18 Oct October 18, 2019 – LetsChat Ankesh Kumar, Female Bosses Terry T. Budget and BoA AJ Barkley
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Ankesh Kumar – Founder/CEO of LetsChat.chat
Any investor will tell you ‘Go as long as you can without raising money.’
So I’ve got one guy that works for me and we have very low burn rate.
Like a Running Back, you’re waiting for the hole to appear and as soon as
you see the hole you hit it really hard. A hundred miles an hour.
Ankesh Kumar is the CEO and founder of social news sharing site Grouptivity. He also founded appMail in 2001, and serves as its president and CEO. Previously he founded Personic Software, a staffing startup which eventually was bought by Kronos. Before that he was the founder and CEO of AT Systems, an IT staffing startup that was bought by Monster. He is also the founder and CEO of LetsChat, an interactive chat service that allows salespeople to share content and chat with their prospects. This creates a pleasant mutual discovery environment for the prospect and the salesperson, leading to shorter sales cycles and quality engagement.
When you master your specific gift and you’re branded for that specific gift then the world will seek you out and they will pay you to be you.
Terry Budget is a professional speaker and leadership expert. He is the founder and CEO of Alpha Success, LLC. Terry is a retired United States Combat Army veteran who has participated in multiple military conflicts around the world and has received the Bronze Star Medal for leadership. He holds a Bachelor of Science and Master’s Degree in Management from the University of Phoenix and holds a Corporate Speaker’s Designation from the International Association of Corporate Speakers. Terry is the author of Who Says I Can’t Be a “Boss?” 7 Strategies Women Should Use to Lead & Win in Business, which he wrote for every woman who has been held back by professional roadblocks and barriers. In it, he teaches the strategies women need to become equal players in the workforce.
AJ Barkley – Neighborhood Lending Executive at Bank of America
People say ‘We’re qualified, the mortgage would be less than our rental
payment, but we’re struggling with two barriers. One being the
closing cost and the other being down payment.’ As a result of that, we
made a commitment of 5 billion dollars over 5 years,
putting 20,000 more people in homes.
AJ Barkley is the Neighborhood Lending Executive for Bank of America, responsible for identifying opportunities to drive successful homeownership among low-to moderate-income borrowers, underserved communities, and multicultural borrowers across the economic spectrum. In her role is, she is accountable for transforming the company’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) commitment for more mortgages, small business, vehicle and small business lending into a strategy designed to increase demand, market share and consumer education. She is also responsible for aligning strategies to deepen relationships with multicultural, first-time home buyers and low- to moderate-income consumers. Prior to joining Neighborhood Lending, she held many roles at Bank of America. She was the Production Executive for the Plano Centralized and Online Consumer Lending Sales Division, where she led more than 140 lending officers and had national responsibility for employee lending, training redesign and employee engagement. She also was the Merrill Lynch Associate Market Executive in Global Wealth Investments Management in Dallas, TX. In addition, she held multiple roles in Consumer Banking, most recently as the Area Executive for the DFW Metro Market, which totals more than 140 Financial Centers. AJ is the Co-Executive Sponsor of the Black Professional Group of North Texas and active in multiple employee networks. She is committed to supporting the community and serves on the nonprofit board for Minnie’s Food Pantry. Her passion is supporting organizations that empower and improve opportunities for children and young adults.
Highlights from Terry’s Interview
We, as men, really go back for a little bit. I’m not an expert on women, but I do know leadership strategy. And I wanted ladies to know that you do have an ally. The reason I wrote the book is to show in simplest terms the strategies that are available that you may know, but simply don’t use. I addressed them in the book. It’s a simple process that you follow to become the alpha female that you believe yourself to be. The problem is that most women don’t effectively use these strategies. There are books that are written for women in business by women in business. There are also books that are written for women by men, but usually about marriage, relationships and the like. But you’re not going to find any books that are written for women in business by a man in business. So I’m ready to show that you have an ally, and I want to help you succeed just as we succeed.
Don’t be confused into thinking that simply because you are woman who is popular, or a woman who’s well known that you are the only alphas. In the military world, we’re accustomed to using acronyms. So I use alpha as that acronym is simple to remember and simple to apply. The letters are ALPHA, of course. Each letter has its own designation; it’s Attitude, Leadership, Purpose, Honor, and Acumen. These are components of what I call the exceptional leader. Any woman can become the exceptional leader, once you apply these principles. You have to look at your attitude, how you perceive things, yourself and the world around you. Your leadership is your ability to influence. Your purpose is your reason why. Who are you and why you do the things that you do? What are the gifts that you have that allow you to do it? Your honor deals with your integrity. If I can’t trust you, I won’t do business with you. And your acumen is your ability to make judgments and decisions. You have to compile, to bind the components together to make a judgement call.
