High Performance with Bryan Gillette Author Of Epic Performance

Bryan is a former Silicon Valley human resource executive, founder of his own leadership consulting business, and amateur ultra-endurance athlete. He has ridden his bike across the United States and run 205 miles around Lake Tahoe. Bryan knows how to connect with both the business leader or the amateur athlete to help them reach their peak and achieve the impossible. The skills and behavior, as he learned, are the same.

After interviewing 100 leaders on how they reach their peak and from his own experience in both roles, he wrote EPIC Performance: Lessons from 100 Executives and Endurance Athletes on Reaching Your Peak. In his speaking engagements and podcast interviews, he talks about the key aspects to push oneself and one’s team further.

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The Lyon Show

High Performance

Sun, 9/11 11:56AM • 52:56


people, big, work, interviewed, talked, executive, book, ukraine, perform, bit, endurance athletes, business, question, fires, important, company, tips, measure, figure, couple

Hey, this is Robert Lyon with the lion show. This episode is very cool. It's all about high performance, he actually wrote a book called Epic performance, where he interviewed over 100 executive leaders in different businesses as well as extreme endurance athletes. So you're gonna learn how to perform better, you're gonna learn a lot about time management and tracking the right stuff. And if you stick to the end, you're actually going to hear about a really amazing adventure where he went all the way to Ukraine, right when the war started, and was helping them negotiate and navigate supplies to the border of Poland. And this is just a cool episode, be sure to like, subscribe, and send me a message at Robert at the Lyon show.com If there's any kind of content or any questions that you have. Hello, and welcome to the lion show with your host, your favorite business coach, Robert Lyon. Today, we have the great privilege of talking to Brian Gillette. He's an executive coach, a performance coach isn't all around awesome guy. So Brian, why don't you kind of introduce yourself and tell everybody a little bit about who you are and what you're up to? Hey, Robert, it is nice to be on your show. And good to good to be talking to you and your audience. So I as you said, I'm an executive coach. So a couple things that I generally do with my clients. One is one on one executive coaching, I run my own leadership development business. So it's called the summit in group. I also work with teams that are trying to figure out where they want to go in the next year or two years or a couple of years and help facilitate that team to push them in the right direction. I'm also a father of two boys and husband live here in the San Francisco Bay area, and then an endurance athlete, and I'm sure we'll get into a little bit more of that as we go through. Yeah, that's awesome. And then you also just had a book come out called Epic performance. So we'll we'll get into that I really want to know, like, executive coach just sounds sounds real cool, real top of line. So how did your executive coaching life kind of start? How did it all kind of come to be? Well? Well, I'm glad you think it's cool. My kids don't think I'm cool at all. So that sounds cool. does sound good. So how it came to be so I have a former VP of HR for midsize technology company been kind of at the executive ranks in a number of technology companies, and have have run several leadership development functions. And enjoyed it. I love the work. I love working kind of individually with people or I love working with teams on how do you optimize your strengths? How do you kind of get a little bit better at what you're doing and make sure you're going in the right direction. So about 10 years ago, 10 years ago, last month, I had the opportunity where it's like, I want to start my own business, I've always had that idea. And it just gives me gives me some of that flexibility I want it allows me to work with the clients I want to work with and not work with some of the clients I don't want to work with. And it's just been extremely rewarding. And so you know, I'm always a big proponent of you, if you had this opportunity, or you want to take this opportunity, go do it. Because you don't want to get to be 20 3040 years down the road and go, Ah, man, I wish I would have. Yeah, so I've been doing that for the last 10 years and absolutely love it. Perfect, man. I love that. So when with these tech companies, were you kind of like startup tech companies, were you like coming into bigger companies, what do you most of them were in the mid size, kind of the the 1000 person and then every once in a while we're, you know, 1000 to under 10,000 people. And then you know, there's been a few that, you know, I was acquired by a much larger company. So I go in and join and, and then you get acquired by a much larger company and you have to decide, Okay, do I want to do I want to continue to be in that and make those decisions. So and then you kind of you help people perform better, right? Performance is always kind of an interesting word. Because there's so many different scenarios where you're going to perform as a good husband are you going to perform in the office? Are you going to perform in the gym, you know what I mean? And how do you think of high performance? What do you what does it really mean to you? And then we can get into more of the tactics I guess. So you found tell people the some of the some of the characteristics of how to perform really well in the office are also how you perform outside the office. And and so I had done I mean the book is called Epic performance. But then the the longer title is lessons from 100 executives and endurance athletes on how do you reach your peak. And, and I've been I've been on both sides that the executive side as well as the endurance athlete and and I had just completed a 200 mile run around Lake Tahoe. So it's eight marathons back to back. And I've done a number of other Ultra distance events and I thought, Okay, what is it? What is it that I'm doing in order to complete something that big? That a lot of people have said, I could never do that. I mean, I'm always surprised with the number of people who You say I could never run a marathon? And I think most people could. It's a very doable, doable thing. And so I had my ideas, but I wanted to learn from 100 other people, executives and other Ultra distance athletes. And