WhyWeWork BrianVee
WhyWeWork BrianVee

Episode 45 · 1 year ago

#45 Andrew Chesnutt - CEO of Nickel City Learning Solutions BrianVee Whywework

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Andrew Chesnutt is CEO of Nickel City Learning Solutions. He takes us behind the scenes of the implementation of training within organizations, since he is the instructional designer of these programsof which we are all all too familiar.  

Contact Info  

Andrew’s Profile linkedin.com/in/andrewchesnutt  

Websites andrewchesnutt.com (Company Website) 

pph.me/andrew.chesnutt (PeoplePerHour) 

upwork.com/fl/andrewchesnutt (Upwork)  

Email andrew@andrewchesnutt.com  

Twitter andrewchesnutt   

About  

"Experienced Instructional Designer with a demonstrated history of working in the e-learning industry. Skilled in Training Program Design, Training Needs Analysis, and Learning Management. Strong business development professional with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) focused in Business Administration and Management, General from State University of New York Empire State College."

...welcome to why we work with your host Brian V. As he speaks to people like you from all over the world as we together dive deeper into our motivations, struggles, joys, seemingly missteps, hopes, warnings and advice which would be an encouragement to us all to get up, get going on, keep on working. Working is tough, but working is good. Now here's your host to why we were way. I'm Brian V, and this is why we look today at the great pleasure. Speaking with Mr Andrew Chestnut, he is the CEO of Nickel City Learning Solutions. He is an instructional designer that helps companies get up to speed. He helps them in medical finance, management and also e learning. And what I want to know from him is how he gets these managers on the same page to realize that they need something to be more competitive. But also I wanna know what he does for the employees who may be scared to make mistakes and get onto e learning and other forms of training within their company. So join me today with Andrew Chestnut. I'm Brian V, and this is why we work. And as I just mentioned we have the pleasure of speaking with Andrew Chestnut. Good day finds her Good day. How are you today? I'm doing wonderfully well, this the wee hours of five in South Korea and you are around that time in the P. M. In New York? Yes, about 4 30. That's correct. Yes. Yeah, it's always fun. And no matter how much I get into, you know, major time zone differences because I have colleagues that air in Sydney and Belly. So I have, you know, major time differences idea with the regular basis. It's still, um, always a bit of a challenge and always a bit intriguing to figure out that it's tomorrow morning for you. It's really I mean, I don't know how much experience someone needs Thio. Just say, Okay, I get it. You know, we're all on different sides of the world, but it's it's something hard to adjust to, especially scheduling. I mean, you probably come across this with your work in scheduling people in figuring out where they are. You know, I'm just waking up. You're just finishing your day, and it's just something that's I don't I don't know how much experience you need in life, just toe understand it all, but it's taking me a while. Andrew, would you do me a favor? I just didn. Introduction to you is being the CEO of Nickel City Learning Solutions. And, uh, could you give us a little bit of introduction of yourself and we'll we'll go back in time a bit? Sure. Absolutely. Eso I have been what one client of mine called an educational engineer for the past 15 years. I've been in business for about 4.5 of this point now as well. My goal in my mission for my company is to bring great training to companies. Ah, lot of times training is something thing that companies either. It's not anything that really makes you money. In most situations, eso they really don't think about it is something they just have to dio or, you know, something that's required legally, depending on what sort of an industry there in, especially the banking industry, they want to see compliance training and, you know, for me I like to bring a storytelling aspect to it. Um, I also like to bring some brain science to it as well. Eso that way we could make training that's effective and training that learners will actually want to sit through and we'll get a lot out of, um yeah. So that s O Andrew. Before we get into some questions about what you do today being from the States, I get a...

...sense that a lot of people, unless you've done something on your own, tend to start working around the age of 15. 16. 17. What was your first job? What? What was the first thing? It may not have been a legit job. You might have been selling lemonade or, um, works cards or something. But what What was something that got you out of the house? Or maybe you're in the house making some money? My first job I was at I worked for a supermarket. There's no longer around anymore because it was a very long time ago. Um, yeah, I was a stock boy on Duh. It was It was this the first job that it was in walking distance from my house? E was relatively easy. You know, I, uh yeah. It was an interesting experience. How old were you? Really? I had to in about 15. 16. Um, e went there. Um, so a Zara's like, um, Why did you go? Why did you do it? It was That's what you did. You started working at 15. Or 16. You started working for somebody, you know, You got a job. You did your thing. I was using it to pay for textbooks to build up a stash so I could pay for textbooks when I went to university. And, uh, I'm sorry. Yeah, really Probably incredible life. I don't really have this, like, wild, crazy life. No, I mean, that's pretty. That's amazing. I waited for my student loan to come in to pay for mice books. I don't know. I mean, that's that's looking into the future for you. Like it was about a couple of years. Yeah, it was It was I had a Really I was not a terribly adventurous child, So, uh, you know, it was that was what I hear. It helped what? That was about two years, and it works. Yeah, really good of you, though. Yeah, it taught me a lot. Um, so it was interesting. It didn't necessarily teach me everything that my parents wanted to teach me, you know, about hard work and due diligence, or but not necessarily about that. But, you know, about, you know, goto work, do the safe thing. Do that. Um What it taught me is an over. My career taught me that I really wanted to be in business for myself, and that was the environment that I thrived in. And, well, I did well with the job. Yes, it did. Yeah, it was The place I was was at the management was, um, challenging, uh, to put it in terms. And so it was interesting. I had been through kind of a Yeah, I had some really good managers in my career, but I've also had some that that really showed that I need to not be working for somebody else. And so for me, it was I always had that entrepreneurial spirit and never actually really did anything with it until I was out of my late thirties, when I started this company that I have now Andi, uh, I've become a very strong advocate for people going out on their own and for many business. I love teaching people. You know how to start their own. There's just not so after being a stock boy. And I mean, I find that incredible that you at 15 or so we're saving money for your books for university. I mean, I don't wanna paint all teenage kids now with the same brush because I know it doesn't exist is not true that you know a lot of relying on the government. Some are just staying home playing video games. Some play on the phone all day. But the idea of being 15 years old and having the wherewithal saying okay, I'm gonna go to college. And not only that, I'm gonna have to pay for my books, like So you were on the right track. And I'm not saying that you're saying that you were on that perfect track the whole time, But the idea of saving, knowing that in advance that you were gonna have to save up for this at such a young age shows that you you had some wits about you that I certainly didn't. And that that makes me enjoy doing this podcast to find out people who just had a different frame of mind. Different point of reference than I did, and I certainly didn't have that. And so I appreciate that. And I...

