Craig DeMarco Podcast – Founding Partner of Upward Projects

craig demarco

Today we’re interviewing Craig DeMarco, one of the founding partners of Upward Projects, which is better known for its family of restaurants including Postino Wine Cafe, Joyride Taco House, Windsor, Churn, and Federal Pizza. In this spirited discussion, Craig shares stories related to:

  • Lessons learned watching his entrepreneurial father
  • The power of venturing off the beaten path, when visiting new places
  • The underrated quality of having a beginner’s mindset
  • Challenges of growing a neighborhood-focused business and the creativity that comes from hard times
  • The amazing power of True Hospitality
  • Why having a purpose beyond profit leads to more profit
  • And, some other odds and ends that involve a VW Rabbit, and Alpine Stereo, skateboarding, and a Playboy wall installation

If you live in the Phoenix area, you’ll love this episode. If you don’t live in the Phoenix area, you’ll want to listen in so you know where to eat the next time you visit the Valley of the Sun. And, if you have no plans to be in Phoenix any time soon, well, this episode is a great example of an inspired leader who wakes up every day with one purpose in mind – to raise vibrations. Enjoy this episode with Craig DeMarco.

Show Highlights

  • 2:00 – Craig’s eclectic history — through family moves, childhood stories, entrepreneurial household
  • 4:03 – Valuable influences from his youth
  • 6:37 – Working for someone else versus working for yourself
  • 8:41 – Stinkweeds Records: the first album he purchased
  • 9:40 – Prioritizing visits to non-touristy areas when traveling with his wife
  • 12:03 – Returning from Italy to face a major neighborhood opposition to a restaurant use permit in Phoenix
  • 16:20 – From naysayers to Postino enthusiasts
  • 17:24 – Purpose: “to create spaces and experiences where people can connect”
  • 20:17 – Aiming for a mission over money
  • 21:00 – Failure rate among entrepreneurial ventures in the restaurant industry; prioritizing historically relevant buildings for these restaurants
  • 24:45 – Creating a neighborhood around Central Ave. in Phoenix, complete with bike paths, etc.
  • 27:50 – Opening Postino at Kierland Commons, as it didn’t fit into the classic strategy for location
  • 30:35 – The power of hospitality (such as serving families with young kids,
  • 34:56 – One anecdote of a hardworking server at the Windsor restaurant in Phoenix
  • 37:00 – Prioritizing employees before restaurant guests and seeking authenticity in new hires
  • 39:04 – Having three other company partners: his wife, and another husband-and-wife team
  • 40:55 – The #1 book Craig DeMarco re-reads and recommends
  • 41:29 – Discussing the pursuit of joy
  • 42:57 – The five core values of Upward Projects
  • 44:59 – Billy Joe Armstrong quote & challenging the status quo

Show Links

5 Restaurants To Add To Your Bucket List

Craig DeMarco Interview

Given the gift of hindsight, as you reflect on your dad and his entrepreneurial spirit, was there ever any emphasis that he stressed on the importance of working for yourself versus working for someone else? Or was this something you just naturally fell into?

It was really a life lesson my dad was drilling into me from an early start. He had many entrepreneurial adventures and was up and was down. But he always said, “You always want to control your destiny.” Working for yourself was a very important core value in our family. So I always knew someday I wanted to start my own company. I stumbled into the restaurant business because, when I was 15 years old, I had my first serious, heavy crush on this gal named Jamie Odell, and wanted to take her out, and realized that if I wanted to ask her on a date I needed a car.

Unfortunately, my parents didn’t have those kind of resources. Even if they did, I don’t know if they would have bought me one. So I rode my BMX bike down to a restaurant and got a job washing dishes, saved up $1200, spent $400 of it on a Volkswagen rabbit, put an $800 alpine stereo in it. It seems appropriate at the age, to have your stereo be more than twice the amount of your car. I’m off on a tangent here but I did end up taking her out on a date, on my 16th birthday, in my rabbit with my alpine stereo to see Modern English, the one hit wonder band that sang “I Melt With You.” So at least I could say I was successful in closing that deal with that first crush.

During the first few years of your marriage, you and your wife Chris traveled a lot. You guys really prioritized visiting the non-touristy, more local-type spots when visiting major destinations. Was that by design? Was there a specific experience that had led you to follow this ‘off the beaten path’ type of philosophy?

