Stay on Top of Your Work With Chris Cebollero! [PODCAST EPISODE #11]

  • February 28, 2018
  • by Kate Borucka
  • No comments

Table of Contents

Stay on Top of Work With Chris Cebollero!

It’s Wednesday and it’s time for another episode of our podcast!

Today I’m talking with great Chris Cebollero, Nationally Recognized Leader, #1 International Best Selling Author and Advocate.

Listen to #11 episode of the podcast and find out how to lead a company to a success and what role employees play in it but also, how Chris stays on top of his work!

Are you an iTunes user? Listen to the podcast here

Podcast Transcript

Kate: Welcome back to the podcast “Stay On Top Of Your Work”. This is Kate and today my guest is Chris Cebollero. Hi, Chris, how are you?

Chris: I am amazing. Thank you so much for having me on.

[00:26 – 2:30]

Kate: Thank you for being here. To begin with, I usually present my guests, but I’d like you to say a few words about you and your work because you work in healthcare management, rights? And I think it’s quite an unusual type of management to work in. Can you say how did you come to be in this particular field of work, of management, and how did your way to your career look like?

Chris: I started of my career as a paramedic on an ambulance and it was my job to come to your home when you need it, care twenty-four hours a day, and I’ve been a paramedic since 1986. That’s a long time. Throughout my career I had the opportunity, I wanted to become a student of health care. When you’re on an ambulance, it’s just you and the patient that you’ve got to take care of. I wanted to make sure that I could be the best provider that I could be for the people who are calling me. When a mom hands you a baby who’s three months old, whose heart has stopped, you gotta have those answers for her. So I wanted to try to become the best that I could. Then, as my career progressed, I’ve found myself finding positions and different systems, private systems, hospital systems, and, then, the hospital systems with my style of leadership. I started to get involved with other departments, I started to get involved with boards and committees.

That’s what led me to understanding kind of the healthcare environment, and then, as I decided to work for myself in 2014, it really gave me the education to help ambulance companies, to help hospitals and help insurance companies, here, in the United States, to really kind of do the best job that they could.

[00:2:31 – 00:4:16]

Kate:  Okay, that sounds interesting. So, you work in health management, so let’s talk about management and leadership a little bit. What does it mean to be a good leader, to lead a company to success?

Chris: I think that this is such a great question, and I don’t know that we spend a lot of time thinking about it. I think we spend a lot of time of trying to bring employees into our company. We interview them, maybe we give them a test, maybe we give them personality tests and, then, we invite them. “Come work with me.” “Come work for me in my company.” And, then, we forget how important they are to the success of our organization. What we do is as we just say: “Go ahead. You work here and if you need me, raise your hand and don’t bother me until then.” Well… That’s not leadership.

Leadership is really an action and you’ve got to show leadership every day.

These people who we’re bringing into our organization, we’ve got to invest in them, and we’ve got to help them grow, we’ve gotta ask them what their goals are and help them reach their goals, and get them to their next level. If we think about how do we grow an organization to be successful, is it that we just get a new building? Is it that we just get new equipment? The only thing in our organization that doesn’t lose value is our people. And if we can invest in those people, if we can make them stronger, smarter, more experienced, then our organization grows. I think this is a big misconception when it comes to the success of an organization. It’s not the objects, it’s the people that you develop.

[00:4:17 – 00:6:10]

Kate:  So we have to take care of our people. That’s important and we have to remember that. So, leadership is connected with people and with managing a team. How to manage a team to create a good atmosphere, to make the works smooth, nice and productive?

Chris: I think one of the things that you have to do is, when you do team management, you really have the personalities of different people in the same room, and you want to be able to set the team up for success. So not allowing to be who they are really kind of stifles who they are. And they won’t be creative, they won’t communicate, they won’t be productive. So, allowing: if I’m leading a team, I want you to argue with me. If you think something is wrong, tell me it’s wrong. But tell me why it’s wrong. And tell me why you think it’s wrong, tell me how you think we should fix it.

Now, does that mean that we do that? Sometimes no. I want you to be able to convince me that your position is right. If I just say “no, we’re not doing that,” how am I my growing the team? How am I making the team the best? So you want to be able to create a safe environment. You want to be able to create a learning environment. Then, the other thing that I think is really important is you want to be able to create an environment, Kate, that people can make mistakes in as well. Because when we work in the workforce, we worry about making mistakes. “Uu… Mistakes are bad…” No, they’re not bad. They help us to grow. Allowing the people who are on the team to know that this is a safe environment, that if you make a mistake, we’re gonna learn from mistakes, we’re gonna make the team stronger, you’re gonna have a lot of people being creative, thinking outside the box.

