June 13, 2022

Who is landing this plane?? Hopefully, Growth Architect Beate Chelette

Who is landing this plane?? Hopefully, Growth Architect Beate Chelette

Creator of the “5-Star Success Blueprint,” Beate Chelette turned her passion for photography into a global business, licensing in 79 countries and exiting in a multimillion dollar deal selling the company to Bill Gates.

In this buoyant, illuminating conversation, Beate  and
Truth Tastes Funny host Hersh Rephun discuss the nuts and bolts of building the perfect offer - and how the "Women's Code" can level the playing field.

Beate wasn’t always one of PeopleHum’s Top 100 Global Thought Leaders, or one of Hearst’s 50 Must-Follow Women Entrepreneurs. At one point, she was $135k in debt, a single parent grieving the loss of her dad, staring eviction in the face. What saved her was persistence - and a plan.

What’s your cargo? Who’s working the flight, and who is landing this plane?? Want to achieve the clarity you need for your business plan to take flight? Give a listen!

Key Takeaways:

  • There is no WTF in TEAM. (my words, but you’ll get it)
  • What do you WANT to do? Hint: it’s not a trick question!
  • In business, men have a code that gives them an edge; what’s needed now is the Women’s Code.

Resources: https://www.linkedin.com/in/beatechelette/ 

Transcript

Beate Chelette

Hersh:  The funny thing about being in the middle of nowhere is that if you pull back 30,000 feet, you'll realize that you're probably somewhere. This is my conversation with Beate Chelette. 

I'm here today with Beate Chelette growth architect at Chelette Enterprises. One of PeopleHome's Top 100 global thought leaders, and one of the 50 Must-Follow Women Entrepreneurs by Hearst. So I, I'm very excited to have her on today and there's a range of topics I want to cover, but let's start at the beginning Beate let's start with. How you came to be a growth architect. 

Beate Chellette: So the, the, the, the term growth architect comes from my love for systems. And when we talk to business owners, entrepreneurs, podcast, as coaches, consultants, when I say system. Probably 80% want to already run away and escape to an island to never have to hear [00:01:00] the terms of strategy and systems again.

But for me, it is a, the idea that. I've been doing this for a while and I've built, you know, lots and lots and lots of business models and always look at what is different in how somebody presents, what they do so that I will go, wait, what did you just say? That sounded really interesting. And most of the times people don't, you know, have a hard time.

Explaining what they do in simple terms, or they say it in a way that it sounds like everybody else. And then there is no, no, it's not interesting. And so the growth architect came from the idea that if I had a blueprint, which I do, and I gave you the blueprint to build the house. We still have a house and you still can furnish it any way you want.

You can put whatever color on the wall. You can put whatever you like. You can go Goth, you can go modern, you can go tradition. You can do [00:02:00] whatever you. But you do need a blueprint to build a house. And so that's how I decided that my brand was going to be around growth architecture, being the growth architect, to help people to grow their authority and scale their impact.

Following a blueprint. 

Hersh: Now, going back a little bit, you started all of this from a perspective of, of not necessarily having a blueprint. Or at aura knowledge of how you were going to get to where you wanted to go, 

Beate Chellette: how did you know, how did you know, right? Yes, it was, it was absolute chaos. So my story is, you'll have to imagine that I was a single mom. I was $135,000 in debt. I made a lot of really excellent mistakes and I found myself in a pickle. How do I, as a single mom, as an immigrant with this much debt, how do I [00:03:00] figure out my way out? Out of the mess. I got myself in and it was not just my mess.

Really. I had come through a decade of bad luck Hersh. So all this stuff that happens to other people that happened to me, I'm the one who had the employee that came up with the idea for her own business, which was my business just without me with my key vendor. No. And the lawsuit. I'm the one who lost a business in September 11th.

I'm the one who lost my key vendor in a tsunami. I mean, you can't make this up, right? This is just crazy stuff. And fires, floods, riots, earthquakes. I mean, it just kept coming over 10 years. There comes a point where you say, am I going to drown in a puddle? Or am I going to jump? And the ocean, at least I'm going to make it worthwhile.

Right? I'm going to at least drown in the ocean. And that's when I went to Germany to, to drum up some more business. My father has a stroke Kirsch, [00:04:00] but he did not have a stroke. My father had pancreatic cancer and he died. Only six weeks later. And now my best friend is gone while I'm at the funeral.

My phone rings since my office in Los Angeles, we were served a notice after all of this while I'm not even there at the grave of my dad. Now I'm losing my house. I didn't own my house, but you know, we were renting, but the sleazy landlord, I mean, it's just, again, stuff you can't make up. 

Hersh: Let me interrupt you for a second and ask you at, so at that moment, because, because that we, this seems sadly so relatable, not, not just relatable you know, because we all go through times that are challenging, but relatable because these days it seems like it's one thing after another.

