The UNCrushed Podcast #5: Kasey Jones, CEO + Growth Strategist, A Better Jones

Podcast.jpg

"When you're going through something hard, you start to lose that sense of sunshiny positivity, you start to lose your sense of self. Who you know yourself to be starts to slip through your fingers. It also makes you feel like a fraud”

Life throws you curveballs. Kasey has been swinging away for years. Divorce, grief, and the strength to overcome these adversities shape the conversation as Kasey breaks stigmas by oversharing, and telling us how life has been hard and that's a valuable thing for our growth. Join Kasey and James as we dive into her story.

PODCAST RECORDING

check out ‘THE OTHER SIDE OF SALES’ PODCAST HERE

Connect with Kasey here, on Twitter, instagram and Linkedin.


Get the UNCrushed Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, and Spotify.

Like this episode? Be sure to leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ review and share with your friends! You can connect with host James Buckley on Twitter and LinkedIn.


TIMESTAMPS

0:00 - Introduction to Kasey

1:01 - Kasey admits to being an oversharer. She’s breaking the stigma

1:42 - Life is one blow after another

3:16 - What’s super moving about the UNCrushed movement

4:42 - Every time, at least one person reaches out to say “Thank you.”

8:58 - Origin of ‘The Other Side of Sales’

11:44 - Stories make us powerful

14:30 - The importance of companionship and the bearded lady

18:43 - The one thing that female leaders should buy

21:52 - Kasey’s mission and purpose

24:37 - The path Kasey took to become more

30:57 - They way we’re viewed as leaders

35:09 - One step at a time, no matter what. You’re always “getting there”

39:21 - You have to fall in love with the process and not the outcome

45:12 - Applying intention to your routine. The intention is different for everyone

49:18 - Dealing with divorce a month into a new job

53:31 - See it from their perspective

54:13 - Benevolent Manipulation

57:28 - Thanks for coming on the show Kasey! Subscribe to the UNCrushed podcast!


full Transcript

James Buckley:

Hello podcast nation. Thank you so much for joining us for another episode of UNCrushed. I am here with a very special guest today, Ms. Kasey Jones of a better Jones has joined us in the studio. Thank you so much for coming to the show. Thank you so much for having me. Absolutely. So a quick introduction. Kasey is a very influential person on social media. She posts a lot of very real problems and issues that we see in our industry and a lot of people have rallied behind her to say, I feel you. And that's a huge part of what we do as sales professionals, as business professionals. We get attention for things that matter, and Kasey is out there telling her story about things that she's gone through. And I just want to give her a huge heads up. I'm going to ask some tough questions today. Uh, Kasey, tell us a little bit about your story. Tell us where you're coming from. Why did you want to be a part of this and how has this changed you as an individual?

Kasey Jones:

Okay. So first of all, I am super ready for hard questions. Um, most people know I am an open book and I tend to be an oversharer and, um, and that's also why I share as much as I do because I recognized that it's really hard for other people to share. And so it's a little bit easier for me. So I'm gonna, I'm gonna, you know, play my role as the, um, stigma breaker person by just like oversharing, a bunch of things that other people are sort of embarrassed, uh, to say publicly good times.

James Buckley:

I love that. I think it takes a lot of courage to say things other people aren't willing to say. What kinds of things do you want to say, Kasey? So,

Kasey Jones:

um, Oh God. Um, so, uh, well let me, let, let me explain why this is so valuable for me. So life is hard and I'm not like super privileged person. Um, yeah. Okay. Woman, I've got bad thing that's like the one tough thing. But, um, I, you know, my parents are still married and they're educated. I grew up kind of spoiled and privileged. I'm pretty smart. And well educated. Um, and life is still really hard. And especially in the last like few years I was doing the math. I think in the last seven years it's just been like one blow after another, after another after another and it gets old and it gets really hard. And even when you are like me where, and this is why swipe Jameson I mega bond is because we are both ridiculously positive humans. And even when you are a ridiculously positive person and, and you know what, maybe especially if you have these big swings on your go through tough times and especially when you're going through something really hard and you start to lose that sense of like sunshiny positivity, you start to lose your sense of self and who you know yourself to be starts to slip through your fingers.

Kasey Jones:

And it also makes you feel like a fraud.

Kasey Jones:

So I think what is super moving for me about the whole UNCrushed movement is that it's a lot of people that from the outside look like they've got it altogether. Yep. Look like they've got the perfect story, they're killing it, they're crushing it, whatever we made it. And there are some things so powerful about coming out and making it very clear that like even when you have those appearances and even when all of those really good things are still true, things are still hard and you can still be depressed and you can still be anxious and you can still have suicidal ideations even when things are good. And it's really important to tell this story. So for the people that are not oversharers right, they feel a little less alone and they feel maybe a little bit safer in coming forward and telling those stories themselves.

James Buckley:

So how do you inspire somebody that has something in their closet that's just dragging them down as, as an individual that's influential on social media? You post a lot of things that I think some people might take the wrong way. Uh, I don't want to name names, but I think that there's some pushback for you sometimes. Yeah, because you're such an oversharer and because most of the things that you share, especially on Twitter, are extremely personal. For you. And sometimes people feel like, gosh, this person is just showing everyone their cards. What do you say to those people when they have to attack you in a way? You know? So

Kasey Jones:

here's the deal. Like, especially, um, when I'm sharing the really tough stuff, uh, every single time at least one person will reach out to me and say, thank you. Now that's worth everything. It's worth everything. And the biggest, so, so here's the biggest, when I had this like, aha moment, this is about four or eight years ago, I think now, um, I have a degenerative neurological disease and it is incurable and I was taught as a child to never talk to doctors about it because there's nothing you can do about it. There is no real treatment. You just have it. And this is America. So my parents were like, don't ever talk about it with doctors cost us thousands. It could cost us thousands and we could lose our insurance. Oh yeah. It is a preexisting condition and there's no treatment for it. So there's no point in talking to a doctor anyway.

