Facing uncertainty can be challenging – being a business owner facing uncertainty is tougher.
Red Direction helps you [fast track and] grow your business – authentically, pragmatically, and resiliently.
Starting the conversation:
How can we recognize what’s out of our control and then adapt to the change we are facing? Integrating learning, pausing to assess, and accessing your awareness are the three things we can use anytime to face uncertainty.
Host: Jess Dewell
Guests: Lizabeth Wesely-Casella, Cynthia Del’Aria, Ed Vincent
What You Will Hear:
There will be disappointments, you choose how to learn from and respond to them.
It’s a journey with many experiences along the way.
Work, and communicate, from stated and written core values.
Awareness is knowing when to step back and realize it’s time to adapt to change.
When external forces demand a different path, curiosity is what will illuminate new opportunity.
There is power in pausing as it changes your relationship with what is happening.
Fail fast to learn and find the best way, the right thing at the right time right now, to adapt to change.
Patience, accountability, and curiosity are skills necessary to assess and respond quickly.
The more you pause, the more you can access to understand exactly what is in front of you right now.
When you know what is in our control, you know what is out of our control.
Decide what there is to be learned and carried forward to integrate actions to face change confidently.
Adapting to change comes from past experience.
Pausing allows understanding of what the situation really is and to be crystal clear about what you know.
Know the level of your commitment and the commitment of your team to adapt to change.
What is important drives the conversation, the opportunity, and the priorities.
It is BOLD to know what you can control.
Notable and Quotable:
Cynthia Del’Aria: If you want to start bringing thoughtfulness and awareness to the way you act in the world, start with your thoughts.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: Curiosity is so difficult at times, but it is such a valuable skill set to hone and practice regularly.
Ed Vincent: Find out what is the worst possible outcome and then start backing up from there. So accept the worst possible outcome and then into your way out of the worst possible outcome towards something better.
ANNOUNCER: Welcome. This is the Bold Business Podcast. We want to thank our listener supporters who keep this podcast ad-free. Find out more at Red Direction dot com forward slash listener supported. Your business has many directions you can travel. The one true direction of your company creates the journey for you to move toward a new, exciting level. We call this the Red Direction. In today’s program, we delve into one idea. This idea is for you to apply to the opportunities and challenges you face. The idea will support you as you work on ever-present situations, including how to stay competitive in a changing market, how to break through the business plateau, and how to anticipate the changing expectations of your stakeholders. This podcast will provoke ideas and will give you insights to be inspired. Jess Dewell is your guide. Jess brings you a 20-year track record of business excellence with strategy and operations overlap. Your path comes from consistently working from the special place, your unique true north. Now, here’s Jess.
Jess Dewell: What’s in your control? And what can you really do about it? I mean, there’s always things in life that are out of our control and if nothing else, right now in this time 2020 has highlighted not one, not to every single thing that is out of your control. Mine too. I’ll be real. And here’s what we have to be thinking about. What is it that we can actually do and how can we showup to it. So there are three things that you’re going to be hearing throughout this podcast today. The first is the importance of integrating, learning from each experiment from each activity to move yourself and your business forward. The second thing is the pause, the power in that pause. Checking in on how patient you’re being, checking in on the alignment of everything, and checking in on your level of curiosity to bring to the moment. And the third point is the ability to access your awareness for not only immediate feedback, but also immediate action. Adoption is really hard. And here’s the thing, the biggest thing about it is the disappointment that comes with what happens in the world, and we may be adaptable and we can still be disappointed. You see Ed Vincent is going to share a little bit about that with us, and he is the founder and CEO of FestivalPass. He’s an entrepreneur with over 20 years of business technology and management experience, including six years of both banking and valuations.
Ed Vincent: I’ve had plenty of disappointments in my entrepreneurial life. And I’ve had plenty of amazing successes. Really just taking them in stride, having more of a rolling middle-sized roller coaster, when ups and downs come rather than going on the big huge drop, and then the big huge one got to take in stride and move forward.
Jess Dewell: It’ll be interesting for you to just self reflect not only on what Ed says, but also what Cynthia and Lizbeth are going to be sharing. We all have our way of us showing up to the world and deciding what is our priority in any given moment, and it’s important to recognize the underlying influence of that core self, that core part of your being. Lizabeth Wesley Casella is the founder and CEO of L 21. Services. It’s a firm specializing in internal communications training and executive virtual assistants services. She uses her communication, collaboration and lean process design skills to identify where businesses can overcome challenges related to process systems and scaling. Here’s what she says about that immediate showing up.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: You’ve had the blinders on. You’ve been super focused, you’re in that growth mode, okay. But there are cycles. Everybody has a cycle, whether it’s circadian cycle or the business cycle, their ups and their downs, and you can’t keep that fire hose on forever. So, tap, tap, tap on the shoulder. Do you remember that conversation we have before about good leadership modeling behavior? Well, it’s time now that everybody takes a breath. And then usually that leader will say, That’s right. Yep, I’ve been in it. I have lost perspective. Thanks for the reminder, everybody, let’s just have them celebrate this moment or realize that we’re so close to this goal. Creative leaders and leaders that really gain loyalty from their staff and retain the highest talent are the ones that make it a point to celebrate, pause, acknowledge, and then make a plan for that. less focused, less intense time.
