What makes you “Backable”

I recently read the book written by today’s guest. It’s called Backable: The Surprising Truth Behind What Makes People Take a Chance on You.

I thought it was incredibly helpful because he gave clear steps for how to be “backable,” the type of person that people like, that they want to put their money or careers behind.

I’ve seen so many of these people here in San Francisco that have that “it quality.” We’ll talk about what that is and examples of how people use techniques to become it.

Suneel Gupta is the author; he’s also the co-founder of Rise which was acquired by One Medical.

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Suneel Gupta

Suneel Gupta


Suneel Gupta is the author of Backable: The Surprising Truth Behind What Makes People Take a Chance on You. He’s also the co-founder of Rise which was acquired by One Medical.


Full Interview Transcript

Andrew: Hey there, freedom fighters. My name is Andrew Warner. I’m the founder of Mixergy, where I interview entrepreneurs about how they built their businesses. Joining me is somebody who well, there’s so many things that I could talk about with you. I could talk about your famous brother. I could talk about your sister.

Who’s your excuse me, your wife. Who’s fricking writing on tech crunch. I’d love for years. Lino. Raul, am I pronouncing your name right?

Suneel: right. Yeah. Yeah.

Andrew: I dude, for like a decade, she’s had some of the best articles when I researched guests. I see her. I could talk about your, your company rise, which basically paired people up with nutritionists over their phone to help them lose weight.

Am I right?

Suneel: That’s right. That’s right. By the way, Andrew, you got the, you got the ordering just about, right. Usually people want to talk about my brother and then my Weiss, and then if we get time to it, you know, we’ll talk about my startup and luck.

Andrew: Your brother is.

Suneel: his name is Dr. Sanjay Gupta. So he’s a, he’s on CNN joined CNN about 20 years ago now that’s so it’s really been quite a while and, and has been, uh, you know, completely, completely focused over the past 12 months on everything that’s been happening in the world, the pandemic.

So really proud of him, all the work that he does.

Andrew: I get it. I would feel so intimidated that my brother was there or I would try to use them. I looked at your old material. I would think that I would see your brother’s name, blazoned all over the site. You know, like, no, it wasn’t, it wasn’t like that. rise basically just showed how it could help people.

But with their nutrition, it’s beyond weight loss. From what I could see, you sold the company to one medical. I’m curious about why and for how much, I’m curious about how you went from being a guy who was employee at several great companies here in the Bay area to starting your own company. And I want to talk to you about that, how you launch the company, built it up, sold it.

And I, I got to tell you, I sat down and I read your book backable, the surprising truth behind what makes people take a chance on you. And I thought that. I thought it was incredibly helpful because you made some, you gave some clear steps for what to do, to be backable, to be the type of person that people like, that they want to put their money behind.

They want to put their careers behind. God knows. I’ve seen so many of these people here in San Francisco. There’s like a thing about them. and I also love that you included tons of stories and examples of how people use each one of those techniques. So we’re going to find out about how Suneel Gupta did that.

Thanks to two phenomenal sponsors. The first few people have heard me talk about for years, I’ve been using them for years. It’s called HostGator for hosting your website. And the second you’ve never heard me talk about because I’ve never suffered so much as I did this year. With just sending out 10 90 nines for my team.

And I just switched over to rippling and we are now going to have everything taken care of when we hire people. And I’ll tell you guys later why you should go to rippling.com/mixergy. . If you’ve got a team of people first, Neil, good to have you here,

Suneel: Nice to be here, Andrew. Thanks for having me.

Andrew: dude. How much did you sell the company for?

Suneel: You know, I’m not even sure that that’s really public information. I mean, there’s been, there’s been a couple of articles out there, so I prefer not to say, but, um, but I, you know, I would say, you know, in our, in our, in our baseball analogy that we tend to use some times I’d say that, you know, we, we, it was, it was a double, it wasn’t, it wasn’t a home run by any stretch, but I will say that the company that we sold it to.

One medical ended up just really not just really blowing it, blown out of the water over the past couple of years. I mean, it’s just such a great company and so forward thinking. And I think the timing of everything they do with primary care, there’s never been a more important time. So I think our shareholders have been very, yeah.


Andrew: Wall street journal said you sold for $20 million. That’s the reported number. Like you said to one medical before I see you make a face at me, you know what they, from what I’ve seen, I’ve now checked in with friends. Who’ve sold their companies and investors. Who’ve had companies that they’ve invested.

Well, the numbers are always fricking off they’re they’re just, there’s no. I don’t, I don’t know why they even bother reporting on a number. Is it, is it basically in the, in the, in the ballpark?

Suneel: it’s it’s it’s it’s ballpark.

Andrew: Okay. Ballpark. And then the, the nice thing is, like you said, in the book in backable, You sold before they went public and fricking, Hey, I’ve been talking forever about how much I love being a one medical customer.

It’s like, you just go right in. They take great care of you. They don’t make you sit in the waiting room. They treat you like a human being. You text them, they respond right away. You go see them on, on the phone. They, they have, uh, they handle it well anyway. So you sold to a great company. It looks like they, uh, tripled since they went public about a year ago.

Right? So.

Suneel: Yeah. And, and, you know, what’s really remarkable about the story. Andrew is like, I don’t know if you, if you heard about how Tom Lee who’s a physician started one medical, but it’s really fascinating because in a lot of ways he used software, you know, methodology of iteration to, to build a brick and mortar.

Primary care practice. He started out as the, as a one man show. He was literally the, the, the physician, the nurse, the front desk, the phlebotomist did every everything himself. And as a patient would come through, you know, he, he, you know, give him, give him the service, but as it were leaving, he would make sure to circle back with them to say, Hey, he was using net net promoter score to say, Hey, on a, on a scale of one to 10.

How would you rate this experience? And if they gave them anything less than a nine or a 10, he’d asked him why. And it was as simple as that. And because it was a one man show, he was literally then taking that feedback and folding it right in to the next patient experience. So we continue to rapidly iterate on it.

And, and through that, he just discovered little things like, for example, One of the patients said, Hey, while I was waiting in the waiting room, the phone was ringing at the front desk and just, it I’m already sort of nervous about my appointment. I don’t like the phone ringing. It’s just one of those things.

And he thought to himself, gosh, you’re right. Like. Patients shouldn’t have to hear that. So now if you go to a one medical office, you’ll have people at the front desk, but they’re completely focused on the people who were in the waiting room. There’s there’s in most locations, at least I know of there’s no phone.

The phones are in the back of throwing and in the back of the office, a little things like that, that just really elevate experience.

Andrew: I found that too. Like they don’t make you wait. I mentioned, but if I happen to show up early, which I do, because I like the couches there they’ll have. I find username and password available, which believe it or not here in San Francisco, there’s not always great internet connection everywhere. So a wifi connection.

