With Martin G. Moore

Episode #100

Where To From Here? 100th Episode Special

Today, we’re going to take a quick breather from our normal content, and talk about all things Your CEO Mentor related to celebrate our 100th episode!

In this episode, Em and I talk about our first two years of operation, and our bold plans for the future.

Em will tell the story of how she actually convinced me to set up Your CEO Mentor with her in the first place, and we’re going to take a behind-the-scenes look at how I landed my book publishing deal in the US! We’ll also chat about my plans to relocate to the US in 2021.

If you love the podcast, I’m sure you’ll find this pretty interesting!

To celebrate our 100th episode we’d love for you to go to your favourite episode, take a screenshot of it, post it onto whatever social media channel you use and tag us in it so that we can see what you’re loving and we can connect with you.

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Episode #100 Where To From Here? 100th Episode Special

Marty: Hey there, and welcome to episode 100 of the No Bullsh!t Leadership podcast. This week’s episode where to from here, our 100th episode special. Today, we’re going to take a quick breather from our normal content and talk about all things Your CEO Mentor related. We get heaps of emails and messages from people saying “Marty and Em, please keep the episodes coming”. So we’ll talk about the successes and failures of our first, almost two years of operation and our bold plans for the future. Em may tell the story of how she actually convinced me to set up your CEO Mentor with her in the first place. And we’re going to take a behind the scenes look at how I landed my book publishing deal in the U S and chat about my plans to relocate to the U S in 2021. If you love the podcast, I’m sure you’ll find this pretty interesting. So let’s get into it. Em how are you doing?

Em: Hello! Happy birthday to us. I know it’s crazy 100 episodes. I honestly didn’t even know if we can make it past 50, so I’m really excited for this episode!

Marty: Yeah, absolutely Em, and a without being self-congratulatory, I think it’s important for us to just step back and let our listeners know what we’ve got planned for the future, and how are we going to take even bigger steps to try and improve the quality of leaders globally.

Em: Absolutely. And we did an episode, I should have actually looked this up before we started recording, but we did an episode on behind the scenes of how we make No Bullsh!t Leadership. And we had so much feedback after that one saying “We loved seeing what happens behind the scenes and do another episode like that”, so we thought this was the perfect opportunity. I had a couple of ideas of what we’d do for our 100th episode, but it seemed really fitting that we would kind of talk about where we’ve been and where we’re going, because it’s incredibly exciting.

Marty: Oh yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. And look, it all started with you. So why don’t you start with telling everyone how you actually got me into this in the first place?

Em: How I got you into this?!

Marty: Totally did. Before you came along, this was going to just be a side gig where I released a couple of podcast episodes and wrote a few blogs.

Em: Okay. It wasn’t even going to be that. I remember when we first started talking, it was about in 2016 and I was having all these dramas at work, pretty much in tears on the phone to you every single week about something that my boss was doing, and it really, it was so frustrating for me. That I was trying to be a really high performer and do the best for the organisation and for my team of my clients, and there were just so many politics and so many issues with the leadership. And it wasn’t just the organisation that I was working in, it was organisations before that. And so I remember us saying, “There’s got to be something we can do to help other leaders who just don’t know how to lead!”

And I remember you saying, “You know what, I’ll write a book. I’ve been thinking about it for a while. I’d love to write a book on leadership.” And I kind of laughed, and I said, “You can’t write a book. No one reads books anymore. You’ve got to do something that’s digital, something that is going to be global. Something that is going to be easily accessible for people of my age, not just people who read business books, because at the time, I wasn’t reading business books.” And so that’s really where it started in 2016, us kind of going back and forth about what kind of mediums we could use potentially to get all of your leadership knowledge out of your head and into the hands of the people who needed it most.

Marty: Oh yeah, absolutely. And look at the time I was thinking, will I get another CEO gig? Maybe, but you did convince me based on what I realised my impact needed to be in the world and how I could realise that with you, so a great story, right. But now I’ve had to adapt to running a micro business, and it’s very different when you’re running a company with a couple of billion dollars on the balance sheet to play with. I mean, let’s face it, I can’t just turn around now and say, “Hey, just throw that to the legal department and get them to give us an opinion” or going, “Yeah get the CFO to run this analysis for us.” I just can’t do that anymore. But we’ve managed to make ok in a very small business haven’t we? So let’s just talk about the future of the podcast because people are pretty interested to know, can this material keep on coming?

