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502 – Leading in Times of Uncertainty | Panel Discussion

May 14, 2020 | 00:00

00:00 00:00

Episode Description

This episode dives into equipping strategic people leaders on how to lead during times of uncertainty. You’ll hear from three amazing leaders. Adam Weber, Emplify’s Chief People Officer and Co-founder; Andrew Appel, the CEO and President of Gregory and Appel; and Steve Baker, the Vice President of the Great Game of Business.

In the lead up to our conversation, we had a lot of questions around communication, empathetic and authentic leadership, and how to foster engagement in remote workforces. You’ll hear the discussion center on these key topics.

The conversation shared in this episode was recorded live. If there’s anything you’re learning or looking to understand more please reach out to us at

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Episode Transcription

Nicole [00:00:02] Welcome back to Insights on Emplify Original. I'm Nicole McLean, bringing you insights to empower executives, H.R. professionals, managers and leaders of all kinds with best in class information to help you unlock the true potential of your employees. Today, we're diving into leading during times of uncertainty. In the following presentation, you'll hear from three amazing leaders. Adam Weber Emplify's chief people officer and co-founder Andrew Appel, the CEO and president of Greggory and Appel, and Steve Baker, the vise president of the Great Game of Business in the lead up to our conversation. We had a lot of questions around communication, authentic and empathetic leadership and how to foster engagement in remote workforces. You'll hear the discussion center on these key topics now as we jump in. It's important to remember that being the leader your team needs starts with taking care of yourself. Staying level and centered when making decisions. While these are real challenges that we're all facing, today's episode isn't just tips and tricks to get you through this season. It's about finding yourself as a leader in this moment and becoming the best version of yourself. So to kick us off, I wanted to take a moment to share a poem Adam presents. As you listen, close your eyes and take three deep breaths.

Adam [00:01:30] This is for Courage by John O'Donohue. Close your eyes. Gather all the kindling about your heart to create one spark. That is all you need to nourish the flame that will cleanse the dark of its weight of festered fear. And a new confidence will come alive to urge you toward higher ground, where your imagination will learn to engage difficulty as the most rewarding threshold.

Nicole [00:01:56] Wondering if you can kind of take us off, or can you maybe just share your approach to making decisions and how you guide others and how to make decisions in times of uncertainty and change?

Adam [00:02:07] Probably like most of you, I quickly realized that we were being faced with a series of decisions that I had never made before, and I knew that what was going to take place over these next couple of weeks likely will be some of the most defining moments of my career. And so I wrote. Actually, it didn't start as a blog. It was something I wrote for myself as a guide to help me through these coming weeks. When I'm faced with key decisions to help remind me of how to make decisions. And so the basics of what I shared and this is, you know, you can you can read this blog, but the basics of the checklist I'm going through before I make bold decisions. The first is to make sure that I'm taking care of myself. I'm trusting my morning routine. I'm journaling. Yes, I read poems or something timelessly true. I'm taking time to meditate and exercise. The second is I'm making sure I give myself enough space to process. We are already in an information overload society and right now that is on steroids. Are you as a leader, giving yourself space to go deep to understand how you yourself are processing the situation, not just what you're hearing from us, but how you are internalizing the situation? And as a leader in moments like this, I want to make sure I'm authentic, that I am truly myself, that I'm not living somebody else's narrative or creating somebody else's legacy, but I'm doing it myself. So take down your walls. Be authentic with your employees. The other was to be transparent with your decision making process. I reminded myself that I'm likely on the cusp of making some decisions that I will need to peel back the curtain, help my employees understand why we are making those decisions, and then the next is lead with care. I want to remember that my team, if I am feeling uncertainty right now. That means that my team is likely feeling just as uncertain. And so I want to lead with care and how I lead those people. And then finally, if I've gone through those steps, it is time to be bold and decisive then. And at that moment, if I have trust those qualities, I'm confident that I can take bold, decisive action and I will live with the results of those actions. So that was really where it started, was just putting myself in the right headspace to make good critical decisions. And we'd love to hear from you, Steve and Andrea, how you think about this.

