Ed Roberts

October 3, 2023
Ed Roberts and Michael Cirillo sit down to chat at ASOTU CON 2023.
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Ed Roberts is the Chief Operations Officer at Bozard Ford Lincoln and the author of Mile One Leadership.

Thanks to Effectv for making ASOTU CON Sessions possible!

Paul Daly: 0:02You're listening to a soda con sessions by effective live from a soda con 2023.

Michael Cirillo: 0:10

Welcome to this episode of a soda concessions for effective I'm Michael Cirillo sitting down with my pal Ed Roberts, who is the Chief Operating Officer at Bozar. And Ford Lincoln off, also an author, also a speaker, also a professional bicyclist, is what I understand.

Ed Roberts: 0:29

Yes. And sometimes gravity takes effect, you, you

Michael Cirillo: 0:32

this is, this is what I love about you at the level of commitment, first of all broken leg at time of recording this for those watching and listening in the future. And you're not missing a deal. And you're smiling as if nothing happened

Ed Roberts: 0:45

is the speed bump. And we all have to run over speed bumps, but it's how we overcome them. Literally it

Michael Cirillo: 0:50

was was a speed bump in this particular circumstance, literally, this is the speed bump, a figurative speed bump, you've done so many amazing things in your career in leading your organization to levels of success that some only dream about. I have to imagine at one point you dreamt about where you are currently. But you are one of the few that have actually achieved it. When did the mindset shift and or what were you thinking about in order to get to where you are today.

Ed Roberts: 1:22

So I will tell you that it wasn't necessarily a dream, even though it kind of starts that way, I guess, you got to really shift that to a vision. And when you can see it, then you can back into the elements that gets you there. And so started with that vision when I started with Bozar. Just the opportunity was was was limitless and but it was it was about changing the mindset and getting everybody believing that and pushing forward. And so one of the phrases that I'm that I'm commonly quoted around there with with some of my folks is, at that time, Galpin Ford was the largest Ford store in the country. And I told him that we're going to become gapen of the East. And then we're going to keep going until Galpin wants to be closer to the west. So that's where it started. And then you just layer the elements there you learn, you're gonna try things that don't work. And you gotta be quick to pull the plug and try something different. But to say that I've tried that, and not go back and try something, again, is what really stops everybody's growth. And so even if if you try something that doesn't work, doesn't mean that you that it won't work just means you haven't found a way for it to work yet. And

Michael Cirillo: 2:31

there's a couple of things I want to dig into deeper there. The first one is this, this concept of being aware of the playing field, but then also having to put blinders on to focus. How do you maneuver around that? Because I think so many people get stuck on the Oh, but look at what they're doing, what are they doing? Go Go mystery shop, go check them out. They seem to be doing this, their advertising looks a certain way, et cetera, et cetera. How do you maneuver effectively through that type of a circumstance where you're aware of the market, but not letting it get in your way,

Ed Roberts: 3:05

you got to create your identity, but there's a lot of potentiality involved in that. Because when you when you come to the team and say, Hey, we're gonna do something different. The first thing that comes to mind, Well, who else is doing that? Who can we learn from, and you can either be a trend follower or a trendsetter. And in order to be a trendsetter, you have to go out and try things that nobody's trying yet. And the easiest way that's worked for us to do that is to express what the end goal is, and this is an element to get there. But if you if you say, hey, let's just do this without expressing what that end goal is, and they don't really know whether it's working or not. So when you express it from what the end desire is, they'll buy into it and start pushing that direction.

Michael Cirillo: 3:47

How deeply so this is the second part. How deeply do you document the thesis of where you're trying to go? And the the kind of my, my motive and asking this question is, I feel like so many say, oh, that's where we want to end up and don't accurately define the parameters with which it shall be accomplished. And then things go awry. And we go, Well, we're given and people give up too soon. Exactly. What does that process look like for you and getting clarity on what it's going to take to get there.

Ed Roberts: 4:19

So that's where the vision really comes into play. Because that conversation is different with each person, or each group of people because of their element of what they have to put in to contribute to it. So you got to paint there, paint the picture of how they're going to help us get there and show that element of what you need them to do to accomplish it. And when you break that down for the whole circle, then as pieces start to come together, the end result ultimately becomes easy in a lot of cases. I love

Michael Cirillo: 4:45

this. I recently was introduced to a working zone of genius assessment. It's not a personality assessment, it shows you where you essentially thrive. And it also shows you what zones of genius you can left with or that frustrate you. The highlight for me as I'm listening to you speak while I'm bringing this up is realizing that a successful organization, although you might have working zones of frustration, a successful organization actually requires all of that landscape. You know, so for me, I'm a tenacity guy. I'm like, get the job done. But then there's wonders who are like, but how and how did I even see in my tone? I'm like, Dad, I wonder is the one or take action, right? I realized now even as I look at my own organization, oh, but wonders are required as much as people with tenacity, or people that can rally the troops so to speak. What's your view on that in your role as the one that's, I guess, creating the vision?

