Talk Commerce

Looking For The Patterns In Your Marketing With Kate Bradley, Hosted By Brent Peterson of Talk-Commerce Podcast - Featuring the Lately CEO

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Speaker 1: (00:00)

All right. Welcome to this wonderful, wonderful episode of lately on talk commerce. I have Kately from lately today. Kate, please introduce yourself. Tell us your day to day role and one of your passions in life.

Speaker 2: (00:16)

Um, I am, Brent's my best friend. just kidding. We just, we were just like looking in each other's eyes here, lovingly. Um, I formally was a rock and roll DJ broadcasting to 20 million listeners a day for XM. So I, I have a soft spot in my heart for podcasting, of course. Right. I love the theater of the mind so much. I love radio. I love that you Brent have this. I don't even know if you know that you have it, you have this beautiful power to create what I call a two-way street, even though it's one way. I mean, you wield the microphone here, right. But people listen and trust you and they lean in because you have this ability to create that magical kind of feeling as though they're part of the conversation. Right. And so that's what attracts me to radio and podcasting specifically. And I don't miss it cuz can I swear in your show?

Speaker 1: (01:17)

I don't know. Yeah. Go for it please.

Speaker 2: (01:19)

Well, I had a time. , you know, there's great things about radio. I met my husband there and, and his record was our favorite record of the year. And of course, total job hazard. Cause I dated musicians do not recommend, found the one good one, you know, um, who've cut his hair and wears chinos and now he's in sales. bless his heart. But um, radio is a boys club of course. And um, you know, me too and all that stuff didn't even exist. And the real rewards you got for participating in sexual harassment were large. It was, it was applauded. And so we all did it, you know, and I, not only, and I was a recipient of course, because you know, I don't have a phase for radio. Yay. And there's no women either. Right. So of course, like every day my boss would ask me Bradley or your hands clean, meaning like, could I hold this Dick while he peed?

Speaker 2: (02:10)

just, you know, just the, the, the locker room. Right? So that was kind of bizarre because what started happening, I don't know why I'm going down this thread with you, but Hey ladies, listen up the, um, the sexual harassment turned into a hostile work environment because of course I was great at what I did. And I arranged, uh, the first ever marketing newsletter for any of the channels. It was ours and it got all this, this is before MailChimp. Okay. So I was like in outlook having to send multiple copies because you could only send it to 250 people at a time. Remember that there was like no formatting. And I got us just a huge amount of press. Um, just because I'm a bulldog, you know? And I was like, well, I think we should do this. And I'm gonna ask all these people to republish it and forward it, et cetera. And they did. And um, and then I got like, you know, on for my success. So that was confusing because you're like, I'm killing it. Why, why aren't people excited about this? You know, it's because they're threatened. And if that's why I have my own company and I don't have to deal with anybody's ego, except for my own , you know, the mountain. So, um, what were the other two questions you

Speaker 1: (03:22)

Asked? Um, what is, uh, what, , what your, your day to day role and one of your passions in life?

Speaker 2: (03:30)

Um, well, we might have covered the passion, but, but, um, I think at the moment, my biggest passion is floating. I love the weightlessness of floating in a pool and we have a kitty pool and in text one, thank God for those people democratizing this thing, you know, and we've had one for a while. It's 12 feet by four feet, maybe three. And there's just enough room for two people to float. We built a solar heater out of black hose and a black piece of, um, wood and there's a pump. And so it's when there's not a heat wave, it's usually 88 degrees, which is what I like. Right. You know? And, um, me and my noodles are out there just floating away every day. I I'm allowed three songs. So I bring the, the bows out there and I listen to three songs on the radio.

Speaker 2: (04:21)

Actually, I can, I can still tolerate live radio. And by tolerate, I really mean that cuz it's all terrible. I mean really, really terrible. But there's this one station here that they mostly play 80 songs, which, and I'm a child at the eighties. So I'm like, you know, Hooters, Eddie grant, Steve Miller. Yes. And uh, sometimes I'm lucky and I get three great songs. Sometimes they throw in some other seventies crap like BGS or I don't really like Harry Nelson and stuff like that. And I'm just like, I'm just waiting for the next good one. But that's my passion at the moment. And then who am I, what am I doing? I'm the CEO of lately lately uses artificial intelligence to repurpose long form content like text and video and audio into bite size social posts that it knows very specifically, which parts will get you the highest engagement.

Speaker 1: (05:17)

Yeah, that's great. And um, I am a, I'm a user of lately for longly. It's been, it's been a great tool for us. Um, I, I do want to just kind of dip back into, um, podcast guests because it's not always a two way street. And when people come on as a guest that are, that have an agenda that are trying to sell, they are not a good guest. And, and I sometimes just look at the clock and think, oh my God, can this 30 minutes be over? And now now the 110 guests that I've had are thinking, are you one of them? , uh, Kate, you are not because this is the second time you've been on and I really appreciate you coming on. Uh, but it is, it is sometimes difficult. And, and it's, my, my job is made much easier when, when the guest holds the conversation, but it's not a sales pitch and I, there's nothing more than I hate in a sales pitch from a guest.

