Rebel Human Resources Podcast

Episode 20: Employee First, Business Second, The E1B2 Collective with Anthony Vaughan

December 01, 2020 Kyle Roed, The HR Guy / Anthony Vaughan Season 1 Episode 20
Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 20: Employee First, Business Second, The E1B2 Collective with Anthony Vaughan
Chapters
Rebel Human Resources Podcast
Episode 20: Employee First, Business Second, The E1B2 Collective with Anthony Vaughan
Dec 01, 2020 Season 1 Episode 20
Kyle Roed, The HR Guy / Anthony Vaughan

Join Kyle Roed as he speaks with Anthony Vaughan, founder of the E1B2 Collective.   They discuss topics ranging from people-first practices, business results, and startup principles in the context of Human Resources.    

About Anthony: I've spent the last 6 years learning everything there is to know about business and entrepreneurship from (sales, marketing, operations, cash flow, profit-loss, partnerships, business development and everything else in-between). I have founded multiple brands and impacted several more through my thoughtful mentorship and strategy via consulting. 

Throughout all my successes and failures I have come to realize my true passion and skill if I'm being honest with my self is in the area HR. Impacting those I work with and helping them be more and become more fulfilled me in ways most couldn't understand. I love using strategy, love, candor, and empathy as it pertains to an employee base to help them drive better results for a brand as well as drive better strategic results for there own personal futures.

Through years of hands-on experience as a leader in several organizations, I have identified the needs to reengage an employee base, revitalize underperforming businesses, and drive true change with senior leadership through innovative strategies and an out of the box approach to HR.

https://www.e1b2collective.com/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/anthony-vaughan-8ba8a8172/


Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.


We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

Rebel ON, HR Rebels!  

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Show Notes Transcript

Join Kyle Roed as he speaks with Anthony Vaughan, founder of the E1B2 Collective.   They discuss topics ranging from people-first practices, business results, and startup principles in the context of Human Resources.    

About Anthony: I've spent the last 6 years learning everything there is to know about business and entrepreneurship from (sales, marketing, operations, cash flow, profit-loss, partnerships, business development and everything else in-between). I have founded multiple brands and impacted several more through my thoughtful mentorship and strategy via consulting. 

Throughout all my successes and failures I have come to realize my true passion and skill if I'm being honest with my self is in the area HR. Impacting those I work with and helping them be more and become more fulfilled me in ways most couldn't understand. I love using strategy, love, candor, and empathy as it pertains to an employee base to help them drive better results for a brand as well as drive better strategic results for there own personal futures.

Through years of hands-on experience as a leader in several organizations, I have identified the needs to reengage an employee base, revitalize underperforming businesses, and drive true change with senior leadership through innovative strategies and an out of the box approach to HR.

https://www.e1b2collective.com/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/anthony-vaughan-8ba8a8172/


Rebel HR is a podcast for HR professionals and leaders of people who are ready to make some disruption in the world of work.


We'll be discussing topics that are disruptive to the world of work and talk about new and different ways to approach solving those problems.

Follow Rebel HR Podcast at:

www.rebelhumanresources.com
https://twitter.com/rebelhrguy
https://www.facebook.com/rebelhrpodcast
www.kyleroed.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-roed/

Rebel ON, HR Rebels!  

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/rebelhumanresources)

Anthony Vaughan:

Too many founders of companies too many leaders have a lot of ego wrapped up in their title and their overall kind of autonomy and role within a company. Not enough leaders and founders put enough faith and trust and honestly like equity and cash into building out their teams.

Kyle Roed:

This is the rebel HR podcast. If you're a professional looking for innovative, thought provoking information in the world of human resources, this is the right podcast for you. Alright, Rebel Human Resources listener. I'm extremely excited for our guest today, Anthony mon. He is the founder of the E one B two collective and also the host of the project 2030 podcast as well as the E one, B two podcast. Welcome to the rebel Human Resources podcast. Anthony,

Anthony Vaughan:

thank you so much. How are you?

Kyle Roed:

I am doing well. I'm living the dream hr 2020.

Anthony Vaughan:

There it is.

Kyle Roed:

You know, one of the things that I'm most excited about is the fact that by the time this podcast airs, the election will be over. I don't want to spoil anybody. But the results were extremely exciting and impressive. So you feel good about it? I don't know. I'll see. I'll be glad that it's over. As long as we don't have some contested election that, you know, drags on so who knows? If I if I just said that. And that's actually what happened, then. I'm going to go into, you know, statistical estimation.

