I try and say yes to everything…the upside has helped me grow as a professional and brought more opportunities and people into my life than I would have otherwise encountered.
Jody Ordioni is a keynote speaker, author, founder and chief branding officer of Brandemix, a New York-based branding and communications agency that solves challenges through defining and marketing organizational culture to the people who drive business forward. With experience working across a wide range of industries from retail and tech to non-profit and healthcare, she is best-known for her work in keeping the relationship between the employee and employer authentic, engaging and true to the company’s brand. Jody’s award-winning book, “The Talent Brand: The Complete Guide to Creating Emotional Employee Buy-In for Your Organization” (LID Publishing, 2018), outlines the framework necessary for companies to build a strong talent brand.
Where did the idea for Brandemix come from?
My company, Brandemix, is a branding agency, and when deciding on a name, I felt inspired by the Malcolm Gladwell book, “The Tipping Point.” In it, he wrote that ideas and social trends are epidemics because they can spread like the flu! Brands are the same way – with exponential growth. Thus the name Brandemix was born, because, like an epidemic, we use a mix of strategies and tools to spread brand awareness and engagement.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I am a morning person and my typical day starts at 5:30am with dogs, espresso and yoga (not necessarily in that order). I am addicted to the internet and live in my inbox. If I am working remote, the sun will rise and set while I sit in my favorite chair and multitask. While I love a fast pace, if there is too much stress I will occasionally pull out the Dyson and vacuum, often while on mute on a conference call.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I am a passionate brand builder and the ideas are always alive in my head. The true pleasure comes from collaborating with people to share my vision and incorporate their ideas on how to push them out from my head and into whatever strategy, medium or experience in which they will ultimately reside.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Technology is amazing and AI is my favorite thing. It makes life so much easier. Just this morning I heard myself thanking Alexa for providing me with the weather forecast when I asked her — and I know I am not alone.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I know that this is counter to the common view of successful people, but I try and say yes to everything. I love to learn and while there is a real danger of spreading oneself too thin, the upside has helped me grow as a professional and brought more opportunities and people into my life than I would have otherwise encountered.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would tell my younger self not to worry so much; life has great things in store for me.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I believe I am an incredibly lucky person and it is through that luck that I have achieved my success.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I say yes to everything. See #5.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I say yes to everything. My personal brand is built on the trust people have in my ability to deliver whatever they need. Over the years, people have come to me seeking assistance on projects I had little to no proven demonstrated experience in. Because I said “yes” and I honor my commitments, I found a way to achieve and even exceed their expectations. This has allowed me to build up an impressive array of case studies in a variety of areas, and today, brings me more opportunities to realize success.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
As an entrepreneur, failure is synonymous with growth, and I have many areas of growth I can point to. One in particular involved being so caught up in the passion and enthusiasm of my own solution that I discounted the advice of people who were close to the issues we were solving for. Through my failure, I learned that everyone’s input matters, and that it’s important to listen and consider every point of view. While I am passionate in my convictions, I am not steadfast in them and never discount or disregard a point of view that differs from my own. #dontdrinkyourownkoolaid
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I think that there is a true marketplace for re-engineered vintage cars that run on electric.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I upgraded my web conferencing service which allows me to have a greater number of people attend our webinars. It was money well spent because the greater number of people I can reach, the greater the exponential value of our brand.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
I am a virtual hoarder, and as such, greatly appreciate the features of DropBox. Not only does it allow me to collaborate with remote teams and share large files easily, but I can decide which files to keep on my computer and which should reside only online. Another great feature of the service is the ability to recover past versions of a document or design, and even restore ones that have been previously deleted.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“The Talent Brand” (of course) because it provides useful and easy-to-follow guidelines for how to brand your culture, your business or yourself. By embracing the strategy used by branding experts, you can craft an authentic value proposition that will allow people to easily understand the value that you, your organization or your talent brings to any potential client, and ultimately reap the financial rewards.
What is your favorite quote?
My favorite quote is my own and it goes like this: “Just because you CAN do everything doesn’t mean you SHOULD.” Female entrepreneurs often feel a greater need to prove their accomplishments than their male counterparts, and they’ll shy away from asking for help, fearing it may diminish their value in the eyes of others. I believe that asking for help is an acquired skill and I try and mentor women personally and professionally to remind them that they don’t need to go it alone just because they can.
- Be open; simply saying “yes” can open many doors to new and exciting professional opportunities.
- Don’t fear the naysayers — listening to differing or contradictory points of view can help you see situations in a different light. This will prevent you from drinking too much of your own Kool Aid.
- Take pride in asking for help. Not only will it improve your overall productivity, it’ll also help you create camaraderie and a sense of trust among team members.
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Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.