Episode 170 – Bill Penczak

Bill travels the world outside the office and socializes in the office


Bill is a social person, which you can tell from listening to this episode. He also loves to travel! So he’s never too shy to share his experiences travelling the globe with his colleagues in the office. In fact, he feels it is beneficial towards developing relationships within the office and therefore a stronger bond with your co-workers!

In this episode, Bill tells a couple of stories on his travel experiences how it affected his social skills in the office, and we learn the worst meal John has ever had!

Bill is the Managing Director of Briggs & Veselka Co. He is a marketing and sales professional with more than 25 years of professional services, B2B, consumer packaged goods, retail, high tech, and telecom experience generating sales and consumer connection for some of the country’s most prestigious brands.

Episode Highlights

• How Bill got into travelling
• How travelling helps him socialize and be flexible in his life
• Developing and improving his social skills
• Dealing with distractions in the office
• How the influx of information in today’s society affects the need for a more open culture in the workplace
• People quit bosses and environments, not jobs
• Bill’s thoughts on how the company and its employees can promote a more open culture

Please take 2 minutes

to do John’s anonymous survey

about Corporate Culture!

Survey Button

Other pictures of William

(click to enlarge)

At Stonehenge

Enjoying wine in Portugal wearing the official Green Apple Podcast t-shirt

At the Cape of Good Hope

Repping the firm in Venice

William’s links


  • Read Full TranscriptOpen or Close

    Hello. This is John Garrett and welcome to Episode 170 of the Green Apple Podcast where each Wednesday I interview a professional who, just like me, is known for a hobby or a passion or an interest outside of work. It’s someone who’s what you don’t think of as being the stereotype which makes them stand out like a green apple in a stereotypically boring red apple world.

    I’m always so fascinated how we usually try to stand out with our technical expertise. I’m here to shine a light each week on someone who understands that expertise isn’t always earned in degrees and certifications. Sometimes, it’s experiences from your passions outside of work that will make you better at your job, but only if you share them.

    Really quickly, I’m doing some research for the book that I’m releasing very soon. It’s a super short one-minute anonymous survey about corporate culture and how the green apple message might apply in your world. So if you’ve got just 60 seconds please head to greenappplepodcast.com, click on the big green button there and answer a few quick questions. Again, it’s totally anonymous. I really appreciate the help.

    Thanks for everyone for hitting subscribe so you don’t miss any other cool guests like this week’s Bill Penczak. He’s the Managing Director of Practice Development for Briggs & Veselka in Houston. Bill, thanks so much for taking time to be with me on the Green Apple Podcast.

    Bill: Thanks, John. I love to be here.

    John: Yeah. It was so fun hanging out with you at the AAM Summit in Portland just several months ago. I’m just excited to have you be a part of this.

    Bill: Yeah. I mean one of our other associates was on the show a couple months ago and he had a blast doing it. He sounded great and you were great so I’m ready and raring to go.

    John: Yeah. We’re going to just get everybody at Briggs & Veselka on the show eventually. That’s what’s going to happen.

    Bill: Some of them you probably don’t want to talk to, but that’s okay.

    John: That’s true. That’s true. Yeah, but we always start the show with the rapid-fire questions. I know we’ve already hung out. But just in case, if we’re going do some traveling, that’s a long flight. We got to make sure that we can make it through that.

    I got my 17 rapid fire questions to get to know Bill on a new level here. All right, here we go. Here we go. Do you prefer things more hot or cold?

    Bill: Hot.

    John: Hot? Yeah. Well, that’s Houston for you. There you go.

    Bill: Living in Houston and having a lot of spicy food is kind of a requisite.

    John: All around. There you go. All right. Would you say you’re more suit and a tie or jeans and a t-shirt?

    Bill: Depends on the day. But jeans and T-shirt, probably. Like right now, it’s a Tuesday and I’m wearing jeans.

    John: Nice. Very good. Very good. How about more Star Wars or Star Trek?

    Bill: Star Trek. The old classic one with James T. Kirk and not all the new stuff.

    John: Right. Right. All right. How about when it comes to your computer, more of a PC or a Mac?

