Today we continue our series on the Trillion Dollar Coach by talking about one of our favorite relationship building tools, the Trip Report.
The Trip Report is exactly what it sounds like. A brief, informal, overview of a recent vacation you took aimed at sharing with your colleagues to build trust and help them get to know you better. When you have a team that is willing to share Trip Reports, you can foster a higher degree of empathy and collaboration over time.
Robert Greiner 0:05
So we're recording, and we're talking chapter two, on the Trillion Dollar Coach, Your Title Makes You a Manager, Your People Make You a Leader. We got about halfway through last time and I'm trying to figure out where we left off.
Igor Geyfman 0:19
Did we get to like trip reports or something like that?
Robert Greiner 0:22
I don't think so.
Charles Knight 0:23
I thought we mentioned it. I don't remember.
Robert Greiner 0:28
Okay, so we talked, I think we have to cover dealing with difficult people, product excellence, communicating well being decisive. So we talked about Bill Campbell being human first, and we definitely said we could go another episode on the chapter. Oh, yeah. We said there's some really gold nuggets in here around structuring one on ones and preparing for them. So we should definitely talk about that. Let's see, we already published in the first part of chapter two. I'm almost done with audio. So it'll go out this week.
Charles Knight 1:01
Okay, gotcha. Okay. Obviously, this still says chapter one, but I remember we talked about chapter two.
Robert Greiner 1:08
Okay. Yeah, I got all the audio done. I just kind of cleaned it up and then we said, Bill did a good job, talking about mistakes that he made and stuff like that. Okay. So we had the dealing with difficult people piece, it'll take us a little bit to get settled back into this. We talked about if you're a great manager, and people will make you a leader. They claim that not you, Charles, you pointed that out last time, I thought that was really poignant, demanding respect, versus having an accrue to you like, trying to force that respect, dynamic it just isn't going to work. Humans are autonomous, right, the more, actually the more you try to push, the more humans push back, typically. And so projecting humility, selflessness, showing that you care about the company and the people around you. Were things that Bill Campbell said were good ways to accrue. What he calls respect, I think there's a bit of a negative connotation there. So I like the word trust a little bit better. I don't have a problem with the word respect or the dynamic of respect as a leader. But this idea of trust, for me is a little bit more. I don't know if nuanced, or complete is the right word. But I do think about building trust with the people around me. We have the story about Donna telling him she was gonna leave if he continued to be a little bit too heavy handed and she was the one that actually told him your people are the ones that make you a leader. This all rang a bell? Yep. Okay, and then we got into coaching a little bit, I think maybe we'll start there, if you want. Because there's a quote, I wanted to chat about either way, where it says in the book, most people don't spend a lot of time thinking about how they're going to make someone else better. But that's what coaches do. And so there's this Bill Campbell's always kept up at night is the cliche, what keeps you up at night, kept up at night by the well being and success of his people. And that had a lot to do with getting the better. And that that resonated with me personally, you know, have a pretty robust review system expectations framework. So actually use promotion, getting the people on my team, helping them get promoted, creating those data points, creating those experiences and the feedback loops. Because I feel like if I can get my, if I can align my actions towards helping my team get promoted as a proxy, then I must be doing some of the right things, right? Because we're in a system that we feel pretty good about. And so that's kind of one way that I've looked at it just not as a not as a means to an end. But as a proxy for Hey, you're probably doing at least partially the right things. What do you think about that?
Charles Knight 3:41
I think I agree that it's a it's a proxy, I don't know, trying to think of what what other proxies would exist for serving that same purpose?
Robert Greiner 3:52
Well, certainly work life balance, Charles, I mean, you've told me a couple stories about people that have been in your team that you did everything you could to lead the horse to water and there was nothing about the project or the client or the atmosphere or the culture that forced or put undue pressure on someone to work so much extra that they couldn't, they felt like they couldn't take vacation or couldn't be home for dinner. And they just didn't. Right. And, and so I think that's certainly a proxy as well on the on the other end of that sword.
Charles Knight 4:22
Yeah. Yeah, that the quote that you, you talked about the beginning coaches, can you read it again, I forgot what you said about how they spend their time thinking about how to make other people great or better.