Kasey Jones:

Yup. So, and it's, um, it's, it's degenerative, it's progressive, so it gets worse as you get older. So I hit kind of my, like late twenties, early thirties, and my symptoms started getting worse and worse. And I realized that I, and I was thinking about having kids, so I needed to go see a doctor to find out more about it. And I won't go into all the details of what this experience was like, but it was an incredibly traumatic doctor's visit. Oh, I'm sure. And what I realized, it just threw me for a loop. Like it hit me like a ton of bricks and I spent the next couple of days just feeling crushed by it. Oh, didn't, didn't mean to make that reference. Very meta here. But, um, and so what I realized is that the reason why I was having such a hard time dealing is because I didn't talk about it normally and I didn't deal with it.

Kasey Jones:

I just pushed it out of my brain so that when something did come up about it, it would just, I would lose it. I would melt down about it. And so I made this commitment. I was like, I gotta be talking about this more because I'm open about it and I'm talking about it on a regular basis. When something bad happens around it or something hard, I'm not going to be so lost by it. I'm not going to be so crushed by it. So I wrote this really long blog post. I mean it's still on medium. Um, that where I like, I think the headline was like, I have a disease I don't talk about, but I think I'm going to start. I saw that and, and it was ridiculous. I had so many people send me private messages that were like, Oh my God, I have this thing and I never talk about it or I have that thing or, and all of a sudden I was like, Oh my God.

Kasey Jones:

Like I was terrified to put this out there. And the response wasn't just, Oh, Hey, I'm here for you. It was, Oh my God, you're here for me. Thank you. And it changed my whole thinking around it. And so, you know, and it's, I, I, for a while I didn't do it consistently, but that was the first step of me realizing that when I say something hard publicly, it helps other people. And I'll also say it helps me, okay, I'm being selfish too. Like it's a liberating experience to get it off your chest and get it out there.

James Buckley:

I think it's two fold for me. I also feel the same way. It's great to get it out. You have to get it out of your body. Uh, our friend Richard Harris, notorious for saying, write it all down just to get it out of your body, out of your mind. Uh, but I think I also get stronger in my struggle by helping others out of doubt. And that for me is the real payoff personally. Yes. Um, so let's talk a little bit about the other side of sales because I really want to touch this podcast that you've started with Ashley early. I've listened to each episode and I really feel like you guys are onto something because there's a whole subculture that doesn't fall into the norm and you seem to be hitting that nerve consistently saying I'm there for those guys.

Kasey Jones:

Yep. So tell me a little bit about what spawned this yeah. Why it exists today, where you feel like it's going to go. Okay. So, um, the way it started is I got, um, asked over Christmas to be part of dig it, be interviewed for a book that was being written about like sales experts. And I saw the, I get the message and I was like, okay, you know, this is great exposure for me. Yes. Thank you so much for thinking of me. And then I clicked through the like little link that they had shared that had a landing page with all the other people that they were interviewing or a lot of the people they were interviewing. And there were 48 people pictures featured on this landing page. Big shocker. What do you think the, the um, uh, gender and racial breakdown was with predominantly white male.

Kasey Jones:

So it was 100% white and it was 96% male. And I looked at that and I looked at it and then I, I sent them in another message and I was like, I can't be a part of this. This is not, this is not what I am about and I can't do this. And they never responded to my message and it was like super fired up. And so I decided, I was like, I'm going to write the other book because if you think about it, it's like when you're selling to someone that doesn't look like you, you have to jump through more hoops. And most of us wind up selling to white dudes. And so when you are not that you have to jump through more hoops in, you're probably more creative about how you sell and you've got these like little work arounds and things like that.

Kasey Jones:

And I want to hear from those people. And so I had this in the back of my mind, hadn't figured out how I was going to do this. And then Ashley, she had a very similar experience and she also was looking, she was trying to find sales podcasts that were hosted by women and there were almost none. And so she sent me a text out of the blue and she was like, okay, is this crazy? Can we, would you want to do a podcast together? And so I wrote her back and I was like, no, it is not crazy. And I have the idea and we both just like went crazy over it. And I appreciate that you think that we're onto something. We are very early and we'd have literally no clue what we are doing. Oh, I heard that on the, yeah, the very first episode you guys were very honest and saying we don't know what we're doing here and we are figuring it out.

Kasey Jones:

But um, we are just on a mission to tell the stories of the people that don't fit like our stereotypical model of a salesperson. And that doesn't just mean racial and gender breakdown. It also means like people that just come from like non traditional backgrounds. So it's like I've been talking to a couple of former pastors that are in sales or former teachers or veterans, right? Like I want to talk to the people that they, cause here's the deal stories. Our stories make us so powerful and owning those stories make us so powerful. And just like what we're talking about, hearing other people's kind of unique stories. When you look out at your industry and you think everyone kind of looks the same and you're the odd one out, which is by the way, what we all think, no matter what our background is, right? It makes us, it, it empowers us. And so we want to tell those stories of what it is like to own who you are and be a little different on your sales team and still freaking kill it. Yep. So this is where I asked one of those hard questions I mentioned earlier, why didn't you participate so that that percentage of white male was a little less so?

