Today’s guest is a Fortune 500 consultant that can help you get ahead of the competition without big investments in technology or weird hacks. It all boils down to knowing yourself. When do you perform best and how do you maximize that?

Please welcome Steve Prentice.

Episode highlights:

  • 1:02 – Soft Skill
  • 4:33 – Next Generation of Business
  • 9:06 – New Way of Approach
  • 11:48 – Productivity
  •  21:56 – Established a Relation

Learn more about this guest:

Contact:

  • steveprentice.com
  • twitter.com/steveprentice
Podcast Episode Transcripts:

Disclaimer: Transcripts were generated automatically and may contain inaccuracies and errors.


Today’s guest is a consultant to fortune 500 companies, twice published author keynote, speaker, podcaster, and university lecture. Like c3PO  from star Wars. He is fluent in the executive, speak it, speak and normal speak, and he helps these groups understand each other. And the issues dealing with cybersecurity, AI, blockchain, and the future of work.  

Plus he’s in a band that plays yacht rock. But I’ll get to that later. Steve, thanks for jumping on. No, it’s my pleasure. Thank you. I’m excited to chat with you because when you and I were connecting a little before we jumped on the mic here and I was going over your areas of expertise. So many of the bullet points.  

Uh, from across your career, resonate with me. And why don’t we start with one that I, I talked about a lot that I think is, um, you know, undervalued the uniqueness and importance of soft skills in the future. So, you know, let’s start there and maybe, you know, what are soft skills to you and let’s have a little dialogue about why we both think they’re important in the future.  

Yeah, soft skills basically are those things that are, um, the kind of things that you learn, uh, and can use intellectually, uh, things that come to mind right away. I think things like critical thinking, uh, as we have seen artificial intelligence and technologies move into certain areas of our work and certain lines of work, you know, it jeopardized a lot of what people were doing in certain lines of work.  

One of the things that cannot be very well replaced is the human to human connection. So this has things such as requirements like, like critical thinking is about pausing and, you know, going through, what are we doing here? What’s, what’s the implications? What is the longterm concept? Most of us have been conditioned over the last few years to be very reactive.  

You know, it’s just the, the pace of life information coming at you from everywhere that all the time means that people tend to do things without thinking. Here’s one classic example that everyone has fallen prey to, and that is phishing email. People get those alerts in their inbox that say that there’s a, um, A job application or missed payments and they click on the link and now everything just breaks loose.  

As malware gets dropped into the system. Um, if people learn to stop and think critically and say, wait a second, where’s this coming from? What what’s this about? Uh, even to be as careful, you know, carefully hover the mouse over the link and see where it’s really going. You can avoid a heck of a lot of heartbreak and expense.  

So soft skills are about being able to think through situations before reacting. It’s also about being able to prioritize tasks in a correct way. And it’s also being able to relate to your fellow humans or whether you are a leader, whether you are a team member, whether you need to deliver feedback or receive feedback, the skills in being able to.  

Communicate talk actively listen, think influence. These are what we’d call soft skills because they come from inside the brain and the heart, as opposed to from a machine or a computer. It’s funny that you mentioned the, the example of emails and hovering over, just to see, you know, where if you click on that link, where’s it really going?  

Because you know, for the listeners that might not understand what we’re trying to illustrate is you might have an email that says. Um, how many is says the transition to give an example about a message I had with my wife yesterday. So you might get an email that says, Hey, you have a delivery from FedEx  

And it says, click here for fedex.com. But if you hover your mouse over, it, it’ll be some long jibberish link. That’s going to take you to some, you know, it’s a fishing or spammy or virus infested website. So it’s, it’s funny you bring that up because I was out of town yesterday and my wife texts me and she says, Babe.  

I got this text that says I got a package from FedEx and I need to, I need to choose my delivery preference. And I said, don’t click it, send me a screenshot. And so I looked at it and sure enough, it was garbage that, you know, who knows what would happen if she clicked on that. So, yeah. I like the idea of critical thinking.  

And why don’t I be curious, your opinion. I know kind of, there’s two sides to the discussion about millennials and I’m kind of on the fence about it. So I’ve definitely experienced. Seeing millennials that are missing some critical thinking components. Um, but I also understand the argument that they were, it’s not necessarily their fault because that’s the environment that they were brought up into and raised.  

Um, so. What’s D do you have an opinion on, you know, where we’re going with the next generation of business leaders and is there a generational gap in critical thinking and soft skills? Well, yeah, there is a generational gap. I mean, to bring it down to the easiest division, I’d say that there’s a, there’s a group that are, um, tech savvy and people skill deficient.  

