Biblical Principles for Business Success

Alex Sezer, CEO, Alex Sezer Ventures

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Through his gifting with both written and spoken word, Alex is on a mission to help as many organizations as possible grow in passion, production, and profits. Alex believes in combining the bible with business, management with a mission, profits with purpose, and culture with Christ. He has been the catalyst to a better culture for every organization he has served. Having an uncanny ability to combine his experience as a 3rd generation PK (Pastor’s kid), elite athlete, and entrepreneur; Alex has been building bridges of commonality that cross, industry, economic, racial, and religious barriers.

This passion started in his hometown of Orange, TX, and carried over into his collegiate and professional life. Alex continued to develop his craft while gaining his engineering/business degree from Texas A&M while simultaneously serving as a team captain on the football team. He excelled both on and off the field, leaving Texas A&M with a long list of accolades including- Magna cum laude graduate, the Aggie Heart award, Bill Erwin Scholar-Athlete, Distinguished Letterman, and more.

Shortly after leaving Texas A&M, Alex was able to put his leadership skills on display in the professional world. He founded his own real estate acquisition company at the age of 22 and went on to purchase nearly 350 units. While building his startup, Alex became the president of an established real estate management company, Twin City Properties, with over $75 million in assets under management. Here, Alex gained more valuable experience in building the culture of a startup and an established company. In the early part of 2022, Alex felt the Lord calling him to be a greater help to other organizations. With this calling, Alex is helping others through his coaching program, speaking, and writing.

Alex Sezer is on a mission to help as many organizations as possible grow in passion and in production. Alex has been building bridges of commonality that cross-industry, economic, racial, and religious barriers. His goal is to help organizations bridge the gap between the visionary and the team performing the vision. Alex’s Biblical training has equipped him to see business in a unique way.

Talking Points:

{01:40} What drives Alex Sezer

{04:30} The Bible as a business template

{07:20} The incorrect way to have vision mission values.

{12:00} Getting others to buy into your value statement.

{15:47} Making mistakes and learning from them.

{18:10} Building the bridge between the visionary and the team with help from Habakkuk chapter 2

{22:10} Wasting Time

{25:20} How to hire people who believe in your mission when you have over 250 employees.

{29:00} Development is the key to scale.

{32:40} How to hold people accountable.

Welcome, welcome to the Talent Empowerment Podcast, where we support business transformation and share Stories of great CEOs, founders, entrepreneurs, and leaders of all backgrounds. So, you can borrow their vision, their tools, and their tactics to lift up your organization, your teams, and of course, your community.

I am your humble host Tom Finn, and on the show today we have a culture catalyst whose background in college sports and real estate has led him to help businesses and schools really find their vision and their purpose. His name is Alex Sezer. Alex, my friend. Welcome to the show.

Thank you so much, Tom. I am happy to be here.

Well, we are happy to have you and I can't wait to hear your story and share it with everybody. If you don't know Alex, let me take just a quick moment to introduce you to him. He is on a mission to help as many organizations as possible grow in passion and in production. And of course, profits.

Now he has an uncanny ability to combine his experience as a third-generation pastor’s kid, we'll get into that, an elite athlete, and an entrepreneur. Alex has been building bridges of commonality that cross-industry, economic, racial, and religious barriers. He founded his own real estate acquisition company at the tender age of 22 and went on to purchase nearly 350 units while building his startup. Alex became the 1st president of an established real estate management company's twin city properties, with over 75 million in assets under management, he now leads Alex Cesar Ventures. We've got a lot to learn from you, my friend, but let's get right to it. What drives you? What is your purpose? You've done so many different things.

Yeah, my ultimate purpose is to bring glory to God through my life, so that remains my consistent purpose. How that's expressed has changed throughout the years as kind of ages and stages have changed.

Right now, I'm helping workplace leaders create cultures that we crave. Doing that, I combined the Bible with business, Imagine the mission profits with purpose and culture with Christ. So that's how that's being expressed in my life right now with my purpose being that of others. They see my good work and glorify my father in heaven.

Well, I love the way you said that because look, this show isn't necessarily about religion, but we'll get into it a little bit here. You're a third-generation pastor’s kid, right? I mean, religions got to play a role somewhere in there otherwise you're not really being your authentic self.

