Mark Hiddleson is the Owner of Specialized Storage Solutions, Inc., a nationwide logistics company with industry-leading warehouse storage solutions. It provides clients with innovative products and facility layouts and designs to optimize their logistics operations.
Mark has several decades of service experience in the warehousing and logistics industry with leadership roles in several professional industry organizations. Using a holistic approach, he also has experience in equipment material handling, operations management, supply chain optimization, professional development, and public speaking. He holds a bachelor’s in economics and a master's degree in holistic health education.
Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:
Mark Hiddleson's background and how he entered the logistics and racking industry
How talking to customers helped Mark gain valuable insights into their needs
Mark's space audit blueprint for working with clients and how he learned about podcasts
Mark talks about the value of coaching, embracing the energy and enthusiasm of entrepreneurship, and the idea of learning with the intention of teaching
Why Mark loves imitating inspirational people and working with mentors
In this episode…
The best way to build a great business is to listen to your customers, understand their needs, and provide them with useful products. This is especially important for entrepreneurs entering a new industry.
When Mark Hiddleson was preparing to start a company in the warehouse and logistics industry, he discovered that his customers were more interested in used equipment than brand new equipment. He catered to their demands. He developed a unique blueprint for working with clients that helped him build the great company he runs today.
In this episode of The Tao of Pizza Podcast, host Mark Hiddleson is interviewed by Dr. Jeremy Weisz, Co-founder of Rise25 Media, about his space time audit blueprint for running a business. Mark also explains how he entered the logistics and racking industry, how he works with clients, and the value of coaching and having mentors. Stay tuned.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Contact Phone: 707-732-3892
Mark Hiddleson's email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Discovering the Soul of Service: The Nine Drivers of Sustainable Business Success by Leonard L. Berry
"[Venture Capital Series] Founding the Next Apple With Richard Melmon of Bullpen Capital and NSV Wolf Capital"
"[Podcast Series] Dr. Jeremy Weisz | How to Be a Gold Medalist at B2B Podcasting"
Strength for Life: The Fitness Plan for the Rest of Your Life by Shawn Phillips
Body For Life: 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strength by Bill Phillips and Michael D'Orso
Sponsor for this episode...
This episode is brought to you by Specialized Storage Solutions Inc.
I have been in the logistics and storage industry for several decades. I know I don’t look that old, but it's true..
We provide industry-leading warehouse storage solutions nationwide.
So basically if you have a warehouse that needs Rack, Shelving, Carts, Conveyors or Mezzanines we help with....design engineering, installations, inspections, and repairs to help clients optimize their logistics operations.
Sometimes people don’t even realize that we can actually help with permit acquisition services.
We take a look holistic at your entire business supply chain ecosystem to develop the resources for continually improving your operation.
To learn more, visit specialracks.com or give us a call at (707) 732-3892. One of the best ways to learn more about our products and services is to follow us on instagram. And there’s a link on our website to do that.
I will even give you my personal email address for podcast listeners so email me at email@example.com if you’re ready to take your warehouse storage and retrieval systems to the next level.
Welcome to The Tao of Pizza, where we feature top logistics leaders, entrepreneurs, and supply chain innovators and share their inspiring stories with a holistic twist.
Mark Hiddleson 0:14
Mark Hiddleson here, host of The Tao Pizza Podcast where I talk with top industry innovators in the warehousing, logistics, and supply chain business with a holistic twist. I have Dr. Jeremy Weisz here of Rise25 who's done thousands of interviews with successful entrepreneurs and CEOs. And we flipped the script and he's going to be interviewing me.
Jeremy Weisz 0:35
Mark, I'm really excited because whenever I get a chance to talk to you, it's absolute learning pleasure. You're very humble guy, right? You are very experienced. And right now, especially in the supply chain space, you are inundated with questions and calls and requests because it has just exploded lately and and it's going to continue to so I'm excited about this conversation and learn from you and your journey before we jump into it. This episode is brought to you by Specialized Storage Solutions, you know, and I know Mark for you people can check out specialracks.com. But listen, you've been in the logistics and storage industry for several decades, right. And you have a proven industry leading warehouse storage solutions, you do this nationwide. Basically, if someone has a warehouse, and they need rack, shelving carts, conveyors, whatever it is the design, the engineering, the installations, inspections, the anything logistics operations, they can call you, you've been doing this for a long time. So I know you take kind of a holistic approach to the entire business supply chain and even help them with innovation and with layout. So if you have questions, you go to specialracks.com. You can give them a call 707-732-3892 and contact them and Mark, you know, says he'll even give his personal email address out. So if you do have questions, you can email him as you know, and just say you're a podcast listener, it's firstname.lastname@example.org. All right, and they can help you take it to the next level. Mark. You know, when you were younger, you probably weren't always like I wanted to be in logistics and racking industry. How did you get started in this business?
Mark Hiddleson 2:20
Yeah, it was and I actually wanted to be a professional baseball player. And for most of mine from time I was about 11 or 12 years old in and started seriously training for that. And I saw that I had it in being an athlete is it takes a lot of hard work. And so I learned a lot of work ethics through through working with other athletes and trying to be the best in in the local area. And I found out you know, in my senior year in high school that health has a lot to do with how far you make it. And I had an injury in my in my career that basically ended I had a rotator cuff industry injury that I had a scholarship to go to college but I had to give it up it was either get I didn't have to I had a choice. I knew I had surgery, but I figured I was 18 years old, I didn't want to start cutting and hacking into my body. At that age, I figured I'm going to take everything that I've learned in being a you know, wanting to be a professional athlete, take that same drive, and practice and work ethic and you know, finding mentors and coaches to succeed in the business world for the this is my, my second shot. So I'm gonna go to school and then focus on the business.
