to Tune In:

 

Alignment In Partnership - Louis Licata - Episode # 007

Alignment In Partnership - Louis Licata - Episode # 007

July 15, 2021

Learning how to become aligned within a partnership is difficult. Louis Licata, Co-Manager of Gertsberg Licata, discusses how he developed as a partner and an individual after being betrayed by his co-founders in their start-up law firm. Louis reminds us that when working with other partners, make sure you share the same core business values, and keep your ego in check.

Takeaways:

 

  • Treat your business partners like partners; respect them as equals.
  • Have similar core business values and long-term visions as your business partners in order to have alignment. Without alignment between partners, behavior is misread and trust issues are formed.
  • You may have many skills, but you may not be utilizing them properly in your business. Once you become aware of these skills, you can work on developing as a business person. 
  • Look at yourself and your failures as a partner in order to grow; keep your ego in check, and admit when you’re wrong.
  • Confirmation bias can work against you, and can block you from big opportunities.
  • You do not need partners; you are capable of starting a business as a sole proprietor. 
  • Betrayal in a career is not always personal, it’s just business.

Links:

 

Ways to Tune In:

 

Wrestling with Risk - Aaron Grossman - Episode # 006

Wrestling with Risk - Aaron Grossman - Episode # 006

July 8, 2021

The habits instilled by over 20 years of wrestling training have prepared Aaron Grossman, CEO of TalentLaunch and Alliance Solutions Group, for the physical and mental challenges of entrepreneurship. Starting and growing a business isn’t for the faint of heart, and knowing how and when to take a risk can pay off with big rewards. Aaron shares his unique experiences with host Alex G on this special episode of CEO Confidential.

 

 

Takeaways 

  • As an entrepreneur you have to be confident in being able to take risks, you know that not all of the risks are going to create wins.
  • “Failures are a great opportunity to learn if you are reflecting in the correct way and you’re allowing the risk to pay off… a risk can also pay off if they don’t go the right way because you can still grow.” - Aaron Grossman
  • On adversity Aaron says, “I treat every day like it’s a wrestling match or practice, and how much am I going to put in and how much do I want to get better every day.”
  • Let fear help you, don’t let it sit in the driver’s seat, but it can be a useful tool
  • Who’s helping you? You can’t be chief technology officer, chief financial officer - you can’t be it all! Get the right help
  • Know your strengths as an entrepreneur, don’t let ego get in the way
  • Say no to good things! If it’s hard to let go of potential opportunities, have people on your team or an advisory board that can check you to your goals/vision

 

Shoutouts

 

Links

 

Ways to Tune In:

 

 

The Humble Leader - Adam Kaufman - Episode # 005

The Humble Leader - Adam Kaufman - Episode # 005

June 29, 2021

What does it mean to be a humble leader? Adam Kaufman, Founder of Up2 Foundation, shares his story of how he leaned on his support network and began his journey to becoming a more empathetic and humble leader.

 

Takeaways 

  • Having a support network, whether you are a CEO or not, is invaluable. Seek out and lean on peers, mentors, and family if you are in need of guidance.
  • “We are all going to face curves in the road. It is up to us to know how we’re going to navigate them.” ~Adam
  • A key component of humility is forgiveness. In order to be forgiven, you need to first learn to forgive others.
  • Take steps towards cultivating who you want yourself to be. Meditation, acts of kindness, or keeping a momento close help slow down automatic thinking.

 

Links

 

Ways to Tune In

Seizing Opportunities - Phil Rankin - Episode # 004

Seizing Opportunities - Phil Rankin - Episode # 004

June 22, 2021

When the pandemic hit, the world went into disarray. Phil Rankin, President of Even Mix™ & Special Metal Stamping, shares his story of how he seized an opportunity that changed his company.

Even Mix™ is a patented 3D mixing technology. They have used aerospace engineering techniques to design pump technology into their variable pitch blades, bringing true mixing technology to in-drum liquids.  

 

Takeaways 

  • Be attentive to current events. Capitalize on challenges that are in high demand by pivoting your marketing strategy to target that market.
  • When shifting into a new market, be mindful of scalability. How can the company grow sustainably? What structures need to be in place to ensure growth?
  • Listen to the customer. Better pricing and new technologies can only go so far if the product is not applicable to the customer’s needs.
  • Trust your gut as a business owner. We are approached daily with new opportunities. Do not be afraid to take calculated risks.
  • Getting the right mix of resources committed to the return on investment expected is key to a great cost analysis. 

