Emily & Heather - The Making of Our Partnership - Ep #166Sep 13, 2022
I finally get to introduce you to my new business partner, Emily Hall! She’s a THREE time guest of the show, but this is the first official appearance since announcing The Speaker Co this summer.
If you’re like me– super curious and intrigued by what other business owners think about– then you’re going to LOVE this unscripted convo where we take you behind the scenes to how we got here, where we’re going next and what YOU can expect moving forward.
- Why Emily and I decided to jump into a business bed together
- How our communication differences work together (and how we’ve adjusted)
- The extremely unique superpower we share that most think would be a disadvantage
- The 3 Cs that are fundamental to our business
- Our Business Building Values
- And what you can expect from The Speaker Co moving forward
LISTEN to the full AUDIO of this episode:
LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON APPLE PODCASTS / SPOTIFY / STITCHER
Subscribe to Heather’s YouTube Channel here.
The Making of The Speaker Co
What brought Emily and I together last Fall and joined forces together to serve our audiences?
It’s not an overnight light switch. We both have existing businesses that are running like clockwork, so we’re actively transitioning and rolling out our new combined services and products. We’d been getting together every few months or so swapping stories and project ideas.
(5:35) Emily: “It just came together really, the timing was perfect because at the time I didn't even know what I was looking for. We're well into COVID, things were opening up and we're looking for, like meeting people so the situation where you're like, okay, yeah, let's go make a friend, and we realized that we had very similar backgrounds. We both come from corporate healthcare, both kind of ended up in this online space. I've been here three or four years and we're serving the same audiences just differently.
My husband jokes that we built businesses back to back because you focus on speaking and voice and messaging and I focus on the content and the design and kind of getting the tech pieces all under control, so essentially, outside the person versus inside the person, and we got together and it just worked from the very beginning. We knew that our audiences need each other so we're figuring out how to partner.”
ONE FRIDAY BRUNCH CHANGED IT ALL.
(10:48) Heather: “So we met for brunch, it was April 22. I remember you were telling me about some exciting clients you were working with and I was talking about how things were going with Speak up to Level up and some of the ideas I had for a couple coming affiliate launches. We were chatting around having you come guest teach inside one of the affiliate programs I was doing for Business by Design.
So that night before I had been binge watching Netflix and season two of the Home Edit had just come out so Joanna and Clea were like in my brain. I remember sipping champagne and I looked at you and I've said, ‘wouldn't it be cool if we became like the Joanna and Clea of presentation design and we would like go into people's homes, ie., businesses and clean up all their crap and help them create the most epic messaging that they could pull from over and over again?’”
What’s our differences and how do we make it work?
One of the really powerful things that we noticed and this is why we think our partnership is so wonderful is because we have inherently different communication styles. We can help our clients more effectively ideate, come up with their messaging and figure out how they can talk more effectively to their teams and their businesses.
(17:33) Heather: “We met in person a couple times where we were having these conversations to brainstorm out. You're an internal processor and I'm an external processor which we’ve figured out very quickly. This comes back to one of our core things which is effective communication. It was understanding that we think and process and communicate differently, that if we were going to make it work, we had to figure out our style.”
(18:17) Emily: “I am a projector. My brain just kind of works to puzzle pieces out. We realized we needed to set ourselves up a little bit differently so that you had space to externally process and I had space to process too without the pressure of like a direct in person conversation moment.
This is one of our biggest strengths in how we communicate is that we can listen to those kinds of instincts like something isn't clicking and we can have very open and honest conversations about it.
It took some practice especially at the beginning because we weren't used to having to share our ideas with anybody else. We're used to just having them going and doing the thing. We built our businesses on our own, so it was different in a lot of ways for us. And what we realized was that using a tool like Voxer or voice messaging over text was actually better for us because we could just say all the words and I could have time to sit in and respond. We're a lot better about it now.”
Our invisible disabilities as our superpowers
23:06 Heather: “I am a partially deaf speaking coach. I have been wearing hearing aids for 13 or 14 years. If you want to hear more about my hearing loss, check out Episode #17 – a full episode around the real story behind my hearing loss and how it led to my superpower.
( 26:30) Emily: “I am a colorblind presentation designer so I cannot see colors accurately. Everything in my world is just a little less saturated. What it does is it actually makes me a built-in contrast tester for presentations so my eyes are essentially designed to be able to see if colors are going to work well together.”
It's funny that we should be less able to be successful in what we do but we've really turned them into our strengths, and it is because of our experience with invisible disabilities that actually shaped how not only we operate as humans but it shaped how we teach.
