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Timeless Principles for Building and Running Businesses

Erick Slabaugh is the CEO of Absco Solutions, a best-in-class fire-life safety and security systems integrator. He is also the Founder and CEO of FCP Insight, a cloud-based enterprise software solution for electrical contracting businesses. Erick is committed to helping entrepreneurs and business leaders leverage timeless principles and build a business that leaves a true legacy. As a former member of the EO Global Board of Directors, Erick is a long-standing member of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) Seattle chapter and serves on numerous other boards.

Intro  0:04 

Welcome to The Future Is Borderless podcast with David Nilssen, we feature top entrepreneurs and thought leaders from around the world, those who bring a global mindset and a unique perspective to their life and business. Now, let’s get started with the show.

David Nilssen  0:23 

Hey, I’m David Nilssen, the host of the show. Here on The Future Is Borderless, we connect with what I call global business visionaries who are unbound by traditional thinking and dedicated to sort of breaking the mold and doing things differently. Our mission for this podcast is to uncover innovative ideas, talk about sort of cutting-edge advancements, and then proven strategies that will not just fuel our business, but also our personal lives. And then together you know, with this information, hopefully we’ll all continue to be able to lead more effectively in an ever-changing world. Now, this episode is brought to you by DOXA Talent. DOXA helps you source full-time highly skilled workers from all over the world. And as a result, these companies can scale faster increase margin and improve culture. They provide everything from accountants, sales, development reps, virtual assistants, and even software engineers to everything from publicly traded companies, the local small businesses, and if you want to learn how to grow your business with offshore talent, simply go to All right, well, let’s jump into the program today. I’m actually really excited for this one. Our guest today is Erick Slabaugh who’s a distinguished entrepreneurs 30 plus years of experience in specialty contracting. As the CEO of Absco Solutions, Erick has dedicated his time to helping clients safeguard their facilities through vulnerability mitigation. He’s also the CEO of FCP Insight, a SaaS solution tailored for specialty contractors. And Erick’s altruism shines through his service on nonprofit boards like Seattle Rotary, the Seattle Fire Foundation, and presently he’s part of the Seattle Sports Commission and Columbia tower Club’s Board of Governors. He’s been a member of the Entrepreneurs Organization since 1997. We’ll talk about that here a little bit later. And he’s also been a global board member earned the EO global Volunteer of the Year Award twice. And actually, Eric inspired a namesake award in EO, Seattle. So with all of that, Erick, welcome to The Future Is Borderless.

Erick Slabaugh  2:24 

Thank you for having me, David. What a privilege and a pleasure to have the opportunity to speak with you today. Yeah.

David Nilssen  2:31 

This will be fun. I’m excited to jump right in now. I am. I’m curious what inspired you to venture into specialty contracting? Like where did that come from?

Erick Slabaugh  2:41 

Oh, well. My parents started this company more than 45 years ago with a business partner. It was less of an inspiration and more of a forced labor. When I was 19 years old, the company had lost a client that represented a third of their annual revenue. And their business partner had already exited the business this hold other people. And when they lost that client, they lost the client because it had been acquired and the acquirer centralised, all of their procurement to Minneapolis. And over the course of the next six months, they didn’t downsize. They didn’t terminate anybody, they didn’t reduce anybody’s pay. And they went from positive owner’s equity to negative $70,000, owner’s equity, three to two payables to receivables over about a six-month period. At the time, I was a freshman at the University of Washington. And I was asked if I was going to re-up for sophomore year, I said, yes. And I was told, okay, I guess we’ll sell the house. I asked, what are you talking about, and then I was told, or you can come try and make a go of the family business. It seemed like a pretty easy choice, because I didn’t think I was going to get any financial aid from my parents for my university attendance at that point. So left university and eventually started buying out other shareholders bought out one of the shareholders took out a loan from my grandfather, actually, for $8,800. And I bought my first house and 25% of the company for $2,500 from somebody who literally just wanted out. Yeah, so seemed like, at the time, the company was like worth negative some odd amount of money, which today, would be substantially larger number by based on inflation, but 1987. So, and by the way, interest rates back then were 18 to 28%, depending on so crazy.