In this particular situation, the alpha female any woman can become is already there, but she must first believe it. When you look at the components that comprise what the exceptional leader is, or a significant person of influence, it’s no surprise that you may see your Oprah Winfreys, your Ellen DeGeneres, your Beyonces. They have all the components together to form that exceptional leader, which is why they’re so notable and often quoted, and why they have so much visibility. If you want to be a person of prominence, a person in business, apply the ALPHA principles. It’s really that simple.
If you look at business and life, many people who are successful, especially men who make significant amounts of money, who have significant amounts of power and influence, usually focused just on the business world. But once they leave the office, they have no control at home. So the idea is to apply the principles of the alpha concept to both life and business. Because when one is out of balance, the other is too. We exert a certain amount of control in areas that we have power in, but when we step back into a different realm where we don’t have control, we simply lose it. So the idea is to apply the components in both business and in life.
The first strategy that I look at is this: Leadership is a game. When you look at it as a game, you play it like a game. You can’t take things personally. Just like I teach in chess, when you have different pieces on the board, each one has its own function, and its own abilities. The same thing applies in business and in life. When you apply these components to where their specific functions are, and then you think of it just like a game, the game can be won. You just have to know how to play it.
If we deal with business, most people take their work home. But when you’re in the office, or dealing with situations, as all of us do in business, we sometimes take things that happen personally. If you think of it as a game to be played, you actually enjoy the process. But it doesn’t matter if you win or lose, you’re still playing. Just like in a casino, when you’re winning, everything is fine. But when you’re losing, it’s also fine, because you got to enjoy the process of playing the game, because that’s exactly what it is. Once you leave that office and you go home, the game is still there. So don’t take it home. Think of it as a game, not something that has become so personal. It just becomes an act, a process, or an everyday occurrence.
The second principle is build your inner circle. When we go out into business, there’s no such thing as a self-made millionaire or billionaire, because the people that deal with the money, or people that deal with the ideas, always keep a close knit circle around them of people who have the greatest influence. You can always have a circle of people around you who have a specific function, but your inner circle is where the ideas and the creativity and innovation come to bear. Not everyone that is in your circle gets to be in your inner circle, because then everyone in America knows your deepest thoughts. They contribute information to you, their creativity and their innovation. Likewise, you pour the same sort of creativity and knowledge and innovation into them. You build each other up. Think of it like this. If you’re driving down the interstate and you pick someone up, you’re still moving in a specific direction, but just because that person is in your car doesn’t mean they’re going to your destination. At some point, you have to take an exit and drop some people off, because not everybody’s qualified to be in your car and go to your destination. Only the people that have the same vision and the same focus deserve to be in your car. That’s your inner circle. All the people that are just advisors, they’re the people that pour into you and you pour into them. Because not everybody that’s with you, is always with you. Inner circle are the ones who share your vision, share your ideas, share your concepts, they can pour into you and you into them and you build each other up simultaneously.
That’s why I focused on women, because we as men think we know everything. But here’s the thing, women want to know, they’re willing to listen and to learn. So what I instruct them in is this process, build a group of people, whether it’s men or women in your inner circle, who provide value to you, and you to them, but not everyone gets to know the deepest part of your thoughts. Only those who are in a circle where you’re building simultaneously and mutually get to know the depth of your knowledge and information.
Strategy number three is promote your ideas. You can’t get anything done with your mouth shut. Promote your ideas. People don’t know what your ideas are. They don’t know what to gravitate towards. You can lose money, you can lose cars, you can lose homes, but never ever run out of ideas. The ideas that you promote are the ones that people gravitate towards, and they want to help you build it. Here’s the thing I’ve learned about other businesses and people who got involved in them. When you promote an idea that can create an income, generate revenue, or can make something better, people gravitate towards that. But they can’t gravitate towards that if they don’t know you have the thought. When you realize that you are full of ideas, one of them could be a multimillion dollar or billion dollar idea. That attracts people; that’s what leaders do. They don’t just sit and look at what works, they improve what already works. Women are conditioned, not necessarily genetically, but culturally, to be subservient. That’s the sad thing. Maybe it’s because of an absent father, or maybe someone liked to influence them. They’re conditioned or they are taught to just listen to the man, get married, and support his vision. But what about yours? What about your ideas? What about your thoughts? So my advice, my strategy to them is promote your ideas, promote your thoughts, because there’s someone out there who believes in you, there’s someone out there who could fund your idea, but they can’t find it or help you with it if you don’t speak it.