Andrew [00:04:20] You know, honestly, I think there truly can be universal qualities. You've been thinking and thinking about it. How I am approaching it really as the person I am today, asked to be the person that I was knocked over, that you can't try to be somebody that you're not, or at least in a way that's not healthy, particularly you, as you said. But I just I feel like the only addition to that is I felt like I was an over communicator to begin with. And now, if I'm not asking myself twice a day, three times a day. Have you communicated community enough? That would really be the only difference between me today and me in October. But other than that, I agree with everything that you just shared.

Steve [00:04:58] I completely agree. People are still looking at you as a leader and they are waiting to see how you're gonna react because all of the information that's coming at them is so unsure. But we've got to do as leaders, I think, is to take fear out of the organization no matter how we're dispersed. We've got to take action, as you said, because action cures fear and we've got to stay disciplined. You know, we know how to do business. Are we talking to one another? Are we talking to our customers? Are we listening to our customers? And, you know, is it is it a message from leadership that truly is getting down to the frontline, the people who create the business? So thanks again, man. I mean, it's really touching.

Nicole [00:05:39] The question we got the most and the question on everyone's minds, which is how to balance financial world and decisions that people make and decisions. So I'm wondering if you can take us off here. Could you share advice on how to be transparent when some of these decisions are still happening in real time, maybe not fully fleshed out how to maybe share those?

Steve [00:06:01] I'm also a problem, if I may, I'll share two different ways. Of course, we've got our own company, SIRC here in Springfield, Missouri, about two thousand people in 10 different companies. And then we have our community of great game open book practitioners out there, and we've been hearing so much from them. If I may share a little bit of both here at this or see the first thing our founder and CEO Jack Stack did, was he basically set down the framework that he did? Same way back to. Thousand eight when the economy cratered, he said, here's where the bank takes the business away from us. He said the end of the world out there. And then he moonwalk back. It was sort of like def con stages, you know, for the military saying this is thermonuclear war, we're way back here. So don't take on more debt. Make sure you know where your cash is. Really, you know, I'm telling you, it was amazing. That was, you know what, twelve years ago. And I remember how I felt then when all this started, I almost felt the same way. The unsureness, the oh, my God, what am I you know, about my family or my parents? I mean, all that stuff that floats around because newsies kill it. Right. So Jack basically led us to be leaders. And he said, make sure you're doing the same thing with all your people. So we we show people the realities, the brutal facts. But then we walk back and we say we're not there yet. So we're gonna cut fat if we need to. But we won't cut muscle. We won't cut bone. The idea is to save those jobs, because for 10 years we've been talking about we can't get enough good people. So we're going to hang on to them. There are community. So we've got people in every business you can imagine, service, manufacturing, whatever. We're hearing a lot from hospitality, heard from a caterer this morning. Imagine this. Weddings are being canceled in droves. Let me just by the dozens and hundreds and thousands in this country. And we've got a caterer saying, look, all I'm doing is reaching out to my customers, saying, how can I help you? And I'm telling my people who are basically hourly workers. Listen, we may have to cut back a little bit, but here's exactly what the plan is. And the idea is, guess what? In a few months, people are still going to be hungry when this thing breaks. We're going to cut loose. Bottom line is that after they took that fear out of the organization, they've already gotten tons of ideas from their employees who said, oh, here's something we can do. We can delivered lunches. We'll drop them on the front stoop. You know, no personal contact. We. We could do these different kinds of things. We can help deliver meals to students. Anyway, the bottom line is it's it's crazy when you think about it. Transparency should be around. What's the economic reality? What is our burn rate on our cash and how do we stand? Let's let people know what that looks like, because what their make it up in their head right now is far worse than it truly is.

Nicole [00:08:49] Andrew, anything that you would add to that?

