Startup Therapy Podcast

Episode #51


Ryan Rutan: Welcome back to another episode of the startup therapy podcast. This is Ryan Rutan joined by Wil schroder startups dot com. Ceo and founder will, this is uh, this is poignant. The Super Bowl just happened. And today we're going to talk about why it's important to celebrate the little winds in a startup. Like you just won the Super Bowl.

Wil Schroter: Yeah. And let's face it, we often don't have a lot of wins to celebrate at the early stages. Most of what we deal with is nothing but heartache. It's almost like we had nothing but losses in the season. That's kind of what a startup looks like. And then the season goes on and on and on and on, there's never an end. There's never Super Bowl, it's just more losses. And I think, wow, that was really dire. I think when we think in those

Ryan Rutan: terms how,

Wil Schroter: how challenging everything is, it makes it all that more important as a startup and really has the leadership within a startup to understand that you have to be able to find and dissect and celebrate the big wins, like it's a Super Bowl because there really aren't a lot of big Super Bowl type moments. And I think if we're not celebrating wins on a daily basis and I mean real actual progress, not just, you know, this is the, you've got your participation award kind of progress. I mean actual progress. I think we're losing something.

Ryan Rutan: Well, yeah, I think it's important for a couple of reasons. One, um, that, you know, they need to be real winds, right? We don't want to get into the point where we're just contriving stuff and hunting around and trying to turn everything into a little win. But I think it's also important to celebrate the winds and to get in the habit of doing that because then if you find yourself not celebrating them, it's a good point in time to say like, hey, are we still making progress? What happened? You know, we were celebrating these little, you know, important, but maybe small daily winds and now we're not what happened? Right? What gives, why, why aren't we doing that now? Sometimes visibility issues, sometimes it's a performance issue.

Wil Schroter: Well, I think the other side of it, I think this is really important for founders to understand often as the founders, maybe we understand that progress is being made. Yes, but our team doesn't and we tend to forget because for a lot of us this is our first time on the job as a Ceo or you know, a leadership role in the organization. If we're not constantly high fiving the team, nothing about this process is doing it for us incredibly thankless business in the business of starting companies. And if there's no kind of feedback loop amongst the leadership in the organization to the folks that are trying to drive this organization forward, it really just feels like this really, again thankless, but also winless experience and it's hard to get people fired up in that type of environment.

Ryan Rutan: Sure is sure is as we started to talk about this this topic today, one of the there was a quote that came to mind from from Mr Bill Gates and and he said it's fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure. Wrong Bill, absolutely wrong, right in this context. I think there's obviously there's a there's a big difference between Microsoft and the average startup but but even holding that aside, I think that there's it depends on the context, right? And I understand what he was trying to say that you know, this can be great learning moments, but you've said this before and that's that one of the reasons that we celebrate these winds is that they are the fuel, right, That feedback loop that provides us, you know that high five, that little reassurance that things are going right and that we should keep doing this, we need that reassurance, we need that gas in the tank and so yeah we should we should definitely learn from failure but I don't think that it's more important than celebrating success. I absolutely disagree with that in the context of an early stage startup company. I it's one of the most important things to be doing

Wil Schroter: but I rarely see it happen and I have to explain here that this isn't just about giving the team high fives which is a great thing to do, there's really no downside to it. I think it's a bit of self awareness on behalf of the leadership to be able to stop and say if we're not constantly keeping our team as fired up as they can be. We're not actually promoting the team in driving the team in the way we're supposed to as leadership as part of our job within the leadership of a company is to make sure that everyone knows where they're going, but also knows that they're tracking toward the right direction. It's kind of hard to know that it's kind of hard to kind of see into the ceo's mind or the leadership's mind and guess that you're tracking in the right direction, Nothing short circuits that process better than just saying Yes, you were killing it today. Yes, getting those extra 10 followers. Yes, I'm glad you did that. Here's what that impacts. I think it's incumbent on us as leadership to constantly be driving the team that way. It's hard to do. It's a lot of work, totally