David Nilssen  4:41 

Yeah, so it wasn’t really inspiration at the time or necessity, but obviously things worked out. Are your parents still in the business?

Erick Slabaugh  4:49 

No, at this point, I’ve got 97 point something percent of the company, a couple of minority shareholders and my mother, I shouldn’t say now my father was passed away. My mother is still my emeritus executive assistants. So occasionally people get an email from my mom, which is always entertaining. She hit her 45th year back in December at the company. So,

David Nilssen  5:19 

Very cool. Tell me a little bit about the company itself. So Absco, when I introduced you we talked about you safeguard client facilities, I think through was vulnerability mitigation. What does that mean? Like in layman’s terms for the people here that are not familiar with what that is? And tell us what you do and what is the problem you’re solving for your customer?

Erick Slabaugh  5:40 

Yeah. So think video surveillance systems access control systems, fire life safety, intrusion detection, mass notification, gunshot detection, or weapons detection, for that matter. For large campus environments, universities, K through 12 hospitals, we do lumen field for the Seahawks organization, we do the V Mac, we do a lot of work for the US Navy. Do work out at Joint Base, Lewis McChord, we do work in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and then a handful of other states depending on our customers. But really integrating those systems into a unified information platform. So that when an adverse event happens, emergency responders can have a faster response. My worst day, I was just with the security director of Seattle Pacific University for lunch at the Columbia tar club here about two weeks ago. And my worst day at Absco was the day that they had the school shooting at SBU when they lost the student, and Mark and I were reminiscing about it, and we both started weeping was really hard to his worst day on the job too. But the day that happened, the entire campus was locked down in about 17 seconds, and the entire campus was notified that there was a Shelter In Place emergency. Now there are a lot of things that went really right, including a student’s response to that situation that save a number of lives. But there were also a number of people who were immediately taken out of harm’s way because of the way the systems work. So those are the kinds of impacts the system’s going to have.

David Nilssen  7:34 

Amazing. Yeah. So when you say vulnerability mitigation is you’re looking for those places, that they’re tightening up, I should say the vulnerabilities of these large facilities have ushering so many people through them in any given time. And then when emergency does strike, helping to sort of respond in a more efficient way.

Erick Slabaugh  7:54 

Yeah, and prevent things from happening as well. I mean, when somebody walks into a stadium, how do you make sure that they don’t have a gun or a knife on them? Right? And how do you at the same time, ensure that the flow of people coming into the facility is inhibited at such a level that the facilities not useful? Yeah. So, college stadium for a football game or a basketball game, for arena, all of those things? How do you ensure that a school, you know, little things like just make it but sometimes it’s not our system, sometimes it’s advising a customer put a push button lock on the classroom, it’s a cheap way to give a teacher the ability to lock a classroom door. And so far we haven’t seen a single school shooting where if the teacher could have locked the push the button that that student has been shot and one of those classrooms. The problem is that not enough of those classrooms have that ability.

David Nilssen  8:56 

And sadly, it’s a big need today. Sadly, yes. You made the decision, though. So you’ve been obviously running Absco for the last three decades. You made the decision to start another company, which is FCP Insight and talk to me a little bit about that. What How did it come about? And why have you chosen to sort of deploy some of your efforts into this particular business?