What really is The Speaker Co?
The Speaker Co was founded to help entrepreneurs create and deliver obsession-worthy presentations that make people fall head over heels for them and their offers. Whether you're speaking at a conference, teaching a workshop or delivering a webinar to pitch your offer– they’ll help you stop winging it and get RESULTS.
Our three main legs are:
The Speaker Society - officially opening on September 27. If you’ve been waiting for doors to open to SULU, you’ll LOVE the Speaker Society.
- Creative Agency
Speaker Studio - our Done for You Design. Get back hours of time by letting our talented design team create custom slides, media kits, and PDFs for you.
- Events - Conferences, retreats, different style events (in person or virtual).
The Speaker Co: Our 3 C’s
This is a conversation that we had locked into place pretty early on and it really guided a lot of how we have the rest of the transition kind of came together. These became sort of our guiding principles on a lot of things and making sure that they stayed both front and center in how we wanted to build things for our clients but also in how we operated things on the back end. We’re still figuring out how to formally roll this out in our messaging but it was this idea around:
- Committing to yourself to show up
- Committing to yourself to be brave and speak and use your voice in front of other people
- Connecting to your why and your core ideas
- Connecting to your message
- Communicating it in a way that really resonates with people and that authenticity shows through
It's really kind of internal and then how does everything come out and bring your audience along for this journey because that's what every talk is. You're picking your audience up from the beginning of the talk and you're taking them on a journey. It's an experience. It's something that they're wanting an outcome from.
They're wanting something from listening to you, from hearing you, from learning from you, and you're their guide so being able to help them commit to that journey, to connect to what you're sharing, and then to be able to communicate what they want and what they need afterwards.
Our Core Brand Values
#1 Always defer to SIMPLICITY
(31:21) Emily: “My memory has a tendency to overcomplicate things. I go immediately into the details. But coming back to simplicity gives me a starting point which I really appreciate and so it's actually been really, really helpful and key in how we've been able to build this plane.”
( 32:55 ) Heather: “For me, it also is a really good reminder. A lot of times as business owners, we have the constant need to reinvent. We also want to learn and absorb and be around all the other business owners which means our brain is always going a mile a minute with all these ideas, and it's really easy to get swept up in the different program ideas or offer ideas or tactic ideas, hopping from one thing to the next and trying to figure out all the things around how you can best show up, share your message, help people. It's all in good intentions.
But at the end of the day, when we're thinking about all those things, we don't have the discipline to say, what's the one thing that's gonna make the biggest difference? That I think is actually one of the hardest things to do as entrepreneurs because we have all the ideas, but it is the biggest needle mover. The answer always becomes super clear when we ask this question.”
#2 Keep it REAL + FUN
Our second main value which we think is one of the most important is we have fun, but we'll kind of blend that in and say what we wanted was our brand being authentic and real and being something that people wanted to be around.
It’s whatever authentic and real feels for you as an individual. Figure out what that is and double, triple down on that because that's where you're going to feel the most aligned and that's where the magic happens.
#3 Maintain INTENTIONALITY
You got to be really intentional in your message. As business owners, we have to be rooted in that and there has to be strategy around it.
#4 Stay OPEN
This is super, super important especially if you’re going into a business partnership. This was fundamental for us and we look at it in two ways: (1) openness to new ideas, and (2) we have an open room for people (inclusion).
There's openness in how we run things because we bring different experiences, ideas and preferences to the table. So being open to having those conversations and hearing the other person out and really reevaluating our own ideas, our own beliefs, our own kind of decisions that we've made before, works better here.
Also it was primarily about inclusion and accessibility. We want everyone to feel they take up the same space. What we do is for everyone. It can help everyone, it does help everyone and making sure that that is communicated in all ways and in every step of the way. We want people to feel like they're invited and want them to feel welcome when they're here and feel welcome to come back when they leave.
#5 Above all else, go with FULL ASS COMMITMENT
We go full ass which is a complete and total commitment. We very quickly decided that in order for us to truly serve our audiences and help people get their message out, we're gonna go full ass on this and make it happen.
Previous Episodes Mentioned:
Designing Effective & Attractive Slides with Emily Hall - Ep #135
[Conference Debrief] Craft + Commerce Takeaways & What to Know About Live Events Post Pandemic - Ep #158
A Seemingly Invisible Disability - The Real Story Behind My Hearing Loss and How it Led to My Superpower - Ep #17