So you could do some work while you’re waiting is killer. Let, let, let me ask you about how you got here. I mentioned that you, you worked here in Silicon Valley. One of the companies you work for was Groupon. I love the story and backable about how, when you met Andrew Mason, the founder, I actually sent him a screenshot of the page in the book where you talked about how instead of sitting in a conference from what he did with you, can you talk about what he did and why that’s so important?

Suneel: Yeah. You know, just, just a little context at that time, I was working at Mozilla, um, and really enjoyed my job. I was working in San Francisco and, and, uh, it was a great company, great team. And, uh, but I I’d been introduced to Andrew and, and Groupon was just at its at its early stages. Hadn’t raised a series, a.

Just yet. And, uh, and you know, I flew out to Chicago to go meet with him and what I was expecting, we were, we were there to talk about, you know, him building out his product team. At that time, there were no product people working at the company. And the idea was maybe I could come on as, as their first.

What I expected was sort of the typical interview. You sit down on a table, have some, have a one-on-one. He has some, he has some questions. I asked them questions. Instead, we ended up spending most of that day outside of the office. Walking around the local area in, in downtown Chicago, where he would point to different places, point to restaurants, point to shops, um, that he had worked with at that point in time that had, that had used Groupon.

And, and he would say, you know, this is that person’s story. That, that, that guy over there, Jim is a Baker. And, you know, Jim loved baking. He grew up, he grew up loving to learn how to bake and that’s what he’s doing now, except. You know, there’s a lot of overhead that comes with being a small business owner.

He has to do marketing. He has to figure out customer acquisition, his figure, all that stuff, but that’s not what he really wants to do. And that’s, and that’s our role. And so we, we just, he just continued to tell me these stories of these local businesses. And, you know, in the book, we talk about this as the idea of casting a central character for your idea.

Casting a central character, who is that one person that you are, that you were trying to serve. And I think that we all know that that’s important for running a business, and we know that’s important for building products, but it’s also very, very important for telling your story that could be too early teammates that could be to investors.

Starting with that, starting with that central character story, it really, really stood out to me. When I, I remember getting on a flight right before I went back to San Francisco, I, I called my wife and I’m like, I’ve got to, I’ve got to come work here.

Andrew: ’cause you, you saw the central character, which was this small store owner, and you said, I want to help them. And this is not just about offering coupons and letting people get dis discounts. The, but that’s a part of it. What else is it?

Suneel: Yeah, no, I mean, I think we, we are tempted. I think as founders, often to begin with the numbers, they begin with the market size to begin with the data. And oftentimes when ends up happening is the central character is either neither part of our story or they’re sort of a footnote. You know, one of the first people I pitched on my company rise, which you know, is it was a one-on-one nutrition coaching service.

Uh, one of her speech people I pitched was was Tim Ferris. Oh, yeah, he was, he had just written for our body and I, and I thought to myself, like he could be a perfect sort of person to have on board with something like this. And he ended up passing on the idea, but he gave me just a great, great piece of feedback.

He told me his story. He said that when he was writing the four hour workweek, he was turned down by 25 publishers in a row. And the piece of advice that he was gotten was go back and rewrite the book. But now rewrite it for one person. We read it with just one person in mind. And so he did, he chose one of his friends and he rewrote the book and it was a hit people.

Loved it. And the advice he gave me is that when I gave my pitch guys, I talked a lot about the growing concern with diabetes. I talked about the size of this market. I talked about the number of people that would be struggling with hypertension, and then at the very end of my pitch deck, I told my father’s story.

And my father’s story was, you know, he, in his, in his forties, he had diabetes, hypertension had his first triple bypass surgery. And I kind of left that all the way to the end and almost included as a footnote. And his advice to me was flip that, switch it, talk about that central character first. Get the people on the other side of the table invested in that one story.

And then talk about how many versions of that story are out there, how big that market can be. And when I did that, when I made that simple switch, I could just see the way that investors were responding differently.

Andrew: And what happened to your dad? Was he went to the doctor, I think, in any collapsed. He, what did he have?

Suneel: Yes. So what ended up happening is, uh, you know, I was in, I was in grade school at the time he dropped me off and he, uh, he was supposed to pick me back up, um, and in between he was going to have a stress test. Uh, where they put you on put you on a treadmill and they, they sort of speed it up a little bit just to see how your body will react.

And, you know, the output comes and they’ll, and they’ll sort of evaluate your health that way. In this case, they saw the results of his stress test and said, Oh my gosh, like you’re, you’re about to, you’re about to have a heart attack and we need to get you to the operating room. As soon as possible. So I’m standing there after school, waiting for my dad to come pick me up.

And he never does. My, my, my aunt comes about an hour later. And by the time, you know, I got in her car, he was already on the operating table.

Andrew: And then when he comes out of this, you said he went from being a guy in his forties to looking like a guy in his eighties. How you handling this? Me talking about it. I’m watching you and it looks uncomfortable.

Suneel: Yeah. You know, it’s interesting. I, I, I never, I never get comfortable talking about the story because, you know, it’s just, it’s, it’s, uh, I, first of all, I’m, I’m, I’m now newly minted it in my forties. I’ve got a couple of kids and, you know, I think about. You know, how, how fragile he was, you know, at an age that was just a few years older than I am right now.

But I I’ll tell you, like, when we left the hospital, it’ll, you know, we got a, we got a piece of paper and that piece of paper was basically lifestyle change. Right. And it had, it had eat broccoli, eat Brussels sprouts. And I remember thinking to myself, I’m sitting in the backseat of a car, like reading this piece of paper and I’m thinking to myself, like we don’t.

We don’t eat broccoli. We don’t eat brussel sprouts. We’re, you know, we’re, we’re Indian. We, you know, what’s the, what’s the where’s, what do we do if our, if our diet consists of things like chicken Curry and the all, and you know, what do we do? And, and that’s why having a nutritionist was such a big deal.

For our family and lucky for us insurance kicked in and help pay for somebody who could kind of really inspect our diet and help us figure out how do we make these, how do we make these tweaks when we don’t eat? Like, you know, the, the, the sort of norm. And, uh, and, and by the way, I don’t think a lot of people eat like the norm.

I think we all need a little bit of customization in order to make things stick.

Andrew: I also need somebody to check in with me and make sure that I’m actually following through, or have somebody who I’m going to want to come back to if there is a problem. All right. So that was the idea behind rise. You left Groupon. I think you said in backable, because you were, um, you saw that they lost the focus on the central character.

You said, I see all these people starting companies. I think I could do it too. You created a spreadsheet of that ideas. And then through the whole thing way, what are some of the good ideas that were on that spreadsheet? And then we’ll talk about why you throw it away. What were some of the good ideas?

