Dan Moyle 0:08
Ready to spend 15 minutes with the experts you admire need strategy sessions from thought leaders brought directly to your ears. Welcome to the sprocket talk 15 minute strategy podcast where every week George B Thomas uncovers the challenges that sales, marketing and service professionals face and of course, the strategies to help them overcome their biggest hurdles. So sit back and set your sights on growth with these bite sized conversations build with your strategy goals. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the 15 minute strategy podcast.
George Thomas 0:37
Alright, sprocket tears. It's your boy George B. Thomas back and I am super excited because Well, again, this is another out of the box conversation as far as a strategy that some of you may or may not be paying attention to, or you may think you are, but maybe at a different level. We're going to almost be a little bit like Sherlock Holmes, and discover some new things today on this episode of the 15 minute strategy podcast but before We get started Scott Monti, why don't you explain to the viewers, the listeners, who you are, what you do and where you do it.
Scott Monty 1:08
Oh my goodness, sure. I am a consultant and an executive coach and advisor. And I'm based out of Ann Arbor, Michigan. And most people if they have seen me around online, they know me from my time leading social media and digital communications globally for Ford Motor Company for about six years. So that's kind of where I earned my chops and learned an awful lot about business in general across the enterprise. Simply by being part of the social and digital team. We're like the nerve center of what was going on at Ford. and that in turn has allowed me to help coach executives on just how to get better at this stuff, not just digital, but how to how to get better at building relationships and growing your customer base and doing all the things that your your stakeholders need to know about.
George Thomas 1:58
I love it. And if you're listening to this podcast, you might want to check out the video version because another thing that Scott is a master at is the bow tie. And he has a banging orange bow tie on for this episode. So Scott, when you think about deeper customer relationship, like what do you mean like, because the viewer and listener, they might have a completely different perspective than where you're coming from or what you're talking about?
Scott Monty 2:24
Sure. So here's, here's the thing, I think, amazingly enough, in this advanced digital age, we've actually moved away from deep relationships. We've we've actually, we've grown our reach, but we haven't grown our depth. Right? What do I mean by that? I mean, we can now reach more people than ever before you go out across Twitter, across Facebook, across your email database across your web traffic. You can touch more people with you know, programmatic ads with lead generation with With all sorts of technological solutions, but what are you actually doing to spend time with these people and to give them what they're looking for, and to interact with them. And I think quite frankly, this sounds crazy in 2019. To some folks, that email is now more important than ever, and IRL in real life, the time that you spend sitting down with someone having a cup of coffee with them, talking to them in your store, wherever you happen to encounter them. These are the interactions that people pay attention to. Why, because they are individualized, they are human to human, they are people making eye contact and, and sharing a strong and firm handshake and being able to trust people for what they say, rather than whatever it is you get on any various algorithms that your feed is controlled by on any given day.
George Thomas 3:57
So my brain just exploded a little bit. There's so many places that I want to go like, the first thing that as you started to talk about this, I was like, Oh, so this is like business like my grandpappy used to do, right? Like, this is the the old school like it just really has to be done. It's real, it's human. And, and which quickly, I went to like this idea that has been kind of spread around in the content and inbound marketing world, like, you know, human to human, like, humanizing your brand, like that type of level that you're talking about here. And then I felt bad real quick, because I was like, well, crap, is this really going to be a strategy for people to know how to be more human? And and the answer, I think, is yes. So like, when you think about this, what are some things that people are fundamentally doing that they shouldn't do and things that they're fundamentally not doing that they should?
Scott Monty 4:49
Well, you know, it's interesting that you mentioned your grandpappy George, because that's really what this is all about. And when you and I Well, I don't know about you, but when I was younger, and I would Go into the bank or the post office with my mom or dad on Saturday morning, which was a ritual, you know, cuz that's what you did. Because you weren't working in the bank, of course was an open hours that you weren't working during the week. The bank manager or the teller knew your parents by name, or they knew you by name, they knew enough to ask how you're doing in Little League, or how your grades are doing or how your play rehearsal was coming along. There was that level of involvement and interest. And that's all it takes. You know, one of the books I keep on my shelf here, and it's an old and battered copy. It's it's good old Dale Carnegie, how to win friends and influence people. And I'll tell you what, this stuff, this is timeless. It's just as relevant in 2019 as it was back in whatever 1927 when, when he first wrote it, whatever the year was, it's about knowing how to take interest in other people. How to You know how to turn on the charm when needed. I know that sounds a little off putting. But you know, you need to you need to learn how to pull different levers and act in certain ways. And that doesn't mean you're being any less than authentic. I mean, you still want to be your true self. But it really does come down to eye contact and using someone's name. And you can say, Oh, well, we use their name in our, in our email database, you know, dear f name or first name. And once you screw up one character there, and they actually see through the formula to see it is how it is that you're personalizing that blows the whole thing up. But But the point is the icontact, right, that's something that is so valued in this day and age. And I'll tell you a quick story. I was at a conference in Paris in 2009 10 years ago, and I had a blackberry at the time, corporate life. That's That's how antiquated were but even then, The person who I sat down with after the talk that I gave, you know, we had known each other online for, I don't know, four or five years, I sat down with her. And she told me that she was astounded and blown away, that I would sit there with her and keep eye contact and didn't look at my Blackberry once and gave her my undivided attention. Do you know what kind of a treasure that is today to people to know that you're getting undivided attention from someone? And you can't tell? When that's going on? When you're online? You can't tell when somebody isn't multitasking. Right? So that notion of you know, maybe having a video chat with someone or physically sitting down with them in a coffee shop or at your store or whatever. That really makes a big difference in the way people perceive your brand and perceive you as whether you're a brand manager or a CEO or what have you.