My wife injected me with the travel bug, wanderlust, and intellectual curiosity and discovery. She’s always been like that. When we were together traveling, she was always doing research even pre-Internet. She researched Zagat guides or whatever she could get her hands on, and found the coolest, newest, trendiest places to go and see. We love getting off the beaten path as well as having those discovery moments. My favorite story is how Postino came into existence.

For my 30th birthday, my wife and I decided we were going to go to Italy with my mom and dad to celebrate. We’d already been there and done most of the major cities and tourist attractions. So we decided we wanted to see how the locals lived and get lost on a crazy adventure.

Chris Bianco, from Pizzeria Bianco’s name, suggested we check out Luca, a city north of Florence. We found a farmhouse, rented it, flew over it. I rented an Alfa Romeo and drove around the North of Italy for a week or so getting lost in little towns and kind of just meandering around. That’s what led to the spark to do Postino. We had this amazing experience in these little towns where people had a local hangout where wine was accessible and not snobby and affordable. We came back to Arizona looking for that, and it didn’t exist — so we created it.  

Let’s transition. I wanna talk about the concept of hospitality, and I want to focus on Danny Meyer, whose famous book “Setting the Table” talks about the power of hospitality. He says hospitality exists when something happens for you and it is absent when something happens to you. I’d love to get your take on this philosophy of hospitality.

I ate at Union Square cafe in Manhattan last Tuesday, with my wife, my parents, and my kids, and Danny was in the restaurant. I’ve been a fan since day one, fortunate enough to meet him. So, here’s my take on hospitality, and this is what I tell a lot of the new leadership and it’s very simple. Take a circle and cut it into 3 equal pieces. You’ve got quality products, you’ve got technically-sound service, and you’ve got connections the guest. Start with the quality products — essentially manufacturing. We take raw materials, add some value to them, plate them, and sell them for a profit. We have total control over raw materials we’re using, and we don’t compromise on quality — so our team members have a high level of pride in what they’re serving and they care about it.

The second piece to this puzzle? Technically-sound service. Our training keeps getting better and better, giving you the skillset to do the job effectively. It’s kind of “hit the ball and run to first base.” Take the order correctly, enter it into the computer correctly, deliver it correctly, make sure the guest doesn’t feel like they’re in a business transaction. We have smooth, smooth service.

The third piece, the connection to the guests, is that it’s our obligation, responsibility, and pleasure to raise someone’s vibration. And I tell the team all the time when someone comes to visit us, we’re going to get them for 50-70 minutes at lunch, maybe 75-100 minutes at dinner time, and they’re coming in and life’s tough, they have a flat tire, their kid got bad grades, they’ve gotta get a root canal, who knows. Life’s just up and down, and it’s our job to take them from where they’re at and when they leave, be in a better place.

We need to raise their vibration in a positive way, and that also takes creating those moments and recognizing them and being special, making them feel important, finding ways to interject them with positive energy. And the staff always says to me, if we keep giving our positive energy away to all of the guests, aren’t we going to be depleted? And I say no, that’s really the most fun thing about this, the universe rewards you with more positive energy when you give it out, almost on like a ten X level. So, when someone visits us, yes — we’re going to provide you with great quality products, yes we’re going to give you smooth service, but more than that, we’re going to give you connections.

Thank You for 5 Years of Y Scouts!

thank you for 5 years of y scouts!

Several years ago, Nationwide Insurance ran a TV commercial campaign centered on the tagline, “Life comes at you fast.” When I stop to think about where the last 44 (soon to be 45) years of my life went, the meaning of that phrase hits home in a big way.

More recently, the past 5 years came and went like a Nolan Ryan fastball (sorry for the baseball reference — I don’t even follow the game). I remember sitting down with Max Hansen when we decided to start Y Scouts, and performing a series of Google searches for search strings like, “purpose-based executive search,” and “purpose-driven recruiting.” If you haven’t heard the story, the results of these searches led us nowhere. Nothing came up… zip, zilch, nada. Keep in mind, this was early 2012 — not that long ago, but then again, a lot has happened in the purpose/values/culture space since then.

We almost stopped before we even started. Boy, am I glad we didn’t.

