Episode 341: Learn How To Never Lose An Employee With Joey Coleman

Never lose an employee
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Are you tired of losing employees within the first 100 days? The constant cycle of recruitment, onboarding, and training can be a never-ending challenge for businesses. Just when you think you've found the perfect candidate, they vanish, leaving you to start the process all over again. It's frustrating, time-consuming, and costly. But fear not! In this podcast episode, we're about to dive deep into the heart of this issue and uncover the secrets to retaining top talent from day one.


Today's episode of Bella in Your Business: Pet Industry Business Podcast, we are thrilled to feature  Joey Coleman on the show. Joey is an award-winning speaker and author specializing in customer and employee retention. With over 20 years of experience, his captivating keynotes and actionable consulting projects empower organizations to enhance customer experiences. Joey's expertise has earned him recognition as a trusted advisor in the field. He is also releasing his latest book, "Never Lose an Employee Again," on June 27, providing valuable insights into fostering solid relationships and turning your employees into advocates.


In our conversation with Joey, we discuss the eight phases of the employee journey and emphasize the importance of each phase. Joey explains that businesses should make the offer letter feel like an invitation to the best place the employee will ever work, rather than a memo from a lawyer. We also highlight the shocking fact that 40% of new hires do not make it to their 100-day anniversary, making it crucial to get the first 100 days right. Joey shares the case study of Jam, which creates a remarkable first-day experience for new employees. If you're interested, Joey is offering a training session for his new book. Attending the training session or purchasing the book could provide valuable insights and strategies for retaining employees.

Topics Discussed and Key Points

  • Eight phases of the employee journey
  • How to make an employee feel wanted
  • Eight Phases of the employee journey 
  • Creating a positive employee experience and keeping your customers happy
  • The importance of letting employees know about open positions to increase employee referrals.
  • How to entice potential employees with job descriptions 
  • Why Cash incentives aren’t  the best 
  • “Never Lose a Customer Again” Joey’s new book and early access training


[00:13] Introduction to Joey Coleman


[01:11] Joey’s experiences and achievements in public speaking and traveling worldwide.


[02:05] Joey’s social media following remains small despite speaking at a major event.


[03:43] Offer letter as an invitation  


[06:52] Introduction to the eight phases of the employee journey


[07:08] The assess phase


[07:31] The accept phase


[07:47] The affirm phase 


[07:55] New hires’ remorse


[08:33]  Activate phase


(09:59) The acclimate phase


(10:35) The accomplish phase


(11:32) The adopt phase 


(12:32) The advocate phase


(13:41) Incentivizing employees and employee referrals. 


(14:31) 40% of new hires will not make the 100-day anniversary. 


(16:14) Creating a remarkable first-day experience


(16:37)  The high-five tunnel and personalized walk-on music


(20:02) Job descriptions as an enticement


(22:08) Importance of excited colleagues


(23:33) Joey’s upcoming book and early access training

Notable Quotes

[00:01:14] “I’ve been very fortunate to have a number of speaking awards along the way. I love being in front of audiences, and thankfully, audiences seem to love having me in front of them. So I feel very blessed that I have the opportunity to travel around the world. I’ve now given speeches on all seven continents.” [00:01:31]


 [00:04:18] “I understand that depending on the jurisdiction you’re in, you are required to state certain things in the offer letter, but that doesn’t mean they need to be stated in a boring legalistic way. Instead, what I like to encourage people to think about is the best wedding invitation you ever received.” [00:04:36]


 [00:07:58] “There is scientific research that shows when somebody accepts a job offer, they feel fear, doubt, uncertainty about the offer they just accepted. Is this going to be the right employer? Am I going to be happy here? I was waiting to hear back from three other places I was interviewing with, but I had to accept this one should I’ve held out a little longer.” [00:08:15]


 [00:08:46] “The secret to the first day on the job is to make it so remarkable, so interesting, so energetic that this employee says, ” I have never worked anywhere like this before and I never want to work anywhere else.” [00:08:59]


[00:12:37] “If your employees aren’t actively getting their friends, their colleagues, the smartest people they’ve ever met, to come to work with them. Your business is not as successful as you think it is, and you don’t really have advocates.” [00:12:51]


