Creating Conversations that Strengthen Team Relationships
Research has proven time and time again that happy, engaged, and empowered employees help to improve the performance of organizations. It all starts with having a strong company culture. In this episode, Karan Nijhawan (Founder, Jube) explains how he has helped fast-growing companies to build a stronger, happier and more productive workplace, and how deep conversations can help to connect people in a disconnected world.
Topics discussed in this episode:
- Karan talks about why he hates the question “What do you do?” [0:58 / 5:09]
- Why companies can’t keep their best employees? Where some organizations get it all wrong? [21:16]
- Karan shares the trends he believe will go in the future:
- #1. Providing flexibility and remote work [30:20]
- #2. Companies looking at new opportunities to keep their staff more motivated than ever before [31:05]
- How and why “trust” is the key to holding your company’s future strong. [33:13]
- Reflection on why it is important to make people feel valued. [36:21]
Christian Klepp, Karan Nijhawan
Christian Klepp 0:08
Hi, and welcome to the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. I’m your host Christian Klepp, and one of the founders of EINBLICK Consulting. Our goal is to share inspirational stories, tips and insights from B2B marketers, digital entrepreneurs, and industry experts that will help you to think differently, succeed and scale your business.
Hi, everybody, and welcome to this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. I’m your host Christian Klepp, and today I am absolutely stoked to be hosting someone who I connected with on LinkedIn a few weeks ago, and the exchanges that we’ve had since then have been pretty inspiring. So Karan Nijhawan, welcome to the show, my friend.
Karan Nijhawan 0:46
Thank you, my friend, so great to connect with you and super excited to be here.
Christian Klepp 0:50
Okay, fantastic. Let’s get this show on the road. So why don’t you just tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
Karan Nijhawan 0:58
Absolutely. So one of my least loved questions is what do you do? And I’ll tell you why. It’s gonna really put all of this into perspective. So I’m from a small town, small city, East Coast, Canada, St. John’s, Newfoundland, where there’s not a big population 110,000 people. And I used to go to networking events as a way to level up the people in my circle. And I once heard this quote that really landed with me and the quote said, “you are the average of the five people you surround yourself with.” And it’s said by this guy, Jim Rohn. And when I looked at my five people, I was like, Oh, crap, like something is not aligned. The people that I’m hanging out with, are they’re in my corner. But yeah, these are the five people that I want to be around? Likely no. So I started going to networking events as a way to hopefully find a new group of five people and if anyone listening to this has ever been to a networking event, you know that it’s full of people putting on a facade. It’s full of business cards, it’s full of fake pleasantries and like mediocre hellos, and you never really build any true relationships. So every event I would go to, on the surface level, I’d walk away with a ton of business cards and what people would call contacts. But on a deep level, I walked away with almost nothing, no friendships, no relationships. It was all about what’s in it for them, what’s in it for the transaction.
So I started hosting my own events. I said every event I go to sucks. So, instead of complaining about it, why don’t I just start hosting my own events. So I started hosting my own dinners, where I would handpick people that I wanted to get to know better. Some were business owners, entrepreneurs, others were just people that I wanted to build deeper relationships with. And really phrase or frame the event as a ‘Hey, this is a different style of event. There’s no business cards allowed. There’s no pitching. And we’re just going to talk about life and real conversations.’ That’s the only two rules is “no business cards, and no pitching.” And my first dinner went between four and five hours of amazing conversations. People didn’t want to leave the room. And it wasn’t because I was doing something crazy unique. It was just I had created this environment where people felt safe and vulnerable enough to let their guard down without any sort of fear of being pitched. So the conversations got deep really quickly, there was tears involved. And it was just a night of really refreshing conversations. When you know that that’s not what you’re going to get at a traditional networking event.
So I started doing this once a month in my local city. And before I knew it, I had a waitlist to people that wanted to start coming to these dinners. And then I turned it into a very small subscription based business of entrepreneurs and business owners that wanted to come have dinner every single with a very curated group of people. So when I came to Toronto, and tried to meet people here in a city that’s 15 times bigger than where I’m from, I found the same thing at networking events. I just found that the environment was not actually conducive to real relationship building. So I started hosting my own events here in Toronto, the exact same way invite-only dinners where I would handpick people that I either had to apply to come or people that I would reach out to or people that were referred, and very quickly started creating my own community here and then started working with businesses and companies and started helping them host their own events to really curate a night of meaningful connection whether that was events with their teams and their employees, or whether that was with their clients and prospects. So really, the way I answer what I do, is I make people feel like people.