Speaker 1: (06:16)

Um, but anyways, this is my pitch. It's true lately because it is, it's such a great product. Um, and I'm, I'm falling in love with AI. I just signed up with open AI. Um, I would, I, I awesome. I want kind of want to get into the Dolly thing and there's so many fun things happening and in AI, uh, that I'm very interested in. Um, but I, I do kind of wanna talk a little bit about, um, some of the entrepreneur journeys you've been going through and, and also, you know, in our green room, I do wanna just bring up the, the white elephant in the room, which is me. And we did talk a little bit about, and you brought it up too. The fact that there isn't, I, I don't have a lot of, uh, diversity in my podcast and I, I, I would like to work on that.

Speaker 1: (07:01)

I'm part of the entrepreneurial community here in Minneapolis and, and Kate, I was just educating, um, Kate, when we, before as well, Minneapolis is a, is a city in the middle of the country. And I know people on the coast don't realize that there's a part of the world that between New York and California, but we don't have to go into that. Um, so I'm on, I, I do sit on the diversity and inclusion, uh, committee and I, I always ask myself, why should I be on this? Right. Like, and, and actually if I've had some good guess, and they've given me some good answers on why, um, uh, me as a white male should be on this. And, and part of it is just awareness and, and talking about it, because if everybody doesn't talk about it, then it becomes something that's sort of in back room. And I think it's always better if we do talk about it. So not to, uh, belabor the point, but, um, uh, I know that there's challenges in that. So there, there wasn't even question in there.

Speaker 2: (07:58)

Yeah. Ahead. I have a comment though, if you don't mind. Um, my friend, Jen, God, what's her last name? Vander something, sorry, Jen. Um, Vander. Awesome. I'm just gonna call her that. So she, we were on a panel once and, and, um, express this in a way that was the first time I got it, which is this, when you are the underdog, you can only be lifted up by those who are on top. And the mistake many people make is not including the people who are on top in the conversation and we rely on them to lift us up. Right? So in your case, it has to be white men in the conversation because they hold the power in the world. They just do for the most part, right. And not excluding them is just a stopper right away. So I get that on the, just a flip side and we should go into politics cuz that's dangerous.

Speaker 2: (08:56)

But I did. I was a marketing consultant for a company called the perception Institute for about a year and their mission in the world or a nonprofit is to change the way that black men are portrayed in the media, black men and boys. And so I learned a lot about people, but black Americans specifically, and how they feel, um, about white people of intervening in their business. And it was mostly not nice, which was interesting, you know? And the, the overall reaction was like, stay out of it with your woke perceptions. Because like, what you think is right is not what we believe at all, you know, and I'm generalizing. So forgive me there, but just, just kind of a perspective, like it's the ask you me, right? You have to never assume what the other, what any side wants. Everybody has to be at the table for the magic to happen for the two way street to happen.

Speaker 2: (09:57)

Like let's get back to that. Right. Um, and the second comment I had related to that was, you know, you kind of touched on what makes for a good guest, you know, so I believe it or not, I was, um, a terrible interviewer on radio for a long time. I would get very nervous and I was young. And so I didn't have a lot of experience, you know, doing that. I was, it was the me show. I was great at the me show , you know, I didn't know. I didn't know how to make people shine or ask the right questions cuz I was so nervous about pushing all the buttons and getting things right at the same time. Cuz you're in my day you were managing like the whole show, just like you are with your podcast. So there's a lot to do behind this in the green room, as you're saying.

Speaker 2: (10:40)

Um, so to tie in what makes a good guest is when you are able to lift others up. Number one a and that's I think that goes both ways. But as an entrepreneur, what we say is make a fan, don't make a sale right now, the value there might sound corny, but I believe in the long tail, this is the radio that I grew up in is all about the long tail. The album cuts, not the hits, right. Get people to buy the records, make fans who are loyal to the death. Right. And I saw the power of those people because when you make a family work for you for free and they can't help themselves. So you get multiple bangs for your buck because you make the sale and you make a, a machine, right?

Speaker 1: (11:34)

Yeah. No. And, and I, I, I really apologize for what I'm gonna say now. because I do feel like now I want to change the name of my podcast to ceiling because I would love to get ceiling fans

Speaker 2: (11:49)

Speaker 1: (11:49)

To keep, keep going. I know, I know. I'm sorry, Brent.

Speaker 2: (11:53)

Speaker 1: (11:54)

That was so bad. Um,

Speaker 2: (11:56)

Hold your nose.