    Bill: I started off on a Mac, but I’m converted back to PCs. In fact, I’m on Samsung instead of Apple because I think Apple was becoming part of the evil empire.

    John: Wow. I never heard of people going the reverse. It’s always the other way around. Good for you, man. We’ve saved you.

    Bill: Contrarian and it serves me well in my job.

    John: Yeah, that’s true. That’s very true. How about do you have a favorite ice cream flavor?

    Bill: Rocky Road, probably.

    John: Rocky Road?

    Bill: You never know what you’re going to get in the next bite.

    John: Right. That’s true. That’s an excellent point. Excellent point. As a Marketing person, I have to ask you, do you prefer more digital content or print media?

    Bill: I’m old fashioned or maybe some people would just say old, so I started in print and in broadcast. That’s really my sweet spot. I know enough to be dangerous with the digital world. But I know from a metric standpoint in trying to generate leads and all that, that the digital part is what we’re starting to make more investments in that. But my sweet spot is belying of my age.

    John: That’s hilarious. That’s so funny. How about when you’re on an airplane? More window or aisle seat?

    Bill: Definitely aisle. I’m 6’2” and I need to be able to move my legs around and I’m too cheap to fly up front, so I need all the help I can get.

    John: Right. No, I’m with you on that, man. I’m with you on that. Then you have some girl who’s like 5’3”, sitting in front of you and then reclines as soon as the plane leaves the ground. What are you doing? Just sit up. What are you doing? How about do you have a favorite font?

    Bill: Ariel? I don’t know.

    John: Ariel. Okay. All right. That works. That works.

    Bill: I was going to say Times New Roman. But it would make me one, appear too old again. But also, I started off in journalism and everything that we used to have to do in journalism was in Times Roman, 12 point, with the little hash marks at the very bottom. So again, I’m showing my age off. I’m feeling old today. I don’t know if it’s you or what.

    John: No. You’re all good, man. You’re all good. We’ll get younger as the — like Rip Van Winkle. Who’s the –? Yeah, that’s it. Benjamin Button. We’re going to Benjamin Button you on this episode. As it goes on, you’re going to get younger and younger. That’s it. How about more ocean or mountains?

    Bill: Mountain.

    John: Mountains? Nice. Okay. How about Sudoku or crossword puzzle?

    Bill: Crossword puzzle. I’m a word guy. Not a numbers guy.

    John: Yeah. Yeah. How about do you have a favorite color?

    Bill: Blue and it’s kind of boring. But I just like all shades of blue.

    John: No. I like blue too, man. Blue’s great.

    Bill: Although, today I’m wearing a pink shirt and I’ve got five or six pink shirts that I wear. So man enough to do that.

    John: Right. Right. Interesting. Okay. Well, then, do you have a least favorite color?

    Bill: Orange, probably. I don’t know why but I was told once by somebody who worked for me, that it wasn’t one of my good colors. I shouldn’t wear my orange shirt anymore.

    John: Just unsolicited feedback. That’s nice.

    Bill: Part of my 360 feedback at the firm I was with.

    John: Then you went and bought four more pink shirts because you’re like, “I’m doubling down on that one.”

    Bill: Yup, yup.

    John: Do you have a favorite TV show of all time?

    Bill: Seinfeld. Still one of my favorites. It’s not quite a TV show. But we’ve been binge watching the Kevin Spacey show, House of Cards. That’s been kind of fun.

    John: That counts. Yeah. How about a favorite animal of any kind?

    Bill: My wife would kill me if I didn’t say Australian Shepherd, because we’ve got one. That’s a very special dog. Really smart, really sweet.

    John: Yeah. Those are cool dogs, for sure. Are you more of an early bird or a night owl?

    Bill: Definitely, early bird. I love the time from 7:00 until 9:00 here at the office where there’s not anybody else here. I got my quiet time to either write stuff or work on things or think about things rather than just go to meetings.

    John: Yeah. All right. Two more. Do you have a favorite actor or actress?

    Bill: Maybe Jimmy Stewart. Or the new Jimmy Stewart, Tom Hanks.

    John: Yeah, right. Exactly.

    Bill: I actually got to meet him once. It’s a long story but I got to meet him and his wife and hung out with him.