Suneel: Yeah. I mean, you know, I, if you think about sort of, um, The the life of any small business owner. Right. Can we think about sort of, what, what is it that they’re consumed with day to day they’re consumed with, how do we, how do we get customers walking through the door? How do we give them a great experience and how do we get them coming back?

Right. Ultimately, those are sort of, I mean, at a very high level, those are the three sort of things I think Groupon did, uh, did, uh, did a fine job. With getting customers through the door. I think for the most part, you know, companies were very small businesses were very satisfied with that, but to, to get them coming back, uh, was a whole different story.

And there were so many people out there that would buy Groupon, check out the store and they were, and then they would go buy the next group and check out a different store for a competitor. And so. You know, w I was very interested in that latter part. How do you get people coming back? Um, but you’re right.

I did create a spreadsheet of ideas. And one of those was, was, was around this retention problem. And I remember. Oh, yeah. I mean, yeah. I mean, I th you’re taking me back, but you’re taking me back over 10 years ago now. I mean, a lot of, a lot of what I, what I thought about at the time has already sort of been, has already been created.

I mean, you have loyalty programs. You have, you have different technology that I think that people can use to sort of track and, and, and make sure that they’re sort of maintaining a relationship with

Andrew: I’ve got to say none of them have worked again, living

Suneel: Yeah. Nobody.

Andrew: We go for ice cream and they’ll ask us to put our phone number in so we could get text messages and ice cream does this. We just never bothered with it. If we want ice cream, we get it. We ignore the text messages and I’ve seen lots of different companies here.

Get into different local stores, give it a shot and not, no, one’s nailed it.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. Maybe that’s part of the reason that I w I wasn’t really excited about it either. You know, I didn’t pass the sniff test that this is something that would be a great customer experience, you know? I mean, I, I think it could, you could see the logic as to why. Uh, it would work for a business, but is it really gonna work for a customer?

But you know, I, I want to answer your question because I, I did create that spreadsheet of ideas and, and I, and I ha I took it to a mentor of mine and mentor basically looked at the spreadsheet and she looked at me and she said, you know, which of these ideas makes you, you come alive? And I looked at the spreadsheet.

Okay. And I realized that none of them made me come alive, not a single one. I mean, I spent the past few years working in e-commerce. So intellectually that’s where my that’s, where my mind was. Hey, all of these ideas were, were, were e-commerce related. But e-commerce didn’t really make me come alive. I mean, it was, it was interesting.

It was interesting, but it didn’t make me come alive. And so I, I took a step back and I started to think about like, what am I really like, what really fires me up. And that’s when I started to think about, you know, my, my story of my dad and, and healthcare and his struggle and, and you know, what we could do.


Andrew: Okay. And so you went for that. The interesting one thing that I highlighted that it’s not the interesting lots of interesting things in backable, but here’s one thing that I highlighted. You said you went to pitch investors, you spent 80% of your time on slides and. I’m an occasional investor. I’ll get these slides that the entrepreneurs will put together asking for feedback, and I give them thoughtful feedback and it goes back and forth.

You said, look, that’s 80% of your time on that 20% incubating your idea. You wish you did instead of spent 80% of your time on what do you remember?

Suneel: of your time focusing on convincing yourself first. Yeah. Yeah. You know, when I was writing this book, I really thought that. I was gonna find a communication style to backable people. People who are highly convincing are going to have a certain way of speaking. They’re going to have to use certain eye contact and hand gestures and pacing that did not in any way, turn out to be true.

I have now studied hundreds of backable people from Oscar winning film makers, to Michelin star chefs, to leaders of iconic companies. And I, and I realized that they all have very different communication styles. Some are more extroverted and gregarious. Some are more subtle and introverted.

Andrew: You know what, um, I’m sorry to interrupt, but I love the book and I got to jump in with it the best way that you nailed that was, you said, look at Elon Musk. When he was unveiling the future of space X, you might agree with income reading directly from books, Inc. Magazine’s headline that he fails public speaking one Oh one.

It’s true. The guy. Has trouble stammering getting out a word he’ll sometimes go off on these random tent. There’s nothing charismatic about this speaking style, which is like the way you nailed it for me. You’re right. These people who are, who are backable, we get excited about supporting. They don’t have that, that thing that I thought that good speakers would have.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, and, and, you know, it’s, we point to Elon Musk, but I mean, look at, look at Steve jobs. Who’s who’s I think, I think held as a poster child for charisma. Go watch. The 2007 iPhone launch, just go back and watch that speech. And you might be surprised it’s not, it’s not a highly charismatic speech.

You know, he, he fails. I think a lot of like the sort of, you know, Toastmaster or sort of Dale Carnegie kind of principles, he uses the word, uh, 80 times over 80 times in that speech or, or go look at, you know, let’s, let’s take, you know, non sort of headline examples. Let’s look at like the number one, Ted talk of all time.

And if you go look that up right now, you’ll see a guy named sir Ken Robinson who gives him brilliant, brilliant speech on education, but it’s a very untethered, like. Speech. He sorta got a hand in his pocket. He’s got a bit of a slouch. You kind of meanders through his script. It’s it’s not, it’s not very TED-like, but, but it’s a powerful, powerful speech.

So here’s the point. What makes us convincing is not necessarily charisma it’s conviction, backable people have one thing in common, which is that they take the time to convince themselves first.

Andrew: I get that. Here’s the part, the fact that they’re convinced I completely get, I see it in their eyes. They believe this. It seems like horses. I shouldn’t say this, it seems like that. And I look at them and I go, are you just trying to snow me? And no, they fully believe that the little widget that they’re putting on a shopping site is actually going to change all of shopping.

If you could just give them a moment to talk about how it’ll get there, they will convince you. And they believe it themselves. The thing that I didn’t, that I, I wanted to challenge you on is you say work on that. I wonder, do they work on that or is this just a thing that happens to them? Do you see Neil having research and talk to them?

Do you find that they, that they work on it themselves, that they look in the mirror and say, this will change e-commerce or did they just naturally go down this path because they can’t help it.

Suneel: It’s such a good question. What most of the people that I, that I, that I studied took the time took the time. So they did not, they did not blurt out their ideas. When they had them, right. They, they took the time to themselves. Now, I think you’re asking about like what was happening in their head when they took the time.

And I, and I, it’s a good question because I, I can’t, I can’t read exactly what was happening during that time, but what I will say, and then this is, this is the thing that I found interesting. And, and I think, I think very practical for me and, you know, have been, has been practical for other entrepreneurs is that we often have these ideas that we come up with and.

