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On this episode of the Healthy, Wealthy and Smart Podcast, I welcome Ryan Estis on the show to discuss excellence in business. Ryan Estis has more than 20 years of experience as a top-performing sales professional and leader. As the former chief strategy officer for the McCann Worldgroup advertising agency, he brings a fresh perspective to business events. As a keynote speaker, Ryan is known for his innovative ideas on leading change, improving sales effectiveness and preparing for the future of work.
In this episode, we discuss:
-Three actionable tips to constantly reinvent your business
-How to stay relevant and achieve excellence with changing customer expectations
-Four key practices you should adopt to thrive and avoid stagnation
-Why you need to reframe problems in order to produce lifetime customers
-And so much more!
For more information on Ryan:
Ryan Estis has more than 20 years of experience as a top-performing sales professional and leader. As the former chief strategy officer for the McCann Worldgroup advertising agency, he brings a fresh perspective to business events. As a keynote speaker, Ryan is known for his innovative ideas on leading change, improving sales effectiveness and preparing for the future of work. He was recently recognized as one of “the best keynote speakers ever heard” by Meetings & Conventions magazine alongside Tony Robbins, Bill Gates, Colin Powell and Mike Ditka.
Ryan delivers keynote speeches, courses and online learning with an emphasis on actionable content designed to elevate business performance. His curriculum emphasizes emerging trends influencing leadership effectiveness, sales performance and customer experience. Ryan helps participants prepare to thrive in today’s ultra-competitive, hyper-connected business environment.
Ryan supports the world’s leading brands, including AT&T, Motorola, MasterCard, Adobe, MassMutual, the National Basketball Association, the Mayo Clinic, Honeywell, Thomson Reuters, Ernst & Young, Lowes and Prudential.
Ryan and his team publish original research featuring client case studies to expand the live event experience. He is also the author of a popular blog on business performance. His writing has been featured in Inc., Forbes, Entrepreneur, FastCompany, SmartBrief, Business News Network, Crain’s Business, and Yahoo Business.
Read the full transcript below:
Karen Litzy: 00:01 Hi Ryan, welcome to the podcast. I’m excited to have you on. So thank you so much for joining me.
Ryan Estis: 00:07 Thanks Karen. It’s great to be here.
Karen Litzy: 00:09 Yes. And so like I mentioned in the introduction, Ryan was one of the keynote speakers this year at the private practice section annual meeting in Orlando, Florida. And I really loved the keynote, which is why I reached out to you. I took action now like you suggested and we’ll get into that as part of my tan plan. We’ll get into that a little later. I reached out to you via social media. And so here we are, but I have to say I really enjoyed the keynote and yeah, and it took a really like emotional interesting turn in the middle and I feel like in speaking with other participants that was unexpected and welcomed and really got people to sort of grab onto your words and take it to the end. So well done from a speech blueprint standpoint.
Ryan Estis: 01:06 Well I appreciate it, you know, and I think an experience like that a little more emotional resonance is a good thing because I think that helps. Helps the tan plan, which I know we’re going to talk about get a lot of attention. So that’s always the goal.
Karen Litzy: 01:20 Yeah, it was great. So thanks so much for that. But now let’s let the listeners who weren’t at PPS get a little bit more information from you. A little taste of that keynote. And one of the things that you know we were kind of talking about before we went on the air is at the private practice section. There are a lot of small business owners, a lot of entrepreneurs and a lot of my audience are yes, maybe work in healthcare but are also entrepreneurs. And we were talking about kind of customer expectations and how those expectations has changed over maybe the past couple of years. You probably have better research than I do on this, but can you talk a little bit about customer expectations and how they are kind of changing the small business or entrepreneurial landscape?
Ryan Estis: 02:09 Right. Well, customer expectations are skyrocketing. They’re changing fast because the world around us is changing so fast. I mean, I’m actually sitting at home right now and you know, when we get off this podcast I can turn to my lap and say, Alexa, paper towels and then an hour paper towels are at my front door. And that experience and experiences like those are elevating my expectations of everything. So as a consumer, I have a whole new set of standards with respect to customization, personalization of efficiency, expertise, sense of urgency and how I spend my time. And for those small business owners and entrepreneurs that are astute, aware of that and have evolving their customer experience to meet customers where they are, the future looks pretty bright.
