Building a Culture That Gets Better Results with Lyn Wineman


How can we lead our organizations into a better future? By taking care of the people who will help you get there!

Our latest guest Lyn Wineman leads with curiosity, purpose, and enthusiasm. In an impactful conversation about the culture at her advertising agency KidGlov, Lyn reminds us that all it takes to get good results in your organization is being good to your people. Start with asking what they actually want, then do your best to support them so they can better support you and your business. 

Listen to our latest episode now to learn more about cultivating an effective workplace culture where people actually want to work.

Credits: Raechel Sherwood for Original Score Composition.

Links:
YouTube Channel: Uncover The Human

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/wearesiamo

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wearesiamo/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WeAreSiamo

Website: https://www.wearesiamo.com/

Transcript

EPISODE 74

 

[INTRODUCTION]

Alex Cullimore: Well, hi, Cristina. 

Cristina Amigoni: Hi. How are you? 

Alex Cullimore: I am doing well. We just had an absolute blast of a conversation with Lyn Wineman from KidGlov, the agency she founded, marketing agencies she founded. Honestly, very inspiring mission. And just a lot of great ideas on how to create a culture of trust and actually take care of people. The real action items that come from that and the reasons you do it. Very informative and, honestly, just a blast. She's very fun.

Cristina Amigoni: Yes, very much of a blast. It definitely – It makes me very glad that we have a podcast, and we get to talk to people like her. It's the highlight of the week.

Alex Cullimore: These are the things that make the more difficult portions of weeks possible. It's very fun to do this. And I hope everybody else gets some enjoyment out of this, because this is just – It's fun for us. And I love sharing this with everyone. 

Cristina Amigoni: Yes. Yeah, check out Lyn, and KidGlov, and the episode. Enjoy.

Alex Cullimore: Enjoy.

Welcome to Uncover the Human where every conversation revolves around enhancing all the connections in our lives. 

Cristina Amigoni: Whether that's with our families, co-workers or even ourselves. 

Alex Cullimore: When we can be our authentic selves, magic happens.

Cristina Amigoni: This is Cristina Amigoni. 

Alex Cullimore: And this is Alex Cullimore. Let’s dive in.

Cristina Amigoni: Let’s dive in. 

Authenticity means freedom.”

“Authenticity means going with your gut.”

“Authenticity is bringing 100% of yourself not just the parts you think people want to see, but all of you.”

“Being authentic means that you have integrity to yourself.”

“It's the way our intuition is whispering something deep-rooted and true.”

“Authenticity is when you truly know yourself. You remember and connect to who you were before others told you who you should be.”

“It's transparency, relatability. No frills. No makeup. Just being.”

 [INTERVIEW]

Alex Cullimore: Welcome back to this episode of Uncover the Human. We are joined today with our guest, Lyn Wineman. Welcome to the podcast, Lyn. 

Lyn Wineman: Hey, guys. I am really looking forward to this fun conversation. It will be fun, right? You're not going to put me on the hot seat, and grill me, and make me feel sad or cry. Do you ever make people cry on your podcast? 

Cristina Amigoni: Not yet. But there's a new challenge. 

Lyn Wineman: Okay. All right. All right. We'll see. We'll see.

Cristina Amigoni: We'll see what we can do for this one. 

Alex Cullimore: We have yet to create a hot seat. But that'll be up on the next – 

Lyn Wineman: All right. I have a seat warmer in my car. I could go replicate that when we're done. 

Cristina Amigoni: I do have people cry in my coaching sessions. But not on the podcast yet. 

Lyn Wineman: All right. Okay. I’m not a crier. So, we'll see. We'll see.

Cristina Amigoni: We'll stick to laughing. 

Lyn Wineman: All right. Better. 

Alex Cullimore: Lyn, you founded a company called KidGlov, which you just told us is newly a B corp certified in Nebraska, which is incredible. First of all, congratulations on that. That's awesome. 

Lyn Wineman: Thank you. 

Alex Cullimore: And secondly, let's talk a little bit about KidGlov. What is it? What does it do? What's your philosophy for it? 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, absolutely. KidGlov is a full-service boutique advertising agency. And what that means is we do pretty much everything under the marketing umbrella. But we're small. We're small enough that we can really take care of people, right? 

And our purpose statement is that we put a megaphone in front of those who are doing good in the world. We really intentionally go after clients who are non-profits, healthcare organizations, social impact movements, and purpose-driven businesses. I mean, that's really awesome for our culture, because our people come to work every day knowing that the work that they do is impacting humans, hopefully, in a very positive way, which is really fun. 

