Robert Glazer: How to Build a Winning Team and Culture | E270

Robert Glazer: How to Build a Winning Team and Culture | E270

Robert Glazer: How to Build a Winning Team and Culture | E270

Robert Glazer knows something about how to maintain performance while scaling a business. After his company Acceleration Partners grew quickly from 7 to 300 employees, Robert knew he needed to figure out new ways to maintain employee satisfaction and performance. In this episode, Robert is going to share some easy steps you can take to start building the capacity of your teams and employees today.


Robert Glazer is the Founder and CEO of Acceleration Partners, a global partner marketing agency. He is also the host of the popular podcast Elevate, as well as the author of the inspirational newsletter Friday Forward and of six bestselling books including Elevate. His latest book is called Elevate Your Team.


In this episode, Hala and Robert will discuss:

– The early days of e-commerce

– Letting his first successful business die out

– His passion for teaching other entrepreneurs

– Building his email newsletter from scratch

– Capacity building and pursuing your potential

– The epiphany he had in his shower

– Why your top performers can change

– How to scale your business without breaking it

– Why he doesn’t like personality tests

– Creating a culture of learning in your company

– Giving effective feedback

– The problem with compliment sandwiches

– And other topics…


Robert Glazer is the Founder and Chairman of the Board of global partner marketing agency, Acceleration Partners. A serial entrepreneur, award-winning executive, bestselling author, and keynote speaker, Robert has a passion for helping individuals and organizations build their capacity and elevate their performance. He is also the host of the popular podcast Elevate, as well as the author of the inspirational newsletter Friday Forward and of six bestselling books including Elevate. His latest book is called Elevate Your Team.


Resources Mentioned:

Robert’s Website:

Robert’s Newsletter (Friday Forward):

Robert’s Course (Discovering and Developing Core Values):

Robert’s latest book (Elevate Your Team: Empower Your Team To Reach Their Full Potential and Build A Business That Builds Leaders):


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[00:01:19] Hala Taha: What's up, Young and Profiters? Welcome back to the show. We've got a super insightful conversation in store for you all.

We're going to be talking about how to build capacity within our teams with one of the best in the business. Robert Glaser is the founder and CEO of Acceleration Partners, a global partner marketing agency. He also is the host of the popular podcast Elevate, as well as the author of the inspirational email newsletter, Friday Forward, and his bestselling book, Elevate.

Robert is passionate about helping people and organizations elevate their performance and reach their true potential. Today we're going to be discussing his latest book, Elevate Your Team, and Robert is going to share some easy steps you can take to start elevating yourself and your teams today. Welcome to Young and Profiting Podcast, Robert.

Thanks for having me. Yeah. I'm super pumped for this conversation and I really want to get into all your work with elevating teams, but before we do that, I was hoping our listeners could get to know more about you personally and professionally. Now you've done a lot as an entrepreneur.

You founded the product review website, Bobby's best brand cycle and acceleration partners, which is a partner marketing agency. And everything seems to fall into this intersection of e commerce and marketing. So I thought we could start there. Where did you first get your passion for e commerce and marketing and how did you hone your skills in that area?


[00:02:38] Robert Glazer: I think I was probably always a marketer. I think I was born that way and I ended up after college working at a strategy consulting firm and that started a business incubator project at it. From there, I went to an actual incubator and then a venture capital firm before going to operate a business.

And I think what I realized really early on was I liked fast growing businesses and being part of them. But what I realized and led to a lot of the work that I did was that really at the end of the day for consumer business, what mattered was, could you acquire customers cost effectively? You'd hear a lot of times people, Oh, there's someone who does this and this part of the country, but if no one knows about them, that doesn't matter, right?

So the businesses. That win in the long run, figure out how to get customers cost effectively. And that actually eventually led me into partner marketing and a bunch of different things. But I think it was those insights, fast growing businesses. And then how do you win in that space? And I started doing that when the whole e commerce.

Digital DTC boom happened. And so that's just sort of became the intersection of the things that I focused on. 

[00:03:52] Hala Taha: Yeah, because you've been doing this since 2005 and that was pretty much the early days of e commerce and things like that. Yeah, that was 

[00:04:01] Robert Glazer: right before the whole. Direct to consumer revolution, and I remember when this business called CSN Stores was launching all these crazy different brands and a hundred different brands, and then it all became Wayfair, and people were first selling stuff online, and, and I got very into SEO initially, and that's what led me to the product review site, the Bobby's Best stuff, was figuring out it.

How do you get people to your site and then how do you convert them to buy things elsewhere? And that's where I first ran into affiliate marketing and I just became fascinated with it but also found it ironic that it had, it was so lowbrow when there was an opportunity for the enterprise segment to use the same model.

[00:04:44] Hala Taha: Yeah. And we actually have something in common. So I used to have a website which was a hip hop entertainment news site back in the day when I was like 25 years old and it was actually really popular. And it doesn't exist anymore because blog sites just aren't really that popular anymore and things are always evolving and it seems like that's pretty similar to what happened with Bobby's Best.

Can you talk to us about that origin story, that company, and what happened?

[00:05:12] Robert Glazer: I was always the person, I had consumer reports, people would ask me for everything, like, which TV did you buy, which whatever did you buy, like, otherwise, and so, eventually I was like, this feels like a job, so why don't I set up a website, and I'll pick one thing for each category.

And I started her having kids and so people were like, okay, kind of your baby list and all this stuff also got a lot of interest in these life cycle markets with the same people, whether it's weddings or babies or certain milestones are gonna be looking for the same things at the same period. So I set up this newsletter.

But then I also set up a website, this was kind of the birth of SEO and I realized, oh yeah, there's the thousand people I know, but there's the hundreds of thousands I don't know. So how can I rank for these things and then particularly getting the deals on these things? And I think a lot of my friends thought.

It was just the silly kind of newsletter, but I was ranking tremendously high around certain products and deals and discounts and making a ton of money. And I, no one realized that I kept it very down low, but like anything, eventually you had retail me knots and big sites come in and the customer shopping, and I just.

Couldn't keep up. And I was also building acceleration partners. And so look, some things are designed to be cash cows. Some things are designed to have enterprise value. At some point I just had to make a decision. Do I keep doing this thing or do I build a bigger business? And so I just let it die off.

[00:06:40] Hala Taha: Yeah. And that's nothing to be ashamed about. I brought that up because. That's what it is being an entrepreneur, especially in the digital world. It's understanding when something's not hot anymore and it's not going to scale, moving on to the next thing that's going to have enterprise value, like you mentioned.

So with Acceleration Partners, I know this is an agency that still exists. You actually did create a company brand cycle that you sold, correct me if I'm wrong. Talk to us about those two businesses. What were you doing and how did they grow? 

[00:07:09] Robert Glazer: It was on all connected. One of the things that I was doing incredibly well with was I had, I was working at a company, this company called tiny prints, which did the first high end for baby birth announcements.

And I hooked up with that company and I was their biggest affiliate. And I went to the founder and I met him and I was like, cause I worked at a business that was oriented around babies and parents. I said, look, I'm doing all this and I'm brokering deals for you, but like you could set up an actual affiliate program.

And he said, I have no clue how to do that. And so I researched it and I was an affiliate, but I didn't know how to run in a program. And I was like, all right, I'll try to set this up for you. I looked around and some of the networks, what they were doing, didn't make sense. Everything was deals and coupons.

