The Agile For Agilists Podcast

How Ford Credit is Investing in ProdOps to Build a Strategic Advantage with Kevin McClure

June 5, 2023
Album cover for the Agile for Agilists Podcast Season 2 Episode 9 featuring an image of Kevin McClure, Senior Manager in the Digital Experience team at Ford Motor Credit.
Agile For Agilists
How Ford Credit is Investing in ProdOps to Build a Strategic Advantage with Kevin McClure

Ever wondered how creativity and collaboration can ignite your professional journey? We had a blast chatting with our longtime friend, Kevin McClure, Senior Manager in the Digital Experience team at Ford Motor Credit. He revealed the fascinating story of how he transitioned from a finance degree and sales career to a product manager, rekindling his creative spark along the way.

In this riveting conversation, we delved into the importance of visualization skills and empathizing with customers for successful product development. Kevin shared his experiences with powerful tools for mapping out his mind and illustrating the flow of value in a way that is tangible and easily presentable to stakeholders. We also discussed the exciting journey from BA to Scrum Master, the evolution of our partnership, and how treating product development like a business can lead to impactful results.

This episode is jam-packed with valuable insights, from UX maturity to the entrepreneurial spirit and metrics-driven decision-making. Don't miss out on learning from Kevin's experiences and discovering ways to channel your creativity into success. And hey, if you love the episode, post a repost with the hashtag #AgileSticks and tag us for a chance to win a free Agile for Agilist sticker pack! Let's keep the creativity flowing!

Join hosts Drew and Brad on an exciting episode of The Agile for Agilists Podcast, as they welcome special guest Kevin McClure, a Senior Manager at Ford Credit with a wealth of experience as a Product Manager for multiple Fortune 500 companies. In this captivating conversation, Brad and Kevin reflect on their experiences at Meijer and explore the fascinating journey that led Kevin to excel in the field of product management. Gain valuable insights into the power of visualizing work and effectively presenting those visualizations, while also discovering Ford Credit's innovative strategies for deepening their understanding of customers. Tune in to this episode to gain useful perspectives on agile practices, effective product management techniques, and the pivotal role of customer-centric approaches.


S02-E09 Kevin Episode (Post Audacity)
[00:00:00] Brad Nelson: Welcome to this episode of the Agile for Agilists podcast. I’m your host, Brad Nelson, and with me is always is Drew and Drew. What do we have going on today?
[00:00:11] Drew Podwal: Oh, we’ve got some cool stuff going on today. Aside from our wonderful guest in the topic . We’re excited that we’ve now got Agile for Agilists podcast stickers, officially licensed stickers from the Agile for Agilists podcast, and they’re super cool. They should definitely be on the back of everybody’s laptops and water bottles and whatnot.
And so what we’ve decided to do is do a giveaway. So if you like this episode and love it. Then give us a repost, use the hashtag Agile sticks and tag us in it and we’ll reach out to you and coordinate sending you out a sticker pack for free. And they’re really, really cool. They’re prismatic. Brad did such a great job with the logo.
So get your sticker today.
[00:01:01] Brad Nelson: get your sticker.
[00:01:03] Drew Podwal: I’m gonna pass it back to you, Brad.
[00:01:05] Brad Nelson: Thanks Drew. So with us today is a long time friend of mine. We’ve known each other for, I believe about eight years now. His name is Kevin McClure. He is a product manager, product owner. He’s been in the product space as long as I’ve known him. So I’m gonna let you finish introducing yourself Kevin.
[00:01:24] Kevin McClure: right. Thanks, Brad. Thanks Drew. Um, the stickers are great. I have one on the back of my phone, actually saw Brad speak at a Google IO event last week, and, uh, it was a great time. Um, yeah, I’d love to introduce myself. Uh, thanks for having me on the show today, guys. I really appreciate it. Uh, first time doing a podcast like this and, uh, you know, I, um, I wanna go back a little bit in history of, of, of me a little bit.
So Brad mentioned eight years in, in product, um, being, uh, software development. Uh, I spent. The first about nine years outta college. Graduated with a finance degree, but I didn’t want to, I didn’t wanna do that. I actually wanted to be a CPA for some odd reason. Looking back, I kinda laugh at that. Um, I was just like, I’m not like these folks.
Um, I, I just had more of a creative spark in me and I’ve always been a creative person and I kind of thwarted away from that. Cause I was like, that’s what I like to do to for fun, right? That’s what I do for enjoyment, um, to get myself out of any other loop that I’m in. But, uh, world’s collided and things have changed so fast that I’m, I’m really fortunate to be where I’m at today.
Um, the skills that I’ve learned, That I’ve gathered, people that I’ve talked to, small and large companies that I’ve worked for, I’ve really got, um, a wide range of, of, of exposure, I would say. Um, so kind of grinding my teeth at it. Sales, I learned to get outta my shell, talk to people, talk to strangers, begging for money essentially.
Right? But during that time, I really learned what it, what it meant to, to have a IT data center, what that meant for the company, the business. It wasn’t just about pushing product, right? I thought it was at first, but it, it really wasn’t, right. It was just a line item on their, on their, uh, budget list. And, you know, I soon out kind of outgrew that, you know, I was like, sick of selling other people’s things.
I said, you know what? My, my creative spark has, has left me again. Um, and I, I wanted to do something different. And a friend of mine worked at Meyer, so Brad had mentioned that earlier. That’s where him and I met, um, said, Hey, you should try this. You know, you’ve been talking to me for a couple years about something like this.
And he’s like, I don’t know exactly what, what you wanted, but I thought this would interest you. So I said, Hey, why not? Let’s give it a try. Right. I left a, a pretty comfy, um, income from doing sales. Took a huge pay. But you know what I, it’s, I was like, that’s, that’s what I wanna do. That’s exactly what I wanna do, right?
Is be part of a team, do something as a team, not just me going out there fighting the world. Um, I wanted that comradery back, right? I’ve missed that. Um, and really just wanted to see what I could do, right? Um, using my creative sense, using my analytical sense as well from studying numbers for so long, right?
I was like, oh, this is kind of a great combination of the two. So, fast forward a little bit. Um, you know, I found myself, uh, now at Ford Motor Credit. Um, Part of Ford Motor, we’re the finance arm. I’m a senior manager in the digital experience team. So what that means is we’re in charge of anything, mostly anything that’s user fr front facing, um, whether it’s a web, an app, anything in between, right?
Anything you can really think of is, you know, part of the organization that, that I’m part of today. So that’s a little bit about me.
[00:05:01] Brad Nelson: Awesome. Yeah. And. When I was at Meyer with Kevin, so he joined as a marketing analyst, as he mentioned. That was when I first became a ba, and then we went through the transformation together. So he learned how to be a product owner as I learned how to be a scrum master. And so those bonds that you build when you’re learning new roles like that and going through a transformation together are pretty strong.
[00:05:26] Drew Podwal: You know, I want to call something out actually that you said in your intro. Cause I, I kind of feel the same sort of way. I was supposed to be a photographer, right? If like 16, 17 year old Drew got what he wanted out of life, I’d be, you know, traveling around the world with bands and, and shooting amazing photographs.
And I was super creative. And then I joined the Navy and I felt like there was no creativity anymore. And I kind of learned how to rewire what creativity meant for me, you know? Um, and so, Troubleshooting circuitry became creative for me. Right? Um, and now I do feel that being a coach, right, helping to move chess players across the board and, and, and working with other coaches and scrum masters and whatnot, is really creative.
Um, I will say, you know, and, and this might be a little incendiary, but I bet that Bernie Madoff made Bernie Madoff, Bernie Madoff, Bernie, right? Um, as much of a pricky he was for, for what he did to the world, I’d be willing to bet that whatever the, the scientific or psychological or principles of like dopamine and whatnot that get released in my brain when I take an amazing photo, right?
That when he was coming up with creative ways to part the world with their money and make himself more money, that it probably was the same sort of like dopamine triggers and whatnot from a creative perspective.
[00:06:54] Kevin McClure: Yeah, I, I agree. Uh, you know, I mean, just look at Willful Wall Street as well. I mean, that guy did, did some bad things, but he bounced back, right? Like, think about, even though he was on, you know, substance abusing substances and everything. But like even before that, you know, I was gonna gonna say like, no matter what you do today in this world day and age, I think if you’re not using some sort of creativity, it’s, it’s problem solving, right?
It’s, I want to do this thing, how do I get there? Whether it’s me painting an acrylic painting right. Or drawing something out. You know, my daughter’s asking me to draw things out all the time cause they know I’m creative and know I’m an artist. So I’m like, sure, I’ll do that for you. Right. But yeah, I, I, I think in today’s landscape, I mean that’s, it’s crucial to a skillset, just cause you’re a software engineer.
If you don’t have any creativity, I’d be quite worried about my future.
[00:07:48] Drew Podwal: Yeah, I, I think we’re all creatives in that regard. And like when you were talking about like, you know, you, you wanted to be a cpa, but it wasn’t creative. Like, I get that like looking at spreadsheets and, you know, balance sheets and that, that to me doesn’t feel very creative. But there are people out there who love doing that.
And I, I, I, the point that I was trying to make is that, um, you know, what’s what to one person is what creativity is to one person is boring to another and vice versa, you know? So, uh, so how are you putting all of this in practice today?
[00:08:26] Kevin McClure: Yeah, that’s a great question. Drew, I think. I think what I do in software. You know, when I, when I was a product owner for so long, right? And, and that’s, I was like, wow, I didn’t know this job existed. Right. And I didn’t know, actually, when I joined, I didn’t really know how much creativity I was gonna be able to have, or like the freedom right.
To, to, to do that. All I knew was, oh, I get to work on a piece of software. Right. I didn’t really know the extent of what that meant until I really got into it. And, you know, for me, I think it was honing in my eye for design, right? You know, going back I was like, I always Drew, uh, anything I wanted, anything that came to my mind, right?