Karen Litzy: 03:03 And let’s say, okay, we’ll take me as an example. So I’m a small business owner and I really liked the way my business is running. I’m successful, I’ve been in business for 10 years. If it ain’t broke, why fix it? So what kind of advice would you give to me?
Ryan Estis: 03:23 I’d have some real thoughts about that. I would say if it ain’t broke, it’s the perfect time to break it because success breeds complacency. And complacency is the ultimate recipe for disruption. And the reality is for so many small businesses and small business owners, they don’t change until there’s a crisis, or they’re experiencing some significant pain. And so, at that threshold, it’s too late and you’re on the verge of losing market share and getting commoditized, having your margin squeeze. And I know this from personal experience, if you remember from the keynote, my opening story was about exiting the advertising agency I worked for. And the reality of that situation is we had just deep pockets of resistance to change. You know, we wanted to kind of continue to do what we’ve always done, follow the playbook. And when the world around you changes and the marketplace changes, that’s just such a recipe for disruption. And so having lived through that, I vowed personally, I am never going to experience that pain again. So the mindset of a small business owner today has to be continuous reinvention. Change is no longer an event. It’s simply a way of existing. If you want to reign, remain relevant, thrive into the future.
Karen Litzy: 04:51 And can you give some examples of maybe what you do with your own business to constantly reinvent? Because I feel like we can say you need to constantly reinvent and I feel listeners out there going, okay, great. Well what does that mean?
Ryan Estis: 05:07 Yeah, yeah. So I’ll get real, real specifics. Because here’s the reality. If things are going pretty well and like the scenario you outlined, I had my business for 10 years, it’s going well and I’m just going to continue to do what I’m doing. I don’t see a real need or I have an appetite for change. And when things are going well that’s true because change is uncomfortable. But, I’ve forced myself to get uncomfortable because that’s where I’m evolving, stretched and growing. So we’ll see a few things that I do. Three things, three very specific actionable tips. I am always in my business conducting what I refer to as three little experiments. I could be experimenting with my marketing on partnership, new software and the goal of the experiment isn’t necessarily to have wild success.
Ryan Estis: 06:03 The goal of the experiment is to learn and iterate forwards. So I’m trying new things that I think could help our business. And a part of that is it puts me in a position where I’m expanding my knowledge, acquiring new skills, getting education feedback, and then pantsing the business forward. So I would say some successes iterative, but you want to get out of your comfort zone and into the learning lane. So we have three very specific experiments that we’re running in our business right now and there are tasks and we’re getting feedback and evolving as a result. So that’s one thing that I do. A second thing that I just really encourage or recommend is that in addition to working in your business, like you do, like probably a lot of your listeners do, and I do as a practitioner and a small business owner, you have to make time to work on yourself and on your business.
Ryan Estis: 06:59 So for me, we just came out of a two and a half day meeting that I refer to as our 2020 growth summit. So this is literally shutting down emails, shutting down the phones, two and a half days with my team and some of our partners. There were eight of us attending in a room for two days with a very buttoned up agenda talking about the future of our organization. And you know, we’re tearing apart the business and challenging ourselves to think about growth into the future. What are our priorities, budget assessment, looking back, looking forward recommendations, competitive intelligence, I mean all of it. So you know, that type of time kind of out of the business to working on that I think is imperative to having kind of a good solid plan and direction ahead. So that’s a second recommendation is make you know, take time out to strategically work on your business.
Ryan Estis: 08:03 Well, the third recommendation I have, and this is something I may have talked about it in the keynote, but I’m a big fan for small business owners of having what I refer to as a personal board of directors. And I have eight people that I’ve invited formerly this, that on my board of directors. And I invited people that I had a relationship with. I have a lot of trust and respect for their opinion or what they were doing say in their specific area of expertise. And the invitations were fairly informal, but what it’s done is it’s given me access to these eight people who have competency and skills perhaps to shore up some of my gaps. And I am able at inflection points when facing a critical decision or a juncture or I’m considering making an investment.