And some, some of it has to do with us. And so if it isn't. Related to us, but it still it's still affects us and, and, [00:05:00] and, you know, hits us. So at that moment, what is your reaction when you get this, this news on top of your loss and on top of everything, that's, that's happening? What was that initial feeling?

Beate Chellette: That's a good hook you're adding here because the thought is really WTF or what now? Right? I mean, so this is sort of the moment when somebody, that's your biggest fan, your biggest supporter, your number one fan, the man that thought all of my ideas are great, which by the way, they're not, but he thought it nevertheless, right?

When, when, when that goes, it's like your worst case scenario just happened. And you go, okay. It's it's it's that dear God, is that it? I mean, are we now, are we now we now done. What happened in that moment is, [00:06:00] you know, and I'm, I'm at the grave at this moment when this happens. I mean, literally we just literally put my dad in the ground and I'm waiting, you know, everybody's leaving, I'm still there.

I'm saying goodbye. I'm leaving back to Los Angeles. That's when the phone rang, I fell to my knees. I raised my fist and I yelled at. And I said, if you have an idea, this would be an excellent moment to fill me in because you go WTF, what's going on here? What did I ever do to deserve this? And I think this is what you're referring to.

The relatable part of this story is like, what did I do to deserve this on top of this, on top of this, on top of this. And when will it ever end? And I think what happens is that the moment when you are in this darkness or you are so surrounded by darkness. And I mean, [00:07:00] we were looking at people who have lost loved ones, post pandemic, you know, that have lost businesses that lost their jobs, they, had to change everything in their lives.

Upside down. People have gone through massive changes.

I, I can only surrender.

So you surrender and you say, because I've, I've done everything I could I've I've showed up every day. You know, I wiped off the tears. I, I kept my back straight. I fought my way through it, but this is now beyond, this is now beyond what. What I can do, you know, I'm, I'm already in debt. This is this isn't going nowhere good. So, so you surrender and you say, I have no plan take over because I, I don't know what's going to happen next. 

Hersh: And so what happens next? 

Beate Chellette: Well, so I went back to Los Angeles and [00:08:00] not long after, you know what, I'm in the middle of figuring out how to find a new office on money I don't have.

And I mean, it's just. I get a letter from the white house because I did in my desperation. Write a letter to the president of the United States. This is sometimes how crazy these stories are. And I wrote the letter Hersh because my ex mother in law would not be quiet about this. "You got to write the president of the United States. He's your president, too. If anybody can help you as the president of the United States, have you written a letter to the President??" I'm like, fine, fine, fine, fine. I'm writing the damn letter. Okay. So just we don't have to talk about, I wrote a letter to the White House. I get a letter from the white house. I almost fell off my chair.

I mean, who gets a letter from the white house? And it says the president is delighted to hear from you and send you his best wishes. I'm like, seriously, of course the president of the United States never [00:09:00] saw this letter, but what it did do it put me in touch with a small business administration, the office here in Los Angeles.

And with the deputy chief director, not with some underling, but with a top doc, because it came from the white house. So I walk in, I had written my business plan. I was ready to go. And then he says, I'm going to put in what you put in. And for the first time in years now, I knew that I was going to be okay, three months later.

They, you know, I had signed the deal with the bank. They restructured my $135,000 in a fixed 10 year term loan. It freed up my line of credit. And three months later, we a break even 18 months later, we are the world leader in our category. 

Wow. And you did have a plan see the, the, the thing is that you couldn't control what was going to happen to you and you couldn't control what was going on, but you could control your [00:10:00] readiness for an opportunity for an event for, you know, okay. If this is my only chance, this is my only way to get to the white house. I wrote a letter and they, they send at, at least they respond.

Hersh: And, you know, but I'm going to go in there with, with everything I have. I'm going to go in there. Ready? I'm not going to go in there and just wing it. 

I think this is a very critical point. And let's just point this out to your audience Hersh, because I think this is, this is what's often, often overlooked.

Beate Chellette: Yes, it is true. That a lot of times we don't have control over the circumstances of our. But we certainly have control over how we react to the circumstances of our lives. And so I could have sat on the couch. I could've, you know, fallen into deep depression. I did have a nervous breakdown in all of this.

And remember, I'm a single mom, you know, I'm still trying to figure out how to make all of this happen, but I choose to be [00:11:00] very disciplined about what I allowed myself to experience and to feel because I knew that if it was going to go down this. self-pity road that it was the beginning of the end. 

 Right. And this was in the area of, of photography, correct? You studied photo design that's that was your background. Your background was not business per se , growth architecture certainly was not what what you were pursuing.

Hersh: So tell us a little bit about your interest in photography and the trajectory of that. Cause I, I have. Listeners, I think who, who bridge the gap between art and commerce, who are artists, themselves trying to be business people or are business people who know they have a certain bent for art artistry and they want to know are the two things mutually excited.