I was like, I’m gonna draw it out or I’m gonna create this. But now it’s like I have some much, some restrictions around it, some freedoms around it, right? But I think just being able to build that muscle, of having a keen eye for, um, what looks good, what resonates, um, You know, what makes a good user experience?
What makes a good user interface? Right? Those are two different things, uh, potentially, right? Um, and really now, like if I fast forward to what I’m doing now, I mean, I have to come up with new ways of working. Cuz I am handling a lot of work, I’m handling a lot of people right now. You know, I, I come up with something every day to make my life easier, right?
I use mirror board, like it’s a bible to really visualize what I’m doing, how I’m doing it, sharing it with others. I don’t keep information, right? I, I, I, I beg others to, uh, give me feedback on, you know, what I’ve put together, right? So it’s, um, you know, besides that too, it’s like, you know, building things for users.
You have to try to put yourself in their shoes as well. Um, You have to get a good sense, like Brad always says that you’re not the customer. Right. You have to really separate. That took me a long time to separate those things, but having the creative sense of, in the analytical sense too, right, of, um, people are visual people, right?
Um, and, and that’s what they see. So that’s, it’s, you know, creativity and design and making web apps and apps. I mean, that’s, it’s almost your number one thing, right? How do you get their attention? So yeah, I’ve just learned over time to hone in that skill and still working on it. Right? There’s still, there’s so many different methods and different ways of looking at stuff now.
It’s, it’s almost unreal.
[00:11:12] Brad Nelson: Yeah, I, I think back to our time at Meyer, and I think we were very fortunate, like. Planets aligned at that time. And we had a lot of support. Like Kevin had a, a product management team that helped with some of the higher level stuff at that time as when he was learning. We had a lead UX person who was overseeing UX for the entire area.
And we had designers on all of our teams. And so we had this really great support network. And for me, I know personally I learned things through osmosis that I didn’t even know I learned until I left. And then I got to the other companies, and Kevin and I also did, uh, the West Michigan family tour. We, we worked at all the privately owned Fortune 500 companies in West Michigan.
Uh, and we’ve technically both left now, but, uh, you realize that most companies don’t have that. And so being able to pick up those skills and make yourself more diverse to me as a game changer. And that’s what I was thinking of when you were talking Kevin, is like being able to take that training from those other people and understanding how that stuff, uh, puts together is so valuable.
[00:12:35] Kevin McClure: Yeah, I mean, I, I think it’s, you know, I think it’s gonna be a, a must have on anyone’s resumes going forward, right? Um, no matter what position you are, right. To have that, build that muscle, have that eye, um, not just focus on just backend things, but, you know, how does this, you know, I think that’s just how the world’s moving, right?
In order to become more efficient, you have to have people that have diverse skills. That’s a must. Now, you know,
[00:13:05] Brad Nelson: Yeah.
[00:13:06] Drew Podwal: Visualization is, is so centric. To everything that we do. I mean, the visualization of the flow of value, right through a Kanban system, um, and all the nested Kanban systems that are out there from a standpoint of like stories, features, and epics and things like that. Um, you know, being able to sketch out both.
You know, product workflows and, and Agile transformation workflows and value streams. Like all, all of that, like I, my tool of, of choice, I’ve always wanted to use Miro, but I’m, I’m heavily in bed with Lucid Chart. Um, and, uh, so my, my whole day is spent like just sketching out things in, in Lucid Chart as well.
And I always like to say my super secret power is that no matter who I’m talking to about whatever concept, I’m able to quickly spin up a lucid chart on the fly to be able to visually demonstrate what it is that I’m trying to help them to, to see, um, in a way that works really well for them. I think like those kinds of skills are just huge for not just, you know, product developers, but, but coaches and Scrum masters as well.
[00:14:15] Kevin McClure: Yeah, absolutely. So quick story about visualization and how I even got this job is I used Miro to get this job. Um, they said, Hey, here’s a challenge. You’re gonna have to speak to a challenge. They didn’t really give you much to go off from, but they said, tell us how you would make our loyalty better or have it be exist in our organization.
So, you know, I use those skills that, you know, honestly, Brad taught me a lot, you know, on how to write user stories, how to break things down, how to think about the slicing. But what I put in front of those hiring managers, they’re absolutely blown away. Not only just because it was visual. But the way I presented it, right, you got to have both of those things.
You can’t just have a, just a bunch of stuff and no organization, but really it just ma created a map of my brain, essentially. I imprinted it on a mirror board and said, here’s how I think through things. And I even told them that. I’m like, I’m exposing my how I think to you guys, you know, and they’re just, were blown away.
They couldn’t believe how thorough and how I walked them through each and every thing that I was, that I thought, thought of. Um, and then even, even cooler yet is after that, after I got the job and that the person that helped me get the job from, from tech Systems, she heard about it and she was, and she was absolutely blown away, right?
She was like, I’m gonna make all my other candidates use, use this format. And Ford was all, I started getting calls and messages like, you know, it was maybe a month or two later, but they’re like, Hey, I, I heard about your interview. So I was even more blown away that other people heard about my interview.
I didn’t share my mirror board. They just heard about it. Right? And I don’t know what they’re doing today, but last I heard, they were like, we have to initiate something like this to, to filter people out because it, it, it gets them to strategically think and shows your passion for that job, that role, next role you want.
You know, I spent three days on it, three days straight. You know, maybe not everyone has that time necessarily, but I was like, I want this. I want this role. I’m gonna sacrifice my time and really show what I’m made of.
[00:16:39] Drew Podwal: You know when, when I’m in, in Lucidchart right? Or whatever the whiteboarding program is, I, I feel everything else just slip away, right? Like, and I, and I have major A D H D, we, I say that in every single episode, but I’m saying again because you’re, you’re a new guest on this episode and maybe you haven’t heard that. My A D H D just goes away when I’m using like Lucidchart and I’m trying to map out and be creative and come up with, with the way that, that things can flow together across multiple systems and things like that. And, um, you know, I don’t think that everybody, again, like getting back to the idea of like, some people like can sit there and looking at spreadsheets and feel like they’re Michelangelo, right?
Like, that’s the way I feel when, when I’m coming up with some greatness on Lucidchart and, and I iterate. Like sometimes I’ll like get halfway through and I’ll just scrap it and open up a new tab and start from scratch and do it again. And, and I don’t feel bad about that. I feel like supercharged, you know, um, I, uh, have you ever bullet journaled,
[00:17:50] Kevin McClure: I have not, I’ve never heard of that actually. Bullet journal.
[00:17:53] Drew Podwal: bullet journaling is, it’s like this concept of, um, I mean it’s, I. It’s this concept of, of taking like a, um, what’s the name of that company that makes the journal? The notebooks, uh, I forget the name of the company. But anyhow, like those really nice journals that you can get like in, um, the, the whatever that French paper store is, that’s a chain now.
Um, but um, God, why am I totally spacing on that? Anyhow, there’s like templates that you can gather, stencils. Um, I’ve got one right here actually. Um, and you can use these, these like stencils to create different like shapes and, um, And have like a system for coming up with like a backlog, a system for coming up with like a plan of the day, um, you know, outcomes or, um, like you could use this one here for creating, um, like a health radar.
And so like each of these slices, um, can be like habits that you’re looking to perfect and perform or metrics and things like that. Uh, just if you’re, I’ve never been so good at, like, I’m great at doing it digitally. I thought I would try doing it on paper in an analog way and it just kind of fell flat for me.
But I know there’s a lot of people out there who love bullet journaling. It’s another form of like getting things done. G T D, um, like.
[00:19:26] Kevin McClure: Yeah, so I mean that’s in, in maybe just cuz maybe I didn’t know that, that that’s what it was called. But I mean, I have, I won’t even tell you how many notebooks I go through a year, but I, every, every day, any meeting I’m on, I take notes because I’ve noticed that if I don’t, I will miss something And I, you know, I can’t tell how, tell other people how to work, but.
I noticed, I’ve noticed throughout my years that you could be paid attention in a meeting, but if you don’t write it down, it’s the devil’s in the details. Um, you miss one little thing in this, in this game. It could, it could mean huge, huge mistake later on. Right. So, I, I’m very attentive when it comes and, and you know, I still write cursive.
I don’t know why. It’s just something that I could do it fast, I could do it easily. Not always, but you know, even on this call right now, I’m, I wrote down bullet, you know, bullet notebooking. It’s just something that, cuz every day I go, I go back through about three days worth and I say, okay, did, did I get that done or not?
Right? You know, maybe it doesn’t work for everybody. Some people use sticky notes. I don’t like the sticky notes cause they end up getting everywhere and unsticking. It’s just a clutter. But yeah, that’s, that’s great.
[00:20:42] Drew Podwal: And that’s like the one common attribute that I’ve noticed, right, is that every great product developer I’ve ever met, Right. Anybody who’s like really gets it, really doing it well, really creating magic. They all keep a journal, right? And they’ve got a way to journal, like their personal stuff, their, their, their ideas, their, you know, work ideas, their, you know, whatever it is, their note taking system.
Um, every great product developer I’ve ever met is amazing at keeping journals
[00:21:13] Brad Nelson: Yeah, I’m not so great at taking journals, so I’m not a great product person. Uh, no. Uh,
[00:21:21] Kevin McClure: don’t think those, I don’t think those things are exclusive, but
[00:21:24] Brad Nelson: I do, I do draw by hand sometimes. That’s something I’ve picked up. Um, so people at home can’t see it, but you’ll be able to see, I’m like experimenting with our logo and so I’ll just like draw it like random times and different things that I could do to update it.
Um, so I find that sort of stuff, it’s easier and it always looks awful. Like you look at that and you’re like, oh my God, this guy’s designing that. Like, it’s terrible looking, but it’s just to get the idea out and see like on paper how it might look. And then I do take a lot of notes. I usually take them, it, it’s hit or Mr.
Me, sometimes I find if I’m note taking in a call, I end up not paying attention to the call.
