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IAM2127 – Leveraging on Technology to Enhance Productivity and Efficiency

Podcast Interview with Bruce Huwitz

In this special episode, Gresh is on Meet The Experts by Bruce Huwitz, where he shares the importance of building and leveraging media company appearances.

Gresh delves into the concept of ‘CEO hacks'—tools, apps, books, and habits that enhance productivity and efficiency without resorting to shortcuts. He also discusses how to distinguish between beneficial habits and those that need change, and how to leverage AI responsibly for better business outcomes.

The episode covers the practical implementation of CEO hacks to streamline workflows, save time, and focus on core business goals.

Tune in to learn more about these hacks and the eight business pillars they support.

Business Pillar: Operations & Technology

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Gresham Harkless 00:00

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. And I wanted to share with you one of the episodes that I was a guest on for someone else's podcast. I always talk about how important it is to build a media company. One of the next best things you can do is be on somebody else's media company.

So I had the pleasure of being a guest on this podcast, and I wanted to share a little snippet with you because it would help support the Eight business pillars. We've really been trying to focus on with a lot more of our content, a lot more of the solo episodes that I'm doing. So make sure of course, that you subscribe to our podcast, but of course you take some time out, check out the show notes and subscribe to the podcast that I've been featured on as well, too, and get to learn about some of those eight business. pillars and how you can continue to leverage and build that up.

So you can go from builder to architect to a course at rockstar and luminary. So this is Gresh signing out. I hope you enjoyed this I AM CEO special episode.

Bruce Hurwitz 00:53

Explain what you mean by hacks.

Gresham Harkless 00:56

Yes, absolutely. So CEO hacks comes a lot from the life hacks that people have used in their life to get further along on their journey to where they want to be. Hack is not in the sense of being a hacker. It's in the sense of like, how you can find and shortcut opportunities to be more effective and efficient.

So I define CEO hacks as apps, books, habits, software, they might even be organizations, but they're different things that help you get further along along the journey.

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Help you to be more effective and efficient, help you to maximize the time that you have in your day, because just like probably many of your listeners, I've tried to get 25 or more hours out of a day. It doesn't happen as well. So it all depends on how you're leveraging the time that you have. So the CEO hacks are those tangible things that allow you to be able to do that more effectively and efficiently.

Bruce Hurwitz 01:40

Would you accept. The use of the term shortcuts.

Gresham Harkless 01:45

To some degree shortcuts. I think that the only thing I would say about shortcuts is even though I even use it is, I think the whole idea of a hack is that it enhances some of the things that you're doing. It's not necessarily cutting short. It's just maximizing.

So I think sometimes when you hear shortcut, you think that I'm going to do it easier. I'm not going to do it all the way or do it as effectively or do it completely. But in reality, you are, you're just enhancing sometimes the things that you're already doing.

Bruce Hurwitz 02:10

I like to tell people that everyone is a CEO. You are the CEO of your domain, of your fife. Them, if you're a, an executive assistant. You're in charge of the of your desk if you are a marketing director, you're in charge of your desk. Is there anything that we are going to discuss today? That would be solely within the domain or purview of this of a CEO.

Gresham Harkless 02:37

No, I don't think so. Just as you said. So, I think we could really look at CEO being more of a perspective or more mentality or even aspirational as I like to define it. So, if you are within any role, even if you're a mom or your dad, or your brother or sister, whatever it is, I think to some degree, taking ownership of the things that you have in front of you is really what I think is at the core of being a CEO.

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Bruce Hurwitz 03:00

For obvious reasons.

I'm going to start with the question about books. Years ago, when I was at a nonprofit, we had a board retreat. Now, usually with a retreat, you go someplace else. We went into the boardroom. So it wasn't that that much of a retreat and the keynote speaker was a futurist.

And 1 of the 1st things he said was, he doesn't like the word retreat because you're not retreating. You're advancing blah, blah, blah. Okay. Everybody says that, but he gave us a bibliography of books and I bought them all and I read them and I found valuable information. But 1 of the things that I read afterwards was an article.

I don't remember where. Where they said there's a problem with business books, because whatever is the. The book, the juror, everybody jumps on the bad way. We got to do this. It's got to be done this way. And then 3 months later, another book comes out. That's the number 1 bestseller. Now we're going to do things that how do you avoid that?

Gresham Harkless 04:04

I think 1 of the biggest things, and this kind of goes back to, the idea of the, the CEO hacks is it's very similarly where, especially now, as we're having this conversation is a really huge thing that people are talking about. They're talking about, all the things that you can do or can't do the same thing as you were talking about with the books.