Jeremy Weisz 3:37
How'd you get into logistics and racking.
Mark Hiddleson 3:40
So that is I went to Sacramento State and graduated in the late 90s or mid 90s. And back then the internet existed. So it wasn't like now you know, you could Google what are the hottest injury industries or who's hiring and back then they had a career center full of three ring binders. And I would after I graduated I had a good jobs I was really looking for something I really the honestly I wanted to make more than I was making already. And that was already I was an assistant sales manager at a car dealership and doing pretty well. So I would just spend hours in that career center flipping through binders going what what's the career that kind of combined, I had a little bit of construction background just working my way through college, I had some sales and construction management engineering. And I came across this and it was it was a higher salary deal. So I'll admit I was I was going I wanted to dream. You know do do what I love and make a good living. That was important to me. And there was this opportunity for material handling. I started looking I'm like wow, this is a you know, kind of combined some of the best of both worlds. There's some sales aspects of it. There's there's some engineering, it's construction management. And I actually I interviewed with that company. They wanted to hire me and they In the in the interview process, I found out that the salaries that were they given was a commission based program. And it was up to the amount that I was looking at where I was thinking, well, you're just going to start out right here. This, but I still I loved it, I spent about a month calling because I'm like, What is this is gonna be like, right now I'm in sales and customers come to me, and what's it going to be like for me? Because new position, I was going to have to go out, basically knock on doors, and start building a business. And I had some existing customers. And I'm thinking, well, let's see what what these existing customers are. So in about a month doing it alongside my job, I found out that this company, they only did new equipment. And then a lot of people I talked to in their network, even the clients they had on their list of their clients. They wanted us solutions, I mean, with something in this business, and I thought, Man, I love this industry, I want to get into it. So I found so many I did what he did back then is you let your fingers do walking in the yellow pages, which is another thing that he does still have yellow pages there doorstops. We had about 10 of them. We had a friend at our house one time and we had five, we're trying to start a fire in the backyard bonfire. And I didn't have anything, newspapers or anything, because I don't get the paper anymore. But we had 10 phone books, and those things. Don't burn that good. But we burned them all. But yeah, I found a local company. And how to converse. It's interesting that the relationship looking back on it, there was I got a hold of a Salesman there. And then I've always learned one thing, if you're trying to find out something about the company, a lot of times you can get into the manager Run command with salespeople will usually talk to you. And they'll usually give you the real story. So it was his name was Ed he's retiring, just recently retired, I think he worked to lose at 80 something for sure. But he just we had a great conversation. And he could tell that I've done my homework in the industry. And I asked him, you know, I told him, I've been on commission for you know, a long time. So I'm comfortable with that. But what you know, what are, what's it going to be like, and he really gave me some good feedback, some good advice, and even kind of some insights on the owner of the company, how to talk to the owner. So I did end up getting in touch with the owner. He wanted to meet in a couple of weeks. And I asked him, you know, how about we meet for a cup of coffee, the next day, it was within the next couple of days, I really, I always thought the interview has been in sales like a salesperson, they're gonna give you an objection, you're gonna have to overcome. Let's see, let's see if this guy can get a meeting with me. And when I did, and we just hit it off. And it started my dress Bennett, great eight years, they're developing my career. And before I started my
Jeremy Weisz 7:48
own company, you know what I want to know what caused you to then strike out on your own. But one of the things you talked about was really talking to customers, right? And you found out they didn't just want new, but they wanted used options. And you gained a lot of insight and things that you do now, from just talking to potential customers.