And that would be the younger side of the workforce. And the other side are people savvy, but the tech deficient, and that’s the older side of the workforce. Now you an unfair division. There’s a lot more, a lot slimmer, um, generational iterations between that. But the point is yes, if you have grown up with.  

Unfettered access to information, you know, so anybody who’s grown up in the age of the internet, and especially now that we now have a first generation of people joining the workforce who were born after nine 11, we’ve got, you know, people who have been totally immersed in instant and uncensored information.  

That changes everything about not just simply information, but about your approach to work and your approach to loyalty, your approach to time and your approach to a hierarchy. One of the presentation images that I give when I speak, I put up on the screen, a picture of a rotary dial phone, black Laura rotary dial phones from 1970s and say, does anybody here know what this is?  

It was a bit of an icebreaker joke, but the point is. Back in those days in the pre internet era generations who lived and grew and formative years, you know, in terms of growing up as a child, as a young adult, Everything had a hierarchy. So there was one phone company, you know, you’ve got your news from one or two newspapers or channels on the TV.  

Everything was very hierarchical. And that, uh, imp that carries with you throughout your entire life. So it managers were now in their forties, fifties, and sixties are still working with that imprint of hierarchy and structure in every decision they make and every approach they, they apply to meetings, to customer relationships, to customer service, all these types of things.  

Whereas someone who’s grown up in an age where you literally have the world at your fingertips, you know, you can look up anything on your phone, you can get anything you want on your phone. That doesn’t just simply change your approach to information. It changes your approach to additive before time and loyalty, how to, how to expect from your new employer or your new customer, a fluid relationship, a bilateral trade if you like of skills.  

Um, so it’s quite fascinating to observe. However, uh, this hasn’t been taught. And this is not blaming the younger generations at all, but if, if this stuff has not been taught in schools, because schools are still sticking with it with a curriculum from decades ago, they’re finding their own way in terms of, or relate how to collaborate.  

And here’s one additional interesting point. Companies have, you know, bought floor space in buildings for decades, including meeting, whoops. You know, they’re spending millions of dollars a year on reading room space, which is becoming less and less needed as more and more employees or, or consultants and contractors.  

Uh, just connect in from remotely, wherever they are. I mean, this, the remote collaboration is a fantastic new fluid approach to, to work. Uh, but this is changing the way that companies need to look at the way that they’re spending money on their, you know, their hard properties. Uh, so young professionals have an enormous, a passive influence on the economy as well as their active influence as professionals.  

But the best way I think in, you know, and I’m, I’m over. And we’re 50 now. It’s hard to, yeah, I still say if you want to learn something. Yes, of course you can go to school and take some degree courses. There’s still good into a certain degree. In some, some of these schools are very good, but there’s so much great information you can get from your network, your network of peers and colleagues, you know, spending that time.  

If you are, whether you are an entrepreneur starting up new business. If you were starting up a startup and looking to get capital and, and, and employ people, or even if you’re starting a career in a larger organization, the best thing you can do is leverage that network, not just for contacts and connections, but for mutual learning.  

And that is the huge investment. And that is a soft skill right there. I was actually gonna ask you and you, you just started transitioning to that. So this is a great opportunity to, to continue with what you’re talking about. You know, how do business owners embrace this? It almost seems like there’s going to be maybe over the next 20 years, like two, like two cycles.  

So we still have maybe another 20 years or so. And like you mentioned, the 40 year old plus managers and their, their hierarchal approach. Do you think after the 20 or so years give or take that’s going to die and then we’re fully into this, you know, new way of approaching business and communication and structure.  

Oh yes. I think, I think it’s just simply an evolution. I mean, you know, you can look back over the last century until the time when the telephone was first introduced or the, or before that Telegraph, you know, A business will always move towards whatever serves it best. Um, but the, the point is now that we’re working in much faster iterations, it’s like a logarithmic curve rather than taking 10 years for something to become a new thing.  

Like the internet kind of was when it first came out and let’s say in the mid eighties for everybody, um, Now it might take 10 months, you know, let’s look at something like blockchain. Okay. I still ask people when I get presents, you know, how many, how many people here can explain blockchain? I get a bunch of, you know, cheapest looks, nobody understands what it is.  

This is going to be a significantly powerful tool, uh, for commerce in the next few years, but starting very quickly, you know, cause we have moved into a trustless economy. You can’t do deals over a handshake anymore because even if you have a trusted colleague, transparency, regulations, and privacy, who will say you can’t do this any longer.  

