Kendal's Podcast

Ep. 7 – The Power Of A Purpose Driven Team: Empower Your Team For Next Level Success


Hey, this is Kendal, Netmaker live from the studio, and today we are going to be talking about the power of a purpose driven team and how to empower your team for next level success. For those of you who don’t know me, I’ve had a chance to work with a lot of people across this country as a speaker, as an author, as a coach, and also as a, I had a chance for many years to work in retail. So I was working with all different types of people coming off the streets, coming into our shops and whatnot, our online store through custom orders and so on. And also having a chance to employ over a hundred people over that timeframe, up into this present moment right now. And I’ve had a chance to do some research and I wanna share with you some of my findings and the, the things that we’ve had a chance to, to produce, but most importantly, the things that will help you succeed as a leader to empower your team for next level success.

So as a leader, the people who are most drawn to you are gonna be people who respect your values, respect where you’re going with your life, your business, your organization. They’re following you. Now, in order to completely communicate that with the people who are following you, you need to understand a few things that I’m gonna sharing with you in this recording. So I’m gonna be sharing with you a few stories, and also I’m gonna share with you seven keys to develop a purposed driven team. And it’ll impact your bottom line. It’ll impact your customers, it will impact the people who are coming to you for your service and so on. Back in 2010, I started my first company. It was called Moose Meat Apparel. And when I first started as a full-Time University student, I thought that I was gonna be a success. I thought that this was inevitable, I was gonna make things happen.

And when I got into this business, I found something that really hurt me and I found that I had failed because I was not ready as a leader to step up and to build the proper team to make this thrive into what it could have been. So long story short, in 2010 when I started the business, I was a solopreneur. I was a full-time student trying to make this business become a reality. I would bring people into my business, I would bring different people to try work with me, only to discover that I would be the one doing most of the work. Have you ever had a group project growing up, whether it be in school high school, post-secondary and so on, and you yourself, to be the only person to, to contribute and put most of the effort into it? So when you had time to do a presentation, you were the one who actually had a chance to speak the most because you actually did all the work.

If that’s you, then there’s a good chance that maybe you and I have something in common and we have a few things that we can work towards to make things better for both of us. So let’s keep listening. In 2010, when I was building this business moves me to peril, and I was, I was trying to make it happen. The people that were coming into my life, I had attracted them there because I was not ready to grow beyond that. At least I was not aware at that time. And there’s a good chance that you listing right now. You have had similar experiences where maybe you’ve attracted the wrong things in your life, the wrong people and your customers have been the ones that have been suffering your products, your shipping, your organizations, or maybe even how your, your, your retail, your, your businesses organized.

People make all the difference in helping other people to thrive and to win, and especially the people that you’re serving. And in this recording, I’m gonna be sharing with you seven key steps, seven key secrets that will help take you from where you are to where you want to be in your life, your business, your career, and so on. So let’s get to it. So after the failure of my first company, moose Meat, I felt embarrassed. I felt ashamed. I felt like I had to let a lot of people down, and especially myself. And, and I, I really had wished that I had built a team in that moment that would’ve allowed me to succeed. And unfortunately, it just didn’t work out that way. However, I took what I had learned in that moment. I took all that pain and I fueled it into a different business.

So in 2011, I started this company Neechie Gear, right after the failure of Moose Meat Apparel and Neechie Gear was born out of a one bedroom apartment. In fact, the very first day I launched this business, my son was born in 2011, and it was downtown at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. And my son had been born there that day. And I can remember just like yesterday, my wife Rachel was carrying Keanu. And that evening I was sitting there with my old laptop and I remember pressing enter and sending off my first business plan of Neechie gear off to one of the biggest business plan competitions I was competing in at that time. And right after that, the next day I got a call saying that I had made the final round for this business pitch competition. So now I had to learn how to do a business pitch.

And I didn’t know what I was doing. I was terrified. So I was thinking, how do I build off of Moose meat apparel, create a purpose-driven team, create a purpose-driven company that finds a way to succeed? And this is what I found. The first key to creating a purpose-driven team is number one, you have to have proper values. Remember what I said before, when I first started this recording, I talked about how the leader communicates their values to their team members, the followers that you get, the team members that you attract into your business, your organization are people who respect your values and how you communicate your values into your corporation, your organization and so on. Your values have everything to do with how you carry yourself in life. Are you abusing drugs and alcohol? Do you abstain from all that stuff? Do you value partnerships?