Jess Dewell: Okay, so we have, “Yes we’re disappointed,” and we can actually create a pattern, a cycle, a cadence, with which to work from, not in the moment to moment, but across periods, across projects, across opportunities that present themselves that we choose to go after. Cynthia Del’Ariais.is a startup junkie. She largely works with entrepreneurs who are just picking up that same habit in technology. Her passion is helping non-technical businesses combine technology, and the idea that failing fast can save time and money and move the company forward making it big.
Cynthia Del’Aria: There are people who feel like oh my gosh, I’ve been at this for five years or seven years or 10 years and it’s just it’s not coming together the way that I thought. I always come back to the same two things, which is exactly what you just said. Where’s the pivot? Are you sure you have enough information know the direction you’re going is the right one? And then you have to just keep going. Hershey filed for bankruptcy eight times before he founded his chocolate company. And he was in his 70s when he did that. Now he could have given up. Somebody said to me a couple weeks ago, I was telling the story, and he was like, Yeah, but I don’t want to be in my 70s before I can enjoy my success. Well, that may be your path. You don’t know. What he instilled in his family, and then the legacy he left for his family, which is what exists today. That’s also part of persistence. That’s also part of never giving up. It’s who are you in the moment that creates a generation of people who never give up and who keep going and who persevere?
Jess Dewell: You know who you are. Yeah, I’m talking to you listening in to this podcast in this information that Ed and Lizabeth and Cynthia are going to be sharing with us for the rest of the program. We have to start somewhere, that somewhere is what we can anchor every single action to, when we’re at the office, whatever our office looks like these days. It’s the way that we’re doing our work and it’s the way we’re doing our work with each other toward the same mission. values is part of that.
Ed Vincent: We have core values within our business, four core values going through a lot of my entrepreneurial world is you should have at least three but never more than five. Gratitude is one of our core values. Design Thinking is also one of our core values. In that process, part of what I try to say to everybody is whenever we think about the product or the business or marketing or anything we’re doing, it all has to play into that concept of design thinking. It’s what ultimately are we building for? We’re building for the end-user, we’re building for how people will participate. We’re building for scale, we’re building for things that will make this product better over time. So that then correlates to the same semantic that everything we do must be foundational, where I was building a base, then I go into the classic, you build a house, you have to build a strong foundation. All you want to be doing is painting the room, you don’t want to be knocking the foundation down just to put a different color on the second floor.
Jess Dewell: Adapting to change requires an anchor, an anchor that we can use. That is how we integrate learning to move forward. That is how we find the power in the pause and it’s also the doorway in to access your level of awareness and increase it.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: I do you think that it’s an awareness light bulb, and I think that when it’s practiced back to your how long when it’s an acknowledgment and a practice that behaviors start from the top. I think it’s a label that stays on for a really long time. I’ve not had a client that has understood that concept fully, and then gone back to their previous behaviors. There are times where people need a refresher and a reminder that you’ve had the blinders on. Or my favorite part because I’m super nerdy is sit down and have a focus group or a team meeting where you say, okay, we are two weeks away from this deadline that we’ve set. We’ve worked really, really hard. Let’s have a conversation about what we want to do when we hit that date deadline. Do we want to have a group retreat? Do we want to celebrate in some other way? So there may just be a half a day away from me shutting the emails for a while. There are so many options to do that. And it’s hard to do right now, especially if you’re not necessarily a creative person to say, you know, okay, we’re meeting over zoom every day for daily stand up. Now we’re gonna have a zoom about celebrating, that may not sound exciting, but there are ways to interweave that. And it’s an important message to keep in mind.
Jess Dewell: Access your awareness, what must be done, what needs to be done to keep people aligned and moving toward the same goal when everything around us seems to be shifting all the time. That awareness is going to be key for you to recognize when, how, where, what, who requires attention. And then of course, putting whatever that immediate problem is into that larger lens. That lens of here’s our mission, that lens of here’s what our objectives are right now. And we’ve done our homework and we know that they’re not going to change so we can show up to this solidly. Adapting to change requires an anger and anchor that we can use. That is how we integrate learning to move forward. That is how we find the power in the pause. And it’s also the doorway in to access your level of awareness and increase it with a path forward and then it’s just is it in or is it out? Are we moving forward? Are we not and bringing your whole self and the creativeness that you have which by the way, everybody has a streak of creativeness in them to bring to the table. So yes, you do. And it may not look like my creativeness It may not look like your peers, creativeness and that’s okay. The point is, you have something to bring and help keep that alignment right now. I struggle with patience, and I know I’m not alone. Ed’s gonna share more on that as well.
