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The Leadership Stack Podcast
14 minutes | Jan 25, 2022
Ep 338: Why Hard Work Yields Good Money Values
Sean: What advice do you give your kids with regards to building wealth and managing finances? Randell: All right! Here's where people are surprised because I'm the finance guy. People think that my kids are really experts in finance. Contrary to popular belief, I do not open my PowerPoint on the dining table or put it on my tv and talk about these things. I do have a little bit of talk with them, but it's not like that. As a parent, it's really more like setting examples for them. I want them to see that their daddy is hard-working, doesn't spend unnecessarily, takes care of the future and they see it that way. From time to time, we remind them they need to save but I don't force it. At the end of the day, number one, there's way too much pressure on kids. You don't want to add that pressure to your kid. I'm very careful about that. I want them to make their mistakes. I want them to learn from those mistakes and even finances. So I teach them the basics. Like when they were very young, I taught them that money needs to be earned. It's the value of work. You know I want them to understand that my money is my money, it's not theirs, so they have to earn it. They have to create it so work on it. That's number one. Number two, I teach them how to spend properly so they don't just buy anything they want. Number three, following that, it means that they need to save, that not all of their money is being spent. And finally, I also teach them to give because generosity needs to be taught. If not, they might become greedy and think it's all about it. So earn, spend, save, and give. These are the basics that I taught them. Then later on, when they saved, I told them to put it in a mutual fund. Now they're older, my wife asked me to teach them how to invest in crypto. You know it's hard for a person to get used to earning big right away without really exerting that much effort. You're teaching them the wrong values. Look at those young crypto millionaires, it's like they don't do anything anymore, anything productive, anything of value, because they have money. What do they do with that? I don't know where they spend it. That's not the kind of value system that I want to teach my kids. I want them to work hard and then later be wise in managing money. I will not get into the secrets and all these things. They have to learn it and they have to see it from me. I picked up a lot of my entrepreneurial skills from my dad. So it's like that. My dad wasn't a businessman all his life. He's not giving us lectures and talking about it. We see it, then we ask about it. When we're a little bit older, we get more curious. Sometimes he involves me, asks for my opinion, and that's why I learn. Sean: That's great! And that's also in the Bible, in Proverbs, right? Money fast gained is money fast gone as well. Randell: Yeah! So again my tip to parents is, you have to be very careful. Don't try to teach everything to your kids because sometimes part of the learning is experimenting, trying things, making mistakes, and don't compare your kids with other kids. That's the challenge now, because now you see Instagram families, looking perfect and all these things. I protect my kids from that, the pressure of society. Now two of them are adults. I'd like to say I taught them something and they're practicing but far from the public eye. Sean: That's great! That's good stuff and I'm learning from you as well. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
14 minutes | Jan 21, 2022
Ep 337: Is it Wrong to Have More Money?
Sean: What is a simple rule for managing your finances? Randell: Well, number one, simple rule, I've been married for more than 30 years. My wife told me, "What is yours is mine and what's mine is mine." That's the rule. That's the only rule I live by. know this man is in that role as the only rule. I live by it. I guess for me, number one is I respect money. I know money is more and everything, but I respect money. I know it's a limitation and I also need to manage my behavior around it. I heard this from Marvin, that it's not wrong for you to have money, what is wrong is for money to have you. So money for me is just a great tool, but not the end goal. That's very clear on my end. My rule is number one, and this is just me sharing it, automatically, I tight. This is a value system that I'm not going to debate whether it should be tight or not, but this is something that my wife and I believe in and practice and stand by it. So we tight. Next is, we save. We have to provide for the family's needs. That's clear, but you also save. So apart from providing, you're also saving. That saving will lead to investing. And also we give. A big part of our income is used to support missionaries, campus missionaries, and long-term missionaries in the advancement of God's kingdom. This is on top of our tights. And my joke is, the amount of money we support can also provide for another family. It's sort of like that because that's our value system and that's why I work. During the pandemic, Sean, of course, when March hit, I was like, "What are we going to do?" As all of us are not salary people and then we're giving salaries. So I said, "What are we going to do? How long will this last? Do I need to liquidate? Do I sell something? How much money do I have?" And then one of the things that bothered me in a good way is that you know I support a lot of these missionaries and give money to those things. What's going to happen to them? They are dependent on what we give them. I mean not just me but collectively. So if I stop and everybody stops, what will happen to them? So I made this prayer, "Lord, can you continue to give me work so that I can continue to support them?" And the Lord was so gracious. I never stopped working and I think I got busier. I never stopped working and not only did I not continue supporting, I added even more last year. I think this year I also added some. Do you get what I mean? I even have increased my support to some of them because I feel inflation and everything and I'm assuming that some people were not able to support them, so I have to level up a little bit. Sean: Wow, that's amazing. That's a very encouraging thing to share here. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
11 minutes | Jan 20, 2022
Ep 336: Randell Tiongson's Outlook on The Philippine Economy
Randell: I'll give you words that are cautiously optimistic. It's not looking too good, I believe. Of course, there has to be a benchmark. If my benchmark is going to be our neighbors, we are lagging behind it because we've taken a long time to try to do the vaccines, opening the economy, and things like mass testing. That has an impact on the economy in general. So again, that's a problem. So in that case we are lagging in terms of our recovery. It's going to take a long time for us. A lot of the economies have begun to open. We are lagging. We're still in the process of: How do we open it up more? And it took us a while to get a groove in managing the pandemic, so that's having a problem in the economy. That's why unemployment is high, productivity-side, supply-side is not yet there, and demands have been low. So it's going to take a longer time for us to recover. But we're seeing signs of growth. We have to be more patient. Maybe you need to give the Philippine economy a two-year reprieve. Do not expect much this year and maybe next year, but I believe we're going to be in full swing in two years from now. So opportunities to take a look at: What can I do now that we're waiting? Do I start investing? So there are opportunities for that. Do I look at certain businesses that will do well during this time? So the economy is slowing down. The economic recovery is slower notwithstanding. There are opportunities that are for us to find there.
