Disruption / Interruption
Disrupting The Corporate Hiring Scene | Alan Stein | Episode # 033

Disrupting The Corporate Hiring Scene | Alan Stein | Episode # 033

May 19, 2022

Our guest today helps the under-represented, under-estimated and underpaid talent land high paying jobs at the world’s best tech companies. He’s an ex-Google, ex-Facebook, ex-Sales Force and ex-American Express employee.  

Founder, CEO and Chief Accelerator of Kadima Careers, Alan Stein knows the inside out, the start to finish walkthrough of how to get hired with any of the giant multinational companies. He’s been there and seen what’s spoken and how to fix it.  

 

 Key Takeaways: 

  • The main ingredient for disruption is questioning everything and how it can be done better. Things are done for irrational legacy reasons or miss-aligned incentives.  

 

  • Status Quo of the hiring process or recruiting talent – hiring process is a huge field and there are millions of jobs out there. Tech giants like Amazon, PayPal, Netflix, Google, Adobe, Spotify, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple etc. (considering Fortune 500 companies) open up roles and streams of applicants come in. These companies are hiring machines and recruiting employees the same way each year, sorting out thru the huge amount of applications as they are attractive brands.  

 

  • About a 1/3rd are hired via referrals at the top companies  

 

  • Most of these companies are looking to hire black talent as they are the most underserved. A lot of companies have between 2% - 4% of black employee base and in the USA the number has risen to ~13%  

 

  • There is a lot of social pressure to hire a diverse workforce like (including but not limited to) Native Americans, LGBTQ, Differently abled, Military vets, Latin ex, Women and Black 

 

  • The Big Problem – Recruiters are focused on hiring with speed & volume and the hiring managers are focused on speed and quality, very few companies are measured on their candidate experience. During this process, if they get black talented women, awesome! But these companies will fill in a role based on the candidates they meet first from some top universities.  

 

  • Alan’s main motivation to disrupt the hiring process was a combination of his recruiting/hiring manager role, which he took on as a passion to bring in a diverse workforce and expand the scope of his networking efforts. 

 

  • Alan’s advice to candidates applying to these tech giants is to understand the process because the companies are not going to change their hiring processes. One of the things to consider is to submit your application in the first week or two – if not you’re probably amongst the thousands who stay in the queue. 

 

  • Alan also advises to always check the careers/jobs page of the company you want to work with because, by the time a job listing comes on a third party job website, it’s about 4 weeks old with a pile of resumes rolling in on top of referrals.       

 

  • Cover letters are a BIG waste of time, it’s more effective to invest time in building relationships and networking instead of writing a cover letter which will have little or no influence on the hiring process.   
     
     

Quote of the show: 

6:29 to 7:01 

“They are in some desire, a lot of these organizations say that they want to increase diversity and I do honestly believe most of the leader there actually do want to occur but what’s more important is the hire quickly, to fill these roles quickly. So if diversity can enhance the situation, GREAT! But it’s not going to slow down the machine of just gobbling up all this great talent that is interested in working for these top companies.” 

 
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Disrupting The Food Sustainability Problem | Dawn Parks | Episode # 032

Disrupting The Food Sustainability Problem | Dawn Parks | Episode # 032

May 12, 2022

Our guest today works with architects, engineers, farmers, and city planners to create buildings that come alive and are a source of food for people living in the area. But growing thousands of plants indoors with building restrictions and putting together all the stakeholders quickly complicates things. 

Enter disruptor Dawn Parks, CEO & Owner of The Alternate Edge Consulting, who is also a conductor of these big projects. She knows how and when to engage the different stakeholders to make food sustainability a reality.   

 

 Key Takeaways: 

  • Nearly 19 million people in the US don’t live near a grocery store. 
     
  • For funding, people rely on the government agencies, which are very limited in what they can provide in terms of funding. 
     
  • The main ingredient for disruption is thinking outside the box and looking for technologies that could fit together which haven’t been thought about before. 
     
  • The government agencies have to provide an ROI back to the government, prove the budget every year and not get cut off.  
     
  • Status Quo of food sustainability remains its location/geographic specific. Because of the history of the low-income area, high crime rate or lower socio-economic area, a lot of retailers/grocery store owners don’t move in and/or take a risk doing so.  
     