Ed Vincent: It’s also hard as an entrepreneur to have patience. In some ways. There’s a prolific authors out there that talk about having older entrepreneurs instead of just the 20-year-old entrepreneur, where there is value. I think some of that value especially after having kids comes with patience. As an entrepreneur, especially in my earlier years. I would jump after every shiny nickel that shines in your face for opportunity. It was always hard to say no to something new and something interesting. This taught me even in this timeframe, how to be patient, learn, understand, but not totally get away from the overall long term focus because eventually things change. I’ll give you context there. As soon as this happened, almost everybody in kind of the live events business immediately shifted all of their resources towards live streaming. In the world of live streaming, yes, there was an immediate need. But the question is, whenever you think of a business decision, are you the business that you’re trying to build best suited for something that is needed at the moment. For example, a lot of artists that are well known highly engaged artists that tour a lot and make lots of money. Their number one goal was just to keep fan engagement, as well as make a good statement to the world on how they’re a citizen and how they want to continue to help people during this time. Their path was not about making money. It was simply to engage Of course Facebook Live, Instagram Live, twitch, other forms of immediate free live entertainment is the path. But for a startup, it would be difficult for us to compete with the infrastructure and power that Instagram, Facebook twitch already has. So that wasn’t really something we wanted to spend resources on trying to accomplish. We do realize that some form of online viewing, live performances will be part of the future, it will never take away from the live interaction and being there. But there is a complementary aspect to building a business around it. So we’ve been focusing on making it a part of our future, as opposed to pivoting, not spending time on the things that are important and immediately changing to what’s hot at the moment with the reality that as soon as live events come back, that business will immediately diminish.
Jess Dewell: He accidentally stumbled on one of my soapboxes. And instead of going there, I’ll just say this instead, a lot of times businesses decide to change with the guise of adapting too soon. And more importantly for the wrong reason. There are times for pivots, big ones and small ones. The thing to be aware of is what’s your mission? What are your values? How can you really serve the market and stay in your lane and continue to move toward the opportunities and the market space that is presented to you with the strengths you already have, that you were using yesterday and the day before, that you can use to make some adjustments and continue to move forward in a new and re-imagined way.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: I found that when we started to get in the frenetic, semi fear semi adrenaline place, plot, plot, plan, plan, plan, what are we going to do next? How can I control things that I had people alongside me that said, Lizabeth, stop, just a pause. You can’t take on everything. And you also can’t control things. Remember that thing. You’re always telling us surrender. So I kind of got a call on the carpet, and they had a little mini intervention. I was lucky that you know, it only lasted one staff meeting..
Cynthia Del’Aria: I’m a huge purpose-driven person, if you’re serving your purpose, whatever that might be. And by the way, I believe that purpose can shift from moment to moment. That’s like the brilliant thing about it. But I believe if you’re serving your purpose, and if you’re in service of that purpose, whatever shows up is the right thing. But it’s really hard to get into that, especially for someone like me, you know, I’m going to execute or I’m a do-er, I have to-do lists coming out of my ears. I’ve sticky notes all over my desk. But sometimes what shows up as there is to do is something that doesn’t fit in our construct of who we are. And that’s because the world’s calling for us to be something bigger than who we are. What needs to get created or once you get birthed is different than who we are in our identity, because our purpose is higher order than our identity. And so I’ve been playing with this concept a lot the last few weeks, and I just have noticed all of the places where I have opportunities to make connections with people in my life, or with clients in ways that I never have before. And in the past, I’ve ignored that, because what has to get done is my to-do list?
Jess Dewell: Oh, oh, yeah, uh-huh, those past selves where you make this to-do list and it gets bigger and bigger and bigger. And you know, there is something to be said, for the cadence of work, deliverables and what we must do for the success of our business. There’s also the things that we must make space and time for. I call that a present retreat. And you know that if you’ve listened to this at all, and you can find out all about present retreats and some of other programs and on the website at reddirection.com. What I think is key here really is the fact that sometimes what our past selves thought was important to do right now isn’t as important as what shows up. That’s an adjustment. That’s from practicing patience from recognizing the alignment of the work that’s being done to the opportunity that is presenting itself in the marketplace for your business today. So patience, is recognizing that To Do List isn’t everything. It’s also recognizing that what we want to happen may not be the right thing to be happening to get us to where we want to go. And even recognizing that things that must happen show up. Now, we still have to recognize the difference between opportunity and shiny object syndrome. The more we practice that, the better we become at it, aka fail fast.
Cynthia Del’Aria: The purpose of failing fast is learning what are the edges of what you’re trying to do? Where is it going to work? Where is it not going to work? And the faster you get to that place, the faster and the more specifically, you can pivot to find that area where everything opens up. And you’re like, Oh, this is it. This is the thing. Like everybody’s resonating with it. It’s the thing. There’s a huge market. It’s wide open and untapped. Bam, here we go. And that really is like starting over. Every time you’re going along on a path and you’re like, man, something about this just isn’t working. I need more data and you talk to more people, you just get that chance to just move a little it’s not big, it’s tiny. Sometimes it’s like one degree this way and bam, there it is.
ANNOUNCER: You were listening to the ad-free listener-supported Bold Business Podcast. We will return to the show soon. Right now, Jess is going to tell you about why we are ad-free and listener supported.
Jess Dewell: I’d like to take a few minutes and tell you why we do not run ads on the Bold Business Podcast. We’ve chosen to rely solely on you, our listeners, for support. If you’re listening to this, you probably already know what I care about most. I care about the space between you and me, and you and your colleagues. And I care about the work that you do together and the impact that it makes for your business and for your community. The work I do comes from a deep curiosity about what makes businesses work, what makes high functioning teams and what elements truly shapes success. I’ve seen firsthand how information can help people make better decisions and change their results. Curating and presenting this information though is not easy. The vast amounts of information out there, and the overwhelming amount of stuff that demands our attention and time, makes finding useful information, firsthand experience that is actually inspiring, that can help you with the big problems that you’re grappling with, it’s really hard. We do the due diligence for you. I am fortunate to have a great team to help me research and to share this information. And one example is the preparation that it’s done for each program. We choose a question to explore, we look for people with the relevant information and experience. We do research for what the current trends are. And then we put it all together into a well-produced program. And then we repeat, and then we repeat. The production of the show notes and supporting information is also comprehensive. This shows in the positive response that we’ve received. People like to see are notable and quotables. They like to see the links that we have to the transcripts, and they like to have links and research to resources and we bet I bet you do too.