Do you value marriage? Do you value your kids, your children? Do you value friendships and so on? All those things have a direct correlation to your values and how you communicate those values is how people are gonna perceive that. And inevitably the amount of people that are gonna come into your organization and impact you through your team. So when I first started to hire team members for Neechie Gear, I would tell my staff members that I was a solopreneur at that time and I was willing to grow this business with them. But I needed their help. And I let them, every single person that would come in, I let them know that I needed their help. So we had people from salespeople to, to design managers and so on, helping this business to thrive and to grow because I was learning just as fast as they were learning.

It was growing so fast, I was not ready and I did not expect what was gonna happen at that time. So as the weeks passed and my team members had a chance to work with me, they also had a chance to really bond with me through my values and I would share how much I valued my wife, Rachel, my son Keanu, and how much I was trying to make my business and my family life all thrive into one together, one wholeness and make everything flow in harmony. Like that was what I was trying to focus on, was trying to create a lifestyle that fit my family life, my business, and try to make it all come together. And they respected that. In fact, they respected it so much that they came in and they gave more than what was required at times and I really appreciated that.

So I’m gonna be talking about that later in the recording. So number one, the first key is communicating your values to your team members, the people that you’re bringing onto your team. Key number two is every single person, organization, company, and so on, should have a mission statement, should have something that aligns some slogan, some tagline that allows people, especially your team members, to communicate what you’re there to do, what you’re there to accomplish, what is your mission. So for us in that moment, us, I would always tell our our team members, this is Neechie Gear. We are a lifestyle apparel brand that empowers you through sports.

So every single time I would tell that to our team members, they would end up telling that to our customers and they would tell it with the same passion that I had communicated that to them. Going back to you as an individual, I also believe that every single person should have a mission statement. What is your mission in life? Your mission in life should be in correlation to your gift, what you’re good at. And if you don’t know what you’re good at, then ask people. You know, people will be honest with you, especially people that you’ve had a chance to work with. You ask them, what are my strengths? What am I good at? They’ll tell you some people are good at being athletic, some people are good at musicians, some good people are good at teaching, some people are good at writing books and so on.

Find out what you’re good at and apply it to a career. Apply it to your leadership position. Apply it to a organization, start a business based out of it. In fact, Neechie Gear was one of those pieces that allowed me to align my gift with what I really wanted to do with my life. So number two, everyone should have a mission. Every person, every organization. Number three, the third key to developing a purpose-driven team is every single person, but also organization, company, and so on, should have a story. The story should be your why, a why statement about why you do what you do, why you serve people, why you sell this product. I had told you previously about how I was raised as a kid in First Nation. And when I was about 10 years old, I was in grade five and my best friend, his name was Johann.

Johann, was a kid originally from South Africa, me and him, every single day we’d be kicking the ball at recess and we’d be sharing stories about how our lives were, where he came from, from South Africa. Me and him happened to be going to the same school. His dad was a doctor at the local clinic, and they lived at this place called Atens Lake, Saskatchewan. We just happened to be going to the same school. We loved to play the same sport, which was soccer. Then one day, Johan, he asked me this question, my bus had just pulled up one day and right before I was gonna get onto the bus, he asked me, Hey Kendal, why aren’t you playing soccer with us after school? So me, I’m stunned. I didn’t know how to react to this ’cause no one’s ever asked me this simple question that I had to be honest about.

So after a few moments of pausing and thinking about it, I just opened up to my best friend. I said, Johann, this bus that I’m pointing to, that’s my only ride to and from my reserve. We’re living off this thing called welfare. In fact, we don’t even have a vehicle. You know, I, I, we’re, we’re living off of this thing called welfare and we only get a couple hundred bucks a month. And then my mom would budget that down to the nearest penny. We would have to pawn my belongings, my my Nintendo, my bicycles and so on. We collect cans and bottles and ends, and the list continues. Even if my mom could get a job, she would have to find a way to go to the city. We’re living in this cycle of poverty. So that night he ends up telling his parents what I had told him.