When we get excited about them, we want to blurt them out immediately. We want to share it instantaneously. Oh my God. You’ll never forget your neck. You got to sit down, but what, what, what typically happens in those moments? Is that at the very best we get sort of a ha interesting sort of reaction. It’s very rare that, that the other people in the room are going to be as excited about us in that moment as we are.

And when that happens, when there’s that mismatch, it can actually be quite deflating. And what we found when I was writing this book is that. Most ideas inside startups and companies actually don’t get killed inside the pitch room. They don’t get killed inside the conference room. They get killed inside hallways, around water coolers and through really casual conversations, because what ends up happening is we sort of come up with an idea.

We share it immediately before it’s ready to be shared and the reaction isn’t what we want. And we sort of put it in a drawer and we walk away. And I think back to your question, Andrew is like, like what what’s happening with with back? Well, people I think is that they take that time. They take that time to convince themselves first, and then they share that when they feel like it’s ready.

Andrew: All right. Let me take a moment to talk about my first sponsor and then I’m going to come back and, uh, uh, continue with your story is a weird, I’m looking, you’ve got such expressive eyes that when I said that, I think I saw you go wait, we’re going to do the ad right now with me here. Yes. How did, how did you do, how did you do payroll?


Suneel: You’re a good reader too. You read eyes went really well.

Andrew: Thanks. How did you do payroll? Uh, when you were at rise?

Suneel: Um, I’ve got a, I’ve got a recall. I’m not sure.

Andrew: Ah, interesting because we don’t really care. Here’s why I suddenly cared about it. Dude. I emailed my team this year. I swear. This is true. I said, I’m paying everybody on PayPal. I can’t freaking deal with the 10 99 anymore. And then somebody, uh, from rippling just happened to contact me. And he said, listen, and Andrew, you know, there’s a better way.

What we could do is we handle all the 10 90 nines. You have W2. People will take care of them. If they move all across the country, we’ll take care of it. I said, what about this guy? Got he works for me in London. I have to send him all this money. He goes, Oh yeah, we handle people even internationally. I go.

That sounds great. That’s really going to save me. I’m switching over is that, and you know what you ever have problem. When you onboard somebody, I go, no, it’s easy to hire them. It’s good. No. What about you have to get them sign the agreement I go. Yeah. Yeah. So we use this one signature built in. He says you ever give him an email address?

Yeah. Yeah. It’s a pain, but it’s not mine. It goes, it’s built in with rippling. There’s just one button you say, I need them to have an email address. I need them to have access to these Slack rooms. Right. It’s all in there. And they onboard them. I go, that’s great. Okay. I don’t know that I need it, but. All right.

I’ll save me some time and then say, what about when somebody leaves? I go, Oh yeah. That’s when you have to hunt down to make sure that they’re out of the email out of the Slack, right? He goes one button there out of all the apps and everything is taken care of. It’s all into rippling. I go, dude, you guys had me.

I don’t have to deal with any more. 10 99. I’ve bookkeepers. I have accountants. I have software. It just keeps coming back to me.

Suneel: Wow.

Andrew: I’m going to say this for,

Suneel: it’s a backable pitch. That’s a backable

Andrew: was it a backable pitch? Tell me,

Suneel: Um, on their behalf. Yeah.

Andrew: All right. Thank you. I’m going to say to everyone, who’s listening to me. Do what I did. I went actually don’t do that.

Don’t do it. I did. I made a mistake. I went to a rippling.com and I signed up because I was so fricking desperate. I forgot to have my own URL. Use my URL. Please get me credit. It’s rippling.com/mixergy. When you use that, they’re going to take special care of you because you come in through Mixergy, they’ll do what they did for me.

A demo that will just show you all the things that you could do to onboard people. And off-board them. It’ll freaking blow your mind. Even if you don’t switch to them, go back to your people and say, give me this, make it easy for me to onboard people. All right. rippling.com/mixergy. Oh, I freaking love him.

All right, let’s continue with the story. You then go and you start to you create the app. Who who creates the app for you? You’re not a developer, right? You’re you’re a product guy though.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. So, so I partner with Stewart permitter. My co-founder brilliant engineer who, who Stuart and I worked together at Mozilla and he, you know, he, he joined early, early on. So Stewart was recruited out of high school to work at Netscape. Um, really, really fascinating guy. And, and, you know, so. Uh, when I, by the time I get to Mozilla, Netscape has sort of spun off Mozilla, working on Firefox.

Stewart is handling all of the mobile. So he’s leading the mobile engineering team and you know, he and I keep in touch while I’m at Groupon. He and I are staying in touch and we’re talking about ideas and, uh, and eventually, you know, we, we were both passionate.

Andrew: Co founders in the business, your job is to go and get customers. I’m assuming, right? You you’re, you’re able to get the nutritionist. The problem was, and I, that makes sense. Right? You’re getting the new business. They just have to be on their phones. Got it. Getting clients was a problem. With, when you’re talking to investors, they want to know what do you, what’s your first instinct and then how do you respond after you start to get smart about it?

Suneel: Yeah, I think my first instinct was, Hey, this is a great idea. Isn’t it like, wow, like people need this and this is a big market. So we’re gonna, we’re gonna, you know, we’re gonna create a big business and something that’s really meaningful, obviously. That’s, that’s not, that’s not the way to pitch. And, and, and there, there are lots of questions.

You know, one of the things we talk about in the book is this idea of steering into objections. You can’t just. You people who are evaluating ideas are, you know, they can’t just be won over by pointing out the positives, but you got to neutralize the negatives. And in order to do that, you need to steer into the objections yourself.

And, you know, one of the objections that I did not steer into, but eventually learned to. How to steer into was, you know, how do you get, how do you get your first customers? How do you, how do you, how does distribution work with something like this? Because at that point in time, at least most healthcare companies that had gotten to any sort of scalable size were effectively B2B companies through were enterprise.

We were talking about building a direct to consumer business. Uh, I, I wanted to do that because I felt like we could move fast. We could iterate. That was the kind of business I wanted to build, but there was very little evidence besides at that point, maybe WeightWatchers that, you know, a direct to consumer business could be built like this and sort of the healthcare space.

And so people were skeptical of that. How do you get your customers? And, you know, that was an objection that eventually I had to go take from, I hope they don’t ask. I hope they don’t ask to steering directly into it, which is like, let me talk to you about, you know, how we found our first pilot customers.

Let me talk to you also about the three ways, these, these different sort of paths that we’re planning on taking for. You know, building it out. Um, you know, and, and, and none of those answers I should say were Bulletproof answers. But what I have found is that when you can steer into the objections of your own idea yourself, What, what happens is you win over the credibility of the person who is on the other side of the table.

