Ep. 143 – This week Chris is talking about acquiring and hiring expertise, from two different angles. You’ll get insight from the perspective of the technical professional on what the journey looks like to acquire the expertise that will allow you to demand the big bucks and deliver for your clients in a big way. Chris also covers what to be mindful of and look out for, as the business owner who is looking to hire an expert, so that you can operate in perfect parity. By the end of this episode, whether you’re the marketing automation provider or the founder interested in hiring one, you’ll be better prepared to continue on your business growth journey.
Chris Davis 0:00
Welcome to another episode of The all systems go podcast where we invite startup founders and digital marketers alike to share software and strategies to build automated marketing and sales systems at scale. I’m your host, Chris Hill Davison, on this episode, I want to talk about acquiring and hiring expertise. And I’m going to come from two angles. But I want to focus this on the technical professional, what does that journey look like to acquire the expertise, right to demand the big bucks or deliver in a big way. But I also want to mention on the hiring side of those who will hire these experts, what what you should be mindful of as well, right? So that we can operate in perfect parity for everyone who offers a service, there’s got to be somebody that’s paying for that service. So with that being said, I want to start out with the idea of a bell curve, some of you who are academics understand the bell curve. And perhaps the bell curve was your friend, I’ll admit, I had the first time I experienced grading on a curve or a scale or whatnot, was when I was taking chemistry, chemistry, one Chem one in my engineering studies. And I got back a test and it was 56%. And immediately, I was like, Oh, my gosh, I failed. This is I’m horrible XYZ. And the teacher said, Hey, we’re grading on a curve. And those A is is now 70%. A B is 60%. And a C is 52%. And above, and I was like, how, how did I not fail with 56%, it had been unheard of. So if you’re an academic, you’re you’re used to curves, charts, graphs, things of that nature. Well, the bell curve that I’m speaking of is, and those of you on YouTube, you’ll be able to see this, I’m actually going to put this up. It’s on my iPad here. But it’s just the process right? Of starting here. You go up the curve, and then come down through, down. So what I’m explaining is that there’s this x and y axis, the x axis is time. So the horizontal axis is time the vertical axis is expertise. And you kind of have this curve that starts low, looks like a hill goes up and comes back down bill, right the shape of a bill. So ideally, I split the bill into three portions, you have the start where your low, low one experience and time, the middle where your high end experience and some time, and then low again, where you’re
Chris Davis 2:49
where you’re high, high on time, and low on experience. So it may appear. This is this is the very interesting part here. So there’s a caveat. It’s not a true bell curve, is not a true bell curve. And that’s what makes today’s episode so exciting for me, as you can tell, I’m ready, I’m ready to go in talk about this. So anyways, if you think of the stage one, that the bottom, low expertise, low time, these are, these are the people who are excited, they see an opportunity and it’s just like, I want to do that. I want to be that that looks so fun that looks. That’s what I want to do. I remember being that person, as an engineer, looking at all of these internet marketers like, wow, one day I want to learn how to automate just like they did, right. So low expertise and low time put in it. So you really can’t expect much out of it. And you don’t know much but you’re willing to figure it out. And mostly on your dime. You’re looking at free content, small investments leading to small results. Like you’re not looking for the 1000s of dollars course you’re looking for like 50 bucks here and do I have to pay $20 a month for an autoresponder I’ll just use this free open source software for now. Right like your YouTube University is is where you get your degree. Facebook forums is where you get all of your expertise and you show up and you post there and people think you’re smart and maybe you get some direct messages and you know things of that nature, but you really don’t know much. You haven’t put it into you haven’t putting in the time right? So even even if you invest heavy. I did I invested in a Brendon Burchard product Jeff Walker’s product. Jeff Johnson I don’t even know if he’s still doing traffic. Jeff Johnson. I don’t know where he went. I all $2,000 I had disposable income as an engineer, big investment still small results. Right? What are you looking for as an as an ace as a technical professional starting out right at that point in the bell curve, what are you really looking for? And what should you really be spending your time focusing on and thinking about education, education, you need to shorten the learning curve short, you need to increase, you need to go from being a little slope to a mountain, you want to go as high up and expertise as possible, as fast as possible. You can only do that through mentorship, coaching, investing in education, that’s what