Anthony Vaughan:

I'm gonna have a no comment on that one, man. It's politics or politics and not, not my, my best talking point.

Kyle Roed:

It's all good. Yeah, politics and religion. Those are two things that I we haven't touched on much on this podcast. I think that might be a little bit too contentious for some listeners, so. So Anthony, I'm really, really excited to welcome you to the podcast, I'd like to start out why don't you just tell our listeners a little bit about yourself?

Anthony Vaughan:

Yeah, I'll try to keep it tight. I'm doing a better job of that as of late here. So a little bit about me, guys. My name is Anthony, though a lot of people call me AJ. And so Kyle, I think we're starting a friendship here. So why don't you go ahead and call me AJ as well,

Kyle Roed:

AJ.

Anthony Vaughan:

And so a bit about me big highlights, started a company at 19 that did well, strategic partnership with the Under Armour. Start a second company at 21 that did well again, made a bunch of mistakes around employee experience and HR within both, like a lot of early founders and young guys do. You know, cuz guys, I'm 3030 years old. So I was 19 at the time and 21. And so, you know, I'm assuming a lot of the listeners can know kind of what's going on within the minds of the of those individuals of that age and how they have a very limited skill set from a maturity and leadership perspective at times. And so inevitably learned a lot and started researching and developing and growing behind the scenes as I was making a lot of mistakes, and took a lot of those learnings and inevitably became the VP people for for two startups over the last five years. COVID happen. Big surprise, I lost my job and got furloughed, and I started the E one B two collective, about a year and a half prior to COVID occurring. I started advising startups again, started getting that entrepreneurial bug once again. And to wrap it all up, I decided to start the E one B two collective guys. So that's what I'm, that's what I'm doing right now, at the moment, it's, you know, inevitably going to probably be 15 or 20 companies over the next 10 years. Right now which three, I have multiple co founders for each initiative. So it's very much a collective of brands and collective of humans that are all excited about improving the world of work through the lens of employee experience and operational level through the lens of startups, small businesses and midsize businesses as well. And so, that's what we're doing. There's a lot of fun stuff happening within those. And I'm just here to try to bring value and I'm excited about anything to do with HR and employee experience to be frank.

Kyle Roed:

I love origin stories. I'd like to dive into yours a little bit. So help me understand what led you into starting a company at 19 and then starting another one in your 20s

Anthony Vaughan:

not to you know, no one cry here so I'll keep it tight. Um, dad passed away in the beginning of my sophomore year. So that wasn't fun. came home and had no intention to come back to school. Honestly, I was only there for football and girls anyway and just thought about acting up and kind of acting out and wasn't in a good state. So I needed to come home. Essentially what happened is, I decided to start a company, I still to this day, I don't really necessarily know why I think I think there were some young kids in the neighborhood, I just needed some help. And I was starting to help them coach and do some things. But long story short, I decided to start a company and it was going to be a small project. But then when I made the partnership with the Under Armour, that's when it's shifted from always as a 19 year old trying to stay busy until you figure out when you're going back to school, to 20 months later, we're looking at 4550 people and staff and four other partnerships and lots of revenue coming in, and now you're an operator. So so that's what happened, guys. And I made a big mistake, though, guys, there was a partner that really wanted to be an equity partner, I looked at him as a partner, but he wasn't equity wise, and I'd declined has offered to be that equity partner and he walked away from the business and the business went to zero. And so that was my very first leadership mistake and leadership leadership learning experience, to many founders of companies, to many leaders have a lot of ego wrapped up in their title and their overall kind of autonomy and role within a company. Not enough leaders and founders put enough faith and trust and honestly like equity and cash into building out their teams. And really All he wanted was a thoughtful one on one career mapping conversation. So that happened. And then to wrap this all up, I yeah, like I said, I started a company at 21. Again, it was a partnership consultancy firm. And that was really just entrepreneurship bug bit me. And I just needed to keep chipping away, the money was running out. And the first business I took a bit bit of a break once it ended. And I built about four very strategic partnerships. So I knew how to do it. And yeah, so that's my that's my entrepreneurship kind of origin story. I don't really know how it started. But now, it's bit me and I'm here.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, I think that's that's a great insight. First of all, I'm sorry to hear about your father. But you know, of course, it's amazing to hear, you're clearly you have work ethic and a drive to create and do something outside of conventional norms. So I've ton of respect for people that'll walk off the beaten path and put themselves out there and learn and learn from mistakes. I think that's part of being 19 and 20. Right? Yeah, I took maybe the more traditional path, but I like to tell people, I took the scenic route, and kind of found myself along the way. So I didn't really get serious about anything until I was at least 23 or 24. So I'm a little bit behind my, my high school classmates. But I like to feel like I've kind of figured it out at this point. But you know, I think I think we're all learning every single day.