so I interviewed about 75% of the people were executives, and then the remaining were Ultra distance athletes, or both? And what are those things that they do? And that's how I came up with epic performance. And and what epic stands for is the IE, is, how do you envision the big things in life at work that you want to accomplish? What are those big things not just next year, but 510 15 years down the road? I mean, the number of of executives that I talked to, they're not looking about what they want to accomplish next year, they're looking 1015 years down the road. So that's the envision the P is how do you put a plan in place, you know, once you know where you're going, how do you then put that plan in place to drive to it, and then the AI is iterate, you don't start off being the CEO of a company, you know, you start off at a much lower level, and then you work your way up. And that's what iterate is you you try things and then they fail, you try something else, and it works and you learn from it. And then you kind of build on it, you don't start off running a marathon, you start off running, you know, two miles, and then the next we round the block right around the block. And then the next week, you do three miles, and then you build up to 26.2 miles. So that's the iterate so far. It is a long distance, I'll tell you that. But it is very doable. And that's I mean, I heard from so many people's like, Oh, I could never do fill in the blank. So we can dig into that later. The sea is how do you collaborate with other people? Yeah, somebody has done this before somebody has done it. And if they haven't done exactly, they've done something similar that you who you can learn from. And so or who are your mentors that are helping you? So that's the Collaborate and the last one is perform, you know, eventually you got to go out and do it. Yeah, yeah. The envision plan, iterate, collaborate, I always look if you if you know, if you use the marathon analogy that gets you to the start line. And then performing gets you from the start line to the finish line performing is just so important. Because I start a lot of businesses, I talk to a lot of business people, and they almost are always just like in their business in their head not necessarily doing it's like no, you just got to stop. Do the tasks, chop the wood? get the deal done. You know what I mean? Just and then keep improving and sharpen your saw. Yeah, and figure out okay, sometimes it's like, where do I start? Yeah. And and, you know, I was I was talking to one woman couple months ago, and she actually it was about a year ago, and she wanted to start her own business. Yeah. And just, it's like, it's so big. It's so daunting. It's like, what can you do in the next 72 hours? Right, that just moves you forward? You go reserve your domain name, you know, exactly. Just do one thing that gets you started in the next 72 hours. Do that. And then repeat it do do something else that moves you moves you forward. Right? So that at a time? Yeah. So when he interviewed all these athletes, and people, like was there any, what's the word I'm looking for, like things that they all had in common, or things that they all kind of said that was kind of interesting to you that stuck out? You know, there, there were a number of themes that stuck out. But what also stuck out is there are many different ways to get to the top of the mountain. So I look at the you know, the kind of the five, five behaviors, you have to look at Envision, plan, iterate, collaborate, perform, but and some of the people were really good at the envisioning, but maybe not so good at the iterating or, and so how do you compensate, they generally these folks were good at really, really good at two or three of the of the five, but they knew how to compensate for the others. And then the other one is they had confidence in themselves. And that and, and so they were not afraid to go ahead and start something big. And a lot of times they weren't afraid to fail, but they had confidence in themselves. And that confidence came from doing smaller things over and over and being successful. And so you kind of build up your your confidence over over time. So I mean, those conversations I mean, I I could have kept going and having more conversations, but I learned so much from them. That's awesome. It's a good little group of people to talk to you know, you're talking to the top, the top killers the tip of the spear I guess and a lot Are these industries and tech stuff and stuff like that? So yeah, and they were all over industries. I mean, it was a variety of industries, a variety of I mean, some people had started their own business. Some people were kind of the chief CEO or the CIO. So real a lot at the sea level and had kind of reached a reached a significant peak in our life, or in their life. And, and what surprised me when I when I would reach out to them, I was wondering how many people am I going to have to ask in order to get 100 people to say yes, yeah. And I only had two people that said, No, which kind of wild. And what it makes me realize is, just ask your comfort zone. It's a lot in your head. Not enough action, actually. Yeah. I mean, you're, you're so right, Robert. Yeah, it is in your head. And you just just if you don't ask, the answer's no. Yeah. Also don't come off like a robot. Like I'm sure you would like. Yeah, yeah. Know who you are. You run this company. I'd love to interview you real quick about that for this book. Instead of like blasting all of them at the same time. You don't I mean, there's a difference, though. Yeah, the more diligence. So that's so cool. So it was it was great. But you got it, you got to ask. And yeah. So for for high performance. I'm just wondering, you know, is it a lot of time management? Or do you have any time management tips? Or was there? What was it like, what do you think? You know, it's I mean, it's interesting, you look at that we all have the same amount of time in our week, we have 168 hours in the week, and you got to know what to say yes to you. But you also got to know what to say no to. And so what what separates these people, the people that I talked to from the people that don't reach the top of the mountain, is they know how to manage their time, but more specifically, they know how to prioritize what they should be doing. So one of the guys I spoke to He is head of HR for a midsize technology company. He is FIFA, former FIFA referee soccer referee. So he refereed at the highest levels of the of the game