Ryan Rutan: agree. It's a lot of work and but I think that I want to touch on one particular aspect of what you said, which is the impact piece. I think this is where especially a lot of first time founders get this wrong right, They may celebrate the winds, but they forget that they may be the only one in the entire organization who can tie together what those little winds mean and how that impacts the overall trajectory of the company. Oftentimes your heads down if your head's down in your department doing your thing. You know, maybe you're just cranking out content and now traffic starting to come up, you may forget what impact that house elsewhere. Right now. All of a sudden the morale of the sales team is fired up because they've got people to talk to the CFO is fired up because there's actually money to count now. Right? So there's a lot of other things that can happen based on those impacts and not that you want to create a keeping up with the joneses situation. And in fact, that's something I want to unpack maybe a little bit later. But you do wanna be able to show progress across the board and you want people to understand how that works together to help propel the company forward.

Wil Schroter: I agree. And I think that if we look at it from two different vectors, if we look at every person that's part of the team and we say, look, the first step is saying, everyone has to be constantly aware of whether they're making progress, which is our job to be able to say yes, you're making progress. Now that can come in the form of a direct high five. You know, we slack somebody and say, hey, you did a great job or at the company meeting, we kind of give them a shout out. That's one way to do it. Another way is just with with your okay, are is your KPI is to say, here's what, here's what progress looks like. It's my job to make sure you understand you're getting it. But the other side of it, I think this is maybe a little bit more impactful and it's really important to understand often when we're building a startup, it takes a while for us to see the big big wins. I mean, we're building something out of nothing and the really big wins, like a product launch or a product success or you know, someday maybe acquisition or IPO of a company. They are so far out. It's basically like saying, I want you to run 1000 mile marathon, but I'm not going to give you any mile markers along the way. Right?

Ryan Rutan: Exactly. No indication of progress. You won't know if you're winning losing or running sideways at that point

Wil Schroter: and I'm the only person that probably knows how far along in this race you actually are. So if I'm not the one giving you a sense of progress, no one else's and if you've ever run a marathon or does anything that's even comparable to this kind of distance, the only way to keep your sanity is to know how far along you are. I mean, it's so bad for me brian I do yoga, right? And then let's say yoga is an hour. I need to know three minutes in that there's still only 57 minutes left. I mean like I would love to say I enjoy every minute of it. I enjoy it when it's over. But my point is like, I need to know how much further along this is going to be nobody.

Ryan Rutan: I deal with this a lot right now, having gone back to playing highly competitive soccer and you know, for the first time in a long time and playing most of the game. And in fact in the last I think eight or nine games I've played the full 90 in that second half. I am asking, I'm asking the referee how much time is left at least 3-4 times. I always try to put a look on my face to make him think that I'm asking strategically that there's some reason other than just like I need to know how much gas I can spend on the next run down the field or something. But yeah, you need that. You need to understand

Wil Schroter: and here's the problem. If we don't give folks mile markers to be able to say this is how far along you are. This is how much further we have to go. And by the way you're killing it, assume you're killing it. I'm not, by the way, this isn't any kind of endorsement for fake praise. I don't believe in fake praise whatsoever. I think it's, it's a challenge. If you even give it because every time thereafter people question whether you actually mean it, I'd rather give less praise than mean it than give praise all the time and have it be half baked or earned for

Ryan Rutan: that. And I think that after about the second or third time somebody receives that type of praise, they would wish for the same thing as well. It doesn't doesn't feel good enough.

Wil Schroter: It's also if you see somebody else getting half baked praise, you kind of look at that and go, well, whoever, whoever is giving the praise, that's not really worth the time, but what we are talking about is recognition of milestones and so, right, maybe we start off by talking about how we take milestones down into smaller parts that we can celebrate at a high level. Right. One of the things we've talked about in past episodes is how we do a really good job, I hope of distilling all of our projects and all of our goals at startups dot com Into a week long sprints, pretty much everything we do at this company with 200 plus people is completely organized around what will get done by friday, we've talked about this at length in other episodes, but part of that benefit Is distilling milestones down in two days so that we know specifically whether or not those milestones have been achieved and get the requisite high five for when they have been.