Christian Klepp 4:57
What a fantastic story, man that sounds like the ultimate way to, connect with people beyond, as you as you rightfully alluded to just handing out a business card and doing the 60” elevator pitch.
Karan Nijhawan 5:09
Here’s the thing, if I tell you what my business title is, rightfully or wrongfully, you’re already gonna start making up ideas as to what I do, who I am, what I’m all about and whether or not I have a value in your life. If you have the best digital marketing expert on your team, and I meet you at an event, I said, “Hey, I’m a digital marketer.” I already got a guy. So like, let me go, let me go try to find somebody else. Right. And we subconsciously, we placed these notions and these meanings on titles and where we see a title and right away we associate it with a business or a position that we’re aware of. And what I was finding was that people were being judged for their business titles, and their self-worth as a human being was dictated by what their title sat on their business card. And that’s exactly the type of environment I tried to avoid creating. And that’s why I believe so much in bringing people together. Because every person brings their own unique experience to the table, their own unique journey and story. There’s so much you can learn from people outside of just writing them off based on their business title.
Christian Klepp 6:21
Indeed, and I mean, like Toronto, certainly a very suitable place to do that. Because there’s so many people from different walks of life, and different backgrounds and so forth.
Karan Nijhawan 6:32
The interesting thing about this city is like Toronto is a hub for connection. It’s a hub for technology, innovation and business. Now, the downside of that is that you’re always trying to keep up with the Joneses or you’re always trying to keep up with the latest trends and you’re always trying to have your best life put together on camera. It’s like that’s what everyone wants, right? They want you to succeed and you have you feel like you have to live this life that others expect you to live. And the downside about that is that it’s very easy to get caught up in trying to keep up with everyone else, and trying to pretend that you’ve got your stuff figured out. And it’s okay if you don’t – like the most of the successful and smartest people I’ve had the pleasure of having dinner with will completely say that, they don’t have their shit figured out. It’s every day, we’re just trying to get better and stronger and learn from our mistakes. And I just find that type of depth typically doesn’t exist in your traditional events.
Christian Klepp 7:33
Right. That’s absolutely correct. So, Karan, that’s what you’re doing right now. But what were you doing before you became an entrepreneur? I mean what motivated you to take this path?
Karan Nijhawan 7:45
I had always known I wanted to start my own business one day and I think that started with my dad. My dad owned an operator and still operates his own business. And growing up in a house where your dad is a business owner. You kind of see the perks, but you also see the really crappy downsides. And I experienced all of that both good and bad. And this notion of I was in a 9-5 job pretty much my entire life because I was trained and I grew up in an environment where safety is important. You need safety and safety in my household was generally around finances. So if you could secure financial security and you have a job that’s paying you every two weeks, and you’ve got a 40 year plan in front of you and how you’re going to get promoted and move up the ranks. Like don’t you dare leave a position like that! Because you’ve got it made and that’s really the path that was headed down. So I worked in oil and gas for five years. In contracts management, I worked in sales for marketing, I worked in sales for two different tech companies. And even while I was at those companies, I always had a side hustle. I started a fitness business a couple of years ago called Fit Opportunity that never really went anywhere, but that was my first like foray into running your own side hustle. And even while I was employed by these other organizations, I was still hosting dinners. I wasn’t really monetizing them from a business standpoint, but I was always hanging out with other entrepreneurs and other business owners and I saw their ups and I also saw their downs. And I just found that hey, if I can control my own destiny and control every single day, and love what I do, and not be tied to this quote job where I get to live my life for three weeks a year, aka. vacation, and the other 49 weeks, if I’m dreading it, then obviously something is broken. And you can know that, and trust me, I knew that from day one, but knowing and taking action are just two different things. And what finally did it for me was, I went to this event in Denver that I had been hired for by a friend of mine, Cody, and I saw two of the cheesiest things on a slideshow, like the cheesiest things that just hit me when I needed to hear it the most. And the first slide said, “If not now, when.” And that phrase just hit me in the face like a ton of bricks and just blew my mind open. And the next one said, “if you’re not building your own dreams, you’re building somebody else’s.” And I read two of these things. The next day, I resigned.