Mark Hiddleson 8:12
Yeah, I really did. And it's, it's fun. If you asked me why I started the company in before I really thought about I would have said, well, you know, I always had a dream to do it and for my kids or anything like that. But it really evolved with the relationships I had and the things customers were asking me to do that our other company didn't want to do. And I'll give you some exam. I had a great Mike, you know, I don't want to say he's my best client, I have a ton of best clients. But I do have a really close friend of the client that he kind of challenged me on some things where my boss would would not want to do use the equipment. And I said, Well, we can't really do used on that. And he he brought me back around to his side of the desk, and he was an even that this lens was probably, you know, 2001 2002 So the internet was out people were were using it. People knew what eBay was, you know, it wasn't like it is now and he pulled up some websites of other there was a company in Minnesota and he goes look these guys are doing it. And he was showing me pictures on hit and I was like wow, this you know, I didn't even know like I don't even go on the inner that like I was having I thought email was gonna be a flop that's why I still have an AOL account. We had a system with that company that they would they were putting out my emails and put them in a folder I would check it once a week. So I wasn't even paying as he took me behind you know, that was kinda it was one of those. He wanted to work with me but he wanted to kind of wanted me and it's a it's I call it a paradigm shift. He really wanted me to take over that part of his company. His company needed us the equipment. He trusted me because it gives me other you know, homework, I call it homework to do and so he showed it to me. So look, these guys are doing it You go out, figure out how to do because we want a supplier who can do these kinds of solutions. And it was a lot of conversations like that. And I actually did do it. And I helped innovate within that company. And we started doing us systems, which which before, they kind of only wanted to do the plane gene easy, not stuff that took a lot of, of engineering to put back together. And just through that, through doing it with with that client, I call my client zero or client one. And I started offering that to other people. So look, not not, and then it was an advantage for me, because not very many other people in this area, were doing those types of things. So there just were more and more stories like that in our my old boss, he did want us to have an entrepreneurial attitude. So if we wanted to do something, and the company wasn't doing it, he was open to come and say, you know, I know if you have ideas, suggestions, especially if you're going to execute and you're going to, you're going to take care of it. And I would run into projects where I would want to buy used equipment that I knew I had other customers wanting to use, like mezzanines or something that nobody really wants to buy like a platform ahead of time, because they're hard to put back together. They're not very common, the engineering is pretty specific. But I had a lot of clients who say now, if you could get a mezzanine, or even one would be available. Here's another reason I started my own company, people would say, Hey, don't worry about it, don't go through the company, just just sell it to me. I was like, No way, you know, we're not doing that. I want to help you out. And there were just enough of those opportunities. And a few other things fell into place. I really, it was tough for me to leave that company because it was a great company. They were great people. And I really had no complaints except my growth path was kind of limited there. And there were some also there were some other limitations. He had a partner. And so I wanted to start a new division, I said, Look, I'll start a new division, that'll be just systems. And we'll do mezzanine drive and rack push back rack, all the stuff that nobody else is doing let
Jeremy Weisz 12:02
You run your own company within the company, essentially.
Mark Hiddleson 12:05
Yeah, because we had read this book called Discovering the Soul of Service. And then like chapter six in there, it had a thing that says I'm trying to execute that. And it's funny at the time, I was, like 35. And probably, if I was 50, you know, now I'm in my 50s, maybe I would have been able to do that transition. But at the time, it was kind of I was already making more than one of the partners, the other partners in the company. And then if I started another division, it was going to be even more. And so the that was one of the final things is that, you know, I saw this growth opportunity not just for making money, but for me personally, to start something really excited. And I wouldn't have done it. So the thing is, it really wasn't really my idea. I had tons of people, the more I think about people saying mark, start your own company, Mark, start your own company. And then it took some guts, but I actually had one mentor that the finally the final finals, he said, you know, it'll send he said girl pair of balls, take a second on your house, and start your own company. And now and he was kind of a rough guy. He was like Chicago gangster kind of like always using four letter expletives which I love when it's appropriate. But I'm like, I have balls. Balls, you know? So I asked my wife about it.
Jeremy Weisz 13:28
That's exactly what I was gonna say. Who cares what you think someone's going to take a second mortgage on your house. You go back to your wife and you better okay with her. What did she say? So So what she said,
Mark Hiddleson 13:41
Jeremy and this is
Jeremy Weisz 13:42
just like, I'm gonna cut them off.
Mark Hiddleson 13:46
Right here, you asked for them in Neelam. Okay, here they are. Yeah. So what she really said is, she said, she said, I've been waiting for she goes up and waiting for you to come and say that. It's about time. I get chills when I think because she was super supportive. She goes, but I want to meet this guy. Because the guy told me grow per balls. He didn't just say that. I asked him I said, Will you back me financially? Will you help me? You know, with projects, if we need money, we need more than whatever I can borrow my house. Will you back me up finance? We said yeah, they said no probable, you know, just just grow up there and get started. So she said, I want to meet this guy before we do this stuff. So we met them and we were in Palm Springs. And after the meeting, we had a great meeting. His wife was a hairdresser. My wife had her own hairdressing business so it really hit it off. And she goes this is I think this is a no brainer. And I said why is that and she goes well, he gets his nails done. He gets his nails professionally. Like that means this guy is a okay. Okay, we're in.
Jeremy Weisz 14:55
Why was that? The what what was it about that that she thought it was a no brainer, because
Mark Hiddleson 15:01
I don't know, I think it's just she was in that business, first of all, and she just thinks that she thought that only people who really had their stuff together would go to that level of personal appearance to, you know, to get their nails done. And it was it was not like, he wasn't like the fufu guy getting the nails draped in gold and, you know, big gold chain and hairy chests hanging out of unbuttoned shirt to get your nails done. It was, it was a neat guy he passed away, probably eight or 10 years ago, but he, he really, really supported me financially, emotionally, and just taught me as a mentor, here's how you do this. This is what he did. You know,
Jeremy Weisz 15:50
like, I want to talk about, you know, kind of your blueprint and how you work with clients. Because this relates to why you started the podcast, it relates to, you know, if someone's listening to this, the book may be out or it's coming out and why you actually wrote the book. So talk about the kind of the blueprint and how you think about when you go into working with clients.