Anthony Vaughan:

100%.

Kyle Roed:

So tell me I I'm curious what led to the creation of the E one B two collective? And first of all, why don't you tell us about the what e one v two means?

Anthony Vaughan:

Yeah, that's fine. I didn't even say it. So he won't be too means. And I'm assuming anyone to listen to this as a huge HR fan, or a practitioner, or a lover of people. So it stands for employees first business second. So that's that stands for. I mean, that I believe in that. I believe in it very much more than a mantra, but I believe in it at a very operational level. I believe that should be the fundamental kind of point of view when you're thinking about the way your company is designed and actually runs and the way, you know, people internally work. And I'll get in a heated debate. And I have with anyone that tries to tell me differently. And so that's what that stands for. As far as that you want me to collective that the entrepreneur bug was, was starting to, you know, it left the permanent scar on my leg there. And it was starting to itch a bit. Right. It was starting to call me back. So I started the podcast, I started advising some startups again, around partnerships, as well as you know, my, my thoughts around e one v two. And then, you know, as I was inside of these, these two startups, I was I was realizing two things. Companies first and foremost, still don't understand how to put employees first at the operational level and actually mean it and remove ego and remove that ego and have it show up in the operational kind of fabrics of the organization. I saw that I was in it. I felt it I had very animated high level business With my founder, a lot around those things. And then the second thing that I've realized is that I was a team of one. And there was you won't believe how many times the, the, my founder would tell me Oh, culture all making people happy. Oh, making sure people are like one task. Oh, making sure like this whole, like, you know, experience thing. Yeah, that's all, that's all you go ahead and knock it out. Like, that's your thing. That's, that's your area. And he would say that in a jokingly way. And then he would say that, to try to make me like, feel bad, I feel like at times, then he would say it like, a very literal way. Like, it's all you there's no other money that we're going to allocate towards them. And then I started researching and realizing that there are people that are at companies, 300 400 people, they have, like, one, maybe two people there. And then I was like, oh, there's companies 1000 people that have like three people there. And I was like, wait, what's going on here like, do they not realize it should be like, operational like, unit, do they not realize there should be like at least five to 10 people, even at a company size of three or 400 people. So, um, that that was kind of the realize, you know, the the whole as i was i was saying and then to wrap up this little bit of a long winded breakdown, that he won't be to collective directly is three different initiatives. Right now. It's Project 2030, I went to help young, scrappy, HR generalist, you know, university senior, you know, students that are looking to become HR students, become the next VP of people and do it through the E one B two way. There's a like a curriculum and perspective that me and my partners have. The second initiative is called Beyond brand studios, which ties a little bit into beyond resume. So we'll get to that maybe in a moment. And then the other big initiative is called startup bx. Companies need to stop throwing everything at one person, they need to bring in a collective for at least a year, build out infrastructure, understand that it's not just the internal HR person, it's the entire company, at the management executive level that need to make the employee experience thing, run and go. And we help those companies do that. So yeah, that's that's the context. Now,

Kyle Roed:

that's great. I, you know, I'm just sitting here, listening and, you know, nodding my head, you can't see my head, but I'm just sitting here just shaking my head, like a like a bobblehead doll. Because, I mean, I can't tell you how many times I have to have the conversation with leaders, that not necessarily my current organization, but in my past that, listen, you can't outsource people, you can't not lead people and expect HR to deal with people challenges, that's part of being a leader, that's part of running an organization that's part of getting stuff done. And you know, to try to like outsource that aspect of leaders work to HR just drives me crazy. My my perspective is hrs role, is to be a connector, to drive a vision and a strategy and ensure that the, the foundation is in place, and then get out of the way of leaders and let the leaders truly lead and then foster the leaders success. That's that's how I think HR works. But then the other piece is in New York, you hit on this and set it very, very well. The other thing is you got to have a budget to do stuff, too. You can't just, you can't just be like, Well, yeah, go, you know, hey, go roll this out. But we're not going to invest anything in this technology platform, because you know, that costs that cost $5,000. And we don't see the benefit in having something digital. So you know, go, go spend $5,000 worth of your time to go put together a paper, non technical solution, right? I mean, I've run into that so many times where then it's an HR person almost fighting for budget, which is, which is not why we got into the profession.