11 minutes | Jan 19, 2022
Ep 335: Is Cardano a Better Investment than Ethereum?
Sean: We have a question here about ADA Cardano. So what do you like most about ADA (Cardano)? Sean: I don't know if you have a vlog about that. I haven't checked yet. Randell: I don't. I'm careful because if I say anything, it's like a recommendation. Right? But personally, I'm very transpired with these things. That's my biggest exposure - Cardano. Out of all of my cryptos, that's number one. Followed by Ethereum and then Bitcoin. People think my number one is going to be Bitcoin. It's like Cardano. I like Cardano because number one, what's being used now is Ethereum. So ETH, Ether's being used a lot in the systems. And I'm not a tech guy, maybe Sean you can answer that. But there's a lot of flaws with Ethereum also. It's slow, cash fees are high, scalability issues. And here comes a company like Cardano which was built on things, because it's founded by the co-founder of Ethereum, to begin with, built on and corrected the mistakes and the scalability. So that's one. So I guess it's like an improved version of Ethereum where it's more ecologically friendly and stuff. Also, the business model has advocacy and is standing for something. So that guy, whatever his name is, really wants African nations to apply this that will bring down corruption, improve poverty, and finance. These things we've been doing, we've been advocating since time immemorial, financial inclusion, but of course, we're limited. I mean how many people have bank accounts? So now he's finding a way not to bypass but make it more inclusive. And I believe that's going to change the future. If they do what they're saying, it's really going to change. So I'm banking on that and I hope you know I'm right in that scenario. That's why I'm a Cardano fan. From an investment perspective, with the recent decline of Bitcoin, with the Elon Musk thing, it dropped and I saw Cardano decoupling from the movement of things like Bitcoin. Because when Bitcoin moves, everybody follows. Cardano's starting to have a life on its own. So people are slowly seeing there's something in this coin. Of course, that's a big debate because you know other guys, I think Marvin and the others really think it's going to be Ethereum because of the NFT scene. But there are also other people that say, "Oh wait. This is the next-gen. This is where the movement will go application-wise." So finance guide again, put in both. Right? Marvin and I are opposites. He has more ETH than Cardano. I have more Cardano than ETH. So we'll see. But I'm a big fan. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
10 minutes | Jan 18, 2022
Ep 334: Why is Managing Finances More Behavior Based?
Sean: Why is managing finances more behavioral-based? Why is it behavioral? Because whatever you actually do is what is going to be affecting your finances. Why we say it's more behavior-based than anything else is because when we say behavior, it's actually what builds habits. And habits are so important because habits are what you do on autopilot. These are things that you don't think about, that you just do. And so a lot of people today their just do it habits sometimes involves just opening Shopee and Lazada. You know those are wonderful e-commerce platforms, but once you spend time with them unnecessarily and unproductively, you start buying stuff that you don't need. That's not going to be good for you. It is behavior-based. It has a lot to do with your habits, the habits that you build. And so I'd say, you have to change behaviors from the mind. You have to invest in what you will know, is what you will practice in behavior so that your habits will follow your behavior and you read a lot of books about personal finance management. Randell Tiongson, the author of the book, No Nonsense Personal Finance, is a really good book to read and that has the five levels of personal finance management that you have to follow. It's an amazing book for you to read. Another author that I do recommend and have personally read is Dave Ramsey's The Total Money Makeover. They have US culture in the book, but it's also the same principles, the five steps to personal finance management, which is really the fundamentals of what you have to fall into and what you have to do if you want a good foundation in your personal finance management. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
16 minutes | Jan 14, 2022
Ep 333: When Should You Sell Your Business?
