How taking a present retreat equals business performance with Jess Dewell
Release Date: 12/04/2020
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Jess is the managing partner of Red Direction, providing executive business consulting and producing the BOLD Business Podcast. She brings over 20 years of advising, consulting, and facilitation experience in operational excellence and growth management focusing on where values and goals intersect. Both practical and unexpected, her views tune into to the uniqueness of the organizations she works with. Companies working closely with Jess learn to ask the right questions and think effectively on their feet.info_outline Is it time to outsource? with Gayla Scrivener
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Welcome to the Thinking Big Podcast. This episode is part 8 of a special 14 day Think and Grow Rich Challenge.info_outline
Welcome to the Thinking Big Podcast. Today we have probably the most organized guest I have ever had on the show, Jess Dual.
Jess is the managing partner of Red Direction, providing executive business consulting and producing the BOLD Business Podcast. She brings over 20 years of advising, consulting, and facilitation experience in operational excellence and growth management focusing on where values and goals intersect. Both practical and unexpected, her views tune into to the uniqueness of the organizations she works with. Companies working closely with Jess learn to ask the right questions and think effectively on their feet. Jess specializes in working with companies at critical points in
Today we are thinking big on how taking a present retreat equals to business performance.
From Chaos to Control 3 Step Framework to Change Your Relationship with Meetings ... and Your Team
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I really want to welcome you Jess to the thinking big podcast, I followed your work. I've seen the stuff that you've done. I've seen your podcast, listen to your podcasts, all great stuff. Tell the thinking big podcast listeners a little bit about you.
I don't even know where to start with that question, Shawn. It's so funny. I mean, there are so many different pieces, right? My very first job was as a Girl Scout selling Girl Scout cookies to raise money so that I could send myself to camp, right helped my family be able to send me away to go sailing or horseback riding, or just day camps where we did archery and hiked and learned how to cook and things like that all the way up to the time when I decided I was going to be a scientist. That was after I was going to be a nun. And after I was going to be a fighter pilot, but I haven't gotten yet to like truck driver. And I want to be a cross country truck driver Sunday gardener. beekeeper, right. And then in general, these days, I build businesses. So somewhere in there have been all of these experiences that have something that has propelled me forward that curiosity that I bring to the world. And so right now it's building businesses, and in fact, it has been for over 20 years. And I think I found the place being a cheerleader and a support and
an outside set of eyes, a trusted advisor for companies that are really looking to navigate a difficult situation for your post acquisition. And even just how do we do? How do we use what we have that much more than we already are? And it's interesting that you bring up, you know, stuff that you did very early on as an entrepreneur. It's funny talking with entrepreneurs.
That is a telling sign when almost every entrepreneur when they were young, did something to make money to do it. It doesn't start when you get older, I think you it's
it starts at very young age. I mean, you you you become an entrepreneur very, very young. Right, I and by the way I knew early on sales was right. But helping other people make sales and being part of something bigger, right? All the things we got as a troop of all the Girl Scout selling cookies was always more interesting to me than anything I got on my own, which was still really good. Don't get me wrong. And that's I think you're right about that, Shawn. And those traits that come out at those early ages are the ones that do seem to stay with you and maybe can be found and whatever we're doing today. I remember, I must have been in, I don't know, third or fourth grade and I would I used to make cinnamon toothpicks. So I would dip cinnamon in or I dip toothpicks and cinnamon let them soak get really hot at something like 10 cents apiece. Yeah, that's
brilliant. I was hustling toothpicks at third grade. So you were an inventor and an entrepreneur. Yeah. And here's the thing. I think that's where all of our genius comes in when you have an idea. And you mix that with a little bit of creativity. I think that's where all the cheese comes from. So I said, Well, people like cinnamon. People like toothpicks. I'm gonna combine the two and I'm gonna make cinnamon toothpicks. I had in third grade. I made a fortune in third grade doing that.
Well, no, that's brilliant. I actually may pass that on to my son who's nine these days. And he he calls himself an inventor. He doesn't really he likes to sell things, but he really thinks they're really valuable and we're still working on the you have to have something that is valuable enough for somebody to part with their money for Yes. Um
so his cardboard arcade machines are awesome.