Andrew [00:08:51] I'm a firm believer in transparency. I echo everything you said there internally. As I've also said, every industry is going to face different pressures at different times from this. And we have an all all employee remote meeting next week and know we'll start after how we manage this situation. We're going to start and walk through the financials like we do every quarterly meeting employees, no matter where you are in the organization, deserved. I understand the financial health of the organization. And you know, to the extent that we can do anything we can as business leaders help people at least feel centered and grounded in their work life. Because, I mean, everybody is outside the work. Life is up in the air. Right. I mean, a lot of us have kids just trying to figure out how how do we educate them, how do we still get the work done. So to the extent that we can make the business setting one that they feel stable and comfortable, you know, that's just one more burden off their plate. But yeah, I mean, we we are in a position where we work with customers and a lot of different industries. I mean, the pain and suffering is absolutely real. But to Steve's point, the transparency that you approach, it should be universal.

Nicole [00:10:01] And that's actually a really good transition to the next big bucket of topics which was leaving with empathy out of you maybe to start with. How do you define or share what you think is also an empathetic leader?

Adam [00:10:14] I think at the core of that, it's taking time to understand the situations that each of your direct's are facing, no matter what level you are in the org and no matter what pace the business is moving at. Oftentimes we can get so focused on the sprint of the urgency or the tyranny of the moment, as I call it. We lose that empathy side, which is. Are we understanding the practical reality that our employees are facing? All of us are. You know, we're dealing with some reality that that is a new reality, whether it's having a kid on your shoulder on a video for the first time or a dog that walks, you know, or unreliable Internet. So I think just as a leader taking time to understand the situation. I think acknowledging and transparently sharing some of the challenges ahead. And so that people don't feel surprised so that they feel in the loop and they feel like you're treating them with care. And then just make sure that you do take time just to be with people. So I you know, I've been trying to set aside this is certainly doing the busiest season I've ever had in my career. And in 2008, I was basically making minimum wage and was at an entry level job. So I didn't have any responsibility during that season. So now that I've been I've been blocking my calendar 15 minutes a day to hot like hop on live like. Water-cooler to make sure I'm just spending time just being with people at least intentionally doing it for one part of every single day.

Nicole [00:11:37] Andrew anything that you. And see what it means to be an empathetic leader.

Andrew [00:11:41] What I was going to add is kind of twofold. One, empathy is a lot easier in person than it is in a remote environment. And you have to you have to approach it with intentionality to continue to maintain connectedness. I mean, I don't love the fact that you have a virtual water cooler. These are things that we're going to learn from other people. But the nice thing is we are as a leadership team. We talk about these things and we task each other with having connected with every person in your department. We're all going through this together. And I think it is very easy for us to get wrapped up in kind of our own world and not realize that the pressures I'm feeling are the exact same pressures that somebody else is feeling. And when you didn't acknowledge that and be able to talk about it in a virtual way, I mean, nothing's ever going to take place through face to face. But you can at least start to build these connections with intentionality. The kind of arc that I shared with our team is individuals go through it, companies go through a country, communities go through. It is in a crisis like this, you have ignorance on one end and less awareness than panic. That's adaptation and it's resourcefulness. Amanda's recovery. And you have to recognize that when you're in that panic phase. Some people have moved for some people or are still in the ignorance phase, but we're all going to get to the end at a certain point. We know what that is, but we can acknowledge that we're going to walk that journey together. We'll be better people for it will be a better company for it. But you just have to talk about and acknowledge everybody is gonna be on that continuum at a different, different place for a different time.

Nicole [00:13:11] One of the questions we had is how do you communicate with team members that don't understand the gravity of the situation while claiming the panic? For those who do understand the gravity of the situation. So could you just repeat that timeline again and then kind of say like, how do you transition your communication style depending on where people are on that continue on?

Andrew [00:13:32] It's ignorance than awareness, panic, adaptation, resourcefulness and recovery. You can add prosperity onto the end if you want to, but that that's kind of the framework that I'm using to approach it. My best advice for that early phase, when you still have people in ignorance and you have people in full on panic mode, is be patient with the people who are in the ignorance fest. I mean, so we're in Indianapolis. You know, we basically this is a city then more or less on lockdown since Monday morning. And once that happens, it becomes very real for people very quickly. So, you know, if you're patient with people when they're in the ignorance phase, you know, obviously, if they're saying things that just totally are dismissive of colleagues were in their panic phase, that's different. But you just have to be patient and supportive and you have to be honest with people on the panic phase. I mean, that the comment earlier about, you know, data driven decisions and data driven discussions is absolutely key. I mean, it's fair to acknowledge that nobody really thought you'd become a pandemic disease expert in December. But that's where we are now. To the extent that you can educate yourself and provide reliable information to your teams, that's huge, because there's a lot of unreliable information out there that, you know, if you get go down that rabbit hole, you're just gonna get freaked out. And microRNA her.