[00:22:05] Kevin McClure: That’s a
[00:22:05] Drew Podwal: Yeah, I have the same kind of challenge at times, you know, um, what I was doing for a while is like for me, like I have my Kanban boards up on, on the wall there, and, um, and what I would do is I would just put sticky notes. It like, I like to take notes in my journal. Right. But then I don’t like transcribing those into sticky notes, so I would just line like a bunch of journal pages every single day with sticky notes.
So then when I came back from the meeting, I could peel the sticky notes away outta my journal and just put it up onto the Kanban
[00:22:38] Brad Nelson: Mm-hmm.
[00:22:38] Drew Podwal: Um, which I thought was kind of funny because it was, I was also being a little precious with my journal, not wanting to like, mess up pages and things like that at the same time.
And so I just never finished that journal.
[00:22:50] Kevin McClure: I like that idea. Drew though, the sticky notes in the, in the journal. Um, I might try that. I might steal that idea from you. Even though I don’t like sticky notes, but now you’re, now you’re talking a hybrid version where, you know, today, this is today, the next day is your next day on your, on your page.
Kinda sound like Kamala Harris right now. But, um, and then transfer that, right? I think it really makes it stick in your mind a little bit better and a little bit more that you’re reading it again and then you’re, you’re putting it somewhere that makes sense for you outside of your kind of day-to-day activities
[00:23:28] Drew Podwal: Have you ever used, have you guys ever used a boogie board?
[00:23:31] Brad Nelson: Uh,
[00:23:31] Kevin McClure: like at the beach.
[00:23:33] Drew Podwal: Not at the beach, no. It’s, and I’m showing it so the people at home can’t see it.
[00:23:37] Brad Nelson: think my kids have
[00:23:37] Drew Podwal: I think I paid like, well that’s the thing is my niece had one that was like rainbow colored, right. And, and I just, the whole like weekend that we went and stayed with my brother, I would be sitting on the couch and just, You know, drawing, right?
Sketching and whatnot. And I was like, this is great. Now it doesn’t like, you know, goes away, right? So it’s really just good for like a one time note and then you press a button and it erases. But I saw on YouTube yesterday, one of these like ads that plays, cause I don’t pay for a YouTube gold or whatever it’s called.
And I, every time I watch an ad I’m like, should I just pay for this now? Um,
[00:24:18] Kevin McClure: get you.
[00:24:20] Drew Podwal: but they’ve got, now these, these tiny little, they’re like a little bit bigger than about the size of an iPad. And it’s got the, the, um, the paper white screen that a Kindle has, and it’s got a pen and then it’s got a keyboard on it.
And so you could type, remarkable. Yes, that’s it.
[00:24:39] Brad Nelson: I’ve seen it actually, when I was at the Stir Trek Conf conference, Suki friend of mine, she that organizes all the volunteers, she was using it. So I got to see it in
[00:24:50] Drew Podwal: Yeah, there. So I, I, I’m really dating. I had a palm pilot back in like. 2000, maybe even
[00:24:59] Brad Nelson: Must have been popular.
[00:25:00] Drew Podwal: Right. Um, and, and then I had a trio. I don’t know if you guys remember the Trio or not. It was like an early, like, it was
[00:25:07] Kevin McClure: I remember it.
[00:25:08] Drew Podwal: right around the time the Blackberry came out, but it had a stylus and it, it ran Palm os.
Um, and that went away. Um, and I feel the same way about this type of technology that I do about vr, right? Like growing up in the late seventies and early eighties, the world has been promising me VR for like, my whole life. And I would go to the mall and there would be the VR thing there, and I’d go in and I’d pay the five bucks to try it out.
And it was just like these blocky, like ice cubes that were like, you know, roaming around an arena or whatever. Then you’d go to like a fair and the same sort of thing. And I remember the first time I used the, um, The Oculus, Oculus, quest and I, I just had this feeling of like the world has finally delivered its promise to me on good vr.
And I feel like remarkable might be the same kind of way, is that the world might now have delivered its promise to me on creating a small like digital note taking device that gives me the feeling of paper and the flexibility of digital.
[00:26:12] Brad Nelson: that’s, that’s funny, Drew. So like you remained hopeful. I remain, I became jaded. Uh, so we haven’t talked about this before. I have a VR headset like my kids. I got it for my kids and I’ve never used it. And they’re like, come on, you should use it. You should play it. I’m just like, I’m like over it. Like my whole life I’ve been using them.
[00:26:29] Drew Podwal: Oh, no, Brad, I, so I bought one right before quarantine, right? Or maybe it was like right as quarantine was happening because we were living in Brooklyn and I knew we were gonna be stuck inside for a really long time. Um, and I, you know, I was playing ping pong and like putting spin and slice on, on the ball, like, and working up a sweat.
Uh, or then my other favorite game was, um, rec room. I would play paintball, capture the flag, right? With. And just like having a blast, you know, like the, the gaming engine accuracy is good. Now you’re a different kind of gamer than me, right? Like, um, and, and you, you, you look at things through a different lens than I do.
Um, I wound up downloading, um, some, some zombie western game where, where you’re like a cowboy or something like that. And, um, and I, I heard something behind me and I turned around and, and I had the biggest jump scare because this zombie was like right in my face. It, it just felt super real. Um,
[00:27:40] Kevin McClure: Is that Red Dead redemption
[00:27:42] Drew Podwal: no, it wasn’t that one, but it was something similar, I think, you know, but like, some zombie was like chewing on my neck suddenly, you know?
And, and it, it scared the crap outta me. Um,
[00:27:54] Brad Nelson: so, so we, so we need VR and. And everything we do now is what I’m hearing.
[00:28:00] Drew Podwal: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Put, it’s like put a, put a bird on it from Portland Portlandia.
[00:28:04] Brad Nelson: Um, cool. Yeah, we, it’s funny though, like we have these tricks that we’ve picked up through the years, and I don’t know if you guys have experienced this as well. Like I, my notes tend to be pretty messy at first, and then later I’ll go back and I’ll make them prettier.
I’ll organize them and then I’ll send them as like a, a meeting recap or, um, like right now I’m on a project, uh, insight where I’m doing requirements for a client and so I’ll write up the requirements and people always seem really surprised at, at it. They’re like, wow, these are great. Like, people don’t do this.
And to me it seems pretty basic. Like there’s not a lot to it other than just writing notes and then organizing it. Do you guys, do you guys tend to like, have those same experiences?
[00:28:57] Drew Podwal: I’m terrible with keeping track of meeting notes, although like if I’m the facilitator, And not a participant. I’m great at taking meaning notes. Um, um, but I’ve always been pretty good at finding somebody else who like, enjoys doing that or does it well and passing the baton to them. So I don’t know. What about you, Kevin?
[00:29:23] Kevin McClure: Yeah, I, I mean, if, if I’m, if I’m the one speaking, obviously I can’t be taking notes at the same time. Once in a while if there’s really something important, I will. But yeah, I usually, I usually kind of dish that off to somebody on my team, you know? Um, like somebody has to take notes. So that’s sort of my requirement, right, is.
You know, and these bigger meetings, either we’re recording it, right, so we can watch it later, which is kind of hit or miss later too. Cause it’s like, okay, like you’ve recorded it, whoopty do, you know, probably won’t get to it, but I have it if I need it. Um, but yeah, there, there’s people that really enjoy that too.
Um, I don’t mind it if
[00:30:04] Drew Podwal: I’ve never gone back and re-watched, never gone back and re-watched a meeting. Like I have a client that wants me to record all the meetings that we do together and I’m just think, and I do it cuz I don’t care, you know? Um, but I’m just thinking to myself like I. Who are these people who are going back and watching a meeting where there’s like five people discussing a
[00:30:24] Brad Nelson: for an hour.
[00:30:25] Drew Podwal: um, where one of them isn’t like Stephen Hawking or, or, or somebody like, you know,
[00:30:32] Kevin McClure: Right.
[00:30:34] Drew Podwal: yeah, I, but I do, actually, I should say that when I’m in meetings, I’ll always bring up a lucid chart, blank document, and when we’re trying to solution and problem solve, I’ll sketch it out.
So that becomes the artifact that I do really well with at the end of meetings.
[00:30:50] Brad Nelson: So, so something else you mentioned though, Kevin was being able to present that. So being able to organize your thoughts on paper or digitally is one skill, but presenting it is a whole nother skill I found as well. Something that I think you can only learn from doing and I’m still learning, right?
Everyone’s hearing it on the podcast all the time. Hopefully I’m getting better. Let me know. Um, but I, I’m curious,
[00:31:18] Kevin McClure: thumbs down.
[00:31:19] Brad Nelson: like you’ve learned a ton in sales. Cold, essentially cold calling. People have to be able to think on your feet. Uh, but something else that we don’t talk a lot about a lot are, is safe in general, the framework safe.
And when it does come up, it’s usually like, well, what is it missing? Or, or what is it not doing? Right. Well, one of the things that, and, and I’m curious your opinion on this, Kevin, that I think it may help as well, is that you’re constantly presenting as a product owner and safe, like you’re, every PI planning you’re presenting to a room.
In our case, it was sometimes 150 people all the way up to the cio. And then every sprint review you’re presenting to stakeholders that come to the team one, but then you also have the combined sprint review for the entire art as well. So do you feel like starting that way, like starting your career as a product owner that way helped you become a better presenter?
[00:32:23] Kevin McClure: Yeah, so I’ll say this. Is that. I’ve always been a good presenter for the most part. Um, growing up and even into college a little bit, uh, I would have stage fright. Um, I would be all confident coming up there. I would start speaking, literally would just like forget. I would just blank out. Once I kind of found myself again, I’d be fine.
But it kept happening and I was like, why is this happening to me? What am I afraid of? Why am I so worried about what these other people think? Um, I think even when I joined Meyer, Brad, you probably even, you know, you could, you could be honest with me. I, you know, even looking back like, I’m like, I don’t think I did that great of a job at first.
