December 12th, 2023
With Alane Boyd, a serial entrepreneur, passionate leader and a high-growth female founder in tech, who has built and exited 2 SaaS companies, is a three-time published author, was voted a Top Leader 40 under 40, Finalist Top Companies to Watch 2021, voted Best Tools for Remote Work 2022.
Alane is a visionary that believes in impact-driven, result-oriented leadership. Her skill sets focus on operations, sales, marketing, and technical skills. She likes to use her time to guide and mentor others, whether in her company or other founders, to grow and scale their abilities. Alane has also been featured in Entrepreneur, HuffPost, South by Southwest (SXSW), PBS, Today in Nashville, Talk of the Town, Parent Magazine, Fem Founder, TN Magazine, and many more!
In our conversation, Alane shares valuable insights into several aspects of her journey as a “woman in tech”, shedding light on the importance of work-life balance and the challenges of maintaining it in today’s fast-paced, remote work environment. She also discusses the challenges faced in entrepreneurship, such as burnout and the necessity of making tough decisions, emphasizing the need to ask for help during difficult times, underscoring the importance of vulnerability and networking with other business owners.
Join us for this exciting conversation on leadership, rebuilding, burnout and AI.
Takeaways & quotes you don’t want to miss from this episode:
- The importance of establishing a system in a business.
- Using AI to streamline business processes.
- How can work-life balance lead to burnout in the tech industry?
- “That’s the great thing about running a business — you can change what you’re doing in the business.”
- Challenges of managing a growing team and keeping up with increasing workload.
- What is social arena marketing?
“You can have hobbies, and you can have businesses. They don’t need to be the same thing.”-Alane Boyd
Check out these highlights:
- 09:48 Alane shares how she got into tech space.
- 15:18 How did Alane help ensure to hire people better after rebuilding from the poor recruitment?
- 22:03 What’s the worst thing about being in tech?
- 24:53 Alane keeps the balance between being a mom, an entrepreneur and multiple business owner by doing this.
- 46:07 Final thought to leave the listeners with…
How to get in touch with Alane on Social Media:
Special gift to the listeners: Get a FREE library of business templates and resources.
Imperfect Show Notes
We are happy to offer these imperfect show notes to make this podcast more accessible to those who are hearing impaired or those who prefer reading over listening. While we would love to offer more polished show notes, we are currently offering an automated transcription (which likely includes errors, but hopefully will still deliver great value), below:
GGGB Intro 00:00
Here’s what you get on today’s episode of Guts, Grit and Great Business®…
Alane Boyd 00:04
So one of the things that we do with both companies and whether you just want to use the software or you want us to help actually build out the process is all you have to do is record a video. You don’t have to actually document everything. We can do meetings, but you know, if you could take a loom video, 25 minute recording of you walking through the process, you might feel like man that was 25 minutes, that’s 25 minutes that you never have to do again.
GGGB Intro 00:31
The adventure of entrepreneurship and building a life and business you love, preferably at the same time is not for the faint of heart. That’s why Heather Pearce Campbell is bringing you a dose of guts, grit and great business stories that will inspire and motivate you to create what you want in your business and life. Welcome to the Guts, Grit and Great Business® podcast where endurance is required. Now, here’s your host, The Legal Website Warrior®, Heather Pearce Campbell.
Heather Pearce Campbell 00:59
Alrighty, welcome. I’m Heather Pearce Campbell, The Legal Website Warrior®. I’m an attorney and legal coach based here in Seattle, Washington, serving online information entrepreneurs throughout the US and the world. Welcome to another episode of Guts, Grit and Great Business®. I am super excited today to welcome Elaine Boyd to the podcast. Welcome, Alane.
Alane Boyd 01:23
Thank you, Heather. I’m so excited about being here.
Heather Pearce Campbell 01:26
Oh my gosh, so great to have you. And I hope people cannot hear the vacuuming happening in the background. Can you hear that? Okay. That’s a good word. We’re keeping it real. You should know that I launched this podcast after COVID started with two kids at home full time. I never knew what was going to happen in the background. We’ve since added a dog and we’ve got house cleaners here which hallelujah, we were just talking about the importance of support in our life. And I will celebrate that one all day long, too. But I apologize if there’s a little bit of vacuuming noise. So Alane, we first connected through who introduced us I’m trying to think back Justin Crane. Justin Crane, that’s right, brought us together on a group call. I love Justin. By the way, if you’re listening and you want to meet Justin, you should he has another conversation on the podcast. I will actually share the link to Justin’s episode. He lives in the financial space but he knows so many awesome people and he brought Alane and I together along with several others. That’s been a few months now. But Alane, for those of you that don’t know Alane, you’re gonna love her bio because she is truly an entrepreneur. Alane is a serial entrepreneur, passionate leader and a high-growth female founder in tech. Join us for this conversation on leadership, rebuilding, burnout and AI. Alane has built and exited 2 SaaS companies, is a three-time published author, was voted a Top Leader 40 under 40, Finalist Top Companies to Watch 2021, voted Best Tools for Remote Work 2022. Alane is a visionary that believes in impact-driven, result-oriented leadership. Her skill sets focus on operations, sales, marketing, and technical skills. She likes to use her time to guide and mentor others, whether in her company or other founders, to grow and scale their abilities. Alane has also been featured in Entrepreneur, HuffPost, South by Southwest (SXSW), PBS, Today in Nashville, Talk of the Town, Parent Magazine, Fem Founder, TN Magazine, and many more! And you currently are running two businesses, right? Yeah. Do you want to mention briefly I know we didn’t get to that in your very long bio. I’m kidding. I love your bio. But you’ve got not one company. But two, do you want to briefly mention those?