of soccer. And, and he's also an Ironman. So now, you know, for those who may not know what an Ironman distances is, it's a, you go out and you do a 2.4 mile swim. And then after you're done, you change into your biking clothes, and you do 110 mile bike ride. And then when you're done with that, you go and you put on your running shoes, and you run a marathon 26.2. And so, you know, you generally have under 18 hours to do that. And so he's he's an Iron Man. And he says, when I am training for an Ironman, I have to find 12 hours in the week, and that represents 7% of my week. And he goes, I can find 12 hours. Now, I know you may be thinking like, oh, 12 hours, I can't find 12 hours, but look at your day, and figure out what's going to have to give. And that's what kind of really separated a lot of these people is they knew that I'm going to have to I'm going to have to give up some something over here in order to find those 12 hours. And you know, when you talk about time management, it's really about priority management. You look at any executive, and if you want to know where their priorities are, you can look at two places. One is you look at where they're spending their money. And then the other one is you look at their calendar, where they're spending their time, because that's fundamentally what they've got. They've got their time and the money. And that'll tell you where so it's you, which means you got to say no to some things. Right? It's hard, though. I mean, I think it's Warren Buffett, he says, you know, if you have five goals, you have to kill two of them. And then you can go forward with those three. That's like killing your darlings. I just I've just there's no real right answer. But do you have any advice or tips because I kind of have a hard time deciphering what is the absolute best use of my time because you know, I'm trying to do copywriting and PR and pub get podcasts and so many different things. So do you have any tips on you know, killing your darlings or trying to pick the right things to do? Well, I mean, it's it's knowing, I mean, what are you really good at? And, and maybe, maybe copy editing, it's like, okay, you know, I'm okay at that. Now, you can spend a lot of time to get great at it. Right? Or you look at okay, those things that I'm like, I'm I'm really good at interviewing and kind of preparing for interviews. I'm gonna, I'm gonna get a little bit better at that. Right and this copy editing, I'm gonna have somebody else do it. Because it's not that's not the best use of my time. So it's really figuring out where is your I mean, you only have 24 hours in the day, and where can you add The most value, your advice would be to focus on like your golden zones, the things that you're really good at. That's one thing is, is that where you can add the most value for what you do well. And so you look at that, I always fight the common sense, because I'm not good at editing, I'm not gonna keep wanting to do copywriting. But I've also mastered, you know, communication and sales. So whenever I just kind of focus on the things that I'm really good at, I always see explosions and growth, and then I come back and I'm like, Oh, I'm gonna go back to doing the really hard things, I suck it. You know, you're looking at, you're looking at like any, like Usain Bolt, you know, he fastest, you know, one of the fastest runners, you know, on the short distance. And you don't see him going out probably and working on his marathon time. You don't see him going out and working on the javelin, he can probably do both of those faster or better than I can. But what he's focusing on is, how do I take a 1,000th of a second off of my 100 meter? Because if I can do that, that's where his superpower is. And so it's really figuring out what are you really good at? What do you really enjoy doing? And then what can somebody else do? And that's, I mean, that's as I talked to these executives, they were really good at knowing this is where I need to focus my time. But I often say it's like, take all the things you did in a day, and write them down, and then go back and look at all right, what are the what are the ones that you really should have focused on? Because because you got to have those things that you're that are driving you forward? 10 years down the road? Right. But you also got to have those things that okay, get me to next week. And being able to balance that out? It is a balance, how do you help people? I think we can pivot into out into like thinking long term for your performance, you know, how do you coach that? Or how do you kind of look at it? So the big questions I look at, you know, on the personal side, is ask yourself, you know, in 20 or 30 years down the road, am I going to regret not doing this? Now I was I was working with somebody a couple months ago. And they were they were trying to figure out if they wanted to take on this big project. And they were kind of going back and forth. And they were really excited about the project, but they knew was going to take a lot of time, time away from their family time away from one of their businesses. And so I just looked at him and I said, So in 20 years, are you going to regret not doing this project? It was a it's a community event. At the end, it was like there was no pause. He said, Oh, yeah, he goes, clearly I will. And I said, you need to seriously then reconsider and do this. And then the other one is, do you want to do it, and they kind of go together. But whenever, you know, whenever I had been faced with something really big, or as I'm talking to somebody they're faced with really big, and I hear a lot of excuses. I've heard them in my own head. But I also hear it from other people's like, oh, I don't have enough time. I'm too old. I'm too fat. I don't have enough money. And, and those are all like all excuses. And you know, the one thing I kind of go to is, do you want to? Do you want to do it? If you say no, then I may be out to autofocus on something different. But if you say yes, then okay, maybe you don't have a lot of money. But you'll be surprised with the number of founders of companies that I spoke to who, you know, they ate a lot of top ramen in the first couple of years of their business. Yeah, I mean, one, you know, I talked to this really young couple, who was looking, they wanted to start their own coffee shop. And they I mean, they weren't far out of school, and they they did not have much money. And so they're now starting this business and I just recently traded notes with with one