Our brand, KidGlov, was very, very intentionally created to differentiate us from other advertising agencies. I don't know if your listeners are in that advertising or marketing world. But it's been referred to as a hyper-competitive industry, which then in turn does lead to very frequently toxic cultures, right? 

I mean, I kind of came up through a midsize midwestern-based agency that handled national clients. And a lot of what I did was tried to, as positively as possible, convince people to work nights and weekends, right? Like, "Wouldn't this be fun? Let's bring in pizza. I’ve got a bottle of scotch in my filing cabinet. I’ll give you movie tickets." My daughter even actually refers to growing up in the conference room in that agency, because she thought that all kids went and watched cartoons and drew on the marker board on Saturday mornings in the office conference room. 

KidGlov is all based on that statement of treating people with kid gloves. That extends to the people who work for us. It extends to the people that we work for. Very thoughtfully putting together their brands, their campaigns, and their strategies. But then also, for our people. Very thoughtfully building our culture to make it the kind of place where people want to work. 

Cristina Amigoni: Very much needed everywhere.

Alex Cullimore: Yes.

Lyn Wineman: I tell you what, it makes it a lot more fun, right? As a founder, you pour your heart and soul into this. And it's not very rewarding to come into an office where people act like it’s drudgery, right? I’m an enthusiastic person, and I like to work with other people who are enthusiastic as well. 

Alex Cullimore: I think the way to get there is by crushing them slowly. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, right. Yes. The meetings will continue until you're all happy. Yeah. No. Soul crushing is – I mean, I have to admit, I have had my moments where I’ve gone on tirades and something I’m really working on as a leader. But no. Soul crushing is not one of our core values. 

Cristina Amigoni: I kind of wish that some companies would put that as their core values when that's what they actually do in action. Because it would make the whole recruiting process a lot easier if you were just not lied to about core values. And then you're going to meetings and you're just, yeah, raked over calls. And I’m like – 

Lyn Wineman: I think there are some code words, though, right? Like, hustle. And I think there are some code words that people are getting somewhat savvy and looking out for, "Oh, I bet that means soul-crushing." 

Alex Cullimore: It's things like, "We'll get the job done at any cost." Like, "Okay. Huh?" One of those first steps is going to be the people. 

Cristina Amigoni: Yeah. Soul crushing. 

 Lyn Wineman: And I'm going to tell you, sometimes people think, when I describe that to people, sometimes they think, "Oh, that means you guys are soft." And we're not soft. We're not soft at all. I talk about having fire in the belly. My folks, really, they care about the work, they care about the clients. But they do that because they want to, right? And they do that because we create a culture, a culture where they can do that. I would say we're anything but soft. But you can have that balance. 

Cristina Amigoni: Well, and I bet they go above and beyond voluntarily and with all their hearts and souls because of that. As opposed to hiding problems. Doing just the minimum. Smiling and nodding and then doing the opposite. Resisting change. All the fun things that happen. 

Lyn Wineman: I love it when people break out into laughter and song. As a matter of fact, I have been on Zoom calls all day today, which means I’m in my office with the door closed. And earlier, I got off a Zoom call, and I could hear laughing. And I opened my door and I’m like, "I love the murmur of laughter happening. Even though I’m in my office intensely on Zoom calls, that just makes me very happy." 

Cristina Amigoni: It's a great indication that the culture is definitely on the right track. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, yeah. 

Alex Cullimore: I think some people miss, too, and they interpret things as soft or too easy if you're trying to like to be good to your people. They think. No. This is how you get better results. And you enjoy doing it. Like, why would you not want both of these things? It's always confusing.

Lyn Wineman: I’m really glad you said that because I feel like I am mature enough that I started my career in the 80s and the 90s when there weren't a lot of women in advertising. And the particular office that I worked in, there were not a lot of women, particularly in leadership. And I feel like I was taught that you have to be tough. You have to be tough. You have to be strict. Don't let anybody take advantage of you. Don't let anyone think you're soft. 

It's kind of funny as I was saying that earlier. Why do I think soft is a bad word? But it typically is in business. And I kind of feel like even though our KidGlov culture has been built on that, and we've focused on it for the last decade, I feel like I’m a recovering tough girl and learning to kind of proudly share my viewpoint amongst my peers, even my peers who are men who I may have been like hesitant to share that with in the past because I felt like maybe they wouldn't respect me. And I love that the world has changed enough that those things have become in fashion. 

