About Kyle Gillette
Kyle is the owner of Gillette Solutions. He’s a business consultant, executive coach, and author. His focus is helping businesses get the right people in the right seats going in the right direction.
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Welcome to Deliberate Leaders I am your host Allison Dunn, Executive Business Coach and founder of the Deliberate Leaders Podcast dedicated to helping leaders build strong and thriving businesses. Each episode we feature inspiring interviews to help you on your leadership journey. And today’s guest is no exception. Today we have with us Kyle Gillette, who is the owner of Gillette Solutions. He is a business consultant, executive coach and author who focuses on helping businesses get the right people in the right seats in the right direction. Welcome, Kyle. It’s great to have you here with us today.
Yeah, thank you. I’m excited to do this interview with you and chat about see what see where we go with this thing.
Yeah, so I was I was looking at one of your most recent posts and says we’re going to start today so it looks like you just launched A new book slash workbook life map. Yeah. Tell me a little bit about that. Who’d you publish this for?
So yeah, life map comes from my own history working for a men’s mentoring program. So back in the early 2000s, I worked at a management training program for about 10 years. And life map is about answering three basic questions. Where am I? where I want to go, and how do I get there. And what we did was we help the guys in the program, learn life skills, learn job skills, and then at the end of the six months, they were supposed to be there, they would create a life map. And so in the life map, we would take seven different areas of life, which I don’t think I can list off top my head, but seven different areas of life. And have them answered those three questions. And by the time they were done answering those three questions, they had a really good map of where they needed to go with their lives, especially with the background of the six months that they had with us in the program.
Fantastic and so on. Is it written like a workbook? So it’s, you know, something that you actually work through?
Yeah, it’s both. So I have a workbook and a book. So in the book, it’s a reading of the process. It’s a lot of history from the program from me lots of stories to get people engaged in that way. And then at the end of each chapter, there’s a set of somewhere between seven and 10 questions that people can answer. And then there’s a separate workbook that’s very purposeful, that walks you through very, to use your words, deliberate process to get to that final map of Okay, this is how I’m going to get to where I want to go.
Fantastic is, can you give me an example of maybe the workbook exercise to help, you know, give us an idea, an area of one of the areas of life in the map?
Yeah, so if you think about financial areas of life, so one of the questions I asked him there is, dude, how are you doing or what’s going on with your financial situation? as relates to savings, right, and so they answer that question they talk about their bank account and how much money’s in it. And then there’s follow up questions that talk about, well, where do you want it to be in X amount of time? And then how are you going to pull that off? And then I asked questions around emotions and your relationships with your friends and family, where are you with your significant other? How is that going? They answer that question. Where would you like to be? And they answer that question. And then how do you how are you going to get to that place or in a better relationship with your significant other, because we can all get into better places with our relationships, for sure.
That’s, that’s awesome. When, when I was when I’ve looked at the some of the things that you’d like to write about, I’d say one of your areas of interest is obviously mindsets. And specifically, you talk about three simple mindset shifts that you can make and I love the way that you position is something that we spoke about on our podcast too. So, and the wording of should versus I’d like to. So why is that important? When you know, I, instead of saying I should do something, instead say, I really want to work, I’d like to do this.
Yeah, I think the mentality of have two versus get two or I should too, or I should or would like to is really fundamentally a big shift for people to make. Because we can get really stuck with the attitude of I have to do certain things, I really should do certain things. But then we forget that, really, it’s a matter of taking a simple action forward. And then you get to do that action, you get to move forward in that way. And it moves from should to doing. And so that little shift in our minds, because many we think in questions a lot of the time as we go through our day, we’re thinking in questions. And so we can think I have to do I have to do this. Should I do this, but I Instead, as soon as you get that thought of I should or do I have to, you can shift it to I get to, and I want to, I will. So it’s nice because that thinking can trigger the more positive behaviors and more action oriented behaviors. And sometimes when we think I have to, you don’t have to you don’t need to do anything. So it can go the other direction as well.