Ryan Rutan: Yeah, it's it's super important because without that again, if you're, if you're aiming at a, you know, you know, whether we're talking about, you know, the big exit at the end of the company or the completion of a multi week or multi month project, those timelines are too far out, right. It doesn't help anybody. I mean, of course you want to stay focused on the long term goal, but in order to do that, there are all these little steps, little wins, they stack up into, into the longer term project completion of the big wins. And so yeah, I would agree. I think we certainly focus on it. I also hope that we do a good job of it, but we've definitely been very deliberate about saying, sure, tell us about, you know, this project is going to take two months at a high level, but then tell me what of that project is going to be completed this week. And let's make sure that, that we, that we knock that piece out of the park, let's make sure that we've got that wind to celebrate at the end of the week. Um, and even within that, of course, you know, we're breaking stuff down into into more granular pieces and those can be, you know, multi day or even single day accomplishments and, and we track that, right, we keep an eye on it and, and we let people know that we're kind of aware of what they're up to and cheering them along as they, as they get there and reaching out for support if they don't,

Wil Schroter: you know, something really interesting that comes out of giving those high fives right? Is that by giving the high fives, it's also a form of communication what the finance team does or the marketing team does or anybody else on a daily basis, the other teams probably don't care, but when they've had a win, it actually tends to impact other people. So part of the, the habit if you will of giving this praise or celebrating those winds, part of the benefit of course, you know, is refilling the tank of getting people excited again. But part of it's just good communication. The other part of it is on your, on your soccer team, let's say when you see another teammate score a goal, if you're like most, if you're competitive. The first thing on your mind is I'd like to score the next goal. There's

Ryan Rutan: something about

Wil Schroter: yeah, well, I mean there's something about watching people win that makes other people on the team want to win especially and this is the part that I have to really emphasize, especially when it comes with the requisite praise. Here's the opposite Ryan, you just scored a goal and all of your team members just walk off the field even they don't even acknowledge that you did any work whatsoever, right? The endorphins of that accomplishment have just gone out the

Ryan Rutan: window frankly demoralizing,

Wil Schroter: That's how 99% of goals get scored and celebrated in most startups in most companies. Yeah, yeah. This isn't a startup problem actually. MS again, we're not talking about a ticker tape parade because you just posted the company's newsletter. Right? I mean like there are certain actions that are just baseline kind of, you know, the table stakes for even being in the business. And we're not talking about rewarding every last task. We're talking about rewarding legitimate wins, Right? If if I'm a salesperson and I'm supposed to make 12 calls a day, hopefully more, but let's say 12 calls a day And I make my 12 calls a day. Not really the win. Probably not. The one is what I say when I've sold a customer, that's probably the win, right? If I've gotten a meeting, probably not the win when I've sold a customer, probably the wind when I've got them. Say maybe probably not the win when I, you know, it seems like we have to show that there's an actual outcome

Ryan Rutan: needs to be something that

Wil Schroter: deserves the praise.

Ryan Rutan: Yeah, Yeah. And I think that, um, I think it's important and I think it does a couple of things to when we, when we start to have this, this sort of celebration of winds focus. We start to think in terms of setting ourselves up for these things, setting our teams up for these things and making sure that, you know, we're, we've we've got enough wins in the pipeline, right? I think the, the converse to that is that, you know, we don't celebrate wins and and we don't get focused on creating them and then people just keep doing their job, right? And then the assumption is, well, I'm still doing my job, I'm I'm shipping the newsletter, Everything's copasetic. That is a win, right? It's a win, I'm still here and still alive, still alive, right? The birthday celebration, you made it one more trip around the sun. It's not that big of a win, right? It's so I think that as we start to get focused and we start to give value and importance to these, it gets that ingrained into the mindset and into the planning and into the forecasting and just sort of sets that tone for, let's be thinking about aligning my activities with something that's gonna generate a celebrated will win. I think that's really powerful.