Cristina Amigoni: And hopefully they stick around more than fashion trends. 

 Lyn Wineman: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I was at a conference. I was at a conference last week called the Do More Good Conference. And I got to speak on a panel. And then one of the keynote speakers launched by talking about how love was an important characteristic in the workplace. And I was just like I’ve never heard – If I can say this. I hope it's okay. You can cut it if it's not. But I’ve never heard a man like get up in front of a conference and say, "Love is important in your culture." And I was like, "Right on. Yes! That's fantastic. Yeah." 

Cristina Amigoni: Was it, Marcus Buckingham, by chance? 

Lyn Wineman: No. Marcus Buckingham, though, was at the conference. But it was Jay Wilkinson who is the founder of the Do More Good Movement. And Firespring, who was the first certified B Corp in the state of Nebraska. And kind of an idol of mine.

Cristina Amigoni: Excellent. Exciting. Very exciting. 

Alex Cullimore: Yeah. I always think it's funny when people are like – Well, your people can take advantage of you if you're being nice to them or something. It's such a cynical view of people. And if you start to treat them the other way, then they absolutely will start to try – You'll create this thing that you're trying to avoid. Whereas you could just not treat people this way. 

Lyn Wineman: And I’m sure that the people who mentored me in the early days of my career were like, "You have to be tough." I am very sure that they were well-meaning. But you're right. Just the opposite. Just the opposite happens.

Alex Cullimore: Yeah. It does come from good intentions. It just also seems to miss looking at the results. You treat people like they're trying to get away with something and suddenly you'll start to find people trying to get away with it. 

Lyn Wineman: Right. Right. I don't know. How do you guys feel about Simon Sinek, since you're kind of in this business? Do you like him? Or do you not like him? Can I ask?

Cristina Amigoni: Oh, I’m assuming he's going to be my future best friend. So, we do like him. 

Lyn Wineman: Okay. All right. All right. 

Cristina Amigoni: I have his book, Better Together, right there – 

Lyn Wineman: Oh, I love that. I see it now on your shelf. Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek is one of my favorite books. And I love – If you've read the book, you know there's this like chart in the book that talks about how the perfect culture has a culture that produces dopamine and serotonin, and which sounds a little bit weird when you talk about it. But I love that balance of safety and challenge. 

But I love the idea that if people don't have to invest brain power in being defensive or putting up their protective shields, then they can just like use their brain to do the work, right? And that's why I believe, as a leader – And I’ve evolved to this. I haven't always been this way. But my number one goal is to take care of the people on my team. Because I have learned that if I take care of them, they in turn – If I take care of them, we don't have to talk about the quality of the work, because the quality of the work happens. We don't have to talk about taking care of the clients, because that just happens. Our culture is to take care of people. And I’m modeling that by taking care of my team. 

Cristina Amigoni: That's wonderful. It's interesting because Alex and I have been talking about that quite a bit recently. And we've had a fair or unfair share of situations where we spent way more energy justifying what we're doing and justifying our presence than actually doing it. I’m like, "Okay, can we get yes all of this wasted time and actually get to work and figure things out and provide solutions?" Because, literally, this is a waste of energy, brain energy, and time, and it burns people out. Eventually, I’ll be sick of having to justify what I’m doing and explain everything, walk on eggshells, and make sure I don't step on toes. And I’m like, "Can we all be adults and not kindergarteners?" And realize that nobody is intentionally, hopefully, stepping on anybody's toes. It's literally a team effort, and we all have different perspectives. That's it. 

Lyn Wineman: That's it, right? It is kind of funny. I mean, I have a good friend who uses the term humans are fascinating, which usually is her saying – That was really weird and unfortunate. Like, she's ruined the word fascinating for me. But humans are – Like, why are we doing this, right? Life could be easier. Yeah. Yeah.

Cristina Amigoni: So much easier. 

Lyn Wineman: Let's take the easy route.

Alex Cullimore: We fostered a lot of cats. And so, at first, we had like little kittens. And like that was it. We didn't have like any of the other cats when we just had the kittens that were like abandoned or something. They're very small. And it's a ton of work to take care of all of them individually. And we occasionally would get offered – Well, there's a mom and their cats. But, like, God, it's already so much work with like the babies. But if there's like the mom and she's defensive about this and she doesn't want us around, how do we take care of this? But eventually, we had a group that had the mom with it. It turns out way easier. You just take care of the mom. She takes care of them. And you're done. It makes me think of – 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, I like that. 