Book: Never Lose a Customer Again

Joey’s upcoming book: Never Lose an Employee Again

Connect with Joey Coleman

Connect with Bella

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Welcome, everybody to the newest episode of Bella in your business. If you are watching on YouTube, you see that I’ve got a friend with me, a genuine friend. His name is Joey Coleman. This man is incredible. He wrote this incredible book called Never Lose a Customer years ago that helped change the process of customer experience in so many pet-sitting and dog-walking companies and jump consulting. So when I say I’m excited for his next book coming out, I’m like, that’s an understatement. Okay, but if you’re joining us for the first time, you’ve recently started your business and you don’t know, Joey. For almost 20 years, he’s helped organizations retain their best customers and turn them into raving fans via his entertaining and actionable keynote workshops and consulting projects. He has a long history of energizing and motivating audiences to enhance their customer experiences. And he’s an award-winning speaker. Yes, they do have speaking contests at both national and international conferences. Joey, aren’t you like, like this? I feel like this is understating your things. Because I’m pretty sure I saw you got a major speaking award.
You’re right, you are very kind, you are very kind. Yes, I’ve been very fortunate to have several speaking awards along the way. I just love being in front of audiences. And thankfully, audiences seem to love having me in front of them. So I feel very blessed that I have the opportunity to travel around the world. I’ve now given speeches on all seven continents, I was able to knock Antarctica off the list early last year. So super excited about that. That was number seven out of seven. And yeah, it’s been an amazing experience.

And I have to just brag on you too, because your accolades include, like Secret Service, and like major comp, like you’re the most eclectic person I know. And we met because you were the keynote at Social Media Marketing World. Way back when I don’t remember COVID. Like it feels like 1000 years ago. Yeah. And you got up on stage. You’re like, I don’t have social media. Like, wait, what? But I remember the audible gasp in the audience. I remember walking on stage. And I was like, I want to tell you about my social media following I have 117 followers on Twitter. And there was an audible gasp because people thought I meant like 117,000 or 117 million. I was like No 117 Because I just got on Twitter two days ago, and a bunch of you decided to follow me because I was speaking here. Yeah, I’ve never been a big social media guy but was honored to speak at Social Media Marketing World. I’m just so happy to meet you there because that was the antithesis of all that Marcus Sheridan was like, You need to meet this man. And I’m just so grateful for that. Because of that book that you were also talking about, there was the need for the Wall Street Journal’s number two best-time seller, guys, that’s not easy to do. Okay. And we love Joey so much that I’m gonna be putting it right out there, we’re gonna have a really special offer for you at the end. That involves if you preorder his book that’s coming out, which I’ve already done, and you should do, then you get some extra special Joey time, and I’ll be there too. But we’re all going. That’s the best part is that you’ll be there. That’s the main reason I’m doing our mini training in our organism in our industry. And that’s the cool thing, too about you, Joe, is that you understand the pet sitters and dog walkers. So I’m so happy to have you here we have a whole bunch of different kinds of points to go out. I’m not gonna go in any particular order. I want to start with the one that just really knocked my socks off. And I was like, You’re so right. And I’d love to hear more about this. It was you who said your offer letter should be like an invitation to the best place they’ll ever work, not a memo from a lawyer. And I think 99% of us do this wrong. Right. So can you expand on that?

Well, and I should say from the outset, I’m a recovering attorney. So this isn’t on lawyers, right? The first step is admitting you have a problem. There are 11 steps after that. But here’s the thing, so many organizations go through this unbelievable recruiting and hiring process, right? They job posts, they get applications, they do tons of interviews, and then they find their person. And they’re super excited because they finally found their person. And what do they do? They send them boilerplate dribble, they send them something that feels like was written by a lawyer and has no enthusiasm and no excitement. It’s very technical. Now I understand depending on the jurisdiction you’re in, you are required to state certain things in the offer letter. But that doesn’t mean they need to be stated in a boring, legalistic way. Instead, what I like to encourage people to think about is the best wedding invitation you ever received. So let’s just pause for a second to think of the best wedding invitation you ever received. I bet it came in the mail. It might have even had raised ink. It was an envelope inside of you that kept opening envelopes. It was like the net Russian nesting dolls of envelopes and you finally got to this invitation that left you thinking there is nowhere in the world I want to be more than this place. To celebrate the beginning of this journey, and you move heaven and earth, to attend this wedding and to join in the celebration to join in the festivities counterbalance that emotional feeling with the feeling somebody would get reading your offer letter and my gut instinct is, it’s not the same type of feeling. I’m not talking about making huge changes to your HR policies. I’m talking about taking an hour to think strategically about what words could we put into this offer letter that would make someone feel excited. How could we design this offer letter in a way that would leave the recipient thinking this is something special? How could we maybe go one step further, and not email the offer letter, but rather physically mail the offer letter old school style in a way that made that person feel wanted? Because at the end of the day, we all want to feel wanted. And if you want that candidate to accept your offer, make them feel wanted.