...hope people who listen know that there are some young people out there that could do these things and they can plan for their future. And I mean, I was speaking to a finance guy yesterday, and he's just talking about what I wish I would have known is just starting to save in high school, right? Just save you know, the compound interest and save your money and that and save for 20 years or so and bam, you'll be well off. And I mean, you had that same idea whether you invested, but you invested short term for your books for four college. How did you decide to go to college or what was your you said? You understood you wanted to be in business and you have the entrepreneurial spirit spirit. What guided you there? Um, well, as far as University is concerned, so I have I was what she liked to call a super super super senior. I've been through a few different degrees. Finally, you know, ended up getting a bachelor's degree in business admin because it just seemed like the perfect solution at the time, but I started off intellectual engineering, took a veer off towards uh um, uh, that's the next one was computer science, then went into theology for a bit, then decided on a bachelor's degree. So I think part of it it was interesting, even though early on, you know, being at 16 and save for college. A lot of that was my parents who said, You know, it's probably a good idea you do this, but I had no expenses when I was a kid, So it's not terribly difficult to do it like I was really missing the money at all on DSO kind of just kind of stumbled around a little bit, trying to find exactly what I wanted to dio on De. So it's kind of take you through the how I ended in the career I'm in and then kind of go from there. But, um, yeah, I just really couldn't figure out, you know, it always had a job, but, you know, it just kind of standards, not not minimum wage. But I was a waiter for a while and had just kind of, you know, experience of going through working for a lot of other people. Um, and I lived in Toronto for a year. I lived in Cleveland, Ohio, for about seven. Um, then when I moved back to Buffalo, my hometown, I really had to get a job. I was looking for what I at the time called my future previous employer. It was just supposed to be a big job. And there's something Andrew s. So you're saying you moved and had different experiences with jobs and, yeah, Did you have a longing to go back home or, you know, e mean there's songs or stories about people that you know, They go, They tried to. I mean, you went to Canada, right? So you're from ST you went to Toronto. So that's a big shift. That's a big move, right? I know it's not that it's very far, but you're going to a different country Chinese something. Then you're going to Ohio. Ohio just always said Yeah, and then So you're you're you're going around, And I did something similar, and for you in university, I started with computer science. That was way over my head. I went to business right on. Then I did the all the theology as well. Uh, very similar. And I'm on the other side of the world still having that longing. So I'm just wondering like it's it's something I like to jump into what people do now and promote that. But that path along the way is what I e think highlights the humanity of us and not really knowing And the uncertainty because we couldn't jump through it a decade and say, Well, I went from this to this. Well, what What was going on through there? So what brought you back home? And, you know, did you have your head between your legs like, Oh, you know, I've done that. You know, I tried like Mom. I really tried. I tried, you know, I went to the West Coast, and then I came back. And so what was going through your mind when you finally came home and you realized, you know, I mean you to get a job. Also, e just I've always had this wonder list, and I just loved to go travel to do other things. I went to Peru before the Corbyn hit.

Actually, I was about a week shy of being stuck in Peru for six months, which I doubt would be like a bad thing at all. But I just like traveling of like, going around. And so Toronto was interesting. I was 18. I had just gotten out of, you know, just moving out of the house. I'm like, Let's do this. You know Cleveland the same way. It's like, Let's try this, you know, Let's see if that works on did have always just been trying to get a new experience, trying to see what's going on, trying to just get a new perspective. So when I moved back to Buffalo, I wouldn't necessarily say that my tail between my legs But it was definitely time. It was time to move back home and kind of regroup for a while. I needed that grounding for being back at home. But none of them were bad experiences. I just needed that grounding for being back at home on being centered in a space that I grew up in. So I end up getting a job in a call center. Um, and within three months of working there, I started the training, uh, training department. Now I had been professor's assistant back in college when I was doing my electro engineering associates degree. So I had already been in training and teaching at some to some extent. So I had some experience at it. I always really liked It s Oh, yeah, I went in absolutely fell in love with the industry. Eso I was there? Yeah, absolutely loved it just really find my passion. Um, it was funny. I had this one person who really did not like me very much Who even said you were really good trainer. So I figured that's one of those I'd like to thank the academy moment. You know, people that are not really a fatter say you're a really good trader. You definitely found your calling, right? Eso um yeah, it just turned into this great career again. It's been 15 years at this point, Andi. Uh, yeah, I love I love every part of it. I love learning. I love teaching. Um, sometimes to the chagrin of my family, I go into trainer mode, but yeah, it's been something I absolutely love. So you're a freelance trainers at instructional designer, so you're no longer with the call center. You're doing your own training for businesses. That's right. I ended up so the cost of her laid me off. They had they reorganized Is their entire training structure everything on DSO they laid off every instructional designer they had on staff is from the the corporate high level about the call center level, eso what they and I went around trying to find. I think I put in about 300 applications for jobs and nothing that I had a couple of tempt here and there, but nothing really significant. And by that point, it was pretty obvious that I needed to not, you know, that I need to go out of my own is really It was pretty obvious that it was becoming more and more obvious every day that I needed to really be out of my own. And so I decided that I was going to do this. And so I gave myself for months and said, See if I can find a client or to see if I could, you know, at least make enough to keep my keep my head above water and go from there. And I did. I had about two clients. One of them is still a client story. Andrew, you had you had the experience in the call center of training and then and also in university in college. Yeah, but what gave you Where did you get the inspiration or the idea to train yourself? Like to train these companies yourself? What was Did you see that happening somewhere else? Were you able to, um, Saddleback off somebody else to see that they were doing it freelance. And then you can also make this a business. What was what was something that you're able to see and then model? I kind of just went for it. I Fortunately, when I was really early on, I knew that I needed Thio seek out some sort of a group to get the associated with the kind of help me along this path. Um, and I found one very, very...