Alex Cullimore: These are the people you're talking about. 

Lyn Wineman: A person who takes care of animals, I think that's a good indicator of high character, Alex. 

 Alex Cullimore: I think it's a good example of taking care of people because they'll take care of it. And you're in the advertising industry. And you have to tease out maximum creativity. And how do you possibly do that if people feel like you're standing on their neck? How do you get the right creative answers? 

Lyn Wineman: No. It doesn't usually work very well. If you've had to work 50 or 60 hours a week and you're – Somebody told me this way once. When you're the stories you tell yourself in your head as a creative person, right? If you think that what you present is going to be just trumped on, then you're going to go with something very safe. Or you're going to do like a dozen options. And that's a giant waste of time. 

And so, yeah, you kind of have to – Your self-talk has to be, "Hey, I understand what's happening here. I understand what the client needs to accomplish. I have all the information I need. Here's the best solution." Yeah.

Cristina Amigoni: Speaking our love language right now.

Alex Cullimore: Yeah, I think you just spoke to regulatory souls on that one. 

Lyn Wineman: Yup, yup, yup, yup. 

Cristina Amigoni: Here's a question for you. Maybe this is the hot seat we've been talking about. 

Lyn Wineman: See, Cristina? That's my strategy. I’m going to just keep talking and then you can't ask me any questions. 

Cristina Amigoni: No. There seems to be a misunderstanding, or at least a misalignment on what taking care of people means in the sense when you talk to most leaders, they'll say like, "Yes, my focus is taking care of people. I take care of people." And then you walk into meetings and people are yelled at. Things happen behind closed doors. And it just starts from there and it goes on and on and on and in many different ways. 

But then when you go back to like, "Well, but I do take care of people. I push them. I motivate them. I care about them." What's missing? Because there's some disconnection there when everybody says that they take care of their people. And yet given that there are about 4.3, 5 million people resigning a month right now, clearly, they don't feel taken care of. 

Lyn Wineman: No. I think that's a great point. I read this once too. I read that a very high percentage of CEOs feel like their number one differentiator is their people. But very few, a very low percentage of people feel taken care of, right? 

And when I tell people – As a matter of fact, I interviewed a young woman for an open position we have this afternoon. And when she asked me what makes us different, and I explained, it's because we take care of people. I’m like, "Really? This should not be a differentiator in our industry, right?" It feels so obvious. But yet, it's rare, and it's also hard. Sometimes it is hard. Sometimes it would be easier just to have a sweatshop, right? Sometimes it would be easier to just bribe people to work on weekends, right? But it's not the right thing to do. Yeah.

Alex Cullimore: It's easier for a very short time, and then you'll run people out. And it's funny that people are like – We'll say like, "We're taking care of the people." As if there are 4.3 million people every month who are just blissfully happy and just happen to leave their jobs. I feel so taken care of, I thought I'd – 

Lyn Wineman: Yes. I was blissfully happy. And therefore, I’m going to leave. I’m out of here. Yeah. I know. I know. I know. I know. It's crazy. 

Cristina Amigoni: What does taking care – Oh, go ahead, Alex. 

Alex Cullimore: Yeah, that's exactly the question. Go for it. 

Cristina Amigoni: Yeah. Two faces, one brain. 

Lyn Wineman: I love you, guys. 

Cristina Amigoni: What are some ways that you take care of your people at Kidglov?

Lyn Wineman: I am glad that you – I think the first thing we did or continue to do that was really right is we actually asked people. We asked them what do you want? And because we were at a time – We did this a few years ago. It was right before the pandemic. And we'd always leaned into the culture. And it's like, "All right, what's the next step in our culture?" And we put together this survey. And "Do you want more parties or lunches? What do you want?" 

And, really, what we heard from them is we want a great environment where we can do our work. Right? We want to work with people we like. We want to work for clients that we care about. We don't really – And then we want to go home. Right? We want to go home and enjoy our families or our hobbies and so forth.

We stopped. We do have group gatherings. But we cut back on them, right? We cut back on the forced fun things. We don't have an alcohol cart in our office, which is kind of unusual. A lot of agencies, I think that's a code. If somebody promotes that they've got a bar in-house, it means they want you to work really long hours, right? Because that's the only way you're going to use that bar, is if you're there after five o'clock or on the weekends. 

Cristina Amigoni: It means you're going to need the bar. 