So blockchain is a technology that, that fills the void of how to do transactions secure transactions in a trust economy. So when I turn to people and say, do you know what this is? Um, A lot of people give me these blank looks, cause they’ve never heard about it. It is it’s Bitcoin or something and that’s, that’s their Vegas concept.  

They’ve only heard about it in, in passing. So my point, my, to answer your question directly is new technologies and innovations like that, or like the collaborative workspace, uh, you know, capitalizing on virtual reality, capitalizing on artificial intelligence and machine learning. These things will all blend into an increasingly fast paced evolution of business.  

And it’s up to those who can keep their head up and look around and listen to them. Learn. They’re the ones who are gonna have the edge when it comes to making deals, doing business and becoming successful because you can’t wait 10 years to learn about this technology. It’s going to happen in 10 months.  

And if you. If you can divide your time again, whether you were an entrepreneur starting up or a salary professional in the company, divide your time alone, the 80 20 rule so that you spend 80% of your time working on your business. That’s fine. But spend some of your time always making sure you are learning day by day.  

What’s going on. That’s how you can ride this curve, this logarithmic curve up and to succeed with it. Let’s take that 80 20 concept. And you know, one of the areas of your expertise is managing time to be more productive throughout the day. So let’s kind of transition into that. How do you embrace this technology to be more productive and get ahead of the curve?  

You know, what do you talk about on that topic about productivity? Well, first of all, I mean, 80 20 rule is a very powerful tool. It can be applied everywhere, but I always say, you know, wonder there’s the calendar that dictates your day should never tell you what to do. You should be telling it what to do.  

And not what I mean by that is, you know, a calendar should never be more than 80% full. You know, the temptation is to fill your day from 9:00 AM to six, with meetings and emails and appointments, because that’s how we have been made to feel productive. The point is if you, if you go past 80 bucks, sent a committed to actions, activities, and work reliving yourself, no space for this kind of both self-education and network extension on a daily basis.  

So one of the key rules I try to teach people is it’s kind of like less is more thing. You can get more done in 80% of the time, then you can in 100% of the time, because part of that, that, that 20%. Is about not just simply network connection, influencing people and managing expectations. So all those times you run into problems with people who drop something on your desk, need this done right away, or, uh, just simply the, the surprises of life, or just simply who want to have a meeting with you or, or demanding things of your time.  

And you have no capacity to say no, and to reject or to deflect this, you can do so much more of that. If you manage people’s expectations in events. So, for example, today, here we are speaking. So I’m going to let my clients know that I can’t respond to anybody’s emails before. Let’s say the beginning of the afternoon today.  

So no one’s going to freak out. No, one’s going to say Steve, where are you? Because they know I’m going to take care of them this afternoon. And that’s a huge thing where they feel that they are looked after. They’re going to get off my back. They’re not going to be bothering me right now when I cannot possibly give them, then my time when I’m giving it to you, if your listeners, but no, nobody gets hurt in this relationship because I proactively manage the expectations of those who have grown into a fast paced instant gratification mindset.  

So the 80 20 rule means I want to spend some of my time every day, making sure I’m looking after and managing the expectations of those who need something from me. And yes, indeed also. Uh, spending some time self-educating and furthering my network. I always go into LinkedIn every single day. Simply an only two.  

Congratulate someone who is celebrating an anniversary today, five years at this job or a new promotion or whatever that to me is the most powerful form of networking because you acknowledging somebody and saying, good job. Well done rather than saying, Hey, please hire me. And people love acknowledgement.  

So that’s a great investment in my time in my business is to spend a few minutes each day. Just sharing some good feelings with others because it always pays back into the business opportunities and leads. So that’s what I mean by the 80 20 rules. Yeah. You can get more done in 80% of your time than in the 100% of your time.  

If you manage expectations, manage relationships and manage your education. All right. So a lot of those things I want to touch on further, um, because those are things that I’m super passionate about. Uh, let’s start with managing expectations and being proactive about that. Is that not yeah, normal for most people, because I that’s totally normal to me, but what I’ve learned is that it’s almost like not normal for other people.  

A perfect example was, um, I gave this example on just a podcast the other day as well. Um, You know, I was in an Uber catching a ride and, and it was in California. And I was asking the guy about, Hey, how’s the new California laws going to impact you as a driver? And he says, well, you know, it hasn’t really changed anything yet  

But the one thing that I can think of is taxes because before we didn’t really have to manage our taxes from the income we make from Uber, but now we’re going to have to tackle that. And I’ve never paid taxes before on it because I don’t understand it. And I just. Wanted to scream because like that doesn’t solve the problem guy  

Like you still have to pay the taxes and whether you figure it out now, or in a year or five years, at some point it’s going to come screaming back at you. And it’s been really, it’s been something that I’ve, I’ve really become aware of in the last couple of years. To me, it seems like the minority of people are proactive.  