of them. And I said, How did because he opened it up before COVID. I said, How are you guys doing? He goes we focused and this is another key thing he goes, we really focused on why we were doing this. And we kept going back to that it was hard. And we knew that we wanted to keep as many we wanted to keep all our employees and that required that we were extra careful with the COVID requirements even though some of our customers didn't like it. And but we never had anybody that got COVID in our in our store in our in our coffee shop and we have we're now doing really well. So I mean it's that kind of that why of why am I doing this is was was a big thing and I had so many people I talked to kind of said That, to me, I think life is kind of like a buffet of experiences, you know, and you got to you got to pick the ones that you really want at the end of your life. Like, I really want to experience this during my time here, and I want it might not be able to get it right now. But I know that if I stay focused on it, and I keep working towards it, I will eventually get to experience that, you know, it's just like anything you'll get there. I you know, I love that. I love that concept. Life is like a buffet. I'm writing that one down. It's great it is. I mean, when you walk through a buffet, you don't. Alright, most people don't take everything right. My kids do every once in a while. But it's a buffet. Especially when you get to the end and your plates full. And yet now you get into the desserts. Yeah, exactly. Right, maybe, maybe try. And this is what I encourage people like coming out of college or something. You try a bunch of little things, put a little bit on your plate, try it and figure out you know, I don't like that. Okay, then try something else. And then to figure out what you really do. Like, I love that. I love that buffet. That's great. Yeah, we're a lot of the I'm just curious. This is a weird question. But it's when you interviewed all the high executives, were they happy? Like were they? Were they happy be running their companies? Or were they all stressed out? Or like what was kind of was it? What was it? Like? You know, I think most of them were my sense was most of them were pretty happy. Yeah, they were stressed at times. You know, I interviewed I interviewed most of my interviews occurred pre COVID. But then I've talked to a number of people during COVID. And, yeah, they were stressed. But what a lot of these folks do is they like that stress, because it pushes them. That's like their personality. It's that adrenaline. It's like yeah, I love that. I love that kind of it makes me feel alive. You know, I don't think you know, any of them, or most of them would be kind of happy if things were just kind of floating along down the river. It was just a random question. That was yeah, no, they liked they liked the they liked the rapids. But you know it? It hits a point is, I do think you have to push yourself into that stress zone, that uncomfortable zone a little bit in order to get better. You know, I refer to it as kind of what's your nervous quotient? Yeah. And if you're nervous going into something, okay. It's probably big enough. If it's if you're not nervous going into something, then maybe it's not big enough? Yeah, I think it was Sam ovens. He said, You know, I try and step out of my comfort zone every single day. And now being out of my comfort zone is my comfort zone. So you can go out there. And like, if you're not in, you're on the edge of something, or if you're not pushing the limits, but that's where the success is to that. I've never noticed that looking back. Now, obviously, when you're in the experience, it's not not not as fun. But when you look back at all the times you've been real successful, or at least for me, you are kind of on the edge of your comfort zone, you're doing something out of the box, you're doing some you're pushing, you're pushing it basically you're trying to be better than you would than you were yesterday, you know, so it's I was talking to somebody the other day, Robert and I, you know often say it's good to be it's you want to you want to get comfortable being uncomfortable. And his response. He goes, if you get comfortable being uncomfortable, he was coming at it from a logical perspective, aren't you then always uncomfortable? Why was that? Actually he goes are that did you kind of eventually get comfortable? It's like I'm kind of jumbling it up a little bit. And I don't say you have to always be in the uncomfortable setting. I agree. It's not healthy to be always in an uncomfortable zone. But when you're going for that growth, I guess, right? If you're Yeah, trying to climb the mountain, like once you get to the top of the mountain, you can, you can rest a little bit but you got to get up there, you got to set up camp, you know, or whatever it is. You got to spend a little time on you know, another way you look at it is like if you're swimming, there's, there's sometimes it's fun to be in the shallow end of the pool. Right? But eventually, you got to go into the deep end of the pool. And when you find yourself in the shallow end of the pool for a long period of time. Go over and swimming in the deep end. Yeah, experiment a little bit. Yeah, dip a toe over there. You can always come back. Yeah, I got a couple of things else I want to hit on. So this is kind of a philosophical thing. Do you think that there is a connection between health and wealth? I think it's how you defined wealth. I just mean money. Yeah, I like because I mean, I've asked different people this you know, and like if you work out if you get your energy really up and really going you have more energy to go through the day, more good things kind of happen to you. So like I said, it's kind of a hippie dippie way of looking at and, but it's also there's a lot of rich people that are real sick, so they have a balance. I just wondered what your thoughts that you have. I mean, I haven't heard her had gotten that question before but I I like it. And it gets me thinking. I don't know if I would say health and wealth, but maybe health and success. Yeah, that's probably the time. Because I did talk to a lot of people who now now what I find is most of the people I talk to now, again, you know, handful, 25% of them were endurance athletes, so they have tremendous amount of health. But even on the executive side, they, they recommend, they recognize that my health was important, and they would get up and exercise most of them had some sort of regiment