page title icon 183: Art Coombs: You label you

Art Coombs Show Notes Page

Art Combs overcame being labeled as lazy and stupid to becoming a CEO. Along the way he started several businesses, wrote a few books and traveled the globe as a contact center expert. He now starts companies focused on customer service problems that he faced as an operations manager.

Art Coombs was born in Las Vegas, Nevada and raised in Silicon Valley. His family moved there so his father could obtain his Ph.D. from Stanford and from there he got swept up in the high-tech entrepreneurial tsunami beginning to swell in the 70’s and 80’s.

Art’s parents mirrored “Leave it to Beaver”. His father worked while his mother stayed home. They ate breakfast and lunch as a family. He had 4 sisters and 1 brother and it seemed they always had other foster kids in their home. Some asked to be adopted, so they became legal siblings.

Growing up Art was rather shy and a horrible student. He excelled at athletics and metal/wood shop. Luckily, he was raised by a father that focused on his self-esteem and not his grades because Art was often labeled lazy or stupid because of his dyslexia. Once Art figured it out, he went from the bottom of his high school class to the top of his college class and graduated from San Jose State with many scholastic honors.

Art started his first company right out of college: Video Data Systems. He raised capital from his father. As he wrote the check, he said I am investing because I am your dad not because you are a good investment. That led to some deep introspection and lessons learned. But it did set him on a path of entrepreneurship and creating organizations from the ground up.

After several years, a relatively small firm asked him to move to Europe and set up their European operations – again, a great fit for his entrepreneurial tendencies.  He was the first European employee, with some talented people around him, they built that organization to over $100 million in annual revenue in less than 4 years. From there, he moved back to the USA and continued building and creating companies with culture.

During the past twenty-five years, Art has worked in leadership positions with a number of global firms and their call/BPO centers worldwide. Currently president and CEO of KomBea Corporation, Art has served for more than a dozen years developing and marketing tools that blend human intelligence and automation to improve call center phone interactions.

Art is a widely published author of methodologies for BPO/contact centers, outsourcing, and technical support, and has served in leadership positions at Hewlett-Packard, VLSI Research, and RasterOps.

Art currently lives in Utah along with horses, dogs, and just enough land to be comfortable and yet not enough land to need outside help. He calls it a ranchette.

He is a single father of 4.  2 Boys and 2 girls.  2 are out of the house, and 2 are still living at home.

Tweetable Quotes and Mentions

Listen to @ArthurFCoombs to get over the hump on the @FastLeaderShow Click to Tweet   

“Now we live in an environment where change is happening every 12 to 18 months.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet   

“When the cell phone came along it totally changed and disrupted the game.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“Financial institutions are going to radically change the way they do business and it’s going to catch a lot of them off-guard.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“99% of contact center agents are ethical.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“As consumers we will have more and more tools available to us online.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“When you have a problem, a real problem, people want to deal with people.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“We are going to combine human intelligence, human intuition with technology.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“We have to bring more technology into the interactions that live agents have with consumers to increase the consistency.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“It doesn’t matter how hard you train, humans are 2-sigma machines.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“I don’t believe artificial intelligence is going to be able to truly understand nuances in our language.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“Think about the very name of that – Artificial Intelligence – is that not an oxymoron?” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“When the heart is convinced that the head has it right, you’re motivated to move.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“Managers talk to the head, leaders talk about the why.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“You’ll never really get people in your organization to go the extra mile if all you do is manage.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

“Leaders have to engage the heart as well as the head.” -Art Coombs Click to Tweet 

Hump to Get Over

Art Combs overcame being labeled as lazy and stupid to becoming a CEO. Along the way he started several businesses, wrote a few books and traveled the globe as a contact center expert. He now starts companies focused on customer service problems that he faced as an operations manager.

Advice for others

Do the hard things now instead of sweeping them under the carpet.

Holding him back from being an even better leader

Procrastination

Best Leadership Advice

Raise as much capital as you possible can.

Secret to Success

I live hard easy, not easy hard.

Best tools in business or life

I focus on the person first and then P&L second.

Recommended Reading

Don’t Just Manage–Lead!