Right? I think it took me a while to combine because I just, I, I was so eager to know. I wanted to know everything day one. And I had to just slow myself down and be like, it’s okay. You don’t, it’s okay. You don’t know everything. Know what present, what you do know, and the rest will follow. Right? You have a team around you stop thinking.
You’re just in sales. It’s all you. Everything’s on your shoulders. You’re, you’re the, you’re the, you’re the quarterback of the team now. Um, you know, it’s your job to take a more leadership role. And, and, and for me it was just an awakening, right? That now I’m like, you know, it’s not a, it’s not a college presentation anymore about my pet dog or whatever it may be.
It’s, it’s actual business applications. And it’s like, wow, my voice in my presentation can actually make a change. This is crazy. Like, it was just like, things that I’m researching and presenting is actually moving the needle, right? So I, I think it was kind of a, one of those aha moments and I’m like, I’m not just presenting just to get a grade.
Right. I’m presenting something that I want to do, I want to accomplish, and setting those goals for myself, right? So, you know, I think at first it was just like, I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t have no sense of direction. And you know, obviously as days, days went on, I understood the front end, the back end services, all those things that are involved in software development, right?
For me, I like have to like know something about everything before I can like be really confident in front of people, even if I don’t know the nitty gritty details, but just how things connect, right? Is, is where I always kind of struggle that first. But once those things clicked for me, my confidence was a hundred percent after that.
Like I’d actually speak and make sense and be clear about things and have a, have a great opinion, but also back it up with, with whatever, right? Whether it’s data, um, however you measure things, right?
[00:35:11] Brad Nelson: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, when I think back, you were a little reserved, which I think everyone is when they start a new job. Uh, and then we start a new role. And what’s interesting is I was a BA and, and Kevin was my customer. He was my stakeholder, so he was who I went to to get requirements. And we wrote big bds, which I hated, and I had to get a bunch of sign-offs.
And then after we got the sign-offs, I was breaking those down into stories for incremental development. Um, and so, but as a ba there, like I was still responsible for the release plan. I was re responsible for the roadmap. I handled all the vendors. I, I did, um, the bug triage like I facilitated and for lack of better words, ran the team at that time.
And so it was an interesting transition moving into a scrum master role of being like, you, you don’t have the answers. You’re not in charge, you’re not there to tell people what to do. And so that transition, I think, took us a couple sprints, but I feel like it happened pretty fast where, uh, Kevin was there to give us guidance and I was stepping back and only pointing people in directions instead of being like, lemme take care of that for you.
It’s like, well, this is who I would go to, or this is how it’d handle that. Uh, not even always the Kevin, just anyone on the team. Right. I was empowering developers the same way.
Um, how, I guess, how does that ch, how has that changed? So like you and I, we were like, we were partners, we were thieves in the night. We had our own sessions before and after certain events to be like, Hey, how’d it go? Give feedback. Um, but we’ve both worked in a lot of different companies since then. Do you find that you still have that kind of relationship with Scrum Masters in these organizations?
[00:37:04] Kevin McClure: Not really. Um, yeah, I think, I think when we worked together it was pretty unique. I don’t know, maybe we should sit down and person some time and figure out what that magic was. I’ve, I can’t really pinpoint it exactly. Maybe like you said earlier, like we were both kind of new, we’re both kind of trying to find our way still in our careers, and we were both working for this gigantic corporation where I would get lost half the time, you know, trying to find meetings.
But yeah, I, I, I, I think, you know, if I, if I fast forward. I think I’m even doing more presentations, but it’s almost passive at this point. Um, I do minimal prepping just cuz I’m so involved in what I’m doing. I’m so passionate about what I’m doing and it seems like I can almost come into any meeting without looking at one thing and, and know, and know how to talk about it because, you know, when I’m not in a meeting, I am head down grinding on knowing my business.
Right. It’s, it’s, it’s, it’s just like running your own company, right? Essentially. But for a big company, like you’re, you have to know, uh, your numbers, you have to know your people. You have to know what’s going on in all aspects, in all, all versions. Right. If you treat it like it’s your own business, you should be able to just fly into meetings and be able to answer any questions.
Right. It just, for me, I think over, over, over lots of time, it’s become much more natural for me. I don’t get the stage fright I used to get.
[00:38:30] Drew Podwal: That’s another attribute that I hear a lot from highly successful product developers is, is that they do treat it like it’s their own business. You know? Um, in many cases they’re sanctioned in looking at it in that way, you know, but not always. And, um, you know, but if they look at their, their slice of the product as their own business, um, that, that’s another attribute I’ve seen.
Um, the other thing that you mentioned is, um, You know that you’re highly keyed in, right? And grinding away in these moments of trying to figure out and learn more about your business, uh, you know, I’m assuming that either you have like some sort of virtual dashboard or actual dashboard or like, you know, you’re the places that you’re checking, right?
Maybe it’s you’ve got things bookmarked or maybe you’ve got, you know, what, what is your dashboard like look like for you? Like when you get back to your desk and you don’t have a meeting for like another hour, let’s say, and you wanna learn more about your customer in a passive way, what are some of the tips and tricks and the tools that you use for that?
[00:39:39] Kevin McClure: Yeah, so that’s a good question. Um, you know, I think I get to talk, I could talk probably in length on that, but just, uh, you know, if I, if I have an hour and I, I truly put that on my calendar, like I wanna get to my, wanna get to know my customer more, right. I, I would, I would come up with a little bit of a plan, right?
Versus trying to figure out, you know, wasting 10 minutes on where to go. You know, I, I think for me it would be okay looking at the week ahead and I need to put something down, right? But I, I guess for me, um, yeah, it’s sort of a loaded question cause I, I feel like I have a lot of different ways I, I, I do things just depending on the day almost.
But, um, In the beginning of any project, I mean, I truly try to understand who the persona is that we’re going after, right? I do a lot of competitive research. I I, I, I’m constantly reading LinkedIn. I’m trying to keep in tap with what’s actually going on. And for me it’s automotive right now, right? But we’re also looking at FinTech companies, you know, we’re looking at, for competitive research.
Right now. We’re looking at Deloitte, or excuse me, we’re looking at, um, that’s who I’m working with. We’re looking at Chase, we’re looking at, uh, SoFi, we’re looking at Toyota Financial. We’re looking at all these different competitors, right? So a lot of my time is spent just making sure I can be, stay relevant in, in this space, right?
Um, you know, my, when I wanna get the nitty gritty details, you know, I use, uh, a little known company called Adobe for Adobe Analytics. I think everyone uses them now, but. Um, you know, I’m bringing on a platform, I won’t name it here, but I’m bringing on a CX platform in my current role, and my current team is called Digital Amplification.
So this is kind of a good segue, I think into, into sort of your question, like, how, how do I get to know my users is that we’re spending a lot of effort and time to actually get to know our users by, by bringing on a piece of software that combines, it’s a data aggregator that brings in data from these various sources that we use, right?
To give us these insights, um, uh, on user journeys. Uh, page comparator. Um, what is my pages actually doing from a speed, speed perspective? You know, what errors are on my page? So a as it sits right now, you know, the tool that I’m bringing on, I’m spending a lot of time there mapping out different things. Um, I, I’m being both proactive and reactive because I’m, I’m now getting different areas of the org coming to me and saying, Hey Kevin, we can’t figure this thing out.
Just the other day there was, uh, a team that said, Hey, you know, we heard you’re the guy to talk to. Um, we can’t figure out why our abandonment rates are, are sky high. I mean, they’re 30% more than they were last month. So I te I, um, test my team to take a look at it, right? And we pivoted really quickly from our roadmap to bring on that group’s pages into our system.
Right. We had some setup to do and, and we’re now collecting data. So things like that, I mean, that’s kind of what I’m, I’m building here is ability to pivot and react quickly and not have to log into 15 different systems to, to figure out what my users are doing, what the systems are doing. It gives you that full picture,
[00:43:13] Drew Podwal: So I, I mean, it sounds like the answer is you’re building that dashboard, which is actually really, really cool.
[00:43:18] Kevin McClure: essentially. Yeah. It’s, it’s, it’s gonna be a self-service in the future until everyone gets trained up on it. Right. Um, and understands how to use it, how to look at their stuff, how to look at the overall picture of, of what your customers are doing. Right. So this, this tool will bring us closer to our customers.
Um, it, it doesn’t say like, Brad came in as it’s, it’s a unique id, but from a, from a generic standpoint, you know, in the, in the feature sets that we’re working on, we’re here to inform those product teams. What you should be focused on, how to prioritize. And that’s another piece I’m working on, right, is governance and, and intake, portfolio intake and, and being that data-driven company that we wanna be.
Everyone says they are, but there really aren’t until you have that complete full circle from output to in back to input, right? Like your designers and UX folks should be also using this tool to start feeding back into those product teams, right? From the, the metrics and the user feed, uh, user analysis, what people are actually doing on your site.
[00:44:28] Drew Podwal: You know, o one of the things I’m thinking about now, um, Is, you know, we always talk about the idea of a test first mentality, right? And so we wanna create test cases first, but look what you’re talking about, right? We’re also supposed to create user journeys first, right? As well. Not everybody does that, but, um, but I feel like a tool like you’re building, right, could be the starting point, right?
Where, where right now it, maybe it’s being looked at, and maybe I’m wrong too, but, um, it’s being looked at potentially as the end point. The end result of what we’ve just built is now to grab analytics from it, right? But you could theoretically build your user journeys within a tool like this, right?
Which then would allow you to then measure those user journeys as they get released, um, to production right away. Kind of like, you know, if you’re using like Gerkin or, or, uh, uh, was it Cucumber and Gerkin? Um, for, um, yeah. Um, But I think like that would like,
[00:45:30] Kevin McClure: That’s a good
[00:45:31] Drew Podwal: that’s really,
[00:45:32] Kevin McClure: you’re bringing up because I, I’ll just interject real quick cause Yeah. I didn’t, I’d even, I’d even, I didn’t even think about that angle of it. And the only, only. Thing I can think of here is that, you know, we have a QA environment in my tool, right? We have QA in production, just like everything else is that we have QA sites, right?