...early on. I think it was about a month into being after I incorporated. It was very shortly thereafter. I found a group, and I'm still a part of them of online learning professionals. And most of them are freelancers, actually. Say almost all of them are freelancers. Uh, met a lot of wonderful people in there. A lot of people that helped me a lot, um, kind of to mentor me into being a freelancer and what that is and really opened my eyes to a whole different section Because I was a corporate trainer. I wasn't used to higher ed. I was, You know, I had some experience with higher a zippy A but hadn't had a really deep understanding of exactly how that worked. And so, yes, I did. I did get on with a group. Yeah, And that's one thing I continue to do is I come from the mindset that I could learn a lot from people, and so I tend to are I like to mimic what people who are further along in their careers. Dio because of its worked once, there's a good chance it's gonna work again. S Oh, yeah. So I tend to do that now, too. I'm part of a few masterminds actually going to be going to San Diego in the end of October for a mastermind. Um uh, Yeah. So that's that's been a lot to do with Yeah, exactly. So what does your work consist of? You touched on it at the beginning. So what would a typical, um interaction be with a company, maybe initial opposed to one of the clients that you've been with for so long? But how would it work with between you and them? Well, there's two main parts to what I dio, and the first one is sort of a traditional training. I have partnered with a company in Canada to do off the shelf training, but I also do custom learning. Um, it was something I've done for so long that, you know, it's It's my main bread and butter. At this point. Can you define e learning generally? Um, it's across a bunch of industries. It's just, um, like if you've ever had to go through corporate training, you have to go through probably some level of online learning. Um, that's the type of learning that I generally dio. I have done university learning as well, especially Post Cove. It, uh, most university. Most universities had some sort of an online component. I think they're doing a lot more how I don't really focus on that space much anymore, but I have done it before. And so that's the online learning that I'm talking about. So e Learning Interactive is the main, of course, like I have one client that does OSHA compliance here in the States. And they made these little five minute modules that they can go and deploy Thio construction crews on. Do they have a little story behind them and some interaction? That has to happen, um, to show learning eso That's mainly what I dio. And that's one part the second part. Um, I help entrepreneurs to create online training, to create training online in person, one of the two on be able to tell their stories and use that for things like coaching programs. And that's something that I'm getting more into at this point. And I'm trying to steer my company in that direction because I find it fascinating to hear how these people Andi, you know, some of them are very well off have been incredibly successful in business. How they started and starting to hear some of the commonalities amongst them and being able to help them tell that story, um, is a really fascinating process, and I love doing it. So are you. You're instructional designer. So you designing these e profiles or e learning environments or you just holding their hands and bringing them through the process that has already been created. So I'm I'm the one that actually facilitates creating the training. Um, if you think about the old analogy of a, uh, you know, c p a. And you go to do...

...your taxes at the end of the year, um, or chartered accountants. And so there used to be this old at. It's where you go with your shoebox full of receipts and give them the receipts and say, Here you figure it out. You have the information. Now you need to sort it out and put it in a way that somebody else would be able to understand on. That's generally what I do with information. I will take somebody's idea. Um, they're based there, there. Their idea, the information that they have is a subject matter expert and put it into a format that people will be able to understand. Andi, that will be measurably understandable. So being able to show. But at the beginning, of course, in the end of the course, what the additional information that has been effectively transferred this so in some ways you're developing a curriculum absolutely. That's exactly what it is. Most universities have instructional designers on staff, and that's how they develop new, uh, new programs. That's a difficult job you have. You know, I'm just trying to get my head around it, but it's a difficult job. You have you you could go into a company that, you know, you know, next to nothing about particular. And they're like, Here's my shoebox and make it pretty now, Yeah, under the sort this out, this amount of money. So, yeah, it's difficult. And then so but so you have a really interesting middleman. Middle person, Um, position between the managers and the employees who tend to be the ones that are the recipients of this, you know, Shoebox effect. Yes, very true. So So how do you even before that? What is difficult? I mean, it seems like a really difficult job. I appreciate teachers and and, you know, working for companies that have these programs. But someone had to make them. Someone had to implement them. And we're just like pressing buttons and complaining if it doesn't take us to the right spot when we want to. But someone had to put in the work to get it there. So what is most difficult to about what you do, keeping it engaging, especially if I'm doing compliance training? Sometimes I'll do banking compliance training, and it is the dullest, dullest information on DSO. Keeping an engaging is one thing. And that's why one of one of the things that I specialize in this storytelling through training eso instead of just dumping information on somebody, Um, and just saying, Here you go Good luck with that trying to do, trying to actually teach through telling a story and making it relevant. Andi, that's that's really the easiest way I found to keep somebody engaged to make training. Not terrible, because there's some training out there, which is you could tell that management is just sort of said here, Just check this box and go through it. We don't care how bad it is. We don't care how much you learn. We just need to do this so that we are compliance. People are not upset with us. Um, but that's one thing. I really try to work very hard on this, making sure that everything that we do is engaging on is relevant. No how How do you find it to stay engaged if you're given a bunch of compliance information? How How difficult is that? If you're like Okay, here's, you know, here's another program and is that is that a difficult, you know, focused to keep when you're just given some of the same because I could see it's difficult, but I can also see that it could be for you maybe a little draining if you're getting you know, here's some rules and regulations and you guys need toe, you know, do this by the end of the week. And is it hard for you to stay engaged and continue to enjoy what you're doing? Can I answer that question by saying that there was a single line item in my budget for Starbucks that helps exactly being somewhat caffeinated really does help during those moments. But honestly, for me, it's more of a challenge. Accepted moment. I love the challenge of that to see if there is a way that I...