Anthony Vaughan:

You know, this is more of an operation, sales, marketing, services or products conversation, but you have no idea how many times I've told leaders that I work with this, this statement right here. I don't want to hear that excuse anymore. Throw that excuse out the window. A couple of things. Do you understand why I'm asking for this tech, this tool? This this this function? This these two other people? Do you understand the value that it brings? Yes, I understand this one who said Yes, I understand. Perfect. Do you understand these numbers? And I'll push across numbers. Yes. You understand how how amazing this will be? Yes. Great, perfect. But you're saying we don't have any money. Right. So let's have it let's have a meeting. Right. So we'll look into the margins. Oh, yeah, there's no money that you're right. You're not lying to me. Okay. There's no there's no kind of cutting of salaries. There's no reallocation of budget. Okay, great. Perfect. Let's do this. Then. Let's start a new one. initiative inside the company, let's let's produce a new product, a new function, a new initiative, a new service something to make more money inside the company. I have a background in this, this is me talking, I have a background in this. I, I've built brands before I know how we can do it, I can throw like seven ideas at you. We've been meeting and thinking about innovation anyway. And those ancillary dollars dollars that come in the margins that we have outside of the staff that is needed to run that function. Let's throw that towards this tool that you keep telling me we don't have money for. People look at me like I have nine foreheads. And then I inevitably tell them, I'm not joking here. And I've done that it's actually worked. So like I'm talking about theory. And then I'm talking about practical executions. There was a company I was working for, we started in events, a ancillary function that produced an extra $20,000 a year, and that paid for two internal tech products that we needed to help make these teams run more effectively. And that was it. I don't know, like, there were there was no other conversation that needed to be had. I just I'm fascinated why companies that use these excuses, don't go that wrap like you were thinking about innovating anyway, just reallocate those extra funds towards this. So I know that's crazy. Kyle, it's, you probably either a have heard of it, and was like, that's not a good idea. Or B probably you're like, That's crazy. But I just wanted to add some thoughts on that.

Kyle Roed:

No, I love it. That's what we're all about here. Right, trying to get outside the box innovate free HR from the shackles of thinking, Well, we've always done it this way. So we have to continue to. Yeah. And I, you know, I, you mentioned an interesting comment that, you know, it's outside the box. As far as I'm concerned, I don't think anything's outside the box for HR. Because we're the We Are the people, people, right? And that means we need to understand, okay, how does sales work? How does finance work? You know, where am I adding value? What does the business do that adds value to a customer? And how do I reinforce that value by making sure that I put the right people in the right seats in the right place? At the right time, HR is so much bigger than payroll, payroll is critical. You got to pay people and it needs to be accurate. But But I, you know, I think that's where that's what separates the great from the good HR people, the great people see the vision, they get it. And they can articulate that to the appropriate people at the appropriate time. So I'm right there with AJ.

Anthony Vaughan:

Indeed. Appreciate that. Huh.

Kyle Roed:

Tell me a little bit more about what you see in the future with E one v two, I'm curious. What is your truenorth look like for your for your collective?

Anthony Vaughan:

That's a great question. Um, I've been so in the weeds that I haven't actually on my calendar here that I want to do like some high level thinking again. You know, I right now, we're just in validation mode. I think any startup or business overall would understand that validating what you're doing is needed. But I think the Northstar honestly, is a paradigm shift. That looks operational. That's why if you keep hearing what I'm saying, I'm using that word operational, like inside the business, the way we're actually working the way decisions are made. I want to change the perspective in the paradigm of just how companies really think about employees, and how they think about what employee experience really means and how they think about producing productive employee experience and how it can really significantly impact the bottom line, a lot of the functions and a lot of the things that I'm starting it's really around that. And I think we're starting to see leaders jump on the bandwagon of the PR around it, but I don't think enough of them are still on the bandwagon when it's time to make some operational changes, or get out their checkbook. Right, I think, I think they're jumping on board with the PR and going on to a stage and saying we do x, y and z, x, y and Zed for our employees, and they have used employer branding conversations. But when it really gets down to the nitty gritty, I still don't see a large population of companies really, really kind of acting on that. So that's really the goal, right? The goal is to again create at a minimum 10 companies over the next 10 years. All of them are around truly changing the paradigm and actually seeing the companies change their actions, not just their words because I think words are changing right now but not the actions.