That we’re bringing in those QA URLs. Um, it, it’s mostly internal people, but theoretically, like you said though, you could do a canary release if you, if you set up a, the right environment and start looking at a subset of folks and what their behaviors are and before you, just because we do do AV testing, we do, we use tools for that, right?
And this tool I’m bringing in, actually, you can view those AB tests side by side within this tool. But I do like your idea Drew, that’s, that’s something to consider for sure.
[00:46:29] Drew Podwal: Yeah. Yeah. I was just, I don’t know what triggered it, you know? But, um, when I was thinking about, I think it’s the idea of like how, um, You know, being able to see where people travel across a page. I was also, I’ve been involved in an effort, um, using a similar but probably nowhere near as sophisticated off-the-shelf product called Zoho Sales iq.
Have you ever used Zoho or heard of Zoho?
[00:46:51] Kevin McClure: of it.
[00:46:52] Drew Podwal: Yeah, it’s, I mean, it’s, it’s good for what it does and it’s, you know, it’s a great stepping stone for, for smaller companies, but they’ve got this product called Sales IQ that, um, embeds directly into your website. And so like when people show up on your website, you could literally see real time that somebody with this IP address, right.
And if they’re registered in the system as a customer, then you can see, um, exactly who they are, right. Um, and be able to watch them move through your, your website. Um, and if you set up the proper, um, User journeys in there. All right. And it’s not called user journeys in that regard. I forget what it is from a marketing perspective.
Um, you could see how they’re moving about your site, whether or not they’re moving on the cow paths as intended or creating their own. Um, and, uh, I don’t know. Anyhow. That’s really cool though.
[00:47:49] Kevin McClure: is another term for it, right? Maybe that’s what marketing uses, but at least that’s what my tool states that it is. It’s Journey analytics, but it’s both. It’s both visual and data combined.
[00:48:02] Drew Podwal: Yeah.
[00:48:03] Brad Nelson: pretty interesting. It makes me think of, uh, my best friend here in Columbus presents on UX a a lot. She, she’s user experience. She’s very, uh, sorry, what?
[00:48:16] Drew Podwal: I said I thought I was your best
[00:48:17] Brad Nelson: You, you can be my best friend in New York.
[00:48:20] Drew Podwal: Okay. How about that? I’ll do that.
[00:48:22] Brad Nelson: Um,
[00:48:23] Drew Podwal: Who you podcast with?
[00:48:24] Brad Nelson: podcast best friend, my best friend of all my podcast partners, uh,
[00:48:29] Drew Podwal: Sorry. I.
[00:48:30] Brad Nelson: um, so she, she’s an amazing UX person and she always talks about the maturity of an organization, uh, in regards to ux and it aligns a lot with product.
And so we’ve done some presenting together on like product and Agile and ux, and she talks about how like the highest maturity of an organization is when UX is driving the decisions. Like UX is driving what we’re creating. And I think that’s the same with product. And Kevin mentioned like being proactive and reactive.
And that’s what kind of triggered me there is like from a product standpoint, how do we shift from, we’re throwing something out to the masses and seeing whether or not it was successful or not. And instead we’re deciding what we build based on what our users are doing.
[00:49:24] Kevin McClure: Yeah, I think there’s a, I think there’s like a middle ground there too, right? Uh, I think any smart enough organization, like, I don’t know what the folks at Tesla are doing. That’s one of our, obviously bigger competitors in this, in this new space of EVs, right? That we’re chasing after. Um, but that, that’s, you make a good point, Brad.
I think you and I always talk about this at Meyers, like just because that user users are asking for it, that doesn’t mean that’s what they want, right? I, I, I don’t know the exact solve of that, but I, I do know if I go back to what I’m doing, um, the proactive risk reactive is one of the features of what I’m doing is enabling our software engineers to, it’s called Shift Left approach, where typically as it sits right now, even in probably most organizations, The business is always the one tapping on it folks saying, Hey, what is wrong with your systems?
We’re seeing a spike in calls on this particular issue. There has to be something wrong with I, the, the IT backend systems, right? The fingers are always pointed there, and what mine’s doing is, is taking that uh, behavior out of the equation essentially. Because if all goes well, the software engineers will be.
Armed with this tool, they could set up AI alerts or even manual alerts to alert them of variances within their pages, their app. Um, so if it is a technical issue, they should be telling business, Hey, we’ve spotted the spike. I mean, we have all these systems, right today, we can see this stuff today, but it’s a matter of time, right?
It’s, it’s a matter of effort to get to this data. And that’s where this is coming in is, you know, we’ve had some tough conversations, you know, in the beginning here. Like, well, this is just another tool. Why don’t we use Adobe? I’m like, we do use Adobe and we’re gonna continue to use Adobe, but I can integrate with Adobe now and bring in Adobe segments and compare that to, um, what we’re seeing on the actual site themselves.
Right? Like what Adobe’s tracking versus. My tool’s tracking everything. It’s a scraper, essentially. Right? But the, the, the goal really of the organization is to, uh, just identify things before they actually happen, before they become an actual problem that our call center, like our, our, one of our tools was down and just other day, and it affected everyone.
They couldn’t log in. You know, I’m sitting there looking at video replays. They’re super frustrated, right? They’re, we call what we call it rage clicking cuz things were timing out, found out it was a global error. But what I did with my team, I said, Hey, this is already in the past. I get that. But what does our data show?
Now that I know that there was this outage, you know, it’s a little after the fact, but I’m like, we have to be prepared in the future to be before the fact. So I’m like, let’s do an analysis on this. Let’s, this is a good practice, right? What is the, what is the data telling us? Right? And we were able to, I was able to produce a report in a, in a, in a half a day.
And send it off to a few people. Um, we’re still trying to perfect the process, but you know, I said, Hey, here’s a sampling of our work. I’m getting you guys used to hearing from us. Um, this is what we could do in the future when everything is the way it’s supposed to be, and everyone’s onboarded to this, right?
It’s supposed to take out the guesswork essentially, right? Between all these gaps that exist, as you guys probably know, working in product for so long or anywhere really in technology, so many gaps that exist from point A to point B, right? Between, from a, an executive saying, I want this. Thing, uh, go find it for me.
Right? Like most of the time it takes three weeks to two months sometimes to, to put all this data together and then to have someone analyze it and then have someone present the results back. And then to make the change is probably 60, 80 days, a hundred days out, right? So we’re trying to just really speed up the time to production.
Right, and, and, and in order for it to get in production, we’re also working on, um, a whole digital transformation right now, right? Where Brad mentioned earlier, we’re bringing on safe Agile. So we’re trying to get the framework in place. We’re replacing legacy systems, um, that we’re 20 plus years old. Um, we’re using the latest and greatest technologies.
Like, I mean, we’re venting into some areas that no one’s even seen before. Not, not, not outside of our organization, but people that are working for us are like, we have no idea. We’ve never done this before. We’re really just challenging and making them stretch, right? Um, we have to get to this point where if, if, you know, if you’re just bringing on technologies, uh, That are just kind of, so, so, right.
It’s going, it’s gonna take two years and you’re already behind. So we’re really just putting an investment in right now to just really prep us for the foreseeable future. It’s, it’s quite interesting.
[00:54:40] Drew Podwal: That’s really cool, you know, and, uh, uh, one of the things that you said is striking, uh, cord with me as well. Um, You know, shifting things left again, um, at a company I was at a little while back, uh, one of the things that I, I helped them to do from a coaching perspective, um, was shifting things left, but also at the same time shift shifting things right?
And narrowing the gap between the left and the right. And so the, um, the C S C D pipeline at the time when I got there, supported dark releases and, you know, canary and, and AB testing and whatnot. But in order for a release to occur, it had to be done by a developer, right? Um, and so what we did was we built a dashboard for our internal customers so that this way the person who had requested the new capability or feature or whatnot that was developed, was responsible for the.
Making the, the, the configurations through a graphical user interface that said, all right, I want to release this new feature dark, right? So we can test that internally, or I wanna release it to just a subset of this type of users or this type of customer and whatnot. Um, and you know, one of the reasons why we’re doing that was we found that what was happening was that we would get ready to do a release, but the people who were sitting all around the left were not ready to roll it out yet.
Um, and, and they were getting upset and there was testing that was still going on. And, um, and by giving them the control to oversee doing those releases and being the one to press the button to saying release, we found that we, we Drew them in closer, right? We shifted things left, but at the same time, we also Drew them in a lot closer.
And I like the idea also of like a self-service tool. Like we. Before I left, we were at a place where we were trying to create self-service analytics and things like that as well. So, um, that’s pretty awesome.
[00:56:42] Kevin McClure: Yeah, it’s, it’s gonna be a huge change. And, you know, fortunately I’ve been, I’ve been really given the autonomy and power to initiate this change, right? With change. Don’t like change and I’ve had a lot of resistance, but you know, I’m just, I’m just learning to, um, you know, spread the good word, but I’m not gonna pressure people to use it there.
It’s gonna be starting to become, um, I don’t know what you call it, uh, sort of the rumor now, right? It’s like, well, yeah, we’ve been on a couple meetings, we heard about your tool. Whoopty do, right? We can, we can do this other stuff. But now peop like I mentioned earlier, now people are coming to me, um, you know, and they’re like, yeah, we’re having these bigger meetings and now we’re really hearing about your tool.
And, you know, they’re getting challenged by executives. Why aren’t you using that tool then? Right? We’re spending all this money, you know, I’m not working in a vacuum here. Right? I didn’t make this decision. Uh, it was decision was made prior to me coming in and I didn’t know anything about it. But you know, after I’ve seen the power of it, I’m just like, wow, I wish I could have had this when I was a product owner.