Robert Greiner 4:34
Yeah. So in the book, most people don't spend a lot of time thinking about how they're going to make someone else better. But that's what coaches do. That's what Bill Campbell did. He just did it on different fields. So I think there was maybe a void of spending time thinking about improving the capabilities and skills and in career prospects of your team. And that must have been a very natural thing for Bill to do just because he is essentially the real live version of Ted Lasso.
Charles Knight 4:59
Yeah. Well, that's certainly what my executive coach does. Like, he will often tell me, it's like, hey, as I was thinking about you and what I wanted to share with you, to help you this year, whether it's a theme or an idea or suggestion, and it's always, it kind of hits me, like, wow, he was thinking about me before ever getting onto this coaching call, and really thinking, what I need to grow and develop. And that's pretty special. Yeah. So I like that. I'm thinking about if I do that, for my team, and for my mentees, and I think I do, but I don't think probably to the degree that Bill Campbell did, you know, I don't think it comes. I think it comes naturally to me, because I've been doing it for so long. But I don't know that there's clearly a spectrum here. And Bill is on the extreme end. So I'm trying to figure out where is the gap? Like, what more could I do if I wanted to do more in that regard?
Robert Greiner 6:01
Oh, man, yeah, one easy thing is tell your team you're thinking about them when you are, I mean, that it's not about getting credit, although that helps. I mean, I don't think there's anything wrong with getting full credit for spending time caring about in developing the people on your team. But if it says here like that the top priority of any manager is the well being and success of her people totally vibe with that. Like that makes a lot of sense to me. That reflects a truth that I've experienced in my career and has gone well. And yeah, I like it when people who are more experienced than me mentors, coaches, leaders, say, Hey, I was thinking about you. And when I read this article, or I was thinking about you over the weekend, and here's a new idea. I love that. Like, it makes you feel really special. And so there's a well being component, I think in there to where you're letting someone on your team know, I care enough about our relationship and your success that I spend my finite time and energy, some of that finite time and energy, thinking about how to make you better. Like why wouldn't we communicate that?
Charles Knight 7:05
Yeah, yeah. Very true.
Robert Greiner 7:07
Igor, any thoughts there? We're about to hit trip reports. As, I'm looking at my notes, which I know are your favorite thing? It was?
Igor Geyfman 7:14
Yeah. I think that, like, to me, that quote, is aspirational. Because I do spend quite a bit of time in that mode. But I would say that it's not the majority of my time. And so my aspiration, I think would be to give that modality, more and more of my time and attention, which basically means giving, thinking about the welfare, success of my team member more and more. And I think it's also probably like a natural extension of how much time you're accountable for spending on like delivering something versus like managing, and the more you're accountabilities as a percentage of time go towards management. I think the more that you're able to skate towards that modality.
Robert Greiner 8:12
Yeah. This chapter is gold. This is a pure gold chapter.
Igor Geyfman 8:17
There's, I mean, that's why we're spending so much time on it, I think, right? Because there's so much stuff like it's easy to gloss over it and just say, okay, one episode one chapter, but it would just be a disservice.
Robert Greiner 8:28
Yeah, I think we talked about seven parts that were aligned, we could easily do seven episodes on this. On this one chapter. Yeah. Okay, so taking a bit of a cover such a gamut, too. So moving on. So the next section talks about trip reports. This is something Igor, that you introduced to our management team in Dallas, when you went to Portugal. Yeah. And we were trying to figure out a way to get some more collaboration cohesiveness amongst the the leadership team in Dallas. One kind of hard thing. I guess this is probably true everywhere, we have the disadvantage, I guess, of being geographically dispersed, where we typically go to client sites, and you have your own sort of projects and commitments and things like that. So you could have peers and do have peers that you may not see for a whole year, right. And so one thing that we really want to focus on is building and developing the the trust and relationships of that peer group. And so we just talked about developing trust with the team and having that accrue to you. And now the trip reports are a way to develop relationships and trust and intimacy with your peer group. And I think that's a hard thing to do. So this is a very useful and potent tool to do that. So why don't you? I think you explained it much better than I do. We've talked about on a couple previous episodes, but why don't you just cover it here for us?