Human Connection: How the “L” Do We Do That?

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

Contacting Art Combs

website: http://www.artcoombs.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/artcoombs/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ArthurFCoombs

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArthurFCoombs/

Resources and Show Mentions

Call Center Coach

An Even Better Place to Work

Show Transcript: 

Click to access edited transcript

183: Art Coombs: You label you

 

Intro Welcome to the Fast Leader Podcast, where we uncover the leadership like hat that help you to experience, break out performance faster and rocket to success. And now here’s your host, customer and employee engagement expert and certified emotional intelligence practitioner, Jim Rembach.

 

Call center coach develops and unites the next generation of call center leaders. Through our e-learning and community individuals gain knowledge and skills in the six core competencies that is the blueprint that develops high-performing call center leaders. Successful supervisors do not just happen so go to callcentercoach.com to learn more about enrollment and download your copy of the Supervisor Success Path e-book now.

 

Jim Rembach:      Okay, Fast Leader legion, today I’m excited because I have somebody on the show today who I’ve known for a long time and I finally get the chance to talk to him about his deep experience in the contact center industry. Art Coombs was born in Las Vegas, Nevada and raised in Silicon Valley. His family moved there so his father could obtain his PhD from Stanford and from there he got swept up in the high-tech entrepreneurial tsunami beginning to swell into 70s and 80s. 

 

Art’s parents mirrored Leave It to Beaver and his father worked while his mother stayed at

Home they ate breakfast and lunches of family. He had four sisters and one brother and it seemed they always had other foster kids in their home and some asked to be adopted so they became legal siblings. Growing up Art was rather shy and a horrible student. He excelled at athletics and metal and wood shop. Luckily, he was raised by a father that focused on his self-esteem and not his grades because Art was often labeled lazy or stupid because of his dyslexia. Once Art figured it out he went from the bottom of his high school class to the top of his college class and graduated from San Jose State with many scholastic honors. Art started his first company right out of college video data systems, he raised capital from his father. As his father wrote the check he said, I’m investing because I’m your dad not because you’re a good investment. That led to some deep introspection and lessons learned. But it did send him on a path of entrepreneurship and creating organizations from the ground up. 

 

After several years a relatively small firm asked him to move to Europe and set up their European operations. He was the first European employee and with some talented people around him they built the organization to over 100 million dollars in annual revenue in less than four years. From there he moved back to the USA and continued building and creating companies with culture. During the past 25 years, Art has worked in leadership positions with a number of global firms and their call center or VPO centers worldwide. Currently, he’s the present CEO of KomBea Corporation. Art has served or more than a dozen years developing and marketing tools that blend human intelligence and automation and improved call center phone interactions. Art is a widely published author of methodologies for BPO contact centers, outsourcing, and technical support and has served in leadership positions at Hewlett-Packard, VLSI Research and RasterOps. Art currently lives in Utah along with horses, dogs and just enough land to be comfortable yet not enough land to need outside help. He calls it ranchette. He is a single father of four, two boys and two girls. Two are out of the house and two are still living at home. Art Coombs, are you ready to help us get over the hump?

 

Art Coombs:      I’d love it, let’s do it. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Alright, now glad you’re here. Now I’ve given our legion a little bit about you but can you share what your current passion is so that we can get to know you even better?

 

Art Coombs:      Current passion—I work for a company called KomBea and we’re passionate about call center security, call center compliance and call center process adherence. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Art, you and I had the opportunity to talk before we actually started this interview and the conversation went great and I definitely want to pull it in so that listeners could hear. One of the things that we talked about that really got us to talking more about KomBea and why it’s so important, we talked about transformation and change and how it

impacts the customer experience and you gave a great understanding when you started talking about, okay, for tens of thousands of years we did this. If you could kind of talk through that I think there’d be a great set up for why passion is and what it’s so important. 