To him, but nobody wants to pay $1 to play them.
Why not? I know, right? That's what I'm like, well, you'll have to keep working on that that's a problem. You can you can chew on that one for a little while. It's all good. And and I think that that's an important thing to consider, too, because we are at a time where we believe and we're told, and it's reinforced that we have this internal value.
Sometimes it's really hard to bring that to the surface, though, isn't it to find out? Well, what is that sweet spot of service of production of the result of the exchange of money for what we are bringing to the table? Whatever our role is, right? Yeah. And I think that's, and I think now, now, more than ever, I think that's hugely important. How much is the current situation affecting, like what you do? as an industry as as you know, this has made such huge changes?
Yeah, well, so the work that I do really is it's that resiliency piece, that resiliency mapping, that, that that stuff that seems very inefficient in the day to day, but it's like a fire drill, when you know what the fire drill is supposed to be like. And if that bell ever got pulled, or you heard that sound, you knew what to do you know, who you were looking for, you knew where to go, you knew who you were expecting there, and there was some order in it. And I think that this time has really shown us Do we have those those equivalent of the fire drills within our companies.
And if we don't, we're feeling it more than if we do. And whether even if they're dusty, even if we haven't practiced them in years, or thought about them, and they their documents, living in a drawer, collecting dust, the fact that the exercise was gone through is really a key piece in what I'm seeing, not only in my organization, but also in the companies that we serve of, Well, okay, so you have to build as you go versus because you've thought about it, it's actually a little bit easier, because you have some you have a starting point with which to respond from, versus react all the way through, right. And in some of your stuff that I've looked at, you know, you talk about a present retreat, what what is a present retreat? What exactly are you talking about? When you when you talk about that? Can I can I be real with you? That that is like a name that I settled on? Because I couldn't think of anything better. I'm a horrible namer of things. However, this one has, and this one, no, I have a lot of different meanings, which is one of the keys, it's not always straightforward. And so I'm like, Okay, let me just honor that. The present retreat for me was a time I got to take a timeout for myself and really do some strategy. And the more that I did this, the more I thought about, well, what are the things that might happen right now? And do what have we thought about them? What are the things that I need to do as a leader what is in in what's out? Am I discerning correctly, based off of the trends I see and the actual results of what's happening? And then the third piece, this concept of a retreat,
really is being able to, to unplug from things to have space. Right. And, and so that's kind of like the spa day. But it's also if you think about it in the relation in relationship to war, a retreat was not failure, a retreat was a place to pause, take stock of everything that there is, and decide how to go forward with what we have, right. So that in return to the present retreat is in the moment.
Taking that pause, what do we have? And how do we move forward? I think and I think that is such a huge problem in general, not only with leaders, but I think with with everybody, especially with, you know, all the social media, all the things that we're being bombarded with, we don't take time anymore to reflect. And to make for me, if I internalize that, it's, I need to take time to sit back and reflect on both my wins and my losses on a daily basis. Because if I don't, if I don't sit back, and I don't actually think about what I've done for that day, my wins my losses, I'm not going to learn anything. Um, and, and to me, it's, I look back over the last six months, and it's harder and harder, even though I've been at home. Most the time. I, you know, I've done you know, obviously, you know, social distancing. I actually seem like I have less time for myself. For these retreats. I spent less time I actually stopped, right. I mean, depending on the situation in your household. I know in our household. I've already mentioned my nine year old, we were assistant teachers, between the adults in the house to him. And I have to say that that right. I stopped my present retreats during that time and it was only four weeks. I do them once a week. It was only four weeks, but I realized I had not only had gone backwards. I actually when I was plugging back into them. I was like oh I can't do this. I have to plug back in. I actually had