...can put this information in a format that will be engaging. One of the worst trainings that I do is FDA compliance training because everyone has to go through it every year. And if you've been working for a pharmaceutical company for 30 years, you've been through this 30 times, and it's the information does not change very, very much over the years. And so, you know, so part of that is telling stories I always love to show, like horror stories, you know, things that that compliance the FDA compliance officers have found inside of pharmaceutical companies going This is why we don't do this, Andi. That tends to make it more engaging. No matter how many times you go through that training, uh, seeing something different each time and seeing how you know some disaster zone, just some of them happened, uh, keeps people engaged, you know, it makes this is why we don't do this. It keeps it relevant for them. Is there a field that you enjoy working in under the ones that you're in, like medical, financial and management? Is there one that you prefer that it's kind of intriguing to you and most of what you dio finance? Absolutely. I started off working for in the mortgage and banking industry. And so it's something that I've that I've been working in for a while Right now I work with a client who does kind of works outside of the banking industry, so basically freeing people from banks on not having to use banks or creating your own. There's ways to do that as well. And it's really that part fascinates me because it's outside the lines. And I really love coloring outside the lines, um, and showing people that there's another way to do something that's come, I think, comes part in person with my job as a trainer, Um is being able to show people things that they hadn't thought about before or things that they may not have been exposed to, Um, and how this outside the lines thinking has really helped, you know, to go back to the experience of, you know, I was 16 and I had a job. Technically, I was doing everything right. If you go, you get a job. You worked there for a certain amount of time. You save your money, you do this, you do this. But that doesn't necessarily have to be the only formula. And, you know, I've learned that throughout the years that there's other ways to do this as well on. You don't necessarily have to use this old formula that works. I mean, it's not bad, but that there are. There are other interesting ways. Um, and that's part of what I like about teaching. It's just opening people's minds to these new things. Onda hoping that by opening their mind to some of these new things that they can really edifying their lives with it. Speaking of opening people's minds, Andrew, what would you like people to understand? Because I don't think I ever really appreciated until speaking to you Now the task that is before doing some online learning or learning something in your company of the person who's they're setting it up. So is there anything that you would like people to understand about your job so that maybe they can have a better appreciation of what your especially if you're making with storytelling and bringing some of the background stories to it, You're trying to make it more interesting, which you probably are. Is there something that you would like peep? I understand, so that they can have a better appreciation of you know what their employers putting in front of them or what they're doing a year after year after year? Um, yeah. I think the number one thing that I'd like people to understand this is that we're really trying our best to make it not dull. Sometimes the information that we're given is very difficult. And so there's a lot of tricks that we will use to try to get to get people engaged, to try to not, um, make training quite a stall. A zit has been eso we really do try hard at it. We don't way we don't like bad training at all. It's not something that is, Um, yeah, we don't like it anymore than others do. And so we do...

...try to make it as engaging as possible where sometimes it's very difficult. E could imagine e mean, some of these manuals that they have are mean munis or is an agent. Where do employers tend to need the most help? So understanding the value of training, understanding the value of understanding the complete value that it brings to the company? Yeah. So training is not a cost center. Uh, train is a cost center. We don't have. There's no, um, financial benefit. Often it's this is something we just have to dio And so a lot of management. I see a lot of management doing things like, Well, we're just gonna get this training done as cheaply as possible because we don't we don't want to spend a huge budget on it. And it really you end up just wasting money because it doesn't really it's not. You know, the trading would not be effective if it's not well designed. Andi learners don't want to sit through training that's not well designed. Um, it doesn't do management any good because you don't have. It's either not measured. Thea Mount of Knowledge is being transferred is either just not being measured or it's being ineffectively measured. And it is a waste of time to do training that is really not well thought through. And I think that's one thing that management just does not think about is the intangible asset the training is. Employees can sense that too, right? If the management like okay, well, you know, did you do your training? You know, did you okay or find this paper and get it? And if they don't care, employees going to care less, and that's just you know, it's not like generally speaking, employees have other things to dio and then being set aside Time to do this other thing, which seems to have little benefit or the people above them don't really care. Um, it takes even Mawr from it. Very true. Very true. There's, ah, quote on. I can see if I can find it at some point. On how toe? Yes. So, uh, this was a quote by Edwin Emery Emery Slosson, Um who said lecturing is the mysterious process by which the contents of the notebook of Professor are transferred through the instrument of the pen to the notebook of the student without passing through the mind of either On. I think that that's really the mindset of training. Um, in some companies where it's just this, Let's just do this. Let's just get this done to check a box and be finished with it. E think that's more common. I'm a teacher here in South Korea, and I see student. I didn't appreciate it as much, but when you see other people do it, I have students taking notes, right, Like if you you write something on the board or on a screen and they're taking notes. But all they're really doing is just looking and writing what it is. I'm like. You're not even reading it. You know, you're not even taking a moment because I know when it gets home, you're not gonna say, Hey, what should I do now? And that's true. It just going from, you know, this piece of paper to this piece of paper and not transferring through the program. But what reminds me of a quote reminds me of, Ah, calculus course I took back in the day and it was calculus to course. So it's one of the most difficult parts of calculus. And there were, I would say, 200 of us, um, in a classroom with this teacher who was his older Asian gentleman, who was very nice and you could tell he was brilliant. He really knew what he was talking about, but quite honestly was one of the worst teachers I've ever had. And he would start at one end. There were four blackboards across, and he would start at one end and just furiously start writing notes and start writing. No talking at the blackboard the entire time Onley stopping long enough to debate with himself whether or not what he was going to write was a note suggestion or a comment. And then we'll start back up again. And by the...