you really need to be focused on. So that you can start to know stuff. Once you know something, you can do something and start to produce something, right. So that’s where your focus should be. You should not be focused on trying to land big clients, you should not be focused on trying to make a living too early, you’re way too early in the game to even be thinking about a business that can truly support you, especially if you have a family, right. But what about the other side, when you’re hiring this is this is a warning, warning, warning warning. You want to be careful that you’re not paying high dollars at this level. Now we’re in a day and age where sometimes it’s hard to tell, you don’t know the person may download a template and their website looks really good. They may have manufactured some testimonials, maybe the testimonials are real. And they’re just cousins, aunties, uncles, friends, right? There’s a lot of fluff out there on the internet. So maybe, maybe they manufactured it. Maybe they spoke honestly to it and just are doing a really good job of promoting themselves and making what’s small, big. Who knows, right? But you to make sure you don’t fall for it. You need someone experienced in that industry industry to help you sniff out the fluff. Right? You’ve got to have access to somebody who could say, hey, look, I get it. You liked that website. Look at this template. He just took that template changed a few things. This does not mean they know what they’re doing. You need a whistleblower. Sorry, I blown many whistles in my day. It blow many whistles, not in a way to like, hate on our like, for somebody’s efforts. But listen, if you’re hiring me to look at and assess what you need, and who you need to do what you need, and the person you’re looking at, doesn’t size up. I just say both of you. I blew the whistle. Hey, don’t even get together. Timeout separate. Some of you wish you had a whistleblower in real life and your dating life. But we’re not gonna go we’re not gonna go down that tangent. Okay. Professionally, yes, I am a proud whistleblower. And it’s for the sake of saving both parties. Both parties, I don’t I’m not focused on either one, I want to win win. Okay. So that’s the beginning you and again, once you know where you’re at, for yourself, you’re just getting started, you haven’t put the time and you don’t have the expertise. Learn something, right, like, go learn something, go sign up for some coaching mentorship. If you want if you want the fast path, if you want the slow path, keep consuming YouTube content and trying to join cheap communities and programs and all of that, right. But at some point, you do this thing, right. And you’ll find yourself at the top of this curve or the mountain. However yours look, some of you some of your experiences is like a mountain where it’s a very high peak and a very steep slope. Some of you are more like a
Chris Davis 8:35
small hill, right? Don’t go up that high. And it took you a long time to get that far. Whatever the case is at the top, this third level of the bell when you’re at the top of the bell curve. This is where you have figured some stuff out. And you know how to do stuff beyond the basics. Oh, hey, look, sign up for MailChimp put in an email and it can go out after somebody submits a form. Now you’re an active campaign you’ve had experience with Ontraport maybe even Zoho like some off the off brand that exists out there in certain industries but it’s not really the main tools for small business marketing automation, right? So you know, you know the main players. Hey, look LeadPages Click Funnels Unbounce Instapage right, gorgeous funnels or whatever is called funnel gorgeous. You know, you know the players you can talk to talk because you like to tinker around with all of these tools. And guess what, you can make them work and if they don’t work, they have tools like Zapier and making Pavley that can do you know some stuff right? You know it you have become a true tactician. I call these professionals my tech heavy folk and often when you take heavy your strategy light, but you know how to do stuff and a lot of tools, or or it could be a select stack. Maybe you just like, hey, look, I have mastered Ontraport memberships, all of that it drives people crazy. But I love it. I just love it right? So be it you learn something true tactician. You asked me to do something and I’ll do it. You, you haven’t figured out how to use this hammer to hit about every nail. The problem is, you think everything’s a nail? Oh, that’s a boat. Don’t worry about it. It’s like, no, no, no, no, you don’t want to hit the boat in, we want to pull it out, oh, I’ll just turn a hammer around. Look, we can pull it out. It’s like, no, you gotta unscrew it, man, what are you doing? Get out of here. Right? You just go looking for nails and everything is a nail to the tactician? Hey, I know how to do that, oh, we could do this. So what does that mean? What does that mean, you simply lack the experience of doing in a consequential environment that demands revenue revenue to be generated. That’s really what we’re saying. You’ve never had to put your skills to a purpose of producing and have your livelihood depended on it. You haven’t. And that’s why you continue to play, you got the digital tool shed out back with every platform from