Super U Podcast | Technology and the Pandemic

In today’s episode, Erik Qualman sits down with host, Lambros Photios on The Venture Podcast. Erik takes us through how we can go “100% Jetsons” and rely on technology during COVID-19, to not only stay afloat, but flourish.

5x #1 Bestselling Author and Motivational Speaker Erik Qualman has performed in over 55 countries and reached over 50 million people this past decade. He was voted the 2nd Most Likable Author in the World behind Harry Potter’s J.K. Rowling.

Need a sneak peek? Below are the main takeaways from the episode.

Super U Podcast | Technology and the Pandemic:

[2:59] On evolving in the face of a global pandemic…

“…the key is, especially on the business side, obviously on the personal side, it’s about being patient in the long term, but persistent in the short term. So I just did some work with Disney, because their cast members are all essentially working from home right now. And so that’s a new world for them. So they just had to do a video this week. So top of mind, what I told them is, number one, make sure you keep your routines as much as possible. So if you get up at 5:30, continue to get up at 5:30. You exercise in the morning? Continue to exercise in the morning. If you get coffee with some of your co-workers, colleagues, or peers? Still get that coffee, but you can do it virtually. So it’s more about that conversation, that connection. I mean, sometimes it is really about the caffeine. But it is making sure you maintain those communication and connections to try to keep routines. And then also making sure you just set those goals, not only daily being persistent, short term, but also long term. So patient in the long term. And so some goals will be adjusted, for others, it will be beneficial. So it’s kind of weird that sometimes it’s a benefit. So for example, I have a book coming out. And it’s going to move forward a little bit because I’m gonna have more time to write. So I’ll get it done sooner rather than later because I’m not traveling, speaking around the world. And so that’s the key, it’s really just about being persistent in the short term, but patient in the long term.”

[4:21] “When you work with your clients, how is it that you actually go through that process of helping them to just change that frame of mind towards, wait a second, what is it that we can offer remotely that still helps people to get the benefit that we have to offer?”

“Yeah, I mean, the bad news/good news for me is that my business is primarily me speaking on stage. So our revenue goes immediately almost to zero because I’m no longer out there on stage. It’s a double whammy, the economy’s going poorly. And now every single conference is being canceled. Now, the good news is we kind of thought there’d be an economic pullback that to this extent, but we had already been kind of preparing as a company. And so what we’re doing is now we’re doing more virtual items. So like Disney reached out and said, “Hey, can you send some videos to kind of inspire our cast members?” We have an animation studio, which we always had. But we knew at some point, if we had to, that the speaking went down, then let’s go more all-in on the animation piece. And so what we’re doing there as part of our part with the Coronavirus, is we now have our animators and data scientists, instead of producing videos around our content around digital leadership, we are now doing it around dynamic animated graphs of how the Coronavirus is growing, and where it’s growing. And so we’re trying to do our part to pitch in to help out and so we’re kind of busier than ever, so it’s really about quickly adjusting what we do. But also knowing, adjusting our goals down. I mean, our revenue for all those small businesses out there. It’s really about making sure you have enough cash on hand. So we’re in a position hopefully not to have any layoffs. We won’t have any layoffs. But I know not everyone’s gonna be in that fortunate position. But we’re now keeping a super close eye on our cash flow immediately.”

[9:15] “Do you think that [the pandemic] ultimately acts to transform the way that we do business and introduce new service offerings that have never existed in the past? Simply because we’ve never been forced to create them?”

“Yeah, whenever I say opportunities, do not miss the opportunity that’s right here. I mean, it is painful, it’s uncomfortable. But do not let this opportunity go by. This is when innovation is going to happen. And it’s a chance for a lot of folks to steal market share because unfortunately, there’s a going to be a lot fortunately and unfortunately. There’s gonna be a lot of competitors that go away. And so it’s hyper-accelerated us. So think about a car, driving a car and you go, “Hey, you [need to] brake a mile ahead, there’s a wall.” Well, we didn’t get that mile warning. It just put that wall right in front of us. And unfortunately for a lot of us, there might be a crash scenario, but it’s really about adjusting quickly on the fly. And so for like our business, we’ve got that new book that’s coming out, all of a sudden, our revenue is much more dependent on that book. But things happen for you, not to you. And I’ve learned that a long time ago, I talked about this on stage that things happen for you, not to you. So you’ve got to have that mindset. I’m not sure why this is happening right now. But I know it’s gonna happen for me. So it’s really about adjusting quickly. And also when we go, “Okay, let’s put more resources a bit more time, let’s launch more on the book. People are gonna be reading more than ever, because they’re at home, they’ll probably be downloading more, because they’re not going to go to the library to check out a book. And so it’s important that we get the Kindle version correct. So we kind of see it firsthand.

Another industry, so I’m an investor, and also an advisor at and Brett Hurt, the CEO, launched Coremetrics and sold that to IBM, and then also took Bazaarvoice public. And so when we were talking with him, he’s like, “Look, the last two times I had companies one was during 9/11. That was Coremetrics. And then one was during the Great Recession, 2008, that was Bazaarvoice, both times we came out of it stronger. And so you’ve got to take that mindset, things happen for you, not to you. And it’s an opportunity you don’t want to pass by because innovation is all-around change. And when the inverse happens, a change is forced upon you. It makes you innovate. And so it’s really: do not miss this opportunity.”

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The Super U Podcast is hosted by #1 bestselling author and Motivational Speaker Erik Qualman.

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