Sean: Well, you know, a lot of people go through that when times get tough in business, we look into ourselves again and we wonder. "Why am I doing this again? Why am I going through all these hard things, dealing with these difficult people in my team and in my client's list?" So what happened then? How did you get to realize why you still want it to go on? Jan: Well, increasingly I didn't and I think, you know, the moment you get to that stage, word gets around. So, you know, you start to get approached by all sorts of VCs. And, you know, out of all the businesses who were under various pretext, you know? And it was a really interesting one because, of course, that so it's a very sort of shark-infested water and very male-dominated too. Jan: So nearly all of them come in and say, "Well, you know, you're having a rough time and you know, you're having problems, but of course, you want to because you're a woman." Sean: That's not nice. Jan: It wasn't the very best way to get on with me actually, there was probably a certain amount of research in manufacturing. But it was a very tough gig for women. But no, it was hard, and so I got some office on the business, you know, so shall I` or shouldn't I, pulled out the last minute, you know as many people do and that's your baby is sensible. "Oh, my goodness, what do I do if I don't have this too?" comes into it. Jan: You know? So I wasted some years actually, to my anger, I should have taken the first offer it was the best offer and it would have been the best for me - "argh, damn it." Jan: But I didn't anyway, and in the end just got to the pitch and I thought, you know, "I really, I cannot. I was getting so ill with them, you know, I just can't do it." And somebody wants to take over the brand, the people that didn't want the actual unit because it was too far from them, it was a competitor. So we just made a deal, you know, within a couple, literally a few weeks. I think three or four weeks took it far. And it was just done, you know, and I thought I would really regret it. Jan: But by that time, I woke up and I thought, This is wonderful. I am so pleased. Why didn't I do it five years ago? And I think a lot of people say you should get out before going too long, too late in your business when you've seen it all before, and it gets that pitch at your signature before. It's definitely the time you should get out because it just doesn't do it for you anymore. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
20 minutes | Jan 13, 2022
Ep 332: When to Switch from Startup to Leadership
Sean: Look, Jan, a lot of people, when they hear the leader, the thing that comes to mind is the guy or the girl that's most paid, that gets the special parking slot, that gets the special corner office that gets all the perks of the executives like. These are the things that come to mind in our world today when you say, leaders. So what do you mean when you mentioned earlier that you're going to have to be a leader in the scale-up phase later? Jan: You've got to be, for one who continually inspires people, which doesn't have anything to do with the pay at the office or any of those things you mentioned, unfortunately. But you've got to be the one that gets everybody going. That can be your investors, your stakeholders, your people most of all. You know, you've got a layout that gets people so excited that they want to get on that train ride, and they want to develop themselves and do better so the next day. Jan: And you've also got to find the people to do it. You know, if you can do those things if you can lay on a vision and keep people on-site and inspired and keep finding people who are ideally better than you are. And that means you've got to be pretty secure because you've got to take on people, you know who you look up, "Oh, without them what would I do." But you know, most of the people like them, are going to take your business forward? Jan: So yeah, it's a lot about finding the right people, people where it's just lovely - I think it is Warren Buffett quote, but you need intelligence, integrity, and energy, that's right, because if you think, if the people you need to take on, you want to be intelligent, you want them to be good at pushing the business forward, but you want to have the energy, you know, there's nothing worse working with flat negative people who go, "Yeah, we could do that." You know you want them to go, "Wow, how exciting." Jan: And that helps you feed off their energy, too. And I think that's really big. And people forget that you need the energy to flow both ways. Then it's about the integrity thing, of course, because they have to genuinely buy into your vision. As well as, you know, integrity at the other end does not actually help themselves to everything in the business that we're talking about, earlier. Sean: For sure. And you mentioned that in the startup phase, we both agreed that you're the go-to person during the scale-up phase, when you're the one, in your words, casting the vision and inspiring your people, does that mean you stop being the go-to person for these tasks? Jan: Yeah, it does. And I think that's really hard. I mean, you know, to some extent, you need to be available, which is a different thing from being the person who steps in and does for you. You have to let go and let them do because you simply can't do the visionary stuff otherwise. You have to be on peak performance. Jan: And I think that's one of the really hard transference because going back to the people we are with the imposter syndrome and we know we put a lot wrong and all this, you know, to say 'I am worse because I am leader,' I am worse saying, 'no, you don't, I'll do it. You know, I'm going to stand back from here. I'm not going to be the one who works till midnight' is really, really hard. Jan: Because once natural inclination is to function and do it for them, and help out because that's what we want to do. We want to help people. But you can't, you're actually going to have to stand back, and you're going to have to work on you, and you're going to have to let them develop because that's how you get better people. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
15 minutes | Jan 12, 2022
Ep 331: 3 Compelling Scalability Lessons for Business Owners