app, Sumo and everything else, and don’t know how to put all of it together to produce a result. Put another way, you don’t have strategic experience. Okay, you know how to do a thing, but you miss the piece of doing that thing that actually generates the revenue. Now, this can be flipped to, okay, you could actually be high on your bell curve, strategy wise, be a really good strategist, and lack the technical acumen doesn’t matter, you can go either way. Right? So what do you need to do, if you’re the professional at the top of the curve. By the way, none of this is bad. It’s just identifying where you’re at. If you’re at the top of the curve, you have to understand that you’re going to your benefit is when you work with companies that already have a strategy. Your benefit is when you work with companies who already have people internal, that can kind of like manage expectation ideas, bring them down and hold all players accountable for producing. That was me at LeadPages. I was at the top of the hill, I knew how to do some stuff, didn’t have the no strategy didn’t know how to produce anything. And it took me joining a company that didn’t need strategy that I could learn strategy from. Right. But it was also consequential every week, we’re looking at the revenue, hey, we hit our mark is a little stressful, but I thrived in it. Right? So you need that if you’re gonna stay at the top if your career is look, I’m at the top of the bell curve. That’s what I do. I’m a tactician. Make pablum Look, I just do stuff. I make magic happen. That’s perfect and fine. But in your company, you need to have a project manager, an operations manager, CEO, oh, somebody to say, okay, look, these are the things that we need to do to push things forward to actually keep this money coming in. Because because people aren’t going to pay for all these ninja tricks without a return for a prolonged period of time. Right, you just need to know where you’re at. So you understand the type of help that you need, and the type of clients you’d be best fit for. Now, on the hiring side, their expertise is worth it. Okay? Because they’re smart, they figure some stuff out, it’s worth it. They know stuff that most people do not.
Chris Davis 13:32
However, it may not result in a return. So if you need if you’re in a if depending on the state of your business, if your business is in a state where I need money right now, and you’re working with a true tactician, that has limited experience producing a return, this is very dangerous, because you can get a false positive, you can get the the feeling that oh, great, I’m working with someone that knows what they’re doing. Right? And then just assume, because they know what they’re doing is going to generate a return. That’s not the case. That is not the case. So you need to understand where your business is, if you’re in the if you’re in a stage where you need a lot of the technical foundation laid, and you’ll make the money later, perfect. You may be able to get a tactician and a ver and in a much, much more affordable cost. Because they just be happy to do stuff. But if you need some revenue coming out of it, like last month, and then you hire a tactician, and wonder why it’s not working, but you got all this stuff built, you can be mad at them, but then you’ve got to point the finger at yourself and be accountable for what you didn’t know. Because remember, they’re going to have ton of ideas and possibilities. But they’re going to need help bringing a single one to reality and holding them along the way of bringing that one. They’re going to want to go back up in the cloud and talk about all these other things we could do and oh okay, I’ll just go get this to know This is our stack, this is the this is the result produce it. If not, no more money, right? You have to start setting very defined boundaries for these types of professionals. Okay? The last is to return to the bottom. Now this is the bottom, but it’s not the bottom. And what I mean is this, you’re on the other side of the curve, it looks like you’ve gone down in experience, and your time is at its maximum. Okay? So some of you may be asking, Chris, that doesn’t work. As time goes on, you get smarter, you do get smarter. And this is why when you return to the bottom, this is the true mark of an expert. Because experience has shown that that that big, deep bag of tricks rarely produces the result. In fact, by this point, you realize, like 10%, of what you learn is good enough for 90% of businesses to increase by 10x. Let me say that, again, you’ve learned that 10% of what you’ve learned is good enough for 90% of businesses to scale 10x. This is a true expert. And the reason why you’re back low is the intentionality of saying, Yes, I know all of this, but I’m only going to apply this amount of it. Because that’s what matters. Sure, I know platform ABCDEFG. But we only need platform a it’s a conscious, intentional effort to quote unquote, dumb it down this filter, bring it down to its most basic level, the fundamentals to produce the result. Now here’s the thing, since you’ve journeyed up high, you can always go back up and grab the ninja tricks if you need to. But what I’m proposing to you is very, very rarely will you need. And this takes true discipline that an expert, I mentioned this on another podcast where we talked