Adam [00:14:50] I agree with how you. There's so much information. One of the things we did was we created a Google doc that is our source of truth that we take responsibility for updating. And that is it's a pretty comprehensive both on what we're learning about the situation and also how we're what our expectations are for people in this new work reality as well. And I did. I posted it online. I'm sharing it. It's exactly the one we're using. It's a real living, breathing document, but I'm posting it so people can use that as a resource. It's a very serious situation and there really are lives at stake. And so but I still I still believe fundamentally that a calm and steady presence is critical as a leader, that it is vital that we educate our employees on the significance of the situation. We point them to resources that not only keep them safe, but also keep our community safe right now, which is really important. But we can't pretend like it's business as usual either. Like that's I think that would be the worst thing we could do. So we need to acknowledge the reality of the situation and just all the things that that everyone is saying just by that calm and steady presence, sharing and sharing transparently, I think are the ways to still move forward during this time.

Nicole [00:16:00] Absolutely. So let's jump into some of the challenges that come with having to make some business out of it. So a couple of the things that came up is, one, how do you how do you support or address employees job and income security here without promising more than you can pay off on? Or how are you helping employees address concerns about child care and financial challenges in general?

Andrew [00:16:29] If you don't mind, I'll actually start with the childcare component because that that's a very real stressor that impacts everybody's entire life. While we have a work from home policy that lays out expectations. The first thing I did when schools start closing was saying, yes, we have this policy ignoring for the time being ignored. I think our next challenge as a company, honestly, is we know that we have employees that are working longer hours and we want them to because of that. So we need to start thinking through, OK, if Indiana just announced that schools are closed or makers. So I'm sorry if you're learning that for me. But we now know where we're in this for the longer haul. Then I think a lot of people initially thought so. We need to be very intentional about thinking through how can we how can we coach our employees so they're not staying up until 10:30 doing things they would normally do at 2:00 in the afternoon because, you know, at missed my earlier mental health and stability is key. And if you're burning, you're burning the candle at both at the end of day. And I could do your family any favors. You're not going to yourself any favors. So that's a conversation that we need to start having. But, you know, when we wanted this, so we're going to continue to uncover things that we haven't thought through before and we just need to be asked about them and address them.

Adam [00:17:45] I think of this with these you know, it's someone when your employees are dealing with child care, financial challenges, you could keep going that what that list may be. And I think of this two ways. If you're a manager listening to this, I would challenge you to make sure that you've got a psychologically safe environment where your team is willing to truly open up about their struggles. And the reality is there are a lot of managers who have not been leading that way up until this point. And so there is some dramatic growing to be done. And I would just challenge you to take the journey of that growth right now to create a safe environment for your employees, where they can be honest about what it's like to try to work in the current environment. They are. There is nothing more helpful to a leader than information. And you need the safety to get that information. You need to create safe environments to help unblock them, to help them reach their true potential. The other, I guess, is so that now would be a nice the manager level at the leadership level just to feel back the curtain on what we're thinking about real time. And yesterday we know the game plan for the upcoming weeks where we're kind of building a list of bringing in experts, then doing 30 minute, just 30 minute webinars with our team. So we have a personal finance, a financial planner. Pete, the planner is going to do 30 minutes with our team. We have a nurse who's who's coming to share about like safety, health, safety symptoms. Make sure that we're educating our team that way. We're working on trying to do a session on meditation, a session on counseling and mental health. And so I think there is this there's this practical side as well where we as leaders, we can help we can help put resources in place as well to help do the best that we can.