Kasey Jones:

Well I think it was really that I didn't want to be a part of a project where that wasn't, it was clear that that wasn't even intention. I see. And I don't want to work with people or, um, and especially something that is going to help someone else. Right. Cause like, you know, it's the purpose was to know was to help the purpose was to produce content for this person's book. Right. And I don't want to be a part of something where like, they're not even considering, they're not even taking this into consideration. It never dawned and what you're saying. Yeah. Yeah. And the fact that I didn't get a response when I said, Hey, I don't feel comfortable being a part of this validates the decision. Yeah. Yeah. And it made me really feel like they don't, they aren't paying attention to these things. And, um, you know, I hate using the term, but like that is, that is not an on-brand thing for me to be a part of that. And so, and I and I gotta be honest like six months or a year earlier.

Kasey Jones:

I probably would have done it anyway without flinching, without flinching. You still hadn't got your grips into what you were after and maybe I would have flinched, but I would've done it anyway because I felt like, Oh, maybe I'll get some good exposure. Maybe this is a good thing. Maybe it will lead to something else. And it felt really good to be like, you know what, this does not align with my values. Yeah. It's important that things that you get yourself involved with as a professional aligned with your values. Absolutely. You've got to have passion for it. So we'll talk a little bit about passion for a moment. Uh, I've seen countless pictures of your dog. I want to talk a little bit about how your dog kind of helped you through your tough times because that's something we haven't talked about. I am crushed yet is the importance of that companionship.

Kasey Jones:

Yeah. And it doesn't necessarily have to be a human being. No. Which I think is such a unique perspective that we haven't discovered just yet. And I gotta be honest. I actually think there's something about when it's not a human being that makes it even better because, well, but it's also, it's like you're really deep. You'll be really depressed and you'll see your dog, like lose her fricking mind over a ball or a Kong or something. And it is really hard to take yourself seriously in that moment. I get it. So tell, tell everybody what kind of dog you have. Okay, so I have a German wire hair pointer. Um, I call, I lovingly call her my bearded lady and she's crazy. Like she is completely bonkers or name her name. So I did not name her, her name is made gin, which means girl in German.

Kasey Jones:

Interesting. And by the way, she has a traumatic past and she has been through some shit. So my ex husband is eight. The um, County medical deputy medical examiner. Okay. She was a dead guy's dog. My ex husband went on scene. Her original owner killed himself. Okay. He had just gotten out. He had been in an inpatient depression facility for three months. He was let out. He spent about a week with his grown daughter. And the first thing he did when he got home was kill himself and she was in the house with him. And when, and by the way, she had been left basically alone the whole time and someone would come by like once a day. And so she was absolutely starved for Lebanon and affection. Wow. And my ex husband knew I really wanted a dog and frankly our marriage was falling apart, so he was trying to make me happy and he came home from that and he was like, I think I found us a dog.

Kasey Jones:

And, um, so she was really, really needy when we first got her. She still got meaty. Um, but she's had, uh, you know, she had a really tough experience too. And she is the most loving, crazy creature. Um, she's a hunting dog, so she is always on patrol. Um, she is always protecting me in the house. You have a special name for her? What is it? W your ride or die? Oh, she's my ride or die bitch. Oh yeah. Oh yeah. And like, um, I mean no joke. It's like we are without a doubt in this together. She has seen me through some really hard times and when my, um, ex and I were splitting up, this is gonna make me emotional. When my ex and I were splitting up, I was moving out and I got aU haul and I'm loading up theU hall with my stuff and she could tell that I was the one leaving and she climbed into theU hall and laid down in theU hall because she was not gonna let me leave without her to allow that to happen.

Kasey Jones:

And that is how she has been from the jump. And when I am having, if I am, if I am crying, if I am upset, if I, you know like we sometimes do if I am like having a really hard time and I'm kind of having a meltdown and I am on the floor of the kitchen crying, she will have her face in my face, she will be kissing me, she will be doing everything she can to cheer me up. And there just something so amazing about that bond and that loyalty and that just like pure, unadulterated love

James Buckley:

and affection. Yeah, there's, there's no expectations attached to that. That's totally different than what happens when we're comforted by a human being. Another human being, no matter how hard we try, I feel like we always have this expectation of how this consult is going to go. If we're comforting somebody that just lost someone or if our friend is going through a tough time in their marriage, we have this need to sort of get this, it's going to be okay. And then have a response come from that. And sometimes that's the last thing that person needs is to respond to you. And your dog seems to understand this and just kind of be there. And I think some people could learn a few lessons there.

Kasey Jones:
Well, and I totally agree. And I think, you know, one of the other things is for those of us that are kind of people pleasers, sometimes you'll be going through something hard and you'll be explaining that to a friend and they're trying to cheer you up. And then you wind up trying to cheer them up that like, Oh no, no, I'm not, I'm not that bad. Don't worry about me. And you're like, wait, how did you allow them? Yeah. Like what is going on here? And so there is something really wonderful about having an animal that is just there for you. And it is. So, it's interesting. I read an article the other day and I can't, um, I'm going to have to remember where it was, but it was, uh, it was a, um, a woman who was talking about why she got a dog when she totally shouldn't have when she was 24.

Kasey Jones:

And I forget what she, where she was working. Oh, she was working for Huffington post. And part of her job at HuffPo was she was interviewing like the top 100 women, um, CEO's. And she asked all of them a certain set of questions and she asked all of them, um, what is one thing every woman like CEO or woman in business should buy? 93 of the answers were completely different from each other. The only, there were seven women that all said the same thing. And they said, buy a dog. And they said, when you are a woman in business and when you are a high powered woman, you often feel like you have to kind of put your humanity and your softness to the side and a dog will help you remember kind of that you have that and then show you how to express it. And exactly. And I thought that was so powerful and such an interesting

James Buckley:

perspective. Yeah. I've never heard that perspective before. Uh, this isn't a hard question, but I have to ask why not a cat?