To ramp back up and really figure it out. And so this is something that I recognize and realize that anybody that works with me, we figure out what what it is some people are disciplined enough and can can take a whole day week, that's an important thing to consider. And I think that that is ultimately my goal. I'm I'm not at a place where I will commit to that I will commit to half a day for four hours a week, I am in this closed space. And that is what I challenge all of the clients and the companies that I'm working with, to do, how do we get up to that four hours in a row that's uninterrupted and protected time? Yeah. Because think about all the distractions I don't know about you, Shawn, I am incredibly fatigued decisions. If people would just tell me what to do from here on out, I would gladly follow directions I am exhausted from all of the decisions to be made. Yeah. And the present retreat actually can help with that some. But when we have so much extra pressure on all these other areas, we really do like to your point, we have to take that self time. Yeah. And Maverick, one of my mentors, john Maxwell, he actually takes a week, at the end of every year, an entire week, and goes through all his journals, all his every one of his planners, his daily planners, his weekly planners, and literally, and I've done it, and boy, it's it's hard, hard work to do that. But it's, you know, for an entire week going over. So the same thing you know, you're talking about on a daily basis on a weekly basis. He actually does it on an annual basis as well. And it is telling you it is so important to do those it is absolutely That's impressive. I do things semi annually. I do things twice a year, but I don't it's not a week. Or it might be a day and it might be two days, but it's never been a week and now and definitely not all at once. Ooh, I think I have a new bar, Shawn.
I've just taken that and raised it up a little bit. Yes, you did. And that's what it's all about. Right? That the discipline and the willingness and the commitment to understand where is the opportunity? And what is what are the skills? We actually have to have to move toward that? Yeah. Now, what do you think are some of the most important reasons that we sit back and reflect on why do these retreats? I mean, what are what are some of the, you know, what are three of the biggest things you get? And when you teach your your clients and stuff, you know, what, what's the purpose that they that they do these? Why is it so, so important?
So there are three soft skills, and there are three outcomes. The three soft skills that are developed in this is the ability to discern, right? What filters do I need? And can I trust in in? Can I run information through with confidence? The second is ruthlessness. I love this word. I love this word. Because we are not ruthless enough in business, we have to know if something is out. Well, let's let it be out. And let's not be worried about the fact that we'll if we don't say yes, we won't have the buy in from our team. Or we might stifle the creativity of our team. If we need to say no, we can actually then be and clearly say no, we can actually, we're actually better at saying well, this is where we're going. And here's the guide with which to work within. And then those people with ideas are going to come back with better ideas that move things forward, because they have guidance. And they've been shown a path that everybody gets to move toward together. And the third is then the skill of prioritization, which sounds easy. But after everything has been filtered with that discernment, and after it's been ruthlessly allowed through, then that concept of prioritization is, can I keep it front and center until it's done, and focus on the priority, not time priorities, the priority, until until it's done. And so Scott, soft skill development is really important, because that's what we're modeling to our teams, Shawn. And when our teams are able to pick up some of these skills, I know, you know, john Maxwell talks, your mentor, he's somebody that I am, have read some of his books as well. And he talks about this a lot. We lead by example. And so the soft skills that we embrace are the ones that we are modeling, which means we're teaching which means we're stating what is what is okay and what is not okay in our behaviors and the way that work is done.