George Thomas 7:55
It's funny, Scott, because when I hear you talk about this I translated into like You've got to actually care. And when I say that what I mean is not care about your numbers or care about like the next email send or how your chat bot is working, but like literally care about the human being that you're sitting across from, or that you're, you know, even digitally sitting across from and, again, this goes into like a life lesson of being human. But you mentioned something in that last segment that I want to dig in a little bit deeper, because I'm curious to what your brain will unpack on this. You talked about going into the bank, and it was a ritual in this digital world. How do you feel as this deeper customer relationship thing that we're trying to unpack? How do you feel companies can actually turn themselves into a ritual that the customer wants to come back to over and over again, again, it's the caring it's the knowing their name, it's the eye contact even digitally and in real life, but what else can Can you do too and this is the buzzword today? What else can you do to make yourself sticky in this digital world?
Scott Monty 9:08
Well, I'll tell you, it really comes down to consistency, doing things the same over and over again, it sounds kind of boring, right? But this is the very reason that companies like McDonald's have become successful, or the way that people know that when they walk into a Disney park, whether they're in Shanghai, or Tokyo, or California or Florida or Paris, it's going to be the same experience, right? And it's built from within culture, within an organization. You know, you mentioned caring before. You can't, you can't necessarily teach someone to care. I mean, they, they inherently have to have it within them to want to care. Now you can build a culture where a caring is part of what you do. But that's not expressed through words only it's expressed in actions, things that you do all the time and It really comes down to having empathy, which is the most human of emotions out there. And empathy is a core core part of emotional intelligence. Right. And if you have an emotionally intelligent leader, they are self aware. They are reflective. They understand how other people are affected by what they do. They put themselves in the shoes of the other. And we're getting right back to Dale Carnegie and even into Stephen Covey with the Seven Habits of successful people. You know, seek to understand first before trying to be understood, and how many brands out there right now are just pushing stuff at us trying to make themselves understood, trying to make their way of seeing things, our way of seeing things, when you know what, if you want to be sticky, it really is a matter of doing what the customer needs from you, or interacting with them responding to their needs and making it such that they want to repeat that experience over and over again. And you can do it reliably and consistently, which ultimately builds trust. And that's at the core of deeper relationships.
George Thomas 11:10
All right, viewers, listeners, you gotta rewind, like, just hit the rewind. There's so much in there and the fact that like, empathy and culture, culture of caring, and and I would say to like, let's just put it in there the fact of understanding that you need to hire and have in place people who are empathetic, who care and are very self aware of the way that their actions make people feel, right, because if you go into those old time books, it's about people remembering how you made them feel, is very important. And you know, I'll just throw another old school name that you listeners and viewers should pay attention to. That's Jim Rohn because there are some gold nuggets of information there as well. Here's the thing though, Scott, let's get back to today. It's 2019. people's heads are down. They're in their devices. They're pushing There's stuff out there basically trying to create clones of people that they can put through a conveyor belt through their business. You talk about it I and as soon as you mentioned it I in in real life and knowing that we're in this digital space, I mean, for goodness sake people are listening to a podcast or watching the podcast. What do you think the differentiator or what do you think maybe the power of the use of video for businesses moving forward? Is that like a nice to have? Or it's like, Man, this and you should be doing these things? Where does your mind go?