So, here we are. It’s been 5 years since launching Y Scouts, and we can’t think of a more appropriate way to celebrate than saying, “Thank You.” Thank you to:

  • Our families and loved ones for encouraging us to stay the course and follow our dreams

  • Our clients for trusting us with finding the right leaders you need to continue your impact

  • The candidates and leaders we’ve had the pleasure of meeting and connecting with our clients

  • Our friends for supporting us in our journey

  • Our partners and network of providers who help us stay ahead of the curve

  • The movement of purpose-based leaders and organizations who believe Purpose Drives Profit

  • The naysayers and nonbelievers for challenging us

  • Our podcast guests for sharing your stories

  • Our advisory board for sharing your wisdom

  • Brett and the team at Markitors for your help in spreading the Y Scouts message

  • Our Y Scouts alumni for allowing us to be a stop along your career journey

And, a very special thank you to our Y Scouts Team for digging in everyday and helping us transform how people and organizations connect to work that matters.

Here’s to the next 5 years!

With gratitude,
Max & Brian

Y Scouts Goes RED To Support The Troops

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On Tuesday, the Y Scouts team “went RED” (Remember Everyone Deployed) and boxed up treats to support the troops. Leadership Search Director Christie McPherson shared two quotes that resonated with her from the Y Scouts team’s “RED day” contributions:

“You can’t fix the world’s problems but you should do what you can, where you can, to make a difference in this world.”

&

“The positive impact we make, no matter how small, is still great.”

Christie’s take on the event:

On Tuesday, the Y Scouts team wanted to find a way to make an impact on a cause that is important to all of us here in America. In the weeks leading up to Veterans Day, supporting our deployed military personnel was a cause that we could focus on as a team. Y Scouts went “RED,” and also wore red to visibly show our support of deployed military. We purchased snacks, treats, games and activities to pack and ship to deployed military men and women at Al Udeid Air Force Base in Qatar who are a part of the in-air refueling unit. Al-Udeid is the largest base in the middle east with over 10,000 troops stationed there in 2015. The unit we shipped our care package to, the Phoenix-based 161st Air Refueling Wing, will be deployed and away from home during the majority of the holiday season this year.

Y Scouts has committed to a mission of transforming how people and companies connect to work that matters. What better work to honor than the mission that our brave military men and women have committed to completing at home and abroad. Their mission matters, to all of us, and this was our way of staying connected to the troops who sacrifice so much. Their mission is to ensure freedom is protected and our hope is that a small piece of home, a few goodies that taste like home, and knowing our team was thinking about them especially on that day, was a small impact we wanted to make.

We encourage others to join the mission of going “RED” by wearing a red article of clothing one day a week to show your support of those who are deployed. Any impact, any support, any gratitude shown, no matter how small, has a greater impact than you can imagine.

On Tuesday, we were able to do something great for even just a few people overseas. A small moment of joy, a taste of home, a reminder that they are appreciated, and something to occupy their time while they are thousands of miles away from the home they so sacrificially protect without question is an impact that I’m proud we chose to make as a team.


Y Scouts, a leadership search firm, finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

What Teamwork Means At Y Scouts: Why 1+1=11

teamwork

Teamwork helps us connect people and companies to work that matters. We have a solid team here at Y Scouts—and here’s what teamwork means to each of us.

Brian Mohr, Co-Founder & Managing Partner

teamworkThat’s the idea around when you align people with shared values and shared goals, the 1+1=2 is exponentially greater because you’re adding more than just brainpower. You’re adding heart and soul. When people can bring their heart and soul to their work, and you can get a group of those people together, and you add them all together, it’s exponential. Because inevitably, in every business, challenges arise. If it’s just an intellectual challenge, and the only thing people are doing is tapping into their brainpower to solve, you’ll solve. But when you can bring your whole soul, your whole body to the problem because you care deeply about it, you get to such a better place.

Christie McPherson, Leadership Search Director

teamworkTeamwork is the really cliché statement that most organizations put up, or they’ll put it on a job description. They’ll say, “We work as a team, we are collaborative.” True teamwork means never having to wonder, “Am I enough?” Most of the time, we as individuals are not enough. Our jobs are bigger than how much time we have in the day. Here at Y Scouts is really the first time in my professional career where I’ve never had to wonder, “Am I going to be able to do this?” because the reality is, no. You can’t do everything on your to-do list today, you can’t get to every job, every candidate, every client today. But I have a team relentlessly asking me on a continuous basis, how can I help? What can I do for you? What can I take off your plate? Teamwork to me is never having to guess, “Can I do this?”