Igor Geyfman 9:56
Yeah, I think the the reasoning behind the trip report is an opportunity for people that are working as part of a team, your peers are your team, that to share kind of personal thing that may not be might not come up in the regular course of business. And I said, Bill extends this idea of building a personal relationship beyond your peer group, also with your team. And I think when we go into one on ones are things that they're, but definitely how can you share something about yourself outside of work life, which might help you to better connect, which might help you to better humanize and create empathy. So connection between people, and trip reports are just I think they're an easy way because it's a vacation probably that you took, hopefully, it's a trip that you enjoyed taking. And so you want to talk about it, right. And back when we went to the office, common water core topic, right? When somebody knows that you went on vacation, or something like that to say, you know, Hey, how was Disneyland or how's Florida or how was Portugal around one, but that's sort of those unintentional collision that may or may not happen, and the trip report brought some intentionality. And it's not like a big thing. It's really just a couple of minutes of the person who came back, really just sharing some of their experiences, and maybe the highlights of the trip. And so, at the time, I this was probably my first reading of this book. And the idea of the trip report really stuck out to me, it also stuck out to me, because, well, you think of a team, you and let's say it's in our sort of line of work, it's usually a team of engineers, and managers and development leads. And sometimes designers and product people come together, working together day to day on, like a common shared goal, usually to solve a problem or to build software or something like that. And so I think that like very naturally creates alignment on goals, because you're literally working on usually the same product, or the same strategic problem or something like that. And in our case, when you think about our team, the management team, abstractly, we're working on a similar problem. And towards the same goal, but in fact, we're quite apart from one another, right? Because the way consulting works is that were sorted among different clients that we service. And sometimes the client now may only have one management team member that's serving them, sometimes they may have multiple, as a management team member, sometimes you might have multiple clients at the same time that you're helping and sort of the, the idea, or the construct of a client. And your connection to the client creates your own little silo, if you will, right, because your goal is to help your your team develop themselves and ultimately provide value to the client. And, and you could do that, in many ways side working with your peers who are at other clients working on different problems in different areas, and the different teams. And so the construct of team, I think, in our case, was not quite as natural as it is for a delivery team, or something like that. And I thought, hey, I think it will be cool for us to have more connection, to think ourselves as a management team more of as a cohesive team, because we really are working towards a certain set of aligned goal at the at the office level. And, and also, like I know, some people who manage their team quite well, and the others I don't know, at all, and that there's probably a lot of people on the management team that know me pretty well and would ask me about Portugal or whatever. And then there's some people that wouldn't even know they went on vacation, right? Because they're busy working on our own thing. And so the trip reports seem like a low friction, easy way to start some of those connection points and conversations on the team. And make it very easy, right? And so not making it so much about what we're doing that client XY and Z but, but really, hey, here's, here's the human Igor, who likes to do these sorts of things. And maybe you like to do them too. Or maybe you don't like them. You don't like to do them. And you want to share that opinion as well. And that was just as simple as grab some photos off the phone that I took while I was on vacation. I said hey, I'm going to do like 10 and then just the showed a photo and gave a little bit of background. All in all, and it took less than five minutes. But it had really great back and reaction from from folks. And what was cool is that you had folks that would then go on trips, and they would share there. And it wasn't something that I was like thing. It wasn't like a mandate. I said well now that I shared my trip report, I think Stan went on vacation. I think it was like one or something like that. And he shared his you know, jumping in and stuff like that.Robert Greiner:
And Lord of the RingsIgor Geyfman:
Yeah, and so like that's that's cool, right because I'm used Sam likes to cycle. And that's something I talked to him about. But I had no idea that he was like the Lord of the Rings nerd. And that some other people might be interested in that he was a bungee jump guy, right? Like, to me, that's like, the last thing I want to do is tie like a small cord to me and jump off a perfectly good bridge. But I'm really into that. And there's other members really into that and so they can bond over that aspect of of his life and his personality outside of work. And I would have never done about Stan, if he didn't share. So yeah, I think it was like a low friction effective tool to share some sort of joy and personality with your peers and bring you closer together.Robert Greiner:
So you've hit on something. Yeah, absolutely. It's it's pretty low friction, because you've already taken pictures and just had the experience, right. And there's probably I mean, at least probably for half the population, a desire to share that experience with others like you, you think it's cool, you don't go on that many vacations every year. Like it's generally something that you humans tend to want to share out there, even if you're more on the introverted scale. But it also I don't have vulnerabilities right word, but like it gives your peer group a peek behind the curtain. Right, we put up a bit of a wall at work, like there's the personal and professional side. And there's some gray area some that gray boundary is wider than others. But we don't experience people's personal lives at work, right? There's some kind of, I don't want to call it a facade, because it is kind of rooted in professionalism. But you give people a glimpse into a space they're not typically exposed to you can't help but be interested and intrigued, especially when the SEC, suppose that with a formal meeting environment, right, like when I remember where you were sitting when you presented your trip report, we were all in a conference room, you had the pictures up on the screen. And I think there's a level of intrigue that this breeds and you're you're kind of giving, you're taking the first step, you're extending a bit of a trust olive branch, and only good things can happen with that, I think.Igor Geyfman:
Yeah, it could have been like, I could have gotten some feedback unlikely from our team, but another team, someone who'd been like, hey, like, nobody cares about your trip, man. Like, Why watch, please, five minutes of my life. And like that, I guess that could have been feedback that someone can receive or I could have received. And maybe somebody in the room thought that as well and didn't give me that feedback. And like, that's okay, too. But it felt like that little place of vulnerability, it's like it's worth it, right? Like the payoff of connection is so much higher than some discomfort, or some weird feedback that I might receive about my trip or something like that. And it does give a peek behind the curtain, I don't quite remember exactly what I shared, but I do like distinctly remember being like, hey, that's what Stan looks like in shorts. I've only ever seen him in this business attire, and also talks about a kid, but I don't think I've ever seen all of his kids before. And so it was cool to see his kids on the platform with him. And all that sort of stuff. So there is kind of a peek behind the curtain that you might not always get with people. And that does present some level of vulnerability, but that shared sort of vulnerability, I think is the prerequisite for connection. And I know that's Charles's specialty with the idea of like more ability and connectedness.Charles Knight:
Well, can I? Yeah. Can I admit something, which is gonna go counter to that? Yeah, I remember when we tried to do the trip reports on a regular basis. And I was scheduled to go and share one of my trips, I think it was a meditation retreat, and it got rescheduled, and then I chickened out. Like I felt uncomfortable doing it. And I just, I just let it go away. Like I had it all put together. Yeah, go.Robert Greiner:
I remember talking about that now.Charles Knight:
Mm hmm.Robert Greiner:
Oh, sneaky. Okay. No, let me ask you this question is, if you had gone to, because you've been Italy recently, but pre pandemic, but recently enough. If this was a tip, touristy trip, where you went to the Colosseum and you had some pictures of the Colosseum, and you ate some Italian food, and you had some nice photos of pizza? Yeah, would you still have chickened out? Because I'm wondering is this just related to not wanting to do the trip report and engage in kind of the things we've been talking about? Or was it that this was like more of a spiritual journey? And that was maybe a little bit too much? Yeah,Charles Knight:
I don't know. It's tough to say because I haven't done any trip report of any sorts. But clearly, there was a difference between a meditation retreat and kind of a stereotypical vacation. I really don't know. But I I've looking back on it though. I do regret it. Like not doing it. Because I know If I, I mean, heck, at our company, I teach people that, hey, if you push past the discomfort, oftentimes that leads to these moments of connection. And I just I chickened out, man, I was not vulnerable, like the fear of something prevented me from going through with it. And I'm not ashamed. I mean, it happens. But I do regret it. I wish I just shared it. And maybe that would have helped other people to feel more comfortable about it, because I, Igor, I was gonna ask you, and Robert, you can chime in as well. It isn't something that took. We did it a couple of times. And then it just kind of died. And I know you teed it up, it's something that it's not something that we have to do. It's really up to people if they're interested. But I'm pretty sure Bill Campbell. That was how they started. Right? It didn't have to be a formal thing. It could have been even an informal weekend trip report doesn't have to be a vacation. But just what are your thoughts on why it didn't stick? And what we could do to try to bring it back and make it more of a part of the ritual for our team?Robert Greiner:
Yeah, I think there's two Wait, did you at us, Igor, I have a terrible deal. Before jumping in, you have to go first? Do you want me to go?Igor Geyfman:
Well, I also have to So I'm curious to hear what your two are? Because they might just be the same. So why don't you go and I can just say,Robert Greiner:
So. Alright, so the guidance in the book is to build better relationships among the teams start team meetings with a trip report or other types of more personal non business topics. And we do that every time. In our weekly, we call it tactical, but it's like leadership team meeting, we start off with an opening round question. Some, I took a lot of pride in my opening round questions. I feel like they were very, like interesting and nuanced. Like the the past couple have been, what's your favorite dessert? And then you get some I don't care. I just like chocolate or whatever. So there are some of those nice glimpses. But like the ones you kind of have to think about a little bit, I remember I haven't got feedback that people wanted my questions like before, like the day before, so they could think about it. Right. So I do think we fulfill the spirit of the trip report. The other thing too, is this is early days of Google, everyone was Google had gone public, everyone was like, pretty newly rich. And so there was they were pretty famous for going on some fairly elaborate weekend trips, see had a lot of that going on as well, a lot more travel. And so I think that, you know, that combined with the fact that we just didn't have anyone, consistently, like we should have put it on our checklist, or like, everyone has like a project or something, whatever, in Glassfrog, for holacracy, that it would surface every time, I think we would have gotten more takers. But if you don't have someone actually pushing and asking each time or even scheduling it or talking to folks ahead of time, it'll just die on the vine. And so I think it's a combination of those things. I said to there might have been three in there.Igor Geyfman:
Yeah, I think my I think mine to be a little bit different. Robert. And so the first one is, I think probably kind of what Charles faults, is that not not like I feel perfectly comfortable sharing pride over sharing a bunch of stuff andRobert Greiner:
You and I are over sharers.Igor Geyfman:
Yeah, we are. We are over sharersRobert Greiner:
No question. No questionIgor Geyfman:
Sometimes to our detriment, right. Sometimes people are people look at us. And they're like, why did we need to know that? Right? And they're probably right. And that's good feedback. And please keep letting me know. And Robert know, when we've over shared because we do try to be respectful of people's TMI limits, or whatever. And so not everybody's like that. And so that's part of it. And then the other part is probably like, the seen clear value, like I could imagine sort of the value, but I also have the benefit of like reading the book, and buying into Bill Campbell's mythology more broadly beyond just like the trip report. But that may not be the case, I think for a lot of folks that didn't have the benefit of maybe reading Bill's book, or just grokking the that there is value in some maybe the value proposition of getting photos together versus what they think that they and the team I get out of it didn't like that equation just didn't come out positive for them. And so they they may have just like, Yeah, I just don't, don't don't see the point to doing something like that. But we do start all of our meetings with sometimes very, like, I like chocolate level of information about ourselves because we do these checking questions, but sometimes they're very deep. And and we also have, I think, a pretty broad spectrum of members of our team at different levels of comfort of sharing things about themselves. And that that's, that's, that's also part of continuing to work towards providing, not like making those people share, right like that's like the antithesis, I think of what we want to do. But continuing to reinforce the messaging and the reality of like, Hey, this is an environment where you can feel scanned. And I think the more that we work towards creating that environment, the more safe people might feel sharing things outside of their professional lives. And, and I remember Charles telling me about his his retreat, not an official trip report, because I think we're just having coffee, and I was just very curious about it. And Charles, I would have loved if you would have come in and been like, I don't have any photos, because I didn't take anything when I was meditating, and so on. And you would have been like, but I want you to experience what that trip was like. So for the next five minutes, please turn to the person on your right in silence, like stare into their eyes, right? Because I think that was one of the exercises. Here's a flavor of the trip for you see, kind of, beyond just seeing it in a photo, you can experience, what it's like, and then people can be surprised how uncomfortable it is to do that for even like 20 seconds. So I would I would have loved that, Charles, thatCharles Knight:
I that that's totally guns blazing. And I don't think that would have went over well with some people on our team. But I, when I, I want to go back to something, Robert, that you talked about what is the definition of a team, because we are a leadership team that gets together. But we also like our day jobs are primarily not working with each other. You know, we're working with our clients, we're working with a team or set of teams that are not on the leadership team. And so part of my maybe diagnosis here of why it didn't stick, or why it was uncomfortable to begin with, for me is that this isn't a traditional team. We don't work together on a day to day basis toward a common goal, we work day to day with other people towards goals that essentially roll up. Eventually they roll up at the office level. And but we're not really working with each other. And is that is that a team? Like I don't know. I mean, it's a team. But it is different, though, than what Bill Campbell coached or how we would coach our teams on our clients. And so I just don't know how to articulate the difference.Robert Greiner:
Well, it because if you have your reporting at the senior executive team, like Bill was coaching, they all have their own sort of areas of the organization. So they have to collaborate. Yeah, there is some silo there. But I mean, you're still kind of working in this building. It's it's like different. It's not different in some way. The Venn diagrams have a good amount of overlap. But yeah, there are some, some things about client work that you're spending a lot of time outside of the business.Charles Knight:
Yeah. Yeah.Robert Greiner:
And some of our clients are so large, we treat them like offices, right. So there's a whole other dynamic layer there to say, yeah.Charles Knight:
Yeah, I'm not trying to say that this doesn't apply. Right. But they'reRobert Greiner:
But it is interesting. Yeah.Charles Knight:
Yeah, they're probably nuances to any team that kind of have to be figured out. And these tools that Bill Campbell talked about, like the trip report, and one on one meeting structures and stuff like that. They just have to be adapted right to, to the environment and the team, because you can't just expect to install these, and you get Bill Campbell level results. We're not Bill Campbell. And so some adaptation, I think is probably required.Robert Greiner:
Yeah, for your situation. Yeah, of course, just like any coach, but I will say if you can move 5%, even towards Bill Campbell's effectiveness in these areas, like you're that's a huge gain. And these are not I mean, remember, he was what 40, before he came to Silicon Valley, had a whole career as a coach, these things didn't just manifest out of nothing. Like what you're seeing here is a lifetime of trial and error and wisdom and experience, and failure and success, distilled into advice. And so yeah, I would say there's a level here that it's easy to when you watch people playing a game looks easy, and then you start to go and get into the nuance of any one area of it. And it's like a whole rabbit trail. Is that right rabbit trail. It didn't sound right rabbit hole.
Rabbit hole. Yeah. Same difference.
Same difference. Yeah, you know what I mean. Alright, we're definitely going to have to go, I think three episodes on this chapter. I'll see ifIgor Geyfman:
Can I make a comment on sort of Charles's observation.Robert Greiner:
And, and this is maybe like, kind of like, maybe a little bit to Kumbaya or whatever. But we do in our mode of how we split, sort of accountabilities, members of our management team, let's say by client, we can probably all be successful at some level, without ever having to truly cross pollinate or collaborate with the other team. Right, so client X can do really wonderful work for client X, and be successful and profitable, and so on, and some other member of the management team can be, can be very successful. And let's say because they're financially successful and successful in developing people individually, those things can all show up, and we can achieve, let's say group success, right, by just being successful individually. And and there's probably less impetus for us to collaborate than there is for let's say, traditional executive team, who might be managing things at the functional level. So marketing is a function in sales as a function of finances is a function and so on. But at some point, there's, there's like a coupling that has to happen between all those pieces, because the organization like really can't just like survive if they don't talk to one another. And that's probably somewhat true for, for the way that consulting is and these client silos. But it's definitely much more true for like a traditional executive team. And definitely very true and very visceral for like a delivery, which is what I mentioned earlier. And as I was reading the book, it, I had this thought that was like, yeah, maybe our management team doesn't mean that to be successful. However, we define success. But boy, I think that by having that level of community and connection, we could all do better, right? We could be even more successful. Right? We could learn from one another, we could connect on strategies with a client, we could connect on staffing and another sort of thing that that we think about at the office level, and there could be a great amount of extra benefit, right? So so even extra success and things that we haven't even been able to explore if we worked, right. And, and working together as a community also, like feels better. Because