 

Art Coombs:      I truly believe in other people, lots of smarter people than me but if you look at the world’s history a very macro scale for million and millions of years we lived as hunters and gatherers then somebody got the bright idea that said, hey let’s plant some seeds in the ground, and so then for hundreds of thousands of years we became a farming type environment, a farming world and that’s the way we thought of life. And then along came manufacturing and all of a sudden for centuries were a manufacturing kind of globe and society. Now all of a sudden, in the late 80s and certainly in the 90s actually you go back to the 60s 70s we have technology emerging and technology coming onto the scene, but change is happening this globe we haven’t seen change happen from millions and millions of years to hundreds of thousands of years to centuries to decades and now we live in an environment where change is happening literally every 12 to 18 months. 

 

Jim Rembach:      You also shared that you had a really interesting conversation with a judge over in the Philippines just a short time ago and I think it was really impactful to me to talk about when you start talking about the evolution and the rapid change that occurred for them. Share that a little bit. 

 

Art Coombs:      Absolutely. It’s only been a few decades but most third world countries or even in Europe most countries had their own Telco Company that managed all Telcos but when the cellphone came along it totally disrupted and changed the entire game. So if you think about a third world country like the Philippines back then 60 70 percent of their entire population did not have a phone, there was no landline in the rural areas. And yet when the cellphone came along within a couple of years everybody in their nation was able to be connected. The same thing there’s another massive change that is going to hit our globe here in the next couple years and that’s the crypto coin and banks are scared to death governments are scared to death. How do we control this massive change that’s about to hit us? Because I can’t control the Internet if Jim and I can trade money, real money, electronically with no institution seeing that that exchange took place it’s a scary thing because our governments live and breathe off taxes. A lot of financial institutions are going to radically change the way they do business and it’s going to catch a lot of them off-guard. Like Uber, it changed how I travel. I used to use taxis all the time. I used to rent cars all the time, I don’t do that anymore Lyft and Uber have totally changed the game.

 

Jim Rembach:      I think it was also interesting too because you were mentioning how with KomBea that you project that within just a really short period of time that people won’t even be using their credit cards in order to make purchases and do the exchanges. You talked about the contact center how fraud issues in the contact center exists and you had said how the contact center is one of the most fraud ridden places when it comes to the use of credit cards and all that than any other part of a business. 

 

Art Coombs:      And we in the industry it’s hard for us. I realize I’m calling our baby ugly and

it’s my industry but we have to be candid and we have to be honest with ourselves. It’s not all evil people these are evil people these are people who are just trying to make a living and scratch out a living for their family. Again I call it the Jean Valjean theory. If you’ve ever watched Les Miserables, Jean Valjean steals a loaf of bread to feed his sister’s child. And so when that kind of Maslow’s hierarchy is involved people’s ethics begin to blur and they begin to get fuzzy. The problem we have in the call center industry is if I were to take your credit card, let’s say I’m an agent it doesn’t matter where I am in the world, but if I take your credit card and I say, Jim, in order to reserve this Marriott room or this Hilton room or this Days Inn room or wherever you stay I need to grab your credit card. You’re going to read it to me, you’re exposing that credit card audibly to anyone you’re around and it’s great if you’re sitting in your office but what if you’re in the Atlanta Airport trying to get a hotel for your next day? If I’m a good agent I’m now listening to that credit card you’re exposing the credit card audibly to me I’m writing it in a credit card field on my CRM and I’m visually seeing it if I’m a good agent I’m going to say, Jim, let me read that back to you just to make sure I got that right. And now I’m reading your credit card where there’s at least five or six other people around me that’s exposed to the credit card. Not only that if a company is not really technically savvy it’s in their call recording or their screen capture so it’s exposed that way. 

 

And what happens is agents will—I hate to say it, but agents will take that credit card and write it down after they leave the center, they don’t have to write it down right there as I’m going to lunch I can memorize Jim’s eight digits, I don’t have to remember all 16 I just remember eight because the other eight are all the same and I remember the CVD code I write it down. I don’t think people are aware on the open market right now if you were to go to Manila or Bangalore or Mumbai or you know San Jose Costa Rica anywhere on the planet your credit card a good credit card is worth somewhere between eight to twelve dollars per credit card and an agent can double or triple their salary very quickly. Now what happens is you save up for a month or two and then sell that list of credit card numbers to organized crime they sit on it for a month or two and collect other people and then they sell it. So this hotel that you booked in April your card is not violated or hit until August until you see 6x boxes that were purchased in Miami Florida. And what do you do? You’re going to talk to your spouse and go, hey honey are you buying all the kids Xboxes for Christmas or—what’s going on? And she’s going to say, no. But you as a consumer have no clue how to connect that transaction with what happened five months earlier on a simple reservation. Now I’m not trying to pick on the hotels it happens everywhere. Let me also say this, 99% of all agents are ethical and don’t do this they all have scruples but we all know that humans are vulnerable mistake making machines we make mistakes and they’re agents that are they’re not that ethical and those lines blur and we have this John Valjean theory and they steal and they rationalize it in other ways. But we’re passionate at KomBea about changing that. 