This would’ve been great for any meeting that I had. Because everyone’s always asking, asking for data. They’re like, Kevin, we don’t want your opinion. We don’t want your bias, Brad, we don’t care about your opinion. You know, like how do you back, how do you back up your claims with, with actual user journeys, right?
So like, Last year as, as a product owner, I spent a lot of time in Adobe, a lot of time in, in, in this other tool called Mouseflow. It just, just really didn’t give you the full picture. Right. Um, and, and it was hard to, and it was hard to set up dashboards, I felt like, and it was sort of bias setting up dashboards.
It’s like, well, I can make a couple changes here and there and get the result I want. It seems, it seems fine, but now, now, you know, with this tool that I’m bringing in, it’s zero bias. It’s, it’s capturing everything that user is doing. There’s no question on, on what they did. Right.
[00:58:49] Drew Podwal: I think that also sometimes people are measuring the wrong thing. I, I saw, I, I read or watched, I watched a video today. They were talking about some of the metrics that are being used to suggest, suggest that life is improving in the United States. And one of them was the number of guitars purchased.
Right. Which I thought was kind of interesting, right? Because they were saying that, all right, number of guitars purchased, um, shows, um, increased access to leisure, right? And the word that triggered me there was increased access to leisure, right? Like people have the access to purchase a guitar and they are purchasing guitars.
And I thought that a better metric might be number of guitar strings sold, right? Because the thing is, is that you could. You could buy a guitar, which means you have access to a guitar, but are you playing it, are you breaking strings? Right? Because if you’re breaking strings, you’re buying new strings.
And that suggests that not only are people buying guitars, but they’re playing guitars. Right. Or, um, number of, of students who are playing guitar in a high school performance or something like that. Or, um, um, but I feel like those metrics that kind of like shoot through the, you know, the George Bush victory, we did it metric right.
And actually measure the efficacy, um, of, of the success, um, is a much better metric.
[01:00:21] Brad Nelson: Yeah, that, that reminds me a little bit of page views.
[01:00:26] Drew Podwal: Yeah.
[01:00:27] Brad Nelson: more page views is good, but it doesn’t tell me much.
[01:00:34] Kevin McClure: Yeah, like when I, the example I gave earlier, Brad, with that team coming to me saying, you know, just to kind of circle back and connect that dot there, is that. They, their initial request to me was like, Hey, can you figure this out with your tool? You know, we heard cuz we, we can’t figure it out, right? I’m like, well I can’t guarantee or promise you anything, but I will onboard youth pages.
We’ll take a look. And so I did some initial analysis on Adobe and I sent it to a leader over there. I said, Hey, this is interesting. Like re you know, I know you’re telling me that abandonment rate’s going, um, going up, right? You’re getting more people abandoning your flow, which is, is part of our moneymaking system essentially.
I just dub it. Is that because it, we start losing people there. You can put a, you can put a, uh, dollar value on those folks, right? So it’s, it’s very important
[01:01:33] Brad Nelson: Mm-hmm.
[01:01:33] Kevin McClure: us. Um, even though we’re not selling trinkets, we’re not having like these Amazon checkouts, but you could still attribute, you know, a certain amount of people that go through these flows.
Will buy our service or product. Right. But like, just, it’s a simple thing, but like, I’m like, man, month over month, the users are actually pretty decent. Like it’s a pretty good up trend. But yeah, you look at that other side of the metric, you’re like, yeah, you’re getting more people, but they’re, there’s more people also abandoning, so like, it’s not a good metric.
Right. So yeah, that’s that’s a good point.
[01:02:11] Brad Nelson: Yeah, and, and so I don’t usually like to use these acronyms, but what you’re describing to me is, is products or product operations, like you’re providing this tool, and I didn’t think this conversation was gonna go there, but by making it self-service, there’s this concept in DevOps right now called Platform as a product.
And so you’re, it sounds like you’re essentially building a platform. And we usually think of platforms in like the hosting sense, uh, but they’re any tool that serves internally. Uh, usually it’s also point developers, right? What’s the DevX? Uh, but you know, product owners are an internal customer. And so by applying that product mindset internally, right?
How do I serve my customer, which is an internal person. Uh, it sounds like you’re right, right in the brink there of building a platform.
[01:03:05] Drew Podwal: I also think that, you know, based on the discussion we had with Dom recently, um, Dom lik right, the idea of, well, like one, you know, uh, The idea of a customer versus a user, right? Um, uh, you know, your internal users are, are product people, right? Um, and you, you mentioned this idea of, of how do I get them to use it, right?
Some people are excited for it, others might not. And like what Dom was talking about from a behavioral product, and I’m gonna butcher this one so bad. So, but, um, but he was talking about like the intersection of, I’ve already butchered it, of like opportunity and need, right? And like willingness, um, and motivation was not one of them, but it’s the only word that I could think about
[01:03:54] Brad Nelson: a prompt.
[01:03:55] Drew Podwal: Do you remember exactly how we put
[01:03:56] Brad Nelson: prompt or a trigger.
[01:03:59] Drew Podwal: Yeah.
[01:03:59] Brad Nelson: prompted to do something, um, it, it also, I also didn’t think about when DAM called, but there was this book. When we were at Meyer, that was circulating the leadership team called, uh, the mobile mindset, I think is what it’s called, where it’s essentially like, how do you capture in the moment, like people’s needs are fleeting.
So like you have to capture it in the moment. Uh, and I think that feeds into the, the BJ fog approach of like, what is the, what is the prompt and then what is the action, and then how do you reinforce that?
[01:04:39] Drew Podwal: I also think this one, um, oh, I’m covering the title, the Cold Start Problem by Andrew Chen. All right. Where he talks about the idea of like, how do you start a social network when you have no users on day one? All right. Um, and that could be really interesting to kind of figure out how to. Um, you know, like essentially your dashboard is going to be at some point, right?
Or if it is already ace, so to speak, social network that you want everybody in your company to log into and socialize on around the idea of learning more and more and more about our customers, um, highlighting insights about them, um, you know, and, and getting, getting to that tipping point where it becomes habitual for everybody in their, like that.
When I asked you the question earlier of like, what’s your dashboard, like your virtual dashboard look like, where do you, what do you check every single day during those like hour long moments where you, you wanna learn more about your customer? Like you’re, you want your tool to be the product that every one of the product owners in your company goes to on a daily basis to check their, you know, Fantasy football stats
[01:05:59] Kevin McClure: check, check their product reels, right? Product stories. I, yeah, I mean that, that’s a great, I’m gonna start using that Drew, I’m gonna steal that from you. Okay. Cause I mean, this whole world is so addicted to. Social network. Right. But I didn’t think of, of my product in that sense. And I, I, I really like that lens on it though.
Right. Because just, just like anything else, right. Our attention spans are, are just smaller and smaller and smaller every day. And you know, I, I think people are spending, some people are spending like five, six hours a day. I heard some, in some senses right on, on social media networking. But, you know, as far as, uh, how my tool is viewed, right?
I, yeah, I think it’s, it’s, it’s really saved. It’s, yeah, it’s really to go in there. I mean, it shouldn’t take you long to understand your, your, your, uh, your product. But it’s, yeah. It’s like, Hey, a minute here, a minute there, I can quick go get answers. Right? But then it’s like socializing that out to the rest of the company to make changes, right?
Yeah. I, my, my, my head’s, my head’s spinning on, or my, my gears are turning on that one. I, I really like that.
[01:07:06] Drew Podwal: you could gamify it too like, like if you had certain product owners that are owned certain product journeys, like the metrics could be common across them and like, you know, You could have leaderboards from who’s, whose customer journey is outperforming the others, right? Um, you could then, um, have the ability, like, you know how like you can go onto platforms and vote for like, ideas that you wanna support, right?
You could allow, you know, voting for the journeys. You could also, um, have people provide comments and feed internal comments and feedback to say like, Hey, I’ve reviewed this journey. I think it’s wonderful the way you’re setting it up, but I’ve got an idea for how you could tweak it. You know, um, kind of like the way that like back in the day when people were doing XP and whatnot, when they were, um, you know, putting comments on people’s commits and, and, and other things.
And the way the number of comments on a person’s commit, or the number of comments that a person gave on other people’s commits was a metric to say that like, I’m a great. Community developer, um, people like commenting on my code and I like to comment on a lot of other people’s code. So
[01:08:22] Kevin McClure: No, that’s great. I, yeah, I, I feel like that would be a good driver, you know, for, for people to kind of wake up too.
[01:08:33] Drew Podwal: yeah, and that gets back to also we were talking about, I think it was before we started recording and we were talking about the idea of that new role of a products op director or whatever. That’s exactly why I would love to be in that role. Like I, I, I love working with product developers and, and like listening to what they’re trying to do and, you know, bouncing some ideas off them, seeing which ones stick, and then helping them to like look at how are you gonna organize this into a backlog and, um, you know, start setting up your experiments and whatnot.
So I think it’s super exciting what you’re working on. Um, absolutely.
[01:09:13] Brad Nelson: Definitely. Yeah. Um, so, uh, I’m cur, I’m trying to think of like, what is the, the last question I kinda wanna ask cuz uh, I can’t believe it’s already been, uh, over an hour that we’ve been talking, but, um, so I guess I’ll say, you know, you talked about earlier, Kevin, about how. It’s like owning your own business and my interactions with you, and a lot of our conversations tend to be around more of the Fortune 500 type large enterprises.
Uh, and Ford is definitely there. Ford’s been around for over a hundred years. Um, I, I don’t think they’re one of the oldest companies in the world are in the us right? Cause you, like Colgate has like 18 hundreds or something, but, uh, definitely old compared to most companies. And so it’s really cool to hear them innovating in that way and, and really trying to grow, uh, especially because a lot of my talks talk about the innovation of Ford at the beginning and, and the assembly line and that.
Um, but thinking about what I do know about you is that you also dabble in the startup world.