Sean: And what were some of the things that maybe give me the top three things that you learned during that startup phase all the way to having two factories and 40 people? Sean: That's a pretty good scale. It's actually a very good scale. You can live off of that. But from Point A where a lot of people are, you know, a lot of people are starting out, they have no idea, they're clueless where to go, what to do, it's too difficult. It's so difficult to start a business all the way to growing your business, making it more stable. What are the top three things that you could tell us? Jan: I think one of the things that I would say is don't let that lack of knowledge hold you back. Because so many of us are really ignorant when we start, and even people who've gone to colleges and got book learning, it doesn't totally prepare you for the experience, I don't think, you know. Jan: And so don't let that lack of knowledge, don't let anything that frightens you hold you back, you're only going to start and at worst you'll fail, but at least you'll have tried. But it's really true that you've got to start. So I think don't let that lack of knowledge make you feel worse than anybody else. You're just as good as everybody else. So that's number one. Jan: Number two, I think it's really important to decide where you're going and why you're doing it because I think that focus on being passionate. I mean, in my case, initially, it was literally putting food on the table for the children, which is a real push. You know, it does focus you quite well, but if you've got a drive, it can be for your kids, it can be to change the world or to build a huge business or whatever that is pushing you on, be really clear about it and be really determined that that's what you're going to achieve. And then when you have a bad day, you want to stay in bed and we all get them, you know, it doesn't matter because that drive is enough to get you right down and keep you going. So I think that's really important. Jan: I would say on, let's chuck in a practical one. I think learning your figures is really important. I was terrible at Math at school, you know. It wasn't something that interested me at all. I loved words, ended up a writer after all. So, Math was a horrible subject, but you know, of course, I had to do it when I had a business. And actually, it didn't matter that I was bad about it. I had a calculator and I began to see that money and business is about patterns. That began to intrigue me how you work the patterns, you know, so don't let fear of money and go and find out how to reach your own money. Don't give it to somebody else to tell you what's going on in your business. I think really, it's so important in those early stages to learn everything yourself about the financial workings of your business. Sean: That's very interesting. A lot of people would say that you should hire an accountant at some point. What do you think about that? Jan: I think later, the better. I think you will always run it better the more you know about finances yourself, you know. Jan: And you know, again you get problems later on because, you know, you'll get to a size that you might have an in-house accountant? And of course, you know, or at least an in-house bookkeeper. And if you don't know how to work with figures, I regret to say that human nature is what is facing almost the amount of fraud in the accountancy industry. And you know, if you don't know, or can't read it yourself, you're setting yourself up for a huge fall. But I do think it makes you build a better business if you understand it. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
11 minutes | Jan 11, 2022
Ep 330: How to Introduce New Ideas in Business
Niño: Growing up in a family that wasn't really into business since they are licensed professionals, every time I pitch a business idea, they tend to forcibly alter or worse reject some of the plans which I think would be detrimental for the business. How do I change that while still maintaining a good relationship with them? Sean: That's a pretty tough question. If they're the ones in charge, it's going to be difficult for you to tell them that this is how it should be done. There are some things that people who have been doing it while will not accept, especially if you're new. It's a matter of humility. People who are not humble to accept change and change is one of the hardest things to accept because you're comfortable. When they're comfortable about how they've been doing things ever since and it's working, and if it's not broken, don't fix it, then any suggestions that you throw their way, unfortunately, they're not really going to listen to it. It's hard for a young person to give advice to someone who's been doing something for a while. The best way you can help change these things and improve these things is to show them. So I know a story about someone. It's a true story. It's a pretty big appliance company here in the Philippines and before the pandemic, they didn't want to invest in digital marketing. So what this guy did, he's the one who shelled out the money. He's part of the family, but he's a distant family relative, but he shelled out. He's the one who invested his own money in digital marketing and he studied it all and did it by himself. Older people in the business, pretty big business actually here in Metro Manila, in the Philippines, I'd say, didn't listen to him. And what happened was it became so successful that right now in the pandemic it amounts to a big chunk of their sales. I would say, a really big chunk of their current sales, because no one's going to the malls. Not a lot of people are going to the mall or risking their necks out there, so they're selling a lot online from the website. And that is because he made sacrifices. So my answer to you here would be the same. You'd have to make sacrifices and you'd have to set the model for your ideas on how you think the business could improve. That is how you do it while maintaining a good relationship with them because if you don't have a good relationship with them anyway, you're not going to be able to pull anything off. This is a tough answer and a tough situation. It's really tricky for me to answer this, but yeah, thankfully I have that case study and that worked really well for that company and that person that I mentioned, and that's a true story. So you could do it that way. I think that works really well. That's going to take a lot from you. I hope that helps. All right, Niño, I hope that helps. Hey, you have the last question. Do you want to move on there? Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
11 minutes | Jan 7, 2022
Ep 329: How to Keep Going When You're Unmotivated