Ryan Estis: 08:58 I had a group of people that, you know, I can reach out to and schedule a time with to use as a sounding board. And I think entrepreneurship at times can be very isolating. And you know, you feel you can get to a point where you feel like you’re making decisions in a vacuum. And having an advisory board is moonshine option and valuable part of my growth, particularly over the course of the last couple of years. So those are three very kind of tactical things that I think everybody listening to can think about as it relates to their own business.
Karen Litzy: 09:29 And, all of those three examples are things that are pretty doable for everyone. You know, it’s not like there are things that are so outrageous. Like when you say three little experiments, you mean small, not like I’m going to restructure my entire business, but you know, you constantly throughout the year are doing this. Do you say I’m gonna do three little experiments a year or is it like every quarter or six months?
Ryan Estis: 10:00 No, these are good questions. I would say I’m always running three experiments simultaneously. So let’s say we’re working on a marketing project that’s a bit of an outlier, an experiment, something we wanted to do, try it. Sponsorship around some of our content branded content. And I’m not sure where this is going to go or if it’s realistic. And so what we’re testing this, I’ve reserved a little bit of budget, a little bit of investment, a little bit of capital. We’re going to go down this path and then evaluate it. But through this process we’ll learn things, we’ll uncover things, we’ll get customer feedback. We’re working with, you know, our marketing partner. And so it’s those, they’re small tasks that, you know, if there’s traction and the evaluation is, yeah, this is beneficial and we could build it then, you know, that we may expand an experiment.
Ryan Estis: 10:57 So, that’s the idea. They’re small because I’m a big believer in that. Success is iiterative, you know, you want to be doing little things. There’s been a thought about that. It’s like the minimum viable effort. There’s BJ Fogg, he wrote a book about tiny habits and small changes and his ideas that to create these, he’s a professor at Stanford. And his idea is that you create a new habit, you need to simplify the behavior and then make the change so tiny, so little, so ridiculous that it’s just something that’s easy to do. So no, you don’t want to and you want to take calculated risks, you know, not something that’s going to jeopardize your core business. So that’s when I think of three little experiments and then you build on those things based on your expanded knowledge, experience, exposure, you know, you can start to iterate your business forward.
Karen Litzy: 11:59 Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. So like in my world, in the physical therapy world, for me, I can think of changes that I made over the last year. And we’re joking before going on air, like I went into these changes with like white knuckles. Like I did not want to let go of the things that I was doing because like you said, it’s very uncomfortable so that it works. So for me in the healthcare world, something that was, it was just simply switching my electronic medical records from one company to another and it was very uncomfortable. But now that I’ve been doing it for, I don’t know, eight months or so or nine months, I think to myself, this is so much better. What was I thinking before? Things are better. My patients are getting reminders that they have appointments, the platform’s easy, or I can do it on my phone. I don’t need a computer. So you know, that’s an example of something small and at least in the healthcare world that you can do. And like you said, I was getting feedback from my patients and they were like, I love this new system. This is great. I love getting these reminders. I love that I can pay through the system. So it worked.
Ryan Estis: 13:14 It works. But I also think it illustrates a very, very relevant point to our conversation that, you know, it’s the psychology of change, right? So our brains are wired for safety and survival, not innovation and change, the mechanism in our psychology is trying to keep us safe and alerting us when danger is near. And that’s trying to keep us away from these unknown elements. And that was pretty useful in times where there were reptiles running around trying to meet us. But in the modern day society, when you’re running a small business, you have to condition yourself to navigate those feelings. So the discomfort, the uncertainty, the trepidation, the anxiousness that you felt upon making this change, that’s a sign that you’re in the learning lane, that you’re expanding, you’re growing, you need to kind of learn to welcome a little bit of that tension because that discomfort means you’re on the cusp of a breakthrough and you broke through in an area of your business that elevated the client experience that’s better for you, that’s better for your team. And you just had to navigate that tension inside yourself. And you know what, it’s like a muscle cause the next time then you invest in new software or taking intelligent risks or conduct an experiment, you’ll recognize that tension of assignment. Yep. I’m in that. I’m in the learning, I call it the learning lane of your comfort zone and into the learning layer. And that’s where growth happens.