Alane Boyd 03:48
Yeah. And they’re and they work together because one came out of the other one. So I own a consulting company where we come in and help businesses use AI and automation, improve their workflows, and just alleviate some of that manual work. And so that’s BGBO Co. And we can get into why we named that in another podcast or later on. While we were doing all this consulting, we started this company out of I sold my other two companies. And so I was retired. And people were asking me to come in and consult. And so I was like, well, I’m not doing anything, okay. And so I started doing that. And then COVID happened, and we exploded, because everybody was trying to figure out how to go to remote, how to support their teams. And my co founder and I were, we had both exited, and we were working together in this company. And he’s like, I think we have another software play. Because teams are really needing a more visual a more skimmable way to get a knowledge base to get how tos and training. So we built Arvo, which is our software platform. So they go hand in hand. A lot of times we work with companies We’ll start with one and then they’ll use the other one or vice versa. But it’s all about helping companies improve their operations.
Heather Pearce Campbell 05:06
Oh, that’s amazing. Well, it sounds like you were doing AI before AI was cool.
Alane Boyd 05:15
I was. I know somebody asked me the other day, how long have you been using AI? And they I think they were expecting me to say like three months or six months, I was like, two years.
Heather Pearce Campbell 05:23
Right? It exploded.
Alane Boyd 05:26
That voted the way that it did. Yeah. But that it still did exist in some capacity, a lot of it’s definitely exploded in a positive way where it’s gotten better and more useful. But it still had some really good use cases, you know, before it really got popular and big. So well.
Heather Pearce Campbell 05:45
And it’s interesting, because I think even now, and I belong to a book club, where we dissect artificial intelligence, and all kinds of topics related to AI, and even defining what AI is, can be a challenge, even in the world of people who are experts at AI. And really, when you think of artificial intelligence, we all have been living with and benefiting from AI for quite some time. Yeah. Right. You think of any technology device that is designed on automation, or designed to communicate with another device so that you don’t have to write and it makes our lives easier? But the new round the level, you know, 3.0, ChatGPT. And other tools have really brought it to the forefront and I think made issues surrounding AI surrounding privacy, all of these relevant topics, like much more kind of in your face.
Alane Boyd 06:43
Yeah, I saw a great post from you, actually, I think it was yesterday, it was one day this week, about, you know, what don’t you want to put in AI, which is extremely valuable. I think people are like, I’m just gonna put everything in, they’re not really thinking about what they should be considering. And I saw your posts, and I was like, this is exactly what everybody that uses ChatGPT or other AI platforms needs to be considering.
Heather Pearce Campbell 07:10
Yeah, well, it’s so fascinating, especially in the world of small business. Like, it’s interesting, because you look at companies like Samsung, Google major companies who’ve restricted their employees from using certain AI tools. And by far the widely available ones, like ChatGPT. Because guess what, they don’t their fear of disclosing trade secrets. Yeah, because people use it the wrong way. And it’s like, folks, I want to scream from the mountaintops like these are some of the biggest, best, strongest companies in the world. And they’re putting a big, big, thick iron door between their employees and AI. And there’s a reason for that. And then you’ve got all these smaller, like, we’ll just call them small business and smaller startups, entrepreneurs, throwing everything into AI, everything. And it’s like, all for the sake of I feel like speed. And let’s be clear that speed can help with certain things. It should not replace everything. Speed is not the number one priority. Anyways, yeah, I could go on and on. It’s a problem.
Alane Boyd 08:20
Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I see it on one side, like man, business owners, it is a great level playing field for people. You know, if you’re not a great writer, and you want a press release, and you are a small business, and you don’t have the funds, great, have it write your press release, like there’s so many great applications. But at the same time, I see it with small business owners where they’re like, I’m just gonna put every experiment, you know, they’re kind of more experimental with things where I’m just gonna throw everything in there. Oh, my God, no, let’s not do that.