If you don’t steer into the objections, what ends up happening is those objections end up sitting with that person. Anyway, it’ll continue to nag at them the entire meeting, and they may not even ask. They may just dismiss the idea out outright and you’ll never have a chance to answer them. So, you know, steer steer directly into it.

Andrew: So you did eventually say. You tried some ads. They, at first, I don’t think work. Do you try a bunch of different things? What did eventually work was realizing that there’s some people like your friend who joined these tough Mudder type races, you start targeting them. They’re willing to switch. They’re willing to try a nutritional program.

I get it right. If you’re, I don’t know about the tough Mudder, tough Mudders of the world, but I know when people start signing up for marathons, they think about their nutrition in a way that they never had before, because it could make or break the event. What I’m curious about is what was in it for tough Mudder.

Did you partner up with them and have some kind of partnership deal where they get paid for sending you people? Or what were you, as you were talking to them, able to work out with them?

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. W w we started talking to tough Mudder, but you’re right. It was, it was actually other races that, that ended up. You know, becoming more engaged with this was marathons around the country. It was, um, we did, we did some work with the Susan B Komen around this. W but the point was that, how do you find people who are looking to make a transformational change?

And even with tough Mudders, someone’s got to run their first tough Mudder race and they got to get ready for that moment and that getting ready for that moment. And we know didn’t just include, you know, what you were doing to work out. It included how you ate. And so, you know, what we were doing is we were offering discounts to anybody who, you know, would, would sign up for the race, come, come to rise.

Uh, we, we explored some revenue share agreements as well. And you know, to be, I mean, these were, these were all experiments at this point in time, the company is about. Four months old. So we’re trying these different ways. And some of them are, some are gaining enough traction for us, at least to get our early customers on board.

The margins were not great, but it was giving us the data that we needed to figure out like, is this actually working? And then

Andrew: margins not great through you were charging $300 a month. From what I saw in an old article,

Suneel: 30, 30, a month,

Andrew: got 30 a month to get a real human being

Suneel: 30 months for real human being.

Andrew: And the way it would work is I would take a picture of my food and a real person would then give me feedback on it and help me guide. And I think you would even ask ’em.

Do I want someone who is going to be like a new Yorker to me and really be aggressive or someone who’s a little bit kinder. Am I right?

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. You know, we all have different sort of personalities. And I think that we respond different to different coaching styles. So, you know, who, who kind of, what kind of, and not only what kind of information and care do you want to get, but like, how do you want this person to interact with you? Um, so, you know, we felt like all of that was really important.

These customizations, the types of foods you eat, the type of lifestyle you live to find you the right coach. And then yeah. What was happening is you were, we, we were tracking, you know, through all of your. If you had a Fitbit or Apple watch or whatever you’re wearing, plus all the information you shared about what you’re eating, simply taking a photo of what you, what you ate.

We’d have somebody customizing a lifestyle for you, giving you feedback and sort of giving you the tweaks and adjustments.

Andrew: Uh, you know what I realized why I thought it was 300, right. I’m reading an old tech crunch article about you from seven years ago, it says typical one-on-one Nutrish nutritionist costs more than $300 a month. Rise by contrast, I guess at the time you’re offering it for $48 a month with a discount for tech crunch readers.

Um, how many users were you able to get before you sold to one medical?

Suneel: You know, it was, it was North of 10,000.

Andrew: Okay. That’s that’s not huge. Why did you sell to them and why did they buy.

Suneel: You know, Tom, Tom Lee, doctor, Dr. Lee and I had a good conversation at the time. And it was, it was, it was very much focused on, Hey, should we, can we partner together? You know, primary care was really sort of going at a, at a pace where, you know, they were trying to figure out how do we engage with patients?

In between doctor’s visits as well. Right. And how do we, how do we keep a persistent engagement? And I think that as we started to compare our roadmaps, what we realized is that there was a lot of commonality between where they wanted to head. And I think where we wanted the head, you know, for rise to your point.

And we were pretty early on only a couple of years in, at this point. And we were trying to figure out like, you know, is how do we take this, this. Engagement model that we created over mobile, that we know is sticky. We don’t have a ton of people on the platform, but what we know is that the people who are on are getting great results.

Can we take this? And we can we explore. You know, other areas like primary care and mental health. And on the other hand, one medical was, was saying, Hey, can we explore nutrition? Um, you know, and so it became very clear, very quickly that our roadmaps are very much aligned. And, you know, I think that that just lent itself really well to like, let’s talk about what it was, what would it look like for us to, to be together?


Andrew: they wanted to continue to build it out the nutrition product, but also say maybe so Neil’s team can create a therapy app for us. Maybe we can do, is that right?

Suneel: Okay. I think it was both. Yeah. I mean rise. Yeah, exactly. So let’s, let’s grow rise. Let’s use the technology. Let’s figure out, you know, what’s figure out what else we need to do in order to be this platform for, for patients.

Andrew: All right. Your eyes are going to do this thing. Cause I’m going to take, I’m going to do another Adam. I’m going to, and I’m going to think through with you. This business model and I’d love your feedback on it. So the second sponsor is HostGator for hosting websites. I really like this idea of matching people up with another human being to help them achieve something.

Right. Um, I don’t answer my email. Well, I’ve talked about this. Well, lately I have been without another person helping me nutrition, an app is good, but a human being is much better. I wonder if there are other areas that we could focus on, like this. And create these little communities where we help people.

And, and I’ll, I’ll just go through like really out there, like chess. I’ve gotten into chess again, lately. Imagine if I could get, instead of me working through the chess app by myself, where I end up just playing like an, like not an idiot, but I keep playing over and over. Instead of thinking through, imagine if I could get matched with a chess coach, 30 bucks a month, the real human being will look at some of my games.

Give me some feedback. Tell me what lessons to take and so on. Are there other models like that, that you could see where people can basically copy the rise formula of pairing you with a human being that we can think through here, like a brainstorming session in the middle of the ad for host Gator.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Um, so it’s, it’s interesting. Cause I’ve seen now. Two different two different ways to go. One way is to go the general way where like you come to a platform, it’s a coaching platform. You want to learn something, there are coaches out there who can teach you that. So like Lyft, not, not the, not the car drivers, but there was a company called

Andrew: They switched to coach.me now.

Suneel: coached or okay.

Yeah. Yeah. So are they, are they still around by the way?

Andrew: They are. Yeah. I’ve been chatting with the founder a little bit.

Suneel: Okay. Good. Good. Yeah. And, and so, and I think there was a couple of others that have reached out to me that are, that are kind of doing the same thing. Like you show up, you just want to coach. Um, and then you have those that are, that are much more tailored, you know, it’s, it’s, it is mental health.