 

There is technology out there that’s easy to deploy and relatively cheap where you can create an environment where the scenario would look like this, Jim I got this hotel reservation for you I need to collect your credit card, are you using your smartphone right now? Yes I am. Oh, well let me push you an SMS message. And I’ll push you an SMS message, Jim I’m going to stay on the line you can see that SMS message come through just push that button and your phone becomes a kiosk and I’m still on the phone I’m there helping you walk you through it but you’re going to enter in your credit card and you’re going to submit the, yes okay bill my card, but it’s all you. I can’t see it and I can’t hear it, I’ll just know that it went through. And I’ll be able to say, oh great, Jim we got it all covered and your card has cleared. Okay, what else can I do for you? Now if you’re not on an SMS file if you’re not on a smart phone I can say, hey Jim, why don’t you just use the DTMF tones of your touch pad and just enter the credit card there I won’t be able to hear the DTMF tones but I’ll be able to see blank dots appear as they come on. So if you have a struggle or if you hit two numbers twice and you shouldn’t have or for whatever reason the card didn’t go through let’s back up and I’ll help you and you can enter it again. There’s lots of ways to collect a credit card and a social security number without exposing it to the agent. Now the cool thing about this is that it radically reduces PCI compliance because less technology is exposed. But if you grab via the kiosk or via the DTMF or another other vehicles and you send it immediately to the payment gateway that credit card information isn’t ever in your telephony or IT infrastructure you’ve eliminated not reduced eliminated PCI scope. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Well, I can see a huge impact for that when you start talking about—even how it affects the entire issues in regards to the whole Quality Assurance process there’s just huge ripple effect to all of that. Now I would like to kind of give context to because one of the reasons I wanted to have you on the show is because I’ve been in the contact center space for couple decades, and you have as well, but that background and experience kind of led you where you are today, where did you start? You said it was back in the late 90s I think? 

 

Art Coombs:      How far back do I go? I was a pathetic high school student, I had dyslexia and back in those days we could identify dyslexia but we didn’t know what to do with dyslexia. Now we have lots of tools and we have lots of things we can do with kids with dyslexia to help them overcome that back in my day it wasn’t that way, I was labeled stupid or lazy luckily for me I had a dad that knew I was neither. And my dad was more focused on—he would say, Art, people aren’t going to care how you spell creativity or how you spell implementation they’re going to want you to do it and you have the skills and leadership to make those things happen so don’t get hung up on what the scholastic this academic world labels you, don’t do that you label you. Anyway, so I sort of got a hold of myself and I leveraged my strengths and I went from the absolute bottom student in my high school class. I swear I didn’t think my name would be called on graduation day I jokingly tell my parents that my dad must have paid someone off or my mom made dinner for a year or something happened that I didn’t know about that got me through but I went from being the worst to actually being one of the best.

 

I graduated top of my class in college and graduated with lots of honors and from there I started a company and sort of fell into this entrepreneurial role. From there I got invited to go over to Europe to set up a support center because Europe was radically changing in the late 80s. Remember in ‘89 Europe signs what they call the (16:45 inaudible) treaty which allowed U S companies to support and distribute goods very differently than they had in the past. And so I was over in Europe for about eight years setting up support organizations for US companies. When I came back to the United States and joined a small little BPO company and somebody on the board got crazy and said, let’s make Art the CEO, and I said—that sort of led one thing to another. I start companies focused on customer service problems that I faced as an operation manager. Whether it’s training or whether its compliance or whether its security I dabble a little bit Artificial intelligence, but yeah, I focus on what I believe my expertise is. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Talking about that transformation piece talking about the whole crypto currency piece talking about this transformation as a whole, changing customer experiences and we talked about how the evolutionary point of what we have to do now and that window is kind of like within 18 months—if we’re doing what we did two years ago we’re in trouble. If you start if you start talking about that type of rapid transformation process and flipping it into projection other than the whole pain and fraud issue thing, what else do you think is going to be changing in the customer experience and contact centers that we just may not be visible?