  • The problem also remains with getting food to the consumer’s location in the US. In other cases like sending food outside the country, the food has to go through aid agencies that get caught up in a political situation where the food never reaches the people it’s intended for.  
     
  • Climate change also contributes to the problem and impacts the vegetation which has an impact on how the crops grow and what needs to be fed to the live stocks.  
     
  • Technology along with data can help make better decisions for everyone to be more productive and profitable. 
     
  • How’s the disruption happening now? Understanding the core problem, the local community and their needs and working towards what’s needed help to overcome the food deserts. 

 

Quote of the show: 

7:34 to 7:55 

“The grocery stores aren’t moving in and those that do move in are taking bigger risk. Because there isn’t a lot of retailers, might be higher crime rate, might be a socio economic area, so then if you have $40 and need to feed 5 people, it’s easier to go to McDonalds’ than go buy broccoli and lettuce. “  


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Disrupting SaaS Sales Approach - Jesse Woodbury- Episode # 031

Disrupting SaaS Sales Approach - Jesse Woodbury- Episode # 031

May 5, 2022

Our guest today, Jesse Woodbury is a disruptor in SaaS sales and a host of a successful podcast show SaaS Sales Players.  

High dollar SaaS sales tend to involve at least half a dozen stakeholders with crazy competition and them being educated about the industry. Enter Jesse Woodbury, he has created 2 frameworks that help providers close over 7 figures in ARR. 

 
Key Takeaways: 
 

  • The SaaS market currently growing by 18% each year and is expected to grow to 22% by end of 2022 and is being considered to transform the IT industry from a cost centre to a value centre.  
  • SaaS adaption in the Health care industry is growing at the rate of 20% per year.  
     
  • The main ingredient for disruption is being a thought leader while creating and putting out content regularly which roughly equates to making 100 cold calls or sending 100 emails a day.  
     
  • Content can be repurposed and packaged up in a way that your buyers consider you a thought leader in their industry.   
     
  • He also changes his mind-set and considered being a consultant or a partner instead of a salesperson as the main prospects are executive-level buyers like CEO, COO, CTO, CFO etc. which in turn increased the deal sizes and time.  
     
  • Tips for frontline SaaS salesperson – read and compile relevant articles to your industry and take snippets that might be relevant to your buyers. Package and share them with your potential clients, even in the middle of buying/deal cycles. This helps you build credibility, and value and position yourself as a partner in their business. 
  • Status Quo of SaaS Sales – One had to fix an appointment and sell the hardware or servers on company premises, usually a large multi-million dollar complex deal.  
     
  • With a lot of market automation techniques and more than 20,000 SaaS companies trying to sell their services, there is a lot of noise. Executives aren’t sure which tool is valuable and supports their business.    
     
  • Being in SaaS sales is an incredibly lucrative game if you play the game right. The best sellers have been figured from implementing content. 
     
  • Being a sales rep in a high ticket SaaS company, the role is to create valuable content for buyers. It can be specific about which tackles/handle a problem.  
     
  • With the current status quo, the average tenure for a Sales VP in SaaS companies is 18 months, and even shorter tenure with frontline reps, resulting in huge financial losses and potential revenue. 
  • Even if you have a small subset of your reps posting relevant content to your buyers, word gets around that they are available to partner with your business and solve problems.  
     
  • Jesse's advice to the sales rep is to “find the medium, platform or channel that works best for you, some people that are tweeting, for others it may be LinkedIn. As for me, I like recording podcasts. I know a lot of reps who have found success with video content.” 
     
  • The status quo was to update your name and numbers in the sales force and inform your manager about the next steps to close the deal. Jesse suggests making the deal more conversational and collaborative, that’s how you know make your deals more predictable and have more span of control.     
     

Quote of the show: 

18:40 – 19:12  
“Being in SaaS is an incredibly lucrative game if you play the game right, but if you’re not playing the game effectively. Sales is the highest and the lowest paying job in the planet. Sales is very much what you kill and if you can’t do that because you’re sticking to the status quo, then how you do continue hitting you’re numbers and continue on with the profession. So that’s been the challenge and that’s why the shift has to happen more broadly” 

 
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Disrupting The Facial Recognition Technology - Matthew Owen - Episode # 030

Disrupting The Facial Recognition Technology - Matthew Owen - Episode # 030

April 28, 2022

Matthew Owen has been solving problems as a Fractional Chief Technology Officer for 25+ years and is a Digital transformation leader, specifically with disruptive innovation of facial recognition. He is also a Twitter enthusiast, using it to ensure success at large scale events to gain valuable real-time consumer service feedback on new technology being implemented while it’s being experienced by the consumers.   