Mark Hiddleson 16:13
So I have an this, this is a it's a company secret, but I'm going to share it here because I think it's in every everybody's best interest. And it's I laugh because I had people who worked with me for a few years. And then I told them, we're not going to tell you the secrets. Tell you the secret what I should have told them in the beginning. But I use I call it the space time audit. Because in a warehouse or storage systems, it's not just the space that you have. It's just how fast things are moving through a warehouse. And just to give some easy examples, some of the systems we do, it's important people are loading truckload quantities or cases is it pallets and you want to move it in a way that you're not putting stuff in the way of something else. For example, a lot of warehouses, you can stack your pallets, 64 high, that's 24 pallets will let that's about a truckload. So unless you're doing a truckload of time, it's gonna get real awkward if you pull 10 pallets out, and then there's 14 loves, and then you put some in front of that. So space and time have to do with it. So I created this and I love words, I love to play with words, acronyms, and alliteration. So I created the space time audit, which is just the things that I go through. In step one is making a sketch. So I like to ask my clients do a sketch, you know, do you have a sketch or warehouse? And a lot of people are hesitant to do a sketch because they think it's gonna look ugly, or they're not a good writer. But it's actually the uglier, the better, because what happens, somebody will draw something. And I look at it, it's not the scale. I don't know, man, this this area was only 20 by 30. But you drew it with most of the paper. And that's because like, that's the most important thing they're looking at. And so I use it as a tool. And it's, I read one time that doodling people who Doodle in meetings like teachers are, bless you. This is this. I don't know how you did that off camera without having the North. I gotta learn that, ah, doodling in a meeting, actually, they found they've done studies where people who doodle or drawing when a meeting or actually retaining more information, so I always say, create a sketch. It engages your whole body really with the process and you start solving problems. We had a, one of my favorite parts was we had a customer that was in Plainview, Texas, and we're out in California on the West Coast. We had done facility for him and stocked and they really wanted to do kind of the exact same thing. We had gone through the spacetime. And, and they just wanted to do it again. And he knew that I didn't want to go out to Plainview, Texas. I'm embarrassed to say that now, because I really didn't want to go out there. But I'll tell you, the people there were so nice that I hate to leave. But he came up with a sketch. And I said, Man, this looks great. He had kind of done we had done it already in stock. So we knew something about it. He said no, I really want you to come out here because there is there is some things you just can't do on paper. And then he's right. You get in you see what kind of lifts they're using, what is their building look like? Are there obstructions? Because it turned out their roof was sloped kind of weird. So the way he had drawn it out, there was a better way to do it. And it was kind of that the building was a little lower on one end. And there was that same 24 pallet rotation thing. And so we found out they can only go three high and part of their warehouse. So instead of making the 64 high we made needed aid need three high utilize the space perfectly, they got the exact same amount of power positions, even though they could go three high. So it was kind of a combination, if he hadn't done the sketch, and we hadn't gotten close to like, hey, we know this is going to be we're going to do this, we just have to put the finishing touches, then I probably wouldn't have made the trip to Plainview, you know, so, so making a sketch is kind of step one. And then step two is, is my P is and the number one is s. And then p is the practice of paradigms and principles of peak performance. Now, there's a lot of peas, I know, but all of these are alliterations. And your practice is important that goes back to being an athlete, and it's not what you do on paper, or what you talked about, in theory, it's what you actually do, you know, when you're on the field, and and paradigm is kind of like a lens in in a company, you know, you can look at through the lens of an owner, through a manager.
All these people have different paradigms of why, you know, paradigm is like, like how you look at something. Or it's like your common sense. And then peak performance, like peak performance goes back to the things that I that I learned as an athlete. And I could get pretty deep into paradigms. And really the whole book goes in into paradigm. But the, the main thing about a paradigm, I mean, it's it really defines what's possible, or your common sense. And it's funny people think to have their common sense all figured out. And then there's some funny, I love Mark Twain disease. He's got some great one liners, but one of them is if there's an endangered species, and you want to save them, the best thing to do is put a bounty on their head. Like water, you already doesn't make any common sense at all. But there's actually there's a story I read in I think is India is one of those countries in the east, they had a real bad problem with Cobras. And so they said, all this is great. We'll you know, we'll get rid of the Cobras. We're gonna pay 10 bucks and Cobra. Well, what happened is, people started breeding Cobras. Now, they're bringing them in, they're losing some. So the problem of putting the bounty in common, so you need y'all Yeah, that makes right. So that's why paradigms is kind of important. And for me, in an integral paradigm or holistic paradigm, one of the important things is to be flexible. And it's always I laugh when I think of the flexibility because the podcast is kind of a good example, when podcasts first came out, I was thinking, this is not something I'm gonna get involved in. I'm not going to be listening to podcasts, I'm not going to actually went to a film festival thing that had a documentary on podcasts in like 2016. And they said, raise your hand. If you know what a podcast is. And I really I couldn't even raise my hand. I didn't know. It's like, if I don't know what it is, I'm not going to do it. And my best friend sent me a text to a link to something I didn't even know what it was. But it was my best friend of mine. I'm gonna open this. And it was actually it was a podcast that was The Unmistakable Creative Podcast hosted by Srinivas Rao. And it was he was interviewing Tim Ferriss, and I was kind of a, I'm gonna like the Tim Ferriss. I'm not a Tim Ferriss fan. I mean, I've read all of his books and stuff and four hour week, four hour workweek, Four Hour Body tools for Titans. So I'm gonna listen to this. And then I started thinking, well, this is pretty cool. And I started listening to other things that I wasn't even thinking, well, this is a podcast, but there were YouTube videos that I could find of authors, even authors who weren't a lot like Alan Watts in passed away in the early 70s. But I started looking at YouTube. And like, well, I can find if I'm interested in something. I can use a podcast to kind of get up to speed real quick, where I would have to call around, you know, to find who are you going to talk to you? And I'm thinking like, how did this guy? So I started looking at some of the other interviews he did. And it's actually how I met John Corcoran, the Rise25 He had a networking. His episode was on network as on I love networking. So I'm gonna listen to that podcast. And so I really went from from being hit puck and never never going to look at podcasts because I really didn't know what it was to. I became kind of, you know, Mister podcast, so no.