And then, you know, we're talking about some outcomes of this, really, the outcomes of a present retreat happen to be that we can reduce the whole amount of overwhelm. So when something crazy happens, like a pandemic, or when something crazy happens, like we get called out of town unexpectedly, or we have to we have a family situation, or our neighbors really need us, or what we can really do is recognize that we're we're more likely to be in sync because we practice them
Because we take the time to reflect, as you said at the beginning, and then the second thing they are, is that, you know,
we're never we can actually shift away from putting out fires to proactively responding. Oh, I know what I want to do here. Oh, yeah. Oh, you know what you want to do here? Great. Tell me. Yep, that fits within, off we go. Off you go. And then the thing, you know, the third thing there is, it's much, it's much easier to find that moment, or the signs that lead to the fact that a growth plan has been outgrown and requires change, right? And now on your, on your stuff, or on your retreats. Do you? How do you do a specific thing? I mean, is it a specific way that you do them? Is it you know, random, I mean, how do you how do you do your? Yeah, mine, they're pretty structured. And I didn't, okay, so when I discovered this, and I'm not the first person to discover CEO time or reflection time and or my present retreat time, okay. By far I'm not, this was my journey. It started out, oh, I've got four hours. Right. I caught up on my emails, the first time in years, I had like five emails in my inbox. Every drawer in my desk was clean. every area of my office was dusted. My my little bin that I have to put all my recycled papers in when I'm done was empty all the time. And then it got to the point where I was like, hmm, cool, I feel caught up, there's nothing else to do I get to, I get to learn what's next. So I had to be busy for a while until there was nothing to be busy with. And then came the time where I was like, oh, gosh, this spaciousness allows all kinds of ideas to show up. And so I've actually implemented a whole bunch of other systems that come from that, that helped me in my workflow. And I will tell you, all of the clients that I have taken through this go through the same thing, they even if it's just an hour at a time, and they're working up from that, the first several sessions are Oh, let me let me catch up. Oh, I have a voicemail. Oh, I have that report. Oh, I have that idea. And see the thing of a present retreat isn't to catch up. It's actually to do the thinking that deep work Cal Newport would say that the deep work
and and understand what can we do to ensure we can find where are we in sync? Where are we out of sync? Right? Right. And I think that that's a huge piece of it right there just being able to sit in the time. Well, I can tell you, you would have your work absolutely out for you. Because I think right now I've got 20,000 emails
in my inbox,
I've got shit. See, I said it. Shit. I've got it everywhere. Let me tell you, you would have your work absolutely cut out.
Oh, I have sticky notes. Every see mine and mine are piles and ideas of sticky notes on they're stuck to everything around my around the office there in books. I actually was preparing for this podcast. And I was like, I know we may talk about books. And because I know you like to talk about books and reference books. And so I and I brought I brought nine ideas for books grouped in threes, just because I was like, Well, what if so I have sticky notes and books across strewn across my desk right now that I'm like, maybe I should leave them out. See I have I haven't even made it a sticky note yet. I'm still drawing on my desk.
I love sticky notes. And the colors end up meaning something even though I don't know what they are at first. All that good stuff, my anxiety levels going up just listening to colors, sticky notes. See, okay, by the way, I just like color because it made it seem less scary. And it turned out I actually was using the colors to mean something. And so for me, there's a system, but there's no way I could describe that system or ask anybody else because if somebody tried to teach me the system that I inherently have, I would be like, you know, what would happen if you went to the store for the blue sticky that you have to have for something and they were out of blue? See that? Right?
That doesn't see that doesn't bother me. I'll just insert another color and we'll just know
I just that's way over. That's way over my paygrade Are you a perfectionist?
Yes. And yes, I can see why you would then have to have the exact same color.
We dry girl we digress we
so on getting back to you know the retreat. One of the things that I you know, I don't have a specific, I guess I have a specific way that I do kind of my thinking and stuff but to me when I do these reflections, I do these retreats.
To me, that's when I get most of my creative ideas. things come to me from a creative standpoint of things I should do. Now the problem is I don't know
Normally, I have sticky notes with me. So I forget, five minutes after I think, but I have some amazing ideas. So now I need you to teach me the sticky note. So I can take those amazing ideas and actually put them on a.
I was people could see this. Okay, so here's how I this is actually how I work because I don't know. But if you're not tactile, it wouldn't work, Shawn. So what I do is I have a, I have two boxes that I set on my desk because I put everything if I'm around, and I'm out, I always have sticky notes with me. It's random little teeny, tiny pieces of paper. And so I'll put things on them. I have, and this is what I actually do my present retreat, I have the reports that I pull that I'm looking at, I have the issues at hand, I have a dynamic SWOT for what's going on in the business at any point in time. And I call it dynamic because we use it that way. And then I have these two boxes, I have the now and near box of sticky notes. And I have the future, which is six months to a year in the future. And by the way, that's actually drawn on with a sticky note.