...time he was at the end of the fourth blackboard, you're just furiously getting down because then he started the other end to start erasing s. So I think this is exactly how the course went all semester. By the time we were finished with that course, um, the highest score was a 98% but that was a curved 98%. The actual score was a 46. They had to curve it so steeply just to get, you know, even half the course, the class to pass because none of them would not. A single one went past a really have a absolutely nothing. Yes, And so then that was, I guess, a really great moment of that, you know, passing from the board to the notebook without anything going through your head on. And that's the you know, that is the fault of managers not appreciating the value of training. What do you find is for employees something that's setting them back the most. Because I know I read something that you wrote about making mistakes and employees air, fearful of making mistakes. What do you find? Because they're going into a new situation. Maybe some compliance training is whatever. But if you're doing some e training, especially with cove, it people are moving mawr toe online stuff, and some people are not used to it. I mean, you see that with zoom type things and people like, Oh, how do I figure this out? Are you finding a You know, a constant stream of mistakes people are scared to make? Um, yeah, just to go back to the something. I think there's two catchphrases for 2020 and the first one is your frozen. And the second is you're on mute. I think those are the two catchphrases for 2020. Thanks to zoom uh, the biggest issues. I see. Um, I do see a lot of people being scared to make mistakes. That's part of learning is making a mistake. Um, it's an effective way to learn is just to go out there, do it, see what happens, you know, not caring too much about the output, but just Let's see what happens. You know, Um, it's it's how kids learn. If you watch a kid when they're when they're trying to learn how to walk their there, sometimes it just I'm going to stand up and they get up and it's like, Oh, crap, what do I do now? But they did it. It was that experience and they may fall down and fail or they may start walking again. But there's that process they have to go through to be able to kind of try a theory, see if it works. If it does, you know, and then change path, depending on whether or not what they did work. Eso definitely being scared to, uh, to fail or being scared, uh, to not succeed at something. The first time is definitely a big, big issue. Thea other part is not really valuing learning, You know, if you go to if you're going to, you know, a job in a fast food restaurant, you're not really going to value the training that you're getting just enough. Thio, you will just enough to be able to do your job competently. Um, but not understanding that you can actually get a lot more out of this. It's just not just, you know, go in, show up and, you know, do your shift and leave. I think there's a There should be a lot more value in learning itself, not only learning for jobs but learning for the sake of learning for me. I'm always in the middle of something that I'm learning. And even after 15 years in this industry, I'm still learning things about the industry. I'm still engaging, um, in constantly trying Thio increase my game, if you will, as far as the company is concerned. Yeah, I guess it's trying not just be stagnant, right? No, no matter your position. I mean, I was speaking to someone the other day, and it's even if you have an aspiration, you have a job. But you have an aspiration for something else. Well, you know, research that on the side, and that's gonna maybe give you that motivation like, Hey, I can do this job well, while I'm looking for something else, rather than being a deadbeat in the office Or, you know, in the past food restaurant,...

...you sound like this would be a very busy, busy sort of ordeal for you when you have clients and your trying to get this training package engaged or implemented, how do you stay productive when you have so much on your plate? I I had to learn a very hard lesson about delegation and that I am only one person and I am not a superhuman. I tend to be a very type A personality, and that has been one of my biggest. The biggest things I had to learn the hard way, and I failed a lot of times at it. But now having a team around you is absolutely critical to being good in business, a team that you trust that you trust enough to give them tasks and then come back later when they're done instead of micromanaging. Um, small business owners air really bad at, um, being able to kind of delegate and then allow the professionals to do their work. Eso For me, it's hiring. Well, you know, making sure that when I I don't I don't hire employees. I usually have subcontractors, but I have a team of subcontractors I worked with regularly and I filled up relationships with them. They're all very, very good. And I make sure that when I have somebody on my team, these people are really at the top of their game. And then I just I say, Here you go. Here's the task. Go do this and then let them do it. Onda Oftentimes they surprised me with how good the content that I get back is, um So I said that was having a good team around you having a good tribe around you as well for support. I have some really great mentors. I have some really great coaches behind me that helped me in my business. Um, being in business for itself is a very unique circumstance. A lot of people think they know what it's like, but unless you've actually been through it, um, it is very different than most people's perception of being in business for yourself. Um, there's a reason I have no hair on. But also, the idea is, you know, to find another client so you can have you know, the mountain effect of Okay, well, you know, everything is good now, but you know eventually that clients not gonna need me or not for the rest of the year, not until next year, and then you need to find another one. So there's that search aspect to your to your position as well. Are you? Where do you place your hands in the whole process? Is it just the beginning? Is that the middle of the end of a particular training session? I mean, that might be the temptation to of wanting to be and all aspects of it. So are you from beginning to end, or is it just the implementation of a training session? I'm monitor and I steer the ship, and that's as the CEO. That's my job is to steer the ship s o while. If I need to, I will jump in and you know, and take a project if I have to. If something's going wrong, I'll jump in and, you know, help or lend my expertise as needed. Generally, I am there for the very beginning toe on board the client. It's nice to have one face toe look at um and then introduced the rest of the team as they become relevant to the the the course itself. For the project itself. I'm monitored eso at least weekly. I check in with my team on the various projects that are going on. So that way I can see what's You know, what's going on, What's going well, what isn't going well, maybe things that I need to intercede on if needed aan den at the end making sure that all of the everything has been buttoned up and ready for delivery. But really, I trust my team, and my job is just to be the captain, to make sure that my team has what they need to be successful. Andi, that they have the guidance necessary to be able to take kind of I don't necessarily want to say the easiest path, but not to run into obstacles. Um, but and so that's my role is to have that higher level, you know, going out also going out and spreading the name of the company and things like...

