My guest for Episode #205 of the My Favorite Mistake podcast is Kim Sorrelle. Kim is the director of a humanitarian organization, a popular speaker, and the author of two books. Her first, Cry Until You Laugh, is about her and her husband's battle with cancer after being diagnosed just four months apart. Her second, Love Is, chronicles her year-long quest to figure out the true meaning of love, a sometimes funny, sometimes scary, always enlightening journey that led to life-changing discoveries found mostly on the streets of Haiti.
In this episode, Kim shares her favorite mistake story about buying a grocery store in St. Croix (she lives in Michigan) and hiring the wrong manager to run that business. How long did it take her to discover the mistake? Did she try to coach him up? When did she decide to make a change, and how did she avoid repeating the mistake based on what she learned the first time?
Oh, and she slips in a story about the time she “busted in” to meet Hugo Chavez, the president / dictator of Venezuela. How did she build rapport and trust and for what purpose?
Questions and Topics:
- Learned: need to hire slow…
- You were new to this type of business though…
- How did this even come to be?
- Do you fire or try to coach him up??
- Tell us about the 2nd hiring… what you learned, adjustments you made?
- Tell us about your non-profit — Rays of Hope
- Avoiding mistakes about cultural assumptions going into other countries?
- Just busted in to meet with Hugo Chavez
- 45 minutes — had to build rapport and trust
- Tell us about your book “Love Is”.
- What is the meaning of love, what is love?
- “Love keeps no record of wrongs” — does loving ourselves mean being able to put our wrongs (our mistakes) behind us?
- Loving yourself when you make mistakes?
- Stephen Covey episode
- How does understanding love help us in the workplace?
- 14 day love challenge – not a year
- What your next book? – on grief
Scroll down to find:
- Video clips from the episode
- How to subscribe
- Full transcript
Find Kim on social media:
Video (Full Episode):
Clip About Meeting Hugo Chavez:
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Mark Graban (0s):
Episode 205. Kim Sorrelle, author of the book, Love Is,
Kim Sorrelle (5s):
Well, my favorite mistake is, was a very hard lesson, I have to say. I bought a grocery store on St. Croix.
Mark Graban (17s):
I'm Mark Graban. This is my favorite mistake. In this podcast, you'll hear business leaders and other really interesting people talking about their favorite mistakes because we all make mistakes. But what matters is learning from our mistakes instead of repeating them over and over again. So this is the place for honest reflection and conversation, personal growth in professional success. Visit our website at myfavoritemistakepodcast.com. To learn more about Kim, her book and more look for links in the show notes, or go to markGraban.com/mistake205. As always, thanks for listening and now on with the show.
Mark Graban (57s):
Well, hi everybody. Welcome back to My Favorite Mistake. I'm Mark Graban. Our guest today is Kim Sorrelle. She is joining me from my original home state of Michigan, different side of the state from where I grew up. But Kim is the director of a humanitarian organization. She's a popular speaker, and she's the author of two books. Her first titled Cry Until You Laugh, was about her and her husband's battle with cancer after they were diagnosed four months apart. Her second book is titled Love is, chronicles, her year-Long quest to figure out the true meaning of love and what people will check out. That book talks about her, her journey, including some life-changing discoveries she found in Haiti.
Mark Graban (1m 41s):
So with that, Kim, welcome to the podcast. How are you?
Kim Sorrelle (1m 45s):
I am doing great, Mark. Thank you so much for having me. How are you today?
Mark Graban (1m 48s):
I am doing well. I'm glad you're here. We, there's a lot we can talk about here about your book and your work and things you've learned along the way, but I guess one of those things you've learned along the way is lessons from a Mistake. So I'll jump in and ask you what's your favorite mistake?
Kim Sorrelle (2m 6s):
Well, my favorite mistake is, was a very hard lesson, I have to say. I bought a grocery store on St. Croix, the Virgin Islands, and I live in Grand Rapids, Michigan. So needed a manager down there and put an ad in the paper. So it was that long ago that that's how you found somebody who was an ad in the actual newspaper, printed newspaper and got some response, but got a response from one guy who was just felt called, like he felt like God showed him that particular listing, and he just knew it was the job for him. He just knew it. And so with that amount of passion and him really believing he was called to do this, I hired him and it ended up being a disaster.