Speaker 1: (11:57)

Everything. Yes. um, so I, you know, my wife and I had this conversation about, um, the, um, Mar Marcia Beski talked has a song about a hundred tampons. And um, in, you know, it, there was there, there was the first lady in space. They, they gave, she was gonna be in space for a week. So they gave her a hundred tampons and uh, and she, she has a she's on Ted. She has a Ted talk anyways. So they, they, she talked about the fact that she has this song and then all of a sudden, all these men started berating her about, you know, you shouldn't make fun of these engineers at NASA, like who knows, like you, you need a hundred tampons right. For a week. And, uh, it was, it was, you know, we had a very good convers, my wife and I had a very nice conversation about it.

Speaker 1: (12:48)

And I, for me, I thought it through and I'm like, yeah, that doesn't really make sense. I don't, you know, I don't, I don't know any better, but her point was, there was a lot of men that came out and were just hid or making, making her feel bad that she'd come up with this song or not making her. But I don't, I don't know the right words. It's so funny. They, they were hand like, you know, like, uh, whatever social media, you know, what social media does, that's what they were doing. So, um, well

Speaker 2: (13:17)

I have a segue for this.

Speaker 1: (13:18)

Okay. Yes, please are ready for me. A segue. Ready? Yes. So,

Speaker 2: (13:21)

Um, so one of my favorite lines is Catherine hah. In, um, the, we are the Millers when she calls it a Tampa and she's from the Midwest. Well, she is in this movie anyways. And so around my house, it's called the tampon. And we, we laugh every time cuz it's so, so funny to us, you know that, but, um, that's that, that ability by the way, to take something and spin it in a new way, which is really what our jobs are about. You know, this is marketing. How do you get fresh perspective? Whether it's a hundred tampons in space or throwing a hot dog down a hallway as, as she says, right? Um, there's I love that. I love, I just did a post on LinkedIn. I don't know why I was inspired by somebody on Twitter. And I said, words that make you like wanna bar. And I said, I'll start. And the word was trousers. And so everybody piled on with not only just words that they don't like, the way they sound moist, got a lot of votes, for example, salacious got some votes. Um, but then also biz bla was all over the place. So people were like partners and utilize, um, at the end of the day, like all, all that kinda stuff

Speaker 1: (14:42)

I'll reach out to you later. So

Speaker 2: (14:44)

Yeah. Yeah. Right. So I was just thinking about the, how we, how we can overuse words to death. So they don't mean anything like awesome, which I am guilty of as well. All of America overuses. Awesome. But the, the whole point of communicating well is to, don't only communicate well, but to communicate with meaning and to here's some biz bla drive engagement, right. To make people lean in is to take something very familiar and just turn it just enough so that somebody is you catch the ear and you make them react. Right. It's the reaction that we don't want. And I love thinking about that. I love like, so my husband is great at this he'll he has all these isms. Um, one is the hammer lane and the granny lane. That's what he calls the fast lane and the slow lane on the highway. Right. Or, um, dirt nap. That's like obviously dying

Speaker 1: (15:50)

Dirt nap. Okay.

Speaker 2: (15:54)

You know, or, um, booger sugar is cocaine , which we were just watching that Tom cruise movie American made, which is a great movie, by the way. Even if you don't like Tom cruise, it's a great movie.

Speaker 1: (16:08)

I agree. I've seen it. Very good. Um, alright, so let's move into, uh, little, let's talk a little bit about entrepreneur entrepreneurship. Um, mm-hmm my daughter just got a, a job, uh, with a, with a CRM company called endear and they're based outta New York, a very young entrepreneur, uh, lady who started it, uh, with a partner and, uh, te did, did you have any struggles as an entrepreneur?

Speaker 2: (16:34)

oh, so many. I mean, I think the, the one that's ever present for me is, um, it's, I don't know if it's confidence, like, I, I don't have an imposter syndrome per se. I take things personally, you know, that, that whole about it being work and business and not personal it's it is, you know, to me it is, um, of course it's personal, it affects people's lives, right. I mean, that's, it has to be right. And I've had to make decisions. I've had to let people go. I mean, I, I, I know how all that, how hard that stuff is. Um, but I, the pressure that I put on myself is pretty intense sprint and I perceive that there's pressure being put on me by others as well, that may or may not be true, but there's certainly that there's that perception, whether it's my customers, like I wanna succeed for you.

Speaker 2: (17:38)

Uh, whether it's other women entrepreneurs, my investors, my, my family, um, you know, my team, obviously Lauren and Brian and Chris and Jason and everybody, Kristen and Katie, Greg, I think that's all of us. Did I forget anyone, Emma, um, Alex , you know, and I, I, the problem is, is like, I don't know what failure looks like. So, so I'm, let me just put this in the ground for everybody. We're bringing it down. So Brian, my CTO is very good at being positive and impractical. He's an engineer. So he, you know, he, he kind of shoots pretty straight and I'm always like wallowing in the negative. And he's like, dude, like you have to really understand this, the odds of what lately is. So, so the chances of startups succeeding at all is already ne it's negative. The fact that lately still exists. The fact that we have revenue, that we have hundreds of customers, right.