around that. I'm a routine. Because, and I will tell you, when I am, you know, if I'm walking around the house, and I'm irritable with my wife, or the kids, my wife will often say, Hey, honey, maybe you ought to go for a bike ride. And that's a euphemism for you really annoying me. And so I do think there's some some correlation between health and being able to perform at a higher level. Your mental and mental health? Yeah, well, you go out and you can clear your mind. And so mentally, you're more prepared, and then physically, your body just works better. Yeah, I guess also, if you're alive for a lot longer, you have a lot more shot to success. A lot of you play the odds is that play the odds, better. You got more darts to throw against the dartboard I love that right. And then the other important thing I want to know is for high performance, I talked to another lady on another interview, and she said, the best thing for high performance is to get into a state of flow. And I'm wondering if any of the executives you talk to or in your own experience, if that's a key thing. Yeah. And number of people did talk about that state of flow and just kind of be able to get into into it. It's about kind of really understanding getting focused on what you're doing. It's about understanding why you're doing it. And then once you can get into that flow, it's a great feeling, but you're not always in the flow. And so part of it is, and I look at how are you? How are you measuring, when you're really performing? Well, what does that look like? And what are the what are the metrics you ought to be evaluating? And and are you watching those metrics and thinking, Okay, I gotta get a little bit better at this in order to get you into into that flow, what I do, but you're not always working there. I mean, a lot of if you're an Executive leader, like a lot of your job is just putting out fires, you know, you're finding problems, you're solving them, you know, if we can't quite get into the flow when you have to be critical. Well, you know, I, you know, I, I think some of your time, should be putting out fires, if most of your time is putting out fires, there's something else downstream that you're not doing well. I mean, you look, you look at a firefighter, most of their time, is probably not fighting the fire. Right? They're training. Yeah, they're preparing for it. They're looking at ways to avoid the fire. Yeah. And so a good executive, what they're doing is they're kind of pulling their team together and making sure their team is working really well. So the fires don't happen. And then when the fires do happen, that's rare. But you know, I, I know, a lot of times people say I don't have time, because I'm spending so much time putting out fires, well, why are you putting out so many fires? Where are these fires coming from? Right? What's the cause? What's the cause? Are you spending, spending a lot of time trying to understand what the what's starting all those fires? And then are you are you getting your team to kind of look at how do we prevent these fires? I mean, a certain amount of your time should be spent looking at okay, what are the fires? That could could happen? Right? And how do we avoid them? This is kind of your question, but how are you measuring all your data? Are you a spreadsheet guy? Like, what do you mean, you've been in business for a long time, but how do you how do you know what to measure? Or what is what is your your tip on trying to figure out what? I do love spreadsheets, but not everybody does. And that works. I think you have to one, you have to figure out what works for you. I think the key thing is is really figuring out what are the two or three or four things that I should be measuring. Right? And I've worked I've worked with a bunch of groups and we'll get in we'll start talking about, alright, how are we going to measure this whatever you know, they're focusing on and people will throw out ideas. Well, we can measure that we can. It's easy to pull this data or it's easy to pull this data or it's an eye. It's like, well, we're talking about what data we can get easily. Let's look at what we should measure to really show performance. And then figure out how do we get that data, I'll give you an example, when I was training for any of the big, ultra distance events that I've done, you know, I wear a watch. And on that watch, it measures 100. And I'm not being facetious about that. But you know, more than 100 data elements, in terms of my heart rate, my speed, my pay, you know, you know, different pacing, your distance, your your speed for each mile. And you I mean, it's just, there's 100 data elements you can look at, and I don't want to look at all 100, I only wanted to look at maybe three or four, and those would be the only and on my watch, I can set it where it shows those for now, if I want to go to another screen, I can go to another screen, and it'll show a few more. But I, you know, I wasn't interested in my heart rate, because I was able to, at some point, get an idea of okay, I could get a sense of Oh, yeah, my heart rate beating at about 104 beats per minute. Now, you know, if so I don't need to look down at my watch to know that. You know, one thing if you're cycling, you want to know what how faster your legs spinning. And so you can watch that, and but at some point, it's like, okay, I have a feel I know, my legs are spinning at about 90 revolutions per minute, right? So measure those things. And then once you get to a point where it's like, I don't need to measure that anymore, then I'm going to measure something else. I remember years ago, I was managing a training and development function for a financial services company. And at the time, the company really wasn't worried about budgets. Because we were we were doing really well, we were making a lot of money. And so didn't really focus on the budget too much. But I knew at some point that we'd have to I had as a manager would have to so i i connected up with our finance person, I said, Hey, can you pull a budget for me? And can we just track it? Because then I can practice tracking it when it doesn't matter? Because when the steak when it does matter, I'll have gotten my budget and all that been able to do that well. So I also say, look at the data elements and practice some improving those things. When it may it doesn't matter, right? Because is when it matters. And you you've gotten there. I like to talk about your book. Was this your first book that you wrote? It was my first book? Yeah. So