Yes, yes, I love the imagery of that, because we can all relate to that kind of feeling that excitement, and it’s one tiny thing that makes a big difference. Love it. I love that so much. You also mentioned that every employee has the potential to go through eight phases during their employee journey. Now I know when our industry reads this any business owner, they’re instantly gonna go Wait, what am I missing something like, what am I doing wrong? And guys, this is the hope that there are different ways you’re gonna learn from Joey, so many ideas that you’re like, it was right in front of my face. Why didn’t I think of this? So, you go on to say that if you get all the eight phases, right? It’s like getting straight A’s on your next employee? The employee report card, right, exactly. What are the things in the eight? I mean, you don’t have to give them all now, obviously, but like, what are some things that people just don’t realize they should be doing?

Well, let me give a quick and I’ll make it a quick 35,000-foot view of the eight phases. And the reason these all start with a as Bella said, it’s kind of to get straight A’s from your employees. And this goes from the first time an employee hears about you until the point where they’re a raving fan. So here are the phases. The first phase is the assessment phase. This is where prospective employee is trying to decide whether or not they should enter into your interview process and come work for you. They’re looking at job postings, they’re doing interviews, they might be meeting with a recruiter, they’re checking out your website. In the assessment phase, we want to show the employee preview to this prospective employee, what it will be like if they decide to come to work with us. We then come to the acceptance phase. This is that offer letter we were just talking about right? There are two elements there making the offer. And then there’s the candidate accepting our offer of employment. In this phase, we want to again kick things off, give them a feeling of being unwanted. We then come to the affirm phase. Now a lot of folks listening are familiar with the concept of buyer’s remorse. I’d like to introduce you to a new concept may be called new hires remorse. There is scientific research that shows when somebody accepts a job offer. They feel fear, doubt, or uncertainty about the offer they just accepted. Is this going to be the right employer? Am I going to be happy here I was waiting to hear back from three other places I was interviewing with, but I had to accept this one should I’ve held out a little longer. If we don’t counterbalance as the employers, that feeling of new hires’ remorse, the difference emotionally between our excitement that they’re accepting the offer, and their fear and trepidation about the offer they just accepted. We don’t close that gap. It’s a problem for the rest of the relationship. We then come to the activate phase. Okay, so we’re about halfway through, and they just started their first day on the job. Okay, the activate phase is one day, and our minds are already blown. But the activate phase is that first day on the job and the secret to the first day on the job is to make it so remarkable, so interesting, so energetic, that this employee says I have never worked anywhere like this before. And I never want to work anywhere else. I like to think of the immortal words of country rock our country music legend, Bonnie Raitt, right when she said to give them something to talk about. What are your employees going to exactly what are your employees going to do when they get home that night? And their significant other, their spouse, their roommate, their parents, whoever it is says, How was your first day on the job? Are you going to any perspective, right? So easy?
It’s an easy perspective, is that just a perspective shift? Sound?