And just like your example of setting expectations, like when I bought a new client, I say, Hey, Our phones at the office shut off at five. We don’t work with, we don’t work holidays. I don’t have email on my phone. So don’t expect a reply within one hour. Um, I will get to you within one business day. And like you said, everyone’s sorta cool with that.  

Like, Oh, okay. He acknowledged me and now I understand the expectations. It helps them. It helps you. But it’s just like a foreign concept when I talk about this to other people. So is, is this not like a default thing and human nature or, you know, I don’t know what else, what’s your take on that? Yeah, no, you’re correct.  

It is not a default that human nature. In fact, the default setting for humans is reaction. Proaction is not natural for most people. So that’s why you get, you know, on the ahead of the bell curve, you can entrepreneurs like yourself who recognize this and say, yeah, yeah, this is what I need to do to, to establish, um, my place in the marketplace.  

You know, I can turn that question around and say, well, what, what do your customers think about when you tell them that your phone’s shut off at five on that you’re not going to give them attention on the weekend. Isn’t that dangerous to your customer, to your business? Uh, you know, how, how would you answer that thing?  

Oh, I’ve been asked that plenty of times before. No, it doesn’t damage the relationship at all. At least in my scope of work, because those expectations have been set. And, and if anything, because it’s proactive. They are comforted because if I didn’t say anything and they expect a prompt reply, then they’re frustrated.  

But since I’ve said, Hey, I’m going to take care of you. I want to take care of you, um, with great attention to detail and care because I’m going to do it within a timeframe or that’s when I dedicate my energy to it. And so it’s never impacted my business negatively. Fantastic. And there you go, because what you’re doing is you are leading, you are taking care of this person. 

  

You are letting them know they’re being cared for. Now. Most people would say, Oh no, we couldn’t possibly, if you know, you want to call me at 9:30 PM on a Saturday night, I’m there for you, which sets a dangerous precedent. You know, you’ve been a slave to, to your customer. And the moment you drop that ball because you can’t, um, Answer the phone on a Saturday night, they’re going to be disappointed.  

So then this is the, this is the paradox that people need to grasp is that by setting those rules, you’re not imposing some tyrannical relationship over actually showing. Here’s how I can care for you. Here’s how I can give you my undivided attention that you deserve and that you may be paying for.  

Here’s how we work and people will gravitate to that, but we’ve got to dig down a couple more layers because. What we’re really talking about here, why the default setting for people with reaction and not proaction comes from the fact that at the base of everything we live in fear, fear, the most powerful emotion of all.  

And all human beings are ruled by emotion first and logic. Second. So with very rare exceptions, when somebody is confronted with change of some sort, the first thing they’re going to think about is how is this going to affect me? How is it going to endanger? So people who are afraid of jeopardizing relationships with customers by setting those kinds of rules, managing expectations are dominated by this primordial response of fear.  

Those rare people. Who’ve got the capacity to ProAct and recognize that by sending these kinds of messages, you were actually demonstrating the framework of care and you’re letting people know when we’re and how they will be taken care of and thus addressing their fear. So again, going back to my example for today, when I let my customers know I’ll be available for them after noon Eastern time today, that’s great.  

Now they know when they can get satisfaction from me, I have addressed their fear. Which as irrational as it might sound, because it kind of is makes them worry. Where did Steve go? And that is one of the key techniques of success. We’re guiding people and people want to be guided. People want to be led unless you are the natural alpha of a group.  

And you are the natural leader. Most people want to be led, take somebody’s hand and be led through the unknown. And that’s what a great entrepreneur is always going to do is to speak the language of emotion first and logic. Second, speak to the fears and address an allay, those fears, and that lays the groundwork for a very powerful relationship of trust.  

And trust is one of those fascinating words that bridges the gap between emotion and logic trust is a feeling, but it’s based on knowledge and that’s, that’s the goal that every successful entrepreneur needs to push you. Well, I think that’s a great segue into your comment about linked in. Um, I too have had great success on LinkedIn and it’s because of trust and just like the examples you gave where you just get on and acknowledge somebody and say, Hey, congratulations on this thing.  

Um, That’s that’s the same thing I do. Um, and it’s had massive success. What I don’t use LinkedIn for a lot of times, I’ll talk to people and I’ll say, Hey, you know, you should be on LinkedIn because I’ve experienced this great success. And I think you could replicate it too. And then they come back and say, well, every time I get on LinkedIn, I just get spammed with messages.  