Kim Sorrelle (2m 53s):
Was not good at the job. He was not equipped for the job. Really. It was my mistake putting the wrong person in the wrong position, you know, in the wrong position on the bus, as they say. Right. And it didn't work out. We moved him and his family over there. We had to move him and his family back, cost a lot of money, cost money because the store didn't do well. Just all of that. And I learned that I'm, because I'm in the for-profit and the not-for-profit world, right. I'm not an entrepreneur. I've had lots of businesses and, and the two seem to do things differently. A mistake that the nonprofit world does that I did is hire fast and fire slow, and really you should hire slow and fire fast, right?
Kim Sorrelle (3m 39s):
So take the time, make sure that it's the right person, and then when it's time to let somebody go, you gotta, you gotta up strings.
Mark Graban (3m 47s):
Yeah. Well, thank, thank you for sharing that. And there's, you know, some elements of the story. I'd love to, to dig into a little bit. I'm, you know, you were new to that type of business or I'm, I'm just curious, like you were in Michigan, how, how do you end up buying a business in St. Croix, yet alone, a grocery store? I'm cur curious what, how that came to be.
Kim Sorrelle (4m 7s):
Well, there was a listing in the Wall Street Journal for this grocery store for sales. So went down and checked it out and bought it for the cost of the inventory. So, figured I couldn't go wrong because the price was right and thought it'd be fun to, you know, I I business is business, right? So whether you're running a golf course or you're running a event facility, a factory, whatever, you're running a grocery store, you know, same principles apply. So if you can run a business, I figured I could run a business in St. Croix. We can make that happen. And it did end up being a great thing when we got the right manager there.
Kim Sorrelle (4m 47s):
Okay. But that, that's how we got it to begin with.
Mark Graban (4m 49s):
Yeah. And, and that was part of your background I didn't mention in introductions. Tell, tell the audience a little bit about, before we get back into the St. Croix story and what you learned. You a long history with a country club,
Kim Sorrelle (5m 2s):
Right? Yes. Yeah. Well, my first foray into business, I was 18 years old and bought an old building in lease space and then bought more buildings than lease space, but bought this piece of property that was a nine hole golf course with a shack on a hill and turned it into an 18 hole course and added my dining and added event facilities, bought another place with event facilities, had other businesses throughout the years. And so, yeah, lots of fun
Mark Graban (5m 29s):
Stuff. So, so you, it sounds like you have a track record there, or a real interest in, you know, building a business or taking something that was, you know, ma making it better. Like what the, this grocery store being for sale at a price where it's inventory only, like, was, was it sort of a distressed situation that you saw, you know, was a turnaround opportunity?
Kim Sorrelle (5m 51s):
Oh yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. The things weren't really being run, run well in the, the business at all. You know, there weren't inventories even kept, so we had to kind of go in and figure it out. But yes, no, no training of staff. It was, it was a failing business. So always fun to go in and turn a business like that around.
Mark Graban (6m 14s):
Yeah. But I'm sure with your background in hospitality and customer service, that there was certain opportunity to, to do some customer service training to create a better, a better environment for customers.
Kim Sorrelle (6m 27s):
Yeah, I would say absolutely. That's true. And the location of the store was more where tourists would go, and it was just a regular grocery store, so we added a little bakery, we had fresh baked goods all the time and, and nice cheeses and meats and things that tourists would like to buy.
Mark Graban (6m 47s):
Yeah. And so then you hired the manager. Well, you talk about this idea of, hi, hire slow ffat, but if you, you hired fast and you, you fire slow. Was the, did the, was the mistake slow to appear? Or did you almo realize like almost right away of like, some hire's remorse of like, oh, or did it, did it take some time to really kind of understand that okay, we made a hiring mistake.
Kim Sorrelle (7m 17s):
It took a little bit of time because I'm, you know, far removed from it, but getting regular reports and whatever, it all sounded good, sounded like things were going good until I went down and looked at the books and realized that things were not going good. And, and there were little cues throughout the way, things that were sad that I thought, oh, hmm, you shouldn't really feel like that. You know, that's not really the right way to look at things.
Mark Graban (7m 43s):
What can you remember an example of
Kim Sorrelle (7m 46s):
Yeah, well, I remember, yeah, I remember him talking about somebody on staff, and the way he was talking about them was sort of dehumanizing. I thought, no, we, we never treat people that way. So inappropriate.