it's it just came out? recently. So it's, it's, it's nice to be out? Yeah, no, I but I will kind of want to know, you know, how did you write it? I mean, was what did the interviews just all turn out? Awesome. And it just wrote itself? Or was it a grind like this kind of what was like, I would love to say that the interviews all turned out awesome. Most of them were great. But you when you interview 100 people, you have so much stuff, right? And then you have to figure out I was I was going back and forth with a text with a friend the other day, and he had sent me a note said, Hey, congratulations on, on getting the book out. And this was somebody who, who helped pays me for my 200 mile run around Lake Tahoe. And I responded, I said I it was easier to run around Lake Tahoe than it was. I'm sure it's such a process. But it is a process. It takes a long time, though. And it's a you know, with anything big, there's an emotional journey. Yeah. And when you get the idea, you think, oh, man, this is the greatest and I talked about this in the book, this is the greatest idea. And then you start getting into it. And you realize, man, this is hard. Yeah, I can't do it. And then it's then you get past a certain point. It's like, oh, yeah, I can do it. And then you get tired. And, and I remember, because I'd been working on this for a couple years, I remember. It's like, I just don't want to write anymore. And I sat down and you know, going back to metrics, and I said, All right, if I'm gonna get this out, I set a very clear deadline of this is what I want to get it out. And I knew I needed somewhere around 50 to 60,000 words for a manuscript. So I need to, and I knew I had like, 30,000 at the time I need to write. I think it was 1000 words a week. And so that's 200 words per day for five days. And so and then I need to get up, I'll get up at six in the morning. And I will write my 200 words, they weren't always the best words. Right? But you did it. But it's as my English teacher used to say, don't get it right, get it written. And it's like, Okay, let me get 200 words down. And so then at the end, and I would put, you know, you asked about spreadsheets, I'd go and I'd put it on a spreadsheet. At the end of the week. It's like, okay, I'm now at 31,412 and I could look what are the weeks I missed? What are the weeks I hit, but it gave me something to focus on. And and it gave me those okay. 1000 words, I need to write 1000 words. So I think it's good to go To set those small goals that are achievable. Yeah, I think it's just really important to, well, I think for me, I have to do hard stuff. Because if I do easy stuff, and I get like, halfway through, and then I'm like, Yeah, I'm done. Whereas if I do something hard, it's like, Oh, my God, I put so much work into this, I have to finish it, or I'll never forgive myself. Got to do hard stuff. It's hard to deal with it. How's it feel when you when you finish it? Great, you know, and then when you have success, you actually have something in the real world that came from your brain, you know, so it's, it's wild to finally get it out there. Well, that's so cool, man. So I guess I got a couple of questions. With all the tech companies and the leaders like, what do you think they're struggling with the most right now? Or do you think, what do you think they need, like help with? Or what are you seeing in your coaching, and you're helping clients, hey, you know, a lot of the things that they're struggling with now, or things they struggled with, you know, five years ago, it's kind of, you know, bringing teams together. It's getting kind of people excited about the goal. But the biggest one, and you know, I'm former HR human resources, Vice President, so I'm connected to a lot of heads of HR. And these last three years, I think, for any executive, so not just the HR, these last three years were extremely difficult. And, you know, how do you you got to, you now got people meeting over zoom, and there's some good things about it. But then there's some drawbacks. You don't have everybody in the same room, there's some good things. And then there's some drawbacks, you go back, you go back to March or March of 2020. And I think, you know, if I were the head of HR, or any of the heads of HR that I talked to, had they gone to their CEO, and said, You know, I think we ought to have everybody work from home. And yeah, and you laugh, and I'm sure they would have listened to would have laughed as well. And then, you know, had they followed up with, you know, I think we ought to start that this week. Yeah. I'm sure the CEO of all those companies would have said, you know, Robert, I like your idea. I love your enthusiasm. Why don't we start with you? And not only why don't we try this working from home thing? Why don't we try not paying people as well, and we'll start with you. So I think every CEO would have said, you know, that's, that's impossible. We can't do that. Right. And if you look back to March 2020, and what we have done over the last couple of years, we did some things that three years ago, we would have said a lot of things we would have said were impossible. And so I'm hoping that, you know, it's that challenge as we come out of this crazy time, that we can look back and say, okay, doing impossible things. You know, I think just got the definition of impossible. I'm hopeful just got bigger. That's powerful. And, you know, I had I mean, a friend of mine, who wrote one of the testimonials for the back of the book, she's a reporter for CBS. She was doing her newscasts from home. I've got two kids, they were they were they were in class at home. Now, none of that was up ideal. Yeah. And we learned a lot in the first year that we applied in the second year, and then again, applied in the third year. And so I think it's how do you learn from that and realize in all right, that definition of impossible could be a little bit bigger than it was? No, I like that. Since you are, you know, been an HR for so long. Do you have any tips on you know, finding good, good hiring, like good? How do you find good people to work with, I guess, maybe tips? It's a big question. I know, but just from your experience, what do you think, you know, we often hire based on technical competence, and spend a lot of time focus on technical competence. And that's, that is important. But I think spending more time and as I talk to my colleagues, they'll they'll agree with this spending more time on, you know, cultural fit in the organization. I mean, I can be highly