You know, can you be an artist and be a business person? Can you, you know, with so many people leaning toward entrepreneurship, is that possible? So [00:12:00] give us a little, a little background on your, on your love of photography and that, that through line. 

Beate Chellette: Yeah. Good points. So I became a photographer because I, I felt that I don't fit in necessarily into, you know, the regular kind of secretary thing. And so when I did my aptitude test in Germany, I had said that I liked being outside. I liked I wasn't afraid of Heights and I. I didn't mind physical, you know, work like carrying things. And the aptitude test said I should've been a roofer

and not that there's anything wrong with roofing. It was really not exactly the professional. I had in mind for myself. And so I the woman, you know, the aptitude career counselor, she says, well, why don't you become a secretary which had nothing to do with anything I wanted to do. So I said, well, but I want to be a textile designer.

She [00:13:00] says too many applicants, no jobs. I want to be a jewelry designer, too many applicants, no jobs. I want to be a photographer, too many applicants, no job. And I just looked at her. I said, this side, Is that everything I wanted to be, she gave me the same answer and she wanted to push me into what she thought was a safe, safe job, which is that classic middle-class thinking.

So I became a photographer anyway. And what I realized is that. The, I was better at the business side behind creativity, interestingly enough. So the methodology or the how to organize and how. You know, maximize ideas was much easier for me than being, you know, behind the camera and taking the pictures because I realized to be somebody who has a style, you have to put the years in, in the craft to develop that particular style.

And then you re recognize that artists or creatives are really in a double whammy [00:14:00] because not just do they have to be very good at their craft. They also have to be business people because if the craft by itself is developed and you don't have a business outlet, you are the best kept secret. And then what, so my experience came then where I looked at how business operates and I immediately saw the patterns.

That's how the strategic thinking and the growth architecture came into place, where I was like, well, that's easy. All you have to do with. 1 2, 3, 4, 5. And he was like, how do you do that? Is that, how can you not know how to do that? And so this is how. Recognize that I had a skillset that other peoples don't other people don't have.

And I ended up as an editor for Elle magazine in Germany. And I was doing, was working with the creatives and I was doing the systems at the magazine. And then I was a photographer representative. And again, I worked with creatives because I understand them, but did the business side of it. [00:15:00] And then I was in photography production.

Again, I worked with crazy colorful non-conforming insane people hurting them all together to come up with one product you know, running the business side of things. And that's how I ended up being the growth architect, because I love this piece. And a lot of my clients today are very creative people that are very unique people that just can't land the plane because they have so many ideas that they don't know. How do I talk about it clearly? How do I communicate this to somebody other than me actually understands it because in the head it's it's, it's, it's the idea. So I built the systems around these ideas and how people land planes.

Hersh: Right. And I think landing the plane is a great, it's a great analogy. You know, I'm a, I'm a writer. And sometimes you know, my wife will ask me about an idea or a friend will ask me about an idea. And as I'm explaining it to them, [00:16:00] I feel like the biggest idiot in the world. I think it's just like the worst idea or I'm not. I'm like, I, I just, I can't, I can't explain it. I can't explain it to you verbally. I can send you the sheet. I can write it out. I can do all those things, but I can't. Explain it over the phone, or even sitting here at dinner until I get that right. And getting that right. I think is maybe the hardest part.

So I think that there's a piece of that. That is if you had the nuts and bolts clear in your mind cause some people are idea. People, they're idea people. They're not Detail people, what are your thoughts on that? 

Beate Chellette: See, so immediately. So, so this is what my brain does. So let's just do, let's just do him or the audience, right?

Yeah. So what I would go, I would then say, okay, so, so what you're saying is that when you hear something in your brain immediately, you're putting words to something. But they're still swirling around and [00:17:00] you can't land them yet. Right. So what's the, what's the process of that for you? And then you would say, well, that's really easy.

Well, first I, you know, interview. So let's, so what is your process? So your first interview, you write things out, your whiteboard, your journal, you using intuition. You go on a bike ride what do you do?. 

Hersh: In my case, what I do is if I'm writing about somebody, which I, which I do quite frequently I'm a brand storyteller by trade.

So it's, it could be somebody's personal brand, or it could be their, their actual copywriting in their ads, or it could be their, all of their, all of their corporate, you know, manifesto, you know, anything public facing. Right. So the first thing is to, to talk to the person, talk to people and get a sense of them and understand who they are.

Then, then the next part is to take all of the notes and all of the madness and all of the chicken scratch and all that stuff, and start placing it into [00:18:00] putting the puzzle pieces together so that the words have melody to it and flows. And it starts to feel a kind of literal. Right. But even that's the same with an idea.

I may have an idea in my head. Oh, you know what? We're going to do a show about it's going to be called true tastes funny. Well, the first thing that happened was I had the idea of the title truth tastes funny. And then I started to think about what does that mean? The truth tastes kind of weird, but we have to take it anyway.