And that program, we went out and we just found all these mom bloggers and baby bloggers. And they love this product and they were making a ton of money. And the program grew like crazy. And. Eventually they sold for Hundreds of millions of dollars to Shutterfly and what happened was I was running that program and then I got another referral and the people from that company as happens in the valley, they great success and they went elsewhere and then people started calling and saying, can you do that same program?

We had it. Tiny prints and they had a wedding site, wedding paper divas. And so classic story. I did it and then I got one person to help me and then kind of went into the affiliate industry that was very focused on lowbrow coupon loyalty. No one having any clue where their partners were and did the first let's go find content partners and people related and build high quality programs and make sure there's no fraudsters in it and kind of this white glove program.

And at the time, most people is more in the weeds, but they went to their network and they got the technology and the agency and we basically said, you don't go to Facebook, you know, to be your Facebook agency for obviously reasons you don't go to Google to be your search agency, you really should keep your agency that's focused on R.

O. I. Separate from your technology. And we help start this industry of Independent agencies that manage affiliate partner programs. And we help drive and expand that industry into the high end white glove. There was always the email offer, but this was the targets and the eBays and the Ubers and people wanting to run very global, high quality partner programs that had hundreds or thousands of partners in them.


[00:09:28] Hala Taha: so awesome. Robert's actually in my podcast network. And this is one of the first conversations that we've had together. And I love finding out that you have this awesome agency with doing partnerships because it's so similar to what I do at Yap Media, but just with affiliates, but it's very similar to running sponsorships and things like that, and at least working with the same brands, utilizing influencers and things like that.

So it's just cool to know your background and get to know you better like that. 

[00:09:56] Robert Glazer: Yeah. And the influencer stuff's now crossing into the partner stuff. And when you think about. If you're an advertiser, you can buy a clicker, an impression, but if you can just pay on performance, you know, if you could enable all of these people and it's coming to podcast a little bit, so brands are excited to pay for marketing after they get a sale.

And so we are now over 300 people, global. We partner with a private equity firm a few years ago, and we help run some of the biggest programs in the world. 

[00:10:23] Hala Taha: Awesome. That's incredible. And so you're obviously a very successful entrepreneur. You are on Glassdoor's list of top CEOs. Like you just mentioned, you built an agency with nearly 300 employees.

but now you're moving into books, podcasts, and you're basically teaching entrepreneurs and I do the same. You know, I've got companies and then I also love to teach entrepreneurs. So what drives you there? Why do you feel so passionate about teaching entrepreneurs how to be more successful?

[00:10:52] Robert Glazer: Yeah. So a couple of things. I've identified my sort of core purpose is to share ideas and help people grow. And so when I figure out something, I kind of want to share it. And so building the company and trying to build a company that had a great culture and was a place I wanted to come to work every day, we broke a lot of rules and we did things differently and we felt like it really worked.

And so I started writing about those things and talking about those things. The big tipping point for me was after a leadership training, uh, it was talking a lot about the importance of sort of reading something positive in the morning and writing something positive in the morning. We had about 40 people at the time and we were all distributed.

And I decided to start this newsletter, which I changed the name or this note, like five times. It was a Friday thing, and it was not about. Work. It was not about our business. It was about just getting better or something about improvement. I didn't have the term building capacity at the time. And I started just sending this note every Friday to our team.

And I honestly didn't think that anyone was even reading it or cared, but people started to write back and they said, Oh, you know what? I really love that. Or I tried that, or I did that, or actually I sent this to my brother. I sent this to my, you know, husband, he forwarded along and I was like, hi, I wonder if people outside the company would be interested in this.

I was at an EO and entrepreneurs. Organization event. I was telling people as a best practice that this was something I did and I was getting good feedback. And they all said, Oh, well, send it to us. And so I threw them on there and three of them were like, this is great. I'll just send this to my employees every week.

And the fourth one started his own and still does. And I said, Huh. So maybe, I don't know, I'm managing this to BCC. People are asking me, I wonder if people would be interested in this outside the company. So I took like 300 of my friends and family. I created a newsletter list, but it just looked like a regular email.

I just couldn't manage it anymore. I threw everyone on. I waited for the hate mail. Like, what the hell is this? Take me off or otherwise. But I kept getting great comments. It kept getting forwarded. So I called it Friday forward three or four years later, I woke up and there's a hundred thousand people in 60 countries signed up for this email every Friday.

And I've been doing it for eight years. And so that led to a book sort of on the Friday forward and actually. That book was rejected, which turned, I went back and wrote the Elevate book. So there's a whole, it's a whole story there, but that simple email every Friday now built a multi hundred thousand news.

I think I just looked like 140 countries now, people reading it every 

[00:13:15] Hala Taha: week. Yeah. I get that email. So what a cute story. I love that you shared that. When I was looking at your background, I saw that you got. A really interesting major in college. You studied industrial psychology. And I had to look that up and I found out that was the study of behavior of employees in the workplace.

And when I was thinking about all of your work and building these companies and building such big teams and now writing books about teams, I have to ask. Did you always have a passion for teams and how did this learning in college really help set you apart from other entrepreneurs, do you think? You know, 

[00:13:55] Robert Glazer: Steve Jobs had this quote about the dots connecting and only in reverse.

So I went to school, super competitive business school. I didn't get into the business school initially, you can't really transfer, but I wanted to take advantage of it. And so I ended up creating my own major focusing on the sort of team human behavior side and then the business fundamental stuff. This may resonate with you deeply, but having now run professional services firm for over 20 years, all the business fundamental stuff is so sad.

Like I could have been a psychologist and it would have been the sort of same background because in a professional service business, your product is people, your customers are people, your partner, people, no one ever calls me and tells me a machine is broken, a widget didn't come in otherwise. So I do feel like a professional psychologist.

In some ways, it's always a human issue. So that side of it was super helpful. And obviously the business kind of fundamental and basic and management accounting is helpful, but particularly in where I landed up in professional services, it just worked out perfectly. 

[00:14:59] Hala Taha: I really think that's so awesome that you were able to go to school, learn about that, and later on it connected the dots, but I bet you, like you were saying in the process, probably didn't feel like.

You were using what you learned in school, but later on, you probably look back and think, Oh my gosh, how everything comes full circle. 

[00:15:18] Robert Glazer: It is interesting. And we spend a lot of time on people and capacity and helping people build and develop leadership and really passionate about that. And when you really get into it with people, it's a lot of personal things that are holding them back and things that they carry with them and things that have nothing to do with the workplace.

The more that you have these discussions and authentic and vulnerable with people, I just, you see a lot of those same patterns. So I feel like at this point, I almost have a psychology degree. how people work and react and teams and personality types and all of that stuff and communication styles.

That's all the stuff that shows up day to day and in the workplace and leading and management. 

[00:15:59] Hala Taha: I totally agree. Let's move on to your book Elevate, and in your book, you spend a lot of time talking about four life changing principles or capacities. And you talk a lot about this concept of capacity building.

You touched on it earlier in this conversation. So let's start there. What do you mean by capacity building exactly? 

[00:16:23] Robert Glazer: There's a short and a long definition. Capacity building is the method which individuals seek, acquire, and develop the skills and ability to perform at a higher level in pursuit of their potential.