Jeremy Weisz 24:31
I love that. And I joke around that everything in my life. Good. Almost everything goes back to a podcast. I didn't I might not meet my wife on a podcast, but some of my best friends I've gone to people's weddings. You know, ultimately, indirectly we met through a podcast because you met John. So I love this concept of the space time audit. So when you take someone through this, the first is as with the sketching And then the P with the practice paradigms, the principles of peak performance, what's the next step?
Mark Hiddleson 25:05
So the next step is the A is audit, assess and accept what is. And so there's this, this is in any kind of goal setting or things that are is what, what what gets measured gets done. And, you know, always since I've been in sales, we've gone over sales numbers. And there's so many things you can track in the warehousing industry, they're called KPIs or key performance indicators. But you know, how many orders are you doing? How many cases? How many pallets? And are you using outside storage square footages. Like, there's a lot of things you can track but in the important thing is, except what is is, is the last part of that, because you audit, he was says also a use of personal performance assessments. And it's funny I've had I use them with with coaching clients, a lot of times people want to change the questions of the assessment so they can answer yes, that's not the purpose of the exercise is is to kind of find places where there's an opportunity for growth. But there's a, we had a data firm, to measure our stuff, I hired a boutique data firm to kind of look at our numbers, because everyone's seen people using data, you know, for customer service. So I said, Look at started looking at our stuff. You know, I know that a lot of our business is coming from a few customers, but what let's really look at what those numbers are. And I was blown away to find out that in 16 years, like over two thirds of our business can be tracked track back to 20 or 30 people, because there were people who gave me referral. Some of them are people who change jobs, a lot of my clients, like building new facilities, getting things up and running, and then moving on to something else, because they like to be in growth mode and doing projects. So I was blown away, because I didn't really have a system, you know, and accepting what is it's like, wow, I have these 30 clients, but 20 of them. I haven't talked to you in 10 years. And I don't really have a way I don't like to send out a bunch of emails and things like that. We don't have a way to stay in touch. Besides me picking up the phone. I do do this. If I see one of my clients truck, like if I see a gap truck, I'll go oh, man, I need to call Dave at Gap. Or let's see if national would. But but that's not a system. And so assessing what is it It reminds me I saw something on you sent on my LinkedIn, there was a one minute blurb from a guy. It was Richard Melmon, I don't even know he was on your podcasts. And it was a one minute thing. And I go, You know what, I have a minute. Like, I might not have 15 minutes or 17 minutes. But I have one minute. And it was funny, because it's just a one minute clip. But he said no, you know, I really only learned one thing, and I was kind of laugh. That's great. You know, all these years. The guy was like, No, this year, he was older than I was. But he said after I was with Intel, there was this, I worked with a company, and they had a product and I knew that the product was not there. And he goes by IFA, because of my marketing savvy and everything, I could make it work and over compensate through marketing. And so really, that lesson I look at it is like that's not accepting what it's like that was his lesson in that story is you got to accept because he was like, that's the reason companies fail is they think they can overcome something through marketing or, or something else, you know, personality or whatever.
Jeremy Weisz 28:46
I mean, Richard Melmon is kind of a pioneer in the technology industry. And he was in charge of early advertising for Apple, he launched the first digital watch at Intel, he co founded Electronic Arts, which went on to become a company with $30 billion market cap now, his other co founder kind of went on and grew it and he was there for a short period of time, but he co founded Electronic Arts early on. And so yeah, he's he's a wealth of wisdom and knowledge for sure. So we have the, the s, the P and the a,
Mark Hiddleson 29:24
what's next? So that's the CS is continually coach and be coached. And so one of the things when we started a company, our wife did give me some caveats. When we started the company, she said, first of all, we're still going to travel, we're still going to travel because we were always taking a couple of weeks off to go, you know, out of country or take her kids across the country to take time off and spend with the kids. And, and the other thing is, I've always been involved in coaching and that was one our company wanted us to do things things and with our kids. And I mean, it's really it. People think, well, you took time away from your career to coach. But one of the biggest things that helped my career was coaching, Junior High athletics because what's what's funny is working with eight to 13 year olds, it's a, it's really similar to working with adults, it's hard. And I had to, you know, in the business world, I had some situations. And I've had to have some training in the Positive Coaching Alliance and I, I have to admit, I was more of like a win at all costs. Coach, we didn't, we didn't give out participation trophies in those early days. But uh, you know, I just wanted to help them develop better players, better teammates, better young men, better students. One time, the teachers that were having some behavioral problems with with some of the kids, I was coaching coach basketball was one of the sports that I coached for five years in a row at a junior high. My daughter asked me to do it actually, there wasn't even I was coaching, but they didn't need a coach. And she's like, Oh, my dad's a coach, he coaches everything. Well, just have, you know, my dad will did. So. It was cool, because I got to be the hero, you know, for my daughter. And that wasn't kids that I didn't have a kid on the team. But it was. He's, there's one of the best players we had on the team was was fighting that got into a fight with this other kid. And I was nervous, because as an adult, you know, there's something you can do with these were kids, like, I just want them to grab them, you know, and shake them and like, man, what, what am I gonna do? And it caused me to, you know, I