It is how you eat. It is fitness. I T and it’s, it’s, it’s learn a new language. I tend to sort of think that the verticalized. Works better. It doesn’t mean that you can’t expand into other verticals, but I’ve always sort of felt like focusing on one vertical. I think at a time tends to make more sense, because I don’t think that the way that people think is I need a coach.

I think that they say, I want to learn how to do chess. Right. And so I think that entry point is much more designed for these verticalized approaches.

Andrew: So what if I do this, I go to hostgator.com. Right? Of course, at my sponsor, hostgator.com/mixergy. One of the things that I needed, like let’s say a writing coach, somebody to just check in with me to make sure that I’m writing to look at my work a little bit, but also just be there to make sure that I’m following through and writing blog posts or whatever my assignment is.

Imagine I have this whole site where writers can join up and be these BDS coaches. And because I’m not going to build out a full for my MVP. What I’ll do is just say you pay 30 bucks a month. I’m going to copy your model 30 bucks a month. I’ll pair you with a writer. Who’s going to give you assignments.

You take screenshots of your work and send it over to them. With specific questions, they’ll respond back and. I don’t even have to build out the full app. At first. All I have to do is have a few coaches are willing to do this, take money from people and then connect them maybe through WhatsApp or some other quick connection.

Yeah. So that they could start a conversation when they want to. And then when the person stops paying dropout or it doesn’t even have to be that I can a, of HostGator, you could even have like a private forum where they, you could get instant feedback. Alright. I noticed I’m getting, looking at your eyes.

You like this model potentially right enough, that it’s worth an MVP.

Suneel: I think it’s worth an MVP for sure. I think it’s worth an MVP now. I’ve always thought that like masterclass, for example, should think about. Coaching, like adding that one layer of coaching on top. Cause they had the community, they have the content. What if like you want to go one step deeper, right. And obviously like, you know, Serena Williams is going to be my coach, but are there, are there, you know, a couple of people who then can kind of pop in and be like, Oh, I’ll work with you.

One-on-one I think it seems like a natural sort of a natural jump-off

Andrew: And you know what, unlike nutrition at the basic point for most things, most things, what you want is just a human being to hold you accountable and to make sure that what you’re doing now matters. All right. So people, if you’re listening to me and you won’t like this idea, I’ve given you the formula, you can copy it for writing for chess, for anything else.

Or frankly, if you don’t like this idea, take whatever your idea is, go to hostgator.com/mixergy. They’ve got great hosting packages, easy to install WordPress and so many other platforms, so many other software, and frankly, inexpensive just works. And if you use my URL, you give me a Pat on the back with them and also you’ll get the lowest price that they have available.

Yes. They drop the price. When you go to hostgator.com/mixergy, you know what? One of the things that stood out for me with you was. The Ikea effect. I’ve seen that, right? You get Ikea furniture back at home because you built it. You feel proud of this bookcase, even though the bookcase is a little bit rickety and you can’t take it to your next house, you feel proud because you made it.

I wonder if you selling to one medical with this vision, maybe helps you because now you’re working with the one medical team to create this thing that they’re buying. Instead of saying, this is it it’s fixed.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. The Ikea effect tells us that we value something that we build up to five times more than something that we simply buy. And so there are a lot of people out there that have poorly made furniture, futons that they’re never going to get rid of because they made themselves. And I think that that really speaks to, I think, a human yeah.

Tendency, which is that we, you know, we wanna, we want to feel like we, we, we, we mattered in this process that we were part of the creative process and we value something so much more when we do the Ikea effect is kind of it originates in this, in this 1940s, actually. So even before Ikea, um, W w Betty Crocker had introduced a cake mix to the markets and it was instant cake mix.

And they were so surprised when it didn’t sell. And they were trying to figure out why, because I mean, it was, they thought it was brilliant. All you had to do is pour water into a mix and put that mix into the, into an, a pan and bake it. And while you get this tasty treat, but they realized that through the, through the help of a psychologist named earnest data, they realized that they had made the process of making a cake too easy.

They had removed the customer from the creative process altogether. And so the recommendation was why not just remove one ingredient, just one and see what happens. And so they did, they removed the egg from the mix. And now as a customer now, as a, as a, you know, somebody who was making a cake, you, you cracked in and mixed in your own egg and sales took off because people felt like they were part of the creative process.

So what does this have anything to do with, with you being backable or innovation and, and back to your point about sort of how a rise in one medical can together. W you know, I think we oftentimes we’re told, or we believe that creativity is this two-step formula. Where you come up with a great idea and you execute on it well, but, but there’s this hidden step in between.

And that hidden step is where we get early people, early teammates, early investors, early partners, to believe in something that isn’t fully baked just yet. But when you get them included in the process, when you hand them an egg and you let them crack it and mixing their own fresh egg. That’s when they arrive with you to the execution stage together, and it always leads to better results.

And I think you can trace every successful startup back to that, that hidden, hidden step. So, yeah, with, with rise one medical. Absolutely. We were, we were, we were complimentary, they were handing me an egg. I was handing them an egg and we got to make a cake together.

Andrew: I’ve noticed that there are some entrepreneurs here who do that really well. They’re not asking for money. They’re not, they’re asking for advice and they’re not doing it because they’ve heard. If you ask for advice, you get money. If you ask for money, you get advice. They’re doing it because that’s their process.

And the other thing that I noticed it allows them to do is even if they don’t end up working with the person, they make the idea, they end up with. That, that advisor’s idea too. So then like if they ask me for feedback, it’s, um, they, they get my feedback. They somehow, and then a few months later it’s hander, you know, that thing that you helped me think through it’s up, meaning can you help promote it?

It’s up. Can you make an introduction now? It’s my idea to how could I not support it? And how do I not support this person who I’ve helped now flourish. It’s such a great, great way to be. Yeah. But it works against our instinct of saying, I need to prove myself my worth my strength to everyone else

Suneel: how smart I am.

Andrew: Yes. I need to feel that this investor, this person is worthy of a conversation that I’m worthy of a conversation with them by showing how smart I am. You’re saying the opposite.

Suneel: I am saying the opposite. And I think the example you give is, is really, is really proof of that. Hey Andrew, like, look at that idea. You gave me, even though I had already had that idea, Andrew, that idea, your idea it’s up now. Right. And what I found is that that is so powerful that it can even work when someone says no to you.

So, you know, one of the things that I, that I learned through the process of creating this company and writing this book and researching for this book simultaneously, is that, you know, when someone would say no to me, I would, I would just say, okay. And I kind of move on. Um, very rarely. Would I go back and ask that person, what would it have taken?

What would it have taken for you to say, yes, I’m not trying to convince you differently, but I would love to get your feedback. Like, what would it have taken. What I’ve found is that backup? Well, people always do that. They’re always circling back with their, with their nose to get the feedback, right.