Speaker 2: (18:42)

We've had thousands before, you know, we're figuring out how to, how to do it all here. He's like lately should have died a million deaths. So you really need to acknowledge this, but it's not that I don't acknowledge it. It's that the road to getting to the next level, like the, the levels, the, the goal post move a lot is very frustrating to me. Like I'm trying to figure out Brent constantly not how to win the game, how to beat the machine. Okay. That's all I think about how do I beat the machine, beat it into the ground. That's what I want. Right. That's all I see. And it's not enough for me just to have a nice little business here. That's not, that's not the game I'm playing, right. That's not this game. And when you do everything that's prescribed and you do it like to the awesomeness of, of awesome platinum level superstar, gala, active awesomeness, which is what we do.

Speaker 2: (19:36)

And you still can't hit the milestones. That's de defeating debilitating to me personally. Right. I take it personally, cuz then I think, well, what's wrong with me? Why can't I do this? Right. And I hang my head in shame, honestly, because the buck stops with me. It has to be me. It's not like, I mean, I can, there's all, you know, there's the great resignation. There's, COVID, there's the market. There's all these things to blame, of course. But I don't think of any of them. I mean, it's always hard. There's always some out there. Right. So it's, it's me. I'm the one where that can control, you know, what's happening or figure it out. And you know, I think just generally that that's the biggest hurdle is my, is myself in a way. Um, I don't, I don't have an off button, you know, cuz I want this.

Speaker 2: (20:33)

It's not that I want this so bad, but I know it's I know it's not even possible. I know it's probable. I know it's probable. Right. And so I also, that means, I know all the pieces are in front of me here already. I know that they are, this is a matter of assembling the pieces. I have the right pieces, which is a blessing and a curse. So, you know, it's right here. But the fact that I can't figure it out makes me feel like an idiot you know, and, and none of that's true. I mean, I rely on you. I rely on our customers. We're always asking for feedback. I'm terrible at taking criticism, but my team is great at it, which is why I have them, you know? And we're always looking for ways, um, like, sorry for rambling, but, but entrepreneurs, here's a great, great tip.

Speaker 2: (21:19)

Um, someone told me and you know, you get a lot of tips that are garbage, cuz everybody wants to give you some advice. But um, um, a friend of mine said, look for the patterns. So if you can look for the patterns in everything, whether it's the way the funnel works or how much MRI you're making or um, what customers click first, right? All these little patterns or macro and micro patterns you can double down or then fix them. And my, I joke all, all the time. My, my great, my great skill is seeing glass half empty. That's what I do. I look for problems, patterns of problems, you know? So can you imagine being my husband? He's a nice guy.

Speaker 1: (22:06)

yeah. I, I am, I am the glass half full and my wife is, is the glass half empty. So we actually balance each other out. We're either full or empty at the same time, empty we're empty. Um um, so I, I, I, I definitely can empathize with your struggle. Um, and I, I do kind of want to talk about as a leader, um, that empathy part that you have to have for your employees, um, do you see a difference in different styles of leadership that work or don't work or I don't know. I, I see sometimes that, um, some entrepreneurs want to, uh, like they assume that your employee feels some way and if you feel differently, it doesn't matter to what it's, it's not, it, it, the feelings of your employees don't matter. And I feel like mm-hmm well that I'm, I, I believe they matter, but that some of that empathy isn't there in a lot of entrepreneurs.

Speaker 2: (23:09)

Well, I had a job, so I know what it feels like to have that kind of panic attack and go to work and dread every day. And I don't want to any, make anyone feel that way. Um, I am very lucky because all of those people on my team are very kind and they're very loyal and they're also very smart. I forget sometimes that they can't read my mind. I try to apologize for that. Luckily they have a high tolerance for my. That's a very, very lucky thing, right. Because I can be an. I mean, I can be, of course, you know, and I'm so grateful. I have to surround myself with people who have that tolerance, because I can't always apologize for it. There's too much to go on, but I, I have to also obviously reward and acknowledge. And so I need also the kinds of people who either don't need that all the time can get it from each other.

Speaker 2: (24:18)

Um, my reward, I, I feel my perception is the reward is to provide a workplace that is fun, which it really is. Um, it's we have like unlimited vacation, no one ever takes a vacation. I don't know why they don't, but they don't. Um, you can, you don't have to ask to go to the doctor or anything. You just, nobody cares. Get the work done. We don't really care what you're doing during the day. Like, there's none of this. Um, and everyone is very autonomous. There's, you know, some things I'm a micromanager about. I know, I know this, but my, my aim is to not be that way and to, to a fault, honestly, like sometimes I'm trying to figure out why these people, these two people, maybe aren't getting along or hearing each other. And then I realize like I don't bring them together enough.