Christian Klepp 10:21
Wow. Literally lazy as they were.
Karan Nijhawan 10:25
Yeah, within 24 hours of seeing those two things. It’s not that the quotes are so powerful, it’s that I was so ready. I was at a place in my life where I’ve probably read and heard those quotes for the last 10 years. But it’s like when your subconscious and your mind is ready to accept that message. It becomes so much more clearer. And although I wanted to leave my 9-5 and have my own business for a lot longer than then I expected it’s if you’re not ready, you’re not ready. So for me, it’s at that moment in Denver, I was just so ready that all it took was those two phrases.
Christian Klepp 11:06
So it’s not even it’s not even that it was a reality check. It was more like a it was more like that revelation that you needed to like not give you that nudge out the door.
Karan Nijhawan 11:15
Yeah, it wasn’t it. That’s exactly it, man. I lived a lot of my life, being on the sideline and expecting this parachute to open to pick somebody to catch me. And I realized that dude, this parachute is not going to open if you don’t jump. And you can talk about what you’re going to do. You can talk about a one day, you can talk about the what ifs. But man, if you’re on the cliff, like I was for years and years and years, and you just are talking about what you’re going to do or you’re talking about, one day, I’m going to do this. Then all of that is only, you’re just putting more pressure on yourself because you’re not actually moving forward.
Christian Klepp 11:53
Right. And the danger with that, I mean, and I think this is to your point is, if people just keep talking about what they’re planning to do and they never actually, implement it or act upon it, you’ll forever be that person in your group of friends or amongst your family members… They’ll look at you and go, oh, it’s just him talking again about his big dreams.
Karan Nijhawan 12:16
That’s exactly it. There’s a reason why people that buy a bunch of books, we call them “shelf help experts”. Because they’ll go on Instagram and show you all the books that they just ordered. And then the show these magnificent photos of their bookshelf. Then they’re just waiting for the next book to come out, and the next book to come out, and the next book to come out and listen, I love reading. I love books. It’s probably my favorite investment in my life is in myself, and it’s in books. And I read a ton, but there’s a lot of these gurus that just want to show you, look at what I’ve read today, and they’ll implement it for a day and think that they understand what the book is about. But it’s like anything knowledge, without action is kind of useless.
Christian Klepp 13:05
So true. So Karan, the next question is probably going to be a massive understatement for somebody like you. Well, what are you currently working on that you’re very passionate about? Or that just gets you like really excited.
Karan Nijhawan 13:17
What I’m working on right now that’s got me really excited is bringing this notion of human connection to the workplace. I have worked at companies with amazing culture. And what I mean by culture is I looked forward to going to work, I enjoyed every single day. It wasn’t about the money. It was about the empowerment. It was about the vision of the company. It was about the team camaraderie. On the flip side, I’ve also worked at companies where that didn’t exist. It was all about numbers, was all about profit, all about the next deal. And yeah, what I have found after hosting 150 of these dinners, is that we all want human connection. Yes, we all want to share our stories. We all want to relate to other people. We all want to share our life lessons, we want to learn, we want to be a part of this community in this tribe. And in the workplace, that sense of belongingness and connection. Many companies talk about it. And they probably have value statements written all over their wall about look at how much we invest in our culture. But if your employees are not happy, and if you’re not taking the time to get to know the people and employees are your best asset to your company, you could have gospel written on the wall, but if you’re not living and breathing it every single day, then it’s gonna come out in your company culture. So what I’m excited about right now, in this virtual age that we are in and probably going to be in for a long time is hosting virtual breakfast meetings, virtual lunches, virtual dinners for companies virtually and for their teams, and the intent of the dinner. I always say this, the dinners have nothing to do with the food. They have nothing to deal with the restaurant, and they have everything to do with the quality of the conversation. So if you can create safety, vulnerability and camaraderie among a team, then it doesn’t matter if you have a team of 5, 10 or 1000, you’re gonna create this well-tuned machine that’s going to operate on a group level versus an individual level.