Again, not trying to convince them differently, but once they actually have that feedback in hand, you can always circle back a few months later and say, Hey, just by the way, it’s that feedback you gave me was, was incredible. And I I’ve used it. And by the way, just want to let you know, like here’s, what’s happened since then.

And just by doing that, you can turn these nos into yeses. So for example, with, with rise, You know, one of the things that I thought distribution we talked about this earlier was, was obviously one of their concerns. But when people started to say no, and every investor that I pitched for rise said no, early on, I never went back to them initially and said why, but when I was convinced by a friend that I should do that, and I did the answer that I got from them was less about the number of customers you have.

It was more about, we don’t know if these customers are going to stick around. W, yeah, we don’t know what the churn looks like. And so that not only kind of architected helped architect how I spent the next few months. And at this point in time, we’re, we’re rapidly running out of runway and I need to focus on one problem to solve and started to focus on retention.

Right. Instead of trying to blow out the top of the funnel, I wanted to figure out how do I, how do I, you know, put mechanisms in place to help people through a maintenance program and. And then I went back to all of the investors that had said no, because of that and said, by the way, thank you for your advice.

Here’s some of our new retention numbers. Here’s how they’re looking now at two of the investors who had initially said no switched to a yes, because of it.

Andrew: Wow. And it made your business better for having known that.

Suneel: Yeah, it was right. It was the right answer.

Andrew: You know what? I wonder if I should be doing more of that with people who turned me down for interviews or even don’t respond. And my hesitation has been the same one that I had. When you and backable in your book said, I went back to investors to ask them, I thought, he’s not going to get a response in reality.

And you acknowledged it. Most people, I think you said most people didn’t respond, but a few did, and it was helpful. If I even come back to people who I’ve asked to do an interview, if the vast majority don’t say no, don’t say why they said no, a handful is even helpful for getting feedback. And it does it doesn’t seem needy to say, tell me why you didn’t like me.

Suneel: I don’t think it seems neat. I think it is. I think it’s the right way to do it. I don’t think, you know, it’s not a, if someone says, Hey, Andrew, I’m not interested in doing your show. I don’t think the responses, you know, why I think it’s more kind of like totally respect it. Um, I think you’d probably, you’re probably pressed for time, but you know, I’m trying to get better.

I’m trying to understand a little more about how to attract a guest to the show. And I’d love your feedback. Like, you know, w what do you think down the line might be the way that I, you know, that, that you say yes, or, or, you know, what types of shows are you interested in doing? You know, I think there’s a way of getting at the signal that you’re looking at, rather than trying to make somebody feel bad or necessarily trying to change their mind.

Andrew: I’m looking at the people who you eventually raised money from, you raised $2.3 million in seed funding got floodgate cowboy ventures, Google ventures, Greylock, right?

Suneel: Yeah.

Andrew: Impressive group of people, dude. I would’ve, I would’ve thought frankly, that because your brother is Dr. Sanjay Gupta from CNN, that you would have just been able to walk.

And because you worked for, for, for Mozilla, for Groupon, that you would have been able to walk in and get funding. The majority of the stories in backable, whereabouts the difficulty of raising money. Why do you think it was so hard for you to raise money? Why was that? Not enough.

Suneel: Yeah, I mean, good. I mean, I, I guess I was, I was. I had an expectation that I was going to be able to raise money as well. Um, but I wasn’t. And I think that, you know, to answer your question of why was it hard? I think it was a good idea. Poorly explained. I didn’t know how to, how to really talk about this in a way that got people, got people excited.

Um, You know, it’s funny. I, Andrew, you talking about talking about Sunday, I’m going to tell you this really quick story. And then we’ll, we’ll, we’ll jump right back into this, but like, because you’ve brought something up a couple of times now I got to tell you this story I was in. I was in, um, a couple of years ago.

I, I moved back to my hometown in Michigan to run for office run for public office. I was living in San Francisco, moved back to Michigan and you know, for the past. 15 years or so I’ve been used to people sort of coming up to my brother and me when we’re walking together and asking for a photo. Right.

And asking for a photo of him, with them. And then usually it’s like, Hey, will you, would you mind taking that photo? And, and a couple of years ago for the first time while I was, while I was in the middle of my campaign, this guy comes up to me. Yeah. He’s about 16 years old teenager. And he’s like, Hey, can I get a photo? And it’s just me and I’m like, Oh, okay, sure. And so, you know, we get into selfie mode and he’s got, he’s got his camera out, stretched his arms stretched out. And right before he’s about to, to snap the photo. He yells out to his friend. He’s like, yo, Chris, get him, come here, get into this photo with Dr.

Sanjay Gupta, his brother

Andrew: Wow. At least you’re getting a step forward. You’re not being asked to take the photo.

Suneel: Yeah, exactly. Um, well, you know, I mean, th th th punchline is that it wasn’t, it wasn’t easy. And again, I don’t think it was because it was a bad idea. I think rise, you know, uh, had, uh, I think it had a lot of promise and I think it was, it was, you know, starting to get into the right time. People were starting to use their mobile phones in a way that, uh, I think made sense for healthcare.

Um, but I think it was a very poorly. At that time, very poorly explained idea. Again, I spent way too much time talking about the numbers and talking about the market size, not enough time talking about the objections, the potential objections to this and getting ahead of things like distribution and retention, um, that all ended up sort of being the lessons that I learned, which turned it into, you know, the pitch that you’re talking about that raise the money.

Andrew: All right. I promised people that we would tell your story and then we’d get into the ideas in the book. But I have to tell you, I think one of the, one of the things I’ve worked on for years at Mixergy is telling a story that embeds the. Lessons in it. So we don’t have to cram them down people’s throats.

Maybe what I should do is just go over some of the things that we’ve covered. We talked about the main character, right? For Andrew Mason at Groupon, it was, this is a small store or owner for you. It was your dad. You tell a great story about dollar shave club and how they stopped talking about the economics of shaving.

And instead went into their main character. You talk about that in the book we talked about, um, Bringing people in. I forget how you express it. Mic co-creating with other people. Oh, flipping. What is it called? A in the book,

Suneel: Flipping outsiders to insiders.

Andrew: flip outsiders into insiders. So now they’re, they’re not being presented with the idea they’re on the inside, helping to make the idea.

We talked about how people who are, who are backable are good at they’re convinced themselves. Right?

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah.

Andrew: about how you did need it to do that.

Suneel: Yeah. I think backable people take the time to convince themselves first and then they let that conviction shine through whatever style it is that feels most natural to them.

Andrew: Uh, backable people go back in and find out why someone turned them down to improve and to stay connected with them. There, there are, others are seven key steps. Is there one that you feel like you wished that I’d included, but I didn’t.