successful in one organization but but do the same exact thing and not be successful in another organization if there's, there's a different cultural fit. So really spending time to understand is there a good cultural fit fit for what you want to accomplish, what you value what you think is important and what we want to accomplish what we value and that's, that's good. I think the other thing is the person and again, it depends on where where the company is in its maturity, but is the person good at adapting to change and kind of flexible? I remember Yeah, I remember I did Did something on NPR shortly after we came out of, you know, shortly after, I should say we went into the pandemic. And every parent I know, was complaining about how my kids not learning enough math or my kids not learning enough English. And so I did this this short bit where, yeah, you know, we're not, you know, my kids not learning all the math that they should have been normally this year, or the enough English. But, you know, Microsoft Word is going to fix that spelling there. And Microsoft, Excel will calculate whatever they need to calculate in the future. What they are learning is that ability to adapt. And I'm hoping, you know, there's a lot of bad that came out of last year, but I'm hoping her last couple of years, but I'm hoping that, you know, the kids coming out of school today are going to have an adaptability to adapt more so and so looking at that, you know, ability to adapt, there's a good cultural fit, I think are two things that often aren't discussed or evaluated enough during the the interview process. Yeah, that's important. I always look for hustlers like natural hustlers. Intelligent curiosity. Yeah. And then coachability. You know, those are my, those. Those are great. Yeah, I mean, I think there's, we could we could expand this list, but I think those are, like, adaptability things. So it's just hard for every business owner like to like, it's almost like the times are constantly making a sprint just to keep up with what's working, what's happening, and it just keeps getting faster and faster and faster. It does. But we adapt. Yeah, I mean, we adapt to it. I mean, you look at you go back in time, and you look at the you know how long it took for the telephone to reach us, you know, 25% market share, and I don't have the numbers right in front of me. But it's, you know, it took many, many years. And so and then you look at how long it took the internet to get a certain population that was quicker, and how long it took the mobile phone to get a certain adaption. So we are adapting to being able to make decisions to be able to deal with the technology more so. So I think that the human mind and body is extremely adaptable, right? growing and getting better. But it is it is hard. It's like, Okay, I gotta I gotta learn this. I mean, as I, you know, into my mid 50s, and, you know, the technologies, it's harder for me to pick it up as quickly I give it to my, you know, teenage kids, and they just say, oh, yeah, you just do this, this and this Dad, it's kind of cool to see too. And I was there when I, when I was their age, I was doing the same thing with my parents. So we've covered so many topics. And but I just want to talk a little bit more about performance, I guess, because I want to make sure I get all the all the nuggets and pick your brain a little bit. So on your website, I remember it says like, reach your peak, you know, and that's I think that's really cool. But how do we reach our peak? What, like, is there any topics that we haven't talked about for performance to really get us to the top level, I guess, that you might have found? You know, I think the biggest one in it, it's the very first part of epic, it's envision. Do you know what the peak is? And do you know where that peak is? Do you know what it looks like? Do you know what success looks like? I mean, there, there's a lot of research that talks about being able to visualize, you know, the success. You look at any the the high, the high performing athletes, Michael Phelps, you know, before he jumps in the pool, he is visualizing what it is what success looks like. Right? I remember I saw a documentary about the Blue Angels years ago. And before they get into the cockpit, they all sit in a hotel or in wherever they are in a room. And they walk through the entire show, just kind of talking through it and they visualize the entire show. So no, they know when they're turned in Leo right are turning left, and they know when they're going up. And so they just visualize the entire thing. But you've got to be able to see the future in order to be able to to get to the future. So I think that's the biggest thing. Robert. Never heard that story of the Blue Angels. I think that's really cool. Yeah, it was fascinating when when I saw it, and it's like, oh, yeah, they they're just, their eyes are closed. They're sitting in in a conference room, and they're just kind of, you know, they're moving back and forth. They're talking through and it's all very calm. All right, bank left in three, two, and it was fascinating to watch. That's really cool. Oh, perfect, man. I got a couple questions that I asked everybody that comes on the show. But before we get into that, what are the best ways for people to find you on online or buy your book? You know what, what's your website's what's to be able to reach out? Thank you for asking. So the best way A you know, my website is epic performances.com So it's epi see performances with an s at the end.com. And you know that a link me link you to me you can you can learn more about the book the books on Amazon. Now it's in Barnes and Noble. And so you can go there and get it online. But epic performances.com is we'll get you and then I'm in on LinkedIn. You know that's from a business perspective where people can find me people meet you my first name, it's B ry n. So Brian Gillette and Gillette just like the razor blade. So yeah, the weird question kind of puts you on the spot, but I'm writing a book about money. So I just wanted at want to ask people like, Do you have any tips on making more money or just tips on money in general? I know it's a you know, it's I started my, my career for an investment company, and spent seven years with them. And, and the biggest tip is just look long term. And it's the same thing I tell women, you know, anytime somebody is trying to think about a big goal, there's there's a lot of get rich quick books out there. And you my view is the only person who gets