Christian Klepp 15:23
Yeah, that is indeed such a powerful concept. And it’s interesting how people still under, tend to underestimate that, which leads me to my next question. So, you’re clearly in your business, you’re in a very interesting space. And when you launched the company, you are in fact organizing a lot of these live events with your customers in different locations. And then COVID happened, but that clearly hasn’t slowed you down, which is great, right? So why don’t you talk to us a little bit of how you’ve managed to successfully pivot your business and what opportunities you’ve identified amidst all this adversity?
Karan Nijhawan 16:03
Absolutely. And I will be the first to admit that this pandemic has not been easy, both from a financial level, from a personal level, from an emotional level, from mental health level from, from a physical health level, like there’s been so many challenges, most of the days, at a time started to feel the exact same. There’s a lot of doubts, a lot of self-limiting beliefs coming up. And for about two or three days, I was really down in the dumps, I was really down about, I’m running this business that relies on in person events. And now you’re telling me that for the foreseeable future, there’s no in person events. So for about two or three days, man, I thought my entire life was just like, crumbling. I thought my business was gonna shut down. I had no idea what to do. I was super depressed. And for someone like me, like that’s very rare, like I’m very optimistic, very pragmatic. It takes a lot to get me in that state of mind. So for about a couple days, I was not okay. And when I decided to pivot virtually, I mean, that was just the natural idea was, Hey, can I create… And can I replicate this in person connection virtually with people. And so I held my first virtual event and the connection was amazing. Obviously, the only thing that was missing was the hugs, the handshakes, the actual seeing you face to face, but from a virtual perspective, again, I think it just reiterated that my dinners are not about the food and not about the restaurant, they’re about the quality of the conversation.
So I pivoted very quick online, and now have been able to work with some really amazing companies and host virtual dinners for their company and for their teams. And yeah, I’ve noticed that there’s been very tremendous success because everyone is at home right now. Everybody needs a break in their day. Everybody is experiencing job and uncertainty about their future, uncertainty about the vision of the company that they’re with. And if within two hours, I can help a team and help a company feel just a little bit closer together, then I think the ROI kind of speaks for itself.
Christian Klepp 18:16
Yeah, that’s amazing, man.
Hey, it’s Christian Klepp here. We’ll get back to the episode in a second. But first, is your brand struggling to cut through the noise? Are you trying to find more effective ways to reach your target audience and boost sales? Are you trying to pivot your business? If so, book a call with EINBLICK Consulting. Our experienced consultants will work with you to help your B2B business to succeed and scale. Go to www.einblick.co for more information.
Karan let me share a bit of research with you before I ask my next question. And it really helps to drive this point home I guess which is one of the things that you work on, which is about company culture. Right. So there was this research conducted by Harvard Business Review, it highlights a strong correlation between culture and outcomes. So they came up with some insights as a result of the research, I’m just going to highlight three of the at least what I identified three key takeaways.
So point #1 is, when aligned with a strategy and leadership, a strong culture drives positive organizational outcomes. Okay, so that’s number one.
#2 is selecting or developing leaders for the future requires a forward looking strategy and culture.
#3 in a dynamic, uncertain environment. For example, right now, in which organizations must be more agile, learning gains importance.
So this was some research done by Harvard Business Review. But another point that I want to bring up during our conversation today was something that you posted on LinkedIn a couple of days ago. You had a conversation with a potential prospect. And I’m just gonna, I’m just going to give a summarized version of it here. So you spoke to said individual about the possibility of working together and you somehow got the vibe from that person that their company culture was a little bit shaky. So you reached out to them and said, Okay, well, is there any way that I can help I and through these virtual events, and to which the individual said there’s certainly some interest there. Let me go and introduce you to the CEO, but it’ll have to wait until Monday because I’m gonna hand in my resignation. It’s almost like okay, so like climax, anticlimax, climax, right? So, when I read that my jaw literally dropped, but okay, so, now that I’ve shared all these highlights.
Here come to the question. So based on your experience, what do you think are some of the critical components of a strong company culture? And to the point of your LinkedIn post, where do you think that some organizations get it wrong? I mean, like you’ve got like these Rockstar employees that are jumping ship.