Heather Pearce Campbell 08:49
Yeah, don’t put your best ideas in there. Don’t put your developed IP, don’t put your procedures and your seven step formula and blah, blah, blah, because whatever it is, that makes you the secret sauce, as soon as you’ve put it into ChatGPT or another open AI, it’s gone. Yeah, you’ve lost your trade secret. It is basically in the public domain. Other people are now going to benefit from outputs based on your inputs, you have no control over what you’ve just done. Anyways, well, we should separately have a chat just about AI, because you’ve been doing it before. It was cool. And I’m sure we could all learn a thing or two. But I would love to know because you are a woman in tech. And that can be a tough place to be for women. And I’d love to hear about your route into entrepreneurship into tech. I’d love to hear from you a bit about your background and how you landed in this space.
Alane Boyd 09:48
Yeah, it was kind of a whimsical move. You know, I don’t really take decisions, like life decisions too seriously when it comes to what am I going to do? I always No, I’m gonna eventually land on my feet and might be a little messy, but I’m well educated, I’m relatively smart most days, you know, like, I’m gonna figure it out. So I don’t really feel like oh, man, I gotta have this path and has to work out like this. And so I went into engineering and I’ll say, I hated being an engineer, and I ended up not not being an engineer, even though I have a degree in it. But I took for us to get our bachelor’s degree, we had to take a basic coding class. And I think at this point, and every college educated persons lives, they need to take this course. Because it was so beneficial. I could go in for like, email marketing, on email marketing first came out, you didn’t have these beautiful templates. You were writing HTML code, well, you know what marketing people make mistakes, or designers make mistakes. And instead of me having to send something back to our design team, I could just go in and edit it and move on. And so that was really what kind of got me going in tech. And so I started working for a company in San Diego, that did, they have a software platform, they were a social media management company, before social media was even a thing, and just started working my way up. And then the founder of the company one day, I said, you hired a bunch of losers, we are redoing this entire company, we’re gutting it, and we’re going to start over because you’re terrible at hiring. And if I leave you, you’re going to be in a bad situation. And he said, I’m not losing you. Let’s do it. I am bad at hiring. And so we gutted the company, slowly, we didn’t just rip everybody out at once. But we slowly started getting people, we became co founders of the company together, and we rebuilt it all. And it was so fun. That’s what like thinking about those days, like we hadn’t I was 26 I think, you know, like, I didn’t know that much. I had a couple of small businesses before that, that I’d done in a different industry. But man, we would like sit, like rearrange our office so that we could have better think tanks and like, you know, like trying to just get more out of our heads. And how do we hire the people that we need, we have no budget at all. And so we figured it out. And we ran that company together to we didn’t have fun anymore. And it was. So I was so burnt out. By the end goodness. So I got in a very long tangent, your question was loving and tech, how’s it like, you know what, at the end of the day, I love it. I’ve got more opportunity than I’ve ever had being in an industry and I paid and say it’s my superpower. Because there’s so many men, and there’s it’s so male dominated. And men get tired of talking to other men, just like, you know, right? dominated industry. It’s kind of nice. When there’s a man around, you know, I’d put like diversity. And I’ve found mentors come out and help me more than, you know, if I was just another man. I’m just out there in a sea of other men. But when I’m a female, and with a bunch of other men, then there’s always a guy in there that’s like, hey, you know what? I’m gonna help you come meet this person. They want to hang out with me, you know, whatever.
Heather Pearce Campbell 13:19
Of course they do. I know. No, I’m kidding. But yes, it’s a breath of fresh air totally. Well, first of all, I love that you. And even it sounds like early in your career, because you said you were mid 20s, that you are a woman that had a voice in tech, right? I think a lot of women feel like they don’t have a voice or they’re not listened to. And so the fact that you could raise that with your boss who agreed with you, and hiring, I feel like is a whole separate conversation, although we should touch on that, because it’s part of what you built out right was to support the hiring process and have that go better for businesses like what a major pain point, but back to the point he listened to you, and then you go on to become a co founder?
Alane Boyd 14:02
Yeah, I mean, you know, people dream of that scenario is somehow I made it happen. But you know, there are opportunities out there. And I really think that not that they can play out that way and every small business. But I think that’s the opportunity that small businesses give you is to have that voice to gain your confidence. And it took a while. It wasn’t like the second day I went into work and said, Hey, you, you know you’ve done a terrible job of hiring was after a year. And that day, I just was like, I can’t do this anymore. Nobody is working behind the scenes, I’m carrying the load. But for a small business, you get to wear a lot of hats. You get to find where your skill set is. And you can help mold the company and continue moving up if that’s what you want to do. And that’s where it really benefited me. Whereas I don’t think I would have thrived in a corporate environment. You know, if I go in and tell my boss, you’re firing everybody. I’ll get fired, probably.
Heather Pearce Campbell 14:57
Right. But even in the context of us Well, that’s a pretty big deal, right for him to be like, oh my gosh, you’re right, I have been hiring poorly. This is not working. So I’m curious once you went through that process of letting people go and rebuilding, how did you help ensure that it went better the second time?