Wil Schroter: I agree. And I gotta say there's something about when we're going around the room, we're going around the table, you know, on monday mornings, we go around slack and we all talk about what we got done last week and what we're gonna do this week, there's something very prideful and it should be around being able to show that you got shipped done, you know, that, that you knocked things out that you were the team member that also scored a goal. I think not having that environment, you know, not creating that kind of environment where people recognize what it takes to win every single day, every single week versus the long long term, there's a lot lost. And I think among the team, if you feel like you're working hard and you're not getting recognition, there's probably no better way to push a team member out the door because I think recognition is one of the highest forms of compensation. Sometimes it's recognized with compensation. You did a great job and here's more money. It is. I gotta tell you Ryan, in my experience, being able to pay people more, but not give them any kind of recognition for the the time that they've put in the investment, they've made the risk they've made etcetera is never full payment.

Ryan Rutan: 100% right. I mean at some point like we've we've talked about this before too in terms of compensation, but there's a point at which more compensation it always nice, right? But isn't the thing that really drives people, I mean there are countless studies on this pay isn't great motivation right? In terms of yes, it motivates people to keep showing up and it's required. And it's certainly it's de motivating if you stop paying them, go ahead and run that. Test yourself. If you want to see how long people stay. If you don't pay them. We've proven time and time again that it's not a great motivator and it really is about giving people purposeful work setting them up to accomplish within that, that purpose driven environment and then celebrating the winds as they achieve them. This is gonna sound super contrived now because it's, it's like you set me up for a softball here on sunday a couple of days ago, I happened to score our first goal in the game. I worked really hard to get in position, had to make a really long, hard run and got into some physical combat in the corner to get free and then smash the ball across in front of the goal intention being across like I was trying to just get it into the, into the area where my teammates could then try to finish it off. Instead it ended up bouncing off of one of their players who was running back on defense and it went in, right? So

Wil Schroter: right,

Ryan Rutan: I scored, but like their team

Wil Schroter: scored,

Ryan Rutan: it wasn't very well celebrated by the team and, and I was kind of, you know, it wasn't like we scored and that was great, right? Everybody was, you know, kind of happy that we scored, but nobody was really congratulating me. They were just like, okay, we've got a one goal lead. Now that feels good. You know, for a couple of minutes, I guess the competitive bastard than I am like what it made me want to do is go, okay, well I'm gonna go score another one and I'm going to make it look better this time. So you jerks actually have to thank me for it And then I did, right? I went and, and yeah, I, I had two goals on sunday. It's my first two goal game and 20 something years, I don't know. Yeah. And the second one was, was a beauty. I took the ball in the corner and beat the goalie and scored. It was a lot of fun. Um, and that one got celebrated. Everybody appreciated that one. But it was, it was a really funny illustration of exactly what you were laying out there. And so yeah, they didn't walk off the field, but they certainly weren't like high fiving the ship out of me.

Wil Schroter: But you notice that your don't ask. Yeah, I did. And you noticed

Ryan Rutan: exactly

Wil Schroter: how that feels, right. And what I think happens among founders and folks putting together kind of the D N A. And the genesis of a company is they either have a culture of celebration or they don't. In other words, if Ryan, if you and I don't set up a culture of celebration here at startups dot com, no one in the organization is going to do it for us. It sets the tone. So if we're constantly giving people high fives again in the right earned way, the folks that, that are reporting up to us that are building their own teams are going to look at that as a template. They need to work off. Here's another side of it. I also notice some of the folks in our organization are better at giving high fives than others are, by the way, I'm the worst at it. Talking about how important this this culture is, but I'm actually the worst at it. I give very few high fives and I usually give them at very specific moments where I've seen a bigger milestone. But I've seen other folks in the organization I'll use like you and Elliot for example who do it frequently to great effect. And so a lot of times when I'm thinking about where this works well, I'm thinking about how you guys do it, not necessarily how I do it, but I watch how incredibly effective it is. I then watch how other managers in the organization emulate that. Q. And I think that's so powerful and I think that's incredibly important to set that early in the game so that everyone starts to understand what a strong motivator that is. I'm gonna,