Would think yeah, absolutely. I popped out and it was, you know, church multiple times a week. Sunday school after Sunday school church night church Wednesday Church. So, I was around the church a lot.

Fair enough. So, let's give some props to Grandpa. So, is grandpa, the first generation passed.

Yep, Grandpa was number one. That's #2. And then I'm kind of doing it in a different way, but #3 so.

Well, well done and I'm sure for those of you out there, you're sort of interested in how, how does that really relate to business? This is the Talent Empowerment podcast. How does religion sort of relate to business? So let me ask. You, Alex, you know. People have lots of different opinions on religion, but how do you feel about its relation to business?

Yeah, absolutely. So, for me, the connection kind of came early in the business phase of my life, it was. Something that happened almost unintentionally to be honest. It was a source in my life that was used for everything else. So, whenever I had business issues or business problems, whether it be staff or growth or whatever it was, I found it as a resource in my life to go back to and say, hey, I wonder if the Bible says something about the XYZ problem that I'm experiencing and facing. So, for me, it was kind of something that happened by default almost.

So, it's the encyclopedia of the Bible. I like it. Look, no matter where you stand on religion, the Bible certainly has its various forms, it has a lot of great lessons in there and for me, I've always seen it as sort of a behavioral template on how to sort of treat each other and behave in this sort of crazy world that we live in, you've taken it further with your businesses. So, help me understand how you utilize this as a bit of a template as you're talking to people in business.

Yeah, absolutely. So, number one for me, it starts with the culture of that business. So, I start with number one, what is culture? Why does it matter and how it's created when I get into the, how and I could talk about those things and tell you what I mean by that, but when I get into the how-to of how cultures create it, I use the Bible kind of a guideline.

So, vision, mission purpose, core values, your brand, the people that you hire and bring on to your team, and also making sure that you Build as you said earlier that culture authentically versus copying someone else's culture.

What is Culture? I actually go back biblically and look at kind of when that was instituted. And if you look at the root word of culture, it actually comes from Latin, and it’s just caring. So how do we properly care for the things that were placed in charge of? Some people might call that stewardship. So, what do you do with what I give you? So, for me, whatever I'm placed in charge of, I want to make sure that I represent my relationship with God well through my relationship with people and organizations, and companies.

Why does that matter? I just started it, but #2 is when it comes to the bottom-line ROI that most people care about, statistically, stronger cultures have proven to be more financially rewarding and stable companies, so there are Harvard studies by James Hesketh and John Cotter talking about the ROI implications of strong cultures.

If you look, I mean 2021, we had 47 million Americans voluntarily quit their jobs, not get fired. They quit and now we have all of the different trends of quiet quitting and rage applying all of those things that are derivatives of the cultures that we formed. So, the results that we experience within our organizations are simply a derivative of the cultures that we formed within our organizations.

And lastly, how it was created to have the seven different modules. Having that established vision, mission purpose, core values brand your team, and then also authenticity and we can dive into any one of those if you want to. But that's how it started for me, and it started as me going back to the Bible as a source and then being able to piece those parables and information together to be able to teach it to other people.

Yeah, I appreciate the way that you said that because it adds some context and some clarity for all of us.

I wonder though, on vision mission values, those types of components, anybody that's taken a business class, even in high school or undergraduate or Graduate School, what have you is heard this vision mission values thing over and over and over and over again. And is it your take that people do this incorrectly?

Yes, most of the time and not to say that everyone does it incorrectly, but I think you can look at some of the results that we see in organizations and go back to kind of the root of that and go, I think we've missed it somewhere. So I used the Bible as a guideline to try to do it. And do it well to help people create; the vision and mission, the purpose of their organizations.

So, what have you seen somebody do well in terms of care or culture as you so eloquently put it?

Yeah, so. I'll use a couple of common examples, so when it comes to core values, make sure that you have established beliefs that are acted out throughout the organization. So, we all think of organizations like Chick-fil-A. So, what makes Chick-fil-A stand out when it comes to core values?

Oh, ask me, ask me. I know this one, I Know this one? no snacks on Sundays.

Hey, that could be one but Here's what it is.

So, I call it the 3Ds of designing core values. Core values must be decided, Defined, and demonstrated.