It's like our medicine. We have to figure out a way to make it digestible, but until I write it out in a paragraph. It doesn't really make any sense. It's just babble. 

Beate Chellette: Okay. So, so then your process is a lot of intuition. So you are collecting you, you do your home, you do your homework, you obviously take a look at what they are and then you use your intuition and then that becomes the product.

So how do you tell someone [00:19:00] that that's your process? Right? Because when people call you, they're going to go, well, we need. 500 words on the website. We need a tagline. We need, we need these things. We need five blog posts. So they are very tactical as they come to you. Right. So they think that you just sit there and you just write it.

They don't understand that there's. A process, a creative process. And for those of you can see this hers smiling. So, you know, that happens all the time. Cause they, they think they put a word count and they say, well, what are you charged per word? Or what do you, what do you, you know, how much is that going to be?

And then you go as like, well, well, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. You're not buying 500 words. You are buying a brand story. Oh wait. But didn't you just tell me you were a writer, so you're not a writer. So you are, you are a storyteller, you are a brand storyteller, right? So, so you [00:20:00] see how we already shifted that from you being a writer to a brand storyteller, right.

And how much value, how much more value that sounds like it has than just being a writer. Because a writer I can go to Upwork and I find a writer and then they're writing me words and I pay for it. But that's not, you know? Right. So that's what happens when you use a strategy of blueprint and you go and you say, wait, so he writing is the vehicle how you deliver, but that's not the result.

But if you say I'm a writer, they think that's the result. It's the brand story. That's the result and the brand story matters because it's the connection of the customer to the story that resonates that results in sales. Oh, that's right. They hire you because they [00:21:00] want that story to resonate better because they already, they know it's not working with the consumer so that that can create that connection.

That then leads to sales. But if you were to say I'm just a writer, then that's just, that has not the same value. But if you say I focus on brand storytelling that connects your message intimately with the prospect so they can become consumers. How much more powerful does that sound? 

Hersh: Well, what's great about that. Beate is that. It's like that that phrase, you know, doctor heal thyself. You can, you can help others, but you can't, you know, so in a way, and I think that this must be the case across the board, is that, is, that is that everyone can, can do what they do for somebody else, but they can't always take like [00:22:00] you, like you describe go to 30,000 feet and look at the whole system that they're at the center of you know, we don't have the perspective to look at ourselves necessarily and see ourselves at the center of this system and then figure out how to make the system work. And that's kind of what you do 

Beate Chellette: that is absolutely correct. And it's interesting that you say that because before I came on your show, I did have a call. My coach. And he said to me, You know, he says, it's not that I don't agree. 

Hersh: You were nervous. You were like, I'm going on with her shit a few minutes. I don't really know what to do. I'm a little bit scared. A little intimidated.

Beate Chellette: Yeah, of course. Of course. All of the, all of the above 

Hersh: I understand. They all, they all call their therapist before and after the interview. 

Beate Chellette: That's hilarious. 

Hersh: That's typical. 

Beate Chellette: Yes. And I, and he said the same thing to me. He says, well, he says, clearly. You're so in the weeds [00:23:00] with what you do, that you, you overcomplicate what you're doing for other people.

And he did the same thing with me that I just did with you, where he just says, so what I'm hearing you say is, and, and, you know, I do this for a living and I cannot do this for myself. So you're absolutely correct. I don't think it is possible for you to do this on your own, because you don't see how effortless something is or how you operate in your thought process.

That takes so much awareness and so much self-development. That's even beyond anything. I mean, everybody, you know, who is anybody has, has coaches and they know they need to pay for it because without that, you are stumbling in the dark looking for the light switch. But if somebody has a flashlight, no matter how tiny and can [00:24:00] direct you, you will find that that, that light switch much quicker.

And that's the power of. Finding people that have done what you're trying to do before and they can give you the shortcuts because it's time or money you pay either way. 

Hersh: Oh, for sure. And I think when you try to do it with friends and family and all of those things, it's almost like I go through this every day.

I would rather talk to you first and go through this process first and then pitch it to my family the same way I would pitch it to to bill gates. Right. I would rather have everything figured out. And then if they have, you know, input you know, it's, it's welcome.

But to go, you know, within, within your personal circle for that stuff, just, just seems like. After all these years, it just seems like it's so silly. It's so silly because, because they're not in a position to really help you. 

Beate Chellette: No. And, [00:25:00] and, and honestly there's a whole other mindset part of it that you need to be aware of their job is to keep you safe.

And yeah, their job is to protect you, especially moms and dads. It's like, are you sure you want to go down that road? That sounds really dangerous. Has anybody else done that before? Why don't you get a full-time job? Wouldn't that be so much easier? I mean, look, you, you work these crazy hours. This isn't even worth it.