Speaker 2: (25:03)

cause we're all just out doing our own thing. We're, we're running and running and running. And one thing sometimes I forget that. Um, because we're, you know, we are dispersed and we always have been dispersed. And I like that because I feel it's like so much more productive. I hate being in office when people are coming in and talking to me all the time. I hate, I hate that. I can't get anything done, you know? Um, and I, I will forget how smart they are. You know, I'm like, Chris has really good ideas. I need to ask him these questions more often and then utilize them, you know, or Lauren is, I think she's 15 years younger than me. I forget, but she's younger than me. And I forget that she is because she's

Speaker 1: (25:48)

So's, she's like 10

Speaker 2: (25:51)

Speaker 1: (25:54)

And I talked to Lauren. Lauren is fantastic by the way.

Speaker 2: (25:57)

Isn't she great.

Speaker 1: (25:58)

Keep going. Sorry. I didn't mean interrupt you.

Speaker 2: (26:01)

No, I'm sorry for she's so smart. And my, for all of them, my expectation is I, I, these people are, are on a scale of one to 10. They're twelves, they're all twelves. Right? And so when they're only tens, I get on their asses about it, shame on me. Right. Cuz I believe in them. I, I respect them and I'm so impressed with them. And, and Lauren is certainly one of those people, you know, so, but she can tolerate my, which I, you know, that this is also what I appreciate. So the way I try to reward, you know, I mean money is not the thing that motivates my team because we often can't pay each other or the salary isn't very high. But I try to create a workplace where there's like a, a ton of flexibility and a ton of autonomy because these are the things that I need personally.

Speaker 2: (26:51)

And I, I mean, I know there's people out there like me, right? And I think too, providing a safe place, like I call it where people can be themselves. Like we don't, you know, we don't really have a lot of rules. The golden rule are our biggest rule. Right. And um, a lot we have two meetings a week, one for sales and one for the whole team, cuz we're small enough. We can do these things still. And at those meetings we have, what's called the rolling agenda. And so the rolling agenda is a Google doc that goes on and on and on for years and everyone's name is on it and you're supposed to write what you're doing, what you've done and what you're doing there. And everyone reads it an hour before the meeting and at the top of the meeting is the actual agenda discussion items.

Speaker 2: (27:38)

And the discussion items are the things that we all actually need to talk about together. Cuz I don't need to have a report of what you're doing. And plus I can see it all in slack. Our slack channel is I I don't, um, I poo threads because I want everybody, I want it to bleed over for everybody. Um, it saves me the time from repeating myself from silo to silo and it makes everybody, um, sympathetic or, or empathetic. And so the rolling agenda what's so funny is like, there's almost never any discussion items cuz we've already had the discussion. So it's a hang we get on the phone. And we find out that, um, Chris's son, Zach just performed at a comedy club and he like killed it with amazing jokes. Couple of Dick jokes, you know, in front of his grandparents. But I guess they were killer. Awesome. Right. Um, Katie's daughter, Ruby just um, scored some major role, um, in a play. I think it was beauty and the beast she's the lead, which is pretty great. You know? Um, Kristen's getting ready to go to Paris with her two children for and her husband. So the first family vacation and maybe the last one, cuz everybody's going to college, this is what we talk about. You know? Um, I love that about them, Brent. How lucky am I?

Speaker 1: (28:46)

Yeah, that's I mean building a team like that is, is like the dream of any entrepreneur. Um, it, I, I think you've, you've talked a lot about, about that team building and how you've been successful in it. What would you, what if, if you were gonna say something to an entrepreneur who was, who was hung up with, um, uh, instead of that, that mentality that you have for performance, like I don't care what you do all day, just so you deliver what we're expecting. Right? The opposite of that is I, all I care about is that you come in and punch the clock. right there. There's a, there's a dichotomy there and there's a, there's a, there's a big swing, right? Like if you're just assembling something and you're punching the clock, you know what you get because you're assembling something. But the same thing is you could come in and assemble something very poorly. Or you know, if you're not checking, there's gotta be a balance between performance. I'm a firm believer in, in performance and, and the outcome of that. Do you think people that look at clock punching, miss the outcome part of it?

Speaker 2: (29:55)

Sure. I mean, I've been that I worked in retail in the mall. I know what it's like. It sucks. right. And I hated it. Um, sorry, dad. I worked for my dad for a while. I love my dad. Um, I think, you know, so life begets like when you are around other people who are working at a superior level and you're not, it's obvious and you feel bad and you wanna catch up. So that's one thing, right? And I've, I've surrounded myself. I'm very lucky to have these people who are, these are amazing people. Um, please never leave me, please, please, please. Um, and I'm always concerned when like one of them, you know, if someone's gonna get married or girlfriend moves in or something like that, I'm like, is my productivity gonna go down so mean, right. That's my first thought then my second thought is I want joy for this person.