[00:6:11 – 00:8:28]

Kate: So, I’m also thinking about conflicts and challenges, because when you lead a team, there are certain challenges that appear, also conflicts between these people. How can we solve them and how can we deal with these challenges?

Chris: I think, first, challenges are conflicts, there has to be good ground rules for working in a team. The ground rules gonna be first, Kate, we don’t talk bad about people. We respect everybody in the room. We work together and everybody is valued the same. I’m not going to stand for somebody pointing a finger or saying dirty words or saying the person is stupid. That doesn’t happen. “Everybody has the same value in this room.” Number two: we’re gonna disagree on the things that are happening, but we’re gonna do it respectfully. We’re not gonna do it mean, we’re not gonna yell at people, we’re gonna disagree and we’re gonna disagree respectfully. That doesn’t mean I have to agree with you if I have a different opinion than you, I’m gonna tell you and then that’s it. Either we work with that or we don’t.

So, then, when it comes to conflict… That’s maybe the challenges of how people are going to get along. Now, the conflict… There’s going to be conflict and how do we resolve that. Well, first off, we need to understand what other people are saying. One of the things that I’ve done in organizations when people had conflict is – I make the other person… So, you and me, Kate, we have a disagreement. You’re coming to my office and I’ll say: “’Kate, I want you to argue Chris’s point for me.” And then I’ll say: “Chris, I want you to argue Kate’s point for me.” And a lot of times what happens, Kate, is that’s just a miscommunication of not understanding what you’re saying. Because we could be saying the same exact thing in different words. So, when I argue your point and I say: “Well, Kate… I think what Kate is saying is blablalabla.” Then you finally say: “Oh, wait a minute… I get it now.” So, that’s one of the things to do. But anytime you have conflict, it’s always open communication and is always trying to understand what the other person is saying.

[00:8:29 – 00:10:27]

Kate: When you speak about that, I’m thinking about customers and customer satisfaction, because we would be creating the company goals to our customers and this is the result of the communication between people in the company. So how, do you think, these two things maybe are connected? I mean, how we lead a team and customer satisfaction?

Chris: I don’t think you have good customer satisfaction without, first, having good employee satisfaction. So, one of the things that I always say is: “Treat your employees like they’re your customer. Like they’re your client. Like they’re your patient. And, then, let them treat the customer and clients the best way that they can.” So, I think that, when we think about customer service when we think about customer satisfaction, it really starts with employee engagement, with employee satisfaction, and with them being productive members of the organization. So I think that needs to be the approach and not just the approach that we’re here for a customer.

Really, as leaders, I’m not there for my customer, I’m there for my workforce. My workforce is there for my customers. And, now, it’s true that I do some work with the customers as well, but I’ve got to treat the people who were going to be standing in front of the customer as best that I can for them to be successful. And in the United States, the Gallup organization, they have a poll that says: “Almost three-quarters of our workforce is either disengaged or actively disengage from the organizational success.” Well, if those people aren’t… they don’t care about being successful, what kind of a service are they going to give our customers. So it needs to start with employee satisfaction.

[00:10:28 – 00:11:21]

Kate: So, do you think can we measure, somehow, how the employees work, or not really? Because TimeCamp is a time tracking software and it helps employers to try to their teams’ work and efficiency. Do you think it can be helpful in delivering a good product?

Chris: I think what we want to do is, we want to be able to make sure that the people who were doing the work are productive. And what’s the best way to do that? Well, a lot of times it’s how much products they develop, a lot of time it’s how many papers they go through. But it may be helpful that there is a software that allows the employee to see their productivity and that we measure that productivity. There’s a lot of great tools that are out there that allow to do that and I think that there is great value in that.

[00:11:22 – 00:12:39]

Kate: Okay, so, in order to make an organization grow and to bring the success to the business, do you think we should use certain methodologies or strategies? Or not really? Even when it comes to team management.

Chris: You know I think that leadership is an art and a science, and you’ve gotta know the science before you can paint a portrait of success of your organization. So, there are greate,  good methodologies out there to do that, but I think that if you want to lead people, you really have to understand that science, some of those methodologies, some of those strategies, because it gives you who you are. Like, if I say to you: “What’s your definition of leadership?”, you may say to me: “This is my definition.” And I’m not going to change that for you, because that’s your foundation of leadership and I want to help you grow from that. Well, the same thing with the methodologies. If you talk about increasing customer satisfaction and if you talk about conflict resolution, if you talk about increasing product, there’s ways to do that. And if you understand a little bit of that foundation, it may give you more creativity and how to make that process better.