    John: Very cool. I imagine he’s super nice.

    Bill: That man can drink. No, I’m kidding.

    John: Right. That’s the real Jimmy Stewart. No. Last one. The favorite thing you own or the favorite thing you have?

    Bill: This ties back to what we’re going to talk about, about my love for travel. There’s a story that goes with it. When my wife and I got married, we went on a honeymoon on a cruise. It started off in Lisbon and wound up in Rome. My mother-in-law was a quilter and she said, “As a gift, I’m going to give you a quilt to commemorate your honeymoon.”

    On all the different ports that we went into, we had to go figure out how to say in a bunch of different languages, “I need a meter of cotton fabric.” In all the different places that we went to, we brought all the pieces and parts together. About six or eight months later, she put together this awesome, awesome quilt that we have hanging in our in our dining room right now.

    On the back of it, she created this little legend that said, “This piece was from here, and that piece was from there.” We always kid about after the kids and the dog, the next thing we’re going to take out of the house if it ever catches fire, is that quilt.

    John: Yeah. That’s really cool, though.

    Bill: I mean, it’s such a unique thing and it reminds us of our honeymoon trip. It reminds us of her. That’s pretty special.

    John: Yeah, that’s really cool. Really cool. Yeah, and just leading right into the travel, how did you get into that? Was it something that you grew up doing? Or was it once you grew, once you got older?

    Bill: I grew up and we did the kind of family station wagon trips. It was kind of the typical thing. When we lived in New York, went up to the Adirondack Mountains or the Catskills. We lived in Texas, we’d go to the Hill Country or to West Texas. I always kind of liked that wanderlust thing and I think it probably goes back to the fact that I like different things.

    One of the things I love about travel is that every day is different. You don’t quite know what to expect, what you’re going to see. Everything, the food to the weather, to the people, to the language, to the money and everything in between, is always new and different, and interesting and stimulating. That’s kind of been sort of a core of who I am and probably why I got into marketing because that’s what we do every day.

    But then over the course of my professional career, I’ve had some international positions so I got to travel a bit. Even when I was working for a larger firm, I got to travel across the US. That’s something my wife and I have always done since we’ve been married 22 years ago and it just kind of took off from there.

    John: No, that’s really cool, really cool. It’s neat how work is able to feed that passion as well or give you the flex time that you’re able to take time off to go and do that.

    Bill: A lot of times, we would pair up like a business trip if I had to go someplace. My wife would come along for like the week after maybe and get to see all these awesome exotic places.

    John: Yeah, that’s really cool. Are there some of the more rewarding or cooler places that you’ve been?

    Bill: Yeah, something that was not even on our bucket list and this was a work trip, was going to South Africa. We got to go to Cape Town when I was at another firm, and it was amazing. The people were great. The food was interesting. You’ve got all the history of the Dutch and the English and Afrikaans and the boars and we never even thought about it, and just to have discovered a place that was so different and unique, you kind of read about it or heard about it all your life and actually getting to go there and experience it was awesome.

    John: Yeah, yeah, Cape Town’s my favorite place I’ve been as well. It’s so cool, because it’s got the infrastructure from the European settlers but it’s also got that raw Africa feel to it. The food and the landscape and that Table Mountain, that giant plateau that you can go up on, and then not just an hour’s drive south is that Cape of Good Hope, and just wild baboons running everywhere. It’s a cool place. Plus, there’s amazing wine, just not a half hour outside of downtown Cape Town, Stellenbosch.

    Bill: We had our global meeting in Stellenbosch. We’re in the middle of wine country and it’s incredible, because you think about Napa, and you look at the vineyards that they have there, and maybe 100 or a couple hundred acres.

    But when you drive through Stellenbosch, the vineyards are like hundreds and hundreds of acres and it just goes on, like for miles along the freeway. The wines are good and there’s a lot of little places that have been built, like in the 1700s-1800s that are now vineyards and wineries that they build up into bed and breakfast, or build up into restaurants. It’s just an amazing kind of chill place to go.

    John: Yeah, it’s really cool. Really cool. If people can sit on the plane that long, it’s totally worth it. That’s what I tell them. Definitely, I agree. Do you feel like any of the traveling translates into something that helps you in the office?