And I think when I started, the spreadsheet had maybe 25 or 30 episodes planned, and I said “On this Em, we will launch our empire”. But we were also going into probably the most crowded space on the planet, right. Leadership Development. This was definitely not what I learned by reading Blue Ocean Strategy, going into a super, super crowded market. And I think initially I just said, well, let’s just give it a crack for six months and see what happens. And put the content out there and see if it resonates with anyone. And if it doesn’t no harm, no foul, I’ll go back and get a job. If it does, then we’re going to be impacting people all over the world. So let’s see how we go. And then of course you had the background in producing a podcast because you put The Artful Trader together, didn’t you?

Em: That’s right. So just going back quickly to your Blue Ocean Strategy, I remember actually sitting down and trying to put together a Blue Ocean Strategy in relation to other competitors that I saw in the space, and it was actually quite difficult because obviously we didn’t have products at that point, so we couldn’t really articulate what our point of difference was or was going to be. But everyone who we speak to says that what we bring to market is incredibly unique, you know? So that has been really interesting when I sat down to actually do a Blue Ocean Strategy, I couldn’t articulate it, but it’s what we’ve ended up creating. Going back to yes, The Artful Trader, so that’s actually what got me to think about the podcast initially. When I was working in marketing agency land, one of my final projects was putting together a podcast for a stock trading/broking company. And that was really eye opening for me in terms of how to actually put a podcast together. It gave me so much confidence and I could actually see the impact that it would have and the way that we would be able to impact people from all over the world by having a podcast. And I don’t even think you had listened to a podcast before I suggested it, had you?

Marty: Probably not. I think the app was dormant on my iPhone.

Em: Yeah, exactly. So, that was really interesting for me because I kind of thought, “Yes, this is what I really want to do.” Your speaking, and, the way you story tell and explain concepts, I knew that I wanted to get that out into the world and I just thought this was the perfect channel for it. And you know, turned out to be true. Turned out to be a really, a brilliant, content channel for us to go into. It’s obviously doing really well now. So that’s good, thankfully.

Marty: So, yeah, that’s absolutely right. And we didn’t know if anyone was going to listen in and in the first week, I think we had 132 downloads. That’s 132, not 132,000, right. And they were sort of family, friends, fools, interested parties and voyeurs who knew I’d gone off on this new venture. We had no advertising or marketing behind it, and by word of mouth after 6 months, we started to get the point where there was 2,000 or 3000 downloads a week. And at the end of 12 months, we’re getting sort of 8,000-10,000 downloads a week. And, you know, we’ve had weeks where over 20,000 downloads in that week have taken place. So in terms of impact, which is what drives me, if I think about the relative impact I could have as Chief Executive of a large business, compared to the impact that I can have by putting this podcast out and getting it picked up in 70 countries, there’s just no comparison. I mean, it’s amazing. So yeah, definitely, made the right choice there. Right?

Em: Yeah. And I think we, the timing was really fortuitous as well, because it was just before “everyone” had a podcast and I use air quotes there because you see so many new podcasts coming out every day. And it’s brilliant. I think it’s such a fantastic format, but we did kind of get in there before the huge rush of podcasts. So we were able to really start to build our place within the charts, get that following globally, and now we’re a chart constant in Business and Careers. Spotify has us in Business and Tech, Education, it’s brilliant because it shows that we are consistently, creating content that people are getting value out of, and that is, really the aim of the game. If people do nothing else except listen to our free podcast, we are happy.