 

Art Coombs:      I remember when I was raising money for a company called Echo Pass and I was sitting in the room with a bunch of VC’s and they were literally spending billions with a B—billions of dollars on Artificial intelligence. And I remember one prominent VC, very well Known VC on Sand Hill Road that basically said, the call center industry as far as a number of agents we have on this planet which depending on the annals she talked to was anywhere from 13 to 15 million, he said, the number of agents we have on this planet will radically shrink because of the investment and the power of artificial intelligence and how they’re going to apply it in the customer service industry. The reality is that didn’t happen. The call center industry as far as the number of seats has consistently grown until the last couple years it actually stopped and we’ve now sort of plateaued. But I do believe—how quickly the change happened this VC I believe was off-base. What I believe is going to happen is that we will have more and more tools available to us as consumers online. Just take me for example, I used to call my bank on a regular basis to transfer this or to do that or to check this or to do that now I do everything online everything even depositing a check. 

 

I take a picture of it with my phone and I just send it in and it’s deposited I don’t have to get in my car I don’t have to go to the ATM I don’t have to do anything. So there’s lots of things that companies are going to do to help us as consumers to let us help ourselves. However let me say this I am a big believer that when you have a problem, a real problem, people want to deal with people they want that touch they want that there’s security involved and me talking to someone and having someone say, Mr.  Coombs, I have your special meal taken care of and the wheelchair for your mother on this flight I promise we’ll be there. You see there are certain things where I’m really comfortable using technology to solve my problems if I’m calling to get the balance of my checking account I can call or if I’m calling to find out if my daughter’s flight is going to land at the appropriate time literally you can use automated systems and I can get the exact same information that the tower has and that the pilot has, I know that if they’re going to land two minutes late or five minutes early, so that means I now can regulate when I leave the house to go pick her up. But if I’m doing something where I’m booking a hotel and I need some special accommodations I want to really make sure this is nice. Let’s say I’m taking my spouse to a Valentine’s romantic weekend, I’m going to want to talk to someone because I want that validation. I’m a big believer that we are going to combined human intelligence human intuition with technology to provide a really wowing draw jaw-dropping experience for consumers. I believe that we have to bring more technology into the interactions that live agents have with live consumers to increase the consistency. 

 

So the very definition of being human is we make mistakes it doesn’t matter how hard you train humans are two sigma machines which means that you can not get me any more than 92%. It doesn’t matter how hard you work with me and how well I read that script my compliance scores are going to flow around 92 93 94 at the best and if you think it’s over than that and you got humans doing it you’re lying to yourself something’s wrong. Because humans can’t do it, I can’t make a hundred percent of my free throws no human can do that. Doesn’t matter how many hours Steph Curry shoots it’s not going to happen and it doesn’t matter how many times you read a disclosure even a federally mandated it’s got to be 100% accurate human agents aren’t going to get it we have to combine technology to bring that quality in that consistency in. I’m a firm believer in my lifetime and in my kid’s lifetime I don’t believe Artificial intelligence, you could go to the people at nice they might debate this with me and I’d love that debate. I don’t believe Artificial intelligence is going to be able to truly understand nuances in our language. We need intuition and it’s going to take a long time before Artificial intelligence is going to get there. In fact, think about it, think about the very name of that Artificial intelligence, is that not an oxymoron?

 

Jim Rembach:      Definitely is. Okay, so what we’ve been talking about the human transformation the organizational transformation the country transformation all these things, man, it’s just riddled with a whole lot of emotion. And one of the things that we look at on the show in order to help us get them pointed hopefully in the right direction are quotes, is there a quote or two that you liked that you can share? 