Kyle Roed:

I think that's a great call out you know, a statistic that that I would throw in there to maybe add fuel to that fire is if you look at the look at the you know, the social unrest and the the racial turmoil in our country. And, you know, back in June the number of CEOs and organizations that came out and said, Hey, this, you know, diversity inclusion and equity is, is a priority for our organization, we're gonna, we're gonna do more than than just, you know, talk about it, we're gonna invest in it. And somehow, but 27% of organizations have cut their DNI budget. Hmm. And so, you know, yeah, actions speak louder than words. So if you're going to start slashing budgets, and you say, this is a priority, and then you go, you know, can everybody in the in the space, people will figure that out? employees will figure that out. And certainly you're not putting an employee first. You're putting, you're putting a cash flow issue first, which you might need to look at something like that in order to maintain sustainability in your business, when you come out and put a speech out and then and then fire. You know, your DNI department, it just doesn't make any logical sense to anybody in your organization. Right? Yeah,

Anthony Vaughan:

yeah, I couldn't agree more. And so I guess maybe even a double down on what I'm saying, you know, also is, what I see the vision look like is, if it comes in three different phases, if you are a HR generalist, or a senior in college, that wants to become a VP, people are ahead of people, and you want to change the way employees experience work, I want you to think about or hear or learn from E one v two, if you are a company, small business or startup to a mid sized business, and you are thinking about hiring that first VP of people internally, or that first head of people internally or that HR director internally, I want you to read here about C or call on MB to to help you make that make that progression, like I want us to be the new norm around when you're thinking about doing these people functions, I want something that we're saying, to to be top of mind,

Kyle Roed:

especially for those you know, the individuals you mentioned in the 2030 project. It HR is one of the most exciting fields to get into right now because it's changing so rapidly. But you need to you need to make sure that you immerse yourself and where we're going and get really good at what we need in the future. As opposed to what the past of HR used to look like. I think that's the other thing I would say is, is I think we're gonna see a dramatic change in what hrs role looks like, as well as a dramatic increase in in pressure and accountability. I mean, I've seen that just in 2020, as we start to shift to, you know, different ways of working and different ways of communicating. Everybody's looking at the HR person in the room going well, how do we do this? And a lot of HR, I don't know. But exactly, what the ones that are successful are the ones saying I don't know, but we're gonna figure it out together. Right. And and leading an organization through that, you know, something as simple as figuring out how in the world do I use a zoom meeting function in order to facilitate good meetings, and then help my leadership team know how to use it so that they can have effective meetings, right? Something is tactical is that has has paid dividends. So so I want to I want to ask you about a couple. A couple projects we were we were talking about here. So tell me about what we were talking about the graduation model.

Anthony Vaughan:

Yes. Um, that's funny, I actually a car I'm a little crazy, man, I'm actually considering a fourth and fifth initiative. Ah, ha, maybe, maybe,

Kyle Roed:

um, what do you sleep? Or do you just just kind of lay there with your eyes open to new ideas?

Anthony Vaughan:

I do that I do both. Um, I, you know, a little secret. Honestly, I'll let I'll get it out. Now. If you ever gonna know we talked about you, if you ever consider jumping in entrepreneurship, one thing I would recommend anyone is take as many marbles that you can throw in the air and then inevitably, some of them will land and pay dividends for you for the rest of your life. That's what I'm hoping I'm throwing as many opportunities in the air as I can. And the biggest thing they'll call is I'm building teams around them from the beginning. So that's probably the caveat, right? Is that this isn't like a scrappy young entrepreneur. And it's like doing this by himself. Each initiative starts at a minimum with three to four people. So that does help a lot. I will admit that it helps a ton. So graduation model, I was with a company, pre COVID. We were noticing a couple things. So this is very operational. This is very tactical here. We were paying a 80% of our staff, no more than $14 an hour We were looking into we adjust made the pivot to become a nonprofit, all this context is going to make sense. We were looking at to our margins, and there was no money, and there was going to be no money for a long period of time. One of the suggestions, I made this for another company, one of the suggestions I made around creating an ancillary kind of service, like the speaking that I'd like the events that I told you about, was not an option, they declined that. So essentially, there was no more money to pay anyone more than $14 an hour. And our staff averaged in age 26 to 39. So these were adults here, these were people that were considering marriage. These were people that were limited in education, I will admit that, but they were hungry, they were scrappy, they wanted to be better, they wanted to be more, they either had families, or were about to have family. So 14,000 hours was not going to cut it. We were starting to see a lot of turnover, fast, because of that, right? directly because of that, like you guys are not paying me enough. I'm not getting enough, I need to find other employment. The graduation model is something I presented to them. I said, Look, guys, let's find a way to retain these employees through this aspect. I started conducting one on one interviews with the with the employees. And I quickly realized that they wanted to stay in this industry, they wanted to stay in the industry. They wanted to find opportunities, but they didn't have the skill sets of progressing into opportunities that were paying them 4050 $60,000 a year. But at the same time they wanted again, they just really loved what we were doing, but we just weren't paying enough. And so essentially, what I realized is that if we were to help them, put each individual employee on an individualized contextual IDP plan, with strategic partnerships with companies similar in the industry to our company, but at a much higher scale, that had ability to pay these individuals more, we put them on an IDP plan, a career development plan, helping them understand and learn things. Partner with companies that were doing similar things to our business model, but at a much higher scale, that had more margins to pay staff, higher salaries, find mentors within those companies, you know, conduct, conduct mentorship programs within those companies conduct a you know, shadowing opportunities and internships four times a year, at a four to five day stint for these employees, we would graduate them after 18 months to then go out and make a seamless transition to be a staff at those companies guaranteed. So give us 18 months, I guarantee you a new life. Wow. And that changed everything that a retention spike to numbers that you wouldn't even imagine. The gratefulness, the effort, the engagement, the passion, the innovation, anything, any metric you can think of spiked. Also PR Kyle, PR, spiked business Journal's news channels, people started kind of flocking to hear about what we're doing. Because conversations are now being had with these families of these employees like they're doing what for you, you are on you are what today, because like, the way I was doing it is like they would do half of a shift at the company. And then they will go spend the other half on the shadowing opportunity with their mentor. So like they were getting paid to do this. Like it was like a very real thing. They weren't losing because that was one thing I made to put in there cause like, we can't have them lose money here. Like, right, like they don't they already don't have enough money. So we need to make this perfectly beautiful for them. And I got a lot of pushback, trust me I did. But um, as we started seeing it work out the executives of the company and I was an executive as well, we all bought into it, and we double down and we and we press that go button even more. So that's the graduation model. I was joking around with your collar to say I was thinking about what it would look like to help like restaurants, fast food chains. Like convenience stores, like, like mall type jobs, like what would it look like to go to other companies that have similar issues where they don't have enough money to pay employees a certain range? They're not hiring managers often? Like what would it look like to go in there and like help them create a graduation model and like supplemented for I don't know, not get into that right now. But um, yeah, so that's the graduation model man and it worked out well.

Kyle Roed:

You know, that's, it's fascinating. I mean, I'm sitting here listening to my wheels are turning I'm just thinking, you know, from the context, my industries manufacturing so in manufacturing, there's a wide variety of pay ranges and, you know, some of the entry level port of entry jobs. Yeah, you might be making, you know, 11 1213 bucks an hour, you could probably go make more money in in fast food. But the pitch, as a recruiter in that type of industry is basically exactly what you just described. Come in here, we're going to teach you a skill, you're going to invest X number of months learning this skill. And then we're going to pull you deeper into the pay grade band in the organization. And you'll get promoted, and you'll have some upward mobility. And, you know, it's the exact same model. It's just an internal model. And what you've described is, is kind of revolutionary, where it's just now it's the same model. It's just, it's just an external model. So that's fascinating.

Anthony Vaughan:

Yeah, yeah. So it worked out well. Again, this was an internal as well, like this was, you know, it was internal and external, I see what you're saying it was external, via the partners and things of that nature. So yeah, it was it was amazing. And it was a, it's not groundbreaking to the point where, like, people like you that have been in this industry for years, haven't heard of similar variations of it. But I think if you think about the operational things that I had to go through, right, the decisions that we had to look into the make the the data that I had to pick through to really get to the value of like, this is one of the solutions that we should try, like, one of the conversations shouldn't be, it is what it is, we just have a lot of high turnover, like that should not be an option, the very operational that sit at the table that have a lot of executive meanings. Let's look at the data. Let's look at the numbers. Let's look at the margins. And let's figure out what we can do here. But let's put the employees first at all times. And if you realize what we did, I created a slam dunk for them.

Kyle Roed:

Well, you know what happened when you put the employees first, as you saw business results, right? Hmm. And that's the punch line, right? You're not doing this as charity work, I think you're probably a charitable guy, and you want to help people out. But, you know, ultimately, this does result in business results. I think that the punch line for for people who you know, maybe think like, this is the soft stuff, right? Or, or this, this isn't how you're supposed to do business, you're supposed to do numbers first and focus on those. You know, my argument is always that the people are what drive the results, not the numbers, the numbers are, they're a ripple effect of what the people are doing.