Mark Graban (8m 2s):
So, we'll, we'll come back to the topic and, and the theme of your book Love is it seems like in a, in a professional platonic way, he didn't love his employees or wasn't treating them respectfully,
Kim Sorrelle (8m 14s):
Right? Absolutely. He thought that he was better than higher than because of his position.
Mark Graban (8m 21s):
So then kind of along that line of, you know, firing slowly, if you will, I mean, were were, were you trying to, to coach him up or was this balance of like, okay, do I, do I fire this person and try again? Or do can I, can I, can I coach him up? Wa wa was there some thought process around that?
Kim Sorrelle (8m 39s):
Yeah, absolutely. Because there was this investment, right? I mean, it's not cheap to move a family to St. Croix, find them a place to live, a vehicle, all of that stuff. So I had this investment and thought, well, gosh, if you can make the investment work, that's really the best way instead of having to start all over again. And I did end up keeping him way too long because I was trying to coach him up. And, and some people, you know, he is, you can be a great guy, you can be an awesome person, but it doesn't mean that you fit into every position Sure. That every job is for you. Sure, sure. So, you know, something that I learned is that firing somebody, letting somebody go can be a blessing to them, because when people are not in the right position, it can be frustrating and agonizing to go to work and ins instead of living in their gifts and, and their passions and what they really wanna do.
Kim Sorrelle (9m 36s):
Yeah. So it's okay to release people when you need to do that.
Mark Graban (9m 41s):
Yeah. Yeah. And I'm sure that experience gave you a list of experiences or traits to look for, to hire the replacement. Tell, tell, tell us about then the next, the next manager and, and, and sort of, you know, how, how you adjusted based on what you learned.
Kim Sorrelle (10m 5s):
Yeah. Well, we hired a man from a small island down in the Caribbean, so already it was a better fit because culturally things are different. I mean, it, it's the US Virgin Islands, but St. Croix has its own culture. The US Virgin Islands have their own culture, and so culturally he was much closer than this guy from Grand Rapids, Michigan, you know, whatever. So he had some understanding going in. So that was good and really checked his credentials, really checked him out, but gave him some scenarios, brought him into the place, saw how we actually operated, like we really took our time and found the best manager we could have found.
Mark Graban (10m 52s):
So, okay. Yeah, I should have asked where that first manager came from, because I, I was making the mistake of assuming that you had hired somebody local to s or from another part, you know, nearby, you talked about the relocation. I guess I, I wasn't picturing in my head a relocation from Michigan down to St. Croix.
Kim Sorrelle (11m 10s):
Yeah. That's a long, long relocation.
Mark Graban (11m 13s):
Yeah. A big, a big change. So there, I guess there was a lesson learned in having somebody who, who knew more of the local culture because the store employees were local, that that seemed like an important, important part of a manager employee dynamic there, of, of not being a total outsider,
Kim Sorrelle (11m 33s):
Right? Oh, yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. And, and it's, it's good that there's different cultures in the world, right? Like, it makes the world more colorful and wonderful, but respecting the culture and realizing that maybe you gotta tweak the way you do business a little bit because you're in a different place and makes a difference.
Mark Graban (11m 55s):
So you've worked in many countries, different continents. Tell, tell us a little bit before we talk about the book again. Love is by Kim cll. Tell us a little bit though about the nonprofit work that you've done.
Kim Sorrelle (12m 9s):
Yeah, so I run a nonprofit organization, Raza Hope International. We're a humanitarian organization, we're a partnering organization. So we work with people in their own country that have a passion, a vision, a mission to do something to help people in their own country. So they understand the culture, they understand the language, and they understand the real need. So instead of me going in saying, oh my gosh, you guys look hungry, let's build a farm. You know, maybe a farm isn't the first step for them. And so we just walk alongside. So, you know, somebody feels, knows that there's a need for a school. Well, it's hard to have a school without a building, without desks, without pencils.
Kim Sorrelle (12m 50s):
And so to get the supplies and get things off the ground. And a lot of times it's also with a business plan that leads to self sustainability. So they're not always chasing dollars, but they're able to get to a point within five years is always our goal, where they're completely self-sustainable.
Mark Graban (13m 8s):
Yeah. Well that's great. Well, thank you for, for doing that. And what, is there a website where people can learn more about the nonprofit?