Right. And so you get down in this whole rabbit hole of talking to people. That have not chosen the path that you choose because they can't do it. So they cannot give you that kind of advice that you need to, to be successful because they are doing the opposite of that. So if you want to hear, if you want to torture yourself and hear about all the things that can go wrong by all means, talk to your mom and your dad.

Hersh: I [00:26:00] should have learned that I should have learned that from my. Marriage because my, my ex-wife would say I would say, oh, well, how about this idea? And she would say, I don't care. Whatever, as long as you don't get fired, It's just okay. Don't get fired again. 

Beate Chellette: That was a real charmer, I guess.

Hersh: Yeah. Well, you know, we all, we, we, we, we, we, what do you call it? Excellent. Excellent mistakes. 

Beate Chellette: Yes. Excellent mistake. 

Hersh: We make excellent mistakes. You know, and I want to talk at some point, a little bit of. The women's code because I have three daughters. So one of my daughters is from my first marriage.

I have a daughter and two sons from my first marriage and my wife and I have two daughters. So so I want to get into the, the women's code a little bit, but first tell me about the five-star. Success plan and why, why you call it that? What sets it apart? 

Beate Chellette: Yeah. So the five, so success blueprint is a system that I've developed to help clients to understand where in their entrepreneurial or business [00:27:00] ownership journey that they really are.

What happens is that we build businesses based up on what we know and what we love. And then we, we kind of suck at certain things. And then we forget about others. And we only want to do the things that we really like to do. And subsequently the business cannot grow because it's missing certain elements.

So I created this as a diagnostic tool so I can help business owners in 30 to 45 minutes takes me like no time at all. When I take them through a series of questions and then I can identify where the business is. Or where they might have missed a step or where they are out of alignment and the five.

So success blueprint out. I'll just take the audience through very quickly. So you kinda know what it is in the first step it's about the office. What is the offer? Why are you the one making the offer? Why should you be making the offer? Who is your [00:28:00] client? What's the solution you offer and why would anybody buy from you?

So that's all about the differentiation factor, the language, making sure that you have this unique value proposition, we call it the unapologetic value proposition clearly defined. Now, once you have that, we move to the. And that's the offer. The offer has to solve the problem. We just figure it out, right?

If it doesn't solve the problem, you're not selling anything, then you creating offers for yourself. Once you have the offer, you built the systems. So the system has to support how the offer is made so that he can solve the problems for the particular clients. Then we go to the team, which is the step number four 'cause then you need the team that operates the system that manages the offer. That then solves the problem. And then finally, the fifth one is you as a leader because there comes a point where you step from business ownership into business leadership. So you can lead the people that manage the systems, then handle the offer [00:29:00] that solves the problem.

And so in the five-star success blueprint, it really is helping me and my clients to identify. Where, what is off, what do we need to fix? And then once it's back in alignment, people walk out, they close five, six figure deals sometimes days later, which of course I have to say the disclaimer results are not typical, but it does happen.

The results may vary. You still have to do the work, but it is not uncommon in my world that when you have clarity about who you are, why anybody would buy from. What you're selling, what problem that solves, how are you going to deliver this and who the people are that help you to do that, that your business is going to grow.

You've got to grow your authority, scale, your impact. 

Hersh: My biggest hurdle has been the team part. I just chose those people poorly. And I, for example, I had a PR firm 10 years [00:30:00] ago that was successful for a tiny little boutique firm with only a couple people. And when I, when I brought in all these other people, they, they seemed good on paper, but they all wanted to be comedians.

And what, what happened was I, and I had been a comedian. And they gravitated to me because of this wild creativity that they all long for. And then we all ended up becoming comedians, which was, which was an excellent mistake, who was great for all of us personally, but the, the company went under, you 

know, 

Beate Chellette: no planes were landed in the time.

Hersh: I mean, we did, we, we, we closed clients and the, but then everything, nothing, nothing clicked. Nobody. Nobody wanted to do the things that. Hired to do it. In some cases they were even honest about it. Well, I don't really want to be a CFO, but okay. But, okay, well, we'll try. This. We'll have we'll do, but they were qualified to do it.

They should have been able to do it, but I didn't bring out in them that part of their personality. I brought [00:31:00] out the, the creative part, the part that was unfulfilled. 

Beate Chellette: Right because, you know, you, you you enabled them to UN unleash their creative part, which probably is one of your super skills is to get people to perform at a creative level that they didn't think it was possible.

So if that is one of your super skills, then we would look at this from a leadership perspective on, well, who's the first person that we would have to bring in to offset that. And it probably would be somebody who does operations and who is. It was a different personality type. Probably not as much fun as you are.

But somebody who just absolutely loves, you know, maybe even a controller. So we, you know, so when, when I do this if this comes up in the five-star success blueprint, and I see that there's a mismatch, I go in and when we do the team building piece, I look at you as a leader and I say, okay, you need to be here.