Erick Slabaugh  9:21 

Yeah, so, in 2001, I was attending the birthing of giants program with Vern Harnish. It’s the EMP program now back at MIT for EO members. And Vern asked the question, what is the industry problem? And I love the waiver. What is the industry problem that if you spent a million dollars solving that problem, it’s a billion-dollar solution for your industry? Right. Good question. And the two thoughts that ran through my head were I don’t have a million dollars I can spend right now. And B, we don’t have a unified business system, in our industry that we can just run our business on, we’ve got all these little disparate like, estimating is done in a spreadsheet, and, you know, business files are kept on somebody’s laptop or in a manila folder. And, you know, drawings are done in CAD and like, all these disparate little silos, that nothing came together at, and my answer was I, I build a holistic business solution that deals with all this stuff. And strangely enough, 15 years later, we started building it 2002 for us. And strangely enough, 15 years later, construction was still the least automated industry in the world. And so we brought on in 2016 17, we brought on just a customer to figure out everything that we needed to do different to make it not an Absco product, but a prospective product, put it on Amazon Web Services. And then May of last year, we raised the money and started taking it to the marketplace, and we’re starting to add customers to it. So yeah, we’re having some fun with it now.

David Nilssen  11:12 

Very cool. I’m glad to hear you’re doing that. Well. How do you deliver that, though, to something that, I think about every industry and my opinion right now is going through some pretty spectacular change, right? Like we’re seeing just the rate of innovation increasing faster and faster? Like, how do you maintain a competitive edge, when you’re trying to deliver a sort of one-size, one solution to a broader industry?

Erick Slabaugh  11:38  

Oh, well, for us. So one of the things that we figured out was, we’ve made it so that we can literally turn on and off every single, not just screen, but every single data point. And on our screens, and we can move them anywhere on our screen, so we can add them and we can move them and we can delete them to tailor the ERP and that’s not through programming that’s like I as a user can well, I shouldn’t say on the back of the house and administrator can do that for an end user. And then we can provision that so that different people can see different things. So to your point, how do you make it so that one of the things we’re finding really funny is, we’re having to really scale the system way back for people to adopt initially because it there’s so much it can do that people are like, oh, my God, this is overwhelming. Yeah, you’re right. All right, let’s start here, get you up and running. And then when you tell us you want to be able to track vertical markets, we’ll add vertical markets, when you tell us you want to be able to add percent likely to close, we’ll add percent likely to close. But for now, let’s just get a proposal out call it good. Right.

David Nilssen  13:00 

I think that’s pretty common with any sort of large-scale software implementation. There’s always add-ins or apps or other capabilities that you can always subscribe to a higher level, but really is trying to understand like, what do I need right now, versus having all of those capabilities at your fingertips.

Erick Slabaugh  13:19 

And making it easy enough that people can do it without having to hire a programmer at some ridiculous rate, to be able to do it?

David Nilssen  13:27 

Now, one thing that I’ve seen, though, with software implementations, in particular, the integration initially is navigated with the company and the client. And then there’s the implementation, which is how we get them to use it. But then the next iteration would be like, how do we get them to move into that next app or that next capability and increase their subscription? So how do you guys think about doing that within your business?

Erick Slabaugh  13:53 

Lots of video, a lot of video feeds a lot of thought leadership around sharing how we use the system, some of the benefits that we’ve received from it. Life Hacks, basically, one of the things that we found interesting is our average salesperson, we used to think a salesperson in our industry, if they did a million to five that was successful. Now, we kind of expect our salespeople to do about 5 million. So, 300%, over what used to be considered successful. And it’s interesting, because we go and talk to other companies, and I’m like, oh, yeah, so our sales guys do about a million to five. Okay. Ours do five. So, and here’s how they do it. And here’s why our system is enabled that so it’s not just talking about the system, but explaining the process that allows for a better outcome, right, and giving them a reason to want to make that change. The biggest issue is change management, right? It’s changing behaviors, and giving them a reason to want to drive reports that change?

David Nilssen  15:02 

Cool. Yeah. Tell me a little bit. Just curious as thinking about your intro, you are the CEO of two different organizations. Now most people, they struggle to start and operate just one. So I’m curious, like, what are the strategies that you use to manage your time effectively assuming you do?