Kim Sorrelle (13m 16s):
Yes, it's Ray of Hope international.org.
Mark Graban (13m 19s):
Ray of Hope. Okay. Well, I hope people will check that out and, you know, just, you know, may, maybe it's just a quick point or I dunno if you have stories around this. So I've had two guests previously who shared favorite mistake stories about going into other countries and, and, and, and different and o other continents kind of going in with an assumption of what they thought aid should look like only to then learn, okay, that was an American perspective, an American assumption, gosh, it's early, it's too early in the morning, I'm having a brain cramp. But the one story was about, you know, going and building a, a school and some of the locals were trying to warn her, the building's too nice.
Mark Graban (14m 3s):
We don't need a school that, that, that's that nice. And sure enough, the school got seized by the military for their purposes and, you know, so a anyway, you know, it's just, I'll, I'll, I'll look up the names and maybe put links in the show notes for those related episodes. But I mean, have, have you managed to avoid mistakes of kind of like cultural assumptions of coming into a different land?
Kim Sorrelle (14m 28s):
No, I've not managed to avoid
Mark Graban (14m 30s):
Mistakes. That's okay. But yeah,
Kim Sorrelle (14m 33s):
I wish I could say that I have. But I've had some very interesting experiences that, you know, looking back maybe I would've handled differently, but, but also realizing that people are people all over the world and, you know, being a woman, dealing with some countries that are just completely run by men can be a difficult thing. But I don't think about my gender until somebody points it out to me. Right. So, you know, I just feel like I'm doing what I'm supposed to be doing, and then when all the doors are closing and wondering why you learn, you know, I learned in a hurry how to deal with that, how to, how to work through that. And, and I had a situation in Venezuela.
Kim Sorrelle (15m 15s):
I went there after flooding, horrible flooding that killed I think 60,000 people. It was terrible. And I wanted to send down some medicines for the refugees that were in refugee centers. And, you know, one person gets sick, they all get sick, and thousands of people that had lost their homes and talked to doctors there to find out what they needed. And, and I was not comfortable working with the docs. I went to the doc to, you know, and Okay, who's your boss? Who's your boss, you know, trying to get to the top of the food chain to figure out who I could talk to to make sure things weren't stolen, stolen on the dock. And I was getting nowhere. It was so frustrating.
Kim Sorrelle (15m 55s):
I finally drove to the presidential palace, I said, I'm here to see the president. And they got on the phone and said a couple things and waved me in to go park. And I went inside and they said, and I, I said, I'm Kim Sorrelle, I'm here to see the president. And they made a phone call and had me sit down, and then they walked me up some stairs and there was Hugo Chavez, president Hugo Chavez, my gosh, in a press conference. And so we waited for the press conference to be done and ushered into an office. And then I talked to him and told him what I had going, and he guaranteed that everything would get through on the dogs, that nothing would get stolen.
Kim Sorrelle (16m 38s):
And that's what happened.
Mark Graban (16m 40s):
Wow. Okay. So I'm, I'm, I'm glad I asked the question. The, the, that took an unexpected turn. You had me, you had me wondering which country and that, okay, well, gosh. So that could have been a mistake to just show up unannounced, saying I need,
Kim Sorrelle (16m 59s):
Especially, yeah, I mean, they have big guns and so yeah, it certainly could have been a mistake,
Mark Graban (17m 6s):
But I mean, at the same time, I mean, I don't know, did it help being a woman that they, they, they didn't think that you were a revolutionary coming to overthrow him? Did. I mean, there must have been some security checks, though.
Kim Sorrelle (17m 21s):
You would think that there'd be more than what there were. I mean, they, they really, I had my 14 year old son with me, and they just let us in. I mean, it was, it was, I don't know why. I don't know how, but, you know, an answer to prayer or whatever. But yeah, it was, I think being a woman probably helped me in that moment because I, I wouldn't, wasn't a threat.
Mark Graban (17m 46s):
Wow. Wow. Wow. That's, that's, that's, that's fascinating how, I'm just curious how, I mean, like how, how long, not to get too deep into this, but like, I mean, how long was that meeting or, or, or that interaction or, you know, I mean, see looking at you suspiciously as an American capitalist or, you know?
Kim Sorrelle (18m 7s):
Yeah, it was probably 45 minutes I was with him for, for quite some time and certainly had to build a rapport to begin with. Yeah. Build a trust so that we could talk about the nuts and bolts of things.