Niño: I sometimes stay away from goals, and I tend to procrastinate, what do I need to do to keep me motivated? Sean: This is the struggle of a lot of professionals actually, so you're not alone in this. A lot of people struggle with that. What I realize is if your goals, if the reason why those goals are on your plate is not big enough, then you won't work hard enough. So it may be that the goals are not that big enough for you in your life. It doesn't matter that what you think about it is not big enough. It doesn't matter too much to you. It might be one of the reasons why you tend to procrastinate. Because if it is something that really matters to you, matters a lot to you and you meditate on it, you think about it, "When would I be able to finish this? When will I be able to do this? What would happen to my life if I actually accomplish these things?" Then you'd do whatever it takes. That's going to be your burning why. Why do I have these goals? Why do I want to achieve that? That's what we call the burning why. If it's burning hot enough, if it's big enough, you're not going to procrastinate. One of the other things that I do to make sure that I hit my goals is, it sounds so simple, I keep a task list in my calendar and I make sure to clear my calendar for things that I want to do that are important but not urgent. Because there are so many urgent things that would come within your day and it's going to demand time from you. So in order to keep that at bay and make sure you have focus time because when you do deep work you're going to need one hour at least of transitioning into that deep work. What do I mean by deep work? It's like writing a book, writing a process document, writing your mission vision statement, writing your core values, and I had to do that. I'm the CEO. I was the one who wrote those things for my company. I needed deep work, and that, again, is one hour of transitioning in time. So maybe four to five hours of focus time, that's what I needed to do that. And in order for me to do that, I have to block off my calendar and tell my team, "This is off-limits, you can't book any meetings here." So that's one of the things that I do to make sure that I am on track with the things that are important and I need to do and I don't procrastinate. Because sometimes procrastination is also a result of you keeping on accepting work. Anything urgent, just throw it my way and I'm going to accept it and I'm going to work on it. And then you realize the day's gone and that important thing that you wish to do, or you planned to do today, is going to be pushed to another day and you don't have the same inspiration on that day. So those are some of the things that I do to make sure I hit those goals and don't procrastinate. Your second question: What do I need to do to keep motivated? Always remember why you're doing what you're doing. Always remember why you have those goals in place. There's a reason why you have those goals, those important things, and if they're burning big enough, bright enough, you're going to be motivated to finish them on time. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
11 minutes | Jan 6, 2022
Ep 328: A Budget-Friendly Way to Do Market Research
Sean: From Mich: What are the best and most cost-effective ways to do market research for a learning and development business? The easiest way? Look at Google trends. I mean just punch in Google Trends. It's free. Put in Google Trends. Look it up on your browser and just check those keywords for online courses, for example. Online courses for brewing kombucha, for example, just because I have kombucha right here. So if you want to look at the market, how big the market is, put in Google Trends Philippines and then put in the keyword like online courses for brewing kombucha. You will get an idea about how many people are searching for it on Google. Because if a lot of people are searching for it in Google, that means there's money to be had there. And you can still rank for that. You could create a website for it. You can market your Facebook page there. Do whatever you need to do to make sure that you reach those people and generate income. That is free. That's easy. You could do that in 5-10 minutes, maybe 30 minutes if you have a lot of keywords you want to check. But that's how I do 100%. Or if you have a little bit of budget, sign up for SEMrush. Just a disclaimer, I'm an affiliate of SEMrush (from.seo-hacker.com/semrush), and it would be amazing if you could use my affiliate link for that so that they'd know that I still refer clients to them. So, if you're interested in SEMrush, let me know. I'll send you the link and you can sign up. And I use that personally to check if there is a market for a certain business that I want to get into. That's how I do my market research. I hope that helps. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
14 minutes | Jan 5, 2022
Ep 327: The Rundown on Employee Evaluation
Sean: How can we better evaluate our employees? I would say, evaluate based on your core values. That's one that for me is very, very important. You don't have to copy our core values, right? I mean it would depend on your founder's DNA. I know a lot of companies here in the Philippines have malasakit. That's one of their core values and that's really great by the way. I'm thinking about incorporating that into our core values as well because that's a really good Filipino trait and word to have. Malasakit. And if you have people who have malasakit for your company, for your team, I think that's amazing. We don't have that yet in our core values, but we do have grit, respect for work, unity, being a challenger, clarity, and experimentation. Just six stuff, and we evaluate based on that. How well do you stand up when you make mistakes? That's grit. How early are you in terms of meetings? Are you on time? Do you log in on time? Do you really complete work on time? That's respect for work. Unity is about: Do you gossip? Do you confront people who need to be confronted? Do you allow incompetence to run amuck in your team? That's unity. Challenger is: Do you go the extra mile? If this is what's asked of you, do you do more? Do you work harder? Clarity is about making sure that when you say something, the other party understands what you mean. The biggest mistake in communication is the assumption that it already happened. So clarity is super important. And experimentation is all about trying out new things in the spirit of having a positive outcome, and not being afraid to make mistakes. We evaluate based on those values. For every person who asks me in my team, for example, for a raise or for feedback, we check how well they have done in terms of those six core values that we have. So I'd say always evaluate based on your core values and on what they bring to the table. At the end of the day, it's what they bring to the table. Of course, maybe you're wondering, where is competence in all that? If they're not competent, then they're bringing the company down. That's not a core value. It should be their permission to play for your team, right? If they're not competent, they really should not be in your team. Maybe you're wondering why is integrity not a core value.? Well, integrity, if people don't have integrity, they shouldn't be working for you, right? Because they're going to steal, they're going to steal time, they're going to lie, it just doesn't make sense. So it's a permission to play value. You have to identify the core values of your company based on what you really value, but you also have some values that are permission to play. That's the minimum thing that your people have to have, otherwise, they shouldn't be part of the team. Integrity is one of them and competence, of course, is another one. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
10 minutes | Jan 4, 2022
Ep 326: Should You Improve Weaknesses or Strengths?