    Bill: Yeah, and a couple of fronts. One, on a social front, and I know one of the questions you’re going to ask is about, “Do you talk about your hobby or your avocation at work?” I do. Because I think I’ve become the unofficial travel agent for the firm. People know that I get to go on cool trips and somebody will say, “Oh, my husband and I are thinking about going to Iceland.” I’ll have a story to tell or recommendation to make or a website to point to.

    That’s a nice icebreaker and then being able to help follow-up and say, “Oh, you should look at this restaurant.” My wife and I were in Portugal earlier this year and one of the new senior managers at the firm as it turns out, totally coincidentally, was going there at the same time. So we shared itineraries, and we went to some of the same restaurants, not at the same time, but we went to the same restaurants.

    It’s kind of cool to be able to share with her some of that research that I’d done. But then beyond that in sort of a more elevated level, the ability to keep your knees bent. You think about when you’re traveling, and you have all these plans laid out and other stuff happens. The weather may change or you may miss a plane or whatever else and the ability to flex and be malleable to what the situation is, I think, in my world, in working in marketing, and probably for anybody in an accounting firm or professional services firm, you never know what’s going to happen next.

    Sometimes that’s exciting, sometimes it’s daunting, but having that mindset that I think maybe travel has trained that or maybe it’s been kind of a back and forth, but the ability to anticipate maybe, and have secondary plans and backup plans. Basically, keeping your knees bent to being flexible is super, super important.

    John: Yeah, I could totally see that. It’s kind of a muscle group that you’re exercising when you’re traveling. All of a sudden, when you get to the office, it’s like, “Oh, I do this all the time,” type of a thing. It’s one of those things that it’s a skill set that you’re not learning in college, and no degree or certification or anything you can hang on your wall shows that. But all of a sudden, when you need to put it into action, you’re really good at it because of all the travel that you’ve done. That’s neat that you’re able to recognize that.

    Bill: Maybe another aspect, as you’re talking, made me think that, the art of translation. Communicating with people is important in other countries and there’s lots of tools that you can use to do that with. But part of my job as a marketer is to translate what we do with the firm, the deliverables that we have for our clients, to define what the problem that we’re solving.

    That interpretation, I think, is the hallmark of a good marketer to be able to say, “Here’s what we do. But here’s what it means to you as a client or here’s what it means to you as a company.” Being able to look for that benefit is maybe another spin on the whole notion of translation.

    John: Right, yeah. I’ve been overseas and when you’re dealing with people that speak other languages, you have to go to the very basic meaning of everything. Definitely. When you’re talking to audit people, or tax people, or other professional services, organizations, people within your firm or your company, everyone speaks a different language.

    It’s needing to bring it to them in the language that they can understand and then also for the client. That’s fantastic. I never even thought of that. That’s really cool.

    Bill: It didn’t dawn on me until you were talking, made me think about that, too. Because sometimes, there are professionals who are very technical, are speaking a different language, but that’s okay.

    John: It’s totally okay. If anything, it’s the magic of it all that makes it really beautiful, like when you’re traveling. I think that’s so neat too, asking people in all the different languages for a meter of fabric. You have to learn the language and that’s not a regular phrase that’s in, you know, Rick Steve’s book.

    Bill: Right. That and also trying to figure out like where’s the fabric store and figure out what a fabric store is, and looking at all that. So there were a couple places where we came up empty or had some sort of jake leg replacements that probably did not wind up on the final quilt. But it kind of made it like a treasure hunt. First thing we need to do when we land in Rome is to go do this. That kind of made it fun.

    John: Yeah, that is neat. You get a lot of burlap sacks. Wait. I think we’ve said something wrong.

    Bill: Isn’t this a Hershey wrapper? I don’t know.

    John: Exactly. But one thing I’m curious about. I think it’s really neat how you’re so open with sharing and so social, is that something that you were always like that?

    Bill: No. Not at all. It’s funny, I taught a class or series of classes this summer on Practice Development. It was personal brand, and how to talk in front of a group and how to network and all that.