Well, that’s true. You’re not wrong. That’s true. But the thing is is you, like, that’s not where you’re going. I like where you’re going on LinkedIn is to become part of the ecosystem and it can be LinkedIn. It can be Facebook, it’d be Instagram. It could be wherever your goal is to have these touch points with people and stay top of mind and build a relationship with them.  

So then when they need your service, they go, Oh yeah, Steve does that thing. And I trust Steve, and then they hit you up. And so I think that’s really important for people to understand that social media, uh, is not. At least from my perspective should not be used the way it is currently for business by the majority, which is, you know, Instagram, suffocation, hypers spam sells pitches.  

It should be the slow play and establishing relationships. And, um, not only does that seem to work better, but it attracts the type of people that you want to work with because you established a relationship and it goes both ways. They trust you and now you better understand them so they can help you help them better.  

There was a to that point, there was a time, believe it or not before LinkedIn existed. And I’m old enough to remember that. Cause I was, I was giving networking events, uh, hosting, networking events back then. And we would talk about, um, your role at X. I mean, for those, who’ve never seen the collection of it.  

And I would say, you know, it doesn’t impress me if you a role, if you have two Rolodexes with 5,000 business cards, because you know, how can you possibly know. 5,000 people. I’m more interested in someone who’s got a little black book or a small collection of business cards of two or three. There are people that they know because these are the people who would recognize you on the street and say, Hey, Damon, how are you doing?  

You know, how are things? Um, they’re the kind of people who you will confidently recommend their services to one of your clients. And they would recommend yours cause they know you. And when LinkedIn came out. And through all the decades now of its existence. I say the same thing to people is if you are, if you are building and maintaining a LinkedIn profile, one of the key things you want to do is make sure every person you accept and say yes to if someone that you respect and know professionally, because they are now part of your 

Collection your image, the pedigree of the people you connect to is vital so that they, they respect you and, and, uh, you can recommend their services happily, and anyone who just simply comes along and just wants to expand their numbers. They will, you will, you connect with me? I will always respond back and say, Tell me where we met, where did we meet?  

What did we talk about? How can I help, uh, promote your business? Uh, just remind me, cause I mean like yourself, I speak a lot on, I meet thousands of people and I can’t remember everyone, but I’m also leave a door open, but I’m saying, tell me where we met so that I can know you. And I can recommend you because my reputation’s on the line.  

If I recommend someone who’s either good or bad. So LinkedIn is an excellent tool, but again, it’s gotta be proactively managed rather than passively accepted. Uh, so yeah, the pedigree of your collection on LinkedIn is vital to your success, but you have to work it. You have to go back on there. Every, in my clinic every day, at least say hi to somebody, wish them happy birthday, wish them, congratulations, post a comment.  

That is something that they will read and thank them for their responses and also respond to their articles and posts. I acknowledge them, give them dignity. And that’s how you, you cement those relationships over the years. Uh, so it’s a hugely powerful tool and worth the time every day to use. Yeah. Yeah, I agree.  

Let’s talk about energy versus time. I assume that you are a believer in that approach and instead of, you know, managing nine to five, instead, if your energy is. Eight to 10 and then two to seven, then that’s how you do it. That is, is that a fair assumption that you believe in energy or time management  

Oh, totally. Yes. I mean, my background is in the physiology of the human being, but mostly the brain, but also the physical body as well. And so your, your, your individual circadian rhythm plays a huge role in your productivity. Um, eight out of 10 people anywhere in the world are morning oriented people.  

They’re, they’re have more focus and energy between nine and noon. And between there. Between nine and 10 30, that is the best time of the day for most people to get the key stuff done. Um, the reasons for that is it’s a confluence of a few factors such as the rising of the sun, which regulates your body chemistry.  

Um, also the caffeinated beverages that most of us take in and the energy of getting to work these things altogether. Make nine til 10 30, the golden time of the day for your most valuable stuff. But what I ask people to think about, you know, it’s a self test, you know, are you a morning or night out person?  

Where do you fit in? I would say picture yourself, taking a vacation. Okay. Like one of these all inclusive resorts, just yourself, maybe a partner, no kids. Just, just, you’re there to have fun on your own terms. So after a couple of days of catching up on the street, you have been deprived off. Where would you find yourself if you were totally in control of your day?  