Mark Graban (18m 20s):
Wow. And and he did follow through on that commitment to make sure things got through? Yes.
Kim Sorrelle (18m 26s):
Wow. Yeah, actually I got phone calls from other nonprofits that were trying to send aid down that their stuff had been sitting on the dock for a year, A year later I got a phone call from one and a year and a half later from another, and their stuff was still on the dock and not released. And it cost money to sit on the dock and wondered if I could use my, my poll. And, and I, I said, I think that was probably a one-time deal for me.
Mark Graban (18m 54s):
Wow. So now allow me to, I don't know, a smooth transition to talk about your book. Maybe you came in with a loving attitude and, and, and, you know, cuz you were doing work to help people and maybe that that came through. But let, let's, let's talk about your, your second book. Love is, I mean, you know, love is a word we, we know, right? But it generates so many, I don't know, songs, poems, movies. We, we, we love exploring the idea of love. Like what, what prompted you to write the book and, and to, to really dig into the meaning of love?
Kim Sorrelle (19m 31s):
Well, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and then four months later my husband was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and he passed away six weeks after that. And yeah, it was a crazy time and I was 47 years old and thought I had my life planned. We were gonna grow old together and all of a sudden I was alone. And it's different being alone after all those years. And so I questioned some things and the true meaning of love, what love really is, is one of the things I question. I wanted to make sure I was doing this life right and that I understood and there does seem to be this mystery around love, like who's really done a deep dive into love. So I decided I would dedicate a year to figuring out the true meaning of love.
Kim Sorrelle (20m 14s):
So I took this 2000 year old poem that you hear at weddings, love is patient, love is kind, does not envy, does not boast right. And decided I would take one word a month and figure out what is love that is patient, what is love that is kind. And I gotta tell you, mark, I have a hard time committing to an entree when I go out to eat at a restaurant. So committing a year to something was a big thing for me to do. Yeah. But the things I learned just blew my mind.
Mark Graban (20m 44s):
Right. I'm sorry. Yeah. Writing, writing a book is almost like, like committing to eating the same dinner every night. You better like that meal, you better like that topic. And I mean, I think clearly you do and I am boy, and and when you talk about love is patient, love is kind, that's actually biblical Corinthian, I'm not an expert on this, remind
Kim Sorrelle (21m 11s):
Chris Corinthians 13, right?
Mark Graban (21m 13s):
Yeah. Yeah. And it's really powerful and I, oh gosh. I mean this is 21 and a half years ago. Speaking of love, I'm trying, I might be, I'm trying to remember if that was read at our, at my wedding, my wife and I at our wedding. I, I'm gonna blame it being early in the morning and the coffee not kicking in and she won't be too upset with me about that, that detail. But it's powerful. It's, it's, it's beautiful when you talk about, yeah, love is patient, love is kind the full, I know you, you explore this in, in the book and, and the, the the ebook guide that, that you have available. But what, what surprised you most then, you know, in that year of study and learning and reflection?
Mark Graban (21m 56s):
Like what surprised you most about love?
Kim Sorrelle (21m 60s):
Oh my gosh, there were so many surprises. And it was a crazy year. I was chased by a motorcycle gang. I got lost on a mile high mountain with a med student in the dark. I left outside with tarantulas and snakes and chupa cobras or whatever is lurking in the bushes of Haiti. I mean, crazy, crazy stuff happened. And so I learned so much the whole time. But love I think, is so often thought of as a feeling or an emotion. And it's not, you know, if you watch a scary movie that night, you go to bed, you hear every creek, every bump, right? You know, you're scared, something's gonna jump out at you, but you get over it. You don't live in fear, fear's an emotion.
Kim Sorrelle (22m 40s):
You don't live in fear, but you live in love, love you don't hang it up in the closet when you get home or when you get to the office. It is always with you. It's part of you. It's who you are and then how you choose to live it is up to you. But, but love is is everything everywhere. And there seems to be this expectation, you know, maybe even when you were in marriage counseling with your wife, you might have heard that you love is, you know, it's gotta be 50 50, it's gotta be a hundred, a hundred or that it's a two-way street or whatever. And none of that is true. Love is 100% on you. If I, if I give you money and you give me a pair of jeans, that's a transaction.