    I told a story that there was a point in my career, I don’t know how many years ago, that it was just mind numbing for me to think I’m going to get up in front of a group. One on one, I’m fine. I don’t know what the tipping point was like. Is it more than six people? Is it more than 12 people? But at some point, you start thinking, is my zipper open or am I going to say something stupid, or whatever else. I tell people today that, especially the younger folks at the firm, you just got to practice it.

    There’s one really rewarding story. I’ve got somebody that I’m coaching on her Practice Development and she’s a former school teacher. She’s not unafraid to talk in front of a group, although most of them are kids. She’s not a Native American. She’s always concerned about how her accent’s going to sound and all that.

    We’ve been working together for a couple years. Literally, I was talking to her earlier this week and she said, “You know, I think I’ve hit that tipping point where I’m not afraid to talk in front of a group.” It’s so rewarding to be able to see that. It sounds stupid, but it just takes a lot of practice to do it.

    In fact, I was telling somebody a story earlier today that we’re talking about group dynamics. I remember being in a meeting about 15 years ago, when I worked for a marketing consulting firm. A client asked a question in the meeting. All my team members looked at me to answer it. I thought, “Oh, my god, I’m the guy now.” I’ve got to answer it, and come up with some answer that makes sense, that they’re not going to laugh at.

    It just kind of gets easier and easier. It’s got to be like you and maybe like your personality, you’ve always been that way. But earlier on in your career, you couldn’t express it the same way that you’re doing now. You just do it and you figure out what makes sense and figure out how to tailor your approach for the right situation and the right audience. But then, you’re talking about before you to start exercising that muscle, and you get better at it. But no, it does not come naturally at all.

    John: Right. It’s something where, I think that it just comes with confidence. You do the first one, and then you realize that it’s not this big, giant, scary shark. Whether it’s public speaking, or it’s just having a one on one with someone of like, “What did you do this weekend?”

    Genuinely asking people what they’re interested in. There’s people all around that have such amazingly cool things. Imagine, if no one knew your love of travel and all the places you’ve been, then they would miss out on all these cool experiences that you’re able to point them in that direction.

    It’s just sad to think about that. Where the flipside is, the worst possible thing that could happen is, you say, “I really love to travel.” And everyone’s like, “Okay, great. Now, we’re going back to work.” Either way, it’s not a bad thing. It’s a win-win, really. It’s always so interesting to me at how our default mode is not to share and yet the human body and mind is made to connect. I’m not sure why that is.

    Bill: We typically share in social non-work situations, right? Hopefully. Otherwise, you’d be a hermit or a tax person.

    John: Right. Hello? Zing!

    Bill: Just kidding, don’t use that. But it’s funny, because at work, we have to put on this grown-up face and our grown-up clothes, and all that. At the end of the day, it’s all about connection. If you have an idea that you’re trying to sell to somebody, or if you’re trying to do something a different way, or you’re trying to motivate a team, at the end of the day, we’re not a bunch of robots.

    It’s the human factor and finding that way to connect with people. There’s such a different myriad of ways that people are, in ways that people want to be talked to. But the trick is finding some sort of common ground where you can feel comfortable with each other, and then the work stuff becomes so much easier.

    John: Yeah, absolutely. I think that’s interesting how you said, we put on a grown-up face, and we put on grown-up clothes. For some reason, it’s like a costume of something that we’re not. And yet, it’s clothes that you pick out. It’s what you would wear to a wedding or whatever.

    It’s still you on the inside and you got to lit that out. That’s what’s always so interesting to me of how we’re so reluctant to do that. But I think it’s great how you’re setting an example that clearly, you can do that and still be very successful. It doesn’t inhibit your job at all, because there’s some of that mindset of these are distractions. We shouldn’t be talking about them at work. How do you feel about that?

    Bill: Everyone’s got distractions and stuff going on in their lives, right? The ability to either not focus on the negative stuff and focus on the positive stuff, I think, sounds a little bit trite but that’s essential to being successful in work.

    But I think it does go back to finding a common bond with people. Some of it could be purely work and purely technical, and some people groove on all that. I think most people have a lot of different layers to them. It’s like the line from Shrek, right? The Onion line from Shrek where it makes a difference of how you connect with people. Therefore, it makes a difference on how successful you can be in a work environment.