[00:12:40 – 00:13:39]

Kate: I’d like to talk a little bit about your book are which is titled “Ultimate Leadership. 10 Rules For Success.” Can you say what ten rules for success do you describe in your book?

Chris: Yes, so, when I think about the ten rules for success in my career, I gotta tell you, in the beginning of my career I was not a very good leader. And I’ve made a lot of mistakes, I made a lot of failure and made a lot of… But I had some successes. So, added the failures and added the successes, and added a lessons learned, I developed rules. So my first role is: “Never allow your emotions to dictate your actions. No matter the situation, you never let your emotions dictate your actions.” Rule number two: “Don’t waste energy or time and energy on things you can’t control.” So these are the rules that I developed along my thirty year career, that I had to come up with to be an ultimate success as a leader.

[00:13:40 – 00:15:09]

Kate: I’m thinking about small businesses, or start-ups, who begin their career in the huge world… What advice would you give to especially young people? Because you have quite a big experience. What would you say to people who enter the world of business? How to develop a good company?

Chris: I think it starts with a vision, so what is the vision of your organization. We’re visual people. If I say: “Do you think about your car?”, you don’t see the letters C-A-R. You actually picture your car. So, if I ask you what’s the vision of a successful organization, do you know what that looks like? You have to have that vision so you can see it. The next thing that you do, is you have to develop goals to reach the vision. So, now, that you have the vision of “I want to be the best speaker in the world.” Okay, that’s a great vision! But, now, the goals are gonna be: “I gotta learn how to speak in front of a group. I got to learn to be funny. I gotta learn to tell a story. I gotta learn…” Those are good goals to reach the vision. And, then, the plans are: “How do I reach that I am a good storyteller? How do I make that happen? So you have a good vision, you develop goals to reach your vision, you develop plans to reach the goals, and, then, the final step is you put a timeline to that to make those happen and make that successful. That’s a quick and easy blueprint right there.

[00:15:10 – 00:15:44]

Kate: Yeah, it is. I have to agree. What is the number one rule in your work without which you can’t imagine your life?

Chris: Whoa… That’s a good question. I would think that the number one rule in my life is “Just get started.” A lot of times we spend time thinking about “What am I going to do? How I am I going to do that? What’s the best way to do that? When I need to do it? Oh…Wait a minute. What’s my plan B? What if it fails? What…” I realized one thing very, very early: just start. And, then, whatever happens, is going to happen. And, then, deal with it when it happens. We spend too much time planning, we spend too much time worrying, and what we need to do is we just need to start.

[00:15:55 – 00:17:00]

Kate: The last question I have to you. The name of the podcast is “Stay On Top Of Your Work.” How do you stay on top of your work?

Chris: Well, one of the things that I do a lot is, I keep myself in a good time management process. I don’t just work saying: “I gotta do this today.” I know exactly what I’m gonna do today. If I have a project that’s going to take me two weeks, I am going to plan that two weeks out. I’m not going to just do it right today, for the next four days and get it done. I’m gonna do two or three hours today, two or three hours tomorrow, and I schedule that, I plan that. People will say to me: Well… How did you write two bestselling books?”  Well, the way that I did that is every Wednesday, at seven o’clock to nine o’clock, was my writing time. Every Saturday from twelve o’clock to two o’clock that was my writing time. So I actually schedule the time that I was gonna do those things, for me to complete those goals and it be successful in the end. That’s how I stay on top of my work.


Kate: Okay, that’s a great advice. I think I’m going to use it my life and my work. Chris. It was my pleasure to have you here today. I think I got inspired and I really enjoyed talking with you and thank you.

Chris: Oh, it’s my pleasure. And I have to tell ya I’m happy to come back any time. You know, if your listeners want to learn about something specific about leadership, have them tell you what it is, and I’ll come back and help them, hopefully, understanding, give a little expertise.

Kate: So dear listeners – let me know in comments would you like me to talk about the next time he’s here. We’ll be more than happy to answer any of your questions. Also, if you want to find out more about Chris, you can check out the information about him below this podcast. Don’t forget to listen to the previous episodes of TimeCamp’s podcast, because you can find great pieces of advice there and get inspired by my amazing guest. Subscribe, stay tuned for more and I see around. Bye-bye.

Thanks for listening!

To get the latest news from Chris and find out more about him follow him on


Make sure to read his book. You can find it on Amazon.


Stay tuned for the next episode!

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Kate Borucka

Kate is a freelance translator, copywriter, and a content writer specializing in time tracking software, time management, and productivity. When not researching new software, she's reading books, or spending time outdoors.

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