 

Art Coombs:      I think one of my quotes I’m most passionate about now is, when the heart is convinced that the head has it right you’re motivated to move. Now, let me explain that, I’m passionate about—one of the books I wrote is called Don’t Just Manage—Lead, managers talk to the head managers say, hey, Jim I want you in at eight I need you to take this many calls the average handle time of your calls should be eight minutes you go to lunch at this time I need your CSAT scores to be so high I need all these metrics, that’s what a manager would say. And that’s a good thing, I’m not dissing that in any way it’s important for people to understand what’s expected of them that’s a manager and managers are focused on daily, weekly, or monthly even quarterly goals managers talk to the head they focus on, the who, the where, the when, and the how. Leaders, you can always spot a leader in the organization, they’re talking about the why, they’re talking about what’s our organization going to look like a year from now? Two years from now? Five years from now? 

 

And so back to the quote, you’ll never really get people in your organization to go the extra mile if all you do is manage. If all you do is manage you’re talking to the head and people are coming in a day and they’re leaving at 5:00. But when you give them the why, when you convince the heart that the head has it right now I’m connecting it and people are motivated to go the extra mile, they’re motivated. I’ll give you a real personal example here really fast this could relate to any call center any customer service center, I was really struggling I have a 14 year old son and I don’t know about you but homework is not his favorite thing. Every night I say, Kai have you done your homework? Every night. And he says, yes dad I have. Well when the grades come out and he’s got FS and DS so the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and I go to his teachers and I say, hey, what’s the deal? And they say he’s a bright kid he just doesn’t do his homework. So I go home and I say Kai you’ve been lying to me. Wow, you took a couple of notches of trust and now we got—and so what do? I lock in and I start managing him. 

 

And I say, hey I’m going to take away your eye touches I’m going to take away the Xbox I’m going to take away electronics I’m going to lock you in your room here is your math homework here’s the book you’re supposed to read here’s the report you’re supposed to do don’t come out until you got it done. And it gets a little better but it’s a constant battle it’s a constant fight I’m managing I’m talking to his head I’m telling him we’re how who and what he’s going to do. At night, I’m like really struggling with this and all of a sudden it hits me I’m not leading my son I’m managing my son. I’m not giving him the why he has no clue why homework is so important. So what do I do? At two o’clock in the morning I go down and I said, hey Kai wake up. Now if you’ve ever woken up a 14-year old boy at 2:00 in the morning it’s a trip. And he’s looking at me like what the heck are you doing? And I said, please just get up it’ll take about 20 minutes put on your sweats and come with me this will change your life. And we have a massive Walmart down in our area it’s open 365 days a year 24 hours a day all the time and I said, Kai as we’re driving down to Walmart I said Kai I’m not trying to be disrespectful to anybody but I want to show you what your future looks like if you continue this behavior of not doing your homework and getting F’s and D’s in school. I said, you’re going to see 35 45 55 year-old men and women who are pushing brooms and stocking shelves and I’m not trying to be disrespectful but I’m betting you that if we talk to any one of them and we ask them, hey, when you were 14 what do you want to do when you grow up? Not one of them is going to say, push a broom in Walmart at 2:00 a.m. And I’m telling you Jim when we got to the store we didn’t say a thing it was as if I called the Walmart manager and he had orchestrated this thing. It was amazing and we’re walking around and I’m quietly saying Kai listen I love you no matter what if this is what you want to do if this is your vision for you in 20 years then stock the shelves the best you can make it look perfect take pride in your work I’ll love you and I’ll be proud of you but my guess is this isn’t what you envision for your life. And I said, the problem is Kai these people made decisions to not do their homework that limited free agency that limited and restricted options so their only option is working at fast food restaurant or pushing a broom at Walmart my guess is that’s not what you want to do? But if it is I love you. So we walk out we drive home dead quiet. Halfway home my son says, dad I get it I absolutely get it. And it has radically changed how we approach homework. All I have to do is say, hey I can’t be done your homework and he goes dad I understand Walmart, that’s all he says is Walmart. So a quote I’m passionate about you have to engage the heart leaders have to engage the heart as well as the head. When the heart is convinced that the head has it right you’re motivated to change.