Would you be up on the tennis court at six in the morning getting, you know, getting tennis lessons from a pro or would you be getting up at 11 o’clock for the second brunch and, and, you know, dancing the night away on the dance floor, where does your natural body want to be? And if you can answer that question in that hypothetical, you can now recognize where your best time of day would be for that vital golden moment.  

What do you do in that time? Maybe it’s. Again, sales calls, maybe it’s research, maybe it’s writing something brilliant, whatever your business card says that you do should be a pledge to that time, rather than falling prey to the reaction of having to respond to emails. Okay. So emails and other kinds of messaging or important parts of, of the lifeline of your business, but they’re not the most important.  

So again, if I manage the expectations of my customers to say, I always respond to emails after 11:00 AM on a daily basis. And I’ll explain to you why, if you need to know what that is, and then I’ll give them the same story. I’m a morning person. I want to do my best work in the morning for your benefit as my customer.  

And then I’ll respond to emails, you know, later in the day, when I’m at a, at a lesser, uh, at an app, uh, if there’s an emergency, you can call me, you have my number, you have my cellphone. But aside from that, that’s how I work. So exactly the same as you were saying about turning off the phones at five, it’s the same thing with the rest of your day, know yourself, know when your best time is.  

Assign your best work to that. And then throughout the rest of the day, if you want to avoid the, the sleepiness, it happens in the afternoon. And those blood sugar drops a very simple and inexpensive solution is protein, protein for breakfast, yogurt, dairy products, meats, nuts, Jesus, whatever works for your diet, your dietary preferences.  

Most of us have carbs only for breakfast toast, bagel, muffin, cereal, and coffee, and that stuff burns off way too quickly. So, if you want to get more energy throughout the day, you don’t have to turn to the red bulls and, and you know, your 26 coffees of the day, just give yourself a protein balance to level out your blood sugar.  

And you can immediately win back. I’d say about two more hours of productivity, even in those lesser periods of the day. Hmm. I’m going to give it a try. Yeah, I’m so sorry to interrupt, but it’s just one additional, let’s say you’re a team leader. Okay. So you’ve got a team of people, right? No hearing what I just said, eight out of 10 of your team are at their best in the morning.  

No. How much does a six pack of yogurts? Cost him a couple of dollars. Yeah. Investments in terms of your turning around your people, uh, basically, uh, boosting their energy levels by about 30, 40%, their focus and capacity levels for an effective meeting and effective work for the mere price of pennies, you know, a few cents per yogurt.  

That’s an incredible ROI and, and, uh, yeah, you’re, you’re, you’re not even giving that yogurt away for free. You are actually investing investment, right. A beautiful output from your employees or your staff or your team. I I’ve been really kind of, um, becoming more hyper aware, uh, Of little things like that in the last couple of years and they really make a huge difference.  

And it’s amazing that those natural things, like you said, you know, protein instead of red bull, um, not only do they work equally well, but I think that they’re more sustainable and there’s less of a crash after, um, yeah, it’s, it’s, uh, It’s like a hack that, you know, I’d feel guilty about. Totally. Well, I mean, it’s, I honestly believe that every ill that humanity suffers on this planet, there is a, there is a cure in nature for, I mean, aspirin is a classic example of an aspirin comes from Willowbrook 

I mean, there there’s an there’s so much stuff out there that is natural and doesn’t have that crash cause it isn’t, isn’t chemically based. But the point is we have moved in since the industrial revolution into a mindset that if you’re not busy all the time, you are nobody or nothing. Yeah. And I think one of the best things to come out of a new generation of employees now who have much more flexibility with regards to work life balance is a recognition that it’s not, you’re not defined by the hours you put in, but by the quality that you bring out.  

So if I have a team member or a customer or contractor who says, you know, I, I like to work out at the gym in the morning. I work between 12 and three. Then I pick up my kids from school. I say, great. You know, you know what we need, we’re going to get this out. By Friday, how you do it, it’s up to you and hiring you for your quality and how, however you do it from wherever you are.  

That’s totally up to you. And I, I love, I love this it’s fluid approach to work. Yeah. I’ll you said the prime time is somewhere between nine and 10 30. And we’re talking right now between nine and 10 30. You did that on purpose. Didn’t you? It’s always my best time when I love it. So do you think the rhythm of our body changes?  

And I asked that personally, because I’ve been an entrepreneur for 13 years and I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m naturally a morning person, but it’s become part of my work ethic because a lot of times I feel like I get more. Accomplished between 5:00 AM and 7:00 AM than I do, you know, for three times that much time later in the day.  