Here's what I mean by that. Obviously, we have to decide on what our core values as an organization are and have ways that we can do that. What do you admire most in your employees? What do you find yourself talking about most passionately? Life-changing events? So, decide what they are.

#2 We have to define what we mean by the word. Some people use phrases, some people use definitions. So for me and my organization, my core values are love, integrity, vision, excellence, and service. I won't stop there. That's the decision phase.

Define it, love, treat others as ourselves, integrity, tell and live the truth. Even if it hurts. The vision lives to daylight tomorrow matters of excellence. Give our all and all and service is an inconvenience to help other people.

So now I've decided what they are. I've defined them so now we have a collective understanding of what that word means and how I expect to see it lived out. Lived out in the organization.

And lastly, they have to be demonstrated. You can create the best core values you've ever seen in your life. The biggest words, the greatest expressions if you don't live it out in the organization, they're just words on the wall. It's just art. You have to live it out and decide, define, demonstrate.

So, that's just a small example

I think that the last one Alex is the hardest right that demonstrates peace. I think people will get really excited about designing it and trying to focus on it and get everybody's attention around it. But actually, demonstrating it over time is the hardest piece.

I talked to a Behavioral psychologist, and she said at one point, look, you have to make decisions. In terms of your culture and your organization, based on your core values, the conversation actually goes a little something like this… Hey, we're making this decision because our core value is love or our core value is integrity and to go in a different direction goes against our core values of the company. And that's why we're making this decision. So, is that the way you've seen this Play out?

Yes, Sir. Absolutely so making, so I call it, so the 3D's decide to find, and demonstrate values become values, statements that then turn into valued action. So, it's kind of like putting your money where your mouth is, so making sure that everyone in the organization sees that, hey, we value this. This is a valued action.

And you do that through team meetings. Hey, you know, Jimmy did this week and that represents integrity. That's what we're about. Hey, we're going to have this as a teaching moment. This customer had this experience. That was not what we were about. This is against whom we believe we are as people of integrity and as you do that over and over, it creates this system of reinforcement that shows everyone in the organization; this is what we believe. This is what we value, and we act it out.

So, as you're thinking about this and you're talking to leadership, typically when you're having these conversations, how do you actually get people to buy in… down in the organization.

Yep. So, you have to go back to the team aspect of what I teach, you have to find people who care about what you care about. You have to find people who believe what you believe because it's very hard to go against the core of what a person believes and try to get them to act in a way that's not consistent with who they actually think they are and what they believe as a person. So that's the first thing is actually recruiting people to join in with something that they believe in.

So that goes back to the mission and the vision of the organization like we want people. I think Seth Golden set people like us to do things like this. So, we want people to like us that do things like this, making sure that you have that right fit. I think that's where buy-in starts in the belief system of the person. So that's number one.

And then from there, it's the reinforcement, but if you don't kind of hit them at their core, it's very hard to get people to go against who they are as a person.

So, you get into all of this culture design, and you get into vision and mission and values, but you did that after some really heavy lifting in real estate markets.


Let's talk a little bit about that. You were pressing at 22 pretty early on in your career towards some big real estate deals which is quite impressive. So, help us understand a little bit of the back story there and what happened at an early stage in your career.

Absolutely, so one may think about how Alex goes from real estate to culture, and here's how. I was buying real estate faster than I could count. And to be honest, it was challenging, but the idea of the principles was easy. It was just something that made sense to me. The cash flow, the appreciation, it just made sense. I used my spreadsheet to factor in my numbers to make my offers. You accept it, or you don't. It was pretty clear-cut.

Well, while that is growing acquisitions, I still have the management side. And people, I'll tell you, are not as predictable as cash flow. So, I have these two dynamics. I'm the President of this company, which is a management company, and the President of this company, which is an acquisitions company. So, here, I’m just buying, buying, buying. And over here I have to manage.

So, I find myself at 23/24 with, you know, 20 plus employees, hundreds of vendors over 2000 residents, and now I have to manage people. And that's where I kind of ran into the challenge of creating culture. The challenge of making it to where we had a collective belief system. And I started to see those core values acted out. The challenge of getting the show, getting people to show up on time, just simple things that one would think are just inherent in all of us. It's like, wow, people are not as predictable. That's what led me on the cultural journey of letting me figure out how to make this to where it's systematic, where it works when I'm around, and it works when I'm not around. That's how the overlap happened. By default, buying a bunch of property had to manage people.