Exactly. And so here’s the thing. I imagine for most people listening, your employer is going to say, well, I filled out some paperwork, and I watched some training videos, and I learned what the 401k matches, or I learned when my benefits will kick in or I learned how to file for vacation or whatever it may be. Give them something more exciting to talk about. Give them a taste of an experience that they will be thrilled to share with others. We then come to the phase that Della to be candid is where most employers start to fall off the rails. This is the app’s Main Phase, this is when you are getting your new employee used to your way of doing business. See, you’ve been running your business for a while. But this new employee who shows up, they don’t know how you like to do email how you like to do meetings, how you’d like to answer the phone where the bathroom is what’s going on, they have no idea, we need to hold their hand and acclimate them to our operations. Now, the acclimate phase, contrary to the activate phase we just talked about, which is one day, the acclimate phase is probably weeks, maybe even months, it’s the whole period that they’re getting used to your cadence, we then come to the accomplished phase, the accomplished phase is when the employee achieves the goal that they originally had when they decided to accept your job offer. Now most employers valla here’s where they make the mistake. They think, oh, the employee just wants a paycheck. Now the employee wants a paycheck, don’t get me wrong, they don’t want to work for free. But they want more than that. They want autonomy, they want the opportunity to grow and learn, they want the opportunity to have a responsibility or a leadership position, or be valued for their ideas or their contribution. If you’re not paying attention as an employer to what it is your employees are hoping to accomplish. Number one, you’ll miss it when they do. And number two, we’ll fail to jointly celebrate it when they achieve that goal. And if we don’t remind our employees to celebrate, they might forget to celebrate, not to mention, they might take a different goal, might start thinking about something else. We then come to the Adopt phase seven the Adopt phase, when the employee becomes loyal to us and only us they’re not answering the calls from the headhunters. They’re committed, what are you doing in the Adopt phase to let your most loyal valuable trusted employees know that they matter? I have heard horror story after horror story of multi-year employees being called to lunch and told they’re fired. I’ve heard horror story after horror story of employees who have given and given and given not getting the same type of treatment, perks or benefits, or attention that an employee on the first day gets, don’t take your adopters for granted. If you do this, well, if you navigate through these seven phases, you come to the final phase, the eighth phase, the advocate stage, where your employees become raving fans singing your praises far and wide. And the way to test if you have advocated is to ask this question. Do you have any open positions in your organization right now? And if you do, are they being filled with referrals from your existing employees? If your employees aren’t actively getting their friends, their colleagues, and the smartest people they’ve ever met to come to work with them? Your business is not as successful as you think it is. And you don’t have advocates. So those are the eight phases.

That’s it, guys. That’s it.
That’s it. That’s it real simple, straightforward. I
love that so much. And I think I think that’s probably when you said that last one about a doc, do you have any open positions that are being filled? I think a lot of times people are like, Well, I’m offering a $100 sign-on bonus if you get your friend. But what they’re doing is they’re negating all of those other steps to get straight A’s, right? They’re skipping to the end without

Exactly. It’s like being on a date, and saying, hey, when do I get to meet your parents on a first date? Not a good choice, right? Same thing if you’ve got your employees. And by the way, let’s talk a little bit about the incentives. All the research shows that incentivizing with cash is not the way to do it, you shouldn’t incentivize with experience. Number two, the research also shows that depending on the size of your organization, north of 40% of your employees have no idea if you have open positions available north, they have no idea. You may be thinking that you’re very clear. And everybody knows and our team is small enough that they understand this. Know, north of 40% of employees have no idea you’re looking for someone and even if you just let them know, you would increase the likelihood of getting some employee referrals.

Wow. That’s so incredible. Such great, great fruit coming from this. A lot of times when you said all of that I was thinking back to another point I read that you said a shocking number of employees don’t make the 100-day anniversary of their new job. So this also sounds like maybe part of the is it acclimate phase where you’re celebrating them. I would encourage our listeners to think how do you like to celebrate that? Or is it like, here you go, here’s the case the kingdom?

Yeah, depending on whose research you look at and what industry you’re in, it averages out to about 40% of new hires who will not make the 100-day anniversary. Now think about how much time and effort money you put into recruiting and finding and training and getting those people in and then they’re leaving before they become productive before you’ve earned any of your acquisition costs back before you’ve recouped any of your marketing costs, etc. It’s a really big challenge. It’s not just about getting the 100 days right, though, I want to be very clear that if you get the first 100 days, right, what you’ve done is laid a foundation, you’ve made deposits in the karmic bank account, so that that employee will continue to think positively of you. Even if things get a little wonky, right? In every business, there are going to be times when there’s a conflict between the employee and the employer, or something isn’t going well, or you’re going to ask somebody to stay late or come in on their day off or go above and beyond. If you’ve made those positive deposits in the beginning, you can start to make withdrawals later. But if not, we’re going into a negative balance very early on in the relationship. And the practical reality is more employers are looking for employees right now. And usual, and I would posit than ever because we’re a more global planet. And so your employees have options, whereas before they didn’t, there’s a lot of other options out there. So you better be focused as a leader on creating remarkable experiences for your people if you want them to stay.