ANNOUNCER: So far we’ve talked about how we put into the production of the Bold Business Podcast. And why Jess feels it is so important to be ad-free and listener supported. And now let’s return to the Bold Business Podcast.
Jess Dewell: The integration of learning is key not only to steer a business strategically, it is also necessary for each person in each role within your organization. And the vendors and the supporters and the suppliers and the clients. every stakeholder that you have, has an opportunity to benefit from your experience because you bring it to them, and they bring their experience to you. Sometimes though, it’s hard to find, being in the middle of everything with what we’re doing in our day to day, the deliverables that we have, and then trying to steer the business. On top of that, making a conscious effort to know more needs to be done or something different needs to be done, but being carried by the tide of something that seems very big and slow to change, maybe even just not quite understanding, if you’re still in alignment, if the path that you’re on is still the right path for your business. So that second set of eyes is an incredibly important thing these days, a mastermind or a board for your private company will We’ll help hold you accountable. And in addition, bring you extra awareness and bring you more experience than you have working in a vacuum. There is something to be said for experience. Ed’s gonna share about that.
Ed Vincent: The average age for the most valuable companies that have been built over the last two decades has been about 45. But that being said, it plays to those multiple strengths where there is some level of experience but still some openness for change. I think that’s where the value comes from. I’m in a place where I know I don’t know everything. And I know I know I need to learn from others. So it’s a constant learning battle. But the few things that are helpful is patience, having a bigger picture focus and being strategic.
Jess Dewell: Accountability to yourself and external accountability that others hold you to because it’s for the best interest of your development as a leader, your position to take the company forward, and to make sure that as many perspectives as possible are present to best represent the interests of your business. Communication is a key piece of this. Elizabeth shares on that.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: Especially now since teams are remote, if all you have to go off of is your internal tone in your head, it’s reading the email that’s frustrating you it’s easy to assign ill intentions to the person who wrote it unless you step outside of yourself and consider whether or not you give the person the benefit of the doubt. And we developed a relationship with them what their historical behaviors are like with you, you may be having a really bad day, it may be hard to read that email and not hear it come off as cranky. But if you have empathy and you sit in that or remind yourself when you move out of it, because we all move out of it.
Jess Dewell: Oh my gosh, just before I started doing the recording here for you, I was reading emails and I had to check myself because by the time I got to the third one from three different people and they all sounded great snarcy. I was like, hey, Jess, put it in check. Is this really them? Oh my gosh, no, it’s not. It’s me. So that awareness piece is going to be key for us to just check in with our energy with our outlook with how we’re showing up to the world and giving ourself grace around that and using it to the advantage because whatever we get to show up with is what we have to work within the moment.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: It allows for people to be accountable without shame or blame. Curiosity is so difficult at times, but it is such a valuable skill set to hone and practice.
Jess Dewell: Speaking of curiosity, Cynthia has a lot to say on that topic.
Cynthia Del’Aria: People always ask me, How do you access that in the moment? My face favorite, favorite word of all time is curiosity. Curiosity is different than any other kind of inquiry, because it actually requires disengaging, being unattached to an outcome, or even what you’re inquiring about in a lot of cases. And that removes the emotion, if I’m in a conversation with someone, and I noticed myself starting to get that emotional reaction or that feeling in the pit of my stomach, or sometimes it’s in my throat, where, oh, my gosh, this is happening, I immediately get curious. Oh, that’s interesting. I wonder why I feel that way? I wonder why what they’re saying is affecting me so much in this moment, like what’s going on in there? And not only does it disengage all the emotional stuff, but it actually gets me curious what’s going on in the room around me, what are they actually saying? What’s the commitment behind what they’re saying to me? What’s my commitment behind what I’m hearing about what they’re saying? And all of that stuff is a completely different way. of interacting and engaging with a conversation than the place where I would normally go. Hands are not a great tool to use on a brick wall. Curiosity is like a sledgehammer.
Jess Dewell: Cheers to curiosity being the sledgehammer to make big change quickly beaking of curiosity, Cynthia has a lot to say on that topic. Emotion is a part of how we all are. I mean, you heard me just talking a minute ago about my reaction to emails I get and that the way that I read them, and the way that I hear the words in my head, it comes directly from where I’m at. And the same is true for you. So this concept of awareness, sometimes, especially during change, isn’t to have the three levels of awareness that you can search for at reddirection.com and learn all about, it’s just to notice, where am I right now? What can I bring? And something I really liked that Cynthia talked about? Was the commitment of the people in the room. how committed am I how committed are they? What are we actually committing to that in itself is like a mini pause. And so when we practice that bigger pause and recognizing where we be more patient where we can be more aligned, and where we can be more curious becomes invaluable to us on the fly as much as it does during time we take to be thinking and dreaming. I think we all have a filter. Let’s just be aware of what that filter is.