Alane Boyd 15:18
I have a little bit better intuition and the questions that I asked and you know, you listen for the red flags were my co founder, he would hear the things he wanted to and ignore the other red flags. And I’m like, I remember we got an argument over this one lady he wanted to hire I was like, she literally said, she did not want to travel this position, you have to travel at a minimum 25% of the job, really 50% of the time we want them traveling. So no, we’re not hiring, she be miserable. She would last for a few months and then quit. And so it’s like those things, he needed to be better trained on listening for where that became more natural to me. And we also we implemented paychecks was a big HR. And they’re still big, but he was smart at the time where he realized, well, man, we need some better training. We got interview trained, we got employee handbooks created, and so that we could have more consistency when we were hiring, the kind of questions that you shouldn’t ask the kind of questions you should ask. And we just started getting better at that, you know, we weren’t perfect, but we hired so much better.
Heather Pearce Campbell 16:25
Yeah, yeah, it’s a process, you know, all of that just takes time and effort and the willingness of somebody to spearhead it and get that stuff in place. So but it’s a huge accomplishment when you do and like, what a way to improve your potential growth if you do hire better?
Alane Boyd 16:43
Yeah, I mean, one of the things that we realized later on, we got to 125 employees with that company, before we sold, and what we realized, and, you know, at for, it’s so nice when you do have a co founder, because you can’t see everything, and I remember, we were starting to grow more and more, and so we were hiring faster. And so when we needed better employee training, but also like, sometimes we hired people, and they weren’t great at that job. And so like, you know, we’d have to fire and one day, we’re in my co founder iron a meeting. And he goes, we’ve got really loyal employees, that they aren’t always great at the job they were hired for, but we’re big enough. Now, we could put them in a different department, instead of you know, that hired, like, even just knowing how you do things in your company, not even necessarily for their job. But if you use a work management system, if you use a ticketing system, you know, all these things, we’ve been training them for a while they know how to do everything in the company, they’re just not good at the job we are there for you started making those changes. And we could better identify, Okay, they thought they wanted to do this, and we thought they were going to be good at it. But actually, they’re not. They’re actually pretty good at this other thing. Let’s move them. And so that really alleviated a lot of growing pains that we had to when we could do transitions.
Heather Pearce Campbell 18:04
Oh, you bring up such a good point. It reminds me of the book, I read Good to Great by Jim Collins that talks about that, like you like just putting the right seats on the bus, like step number one, but then getting people into the actually the right seat, right, being able to move them around and jostle them around, I think when you’re of a size where you finally have the flexibility to do that makes all the difference.
Alane Boyd 18:30
It does, it made a huge difference. And we started having a voice that when we sold like our average number of years, they were with us was like we had one that had been with us for seven years, our company was only 11 years old to our average employees with four years, when we sold like they just what we really tried to build, we didn’t have this fun culture by any means. We weren’t like the, I don’t spend a lot of time and like, Okay, let’s do this bonding thing. Like that’s not my personality. But my personality is I want you to enjoy the people you’re working with. And I want you to be able to leave work, you know what’s miserable, answering emails at 8pm when you’re there with your family, and we were going through a period of time where our our workers we’re doing that and I’m I don’t want to be doing that I’m burnt out. I don’t want to expect anybody that. So we always were trying to work on that part of our culture. How can we make it a better that work life balance that I don’t know that really exists, but that our employees can leave work, and that when they go on vacation, they can go on vacation. And so we just did a lot of those systems so that our workdays were easier and it played into after we sold. You know, what did we want to do with our lives and why we went the route that we did and built Arvo was because those operations and those things if they know how to do their job and they can leave their job at the end of the day, that is a happy employee. You know, they didn’t have to ask 50 questions to find the information. They could just go into work. They can get their job done. They can be creative. What and they can have the, you know, they have the mental capacity to do it and the time, and then they can go home and enjoy their time with their family.
Heather Pearce Campbell 20:08
Oh, it’s so important. I remember having conversation with somebody years ago about, like, can’t remember if it was the employee, like their belief that employees should make the employer believe they’re so indispensable, right, they could never operate without them. I’m like, well, like, I get it. And I don’t really feel like that’s the right solution. Because employees do need to go on vacation, they do need to be away from their jobs for a period and the company does still need to run it is really about having it be a win win. Where you have people that enjoy their work while they’re at work, but they don’t feel like they can’t have a life beyond that. And I think that is really typical old company culture, you know, this whole like, and COVID. I mean, I feel like COVID blew up some things. And I mean, that’s a whole different conversation. Because in some ways, I think it made people really realize how blended our work and home lives are. And even for those of us who work from home, pre COVID, COVID just brought it to a new level of intensity, where you realize how much effort it actually takes to have clear boundaries between home and personal time and work time and the importance of that. And as parents, we need the flexibility for those things to blend, right. So there, it’s a trade off and getting the balance right is not always an easy path. But I think also companies that I would say in the last couple of years, so many people have experienced burnout, right? And you mentioned having gone through burnout on your journey as well. I feel like that’s such a big important topic, and it will continue to be as people navigate. How do we do this quote, unquote, work life balance that never really feels very balanced?