I listen, when I’m coaching with someone I listen for the word should or have to, because it’s almost like it’s you know, someone else’s expecting it. It’s like an expectation of someone else, and to really drill down to identify whether it’s something that it is, do we even really want to like, why do you have to why should you.
You’re taking the time to actually think about whether or not I should do something is novel for some people, because we sometimes we just operate on autopilot. And we’re a bundle I like to say that we’re a bundle of habits and so if we don’t actually take time to step back and Think about our behaviors, think about our thinking. We’re humans. And so we have metacognition. So it’s kind of, it’s really valuable to be able to step back and think about our thinking, and then filter it through, there’s a lot of ways to filter it. But filtering through that simple process can be really helpful.
And the second mindset shift that you were talking about, in one of your articles was the quality of relationships versus the quantity of relationships. So how I’m which I think is, I’m someone who likes to be around lots of people. So, you know, I have I feel like I have a quantity of relationships. Um, how would you define the making sure that the quality is there versus the numbers?
Yeah, I think there’s statistics out there to talk about how most people have about 250 friends that they can they actually have communication with. Now of course, they’re not close friendships, but they have those friends. If you look at Facebook accounts, of course, they’re going to be much bigger. But most the time you’re not actually communicating with maybe 10% of those people you might be communicating with. I think the difference when it comes to quality is trust. And time spent. I have every Tuesday morning at 630 I usually talk to two dudes in person or now online. And one of the guys has been hanging out with his soon to be fiance and so they he hasn’t been on the call last two weeks, but every which is cool. Like I’m really excited for him to be you know, and getting engaged really soon. But the thing about them is, every Tuesday we’re talking about the realest things that we can talk about. There’s no there’s no hesitation. There’s no filter, and there’s really deep trust. So that’s quality. And the surface conversations, the surface relationships matter because some of those can turn to quality as well. But it’s very deliberate in the approach to it because every Tuesday we meet at 630 in the morning to talk for an hour about personal things and business things that mattered To us, so we we’re not it’s not a willy nilly thing. Same thing happens. I have some college friends from one lives in San Jose and another lives in San Luis Obispo. And so when my wife and I moved here with our kids, we decided that we’re going to be really purposeful and continue to pursue those friendships. So every single summer, all the families get together somewhere in the country and hang out. But that’s a lot of effort. Because between us, it’s what is it nine kids and six adults. So to figure out how to coordinate all that and make sure we’re together and having a good time is complicated. But that’s what produces a really fantastic quality relationship with those friends.
Sir, that’s a great example. Just out of curiosity 630 in the morning, is that are you meeting somewhere? Like a coffee shop?
Yeah, wouldn’t before yet we meet at a local coffee shop and hang out till about eight Typically
Cool. And the third mindset shift that you talk about is perfecting, and bookending your day. And so I was hoping for you if you would share, what does that look like for you? And how have you perfected that?
Yeah, I think when it comes to having a great day, having a great week, it’s about reflection. It’s about making sure that the things that you chose to focus on the beginning of the day, are the things that are the most important. And so I have a to do list that I’m really obsessive about my to do list. I’m gonna be brutally honest here. But on that to do list, I put the things that are really vitally important to get done. If I get other things done, that’s great. But at the beginning of the day, I’m waking up somewhere between five and 530. And I’m spending time reading and spending time praying, I’m spending time just being quiet by myself. And then from a About eight o’clock. So that seven day window is time with my family breakfast and all that. But then from the eight o’clock window, through work, that first window is let me look at my calendar and let me look at my to do list and make sure that I’m starting my day strong and doing the things that I want to do. And then at the end of the day, the book into the date for me is the journal entry. So sometimes a journal in the morning, but the journal entry at the end of the day really gives me a time to reflect on how the day went, what I did, what didn’t go, Well, what did go well. And it’s this relief, it’s kind of a new reflection time. So I begin with that reflection time and I end with reflection time, which really allows you to take in what you learned from the day and take in what went well, what didn’t go well and potentially make some simple adjustments because it’s those little incremental changes that ultimately produce the massive changes that we all want in our lives.