Ryan Rutan: I'm gonna put a slightly different spin on what you just said. I'm not disagreeing with you. Well I am sort of around the part where where you're not good at it. Do you do it as frequently? No. Do you celebrate all of the small winds? No, but I would also argue we don't have a deficit there. Um again because others in the organization are doing that. I think that I think that's something that you've done a great job of is making sure that you have kind of held your, your celebrations, your high fives and reserve a bit. And I think that by, it's, it's almost like a tiered approach, right? You know, people on the individual teams know they're going to get some praise from the manager. You know, they're doing, you know, something slightly bigger than, you know, it's gonna be on my radar or Elliot and you're there sort of for the, the kind of pinnacle winds. And I think there's actually a lot of power in that. But I think that if it was such a structure, like if Elliot and I weren't there or there wasn't that kind of more constant praise the lower level, then it would probably be too few and far between. But because it isn't, I think that rather than just piling on with the rest of the enthusiasm, I think yours come in with a little bit more weight and I think that's a really cool balance. I don't know, that's something that you like try to create. Um, but in this case I would say that's sort of how it's worked out, right and you can see the difference in terms of, and that's my praise has different value, but there's, there's sort of like, you know, if, if, when you come out and say something, people are gonna pay more attention to it, which I think is pretty cool.

Wil Schroter: You know, I got to tell you where it stems from, you know, where my, you know, cadence of praise if you will or borrow of praise stems from is it's, it's a reflection of myself. Like I don't praise myself so to speak, I don't validate my own wins unless I feel they've become significant. You know, I don't do a good job of saying well today was a very good day and sometimes I do, don't get me wrong, I'm not like, you know, running home beating myself up every day, but at the same time a lot of times I'll say, yeah, today was was fine, but I could have done better. I'll focus on tomorrow. And honestly that's, that's a bit of a miss and that some, some bad self psychology into itself, but I think I project that on to the rest of the organization. Hey, I'm thinking to myself, hey, you did a great job this week, but really until you kind of get to that next level, you know, you're not going to get my version of the High five trophy.

Ryan Rutan: I don't want to make this episode all about soccer. But I'm gonna tell another story. This one goes back, she's 23 years now. I think I was the captain of my high school soccer team and my eyes were like kind of halfway into the season, my coach pulled me aside and he said, you're being too hard on everybody and it's, it's not having a good impact, right? You're alienating people, you're you know, you're you're not doing, you're doing the opposite what you're supposed to be doing now, which is bringing the team together, motivating everybody. And I looked at him and at the time like I didn't have enough perspective, enough self awareness like him and I said, coach, if I'm hard on them, I'm twice as hard on myself. And he said, right, you're absolutely right, He's like, but what gives you the right to do that? And I was shocked and it was it was a really great moment. It was one of those, those, those kind of, you know, very, very crystal moments in my memory. And it changed a lot of my thinking from that point on it took some time for those concepts to mature in my, my little testosterone addled brain, but I did kind of start to figure it out and he was absolutely right, right. I had no right to set the same level of expectation for everybody on that team because my motivations were very different. My background was very different. My my history with the game was very different, my opportunities have been different up to that point and and he was absolutely right and in trying to drive them and doing it in the same way. I was driving myself. I thought it was fair and justifiable because I wasn't being as hard on them as I was being on myself and it was, it was it was wrong. I wasn't, I wasn't thinking about it the right way. And so I think that there's a very similar adjustment there in terms of as the leadership, we know that we have to drive big wins and we're not going to thank ourselves and celebrate the little stuff until we do and probably still not quite the right way of thinking about it, but it's hard to change that. And I think that we have to stay focused on this big things. We can't hold everybody else that same standard said differently if we do, then we should be thinking of them as an exact pier and not as a team member, right? Not as somebody that that reports to us, you know, that should be somebody that we're standing shoulder to shoulder with, not somebody that we're relying on as some sort of a subject team member.