I think the way to avoid that is really to leverage the books are leveraged the software, whatever it is that we're talking about to support the things that you're already doing. I think so many times we get shiny object syndrome because we see a new thing that we feel like we need to read. We need to listen to.

We need to install whatever it is. It's something new and it's sexy. It's it's popular. It's trending whatever it is. That's attracting us to it. To it, but we often forget about the quote, unquote race that we're running quote, unquote thing that we're trying to execute on and improving that. So, I think the best way to approach that is really our approach going into these things is saying, okay, if I'm doing X, Y, and Z, and A, B, and C, why am I worried about W, O, P, and all these other things that are, that are sexy, that are, that are exciting that I want to do.

When they're not core to the race that I'm running. So I think the very biggest, the most impactful thing we could do is ask ourself, like, how can I improve the things that I'm doing on a daily basis? Does this new book help me to do that? Does the strategies that are presented in this book help me to do that?

If it doesn't, then maybe that's something you can kick to, another year or something like that. But at the end of the day, try to enhance the things that you're doing.

Bruce Hurwitz 05:32

You mentioned AI. Now with AI, people ask me, because I'm a professional writer, if I was going to use AI, and I said, absolutely not. Because when you have a new software coming up, and this happened to everybody who has ever bought a computer, has purchased a brand new, fresh out of the box, now figuratively, but used to be literally, a piece of software, the first thing that happens is you have to upload updates.

And then, They make all the corrections and a year later, you've got the software that doesn't have the bugs. So that was the 1st reason why I said no day. I was also concerned about ethical problems, copyright issues. I said, I want to get into it now. I'll use what I call RHI, real human intelligence. And that way, there are some, you have lawyers now using AI to submit briefs in court and the cases that are cited are phony.

In AI, as I'm sure, it's called hallucinations. I've caught quotations that didn't make any sense to me. I did a search for the book. Book didn't exist. In one case, I had the book. I double checked that it was the right edition, but it wasn't there. It didn't, so I, so I explained that the AI lies.

It's called hallucinations. How do you recommend CEOs work with AI? In a way that they will invo avoid embarrassments and lawsuits.

Gresham Harkless 07:13

That's a great question. And if it's okay Bruce, I'm gonna borrow from you. It's not a hallucination or anything. I'm gonna say that if you have AI mixed with our ai, that's really the great way to, to try to leverage ai.

I think, and it goes back to what I talked about and why I was hesitant to say the CEO hacks. Or these things that are out there are shortcuts. And I think when you have the mentality that it is going to be a shortcut, you will start to upload a prompt or say, you want X, Y and Z or this specific thing, or you want this specific quote, or you want this brief and you won't go through and do the part, which is actually to understand that you.

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Need to be the person, or you need to have a person that is actually looking through this information. So, to answer your question, I think, really, the best way to use a lot of these tools is is like an intern really? Because you may not get exactly what the things are that you're looking for, but before it goes live, or before you send it out, or before you stand in court and speak about it or speak to it, whatever it might be.

You have at least done that human intelligence part and start to understand exactly what it's saying and make sure that it, again, is in support of the things that you're trying to do. And I think what's happening with AI is that people are really excited because they can literally write in two sentences or less than two sentences, and they can get pages and pages of content and information, but they're not really understanding if that content and information is supporting what they're doing.

Or, like you said, it's going to leave you in a place where you become that laughing stock. So, I think the best way to do it is to approach it a lot like it's an intern or a really, really intelligent intern, but an intern that does make mistakes and is not imperfect so that you can, at the end of the day, start to enhance the things that you're doing, not replace or take that shortcut towards it.

Bruce Hurwitz 08:55

I like that analogy to an intern. You can use my and I will use your deal when you wrote in, you mentioned 1 as 1 of the hacks habits. Now, I'm a big believer in habits, because if you form, if you establish a habit. You're also creating neural pathways in your brains and that in your brain, and that's the way you're going to do it.

So expand on that a bit. How, that a habit is something you want to keep, that it's good. But how do you know, it's not something that needs to be changed.

[00:09:36] Gresham Harkless: I think that's a great question. And I think. 1st, we have to sometimes remember that we all have habits, whether or not their habits that you want or their habits or not, that's a whole different conversation.

But I think so many times, we'll hear or we'll see people that are really, dedicated in the gym or they're dedicated at work, or they're doing all the things that maybe we aspire to do. And we say that they have something that we don't, but we all have habits. Even if the habit is to start something and not continue, that in and of itself can be a habit.

So I think the first thing is to accept that and to understand that. And then I think you answered the simple question of, are you doing the things that you want to do to get to whatever that goal is? So whatever your goal might be, whether it be going to the gym, whether it might be getting that promotion, or it might be having a seven figure business.