Sure. Sounds like you’re very structured like I am as well. I’m just curious have what if anything, have you reevaluated in your routine and had to move.
Oh, gosh, you know, I started doing this really purposefully. In September, I do a weekly review, which I call a Molo, which is asking five key questions. But what’s happened is one of the things that always stands out is less time on devices. That’s the shift that I’ve been making a lot is less time doing. Not social. Social media is not the thing that drives me nuts. It’s YouTube videos that are entertaining that draws me in. I just waste so much thinking time doing that. And so that’s one of the big reflective things that’s happened for me is stepped away from that, because it’s really easy to watch a 15-20 minute video on YouTube. Then click a three minute one click a five minute one, click a two minute one next thing you know, an hour has passed. Meanwhile, my head’s buried into the dang device and my kids are running around wanting to play.
I mean, I don’t ever know Do it during work hours, quote, work hours.
We’re gonna talk about that in a minute.
Yeah, but it’s just, it’s not, it’s not the most effective use of my time. So that’s a big one and then being really deliberate and purposeful with my wife. So we’ve decided to take we’ve kind of pretended like our marriage isn’t working well. And so we’re going through videos and books to help us. Even though things are going fine. You know, we’re not perfect by any means. But things are going pretty well. And this reflective process has helped me come to the conclusion that why not do the work now, instead of trying to fix what was broken, let’s improve what’s working. And so we’ve been real purposeful about pursuing books and videos or DVDs and videos on that.
That’s fantastic. I think. I think too few people put the emphasis on the core relationship that supports their life, and so good on you for proactively just making it better. Like it can always be better just like we always were at, you know, educating ourselves to be better, why not work on the relationship?
Yeah, it’s way it’s way more enjoyable, especially now that we’re kind of locked in together to a certain degree. It just makes it makes those interactions much more enjoyable. And it’s fun to understand the nuances of other people, not just your significant other but other people in general, as you feel purposeful about those interactions. Because then you get this new awareness about them that’s really empowering for them and empowering for you and it up levels that trust which then brings us back to the quality of the relationship.
So just a moment ago, you brought up work hours, and it’s gonna actually open perfect segue to a topic that you’d like to talk about, which is business hours. And I loved your analogy on highs and lows and I just want to tee it up for you to kind of explain that To our listeners, highs and lows.
So you wrote an article about what are your business hours and really talking about how some people are built to work five to 9pm 5am to 9pm. And other people are built to work the nine to five.
Got it? Yeah. So finding your flow and in your in your work process. Yeah, I think that we all have these. What do you call these times in our day we’re on we’re on there’s a switch in us that’s flipped on where we’re really can focus and our attention is, is good and our ability to perform work is really good. And for me, I’m really the best in the morning hours, from five to one ish in the afternoon is my window of quality. And then as soon as I get to that, two, three o’clock hour I want to go out and exercise and take a break and do some things. And then every once in the evening, I’ll hit that creativity mark, but really the highs and lows, I think it has a lot to do with your own flow. But also the when your brain is creative and when it’s not. So some people are night owls and some people or not, but I think it has a lot to do with our creativity. And when we’re able to, to express that best. And so whatever that is for people, then you go after it if it’s possible, if it’s not possible, then it’s you’re in an office where your hours are what they are, then there’s gotta be ways that you can take breaks from work to reenergize and recharge, so that you have that those highs and lows more under your control despite the time limitations that you’re under.
If I were to speak to just myself in launching a business that I never turned it off, it just never turns off at all. But when I really That I when I never turn it off, I lose my creativity. It just you know it. It’s siphoned away to some other I don’t even know where it goes.
Does that ever happen to you too?