...podcasts like we're doing today. Um, that is in marketing and a swell as innovation as well. If there's something really cool that I want to see the team start working on our direction to go all trail, blaze it, come up with the procedure for it and then roll it out to them. So that's really that's the area that I love to work in as well on Do something that I really good at, something that really brings me. I have a huge passion for Andrew as an instructional designer. What is your favorite tool that you use, or something that allows you to be most efficient in your work? A white board? Honestly, I love white boards. It is it allows me to get my brain onto paper. Um, sometimes my brain does not have the world's most linear pathways to getting these. And sometimes it's. What we do is a very creative process. And so there's times when I just need to dump is much information is possible onto a whiteboard. I have a virtual assistant and some of my staff members air used to my brain dumps and kind of how that works. It's just sort of like a fire hose, but sometimes just getting a whiteboard, getting it down onto paper. White boards, I think, are easier. I can break things off the race and move as I need to. But yeah, I would say that's the number one tool that I love using, and that helps me the most is a white board thinking about this podcast and why we work. What is a tip that you have thinking back of being a stock boy or some of the paths that you have taken to get where you are? What would be a top tip that you have for listeners as they get into work or change your career from something that they're maybe not liking so much into something that might be even their passion or something within their talents? E I have two that I really lived by. The first thing is, is always make sure that what you are doing is a passion that you have That way you will never work a day in your life. Um, I love going to work even in the bad times. I love what I dio. I love that process I love I love you know, innovating in learning. I love trying to figure out how to teach somebody a difficult piece of information. Um, and the second thing is just because it's worked there. Just because it's worked for a lot of people in the past doesn't mean it's right path for you. We've been taught for many years, you know, Goto work, work there for 30 years, retire on a pension and go forward. You know, that's I don't think that paradigm is working anymore. And especially after the current situation that we have, Um, I think it's going to be a number of years before we start to get back on our feet again financially, especially here in the States. Um, and I think it's gonna very significantly change the way that we do business so that that old paradigm does not work anymore. It hasn't been working for years. I think it's gonna be even worse now. Andi, I think there's a lot more control over your life. Eso as an independent contractor as a freelance or somebody on your business or a small business. I think you have a lot more control of your life. I mean, you know, my boss isn't gonna fire me one day unless I end up with multiple personality disorder. E try not to argue with myself, at least in front of staff, right? Uh, but I think that's one. You know, you have a lot more control in your life. Um, and also, if you're in a situation where, um, you know, a client may not be a good fit for you, that I've had to walk away from clients where it's like this is not working for either of us. Having that control over your life really is helpful. And I think with the economic situation, that's gonna happen after, UM, co vid, I think that's going to be even mawr, Um uh important is to have that that control to be able to pivot when you need to. I think the first one you mentioned of loving and having a passion for what you do and you're saying that you have a passion for it. I mean, it's very important because you...

...are in through the work that you do is in through all of businesses, right, because there's always training that's needed. There's always something, so you're in a good sort of niche. But it's really important role that you have in a job. So I'm glad that you do have that passion and desire to do what you do. How do you find a work life balance and separating yourself from the work and doing something else to enjoy your time And what is What is something that you dio? It is a constant battle. It's a constant battle. Um, so one thing I dio bare minimum one day a week off a week, period. One least one full day I try to get to, but at least one full day off a week. I don't answer emails or voicemails or anything after a certain time of night. So 8 p.m. Eastern. You're not gonna get ahold of me unless there's something else. Unless there's a reason for it. You're not gonna get ahold of me. You're not gonna get hold of me before, you know, eight o'clock in the morning. Just not gonna, you know? So I have that time to myself where I could decompress, Um And then I take time throughout the week. If I feel like I need some downtime, I will take it on giving myself permission to take that time for myself, knowing that if I don't take that time, I am less efficient. I'd rather be able to schedule those moments when I don't when I have some downtime or when I'm not being productive, if you will in my in my work life rather than get a massive case of burnout and have it done for me. Uh, because there's gonna be a point when your body just shuts down and there's your brain shuts down and you're not gonna get anything accomplished. Anyway, I'd rather plan that, Andi. So you know, if there's times when, like this evening, I know it's been a really long day for me. So for me this evening, after we're finished with this, I'm going home, and I am going to work on something I like, you know, something that's not really this related toe work, but not, you know, the fund projects that I have on my back burner. That may not be for a client, but just interesting stuff. I'm actually gonna go working on some marketing when I'm done, because that's something that I just like to do is coming up with interesting marketing campaigns and stuff. So what is what is the funnest project? Do you have done? Maybe even with the advent of technology and the advance of even with Koval, where people having to learn from home orm or on computer base? What is one of the most interesting projects you had a work on. I have a client who teaches how to use. Ah, life insurance policy is a banking system, and it is a It's a higher level. It takes a lot of work to teach people how to do this because it's so, so different than what people, um are used to thinking. Usually you put your money into a savings account, you get a certain amount. That's it. There's not really or you put your money into stocks. You It's pretty Washington's repeat. Um, that is probably one of the most fun projects I've worked on because it's so different. It's a massive challenge. You're working against a lot of cognitive dissonance, because when somebody sees something that's outside, their viewpoint of the world's outside there, they're gonna view of the world. It can be very difficult to train around that, because that's a massive wall that they hit. Well, this doesn't make sense to me, so it's wrong on. That's the immediate thing that they do. So trying to work around that cognitive dissonance is one trying to explain this very high level this'll high level process, uh, in a way that everyone can understand is also something that is a fun project to work on. I love working on it. Um, I've worked with this client for about three years building these. The other thing I love working about it is it's teaching somebody something very different. Um, it's something that, um will bring quite a bit of value to someone's life if they're willing to use these systems.