just don't know, hey, you guys take a timeout. I separated them out. And the only reason I did that is because I was thinking, oh, man, I need a plan. I need a plan. And so I wanted to the one that was sort of the best player on the team, he was the leader. And he was just frustrated because that guy, you know, he wasn't doing the right things in practice. And he said something that wasn't appropriate, you know what he said, but he was right. And so I said, Man, you don't have to apologize, okay, because I get where you're coming from I go, but I know you're the leader on this team. And, and people look up to you. So, you know, Matthew is gonna look up to you, if you go and say something to him, it's fine. It makes me emotional, because I still know these kids kids as a, as an adult, I go, you just gotta go and make it right and be a good teammate. And he kind of he looked at me, and he's like, Okay, Coach. And that was a really cool feeling, you know, to just have somebody look at you, and they trust you, and they're fighting almost, when you're playing sport is one of the things about sport, your emotions get involved, you know, and even in practice, and if you're a player, and you want everybody else to be working on it, and you see other guys are screwing around, but he did it, and it was kind of cool. And the whole team was kind of looking at it, and I didn't know what was gonna happen. Looking. And I was like, that's pretty cool, you know. And so the paradigm, you know, of coaching and being coached everything as a business owner, and then it's one of the things I love is you know, people like you I look at you as kind of one of my coaches in the coach certain areas of my business, because, you know, there's levels of accountability. If I make a commitment to you, you don't have a boss. Well, I have my wife, I shouldn't even said that. She's probably you know, so I don't like to hear all of my coaching from from one boss, I like to get multiple inputs. So that coaching and being being coachable. You know, for me, because I've made those same mistakes that Richard Melmon was talking about, about thinking you can overcome something, it's something you know, is wrong, you assess it, you audit it, you know what's wrong, and it can be overcome with personality or something else. And without having a good coach. You know, a good coach is going to save you time. effort. You guys, there's another podcast, I listened to you where you did a gold medal. How to be a gold medal. I forget exactly what it is. But gold medal, gold medal. BTV. Podcasting? Yeah, it'd be in I thought, Man, that's it's right on because the Olympic athletes, this a no brainer, you have a coach, and you're not even going to participate. You're not even going to get in the game, unless you have a coach.
Jeremy Weisz 34:19
yeah, I love that even you look at some of the best performers in business or athletes. You think Michael Jordan, I mean, they have like you said, coaches for individual things they may have, you know, an offensive coach, a defensive coach, a head coach, a strength coach, a nutrition coach, you know, different facets that they want to improve on. So, like you said, it's not just one thing could be broken down into multiple things.
Mark Hiddleson 34:45
It is and it's that's that reminds me another story. When I first started working on this book a few years ago, I hired a coach and he was a health and fitness expert, and he had written a book on it called Strength for Life by Shawn Phillips. And I love this book because it came out in 2008. And it was really it was a, I just graduated with my master's in holistic health education. And there was another book that had come out a few years later that was Body for Life. But his was Strength for Life. And I was like strength is something you want to train for, like your body is kind of like he didn't want to have a nice border, but training for strength and the strength can be so many different things in the way. He broke it down. So I bought that book. And probably it was almost 10 years later, he was some kind of thing. I was involved with a mastermind and he was doing coaching. But the funny thing was, is I hired him as a coach. Within 90 days, I lost 25 pounds, I was in the best shape of my life. But I didn't finish the book. But the higher the health and fitness coach, you get health and fitness results, but I did get started I got to practice and and I'm still involved with Shawn, he's still helping me with the editing and everything about the book. But the funny thing was is I didn't sign up, I signed up to write a book when the coaching but their coaching with the fitness guys and I just lost the weight.
Jeremy Weisz 36:07
That's great. So the see, and the next is E
Mark Hiddleson 36:11
Yeah, so he's embraced the energy and enthusiasm of an entrepreneur. And it's really, really hard for me to explain the amount of energy that it took to launch my company. And it wasn't something I knew. At the time. I just knew there were people that I was going to call that I had support. But it was long hours. I mean, there were, you know, when I was starting out, it was by myself, I was working in my garage is funny when my daughter, they have a little assessment. Speaking of assessments, my daughter took an assessment for kindergarten to kind of, you know, where there was like a cognitive thing, and she got marked down because they said, Where does your dad work? And she said in the garage, and everything you go, yeah, like daddy makes stuff in the garage? No, honey, that's not what we're talking about. What does your dad do for a living? It's like, no, no, my dad works in the garage. But it was it was only a few years for I had to get an office because one of the people and this is, you know, the energy and enthusiasm and entrepreneur, it almost has to be reined in. Because I would work till midnight, you know, if the work needed to be done. It was really people ask me well, how do you work at home? How could you not just, you know, be checking on the laundry or doing chores or anything? So you know, for me, it's actually harder to turn it off. I mean, with with work being at home, I would work on it forever. So kind of early on. And that was another thing that the boss implemented is we're going to find you another space to work. But entrepreneurs kind of it's another paradigm. And I heard a speech from the the guy who started monster the monster the not a resume company, but it was like a job before there was indeed there's monsters monster still.
Jeremy Weisz 37:59
Yeah, I think so. Yeah, I know what you're talking about. It's like, there were it's kind of like, where people would find jobs, right?