Yeah, I mean, I think I went to I went to overload in my brain probably last summer. I’ve had little bouts of it since then, of course, but I hit the summer and I basically quit doing any sort of work to build up the business because my I had taken in so much content, so much information. I had a lot of work that I was doing that I was just overwhelmed. It’s like my circuits were fried. And I couldn’t, I couldn’t focus. And so I took, it was like six weeks that I was still working on the business a little bit, but it was, it was really rough. It’s like I hit this overload point, and there wasn’t much we were doing. Last summer. We didn’t do a lot of hiking or any we didn’t do a lot of adventure type stuff. And so I was at out of whack out of balance as a result, and my business suffered, I made just the income during those months, it was very clear, things were different was very clear that I had burnt myself out. And so the way I had to recover was to back off on all the content I was taking in. And this is September, like I said, was when I started that reflection practice. That’s the key that was the key was to turn on that reflection practice. So I could take that content and turn it into something useful, which in my case, was dumping it into a document.
And I remembered that what you called the highs and lows. It was called the aesthetic motivator.
Is that is that an online assessment that can be taken or how do you can you explain it better than I did? I think, yeah. So what aesthetic motivator? What that comes from is through a tool called the motivators. And basically there’s seven different motivators or seven different values. That we operate out of an aesthetic is one of them. And the high and low of those two is the high is the idea that people are people that think outside the box. And they have alternative perspectives. Meaning when you’re driving down the road, the analogy I love to use with people is someone that has the highest is driving down the road in their car. And they see they see seven lanes of traffic, they see all these different options, alternative routes that are taken. Meanwhile, someone like me that who has a low aesthetic, where the scale is 100 to zero, I’m a 12, the highest settings are going to be 60-70s. So the person in the 60s and 70s sees seven different options, seven different approaches to accomplish something to think outside the box of why things can get done. Meanwhile, I’m super practical, and I’m like whatever the craps gonna work, let’s do it because I don’t need to weigh all these options. And so if I’m in the car with them, or I’m interacting with them, it’s a little bit more difficult for me to see all those lanes and so People that are in that high range of aesthetic, they might struggle to communicate these other options with people that are more like me because I’m too practical. I’m too boots on the ground for them to be explaining things. And then the opposite can be true to where I’m so practical. They’re going, what I don’t understand why would we approach it that way? So, so the beauty is being able to communicate well, and then synergize, those two different types.
And do you have any guidance? Because I think I’m wanting my husband as the other as an example, and my son is one and I’m the other. How do you adapt to someone? What are some of the tips you’d give?
Yes. So are we talking, thinking, adaption or behavioral adaption?
Yes, those would be great to touch on either like whichever one you’re right.
Yeah, so we’re kind of talking about thinking when it comes to the aesthetic. So the big thing is gonna go back to that trust piece. Trust and time spent together because as you get to know the thinking pattern of the people around you, what happens is you don’t necessarily adapt to it and become that thinking pattern. And think that way, it’s that you understand that thinking pattern better, and can trust what they’re doing with it. So this is why so many of the times opposites can attract in marriages because there’s this trust factor that allows the person like myself who’s I’m not super detail oriented. And so my wife knows that. And so when I put a little bit of effort into the detail orientation, since I don’t think that way, normally, then she recognizes it and appreciates it, even though it’s nowhere near as good a job as she could have done on this specific thing. So a lot of it has to do with understanding the other person’s thinking. And of course, there’s the cheater way to do it, which is to take an assessment. And then you get to read about that person. And aesthetics, only one of really six other or one of seven other motivators. But when it comes to behavior, there’s really two sides. employs to do behavior that’s a lot easier because you get to observe it thinking is not observable but behavior is. And of course, the behavior comes from the thinking. But there’s disc is the tool that I use. And there’s the four different styles which are dominant influence, steady and conscientious. And we could spend the whole episode talking about this.
We probably shouldn’t do that. Because disc is my tool as well. And okay, you’re really fun conversation to do in another episode.