Kim Sorrelle (23m 21s):
And love is not a transaction. Love is on you. You have no control over anybody but yourself. And so I think people get hurt so often because when they love, they have this expectation of getting that the same love in return, but you have no control over what comes back. You have no control. So when you do that, you set yourself up for heartache and disappointment and loneliness. And love is not that love loves period. Love loves everyone. And love just loves.
Mark Graban (23m 55s):
So the word unconditional comes to mind, like, love, love, if it's really love, it's, it's, it's unconditional, right?
Kim Sorrelle (24m 2s):
Yeah, yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely. It's unconditional. Everybody is worthy of love. Everybody is including yourself, you know, so you gotta love yourself so you can love other people, but we're, we're all worthy of love. You don't have to like everybody. I think that gets a little messy when people start to think about that. You don't have to like everybody, but, but loving everybody, just loving the uniqueness of everybody and everybody's differences and, and showing that love loving and that love is, is the most freeing, peaceful way to live.
Mark Graban (24m 39s):
Oh, that's very nicely said. You, you use this phrase, you know, you're talking about loving ourselves, which, which leads into another a question I was gonna ask. So if we, if we go through the love is patient love is kind and it continues as, as you highlight in, in the ebook, love keeps no record of wrongs. So that jumped out at me when we think of the theme here for my favorite mistake, the podcast, my, my book, the mistakes that make Us, so like, you know, finding a balance of like, you know, when when we make a mistake to be kind to ourselves, to love ourselves, however you want to put it, and you know, like re reflect and learn without shaming ourselves or making ourselves feel bad or dwelling on it.
Mark Graban (25m 28s):
Like what, what are your thoughts about, you know, sir, loving yourself when you make mistakes?
Kim Sorrelle (25m 35s):
Yeah. Y you know, it's interesting you've picked that one. I dreaded doing that month. I wanted to put it off. I was thinking, what could that even mean? Because we might forgive people, we might forgive the things that happen to us, but you don't forget. So, you know, keeping record of wrongs, you know, what does that mean? And, and the reality is that, oh my gosh. And what I went through that month was crazy to finally get hit over the head with the truth of it. But we, we picked the tone, we picked the narrative, we choose our own narrative, right? There can be two people in the same traffic jam and one guy is mad and his blood pressure's going up and he's pounding on the steering wheel and he is honking his horn.
Kim Sorrelle (26m 21s):
And in the very next car, a guy's going, you know, I'm in this traffic jam, there's nothing I can do. Mark's got this great podcast, I think I'll turn that on and just chill. Yeah. And so, you know, the same situation with two different narratives, two completely different narratives. So we pick the narrative. So with the stuff that happens to us that might make us go, oh my gosh, I was so dumb, I can't believe I did that. Yeah. Instead of that going, oh, well what did I learn? Yeah. You know, what, what did I learn from that? And how did, how can I grow from that?
Mark Graban (26m 56s):
Yeah, no, that's, that's, that's great. And it makes me think of the late great Stephen Covey of, you know, the seven habits fame. I, I had an opportunity once, I'm very thankful for, to, to do a brief interview with him. And I was, I was there in person. It's one of the, the few times where I was actually like holding a recorder up to somebody and he, you know, I, I asked him a question about, you know, respecting people in the workplace and what does that mean to you? And I'm, I'm quite certain he actually used the word love. That means you love oth, you know, others, I'm, I'm, I'm, I'm paraphrasing and I, I could link to the conversation, but that, that really struck me as being really powerful.
Mark Graban (27m 43s):
And, and then when, you know, he, he taught a class he was emphasizing, and I try to reminding myself of this, of putting a pause between stimulus and response is something humans should have the unique ability to do maybe. But we sometimes struggle with that. And, and I think what you're saying makes me think of like, you know, putting in that pause if someone's being unkind to you, we have, we have, we have a choice,
Kim Sorrelle (28m 13s):
Right? Yeah. Yeah. I love that, that there's so much wisdom in that. And I'm thinking about how things in my own life would be different if I put in the pause more often. You know, it's easy to, you know, like as a couple, it can be so easy you get in an argument over some stupid thing. Cuz usually they're over some stupid thing, right? And so, you know, you might start with a conversation that turns into more of a confrontation and pretty soon, you know, your blood pressure's rising and your mind's going crazy. And then you're going and, and, and, and that thing that you did that last week and then two years ago when you did this and you know, whatever, you know, we bring up stuff from the past because we're at this heightened phase of our, our bodies adrenaline's, rushing, and all these things are happening to us.