[01:10:23] Kevin McClure: I do. Yep. I, I can’t claim I made much money on it, but, you know, the only thing I can claim is that I know how hard it is. Right? I know what it takes. Maybe not to, to, to be as successful as I want it to be, but at least I’ve, you know, I’ve burned my antennas. Um, I’ve granted, granted it out till three, four in the morning on certain things.
Right. You know, I, I think my biggest thing was I, I wanna go do something. I wanna see if I can do it. Um, you know, if I fail, I fail. Um, at this point, I don’t even, I don’t even care because I even told my business partner, I said, you know what? I’m having fun just getting the experience of how to take an idea, actually create a physical product and get it out in the market.
I’ve learned so much from that, and I’ve honestly, I couldn’t even, I’d have to sit down and think about the amount of things that I’ve learned from that experience that I actually apply right now. And I think, I honestly think I could attribute some of my success, um, where I’m at today, just the short time I’ve been at my, you know, in my current position to take in that mentality.
And there’s really a driving force to everything I do. Right. Taking complete ownership. You know, I heard a great quote, uh, just the other day. It’s, it’s around, um, uh, how hard you work and the money you make, right? Um, I might butcher it, but conceptually it was basically, it is basically, uh, saying that, um, nevermind the money, right?
Stop worrying about the money. Work as hard as you can. And do the best job you can and you will get rewarded. Otherwise, you’re at the wrong company, essentially. Right. But even when you do get that pay raise, you, you still work as hard as you did prior. Right. Because you’ll still, you’ll still continue that.
But what I’m seeing a lot of people doing right now and complaining, I’ve heard it personally, that just, this is gonna sound really strange, but, you know, I, I’ve heard things like, well, my calendar’s more, you know, busier than the other person’s calendar, and I know they make more money than me. And I’m just like, scratching my head like, man, I, I don’t know.
I’ve been working since I was eight years old on a farm. So I’m just the concept conceptualize of, of that kinda metric. It doesn’t make any sense to me.
[01:12:50] Drew Podwal: Yeah, I was gonna say that’s like the guitar metric versus the strings metric. It’s not even a guitar metric. That’s like number of meetings.
[01:12:57] Brad Nelson: Yeah.
[01:12:57] Kevin McClure: it, it, it’s like, how about, how about your output, how about your con contribution to team meetings and speaking up more, you know, they wanna focus on the wrong things. Right. Um, it just, it just kind of blows my mind. And, you know, in, in, I feel like in most of my roles, I’ve just been like, okay, even if I felt like I don’t get paid enough, I’m like, I still have a job to do.
Um, I still wanna accomplish something. But that’s, that’s also, you know, I just took my Clifton strengths the other day. Like, you know, I’m a lot of, a lot of those kind of high energy, like, get stuff done, accomplished, assertive. And that’s, that’s just part of who I am. Um, and it, but it’s, it’s taken me 20 years to get there though.
[01:13:46] Brad Nelson: Definitely, yeah. I’ve worked with people who accepted every meeting they could and then they would like compare how many meetings they had per week. And that was like the goal to see who could have the most meetings on their calendar and they didn’t even attend most of them. Think of that, how crazy that was.
[01:14:01] Kevin McClure: Trying to shed meetings, if anything.
[01:14:04] Brad Nelson: Uh, I’ve, I block my calendar sometimes there’s mystery meetings on my calendar sometime when it’s really me. I just need the work. I don’t want anyone booking it. But, um,
[01:14:16] Kevin McClure: So, yeah, but I think your, your original question though, Brad, was, if I remember now, we’ve been talking quite some time now, but was about kind of the entrepreneurial spirit, right? And just owning your own business. But not a lot of people have it. And, you know, I don’t, I don’t, there’s not one way to go about it either.
Like, you have to really make it your own. Um, you know, I’ve had to do that through trial and error. Throughout my career, you know, um, I always like test the limits, uh, of a lot of things. But yeah, I think you just gotta really be focused on what you love. And, and, and honestly, I, I tell people all, all the time in my recent role here that people are like, wow, you’re, you’re getting a lot of things done, right?
And I’m like, I love what I’m doing. It’s not even a job to me anymore. Like any challenges that come away, it’s, it’s not even, it’s a challenge, but it’s like, it’s fun for me to fix things and, you know, remove roadblocks from my team and have these tough conversations all over the place, right? I’m just like,
[01:15:23] Brad Nelson: That’s awesome.
[01:15:23] Kevin McClure: it satisfying.
[01:15:25] Brad Nelson: Yeah, the, the question I was going to ask, the reason why I kind of queued that up was I was gonna ask, having full autonomy of your own business versus having stakeholders coming to you with problems like, which one is harder?
[01:15:43] Kevin McClure: The stakeholders. I think there’s a lot of, there’s a lot of, I haven’t really experienced it too much with, with, um, hard to get along with stakeholders. I, I try to get to know people more on a personal level first before I start talking business, and that’s, that’s served me well. And that’s, that’s really kind of encouraged here at Ford especially.
But I think in anything in life, it, it’s not all about business, right? You know, Brad, you know this, the manifesto, right? It’s people over process. And I, if all you do is talk business, you don’t really actually get to know that person. What makes them tick? What annoys them? What discourages or encourages them, right?
You really have to, I mean, you don’t, you don’t wanna directly say what discourages you, but you can roundabout get to those, get to those answers right? By, just go have some coffee, go grab a drink after work. Like, just stuff like that, right? Really putting out an olive branch and sticking up for the, the small guy.
I think that I, I’ve always done a good job at that too, is, you know, I just had an intern, uh, on board and he’s already getting pushback on wanting to code and I was like, no, we’re doing this. We’re gonna do this. Like, I don’t care if you’re a student, like that’s what you wanna do for your internship, I’ll make it happen.
So just that kind of thing. I just, I just kind of laugh at, I’m like, you know, people telling me no. I’m like, no. We’ll figure out a way. Let’s, let’s do it. That’s gonna make you fulfilled here under, in my department. Then you, I go, you’re gonna have the best presentation cuz I’m gonna help you.
[01:17:29] Brad Nelson: It’s awesome. Yeah. And then I do wanna give a shout out. I feel like we have to give a shout out now to your brother Kyle. Uh, we were talking about this, uh, when I was in Grand Rapids, so, and I don’t know how much he knows it, but, uh, so Drew, you don’t know Kyle, but he was a Marine, he. Is, uh, or Army? He was Army.
Okay, well, we’ll cut the Marine part so I don’t insult him. He was Army. He is a pilot and he’s got these amazing quotes. And through Kevin, these quotes of like, worked into my, uh, day-to-day vernacular. So like, when I say slow is smooth, smooth as fast, I got that from Kevin, and Kevin got it from his brother Kyle.
So, uh, I just feel like we, we have to give him a, a shout out on this episode.
[01:18:15] Kevin McClure: Yeah, definitely. I’ll, I’ll definitely send him the, uh, the Spotify link. I, I’m pretty sure he use a Spotify, but, uh, yeah, yeah, it, you know, we started using that beck at Meyer and, and the, and the more you think about it, if you actually actually dissect what that means. Right. Especially when it comes to, and I’m hoping we can get Kyle on, on this, on this actually Drew, I think he has a lot to say as well.
He’s a 20 year veteran, then overseas, he’s a blackout helicopter pilot. He still is a helicopter pilot today for hospital Kalamazoo. So, you know, when he actually broke that down for me is, you know, when it comes to his job life, were actually on the line, right? I’m not saying what we do, lifes are actually on the line, you know?
Uh, but yeah, if you work for a health system, they really are. Right. If you’re doing software for that. But yeah, he was like, if you rush and hurry, people do die. But if you take your time and, and actually think about it and move, move just a little slower than you were before, you’re not gonna tip things over.
You’re not gonna push the wrong button, you’re not gonna make these knee jerk reaction decisions in his line of work. Again, could hurt or kill people. So it’s, it’s really remarkable some of his stories, but,
[01:19:29] Drew Podwal: I, I’m a huge fan of the military, being a Navy veteran myself. But, um, you know, I, I, I think that like life doesn’t always hap like when life is on the line, it’s easier to see your purpose. Right. It’s much easier to see your purpose when, when it’s your job to deliver a heart transplant from, you know, some other one location to another.
Right. Um, um, but when livelihood is on the line, right, um, like when you’re. Issuing loans, right? A person’s livelihood is on the line. And um, I was at the Business Agility conference a couple of weeks back. They were talking about how Roche Pharmaceuticals has shifted their, the way that they work.
Everybody at that company should be able to answer the question of, what is your purpose? Right? Not as, not what is your job? What is your job function? What is your title? But what is your purpose? And their purpose is connected to an end user who you’re serving value to. Um, and that the sales people are no longer selling products, right?
They’re selling outcomes that enable people to have better lives. So, Roche, um, they sell, uh, diagnostic equipment and pharmaceuticals and surgical tools, and they, they, no, they no longer will just sell one piece of that value stream of a patient who might have an affliction they have committed to. We want to serve the entire end-to-end outcome of getting that person healed, right?
So they can have improved, um, livelihood or retain, you know, um, their life, right? Or however you say it in pharmaceutical world. Um, but like, so for like a metric, from a standpoint of. Of finance, right? Like companies are a little bit shortsighted. Are we, what percentage of money are we making each year on selling this financial product?
Right? That’s a shortsighted metric. That’s one that serves the banking industry or Right, but it doesn’t serve the customers. So better metric would be we are selling X type of financial loans or whatnot to a, um, to a persona, right? A persona that has a, a farm or a persona that, um, wants to start up a, a healthcare, uh, company or a daycare or something like that, right?
And the metric that you look at is in my region for where I’m selling, right? Um, if I own small businesses that are focused around daycare or something like that, Are parents having a reduction in cost for daycare, right? Are parents seeing that their children are having improved learning upon entry into kindergarten or, and stuff like that?