So, I remember my first management job and it Was a while ago. I was A little older Than you were. Maybe I was 20/25/26 ish when I first got into management. What was your biggest sort of mistake or what was the biggest lesson that you learned from that role?

So, I had the privilege of one starting a company, and two being hired into a company. So, I know a lot of us start things in our 20s and that's, you know, great, especially if you blow it up and make it happen. But to be hired into someone else's company and he goes, hey, I want you to be the president of my company at the age I was that was interesting.

And here was my biggest challenge. Getting the founder and the people on the same page. Because he had an idea in his head that sometimes was in conflict with what the people thought. So that was honestly the biggest thing, being a kind of mediation or mediator between the CEO and founder and the employees.

And I had to build that bridge, build that gap and really articulate what he had in his head in a way that they could understand it and then also take what they thought they found important and bring it back to him; and make it to where we're all on the same page. We're all working towards the same thing. That was the biggest challenge.

And I say this often, working with leaders that vision is often blurred from our heads to our hands. And what I mean by that is leaders often struggle to articulate, to staff what they have as an idea in their head that actually means anything at all to the staff. So, we could talk about the vision statement and how to write that, but my biggest challenge was sitting in between the people I served and the owner that wrote the checks. So that was interesting.

But this is the biggest misconception in business in terms of the mismatch between the visionary who is the founder or the CEO, or the president, whatever that role is that you want to call it, it's fine. But it's that person that sets the vision and is the architect behind the design of the company and that could be a big company. They're the architect for those few years or for that decade, or it could be a founder that started it and grew it.

And the disconnect? I love the way you said that it's the difference between the sort of the brain and the hands. Right. And what's going on in the work? So, in this particular case, how did you create that bridge? What did you do that brought a visionary and sort of these hard-working folks on your team?

So, the first thing, honestly, I spent months with the founder trying to clearly articulate his vision in a way that everyone could understand and get behind it. And that's where I kind of created the five pieces of vision taken directly from the Bible. And so, it comes from Habakkuk chapter 2. And if you have no Bible backing, it's OK. I'm going to explain it.

But the verse says, and the Lord answered me and said write the vision and make it plain on tablets of stone. So that whoever reads it may run with it for the visions yet from the point in time, if it tries to wait for it, it will surely come. That's where I got the five pieces of vision. I used it with them.

The number one vision must be personal. Make sure that your vision statement is a personal statement to the organization, he says. The Lord answered me. It was a personal vision given to him based on what his nation was experiencing.

#2 you want to make sure that vision is permanent and what I mean by permanent is, he says, to write it down on tablets of stone. You write anything on the stone that shows that you believe that's going to come to pass. It shows faith in the fruition of the idea. #2 is the permanent

#3. It needs to be practical, and this is where a lot of us go wrong. So, we come up with these big grand visions that have no practicality at all. He simply said, write the vision, make it plain. Can they understand it? Does this mean anything to the person who reads it?

#4 It needs to be purposeful, whoever reads it, runs with it. What does that mean? A vision statement is a call to action. When I hear it, I'm inspired to do something with it.

#5 has to be patient. I Said to wait for it, it will surely come. So, vision statements are normally a future projection, so visionaries see what shall be. But we have to deal with what is. So, it's like how do we blend perseverance and patience at the same time? That was the framework I used to actually get the message from his head to the employee’s eyes where it was understandable, we knew where we were going, and this is what we were about. This is what we want to do. Here are the steps that we're going to take to get there. So that was how it happened with a lot of back and forth.

Well, it makes perfect sense that your background, the great work that your grandfather has done, and your father have done, led you down this path as well would all be combined in this first job. Yeah, that really kind of tested your skills and tested you as a leader and it's no surprise to me and probably not to anybody listening that you would lean on that sort of playbook, for lack of a better word, that that gave you the principles and the core components that allowed you to get through these difficult conversations.