The next day at school, I get off the bus Johann’s standing there and I’m thinking, why is he so happy? ’cause Johan’s just a, a super happy kid all the time. So I go up to Johan and I I we started talking and he says, Hey Kendal, I have some good news. And I said, what is that? And he says, I told my parents what you told me, and guess what, we wanna help you out. And from that moment forward, this family who I didn’t even know yet, offered to pay for my soccer fee. But you know what else they did? They drove me to games and practices. And you know what else they did? We became best friends. And I was invited to their house almost every single weekend. I had a chance to meet with all of them. His dad would become my role model.

His mother was an amazing HomeKeeper with her children and so on. I just loved being around them. It was just so positive. And two years of that, they hadn’t a chance to, to compete. Playing the sport of soccer, being around them and being mentored by Johann’s dad. We found out that they had to move away. And I was devastated because that was my best friend. And I was wondering what’s also gonna happen to soccer, my, my best friends moving away. You know, that’s, that’s a tough feeling. As a kid, before they left, they actually gave us a gift. And it was a 1986 Ford Crown, Victoria, burgundy, red, no hubcaps built for the res, as we would say back home. They gave us that because they saw within my mother that she was doing everything she could to help provide her her kids, which I am.

I am her oldest child. Without that family’s help, I would not have had a chance to continue to play more sports, play more soccer. That sport evolved into volleyball. That sport allowed me to graduate high school. Graduating high school allowed me to go to university to play college volleyball, finish two degrees. And inevitably this company called Neechie Gear, where now we have an opportunity to help the same kids that are growing up just like I did that are underprivileged, are from low income families and need a helping hand to help them ignite their careers through sport. That’s why we created niche gear. And I would tell that to every single customer, every single team member that would come through our doors so that we can change the world through this company called Neechie Gear one T-shirt at a time. It was that story that allowed us to evolve.

But what’s most important here is I was able to attract the right team members because I had a purpose-driven company, I created a purpose-driven organization that people felt attracted to. They wanted to come and work for us. They didn’t even ask about how much they’re gonna get paid. They just wanted to come be part of this mission, this organization produced to try change the world. That’s how much we inspire the public. So as you’re attracting the right team members into your organization, your business and so on, key number forward is you wanna create clear expectations of what you expect for them. Far too many times we see business owners, leaders and so on, they’ll make a new hire, they’ll have a new employee and they say, this is what you’re gonna do. And they sit ’em in a desk and create no clear expectations. They provide no mentorship and so on and expect them to succeed only to discover that this person lets them down in the future.

Who’s at fault? It’s the leader’s fault, it’s the organization’s fault. You have to create clear expectations. You have to in detail, show this person how they’re gonna succeed. Give them tools, give them equipment, give them training and show them how to win as opposed to being in the back of the office and expecting them to figure it out. Number four is creating clear expectations. And the easiest way to do this is you wanna find out every single team member that you have, find out what they’re good at and pair what they’re good at to something that your company, your organization is trying to accomplish. That department that they’re in, is that the right department that they should be in based on what they’re good at? So many times people are put into the wrong departments, wrong organizations and so on. Wrong even leadership because they’re not aligning what they’re good at with where they’re trying to go.

So as leaders, as CEOs and so on, your job is to find out their gift and also ask them, where do you see yourself in five, 10 years? Where do you wanna go? Is it with it in this organization? Do you wanna go do something else? Whatever that is, your job is to try help them to get there through your organization. I think it’s a far better opportunity for yourself to try help someone to get from where they are to where they want to be. And your organization, your company is a segue to help get them from there to there. That would be amazing, wouldn’t you think? So, creating the clear expectations, finding what they’re good at, finding what they wanna accomplish with their life and help making it a win-win so we can utilize your time together to help both of you succeed. When I became a speaker and I started to do keynotes across the country, I was started high schools at small events and eventually into to colleges, university, corporate events and national organizations and so on.

And as I was climbing this hill trying to grow as a speaker, I started to find that this was my gift. This is what I was good at. I felt I was meant to do this. That is what you gotta be dissecting with the team members that you’re, you’re hiring people that you’re bringing into your team and so on is that feeling, what makes them tick? What makes them go the extra mile? What gives them purpose? If you can align their purpose with your organization, there’s a good chance that you’re gonna find a win-win. Key number five is you have to give rewards to your teams. You have to give them praise, you have to show them that you appreciate them. So many times I have seen, especially even with the people that I’ve been coaching, I ask them, how many times do you talk to this person, talk to this department, and so on.