Kasey Jones:

Um, don't discriminate against the cats dog people out there. I don't discriminate. Cats are really nice, but their, um, cats don't need you in the way a dog

James Buckley:

that is 100% true. I've said for many years that dogs have companions, they have owners and cats have servants. I have two cats and they always look at me like I'm not doing enough for them. Dogs don't have that look. They're just really happy to see you all the time no matter how. No matter how you might treat them, they're super happy that you're home to Dallas. And I, you know, I feel like there's a little bit of therapy in that too. Kids are that way when you get home and they haven't seen you all day, they're very happy to see you. And it's like this sigh of relief that you breathe. Like, Oh, my day is fulfilled now I'm with my kids, I'm with my family, we're spending time together, I'm relaxed, I'm in my element. And I think your dog kind of provides that same comfort level for you, without a doubt.

James Buckley:

Yeah. So I think it's interesting that the dog has been such a like helpful thing in your life. I helpful almost had person there, right? Because we attach these human qualities to our pets. So that's really awesome. Where do you see your brand going? Because it's such a controversial brand. If I'm being honest, right? Like sometimes the things that I see you posted, I'm like, man, that's really forward. Like she's really giving away a lot right there. Where do you see that going for you and what's the benefit of wearing it all on your sleeve? So proudly

Kasey Jones:

so. Okay. So I had a realization about a year ago, maybe it was two years, I dunno, whatever, where I realized, so you know the, the Maya Angelou quote where she's, and I'm going to butcher it, but she says something like, people don't remember what you did. They don't remember what you said, but they remember, they remember how you made them feel. Right. And I realized that my mission, my purpose, the thing that makes me feel the best in life is when I can make somebody feel like they can do more than they thought that they could before we started talking. And not just that they can do it, but that they have a plan on how they're going to get started. Nice. And so I am really focused on, you know, building out things like the other side of sales and making it easier for people, for teams and for companies to recognize that they can do more than they think that they can and they just need a little bit of, um, a positive attitude, a little bit of innovation and some help kind of shaping that plan.

Kasey Jones:

And maybe some time and maybe some time, definitely plenty of time, but that, that is really what I'm focused on and in a variety of ways. And I, um, I really want to make it easier for, um, you know, people that don't necessarily fit the kind of typical model of a startup founder or a person in sales yet, or a leader in business to feel like they can find their tribe and that they will be celebrated and supported and that they can get to that next level. So I'm really focused on kind of breaking down those barriers.

James Buckley:

That's interesting that that's such a huge focus for you because in most cases we don't see a lot of momentum in that. Right? It starts off really strong. I've seen a lot of people come forward and be like, I'm going to change the game. And you know, the way that people perceive their roles is going to be different because I impacted their lives. And the problem I think is that they really struggled to stay consistent with that message. But you seem to be really on this message of like, I am going to give everyone everything I have and I'm not going to hold back and I'm not going to feel ashamed and I'm not going to feel like there's judgment. And if there is judgment, I'm okay with that too. And I want to know how you got there. Like, so we talk a lot about super powers here and you told a story today at DSW, uh, 2019 AI ISP. We were just at the show. You told a story today that hit a lot of nerves. I could see a lot of people sort of nodding their head in agreement. Like, I know what you're saying. Can you, can you give us the once-over on this path that you took to become the person that you are today?

Kasey Jones:

Sure. So I think the, what, what we're really talking about with this, and I totally rambled at AISB, so I will try not to do that. You know, I didn't, um, that's OK. This is how we learn. Um, but um, was really, I thought I was on the path. Um, I had, was totally lost in my twenties and then things started to really happen. Um, and I, I shouldn't say happen, like I made them happen. Um, I, uh, met a guy who was super charming and handsome and cool and had tons of friends and like it was a total whirlwind romance. My parents loved him. He was an Irish punk rocker and a scientist, right? Like super cool guy, tons of friends. And I was always kind of a loner. And so I was just like swept up in this. And, um, and at the same time I started getting my MBA at night and my career started to really take off and it really started to kind of like figure things out.

Kasey Jones:

And over time I realized that, Oh my God, what I thought that this marriage was going to be was so not it. And, um, you know, I'm not gonna bash my ex, but really like in his eyes I just could not do anything right. And I just got smaller and smaller and smaller. Yes. You know, I'm six feet tall. I did not get any smaller. Um, but I became a smaller version of myself. Like I was not, I became way more of a homebody, um, sort of reclusive, totally reclusive. And I started to really, really identify as an introvert. And I am, I have your word here, it is a heavy word here. And I would say like, I know people, I do not seem like an introvert. I am somebody that needs a lot of alone time, but I'm a very extroverted introvert, but I became a full on introvert. I really to be out in public. I kind of like never left home. Um, and my, my marriage ended and it was, my marriage ended a month after I'd started at a new job and Oh my God, I was such a mess. Um, I moved out. I also, I moved out of the house four days before my 34th birthday. Um, so it was just like a lot all at once, a lot of changes. And, um,

Kasey Jones:

the smartest decision that I made is I immediately got myself into therapy and my therapist, this is actually great, you'll appreciate this. So my therapist actually went to go see this therapist for the first time the week that I was deciding whether or not I should move out of my married household. And I show up. And like normally your first session with a therapist is like a consultation, you know, like seeing if this is going to work. And I came in and I'm like, Oh no, no, no, I've got all this stuff that I don't we need to talk about and we get to the end. And he was like, okay, like we've got a couple minutes, let's talk a little bit about like what you're looking for in therapy in your style. And I can tell you a little yeah. And like, and I can tell you a little bit about mine.