That's sort of my long winded. The short thing is I think this is actually the formula for how we get better and it's not about doing more. It's doing the right thing. It has four pieces. And if you can imagine four quadrants of a ball, spiritual, intellectual, physical, and emotional, and I'll explain each one, but to me, it's, if you're working on those things and growing them, you have this ball, bigger mass it's rolling when one of these gets out of whack, you can imagine it kind of flying all over the place.

But these to me are the four things of how we improve. So spiritual capacity is not religious. It's about understanding who you are, what you want most, and the standards you want to live by. I think for most people, it's their core values and what it is they value at their core. Intellectual capacity is about how you improve your ability to think, learn, plan, and execute with discipline.

This is like your personal operating system. Like, how do you get better at something? How do you learn something so you do it better tomorrow and faster and smarter and don't make the same mistakes? Physical capacity is your health, well being, and physical performance. And then emotional capacity is how you react to challenging situations, your mindset, and the quality of your relationship.

So if this was a race car, spiritual capacity would be designing it, intellectual capacity would be building it, physical capacity would be like taking it on a practice track. But then emotional capacity is like, what happens when other people are driving their cars at 200 miles an hour, right? Now it takes on a whole different thing.

And so I think for all of us, working on those four pieces interconnected or how we improve and we're always a little out of whack, but some of us are really out of whack in a couple of these areas. 

[00:18:08] Hala Taha: So you wrote this book in 2019 and like you just mentioned, it's all about how to elevate yourself, leveraging those four principles that you just mentioned.

You had an epiphany in the shower where you realized that these concepts fit perfectly with material around teams and the work that you know around teams. So talk to us about that epiphany and what led you to write Elevate for Teams. 

[00:18:32] Robert Glazer: Elevate actually was a Friday forward compilation that got rejected because the editor said, look, you've already written all these things.

I love the compilation, which I ended up writing later, but like, what's the story behind the story? And when I realized all these Friday forwards I read, what were the themes? And so I went and extracted them. I said, Oh, each one of these things touches one of these themes. And this is actually the process I've used to make huge.

Improvements in my life and what I've seen other people do as well. The people I see killing it have these four elements. Well, then at the same time, we were really struggling with the company was growing really quickly. Some people were growing along with it or even getting better. Some people were kind of falling off the cliff as I'm sure you've seen as your organization grows fast.

And I was. Super frustrated. I couldn't figure out who was who and which was which and why that was. And eventually I realized it was actually the same formula and that the people that could grow with the company had built the ability to build their capacity at an equal or greater rate to the organization.

And that actually we had been training around these four things and we had been focused on this and leadership development. We just not consciously, and I didn't have the words or otherwise. So once we had the words, we could really double down on it. So. What changes in that context, kind of same formula, but for teams is that spiritual is about helping make sure your teammates understand their values and what's important to them because they're not going to become great leaders if they aren't there.

Introspective or self aware. I think level five leadership is Jim Collins defines. It requires you to be who you are and be comfortable that a lot of us start out in leadership and we take a bunch of best practices from other people that we saw in a bunch of things we hated about bosses that we had and we mash it together, but it's not.

Super authentic intellectual capacity in the workplace is about creating this culture of learning and feedback and growth and people who want to get better and want to improve and otherwise physical and emotional is again. Are we creating environment that lets people maintain good physical and emotional capacity?

Are we destroying it? Are we burning people out? How do we create an environment that is about results is not about hours worked and that again doesn't burn people out and then emotional capacity in the workplace? A big degree of that is psychological safety, right? Are we creating a workplace that is psychologically safe?

Are we getting teams that focus on the things that that are vulnerable that are talking to their team and that focus on? The pieces that they control and not the pieces they don't control. And look, we see this a lot and you've probably seen this in organizations. And I think this gets fostered by leadership.

There are sales teams. They've never lost a deal that was their fault. Right. And this gets permitted. We got screwed by the partner. We got screwed by the client. They're just not even looking at what they did wrong or what they could do better last time. And so that's something you either allow in your organization or you don't allow in your organization.

[00:21:31] Hala Taha: I love hearing about this stuff. It gets me so excited because as an entrepreneur, all you want to do is just get your team more productive, working smoother, having a better company culture. And this is all the stuff. That you preach and one thing that I want to dig a little deeper on is this idea that you were just sharing about how your top performers don't always stay your top performers.

And as an entrepreneur, I've experienced this where I've had somebody who was like a clear A player crushing it. And then like two years later, what happened to X, Y, Z just making errors or whatever it is. I've been an entrepreneur for four years now. A real, I was an entrepreneur when I was younger, but like a real renewed entrepreneur for four years now.

You seem like you were born one. Yeah, I was, I had a lot of, I was. But with Yap Media, and I've even noticed that people have like on and off years now that some people have been working with me for four years. One year they're a rock star, one year they're not. One year they're a rock star, one year they're not.

So just curious to hear your thoughts about how we can scale with our team. What kind of team players should we be looking for who can actually scale and be top performers? 

[00:22:39] Robert Glazer: Yeah, there's so many different ways to answer that. Let me start at a high level, which I think we're coming off this extraordinary period.

So for anyone who's 32 or under the last 10 years before the last two years, they might think that that was normal, but historically it was an aberration. It was free money. It was hyper growth. It was, you didn't have to make money. It was valuing the top line. And so the goal is just grow the business.

And if you destroy the people along the way, that's fine. My analogy is if NASA said, Hey, we're going to put a crew on Mars, then flies to Mars and they open it up and everyone's dead. I don't think everyone would be cheering. Right. But this was sort of how companies ran where we're just going to hit this goal and it doesn't matter.

That's gone. People are burnt out. The money's not there. We're not valuing the top line. So now we have to build companies by building the people. You know, if you picture growth is like a wave instead of being crushed by the wave, we need the. Ride the wave. And the way to do that is make sure that they're building their capacity and growing with your business.

And it's kind of a win win, not a win lose. So to what you were saying before, my definition of an A player, it's not an absolute. You've seen people grow into ones and out of ones and cycle. It's the right person in the right seat at the right time. And when your business is changing that much, the seat is changing.

And some people don't want that next job. So some people, they're good from zero to 5 million and they need to go need to do that again. But some people just aren't improving at the rate they need. If your business is growing 40 percent a year, the leader of each of those functions needs to grow 40 percent a year just to stay at that job.

That's a really hard thing to do. So I think we should do everything that we can do to help our people grow with the businesses. But then we also have to make those hard decisions when the job just isn't the same job anymore. And I think a lot of people, the job has changed, but they're afraid to admit that and they don't want to do it and they don't want to give it up.

But frankly, that's where the leader has to come in and say, I don't think you want to do this. Let me help you find something else somewhere else. This isn't the same job it was two years 

[00:24:46] Hala Taha: ago. I love that right seat, right person, right time. That is so brilliant. I love that so much. Okay. So in your book, you say that every time you double a company size, you break 50 percent of your processes and 50 percent of your people.

So my question to you is, do you feel like that's an inevitable or is that something that we can prevent? I 

[00:25:08] Robert Glazer: think you can prevent it, but that's what coaches always told me. And that was sort of why I was like, I don't want to do that. I don't want to change the tires every two times around the race course.

So how do we focus on finding. High aptitude people and creating a culture where we have all of these things, where we have introspective and learning, and we're not burning people out and they're growing. What's exciting to me is when people always grow and take that next seat. And when you build from your draft class, because it's just like sports, the overpaid free agents often aren't worth the money, it's better to build through the draft.