Kim Sorrelle (29m 4s):
And if you can take a pause and instead of going to that place, yeah. Things would be a lot different.
Mark Graban (29m 13s):
We, we can choose calm, we can choose kindness, we can choose love.
Kim Sorrelle (29m 21s):
Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. It is a choice.
Mark Graban (29m 23s):
Yeah. And, and so I wanna ask you about how you apply what you've learned to the workplace, country club, other settings. Steve, Steven Covey, like, I could be wrong, but I'm quite certain he used the word love. And I'll tell you, when I started my career in manufacturing, nobody went anywhere near that word. Love. In healthcare, people do more often use the word love in a platonic, you know, we, we love our patients, we can be loving and you know, all of that. But like what, what have you learned about, you know, choosing love or being loving toward employees or what, you know, what advice do you have for others if they're running a business like you do?
Kim Sorrelle (30m 6s):
Yeah. Well I would say first of all, one thing that love does is recognize is that everybody is this unique individual masterpiece, right? This one of a kind. Nobody ever like you before, nobody ever will be like you again. You are the only you, you are the only one that has walked in your shoes. So everyone has a past, everyone was raised in different homes. You know, we all have stuff that we bring to today. You know, all of our days that we've led so far lead us to today. And so to pause and take a moment when you're questioning why somebody responded a certain way, realize, well they responded that way because of who they are.
Kim Sorrelle (30m 53s):
Because not so much necessarily who they are, but what they know, what they've been taught and and and what they know. And so to give Grace is loving to, you know, question yourself first and say, you know, what could I do differently? Yeah. What kind of training or what, what could I do differently to help this, this person on my staff? But respecting and recognizing that they have a family and they're an individual. And my, my dad was old school, you know, 1960s mad manner, I don't know, kind of leadership, right? Yeah. And, and he used to say, Kim, you gotta swear at people sometimes.
Kim Sorrelle (31m 35s):
And I'd go, I'd say, dad, if I ever have to swear at somebody, we shouldn't be working together because nobody should ever be disrespected like that. You know, things should not be so bad that you have to swear at somebody. I think, you know, you love helps you keep that perspective that each individual and grateful, my gosh, so grateful for the people that would put in the time to, to work for me. Yeah. You know, just how nice.
Mark Graban (32m 1s):
I'm sorry, what was that last part? I cut you off.
Kim Sorrelle (32m 3s):
It's just so, it's just so wonderful, you know? Yes. The the commitment and loyalty and friendships that develop.
Mark Graban (32m 10s):
Yeah. Yeah. And, and and, and and that's, yeah. And I, I love the way you, you phrase it, questioning yourself first. Like a lot of times leaders for, for different reasons cuz someone's made a mistake or there, there there are problems. It seems like the default, like, you know, leaders will jump in to blame the person. And I've even seen, you know, situations where people didn't reflect and learn the way you did with your grocery store. They will just keep hiring and firing and curse all those employees. Or why, why do I without thinking like, okay, if if the problem really is a series of crappy employees, like what, what role do you play in that?
Mark Graban (32m 55s):
And I've had other, I've had other guests share that reflection where it took a couple of mistakes before they realized, okay, I'm, as you put it, okay, it's time to question, question myself first instead of just pointing fingers at others. That's that. I appreciate you bringing that up.
Kim Sorrelle (33m 11s):
Yeah, well I think it's, it's just so, so true. Anytime I've ever felt like I had to let somebody go, I would first think I say anytime, like my whole life I did this, this is something I learned to do. But I would first think, did I train them right? Did I, have I equipped them? Do they, they have the necessary tools that they need to really do the job? And then I'd question, are they in the right position? Is there a different position in the company that they should be in? Maybe that's not their skillset, maybe that's just not where they should be. But the whole time recognizing that they're a person, they're a real person with a life that I love this person and you want the best for them.
Kim Sorrelle (33m 57s):
And so if I believe that I have indeed trained them well and if I believe that they really are not in the right position, and so they're not gonna be happy there either, and get to a point where I have to cut the ties to, to make it not so painful, you know, to let them realize that you see their value, it just doesn't happen to be in that position.