 

Links

 

Ways to Tune In

The Vulnerable Leader - Ben Bebenroth - Episode # 003

The Vulnerable Leader - Ben Bebenroth - Episode # 003

June 8, 2021

We all are faced with stressful situations at one point or another. It is our reactions and next steps that help mold the future of our company and yourself. Ben Bebenroth, Chef/Owner of Spice Kitchen + Bar, Spice Catering Co., and Spice Acres Farm, shares his story of how to pivot a highly stressful situation into an opportunity for personal and company growth.

Spice Hospitality Group offers local food focused restaurants, catering, and foraging from their Spice Acres Farm. They strive to change how people connect with food through sustainable agriculture.

 

Takeaways 

  • It’s ok to be vulnerable and let yourself feel your emotions. When you encounter a stressful situation, be mindful and take a step back before tackling the issue.
  • It is important to develop a sense of self awareness while encountering stressful situations. How are your actions or reactions affecting your team?
  • Behind every emotion distress is fear. It is what drives emotional outbursts, reactions, and responses. What is your modality of operating? Are you navigating situations through love or fear?
  • “There is no miracle hire that is going to save a company. If you are managing and leading from fear, it’s gonna crumble. You cannot grow a business and attract positive people and energy with that negative wavelength.” ~Ben
  • “The vulnerable leader enables and encourages his entire team to be equally vulnerable.” ~Ben
  • It is one thing to be vulnerable, but it’s another thing to be able to filter a moment and show up for someone else. Support your team by checking in with them on a personal level.

 

Links

 

Ways to Tune In

Owning Your Values - Leslie Zinn - Episode # 002

Owning Your Values - Leslie Zinn - Episode # 002

June 4, 2021

Sticking to your company values is crucial to building a brand and protecting the integrity of your product or service. Leslie Zinn, Owner of Arden’s Garden, shares her story on owning her values through the thick and thin of it.

Arden’s Garden is Atlanta’s premier fresh juice manufacturer. Over the last 26 years, it has grown from bringing wellness to the local community to now being available in 1500 stores across six states. The 170+ team at Arden’s Garden is dedicated to providing pure and healthy juices, smoothies and plant-based foods for consumers.

 

Takeaways 

  • “The biggest lesson learned is don’t ever give up. You have got to keep pushing forward.” ~Leslie
  • Consistently doing the right thing and not cutting corners pays off in the long run.
  • Have well defined core values within your organization.
  • Stay true to your company's core values, especially when making big decisions for your product or service.
  • “Do the right thing just because it’s the right thing. For no other reason. You got that path and you follow it. It makes life so much easier.” ~Leslie

 

Links

 

Ways to Tune In

Navigating Hiring Hazards - Lee Stacey - Episode # 001

Navigating Hiring Hazards - Lee Stacey - Episode # 001

May 25, 2021

Looking to hire your next employee? How do you deal with picking the WAY wrong employee? Better yet, how do you pick the right candidate? Lee Stacey, CEO & President at McGowan Allied Specialty Insurance has some insight and a story you do not want to miss on this episode of CEO Confidential.

Takeaways 

  • Do your due diligence! Create a candidate checklist and interview process, then stick to it
  • Consult counsel (legal or human resources) on how to deal with tricky employee situations
  • Check references! Ask, “can you comment on this candidate's behavior in the workplace?” Sometimes brief answers are a red flag 
  • When checking a reference, if a previous employer will only confirm dates of employment, that could be an indication to dig deeper and call another reference
  • Do background checks, reference checks and even a culture index can be helpful
  • Hire the right people for the right seats and your business will run as smoothly as possible

Links

Ep 144 - Building Self-Managing Businesses - Meet Jason Smith

Ep 144 - Building Self-Managing Businesses - Meet Jason Smith

March 16, 2021

Alex sits down with nationally acclaimed speaker, financial planner, author, coach, entrepreneur and CEO, Jason Smith, to discuss how a diagnosis of a complex heart condition at the age of 29 opened Jason’s eyes and led him from a revenue-generator to the creator and CEO of multiple, self-managing companies.

Notes:

  • Jason’s many hats
  • How one company branched out into five
  • Following in his father’s footsteps - whether he wanted to or not
  • How a sudden heart condition diagnosis at 29 years old opened his eyes to what was really important
  • Going from revenue maker to the creator of self-managing companies
  • What it was like to “die” on the operating table
  • Having to say your goodbyes
  • Raising kids with blue-collar values in a white-collar world
  • The 80/20 Rule and building the right team with the right processes
  • Jason’s unique ability
  • Personal development and “thinking about your thinking”
  • Lightning Round

Links:

Jason’s LinkedInThe JL Smith Group Strategic Coach“The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else In Business” by Patrick M. Lencioni“Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty” by Patrick M. Lencioni “Principles: Life and Work” by Ray Dalio

 

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App