Speaker 2: (30:47)

Right? Hello. What's wrong with you Bradley. Um, but I think that like, I think we were saying earlier, like the work life balance is. Like work is life and life is work. And if you're not having a great time during what you're doing, you're not feeling re fulfilled and joyful. And like you're doing something to improve the world or yourself, then you really need a different job. And it's so important. Um, I think, you know, for entrepreneurs, the objective, I always think, and I think about this, especially when I'm like arguing with my husband is what is money? What is the outcome that I want to hear? What's the outcome. So let's back into it is the outcome to make someone feel wrong because they up is that their outcome that you want, you wanna make them feel bad. So then they don't sell for you all day long.

Speaker 2: (31:37)

Cause they feel bad and they're, they're done. I've done that before. I've done that. I like, I like making PE people feel wrong. Like I do. I like calling them out on their. Like I'm trying to go to therapy to improve this. But like it's there, it's, it's a thing. And I, but I've learned not to do that because what is the point now? Now sometimes you have to correct someone on what they've done in order for them to improve. I'm not great at this, but I, that is my aim. You know, like for Lauren, she, I like people to write copy for me. So we're always, we work together on sales. And so she is in charge of the follow up with the sale, right? So we have a call, we have to email them, she'll draft an email and Google I'll take 95% of it apart and rewrite it and then be like, okay, here you go.

Speaker 2: (32:22)

Now her, her feeling can be, um, defeat defeated, like thanks for wasting my time. But I explained to her, I was like, you don't know how much time you saved me just by starting this. Right. And my point of taking a part isn't to on you. My, my point is to like give myself something to play, where I can move around. And I said, this was a like earlier last year or something. And I was like, I will do. I promise to do a better job of telling you why I'm rearranging these things and what, why I'm putting these things in here. You know, if, if you wanna learn how to do it better, but at the same time, I have to remember like Lauren came from she's. So she has a she's smarter than all of us. She has a master's degree in, um, psychology analytics.

Speaker 2: (33:12)

And she came from working at the cancer ward in hospital, God. Right. And took the first job at lately as head of customer service, which she killed it at. And then she ran our sales team and now she's my chief operations officer. So she has some very deep legacy knowledge of the company, but she didn't come from, from sales. That's not her background. None of us actually have come from sales me the most. I mean, I have the most experience itself. And um, you know, we have a 98% sales conversion. Brent, Kristen comes from sales. Chris comes from radio like me, the reason, I mean, of course the product is awesome, but we have up that demo 50,000 ways sideways to Minneapolis. Okay. I've seen it. Me too. And the demo does sell itself, but it's the people, it's the people that sell it.

Speaker 2: (34:06)

Right. And it's because Lauren, her ability to read the room and by the room, I mean any room in a room, an empty room on a camera, in a zoom call or a room full of 85 people at SAP, like she has those nuances. Right. And that, and Chris has the same thing as well. These guys, um, this is about being nice, right? It's about being thoughtful. It's about listening. It's about, um, you know, they, they know both of them are, I'm talking about them cause they're my chief salespeople specifically, but like they can stand on stage any kind of stage, whether it's just a call or actually on a stage and lead a room, they have that capability to do that. Um, but at the same time they know when to listen. I don't have that capability. I just like to be on stage and hear the sound of my own voice. Sorry.

Speaker 1: (35:07)

Um, so what, what would you say to, um, to an entrepreneur then that is that they're building this team and, and they're, they seem to be getting a lot of turnover. Is there, is there a magic formula in that team building model or is there yeah. Something to create community or is there anything, anything that somebody could start with?

Speaker 2: (35:34)

I think the first thing is just to really think about how you wanna be treated. That's just the most important thing. And that's very hard cuz like you're trying to get done, you know? So you have to be very reflective constantly and to not just how you wanna be treated, but when, when you're at your best, when you, when you're in the zone, right? What, what are people around you doing to facilitate that for you? And then try to replicate that? I think that's the first thing. I think the second thing is to know this is so important. You have to ask people about their lives, right? Like there are so many times where I just wanna get the meeting on and get stuff done, but I don't, I make sure, Hey Brian, how is your trip? Blah, blah LA you know, like, you know, oh, Hey Jason, I saw that me's on Instagram. And she's like doing this whole abs routine. She looks amazing. Like, what is that about? So he'll tell me, you have to start that way. People want to talk about themselves. Obviously look at me.

Speaker 2: (36:37)

Um, I'm someone who talks over people, Brent, uh, and I have no patience for people who are offended by that. Honestly, I, I believe in passion and I believe in the, the power to express your passion and that an interruptive culture should be celebrated because people are so excited to share their yeah. And I don't, I don't believe in democracy. I mean, lately is not a democracy. I'm the leader. Although you have to make people feel as though they, you listen to right now, you can only do that with people you wanna listen to. So if you're hiring people, you don't wanna listen to, then you're an idiot, you know, you're, you have to really think about who you're hiring. Right. And we've made mistakes. I mean, Lauren will know and she rolls her eyes and she tells me every time and I still make this mistake. I constantly think we need an experienced salesperson to come in here. And so I hire these dudes. They're always dudes. Um, and some dudes I love they're some, some, some of them are dudes. I love some of them are dudes. I don't love. Yeah. And it never works out

Speaker 1: (37:38)

Because they're probably bold white dudes. They're the worst

Speaker 2: (37:41)

Speaker 1: (37:42)

That were

Speaker 2: (37:43)

Hawaiian choose. Yeah. Or like, so one mistake we made by the way, which I didn't know, this was, you cannot hire a salesperson to be both a manager and a salesperson.