Right. So I don’t even there are so many things going on in my head right now. Because you talked about Bonnie Raitt earlier, you know how to create a market remarkable first day on the job. So like, what would be examples of that? Like, how would one do that? Oh, there are so many ways and these things don’t have to be expensive. So let me tell you a quick story. This is one of the case studies in the book. There are over 50 case studies in the book from all seven continents. One of them is from a company in Canada called Jam. And they run sports networks. So think of this as like, Hey, you’re your local kickball league that you’re kind of meeting other people in or they do virtual events for large corporations. They have what they call the high-five tunnel. Here’s how it works. On your first day on the job, you show up at 10 am, you’re told to come at 10 am All the other employees come at 9 am. To get ready, you pull into the parking lot at 10 am. And your new boss is standing outside waiting to meet you. So you’re not walking into the building, wondering which way do I go, they’re outside ready to greet you. They lead you into the building. And as the door opens, your walk-on music starts playing you know, as you think, because, in the interview process, they’ve asked you what would your walk-on music be if you were a professional athlete, they start blasting your walk-on music through the speaker. So you’re showing up and it’s your theme song. And then you see a tunnel of your co-workers. And these folks are all lined up to high-five, you as you run through the tunnel, you get to the other end of the tunnel. And they lead you into a big conference room where all of their employees who work remotely are up on the screen cheering and singing your name, the walk-on music is still pounding. Everything’s great. Everybody’s you know, happy to see you. They ask you some fun, playful questions to get a little bit about your personality. And then they give you your rookie hoodie. Now again, this is a sports-related team, you get a rookie hoodie that you wear at the next high-five tunnel and it is all team meetings and those types of things going forward. And then on your first anniversary, you get your jam, hockey sweater. So it’s a full hockey thing with the year that you joined the organization in your name on the back. And that’s what all the veterans are wearing in the high-five tunnel. This is something that doesn’t cost a lot of money. On day one, you feel like you’re part of the team, you feel like you’re being celebrated. And can you imagine you’re 15 minutes into your new job? Your heart rate is pumping, you feel seen you feel appreciated, you feel valued. That’s how you create a remarkable day-one experience.

Wow, that is so incredible. Like I can imagine all of that. I can also imagine how they feel like they belong and that there’s also a track for them to follow and achieve more and now. Now they’re part of the cool kid club, you know, and they get to do it for other people and pass it on. And that is just goosebumps. And like you said that doesn’t cost a lot at all.

No, I mean, sure the swag cost stuff. But the high-five tunnel is free. You’re playing their walk-on song is free, standing outside to meet them at their car instead of having them come in and be like, where’s the reception? What floor? Am I supposed to be going to? Well, if that’s free, it just requires a commitment of intention yet intentionality. Right? And a lot of this matters.

Yeah, exactly. A lot of our pet sitters use pet care team training, which is like a certification for dog walkers and pet sitters. And with that, they also give quarterly blueprints. So for quarterly meetings so you guys if you’re one of those doing these quarterly meetings is also a great way to like you know, push it in there. And so you have these meetings and these are things that you can oh my god, I love it so much. Okay, we are running out of time, and I’ve got like 20 More points I want to go through the last one I’m going to do for you, Joey and you guys, I have an amazing offer for you coming up right after this. But Joey, you said that your job description should read like an enticing enticement to join an organization that’s bigger than yourself, not a shopping list. And I know this is one area that so many of our pet sitters and dog walkers, and business owners in general struggle with the right because we have to be legal, but like how do you still make it like that love note that like gets that? Yeah, it’s bigger than yourself, how do we do that?