Karen Litzy: 14:51 And it’s not easy, but it’s not easy and it’s a little scary. But you know, I guess I love the third point you made kind of having a personal board of directors and I guess I do have this without even kind of categorizing it as such, but I do kind of run things by people and it’s interesting even when you run things by this group of, let’s say you have eight people to shore up your ideas with, what do you do when they come back to you with feedback that doesn’t align with what your thoughts are?
Ryan Estis: 14:52 Yeah. So ultimately I would say I’m the decision driver, but if I’m out of my comfort zone or I’m entering unchartered territory, then it’s useful to gain some outside perspective. And so I’m taking their advice under advising and helping it shape my decision.
Ryan Estis: 16:04 So if I get feedback or advice or counsel that’s counter to what I anticipated and my own opinion, then that means I’m probably going to have to do a better, more thorough job of convincing myself that I was right in the first place. And, then taking that step forward. The other thing about the advisory board, I would just also recommend is I hand selected these people for their particular skill or competency. So I have a technology entrepreneur that’s an expert at scaling a business. I have a good friend who owns a research business that’s complimentary to mine and he built and scaled that business and sold it. And so he has a lot of expertise that’s related to my business. We partner together, but I value the way he ran his business and the organization he’d built.
Ryan Estis: 16:56 I have my business manager who’s known me for 20 years and is a good friend. And I also have my life coaches and spiritual advisors. So, my point in kind of sharing some of that context is, you know, I reach out to the people that I think would have relevant context based on the decision I’m navigating. So, if it’s a financial decision, I’ll probably reach out to my good friend who’s worked in finance on wall street for 20 years and say, I’m thinking about borrowing money to do this and what’s your perspective and how does this look good? And these are the terms. And so I have kind of carefully vetted these people based on their experience, exposure and the competency and thinking they could bring to support mine, if that makes sense.
Karen Litzy: 17:43 That makes perfect sense. And did you do any sort of like self evaluation to see really where your gaps are, whether conscious or unconscious gaps?
Ryan Estis: 17:54 Yeah, I’ve gone through coaching programs and have done some assessment work and then I also just recognize, you know, after having been in this business for a decade now, what some of the things that I’m really good at, some of the things that, you know, I’m not strong in. And so I just, I think in this kind of point on the journey, I have some exposure, I have some exposure to that. And some of it’s based on my previous experience too. You know, I’m not a finance expert. I’ve never scaled the business and sold one. And you know, I’m not a technology expert. I’ve never launched an app. So these are things I’m like, Oh, these are things that, you know, as I move forward and navigate these waters, you know, it’d be good to have people that occasionally can jump in the boat and row with me and that elevates my confidence too.
Karen Litzy: 18:47 Sure, sure. Yeah. And I’m sure it gives you more confidence in your decisions. And you know, I’m thinking of those like brand new entrepreneurs who feel like completely overwhelmed with absolutely everything. What advice would you give to them to kind of really hone in on what their zone of geniuses or greatnesses if you will, and then what may be they need to fill in the gaps?
Ryan Estis: 19:12 Yeah. You know, a new honor, first of all, new entrepreneurship is overwhelming. So the best advice I have is be patient with yourself and be honest with yourself and you know, because everyone talks about entrepreneurship and freelancing and the gig economy. And you know, I guess when I quit my job, people thought I was crazy and I don’t know, we weren’t, entrepreneurship is so celebrated in our culture today and it’s really happened in the last 10 years. You know, we’ve got magazines like fast company and we’re putting, you know, these YouTube millionaires on the cover of ink. And I don’t know, I think there’s all this pressure to succeed and scale and get and just I would say just remember, focus on the next most important thing.
Ryan Estis: 20:09 Build what you’d want and make and you know, achieve some semblance of success before you move onto the next thing. Focus is so critical for an early stage entrepreneur. It’s so easy to get distracted and trying to do seventeens that we try and do 17 things at once. Well, and then you want to be networking. So you’re meeting with people in a coffee shop that did it before you and you’re just slow down, focus, get the next thing right, be patient, success of build. So that kind of perspective I think is so important.
Karen Litzy: 20:47 Awesome. Thank you for that advice. That was great. I’m trying to take notes as quickly as I can here, but I’m going to have to go back and listen to this again. Now, you know, before you said you were kind of built to survive, you know, our nervous systems are built as human beings for us to survive. But something that you had mentioned in the keynote was, yeah, it’s great to survive, but we also need to adapt and thrive. And you had sort of four keys to this breakthrough for poor performance are four keys to really help us adapt and thrive. So, can you kind of go through those for the listener?