So the book talks about really all the things that we can do to try to give ourselves the best shot of building from the draft. The goal is to do better. Then that number, I don't think it's fun. You don't want to break half your people every two years, right? I mean, you want to be in the battle with these folks and understanding that over time.

Yes, people will cycle in, they'll cycle out. The 50 percent rule was presented to me. And a lot of this was, how do we not fall into the 50 percent rule? You 

[00:26:10] Hala Taha: talked a lot about how to prevent the employees or focus on the employees, but how about the process piece? What is your guidance in terms of preventing your processes from breaking as you're scaling?

[00:26:21] Robert Glazer: We have a core value of excel and improve, and I always explain it to people that Excellence requires improvement. So if we have a best practice way of doing something and you have no clue how to do it, you probably should use that, but you also need to be constantly looking at changing that or improving it.

The thing is, improve the operating system for everyone. Don't just improve it to yourself. That to me is the excellence and the standardization, but we should always be looking at every process we have and blow it up and make it better and roll out the new code to everyone. When you move away from excellence is when you're running 4.

0 and I find 5. 0 and hold it to myself and then Sally find 6. 0. Right? You want you want Sally to find 6. 0 and then tell everyone running 0 to upgrade. So to me, everything has to be revisited. I tell an onboarding culture story about one of our core values, about one of our best traditions in the company and the so board ceremony, and it just went from nice to not working as we went from 10 to 75 people.

We had to totally reinvent it to bring back that special piece of it again. And then three years later, we had to reinvent it again. So yeah, That's always going to 

[00:27:26] Hala Taha: happen. I totally agree with that. Re evaluating and always looking to improve your processes, even when things are going well, right, that is the time where you can do that because you actually have the time and there's no 

[00:27:37] Robert Glazer: fires.

And that requires that psychological safety, right? It requires a culture where people can say, this is broken. We need to fix it. And they don't get the, it's always been that way. It works. Leave it. 

[00:27:48] Hala Taha: So you have four components in elevate for both the individual capacity and the team capacity, spiritual, intellectual, physical, and emotional.

And we talked about that previously, but I do want to spend a little bit more time on each one of these areas. So let's start off with spiritual, and I know that a lot of people cringe when they hear anything that has to do with, I know you said it doesn't have to do with religion, but just, they just cringe.

So what would you tell to people who are like, what does that have to do with business? 

[00:28:19] Robert Glazer: If you don't know what your core values are, you don't realize how much they're driving your behavior in leadership and in life. We just did this with a group of leaders and two of the people in the organization.

We're really struggling with each other. The root of both of it was childhood experiences that strongly impacted their values and how they behave. So I can give you an example of this. Let's imagine we have a lot of people, when we've done this process, they have a core value of trust. For most of those people, there was some violation of trust in their life that made trust really important.

But, that's their operating system. That's how they operate. They trust their team, they keep them close, they have a small circle. What was happening was, A leader who has, and I've, every time this has come up and you ask them this, if someone on their team. Was a little bit late, missed a deadline, couldn't be found at four o'clock.

That strikes like, this is someone who can't be trusted. And they put them in a penalty box and lock the key. And these people didn't know about it. So once they have that awareness and when they understand these things, but they would go to their team and say, look how you're my new employee. Trust is really important to me and I am going to give you trust and you are in my circle.

But by the way, once it's broken, it's broken. And here are some of the things. Where that can happen. Well, now you're leading with that and you're using that. So I think there are a lot of these things that again, I tried a hundred words and I know spiritual, it is just about understanding yourself, honoring your standing, your strengths, your inclinations.

They're all different for each of us honoring that, understanding that about other people, because most issues are communication issues. And then using that to your advantage, to be the kind of leader that's authentic. I am a totally different leader than the other people in my organization. And I would say, I'll say to people, this is why you'll hate working for me, or this is why you'll like working for me.

It's the same thing. So I'm just going to lay it on the table for you and you can decide. It 

[00:30:11] Hala Taha: is really important when you're managing teams to have that alignment with core values. I actually did an exercise with Darius Mershazadeh, who is our mutual friend. And we did this whole workshop with him. It was like a three week long process and we have core values now.

And my team culture was always strong at Yap because we started as a volunteer group for my podcast six years ago and it was 20 people for two years worked for free for me and when we were volunteers. It was just easy. We had a culture because we were just doing it for free. We all had the same passions.

And as we evolved as a business, I start to feel like we lost some of that culture that was just ingrained in us. Cause we basically all started this together. So we started these core values. We rolled them out and it's been so impactful to just have clarity, writing them down, communicating them to your point when we're doing hiring, we're judging people based on if they fit or not.

And it's just helped so much, I think, with reducing employee attrition and everything like that. 

[00:31:11] Robert Glazer: Yeah. And Darius is really good. And I've done some work with him on the business ones. Yeah. I ended up creating a course on the personal ones, which align like if people understand their personal core values, they will align mostly if you get the right person to yaps core values.

So we did that with so many leaders and when they read Elevate and they talked about, okay, I buy this personal core value thing. I want to figure out mine. How do I do it? And I was like, it's not that easy. I have a whole process I do with the team, like, well, can you share that with us? I was like, I don't really have a great way to do that.

So I turned it into a course and over 2000 people have taken that and just figured out their personal values. Amazing. Where can people take it now? Yeah, it's, uh, they can go to corevaluescourse. com and I'll set up something if they, uh, get a discount, if they put challah in there. 

[00:31:58] Hala Taha: Cool. Awesome. I'll put that in the show notes for everybody.

So speaking of getting to understand who your employees are and their own values and personality traits, you actually are not a fan of personality tests, or at least the obvious ones. How do you suggest that we evaluate our employees and see if they align to our 

[00:32:16] Robert Glazer: values? Yeah, so I've taken all of these and I'm not, not a fan of them.

I actually, I love them, whether it's DISC or values or Colby or any of these things. I just don't think they should be used for interviewing because what happens is you have this bias where people go for the same as them and you actually want a team that's different, but it's super helpful for me to know that you are an S or I am a D or other, because it helps with all the communication stuff.

So I don't think you should use them for hiring. I know Adam Grant, some people have said, look, I don't really see them as personality as much as they are your. Styles are your preferred form of communication or the way you kind of operate. I don't look to put someone in a hole, but they are incredibly, we've done the wise stuff with Gary Sanchez.

And when two people are in like a real argument, I first go to that information. What are your wise, what are your, I'm like, Oh, this is why you're doing this. Understand this. Cause there's some just natural conflict points between those two. Different profiles. And, um, yeah, we've done a lot with Gary Sanchez and his why archetypes.

I have found those to be the most accurate as the behavior that drives people at their core. 

[00:33:26] Hala Taha: Oh, I got to look him up. I've never heard of him. I got to check that out. 

[00:33:29] Robert Glazer: He took Simon Sinek's now find your Simon got everyone convinced that they should know their why, but then going to figure out your why is like not an easy thing.

And Gary developed archetypes nine specific why archetypes by interviewing thousands of people. And so I feel like Simon kind of wound it up and Gary actually made it. Doable for people because it gives you an archetype and the strengths and weaknesses and all that stuff. 

[00:33:52] Hala Taha: Oh, awesome. I love that. Okay.

Moving on to number two, which is intellectual capacity. Can you talk to us about why creating a culture of learning is so important and what are some actionable ways that we can facilitate learning within our organizations? 

[00:34:08] Robert Glazer: Yeah. So first for all these things, people are the same inside of work and outside of work.