Alane Boyd 21:58
Yeah. I mean, that’s the great thing about tech. And the worst thing about tech, because, you know, you can work from anywhere. So you do have flexibility, but the problem is you can work from anywhere, and you work. So that was just something that we really wanted to work towards. And you know, we’re talking about burnout, I have to be cautious on myself, I have to end work at a certain time so that I don’t get you know, I get excited just like everybody else about things like oh, want to get this done. But at some point, you do get burned out. And so I don’t want to reach that point again. You know, I want to be cautious of the feelings that I’m having the emotions that I’m having, so that I don’t have so big, such big highs and lows that I am, I am moving at a good pace for me. And that’s sustainable for me.
Heather Pearce Campbell 22:51
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Heather Pearce Campbell 24:35
And as a mom, and an entrepreneur and somebody I mean you who is running multiple businesses, are there routines, tools, like how do you help keep that in check? Are there things that you do that really help you keep that in balance or help you notice when it’s starting to get out of balance?
Alane Boyd 24:51
Yeah, I mean, I have a work calendar, a personal calendar and so does my husband so that everything that we’re doing is on a calendar so that I can manage time appropriately. And that, you know, there’s never a miscommunication on what, who’s available and what needs to get done. My husband takes our son to school in the morning, so I have that time for myself. And I’m the one that picks him up and does the afternoon. So like we have a set schedule, that it makes things understandable. And then I use the work management system for work and for personal life. Like to me, you have work in your personal life that like a travel checklist, I have a travel checklist, every time I travel, I don’t need to recreate it. It’s all in my work management system, I just hit duplicate, and it has my entire checklist on there, you know, so it’s those things that have made my life easier. I’m not having to chase things down, I have visuals, communication with my significant other, and I just, I don’t work when I have my son anymore, it is so stressful for me to try to do both. He’s seven, he does not understand the concept of Do not interrupt me. Oh, here’s a cheese stick to not interrupt me. And he’s like, why that? Can I have another? Like, what is the problem? Oh, my God. You know, there’s hope. Right?
Heather Pearce Campbell 26:10
You just described everybody’s experience working from home during COVID. Like kids, you know, kids and boundaries don’t go together very well. It’s a really challenging thing to actually achieve. But I love that you brought up systems, right? Here we are, again, with systems. And I’d love to know, where did you recognize in your journey? Because being in tech, I think you really, to thrive there probably have to be systems oriented, right? Yeah. Where did you recognize that you had a systems brain? Or that you really understood systems? Because your business is based entirely around systematizing things right for other people?
Alane Boyd 26:50
Yeah, that’s exactly what we do. You know, if you if you met me outside of work, you would not think I was that I’m pretty chaotic. I am not a house cleaner. I am very spontaneous. And if you tell me plan something, I’m like, Oh, my God, I cringe.
Heather Pearce Campbell 27:06
Which by the way, you should know is just human nature. I was doing a whole bunch of reading on this yesterday. Make up for it. Yes, planning is not something as humans that we do very well, because it is anxiety provoking. So it kind of like it’s a little bit like whiplash, like you’re forcing yourself to do something that’s going to give you anxiety and a little bit of like, whoo, you know, and that’s just how it is.
Alane Boyd 27:29
Yeah,well, that makes me feel better. But what I first realized that, so when we started hiring the new team, and at the same time, we’re hiring new team members, we’re also growing, we’re growing, growing faster than we can keep up with this. One client was a large Automotive Group. And they just kept giving us more and more and more and more work. So I’m hiring new team members, and I’m handling our corporate contracts and the corporate people that keep bringing us more work. And there was just, there’s only so much of me in a day. And so back then this was, I don’t know, 12, over 12 years ago, so probably 14 years ago. Now. There was not the tech that exists today, you know, so I built our How to social media manual, we started so social media management before social media management was even the term. We call it social arena marketing like this is how do we were, it’s a game.
Heather Pearce Campbell 28:16
Social arena marketing, I think we should go back to that. Right.
Alane Boyd 28:31
You know, I printed out manuals and binders for our team members so that when we had to create a new Facebook page for a new client, they had their how to do it there, how to and their process all there. Now, as everyone probably can imagine, at this point, printing that out and keeping it up to date for social media was super hard. So as more technology came out, there was online knowledge bases. And so we moved all of that we actually hired a part time worker from a temp agency to come in and get all of my Microsoft docs into our knowledge base. And you know, that’s the key. Like, I didn’t put the burden on a team member that’s already exhausted, like, how can you cheaply and efficiently do something? We heard a temp worker, she got it done, like 40 hours. So it took us like less than two weeks she came in, she did it. She was phenomenal. We ended up hiring her full time she stuck with us till we did our exit. She stayed on the company with the company a little bit further. And just a random story about like, just the amazing universe. I was in Chicago, I told you when we were chatting before our podcast, I was in Chicago for a week this summer. I was at an AI summit that I was speaking at. And I’m there and I turn around and I see her across the room in Chicago.