Kasey Jones:

And I was like, Oh, well, you know, I've been in and out of therapy for years. Like, I know what I'm looking for. I need someone who's going to give it to me straight. Like, I'm tough. I need someone to be really direct. Like I don't want any handholding and I give this whole thing. And he was like, okay, I totally hear you. [inaudible] basically repeats all of that. And he was like, you know, you're, you're really, you're really tough. You're very direct. Like, you know, I want to hold your hand, all of this stuff. And then he goes, and he was like, but you know, in light of all of that, maybe just, maybe you do need a little handholding. And he says that. And I like immediately burst into tears and it was like, Oh my God. And so, um, and so I think one that is the, that is the most important thing that I did, but then I went on a mission to basically rediscover me.

Kasey Jones:

And so I started, I basically decided that anything that I could do that if I just had a whim of doing something, because I had spent years pushing down what I wanted to try to make someone else happy. Yeah. I, it was like a, a reclamation of me and what I wanted and yeah. And so anything that it was like, Oh yeah, okay mom, maybe I want to do that. I did it. And like I had a friend who, um, uh, he was like, well, you know, I'm going on this trip to Cuba, a fringe diplomacy trip, or we're going to go to Cuba and where it's a bunch of business people and we're going to meet with a bunch of entrepreneurs in Cuba. And he was like, would you want to go? And I was like, done going to Cuba. So we went to Cuba, like, and it was just like a bunch of these kinds of things. Um, and, and, and so I just started not just rediscovering me, but celebrating that process of rediscovery. And I've also tell you like, if that makes it sound really fun, it was awful. I was, I was a mess. But the end result is pretty solid. The end result was really solid. But you have to understand that like you're going to do these positive things and they're going to lead in a better direction, but there's going to be a lot of hard shit on along the way.

James Buckley:

So in the process of building a better Jones, um, you probably learned a lot that you didn't know about yourself. Yes. Um, I'd imagine that through that journey there's a lot of acceptance. There's a lot of denial, there's a lot of learning experiences that maybe you didn't expect. Um, can you remember anything that stands out to you that maybe one day you woke up and you thought about something and it just hit you just right, or you had a dream or someone said something to you and you were like, man, I didn't even know that about myself.

Kasey Jones:

So one of the things that has been a really interesting process, and I'm not saying that I am perfect at this at all, I have a long way to go. I'm usually spread too thin, so I'm not always there for my team and the way I want to be, but I'm a way better leader than I ever gave myself credit for.

James Buckley:

There you go. What makes you say that now?

Kasey Jones:

Um, because I get really positive feedback from people on my team and from people that I kind of mentoring coach about exactly what I was saying earlier about how I make them feel. Okay.

James Buckley:

It's huge. Yeah. Do you feel like that's, sorry, I didn't mean to cut you off. Do you, do you feel like that sense of leadership and the way that they view you as a leader has instilled not only loyalty from others, but a little bit of loyalty to Kasey?

Kasey Jones:

Oh, without a doubt. Um, and I will say like that's one of, that's been one of the most amazing things. I, um, was part of a, a partnership that wound up not working out. And my team kind of had an option of who to go at. Mm. And my team was like, Oh my God, we wouldn't think of going with anyone, but you like, we love you and we are so loyal to you. Yeah. And it really, um, and that was amazing. And so we have this really close bond as a result. That's great. Um, if people do have, so we have, I have only three people on my team. We're small but mighty small, but mighty small but mighty. And um, and so I think that was a huge thing. Um, but I also think so over over time, I've also learned a lot more about my values.

Kasey Jones:

What's important to you, what's important to me. And I will say, so the other thing that I can say, and this has been a kind of a newer like, aha moment that's just happened recently. Um, I because of the, you know, the end of partnership and because of just other things, like I'm constantly meeting with startup founders who are like 28 and like a hundred millionaires and I'm 37 and I'm like, Oh my God, I to get my shit together. Yeah. So I, I was really in this trap of like comparing myself to others and I definitely consider myself a late bloomer and I was having a really hard time feeling like I was behind. And I, again, I was kind of talking about this on Twitter and I got in this conversation with a couple of different people and I don't really read a lot of people, a lot of people and a lot of, and, and I don't know what it is that somebody said that made me have this aha moment, but all of a sudden I was like, Oh, as long as I am doing right by my values and maintaining my integrity.

Kasey Jones:

Yup. I actually don't really care about anything else. And the moment I, I like, it was seriously like I lost 30 pounds when I had that aha moment. Wow. Like to the point where I almost immediately sent, send an email to my therapist, um, where I was like, Hey, we've been talking about this. And I figured it out. And that's the thing that I really encourage people to think about is instead of looking at like stuff or status or results or income or income, like any of that external stuff, if you look at the decisions you're making, the choices that you are making in your life, and we talked about this earlier, if they make you feel a sense of peace, that is all you need.

James Buckley:

That's right. I've said that a couple of times now to a couple of different people and I think there's something really heavy to that. Yeah. When you're caught between two spots, or even if you just need to make a choice because there's a deadline, if you've got a sense of peace in you regardless, then you should make the choice to do it, whatever it is. But if there's even a small amount, a smidgen of doubt or something that just makes you uneasy, it's really important that we listened to those gut feelings. How have those feelings sort of led you in the direction that you decided to take?

Kasey Jones:

So I think those feelings have an, and it's funny, somebody asked at after our talk, somebody asked this question, asked a question of like, Hey, you mentioned, um, not feeling rewarded or not feeling fulfilled and kind of how do you solve that? And I think the big thing is like, you do have to take it one step at a time. And what I realized is like, you know, I was the kid that wanted to change the world. Like if you had asked me 20 years ago, they actually, no, 20 years ago, I thought I would have had an Oscar by now. But like 17 years ago I would have said that I'd be like running for Congress or something. Right? I have way too many skeletons in my closet now. But, um, and I realized like I, I know to be happy and to feel satisfied as I need to feel like I'm making a difference in this world.