Ed Roberts: 5:46

Well, you need the one where it's like you said, because they're going to highlight some of the obstacles that may come into play. Because when we look at big picture, we don't look at all the obstacles we look at, okay, here's what we got to get. And then you need them questioning those things, so that you can not necessarily plan for the obstacles, but accept them as they arise and work around them. And the earlier you can find those listening, you can work around them. So you need those guys and say, Well, what if, but what you can't have as them be the naysayers that will never work. If they if that's their thought, then that's exactly what's going to happen because it won't work. So you got to give them all believe in and and then take those elements. Don't stop. Don't stop believing that

Michael Cirillo: 6:28

those that believe it. I got it. Along the way, so you said okay, there's this leadership nucleus, if you will get them believing. How do you actually though? I mean, how many employees at Bose are now

Ed Roberts: 6:45

336? Now? How

Michael Cirillo: 6:47

do you get 300? How do you ensure that as as the word and the belief happens at the leadership level, that those leaders are then effectively making, you know, maintaining the consistency of the belief? How do you ensure that?

Ed Roberts: 7:05

Well, we're gonna talk about busy versus effective tomorrow. And with those elements, in order to be effective, you really have to build a reach out and and embrace our people, right, and you're always going to have people that are not rowing, you want everybody rowing in the same direction. And you're gonna have people that have an off days, and they're not rolling, but you never want the ones that's pulling back. And when you can be effective when you can slow down your business, and really be effective, you can identify those ones pulling you back. And we either have to do things to get them on board, or get them on board where they do fit, right. And sometimes that can be a different place. But identifying those and, and pulling them back because one naysayer one that's pulled backwards, will pull others with them. And so you got you have to remove and sometimes it's clarity of the vision. And sometimes it's just the wrong person. But it's rarely the wrong person is clarity and what their level of contribution is.

Michael Cirillo: 8:09

Right? It goes into what's that saying? You know, people don't show up intentionally to do a bad job.

Ed Roberts: 8:14

Exactly. I say that all the time about our customers, our customers don't come here expecting you to give them a bad experience.

Michael Cirillo: 8:20

Interesting. Yes. Interesting. I could talk to you forever. I'm not going to do that to you know, people can only take so much in my voice is what I've been told by my wife. She's a little longer at what point do you decide I'm going to write a book.

Ed Roberts: 8:40

The I have been pressured, so to speak, to write a book for about 20 years. Wow, I started taking notes about 10 years ago. But really late last year, I was listening to a friend of mines book, but at that moment, and it was just, it wasn't anything that built up to it. It was just that became the piece that pushed me over the edge. In that moment. I says, Alright, it's time to deliver the message. And I called a friend of mine says, Hey, you inspired me and we'll write a book. And and I did and from that from those elements, I got about 270 days from the time that says, hey, I'm gonna write a book to I have it in print, and that's relatively quick. But ultimately, that was because one I'm relentless. Once I start something, I gotta finish it and tenacity and to the elements of the book was already there. It was just about putting it on paper to make it make sense.

Michael Cirillo: 9:34

Yeah. What I love about this ad is that especially in this day and age when people light up a clubhouse room because they went to a single yoga class, and now they have the secret to unlocking, you know, whatever it is, and they write a book about it. 20 years of substance in the making 10 notes of documenting those observations. I mean, it's just so amazing to consider the value and also in Why I just, I felt I feel drawn into you as a as a colleague and as a as a new friend, is because you know, one of the things that I've learned about true success is that when you've achieved it, you desire nothing more and nothing brings you more joy than to help others achieve it.

Ed Roberts: 10:18

That's what the goal is to allow people to grow. And that's a lot of the content of the book is doing things like this and going out and seeing what obstacles people run into. And then let's put that on and form and paper on paper to help you overcome those obstacles. And if we if one person grows from it is worth writing the book amazing and, and I it's been well received and I hope that more than one grows, but if it makes a difference in one person's life that's tugs on the heartstrings enough for me,

Michael Cirillo: 10:48

I love it. How can those listening or watching get their hands on a copy of your book?

Ed Roberts: 10:52

So you can find my one an endless journey to effective leadership on Amazon or on my website at Mao one leadership.com

Michael Cirillo: 10:59

Ed Roberts thanks so much for joining me on a Sodom concessions for effective. Thank you, Michael.

Paul Daly: 11:06

Thank you for listening to this. So to concession by effective if you want more content like this, you can check out our other podcasts we have a daily show called The automotive troublemaker Monday through Friday, here and podcasts also live streamed on YouTube, and LinkedIn and Facebook. We also have a long form podcast called Auto collabs auto collabs. And if you just want to go a little different in this community, you should sign up for our regular email we put our heart and soul into it. You can get it for free by going to a sotu.com We'll see you next time.

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