Marty: Totally. And, look, I mean ultimately from the 25 or 30 episodes that I started with on the chalkboard, we’re now at 100, right. And I always said to you, “I want to be just like Scott Adams”. And for those of our listeners who don’t know who Scott Adams is, he was the creator of the Dilbert cartoon strip. And after years and years of producing these cartoons, he was being interviewed once, and the interviewer asked him, “Scott, how do you keep coming up with just these sensational ideas time after time?” Scott Adams said, “Once my cartoon strip became popular, every morning my inbox would be absolutely flooded with emails that all began, ‘Dear Scott, you wouldn’t believe what happened at my work…”‘ And then I just turned that into a three frame cartoon”. And so I think we have relied on and will rely more in the future on these great questions that come in from our listeners, because I look at some of them, I go, “Gee, I hadn’t thought of that. That’s a great question.” And so that’s driven sort of the changes in our format a little bit as well.

Em: Yeah, and I think the changes in format, I was emailing back and forth with one of our longtime listeners, Tim last week, and we were kind of talking about that change in format. I just want us to keep evolving, trying different things that might be interesting to people. So the live mentoring sessions, that was just one day I thought, there’s some amazing content that goes into those sessions and those really natural conversations, I wonder what people would think if we put them on the podcast and they’ve gone really, really well. So really it’s just about testing things that the audience may like. And the Q&A’s that you and I do, and the live mentoring sessions have been really good. We also, pre-COVID, we were actually just about to launch an interview series with CEOs and brilliant business people, where you were going to interview them about, No Bullsh!t Leadership topics and get into the nitty gritty with them. I still want to do that, but I really want to do it in person. That’s probably one of the main reasons why we’ve held off, but, I just want to keep trying things, testing things and making really fun content and not, not being boring, not just staying the same and getting boring.

Marty: Absolutely. That’s definitely one of our values, isn’t it? So look, I agree. Those interviews will be great when they come to. The first interviewee I had lined up who’s a very high profile Chief Executive in Australia. Was all lined up to go and then COVID-19 hit, and he wasn’t in one of those industries that massively benefited from COVID-19, he wasn’t running a toilet paper, manufacturing business, he’s been pretty tied up since then, let me tell you. But it’s all about just keeping this content coming out and making it relevant and practical and timely for all of our listeners. So hopefully, guys out there, we’re doing that. Obviously in terms of the business model, it’s hilarious because quite often, my close colleagues who I worked with in the corporate sector will say to me, “Mate, I’m so glad your podcast is going so well, but how do you make money?”

And those who don’t know me so well have asked those people who are close to me, “How’s Marty making any money out of this?.” So I think, one of the things that you and I spoke about in terms of podcasts, is that a lot of podcasters make money out of advertising, when the podcast becomes very popular. And if you listen to a Joe Rogan interview at any point in time, the first, I don’t know, 6 or 7 minutes now is all ads. So we’ve got that dilemma. Do we advertise to bring money in directly through the podcast? Or do we keep the podcast clean and then let it back into our other products where we do make money?

Em: I think I’m still really on the fence with that because, as you know Marty, we’ve had so many people contact us to sponsor an episode or a month’s worth of sponsorship or whatever it is, and the money is good, but we’re in agreement on this, we don’t ever want to spruik a product that we don’t use or that we don’t think would be valuable to our listeners. That would just be so against our “no bullshit” ethos. So, I’m not saying that advertising won’t happen in the future, it might, if it makes sense, and if it’s a product that we love and that we genuinely think will help leaders. I mean, of course, like that is perfect synergy. But there just hasn’t been the opportunity that’s come up yet that I have felt has been in that ilk. So I don’t know, watch this space. If we do ever advertise a product that isn’t ours, you’ll know that it’s because we actually, genuinely recommend it, or use it ourselves.

Marty: Oh yeah. And I think the fact that we got to a 100 episodes and we’re getting this much activity on the podcast without succumbing to the advertising dollar is probably a good sign that we are serious about that, so we’ll see how we go. But obviously, the key product for us is Leadership Beyond the Theory, which is the online program. And a lot of people listen to the podcast in the car or on the train on their way to work, on their commute, and that’s awesome because they can take in some stuff, get some positive things in their head before they go to work. But the people that really change are the ones that commit to doing the program and actually get through that 7 or 8 weeks of intense study on these leadership concepts with the practical tools that help you to implement them. So that’s where we put most of our focus because that’s where we see the real change in people.