Mark Hiddleson 38:06
Yeah, yes. Like indeed.com is thick indeed. Yeah. So he was doing a keynote. And one of his things was one of these things was trained like an athlete. But the other one was being an entrepreneur, even the future. It's your entry level position.
Jeremy Weisz 38:21
Was it Timothy Yates?
Mark Hiddleson 38:22
The person was named Jeffrey Walker, I think Jeff, Jeff something. Jeff Walker, Jeff Watson. He was a career he was awesome. Got he, as a leader, he did something like he did. Barefoot waterskiing behind a hot air balloon or something as a publicity stunt. and team building thing was a great speech but always in that was before that was before I had my own company, I worked for somebody else. And I was already kind of thinking like an entrepreneur. But that kind of gave me license to be even more entrepreneurial in just the way I approach things. And so we try to, you know, anyone that works for us, and we're a small company we do a lot with with the very few people and it's really everybody has to be like an owner, which it might sound prestigious, but it means you're doing all jobs, including pulling weeds and taking out the garbage. But you're also it's a big picture view. And you know, it's nice, I tell a lot of my clients the difference in working with with memes owner, I can do things I can make decisions quickly. I don't have to get permission from somebody else so that the more autonomy that you can have, the quicker you can execute.
Jeremy Weisz 39:37
Yes, we have space, right? We covered the space part of it, and that's talked about the time.
Mark Hiddleson 39:45
The T and time is of the space time audit, is the dowel teaching and being taught. And it's a little different than coaching. What I mean here is when you learn when you're trying to learn a new skill, and I Just talking with one of our managers, what we're doing training, really to master something that means you could teach somebody else. And really, when you have that paradigm, I mean, it's another all of these are really paradigms. And that's why integral is in all the chapters of my book is because all of these things are integrated. They all work together, the idea of learning something with the intention of being able to teach it, it just, for me, it always changed how quickly I could learn something, and then try and explain it to somebody else. Like, if I'm trying to explain to you, I'm not getting it well, if I can't explain it to work together, then then I don't really get it. And so with my clients, it's funny, there's a, I'm being taught things by my clients, because we're doing business in so many different areas. We do lumber industry, beverage industry, and then beverage, there's, you know, soft drinks, wine, beer, that they all have different nuances, or third party warehousing or cold storage. So there's things that I've learned over the years and those business those businesses, and, and then I can teach other clients. So if I go to another cold storage and learn something at another one, I can teach them. And I'm constantly trying to learn and I want to learn, not just things related to the racket, and that's what, it's fun. I got a call yesterday from one of my best clients, and he said, what's our NIC s number? For what we do? Wow, no, I'm you're racking guy, like an HR question. And I go, Well, I'm like your apparel. Because it's a, it's called Title Nine, they do apparel for women. It's like athletic wear. For women. It's called Title Nine. Super cool, direct. And I'm like, well, your apparel. And then I looked at that, and I go well, now this really means you're making clothes or something like a will your direct to consumer. So I was just brainstorming googling it with him. And I found out you know what they are? They're ecommerce. And that's like a 4342 zeros or whatever. But you're trying to learn something. So now, if you're if you're listening to podcasts, and you need to know what your NAICS number is just call you. Yeah, I didn't even know what it stood for. Until he said what it was like, we just googled it. Yeah. So that's the teaching, you know, that's the dowel teaching and being taught is that I'm always trying to learn something or a level, I can master it to teach somebody else. And I want our, you know, the people that work with us, our suppliers, which is another learned a ton from suppliers. You know, when I didn't know anything about something, whether it was dock equipment or a mezzanine, I would find a trusted advisor on that end and say, Hey, and even now, I've been doing this, you know, more than a couple of decades, and I'm still learning new clients, new applications and new new things are coming out. So what's the eye? So the eye is is imitation imitate inspirational individuals? In this one, it's a it's a huge, I've always liked reading nonfiction. And I've read some of these biographies. Ben Franklin, Albert Einstein, I read. Walter Isaacson is a really good biographer. He's, he actually he wrote, Steve Jobs biography was funny because Jobs had asked him to do his biography. And the guy eats Walter Isaacson is like, well, I'm Walter Isaacson. Like why? What makes you say I did Einstein? I did. Ben Franklin. It's kind of the hubris or whatever, you're kind of, you're coming to me and asking me to do it. But there was hit already has started to have some health issues, I think. And when he talked about the legacy, and what he was facing, personally, Walter Isaacson was really touched. And then we ended up who's been really honored brother, great biography on so I've read those and so I couldn't be I can't call Steve Jobs on the phone, you know. So this inspiration is is different than a coach or a teacher. This is something I'm talking about, you know, whether it's, you know, Einstein or people like Jeremy wise. Getting inspired is like the, the people that inspire you and they don't even necessarily Tony Robbins is another one. I've watched his I'm not your guru thing with my daughter. And it says that mean to me, it's so inspirational and then just imitate some of the things they're doing. You know,
Jeremy Weisz 44:33
it's funny when you say this part about imitate that's exactly who comes to mind. For me it is Tony Robbins because he talks a lot about modeling and modeling successful success in health and business or whatever facet. So he talks a lot about modeling in his in his teachings for sure. What about the next one?