about how somebody who doesn’t know what they’re doing, uses a whole lot of words to describe what they’re doing. And then somebody who’s a real expert, and has been doing it for years, can say what they do in like five words. And it’d be better than the person who rambled on for like, three minutes. Right? When you’re a true expert, you know how to just concentrate? It’s your your, your your expertise is concentrated, it’s pure, it’s, it’s like, man, no, there’s no dilution. Right? It’s just pure. Man, just one drop was better than a whole cup of somebody else’s over here. Well, that’s intentional. That’s because I went and did all this stuff and realize you don’t need all of it. Right? They know their way around tech and strategy. And any complexity is invisible to you. You just get the desired output, there’s, you say, hey, look, I’m using this, this tool here. And I just need this tool to send this information over here. And then I need it to produce this, this thing, right. And somehow that thing is produced, you’re like, great, on the back end, there’s all kind of integration did you have to set the you had to format the data, then you had to create these charts. And then you had to learn how to do the graphs and the pivot tables, a whole lot of expertise, you went, you went back up the hill to get that expertise,
Chris Davis 18:30
but to the company, to the to the to the delivery? Who the recipient, I should say, It seems simple. That’s the mark of an expert. Right? And, and usually they don’t charge hourly, because they always focus on the return, they’re experienced enough to say, hey, look, if it takes some more time, so be it. I’m not gonna, I’m not gonna keep you on the meter. But takes more time out, eat that. That’s all me. Right? So if you’re that expert, if you’re that, you need to be sure that you’re coupling yourself with companies that one are in a position to produce a return. So you don’t look like you’re one of those previous in the in the in the bell curve. Right. And you need to go in with strong decision making. You can’t go in differing all the time. Hey, is this what you guys want to do? Hey, what do you think? Right? There’s a time for that. And then there’s, there’s a time to say, hey, look, this is what it is. This is the tool we’re using. This is what we’re doing. You’re eliminating possibilities all the time to make sure that we’re focused on the one thing, right, this is the mark of an expert, and I’m just talking specifically, marketing automation. Right. Now, I know we can use that tool. We’re using this one. Yes, I know that tool exists. Not thinking about that right now. This is what we’re focused on. Yes, I know. We can add a pop up to the website. Yes, I know we can add three or four more email sequences. Yes, I know. We can tag this every time happens, not doing it. We’re doing this right now. Right? So what do you do when you’re hire these people, when you come across, you have to know that they don’t come cheap. So you better not come with the cheap mindset. Okay. And usually this happens because you’re you’ve got a history of abuse from all of these freelancers, and other professionals and experts that just burned you, they were on the other side of the bell curve burns you out. And now you get to somebody who can really do what they what they say they can do, and you’re out of money, and you’re out of belief that it can work. So you have to understand, you cannot come at an a true expert, with a cheap mentality. Okay? You have to be willing to invest, you have to be patient, you have to be willing to listen and trust the ride. If you’re dealing with an expert, you don’t want to be telling an expert what to do. You want to be deferring to that expert asking them all the time. What do you think, and giving them the floor? Right, you have it? Another thing? This type of expertise is extremely hard to find. You’re not going to easily find it. It’s usually through referrals sometimes, like this podcast or listen to it a friend send it to you. Okay, you found me up? You got me. Right. We’re, we’re findable. But we’re not easily found. And I don’t say that because we’re like hiding. Sometimes it just takes a person to go through so much to even realize I’m ready for an expert now. Right. But this is why I do what I do. And I’ve created what I’ve created. I know I’m an expert, I checked all the boxes, I understand that peep it not just my own mouth, other people’s mouth like certified right, the low was that verified star that they put on accounts? Yes, all of that. And that’s also why I’m training people to do the same thing with my certified automation service provider program, right? training them to do the same thing. So they’re not as hard to find. And you and we start to balance out the market with those that truly are on the right side of the bell curve, versus those who are on the left side posing like they’re on the right side. Okay. And and what it looks like is most people are familiar with Kiss keep it simple, stupid, right? I like to say keep it super simple. That’s my kiss acronym. But it comes with experience and it comes with time. Now you can do you can experience a high level of success at any point. If you’re in the beginning you like No, no experience and time. You be you become a student, become a student of the game. You may not have to learn the skills, but you need to learn how to talk about it intelligently. Maybe you’re just speaking from the stage getting people all motivated. Right? Many people that do it. You’re at the top your true tactician. Look, I love building,