Wil Schroter: I think about though, like how my version of praise has changed over the years, I think about how it works in different contexts. I think about, you know, I've got kids

Ryan Rutan: now

Wil Schroter: if I'm not well yeah, man, look, if I'm not celebrating those small winds and I'm dad, if I'm not celebrating the small winds, that's a problem, those things, you remember for a long time and I think so much more critically these days about how every bit of my interaction, every bit of my praise or negativity to, to be fair, I don't really have a lot of negativity with my kids but how much of it, how impactful it is. And I don't think I really appreciated how much impact celebrating the winds could have on an organization until I saw the folks that work at this organization again, you Elliot and definitely some others do it and do it really well. It was fantastic. It's one of those things where I might be the Ceo and I'm good at a few things, but I'm not good at that many things and it was great to kinda almost get, you know, my mentorship and learning from the rest of the organization and watching them do it far better than I had ever done and now I'm sold, I mean hell that's why I wrote this article right? Because having watched other people do it so well, I'm sold on on how how powerful and effective is.

Ryan Rutan: Yeah, for sure. Let's talk for just a second because I think there's, uh, there's something that we've run into that can be a bit of a challenge and that's that some roles, some departments, some functions within the company are a bit easier to celebrate than others. And so what do we do to try to strike balance between that without, without downplaying some of the, because not all winds are created equal right away at the beginning of the season and a win in the quarterfinals is not the same thing. Right? And so it's, you know, when, when you're talking about, you know, well we've, we've consolidated our, our tech stack, Right? That does feed into a lot of other things, but that's not necessarily the same thing as we blew away our sales goals by 50%. Right. one of those

Wil Schroter: is let's, let's build

Ryan Rutan: easier to quantify.

Wil Schroter: Okay, so sitting in the organization where I do, I'm, you know, kind of responsible for every working component of the business and a lot of folks don't know this, but I actually have a lot of experience and every working component of the business, whether it's sales, marketing design, product development finance, what have you. So when someone does something really well in the organization, like improve the tech stack, I actually know specifically how impactful that is to the rest of the organization, but here's the rub and Ryan, this is essentially what you're saying, but nobody else does. If we sit on that fact and we say, you know, deV team just killed themselves trying to kind of improve the tech stack or eliminate some tech debt and we say, hey, high five to the deV team for, you know, launching this, this next iteration of the tech stack. No one cares, it's total tumbleweeds, right? No one cares. And as the leadership, if we're not self aware enough that no one will care unless we explain to them what the context of that is, then it's going to fall flat. We lose twice. We lose in the fact that we don't give the team the recognition they deserve. Because recognition is only as valuable as the context. If if you're David Beckham when you scored your 13,000th goal No one really cares, they've seen 13,000 goals before, right? But if you say by the way, the 13,000 goal, you are now the leading scorer in the history of soccer, all of a sudden, tremendously different context. It's our job within the leadership. When we're when we're giving that praise or when we're isolating something that we probably know doesn't have as much obvious weight as everything else does to stop and give it context. And I got to tell you we've done that in a lot of our company meetings and I think it's worked amazingly well.

Ryan Rutan: Yeah, it's it's always an interesting balance to strike, right? Because you you want to provide the context. I've always found that it's a little bit like having to explain a joke alright, in that Sure if you go too far with it, then it seems like you're trying to justify it and it seems like you're, you know, again, you get back to this contrivance and and you want to be really careful about doing that because you you don't want to, you don't want to undercut the other accomplishments, right? Other departments, things like that by by trying to make them all seem equal. On the other hand, you do need to provide the context and make sure that everyone understands how they're feeding into those winds. Because the reality is that with enough unwinding with enough unpacking with enough context, they're very rarely done in isolation, right? There are very few things that happened in the organization where it's just, oh, this individual ran the ball from, you know, from from end zone to end zone. Oh, and by the way, the rest of the team walked off the field didn't block for them. You know that there was no signaling from coaching staff. Nothing right? Like it just doesn't happen. And so I, but I think that it's important to provide that, but but also to try to strike that balance of not going too far. Not making it seem like you're trying to manufacture wins. You talked about that very