Lyn Wineman: It means you're going to need the bar, right? I mean, we've been known – I’m a believer. You should always have a couple of bottles of champagne in the fridge because you might need to break out into a spontaneous celebration. But, yeah, we asked people what they wanted. 

 We also have a project that I’m very proud of. We call it Creative Nirvana. Because in agencies, we focus on creativity, and we have a creative department. We have an account service department, which is part of that project because they're very critical to providing the tools and the things that are needed for creativity. But what that is, is an all-agency initiative where we're continuously working on what is the next thing? What is the next thing? 

I mean, one thing that kind of bubbled up as we started this project last year was, "Hey, I’m spending so much time in zoom meetings that I don't have enough focused time to do my work." We did some research. We looked at our own data. And so, we've now blocked two half days during the week as meeting-free time. And so, people come in on those days and know that "I’m going to have that blocked time to do some work." 

Our people wanted mentoring and development. And so, we use a system called Catalytic Coaching, where it's three steps. And the leaders listen to their employees. Then the second step is for the leaders to provide goals and areas of improvement. The third step is for the employee to write their own annual performance plan. And then we meet monthly to talk through that plan and, "How's it going?" "How can I support you?" "What can I do?" We're intentionally, intentionally mentoring. And then just continually talking about how we can, together as a team, improve our craft. 

Alex Cullimore: Those are all fantastic ideas. 

Cristina Amigoni: Yes. Can we clone you into all other organizations and then we'll just go on vacation? 

Lyn Wineman: I want to clone me because there's so many – There are so many things I want to do. That's my number one thing. I am kind of a restless person, right? I’m always like, "What's the new thing? What's the new thing?" And so, it's a good thing for me that our CEO – First of all, she's a certified meditation and yoga instructor. She brings the calm to my restlessness. But she's also a perfectionist. The two of us balance each other out. I’m not allowed to implement new ideas while we're still working on the last round. 

Cristina Amigoni: I like that. 

Lyn Wineman: That's something we work on. 

Cristina Amigoni: That's a good rule. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, right? But then every once in a while, she has to finish the perfectionism part of her. And we have to move on too. So, we're a good balance to each other. Yeah. 

Alex Cullimore: Balance is especially important. I mean, you can't do everything from one point in a view, which is funny that we talk about that one. Cristina and I have a single brain and two faces here. But there are – You do need the extra viewpoints. And that's definitely true in creativity. You're creating things and you also have to hone them and critique them in the right way. Plus, you're talking about the balance between the CEO pushing and the CEO – Making sure everything is still buckled down in the CEO. Make sure we still continue. 

What are ways you find are especially important to create that safety to have that balance? Because that tends to be so crucial. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah. I mean, I bring a couple of rules that I brought from – I learned in parenting, right? I was a no gossip, no bullying, no ridiculing parent, right? And I didn't tolerate that from my kids. I don't tolerate it in the workplace. It's just not what we do. And I think that's a big part of what creates safety. 

We talk about, one of our core values is loyalty, and we define that as we have each other's backs. And I think that having someone's back means that you're there to give them a safe place to fail if that happens. But you're also willing to have that fierce conversation, right? Sometimes I think the greatest stress is me trying to guess how you're criticizing me but not telling me, right? And that happens a lot in the advertising world, right? 

And so, we actually do it a couple of times a year. We talk about like how do you have a fierce conversation? And feedback is a gift. And I know the thing about my job that I hate the most. I hate to tell a creative team, like, "Hey, guys. I really think we missed the mark here. And I think we got to go back to the drawing board." 

But the worst thing would be if I didn't say that, but then turned the corner and went to everyone else and was like, "Oh my goodness! I can't believe what they did," right? I think that's a really, really important part of our culture, like having that feedback.

Alex Cullimore: Makes sense. And if you've posted it perfectly. If you have that loyalty and you have the established, "Hey, we're in this just because we want to be in this together." And that will require tough conversations. Otherwise, they always say, if there's no conflict, one party's not being honest. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, that's right. That's right. 

Alex Cullimore: Like, there are no disagreements. 

Lyn Wineman: Right? Even when people come to me – I’m not perfect at this. But when people come to me with criticism or hard feedback, I always try to start with thank you. Thank you for that. I may not agree with it. I might not be able to act on it in the way that they want. But I appreciate them having the courage to confront me. Yeah. 

Alex Cullimore: I love that practice.