rich quick on those get rich quick books, is the person who wrote the book, or and has the has the seminar. It's, you know, it's just investing a little bit every, every week on a regular period of time. And it's just start, let it grow. But time is, is the biggest thing you have going for you and that's an investing that's in driving any big goal. Compound Interest, I think, yeah. compound interest. I mean, that's but it's it's time. Yeah. Big things take time. Every once in a while you read about somebody who, you know, won the lottery or their company took off and became a unicorn overnight. But yeah, that's rarity, hard work. Hard work and discipline will get you want to be the overnight success, though. You know, there was there was one actor that that that Oh, yeah. And I don't know the exact quote, but it was like, Yeah, you know, I'm going over, you know, it took me 17 years to be an overnight success. It's something along those lines. It takes hard work. And that's what these 100 people said. I mean, they were not overnight successes. It's hard work and discipline. That's the truth, man. And then the second question I asked everybody is, you know, what motivates you? What really gets you fired up? gets you going? Yeah, what motivates me now and kind of is what motivated me in the past some time are different. I love adventure. And so I love just trying new things my wife and I had back in March or April, you know, shortly after the Ukrainian situation took off, and really, we were just looking, our heads were spinning, and it's like, what can we do? And we both had gotten this idea from another friend. It's like, let's raise some money and go over and help the Ukrainian situation. And we went into Poland, and we raised about $60,000, we were able to buy a bunch of medical supplies. And then it's like, okay, how do I get those medical supplies into Kyiv? Or into nipro? Or into Aviv, and it was just this big problem that we didn't know how, and we kept salt trying to figure out it's like, okay, we I got connected with a pharmaceutical distributor in Germany. It's like, okay, there, I can buy medicine at a discount. It's like, okay, now how do I get it to the border of Poland and Ukraine, alright, configure that. And so it's just, it's that whole adventure. And that just, we were just, we loved it. So any type of adventure like that? gets me excited. So I'm trying to solve this, you know, these big puzzles. Why did you go to Europe and do all that? We went, Yeah, we flew into Germany then drove into Poland. We were cool. And we worked. We went into this town of about 50 60,000 people in Ukraine, they had not Ukraine, in Poland, they had about 2700 refugees. And they had an orphanage of about 70 kids. And we went there and we were able to just, you know, bring a lot, you get a lot of things that they needed. And but it was just this adventure. And I remember, you know, shortly and shortly before we took off to fly to Europe, my wife threw out and I forget even what the problem was, she goes, Well, how are we going to handle this? And it was it was something fairly minor. Yeah. And I said, you know, there's a lot of problems we're going to deal with. I said, that isn't even one we should be thinking about. Like how do we you know, and it goes back to what are the big priorities what are the three biggest problems we can face? How do we deal with those? Let's not worry with these these small things like you know, they don't have a rental car we can we'll figure something out. So by But it's Yeah, so we did end up going into we raised about $60,000. Went into Ukraine just just got in. When we just got another kind of big round of medicine into, into Ukraine couple weeks ago. Cool, very cool thing. I'd love to just give you a little acknowledgement, man. That's incredible. I love adventure to me. And my it's all about was getting out there. I lived in Germany for two years. So Europe is it's crazy that it's just happening right there. So yeah, going out there and helping them. That's cool. Good for you for for living over there. I think I think if, if more Americans would kind of travel out and kind of see that, hey, you know, it's different in other countries and how we understanding, but in many ways, you know, the problems they're dealing within you're very similar. Or that yeah, Ukraine everywhere has their problems. But you got to get out of America at some point, I think we do. You just realize how big the world is. And there's different ways that people think and live and do stuff. So yeah, cool. So do you have any other kind of maybe things that we didn't touch on before we kind of wrap up that you'd like to share? You know, I think the the only other thing, and then maybe we did touch a little bit on it is just, you know, if you're looking out, look out 2030 years and really ask yourself, will I regret you know, I think we talked about it at the beginning, but that's a big one. Will I regret not doing this? And, you know, I, there's a woman Barney rare who, who wrote a book about the top Regrets of the Dying, and she's from the, from the UK. And she was interviewing people in their final years of life. And one of the things that she learned is people often regret the things they didn't do, versus the things they did do. And so how do you look at those things in your life and kind of say, Okay, what is it that I want to do? And, you know, am I gonna regret not doing it? 20 years, 30 years, or when I'm at kind of towards the end of end of this, this race that we're on? The gut check hoax pokes you in the fields right there, like, yeah, do all this stuff. And you don't have to do everything, but just figure out what are the what are the ones it's like, oh, yeah, if I don't do that, it's gonna drive me crazy. I mean, there's, there's, I have this big list of things that I want to do. And like, Okay, I'm just kind of knocking them off. And that's cool. We're, eventually in the buffet of life. As we said, I love I love that. Robert, I wrote that one down that buffet. You can't eat everything on the Yeah, it's great. Well, Brian, I really appreciate you coming on the show today. I think everybody listening definitely got a ton of value. We're gonna go kill it and go get your book. So epic performances.com. We'll have all the links down in the show notes. Yeah, leave us some comments, share this with a friend and I look forward to talking to you in the next one. Thanks, Robert. No problem. Thanks for coming over.


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