Business Coach : Help From The Best
-I want to share this little anecdote and business coach education with the Thrivers, because you mentioned “In Search of Excellence.” it is bizarre how, as we’ve interviewed Thrivers all across the country, how you hear countless of them, these mentors, mention. They say, these people who have built million dollar businesses, these success stories, you say, when was your moment? When was ah-ha moment? When did you decide that you would become the head of this company or the CEO, or the guy would start this mega business.
And they all point back to a book, usually. Or specific seminar or business coach education training. But it was a learning opportunity that exponentially increased their learning opportunity. And so I just love that that’s a book that in 1984 got you going. Now Tim, I want I want to read this quote to you. Gary Keller– again, bestselling author, co-founder of Keller Williams realty. The reason why I love Gary Keller is that he is a phenomenal author, but he’s a phenomenal real estate guru, and he’s phenomenal business coach. And he says this. He says “a college professor once told me, Gary, you’re smart. But people have lived before you. You’re not the first person to dream big. So you’d be wise to study what others have learned first, and then build your actions on the backs of their lessons. He was so right, and he was talking to you, too.”
Tim when you were growing “Tax and Accounting Software” from two people to 400 people, how did you experience success as a result of maybe studying other companies, or studying other people? How did you guys not get stuck? Because you could have been stuck where it was just two people. How did you study other companies and apply it to your own business there?
TIM REDMOND: Gee. I remember when Fast Company came out. We had already been going as a company, but just reading– I would read “Ink” magazine. So I would be watching other people, what they did and how they attacked their problems. And I’m surrounding myself with people that are overcoming odds and building big. And so I just like– that’s what I surrounded myself with, so that’s what my expectations began to just come in line with that. And I would do this, Clay. I would get my top guys. I would get into a book. Or there’s this thing by the House of Being or by the Peter Drucker association.
We’d get these executive briefings there. And I would gather my team around. And we will have had to read this thing. We’d come in and we’d talk about it. Then we’d say, well, how are we going to apply that right now to this company. And so reading on my own, and also getting a group where I’m reading together with my people that I want to pour into. And then our last question is, what are we going to do about this knowledge right now in our company?
-I will say this. Old school, this is 2001, when I interned for Tim. We did not know each other. I remember just coming up there on the floor, and there’s probably close to 400 employees of the time. And I remember looking around. And there’s all these people, and all these computers, and all these phones, all this office space. And one of that really deeply impacted me was there was a professionalism. There was an organization. There was a systematic approach to what you were doing.
And the training was over the top. It was very systematic. It was very good. We had a lot of Subway that we got for free. We’d had a lot of pizza we got for free. I’d try to take that home as an intern there. But one of things I would say, I just I just remember that it was such a systematic– it was almost like the Death Star of accounting software. It was just a very– it was awesome. Very efficient. But you don’t get to that level of success without studying these companies like with what you were doing there. So you literally got the teams together and would deep dive into these reports?
We would deep dive. And then people that went before us, that were a lot smarter than us, we read what they did right, what they did wrong, their success. And then we’d dive into it. Well, what’s happened behind the scene? And I would hire really smart people. And they were obsessed with their own opinion. And so there were thinkers. And they would get in and begin to think about this, and we’d really dive down and say, what problem did they have? And what were they feeling on the inside?
And we’re coaching each other. It was just an amazing environment where we would coach each other and challenge each other on this. And we created our own language, really, based on what we learned in this.
-Was it sort of like a Klingon dialect? Were you there long enough to be introduced to that language?
-That might have been a new guy sort of hazing they were doing.