    You got to have somewhat of an open mind. I’d like to think that there’s maybe a tipping point now that people are more generally open. I think, with the influx of information that we get and the transparency that we get a lot more that society has kind of dictated that. Businesses that don’t embrace that are probably going to be left behind.

    John: Yeah, for sure. Because, there’s the internet now and people can find organizations that are doing it the way that they feel more comfortable and valued. In the end of the day, it’s also making people feel valued. I care about you as a whole person, not just the accounting part, or the law part, or whatever. It’s, “I care about all of you.”

    You don’t buy a Ferrari and only put gas in it. “That’s the only stuff I need, because it’s what makes me go forward.” It’s like, yeah, but eventually the tires blow up, and the car rusts out, and the oil — the engine blows, and it’s the same thing. People are just as valuable as that or if not more.

    Bill: I read something that people don’t quit jobs, they quit bosses. I think you could probably extend that to quit environments. If you’re working for, say, an accounting firm A, and you go down the street to go work for accounting firm B, the work that you do is probably going to be pretty much the same.

    You’re ticking and tying or you’re doing tax returns, or you’re doing consulting. But the people with whom you do it, whether it’s your clients, that you may not have as much control over, but you can have more decisions and the types of people and the types of culture that you’re working within. That’s what makes a difference.

    I’m doing a panel later on this week. Got a couple of other professional services. People talking about — the topic is Culture versus Compensation. From the pre-work that we’ve done so far, I think the conclusion that we’re coming to is that culture can trump that and drop the compensation piece. Money is good. Money is important in life. Balance is important. But if it sucks to come into work every day, who cares how much money you’re making?

    John: Right. It doesn’t, because we’ve all worked around that person that’s, you know, “I’m going to quit, I hate it here.” And then they go and offer them another maybe $5 or $10,000. Then a week later, they hate it again. Unless it’s like a million dollars, then that’s life changing. But no one’s giving you that money.

    In a normal day to day, yeah, I mean culture, absolutely, for sure, is much more than that. There’s actually an article that I read about that as well, that showed that, people are willing to take $100,000 less pay for an amazing culture that actually values them. There was a study that was done with that, which is pretty neat. I’ll try and find the link to that.

    Bill: $100,000?

    John: I know, I was like, wow! But it was Harvard. So they must be right.

    Bill: They probably just talked to Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

    John: Right. Because for most of us, that’s a 100% decrease in salary. “I’m paying you now? How does this work?”

    Bill: “Wait a minute. That’s not right.”

    John: Right. Exactly. One last question before we bring it in for a landing, I guess, how much do you feel like it’s on the organization to create that culture? It seems like you guys have there at Briggs & Veselka, where it’s encouraged for people to share versus how much is it on the individual to create that amongst themselves in a small group?

    Bill: Well, I think it’s a cause and effect that the company has to have the capacity to want to have that. Imagine being frustrated that you had a desire to connect with your fellow employees, and you had this burning desire to do things better, and all that kind of stuff. And you work for somebody or somebodies that thought, “Nope, we’re just going to do this the way we’ve always done it.”

    I think the first step is creating a comfortable enough environment in which people can express themselves. The second part of it is for individuals to kind of step up and do it which, you know, that doesn’t happen all the time. But it’s not like a one and done, that culture is not a thing that you put up on the wall or put into a three-ring binder or you do at your annual meeting, and it’s done. It’s a constant living, breathing kind of thing.

    A couple years ago, we redid our Mission, Vision and Values. One of the lines I like about within it is, “We find the best in ourselves and in each other.” I really do believe I’m drinking the Kool Aid because I helped make the Kool Aid. But the people that I talked to, when we were putting this all together, really did say that and feel that and had examples of how they felt supported.

    It’s not just, “I’m going to support you if you mess up” but, “Support you to do better and bigger things.” We’ve got a couple of examples of new practice areas where somebody like a more junior person on the team had an idea and we wind up making a practice out of it, and now we’re making money off of it. That’s the whole idea of doing it that you have people that are totally engaged that can do great things and help each other to do that. What else would you want?