Erick Slabaugh  15:22 

Oh, well, I mean, I know this is gonna sound odd, but serving on the global board at EO twice, forced me to learn how to manage my time effectively, and it really forced me how to delegate and identify well, and you use culture index. So you understand this. I mean, I’m a persuader Trailblazer. So I’ve got a really weird stack, and three out on either side on that. So I drive hard most of the time I compartmentalize Well, I will say that I compartmentalize really well, when I’m working on Absco, I’m working on Absco. When I’m working on FCP, I’m working on FCP, when I’m focused on my own personal brand, I’m focused on that, when I’m with my children, I’m home. So when I’m off the clock, I’m off the clock. When I’m with my friends, like I compartmentalize well, I also delegate, well, might if you saw my inbox, my inbox, by the end of every day is down to three or four items in my inbox. And it’s been that way forever, and I try and teach my team how to do that. And I’ve got a number of people that are just like, I need to hire them EAs who are capable of doing that for them, because they just don’t understand how I do it. But I think it’s really important to identify, there’s, you’ve got a team member, Lauren, who I just think the world of because she says it really well, you delegate, you delete your file, or it’s something to be put in the schedule to be dealt with. Right. Those are, those are the things you do and that’s kind of how I run my life is just make sure that I keep everything moving in and on track.

David Nilssen  17:25 

You know, part of the reason ask the question, I remember when we first started DOXA years ago, I was still the CEO of Guidant Financial and I was trying to do both at the same time. And I found that, especially in a younger organization, it requires a lot more attention. Because you’re still sort of getting your sea legs for lack of a better term. So I chose to focus my time and attention to building DOXA. We have a philosophy there that is if there’s something that you can get off your plate in under five minutes, just do it. Instead of creating this laundry list of things that you got to get done in the future, just get it off your plate. And so funny enough, the system that you talked about this something I’ve been running for years, which is when I leave every day with nothing in my inbox. If it needs to be in my inbox, I use a tool, a plugin and Outlook called Boomerang to get it out of my inbox to come back to it when I want to pay attention to it a day, two days, three days a month later. But it’s either you respond, you delete, you drag to a desk, you drag to a calendar item, or you process it violet, dollar five actions, you need to deal with that simple. And most people overcomplicate it, I remember one time I had a salesperson I was talking to. And I was like, I looked at his inbox as I was sitting over standing over the shoulder and I said, do you have 7000 unread messages in your inbox? And he was like, yeah, I do. And I remember I said, I want you to go back two weeks control and go all the way down to the page and hit it again and delete every single thing in there. Because if you haven’t responded to it by then you’re not going to. Clean it up, start fresh. And here’s a new system. So anyways, may not even require an EA for them. But the system is definitely helpful. Well, enough about that. Let’s talk about I just, I always love talking to entrepreneurs about like some of the things that happened to them early in their careers that influenced them as an entrepreneur or really challenged them to grow as an entrepreneur. So if I were to say like, what’s the one or two things that you’ve done, or had to deal with in your life that really stretched you above your capabilities at the time? What comes to mind?

Erick Slabaugh  19:31 

Oh, I think the first one would be, 20 years old meeting with the banker for the first time and having him walk me out of the bank and telling me that he couldn’t give me a $10,000 line of credit because we’re gonna be out of business within the next 90 days to six months. And me saying that wasn’t an option because, you know, my parents would lose their house. And then having the same banker back in my office, like four years later soliciting our business. Yes, that was a fascinating experience. Another would be, like, when I was younger I was not a good leader, when I was younger, I could get triggered. And even as I got older, I still found, while I had developed a good deal of self-control, I still found that about once every 18 to 24 months, something would trigger me and I would just see read and lose my mind. And it would be so unlike my character in the challenges that as leaders, it takes weeks, months, years to build true trust with our teams, and it takes seconds to destroy it. And so that was not acceptable. And so there was a day where I had a team member and something went terribly wrong. And I looked at him and I said, I just want to know who do I need to fire over this. And he looked at me and he said, well, this was a process issue. This wasn’t a human issue. And if you have the need to fire somebody, you go ahead and fire me because I’m in charge of this. And he so just stuck me to my core. Like it was just like, oh my god, I was so wounded, that it was like I can never behave this way again. Like and it was about three months later that I was invited to join EO and it was like it was YEO then obviously, I was a matter of fact was that the Columbia Tarik lab it was in the Stimson library, and Michael Miller and Phil Erickson and oh, geez one other person there, invited me to join the then YEO, and it was like, oh, this is exactly what I need. I need a group of people to smack me upside the head, I could sit down and share life with and be vulnerable and tell them that I was an idiot. That I’m sure some experiences.