do you notice? I did I cut the sticky note sticky part to label my boxes? Oh my god. See? Now remember, when I let's go back just a few minutes. I said I have 20,000 emails in my inbox. Yeah. If I went to sticky notes, I would have sticky notes wallpaper everywhere. They would be just as disorganized as
as my email so well. And here's the thing, the only thing that goes in those boxes are my ideas, or initiatives or concepts because I haven't discerned them yet. I haven't been ruthless about do they fit with where our current goals are? And does it align with our long term mission. And I don't know if they fit our priorities. But they're things I don't want to forget. So they have they have a place to go. Because I don't want to take into my mind. But I also know I don't want to forget them. And so what you saw today is a Friday, I do my president retreats on Monday. And so they'll get weeded out because I'll go through the the near and now on I touch every week and stuff is coming out of there. If and if there's things that I can actually get done, then it goes into other systems and some stuff like that. But it's the time I have to reflect on all of the ideas that I was able to capture goes in there. And you know, I mean, and so for me, it actually helped because I quit feeling like I was forgetting things. I quit feeling like I was missing opportunities be and I quit feeling like I don't have time to really assess them. Because I made time. And in that time I can recognize and spend spend thoughtfulness does it work, does it fit? And if not, was it really for me? Or was it for somebody else that I can be in service to right? See what did the genius thing about what I do is I forget what I forget. So then I just don't? I don't even remember? I don't know. You know, can you teach me that?
It's been years in the making years, years of training? Oh, well, if you ever figured out the first step, help me out because I could save a few trees.
Now I was on your website. And one of the things that you know, again, I'm I love john Maxwell, I love leadership stuff. And you, you have a thing called dimensional leadership. I'll explain some of that, because I think that is a great, a great system. It's a great skills. It's, I really liked how you put the dimensional leadership up there.
Okay, so dimensional leadership starts with being able to say yes and no, as as a leader. So this present retreat is almost like a prerequisite. Is it in? Or is it out? And being able to be totally clear about that? And not feeling guilty? When the answer has to be No, okay? Because that's awareness of self. And that's awareness of the responsibility and accountability that we've taken in whatever our role is, and how we're showing up, whether that's at work, whether that's at home, whether that's in our community, wherever. So then you take that and once you are so solid in yourself, you can now actually really see and hear and seek to understand the people around you. But if we're unsure, and we're unclear, there's no we're we're working through a fog. So if I was unclear, Shawn, and I'm trying to listen to you, I have a much less chance of fully understanding and making the connection and getting the true information I need to be able to do whatever I need to do intentionally in our interaction. So removing that fog is key. So that's where the present retreat is a big part of it. And so it's like putting your so that first part is put your own mask on before you help anybody else. When you fly in a plane. That's what they tell you. And if you don't have a shirt, you can't give your own shirt away. You have to have your own shirt to be able to move forward and create something to be able to help somebody else get the shirt that they need. And so that is something that I think that's really hard.
hard to remember, as a leader, because there's a lot of there's a lot of judgment that comes both self and other. And so when we're talking about dimensional leadership, there's huge levels of awareness. And so that first one is, are we solid in ourself? And then what habits do we have? And what habits do those around us have? And can we use them for good? And if we can't use them for good, then we start thinking about how do we have to change them. But really, the ultimate piece of dimensional leadership is, every single time you add a person to the thought process, you're increasing awareness and increasing leadership, yourself, first, your business second, or your your responsibility to the business second, then the people that you work with side by side, the people you report to the people who report to you this any other stakeholders, every single time you do that you're adding this layer of awareness that when each one has clarity around it, and is built from a place of very clear intent. There is so much information that can be harnessed, there is so much opportunity that can be leveraged. And I find it comes with practice. That's what it is. It's practice. Yeah. And what do you think's the biggest? Like when you're out working with clients, you're out working with people? What do you think is the biggest issue right now, with leadership? People in leadership, I mean, I see people, the biggest problem that I see with working with people is, someone will get put in a leadership position, because they're a good at whatever it is that they're whatever, if they're an engineer, they're a good engineer. So now that makes you a good people person that makes you a good leader. And that's to me, I see that I see that more in corporate America than in anything that you get promoted, just because you're good at what you do. But what what do you see as some of the biggest problems with leadership on the people that you're working with? What came up first for me, was that we're all too tired.