Anthony Vaughan:

Yeah, I couldn't agree more coffee. So here's something that is really important. To me, this isn't super, super, super innovative. But this is something that I think a lot of companies are not doing. I think every three months, we all can agree something in life happens, that affects our professional desires to keep going may adjust our professional perspectives of what we're doing as a professional in our careers, especially in the younger years of our career, let's call it 19 to 3334. every three months, something may happen. Personally, wife, husband, kid, etc. Something may be happening internally with our own mental health, every three months, in my personal opinion, let's call it four months, every 120 days or so, something is happening, that I believe, adjust how you work inside of a company or adjust your perspectives, or something you just need to address personally. And I believe it's a good idea to do these check ins every three to four months with your employees for an hour just to understand what that is, record that data in a personal kind of personal, whether it's you know, whatever system or tool that you use, and make very strategic decisions around how you're going to support that in that employee based off of that context. I'm seeing a lot of HR leaders just check in and say hi, how you doing? How are you feeling? How's life, but I'm not seeing too many people get really into the nitty gritty of kind of the life check from an audit perspective, finances, health, a family, your personal health, you know, desires, career wise, adjustments, career wise, adjustments of perspectives, overall points of view, like I'm not seeing anyone get very tactical from that perspective. And then and then go out of their way to make a lot of decisions to support them personally, on that I'm not seeing a lot of of that happening. If you are Kyle, commend anyone that's doing that, but I'm not seeing a lot of like, structured attention where like you're collecting data, you're making decisions that are empathetic to the contextual needs of that employee. And doing it at that every three to four month cadence. So that's something that I've done.

Kyle Roed:

Man, you are you are hitting a nerve with me right now. And I, I would agree 100%. Now, I know I guarantee you there's HR people listening to this going. I can't ask them personal questions. That could be a HIPAA violation or that could be you know, inappropriate. But you have to get to know people on a human level. If you truly want to Understand what they need to be successful. So here, here's an example for you. So previous company I worked at significant amount of turnover in a lot of it was in the first few weeks, you know, and we just, we couldn't figure it out. And we had all these statistics, and we were looking all these numbers, it was just like, nobody knew what to do. So, you know, what do we do? Well, why don't we go ask? So we were, so we went to people in the departments. And we asked them, Why did so? And so leave? Or why did why did so slowly, what we found was a trend of people leaving, because they had daycare issues. And you're never gonna find daycare issues on the spreadsheet, it's never gonna show up in a turnover number, it's certainly not an option that you choose in your HR information system. When you process a termination within your system. The only way you find that out is by getting to know somebody. Then once we had the data, we pulled that we had those conversations, we pulled the data, we put that into a spreadsheet, and we we knew how much it cost us how much turnover cost us. Turns out, we were losing about 16 to $20,000 a month because of daycare issues was masked as attendance turnover, or people who just voluntarily abandon or job you know, job abandon their, their posts. And they don't have a choice. And then you start to peel back the layers of the onion and you realize, oh, wow, that's because we have 3000 spots, we have a deficit of 3000 spots of daycare within our local community. So then, HR can actually be proactive about that, right? We can change policies, we can work with local daycares, we can offer a benefit that helps subsidize or you know, offset the tuition costs for daycare. I mean, there's so many options. But the only way you figure it out is by talking to people getting to know who they are and what their challenges are. That's, I'm with you there, man. I'm like, I love that.

Anthony Vaughan:

I talked about how I have advised companies to create new ancillary services or products or find ways to increase revenue, and allocate that towards people, whether it's tech for the HR solutions, whether that's, you know, I love this one, we just don't have enough money to pay more than $14 an hour or to pay more than $40,000 a year, or whatever the case is, then just didn't create more things and then reallocate that money just for that be very intentional about that. This is something again, there are companies that have taken advice on this and it's actually worked. And then in that same category as well. I've advised executives to all take a salary cuts to reallocate towards bringing in two or three new employees for a search for a certain period of time, or to really to reallocate those funds towards things that we're going to help the employees whether it was ancillary out of the box benefits, other contextual needs of the employees. I was listening to a podcast three years ago, where I came up with the idea, he said that out of a $50 million dollar revenue company a year, he is the he makes the least of any employee. And that executive, the founder makes the least of any employee in the company. He re reallocates every single dollar he can back into the company back into the people. And he actually has a spreadsheet and his whole formula around it. And I stole that and I said, I need to start seeing more founders and leaders and I'm working with do that you should not be the highest paid person in the company. Because you read read a Forbes interview. And that's what you think should be the case. You should be doing everything in your power to reallocate any extra funds you can to double down on your people. Because without your people, you would have no business.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, talk about your money. We're not this founders. You're putting it all on that equity and the growth of the business and kudos to him.