Yep, for sure. It has shaped and molded my leadership style, and it's, I mean, obviously been a great resource to me. The people that aren't, you know, religious that's OK often say that your favorite, your favorite business coach, has either quoted directly or indirectly the Bible at some point.

So, my job as a coach is to make it simple to make it clear I don't want to go into an organization, and They go wow… Alex is really smart, but we have no clue what to do with the information he talked about? I want to walk in, and people go. Man, that was so clear and so simple, how have we not thought of that? How have we not done it that way? So, I try to make it easily understandable so that people can actually implement the ideas.

Yeah, I like the practicality of the way you approach mission, vision, and values in a framework setting, but there's got to be some misuse of time or waste of time. You know that people tend to do it over and over again, that's sort of a waste of time, and don't get to the point right away. What do you see?

So, the biggest waste of time that I see is often, and this is going to be a funny word I just thought of is “I division”, so we don't have the same. We don't have alignment, so a lot of times, especially when you have more than one person who kind of has power in an organization, what you often find is what this person wants to do.

This person wants to do this, and we have no cohesiveness. This is where we're headed, and then it just turns into instead of a vision writing session. It's in arguing over the direction of the company. That's a big-time waster, so it's it really helps to understand when I go into an organization whose word has power, and who are we listening to early on I think a lot of the employees in the company kind of felt like, what's the use and what's the point of us having an opinion because we don't feel heard?

So those are often dynamics that have to be dealt with, OK. How much say or how much weight will you give your employees on what they say about where we're headed as an organization? So that's what I see as the biggest, the biggest time waster is often trying to get a vision is the “I division” between people within the organization.

Look, anybody that's listening to you, Alex, that has been in a room and tried to put together vision, mission, and values with a group of just six people knows how difficult that homework is because everybody has a different opinion and they're bringing their own work and their own life skills and their own experiences and all of that to the table that may differ from what the actual company direction is. And so, you end up getting into a bit of a debate, a bit of a political debate if you will, about which word we're going to use and what that word exactly means, and then what the behaviors are that we expect from the team and the employees, it's just hard work to do so I commend you for doing it.

The other thing, what’s really interesting is that when you go into larger companies and you talk about hiring people and getting the right people that believe in the mission division, and the values, but in larger companies it is even harder to do.

And here's why. It's very hard. The salesperson is going from company A to Company B because they got a better sales territory, or they got a guarantee of commissions or they liked the manager and their manager used to work at the old company. The right marketing person is doing the same thing.

They're going from director to manager to director, or they're leveling up in some way to a VP position. We're moving around within the industry for a financial advantage typically or a role advantage. Or perhaps a location advantage in certain cases, as well. So how do you hire people that believe in your mission, vision, and values when you're above, let's say, 250 employees?

So, you have to leap with them. So, in the process, I even go as far as writing the job ad, it's not just about here's how much this job pays. You have to be clear and upfront about who you are as an organization lead with that from the first point of contact until the last.

So, first day to last day. We're leading with who we are as an organization and maybe they're moving for a pay raise and they're not moving forward, the big vision of the company, but what they need to see is how their individual role plays into the organization, achieving that big vision.

So, it's how I am, I call it the brick builder or the brick mason versus the cathedral builder. So it's the story of the guy walking up to the guys that are kind of building this building. He says, hey, what are you doing? I'm what it looks like? I'm laying bricks and the other guy goes. I'm building a grand cathedral for God. What's the difference? One person sees how what they do plays into the larger vision, so that's how you do that.

And then I go back to what I call the 3Cs of… I have a bunch of alliterations of the 3 C's of hiring and its exodus. In chapter 18 Jethro, who's the father-in-law of Moses, is observing Moses on what I called bring your dad to work day. And he goes “Moses like what you are doing is all wrong. You and the people who come to you will only wear yourselves out.”

So, Moses, like the lone judge has a bunch of people around him and they're just wearing him out. This is what he tells Moses about building a team. Find capable, God-fearing men who are trustworthy and hate this honest game. And he says appoint them as officials over hundreds, thousands, the 50s and 10s. What does that mean?

Number one, you need to find people that are competent when you're hiring. I don't just hire people. I'm a Christian. You know, you're we don't just hire people because they say I'm this. Or are you competent? Can you do the job with excellence?