 

Key Takeaways 

  • The main ingredient for disruption is extreme customer focus, taking into account the customer experience and their journey. 
  • Twitter could be a major feedback tool, where customer voices their opinion and experience about your product & services.
  • Facial recognition technology is controversial but when used correctly can be incredibly useful.  
  • Facial recognition technology can help solve certain types of problems.  
    Example: A Football stadium or a concert – 60 odd thousand people are trying to get in with an even smaller army of people helping them to get in, creating a bottleneck. Adding COVID to this mix makes it more challenging.  Implementing Facial Recognition based express access or iPass allows fans and staff workers touchless access.  

  • Status Quo with Events and what consumers expect after COVID – Change is constant, with COVID regulations easing out consumers are confused with overlapping rules thrown by the authorities. Each event has its own set of rules & regulations, making it challenging for fans and employees alike.  
  • User education plays a pivotal role in making this technology scalable. The problem with educating the masses is that they are desensitized to marketing emails and half a short attention span.  
     
  • A proper protocol is followed with multiple layers of screening and judgment to ensure peace of mind and public safety.  

  • The challenge with this technology in the States is the regulatory environment. With privacy advocates for the consumers, the country is governed by laws making it difficult to navigate around them and still make sure the technology works for the consumers. 
     
  • The future of Facial recognition technology is going to be ubiquitous, inevitable and can be deployed at every location for the good of the customer.  
  • Part of the challenge is the myths surrounding the privacy and security of the technology – Consumers don’t really care as long as it’s convenient and saves them the Hassel. The real bottleneck it educating the end-users and making them aware of such technology.  
  • The major challenge is budgeting – who pays for such a tech? Because it’s a cross-functional tech, getting all departments to agree to possess a greater challenge, which slows down the process. 
     
  • It’s all about the consumer experience. When it comes down to it, any technology which is developed whether B2B or B2C, ultimately affects the end consumer. In the case of Facial recognition, it affects directly.  
     

Quote of the show: 

6:43 “The technology can it used for good or evil, just like any other technology we’ve invited as mankind. It’s incredibly useful if used correctly, there are things you can only do using facial recognition, like scanning a crowd of 66,000 people and picking out 3 people that shouldn’t be there”  

 

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Links 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6923281101763268608 

YT snippet: https://youtube.com/shorts/ADMv9X0IysE?feature=share 

YT episode: https://youtu.be/5TadziWMP84 

Podbean: https://www.disruptioninterruption.com/?s=%23+029 

Amazon Music - https://music.amazon.com/podcasts/eccda84d-4d5b-4c52-ba54-7fd8af3cbe87/disruption-interruption 

Apple Podcast - https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/disruption-interruption/id1581985755 

Google Play - https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZGlzcnVwdGlvbmludGVycnVwdGlvbi5jb20vZmVlZC54bWw 

Spotify - https://open.spotify.com/show/6yGSwcSp8J354awJkCmJlD 

Stitcher - https://www.stitcher.com/show/disruption-interruption 

Disrupting The Trucking Industry - Dave Dein - Episode # 029

Disrupting The Trucking Industry - Dave Dein - Episode # 029

April 21, 2022

Dave Dein has been in logistics, trucking and now education for 30+ years. He has been in all positions in trucking, a driver, management and now is a CDL (Commercial Drivers License) instructor with Patterson High School, California

The trucking industry has been changing drastically over the years. Supply chain, logistics, technology, training but especially recruiting. Today, we have an enormous shortage of truck drivers.

Key takeaways 

  • Status Quo – Because there is a shortage of skilled and trained drivers, companies are now enticing drivers with more benefits packages, and paid time off, like salaried positions compared to per load or mile.