Chris Davis 23:11
I don’t want to be on sales calls. I don’t want to do any of that other business stuff. Okay, we’ll build an agency where other people are doing that, and you can just truly be the tactician. Right, expert, you pick your path, shoot, you can go any direction. Right? But just know where you’re at and be true. Do I have a deep bag of tricks? Absolutely. Absolutely. I can do things that anybody who’s techy and really appreciate automation. It will seriously you look at it, and a drop of saliva will involuntarily come out your mouth. And before you know you’re like, oh, shoot, I was true. Maybe I’m hungry. No, no, you’re just amazed what I just showed you. Right? Deep bag. I have it, I admit, do I dig in it often? No, intentionally I don’t. I can solve very complex problems I can. I choose not to because your success doesn’t rely on how deep I can put my arm in my bag. It relies on how quick I can produce a result. Okay, so I have the discipline and understanding of knowing the depth of which is required. But I have the bag if you don’t have the bag, you’re going to have to get access to somebody who does. I often consult with fractional CEOs, CMOs, that are just like, hey, we’re trying to do this thing. And they may not be as tech savvy, heavy on strategy, but they need some help, technically, they’ll reach out to me. And I’ll come in and say, hey, look, I can consult and guide you on how to do this with your client. And it’d be all your work. You don’t even have to introduce me to the client. Well, they get to the point where they’re like, look, I don’t care if the client knows I don’t know this I I just need the client to know that I’m solving it. Right? All good. All good. So I know the role that I play. And I have the unique position of owning both strong strategy and technology. Right, but this is, this is the if you’re looking to get started, this is the journey that’s ahead of you. If you’re looking to hire, these are the phases that are present right now. So my goal is with this man, my hope is that with this podcast episode, that you’re now more prepared to continue on your journey. And you’re also more aware and thinking accurately around who to hire, and where they are in their journey. Last thing that I’ll say, get help. What do I mean by get help, I’m talking about the hiring folks, get somebody it’s okay to pay somebody $1,000 $1,500 or so, to come consult, just help you out a little bit to see, hey, do you think this person is a good fit? Trust me, that may be a month, a half a month of wages, two months of wages, is okay. Pay it upfront is gonna save you years of headaches and pain when the wrong person comes in, and starts messing up. Get help ask for an educated opinion. Always. Always. Alright, so hopefully, this is more encouraging. And it’s showing you the path that you have ahead, both as a professional in the in the one hiring the professional. And the last thing I’ll say with the professional is listen, I have a fast track you already know. Or you should know, amplify my automation is literally that amplifying your automation skills within six months. I can’t I don’t know where else you’re gonna go for it. And I’ve been hearing people, I need to get ready. I need to get ready. It’s like you don’t get ready to go to the hospital. You really don’t you hurt yourself and you go to get better. You don’t say, Oh, I’m bleeding now. But let me just try to patch it up as much as I can so that the doctor doesn’t have to work as hard. That defeats the purpose. So some of you it’s time to make that uncomfortable investment. It’s time to jump in, if that’s what you desire to do. All right. So both sides, all I ask is that we do it the right way. Thank you for tuning in to this episode.
- [1:59] Chris uses a bell curve to describe the 3 different stages of the technical professional journey
- [5:04] What you should actually be focused on in the early stages of being a technical professional
- [5:57] Warnings and red flags to look out for when you are looking to hire an expert
- [8:43] What it means to be at the top of the bell curve – this may be different than you would assume
- [9:44] The different working situations and clients that are best for an expert in strategy vs. technology
- [13:19] How to know if you should hire an expert that leans more tech heavy or strategy heavy
- [15:13] What it means when you’re on the other side of the bell curve and returning to the bottom
- [16:50] The qualities of a true marketing automation expert
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About the Show
On the show, Chris reveals all of his automated marketing strategies he has learned from working in fast growing marketing technology startups so you can put your business on autopilot quickly and without error.
Discover how to deploy automated marketing, sales, and delivery systems to scale your business without working long hours to do so.
Chris L. Davis
Chris is an Electrical Engineer turned entrepreneur who is the Founder of Automation Bridge, an international speaker and facilitator, and startup consultant