They're not really good with money at home and super energetic and walk into work and are terrible with budgets and exhausted. These things are consistent. And so I think learning cultures and feedback cultures are how you get better and grow. So simple things like having a book club or podcast club because it's free.

We pick an episode. We listen to it. We talk about it. We talk about how we can. Do something better. We also focus on what are healthy routines. What is a good morning routine? You know, look like we do a lot of how Elrod's Miracle Morning because again, if your people are well rested, if they're taking care of themselves, they're going to come to work better.

A lot of two is feedback and learning how to have these difficult conversations and framing it when you're growing around. This is about learning and not making the same mistake. And so many people don't know how to have. These conversations that they put them off and then they lead to even worse conversation.

So we even have a whole module and we talk about some of it in the book around how do you practice having these difficult conversations so that you don't wait too long to have them. 

[00:35:18] Hala Taha: Yeah. Difficult conversations are definitely going to come up in business all the time. And it's really important to understand how to give feedback.

Talk to us about how feedback can be really damaging sometimes if you don't know how to do it effectively. Definitely. 

[00:35:32] Robert Glazer: Yeah, most companies don't train and people don't train on how to give it and how to get it right and a lot of feedback is way too personal. One of the things you should never do is tell someone they are something or they aren't something I've talked to people who are five and 10 years later, still have PTSD from being told they weren't strategic or they weren't funny.

Strategic is a perfect one. telling someone they're not strategic, doesn't feel like something they can fix explaining to them, Hey, in the report to the client there, these are the places where more strategic insight was now maybe true that they're not strategic, but if you're trying to give feedback, you need to explain what strategy looks like and examples of how they can improve it.

So. It should always be depersonalized, just like in parenting, you should never tell someone they're smart or not smart. You should say something they did was smart or something they did was not smart. And one of the frameworks I like is really simple, SBO, Situation, Behavior, Outcome. What happened? What did you do?

And then what was the result? What was the outcome? And why does the outcome matter for you? This happened on the call today, and I think you really want to fix this because You're going to lose the sale or people aren't going to want to work with you or, you know, and not have it be sort of about me. So that's the giving on the receiving side, particularly upward feedback.

The first time you're not receptive to feedback, it'll be the last time you get it. And people will just go tell everyone else, you know, not you. So I think you have to make it clear that your door is open and you're always willing to feedback. You have to just shut up and listen. If you try to formulate your response as the person is talking.

They can tell you're not listening. You're getting into, you just have to listen. Even if you don't agree with it, you just have to listen. And then you have to thank the person and then you can take your time to reflect. You can act on it. You can follow up or not, but doing those three things, like my door's open, just listen and thank them.

Means that people will come and share things with you. Otherwise they won't. And I would much rather have someone tell me a problem to my face, then tell everyone else about it. Yeah. It 

[00:37:33] Hala Taha: takes some emotional intelligence to just be positive and process it afterwards. And he doesn't mean you have to take all the feedback.

It just means that in the moment as a leader, you accept it and. Act professional and 

[00:37:46] Robert Glazer: positive. Yeah. That person feels heard. They don't feel like you're fighting with them and arguing with it. So you just have to, again, eat the key, swallow it and just listen to it. Yeah. 

[00:37:57] Hala Taha: We've talked a lot about getting feedback on the podcast.

I had Kim Scott on the show. I've had Heather Monahan talk about that. And sometimes people recommend to give a compliment sandwich, right? So say something nice, say the mean thing or the thing that needs improvement, say something nice and. You're not really aligned with that, right? So what do you think is wrong with that 

[00:38:18] Robert Glazer: approach?

It's actually a worse practice and our training around this where we model fake conversations where boys have to sit down and they only know one side of the story and not the other side and you watch what happens, you see how poor it is because how many conversations did someone, has someone told you about where like, yep, I talked to the Paola, I gave her a warning she understands.

And then how I was like, I thought everything was going great. And what happens is when you watch people do this again, we don't like to give hard feedback. So we warm them up with a compliment. Then we kind of say the thing that we want to say, and then we kind of end with a compliment and people just miss it.

They missed that. That was the important part. And I've done this training a hundred times after one of these scenarios. And we asked the group of everyone watching and we say, how many people think that that person knows? That their job is on the line and no one has ever raised their hand after doing this training because the default of the person is to kind of launch that in when they do it again, it totally changes.

I have the kind of couple lines in the book and the last time I had to do this, I just did this and I got in and I said, this is going to be a really difficult conversation. I need to tell you some things. So now there's no sugarcoating it. There's times to compliment and otherwise, but you particularly were talking about a conversation where someone's job might be on the line.

You want to be really clear and make sure that they Understand that and that they aren't confused with good, bad, good. 

[00:39:46] Hala Taha: Totally. Because I could imagine how that could be confusing and people actually remember the last things that you said to them more than the first and the last things. And they lose the thing in the, in the middle.

Like that's a proven fact to your point. So you're basically leaving the most important part in the part that's the easiest to forget. I totally agree that that's probably not a great way to do it. Can you give us some real examples of giving somebody good feedback? What does that sound 

[00:40:13] Robert Glazer: like? I'll give you the example that I use in my training, and this is kind of, I like to use law and order ripped from the headlines.

So years ago, we had an employee who was very cerebral and. Let's just call this person Jamie and like to think through things before answering, but they were in a client service role. So several times in a week they had been on a call with their manager and the client asked a question and there was awkward silence for like 10 or 20 seconds.

So manager could say to Jamie, Jamie. There were two calls this week, you sound like an idiot when the silent was so awkward for me. It was awkward for everyone involved. That's the classic personal attack. It's bad for me. It's just being mean. The SBO approach would be like, Jamie, I noticed on the call last week twice.

There was an awkward pause after the clients asked you a question. I know that you're someone who likes to think through something, but frankly, I'm worried that the client thinks you're not going to know what you're talking about when you have that. So, let's think of a crutch phrase. Maybe it'd be better for you to say, let me look into that if you need some time, and just use that to buy yourself some time and come back.

I know you know what you're talking about, but I'm just afraid the client's going to be worried that you don't totally different approach. One is about the actions, how you can get better approve, why it's helpful to that person. The other ones is just a personal attack. And I think that's what most people default to.

Unfortunately, is the first one. So 

[00:41:38] Hala Taha: basically you're saying, don't make it a behavioral thing with them or a personality thing. Make it about the exact action and how they can fix it and just be precise. Give the precise advice about that exact specific incident and don't label them. 

[00:41:53] Robert Glazer: And why is it bad for them?

Everyone cares about why things are bad for them. They don't care why it's bad for you. So when we say something from a place of annoyance or like it's bothering us. That sounds like wise about they care about what like again, Jimmy, you're a really smart guy. I don't want clients to not think that you don't know what you're talking about when you do.

So I think this is the type of strategy you need to bridge that gap. That's wanting to help Jimmy do better. Similarly to the not strategic person. Look, there was three or four times in the presentation where the client needed some strategy. This is what it looks like. This is what they needed to hear.

And what they got was tactics. You want to criticize the actions or the behavior, not the characteristic of the person in any way. And by the 

[00:42:37] Hala Taha: way, this is your job as a leader to develop your employees and the people on your team. And so if you're afraid of giving feedback or you don't know how to give it, people are never going to improve.