And sometimes some of them don’t even communicate with them for the whole month. Like how do you expect things to get better? How do you expect to create a winning organization? A winning company? If one department, you don’t even speak to the goal. The main reason a business a company thrives is continual communication. Think about your own relationship If you have a husband or wife and so on, a boyfriend, girlfriend, whoever that might be, that is the number one reason most people break up is the lack of communication. Lack of communication creates a lot of conflict, creates a lot of problems. And you know what, that’s also happened in my own relationship with my wife. We’ve had to get counseling several times just to make sure that we can communicate effectively. ’cause no one taught us that. So as a leader, as a CEO, you have to understand that you have to bring this into your organization if you want things to thrive because no one can read your mind.

You have to communicate this, you have to have regular meetings with people, you have to touch base all the time with people. And when they meet your expectations and they exceed ’em, you reward ’em. I’m not saying you have to give them bonuses every single time, but all I’m saying is even lunch goes the extra mile. It’s showing them that you care. Letting them go, you know, a few, few minutes early that shows them that you care. Simple things like that, giving them praise. But most importantly, it has to come from you, from your vocal chords. You have to share that. Share the message. Simple words go a long way. I’ll, I’ll give you an example. In grade 10, the reason I was able to play volleyball and I stuck to the sport is because of a high school volleyball coach. And his name was Doug.

Doug was the guy who made it very clear the very first day I walked in, I was a very shy, timid kid. And he took me aside at the end of the tryout and he said, Hey Kendal, I see a lot of potential in you. I want you to stay on my team. You might not get a lot of playing time this year, but I want you to stay on my team. I see potential in you. No one up until that point has ever told me that I see potential in you. I felt gravitated towards this team. I want to give it my all. And you know what I did within a few years that I was the team captain and that sport took me to college. And you know the rest of the story, that’s the power of praise. That’s the power of rewarding your team members, the people that you’re serving.

’cause you don’t know what they’re gonna come back and serve you in the future. You don’t know the amount of effort that they’re holding back and just by a simple word, they can unleash it, give you a hundred percent effort the next day because you are showing them that you appreciate them. Key number six is the type of culture that you’re going to be producing for your team. The type of environment. How are you setting the tone for when they walk in on Monday morning? What does it look like? Do you want to be in an office setting? Do you wanna work remotely? Do you want to just have a, maybe a coworking space where maybe you see each other every, every day or so? Whatever that looks like, you have to set the tone on day one because there is nothing more frustrating to team members that walk into an organization only to see chaos because the more they see unorganized surroundings and and and lack of positivity in the environment, they start to soak that in.

I’m gonna give you an example. I had a summer job one time and at the summer job I didn’t realize that I was expected to do more than most people. In fact, I was just like a regular employee, just like every single person there after a few weeks. And I was doing exactly what they were doing. And what I noticed was a lot of these staff members that I had walked into were very unhappy people. And every single coffee break that I would walk into, it was nothing but complaining all the time. Complain, complain, complain. All they would do would complain about the politics, how bad the weather was. Everything in the newspaper. So me, I’m sitting there as a, as a teenager and I’m sitting there listening to all these conversations and I wouldn’t speak a whole lot. The first couple weeks, a few months later, I found myself contributing to this negative conversations that were happening because I was a product of that environment.

You see, you gotta watch the culture, the tone, the environment that’s happening around your team members because they can either nurture them or destroy them. And I believe that at that time there could have been one person that could have stepped up and said, we’re not gonna be doing this anymore. And unfortunately it didn’t happen and I had to be a product of that and I found myself being more negative in that environment. Thankfully I was able to reprogram myself later on after that and find a way to be more positive again. But that’s the power of creating the right culture, the creating the right team, creating the right environment. Is it destroying you or is it nurturing? You choose to nurture your team members and you’ll watch and see the amazing things that brings out of them and they’ll be more happier and know what happens. Their families become more happier and they start supporting them, especially in times where you need them the most, where maybe you need them for overtime and so on. They’ll be there to step up for you.