Steve [00:19:20] I would just like to say that now is the time where we're really activating contingencies that we've had in place. So anybody who's listening to the webinar, it's not really fair because I'm saying, oh, activate your contingencies, but you better start thinking now about the next event, the next black swan. There will be something else. In the meantime, I think what with Andrew and Adam have laid out is really powerful, because if you create a safe environment and you bring in the information and you are able to create a space where at least at work, we know where we stand. And that's where the creativity happens. So you can't get contingency thinking going on because you can have experts being brought in and say, I don't have to worry about home right this moment. I can really unlock what's going here. You know what? I'm going to call all of the customers in this region and just check in on them. You don't know what's going to happen. So what happened here at work? You know, one of our fellows, Brian Underhill, got on the phone, talked to all of his coaching clients. And what's really amazing is that we did a red, yellow, green analysis and it was really cool because it came back mostly green and we thought it would be mostly red. You know, people are shutting down their Netflix account and they're shutting down, you know, subscriptions and everything else. Will these folks that remain. GREENE What Brian told us was they were looking for certainty as well. And one thing they knew as they had to stay disciplined to their systems, just like you guys are talking about, you're going to have that certainty and that safe place. We got to make sure that we're doing the right things, the blocking and tackling. So I would just encourage everyone to to make it safe is, as you've said and pointed out, those are great tips. And then ask people to participate in the solution. You know, they are part of it. Who knows the number better than the person creating the number in the business. So I think that's all good advice. I mean, get him involved on.

Nicole [00:21:08] I'm really trusting financial things. A couple of questions we got. And Adam, I know you were once leader of sales. Any advice for leaving a sales team or any type of organization that is commission based?

Adam [00:21:23] And I said let sales teams for a decade and and definitely have a lot of empathy for people who are who are out there. Trying to trying to cold call or drum up business in the midst of this moment. One thing I would say as a leader in general and then I'll talk about sales specifically, is that I really think in these moments one of the ways you can fight anxiety and panic is to give your employees something to rally behind like this truly can. Like oftentimes adversity is the thing that brings out the very best in your people. And so let's give them a chance to bring out their best, I think. So that Thursday when we went remote, we also made a really bold decision ourselves. We we stopped all product and engineering development on our core product and decided to build a Cauvin 19 specific assessment tool that just launched today, by the way. But. And because what we realized is managers need that honest information back and forth from their employees. So it released today. It's an easy way for managers to understand what the personal well-being of their employees. I share that, not just about the tool. I share it because we did it because we knew we needed something to rally behind. And so the team is working day and night to have a thing that's motivating. And now we've got a cause that's worth fighting for. Like if our purpose as a business was true before this, it should be even more true right now than it ever has been. And so for sales leaders, what I would challenge you is how can you find something to rally behind? How can you how can you create believable messaging that is actually valuable to your market right now? How can you have your sales team sales in Samarra? I think the biggest caution is trying to get them to do something, pretending like it's business as usual. So find a cause to rally behind, make it noble, make it something that is worth their time because they don't want to sit around either and do nothing. They know that this is a time to fight for their business. And so give them something that's worth fighting for fever and do anything else to add to play around like a permission, be it or roll.

Andrew [00:23:19] Yeah. I mean we have a number of sales functions within within our company. You know what to rally around. I agree with what Adam said. I mean, we have a lot of clients who are experiencing very real pain and there's some very legitimate insurance implications that everybody is finding out about it. So our job is to provide accurate advice to people, obviously be empathetic with the situation that they're going through because there are very real challenges. But that's it. That's a short term thing, right? The best that's occupying all the time. It began with now to the extent that I've had sales people approach me with concern about what does this mean for me? What does this look like? What are your expectations? You know, I'm telling them that there are three basic steps of short term phase, which is the acute phase right now. Don't worry about a focus on giving advice and helping people through this. You know, there's a medium phase where businesses are recovering. They're starting to get back business as usual. But really, the long term solution is kind of a mentality that we've been shifting toward over the last six months, which is approaching sales from a fourth quarter rolling basis and not a calendar year basis. So, you know, if you're freaking out that my second quarter is going to be terrible, you know what? It's going to be terrible for everybody. You know, focus on Q3, Q4, Q1 and Q2 of next year. You know, that's where you need to be spending your mental energy instead of beating yourself up over something you don't have any control over.