 Cristina Amigoni: Yeah. And that's so crucial. Yeah. It's not the feedback. It's not easy. But it's not the actual message that's the tough part. It's whether there's honesty and integrity behind it that's the tough part, I find it. It's wondering why didn't you tell me sooner and waited until the last second when now it is a big deal? Or why you know is this done not privately, but it's done in public, in public settings? Or whatever it is. Like, it's not the message itself. It's more about can I actually trust you now? Or can I not trust you? Because when am I going to get sucker-punched the next time without knowing it's coming because there wasn't that upfront constant and continuous conversation? 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah. Yes. That was really well said, Cristina. 

Cristina Amigoni: Thank you. Been sucker punched a few times. 

Lyn Wineman: Yes. Once you've been sucker-punched a couple of times – Yeah. I mean, honestly, we have people that come to us from other environments, other agencies. And sometimes it takes them a little while to believe that it's okay, right? To believe that it's okay to share their feelings, or that things are – The other shoe is not going to drop on them. 

Alex Cullimore: I absolutely was just talking about this the other day. I switched out of this pretty toxic job into one that was very focused on people, like, pretty open. But I did not trust that at all. And it literally took, I think, maybe a year and a half before I looked around. I was like, "Wait, I think maybe I could trust this." And I still feel like – Cristina and I always called them gremlins. Started to crop up every once in a while, where you're like, "Hmm. I don't think I trust this." And you have to really investigate like is that just because I had bad experiences before? Or is it actually something like it seems off here? 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah, yeah. I get that. Because sometimes situations can be kind of syrupy sweet, right? And then you're like, "Wait a minute. What's going on here?" Yeah, yeah. 

Cristina Amigoni: Yeah, they definitely can. What are some of the ways you see your people, who are feeling taken care of, take care of the customers and your clients?

Lyn Wineman: Yeah. I think that we are really known for feeling a high level of accountability. Sometimes, maybe even a project is more important to us than it is to our clients. Really making sure that they're going to achieve their results. Or that we're like looking after the details. I think that's, one way that we do it. 

Oh, gosh, Cristina. I had another way in my mind, and it's just left my mind. Maybe I’ll think of it. I’m losing my mind. 

Alex Cullimore: Let's just circle back on that. You've also talked about that you're saying thank you after you get feedback. That takes a lot of training in yourself. Do you find that that is a big part of it? I mean, taking care of people, there's a lot of externalizing, a lot of taking care of people. But there has to be a lot of starting with yourself. You have to be able to manage your own emotions and lead yourself there. Have you had experience with that? 

Lyn Wineman: We do quite a bit of soft training. I mean, with soft skill training. Probably not nearly to the extent that you guys do. I’m sure not nearly to the extent. But we really take a lot of time to focus on what's creating stress. What are the barriers? 

We have a couple of people, more of the older millennial generation, that tend to be workaholics, right? And they have kind of come to us with already this ingrained nature. And I know this because I have it as well. That, "Hey, if I’m not the last one here, and if I’m not working at night or over the weekends, I’m not doing my job." And just really even trying to break people off that like, "Why are you doing that?" And so, I think those are the kinds of things we try to think about or look about. 

We do training and role-playing on having fierce conversations, which I think is an important one. And we talk a lot about building confidence, which I think is a key one as well. 

Alex Cullimore: If it's okay with you, I’m going to start stealing the phrase, fierce conversations. I think that's one of the better ways of describing it. I love that.

Lyn Wineman: Actually, I stole it from – Actually, I like to – In our business, we know that words matter, right? And so, we don't like to say that we're stealing. We like to say that we're taking inspiration from. But there's actually is a book, right? Taking inspiration from. Words matter. There's actually a book called Fierce Conversations that actually has steps to take, like, get yourself ready to have this conversation. Yeah. Yeah. 

I think another indicator maybe or indicator and outcome of having a great culture is empowering everyone on the team to be part of improving it. Part of our creative nirvana project is the fact that everyone is involved. Everyone has a voice. And I don't want to leave people like out on a ledge on their own. But it's like, "Hey, if you have a problem with something, let's fix it," right? 

If you feel like this person is not giving you what you need, or it's too noisy in your workspace, or you don't have enough time to work on a project, then you don't just have to sit there and stew about it. Let's figure it out together. I think that's a good thing that I’m very proud of as well. 