And the reason we're tired especially now is we're having decision fatigue, are we doing what's right for ourselves? Is everybody that we're in touch with from the decisions that we're making going to be impacted by that? How do I then amplify that out to the people who report to me to the company that I'm supporting to the community that uses the product and all of those different things. So there's, there's a tiredness. And that's, that's part of it. I think another one, though,
is it comes back to awareness. And it's this, you were talking about promoting, for promoting because of performance, and not necessarily having all of the skills to do what needs to be done at that next level up. And I would say delegate versus dump is a big one. People talk about delegating, but really what they're doing is they're getting the things they don't like off their plate. And this happens in corporate America. And this happens in small business. This also happens in relationships. Oh my god. Yes. Don't tell my husband, my wife. Yeah, my wife.
I want to hear this story. Oh, I tend to dump
do see I we are both dumping grounds. And in fact, we've learned to we've learned who does what so we just stay at it, we get we have our own lanes. So there is no delegation and there is no dumping in our, in our marriage, there's Get out of my lane, or Hey, that's actually yours, it goes in your lane. See, I actually backup the dump truck to her lane and just
dump it all. Oh, Shawn. Oh, that's hilarious. Well, you know it, right. You know it. And I know, see, for me, I when I was first starting out, I dumped numbers, I forgot the governance part of business. And I was like, whatever things can happen, things are happening. It's all good. I was able to do more when I actually looked at it, right, it was being done, but I wasn't, I wasn't investing time or energy into it. And I think that's the difference in delegation is that we're, we must invest the time to know the purpose for the role, how it aligns to our how aligns to the work that we're trying to do. And having somebody that likes to do that work. And then actually being able to receive the work that has been completed to hear and be able to ask questions comes back to dimensional leadership, right? We can't know it all. So who are we going to put our attention and effort into so that they can put their attention and effort into creating what we need so we can use it effectively? Right? Yeah. And, you know, you talked about on the doing your retreats on Monday, do you by chance, I mean, what is your thought process on like doing weekly, or daily journals or daily
You know, the day planners type thing? Yeah, I personally, I have to have a day time I noticed when I don't do like a, if I don't plan out my day, before the day starts, I end up not doing anything. I have to I have to have that list. I've got to it's kind of like doing the retreat. It's like every day, I've got to sit down, it's okay. To I'm doing this at 3am doing this, because I don't I just get consumed by the crap of the day, you know, the buyers? Ah, here. Yeah, um, I am not a fan. my calendar is probably my best friend and my worst enemy. I'm pretty me personally. And so yes, part of a president retreat is actually looking at the weekend. What are the priorities for the week? What are the priorities for the rest of the quarter? What are the priorities for the rest of the year. And so then gets to look at what's going on each day. I refuse to do more than three big things in one day. Because there's a lot of little stuff I want to have to also have to fit in shows up that needs to be taken care of, sometimes things that I want to do. And so I limit myself to three priorities or initiatives I call I think in a day, I don't know I'm going back to the Stephen Covey, Boulder theory, I only have three boulders in a day. And that's going to be my biggest heaviest work that requires the most creativity that requires the most critical thinking that requires the most presence. And those are going to be the things that must get done and everything else is a bonus.