Um, it can really be very beneficial for them on DSO. I always like That is, Well, what a project has a positive outcome and can significantly and positively affect somebody else's life. Yeah, as the captain of this ship, the CEO of the company that goes into these places Do you receive a lot of complaints? Not necessarily at the work that you're doing, but just because you're the easiest target rather than the employees going at the managers or the manager's going at the employees. Let's blame Andrew, is that do you receive a lot of that? Well, I think as a CEO of a company, no matter what goes wrong or whether or not I've actually had a hand in it, it's my fault. You know, I am responsible for that and it's you really have to have a very you know, you have a very thick skin for doing it, understanding that most of the time this is just frustration manifesting this the industry, that it can be very, very frustrating especially, you know, if you have a client that's just being difficult or isn't getting information, or I have this really complicated thing that I have to break down Thio the level that a five year old would understand. That's a very difficult process, Um, or even making a mistake in business. You know, things like that. Then I've made plenty of them. Um, yeah, you end up being the scapegoat for a lot of things from both customers and clients, as well as from your internal staff. Andi, that's that comes part and parcel with being a business owner. While I try to encourage people to be business owners. It is not that it is definitely not for the weak, you know, but having a thick skin and understanding where that person is coming from and where this is manifesting. There's, I think there's a really great way to put this. There's a theory called Millers Law. It was created in the late fifties, mid mid late fifties. Um, and it says under accept everything is the truth, then understand what? It's the truth off. So if I were to walk out and say The sky is purple now, your first reaction would be No, it's not purple, it's blue. What's wrong? It is suspending that disbelief for a moment and saying, Okay, I'm going to accept that is the truth for right now because I'd like to understand Samora about where this person's perspective and using that technique and going okay, This employee is now blasting away at me. It's on slack here. Step back a second and accept that what they their feelings are valid. And what they're saying is the truth. Now let's dig a little bit deeper. It takes the attack mode out of you. You're not in fight or flight mode anymore. Now you're in. This is a problem that needs to be solved, and it completely changes the theory. Entire, uh, conversation that would help in most relationships. Absolutely, very, very true. Very take a moment. Would would some of the problems some of the feedback you get or the highest amount of criticism come maybe from the medical profession. I'm just just a guess that I talked to doctors and doctors are there to help people. But, I mean, I've watched shows. It's the administration part that really gets in the way of them doing their job where I would think that finance would be there. They're all right with these things. They go with the ebbs and flows of life a little bit easier. So there's not really anyone industry that I work in that's worse than the others, the clients that I get the most the most negative feedback from our ones where they don't. It's a lack of understanding. And so this might be a lack of understanding for, um, you know what the project was supposed to be. No matter how clear you are, people will always enter into a situation with their own perspective. Eso Sometimes it's, you know, we we may have been I tried to be very clear about what will be and will not be done inside of a contract, and just I do that so all the parties know it, you know, like transparency. I want to show exactly what you're gonna be getting at the end. Sometimes that doesn't always work, or somebody thinks that there's things...

...they were going to get, something when they wouldn't on. Do they come in with their own perspective? Most of the time, it's a misunderstanding. Um, e would say almost all the time, it's just a misunderstanding or somebody changes. UH, changes scope in the middle of project, which then completely changes everything on DCA NBI a mess. And they may get upset about that because, I mean, it's not, um, no amount of planning can plan for somebody else's, uh, randomness or something else coming up in the middle of, ah, Project E actually want to get one of those I wanna give you is one of the big 19 fifties sci fi posters and just says the scope that will not die. I guess a lot of a lot of the bad projects that I've been on have been that way, where the scope just keeps growing and growing and growing and growing to this massive beast on DNO buddies truly happy when that happens. Yeah, that's true. I can imagine just like some of the difficulty you think of, you know, TV shows like the office or those types of things that just how bad a culture could be if management is not running it well and then you implement these other sort of training programs, and as you're saying is the scope getting is getting bigger, the missions being lost, the visions gone. And then you have a bunch of people running around not knowing you know which way is up, but they still need to produce Mhm church. Very true, and training is usually the first one to see it, because we're usually the first line. When you go into a job, you generally go through training first. And so if there are major gaps in management or there's some other things were usually the first to get it. And you mentioned planning. So thinking back, what would you wished that you knew, starting your working career, your journey with work that you can implemented let people know now that if you just knew this one thing, you think it might have helped you along the way a little bit. Bucking what society says you should do is very much so not a bad thing, and I think people should do it more. Say that again. So I missed the first parent. That's okay. Um, bucking what? What tradition? And what the culture says you should do is not always a bad thing. Um, and having the faith in yourself to be able to say I may make a massive, massive mistake right now, this might be, you know, a life altering event, Onda allowing that fear to take over and to go for kind of the average because you think that's the That's the easiest way out. It the easy way out is not always the most fun, and it's not always where you should be. I'd say that's the number. One thing I tell myself is, if you feel like you need to go, do this, do it. You know, one of the greatest teachers is failure. Failure is another name for learn. Onda failure is not bad. Failure can really you could get a lot out of a good or a bad experience. I like to say that everyone is a good example. Some are a good example of what to do. Some are a good example of what not to dio, but everyone is a good example, and everyone is entitled to that experience. And so if you have a desire to do something and you have a passion to do something and you think that it is right for you and in your gut it feels like the right direction to go, don't listen to others do it, you know, And I wouldn't say Don't listen to others altogether, but I do it don't allow that appeared to take over. You mentioned Andrew missed aches a couple of times. What is what is one of the biggest mistakes that you've made and learn from? Oh, recently, Um, A to the advice of a company Started a marketing campaign way too early things year. I think I ended up losing over $10,000 on that thing. That was the biggest mistake recently. Um, and it was interesting because I did everything I thought I was supposed to dio. And when...