Marc Ruter, Leadership Search Director

teamworkI do think 1+1=11 is true. I think especially at Y Scouts, what’s worked for me the most is that I’m learning so much—I was never a recruiter before I got here. So I sometimes need the knowledge of my coworkers to solve the problems that I’m trying to work on. Sometimes you can spend a lot more time doing something on your own than if you get the collaboration of a group. The ideas that come from it are key in solving problems.

Max Hansen, Co-Founder & CEO

teamworkWhat I always love is playing for teams and coaching teams. I was always lucky enough to be chosen to be captain of the team. What it means is people believe you’re willing to put in an effort, and they just believe you’re going to get it done. Nothing gets done without a great team. I think the question has changed from parents asking kids, “Who do you want to be?” it should be, “What do you want to be a part of?” And being part of something creates a team. That’s where the power is—in sports teams, in businesses. Teamwork is super magical, but one of the hardest things to continually increase and make better. I think everybody’s kind of wired in a way that, if they’re not careful, they can give themselves too much credit for something. Anybody that’s a really successful person—if you ever ask them why they’re successful, they’ll always say, “It was because of my team.” There’s a reason for that. As soon as you think you’re self-made, you reek of cockiness. It’s a fine line, being confident and not cocky.

Adam DiBiase, Research Manager

teamworkNone of us can do this work on our own. We’re all skilled differently. I come from a faith perspective that God created us all differently and gave us all different gifts to work with, as I see it. There’s very seldom a project that’s just one person’s to own. It’s a team effort. And we get great results for our clients because we’re putting in the best of us. We’re all contributing those pieces that—even if it’s someone that’s not working much on the project, sometimes they’ll be the ones with the idea that cracks it open. We’re all picking each other up when something doesn’t work right. And celebrating each other’s successes.

teamwork

Nicole Spracale, Leadership Search Director

teamworkYou can’t do anything alone. Even if you can, what’s the fun in it? My problem is that I say that I want to do things alone, but I want to do everything else for other people. I’m a huge believer that we should do everything as a team, but I just want to be of service to others so much that sometimes my biggest fault is that it seems like I don’t want to do things as a team because I’m selfish, and that’s not what it is. I just want to be of service to others so badly that I want to do all the hard stuff for everybody else so that I can take care of them. So it’s kind of finding a balance.

Jason Gabler, Leadership Consultant

teamworkTeamwork is combining forces. It’s acknowledging that you’re not just bringing XYZ value, you’re bringing an exponential value because you’re a different person with a different perspective and approach. So when you work together as a team, not only do you bring out the best in yourself, because you can contribute what you’re good at—but it also enhances the other person. Working in tandem helps lift each other up.

Paul Eisenstein, Leadership Search Director

teamworkI’m a very strong individual contributor, and I’m very good at completing a goal. It’s similar to that tunnel vision—yes, I can get it done, but if you get other people’s thoughts, input and opinions, whole new worlds open up. So you can do something 10 times more impactful. 1+1=11 is another one I’ve really learned because we have such a high-functioning team here. Everyone has unique insights to offer.

Christie and I are an example of the 1+1=11 equation. We started a new program called Emerging Leaders. We’ve done leadership search and we were looking for ways we can really grow. Christie has a great recruiting background that she comes to the table with. I thought, Christie’s going to run with this and infuse other input, and she came up with a new idea that actually has made her process five times more efficient. I was skeptical of that and would never have done it. She’s really good at the client interactions, and I’m really good at breaking things down into black and white. Together, we make a really powerful team. We’re able to build up our process and can serve a lot more people in a better way—so it’s not just 1+1=2. It’s five times better.

Ken Butler, Leadership Search Director

teamworkMy wife and I make an incredible team. Both of us have discovered ourselves as we’ve matured and become really strong partners—in each other’s goals, and in raising our kids.  Teamwork is about helping the other person but also encouraging and supporting the other person to go and to do. So when I look here at Y Scouts as well, a good teammate doesn’t necessarily do the work for you. I think part of it is also saying, you can do this and you should do this. I’m on your side, and you’ve got to go do it. And that support goes a long way in helping people achieve greater things than they would’ve done without that support from a team member.