Ed Vincent: I asked our folks to be really aware, before we do something, I can give a million examples. It’s easier to give examples from the product perspective, but also foundationally from marketing. I just got off the phone with one of our PR folks, about an hour ago, we just announced the partnership we have with a big radio network. And in the process, there was a quote from one of the partners and the quote was very important for how we want to be perceived in the future. And one of the conversations as you’re talking to different media in order to have them write about what this partnership is, let’s remember that quote, or that saying was foundational. That’s something that we will build upon. And we’ll look back two years from now as how we’re transforming are innovating within the live events industry, meaning that the conversation doesn’t have to be solely about the media partnership we have in place. It’s really about how we’re innovating for the future.
Jess Dewell: Opportunity comes when we know how to look for it. If we’re running, if we’re responding, if we’re reacting we miss it doesn’t matter how loud it comes at us. We put ourselves in a situation where we are unable to acknowledge, recognize and take action on something that is really good. That actually keeps us aligned. That actually keeps us curious. That actually keeps us moving forward and integrating the learning that we have every step of the way. Ed’s going to talk to us more about bringing awareness to opportunity.
Ed Vincent: Things that happen that we collectively don’t even know are happening in parallel so that when paths cross then big opportunity comes from it. Great example is in the music environment. Even though festival passes and only music, it’s all events, sports, including wine and theatre and all the things that makes life wonderful in terms of music. COVID was super hard-hitting to all the independent music venues. So there’s about 4000 independent music venues in the country. Everybody here that likes live music probably has been to one of them. They’re the ones that are a mom and pop owned or somebody owns two or three of them. They’re really the fabric of what creates music artists because without that infrastructure, you wouldn’t have any future success in a region. It shows all of those businesses or small businesses, so they were hard hit. When COVID happened, they all got together and created an organization called the National Independent Venue Association called NIVA. By banding them together in that capacity, they created something called “Save Our Stages. The reason I’m bringing all that up, which I think is wonderful, and it really fits in to the culture of what we want to create festivalPass for is really just creating all this amazing live experience. But pre-COVID, this organization didn’t exist. So that would have meant if we wanted all of these people on Festival Pass, we would have to call 4000 separate business owners, get them interested in what we’re doing. It almost like the old Groupon model where they had to go restaurant by restaurant in order to sign them up. That’s a lot of sales, a lot of infrastructure and a lot of people but now we know the leadership over at Niva. We’re helping them In their mission, which is getting out there for save our stages, and we’re partnering with them, in order to build a program for all of their venues to be part of a festival. That’s, again, that’s a unforeseen thing that had happened. But if we just gave up back in March, we never would have had the opportunity to be here now, because we’ve been building all the technology and infrastructure now to embrace this partnership.
Jess Dewell: Ed was talking about so many things that are inside the control of his thought, his action and his leadership. It starts with saying, okay, we have given ourselves a path. What does that path look like today with the climate and the environment we’re in, and where can we create bigger impact that we didn’t even know that was possible that not only benefits our industry but allows us to be an active player and ensure that other people can be active players to strengthen where we are as a group to continue to move forward. And the thing is, we don’t know which opportunities are the right ones. But we can narrow down the possibilities quite a bit. Deciding what factors are important that you know, you can get information that you can rely on, you can take a look exactly where your company is and how the company has been performing. And you can see what the responses are by other people and then decide where you fit in. Are you really part of that bigger stream that’s shifting altogether? Or are you one of the little tributary trickles of water that still get to the end goal, whether that’s the ocean or a lake or a bigger river, and you’re able to add value and create something that’s supportive and it’s all your own. That’s the opportunity that you’re looking for, that’s the awareness piece that can only come from pausing and integrating as well.
Cynthia Del’Aria: Every conversation is a chance to listen newly and meet somebody where they are now. Exactly how we want to be listened to. Turn it around and think about the way that you want to be listened to, you’re not always the same person, you don’t always have the same concerns. You don’t always have the same fears, you’ll always have the same worries, you don’t always have the same level of happiness or success. If you can see it in intimate relationships were for me, my fiance will come home and I’ll say, Honey, how was your day? And what I should actually say to him is, Honey, I want to get to your day in a second. But I have had this thing happen. And I just need to say it out loud to you so that you know that it’s going on. Can we do that? If I would say that to him? He would be right there with his listening to say, yeah, totally Give it to me What’s up, and he would set aside all the stuff that’s about to come out of his mouth, because that’s what I told him, I need it. But we don’t do that, right?or what we nee. And we don’t show up in the moment listening for the other person. And so he walks in the door and I’m over here like waiting for him to read my mind. And so I’m like honey, how was your day and then he starts downloading his whole day on top of me, and I’m just getting more and more upset about it. Because I’m like, No, I want to tell you this thing.
Jess Dewell: Been there, have you? It’s interesting that Cindy is talking about listening, yet sometimes to be able to listen, we actually have to speak up and set an expectation so that the best listening can occur. Be responsible and be accountable to your own actions and the way you’re showing up that is something else that you can control.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: Because you are writing your own script, when you are taking accountability for your actions, whatever it is that sparks reason that you’re taking accountability for something that means that you aren’t following some other guideline or some other story. You’re in new charted territory and you have the choice, how you react, how you behave, how you are present, in that circumstance and in the world. And so you are literally creating your own future and you are impacting the experience of anyone who’s interacting with you. And just by having that power your own innate inside, cool, light it on fire, power. That’s amazing.