that's how humans are wired. And so if you live in a neighborhood, traditional suburb, right, and you're kind of like upper middle class, or whatever you can, you can survive and do well and be successful as you define it, without ever engaging any of your neighbors. Right, you can run a successful household, and for things that acquire community level, things like fire and rescue, police, trash pickup, and all that sort of stuff that's sort of abstracted away from you, right? And that kind of gets taken care of, you never have to engage with your neighbor and say, Hey, why don't we pull our money together to make sure that they can respond to emergencies or so on. But, but it still doesn't, like, feel right, right? Like, you're still. So you can be successful as a household. But it's probably much better. If you know, your neighbors, and you connect to your neighbors, and you work together as a social circle, even though you can be quite successful independently. And I think that's maybe the situation that we're in. But it's very easy to choose to say, Hey, I'm not going to be vulnerable. I'm not going to go through the effort of extra connection, because I'm successful enough on my own here. And then maybe that's kind of, but I also saw that as an opportunity for us to be.Charles Knight:
Yeah, but I totally agree that it is better. And I think maybe, maybe the question that I'm posing is, what is the best way to foster connection between peers on a team because I like the, the emphasis on Hey, peer relationships are important. I mean, I remember one of our collectively the three of us one of our mentors. I remember he sat me down and talked about like, Hey, look at the people around you right now, Charles, hey, in a few years, y'all are gonna be running the Dallas office. AndRobert Greiner:
Yeah, you better get along now.Charles Knight:
It's gonna be harder.Charles Knight:
Yeah, that's exactly crap. Yeah, that's right. Yeah. So maybe it's a question of you need, you need, maybe we need in our company, we need more ways to pair people up. And to get them to work together on something, because they're not working on something. Today, I'm in some of our roles on the leadership team. We do have this officer in charge and second in charge. So there's a pair. You know what, it's more of like an apprentice relationship than a than a peer relationship. But maybe we should be more intentional about saying, Alright, for this project or this decision, we're going to pair people up to go tackle it as opposed to letting one person do it. Who's filling a role? Because I do think the best way to get to know people is to work side by side with them on something like the the the times when I got to know The people on my team really well and bond and connect with them was when we were going to battle together, or we're up against a deadline, we're trying to figure out a bug and staying up late and working weekends to make something great happen. And I don't have that opportunity to do that with you all on a regular basis. And maybe that's where we can be more intentional is pairing people up to make sure that everybody has at least an opportunity to work with somebody on something. And pairing that with something like trip reports in our opening question, as a, like a double threat, and a good way or kind of tackling it from a couple of different angles. Yes, it is worth it. It's absolutely worth it.Robert Greiner:
As a leader of the group to encouraging finding moments to set those pairs up or your one on ones giving some feedback around like, hey, it's not clear that you and Igor know each other very well. Like fix that.Charles Knight:
Yeah. Yeah.Robert Greiner:
And just pointed out, and it's like, You're smart. You go figure it out. Yeah, like what go build it figure out which I want to work on. Yeah. And we've given that kind of feedback, when we have a new member of the management team get promoted, one of their career development points coming out of their promotion review is almost always go build relationships with this group, go get plugged in. Yeah, and we kind of identify a contemporary group, where these are the new principles, there's four of them, like spend some time with them. And I love your idea, though, about collaborating and working together, because you see, gives you an opportunity to see glimpses of brilliance, right. So the trip report gives you glimpses into behind the curtain into personal life, which is cool. But it's great when you're working together. And then the person that you're collaborating with, like, just comes up with a great idea or perfectly puts together a slide. And it just kind of makes the difference. And you think, Oh, this is this was really great. Like, I appreciate the craftsmanship. And so I think there's certainly multiple angles, obviously, building relationships. But I do like that idea. All right. Well, we're coming up on time. Oh, go ahead. Yeah, go ahead.Igor Geyfman:
I think it's up to the leader to set the tone of for the team. Because you and I are also kind of like on a peer team. Right? Like, we work on a client. And that client could be considered a microcosm of our office, right? Because there's probably was like seven management team members, I think, on our team, right. And, and we could all be quite successful, but from a development and a financial standpoint, if we all work separately, we don't have to work together, right? To be successful at the client. But our leader will not allow that. Like there's no world in which Stan allows each one of us to operate completely independently without the other and connecting with the other. And he sets that tone, even though he doesn't have to, like and we could do fine without it.Robert Greiner:
We would just be fine, though, right? Like, we would just, we would just meet the minimum bar, which would be okay, on one dimension. But we're we're definitely better as a group. And yeah, you're totally right, like you can, you can take on that relationship debt and ignore it. And you're not going to get any near term consequences, probably. But over time, by having great relationships with your peer group is really going to take a toll. But yeah,Igor Geyfman:
Charles doesn't have the benefit of that, right. Charles is the OIC of set price, I think, several accounts at this point. Right. And he doesn't have like a big client team, he has to actually split his effort across multiple and he's the sole sort of MT, and that he doesn't have that clear of an opportunity. And so I think, especially in those cases, able to pair up with somebody, not the whole time, get in the same foxhole shoulder and like, the same goal like boy what a what a dream that would be I think, to people that don't that don't have that. And then going back to layer above, at the general empty level, right. Where our office manager vice president?Robert Greiner:
Yeah, and it's interesting, because we, there is a benefit to being having that scale. But it's not like Charles, we're talking about you, like you're not here doesn't do anything, to develop peer relationships with the people around them. And so there's like multiple degrees of responsibility, accountability here. But it's up to you to ultimately up to you to build relationships with your peer group. And you fail to do that at your own detriment. Right? Like that's very important, especially if you want to get stuff done in the long term. Based on your situation, though, things are going to vary. And I think the leader of the group can definitely help poke and prod to point out and provide feedback that it's like, hey, this area over here, you could go build some better relationships and things like that. So I definitely I think that the best way to think about it, though, is does your responsibility to have great relationships with every one of your peers.Charles Knight:
And I think that's a good segue for maybe what we start with next time is talking about those one on ones. And how Bill Campbell approach structuring those becauseRobert Greiner:
So good. Yes.Charles Knight:
Yeah. Because what I, as y'all were talking about me as if I weren't here, what I was thinking is that I do get insights about my accounts, even though I am just one person over all accounts, not at an at a place where I have peers working alongside me. But I have so many one on one conversations with people like you all and, and other folks about other things, sometimes formal, recurring meeting invites, other times it's a meeting to talk about something else. But that's where I get a lot of my support and help from peers. Right? Is it in the last few minutes of the meeting is like, Hey, I'm thinking about this thing at this place. What do you think does this apply to you? How would you approach it? And so maybe the the intentional thing to do is to say, hey, you should be having one on ones with your peers. Like, I wonder how many our leadership team is meeting with each other on a regular basis? Probably not. As often as we should.Robert Greiner:
And it was easier in person. Because if you ended a meeting 10 minutes early, like to your point, you could you could hang around, grab someone, like, very rarely do people go right back to their desk. Yeah. As I'm remembering our sort of management team meetings, but also you can go grab coffee, there's, you have a lot more serendipitous opportunity. Yeah. But when the host kills the zoom, it's over.Charles Knight:
Yeah, that's true.Robert Greiner:
You just kind of move on. SoCharles Knight:
Man, that's so true. Wow. What an opportunity there to create some of that space. Yeah, that's great.Robert Greiner:
Yeah, well, hey, look, we have I was just kind of taking stock one on ones which are so good. Like the guidance in here is great decision making breaking ties, those kinds of things, managing difficult people, compensation, product development, how to fire people, bringing fun humor and play into situations. I mean, there's, there's a bunch more in this chapter. So I think we kick the next one off with one on ones that makes a lot of sense. And we'll just go I'm not sure how many episodes it's going to be. It's definitely our longest chapter now that I think that we've had of any of our series that we've centered on although you could argue it's probably a bunch of little chapters, because the content in here is pretty buried. But yeah, we'll talk one on ones next time. I think that's great idea.Charles Knight:
Cool. Well, great talking to y'all today. Stay safe stay warm. Roads are little icy powers on though, so that's goodIgor Geyfman:
Power is on.Charles Knight:
for now. For now.Robert Greiner:
Yeah, there's there's been no promises made. So yeah, well, we'll see how it goes. I got some prepper kits, so if y'all need anything.Charles Knight:
Let me know. Alright. Have a good day. Thanks. Bye.
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