Are you doing the things on a regular basis that can lead you to that? And if you're not, or if you're not achieving that, or you're not seeing the things that you hope to see, that's when you want to start to look at your habits, look at the things not that you're doing. Once a year, you want to look at things that you're doing on a daily basis and seeing what they're doing to get you to that place.

And that's why I think there's really, exciting ways that you can hack yourself. And I mean that in a different way now so that you can get to where you want to be. But I think it's so important to understand that. You can make those changes and we all have those habits.

It's just a matter of reengineering yourself and working backwards so that you can reach the goal that you want to reach.

Bruce Hurwitz 11:01

Now, I used to have habits for setting up appointments and posting on social media, and then it became too much for me. So I use Bookify for as my scheduling app. Yeah. And so for my social media posting was, so I think it's 3 months.

You can schedule them 3 months in advance and then forget about it.

Is that a good example of a habit being transferred to me? To an app.

Gresham Harkless 11:36

I think that is a perfect example of that. And that's exactly what I call the CEO hacks. Like the idea of giving somebody a scheduling link that is maybe booking something from a different time zone and you don't have to do the back and forth and that allows you to take that time and put it into your zone of genius.

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That's the definition of the CEO hack being able to schedule social media posts again. It doesn't have the same impact as a lot of times. If you're posting natively. On these platforms, but again, you start to weigh, okay, I only have this much time and I, I really want to get this done. And I believe that getting this done is going to be impactful.

So why don't I schedule it ahead? So, using Zoho, using HootSuite there's lots of different platforms out there. Even Meta has different ways that you can schedule within its own its own site as well too. But again, being able to leverage. And maximize your time because it allows you more time to spend, spend in your zone of genius so that you don't have to worry about things that I do, which is often did I book at the right time?

Because I'm really bad as my own assistant and I often will show up an hour later, an hour early. If I don't have that booking link, you don't have to worry about those things because you let the software take care of it.

Bruce Hurwitz 12:46

I was speaking to a. Lady who was trying to book to be on the podcast and I said, you just go to the website and just put it in and she did it.

She apologized. She said that it was a bad day and I said, don't worry. You have nothing to apologize for and then I told her that when I become king of the world, the 1st thing I'm going to do is make a book. Every get rid of all the time zones. Everybody will be on the same time.

Okay, let's move on. You wrote that business, so that the whole idea is to increase effectiveness and efficiency with CEO hacks.

How do you create a hack? You got to think you need a solution.

Gresham Harkless 13:32

I think that there is sometimes not a very long, very quick way to do that. Because I think the CEO hack truly become a CEO hack when it's implemented and executed and it works in terms of your workflow. So, honestly, a lot of what I've experience.

Like, I use a different scheduling software. So I use Acuity for my scheduling. I tested out. Calendly tested out many things. And sometimes when you start to use these softwares, you realize that it does 1 thing that you wish that it didn't do or vice versa. You wish that it do that.

Whatever it is, you start to test out these different softwares, these hacks, these different things to be more effective and efficient. So I think it really goes to another level. Not when it's just, I think that's 1 of the. The kind of bridges that people have to cross over is because when you see and read all the benefits you hear or see a commercial, you're like, I could really use that.

But when you get that in front of you, you're putting that into your workflow. You're trying to execute it on it. It doesn't quite do exactly what you thought it would do. And that's where I think that. We want to try to bridge that gap towards the teaching people how to actually leverage this on a way to be more effective and efficient because a hack is to me, not so much a hack.

If it's just saying, laying there as a software is a hack when it's implemented to your workflow and you're able to really use it to help you to save that time. So it's all in the execution. It's all in how you're going to implement this into your workflow. And for a lot of people and a lot of organizations and personal individuals, even.

That's going to depend. So you sometimes just have to try it, implement it, do it on a very low risk, low cost way. And a lot of times, and then you're able to see if it works or if it doesn't work. And it actually is, save you that time.

Bruce Hurwitz 15:11

You've been providing us with a wealth of content and I thank you for that.

Gresham Harkless 15:18

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is again, and I hope you enjoyed that special episode of the podcast. I'm just, like I mentioned in the beginning, we're really trying to. Laser focus on these eight pillars and show you as a builder how you can leverage these eight pillars and really level up there. So it helps you level up your business and organization.

So hope you enjoyed this episode. Definitely. Please check out the show notes. Learn more about the pillar. Learn more about the person that I guessed it on their episode. And of course, learn more a little bit more about us as well to this is Gresh signing out. Hope you'll have a phenomenal rest of the day.


Dave Bonachita - CBNation Writer

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