And one of the now one of the things I did want to bring up because I think it's such a great thing. But I want to talk about your podcast a little bit as well. And it is the bold business podcast that does a great, great, great podcast and I'm telling you, you've been you've been busy on that you do you have a lot of a lot of content out there a lot of great content out there as far as leadership and there's so much stuff out on that pocket. How is a doing a podcast? How's that been for for you? How's it
it turned into one of my boulders, Shawn, and just and then I had to discern it. Okay, so this was a backwards thing. Usually here it's in or it's out right? And you're ruthless that way. I was ruthless about figuring out how do you make it part of what we do here at redirection because it is my absolute hands down favorite thing to do with being guests on podcasts like yours, your end, all the shows that I've listened to, and the information that you're sharing is fantastic. And I come away with an at least one idea of some for something that I'm working on, in the near future or the day of as I'm listening. So that's fantastic. And you know, there's something to be said about just having conversation. So the way I started was I'm like, I kept talking to all these really cool people and getting really inspired. And they're telling me about these business problems that they've been grappling with. And I was like, I'm learning from this and inspired by it. Other people will be too, so I started recording them and sharing them in there came the podcast. Yeah, that's fantastic. It's a it's a great podcast. And I love the way that you have it on your homepage, by the way. That is Thank you, that is fantastic. I you I put the podcast at the bottom of your, your homepage. And for all the listeners, you know, we're going to there's gonna be links to your to your podcasts, there's gonna be links to your to your website, which is red direction.com. And the one of the things that you had on there was you had the the three step framework that will change both your relationships with meetings and with your team. What, what is that that is? And that's something that all the listeners can go and download and get this concept. All right, this concept for the three step framework to change your relationship with meetings is that none of us have enough time. So I'm I'm saying, Wow, wouldn't it be awesome if and I challenge you to take four hours a week in a row uninterrupted to have a president retreat, because it will change your business, because of all the things that will come up the way that you interface it will be uniquely your own to your workflow and style and companies initiatives.
But you need more time. And that's why I created this, this little book. And it's little it's short. It's only like 10 pages long, I think. And the purpose of it is to talk about what is a good meeting. How do you have a great meeting? And do you really need the meetings that you've got happening? No. I know. Do you know? Okay, so here I did this, right? I believe in walking the walk. So I come up with this thing. And I'm like, this is great. And I'm like, but I don't think I do it. So I put myself through the process. And I got rid of 25% of my meetings right off the bat. I 25% more time in my week by following my own advice. That's genius.
Sounds like oh my gosh, this works. And I will tell you, the team that works with me. They were like, oh, you're a little more accessible. Oh, you're responding to us a little faster. Oh,
This is so great. Yes, yes. And yes. So I mean, for years I was a, when people asked what I did for a living, I'd say, Well, I'm a professional meeting goer.
Oh, I know. And between the two, it's, you know, it was kind of up in the air. But yeah, it's a. So yeah, this, this framework, I think is fantastic. And how to be on time, right? We, we have unwritten agreements, Shawn, and like your inboxes, crazy, your professional meeting goer I've had both of those things happen to me, and they still happen to me. And so these are the types of things they're tools that we just get to rely on the information that you're sharing what you know, what the john Maxwell coaching programs do, what redirection is bringing to the table, all of these things are incredibly important to realize that you don't have to master them, we just have to know when we need them. Right. And I think that that's, I think that in itself is a science and an art. And there's mastery just in that. Yeah. And I've got all the listeners, everyone who listens to this, that there's absolute gold nuggets in what's being said, and go get that download, I'm telling you, if you get one out of any of this podcast, but if you get one thing that's going to help you save time, that's going to help you be better at what you do, it's gonna be better, it's gonna make you a better leader.
How long does it take to go through that?
I was gonna, let's see. Now, it'll take you about 15 minutes or so to read and digest. And it'll if you actually do what's suggested, it will, it will seem like it's adding time because you go into you have to analyze each meeting and go into each meeting with an intention. Right, like, so for our, our connection today, Shawn, I knew it was going to be a meeting that I didn't want to miss I wanted to be prepared for and I wanted to show up and have a great conversation with you. So I spent time going through what did we you know, what did I want to talk about making sure all the information was set? And how could I not only show up and share information? How do I show up and really support your work and what you were doing right? And that was my intention. And it took it took time at the beginning. But you know what, I feel so good about our conversation so far. I'm never gonna, I'm gonna get done and go, Oh, I wish I could have said 25 more things at the same point in time. I'm glad it's Wow, I wish I had never said that.