Rae Johnson, Accounting & Office Administration

teamworkWe’re not here alone. We’re all in this together. One of the things I like outside work in my exercise classes is the energy, and the teamwork, basically. We’re all together, working out in a class that we enjoy. And the camaraderie. I also like hiking with people. And in the work environment—it’s more fun with a team. I’m working more remotely than I ever have before. I know that it’s OK, but I also know that being with people is important. It’s not always about me; I can also contribute.

What does teamwork mean to you? Let us know!

Y Scouts is a leadership search firm that finds purpose-aligned and performance-proven leaders to help organizations achieve their missions faster. Ready to supercharge your leadership search and get the right person in your organization? Contact Y Scouts.

How are you making the world a better place?

World A Better PlaceEvery member that joins the Y Scouts Leadership Community answers a series of questions to help us understand where they find purpose and meaning in their work.

One of the first questions we ask is, “Roy Spence of the Purpose Institute defines Purpose as “a definitive statement about the difference that you are trying to make in the world.” What do you believe your purpose to be?”

You can imagine that we receive a lot of answers along the lines of, “I want to make the world a better place.” This morning, we received an answer along these lines, but with a bit more elaboration. We thought we’d share it with you…

Q: Roy Spence of the Purpose Institute defines Purpose as “a definitive statement about the difference that you are trying to make in the world.” What do you believe your purpose to be?

A: This is a question that has actually been on my mind for a while…and my answer is simply to make the world a better place. I am sure this reply would make most people say “geez, what a horribly lame answer”, so please let me elaborate. While I have come to the conclusion that in all likelihood I will not find a cure for leukemia, end world hunger or rid the world of violence, I do realize I am able to make the world a better place through my actions. It could be by making my job (and the owners of the company) happy by being successful at my job…or it could be by making my co-workers and the people who report to me happy by being an organized thoughtful boss that treats people with respect….or it could be by doing random unselfish acts everyday in my personal life. When I came to this conclusion a few years back I not only realized I was making the world a better place, but was also making myself happy.

How are you making the world a better place? Tell us by joining other leaders in the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

4 Types Of Organizational Culture

Organizational Culture

Researchers and academia define organizational culture as the values, beliefs, symbols and behavior of people who work in an organization. Robert E. Quinn and Kim S. Cameron at the University of Michigan have identified 4 types of Organizational Culture. What organizational culture best describes where you thrive?

Clan – family-like, with a focus on mentoring, nurturing, and “doing things together”

Adhocracy – dynamic and entrepreneurial, with a focus on risk-taking, innovation, and “doing things first”

Market – results oriented, with a focus on competition, achievement, and “getting the job done”

Hierarchy – structured and controlled, with a focus on efficiency, stability and “doing things right”

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

How To Get The Most From A Professional Business Organization

Professional Business Organization

What is one tip for leaders and CEOs to get the most out of a professional business organization?

We asked the Y Scouts Leadership Community this question to get their best professional association tips. Here is a collection of five tips on how to get the most from a professional business organization.

Select Your Professional Business Organization
It’s always an honor to be asked to join a professional network, but sometimes it’s simply smart to say thanks, but no thanks. Most professional business organizations cost money and to get the most out of them takes time. You’ll get the most value fully committing to a few rather than slightly committing to many.

Focus On Relevant Benefits
Most professional business organizations offer many different opportunities. You simply cannot take advantage of all of them. Narrow your focus to 2 or 3 benefits and get maximum values from those.

Give What You Have
Many people engage in professional business organizations by trying to get as much out of it as they can, without thinking about the value they can add to everyone’s experience. You’ll have much more benefit from the group by contributing to it, instead of just being a passive member.

Have A Clear Plan For Each Meeting
In Keith Ferrazzi’s classic sales and marketing bible, Never Eat Alone, he makes the distinction between those people who simply show up at events versus thus who come with a clear plan. The same could be said for getting the most out of a professional business organization. If you join an organization, identify your membership goals, be a pro-active member, participate, make real connections.

Listen and Learn
It is always tempting to use these professional business organizations for networking when much of their real value is in listening attentively to other members about what is and isn’t working for their businesses. Listening to learn rather than listening to wait and speak is critical for leaders that want to maximize their exposure to best practices and establish their credibility among fellow leaders.

What tips do you have on getting the most from a professional business organization? Join the Y Scouts Leadership Community and share your insight with our purpose-driven executives.

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

The Good Life Project

This is a post from Y Scouts Managing Partner and co-founder, Brian Mohr.