Wil Schroter: topic. You don't want to oversell it, right? And I think that could be a big, but I gotta tell you, I've watched very closely within different organizations that I've worked at where I've watched different folks in management express their appreciation. Let's just stick with that word for a second there appreciation. True, genuine appreciation for the work invested and how difficult that task was. And I watch how dramatically differently the folks receiving the praise react when they really believe that you understand what they're talking about an exam. 100%. Ceo comes in and says development team with the programmers. You did the java's in the reacts very well. Right

Ryan Rutan: flashbacks.

Wil Schroter: You know what listen that might be. I may actually say like I'm trying to praise you, but you clearly demonstrated that you have number one, no idea what we actually do. # two. No concept for why what we did is truly important other than it was, wasn't done before and it's done now. The difference being, if you can put some perspective, if you can put some personal view as to what what they were up against and why what they built has a dramatic impact and why you're personally proud of the fact that there's accomplishment there. Yeah, that's genuine.

Ryan Rutan: I think you're absolutely right that the, the appreciation, that piece of it. I think the genuine appreciation regardless of the size or outcome of the wind. That's the polish on the trophy. Right. And I think that is really what makes the recognition shine. Is that genuine appreciation and that understanding, right? That connection between you and the person or people being praised that they really kind of feel that all the way down, right? And I think that's super important

Wil Schroter: and there's really no downside here to just take in a minute if you're going to take the time to give the praise, take just a minute to give it some color, some context and you know, and write more on the hallmark card other than thank you don't

Ryan Rutan: give it a little bit of context. That's a good point. That's a great way of putting it.

Wil Schroter: Ryan when we were, when we were at our last company meeting, you know, when I talk about some other time, but I cried for the first time in a meeting. It

Ryan Rutan: was it was that really the first

Wil Schroter: time you ever yeah, caesar emotions gross, get him off me. But it was because I was about to deliver some thank you a long overdue thank you. And as I was about to say it, it occurred to me that I'm like five years overdue on this. Thank you. All of a sudden in my mind, I remember this montage going through my head of all of the moments leading up to that that I was thankful for and how probably I probably forgot in almost every one of those cases to actually express my gratitude. And so that feeling and that emotion all came through kind of surprised me. Didn't see it coming in the moment of giving that gratitude and and I cried now, I don't think I certainly didn't plan on crying. That kind of took me by surprise. Haven't done that one before. And it's okay to cry. Just didn't see it coming. But the way it was received, it was pretty intense because people like, wow, he actually really, really means it and I did, unfortunately, that really

Ryan Rutan: screwed us in. All appreciation given from this point forward because now if we don't cry, it's not going to feel really thanks for that ship we really needed that you're going

Wil Schroter: back to robot will. But listen, the reason I'm bringing it up is because I think when you can genuinely see that there's appreciation and gratitude behind the compliment, it's the highest form of praise. So again, I want to point out here, this isn't just about saying, hey, here are the milestones and you've hit them. It's not just about saying here's the high five. It's also about putting enough context in caring behind that prays to make it worth receiving. I think that's really powerful.

Ryan Rutan: That's a wrap for this episode of the startup therapy podcast. This is Ryan Rutan on behalf of my partner Wil Schroder and all the startups dot com family thanking you for joining us and we hope you'll continue to join us. Be sure to subscribe rate and comment on Itunes or wherever you love to listen to startup therapy, you can find all of our episodes at startups dot com slash podcast. If you're looking for more amazing resources to launch or grow your startup, be sure to head to startups dot com and check out startups unlimited. It's everything we have to offer from our online university to our amazing community of experts and founders and even all the tools we've built like biz plan fungible and launch rocks. It's everything a founder needs visit startups dot com slash begin that startups dot com slash b e g i n. You'll thank me later.

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