Kasey Jones:

And so I am slowly starting to find ways that I can inch my way towards that. And I am not there yet. Not by a long shot think you'll get there. But I am getting there. Yeah. And I think that's a really important part of like so, so when I was in business school, they had us do this one assessment that I think they wrote themselves that I absolutely loved that basically it was a bunch of these questions that they seem silly at first. Like I remember the first question was right, 39 things on your bucket list. And then the next question was if you don't, if like, um, talent, education connections, like none of those things are an object. What are three total dream jobs? And so they ask a bunch of these questions like this and then they, and then they would stop every couple of times. It'd be like, okay, what themes are you seeing between the answers of these different questions? Yeah. It was so tremendously powerful for me. So there were three things in like everything, um, a desire to travel,

Kasey Jones:

A desire to solve really complex problems and a feeling like I'm making a difference. And so if you can start to like have that sense of self awareness and do that kind of personal work of getting really curious about what inspires you, what motivates you, what do you dream about? Yeah. And then finding ways to just inch your way closer and closer. Little by little, we think that we, it, it's going to be an aha. We're just going to know, find your passion. The way most of us find our passion is we do something that like, I dunno, we just do it. We're like mildly interested in it and we realize, Oh, I like this thing about it and I don't like this thing. I'll do a little more of this thing. And you slowly get closer and closer and closer. Do you think that we feel this sense that it should happen faster because of the swipe right?

Kasey Jones:

Dopamine, yeah. That we've all been affected by in the last, I don't know, 15 years or so. Uh, I really do think that success is viewed in that same way. So I wrote my thesis on success for in college and it was such an interesting piece because I interviewed a lot of people both that were successful and people that kind of viewed themselves as like struggling. Right. Uh, and it was interesting to me that when I spoke to the people that were wildly successful, they still had the same opinion that the people that thought they were struggling where they're like, man, I'm really struggling. It was just a different kind of struggle. Yep. Yeah. So, so when we talk about struggle and we talk about inks and like the things that that sort of come from within that drive us to find that thing that makes us happy. Yeah. What was that journey like for you? And I have obviously led a better Jones

James Buckley:

that then led to the other side of sales. And that has led to you sort of traveling around and sharing your story with so many wonderful people and you're making an impact and a splash in the water here that's rippling out and affecting a lot of people that are either going through the same things, similar things that you've been through or they have other problems and they see some strength in you and they want to be able to go to you and say, what do you think? So what do you think?

Kasey Jones:

So I, you know, I, I feel like this is the theme for me of, of this conversation is it all starts with little things, right? And like I, it's not the most amazing book ever, but I do really love the book compound effect. And you think about like compound interest, right? Like, and I actually, so before I, I started to deal with some health things and so I am not, I don't do this anymore, but for awhile I was super into heavy lifting. Okay. Um, I was training for a power lifting competition. I'm six feet tall and gawky and like not coordinated and not a natural born athlete. So I was not going to win that, that competition. But I loved the process. And one of the things that my coach who is a brilliant and wonderful than philosophical dude really helped me learn is that you have to fall in love with the process, not the outcome. Oh, I like that. And um, if you, if you're always focused on the outcome, you are going to lose your give a shit and your grit and your commitment long before you get to that out.

James Buckley:

That is probably one of the more insightful things that

Kasey Jones:

I've heard in the last six months. Well, Josh sub RA, that's, that's who, that's who really taught me that. Right. Shout out to Josh for that little nugget. Yeah, it's definitely a perception that I think a lot of people are lacking. Yeah. And, and, and, and I am not a natural athlete and so, you know, all of this stuff was really hard for me, but it would be an end. Here's the deal with like when you're doing anything physical, you'll do all of the same things and one day you can lift 15 pounds heavier than you can the next day. And there's no real rhyme or reason why. And you just have to get Zen and be like, I am sticking to the process and things are going to continuously move forward. And so I really encourage people to think about their lives that way. And so I can tell you one of the best decisions that I've made in the last couple of years.

Kasey Jones:

So once I sort of got through the, the really tough part with my divorce during the tough part, I frowned all the time and like, I'm not joking, like I would be sitting at my desk and all of a sudden I'd realize that I was like, like I had like an aggressive frown. Like it was like, Oh, like, like over the top. But I'd be like, what am I doing? But then I kind of got through things and I started to feel better. And I realized I was, um, very quick to anger and I was being, I was irritated with people and I had a tendency to kind of struggle with that as well for what it's worth. So one of the things that I realized, I was on public transportation [inaudible] and I don't remember what somebody did, but somebody did something very minor. And I was like, like w wanted to murder some stranger on the frickin train.

Kasey Jones:

And all of a sudden I realized, Oh, I keep hitting the microphone. I realized, Oh, uh, I'm on like hour 15 of a political podcast this week. And it turns out listening to news and politics really makes you negative or it makes me negative. It's because it's what's being delivered to us. Exactly. And so what I did is that that day I was like, I'm done. And so I immediately stopped listening to that and I immediately started listening to, um, more positive, um, business, personal development and like leadership, audio books. And I mean, we're talking like within days, all of a sudden my mood started to improve and I started being kinder to other people. Consume positive views, put out positive. Absolutely. And I'm also say that then all of that knowledge has built up like so, um, I also, I joined a, an all virtual women's book club.