This is where you shine, you know, the, that making people [00:32:00] laugh, the the humor, my God, do, we all need humor right now, right? It's a phenomenal selling point right now, but I already now know that there are things. Your leadership where you, you don't want to do the tough stuff. You don't want to write someone up.

You don't want to give them a, a performance improvement plan. You, you don't want to be the boss. You want to be a friend. So who do we need to bring in then? Or what structure do we need to create that will help you. Too, when you go down that road to say, you know what, that's where we bring Suzie in. So, so Susie, can you take over, Susie is going to explain exactly on what the deliverables on this are, and she'll go over this in the project management self.

What's expected from you. And if you have any creative questions come to me, but the the delivery and the process, somebody else manages. So we built this, you know, that's why we have the five. So success blueprint. We build this not [00:33:00] cookie cutter. We built this to help you only you, because it has to work for you.

I cannot sell you anything that. Is against your belief system. I have to go in and look at you as the business owner. What does Hersh really need?. So I would free up more of your time. So you could be more creative because I think, and funnier, because I think that's a huge attraction factor, huge differentiation factor.

You could be even funnier.

Hersh: Free me up? So I could be fun 

Beate Chellette: by the way, I have a shtick. I went to I did take a comedy class and my shtick was the "funny German." 

Hersh: Oh, I also did a funny German. Yeah, I did. I pitched a concept to Birkenstock, although I want to hear about your, about your you're funny German too, but I, I pitched a concept that was the Birken bus. That was [00:34:00] the idea was this very fanciful character would drive this bus you know, like a VW bus around the country. And stop at retailers and provide new Birkenstocks to people who brought in their Berks that were like 20 or 25 years old. And it was the Birken Bus, and this guy who would, who would this character of mine?

This Hans Schreigg was the name on the bus and take the bus all over the country. We would stop as always very excited and very happy to, to see the, the, the sandals that they had over 20 years, the last them forever and give a reward them with good sandals and we will always be on the, on the road. And that was the character.

Beate Chellette: I would love that. And then, and then, you know, add some, add some tie, dye, socks to it that, that, that would be even I did, I did see somebody with tie, dye, socks, and Birkenstocks walking into REI yesterday. And I thought that was, that was quite the look. 

Hersh: It is a look. So [00:35:00] what was your, what was your, 

my funny German was just this like completely dry person that, you know, wanted to be the funny German only to find out that there are no funny Germans.

Ah, okay. That was see it. We took two, two opposite tacts. The knowledge that Germany, Germans can't really be that funny and made it one that was funny because that made it fantastic and fanciful. And you took the idea that Germans have a hard time being funny and played for laughs with you trying to be funny.

Beate Chellette: Yes, I, I, I did. And I did have a Canadian boyfriend at the time. And so that was even. So yeah, so it was all, it was all the things that happen to a non funny person that are hilarious to other people that, that poor German can't really fathom what happened. So what, give me an example. So one example was that I, I, you know, I'm with this at the time with this Canadian [00:36:00] man and it's my birthday.

So he goes and gives me a gift certificate to a golf store. Well, I don't golf. And so, you know, it went down that kind of road of the things that people did that were very thoughtful, but made no sense to me as a German as like, why would you, why would you do that? Oh, that's right. Because he liked golfing and he re gifted the gift certificate.

Yes. Because he had not thought about it at all. 

Hersh: And how did you feel doing. Doing standup. Like 

Beate Chellette: I actually loved it. I loved it. I, I actually think I'm funny, but you know, but then again, let, let, let, let the audience be the judge of it, but it was something that I wanted to do because I speak a lot and you cannot just hammer down facts in an audience.

You have to take 'em, you have to break the tension. With laughter. You know, as a good speaker, you make people cry. You make [00:37:00] people laugh, you take them on a journey and I wanted to be able to do that. 

Hersh: Absolutely. I think that that's, that's the, you know, in standup comedy, hopefully , the humor, the irony the spin and a little bit of distance dilutes the truth with the.

Breathing with enough of an exhale that you can then take the truth away from it because it's just too hard other, otherwise, my dad was German. His family escaped Germany. And he was only four when they, when they left. But his ear for dialects, his, his comedy timing, and all of that stuff was so impactful on, on me, you know? And I think that, and that's definitely where I got it. My mom could not tell a joke. She would tell all the details of the joke. She would say, oh, you did tell the joke of, but she say, my father tell the joke about the, the, the guy who, [00:38:00] the old guy. And he can't remember where he lives in the, he does the thing.

And then there's this thing. And it's like, that's, that's her. Telling a joke, but great audience, a great audience, you know, so but I maybe, maybe there's something to the idea of using, using con I mean, there are people who do this, but who teach corporate people how to, how to be funny. 