Ed Vincent: Thinking about how you can turn that weakness into an opportunity? I often talk to different folks within our company and I try and coach them on that path kind of like hey, we just got a great I’m using tactical real examples, but we just got a great event owner that produces 80 culinary events a year. They’re super excited. They Want to be on the platform? They’ll get back to us as soon as they know the dates for the 2021 schedule and we’ll get it done like, okay, great weakness there is that events, we don’t know the date yet. They’re not happening. But for me, that’s an opportunity. So it’s okay great. So now is when you need to call them back and have a conversation and say fantastic. Even though we don’t know what the dates are yet, we’re going to get them on the platform today. We’re going to sign the agreement for the future. So we don’t have to restart this conversation for four, five or six months from now. So the weakness does exist. But that’s a perfect opportunity to close now, rather than just punt down the field. A lot of people love to say, give me a call back in three months when the world looks a different way. And all that does is accomplished nothing.
Jess Dewell: And being able to speak up about it is a pretty big deal as well, that’s a big part of the sales process recognizing, okay, there’s a hiccup. Okay, there’s something that stands in our way. Okay. You may not be ready now. But how do you know when you’re ready? What if we thought about what we could do now to help set the direction and keep you on strategy, customer stakeholder client, community, ourselves in our role. So being able to build the habits that are necessary to help recognize, when to pause, when to integrate, and when to access awareness, to bring all of those to the table is something that comes with using them, use it, use it, use it, use it.
Cynthia Del’Aria: Getting curious is a habit, okay? So the more you work the habit, when you do have time, the easier and the more access, you will have to that habit, when you have the perception of not having time. What I’m going to say about what you just asked me, there’s always time,. Sometimes the thing there is to do is to create the space of time, to take a step back, remove yourself from the situation, turn off the news, whatever the thing is, create space, there’s always time. I know that there are moments when it feels like that’s not true. Try it. Get curious in a moment where you’re like, “Oh my god, I have to do this right now.” Get curious in that moment and say, what if I just sat back got quiet. Listen to what, what’s going on in my head and listen for the commitment in the room. That is creating space, that is creating time. You will be amazed. There’s a reason why there’s a sales closing technique called shut up. Because in that space of time, other people get time, other people have the experience of what am I thinking? And what am I saying? And what’s coming out of my mouth? And where do I have? Other people experienced the same space and time that you do, and you’ve never know what’s going to come next.
Jess Dewell: I started out at the beginning of the program, talking about the power of the pause. Being able to practice patience, being able to recognize how aligned things are right now, being able to be curious. And Cynthia just added one that I can’t believe I forgot. But I have to say, I’m glad she did to make time to take time because the time is there. And this concept of the power of the pause in relationship to time, we’re all processing everything. When we pause, and we allow others in our presence to also pause is always an experience and a curious place to see what comes up how the conversation goes forward. What is found, usually, there’s some seriously good nuggets in that space. And I’m gonna say it’s easier to do it with other people when you do it yourself. So you may want to consider practicing a present retreat specifically to start building that habit of taking time and giving time to spaces to see what else is around that wants to show up.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: The skillset of accountability for yourself and empathy combined are huge. It’s the same ability to look within not only to take care of the standards that you hold for yourself, but to have an understanding of the fact that you’re right. Every single person has been impacted by this. This isn’t just a seasonal thing where you two people may have allergies, this is big. Everybody’s writing everybody is going through it everybody’s impacted. Most people are impacted financially, many of them are impacted by whether or not they may have business. I mean, of course, health.
Jess Dewell: And the list goes on. Yet when we recognize what’s out of our control and what we can control, we now can see real pragmatic clarity around what’s possible.
Ed Vincent: The business aspect just to give you context is the worst possible outcome. Once this all started happening was this is going to take a couple years, maybe we should shelve the business until events come back and be ready to reignite it at that time. That was the worst possible outcome. But we luckily have support of a bunch of our great investors and partners and they’re just like, well, we’ll see where it goes. Let’s keep moving forward. And it gave us opportunity to continue to build. And now the ironic part is, as long as you have momentum, it just begets other opportunities.
Jess Dewell: There’s some wisdom in that.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: I had to reach a certain age. I am a woman of a certain age, before I stopped struggling against it, and it being control. I think that from a very early age, I always wanted things to be organized, or at least chaos of my own creation was fine, but just general chaos around me wasn’t there’s a tidbit that kind of informed my parents about who I would become was my mom used to sew my clothes when I was a little girl. Back in the 70s, that was like the thing that moms did. At four years old, she take me into the fabric store with her. And then she just let me do my thing. And the women behind the counter, if they were new would completely freak out because I make a beeline for the thread aisle, and they’re thinking four-year-old thread and attendant child, this is going to be a nightmare. But the ones that had been there for a while and seen this, they just kind of nudge each other and be like, watch this. So I look over there and I looked at all the assortment of threads and see which ones had been placed in the wrong color lines. So basically, I ended up doing their inventory with for them. So it was all about organization and control very early age. And then I got to be older and having had experiences where I couldn’t control things. The impact of that was depression at different times or frustration at different times. I really embraced the concept of surrender. So anything that I can’t control, I need to just sit back, see where it’s going and realize that the only thing that I can control is me being flexible and able to adapt. And in a certain way, understanding that, even if I’m not in control the entire situation, if I am doing the things that I know that keep me sane, safe and happy, I’m modeling good behavior. And that trickles down then to the people around me or to the people on my team. And hopefully, I’m creating a happier space for myself and for those around me, but I can’t be in control of everything.