David Nilssen  22:10 

Fake it till you make it. Talent is a really interesting topic today. Because if you can find it, if you could find it, it’s hard to afford if you can afford someone with 11 million plus jobs open, they’re really hard to retain. So how do you think about or how do you approach nurturing talent or building culture within your organization?

Erick Slabaugh  22:33 

Yeah, it’s a really good question. And to your point, yeah. So I think there’s a couple of things there one, can you find the talent? Two, do they have the intellectual and physical capacity to do what needs to be done? And then are they prepared to actually physically do it? And those are sometimes two different things right there, they have the ability to do the job, but not the willingness to do the job. Right, they’re willing to accept the job, but for whatever reason, the pandemic has ruined their work ethic. And so they no longer you know, they’d rather sit home and watch Netflix then actually come in and do a physical job anymore. And when I say physical, I mean, be a blue-collar or white-collar job, they just don’t want to show up. And showing up is a huge part of life. And then once they’re here, how do we nurture it? Well, so to start, when we onboard, every new employee, we onboard with either company, I have a two-hour session plan that we share. What is the company? What do we do? What is our mission vision values, but then we also have a laundry list of about 12 stories that I share, most of which are now available on our various websites that really are just life lessons that we’ve learned over, that I’ve collected from other people more than anything, I mean, like, r&d rip off and deploy, right, like, they’re just really good character building stories. The importance of the little things in life, the importance of empowering your team, getting paid for outcomes, not content, all of those things that matter. And then we engage our team in a lot of different ways, including company events. For our holiday event. We held our holiday event in January instead of December, but we brought everybody together at Top Golf and had everybody from all of our offices come together. We flew some people and we brought some people in on a train. We had everybody together and it was a really powerful event.

David Nilssen  24:55 

Awesome. I think those things make a big difference. What about you offshore. So I happen to know that you have an offshore Strategy in your talent playbook. You decided to first start leveraging offshore talent, did you get any resistance when you propose the idea of going overseas for team members?

Erick Slabaugh  25:19 

Funny thing is I think you already know the answer to that question. I got huge resistance. Everybody looked at me like I was insane. It’s like, we’re gonna do what? Okay, so at the time, we really needed a second AutoCAD operator, desperately. And in the Puget Sound area, we had a heck, we could go outside the Puget Sound area, we couldn’t find anybody. And if we could find them, the likelihood that they were going to stay with us for more than a month and not get hired away was nonexistent. Because the construction industry was just red hot. Yeah. And it’s not just, then it became start working way down the list over the next two years, like finding an accountant became impossible. So near shore, or offshore, didn’t matter what it was, it was like we can’t hire in Seattle are these jobs because Amazon and Microsoft and Google and Facebook and fill in the blank, like you’re hiring anybody and everybody for twice what the market was a year ago. And it was just was crazy. So we had no choice but to look at alternative pathways to just fulfill work for the same companies that were hiring everybody. So yes, at first, I got a lot of resistance of Erick, you’re just absolutely nuts. There’s no way we can do this. And then when we got some amazing people on the team, and they started producing some amazingly good work, and everybody realized, oh, wow, we can make this work. And then I took some of my team members over and they got to interact on a personal basis. Everybody’s like, oh, well, this is a good idea. And these team members are happier to be part of our team than some of our team members back home. As matter of fact, I wish they had the same cultural integration into our organization. I wish our team members back home had the same cultural integration into our team that these team members have. Some of our team members are not as engaged and enthusiastic about being a part of our team, as our overseas team members are. And it just really changed the dynamic. And we view those team members every bit as much a part of our team. This last trip, I took my corporate president over for Absco, which by the way, is another Strategy to how do I manage my time I put a corporate President place with Absco. But I took Tom over with me and Tom, one of the things I love is Tom has great curiosity about everything. And he asked all of our team members, we took a day we drove him out to the province of Bhutan. And he just asked a ton of questions all day long. And the team just filled him up with information. And he just loved it. And they felt heard and like and Tom got them what additional resources that they needed as a result of it was awesome. So awesome.