I enter a situation I generally like to think about, um uh, you know, I'd like to at least have a limited, functional knowledge of what I'm doing. Um, and in this situation, I learned in that situation that no matter how much due diligence, you dio, no matter if you are going by that mindset of I wanna have a limited function knowledge. So I generally have an idea what's going on and then outsource the rest of the experts. Mm. While that's a really good idea, it's not 100% foolproof, so yeah. Yeah, and what I learned from that is that there's going to be times when you're going to stumble. It's inevitable. There's no way around it. Because I did everything I was supposed to dio. I did everything I thought I was supposed to dio I you know, I followed what the experts were saying. These folks had a track record. It was not any person's fault, per se. Um, but it was definitely a learning experience that me, that no matter what's gonna yeah, sometimes you need to learn by not being successful at something. Yeah, And you said that a moment ago about something you wish you would have. No, just go with the mist, aches and learn from them. Andrew, you mentioned about going into college. Not certain you took a few changes in the in the degree you want to get. How? How much value do you put in education Looking back and even looking forward, I e mean, you even mentioned that you still like to learn things, and that's very important for employees. But could you summarize your idea the value or how you value education? I think that education takes a lot of different. Um, are has a lot of different, um, methods. I think that university education is a good thing. I think it can be e you do not think it is the only thing. So I think it depends on where you're in. I think that you should always be learning something. Um, it doesn't matter what it is. Um, there was a time when I was sort of just burned out on learning about, uh, kind of my industry and I needed to take a bit of a break on dso. I decided I wanted to learn how to say the Canadian national anthem in French. It was just something it was It was e can now, thankfully, but it was one of those weird things where it's just, like always, learning something, So always be curious about your worlds and try to see um, you know, try to learn something different. I think that it will give you a completely different perspective of the world that we're in right now. Ah, lot of times were dominated by this noise. That is the media and all of these things that are going on around us. And we're constantly being bombarded by this negative information and a huge amount of information that to be really frank is completely irrelevant to our lives. And, you know, I think that we get so caught up in that that we really lose sight of some of the really cool things that this world has to give us. And we think it is important to our lives And like, Oh, I have to know this top news today because my life of being different, If it is, if I don't what? We don't realize what it is. It's an addiction and what it is. Whatever I get a text message or an email, or I see news or I get a high score. We actually use this in training at some point because it can actually be used for good. But you get a dopamine release in your head, and every time you see something like that. You get another dopamine release, Andi, that can cause an addictive cycle so that when you're removed from that dopamine, the feel good one of the feel good chemicals, Um, it Z you know it. Make sure you get you get a accomplishment you get You get a hit of dopamine when you successfully complete something as well. Onda. We try to use that in training whenever possible, because it's a very effective way to get somebody motivated. But when you have this dopamine hit on Ben, it's gone. You now crave something that we give you that dopamine hit again, and so it...

...becomes this really addictive cycle. The other side is our brains are wired to be. It's called negativity bias. We're wired to be negative. We're wired to see negative negative influences and negative experiences about three times there, about three times as powerful. About remember, about three times is better. Much Try it again, uh, remembered three times as well as a positive experience, and that comes from our ancestors. If I'm being chased by a saber toothed tiger and he's about to get me, I really, really want to remember what I did to get myself into this predicament. So I never do that again. Um, it's part of our fight or flight response. And so it had at one point a very good use. It does still to this day have a really good use if you something negative happens to you. I don't remember what happened, so I don't do that again. The downside, though, is that it could be triggered. That's what news is generally negative. They know that we have a better chance of remembering that, and we can get more engaged in it on. Then it triggers the fight or flight response. Eso yeah, we shouldn't be shocked when we hear so much Complaining is what you're saying. Yes, that's exactly what it is. It is an addictive cycle. And if I can redirect that towards something positive, like learning something new on, but doesn't have to be anything really profound, Um, you know, just something, um but you know, constantly learning about people I love learning about people. It's something that just fascinates me or learning how to do something new Or, um, you know, just learning something, Um, that is it can get us out of that cycle, Um, and kind of into a new cycle altogether. That's your leading into one of my final questions, Andrew of how can How would you encourage people where they are in their state of work, whether their disgruntled, they're just starting out, they're nearing the end of their career, and they just maybe need a reminder they may not even be that discouraged. It's just, you know, why do I work? You know, why do I have to get up today? How How would you cap off of encouragement to them? I would say that if if your response in the morning when you're getting ready for work is how do I keep going? I would think about the career that you're in, because that's usually a really quick. That's usually an indicator that you may want to look into something different when I know that there are some mornings that air really difficult for me and you know, business. Being in business for yourself is definitely not easy. There are a lot of times when I'm just like I'm done piece out, I'm going away. I'm done. Um, there's times when I get close to that. But every morning when I wake up, I know this is my passion. This is what I want to do. Yep, It is awful right now, this is not a good experience, is an experience that is not negative, that I'd like to not. You know, I like to remember how not to do this again, but I still have this underlying this underlying Pashto from what I dio and then that that is the biggest motivator in the world. So I would say, um, that if it is a constant struggle to get up, Thio out to work, if it is something where it is constantly sucking the energy out of you and you just feel like you are completely deflated by the end of the day on a very regular basis, it may be time to take a look and see what your passion is, even if it's completely wild. My best friend, it was funny. He had a very good sales job and was did very well for himself. Was six figures, you know, just was had a really good job. And one day he's like, this job is sucking me dry, and I can remember the day he quit. I saw him the day that is his last day. I almost thought something was wrong because for the first time in the longest time, I saw him come different and, you know, he just totally I thought something was wrong. And he's like, No, I finally don't have all this...

...stress anymore. I am not dreading going toe work all the time. He ended up getting associates degree in what in a brewery. Management and I went started brewing beer because that was his passion. And he is significantly happier with that decision. And sometimes it just takes a massive life change, right? And, uh, it's you only get one shot at life. Why make it miserable? Especially when it comes to your work, which is gonna be a massive part of your life. It's a big chunk of your life. Mhm Andrew Chestnut, CEO of Nickel City Learning Solutions. How can people reach you? Um, if you would like you could reach me by email at Andrew at Nickel City Learning Solutions dot com. You can also go to our website Nicholson City Learning Solutions dot com. I am also on Lincoln. My name is Andrew, and last name is spelled C h e S N U TT Andrew. One final question. Mhm. Why do you work? I work because I love to help people experience the joys that air, the wonderful things that happen in this world and the information that will help them through life. I love transferring that, and I love being able to be to help people and guide them through that process. Andrew Chestnut. Thank you, kind sir. And I appreciate and I hope people get a better appreciation of the training that's before them because there's someone behind that doing the work to make it engaging and fruitful for them. Thank you very much, Andrew. Thanks for having me. I appreciate it. Thank you for listening to this episode of why we work with Brian V. Be sure to subscribe, follow and share with others so they too, can be encouraged in their work. E hope that you have yourself a productive yet joyful day in your work. Mhm.

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