Mark Hiddleson 44:53
So mentors make mastery more unmistakable. So mentors and so There's some distinctions between coach, teacher mentor mean, mentors are some of you know, those are when I'm talking about mentors, it's people that have taken me under their way. You know, we're you needed something. Don Myers is a good friend, he was the person I knew there was one or two or three people I knew I was going to call when I started my own company, I didn't, I didn't tell anybody. I didn't tell anybody ahead of time, because I didn't think it was ethical, I was already working for another company. And I didn't, when I left, it's in this business, a lot of people. And I'm not saying this is the right way or the wrong way, or it's not really a moral issue I chose to I chose to do the way I do, it actually was really self serving, I really wanted to have a relationship with the company I was leaving when I started my company. And so I didn't do anything like any sales I had, if it was a quote, and I never did a prospect was you're supposed to give a prospect list every month of like, this is my quotes that I have outstanding. I never did that the whole time I worked there. And I was always the top salesman and figure, well, it's if I can get away with not doing that I don't, I just don't want to fill it out. But when I left, I gave him everything. I had $300,000 worth of deals. And the other thing I did before I left, I tried to close every single one of those deals because like I'm leaving, I quoted it, I want to get the credit. So it was like get it sold, get it built, get it paid for get it, leave on a good note. And so when I, when I started my company, I was really starting from scratch. Nobody knew, you know, and they were blown away. But immediately, you know, he just he had meeting with me told me you're doing the right thing. Just give me I was looking for really just support. But he started giving me clients, giving me clients, here's people I'm working with. And he's always been like a sales manager for a forklift company where he's got, you know, 1520 25 reps, and he was putting me in touch with these guys here. I've got this new guy, you work with him, he'll buy all this stuff from you, you know, in teaching these guys. So, you know, that was something that just totally blew my mind of you been working with the with the mentor? No, no, I've, I think I brought up before the it was a mentor that really, they told me to grow pair of balls and start this company. And, you know, he's no longer with this. And it just, I kind of look for those opportunities. The other thing is, is this isn't just finding mentors, this is mentoring other people. So I've, it's one of the things so many people helped me, you know, want to look at, there was no way I could have done any of this without, you know, 3040 5080 people, and just the list goes on and on and on people who've helped me over the years. So anytime I get a chance, and I've helped people start their own companies is one of the things I'm most proud of, we have competitors in our business that have worked for me, and they're out there doing, you know, competitive people like don't, doesn't that make you mad? And it it doesn't it doesn't it all really doesn't even I leave until it I had I had a lead that I didn't follow up on. And I had a guy that he was it worked for me before he was just out cold calling. And he called him this guy. And he goes, Oh, yeah, you're the rack guy. You were supposed to call me. He thought it was me. Was there any he ended up getting was was a big client. And, you know, people are well, doesn't that make you man? It's like not I didn't I only beat me to the punch. I didn't follow up. He was hustling I wasn't us. And I'm just proud that people have come to me for help. And then, you know, started their own thing. And even you know, there's guys now that were rookie forklift salesmen, now they own companies bigger than mine, you know, and I helped them when they got started.
Jeremy Weisz 48:46
Yeah, I mean, Mark, you have an abundance mentality, right, which is there's there's lots of stuff to go around. And then those people refer to you too, in time, and you'll pass things along that you don't work with. What about the E,
Mark Hiddleson 49:03
so the E's evolve in ecology, of values. And what I mean by you know, the ecology of values is kind of like all of these things in the spacetime audit, they, it's an ecology, because they're all like a web, they work together. And I use the ecology versus economy, because I think a lot of people use the economy values where they, they cost benefit, what their values are. And so, it you know, there's a good example that the people have made commitments to our clients, and we've had clients, we've won clients because other people have made commitments. And then later, they saw that it wasn't, it wasn't financially a good idea. And so they decided to withdraw their commitment. And we had one recently where a client came to me that chose to work with somebody else. They told me the story, they said, Yeah, they weren't going to set up a free sample and And then we were getting ready to do it. And then they change their mind. They wanted to charge $3,500. I said, Oh, that's, that's too bad. My Oh, first of all, I would have never said that I was going to do a free sample. But it says $3,500 I go and then if, if you said no, then we could have negotiated, I would say, Okay, look where my cost is gonna be to 2500. Or it's kind of like, name your price, you know, if you can do it, I can do for free, or you can do it. But there's another thing is if I did promise, the free thing, you know, a free sample, and then later, I thought, Well, man, that was a dumb idea. I would still honor. You know what I said, even if it's going to cost me the $3,500 because I do you know, sometimes I do make amendments, and then later, it's like, oh, man, that that sucked, you know, it's not going to be good for business or it's not, not a good idea, but then I just do it anyways, because, because that's what counsel and I think that's, that's the difference between ecology and economy and ecology, you can't hide, you know, if you don't water the tree is gonna die. He can't, you know, hope that it's gonna live anyways.
Jeremy Weisz 51:05
Mark, I love this. You know, I want to encourage people to check out more episodes of the podcast, you know, and I love I didn't, you know, we've known each other for a while I didn't know any of this. Nor did I know this, where this would go. But this space time audit is pretty powerful. So I appreciate you sharing it. And I want to tell people to go to also check out specialracks.com and see what your you're doing with the business. So thanks for having me. Check out more episodes of the podcast if and when the book is out. When you're listening to this, get the book as well.
Mark Hiddleson 51:38
Thank you, Jeremy. This has been a blast. I really appreciate you your energy, enthusiasm, everything with this. This has been awesome.
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