Kasey Jones:

We all live in different cities. We get on a zoom call once a month. It's awesome. It's fricking amazing. And that also like started me reading a lot more to read the books. Yeah. And so I went through this big transition and I had always been a big reader when I was younger and I had really fallen out of that. And I went from reading, I don't know, maybe 10 to 12 books a year to last year. I read 57 and I've already read, I dunno, 51 and we're only in September. And so I have learned so much in the last two years. I, it's, and it's phenomenal. Like I'll be in conversations with clients and I'll have like little knowledge bombs to drop and and it, it makes me more curious and more excited and, and, and what I'm saying with this is like that is just a simple thing that I do every day is now my commute is I listen to stuff that feeds my brain and feeds my heart and makes me happier and a more curious and interesting person and that stuff builds over time because of that.

Kasey Jones:

You've probably getting more of that back without a doubt. I'm a huge believer in karma. I think it's really real that what we put out, we get back and I think sales specifically has this element of you're going to get out of it what you put into it. If you're that person that only works, you know, as hard as they have to to get by, that's probably what you're going to get out of it is just enough to get by. But if you're that person that's like, all right, I'm all in. I want to learn as much as I can. I want to apply myself. I want to put in the extra work or like I heard a podcast once that asked, do you want it bad enough? And I thought that was so interesting. Like how bad do you want it? Do you want it bad enough to come in earlier than everybody else?

Kasey Jones:

Yeah. Do you want it bad enough to stay later than everyone else? Do you want it bad enough to sacrifice the things you have to sacrifice to get where you want to go? If not, then you don't want it bad enough. Yeah, and I think that's such an interesting concept and when you want positive bad enough, it's so amazing how easy it is to find it. Oh, without a doubt. But if you're not searching for it actively, the negative finds you all by itself. It absolutely does. And you have to, you have to apply some intention to your, your daily kind of routine and really inject that kind of positivity and that it's almost like structure around the positivity to really get that going. And so you want to find and look, it takes, it takes testing because everybody is different. Right? What is going to make me be in an amazing mood and be super positive isn't necessarily gonna work for everyone else.

Kasey Jones:

Right. And so you have to try a bunch of things and be like, Oh, okay, I liked this or I didn't like that. And you know, one of the, it's, it's funny, it's like, um, I was talking to somebody recently where they were saying how the, the hard part that they have with, um, reading a lot of books is that they will start reading a book and they won't really like it, but they'll feel like they need to finish it. And it's like, no. Okay. Like just put it to the side. If you start a habit or if you start trying something and you're like, and you know in your gut, like, this is not feeding me. Yeah. It's not working for me. Put it aside and try something else. Like be experimental about how you design your life to make it better and to make it happier.

Kasey Jones:

I agree. I, I've recently started a, a, um, a blog online, say what? sales.com and I feel like I get a lot out of it because as to Richard's point that we talked about earlier today, I'm just getting it out there. The thought has to land somewhere and a lot of people are reading that blog and coming back to me and saying, this is a great post. It really helped me put things into perspective. Uh, and I find that like even in conversation, I come up with these brilliant people that come my way and have something to say and I'm like, Oh, that's a really good thought. I wonder if I could expand on that on the blog, trying to talk to them. So every time somebody says something to me that puts a perspective in my brain, I have to get that out on the blog in the morning.

Kasey Jones:

And that's really helped me to get up, get my brain moving, start those juices flowing and start putting something out that impacts someone else. So here's another thing, and this has made a huge difference for me. So I always used to think that of myself as like someone who should be very productive. But really struggled to be, and I was someone that like, I literally tried every single like productivity and like list building app under the sun, and I'd try it. I'd put everything in there for like two or three weeks and then I get behind it and I wouldn't go back to it. So I started the bullet journal and now I have this one place where I w I write down. So before I go to bed every night I write down everything that I'm planning on doing the next day. But it's also where I write down.

Kasey Jones:

Any time somebody says something brilliant and I want to remember it, I immediately jot it down and then I'll like flesh it out. And there's this guy, James altimeter, who he is, his podcast is entertaining. He's a total, he's such a nerd and he is kind of an odd ball, but he has this idea where he says, you should write down 10 ideas every day because ideation is a, it's a, it's an exercise that you've got to build that muscle. And so he'll joke like when you first start it, it'd be like, okay, I'm going to write ideas about whatever and you'll have like three and then you will, you'll be out of steam. But over time you start to get better. And so there was something about once I had a place to where anytime I had an idea I could write it down and then write down some extra thoughts about it.

Kasey Jones:

I got better at like coming up with ideas and like flushing those things out. And so I, I really, I love that you are doing that because I think it's, especially over time, and I know you're like kind of starting out at it, it's going to be amazing to see what you are able to create and how it's going to affect your brain over the next six months or a year. So that's my goal is to write every day for a year. Awesome. So there's a lot of people in the workforce and I think that sometimes heads tend to, but yeah, when you were going through your divorce and having all of these personal growth moments happen and moving in that direction of like changing, right? Because when you're going through those personal things, there's a lot of change happening. How were you treated at your place of business?


Kasey Jones:

So this is, um, it was very awkward. So I was only a month into a new job and I was at a very early stage startup, so I was actually the first non technical hire. So I was the first person that was hired that was not a developer of some sort. Um, so even like the leadership team, they were, they were technical people. And so I wanted to, so Jones is my maiden name and I had taken my, um, ex husband's name. It was, uh, it was, it w it was a difficult name. And so as soon as I was like, okay, this is really happening, I want to, I want to change my name back to Jones. Sure. And so I think at this point, I don't know, it was like maybe six weeks into the job, seven weeks into the job, and my boss wanted to, um, do a round of introductions to customers so that I could do some customer discovery interviews.

Kasey Jones:

And I went to him and I was like, look, you're about to make this introduction. Um, before we do that, like I just need to give you a heads up, like I am getting a divorce and I want to change my name back to Jones. And so can we make that happen before you go and introduce me to a bunch of people? Right. And by the way, I wrote all of this over Slack because we had bad kind of an environment and he wrote me back and he was like, Oh yeah, sure. That's no problem. Um, but you know, the rest of the team is going to think it's sort of weird that all of a sudden your name on your email is changed, so you should let them know what's going on. So I was like, uh, sure. I'll tell the whole team that I'm getting a divorce that's positive.