Speaker 1: (37:51)

Yeah. Very true. Absolutely. You can't hire anybody to be there to do dual jobs. They're gonna do two jobs poorly.

Speaker 2: (37:59)

Yes. And that is a, a mistake that I made. I didn't cuz I do that. So I don't understand why someone else can't do that, to be honest with you. And like Lauren does that. I mean there are Brian does that. I have superior people in the world who can do that. So it's kind of like why, but it's not everybody's nature, you know? Um, so I think like that's the first thing a very easy tell for us is this is like if your company, if the PE if your employees, aren't saying we you're doing something wrong.

Speaker 1: (38:34)

Yeah. If they're saying you Kate, that then also you, you, and I'm, they don't because I've talked to your employees. Um, yeah. If they are though, just always referring back to you, that's also could be a problem.

Speaker 2: (38:48)

I do that by the way on purpose. So I rarely, I don't like it when people call me the boss, I correct them and say, don't say that I don't like that. Um, I, I say we all the time, my team, I, I rarely say my employees, you know, I rarely do. Um, I, I need them and I don't like the word need, you know, this an needy team is needy, but I cannot live without them. And so they know that I know this and I send them gifts often, like little surprises. even the guys, um, some

Speaker 1: (39:24)


Speaker 2: (39:24)

All guys like pocket knives, you can give them endless pocket knives. I see.

Speaker 1: (39:28)

Am I right? Bread send 'em a box of tampons.

Speaker 2: (39:31)

a hundred,

Speaker 1: (39:33)

A hundred figure out what to do with these about . Um, I do, I want to just go back cuz I, you, you talked about, um, re you're editing Lauren's copy when she started it. Um, and I, I think that, and it sounds like you explained to her why you're doing it. I'm cause I think, I think a lot of times, um, a lot of times, uh, um, leaders will jump on they'll they'll just take it and they'll do it, but they don't give any feedback on why that happened. And that just leads to narratives in people's heads. And I think

Speaker 2: (40:09)

I made that, I made that mistake actually, because I assumed that she would understand and know. Right. But, and I assume that she would take the time to read it and think about it. But of course Lauren is busy and she's just trying to check off her list and get, cuz she's the queen of productivity. Right. She knows that. I respect that. And so either one of us weren't both of us didn't want to take the time to do what you just said, which is a very important thing to do cuz who can learn if you don't do that. And um, you know, like I said, why can't someone read my mind? What the when it's so obvious to me, you know? Um, but I'm sure at the same time she's thinking, why can't Kate read my mind. right. Um,

Speaker 1: (40:50)

Yeah. So I think that I, I have definitely got, I've gotten into the habit of explaining I'm I'm always now trying to play chess with, with, um, with anticipating the way somebody's thinking. And I realize that people that are happy are more motivated, um, and that they're gonna be more productive when they're motivated and that when they're happy and productive, they're gonna get a lot of work done. Right. So if I, if I'm gonna be critical of somebody, I would like to explain all those reasons why that's gonna happen. And I, I maybe now do it to, is the word en nauseam or something like that, where you do it too much. Ad NASM. Yes. Ad nauseum, whatever in nauseum I'm nauseous. Um, so you know, just that, that, that verbal feedback, because I think we do, I, I also suffer from that same thing where of course everybody should know what I'm thinking and yes, everybody can do this. Right. Everybody can be a great salesperson. They can also be a developer. I, I, I fall onto that trap because I used to be a developer and I would say, of course you can do that in AWS. I can do it in 20 minutes. Let's let's watch me do it. And everybody's like, oh God, this is the worst time of my life. You know, you can just see everybody's kind of eyes are glazing over and pretty soon, like they're, you know, anyways, so

Speaker 2: (42:17)

The read the room.

Speaker 1: (42:18)

Yeah. Read the, and then it makes it worse on zoom, you know, everybody's camera goes off and then you get done with your demo. And then so what did everybody think? And, and nobody's there, you know, it's silence, everybody's got the bathroom. Oh, I'm sorry. And then one person leaves the mic on and the flesh sound comes out and your zoom call is ruined

Speaker 2: (42:40)

or saves

Speaker 1: (42:42)

. Yeah. Or save exactly

Speaker 2: (42:45)

. Yeah. I think, um, you know, I oftentimes I wish people would ask me why I do stuff and they don't. And so that, that is frustrating to me because I want, I want the initiative to, to be there and like that's my problem is, is that's why I'm the entrepreneur and these other people are not right. That's a different skill, you know? So I have to constantly readjust my perspective to reality and, and think about, you know, what's gonna, what's gonna get the job done. You know, like you said, like, how do we, how do we get people to be happy and motivated and successful all at the same time? I think that it's important to ask people, do you like working here? You know, sometimes you, I brace myself for the answer. you still, you still like working here, are you leaving?