Heather Pearce Campbell 29:52
I do love that when you see people out of context.
Alane Boyd 29:56
Started to see a people and I was like crystal is she like we both just like, Barbie doll girl screamed, because it was just the most random circumstance, neither one of us knew we were getting. We were in San Diego when we met, we’re here in Chicago. So it was just so such a cool, random thing that happened.
Heather Pearce Campbell 30:15
Yeah, that is so fun. The universe is fun like that. Well, hearing about your turn, though so many themes. I mean, I think a lot of women in particular, but humans in general, I think can relate to various parts of it. And I think when it comes to small business, so often it is about figuring out, like, where to put your resources so that you’re using everything efficiently, right. And systems are paramount. And I think they’re really hard for people to get right sometimes. And it’s not like set it and forget it, you don’t just put a system in place. And then it just runs and you never revisited and things are hunky dory, right. So they’re constantly needing updating and nurturing and eyeballs on them to make sure that they’re current.
Alane Boyd 31:07
Yeah, I mean, it does feel overwhelming. At times, when you think about it like that, because it does things change. There’s not an end, even if it’s not like Pipedrive, like you use Pipedrive CRM, you put a how to, it’s not always that the system that you’re using changes, and you need to update the How to is that you as a business changes. And you need to update how you do things and how you want your team to handle things. And so that does feel a little bit of a burden. Now, that’s also a benefit of AI and how we’re using AI.
Heather Pearce Campbell 31:40
Well, I was gonna say, maybe you could spend a few minutes and speak to both Arvo and BGBO, and how you make those processes easier for your clients.
Alane Boyd 31:51
Yeah, so one of the things that we do with both companies and whether you just want to use the software, or you want us to help actually build out the process is all you have to do is record a video, you don’t have to actually document everything. And so, we can do meetings. But you know, if you take a loom video, you know, loom is pretty popular these days. So take a loom video, 25 minute recording of you walking through the process, you might feel like man that was 25 minutes, that’s 25 minutes that you never have to do again, like that’s powerful, you only have to say one time, and we are going to document the entire process for you after that.
Heather Pearce Campbell 32:27
And you’re going to document it in a way where it lives online. Right? It’s accessible to anybody on the team. And I know visually because I think I can’t remember if you showed me or if you just described it, but it sounds like one of the huge accomplishments of your software in your process is that it’s visually very pleasing as well like you from a user experience standpoint. It’s really designed thoughtfully compared to the old school, like, hunt and peck for the right document. Yeah. Oops, is this it? No, that’s the old version. Right?
Alane Boyd 33:01
Right. Yes. So with Arvo if you I mean, you nailed it. It’s skimmable and we made it so that the person building it they don’t not need to know how to design they just need to know how to type and they just need to know how to click a button. So it drops in the design for you and you edit type it put it in there are other.
Heather Pearce Campbell 33:19
Arvo is you can do it yourself. Like you plug yourself into the process. And then BGBO is helping you out. Got it, helping you automate and do all that stuff.
Alane Boyd 33:31
Yeah, because you know, attention spans are just they’re different. Now we’re on our phones, we’re on social media, we’re used to things being digitally appealing all the time. And then what we noticed through our consulting as well, then these people go to work. And they’re looking at long form text documents for the how to’s. And like you think.
Heather Pearce Campbell 33:52
Right, ask me how many of my clients like actually read the legal unit? I mean, like I live in the legal space, and all I deal with is like black text on white paper.
Alane Boyd 34:04
Yeah, like, people just like, I’m just gonna sign this is gonna opt out.
Heather Pearce Campbell 34:09
I’m gonna assume it’s good. Yes. Yeah, that’s right.
Alane Boyd 34:13
So that’s why we built Arvo is because we just saw this change in how people retain information, how they look for information, how they want to look at information. And to make that as easy as possible on the business, whether they just want to use the software, or they need us to help bridge that gap between hey, I need the documentation, but I don’t have the team to build it. Yes.
Heather Pearce Campbell 34:38
So did BGBO come first? You were doing the consulting, you’re helping people with the processes. And then you develop the software as one of the tools to do that.
Alane Boyd 34:47
Yeah. And we ended like, it’s so funny because we named a BGBO Co. because like, we weren’t starting a company we were doing in a retirement. And he was like, this is the hardest name to say to like, well, it is when we weren’t doing anything. So it stands for biggest goal biggest obstacle. And so like, our idea was we’re gonna go in and we’re gonna help companies with their biggest goal biggest obstacle. We’re gonna call it BGBO Co. and now like people feel like it’s a tongue twister likely should probably do like a DBA or something. But it’s so fun.