  • The main ingredient for disruption is to create a pipeline of young well-trained talent and provide opportunities to get the education of the Industry, who are passionate about trucking and not in it for the dollar bills.
  • There is always been a demand for well-trained drivers. With the current ageing workforce and about 25% of the current drivers are getting close to the age of retirement, that’s approximately 60,000 to 80,000 drivers.
  • It’s estimated that in the next 7 years we could have a shortage of 125,000, as we don’t have a lot of young people going in the industry.
  • The percentage of female drivers and role models have been stagnant over the years, at only about 10% of the total workforce. Dave with his program aims to reach out to young kids and adults with female role models to plant a seed and educate them about a possible career.
  • When Dave and his student address some young students with a 30 mins presentation, 47% responded that they would either consider taking a class once they reach high school or were not considering trucking as a career.
  • All of the industry partners have bridged the missing link by creating career pathways for the students by bringing them into the industry
  • The average person entering the trucking industry today is 38 years, mainly because they have liabilities and the trucking industry can solve their financial problems. With more influx of younger people, the dynamics of the industry can be changed.
  • Dave and his team's mission is to reach as many high schools students as possible to provide students with the opportunity and educate schools on how to market the programs, recruit and connect with them industry partners and get the program up and running.
  • The driver shortage is going to continue unless more can adopt the program and create a new pipeline of drivers.
  • With the new emission norms, the industry has to adapt to new technology like electric-powered trucks or hydrogen-powered trucks. But currently, we don’t have a sustainable infrastructure to support this.

 

Quote of the show:

4:22 “I have been in trucking since 1988, there is always been a demand for well-trained drivers. The problem is we have a driver’s shortage and an ageing workforce. 25% of our current drivers getting close to the age of retirement.”

 

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Disrupting The Restaurant Industry - Brian Duncan - Episode # 028

Disrupting The Restaurant Industry - Brian Duncan - Episode # 028

March 3, 2022

Brian Duncan is the Director of Business Development at HungerRush. We live in a golden age for food delivery but it can also be overwhelming with all the options. Brian wants to make sure that ordering online becomes simpler than ever. He sits down with host and fellow disruptor KJ Helms to talk about how he is disrupting the restaurant industry.

Takeaways:

 

  • The biggest problem in tech startups is that people overcomplicate the solution to the problem. Consider high tech solutions for low tech problems.
  • COVID has only expedited how many people are leaving the restaurant industry. 
  • We are overloaded with apps for each individual place to order, hence why Grubub and Uber Eats have taken off.
  • The bigger restaurants can pay more money to be higher up on search results why smaller companies can’t keep up and that pushes them down the google list. 
  • Text based AI can learn based on the amount of data that is put into it. So the more often you text an order, the more it learns and it will correct any mistakes in an order. 
  • Text based ordering can be easier than calling to place an order if you are in a noisy environment, and the AI will remember your last order as well.
  • 50% of all restaurants could be virtual by 2030. Human interaction will be limited to a special occasion.

Quote of the show:

 

2:36 “I think a lot of times when it comes to tech startups is people try and over-complicate the solution. How do we get food there faster? We build a drone, right? And like, wow, that's really impressive. But the amount of capital outlay you're going to need to buy them. Uh, people involved that are going to need to help you get there. What I always say is high tech solutions for low tech problems.”

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Disrupting Working Remotely - Dano Ybarra - Episode # 027

Disrupting Working Remotely - Dano Ybarra - Episode # 027

February 24, 2022

Dano Ybarra is the CEO at MyHive.global and Certified Sandler Sales Performance Consultant. He’s also the author of “Guiding Your Raft”. He sees the issues with working remotely and aims to provide solutions to those issues. He sits down with fellow disruptor and host KJ Helms to talk about how he is disrupting the technology of working remotely.   

Takeaways:

 

  • The main ingredient for disruption in your market is a collision of ideas. Sometimes the best plans and ideas are put together from all the ideas from a group of people. 
  • You need a team around you that is as excited and inspired as you by your plans. A great team will help you build a better product. 
  • Working from home increased individual productivity but it also came with its share of challenges as well. 
  • Human interaction is an important part of the working environment. You need to be able to see and talk with others to feel that connection and warmth. 
  • Allowing employees to work remotely opens up your hiring pool to a broader audience. You can get the best talent from anywhere in the world.
  • Whenever you introduce a new way of doing something, there will always be push back or people who don’t understand.
  • If you don’t reach out and collaborate with others, you miss out on spontaneity and that could cause you to miss out on a great deal.

Quote of the show:

 

6:53 “We came up to the beginning of the pandemic, only between eight and 12% of the workforce worked remote or in a hybrid fashion, when the pandemic hit that number went to 88%, according to Gardner. The reports and the research shows that individual productivity did go up but innovation, creativity and the business went down.”