Niño: The next is: In either choosing a business or a career path, which do you think you should anchor it on: your passion or your skill set? Sean: In my opinion, business or career path, if you only had two choices, passion or skill set, I would go for skillset. Because if you're so passionate about something but you're not really great at it, that's going to take you a while to get paid well and to really enjoy the team, enjoy the work and enjoy the job. So I'd go for a skillset. You're really good at it and you have to learn to love it. Here's the truth. You're not really going to love 100% of what you do. That's why we call it work and not play. A lot of people think, "I should love my work, so I don't have to work every single day of my life. You know, it's fun for me because I love my job." You're going to learn to love it up to 50%. And if you love 70%, 80% of it, fantastic, great for you, but it will never be a 100%. Even for me as CEO of SEO Hacker, I've been doing it for over a decade now. I don't love 100% of my job. There are parts of my job that I don't like. It's really like that. Work is like that. There are some parts that you're not going to like. I wouldn't focus too much on passion. I know a lot of people, a lot of speakers would say, "Focus on your passion. Focus on your passion." But if I'm going to choose between skillset and passion, I'm going to choose skillset. So when I was starting out I knew I love writing and I'm really good at it. So that's great because I have both. But I'm also quite good at logic and understanding how code works. I can't build code. I can't write code that well, but I understand how it works when I read it. So I pursued SEO. One facet that I loved about SEO is writing. I'm not really that great when it comes to marketing. When I started out, I'm not really that great when it came to programming. So I'd say maybe 20% to 30% of the job I was passionate about. The rest I was not passionate about. I was not passionate about legal matters. I'm definitely not passionate about sales during that time. I'm an introvert, so I'm not really good at sales. I'm not great at drafting contracts and proposals. I didn't like a lot of things about the job, but I did have the skill set to take me to the next level. So yeah, my answer: there is going to be a skill set. I hope that helps. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
58 minutes | Dec 31, 2021
Ep 325: Imperium Empires’ CEO Interview: What Makes A Sustainable Tokenomics?
Joining Mr. CEO at 22, Sean Si, is Mr. Marvin Germo, a stock trader. They will also be accompanied by none other than Mr. Cliff Yung, the CEO of Imperium Empires! Stay tuned as Mr. Cliff Yung gives a sneak peek at this upcoming GameFi project - Imperium Empires - the first AAA quality space metaverse that will take NFT games to the next level! Listen up as they also discuss crypto gaming and what makes a long-term and sustainable tokenomics. Catch all of these and more only in this episode of the Leadership Stack’s Ask Me Anything! Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
18 minutes | Dec 31, 2021
Ep 324: Fail-Safe Growth Hacks for Creative Entrepreneurs
Sean: And talking about growth, all these books that you were able to read through, how did you know what books you want to read next? And how, what other methods of growth do you have, aside from books? Did you have mentors? Did you pursue them? Do you listen to podcasts? Do you watch YouTube videos? What channels do you watch? Can you share some of that with us? Chris: I would always go to the bookstore. Yeah. We don't really have bookstores anymore, but these bookstores are known, go to the business department and grab a stack of books. And just go, you know, you buy a book for $9. I buy five books, go home and read them. And you started seeing like patterns of like the same people showing up over and over again, know, this guy is writing a book and this guy has a newsletter. So I get a newsletter, Dan Kennedy is one of the guys' newsletter. Just you'd see names popping up over and over again, like people who are really out there doing it or somebody who has a lot of books. You know, some of the leadership guys like John Maxwell, right? That guy has a lot of books, you don't have to read them all, but you know, you could read a few of his books to learn ideas about leadership. Michael Gerber. I've actually read all his books. He really wrote the same book over and over again. It's really the same concept, but they're really solid. But I think that is, initially that was something I really did. And then it was things like seminars and conferences you can go to. And there are different ones, you know, like say someone like Tony Robbins has sort of the self-help. How do you get motivated to attend conferences? Well, I'm pretty motivated, so I didn't really need that, but any kind of business-related stuff, I would look at who's a great business leader? Who's going to speak in it? Who's going to be there? And so I would go to things like that. At some point. I actually, it's funny, my business got audited by the IRS. This is a funny story and it was fine, but they wanted, they need to look at your finances. And so my accountant said, "you know, I do your taxes or your finances. You're fine. You're not, there's nothing to worry about, but you don't know anything about accounting. So we're going to go to this meeting and don't say anything because everything's fine. So you talking can only make things worse," right? He's like, so just go to a meeting and don't talk. Let me talk. I said, "Okay, great." So I sat there and they talked about finance and I had no idea what they're talking about. I was like, I don't know anything about accounting. And so after that, I started taking accounting classes and I took about, I don't know, like three or four years' worth of accounting classes. I really became like this a really beautiful funny accounting person. Yeah, I actually, it's funny because one of my accounting teachers who I see kept in touch with these, she goes, "oh, you know, they have a program at Harvard business school, you should really look into doing it." And I was like, "I don't know if I have the time." But I just learned all about the accounting side of things. And that was a gap. So I knew marketing. I had learned management and I knew I wasn't very good at it. I learned all sorts of things, but it was like I didn't know anything about finance. So about 10 years ago, I learned as much about small business finances as I could have. And I didn't do it all at once. I took a class in the summer. I took one in the fall. I took basically, you know, four classes a year for like three years. So I took basically all the classes you would need to have a degree in accounting. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