Speaker 2: (43:41)

I just wanna know. Um, I think that knowing what your weaknesses are really important, like I said, I'm, I'm, I'm not a great cheerleader, but Cadi Jordan is, she's amazing. Like, and she does it for me. And Chris is great at that. I mean, everybody is that everybody piles on, but like you need a cheerleader on the team. If it's not you that bubbly. I mean, when, you know, when Lauren's on vacation, slack is quiet. right. And you feel that energy gone like that. It's so important. She sort of, she doesn't even real. I don't know. She realizes realized that she probably does that. How much that energy, I mean, slack is our workplace, right? That's our work environment. And so it's the, you can see the thermometer of how things going now. Like, you know, when I like last week, an investor who had hard, hard committed first to a smaller amount and then to three times an amount hard commit, hold out for no reason.

Speaker 2: (44:44)

I mean, I just was like, mother. I said like every swear word of the thing like that could be. And like, no, I don't do it in the general channel. I just did it with Lauren, Jason and Brian because I didn't wanna upset everyone else, you know? But like, I need them to know cuz they're they're we are running the business together. We're running the numbers, we're looking at all these things, but Brian and Jason are, co-founders like, they do need to know what happened with this investor. And like, I need the ability and in a place to express my frustration, I also need them to have sympathy for me because like when I have to ask them to not have a paycheck, they need to know exactly why, and I'm not doing it on purpose and it's not cuz I'm selfish or a money scrubber, you know, there's a real reason and it's very, very painful for me. Like, so that sympathy, empathy thing here I think is so important. Like I'm, I'm just a person, Brent, I'm trying to do this thing. And there, these people's lives are in my hands a little bit. Cuz a paycheck is a paycheck. I mean, you know,

Speaker 3: (46:10)


Speaker 2: (46:29)

Period. Yeah. Yeah. It happens. Right?

Speaker 3: (47:49)


Speaker 2: (47:53)

It's their thing. It's true. Yeah. I think, oh my God.

Speaker 3: (48:52)

Speaker 2: (48:56)

Yeah. I think, you know, one thing is I always, and I've said this before, like I, I expect them to go to, to, to complain about me, to each other. I expect that that happens to all managers and bosses. That's part of the role that you're accepting. Right. Like, and so good. Do it complain, complain to each other, get it out of your system. Right. Certainly. I mean the same way, like you know how many times you be are, you're like Brent

Speaker 3: (49:22)

Speaker 2: (49:23)

Right. But I mean, I say that of course about myself, but oh, you know, whoever it is, like that's just your, and it's not like, you mean like you have, you have to know that like to and express a frustration because someone isn't perfect in this second moment, um,

Speaker 2: (49:43)

It's, it's meaningless like right. It's just this thing, evaporating the world. And like, um, when you have people around me, like, you know, sometimes I'll complain to Lauren about other people in the company and uh, just cause I need that, that outlet with, with somebody and, and the validation that I'm not alone in this thought, you know, and I'm sure they, I know they all do this to each other, you know, which is fine. And I, I think that's part of the culture that you wanna encourage. Right? People are gonna vent it's. I mean, this is, this is human nature. And um, I think of it as like, I mean, if lately, if, if everything about lately was just smooth sailing, boy we'd have no fun whatsoever. I mean, I mean, this is part of the adventure, like, are we gonna make it, are we not? So it, that, that ups and downs, you know, it keeps, it keeps it interesting. Like I, I think that's why they come to work every day is cuz they're wondering what's gonna happen. I don't know. Um, we don't uh, right. Essential. Hmm. Right. Yeah. I gotta go do Brent

Speaker 3: (52:14)

Speaker 2: (52:19)

Um, no, I don't have time to go over it. I gotta, I have to, um, I'll say this one thing, we just released a new feature where the AI is rearranging what it finds to pull out into wholly new content and it, we just launched it like the other day. We haven't told anybody, we haven't even told our customers like, so you'll just start to see it suddenly surprise you'll be like, who wrote this? Oh my God. The AI did and it's pretty good. Yeah. Keep an eye out. Yeah.

Speaker 3: (53:10)


Speaker 2: (53:14)

Um, Jesus. I'm gonna plug forgiveness today. Forgiveness. Yeah. I think we all need a little more this is why just so you know, on, on the air. I, I stopped saying my, my name because I, I mispronounced my own name once in an interview with the guys from ween. And so I never said it again. Uh, got a bang. Oh my God. I love you. It's so funny. thank you, Brad.

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