That's what this that's what this handout is really you know, this ebook. And this process is all about, because I don't want to I don't want to make people late for their next meetings, I want to be conscious and aware about value their time. Because when we let time slip, it just eats up like you said, if we don't have things on our calendar,
the day goes away. And we're like, What just happened? We did a lot of stuff. But what actually just happened today. And this allows us to be much more intentional about it. And you mentioned that you had some books pulled out what are what are three of your favorite books of all time. Okay, so I have I have books about growth. I have books about business, and I have books about decision making and strategy. Which group would you like? No, let me ask you this. What color sticky note is on each one of those? Oh, you know what? They're all the same color. They're all they're all like this teal blue? It's my Don't forget this sticky note. What is your favorite on growth? My favorite on growth? Okay, so I did bring three, I'm going to share this. My absolute positive favorite growth is children's book called giraffes can't dance. I've never heard of that book. And it's written by geils, Andrea and guy, Parker Reese. And it is the best book about coming back to what we were talking about with dimensional leadership. How do we show up as ourselves? How do we listen to what we actually have to bring to the table and then do it? Yeah. And everyone listening, I'm gonna put there's gonna be in the show notes. There's gonna be links to all these books. So that I think that's important that when any book is shared, that there's a link to people to be able to go find it. Yeah. Oh, good. I'm glad you're gonna do that, because I was gonna offer to send you links if it was helpful, because these are great ones. Um, and I don't even remember where we found this. But when I found it at a bookstore when my son was tiny, tiny, and when he grew out of it, it became it got added to my business library here in the office.
That's a book that grows with you. Yeah, that's right. That's right. Do you wanna hear the other two? Sure. Absolutely. The second one is called a question of values by Hunter Lewis. Great. This is something that helps us with our discernment, which helps us with our ruthlessness and it helps us with the prioritization because what we believe in
really drives. And something that I talk about too is what you prioritize is what you value. And so it's really important to know what you value because if what you're prioritizing isn't what you value, there's a leak. And that leak is going to be draining and it's going to become heavy and hard, and we're not gonna be able to do what we need to do. Right. Right. And here's the third one. This was written by Diane Collins, it's called, do you quantum think?
Wow. Of the three Look at this. Of the three you can tell I This one is like within hands reach. It has water spilled on it, there's a coffee stain or two on the inside.
This one was back when I had star sticky notes for a while. Have you ever seen those giant sticky notes? Oh, yes. I'm so glad I don't have them because they don't fit into anything.
Your wall? they're grateful.
Oh, I don't I don't want anything on my wall. That would be a little overwhelming to me.
This and so quantum thing. Um, they, they're they're basically just saying all the time. Can you look at this from a different perspective? Can you look at this from a different perspective. So the reason the reason it's so well loved is because it's something that when I need when I need to look at something a different way. And I feel stuck in the moment, or especially during my present retreats, outcomes, this book, and I will just open it to a page and I will start reading. And then I'll be like, Okay, good. That was what I needed. And I can look at this. And it doesn't matter what page of the book it is, I can look at whatever I'm stuck on in a different way. And it'll help me move forward. So those are my three growth books. That's fantastic. And I know about one of those I don't know about the the first one or the last one. So I'm gonna, that's those are two books that I'm definitely going to check out. But just I absolutely want to thank you for being on the podcast you you've added so much value to my listener tonight. So I really do appreciate your time and all of your knowledge. I absolutely love it when when people have a passion for something. And you hear it all the time with people go go an inch wide and a mile deep. And people who just dive into what they're passionate about and do what they love. It's just it to me, I get so much out of doing a podcast with like you it's like I get to talk to so many amazing people that are so dedicated and what they do in such a great niche that that fits them. Perfect. So thank you, thank you so much. And and I know that the listeners are going to get tremendous amount of value from what you shared with us today. So thank you very much. I'm so glad to have been here today with you, Sean. Thank you. Well, I want to thank just for being on the podcast today. And be sure to go to the show notes and go. I'm gonna have links to the books that we talked about. There's links to her podcast, the bold business podcast, and make sure you go to a read. Make sure you go to her website red direction, calm. And again. It was absolutely fantastic. Having just on the podcast today