Anthony Vaughan:

Yeah, so those are a couple ideas that I think would be interesting as well.

Kyle Roed:

Alright, so one of the questions I'm curious to understand a little bit more, you mentioned that you made a mistake in your early business endeavor and you did not extend the equity that your business partner wanted and that you know, really impacted your business in a negative way. So what steps did you take when you realized that you you made a mistake? How did you focus on that?

Anthony Vaughan:

I immediately when I made that mistake, and then like you said at a macro level, what I did learn I immediately started researching a ton. So I spent literally five years of studying three hours a day. I did multiple, this is a big thing. I want to get this on the record here because I've seen a lot of people with a lot of ego here. I am young guys. But if I can be a little bit egotistical for a moment, I'm a hustler, guys, I've always made money, right? So from the aesthetic of life, like I've always had a decent sized house and a car and took care of my girlfriend very well, in my family, I've always been a good producer, right? So, you know, on paper, I have no reason in the world to conduct these internship, shadowing mentorship, things that I've done in my career, but I've done them. And so what I'm really saying is, I study three hours a day, and even after all the money that I made, or all the things that I did, and how great I felt that I was, I put my tail between my legs, and I conducted nine shadowing, shut my mouth and learn from people. moments were for three weeks for six months. One, I'm in one whole funny fact, I'm in one right now, she had to cancel our call today. Aaron right now is going to let me in on a 90 Minute. I'm wasn't going to say a word, my zoom screen is going to be blocked out, sitting in on the executive meeting, sign an NDA, just going to sit back and learn around how she's problem solving internally. Right now. She's a VP of people at a start up about 250 employees. Just problem solved thinking through things and executive mean, I was going to sit there and just listen. I want to learn like I'm a learner. So to answer your question directly, I did all that I studied. I researched. I took courses, I pay people money for an hour of their time to just unpack their brain. I found individuals that were allowing me to do internships, I just sat back and learned Kyle, and I'm still doing it like I won't ever stop. So that's what I did.

Kyle Roed:

Love it. Alright, AJ, well, I I wish we could keep this conversation going another hour, but we're closing in on time. So I want to make sure we get through the flash round. I'm fascinated to hear your, your responses here. So here we go. Here we go. Brace yourself hard hitting question. Question number one. What are you reading right now?

Anthony Vaughan:

I'm reading startup for everyone. It's a book by a dear friend, Casey bank, bank, Ford. He's a great startup entrepreneur that I really respect. And I'm also listening to a lot of content by Christine coming forward. And Keith ferrazzi. Those two are neuroscience individuals that play in the employee experience HR space and do a lot of great work.

Kyle Roed:

Great, perfect. Well, you are you're giving me a softball, because my next question is, who should we be listening to?

Anthony Vaughan:

Uh, I'll give you a different one. Um, I kind of took a little bit of a jab Adam Grant, though, I really respect him. So maybe let me give him some kudos. Adam Grant, he makes a he writes a ton of content. So I'm reading that listening, or watching but uh, he has a great Twitter that people should follow. It's around organizational psychology.

Kyle Roed:

Yeah, I love Adam Grant. He's one of my favorites. I had the opportunity to see him speak a few times. And I always take away something from his, from his perspective. So a lot of great research there, front. Alright, final question. Probably the most difficult, how can our listeners connect with you?

Anthony Vaughan:

Ah, yeah, you can send me an email at Anthony Vaughn 2000 fifteen@gmail.com. Or you can reach out to me at startup iacs@gmail.com beyond brand studios@gmail.com or you can reach out to me on LinkedIn or Twitter. If you want to maybe plug those in, you'll find it there or you can reach out to me at that you want B to collective calm.

Kyle Roed:

All right, perfect. And I'll make sure that we have links to those those in the show notes for any listeners that they want to get connected I'm personally fascinated with the the approach you're taking and the work you're doing and and I love the the approach and the innovative spirit and in the application of startup principles into the the people side of the business. So looking forward to watching your continued success.

Anthony Vaughan:

I really appreciate this call. This was actually really fun. I really appreciate it.

Kyle Roed:

Thanks, AJ. Have a great rest of your day.

Anthony Vaughan:

We'll talk soon.

Kyle Roed:

All right, that does it for the rebel HR podcast. Yes, follow us on Facebook and rebel HR podcast, Twitter, at rebel HR guy or see our website at rebel human resources.com. Using opinions expressed by podcast listener, not necessarily policy for any of your organizations.

Jude Roed:

Maybe