#2 is the character of that person. God fearing, trustworthy, hate, dishonest gain. So, make sure that they match your values. So, competency can't be overlooked. The character certainly can't be overlooked, and the last one is capacity.

He says, assess them as officials over thousands, hundreds, the 50s, and 10s. What is that? What level of authority can they handle in the organization some people can handle overseeing 11, 50, or 10, so make sure that you #1. Lead with your values. This is who we are. Is our vision. Making sure that they're competing for the position they match your values via character and making sure that you give them the proper level of authority and that they see that grand vision of how their individual role plays into the grand vision of the company.

Yeah, I love the 3C's and it plays out beautifully.

And then there's the next component when you have these great people in the organization and maybe it's a modern component, but I would think it goes back hundreds and thousands of years. You have got to develop people.

The next piece. And I'm sorry it's not a C. Alex, I promise you, I was racking my brain trying to think of a C for you. I mean, a little bit of coaching, maybe, but you've got it. You got to develop people, right?  When you have those great people, if you don't develop them, they will find another mission, vision, and values that inspire them more because none of us want to be stagnant, and certainly not the high-character people that we’re talking about.

Development is the key to scale. So what I mean by that, I'm not going to directly quote him, but John Maxwell talked about development and I just kind of put my own spin on it. But number one is you do it. So it's you mastering the trade, a skill, whatever it may be.

#2 is you do it and bring someone else. So now it's me doing it kind of like the talent empowerment I have with someone else that I'm coaching and training.

#3 is you do it or let them do it. As you watch. So now it's OK we got the training rules on. I've shown you how to do it. Now let me watch you do it.

#4 is to have them do it, so that's where you empower them. That's where you delegate. That's where you show them. And that you have a level of trust within them or in them that you let them do it on their own.

And here's where we go to scale. Have them do it and bring someone else with them. That's how leaders create leaders. I do it. I do it with someone. I have someone do it with me. I let them do it. I have them do it and teach someone else.

And the critical component or maybe detail underneath the hood here is that as an architect or a leader, you can't be critical of the work that they do when you teach them how to do it. So, the first step when you teach them, you have to let them do it their own way. You can't grab it back from them and say, oh, my goodness, you're not doing it the way I do it. Now, perhaps they won't.

And in most cases, they won't do it exactly. The way you'll do it, but they'll do it. Within an 80% threshold. And I always say. If we can get to an 80% threshold the other 20% is your intuition, ingenuity, your expression, and the 1st 80% is the knowledge and competency right. And so, if we can get to the knowledge and competency first and then that last piece is just who you are, right, it's always going to be different from the way I did it.

Yeah, I think a large part of delegating effectively. Is being OK with a temporary reduction in the level of quality, because if you've done it for a long time, if you've mastered it, it's very hard to bring someone in, and on day one they do it as effectively as efficiently as you do.

You have to be OK with that short term. OK. You know, Sally doesn't do it exactly how I do it, but she's going to get there. And if you're OK with that, you can reach a level of scale that's not able to be reached when you just do. So, I think that's a part of it. I mean you see that with children or everything, I mean you have to be OK with someone else figuring it out the same way you had to; in the same way, we all have to.

Alex is really talking about. A dip in productivity of the person and the job and the role. That you'll see almost immediately, and you can't. You can't get out of it. You have to go through this productivity dip to increase productivity over time as you develop this person.

So, it's a very important concept that people need to understand because you're going to go through it. If we all do right when we're developing people. On the other side, I'm interested in this and your expertise here, Alex. The other side is holding people accountable for measurable outcomes. KPIs, metrics, whatever you want to call them, right? But you got to hold people accountable. How do you do that?

So, number one, you have to establish what those metrics are and make sure that they are also aware of them. So, for the twin city properties we had, I met with everyone weekly, but we had assigned quarterly type assessments.

It's not fair for me to assess someone on something they have no clue of what they're actually being tested and assessed on. So, just like a teacher teaches the information, first inform the students of what they're going to be tested over. It's the same thing in leadership. Hey, here's what you're judged by. Here's what you're going to be evaluated on. That way they have a clear understanding of what is expected.