And it's literally your responsibility to help them improve in their careers. And when I look back at my career, I used to work in corporate and I remember I was a little bit arrogant because I was really productive. I would always just rock everything. And I remember my manager loved me so much, but he told me, Kala, your team members aren't going to like you.

You've got to be nicer. Basically, he used to tell me like, you've got to be nicer. Like you're too focused, just like a machine. And that's helpful. But I also think your weaknesses are your strengths, you 

[00:43:19] Robert Glazer: know. Right. And nicer, nicer the characteristic, right? So, right. Yeah, that is 

[00:43:24] Hala Taha: Exactly. So, so to your point, like, it's like, what does that even mean?

But I appreciated his feedback because it at least allowed me to remember to like, think before I speak or not topple over people. If I could avoid it, 

[00:43:38] Robert Glazer: right, you could say, Holly, you're a superstar and you're a high achiever. And so that's going to be threatening to other people. And so you're going to want people on your team and to be supporting you.

So here are some of the things you might want to think about to do that, right? That's probably how you'd want to land that message. 

[00:43:54] Hala Taha: Yeah, and he probably said it a lot nicer, but like my remembering is that like you're not nice enough, right? I told 

[00:43:58] Robert Glazer: you I can give you a list of people who they've said they can remember the person who said to them I remember a boss who said wasn't kid.

We said there's nothing you won't waste money on but they they have this list It's like a flashbulb memory of what they were told 

[00:44:11] Hala Taha: 

[00:44:20] Hala Taha: So physical capacity is the third one and this is about employee health and wellness. So how can we have more work life balance or what are the ways as leaders that we can foster that within our teams?

[00:44:32] Robert Glazer: It's like the Hippocratic Oath in medicine, first do no harm. So I tell the story of Marissa Meyer, right? Marissa Meyer came into Yahoo. She was heralded as this top employee at Google. She bragged about her 130 hour work weeks and articles. If you've done the math on that, that's 18 hours a day for 7 days.

So barely enough time to even sleep. And bought 52 companies at Yahoo and got fired. And the whole thing was an abject failure. Now there's no question that Marissa Meyer worked hard, hard work and smart work are different. So I still think we have way too much focus on hours and inputs and not outputs.

So I think getting people focused on outcomes and not celebrating heroes, hours and inputs, because we're not, I mean. Your salespeople, you happy with, they are making a lot of calls or if they're selling things, right? Which do you want to do? People need time off. They need rest. They need to step away from work.

You need a culture where it's okay to take a vacation and people cover you and you turn off your phone and you come back rested. But if I, the leader and look, the leader emulates for everyone. There's a great example. So if I'm going on vacation and I say, Hey team, I'm going on vacation next week, but if you need me, Slack me, text me, email me.

I'll be on every day. That clearly says one thing, and then Everyone emulate that behavior. There was an email I saw from a guy at a venture firm. He said, basically like the difference of I'm going on vacation. I'm going to be with my family. So here's my wife's cell phone and text her if there's an a real emergency and she'll find me.

And if you need to reach me by email, please use interrupt my vacation at the company. Dot com sends a totally different message to the team around taking time off. Another very simple thing I started doing years ago as the leader. Look, I would get up when I had little kids and I go through emails on a Saturday and as the CEO of the company, you get an email from the CEO and you feel like you have to respond.

So I started using delayed delivery. So if I'm sending something to anyone, particularly if they're below you, and I don't mean that pejoratively, but I say that because I think people feel a really need to respond to people above them in the org chart rather than peers. And it was like late nine hours or whenever I just said delayed delivery until eight o'clock the next day.

This also can make you look like a hero on Monday morning. You're sound asleep and like your email firing and all stuff to everyone, but people appreciate that because nothing's urgent, but look, a lot of us entrepreneurs and our brains. Either use that tactic. The other tactic I did was I had a one note thing for everyone on my team, and when I thought of that thing, I just put it in the bullet thing, and I put it in under their list for our next one to one.

Or if I would send one email with the five things rather than constantly them getting my epiphanies via email. So I think people just appreciate some of those boundaries. And frankly, they'll be more energized. I mean, we have societal burnout going on right now. So you can try to work people to death, but you'll have to find new people.

And they're all tired too. So I think it's much better to try to focus on outcomes, give people this rest and relaxation and model behavior where they can have life outside of work, but then they come to work and they're all in. 

[00:47:52] Hala Taha: Boundaries are so important. I know we have a global team. And so we use Slack.

And as entrepreneurs, a lot of us, we don't have the same boundaries because we are the business owners, right? And to your point. You're making sure that your emails are hitting in the morning. When we send Slack messages, we've got all these little codes, like don't need to respond till Monday. And like, it's like a certain abbreviation or just, you know, respond with an emoji or whatever it is not needed until tomorrow morning.

So we make sure that we write that because with a global team, it might be midnight for somebody, and I don't want to look like a crazy psycho boss. Right. 

[00:48:30] Robert Glazer: You're being respectful. You're also, if you make everything important, nothing's important. Look, there are times when there's a big million dollar proposal and people need to.

Work on the weekend. They need to pull it together. And I'm sorry, that's the trade off. I think everyone wants the flexibility in one way. It's got to be both ways. It's got to be when the business has a core thing, you got to rally around it. And that's the trade off. The problem is if you're constantly forcing people to do stuff out of hours when they don't need to, it's hard to rally them around when it actually is something that requires that.

[00:48:58] Hala Taha: This is so true. If you treat your team with respect, then once there's an actual fire, they're going to want to help you. Till 10 p. m. at night because they just feel like, Oh, I love my boss. I love my job. And they care about what they're doing. They don't feel like you don't appreciate 

[00:49:13] Robert Glazer: them. They are happy to be a firefighter if you are not the arsonist.

[00:49:17] Hala Taha: Mmm. Good one. Okay. So emotional capacity. This is the final component of team capacity. What are the ways that we can build openness and sharing into our company culture? 

[00:49:29] Robert Glazer: Psychological safety. What is that? We hear it a lot. My definition is it's like trust as scale. So if you and I have trust that we build up, how does someone walk into a team and feel that trust all around?

And so there are a couple ways to do that. And there's this exercise called the Johari window that shows that if you ever heard of it, but the two main ways are vulnerability and sharing. Vulnerability is opening up, letting people know things about yourself, having these conversations, building that trust.

And then the feedback component is people know that they can speak up and they can speak truth to power. And you talked about that earlier in intellectual capacity, just letting people know that they can say stuff. They can sense when they can walk into a meeting. There was a great tip I heard. I think it was actually Kim Scott who said it when they said, if you want to know if your team has psychological safety, give them something that's completely impossible to do and see if anyone says anything, um, fantastic.

Just can't be done and see if someone says something. I was like, that's kind of a great idea. If you want to see whether people feel. Comfortable comfortable speaking up on your team. The other thing is really getting your team and organization focused on things that they control. Again, when we talk about why we lost the sales deal, we don't talk about external factors.

We call the client, we ask them for their feedback. We ask what we could have done better. We focus on the things that we control. So think about when COVID happened, we give way too much credit, I think, to the initial. Kernel of something that we don't control than the whole spectrum that we say this thing happened when it's really not true.

The stimulus was not controllable, but the response was controllable. So think about COVID happens, obviously not controllable, shuts down every restaurant in the world. There's a whole group of restaurants who are like, we're not going back unless we can do what we were doing and how we were doing it and we're not changing and otherwise, they're mostly out of business.