If you don’t promote yourself, who else will? You have to let people know that, “Hey, this is my idea. These are my thoughts.” But here’s the greatest thing, and why I say build your inner circle. In a second strategy, your inner circle will promote you because of your ideas. We’ve call that third party validation. It’s one thing to toot your own horn, that gets you noticed, but when other people speak your ideas and speak your name, that gives you credibility. That’s the distinction. My recommendation in using this strategy is to create a following of people who will promote you and your ideas, because you’re pouring into them. And as a result, they pour into you. There was a saying that I heard years ago, when you give me help, other people get what they want, then you’ll always have what you need.
Number four is plan to the end. As I said, in the first strategy, business is a game. Before you stepped up to the table, you must know what the endgame is. If you don’t know what the vision is, or what the answer looks like, you can’t start a path to get there. Many things occur to hinder us, to change our direction. Seldom is the path to success a straight line. Like the example of being on the highway to success, sometimes you’ve got to take an exit. It’s not with the intention of breaking your stride towards the goal.
You know what the end looks like, and we promote your ideas, and you share what the end looks like. People can gravitate towards that vision. That’s what people buy into. It’s not necessarily about the person, it’s the vision, the purpose that person has. When you have a clear direction, you have a clue, and people know where they’re going. If you don’t have a clear direction, you don’t know what the end looks like, then why am I following you? It’s really that simple. The processes that I’m teaching are basic, simple processes.
Number five is create your personal brand. When you think about Michael Jordan, what’s the first thing you think about? Illegal golf betting? When we think about Michael Jordan, we think about basketball. You think about greatness. You could try to shoot like Mike, but you never beat Mike, because he’s known for what he was able to do. Same thing with Tiger Woods. When you think about Tiger, you think about golf, because these guys branded themselves with their gift. So the idea is this. When people speak your name, what would they think of? That’s good. That’s being branded. If I know what you have, and know what your gift is, I know what your brand is. I know what to come to you for. That’s the whole concept.
When I was talking earlier about promoting your ideas, your ideas and your thoughts become your image in your brand. I know this person because this is how they think, this is what they do. They mastered this specific thing. Because you don’t go to a Tiger Woods for basketball lessons. You got to get Michael. You want golf lessons, go to Tiger, because they’re branded in that specific area of their gift. So when I say business is a game, so is branding. Branding in itself is when I have my specific area of mastery.
I have the perfect example for you, you see an apple tree? The correct answer is, I see apples. There is an apple tree. Think about it, all the work that tree did to get out of the ground, put out all the branches, all the leaves. And that was the only thing he came for, was its brand, the apple. That’s what makes that analogy. Because when you brand yourself with a specific thing, people know what to come to you for. That’s what your brand is. Your brand is whatever your gift is, and whatever you’ve mastered. This is what I learned: when you master the specific gift, and you’re branded for that specific gift, the world will seek you out, and they will pay you to be you.
Number six is assess through succession. We always think that leadership is about influencing, directing and controlling people. And it’s really about self-discovery. But the first thing that a leader should do once they get into a specific position is step outside the office, don’t focus on who’s on the team or what the next goal is. The first thing you do is find your replacement. There’s a rule that I lived by when I was in leadership positions: If they don’t grow, I can’t go. What do I mean by that? When I have someone who, when I’m in position, and I need someone to learn from me and learn all the skills that I have, to become another me or better me, I want to pull in one or two people who have exercised specific areas of strength or knowledge, bring them in and let them know I want you to take this position from me in this amount of time. Because if my presence is required for things to happen, I’m not a leader. I’m simply a manager of people and resources. So the idea is to pass on all my knowledge to the person I’m training or mentoring or grooming so that they can replace me. That way I was replaced and I can go to the next level and learn from the other person.
Number seven is personal and professional development. Once you stop growing, it’s time to leave. Knowledge is everywhere. Information is everywhere, development is everywhere. But it is seldom free. What are you willing to invest in yourself? What are you willing to invest in your people to make yourself better and make them better? Because if we’re not willing to grow, then why are we here? A true mentor exists for the purpose of helping you lead and win. This is what it means to be a boss. A boss is not thinking about themselves. They’re always concerned about other people, which is why I make the statement that you have to be able to have professional development, you have to be able to succeed through the succession of other people, because when you make them better and you help them grow, they will call you and they will make you their champion.
You can go online and get my book at www.TerryBudget.com or you can follow me online on LinkedIn or Facebook I’m TerryTBudget.
I decided that I wanted women to have this book, because women raised me. I grew up without my father. Because I learned first about leadership from my grandmother and my mother. Even though I learned how to lead and love, they can teach me how to be a man. My first example of leadership was through a woman, so I dedicate this book to the women out there who want to become a boss.