But as I’m approaching 40 now, I feel like I just can’t hang with that anymore. And the couple times that I’ve, uh, stayed up late, read my kids a book and they pass out and I’m still up. I feel like I get a second wind now at 10 o’clock. So is that in your experience? Um, is there an evolution to our body rhythm sometimes?  

Oh, definitely. I mean, as, as you age, a lot of things change. I always think of the wonderful story about Woodstock, the original Woodstock in 1969. And you know, if you were there in your twenties or teens, you’d be saying, wow, what a fabulous festival with suits. But if you were 40 years old back then you’d be saying, who’s going to clean this up, right.  

Because you have a whole different perspective on life. Um, yes, our bodies change as we age, but not necessarily just simply becoming older tireder and crankier. Um, I’m a passionate student of the chemistry of sleep, uh, understanding, sleep as it relates to productivity during the day. And just a personal story.  

I have two Huskies, a few dots, and one of them is their, their dogs. Yeah. Dogs or these kind of dogs breed nocturnal. So my older dog always gets up twice in the night. He gets up around one o’clock and it’s around four o’clock to just go outside and have a peek. And for the longest time I thought, Oh my God, this is going to ruin my career.  

Cause I don’t get a full night’s sleep anymore. I’m not getting, you know, sort of 11:00 PM till six, a full nights, unbroken sleep. But you realize that the chemistry of sleep is a remarkable thing that you can indeed have those kinds of breaks. If you know, whether it’s dogs or infant children or whatever, you can break from your sleep pattern and catch it up again.  

Even if you lay awake for an hour worrying, right? I say, don’t worry about it. You will lay awake for an hour, but chemistry of sleep is, is it’s fluid, it’s liquid, and it comes back to you and you can, you can do a lot of great stuff even with broken sleep. So yes, your, your body does change as the years go by.  

Teenagers as well. I always looked down upon because they’re never awake before new and they’re, you know, sort of dragging around and they’re very lazy and all these, these unfair descriptions of them, but the chemistry, the hormonal chemistry of teenagers, they are spending so much energy just growing.  

There’s no question that they can’t function before noon. So, you know, I’m a strong advocate about education for young children, as well as teenage children. Um, that shouldn’t start at nine in the morning just because parents are working at that time. Um, if you want some teenage kids to learn. They got to do it on their own physical terms.  

And that it’s a personal individual prescription, which again is another great reason for being alive in this era. Right now you have the capacity for personalized education. So yes, from, from teenage years, all the way through to your eighties. And as we’re seeing with, with bands like Aerosmith, you could still play.  

So, you know, Hey, we can do it. Great stuff. So the short answer is yes, your body changes, but not to the point of decrepitude by age 55 only you got to do is know yourself, no one you, and you can, you can ride this as opposed to fighting it. It’s fantastic. I need to find something passionate, like music, like you said, Aerosmith, um, or, or just any of, you know, uh, the guy from rolling stones and there’s, there was some funny meme I saw the other day and I think it was Willie Nelson and it said something, it was making a political joke about, um, the health care system.  

And it said something like, you know, my biggest. Political concern is how are these millennials going to take care of me and Mick Jagger and Steven Tyler, because they’re going to live forever. I need to find something passionate like that because you can see, I mean, even with a rock and roll lifestyle with just, you know, drugs and horrible choices they’ve made, they are still.  

Hyperactive compared, you know, I’m, I’m barely, I’m still like two years away from 40 and I’m starting to notice the little glitches in my body. And I’m thinking, how, how do those guys that are twice my age, just outpaced me like crazy. Yeah. And you’ll see that a lot of other people, they may have this sort of, um, sort of Renegade anarchist.  

Outward image, Keith Richards and Steven talk. Yeah. Keith Richards. Yeah. Yep. But the fact is they’re very smart people. They know about sleep. They know about nutrition. Um, they know how to manage themselves. And again, I always look at Paul McCartney. Who’s now like 78 still gardens, but yeah, but he he’s going to sleep till 5:00 PM, but he’s going to sleep through the day.  

And he’s gonna to get up and go to work the same way most people would do at 5:00 AM or 6:00 AM. So they’re not sort of sitting up all day and then go in and play a three hour gig at night that they just shifted their actual Workday around to fit the requirements of the job. But, you know, you can go down a rabbit hole, people like Keith Richards and so forth, they have a terrifically, powerful, um, metabolism for sure.  

But behind it all is a M. A very smart business sense about marketing a brand. Okay. So the sun brings back down to two key, a key thrust of your, of your, of your, of your podcast marketing a brand. And I always think about van Halen, for example, this is a very, very brief story, but that inhaler was famous for awhile with their Brown M&Ms story.  