Heather Pearce Campbell 35:22
I like it. I like it right? And then yeah, has the story to go with it. I think it’s funny. My sisters and I come up with acronyms for everything. I don’t know how this started, probably I don’t even know. But this is a really silly one be an SES. And like, well, we’ll just have like our own language or people like be Nazis. And we’re like, yeah, back inside chubs.
Heather Pearce Campbell 35:44
You know, like, younger Joe’s own language.
Heather Pearce Campbell 35:48
I personally love acronyms. And then when you get to tell this story makes it way more fun. I don’t think you should rename B2B telco I like to say it. So I am curious. Because like, there’s a huge part of your story that my mind keeps wanting to go to, and this is the fact that you retired, and then you came out of retirement. To build a business, I want to, I want to hear what you learn from retirement.
Alane Boyd 36:14
That retirement is really not as fun as you think it would be. Right? Because I was. So I signed my contract to be done three days, before I turned 35 years old,
Heather Pearce Campbell 36:26
Oh, wow, retiring in our 30.
Alane Boyd 36:28
And we had money in our account, we were tired. And, you know, I was I did a lot of the things that I had been wanting to do, like, be a good mom to my son. Like that was number one, like, I’m gonna be a great mom at this point. And so when he was three at that point, and that kid, I will say, at this point, he is down for anything like because he just had to go with the flow for so long, like, he adapts really well. So that is a plus. But, you know, now I get the luxury of prioritizing my time it isn’t where I have to say, oh, I need to work or I need to be a mom, like I get to have that luxury because what I’ve built before, and I just realized, for a while, you know, sleeping in, I checked my phone, I didn’t have an email, I’m like, This is so weird. I go for long walks, I did a ton of my family and I did a ton of traveling and visiting friends and family we hadn’t seen I’m taking the time to see and so long. But for me, it was also a depressing feeling. Because I have a lot more to give in life. And I get energy from working, being creative from having new ideas. And so I didn’t want to be retired. I just wanted to keep building like I have so much passion for building things and for being an entrepreneurs that I just was like, I’m gonna build something else. And so, you know, I did out of retirement, I started building, I was doing BGBO Co and I was doing consulting. But during my time of my other company, I’ve been playing around this idea called burger fit. And it’s burger company, where you where you have meat burgers, and you hide vegetables in them. And I had no idea because my brother and my dad would not eat any vegetable. And I was like, I’ll show you old man and my older brother. And they were they were eating them. And so I was starting to do this more and more and called a burger fed. And I was like I’m gonna write a cookbook. And I’m going to go out into the world with burger fit. And that was such a tough pistas I went down the manufacturing route of getting sold in grocery stores. I launched right before COVID hit and oh my god I was so I mean when I sold my company when I knew I needed to be done I was having these autoimmune episodes where my face would would explode in like this giant round. It looked like I was having an allergic reaction and my skin would just like turn into fire bites all over my face and then on my skin would peel off. It was so painful and this started happening every week towards the end and that’s when I was like okay and I’m I need to be done done like this is not healthy. It took me a while to that it was from chronic stress, chronic stress it on Sunder. And it happened twice during burger fed. And that’s when I knew that I just didn’t need to be doing it and I would I was about to be on TV the next morning at 4am I woke up and had another one of these episodes. And I wasn’t in town where I live I was two hours away about to be on TV. And I couldn’t go I mean I look like I don’t even look like the same person. I look like a my friend calls me the walking dead when I’m having an episode. So bad. So when I started haven’t I had to back to back. I said burger fit is not where I need to be doing this is to stress spool and I’m putting myself under pain that I don’t need to be on. And I was like, I have this other company that I love, I can do from anywhere, you know, I’m gonna focus back on my consulting company, we were just launching our VO, and I’m like, I can have passion there. And that’s where I really learned. You can have hobbies, and you can have businesses and they don’t need to be the same thing.
Heather Pearce Campbell 40:23
Oh, so true. Well, it’s such a great example of what happens. And I think, unfortunately, a lot of people and in particular, a lot of women, because autoimmune tends to be higher occurring, and women can relate to that. And I know a ton of women who had autoimmune issues pop up during COVID, just because of the stress of trying to do sack everything into Yeah, do so much. And you just can’t do it all. And so you know, what a powerful lesson of like really listening to your body and observing what’s happening and making a different decision. It’s, you know, my next question was going to be given that we’re unconstrained, great business, you know, where have you hit those stopping points where you, you know, you could have made a different choice, but you decided to keep going and not throw in the towel? Or? Or like this one, you know, made a different decision, you kept going, but in a different way?
Alane Boyd 41:17
Yeah. Well, I feel like I go through that a lot. And like not giving up because it’s, especially in the other company where I was, and this was even before we got offered to sell the business, where I realized, there were some days, I just wanted to give up because I was burnt out, raising a yacht, you know, I had a son while I was running that company. We had offices in San Diego and Tennessee. And we were going back and forth. And it was just exhausting. And there were some days, I just wanted to give up and whatever. I’ll have those bad days where I don’t want to keep going. And I just let myself have that bad day. And then the next morning, I’m like, okay, Alane, are you serious about it? Because you need to make a change? Or were you just having a bad day, and you’re gonna stick with it? And so, most days, I stick with it? Because I do enjoy it. Like, am I enjoying the work? And if not, that’s the great thing about running a business is you can change what you’re doing in the business.