Ryan Estis: 21:27 I can. So the first one is very related to kind of where we started, which is about change. And the first one’s initiate continuous reinvention. So you want to be an agent of change. You want to look at change in challenge through the lens of opportunity. And you want to be invested in this idea of successes that are rid of them to constantly be conducting experiments. And really I’m going to disrupt myself before the marketplace or competition does it for me. So stay in the learning lane, push yourself, get uncomfortable. That’s the first one. The second one is really about customer experience, the idea of brand, the customer experience. We’re in the experience and kind of, we touched based on how fast customer expectations are changing. The actionable recommendation around that as audit your own customer experience.
Ryan Estis: 22:20 Look at every customer touch point your app online, offline, and look for opportunities to elevate it and add more value and make the experience better for your customers, meet customers where they are. Then the third one was it’s related, but it’s really about kind of, you know, the internal operation of your business, which was be a culture champion. I think culture is a catalyst for, you know, employee engagement, discretionary effort and contribution and culture is merely a reflection around how you lead. So think about purpose, vision, values, why are you doing what it is you’re doing and what are the people who join you on this journey? Gonna get out of it. And employee experience and customer experience will always be directly correlated. And then the last one was take action. Now you talked about a Tan plan pan is, that’s the acronym.
Ryan Estis: 23:16 Take action now. And it’s that, you know, great leaders, entrepreneurs, small business owners, they have a healthy action orientation so they don’t get paralyzed. They’re able to make decisions. The idea that you take in new information and then you immediately take action on those ideas, right? So, just like this, your listening to this podcast, you invest 30 minutes, 45 minutes or reading a new book, it’s then taking a pause after you’ve taken that information in and say, what can I decide and commit to doing and doing differently that’s going to create some momentum or advanced my clots. And that’s, you know, really successful people they have, they’re hungry for information, but then they back it up with action orientation. And those were the four tips.
Karen Litzy: 24:04 Great tips. And I want to go back briefly to where you have branding the customer experience or patient experience in the healthcare world. Often times people use the B word, I call the B word branding to be all encompassing, right? Like you just have to, Oh, you just did your work in your branding, or B, be a better brand. But
Ryan Estis: 24:32 Yeah, that’s not really it.
Karen Litzy: 24:34 It’s sort of this term, you know?
Ryan Estis: 24:37 Yeah. I have an ad agency background, so I’d probably throw that word out too much. I liked how you call it, the B word that’s actually good for me. But let me clarify. So I guess a more specific way to describe what I mean by brand. It’s establishing an identity, standards of excellence right away you go to market, tell your story, engage customers, deliver service, follow up and follow through that differentiates you from the competition. And that delivers value or resonates in a compelling way with customers, right? It’s how you do things and if that, you know, look every touch point with the customers and opportunity to add value in advance or relationship. And it’s just imperative in the experience economy that we’re carefully thinking about that and looking for ways to elevate.
Karen Litzy: 25:36 Yeah, and I love the example that you use. Where were you at? A Ritz Carlton or something. Is that where you were? So if you want to like briefly tell that story because I think, you know, when people hear Ritz Carlton, I mean, I know the first thing I think of is expensive, very elevated sense of customer service and is the same thing with like, a St. Regis. And you know, this is what I want to do real quick. I’m going to tell a story about my stay at st Regis and then we can contrast to your stay at a Ritz Carlton, which I would say are on par, right? So I was at a st Regis, I went out, it was like in a very warm part of the country and in the middle of the summer, came back, the air conditioner in the room, not only broke, but flooded the room and like you walked in and it was steamy and it smelled and it was like the carpet was all like squishy with water.