I’m not sure. Have you ever heard the story of the grounding? Is this the dress room story where they only want certain color? Yeah. Yeah. They went on the Brown M&Ms removed from their big bowl of M&Ms. Oh, wow. What a bunch of divas, what a bunch of, you know, silly idiots. It wasn’t why they did it because they put them Brown M&M request at the bottom of their contract writer to make sure that everyone who’s doing business with read it.  

Yeah. There’s a test. Absolutely. You know, I do the same thing. When I hire new employees, I put an Easter egg in the middle of it, the job application. So at the top, it, I try to connect with them and I say, Hey, you know, here’s the company. We do these exciting things. Um, you know, look for a longterm relationship.  

All my other employees have been with me for super long time. And I like it that way. Then at the bottom I put their compensation and here’s your benefits, you know? Cause people look at the top of the bottom of things. So we’re right in the middle. I put a qualifier and I say, you know, if you’re interested, don’t email me.  

Don’t private message me on this platform do Skype me and you must copy and paste. I love Tyrannosaurus Rex. Like just something super bizarre that nobody in their lifetime would do unless they actually read it. Yeah. Which goes full circle to the whole idea of critical thinking. What is it? It’s about thinking through the situation you’re in right now and not just skimming through the first couple of minds.  

So this is what makes certain people win. And other people wonder why they’re not winning. All right. As we get calls for wrapping up, let’s talking about winning in a yacht rock band. So, you know, I never heard the term yacht rock and, but then I went and clicked around a couple of your videos and that is definitely the right way to phrase music that you guys do.  

So how long, how long have you been a musician and how did you know doing a little side gig is as a musician, musician come to life. Yeah, I love it. I’ve been playing since I was 17 years old. And to put that in, in chronological perspective, this is a time when you two and the police were new acts.  

Everyone’s going, wow, this is what these guys. So I was playing punk when punk was punk. Um, I just love music. I just love it. It’s a great outlet, but it’s also a terrific management education because when you’re running a band, everything about management is in there. Everything about personalities and project management, everything is there in a band.  

And so it’s, I’m actually putting together. Of course, you know, which hopefully will be interesting because it’ll be about running a band, but it’ll be, it’s a management course disguise as well. Um, I love doing it. I mean, yacht rock was a pejorative term to describe, you know, a bunch of lazy rich guys sitting around on their yachts, listening to music, but I just, you know, you got to do what you love and as a musician, the kind of artistry that people like it to be brothers and Holland notes, and these bands that work.  

The key thing about seventies music just to very briefly is that every, every member of the band brought their history to the recording. So you’ve got, you’ve got a combination of talent. Does he have this switches, rental management school story? It’s a combination of talents that build a great team. And I, I, I’m always amazed where people came from to, to add their little piece if they had a soul background or R and D background to add it to the beauty of the tune.  

So that’s why I love the music. And, uh, but again, it’s, it’s. Work life balance in the sense that I never work in the evenings, I’m always practicing or playing or playing a gig, but I flipped this around again from a networking standpoint. Cause I don’t want to play bars. I play corporate events. So all of my friends that I know on LinkedIn who are looking for great entertainment, And this, by the way, it seems from my observations that the music does appeal across the generations.  

It isn’t just simply the old people from the office, but a lot of younger people have heard these tunes from movie soundtracks and commercials, and it still has a wide appeal. So I’ve found a brand. I found a product. I found something that I enjoy and yes, I leverage my network to get those gigs, to do what I love.  

And Hey, you can’t eat that. Yeah, that’s super cool. I’ll see. Prentice SteveP R E N T I C e.com. Uh, Steve, I’ll give you the floor for a minute to put out any other additional contact information or, um, you know, give a speech on anything you want to promote. Well, you know, that’s pretty much it. If I was to hand you or any of your listeners, my business card, that’s all it says.  

I have no address, no phone number, nothing with business card. Just Steve credits. Everything you need to know is right there and you can pull it up on your phone right now and check it out. So. No, I’ve, I’ve got a couple of books. I, um, I do, I do a lot of writing people and this is just what I love to do.  

And more importantly, you know, if anybody’s just interested in connecting just to expand their network and for me to expand my network, that’s what I love. So just, just reach out and say hi, and I will ask you that same question. What do you do? How can I help you tell me more about yourself? And I think that is the single greatest asset that any entrepreneur or employee could possibly have.  

It’s a thriving and vibrant personal professional network. Steve Prentice. Everybody. Thanks so much for your time. My pleasure, indeed, Damon. Thank you. 

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Steve Prentice: Hacking Life Without the Hacks

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