 

Jim Rembach:      Art, I want to thank you very much because I definitely connected with that having a 14 year old and a 12 year old that I’m struggling with the whole homework thing and I think there’s going to be a 2:00 a.m. wake-up call coming soon. For those that are listening to the show very often you know that the show follows a certain flow when we talk about quotes we get into hump stories and but I think Art covered it all in his own, that you Art I appreciate that. What I would like to know is—you have KomBea we talked about several other things going on and he was talking about the homework change, but if you had one goal one, what would it be? 

 

Art Coombs:      I think on a grand scale I mind there’s a myriad of directions my mind would go on that one, on a grand scale I would love to help us create tools that enabled agents to provide a better more positive customer experience or callers all over the planet I’d love to create tools that provide callers security. I’d love to create tools that eliminate agent fraud or disclosure mumbling and we all have been in call centers, agents get so good knowing what federally mandated disclosure to mumble through because if I say it clearly I might lose the deal or I might lose the pledge or I might lose the lead or I might lose the cross-sell or upsell. I just want to create tools that create no ambiguity and yet still allow us to communicate as humans with humans in a very clear honest kind gentle way where I can get my problem solved.

 

Jim Rembach:      And the Fast Leader legion wishes you the very best. Now before we move on let’s get a quick word from our sponsor. 

 

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Alright here we go Fast Leader legion it’s time for the Hump Day Hoedown. Okay, Art, the Hump Day Hoedown is the part of our show where you give us good insights fast. I’m going to ask you several questions and your job is to give us a robust yet rapid response that are going to help us move onward and upward faster. Art Coombs, are you ready to hoedown? 

 

Art Coombs:      Let’s do it. 

 

Jim Rembach:      What do you think is holding you back from being an even better leader today?

 

Art Coombs:      Procrastination. 

 

Jim Rembach:      What is the best leadership advice you have ever received?

 

Art Coombs:      Raise as much capital as you possibly can.

 

Jim Rembach:      What is one of your secrets that you believe contributes to your success? 

 

Art Coombs:      I live hard easy not easy hard. 

 

Jim Rembach:      What do you feel is one of your best tools that helps you lead in business or life?

 

Art Coombs:      I focus first on the person and empathy and on P&L or profit and loss second.

 

Jim Rembach:      What would be one book that you’d recommend to our listeners and it could be from any genre? 

 

Art Coombs:      The most recent book I read that I really enjoy is the Subtle Art of Not Giving Up. 

 

Jim Rembach:      If we’re go** otherwise I’m going to lose my clean—

 

Art Coombs:      If you can suspend, just suspend, I have sort of abhorrence for that word, but it’s an absolutely fantastic book.

 

Jim Rembach:      Okay, Fast Leader legion, you can find links to that and other bonus information from today’s show by going to fastleader.net/ArtCoombs. Okay, Art, this is my last hump day hoedown question: Imagine you were given the opportunity to go back to the age of 25. And you’ve been given the opportunity to take the knowledge and skills that you have now back with you but you can’t take everything back you can only choose one. So what skill or knowledge would you take back with you and why?

 

Art Coombs:      I would take back this knowledge, I already mentioned it, I would take back the knowledge of doing the hard things now is far, far better than procrastinating them or putting them off or sweeping them under the carpet. Living hard now and enjoying the consequences of easy later is far, far better than taking an easy road and dealing with hard consequences later. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Art, it was an honor to spend time with you today. Can you please share with the Fast Leader legion how they can connect with you? 

 

Art Coombs:      You can find me on Instagram, you can find me on Twitter they’re both at @Arthur F Coombs. I’m also on Facebook at author, Arthur F Coombs. And I also have a website, it’s artcoombs.com. 

 

Jim Rembach:      Art Coombs, thank you for sharing your knowledge and wisdom the Fast Leader legion honors you and thanks you for helping us get over the hump. Woot! Woot! 

 

Thank you for joining me on the Fast Leader show today. For recaps, links, from every show special offers and access to download and subscribe, if you haven’t already, head on over the fastleader.net so we can help you move onward and upward faster. 

 

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