Like those are the kinds of outcomes, BA based metrics that, you know, if the world was, was adjust and fair place, right? Everybody would be using those kinds of metrics instead of like, did I hit my commission for this year? Um, so
[01:22:37] Kevin McClure: exactly the reason why I got outta sales Drew. I was sick of that carrot, right? You got punished for having a really good year. You’re like, well, you did so good that we’re just gonna double your, your goal next year. And I’m like, that doesn’t even make sense if I look at my history of, you know, obviously the goal of sales is to keep climbing, right?
But I got to a certain point where I just didn’t care anymore. I was like, I really don’t care. I’m making enough money. But that’s why I decided I needed to get out because I didn’t care anymore. I’m like, it’s not good for this company.
[01:23:08] Drew Podwal: If the carrot was connected to improving little Jimmy’s life, right? Um, or little Cindy Lou, who’s life or whatnot, right? You might still be in sales, right? Because you’d be able to be making great money. And at the same time, knowing that my purpose here isn’t just to hit a number. My purpose is to, um, is, is to improve somebody’s livelihood.
So, but yeah, I would love to set up an episode with your, your brother for sure. Because, um, you know, coming from a military background, like, like topically speaking, like leadership is a, he
[01:23:44] Kevin McClure: Mm-hmm.
[01:23:45] Drew Podwal: absolutely there, right?
[01:23:47] Kevin McClure: Absolutely.
[01:23:48] Drew Podwal: military
[01:23:49] Kevin McClure: He was a captain.
[01:23:50] Drew Podwal: Yeah.
[01:23:51] Kevin McClure: Yep. He’s held leadership roles, I think from the very beginning. You know, like he was, he was the type of guy, like, honestly, it was, it’s kind of funny because he was super small growing up, super small in high school. His passion was flight. I mean, he was flying before he had his driver’s license.
Um, but you know, when he went to bootcamp, he was just number one at everything. Physical, mental, you name it. Right. And he just, he just had a will that would not give up. And that served him super well. You know, in, in, in both mainly his career, we won’t go into his personal life. Um, I mean, that military takes a toll on you, right?
But, um, yeah, but from a, from a lens of who do you want to train? You, who do you wanna go to war with? Kyle’s your guy. You know what I mean? It’s like, I couldn’t, you know, he has all these accolades and he’s just so fast, fast and smooth. That’s, that’s his motto, right? It’s been his motto. And, um, you know, at least on his watch, right?
Nothing, nothing’s bad has happened because he, he truly cares about what he does, cares about now, now he truly cares about, You know, the, the, the, the patients that are in the back of his helicopter, you know, he, he says you do have to separate yourself, uh, emotionally from that, no matter what you see, because that’s when you start making mistakes in the, in the, in the cockpit.
Right. Um, you almost have to numb yourself a little bit, but yeah, he’s seen, heard, smelled, whatever you, whatever you can imagine, he’s, he’s basically seen it right? In the, in the world of what he does.
[01:25:41] Drew Podwal: Yeah, I like to say like, imagine, imagine how much you could achieve or how much more you could achieve or, or how more innovative you could be if you didn’t have the weight of stress, of the fear of what could go wrong on top of you, right? Like, um, And I, and I definitely learned that from the military as well, right?
Where, where, you know, there’s real things that are happening and you’ve gotta figure out and problem solve. And, you know, human nature is that, like when you’re under stressful conditions, you have to think and solve problems in, in, in stressful ways. And imagine how much better you would be at solving those problems, finding the right solution, finding a better solution, a faster solution, a more efficient solution if you weren’t worried about losing your job or worried about like, displeasing stakeholder or saying the wrong thing in a meeting, or any of those things, right?
And, and you’ve gotta figure out ways to disassociate from that, right? On the, on the, on the path to not having to experience that anymore. You have to figure out ways of compartmentalizing and say, you know what, these are real things. These are real feelings, these are real emotions, but they’re not gonna help me right now to get to the place that I want to go.
And so let’s just put that over here. I could always put it back on later if I need to. Um, I could always experience that fear if I want to, but I’m just gonna put it over here for right now and, and focus on, on that goal. Um, and that, that, you know, also comes from a lot of the, the personal performance coaching training that I’ve done as well.
[01:27:24] Kevin McClure: Mm-hmm. Absolutely.
[01:27:25] Drew Podwal: I think it’d be
[01:27:26] Brad Nelson: yeah, yeah. Kyle
[01:27:27] Kevin McClure: have a whole podcast just on that topic.
[01:27:30] Brad Nelson: yeah, he, he dropped the gem on us when I was up there. And it’s, there’s no rank in the cockpit,
[01:27:37] Drew Podwal: Yeah. Yeah.
[01:27:41] Brad Nelson: which I was like,
[01:27:42] Kevin McClure: That’s a good point.
[01:27:43] Brad Nelson: that was,
[01:27:45] Kevin McClure: Yeah. When you’re, when you’re, yeah. Yeah. W yeah, when, when you’re. In that kind of situation that at any point in time, you know, a failure could happen, right? Someone could get hurt, someone could pass out. You know, it doesn’t, it’s like you have all jump in, you’re all a team regardless of captain or GT or whatever.
Um, Is that kind of the point you got to Brad from him saying that, or,
[01:28:14] Brad Nelson: Yeah, I think what I heard was that everybody has a valuable opinion and everybody is seeing different things. And so it doesn’t matter if you’re not the highest ranked person in the cockpit. If you see something, you say it.
[01:28:29] Kevin McClure: oh,
[01:28:30] Brad Nelson: that could, that could be the difference between life and death. Like we don’t want you to be shy and timid because Right.
Like you are a grunt. Like that’s okay. And I think that’s the same thing in companies too. Hopefully it’s not life or death situations, but you know, the, the big wig enters the room and everyone shuts up.
[01:28:51] Kevin McClure: Yeah, that’s not a good, that’s not a room I wanna be in anymore. I’ve
[01:28:54] Drew Podwal: That would be an interesting, sorry. That would be a very interesting principle to incorporate into your tool, right? The idea of that, like anybody in the company should be able to look at the performance analytics for, for the customer journey so that anybody can provide the insight for what they’re seeing.
You know, it’s kinda like the, the fist of five vote of confidence that we, we do especially like in safe. Um, and, uh, you know, when you’re in the big room at the end of PI planning and you do that vote of confidence before the, the art commits to the PI plan, you know, Anybody who is observing something that may still be a risk that should be discussed, has a opportunity to raise one finger and say, I want the ability to have like five minutes just to discuss what I’m, what I’m seeing that maybe somebody else isn’t seeing right now.
[01:29:49] Kevin McClure: Yeah, to have the courage to do that too, right.
[01:29:52] Drew Podwal: yeah,
[01:29:54] Kevin McClure: but you have to, you have to create a safe space around that prior, right.
[01:30:00] Drew Podwal: the intersection of the safe space and courage, right? Is is like, and that that interface is different for every single person in every single environment.
[01:30:10] Kevin McClure: Cuz you don’t wanna create such a safe space that everyone’s avoiding topics. Right? Everyone’s like, oh, we’re all cool, right? We’re all cool. And, and no one actually brings anything up anymore. Right. You still have to, you have to put a little, little pressure on the system Right. To, to still get people to interact and, and not avoid, uh, just because we’re in a good spot, still, still not avoid anything.
Right. Still keep your head to the, your ear, to the ground on, on anything.
[01:30:38] Brad Nelson: Yeah, I’ve seen that too.
[01:30:39] Drew Podwal: Well guys, I am gonna be the one to be the poo poo platter here
[01:30:43] Kevin McClure: No, you’re good.
[01:30:44] Drew Podwal: I’ve gotta go make some dinner. Um, but this has been a really wonderful conversation. I, you know, we don’t talk enough about product on this podcast. I think we’ve only had a couple of, couple of product people on. And, um, you know, my takeaway is, is that, You know, you wanna look at metrics or either you want to innovate on both ends of the equation, right?
You want to innovate into making sure that you’re measuring the right things from a metrics perspective. And then, you know, the idea of constantly like drawing in whatever journal tool you’ve got, whether it’s Miro or Lucid Chart, or I was hoping I was gonna remember the name of this book, but, uh, paper Skin, no, moleskin, moleskin, um, whether it’s in your moleskin or whatever your journal of choice is, or on sticky notes, right?
Innovate on both sides and work your way in, you know? Um, so
[01:31:40] Kevin McClure: Absolutely.
[01:31:42] Drew Podwal: yeah.
[01:31:42] Brad Nelson: Well, Thanks for joining us, Kevin. It’s been a pleasure.
[01:31:47] Kevin McClure: As always,
[01:31:48] Brad Nelson: and
[01:31:49] Kevin McClure: yeah. Thanks for having me on, guys. Appreciate the conversation and look forward to maybe doing one another, one in the future.
[01:31:56] Drew Podwal: Yeah. Let’s bring
[01:31:57] Kevin McClure: maybe you can get both Kyle and I on the podcast.
[01:32:00] Drew Podwal: Kyle, sorry, Kevin
[01:32:02] Brad Nelson: Kevin and Kyle. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Uh, if you made it to the end of this episode, provide us your feedback at Agile for Agile Agilists dot com. I still cannot remember the name of that. Plug in Drew, the little voice recorder on the
[01:32:17] Drew Podwal: Memo fm. Memo fm.
[01:32:19] Brad Nelson: a terrible, it’s a good thing they’re not sponsoring us cause I never remember it.
But, uh, yeah. Memo FM’s on the side. Leave us a voice message. If you leave us a voice message, you may appear in an episode. We may just air the Yeah, we will. Drew says We will, you will. Uh, otherwise write us, email us. We’ve been getting some great feedback and we appreciate it.
[01:32:40] Drew Podwal: Podcast Agile for Agilists dot com is our email. Thanks guys. Much
[01:32:48] Brad Nelson: Definitely, yeah.
[01:32:49] Kevin McClure: All right. Thank you. Yeah. Have a, have a.

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