Em: Yeah. And it’s my favourite part of this whole company. Because I get to know all of the leaders so well and just really watching them change and helping them through bits and pieces in their leadership career, getting them out the other end and having them go, “Wow, this is really been career changing”. There’s nothing like that. It is such an incredible feeling. It’s probably a good idea for me to plug, the fact that we are having, we’re starting our September cohort very soon. So 31st of August is when the next one will start. So if you’re keen on finding out more about that, just go over to our website, www.yourceomentor.com/program.

Marty: Good. I love the way you did that Em, because that was just right on the back of us saying, we’re not going to advertise. I’m a huge fan of irony as you know, that was awesome.

Em: I will never, ever stop myself from spruiking it when the opportunity arises, because I just believe in it so much. I just love it.

Marty: I know. It is awesome. So why don’t we talk about the book. Because, given that that’s where I started, and I said, “Yeah, maybe I’ll write a book”, boy, I’m almost at the end of the manuscript delivery now and I’ve got to say the journey was nothing like what I expected. Absolutely nothing like what I expected. But we’re in such a good place now. It’s incredible. So the journey started off, when I had a coffee with a close colleague of mine, Heather Linaker, who used to be the Chief Executive of Wiley in Australia. So she was the Wiley MD and sort of late 2018, we’d only really just started the business and had a few podcast episodes out, but I wanted to get her expertise in how I might go about securing a book publishing deal, because I didn’t want to just self publish and give it away on the internet.

So I caught up with Heather and at the end of that conversation, having found out what I wanted to achieve and what was important to me, which was all about having impact on leaders across the globe, she said to me, “Look, you’ve got to publish in the U S. If you can publish in the U S that can be distributed into other countries. If you publish in Australia, here’s where it stays”. So that sort of gave me the idea, and of course my wonderful wife, Kathy is American. So, at some point I decided that that was the path I’d go down. Now, you will remember a woman by the name of Laurie Reuttimann. Once again, a great person, whose podcast, Let’s Fix Work, you pitched to get me on ages and ages ago. You remember that?

Em: Yeah. Yeah, I do. And I actually remember as well, which was really funny, something had happened and the studio in Raleigh that you were meant to record the episode in, maybe it double booked or something, and so Laurie said, “Look, maybe we can just do it via Zoom”, or I can’t remember exactly what happened, but I said, “No, come on, he’s bought a flight, let’s just do it anyway”. And we ended up finding a place to do it, which was brilliant. And the episode is awesome. But that’s really how your relationship with Laurie started, and it almost didn’t, which would have made a big difference to the book stuff.

Marty: Yeah, absolutely. I was in Raleigh, North Carolina for a day and it sent me down this path, right. Because after we’d recorded the interview, Laurie and I were just chatting and she asked me what I was going to do in 2019. It was early January. And I said, “Well, I’ve got to get a hurry on with this book”, and we started talking about it and I said, I wanted to publish in the U S and she said, “Oh, Marty, if you want to publish in the U.S, Nick Morgan is the guy for you. He is dead set genius. He is so well connected. So knowledgeable around the publishing industry and also the speaking circuit. And he’s the guy that will help you to get this book out because he’s doing that with me at the moment”. So I contacted Nick and one thing led to another.

When I was back in the US a few months later, we spent a bunch of time together and we worked out that we actually had the basis for a book on leadership, based on the sort of stuff we teach in Leadership Beyond the Theory. So, several months later I ended up being signed by one of the top literary agents in New York, Jim Levine. And we got a publishing contract with, Rosetta Books, which is an imprint of Simon & Schuster. So we have the global distribution might of Simon & Schuster behind us, which is sensational. So, my manuscript is due on the 31st of August this year, but due to COVID and a few other things, we’ve decided to push publication back. We were going to publish in the U S spring next year in sort of March, April, we’re going to push back to September now, just because of COVID, because I don’t know what anyone else is doing in the world, but, the Australian Government isn’t keen to see us get onto a plane to the US at this stage.

Em: I’m so glad that we made that decision, too. We made it pretty early on in the piece, and obviously, our publisher really had ultimate say over it, but they agreed with us that, September 2021 was going to be the best time to do that. And for me, that’s fantastic, because that means I get to keep you in Australia for a little bit longer.