Kasey Jones:

I did and I mean it's a small company so there were like 10 of us, but I had no idea what to do. And so, you know, they made an announcement on Slack and I was like, Hey guys, sorry for the weird like you know, medium that I am making this announcement but I you will, you will notice that I am changing my name on email because I am getting a divorce. And I said, and then I did a line below and I was like, you know, before you ask, don't worry, I'm doing okay and I'm sitting around all of these people. And so you know, you see like the like three dots pop up. Like people are starting to type and then it will like delete, right. And like then, then finally the one other woman writes, well, um, well at least Kasey Jones is a way cooler name anyway.

Kasey Jones:

And then there's like this like laugh in the room and everybody kind of like eases up. And I got, I got one private message from one of the founders, the other founder that was like, Hey, you know, I'm sorry you're going through this. If there's anything I can do, let me know. That's great. And it was really nice. But you know, I mean there would be days where like I, they had to notice that I was like crying at my desk or I would leave and we worked in this old building and it had two stairwells and I would, I would sit in the stairwell and I would cry. Um,

James Buckley:

that's, that's pretty intense. I have to imagine that there's a lot. So in most workplaces there are tons of heads constantly with their own agendas. Always like having this feeling like what they're doing should be a priority. And sometimes other personalities that also have their own agendas that also think what they should be doing as a priority sort of clash. Um, that can have a really dramatic effect on our mental health because we feel like it weighs down on us when colleagues don't appreciate, respect, communicate, uh, or even like just treat you like you feel like you should be treated, uh, do on to others kind of comes into mind. Right. Um, what's, what's your advice for people out there in the workplace that sort of have this relationship with that one specific person or multiple people that they just don't seem to be able to get along?

Kasey Jones:

Yeah, look, it's really hard and it's never going to be easy. I think that there's a couple of things that I try really hard to keep in mind. I try really hard to see it from their perspective. So you know, and what is, what is going on for them, but also what are sort of, what's their personality like, what's their sort of approach to life. Sure. And can you kind of look at it through their lens in a way that yes, it's going to help you be more sort of empathetic, but it's also going to help you understand how you can potentially shift your approach to dealing with them. So it's going to land a little better. I like that. Right. So you wanna like you gotta be kind of strategic. Sure. At chess game for sure. That's a chess game. So my mother, she has this really great um phrase that she uses about marriage and she's, she will refer to things as benevolent manipulation.

Kasey Jones:

So, right. So like if my dad is in a really bad mood and he comes home, my mom will immediately go back into her bedroom. She'll put on a low cut top and put on some lipstick and my dad will be in a better mood in like five minutes. And she will joke that woman, she knows how to push his buttons, but in a good way I can actually learn how to do that with other people. And it's a little bit harder cause you don't know them as well. But if you can try to figure out like, okay, what, what motivates what motivates them and what the way you can communicate that is really going to land for them. That is really helpful. The other thing I will say though, and this is a big one for me, is you also have to know when to frickin let it go and when to not care that they're annoyed with you.

Kasey Jones:

So if you know you are doing everything that you can yup. You know that you are, you are a good person, you have no malicious intent, great intentions. Yeah. Then then you have to know that like, sure, if somebody comes to you and says, Hey, you did this thing and it hurt my feelings, you absolutely apologize. But if they don't do that and they have a negative reaction to something you do that is on them, that is their experience. That is their, you know, that is what they are going through and you cannot control that. You have every right to bring it up and say, Hey, I noticed that. It kind of seems like maybe, you know, I said something that bothered you. Um, can you tell me more about that? So I, I encourage you to get curious about it, but with the effort of really trying to understand things from their perspective, not to engage in, um, a combative conversation or like a tit, tit, tit versus tat or like, you know, us versus them kind of thing, you've got to know that their perspective is just as valid as yours. Yeah, I like that because I think we struggle sometimes to see that other people's perspectives might be making a difference in the way they're treating us that day or that week or that year or, you know, just in general. Yeah. So that's really interesting. I can't tell you how much I appreciate your time today coming out, telling your stories, uh, and even just kind of being like super present in the moment. Like super great and very rare

James Buckley:

actually. I think we've done a lot of these shows and I think we get a lot of great content and a lot of the people that have come on have told us some really personal stuff. Uh, but there's always that, that moment that you have with people like you that, that tend to just give it all away and there's no apprehension there and there's no fear of like judgment or persecution because you've been through all that before and you're okay with it. And I think there's a comfort there that I get personally from people that have that mentality because I have my own demons and I try really hard not to throw them out, uh, everybody else. But you seem to be able to do that with this element of poise and understanding and skill and there's almost like a value that you get from your lessons.

James Buckley:

So we really appreciate your time coming on on crushed. Thank you. Absolutely. This has been a wonderful experience. I love what you guys are doing. I think it is so valuable and so important, and if there is any way that I can ever help you or anyone that is listening or anybody that is a part of this or anyone that is struggling, come find me. I am here. That's awesome. Well, thank you so much for joining us. If you have not subscribed to the UNCrushed podcast, we are doing these all the time now. Starting to sit down with an amazing thought leaders. Subscribe to the podcast. Listen to these. They're great life lessons. They'll help you grow. They'll help you find that direction. They'll help you with your problems, give you some steps that you can take to get through what you're going through, whatever it might be. And if you want to tell your stories, visit us at uncrushed.org/submissions and give us your story. We'd love to talk to you and hear from you.