David Nilssen  28:37 

Yeah, I think it’s great that you guys think about them as an extension of your team. Because at the end of the day, my experience has been if offshore team members feel like the outsourced resources, that their connection to the organization to the your own purpose, the quality of the work suffers as a result. How did having a BPO team sort of help you guys through the pandemic? I mean, having an offshore team having already sort of tested into this remote strategy, did that provide you any benefits during that time?

Erick Slabaugh  29:11 

I will say this, it prepared us for the pandemic. Yeah, I mean, I’m sure you remember. But going into the pandemic, like everybody in their brother was trying to get video chat resources, right. And everybody in their brothers trying to figure out how do we just answer our phones remotely. Right? And how do we get people VPN so that they can connect to how do we change our network dynamics so that people can do work from home and like, everything changed overnight? Well, it didn’t change for us overnight. Like nothing changed for us overnight. All of our people can already VPN in from wherever they were. All of our phone system was already Voice over IP, because we had already had to figure all of that out to allow our overseas team to be able to fully integrate into our team. And as part of that, there was another dynamic to that, which was I wanted to be able to work from home so that I could be home when my children came home every other week to be with me. And so we kind of worked through that as well. But so now literally, you can pick up your phone off your desk, take it home, if you have IP connection, your phone is still your extension. And so literally people just pick their phones up off their desks and took them home with them. So awesome. Yeah.

David Nilssen  30:44 

Erick, when we first started this call before we hit record and jumped in, you had mentioned that you had engaged a personal branding coach at some point in the last few years. And just curious, like, if you’d share with our listeners, why did you choose to leverage a coach and invest in your own personal brand?

Erick Slabaugh  31:01 

Yeah, so I do strategy summits for EO boards, and I do them for a handful of companies. And I have a lot of entrepreneurs. And a lot of close EO friends sit down and talk to me about the stage of life that they’re in, around some of them, because of my experience on the going through the path to leadership in EO and having done the Leadership Academy for four years, they get to that point where their leadership journey has come to an end, and they’re suddenly in a transition and they feel lost, or they’re selling their business, and they suddenly feel lost, they’ve lost their identity. And so I’ve had a lot of conversations, and I went through this myself right after my divorce, I suddenly felt lost, I just felt broken. Like, who was I, I didn’t know what brought me joy. I didn’t know who I was, I just lost my identity and a fellow EO, Melanie, out of Arizona came up and spent a weekend at my house just going through a laundry list of helping me identify that. And so one of the things that I realized is, we as EOs are more than our businesses were more than the role we serve in a nonprofit organization. It doesn’t matter what the nonprofit organization is, because I’ve had friends who they work their way through a nonprofit board, they became the Chair of United Way or tree house or whatever it was, and all of a sudden they got done with their last year. And they’re like, what next? I’ve seen chapter presidents of EO boards go on leave any Oh, why? Well, because I don’t know what next, right? Like, oh, okay, that’s probably not the reason to leave. Like, just be a member for a little while. And then let’s have a conversation. But so one of the things I realized is, there is a chapter after Absco, there is a chapter after FCP, I will likely sell one or both of these sometime in the next five to 10 years. And it will likely be both of these in the next five to 10 years. And I want the off-ramp that I have clearly defined who I am what I am. And I want to give back to my community in a broader way around leadership. And around trying to make the world a better place. The world right now, especially here in the US is a mess. I just saw a survey where Americans, we don’t value patriotism, we don’t value community, we don’t value church, we don’t value having a family, what we value is money and fame. Those are the most shallow things on the planet. If we don’t value being a part of our community, we’re in serious trouble. I mean, so working with Marina has been huge. And one of the things that she brought out of all of our conversations is, is that I do believe in a lot of traditional values. I believe that we should be brought together as, I do believe that the United States is better than it is worse. Look, I think there’s a lot of things wrong with our country but I’ve traveled all over the world. US we got a lot of problems. A lot of things wrong with it. But there aren’t too many places I’d rather be.