There was another group of restaurants that were like signed up for every delivery app. We need to figure out how to do this. Started selling wholesale produce to keep their people going, built outdoor things and totally changed their business model to survive. They had the same thing, the thing they didn't control, but they had choices about how they responded.

Waiting for the external in the world to change is much harder than focusing on the things you control. So I think Leaders of great companies get their teams inherently focused on what they control, and they just don't let them even use the excuses of external and outside and otherwise. 

[00:52:01] Hala Taha: Can you help further define this by comparing and contrasting an organization that has high emotional capacity versus one that has low emotional capacity?

How would they act differently? You just gave one, I guess, an example with COVID. 

[00:52:16] Robert Glazer: There's some, a lot of partners that we work with, and they have sales teams. You've seen this a lot with sales, where there was a team that they had never lost a deal that was their fault.

It was, we could have teed them up better. It was the partner. They got screwed because it was the end of the quarter. The client didn't call them back. The whole team, it was a cultural thing. They would just always blame everyone else. There's no way that team's getting better or learning from the mistake versus the sales leader who says.

Let's do a debrief on this deal. What could we have done better? Do we wait too long? Was our pricing wrong? Did we ask the client for feedback? I mean, I have had people ask for feedback before and then fight me on it. If you're going to ask for feedback and fight it, like I'm not going to give it, I'm not going to give it to you.

And do we look at all the things that I literally like, why did you go with this other, I was literally like, look, I'm telling you the truth. If you want to fight me on it, I don't need to have this conversation. And then they focus on winning the next time. So again, I do see it a lot in sales. There's another story I share in the book.

We actually had a partner, a partner that came into our industry. We do the services piece, and then there's people that do the technology piece. Unfortunately, some of the tech vendors still have services, and so there's some awkward conflicts at some point. And then there's some pure play technology companies.

Well, it's one technology company come in to the business. They hired a big agency team. They went and sat down with all the agencies. Bid for services. And we started doing like a lot more business with them because they just really were doing a good job. And this other one, we kept giving them feedback.

Your pricing's too high. Customers want different feedback. There's an awkward service thing, and we were at a conference in London, and someone from that organization went up to our team and said, I know for a fact, we know it's a lot talked about in our organizations that you take kickbacks from this other organization, and that's why you're doing so much business with them.

A, we had never taken, I was like, I'll give you a million dollars if you have proof of that. We had never taken any kickbacks, and we had been very vocal about how there shouldn't be conflicts of interest in our industry. Basically, what happened was. They were losing a lot of deals to this other company, instead of actually changing any of the factors about why they're losing the deals.

It was just easier to make up this narrative that we weren't working with them because we were getting kicked up. That to me is low emotional capacity. I love that. 

[00:54:31] Hala Taha: So we love actionable advice on the podcast and you have this exercise called One Last Talk. Can you help us understand how that exercise can build emotional capacity?

[00:54:42] Robert Glazer: Yeah, there's a book on that. If you're interested, and we did this at a company event. This is 303 in the vulnerability world, not 101. So if you're trying to introduce vulnerability into your organization, just little things when you do a call or a team call, like Personal high from the weekend, personal low, professional high, professional low.

We did a quarterly thing. What was one thing you screwed up this quarter that you'd like back? Look, sometimes you find out something really bad happened to that person that weekend, and that's kinda what's in their mental space. So, mix people up. In meetings, start with, how's it going? How are you doing?

What's going on? That's the 101 version. 303. One last talk was we had four employees that were coached by Philip McKernan, who wrote the book at our actual annual company event. And they gave these one last talks and these are. The speech you would give the day before you're leaving the world and the thing that you haven't said, but you need to say, and they were deeply emotional and vulnerable and things that people had not shared anymore and discussed in front of the entire company.

And there just wasn't a dry eye after any of these stories. I mean, one was about someone who had the BRCA gene and how it weighed on them. Another was about someone who came out, another person leaving their family at a very young age. But the ripple effect at the retreat the next two days of people who were just like started having real Personal conversations with people that they had worked with for five years and just didn't really know anything about them I say actually the one downside of it was we had a hard time putting the genie back in the box at some point Stuff was coming up that we were like, we're not not going to deal with this.

Yeah, the initial reaction was incredible I think those people felt seen and heard but it just modeled for everyone else that it was okay to Talk about these things in your life. And so it was really powerful. Again, don't recommend that as a first step. I think you have to have a high degree of psychological safety in your organization to do something like that.

Yeah. And 

[00:56:38] Hala Taha: I think what you're saying is pretty basic in terms of having that human element and things that you do at work, like making it where. You do care about people's lives and what's going on with them. I know with our company, we have daily huddles for all our different teams. And we start off with what's your personal high for the day.

What's your recognition or like success story and just gets people warmed up, gets people talking. So I totally agree with that. 

[00:57:05] Robert Glazer: Yeah, and you often find, look, I had one of these yesterday, you know, there's a lot of times, hey, how's it going? And you just mean that generally or to a client. It's always a good, or some people know really how's it going, some people say.

And you know what, yesterday they were like, not good. And I have this, here's the personal thing that's going on in my life. It was sort of a check and go, but that's what we talked about for half the thing. That was what on their mind. And if I didn't ask that question, I would be like, why is this person being short and aloof with me today?

And did I do something wrong? But that's just where they were emotionally. And I think I was happy to have that conversation and try to be helpful if I could. 

[00:57:38] Hala Taha: Okay. So my last question for you, Robert, this has been such a great conversation. We're talking about how to elevate. Teams and build capacity within teams.

We've got to make smart hiring decisions. In my opinion, making smart hires can like make or break you as an entrepreneur because it's very hard to fix bad hiring. Yeah. Yeah. And it just screws you up, especially when you're going fast, you need good employees that can scale with you. What is your guidance for hiring best practices?

What is your approach? 

[00:58:06] Robert Glazer: First read Jeff's smart book, uh, who, cause he's the smartest guy on hiring in the world, and he's kind of the expert. And we built a lot of our things around that. What's his name? Jeff Smart. You should have him on. First of all, he's hysterically funny, and he's the top. He built the McKinsey of sort of hiring consulting firms.

Okay. I love it. You might have heard of Top Grading. His dad wrote that book. He was born into this business. I happened to make an intro. So one is, first of all, make sure everyone is agreed on the job description and what good looks like before you post it. I've seen a lot of people, Hey, do you have some advice?

I want to hire a sales and marketing person. Uh oh. I'm sure sales and marketing both want different things. So make sure. Super clear on the job description. Hiring should all be behavioral based questions. Jeff will say, if you have asked hypothetical questions, you'll get hypothetical answers and we break ours down into half is around our core values and we have behavioral based questions around all of our core values.

And then half is around the actual job and there's some exercise or work product or whatever that mimics the work they would actually have to do. And we try to make it clear that's not valuable. We're not trying to get free work and people say, Oh, I missed that or I didn't. And like, this is the job you're going to have this same sort of time frame to get this back to a client.

We give them a client report that has a lot of errors in it. We see which things they fix. And they don't fix. And the people that are natural at that are good at, so we do 50 percent on aptitude, 50 percent on values. Do reference checks, ask hard questions, don't just give the two people they gave you, like for senior roles, you have LinkedIn, do some back channeling, people hire people that used to work here all the time that know us, that we work with, I'm shocked that they don't ask us, on a couple occasions I would have been like, no comment, you know, and could have saved themselves a lot of time and money, so verify that what people are saying to you is true, and in that process itself, don't ignore the little things.