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Disrupting the User Experience - Chris Federspiel - Episode # 026

Disrupting the User Experience - Chris Federspiel - Episode # 026

February 17, 2022

Chris Federspiel is the CEO and Co-Founder of Blackthorn. Everyday we all use apps and we never think about the work that goes into making sure the apps are easy enough to understand and use. That is where Chris comes in, and he wants to help shake up the user experience for all apps. He sits down with fellow disruptor and host KJ Helms to talk about how he is disrupting the user experience.   

Takeaways:

 

  • User experience is king. In today’s workforce, if you don’t have a user experience that is easy to get the hang of, you are quickly passed over. 
  • The main ingredient to disruption is speed. Being able to get things done quickly and with good results is a key aspect. 
  • People now want their business apps to look and feel like regular apps. They want them to be easy to use and understand like Facebook, WhatsApp or Instagram.
  • When it comes to the user experience, people have a sliding scale of what they expect. With every new advancement, people expect more to come. 
  • Everyone wants their information as fast as possible. Now more than ever speed is so important when it comes to UI.
  • When you run a company, you want to have a positive impact on the world. If you are having a company and you’re only looking to make money it will be a challenge.
  • There’s enough enterprise SaaS companies out there, what there needs to be more of is physical product companies.

Quote of the show:

 

5:15 “People now want their business apps to operate and feel like they're consumer apps. So the problem is it's really hard as you'll get these requests for proposals, these RFPs, where the deals are 50 K plus, like it behooves you to go after them. But you can't win them unless you check the box. There is no single RFP that will award you the RFP based upon how good the app feels.”

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Disrupting the SaaS industry - Esben Friis-Jensen - Episode # 025

Disrupting the SaaS industry - Esben Friis-Jensen - Episode # 025

February 10, 2022

Esben Friis-Jensen is the Co-Founder and Chief Growth Officer at Userflow. He sees the importance of helping the underserved for SaaS companies and is shaking up the industry. He sits down with fellow disruptor and host KJ Helms to talk about how he is disrupting the SaaS industry. 

 

Takeaways:

 

  • The key to disruption is making sure you look around and seeing what can be improved upon through technology.
  • The new way of thinking for SaaS companies is having the focus of having the product drive more of the growth.
  • You want to make sure your technology is better but you also want to make sure it is simple to use, if it’s too complex then no one will use it. 
  • Make sure that you are able to focus 100% on the product and let others handle the onboarding of new clients. 
  • When you are disrupting, you are serving the underserved to help them get out their pent up frustration.
  • You want to surround yourself with people you can trust and you know can get the job done. 
  • If you have tried to use a product and don’t understand it, then give a call to talk about it rather than immediately calling someone and setting up a meeting at the beginning. 

Quote of the show:

 

8:01 “I think in general software makes things better. What then ends up happening is. You sometimes end up adding too many things, uh, and making it complex and that is of course not good. So then you have to rethink again and how can I make it smarter, better UX and so on. But in general I think software always makes things better, but then the next step is making the software better.”

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Disrupting Investment Management - Christian Hyldahl - Episode # 024

Disrupting Investment Management - Christian Hyldahl - Episode # 024

February 3, 2022

Christian Hyldahl is the President and Founder of Varium Investment Partners. He’s quick on his feet when it comes to investment management. He looks into the future and tries to stay one step ahead of the trends. He joins host KJ Helms to talk about how he has been disrupting the investment management industry. 

 

Takeaways:

 

  • The main ingredient for disruption is a radical focus on what you do and how you deliver what you do. 
  • Asset management firms haven’t had to share their economics before. 
  • The market has been gently rising for the past 12 years, but in 3 to 5 years that will change. 
  • We are no longer in a 30 year cyclical cycle where fixed income and rates have gone down from 8% to 50 basis points. 
  • Cryptocurrency has taken off recently and it has allowed some people the financial freedom to quit their jobs. 
  • We have more jobs available than people who are unemployed right now. 
  • Everything is being automated and it runs on a subpar performance, and people are ok with that when they really shouldn’t be. 

Quote of the show:

 

16:14 ​​”Something like 4% of the working population is not going back to work because they made so much money in crypto that they don't have to work anymore. We've got this sort of weird, perfect storm of innovation and government intervention that have created an artificial what I call an artificial economy. That is going to be very difficult to transition out of in, and that is really going to hit the next three to five years.”

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