Beate Chellette: That's my point. That's what I, that's the first thing I've I, that came to mind is the idea of an unapologetic value properties. Is to take what you love, what you're passionate about, what sets you apart, and instead of apologizing for it, making it the centerpiece of everything. I mean, how many times have we been hearing about people that are in the branding world that are in corporate America?

And it is so bloody dense that you just want to go in and, and, and, and. [00:39:00] You know, do something funny to just like, come on guys. You know, we, we, we all, we're all just people here, but to teach people how to use humor, curiosity, Humor in leadership who has ever talked about that?. 

Hersh: Yeah. 

Beate Chellette: So, you know, that's where I would go and I'd say, well, if we were to come up with that idea, what would that look like?

How would we implement that? Because if, if, if everything is about humor with you, then that has to be the centerpiece of everything. Then writing is not the centerpiece, right. Humor is. 

Hersh: Humor is. Is, and, and on a practical level, we, we don't want to limit ourselves. By putting ourselves in a box. So some people like me would say, okay, I don't want to say I'm a humorist or a satirist or a comedy writer, but that is, that is very central, you know, because then I, [00:40:00] then I might not get the other gigs that I want that are, that are you know, more touchy, feely stuff, warm, fuzzy stuff.

You know, typical corporate stuff, but, but you're right, that the comedy could be, should be, should be central 

Beate Chellette: well, you'll have to look at it from this perspective. If you were the top dog in the field, wouldn't you be making more money and working less sure. Isn't that what you want work less and make more money.

So you can, you can be funnier and do more things. That are entertaining to you. It doesn't mean that you cannot do that. You know, we, here's an idea and I'm just going to throw out. So I had this with a photographer and he had, he had, he was quirky. Right. And so we didn't use the word quirky. Funny. I came up with the word quirky.

Unfortunately, never used that branding, which I think was a huge mistake. And I said, we can come up with a quirky scale and we can say on [00:41:00] a scale of one to 10, how quirky you want these. Do you want a full 10? Or do you want a one, right, with just, just a little bit of that in it, you could do the same thing, right?

Is that you can say, well, we have a funny scale and so, or humor scale, we can go to. Which is outrageous, or we can go three to four, just enough for people to have a little chuckle, right. Because that's, that's powerful. And if somebody says, I don't want zero, well, then, then don't, they don't get any, but then they're missing out on the best part that makes you unique.

Why, why would I want to work with you if you're funny, why would I give you the sappy stuff? 

Hersh: Right. 

Beate Chellette: I want to give you the funny stuff! 

Hersh: That's the curse. The curse is being good at too many things. And I, I don't say that facetiously. I mean, like being able to do a lot of different things can be a form of a curse because you're right.

Beate Chellette: What ends up happening is you dilute your brand and then you're doing all the [00:42:00] things you can do, but you're spreading it out over many more hours and much less money than you than you could if you were the, the top, the top dog. 

Hersh: But now I'm obsessed with, with this idea. And I think we should create a mastermind for corporate executives with the toughest job and, and call it how to fire funny. And the idea is they have to, they're going to have to fire people. They're going to have to let people go, but the challenge will be to teach them how to do it in a way that makes the person they're firing see some humor and some hope of course, there's pathless and there's humanity in it.

There's none of it is ever good comedy doesn't work without humanity. And, and empathy. That's what a lot of people don't get is that they think that that insult comics are really insulting when in fact good insult comments, aren't really insulting. They're really empathizing, but that's, that's a different, well, that's 

Beate Chellette: part that that would be, that [00:43:00] would be part of what you would be teaching then.

Hersh: Yes. But not give it all away here. 

Beate Chellette: No, but, but, you know, let's just lay this out for the audience and what we just did. So, so, so that there is. And understanding of, of how this process works, right? So I'm a strategist. So what I did is I was listening to you and I was hearing some of the things that are coming through.

I look at your brand, you know, it's all about being funny. You lit up. When, when I said I have a shtick of being the funny German, I'm really not that funny in the comedy. You know, I didn't do enough. You were polite enough to not tell me that, which I appreciate. And, and, but what it showed me where the passion really.

And so as a business strategist is somebody who looks for things I haven't heard before to say here's somebody who works in corporate America or with corporate America who can add funny, well, what can we, what can we do to add funny in the minute I gave you the idea, add funny to. [00:44:00] Your intuition already kicked in and came up and filled in the blanks.

Oh, what we also could do would be that's how you build systems is that, you know, I listened to the key find the button to push. Then the puzzle pieces appear and then all we have to do is pull it out and put it together. And that's what just happened. So just so we, we we've outlined this for the audience to see what just happened.

Hersh: And this is what you do with clients 

Beate Chellette: all the time. Love it. 

Hersh: This is what you do with it, but they're not. Funny. It's not always about 

Beate Chellette: G-d forbid. Nobody's as funny as you are 

now. No, 

Hersh: thank you. Well, that's not true. There's there's, there's, there's a few. 