Marty: Yeah, I know. I know. And look, ultimately, why would I want to go to the US? Australia is, by far, the best country in the world to live in, even with the punitive taxes that we pay that’s okay, because it’s just a great place to live and a great society, and I absolutely love it here. But the US is the big market, right? That’s the big game. I’ve got family and a lot of friends over there, and we can just have a much greater impact from that vantage point, and still service our global community. So that’s really what’s driving it. And I think it’s a much better springboard also for the UK and Europe, because we have so many listeners, and so many students who are in the UK and Europe and the US, so it sort of makes sense. Between now and then, as you said, I’ll be in Australia for longer, and as you well know, I do a lot of consulting work with CEOs and executive teams, I do a lot of speaking engagements here, and I’ll still do those in the U S, but my time in Australia for those will draw to an end at some point.

Em: Yeah. And it’s kind of bittersweet for me because obviously I’m not moving to the US. I’ve got my family here in Australia, and this is where I want to live, but I want to keep you here, but in the same breath, you know, when we started this business and we came up with our purpose of improving the quality of leaders globally, everything we do, goes through that filter. And if, you know, you and I have had a couple of robust conversations since COVID started about me saying maybe this is a sign not to go. And really, if we come back to our purpose, where can we best do that from? Where are we going to be able to reach even more people and impact their lives and make them better leaders, happier in their jobs, happier in their homes, better relationships with everyone around them. Really the answer is in the US, that’s where we’re going to get to impact so many more people.

So, selfishly, I want to keep you here, but I know that if we’re living true to our purpose, that is what you have to do.

Marty: Yeah. Don’t worry. I’ll spend plenty of time on both sides of the Pacific. But to all my friends, loyal listeners and family over in the US, I’m coming. So we’ll wait and see, I guess it’s going to take a vaccine to really make it happen, but, we’ll be there in short, short order.

Em: Absolutely. And you know, brilliant that we’re working with so many of our Australian clients now, before you go overseas. Your time is going to be a little bit harder to get for our Aussie friends.

Marty: Yeah. And I love my clients over here. It’s amazing because I’ve been able to get across so many different industries. I already had pretty diverse range of industries in my corporate background, but just the number of different industries and different executives I’ve dealt with, it’s just so incredibly exciting to see how many of these businesses are going so well and growing. So I just love that work.

Em: Marty, is there anything else that you want to cover in this episode?

Marty: Not really, I reckon that’s it. I think that’s been a pretty good fly over the top of where we’ve come from and where we’re going. Just as a last word to listeners, we’re going to keep these things coming. Don’t you worry. If I’m 89 years old in the nursing home, I’ll still be trying to knock out a weekly episode. Don’t worry about that. And by the way, for those of you who wonder, that’s 31 years away for me, so, we’re going to try and keep this going forever. We think it’s just such a great resource for people and we love doing it. So, yeah, don’t worry. Just keep your questions coming and we’ll keep the answers going.

Em: Absolutely. And you can always send me any questions directly to emma@yourceomentor.com. Now, if you are still listening to this episode, I feel like it’s been a pretty long one, you must be a true fan. So I would love for you guys to get involved in something for us this week to celebrate our 100th episode. I would love for you to go to your favourite episode or your most listened episode, or even just this episode, take a screenshot of it and post it on whatever social media channel you use, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn. Tag us, so that we can see what you’re loving and we can connect with you. Word of mouth is our biggest growth channel always has been, probably always will be. So sharing, you know, your favourite episode or the episode that you’re listening to, it may really help another leader who’s in need of some No Bullsh!t Leadership guidance. So I would love to see those. Love to connect with you and chat with you and hear what kind of impact the podcast has had on you and your leadership career.

Marty: Awesome Em. Thanks for that. Well, that brings us to the end of a rather lengthy episode 100. Thanks so much for joining us. You know, what our purpose is, because we’ve said it so many times in this episode, but please take a couple of moments to rate and review the podcast. We’re really, really grateful for those of you who’ve done that and shared it around your networks because that’s how we reach more leaders. I’m really looking forward to next week’s episode about Talent Retention.

Until then, I know you’ll take every opportunity you can to be a no bullsh!t leader!


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