Key number seven, to building a purpose driven team. Number seven is you must allow your team members to be creative to try experiments. You know, there is so many times I’ve had a chance to to go through organizations and I had a chance to work with leaders and they are so strict on team members and what they could do. In fact, a lot of them don’t feel like they can express their true creativity in business. The reasons why a lot of entrepreneurs find a way to thrive is because all they’re doing is creating experiment after experiment after experiment. They’re trying things out and a lot of them fail. A lot of them don’t even make it to the marketplace. But because they’re doing so fast, so fast and trying one thing after the other, eventually they’re gonna find something that works for themselves. And that is the goal that you wanna create for your team members.

You wanna be able to give them freedom and confidence in themselves so that they can try things out and not have to hover over their desk to make sure that they’re doing something right or making sure that it’s not screwing up and so on. You want to be there to support them through it all and you have to give them freedom to be creative, to make experiments. ’cause the more you do that, you’re gonna find golden nuggets and those experiments and they’re gonna come back and impact your bottom line, the people that around you, your customers and so on. They’re gonna be create a more happy environment and you know what’s gonna happen. You might even find your next C-suite leader there. You might find your next CFO, your next CEO, your next COO and so on. But it won’t happen if you don’t give them the freedom to be creative, to do different types of experiments and keep trying until they find something that works for themselves.

And most importantly, for you as an organization, the best example I can give you is we used to have all these different types of designers and we would always get different designs thrown at us. So we would experiment by putting these T-shirt designs, putting them on different items from t-shirts to hoodies and so on. And we would test them, we would test them in our stores, and if something didn’t sell a lot, then we wouldn’t do that again. But sometimes we would find something that maybe we thought wouldn’t sell and it would be a home run. But that wouldn’t have happened if we weren’t able to allow our team members to be creative, to let ’em, to try this experiment out. That’s the power of giving your team members the freedom to try things out, to experiment, to be creative, to impact your bottom line for future success.

So let’s recap the seven keys to building a team. Number one is every single organization, every single business needs to have values. Those values are communicated from the leadership down to the team members, and those are the reason why some people will follow you and some people will say, I don’t wanna work for you. Number two, the mission statement. What are you trying to achieve? That mission statement should be communicated to every single customer that walks through your door, every single distributor and so on. Number three, every single brand should have a story, personal brand, company brand and so on. That story is communicated through your mission statement to help plant that seed, to help allow a customer to be able to be persuaded to come to you to buy your product or service. And so on. Number four, creating clear expectations and showing your team members what you expect from them so that you’re able to align them with their gift.

And when you align them with their gift, they’re able to produce better results for you every single time. Number five, always reward your team members. Always create a place of praise, of uplifting, a positivity. The more you do that, the more you’re gonna bring out more of their gifts and let them shine through that. Number six, creating a culture that allows them to thrive in a certain environment, especially if you’re working in a different office setting or a retail store and so on. That culture is very important. Number seven, allow them to be creative. Allow them to create experiments that will hopefully one day create a golden nugget that you can use in your products, your services and so on. That creates bottom line results and helps impact your organizations. And most importantly, your customers will be happy, you’ll be happy, your board of directors will be happy and so on.

Those are the seven keys to empower your team for next level success, and I really hope that you, you could take a few of those and apply ’em to your life, your organization, your business, and really see amazing things happen as they’ve done for us. I wanna give you one last bonus key here. One of the things that we used to do is, is we would bring our team members into, for example, if we would give back a donation to our organization, a charity and so on, or we would do an event for someone, I would try my best to bring my team members that could attend to attend that with us so they could, they could feel part of it. Those simple things allow them to feel part of the deeper purpose that you’re trying to achieve with your organization and it makes them feel part of it and they’ll wanna give more, they want to help more and so on.

I really hope that you take this time to absorb all this and allow yourself to, to create and and use some of the steps into your organization and so on. And I really want to thank you as a leader, as an organization that you’ve taken the time to invest in yourself because you know that there is a power in creating a purpose-driven team because when you do this, you can create long-term impact and create a business that is recession proof and so on. But most importantly, create a business where your customers are happy, your team members are happy, you are happy, and it flows in harmony and watch the amazing things that come outta that. Keep moving foward!


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