Okay, perfect. Yeah. So with disc when it comes to behaviors, there’s adaptable behaviors, which are the behaviors that we choose. And then there’s the natural behaviors, which is habits, we’re Don’t even think about our behaviors. And so when you’re at home with friends, family, you’re just comfortable. Those your natural habits and behaviors, your behavior just happens. Choice is what you’re talking about, which is that adaptation that sometimes we need to make with other people. And so the basic analogy here is There’s fast and they’re slow, and there’s people and there’s task. And so if you notice that you’re faster than somebody, what you can do is just simply pump the brakes. If you talk too fast, or you’re thinking too fast, or asking too many questions or responding too quickly, those are all very, very good examples of things that I’ve done and do, then what I need to do is be conscious of that. So the self awareness piece, and pump the brakes, which is as simple as taking a breath before you respond, not assuming just because someone’s asking you a question that you have to answer it. Those types of things that just because someone looks like they want advice does not mean they want advice, they just may want to be listened to. And so when you slow down and ask less questions, ask one instead of four. Wait for let silence be your friend instead of the scary enemy. That’s how you can slow down. Then the other folks they need to speed up a little bit. They have to hit the accelerator a little bit and maybe be Little bit more responsive to the questions that you’re asking be a little bit more be quicker to do the thing that they said they’re going to do a lot of people that are in the slower side of, of taking action, they get into analysis paralysis. And a lot of my clients are like that. And so it’s a lot about saying, What’s the little tiny step you can take now, because then it breaks that momentum barrier. It takes the brick off the proverbial train tracks so the train can move. And then you have vertical priority line, which is task versus people. And that one’s a little bit more complicated, but it’s just understanding the difference that some people think in terms of getting things done and fixing and bottom line orientation before they think about people. And then other people go, how is this going to impact my friends? how’s this going to impact those around me? How is this going to impact me can I express my opinion in this and then they think about the task so Ultimately, the easiest way to make adjustments to people though, is to either pump the brakes or to speed up. That’s, that’s the simplest. And you can do it in any situation. And you don’t even have to think about it very hard. So I always recommend that.
And it’s just as obvious is to see how the other person is showing up. So if I speak very quickly, and you only mean to speed up if I’m a slow speaker and kind of adjust for each other.
Yep. Which is fun. Because it becomes a becomes a bit of a journey and a bit a bit of an adventure. You’re going on a quest to figure out what kind of what is this? What type is this person? What are they like, and then you make your adaptations to them to better connect and more deeply Connect, which again, brings us to more quality relationships, for sure. Awesome.
One of the other things I wanted to talk to you about is the topic of how to build a personal advisory board. We run a structured program that helps people Hold it for them, and then we facilitate it. But I am just such a huge proponent of it’s a critical element to life and success in relationships and finances. And, you know, so I just want to tee up your thoughts on that, and how it’s impacted your life.