For those of you who are not aware of The Good Life Project or the work by Jonathan Fields, I highly recommend you check it out: http://www.goodlifeproject.com/

In 2011, Jonathan shared his 10 Commandments of Epic Business. He quickly realized these commandments applied not only to business, but to living a better life. So, for those of you who have the privilege of leading in the 21st century, take a look at the 10 Commandments of Epic Business – they’re a great playbook for business in the 21st century: http://www.jonathanfields.com/10-commandments-of-epic-business/

10-commandments

My best,
B. Mohr

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

CVS Drops Tobacco Sales to Focus on their Purpose

This is a post from Y Scouts Managing Partner and co-founder, Brian Mohr.

Oh yeah, the importance of Purpose is growing!

The President and CEO of CVS Caremark, Larry Merlo, made an announcement earlier this month that as of October 1, 2014, CVS will no longer sell tobacco and tobacco-related products in their stores. The sales hit to the company is estimated to be in the $2 billion range.

We see the announcement as a defining moment in corporate America. When Merlo was asked how he was able to justify the revenue loss with shareholders, he responded by saying, “It’s a real contradiction to talk about all the things we’re doing with people to help them on their path to better health and at the same time sell tobacco products.”

As of the date of this message, CVS’s stock price has rebounded (see image below) from the dip it took on the heels of the announcement. Will consumers rally around CVS and put pressure on other pharmacies to follow suit? Whether or not the sale of tobacco and tobacco-related products vanish from the shelves of other pharmacies is still up in the air. However, one thing that isn’t up for discussion, at least in the C-suite at CVS Caremark, is how they will make decisions. That’s right, an unwavering sense of purpose is guiding the way – thanks CVS Caremark!

How committed is your leadership team to practicing your organization’s purpose?

My best,
B. Mohr

CVS Stock Price

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

7 Apps To Make You A More Productive Leader

What apps can make you a more productive leader? There are several out there. Here are 7 apps – one for each day of the week – that you can try out for your business.

Productivity AppTINYpulse
TINYpulse sends out a 1-question weekly anonymous survey to everyone at a company. Stay informed of company issues before they get out of hand, and keep a tiny pulse of company culture. The product provides an easy way for employees to engage with and provide feedback. Don’t try TINYpulse…unless you’re a leader who’s committed to change, sharing and action.

Leadership Productivity AppBasecamp
Basecamp is a project management and collaborative software that keeps our team on task. It makes communicating with clients as well as assigning tasks to remote teams a breeze. And, everyone has the app on their phone in order to stay in touch while on the go. Last year alone, Basecamp helped over 285,000 companies finish more than 2,000,000 projects.

Apps for ExecutivesAsana
Similar to Basecamp, Asana puts conversations & tasks together, so you can get more done with less effort. Basically, it’s teamwork without email. Asana puts conversations & tasks together, so you can get more done with less effort. Asana promises to organize your team, your project, and yourself. Teams using Asana include Pinterest, Dropbox, Uber, Virginia Tech and Synthetic Genomics.

Google Drawing IconGoogle Draw
Flow chart an entire processes and hand off to your employees. Spend 20 minutes flowcharting a process and employees can then access that anytime they get stuck. Also helps immensely with onboarding of new hires. To start creating drawings in Google Docs, go to your Docs list, click the red Create button and select Drawing. Then, use the menu options and the button.

Ted TalksTED
Listening to TED talks during a commute improves your ability to lead in so many different ways. In a week of TED talks you can learn about psychology, personal betterment, technology, medicine and sociology. These talks add to your knowledge, and more importantly, help you become a better person. They also add an element of motivation and creativity to your day that you can take into your workplace.

Leadership AppContactually
Contactually is a CRM that makes it very simple to follow up with employees, mentors, customers, and other people in your network. For most businesses, relationships is a key component that helps it grow. The simple reminders from Contactually suggest who you should follow up with to keep your business objectives moving forward.

Productivity AppThe Calculator App On The iPhone
Confirm some revenue related discussions quickly with calculations.

What apps out there make you a more productive leader? Let us know in the comments below.

Y Scouts is an executive search firm that helps nonprofits and social enterprises find exceptional leaders. Contact us if you are looking to find an exceptional leader. To be considered for exceptional leadership opportunities with our clients, please take the first step by joining the Y Scouts Leadership Community.

Find An Exceptional Leader

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