Steve [00:24:44] That's also get much to add. I would say that you guys are dead on. I mean, it's really about what do we rally around? If you're an open book companies, we talk about a critical number. That's the thing we rally around. Well, do we change the critical number? That's the big question we're getting. Do we can change the annual plan, the forecast that we made? Well, you know what? Why don't we leave that there and talk about plan for the next 90 so we can be proactive and at least move toward that goal while still keeping an eye on that loftier goal. And I really like what Adam said about make it noble. Dude, that is awesome. That makes me feel like a part of something way bigger than a virus. I don't mean to diminish it. I'm just saying there's something bigger than that.

Adam [00:25:28] And if you're a leader right now, I think practically set Santiago, my business partner and our CEO Thursday night. We're talking we're like at this point to who we are as leaders. Like this is our moment. You know, this is what we're our legacy is right now, what we're building. And so how you lead your people in this moment is the way that you'll ultimately be remembered. That's why it's like what you can't do. It's just nothing. You can't you can't pretend like it's not happening. You can't not acknowledge it and expect business as usual. But if you lead well through this time and this is an ongoing thing. So I understand. And luckily for the three of us, it's all recorded. So we'll see how we did it in the future. But I think following the things that we're talking about, at minimum, we can hold ourselves to the standards that we're saying. It will put us in the best position to do that all the way through this situation.

Nicole [00:26:17] So let's pivot to the company that are positioned to go remote or work from home. Let to share some tips and tricks and what you're doing to keep on playing games. How managers can feel connected with their players. I didn't feel when I took up on this one. I know you've been doing a lot over Emplify.

Adam [00:26:35] Well, this has been a bout a 5 percent of my work for the last week. My thought was one week. I mean, we measure employee engagement for lots of distributed remote companies already. And yet we ourselves, you know, the vast majority of our workers work in our central headquarters. So we just made a decision. We're like this is an opportunity for us to to figure out how to build a world class remote culture. And so that's just the decision that we made. So a couple of the things, you know, that we're doing practically and I shared some of them that I do have some other more cultural based linson is this. This stretches is it it seems like it's going to for quite some time. I do think it's OK to put some sustainable rhythms in place as well. So some of the things we're doing just to help help employees stay engaged, we're doing to all team meetings a week we're doing. And one of them is more business priorities, PR transparency and the others more like education. We're doing 50 minute daily stand ups, as I said, 5 minute daily calls with your manager at the lease. And then in addition to that, my departments of the people observe what we're doing is we're trying to make sure we're supporting those emotional needs of the employees. So we have that live water cooler. It's just a zoom length that's always open and then different people. We have different people that are committed to being there throughout the day. So you can just hop on. I then I got a puppy this week as well. It's been a very eventful week for me with COVID-19, a puppy and a camper all in one week. So I've been hopping on with my puppy. We're doing the educational resources that I that I shared. We also started to slack channels or chat channels. However, that works for you. One is. One is called Work from Home Success or where the employees are crowdsourcing tips and tricks on things like how to work with kids. We had someone share an idea who they have, a baby and a two year old and one. And it's that mother who is a is a director level at our company. And so she has a really, you know, really important job right now where there's a lot of pressure on her. She also has a two year old. The baby was born to be around it. So she's walking out the door, faking, going to work and then coming in the back door. So I'll give a little space. So, you know, we're sharing tips and tricks like that. We have another one called mindset, which I'm really excited about. And that's a place where we're all acknowledging we are all dealing with alone time and solitude and ourselves in a way that many of us have never faced in our entire lives. And so we have a we have a place where we're sharing. How are you winning that battle of your mind? How are you giving yourself permission to spend time alone and feel confident in that space? And so that's been really effective. And then we are doing a couple of happy hours a week, too. So just like Zoom's video, bright zoom, if you're not familiar, has these breakout so you can join all as a group and then break into smaller groups. And so we've been utilizing that as well. That's that's a handful of the things on our end.