I think the main way we want to do that is don’t be afraid to let the spirit of your brand, the personality of your brand, show up in your job description. Yeah, don’t be afraid to let it show up in your advertisement. There’s a great example in the book from a company called verbally, okay, it’s a copywriter company. So they’re good with words, but their descriptions are all about the fun things you’ll do. And it’s like, yeah, get ready to join one of our Slack channels, depending on what your hobby is, like our green, some slack channel for all of our members that are gardeners get ready to wear, you know, Friday, the casual day is where we come to, we knock off early in the summer to go mountain biking or hiking or just have some time at the pool or whatever it may be. They’re presenting the excitement of being part of this group. And part of this mission, in the same breath that they’re talking about. And we hope you have this level of experience in your job responsibilities will be this in your duties. It’s just recognizing that employees care more about the type of people they’re going to work with, and the type of environment they’re going to be working in. Then they do the Oh, do you have this degree? Have you taken this many Excel spreadsheet courses, you know, certifications, etc, etc? Yeah, I’m not opposed to including those things, I just want your personality in there as well.

I love that this is probably going to be so uncomfortable. So for so many of us, because we focus so much on clients, right? And it was funny, because as we were going through your first book, or Well, the book before this one, never lose a customer. You know, a lot of us were saying, we could probably use this for employees just as you can use marketing. And I think as being a business owner, you know, our head is spinning, and we’re down in the weeds. And we don’t ever actually take a step back to say, Hey, yo, I’m a human, and I just, I hired another human. Let’s be human. Right? Exactly. Ah, I,
it’s so true that the human piece of this is so important. And I’ll just plus one and add to what you said, I get that it’s hard to be a business owner, I’ve been a business owner for 20-plus years, and I get that is incredibly difficult. But here’s what I’ve learned. If you have excited colleagues, co-workers, and people that are in the trenches with you that are committed to the same goal you are that are on the journey working with you, it makes it easier, it makes it easier to deliver a remarkable experience for your clients, it makes it easier to push through the hard times, it makes it easier to realize your vision. So I am all about finding the right people that start at the beginning in the assessment phase, and then continuing to remind them how much they mean to you throughout the entire journey so that everybody’s interests are aligned, and we’re all working towards the same end goals.

I’ve never been so excited for a book to come out. You’re very excited too. And I want to invite all of our listeners and everyone in our jump orbit sphere to come to join us on June 2 at 1 pm. Eastern Joey is going to do a special mini-training for everyone who has pre-bought the book. So that’s coming up in just a couple of weeks. But what you can do is you can go straight to Amazon and just search, never lose an employee again, and you can find it there or anywhere else you get books, we will put the link in the show notes. And what you’re going to do is you’re going to take your receipt and email it to fiath@joeycoleman.com. And she’s going to give you that exclusive access to join us, you guys. You’re not gonna want to miss this, he is so motivating, he is so inspiring. The mindset shift that happens every single time Joey talks to us is incredible. Like, you do not want to miss this. And of course, if you can’t happen to make it on that day, we will have a recording that we can send to you. But I highly encourage you to do this. This is not going to be like anything else you’ve ever seen out there. It’s going to be magical.

Joey, thank you so much for your time. And I feel like you don’t even need it. But I’m still gonna send it all the luck in the and the success of this book. We are so behind you. We love you since the first book and all that you’ve done to help support the pet sitters and dog walkers of the world. So thank you.

Oh, Bella, it is my pleasure. And thanks to everybody for listening and watching and I hope you’ll come join us. Here’s my promise to you. If you buy the book, I belly didn’t even know I was going to do this. But if you buy the book, which gets you access to the training, and you do the training, because the training happens before the book comes out, you’re getting access to stuff for weeks before the rest of the world is going to get access. So you’re going to be ahead of the competition, you’re going to be out the on the edge of the conversation. If after that training. You’re like yep, nope, I just don’t see the value. I just don’t see how this is gonna help my business or Joe, we you don’t understand, you know, with my operation, this stuff won’t work. You private message me and I’ll buy the book back from you. So it’ll cost you nothing, and you’ll still get to come to the training if it works for you. Great. We’ll support you going forward. If it doesn’t do any harm, no foul, 100% guaranteed return on your investment.

You have nothing to lose you guys. So let’s get jumping in. Let’s get in there because I want to pack this training and it’ll be fun. Joey Coleman, you are amazing guys. Go buy his book. Never lose an employee. Again. It’s on presale right now it comes out, is it?

June 27. June 27. So yep, that’s coming soon.

I can’t wait. I can’t wait. Joey thanks so much for being here. You guys. Remember when life gets you down, always keep jumping by now.

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