Scott Monty 12:35
Well, look, George, I don't believe in, you know, blanket statements and one size fits all approaches. I think it obviously depends on the type of business that you're in. That being said, I think there is a case to be made for video in various formats, whether it's a chat function, whether it's your marketing, who knows, you know, I think there's A variety of applications to think about here. But the bottom line is we are a visual species. You think back to the way we started the first way we started to communicate, probably before we even had the spoken word. We were drawing paintings on caves, right? We were expressing ourselves visually to the people around us. Maybe it was to the, to the next tribe that came in and saw the cave as Oh, there's a bear that lives in here. We shouldn't be in this cave. Maybe that's what this this visual means to us. Today, you know, everybody's roaming around with their device, and they could be on a subway, they could be in a cab. They could be just sitting at home while they're watching television, right. And in some cases, video is going to tell a better story or do a better job of telling your story than print. Right? And if you're going to do video and you're going to use it for those kinds of marketing purposes, I would say don't forget about the written component to it. First of all, it's always smart to have a written script to begin with. Secondly, the transcript from that video can become a valuable SEO tool search engine optimization tool to help drive people to wherever it is you're, you're housing the video. And third, if you can actually make captions out of that transcript. If somebody is on that loud subway, you don't have to worry about whether the volume of your video is overcoming the volume of the subway train or the wheels are clacking as you go by. Right so there are all kinds of considerations to think about. Once you've decided video is important, where it goes, how you do it, who's it intended for? It becomes a very complex strategy rather than to just say, you gotta have video.
George Thomas 14:46
Scott money dropping video bombs, knowledge on the 15 minute strategy podcast, I love it. So here's the thing. In the closing question, what I want to do is really help the viewers and listeners activate what they've been listening to and if If they're listening to the same thing, I have been the same thing that you've been saying, I hope they hear that it is truly not just a nice to say we're going to be a human to human business. It is like hard work to be caring to do things in a very old school way to learn from some of the resources that you've talked about in here and to lead with empathy, and to focus on eye contact and, and really the precious piece of like, we're gonna devote time, customized time customized conversations to this individual, make them feel a certain way. They're sitting here listening to all of this, like, the question I would ask myself is, that's great, Scott, how do I get started? Where do you lean them into Get Started into changing this mindset, building this culture, making this a level of importance that actually they take action on?
Scott Monty 15:55
Yeah, well, it's a again, not an easy question. To answer, George, I think the first thing is, if you're open to it, and you're thinking about it already, that's half the battle right there. You know, it's really difficult to chip your way into a closed mind. So it's about having an open mind, but then it's about having an active mind. Right, it's a mind that is looking to engage that is looking to bring in other perspectives. You know, I don't want to, you know, tell and sell here, but I mean, this is the kind of things I help certain executives think about, as they're, they're working with their teams, right? How do you start to create a strategy around this? How do you create a culture such that this, this flows throughout your organization, how do you communicate with your employees regularly about this? You know, these are the kinds of things that I coach executives on so I don't care if it's me or somebody that you've known for many years, it's good to have an advisor to help you work through this stuff, could be an agency, could be a coach could be a mentor, you know, you figure out where it works. For you, but having somebody to bounce this stuff off of and to say, am I am I getting this right? Am I thinking about this in the right way? What else am I missing? You know, it's always great to have advisors like that in your life.
George Thomas 17:13
Well, Scott, here's the deal. You're the one on this podcast, you've You're the one that's been adding value. So if they do want to reach out for that coaching, if they do want to contact you online, and they have questions around this conversation, where do you want to send them?
Scott Monty 17:26
The easiest place to go is to Scott Monti Comm. That's my my website there. You can read about some of the stuff I've done, sign up for my newsletter, which is timeless and timely. And of course, I'm on all the social networks and whatnot, but that's the that's the main place you want to go is Scott MontiComm.
George Thomas 17:44
Sprocket talk viewers and listeners Listen, keep an active mind. Keep an open mind and we'll see you on the next episode.
Dan Moyle 17:50
Did you enjoy this episode of the 15 minute strategy podcast we'd love to know. leave a rating and written review wherever you listen to your favorite shows and keep that learning going by visiting spread At talk.com sign up for your free membership and in that membership area you can find bundled episodes where we combine like strategies to help you grow better make the world better and share this episode with your friends and co workers who may be battling this same obstacle. You can always reach out to George Thomas on Twitter with questions or guest suggestions or just to talk about your favorite Marvel superhero. Go out into the world and leverage this strategy for your success. And we'll see you on the next episode of the 15 minute strategy podcast.
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About the Expert
Scott Monty is an executive coach and advisor who helps the C-suite embrace virtuous leadership and better communication. A Fortune 10 leader whose background in classics positioned him to see through the shiny objects, Scott can drill down to understand the common human needs from throughout history that still drive us all. He was ranked by The Economist as #1 atop the list 25 Social Business Leaders and Alan Mulally, the CEO of Ford Motor Company, called him "a visionary."
Dan Moyle 0:08