So once expectations are clear. You have to be direct. So, for me, it started with the timeliness thing. We had people showing up at 8:05 and 8:02 and it's not the end of the world yet, but it's an erosion of our core values. It's an erosion of what I said in the team meeting about who we are. So, if I don't follow up. On what I said. Everyone goes Alex doesn't really mean what he said.

So now it kind of negates everything I said. In that meeting. Because I'm not brave. Brave enough. I'm not bold enough. I'm not proactive enough to go “You showed up at 8:02. We said that 7:55 to 8 was kind of a grace period. We expect you to be here and be. Ready to work if a customer walks in at 8:00 AM we need to be ready to serve.”

So, knowing what they're tested over is a huge part of it. The expectations of the organization and #2 You have to be direct. It's so easy as a leader to just ignore it, and it's kind of like that snowflake that is harmless at the top of the hill. That is a snowball at the bottom of the hill that just knocks your house off the mountain and is left unaddressed. It's OK for a while. And then it gets so big that now you have to have this big blow-up meeting because we weren't proactive. We weren't diligent, so that's how I have been able to do it. It's #1 clear expectations, #2 being proactive, being diligent, and following up on what you said. When you see it.

Yeah, well said. What generation do you identify with?

I am an old soul so I often say that I'm like 50-something or 60-something trapped in this 20/28-year-old body. But I'm kind of from the I guess I would attribute that to my grandfather and my dad. I'm kind of old school, to be honest. But that's helped me to relate to the way baby boomers that are aging out. And the Gen. Z millennial that's figuring it out. So, I'm kind of in the middle because I can talk that talk, but I understand it's these people because I'm technically one of them. So, I'm an old soul trapped in a young body.

So technically you're a Gen Z.

technically I'm a millennial.

You're right. At the end of millennial.

Like right at the millennial cutoff?

OK. So, to all of my baby boomer friends out there and all of my Gen Xers, we have a millennial who is a bit of a **** *** on showing up at 8:00 o'clock in the morning. OK, now I didn't know this was possible. You're a Unicorn, Alex. You are an absolute Unicorn.

And for all of the grumpy baby boomers that I've heard over and over again, say that the next generations. I don't get it. I think the next generations do get it and there are certain rules of business that are changing and evolving to match the modern culture. But here's an example of someone who’s a bit old school, actually, quite frankly, in your approach.

Which, yeah, I think there's a balance as well. I'm hard on things like that, but that's just me. That's an integrity thing for me. If we're going to. If you don't want 8:00 AM, don't say it. So, for me, it's like we established it. Now I have to follow through. But along those lines, I LED through COVID. Took our operation 95% online overnight and leased all of our property through COVID. We couldn't even show the property. We leased it, we're 99% occupied, and collected 98 points, almost 99% of what we expected to collect through COVID. Didn't have a lot of evictions, so. integrating technology was part of it, but also, it's how we do what we say.

So, at your house when we were at home for like a year, I expect you to be logged on to your computer and ready to work. You can wear your sweatpants down below, but up top now, we want something that looks professional Just setting up Expectations and being excellent, in everything that we put in Our hands.

So yeah, and it feels like you are excellent at everything you put your hand towards, and I thank you very much for sharing your vision and your mission and your purpose and the values that you bring to the table on our show, talent empowerment. So thank you for being on the show, my friend. Where can people find you if they want to get in touch with you? And make contact.

Yeah. So, it's and Sezer is spelled SEZER

Yeah, he's got a great website, check out we'll put it in the show notes so that you can connect with Alex if you are looking for someone that can help you with the vision mission values, and all of those components Alex is A great resource and he's got some training and tutorials. Components on his website and does some work with individuals in person and via zoom.

You're welcome to connect with him and tap into his, his baby boomer brain and his, you know, millennial driver's license essentially. Alex This has been an absolute treat, my friend. I feel like I've learned a ton from you today and really thank you for being on the show with us.

Thank you so much, Tom, for your work and for giving leaders a platform like me. Leaders of a platform for people like me, so thank you for having me. And it was a pleasure I learned from you as well. So, thank you.

Yeah, absolutely. We all learned together a rising tide raises all boats. And thank you for joining the Talent Empowerment podcast. I hope you transform your business by being purpose-driven and placing gratitude at the center of everything you do. And enabling innovation at scale, let's get back to people and culture together. We'll see you in the next episode.

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