Karen Litzy: 26:46 So we called down and said, Hey, you know, our air conditioner broke, there’s water everywhere. And you know this just like one in the morning, I realize it’s like the seed team on but still, so the guy knocks on the door with a mop and a bucket and I was like, Oh no buddy, you’re going to need more than that. Like this is not good. So we have to call back down. Say, yeah, no, like we can’t actually stay in the room. It’s really bad. So someone came up, knocked on the door, handed me a key and said, you’re in room three 47 and walked away. I was like, boy that wasn’t very st Regis of them was it? And then the next morning I went to the front desk and I was like, well maybe cause everybody was like real tired and like I was with my boyfriend at the time. We just wanted acknowledgement and maybe like have breakfast on us, have a drink at the bar. I went back down and said, yeah, my room flooded last night and they just came up and handed us a key and now we’re in this room. The girls like, yep. Got it.
Karen Litzy: 27:46 And that was my experience. So I wrote a letter and what the st Regis did is probably more along the lines of your experience at the Ritz Carlton. I wrote a letter, I didn’t make a big deal while I was there. Wrote a letter, said what happened to general manager, came back and he said, thank you so much for not ranting and raving and making a big deal of things. Any weekend you want. No blackouts. It’s on me. So we took him back and they gave us a whole redo. And now I’m like, I would stay at a st Regis again in a heartbeat. They were fantastic
Ryan Estis: 28:25 There and that’s the ultimate lesson for any entrepreneur. It’s the last sentence. You just say, cause here, here’s the key. And it’s similar to my Ritz Carlton experience and their philosophy is that problems are our best opportunities in business to deepen a relationship and that. So it’s a real reframing of the problem, opportunity and customer relationship. It’s so interesting. The best customer service stories always start out with a problem. My room got flooded, I lost my Ray-Bans in the Bay and was, you know, frustrated. And then some heroes steps in and resolves the problem beyond our wildest expectations. And it deepens our affinity, loyalty and evangelism for that particular brand. And so it’s just, it’s important to remember, it’s never the problem, it’s the way it gets resolved that people remember. And that ultimately shapes how they feel about doing business with you and Ritz Carlton leaving keys like PR.
Ryan Estis: 29:38 It’s almost celebrated. We have a guest that has a problem. Here’s our moment to shine, to be magic, to create that wonderful, memorable feeling. And you know, so often I think in business and small businesses, you know, we get aggravated, Oh, customer’s upset. Oh there’s a complaint. And just next time that happens, pause and say, how can we turn this problem into an experience that creates a customer for life? And you’ll reframe it. And you know, it’s just interesting it’s when problems come up for me. Now I have some of my, God, there it is. Now we’ve got a real opera, a magic moment as arrived.
Karen Litzy: 30:16 Yeah.
Ryan Estis: 30:17 How are we going to raise, how are we going to respond?
Karen Litzy: 30:20 Exactly. And, you know, for the listeners who weren’t at PPS, and you correct me if I’m wrong, but you were like paddle boarding and the Bay, you lost your sunglasses. And like some guy that worked at the Ritz Carlton went snorkeling down and got them for you and returned them to you. And you were like, what in the hell?
Ryan Estis: 30:40 Yeah. And keep in mind, I never said, Hey, I mean I lost it. It was my fault.
Karen Litzy: 30:47 Yeah.
Ryan Estis: 30:48 And he just overheard me talking about it. I never, you know, I never went and said, Hey, this happened to me, you know, so it was just totally my thing. And the fact that they picked up on that and did what they did. And I was just, you know, I was dumbfounded and the more I researched and unpacked it and learned and actually spent some time with one of the executives at Ritz Carlton that runs a leadership Academy, you learn how based in their culture that is, right. So it’s their values, it’s their service standards. I mean, one of the great things at Ritz Carlton is that, you know, they have these very simple standards for how they greet and interact with guests. And part of what’s great about that is that it creates consistency across all Ritz Carlton properties, right? So there’s a way they greet and interact with the guests and they train on that, not what I mean by brand and things standard of excellence that’s repeatable, that differentiates them, that resonates with the customer. So it’s just a great takeaway from that is do you have standards? You know, you say customer service excellence that may mean something very different to me than it does to you. And that’s my point is you don’t leave customer experience up to the subjective interpretation of each individual. You standardize it, create protocol around it, process discipline around it so you can deliver a world class experience every single time. That’s the idea.
Karen Litzy: 32:20 Yeah. So really get specific.
Ryan Estis: 32:23 Yeah, get specific.