Mark Graban (34m 25s):
Right. Yeah. Sometimes it's a matter of fit. Absolutely. Yeah. Right. You, you're, you're triggering one other memory, and this is a very vivid memory back to, forgive me, General Motors, 1995 or so, some visiting executive coming to the plant and I can't even picture the room and kind of picture the table that he sort of pounded on, but I'll clean it up. But the, the, the, the, the very direct quote was something like, you know, you've got a bleeping swear at people or they don't bleeping know that you're bleeping serious. I mean, it was like, okay, like that's
Kim Sorrelle (35m 1s):
Was that my dad? I wonder if that was my dad.
Mark Graban (35m 6s):
I mean there and yeah, that was not a healthy good environment, but long story short, we got a new leader for, for that facility. And you know, the, the, the, the attitude of, of a leader and the respect, the true respect that they have for employees, that, that, that makes such a huge difference.
Kim Sorrelle (35m 26s):
It does, it does. I mean, you're at work a lot of hours in a week, right? You spend a, you spend more time at work than you do with your spouse a lot of times, or certainly with your kids or with whoever. And so it's a big part of your life and people deserve to be resp deserve isn't a word that i I throw around lightly. I, I'm not fond of that word, but, but people do deserve to be treated with respect at work. Yeah.
Mark Graban (35m 57s):
That's great. So before we wrap up here, our guest has been Kim Sorrelle. Her most recent book again is love is, is, is is there another topic that you've decided whether it's a full year or not, to dive into and and to, to research and think about and write something new?
Kim Sorrelle (36m 15s):
Yeah, well, interesting and question, yes. I'm actually writing a book on grief right now. Grief is a in a place that we don't always give each other grace to grief. And it's so individual and you know, there's this list of depths of grief that you're supposed to go through and not everybody does. And, you know, sometimes you need permission to grieve and understand what, what grief is. And so I'm co-authoring with a friend of mine who's a medium. So it, she has a, a different perspective on grief as well.
Kim Sorrelle (36m 56s):
So it's, it's been fun, it's interesting. It'll be good.
Mark Graban (36m 60s):
I'm sure people can sign up for more information through your website. Again, our guest is kim cll kim cll.com I'll, I'll put a link in the show notes so you can get there. And then the final thing I wanna offer and share, cuz I, I downloaded this, I took you up on the offer, Kim, you spent a year looking at love You, you've set up maybe an easier, shorter challenge, a 14 day love challenge. There's an ebook that people can go and, and, and download. Just tell, tell us about that real quickly of, you know, why somebody should go and do that.
Kim Sorrelle (37m 33s):
Well, I think there's such misunderstanding about love and when you really understand what love actually is and how to live it, it really is life changing for all the good reasons in all good ways. And so it's an easy challenge. It's just reading something about love every day, short and sweet, and then thinking about it that day and, and trying to live it out that day. See what that feels like. And so it's there, there are 14 is and ISTs of Love in that chapter, and so it took me a little longer than a year, but, so that's why it's a 14 day love challenge. And when you sign up for it, I will send you, if you sign up on my website for it, you can do it without signing up.
Kim Sorrelle (38m 18s):
You can do it either way. If you do, I will send you a free ww l d what would love do Wristband. Yeah. Because if you're gonna answer any question with what would love do, you're going to be doing the right thing.
Mark Graban (38m 33s):
That's a perfectly said. That's a a lovely note to end on. So again, our guest has been Kim Sorrelle most recent book. Love is Kim, I've loved having you here as a guest. Thank you. Thank you so much for, for joining us.
Kim Sorrelle (38m 47s):
Thank you so much for having me. I love your show. It should be on everybody's podcast list and everybody in the world should listen to you. You have such wisdom and I just so enjoy you and your show. Thank you for having me.
Mark Graban (38m 60s):
Thanks again to Kim Sorrelle for being such a fantastic guest today. To learn more about her, look for links in the show notes or go to markgraban.com/mistake205. As always, I want to thank you for listening. I hope this podcast inspires you to reflect on your own mistakes, how you can learn from them or turn them into a positive. I've had listeners tell me they started being more open and honest about mistakes in their work and they're trying to create a workplace culture where it's safe to speak up about problems because that leads to more improvement and better business results. If you have feedback or a story to share, you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org. And again, our website is myfavoritemistakepodcast.com.