Heather Pearce Campbell 42:17
Yeah. Well, and you’ve just described the path of entrepreneurship, right, reaching these points, where it’s like, oh, not every day is a great day in business. It’s just not and especially when life piles on or other things go wrong. And I think it’s, I think there’s a lot of wisdom in what you said about just like letting yourself have that time and those feelings and moving through it. And I think it’s hard when we when we do the opposite of like, put on that shiny, happy face and just pretend like everything’s great. And everything’s fine when it’s not, you know, we miss out on opportunities for other people to show up for us or to give us grace or to give us an idea or a tip or something that got them through. Yeah,
Alane Boyd 43:01
I’ll tell you the times that I’ve been the most vulnerable and said I needed help, were the biggest ones that I’ve had. That wasn’t so scared to say that I’m struggling. And I call one of my friends. You know, being in a network of other business owners is a must. I didn’t realize how much I needed that until I was in it and realized that before I didn’t have it. And so like I’m in EEO and I’m in I went through the 10k the Goldman Sachs 10,000 small business program. And now I have a huge network of business friends, you know, that I can call and say, Hey, I’m really struggling. And they all somebody always comes through.
Heather Pearce Campbell 43:41
Yeah. Oh, I love that. That was totally goosebumps. So much goodness. And I could just keep talking your ear right off and I won’t because we’re well past or those of you who have not been with us on the brakes at my house cleaners should have right as we were gonna hit record my kids have been like being crazy people in the background and then Seattle City Light showed up and made me move cars in front of our house right in the middle. So it’s been quite a time Alane, I appreciate you.
Alane Boyd 44:08
Fine ride I enjoyed it. Well, I know that other people’s lives are chaotic. It’s not just me.
Heather Pearce Campbell 44:17
Totally right. And we still so the funny thing over here in Seattle is like you your kid is going back to school. You know right about now and I have other girlfriends who are in the same boat and we’ve still got a month of summer left. But we we were in school until June 30 here right so like it’s kind of feels like we’re just starting summer honestly.
Alane Boyd 44:39
You’re just getting into the swing of it.
Heather Pearce Campbell 44:41
Right. So we’ve still got a little bit of chaos ahead for us. I laugh because summer from a scheduling standpoint is chaos. Alane, so fun to talk to you hear about your story. You’ve shared so many insights that I think all of us can benefit from when we hit those hard days and I love your point about asking for help. I think that’s a really hard thing for a lot of people to do. I feel like that was a really great final point. And I’m still going to ask you a couple of last questions, which is one for folks that want to connect with you. Check out Arvo, checkout BGBO Co and I love saying that. Where do you like to send folks? And are you online? Are you a connector? Would you want people to connect with you like on socials or somewhere else online?
Alane Boyd 45:27
Yes, I’m active on LinkedIn, come and connect with me. I love doing that. The other social profiles I don’t keep up with. So if you that’s…
Heather Pearce Campbell 45:36
Right. I love LinkedIn too. So that’s my number one. I agree. I agree. So we’ll post your LinkedIn link. Folks, you can find her we’re going to post links to both of her companies, as well as LinkedIn at the show notes page, which you can find at legalwebsitewarrior.com/podcast, pop over a leave us a review while you’re at it and share this episode with somebody who you think would benefit from hearing from Alane today. Alane, what final thought or action stuff would you like to leave people with?
Alane Boyd 46:07
I think the most important thing that I’ve taught myself is just keep putting yourself out there. And just keep trying. Put even if you’re scared of what people are gonna think just keep doing it. Because if no one knows what you’re doing, you have no one to find you.
Heather Pearce Campbell 46:22
So true. Oh my gosh. And isn’t it just a journey? Like sometimes I feel like I’ve reached points in business where I’m like, Okay, I got this and then I’m like, Okay, I don’t got this. I have to figure this out again, or just keep doing it. It is you just have to keep going. I love that. Alane, thank you so much for joining me today. So much fun to have you.
Alane Boyd 46:42
Thank you for having me.
GGGB Outro 46:44
Thank you for joining us today on the Guts, Grit and Great Business® podcast. We hope that we’ve added a little fuel to your tank, some coffee to your cup and pep in your step to keep you moving forward in your own great adventures. For key takeaways, links to any resources mentioned in today’s show and more, see the show notes which can be found at www.legalwebsitewarrior.com/podcast. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast and if you enjoyed today’s conversation, please give us some stars and a review on Apple podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcast so others will find us too. Keep up the great work you are doing in the world and we’ll see you next week.