Beate Chellette: No, I mean, I've worked with people that, you know I've helped somebody to build a framework for the use of ethical AI in surgery.

And in, in search results, which was unbelievable. I can truthfully tell you about half of the time. I had no [00:45:00] idea what she was talking about, but because it, you know, it's data science, but I was so fascinated by the idea and because I didn't know all the lingual lingo, I was able to help articulate it in a way.

Anybody would understand it, right? Because she, she, she wanted to go off in the data science world. And I just helped somebody put a whole system together that they want to teach to corporate America, Silicon valley, Google, Facebook change.org, all these like crazy crazy organizations, helping them to improve leadership by helping them to sell ideas you know, because of the communication is always stuck between organizations. So I, I love this. This is easy. This is, this is hearing the ideas and helping land planes is amazing. 

Hersh: And that's what lights, what lights you up? That's where, where you just feel naturally at ease. Yes. [00:46:00] And so how are you applying this next?

Beate Chellette: Well, so I'm in, I'm in the process of launching a mastermind about this. And the mastermind is a 12 week mastermind where I am taking now this process, because I think the one thing I want to add to it is the power off the group, because sometimes, you know, when you have other people, if you have 12 people that are listening now, 12 other inputs as well.

So it's not just me, but that way the idea can be tested like in real time. And. And so I'm building that right now. That's going to launch in in, I think the launch date I'm going to set for August because my daughter's getting married in July. I probably should not do this before she gets thank you.

Before she gets married and and really helping people that are in a place where they want. Take your plate clearly what they do find that sweet spot take that overwhelmed and that jumble mumble [00:47:00] stuff that comes out of the mouth out of it. And talk about it in a simple way that everybody understands what you do.

That's my target audience. 

Hersh: Well, that's going to be pretty amazing. I mean, if enough people see what you did here today, then that'll, that'll. You know, I think give the, give the mastermind a little, a little boost, but that's exciting, exciting stuff. And then before I forget, so the women's code.

Beate Chellette: Yeah. So the women's code I founded after I sold my business to bill gates, I was hired and asked to run their global entertainment division, which I did for about another two years. I thought that was a really terrible thing because I felt that I saw firsthand on the difference in how men and women are being treated, in a corporate setting, I looked at the structure that was built by white men for white men and works great for white men. Actually, it's not even working for white men anymore, either. Certainly not the next generation. [00:48:00] And I saw that men have a code. And it was so obvious on how they did that.

And then women couldn't figure out on why they would come on Monday morning into the office, ready to talk to the boss who just cut the deal with somebody else on Saturday, while golfing with someone else. And they didn't even, they didn't even know that that. That they should have been there, done that, or they don't even know what happened.

And so I set up the women's code because the number one problem women are having, and I'm going to be very open and honest about this is that women don't know how to deal with other women. Certainly not in the twenties and thirties, it starts to shift around forties, but the entire society is laid out catfight. You know, take each other down instead of lift each other up and women take each other out as serious contenders without men ever, even having to do anything. [00:49:00] So if a man can manipulate women to keep going down that road, because it eliminates 50% of the competition, you think that it wouldn't do that?

Of course they do that. They do it every day, all day. So I created the women's go to teach women. And I'll be happy to send you the book Hersh happy woman, happy world, where I teach women on how to, to say it. Bluntly not be a B you know be a woman that has ethics and standards and understands this collaboration instead of competition knows how to lead and wants to lift other women up because there's enough for everybody.

Hersh: Amazing. Well, you know, I look forward to reading the book. I, it, it, one of the good things about this show is that I was not a huge reader of, nonfiction. You know, self-actualization books and so, and personal development books, but obviously doing a show, you start [00:50:00] you reading the books of the guests and you're reading in your reading up, and then you become curious and then you want to, you know, and now I, I just devour this stuff when I can, when it's, when it's something I'm excited about.

So I really look forward to getting that and also sharing it with my with my wife and my daughters. Well, thank you Beata for, for being on. I mean, this is, this has been wonderful, so much fun. You are funny. I don't, I don't think we need to qualify. Funny. That's why comedy is a dangerous word.

I don't even, I didn't say the truth. The truth tastes comedic. It's like funny is, , it's all relative to, to, to the, to our personalities, but you are certainly a pleasure to talk to and very, very engaging and fun. To converse with, and I love what you do. And I have tremendous regard for your ability to land those planes because nothing happens if that doesn't happen. Everything stalls, all the great ideas. [00:51:00] Just go into a void. If somebody doesn't guide that plane down onto the runway. 

Beate Chellette: Yes. 100%. It's all about if you're the best kept secret. You're not making the impact you came here to do 

Hersh: Exactly. Well, thank you. Thank you, Beate Chelette, for being on our show today. 

Beate Chellette: My pleasure. Thank you so much for having me.