Karen Litzy: 32:25 Yeah. Yeah, that makes perfect sense. All right, so before we wrap things up here, I just have a couple more questions, but first one is, is there anything we missed? Any key takeaways that you want the audience to get?
Ryan Estis: 32:41 You know, I think to just, you know, and this isn’t new, but I think really spending some time as a small business owner, looking out, being forward thinking, you know, spending a little time, this is a great time of year to do it. We’re coming up on the end of the year and I know it’s an exercise I’m going through. I’m asking myself, you know, why am I doing this, first of all, and then what do I really want this to be a few months from now, but even five or 10 years from now? And some of that forward thinking and visioning and purpose, solidification. It helps reconnect me to why I got into this in the first place. Why it still matters to me. And the solidification and the articulation of that can really be beneficial to a culture and connecting your people to it and being able with clarity to say, this is where we’re going, this is what we’re building and this is why we’re doing it. This is the impact that it’s having. And I think for your listeners in your industry, some of that work could be, so useful and so, so meaningful. So I would think that’s another, you know, Simon Sinek did the great Ted talk. He wrote the book and starts with why. And I think that’s true.
Karen Litzy: 33:55 Awesome. Well, thank you for that. And then the last question, I probably should have prefaced this question, but I forgot. So here we go. It’s a question that I kind of ask everyone at the end of the interview. And that’s knowing where you are now in your business and in your life. What advice would you give to yourself straight out of college?
Ryan Estis: 34:19 Yeah, I would say, relax, have fun and enjoy the ride because it goes by pretty quick and you know, if it’s not something that is going to matter five years from now, don’t give it more than five minutes of your time and attention. I think for a lot of, you know, achievement oriented, entrepreneurial type a people, which I am one of, we can tend to get perfectionist and stress about the details and kind of, you know, that creates low grade anxiety and overwhelm when things go wrong. And it’s just, as I’ve gotten a little older and wiser, I think just relaxed and letting some of that stuff go and really making sure that, you know, yeah, hard work is great and building something that you care about and are proud of matters, but just really make sure that you’re enjoying the moments and the journey your on, you know, while you’re moving through it.
Ryan Estis: 35:14 I think that’s just so critical. I think we project outward and delay our happiness until, you know, I call it the if when happiness travel, if my business gets to this point, you know that then I’ll take a vacation or once I get here, then I’ll finally be happy. That’s a real, a real miss. And so I let some time go by. I think it’s certain phases of early phases, my career and my life where I would have been a little more relaxed about things and that’s important.
Karen Litzy: 35:46 Yeah. I know I’m guilty of everything you just said for sure. And now totally guilty. Oh 100% guilty of everything that you just said. And I’m trying to work through that myself. So that’s wonderful advice. Now, where can people find you if they want more information and they want to connect with you? They want to hear you speak, all that fun stuff.
Ryan Estis: 36:11 So I would say that the website’s a great place. We do a weekly newsletter called prepare for impact. It comes out every Sunday and it’s just kind of a couple of actionable tips to help you get ready to be the best version of who you are and the week ahead. And then social media. LinkedIn, I’m pretty active on Instagram. We have a company Facebook page, pretty pretty active YouTube channel. So all of the social properties. But I’d love to connect with any of your listeners. This was a lot of fun.
Karen Litzy: 36:45 Fabulous. Thank you so much for coming on. I really appreciate it. And do you have anything coming up? Anything in the works
Ryan Estis: 36:55 And I do. So, you know, we’re working on a book.
Karen Litzy: 37:02 Yes.
Ryan Estis: 37:04 I think we’re at the point now that we’re at the point now where I think it’s actually gonna be a pretty good book and it’s about sales, service and leadership. I think it’d be very relevant to the, you know, small business owners and practitioners listening and that’ll be out sometime next year. So for anybody listening that’s interested in, you know, if they subscribe to the newsletter and stuff, we’ll be sure and do promotion on it.
Karen Litzy: 37:32 Awesome. Well, thank you so much for taking the time out and coming on. I appreciate it.
Ryan Estis: 37:36 Yeah. Thanks for having me.
Karen Litzy: 37:38 And everyone, thanks so much for listening. Have a great couple of days and stay healthy, wealthy, and smart.
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