Were they a pain to get scheduled with? Did they show up on time? Did they write a thank you note? How did the person sort of behave and operate during the process? And then another best practice that we. Got, and by the way, you should try to score everyone and make these questions numerical so that you can objectively, you should evaluate a couple candidates at a time, but have someone in the hiring meeting that's disinterested, that's not part of the team that's hiring, that represents the company hat, because the people want to hire often really need the job.

They really need that whole field and they're kind of, and that person is supposed to represent the company. They're like, you got legs and arms, let's go. Yeah, they're supposed to be like, look, you keep wanting to hire Sarah, but like you told me detail oriented is important and I'm looking at the things here and detail scores are really low.

So it really helps to have that person in that room. And adopting this question is the last thing. Is this person better than 90 percent of the people? Or they raise the bar for the company. That really forces you to. Does bringing this person in raise the bar for the organization? And everyone has to answer yes to that.

So that's some of them. I talk in the book to just about if you want to hire high aptitude people. I have a couple tips around that. The people that are the fast learners, because that's about are they good for the company and the culture? A couple tips are one. Look for people that were promoted in place.

These days, a lot of times people are lured away and offer a promotion they're not qualified for by a new job. If the people that worked with them wouldn't promote them and they couldn't do better in the same place, I don't think that's a great sign. Look for people who are voracious learners. They're learning things, they're improving things, they're telling you about the lessons they did or otherwise.

Then this one took me a long time to learn, too. But particularly for candidates that are 10 years into their career, 30, 40, If they left jobs a lot of the time, why they left the job is important. If people pulled them that worked with them before, that's awesome. Well, then Hala pulled me here and then she went to another company, pulled me there if they're 10 or 15 years into their career and they've never worked with this recruiter before, and it doesn't seem like they're working with anyone who worked with them before.

That's a big red flag, even that the recruiter that worked with them last time, isn't working with them before. So you shouldn't be. 30 or 40 or mid career and be totally outside of the network that you've been in looking for a job. That's kind of a red flag for me too. 

[01:02:26] Hala Taha: So many good insights, Robert. I have to say this whole interview.

I'm like, Oh, I should be doing this. I should be doing this. Giving me a lot of ideas. 1 percent a day. That's all you need. Yeah. Yeah. Lots of stuff to implement. I highly recommend you guys go get his book Elevate and Elevate for Teams. Robert, we end our show with two questions that we ask all of our guests.

The first one is what is one actionable thing that our young and profiteers can do today to be more profitable 

[01:02:53] Robert Glazer: tomorrow? I love the 80 20 rule. So I would say go look at your clients, team, whatever, and you will find that 20 percent of the people are responsible for 80 percent of the outcome. That's where you should focus.

And you can stop doing a lot of the stuff where 80 percent of the effort is getting 20 percent of the outcome. It's very hard to escape the 80 20 rule. If you don't believe me, walk into your closet and look at your clothes and you wear 20 percent of your clothes, 80 percent of your time. 

[01:03:20] Hala Taha: Everything is 80 20, the whole world is 80 20.

And what is your secret to profiting in life? And this can go beyond business, beyond finance, whatever comes to mind for 

[01:03:30] Robert Glazer: you. Look, and this is, I guess, the core of affiliate marketing. I thought about it. I've tried everywhere to build mutually beneficial outcomes. Win win sounds so trite, but I think in everything we've done, whether it's between the organization and the team or partnerships or the core model of what we do, try to focus on outcomes where everyone can win and not, not win lose.

I think that that works in the short term, but it's no fun in the longterm and it doesn't work. So. I really focus on, let's say, mutually beneficial outcomes. 

[01:04:03] Hala Taha: I think that's super smart. Robert, thank you so much for this amazing conversation. Learned so much about how we can elevate our teams, build capacity within our teams.

Where can everybody learn more about you and everything that you do? 

[01:04:15] Robert Glazer: Everything is totally integrated now at robertglaser, G L A Z E R dot com. So the books are there, the podcast there, the Friday 40 email, if you want to join in on the course and, uh, I'll get you that code as well. 

[01:04:27] Hala Taha: Like I mentioned, you are a part of our podcast network.

So his podcast is called Elevate and he's got a super engaged following. So if you guys want to learn more about entrepreneurship, tell them what they'll hear on the show. 

[01:04:38] Robert Glazer: Yeah, we really focus on a combination of CEOs and people that have done it and been in the trenches as well as world class thinkers and writers and authors around aspects of performance, where if you want to get better at something, then they're the person that can tell you how to do that.

So yeah, it's the Elevate podcast. Join wherever you listen to your podcast. 

[01:05:00] Hala Taha: Amazing. We'll stick all of those links in the show notes. Robert, thank you so much for your time today. 

[01:05:04] Robert Glazer: Thanks for having me. 

[01:05:10] Hala Taha: I loved this conversation with Robert because it was so practical and he had so many helpful things to say about how we can grow, scale, and build better businesses, even in challenging environments. I personally took away so many lessons today, but one that's top of mind is the fact that we talked about how top performers likely won't always be your top performers.

And I've personally experienced this before. At one point, I'll have an employee who's absolutely crushing it. I'm always saying what a rock star they are. And then suddenly, they seem to be really falling flat, like they're in a rut. And I've also seen these people become top performers again if I put them in the right position.

And so, what can you do to help these performers stay top performers? Robert says it starts by recognizing that this kind of change happens all the time. When your business is growing, it's often evolving right under your feet. And the same people who were great when you had a dozen employees, sometimes just can't keep up with the same role in a hundred person organization.

And as a leader, you have to recognize this and make the tough call to say to them. I don't think you want to or able to do this job, or you need to figure out a place within the company that they will thrive. But it's not inevitable that your business will fracture as it grows. Finding the right people is key.

Robert compares it to building through the draft in sports. If you can find high aptitude individuals who are curious, reflective, and interested in building a culture of learning, then you'll likely have a better chance of adapting to new pressures as you scale up. You'll also have to nurture your team, treat them with respect, and only cry fire when there's an actual fire.

As Robert put it so well, they'll be happy to be your firefighter if you're not always the arsonist. It also helps to figure out what strings you can pull to improve their satisfaction and performance. For example, Robert is not a big fan of the compliment sandwich. And although a lot of people have come on the podcast and recommended that strategy, neither am I.

Sometimes people miss the meat of the sandwich or focus more on the last thing they heard. Sometimes it's more effective just to be straight to the point. Thanks so much for listening to this episode. We also love feedback and compliments here at Young and Profiting Podcast. So if you did enjoy this show and you learned something new from Robert Glazer, then drop us a five star review on Apple Podcast.

Nothing helps us reach more people than a good review from you. Another thing that we love is sharing. Just hit that share button and text a link to this episode to somebody you know who could benefit from it. If you prefer to watch our podcast as videos, you can always find us on YouTube. Our YouTube channel is growing really fast, so check us out on there.

You can also find me on Instagram at Yap with Hala or on LinkedIn, just search my name. It's Hala Taha. Before we go, I did want to shout out my production team. I'm so grateful for Jason, Amelia, Greta, Sean, Hisham, Prakhan, Kriti. Ambika, Ashutosh Garima, the list goes on and on. You guys are amazing. This is your host, Halataha, AKA the Podcast Princess, signing off. 

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