Suneel: yeah. You know, let’s talk a little bit about the earn secret because this is something that I

Andrew: yeah. I love that.

Suneel: Yeah. Yeah. You know, it’s something that I think about myself quite a bit, which is, you know, that, that, you know, how do you find and share something that you learned through firsthand experience?

It’s something that, um, You know, you, you went out and discovered because I have found that great ideas are based on, you know, surprising insights, little things that you, that you, that you were able to discover. I’ll tell you a story. I was, I was in, um, the, the waiting room of, of Brian Grazer. Who’s this Hollywood producer, but you also invest in startups and he runs big companies and.

You know, there were all these people that were waiting to pitch him on there under idea. And you could just tell the anxiety in the room, the anxiety in his waiting room was pretty high. And so when I went back to go see him, I asked him, I said, Hey, if I could go out there and give everybody one piece of advice, what would it be?

And he thinks about it for a moment. And he says, you know, I want you to tell me something that I couldn’t easily find on Google. Give me something that isn’t like easily. Google-able. And I thought it was so interesting because as I started talking to more and more backers, people who are making decisions, I began to hear largely the same thing.

Like give me an insight, give me something that you haven’t found that, that, that is that most people who are going to be in your shoes, aren’t going to already tell me. Right. Cause how you arrive on an idea can be as important as the idea itself. And I discovered this when, when I was, um, When I was pitching rise, you know, one of the ways that I got my first customers was, was I was, I was standing outside of WeightWatchers meetings.

I would, I would stand outside of weight Watchers meetings. As people were walking through the door, I’d be like, Hey, do you have a moment? I just want to share with you this, this app. And I give them this like demo. And most people were just like, no, what? And they would kind of walk past, but every once in a while I get somebody to say, yeah, sure.

I’ll take a look at your app. And I give him a quick demo. And if they, if they were engaged, I would ask them to, to sign up on the spot. And I was always sort of embarrassed by that story because it’s just, it’s, it’s not very sophisticated. This is not the Silicon Valley sort of approach of, Oh, I ran this very clever experiment.

It’s got these two more men on the street type of approach, but. And that turned out to be the part of the story that really got investors like leaned in. And I was always curious as to why, like, why were they, why, like, why was it that, that the part of the story and I, I think to me, it all comes down to this idea of like, it’s very rare that people go beyond Google.

It’s very rare that people get out from behind their desk and get into the field and talk to customers. Test drive products, attend, attend certain meetings that they weren’t invited to like to really kind of like find insights that just aren’t easily Googleable.

Andrew: Jump in and give you another story from your own fricking book. Good. I love your writing. All right. Here’s here’s one. You are going to talk to a company that was going to compete with Fitbit, right tracking of people’s health. Before we’re going into the meeting, you went to user testing.com. You hired real human beings to test the product and give you feedback.

It costs what I don’t remember. I think you said 50 bucks or something like that. You walked into the CEO. With insights. And when he said, how did you know it? You could show him the video. This is going beyond Google. It doesn’t have to take that much work, that much money that much time, but men, can you imagine as a CEO, not just hearing a guy spout off, but saying here, look, let me show you this.

All right. Your book is full of great stories like that. Great specific stories to back up your points.

Suneel: Yeah, Xander. Yeah, no. I mean, the other day I was talking to somebody who had a very similar experience and, you know, mom of mom of two, you know, getting back into the, getting back into sort of the working world. And she was, she was applying for a job at a social media company that. She did not use, like, she was not engaged with that product.

Right. But you really love, she really wanted the role. And so she had this interview and she was trying to figure out besides like going on a product and like just testing it out, like, what else could she do? And what she did was really clever. She interviewed her daughter in all of her daughter’s friends about their experience.

And then she had them send her screenshots. Of these moments of delight or these moments where they were like, you know, I wish that they had this. And so when she walked into this interview, this is all over zoom. She held up her camera and she started sort of scrolling through swiping through these, this gallery of, of insights that she collected at the guy that was interviewing her was so impressed that not only did she get the job.

But on the spot, he ends up pulling in someone else from the UX team onto the zoom. So that that person could actually see some of these insights. Let me talk about just, just, you know, going beyond Google.

Andrew: The thing that I’ve got to keep in mind. I want to talk to somebody, find out what’s the next level. Thing you can do and bring it in. All right. The book is called backable. It’s just, it’s got seven specific things that you could do, but I feel like if I say seven, it feels too small. It’s sevens with the nuances and ideas and examples.

Kind of like what we just did right here with that. Um, what does, what does that one idea called the secret? The earned secret. All right. Thank you so much for being on here. I feel like we set everything right. So Neil, I’m looking at you again. I think you know what it is, your face is very expressive and I’m trying to get a sense, like I could see when you’re a little disappointed.

I can see you’ve got to see your personality, that you know, where you need to go. You’re a good speaker. I read that you apparently you’re a speech writer or you were a speech writer for bill Clinton. Am I right?

Suneel: I did do some speech writing for bill Clinton. Yeah.

Andrew: So like you don’t, you don’t strike me as somebody who has patience for a pain in the ass interviewer.

Who’s not going to go in the right direction. So I’m watching you and you’ve got a lot to say. I feel like we’ve got it.

Suneel: No, we got it.

Andrew: You proud of this interview. I am

Suneel: I, I, I think we had a great conversation. I really, I really appreciate it. I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you one last thing just to close it out real quick, which is that I have a new mantra now after reading this book or after writing this book, I should say, uh, which is, which is that the opposite of success?

This is not failure. It’s boredom.

Andrew: I don’t think we board anybody here. Do you

Suneel: we bore now.

Andrew: know,

Suneel: it was, I think was engaging.

Andrew: All right. I want to thank the two sponsors who made this interview happen. The first, if you’re onboarding people, onboarding people, paying them in the U S regardless of where they are W2. I didn’t even say that if you don’t want to hire them, because you don’t want to deal with the legalities of it, they will actually hire your people for you and pay them.

Basically, if you have people at your company, go schedule a call right now with the team over at rippling. Like I did. Rippling.com/mixergy to get started. rippling.com/mix. I get the name, I guess the name comes from like the rippling effect where yes, onboard somebody, a letter goes out the way you want it, then you want it.

Then you get them into the software that you need. Then you make sure that they get paid. I guess that’s where the name comes from rippling.com/mixergy. And of course, if you want to take the ideas that we presented here in this interview, or any of your other ones and start a new website, go to hostgator.com/mixer, even Sue Neil, who wasn’t sure he liked this ad in the middle of a conversation, right?

I could see we turned them around. Not

Suneel: I’m in, I’m in, I’m in I’m. I’m I’m going, I’m going to the site.

Andrew: Thank you. And go get backable. Thanks. Bye.

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