Yeah, so I want to back up a little bit to, to why I want an advisory board and why I always recommend people to have it. So in my Sage mindset, leadership model or framework, the a and safe stands for accountability. And I described this thing called an accountability pass in my course, and basically, it’s four different ways that you can create accountability in your life. So ultimately, we’re accountable to ourselves, period, we are the one that’s ultimately accountable and we can’t get out of that. But there’s ways to build that up and to create better accountability. So briefly, the P and accountability is passive accountability or the piano passes passive accountability, which means you’re essentially just sharing With people what it is that you want to be accountable to, you’re saying you’re sharing a story of the things that you want to do. If you want to write a book, if you want to start a business, if you want to go on a date with somebody, if you want to be better with your kids, whatever, you’re just telling a bunch of people, and then what happens is, they end up at some point or another, some of them will ask you about it. So it helps keep you accountable. So their interaction in that is pretty passive. Then the A stands for act of accountability, which is the idea that I’m going to ask you directly. Allison, can you keep me accountable to making sure that every week I write 5000 words for my book, and then you would check in with me and then preferably you and I would exchange accountability. So it’s very purposeful. And so this is what I do every Tuesday morning with those guys. We create that accountability list and we check in and see how things are going. Then the first S is for stuff. And so this is simply your to do list your calendar contracts you’ve signed, alarm clocks, your phone in some way or another. So it’s just the things in our life. can keep us, remind us to stay on track with what we said we’re going to do. Then last, the last S is obviously self. And so ultimately, the buck stops with me, ultimately, the buck stops with you. And so it’s about honoring and having integrity, but using the rest of the past to pull it off. So that’s the accountability piece, but the way but you want to put the right people in your life to really apply that well. Because if I surround myself, I was talking to a client yesterday. And he is he has people in his lives that I’d call like, level, let’s say level two people. And let’s say we go up to level four. He has some level two people in his life and some level three and fours. But the thing is he he’s adjusting to the level two people, instead of adjusting upwards the level three and four people and so when it comes to personal advisory board, what you’re doing is looking for people that are either at your level or significantly above your level, in terms of their experience, their knowledge, their wisdom. them, their willingness to share, wherever it is that you want to grow, you’re surrounding yourself with those people. But who are those people is really the question, how do you get these people on your board, because I’m not talking about a traditional advisory board, or, you know, Chief executive officer that has this advisory board around I’m talking about a personal advisory board. So this is the people that you know, in your life, they’re your mentors, their trusted friends, but they can also be people outside of your sphere of influence. So it could be someone that you stumbled upon, like, let’s say, Gary Vaynerchuk, on YouTube or on LinkedIn that you go to consistently now he’s not talking to you directly, but you can still use his advice. And the beauty of a personal advisory board is you get to choose who is on it, and you can kick them off whenever you want. And they don’t even know they need to know that they’re on it. And so, of course, I have recently started reaching out for new mentors in my life because I want to have changing my advisory board a bit I want to I want to bring it up a little bit because I’ve noticed a stagnation in my life. And so I’ve reached out to some people in my life to ask if they mentor me and put input in my life.
And how many people are on your personal over what the ideal number
I you need to be able to have contact with all of them one to one in some way or another. So to me to for it to be purposeful and sevens, the number that immediately comes to mind any more than that seems a little bit overwhelming. It’s not one person every day of the week, but a way to remember it. You have this buddy for Monday, this person for Wednesday? No, but in reality seven is something we can handle. We can remember what their role is sevens, one of those numbers, it’s easy to remember as well. So and if your spouse or the significant other isn’t on your advisory board, you may want to think about it.
Excellent advice. I think in terms of your life too, so you know, there’s, there’s someone that could be on your board, that’s for your business. But then there’s also spiritual aspects. There’s relational aspects, there’s emotional aspects. And so making sure that there’s, they’re well rounded, because that helps you keep balanced. Because like I said, back in the summer, I was way out of whack, because I didn’t have that balance in my life. But they if I had these people that was more purposeful about it at that time, I wouldn’t have gotten out of balance, they would call me out on it. And that’s really important for them to be brave enough to call you out on your stuff.
Is there a specific area or platform in which our listeners should and can follow you on prefer?
Yeah, I would say LinkedIn is the social tool that I use the most and I interact on the most and love LinkedIn because people are not Crazy a vast majority of the time. So LinkedIn is great. And then I have my own website, which is gillettesolutions.com. And then really the place where I put a lot of my content way more way more than any of the writing I do is on the sage mindset podcast. That’s the, that’s the place where you’re gonna get a lot more content. That’s where to find Alison, you’re going to find other folks that I’ve interviewed as well. So that that’s my favorite place to put content.
Fantastic. And I have listened to a number of your episodes on stage mindset. And I do agree that it’s a fantastic platform to just kind of get some quick tips and advice.
Yeah, thank you.
You bet. I’m Kyle, I am going to include in our notes, a link to your life map on Amazon and how to connect with you on LinkedIn. And I just can’t thank you enough for your time this afternoon and being here with us.
Yeah, you’re welcome.
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