12 minutes | Dec 30, 2021
Ep 323: When to Delegate Roles in Business
Sean: Aside from taking your name off the wall, and stepping back on the sales process. What other things did you fully commission or fully delegate so that you can work on the business rather than in the business? Chris: Yeah, well, and I think it was gradual, cause I started out doing everything. So the first thing I took myself out of was any kind of the front-end customer service type of thing and organizing the office. So that was kind of the first night that it was hiring other teachers to take some of the students. And then, as the marketing became more complicated, you know, I got into doing websites, really digital marketing. We first started getting into it in 1996 and back then it was AOL homepage. There was no Google, Google that people forget, the Google didn't exist. You really couldn't find anything on the web. So you had these weird AOL home pages and you know, or like what, like if you had a website that, you know, you could have like one page, not everybody had mean. But for us, we said, okay, we built a website. We've held the whole region. So we, I learned how to build websites, not doing code, but like templates, right? Like whatever, Go Daddy website. We learn how to do that. And so as I learned that I learned what worked and what didn't work. And that was something I found somebody to do for me. So someone else does the websites now I talked to them about it, but, and talked about the content and things like that. But I stepped back from it. So gradually you sort of can step out of different roles. I'm very actively involved in our Google advertising and our Facebook advertising. Someone else actually does our Facebook advertising, but it's, it's something that I'm involved in as far as messaging and the images and what are we presenting to the customers, but I'm not the one actually uploading the picture and typing things in. So you're able to kind of, you still need to be there, but you're doing maybe a different thing. Strategic work, I guess, would be the term to do this. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
19 minutes | Dec 29, 2021
Ep 322: When Should Your Business Hire People?
[00:00:00] Sean: So you have this beautiful engine of marketing for you, that's just driving in leads, just driving in the sales for you. And the other guitar teachers didn't have it, as you mentioned earlier. When was the time that you finally realized that “I have so much going on and I can't just throw these leads out the window, I got to hire people?” Chris: I think that was the point where I had done my own space and I was still sort of doing the networking, but I was advertising in the yellow pages. If you know what the phone book is - I know the younger people will not remember. They're used as a book before Google, which everybody used. And once I started and I was the only guitar teacher who bought like a yellow pages ad. So you'd go on yellow pages. It'd be like, you know, little listings of every person. And there was a big ad that said guitar lessons, all ages, all levels, expert, you know. It's like a thing about it - I read a book on how to write a yellow pages ad, designed the ad and the phone was ringing and I was like, well, I could have a waiting list and make people wait six months. Or I could hire a guy to come in on Saturdays and Fridays when I'm not there. And so it was just that. And so then after that was full, I said, okay, I'm going to get two offices. "Hey, the office next to me, is open enough. Okay well, I'm going to hire another guy. And at that point, I had added two more guys, actually. So it went from me to four people, almost like, "Okay, now there's an office of fire." And so then I, you know, you need to hire a secretary, basically, someone to handle the scheduling and someone to help you keep track of the billing. And so then it just sort of kept going like that. And this was - this was then what I just compressed was like 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, like another four year period work, like it just kept growing. Sean: Got it. And when you were hiring your first people, what were some of the challenges that came up? Because I know when I was a first-time leader. Yeah. We were both business owners, but we were solo flights back then. But being a first-time leader, what were the first difficulties that cropped up for you? Chris: Yeah, I knew right away. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. Like I knew a lot about marketing. I knew a lot about the front end of the business, like teaching guitar. And then I was very good with talking to people and I liked the client. I understand marketing. You know I was never a manager. I had no management experience. I mean, even as a kid, the jobs I had. I delivered papers, there was nothing to manage. You know, and in the restaurant job that I had, I worked in a kitchen, I was making pizza. So I had no management experience. I didn't know - there were no software. There were not, you know. We got it, at some point I had a computer and got an Excel spreadsheet and that became, you know, keeping track of the finances and I have to pay these people all the time. And what I did that it got a lot easier. You know, it started like explaining stuff to people and writing like an employment agreement and then not, you know, I guess they would say, okay, so if you start at two o'clock, you need to be on time. And if you can't make work, here's what you can do. And just spelling out all the different things about the job, what the expectations were. A lot of stuff I took for granted. You know, if I had a client at 2:30, I didn't show up at 2:45. You show up on time, things like that, or just how we teach the classes. So we started, you realize these people need some training, and then we're looking to you to explain how to do things and set the borders and the parameters. And it took me about a year to figure that out. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
15 minutes | Dec 28, 2021
Ep 321: Should You Work Harder or Smarter?