Karan Nijhawan 21:16
Yeah, man, there’s so many ways to take this question. And I’m going to share a couple stats with you as well that are going to add to this conversation. So right now, no matter how great your culture is, you have to assume that 1 in 3 employees at your company is actively or casually looking for employment elsewhere. 1 in 3! If you have a disengaged employee at your company, you have to this is backed by data, up to 34% of their salary is costing you in complacency costs, right? 34%! So if someone’s making $50,000 a year, which is the average in the US is$ 47,000. It’s gonna cost you about $17,000 a year, just in trying to keep them happy trying to keep them motivated. That’s money spent on your employee who’s probably working on their side hustle, during company hours.
Only 42% of employees look forward to coming to work, 42%! And to some of the stats that you mentioned, man, strong company culture can increase your revenue by up to four times like it’s unbelievable. And by increasing your engagement levels at your company, just by 10%, you can increase profits up to $2400 per employee. It’s unbelievable.
So we think about employee retention as well. It’s like strong company culture can increase your retention rates by 84%. So some of the things that I think employee or organizations can do and where some of them go backwards, is that #1, they talk about how they have this plan. This succession plan for employees to grow with the company. And what they don’t think about is that they don’t ask the employee, where do you want to be in 12 months? What’s driving you to be motivated? what’s driving you to hit your targets? what’s driving you to hit your quotas? And there’s two different types of motivation. There’s intrinsic motivation and extrinsic, extrinsic is where people go wrong, extrinsic is all about money. It’s all about how much vacation you get. It’s the perks that we think people want. So increasing my salary by 5% is only going to keep me happy for about five minutes. And then I’m gonna be like, okay, what’s next? When is my next phrase coming? Intrinsic motivation is understanding the value, the drivers, what’s happening in your employees personal life. Why do they do what they do? What about their experience can you put to use to the future of this company there’s a such a big difference between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation, and I think where a lot of companies go wrong is that they just think that an extra five grand is going to keep their employees happy. And just like, this famous doctor created the five love languages, if the love language of your employee is not money, and all you’re doing is jamming money down their throat and this promise of a promotion, but really their love language is, Hey, I just want to feel empowered. I just want to be able to make mistakes and not feel like I’m going to lose my job. Right? It doesn’t matter how much money you jam down their throat. It’s just that’s not how they’re motivated.
And there’s a couple key things that have come up in my company dinner. So when I do a dinner for a company, we send out surveys to the entire staff. Sometimes it’s anonymous, other times it’s not and one of the most common things I see is this question that I asked what are the top two to three things you think your leadership team could be doing better? And across the board, the top three are #1 better communication with leadership, #2 is I wish I had a higher salary. And #3 is I wish I was aware about the plans of our future, over and over and over and over and over again.
And similarly when I ask employees where do you feel the most stuck in your position right now? The top three are that #1, there’s no room for growth. #2, job security. And #3, I don’t have connection with my team. And another place companies go wrong man, this is going down this huge like, trust me some companies are amazing at this but another thing companies do wrong is that they celebrate the individuals and not the entire team. So when I worked at a tech company, and I was hitting my numbers and my quotas, man management loved me. I had amazing relationships with the CEO, the CMO, the team leads, the VPs I had amazing relationships. I was hitting my quota. It was incredible, little did I know that every time I went up and celebrated one of my opportunities, the entire team was like, Oh, he got another one or he got lucky or he’s making us look bad. I didn’t know that. I thought I was just doing my job because I was trained to hit numbers. I was trained to do my job. I was trained to pick up the phone and call.
Christian Klepp 26:21
Right. Sorry. And so there was resentment and animosity as well.
Karan Nijhawan 26:27
Absolutely, man. Absolutely. I’m here. Think about every time somebody on your team brought in business and as a way to celebrate you said, hey, that’s awesome. Go write the name of the company on the board. So we can all see the amazing work they’re doing. So there’d be days or weeks where I’d be going up every couple days, writing this new name of a business on the board, like patting myself on the back. And little did I realize that every time I stood up to go write something on the board, I had my team also watching me and if you’re going up and obviously you know I was a bit younger, I started getting a little bit cocky around it. Like no question, but Well, yeah, dude, I was creating resentment, animosity on the team and like little did I know because the one message I was getting from leadership was great job, keep it up. The other side of my team was like, dude, you’re making us look bad.