Andrew [00:29:28] You know, I think for companies on the same journey as us maybe didn't have as much work from home as others. I mean, there's just there. There are going to be some growing pains and that's OK. You're going to figure it out. You know, one thing that I intellectually understood, but I never really use it. Were collaborative software programs like a Microsoft team, the Slack, you know, Salesforce quip. I could see the value in it. But because everybody was around me all day, it wasn't really critical. And then we went to 100 percent work from home environment and my e-mail traffic tripled. And I just I found myself through the first couple of days just trying to react to everything in a way that wasn't helpful for me and wasn't helpful for the company. So, you know, I've been encouraging people that I work with the company as a whole to look into these different tools that allow teams to work on projects collaboratively in a way that removes that email clutter. Because I've got it now. I see the number of emails I have on Reddit. My look, it's giving me anxiety. But to the extent that you can explore these new tools, it's helpful. And I you know, whereas before I might have been like this myself, really no new software licenses for them. I guess that makes sense. We need it.

Nicole [00:30:41] So what advice or a final thought do you have around how to direct the energy of intention to move through the continuous creating an evolved outcome for the future?

Andrew [00:30:56] I would say first and foremost, you have to give people the space to be able to get themselves to a mental spot where they can see the future. Because if you're trying to paint that picture to somebody who's in that panic phase, it's going to go right over their head. It's just going to make it worse. So give people the space and the information to get to the point where you can paint a picture because there can be very real consequences to this. And I'm not saying that there are not. And we need to acknowledge that we need to face it. But we also have to say, you know what, this is a finite window. There will be an end to this. You can see the. Coming out of China. And it does give you at least some sort of thing that you can look forward to. And I am a firm believer that there is going to be a lot of pent up demand when we get to the other side. People who have been stuck at home for a long period of time are going to want to go out there. And I want to travel. They're going to want to get vacation and, you know, they're going to want to go to restaurants again. And so when you can get people past that initial crisis and at least where we are here, I can only speak my my mind base is, you know, we're starting to get there. We're starting to get to the point. We're saying, OK, you know, I know this is the reality for a period of time, but I can also see where we're going. And I can see my own behaviors change in a way that I think I'm going to be a more effective person when we get to the other side where we can all be together again at the office.

Adam [00:32:14] I might ask one of our core values and I've been I've been an entrepreneur for a year. Some have been doing this that long. And the one value that has been true that I've just believed in so much as its growth mindset. And we believe that growth happens when you're at the edge of your capabilities. And I'm choosing to believe right now there's an entire workforce that is at the edge of their capability. And in that moment, there is opportunity for innovation in a way that we have not seen in a long time. And so let's let's lean into that. The best that we can and I agree with what Andrew said like this is this is going to be a difficult season that does need to be weathered. I do think that coming out of it, that innovation right now, good, solid business principles right now, bold, kind leadership is critical. But then coming out of this more than ever, knowing there is going to be pent up demand, there might be minimal resources to achieve that demand. And so leading like a human leading, leading and following these best practices is going to be more critical than ever when that moment comes. We need to make sure that right now, in this moment, you're doing the work that will position you for twelve weeks from now or six months from now. Or however long this last.

Steve [00:33:30] I think. Andrew, you nailed it. You know, let's embrace that transparency. Help people understand where they are worth, you know, allow them to process it. Let's be bold and discuss our cash position and say, here it is. I mean, I challenge everyone to look at it themselves and then be able to tell people this is how long we can last. If at all possible, protect jobs, because it really is that thing where you go, OK. This is the one place I can win. Celebrate the wins as you can, but protect those jobs as you can because you've got to be ready for the upturn. And I think we're all in agreement, man. There is an upside. Let's look for that. Let's strive for it and take care of our people along the way.

Nicole [00:34:09] Well, those are some really great ending thoughts there. Andrew, Adam, Steve, thank you all three of you, for your insight. Thank you for joining us for this week's Insights. Don't forget to subscribe so you never miss an episode. And in the meantime, if you have questions or topics that you'd like to see us cover, please go to amplify dot com slash questions. That's e m p l i f y dot com slash questions. And let us know what's on your mind. Stay safe. Stay sane and we'll see you next week.