I think the other thing, is we have what we call the two-time rule. And so, if we've presented something to a client of ours and they come back to us and they give us feedback that we think is wrong, like, it will not be good for them. And that could be from a variety of different things. To changing the headline, to the images, to all kinds of things. We'll go back to them two times in the spirit of education, right? Like, "tell me more about why you want to make this change. Here's what I think might happen if we do this or do that." And we go back two times. Because I don't ever want our people to feel like, "Oh, well, the client said this. So, therefore, we just have to do that." Because everybody always forgets. 

At the end of the day, when the campaign launches, everybody always forgets the scenario if you're not achieving results, right? And so, we go back two times. And even after the two times, if we still have to do something that feels like it's against our instinct, we never do anything that's immoral or lying, but against our instincts. We still ask our team, "You make it the best you can make it." 

If that is the situation, you make it the best you can make it. But you've gone back two times with love, with the spirit of education, to try and change their mind. I think that principle just empowers everyone to try and make everything the best it can be.

Cristina Amigoni: I like that a lot. 

Alex Cullimore: Definitely going to take that inspiration.

Lyn Wineman: There you go. Take inspiration from that. That's right. Two-time rule. Yeah. Yeah.

Cristina Amigoni: How do you find – Or how do you distinguish whether a client is a fit or not a fit? 

Lyn Wineman: We used to – At one time, we had a test. It's like these are the five things we want from a client. And we knew it was not very often that you would get all five. But it's like, "Hey if they're low on this thing, they better be great on these other four." 

We don't really go through the test anymore, because I think we have more of a feel for that. Part of it, though, is the brand that we put out into the world. The fact that our name is KidGlov. The fact that we say we're the people helping the people who change the world. The fact that we talk about love and being a certified B Corp. We generally do not attract mean clients that are just looking for the lowest rate, right? 

Our brand is put out there very, very intentionally. We tend to attract clients who want to make a difference, and who know that their brand is important to their success. Who knows that they want a balance of strategy and creativity? 

I mean, we got a button in our logo. And you were kind of quirky. We tend to attract the type of client that is a good fit for us because of how we intentionally put ourselves out there. And I guess you could say that our brand is very authentic to who we are, right? We know who we are. We know what we're good at. We put that out in the world, and we're successful enough at putting that out there in the world that we're able to attract back enough clients to make a go of it. 

 Alex Cullimore: A great example of someone like the long-term, short-term. You can either try or bribe people to work on the weekends, so you get something in the short term. You can try and like have the biggest net in the world and try and just get everybody and take as many leads as you possibly can. Or you can be directed about it. It might take longer. But then you have rather than – I’ve been at so many companies where it gets to a point where there is X number of customers. And now you're suddenly ranking customers. You're like, "Okay. Well, these are the ones that really fit what we need, and what we can do. And here are the ones that are really detracting from this. We're spending all this kind of time supporting them, whatever." And they have to suddenly now break out that. And now you're spending all of these extra hours trying to decide how to support the things that you never could have really supported in the first place. Either you Frankenstein yourself or you wait and – Well, that one. 

Lyn Wineman: I love that you said that. I love the phrase Frankensteining, too. Because I know exactly what you mean. And so, that's what, too. We know that when we work with nonprofits, social impact movements, and purpose-driven businesses, we know how to handle those organizations. We're able to go into the situation with a high level of confidence. This is what we do. And so, we can present with confidence. We don't have to reinvent the wheel every time. Because, also, we know what it takes to make a fundraising event work. We are pretty well-informed on what it takes to promote behavioral health, healthcare, recycling, or different kinds of things like that. It gives our team confidence. It gives our clients confidence. It makes us more efficient because we're not Frankensteining it every time – We're not in the back Googling how to market X, Y, Z, right? We know. We how to – 

Cristina Amigoni: After you sign the contract. Yeah. 

Lyn Wineman: Right. If somebody is Googling how to market social impact, they may be ending up on our website actually. 

Cristina Amigoni: I’m sure that we could continue this conversation for days. And we will when you come into town, and we go for a wine.

Lyn Wineman: I am so looking forward to that. I’m going to put your sommelier skills, Cristina, to the test. And I cannot wait.

Cristina Amigoni: I’m going to be in the hot seat. 

Lyn Wineman: But it'll be so much fun. 

Alex Cullimore: I'll be Frankenstein. So that would work. 

Lyn Wineman: There you go. You might even get me to dance or sing, which is a pretty scary moment.

 Cristina Amigoni: Perfect. Last couple of questions for you, Lyn. One is what is your definition of authenticity? 