So this focus on individual targets versus group targets, oh men, the companies that set group targets, and celebrate group milestones are so much happier because everyone wins. Everyone wins, everyone celebrates and there’s room for both. There’s room for a hybrid approach. It doesn’t need to be one size fits all, every company is different. And the last thing I’ll say is that companies that empower their teams and their employees and their staff to help them paint the picture of the future of the company, versus prescribing a future of the company. Again, it’s like when you make something someone else’s idea, they’re more likely to buy into it. And what do companies do they think they have this grand vision of what a company should look like and where they want to go. And all I would say is, Hey, how about for a day, you just give your employees, the sharpie, give them that, give them the whiteboard, see what they draw up, see how they want the future of the company to look like see where you can take their zone of genius and implement it into your company and make it stronger. Right? It’s like company preach collaboration all day long. But when it comes down to it, do they really?
Christian Klepp 28:34
Yeah, exactly. I mean, man, your insights were absolute gold. And I mean, you touched on so many things that resonated with me just alone, based on my own past work experience and what have you. And I mean, I totally agree with the concept of empowerment and helping employees to also think as a team, so it’s kind of like, it sounds a little bit cliché, but these things that you need to see them sometimes as like soccer, or it’s a team sport, right? So you give recognition to the whole team as opposed to one person and that breaks the ice a little bit, at the very least lowers the tension.
Karan Nijhawan 29:18
Right? Yeah. And what you just said is, it’s a really good point, because you’re right, it is a team game. And what happens is that if there’s no measures put in place, if there’s no camaraderie, if there’s no team connection, every player turns into this coach, and every coach tries to coach each other. And what happens when you think you’re the coach, and somebody else tries to coach you. It creates this unneeded dynamic in a company where everyone’s just trying to lead each other and it’s just like the blind leading the blind. You’re just gonna be going in circles.
Christian Klepp 29:57
That’s absolutely right. I think you’ve touched upon this topic already. But I’m going to ask it anyway about, like things that you’ve seen in this current pandemic, and eventually also the recession, how have these events redefined the ways that companies are looking at their own internal culture? And what kind of trends have you seen in terms of where this will go in the future?
Karan Nijhawan 30:20
Great question. I think one of the biggest trends is that companies are realizing that for years and years and years, they said that they would never be able to operate remotely. They somehow found a way to equip their employees with without home workstations, giving them flex hours and targets are still being hit, numbers are still being met. So I think from a cultural and trends standpoint, I mean, we’ve heard some of the major companies in the world like Google and Facebook and say that, hey, we’re not going back to the office, at least for the next seven months. And companies like that can operate remotely, I’m sure your startup or your team of 50 can probably operate remotely to that’s number one.
The second thing that I think is going to be a major trend going forward, and this is really going to signify whether or not your teammates stay with your company, or they put in their resignation notice is how much you involve them in the decision making going forward. I think businesses and companies and CEOs, it was always about we need to hit our business targets. And now it’s all about how do we do that while keeping our staff even more motivated than ever before. Because we’re all at home, we’re stuck behind a screen. You can’t see how many hours I’m working in a day. But you’re still paying me as if I was in the office. Right? So the employees that are going to step up and go above and beyond are going to be ones that feel empowered. They’re going to want to take risks, they’re going to want to get innovative, they’re not going to want to slow down because of red tape, and all of these things that again, were once the norm, we’ve now realized that, hey, we can actually operate and there is no such thing as normal anymore. So why not test your ideas like now is not the time to keep spending marketing budgets on billboards, because that’s what you’ve always done. Now it’s time to look at new opportunities.
Christian Klepp 32:21
Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So Karan, I think one of the core things about, your business model and your offer at least I believe, is that you’re focusing around building deep, meaningful relationships between people. So explain that a little bit to us. Why that’s so important to you. And how do these relationships play an instrumental role across so many different facets in a person’s professional path?
Karan Nijhawan 32:53
You want to know what the, one of the number one characteristics among a striving team is?
Christian Klepp 33:00
Karan Nijhawan 33:01
Guess? I’m gonna put you on the spot. What are one of the key characteristics of a company? Or a high performing team?