Sean: Did you establish it early on in life? And your dad did an amazing job training you and making sure you knew the value of hard work, which is pretty much a lost art right now and lost discipline with Millenials. I'm a millennial by the way, so millennials younger, you know, we always say "work smart." Don't work hard, but Hey, work hard - that's key. Chris: Work smart and hard, you know? So it seems like when I started the music school, going in and networking with the stores where the clients were, was the smart move. Yeah. There wasn't an instant message. I couldn't send someone a text message. There was no Facebook. So that was when you had to go face-to-face. Yeah, to me, it wasn't hard work. It was time-consuming but it was the smart thing to do. I was the only one doing it. None of the other guitar teachers are doing it. They're all complaining, you know, like whatever. Sean: And did you get rejected by some of those guitar salespeople, guitar stores that you approached? Chris: Yeah, you know, when you had the - because these are salesmen, right? And so you had in any business, 20% of the salespeople make 80% of the sales and then the bottom they come and go. So when you go in there, you know week one, you talk to everybody, you come at week two, there were five guys. Now, one of the guys is missing and there's a new guy. By the end of the month there's really one guy who's there every week and they, and the other, you know, the other four guys are just transitioning. So you figure out, okay, I really only need to talk to this guy, the rest of these guys aren't going to be here. And then at some point, this guy, the sales manager, and then at this point, the guy, the store manager. You know, you watch them move up so you can kind of see, okay you figure out who the person is very quickly, who's going to hook you up. And they know that you're sending them clients. Sean: Yeah. How often would you get frustrated that the guy was talking to him, building this relationship with his is he's gone. So he's one of the bottom 80%? Chris: And I realized early on, it was like, okay. So it was just like with my dad’s company, it's like, you know, there is a top salespeople. There are the people who grow up in household. There are other people that do things and then there's kind of the other people. And so you don't know you give everyone a chance and it just seemed like the thing. I actually liked the hustle and I liked outworking and I really didn't want to get a job. I didn't want to have to get a job. You know, I had a music degree, so what was I going to go do? You know, I was, I always wanted to be a guitarist, so I was pursuing what I wanted to do. So it seemed to make sense to say, okay, there's going to be some obstacles along the way, but you don't give up. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
0 minutes | Dec 25, 2021
Season's Greetings, Leaders!
It's almost Christmas Season, and Happy Holidays, Leaders! I am so blessed that you guys have been with me on this journey. July 2019, when we started, and now it's 2021, so we're two years already and counting, and I really appreciate your help. The value that you're getting and you're sharing, also to friends and family. We are so blessed to have you. And on behalf of the Leadership Stack team, thank you for a wonderful 2021! Happy Holidays!
13 minutes | Dec 24, 2021
Ep 320: How to Communicate Ideas to Your Boss
Sean: What's the best way to tell a boss or client that their business idea may not be as viable as they think? And how to position your alternative solution? Oh, good question. Erika: Give them a comparison with their business idea or tell them that, "Oh, you know, if we do this, we can insert reasons here." Tell them how your alternate solution is better without undermining their idea. Do you get what I'm saying? Sean: Yeah. And how you can ask it is, "Well, boss. What do you think about this?" And then tell them your proposed solution there or your alternative solution. And if they accept it, that's fantastic. Don't get hurt or don't feel bad if they adopt it as their idea, at least you know that you did what is best for the company and for your leader. That's how I think about it instead of having a bad business idea pulled under you. I think that that is something that you could do. "Boss, what do you think about this?" Or if you're talking to a client, "Sir or ma'am, what do you think about this idea?" You don't even tell them that your idea is not good. It's not going to fly. You're going to have a problem here, here, and here. Just tell them first your proposed solution, and they're going to think about it, play around with it a bit. And I'm sure if they're smart, they're going to come up with a combination of your proposed solution and the good things about their business idea, and it's going to be a collaboration between you both. No one likes it when people criticize or shut down their ideas. That's for sure. Erika: And be sure you're prepared when they ask more questions about whatever it is that you're proposing. Sean: Yup, a hundred percent agree. Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/leadershipstack Join our community and ask questions here: from.sean.si/discord Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leadershipstack
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