David Nilssen  34:56 

So you taking on this was to sort of help build a framework for yourself that you can help others to think about the second mountain for lack of a better term. Yeah, yeah. And in some cases, coming down from the mountain, right, like?

Erick Slabaugh  35:16 

Yeah, I mean, some people are headed into the valley, right? They’ve hit the peak. And they’re headed into a valley. And the reality is, they’re still in the Himalayas, right? They’re still way up at altitude. But all they can see is that they’re headed down, and they just don’t feel like they’re at altitude. Yeah, it’s like, Dude, and this is one of the posts I had recently. Seattle has started this group called the 10s. And it’s members that have been in tenured for 10 years or more, in EO and we had a question at a dinner that we were all at, and it was, what are you going to stop doing this year? And my response was relatively innocuous. I’m going to stop tolerating mediocrity in my life. And, like, eight of the 11 people at our tables said almost in unison, well, there goes our friendship. And it was, I know, they were all kidding. And at the same time, I know in the joke, there’s a certain amount of self-doubt in that statement. And every single one of the people who set it are people that I just look at, and admire and think the world of. Right? Like they are at the top of their game. They are amazing human beings. And they deserve to know that we all have that moment of, you’re not good enough. In the back of our head, we need to hear more of no, you’re a freaking amazing human being.

David Nilssen  36:56 

Yeah, well, imposter syndrome is real for all of us. That happens. Nobody seems to be immune. Well, very few people. Inherit, we’re coming towards the end of our time together, I’d love to just hear, I always enjoy talking to entrepreneurs, because my belief is that they tend to be lifelong learners. Clearly you are. But what is it right now that you’re trying to learn more about to improve Erick’s labor?

Erick Slabaugh  37:21 

Oh, wow, it’s all over the board? That is a really good question. I was just at the gathering of facilitators back in Atlanta, and we had Priya was one of our speakers. And one of the things she talked about was, every meeting has to have a purpose. And we need to end meetings intentionally with intent, and was at another meeting a couple of days ago, were talking about the contract of a meeting. Right? What I’m going to do, what I expect you to do, what the purpose of this meeting is, what the outcome that we’re striving for is, and what the conclusion of the meeting is what we got out of this meeting and where we’re going next. Right? And just being very intentional about that, and very clear cut about that. And it was funny, it was a sales conversation. It was like a Sandler sales thing. And, and at the end of it, I like to James that I go, James, if you take the word buyer out and put human in it child brand, co-worker, peer manager, that literally could be any human being. And he was like, yeah, no, this works for everybody. Right? This is just basic human interaction. So I’m finding that aspect fascinating.

David Nilssen  38:57 

Awesome. All right. Well, we’ll leave it there. We’ve been listening to Erick Slabaugh, the CEO of Absco Solutions and FCP Insight, Erick, where can people go to learn more about the work that you’re doing?

Erick Slabaugh  39:09 

They can either visit my personal website at or or Any of those are great. And feel free to reach out to me at erick.slabaugh at either the companies or my personal website.

David Nilssen  39:27 

So great. We’ll put all of those in the show notes. But thanks for joining the podcast today. Appreciate all your insights.

Erick Slabaugh  39:34 

Thank you, David. Make it a great day, buddy.

Outro  39:39 

Thank you for listening to The Future Is Borderless podcast with David Nilssen. Be sure to click subscribe to future episodes so you can hear from more top entrepreneurs and thought leaders and we’ll see you again next time.

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