PROCO360 | Best Podcast for Entrepreneurs and Business Owners
COVID-19 - Crisis Communications Advice from a PRO

COVID-19 - Crisis Communications Advice from a PRO

March 24, 2020

“When there’s CHAOS all around you, and when things are moving SO fast… the best way to figure out how to balance competing interests… is look at your values…” 

Paul Raab, Managing Partner, Linhart PR

Notice that while Paul and I were together in the studio, we’re 6 feet apart!

Notice that while Paul and I were together in the studio, we were 6 feet apart!

Normally when we think of “crisis communications” it’s about a company that’s having to do emergency public relations because it did, or is accused of doing, something BAD (ie, an oil spill, harassment), and it has to defend its reputation.  That’s NOT what’s happening here in the face of the coronavirus.  In this case, something has happened TO everyone, TO every company.  Still, while not at “fault,” leaders need to speak to the issue in ways that support their people, their brand and their values.  It’s tricky, so I recruited a seasoned PR pro for this very important and timely interview.  Even when we’re past this challenge, you’ll find the lessons in this podcast episode valuable.  

“Nothing Trumps Mission Success”

“Nothing Trumps Mission Success”

March 11, 2020

Tory Bruno, President and CEO, United Launch Alliance – From aerospace engineer to CEO of the world’s most successful launch company, Tory shares his approach to management that has yielded 137 rocket launches with 100% success.

“Nothing trumps mission success... now, let's talk about the decision we have to make.”  Tory Bruno, President and CEO, United Launch Alliance

There are recent and very high-profile examples in which notable companies have had product failures – air bags, helicopter fuel tanks, aircraft and more – which appear to have been caused by decisions to optimize speed or profits over safety and certainty.  On its website, United Launch Alliance says it is CREATING VALUE THROUGH CERTAINTY.  How one manages for CERTAINTY, and still can charge a price customers will pay, that’s the topic I couldn’t wait to discuss!  You’ll enjoy the conversation! 

 

Customers are so proud they found us

Customers are so proud they found us

February 27, 2020

Eric Gutknecht, CEO, CharcūtNuvo – Eric and his wife Jessica basically STOPPED the multi-generation business of Continental Sausage to remake the company and its products.  The decisions, the branding, and the product innovation are the subjects of this episode.

“People try it at Costco and it’s, ‘oh my goodness’ – They’re so proud to have found us and they want to share it.”

Eric Gutknecht, CEO, CharcūtNuvo

 

This episode of PROCO360 is the story of a multi-generational business in which the youngest saw an opportunity to reinvent the business.  Eric Gutknecht and his wife Jessica decided to shut down the deli and its small sausage making operation in the back, replacing both with a manufacturing company focused on product innovation and distribution.  The decisions, the branding, and product creation are the subjects of this episode. 

 

 

Being an entrepreneur requires scar tissue.

Being an entrepreneur requires scar tissue.

February 4, 2020

"The people with the best ideas were the least likely to share them… I set out to solve the problem of getting those people to speak up.  

Anthony Franco, CEO, MC Squares

Anthony Franco’s company, MC Squares, is an earlier stage company than I typically feature on PROCO360.  I wanted to interview him NOW, because 1) the company has gone from $5,000 in monthly sales, to $100,000 in monthly sales over a short period of time, and 2) because I’m intrigued at how he’s made the transition from a serial B2B entrepreneur to a B2C entrepreneur. 

I Had to Stand Up and Fight

I Had to Stand Up and Fight

January 16, 2020

Nancy Fitzgerald, CEO of iLendingDIRECT – After her husband, CEO of the company, was killed in a tragic bicycling accident, “the sharks were circling” the company.  Now it’s thriving.  Here’s the story.

“I never quit... I’ve always known that no matter how hard my life has been at times that the sun is going to shine the very next day.”

Nancy Fitzgerald, CEO, iLendingDIRECT

 

I wanted to interview Nancy because I LOVE the service delivered by her company to its clients: it gets consumers out from under expensive (predatory?) car loans, lowering their interest rate by an average of almost 6%.  Nancy, former Miss Canada, shares a bit of her vocal talent during our interview.  More importantly, she shares a story of massive determination and running a culture-driven company. 

Authentic Vulnerability is a Strength at CampMinder

Authentic Vulnerability is a Strength at CampMinder

December 19, 2019

Dan Konigsberg, Founder and CEO of CampMinder – an inspiring and entertaining story of creating a software as a service to enable an old industry to flourish.

 “Employee engagement is our #1 goal, before client satisfaction… That will lead to client satisfaction.”

 

I really was eager to talk with Dan Konigsberg about building a COMMUNITY of customers in a powerful niche.  CampMinder is a Best Place to Work winner while helping its clients average 42% revenue gains.  That all weaves together in this high energy conversation with a durable (18 year) entrepreneur.

We’re Venture Capitalist for Musicians

We’re Venture Capitalist for Musicians

December 5, 2019

The owner of Third & James developmental record label and two rising artists, Oli McCracken and Kayla Ruby, talk about the business. 

 “There’s about an 80% non-recoup rate, so record labels are for the most part venture capital.”

Joshua Olsen, Owner, Third & James Recording Studios

 

Recorded in front of a sold-out live audience at Third & James Studios, this episode was a blast!  We talked about the business of promoting rising musicians, and we heard some candid stories from Kayla Ruby and Oli McCracken about their struggles and progress in the early stages of promising careers.  Owner Joshua Olsen sums up the business well when he said of his record label, “We’re like venture capitalists.”  Special thanks to R. Chris Clark for taking tremendous photos at the event (seen above), and to Community Banks of Colorado for sponsoring the event.

My SUPERPOWER: spotting and waking strengths of others

My SUPERPOWER: spotting and waking strengths of others

November 21, 2019

Terumo BCT CEO Antoinette Gawin on leading change at a 7,000 person company.

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“It’s one thing to agitate without understanding what the consequences might be...but the more you know about other people… the more likely you are to anticipate what might be the fallout.”

Antoinette Gawin, CEO, Terumo BCT

Terumo BCT is one of very few BILLION dollar Colorado companies, and as Antoinette Gawin approaches her first year as its CEO, I wanted to learn how she manages change while respecting how the company has achieved its current success. 

“No Cash Made Us More Creative” – TAG Restaurant Group

“No Cash Made Us More Creative” – TAG Restaurant Group

November 7, 2019

“When the budget’s tight you have to use your mind... I think you get more creative when you have less.”

Troy Guard, Chef & CEO, TAG Restaurant Group

Another LIVE audience – what a great time interviewing Colorado’s legendary Chef Troy Guard.  Like many restauranteurs, Troy started at the bottom in the business (a teenager, making sandwiches).  UNLIKE most successful chefs-turned-owners, Troy hasn’t built out one concept – he’s created several and continues to grow via new concepts rather than more locations.  This made me really curious – a primary reason for wanting to interview him.

 

“Not What I Planned In College” - Native Roots CEO Loves “No Playbook”

“Not What I Planned In College” - Native Roots CEO Loves “No Playbook”

October 24, 2019

“People think about cannabis and they think of a 3-foot bong in their basement… that just doesn’t look anything like the industry for most people today.”

Ryan Brown, CEO, Native Roots

Users or not, most of us are super curious about the cannabis industry (we don’t say “marijuana” anymore).  I was, and was really looking forward to this highly engaging and really informative interview with the CEO of Colorado’s largest producer and retailer of cannabis products.  This was a LIVE audience interview and you’ll hear audience questions at the end.