    John: That’s fantastic. Such a great example for people to realize that, just because you’re older, more experienced, doesn’t mean you have all the answers.

    Bill: I don’t?

    John: And allowing people to step up and share that. Yeah, you still like Times New Roman, for god’s sakes. I mean, come on man. I’m just kidding. Hopefully, when they made the suggestion, they printed it on paper and handed it to you.

    This was fantastic, Bill. But before I wrap it up, it’s only fair that I turn the tables back on me and let you rapid-fire question me. Put me on the hot seat. You can fire away.

    Bill: Question number one. What’s the worst meal you’ve ever had?

    John: Oh, worst meal. Okay, well, we used to live in the Azores. My dad was in the Air Force and there’s an air force base there. There are islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. They would make this Alcatra. A-L-C-A-T-R-A, I believe. There’s beef and fish, one or the other. What it is, is just a clay pot that they put into this wood burning oven in their house all day.

    It’s just like, a whole fish or three or four and then loaves of bread and a bunch of vegetables and then broth. It just cooks all day. Then they bring it out and set it on the table. Well, when it’s a whole fish, like all the eyeballs are just floating on the top and it’s so gross. I haven’t liked fish since 7th grade. It still haunts me to this day. That was a bad one.

    Bill: You know that some people like the eyeball.

    John: Yeah, and good for them. Then they can go nuts. They can eat all of them. I’ll fight you on the chocolate cake, though. That one’s mine.

    Bill: What’s your favorite destination, since we’re talking about travel, your favorite destination in the US besides Denver?

    John: In the US? Okay. Yeah, wow. There are so many cool places. Oh, you know what? Okay, favorite destination in the US, I would say, Big Sur, like the Pacific Coast Highway, South of San Francisco there.

    Bill: Okay, that’s a good one. That’s good.

    John: It’s super amazing. Every single turn is just like, let’s get a picture of this. And then you go around another turn, it’s even more beautiful. There’s a resort hotel, sort of a thing where there’s these pods that are up on this cliff that are on the edge of the Pacific Ocean. They’re a couple thousand a night I think. Just one day, I want to stay there, for a couple of days just to say I did. That’s like a bucket list item for sure.

    Bill: That’s awesome. Okay, the last question is, because you moved around a lot, do you think that your ability to connect with people came as a result of that? That you had to make friends in a bunch of different places over a bunch of different times?

    John: Yeah, I definitely do think so. Because everybody likes the kid that can relate to them and also has kind of a funny joke or has a good sense of humor. I’m also pretty flexible when it comes to things. Like you said, keep your knees bent. It also allows me to really appreciate where I’m at in the moment.

    When I travel to a city, every city’s got something cool to do for a day or two or three. It just makes you really just jump in and appreciate those things. So yeah, I definitely do think it was a big factor in what I do now for a living. Absolutely, it gave me that skill set to be able to relate to people, but also to observe and adjust on the fly. Absolutely, I think it 100% makes me better at what I do, for sure.

    Bill: Last question related to that. Have you gone back and thanked your parents for that?

    John: Well, yeah. They definitely know how much I appreciate them for sure. In the moment when you’re moving around in elementary school, and you end up going to, I don’t know, I think ten schools all together, counting University, it’s not always fun. But looking back on it now, it definitely made me a better person overall and who I am today. Just imagine how terrible I would have been if not.

    This was really great, Bill. Thanks so much for being a part of the Green Apple Podcast.

    Bill: Sure. It’s been fun to do this. I appreciate it.

    John: If you like to see some pictures from Bill’s travels or connect with him on social media, be sure to go to greenapplepodcast.com. All the links are there.

    While you’re on the page, please click that big, green button and do the anonymous research survey about corporate culture. It’ll really help for the book that I’m writing that’ll be out later this year.

    Thanks again for subscribing to the show and for sharing this with your friends, so they get the message that we’re all trying to spread which is to go out and be a green apple.


Related Posts

Episode 529- Elizabeth Coo

Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedInElizabeth is an Accountant & Podcaster Elizabeth Coo, Founder and...

Episode 383 – Scott Shute

Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedInScott is an Executive & Photographer & Musician & Meditator...