Lyn Wineman: I love that question. And it's a hard question, too, right? I mean, honestly, if I’d been more prepared, I would have just looked it up and taken inspiration from the dictionary. But since I didn't, we'll just have to go with what's in my brain. And I think, to me, authenticity is being very comfortable. Comfortable enough in your own skin and in your own situation that you can be exactly who you are, right? There's not that fear of having to pretend or having to act. But you're just exactly who you are. 

Cristina Amigoni: I love that. 

Lyn Wineman: Whew! Good. I am going to check the dictionary after this to see how close I am. 

Cristina Amigoni: I have no idea what the dictionary definition is. There you go. 

Lyn Wineman: All right. Sounds good. Doesn't even matter. There you go. Doesn't even matter. 

Cristina Amigoni: It's not a pass or fail the test. 

Lyn Wineman: Okay. Whew! That's a relief. 

Cristina Amigoni: It's not a test at all actually. The second question is where can people find you and KidGlov? And you have a podcast too. 

Lyn Wineman: Yes. Thank you for asking both of those questions. Here's a funny story. When we named ourselves KidGlov, there was already – Somebody had taken up the URL kidglov.com. And so, we had to take the E off of our name in order to get our URL, which is kidglov.com. So, kidglov.com. We're on all the social media. 

I’m actually super active on LinkedIn. If anybody wants to link to me, I will generally respond, unless you try to sell me something in the very first message. And then we do have a podcast. And I am so excited because we are about to launch our 100th interview, right? So excited about that. 

Alex Cullimore: Congratulations.

Cristina Amigoni: Yes, congratulations. 

Lyn Wineman: Yeah. That is called Agency for Change. And it is on all the podcast sources. But we talk to people and have them – It's not even about marketing. In most cases, we don't even talk about marketing. We talk about how people are changing the world. 

 I mean, I’m so proud the two of you were on Agency for Change. And we talked about great cultures. Some of the things we talked about today. But that's such a passion project for me. Other people golf and garden. I do podcasts as my hobby. And I think it's a lot of fun.

Cristina Amigoni: We can certainly relate to that as a hobby. 

Alex Cullimore: Well, thank you so much, Lyn. We really appreciate all your thoughts. Absolutely, obviously encourage anybody to reach out. You've got a fantastic mission. It's awesome that you got certified as a B Corp. That's a fantastic goal. We were just joking before the show that everything should be either B corps or toxic corps. Those are your options. 

Lyn Wineman: Either a B Corp or T corp. And T is not good. 

Cristina Amigoni: T is not good. Yeah, thank you so much.

Lyn Wineman: This has been such a delight. Thank you. And I just love love, love what you guys are doing with Siamo.

Cristina Amigoni: Well, thank you. We love what you're doing. 

Alex Cullimore: Thank you. We love what you're doing with KidGlov. 

Cristina Amigoni: We'll probably need to hire you to help us with our marketing and advertising.

Lyn Wineman: I would love that. 

Cristina Amigoni: Next conversation over wine.

Lyn Wineman: Okay, it's a deal. I’ll buy it. All right. 

Alex Cullimore: Thank you so much, Lyn Wineman. And thank you, everybody, for listening. 

Cristina Amigoni: Thank you, everyone. 

[OUTRO]

Cristina Amigoni: Thank you for listening to Uncover the Human, a Siamo podcast. 

Alex Cullimore: Special thanks to our podcast operations wizard, Jake Lara; and our score creator, Rachel Sherwood. 

Cristina Amigoni: If you have enjoyed this episode, please share, review and subscribe. You can find our episodes wherever you listen to podcasts. 

Alex Cullimore: We would love to hear from you with feedback, topic ideas, or questions. You can reach us at podcast wearesiamo.com, or at our website, wearesiamo.com, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Facebook. We Are Siamo is spelled W-E A-R-E S-I-A-M-O.

Cristina Amigoni: Until next time, listen to yourself, listen to others, and always uncover the human.

[END]

Lyn Wineman Profile Photo

Lyn Wineman

President : Chief Strategist, KidGlov

A marketing veteran with over 30 years of experience, Lyn is one of the most passionate and accomplished marketing leaders of her generation. As the president and chief strategist of full service advertising agency KidGlov, her award-winning work has helped a multitude of organizations achieve their goals.

A visionary with heart, Lyn is focused on creating the ultimate work culture while serving clients who make a positive difference in the world. KidGlov has been recognized multiple times as one of Lincoln, Nebraska’s Best Places to Work and recently became a certified B Corporation.

Lyn is also the cohost of the Agency for Change podcast that brings you the stories of people creating positive change in the world.