Jess Dewell: Yeah, no, we can’t be in control of everything. And it does start with us and accountability to ourselves. And it comes down to the three things that we’ve been talking about integrating are learning, pausing, and taking advantage of the power in the pause, and accessing your awareness in the moment to show up and see what becomes possible. It’s funny that age keeps coming up. So regardless of our age, and it doesn’t matter what age we’re at, make sure that we’re including people that are younger than us that are our peer group in turn of age that have more experience than we do just in life and in business, because we never know what can come out of those conversations. And we need all levels of experience to be able to recognize what is an opportunity, what can we control, and how do we look at whatever is right in front of us right now.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: And we utilize our platforms with clarity. So that means that we sat down and made sure that we reviewed our internal comms platform use plan, did some tweaking but identified, exactly what types of information we were sharing on which platforms so that documents weren’t stored and five different areas and conversations were happening on threads and three different formats. Because the one thing that was contributing to my crazy was the time wasted searching thing. If I couldn’t find exactly what I needed when I needed it. It was making me think I needed to start adding new technology or creating more plans and making things more detail when the answer was actually exactly the opposite. Less technology, fewer detailed plans, just one guiding principle.
ANNOUNCER: It’s time to take another brief break from a program. Earlier Jess shared about what goes into each podcast, and why it is so important to be ad-free and listener supported. But why? Why should you consider becoming a supporting listener? Jess has that answer.
Jess Dewell: As a supporter, you receive full access to expanded show notes, including formatted transcripts, links to all the resources, full uncut interviews with each guest, by the way, which also have their own transcripts, and email notifications of new resources as they become available to you as a supporter. Supporters also receive exclusive access to a platform where you can ask your specific business questions to me. And you will receive a link to the Bold Business Supporter Podcast which does not have a support or call out. Any other content that we decide to publish in that channel as a value add as well as access to carefully cultivated playlists that focus on key business and leadership topics. The Bold Business Podcast is a resource that helps you and will remain free to you and to all. I do hope you find enough value in the podcast itself. and the additional exclusive benefits are worth it to become a supporter at a level that reflects its worth to you as an investment to your personal and your professional growth. The value you receive from our podcast is how we fund the necessary work and continue this work.
ANNOUNCER And now, let’s return to the Bold Business Podcast for the rest of the show.
Jess Dewell: What’s in your control and what can you do with that information? So we’ve been talking a lot about habits. We’ve been talking a lot about experiences. We’ve been talking a lot about opportunity and it comes from the focus of integrating learning to move forward, have the power in the pause to check in on your patience, your alignment, your curiosity, and how you’re using time as well as the ability to access your awareness. All of these are habits that you have in some form, and it’s up to you to hone in and use them for the betterment and move you toward the achievement that you are on the path for.
Cynthia Del’Aria: Here’s the great thing about habits. you have them anyway. You guys like you are going to do something and that something is going to be the thing that you continue to do. If you bring mindfulness to it and practice something that empowers you. That’s going to be way better in the moment. You have a habit anyway, is it working? Are you committed to keeping it? Can you replace it with a different habit that makes you more empowered or that gives you space or whatever the thing is that you’re actually committed to?
Jess Dewell: Thank you, Cynthia. There’s a level of confidence that we must have in our own ability. Ed shares about it.
Ed Vincent: When it comes to company-related stuff, I have a general level of confidence in my own ability, regardless of what happens and what I mean by that. It’s not ego-driven. It’s just more about whatever it is, even if it fails, fails miserably next year, I’ll figure something else out, meaning that life will go on. There are a couple of things though in life that are huge. Like for example, this is more of a personal story that I split up with my ex-wife seven years ago, and we have three beautiful daughters. To me, the most devastating aspect anything in life was the unknown about during custody with my kids. The worst thing closest to death to me would be to not be able to be the constant parent to my children. In that capacity that experiencing the almost the worst possible thing and getting through it shows me that nothing else is that big of a deal. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen that can’t be recovered from? And a good entrepreneur friend of mine, who’s in my forum in my entrepreneur group always says, find out what is the worst possible outcome and then start backing up from there. So accept the worst possible outcome and then inch your way out of the worst possible outcome towards something better.
Jess Dewell: There’s always something better. Everything that happens to us is a way for the universe to say there is something here that you need to see. So it’s up to you. And I’m also talking to me here. It’s up to you to decide. Are you willing to see it?
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: For an overriding concept? Yes, I think that that is why it’s important to own my own actions. It shows other people, the type of behavior that you find acceptable to be around. It also shows other people often behavior that can help to overcome whatever challenge is happening. For example, if something goes wrong within my organization, and I don’t take responsibility for my behavior or my own actions, then I’m showing the people that I’m leading that it’s perfectly fine to shirk responsibility or to not take responsibility and be proactive and create a solution, or that it’s not suggested, to find a way to be at peace with whatever’s going on. That may not be the ideal. What I want to do when I’m with a group of people, again, whether or not I’m leading them, I want to be that space of peace, where if things are going wrong, or I’ve done something wrong, I’ve accepted that I’m a human being, I take responsibility for any actions that I may have done wrong or that I may have contributed to happening that aren’t ideal, and then move forward because very few things in life are unmanageable to the extent That you can’t go back and either learn from them or that you can’t do the proper things like make an apology.