Christian Klepp 33:11
Karan Nijhawan 33:13
That’s exactly it. Trust. Can I trust you? Do you have my back? Yeah, if we go to battle together, can I count on you? Or are you going to disappear? Are you gonna throw me under the bus? Are you gonna be a collaborative team player? Are you gonna be there for me as much as I’m there for you? It’s trust.
And I always reference this study of the Navy SEALs. The Navy SEALs are one of the most highest performance teams in the world, right? You think of the Navy SEAL? You think of the Navy SEALs, and you think of like the best of the best of the best, right? So the Navy SEALs would rather have somebody on their special ops team who has rated higher in trust and rated lower in performance than somebody who has rated higher in performance and lower in trust. So if the Navy SEALs, the most elite group in the world, the most tactical teams that are like the smartest in there, doing operations that we know nothing about. If they value trust over performance, then shouldn’t my small company, or my business value trust over performance too?
And all we do is we celebrate performance. We celebrate numbers, we celebrate KPIs. So we’re unable to create that trust, again without some of these key measures. So when I bring a virtual event together for a company, one of the first questions is how quickly can I make this team feel vulnerable? That’s what I asked myself how quickly can I create a space of intimacy, and vulnerability in this virtual room. And the questions are not simple like, where do you feel the most stuck? We don’t talk about that stuff, that stuff is that stuff remains in the survey. But we ask questions like, who has helped you become the person you are today? And what’s the top thing you thank them for? And right away you get people thinking about their mom or someone who’s passed away or their partner at home or one of their old mentors and their old bosses. And all of a sudden you’re hearing 10 different stories of Hey, like this guy, Jim in grade seven like without him like I’d be elsewhere I’d be screwed. If I didn’t have this one mentor. Or if my partner didn’t do this for me…you start to learn about people. And the more vulnerable these questions get throughout my virtual experience, the deeper and deeper bonds are able to be created because the key aspect in all of this is vulnerability. And when you’re able to display vulnerability, and you’re able to get vulnerable with other people, and they’re able to get vulnerable with you, it creates that one thing that every team wants, which is trust.
Christian Klepp 36:08
That’s absolutely amazing. And that’s a really powerful insight. And speaking of insights, I know you’ve shared quite a bit of them today. But just as we’re wrapping up, did you have any other thoughts or advice that you’d like to leave our listeners with?
Karan Nijhawan 36:21
Yeah, the last thing I’ll say is, people just want to feel like they have value. I want to come home after a hard day’s work and just be appreciated. I want someone to, give me a $5 Coffee gift card saying great job on that, on that recent contract. I want someone to reach out to me saying hey, Karan, you actually helped my business today. Hey, Karan, you actually, this one conversation changed, changed an idea that I was thinking at, and here’s the thing like, relate that relate that to the people in your life. When was the last time you thanked your partner at home, when was the last time you hand wrote somebody a letter. When was the last time you showed true appreciation to your employees that was outside of just their birthday? When was the last time you celebrated your clients outside of them just signing a contract with you? When was the last time you reached out to your mom or dad or your grandpa just to say, hey, right? People just want to feel appreciated. So we talked a lot about company culture today. Really, really what I’m just trying to create is this environment where people are just treated as people and at the end of the day, we might have different stories. We might have different experiences, we bring different assets to the table. We have different things that keep us up at night. But all of us want human connection.
Christian Klepp 37:43
That is so true. Karan, this has been so great. Thank you so much for coming on and sharing, so what’s the best way for people out there to connect with you?
Karan Nijhawan 37:52
Best way, my website jube.ca. You can email me at email@example.com, and I’m all over Instagram @letsjube, which in jube stands for just be.
Christian Klepp 38:09
That’s amazing, Karan, this session has been so inspiring. And it’s been such an eye opener. Thank you so much for your time. And thanks for coming on. So take care, be safe, and I’ll talk to you soon.
Karan Nijhawan 38:21
I appreciate you, Christian. Thank you.
Christian Klepp 38:23
Thanks. Bye for now. Thank you for joining us on this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. To learn more about what we do here EINBLICK, please visit our website at www.einblick.co and be sure to subscribe to the show on iTunes or your favorite podcast player.