Jess Dewell: Checking in on our habits, integrating failures, taking the learning from both of those and deciding how to move forward is key. The pause, the present retreat pause specifically here is a place where that protected time can be used to discuss and think about this type of information. What needs to happen? Are we doing it right? Do we have unwritten agreements that are undermining the work being done so what we say we’re going to do is different than what we’re actually doing things like that. Usually, everybody leaves it to the leader, the one in charge to be responsible for all of the stuff we’re discussing today. What’s in our control? How do we show up to it? How do we learn from it? Guess what, on a team, one person can’t do it all. In a department it takes everybody. In a company it takes everybody. And Cynthia shares about that.
Cynthia Del’Aria: You don’t have to be the leader of a team in order to express to the team around you that you are willing to take responsibility for the mistakes that you make, and that you’re open to listening for different things at different people need from you at different times. Now, this is different than being a doormat. I want to be really clear about this. This doesn’t mean that I’m everything to everyone and I adjust myself to meet the needs of everybody around me. That’s a doormat. What I’m saying is that I’m listening For what is the commitment behind what people need? What are they asking for? How could I potentially serve them that serves the highest good for all of us? And that is within everyone’s capability, regardless of where you are. And it is the epitome of fail fast and fail often because we’re going to be trying things and some of them are going to work and some of them are not.
Jess Dewell: The grand experiment, a new day, a new set of situations even when you apply the same process And therein lies the crux of opportunity when we can show up differently and we can recognize what we’ve been doing and what is necessary to keep things going. And we can be curious about it, we can figure out what’s best for right now. How we show up and how each person around us at work shows up together or remotely is building the culture with which work is done.
Ed Vincent: Everything starts with an understanding that if we say that that’s important to us over and over again, and we make all decisions with that in mind. As we grow, and as the culture moves through the environment, it’s not really just me saying it, everybody else is saying it. So then hopefully those actions will happen. you’re always balancing resources with growth. Because of the simple concept. More members we have, the more events want us, the more events we have, the more members want us. It’s a constant seesaw. So the idea is always stretching just far enough with the current resources available, but not overstretching.
Jess Dewell: That’s in our control. Clear, deliberate action. We’re talking about making time when time is very precious, and we already feel like we don’t have enough of it. And that’s one of the things that makes it bold. It’s bold to recognize what’s in your control and what you can do with that information. And here’s why. In Ed Vincent’s words.
Ed Vincent: In the of words of Brené Brown, it’s a bold action to be vulnerable. The idea of choosing to go where things are uncertain, choosing to embrace change, I would consider that bold.
Jess Dewell: It’s bold, to know what’s in your control and what you can do with that information. Here’s what Lizabeth Wesely-Casella says.
Lizabeth Wesely-Casella: Because you are writing your own script, when you are taking accountability for your actions, whatever it is that sparks reason that you’re taking accountability for something that means that you aren’t following some other guideline or some other story. You’re in new charted territory and you have the choice, how you react, how you behave, how you are present, in that circumstance and in the world.
Jess Dewell: Here’s what Cynthia Del’Aria says.
Cynthia Del’Aria: Courage is bold. Courage only can exist in the face of fear. Courage only can exist in the face of something that requires courage to overcome it. Boldness is a form of courage, taking responsibility for our actions is not easy. It’s much easier and it’s much more protective of ourselves in our identities, to have things that have to be outside of us, to have a reason outside of ourselves that something is the way that it is and we have no control over that thing. Taking responsibility for who I show up as in the world, taking responsibility for my actions, being willing to be responsible for who I am and who I show up as.
Jess Dewell: Three interviews with the same question sharing very different yet connected information. The first thing that you can take away from this program and be solid in the knowledge is that integrating the learning that you have from positive and negative experiences will help you move forward and it will help you confidently make decisions for your business to move forward. Then the power of the pause, practicing your patience, checking in on alignment, staying curious and taking time. Those are the elements of a pause that are incredibly important to assess and move forward. Your ability to access your own awareness and tap into the awareness of others around you is what is going to guide you through not only a difficult moment or a day or a week, but a period of time, through a transition from beginning, middle to end. And sometimes we know where the end is. And sometimes we don’t. And that’s where our awareness is even more important. We can use it as the fuel to keep guiding us and keep integrating and keep pausing your commitment to what you can control and your commitment to taking conscious clear action from that is what will guide you forward.
ANNOUNCER The Bold Business Podcast is brought to you by Red Direction. Jess Dewell dug into one idea in this program. Her goal is to ignite your creativity and spark different thinking with the presented material. How you apply this to your current priorities is up to you. We want to know what actions you take. Use hashtag #boldbusinesspodcast and add your voice to this important conversation. Jess Dewell can bring the missing voice back into your company. With you, Jess will solidify your company’s true north, your unique Red Direction. Provided you are ready to work with Jess, email her at Radio at Red direction dot com. Special thanks to the SCOTT Treatment for technical production.