Catch Kyle Chambers on the #PirateBroadcast™
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Introduction: [00:00:00] Welcome to the #PirateBroadcast™, where we interview #interestingpeople doing #interestingthings. Where you can expand your connections, your community, #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree. Let’s get this party started.
Russ Johns: [00:00:10] And we're back for another episode of the #PirateBroadcast™ and I just want to thank you everyone for joining in the future, today, now, whenever you happen to catch this episode, and today we have a new pirate in the room. Kyle, welcome to the #PirateBroadcast™ how are you?
Kyle Chambers: [00:00:27] Hey, doing great. Doing great. Glad to be here, talking to you.
Russ Johns: [00:00:30] And from Houston today and making it happen. So I'm glad that you guys survived the winter freeze man. That was crazy. It was crazy.
Kyle Chambers: [00:00:40] It was. We made the most out of it. We did, definitely from Texas, so we did the typical redneck thing. And we tied a sled to the back of the pickup truck and drug the kids around the neighborhood for a few hours while the snow was still on the ground. So we made the best of it,
Russ Johns: [00:00:54] We will survive. The thing that amazes me and I was spending a number of years in Houston and it's really I was through Harvey and, some of the things that Houston has been through and it's just the resiliency of the community and it's amazing. Absolutely positive. So for those that may not know you or are not familiar with who Kyle is and what you're doing, share a little bit about what is going on in your world, Kyle, that you can help out a few people with what's your focus of attention here?
Kyle Chambers: [00:01:26] Yeah, absolutely. So Texas Quality Assurance was founded because we knew that there were better ways that folks could manage and operate their businesses, maintain compliance, and keeping track of, your certifications and your legal requirements. These are very time-consuming difficult activities. And we knew there had to be a better way. So that's what we did. We set out for, a simplified method of managing your quality management systems, saving time or resource to court matters. And it all actually started because I was working 80 plus hours a week. I wasn't seeing the family and said, I got to find a better way to do this for myself and turned out that we could help other folks in the process do the same. So everything spiraled to get us where we are today.
Russ Johns: [00:02:10] It's one of those things that people don't really think about until you have to do it. And it's such a enormous task if you just pick it up from the beginning and start. So it's really nice to be able to have somebody like yourself to be able to walk through, understand what the documentation needs to be, how you need to process it when you need to process it, what intervals are going to be required and all, everything that's necessary. So how did you actually start in this business of the documentation and the process and QA and everything that goes along with it? Just wake up one day and say, Hey, I'm going to go after this. Or was it a evolution in time?
Kyle Chambers: [00:02:51] No, definitely an evolution, somewhat of a rapid one. We talked to obviously a lot of different quality managers, health, safety, environmental, and you'll find folks at winter school to do health and safety.
They went to school to do environmental. I have yet to find anyone that left high school saying I'm going to be a quality manager. It just doesn't happen. People don't set out to go out...
Russ Johns: [00:03:12] I don't think there's a lot of people in high school that know what a quality manager is.
Kyle Chambers: [00:03:16] True. But you will have people say that they're passionate about health and safety, environmental, but quality's one of those things that sometimes it almost gets overlooked. And so I was actually a network administrator. I had built the network, the had the servers up and running. That was what I did. So I went from installing switches and networking equipment one day to health and safety manager the next day.
Russ Johns: [00:03:39] Oh, wow.
Kyle Chambers: [00:03:39] And so I got thrown into health and safety.
Russ Johns: [00:03:42] That's so funny. That's ironic because after I fell three stories and shattered my arm and was off on workman's comp for two years, I came back as the safety director and then I migrated to the IT director.
Kyle Chambers: [00:03:58] Oh, really?
Russ Johns: [00:03:59] Yeah. In an organization. So I just did exactly the opposite of what you did. So yeah.
Kyle Chambers: [00:04:05] I got involved with health and safety and that has its tie ins to environmental and, it's all a very similar umbrella there. Everything's on there. So quality health, safety, environmental management, it's all under the same umbrella. And so just one thing led to another pretty rapidly. The company I was working with was ready to get a certified there. They were looking to sell and do some other, other things. And they've done quite well since, and we went for certification to three standards in one year. And yeah, so I wasn't sleeping. I wasn't even at home, I slept at the office several nights and I just had to be a better way.
Russ Johns: [00:04:41] It's usually the IT people that are pulling late nights.
Kyle Chambers: [00:04:44] My background. So yeah I took everything that I knew, took all of the available tools. We built software solution and it worked, saved us a lot of time. That's still what we're doing today.
Russ Johns: [00:04:57] That's fantastic. I really find it interesting that how people evolve and adjust to their different circumstances and every time we learn a new skill and learn a new kind of a way to process it or way to see it, it's really nice to be able to have a perspective from outside the industry or outside of the goal that you're working on to see a new process. And for yourself, like you mentioned, The it and the technology piece became really valuable when you got into that element of trying to get certified and get these quality assurance and levels in place. And so automation. Process and things like that. So talk a little bit about that, Kyle, because I think a lot of people struggle with that, building processes and making sure things are in place. So what's your approach? What's your strategy for being successful in that arena?
Kyle Chambers: [00:05:59] Yeah. So we utilize, the process versus now this is a term that is overly utilized in the quality management world, but it really does have a specific connotation and you hit the nail on the head with the IT. Those skills working in IT came in incredibly handy and still come in very handy today. The process approach basically says we have an input and we have an output. So it's if you're driving your car if you want to go faster, the input is you press on the accelerator. The output is, the vehicle goes faster. You've got certain controls in place that help the vehicle to convert the input and into an output effectively. That's it? It's the same thing with it is, the old adage crap in crap out. Yeah, and it's not so often that we'll come into a situation. And this is what we see very frequently is are these enormously complex solutions, that really with a little extra thought could be distilled down to a singular issue that needs to be fixed. I was looking at an instance this week, where there was the possibility of writing three or four new procedures, implementing whole new processes, gathering additional information from the customers and documenting and all these different places. We fixed it with one line edit to a process procedure. But it's distilling it down to that final, minimal level is the simple solutions, they're the toughest ones to come by sometimes. And the reason that's so important to us is I value my time, and I think most people do as well. I value my time at home. I value my time at work and, I want to make sure that I'm making the best use of it. And if we can do something like this to save this customer, they're not going to have to go through this extra hour and a half long process for every sell that they have. They can get the product in the door, out the door, meet the customer requirements and they made one tiny change. That's a win. That's what drives me and keeps me going. I know it's not the most exciting topic for folks, but I love to see the difference that we can make in these businesses because we can help that business stay productive and stay efficient, especially right now. It's an enormous difference for everyone that works there in that company. When you're talking about very long lasting changes for a lot of folks, that's where, the pride in what we do comes in.
Russ Johns: [00:08:07] I think it's really important for people not to miss this point because you touched base on. A very important and critical measure is that so many business owners, so many people in business they're used to doing it. That's the way we've always done it mentality. And they don't necessarily look at things in what can be improved. They look at things about, okay, how do I just get to the next step? Where someone like yourself can come in and look at it from a new perspective, fresh perspective, and say, okay, there's one line of code in this process that we can change and evolve into. Changing everybody's world and saving everybody a lot of time. And all of a sudden you could be the hero. However it's what's required is a new perspective, a new idea, something to be seen that others have not seen.
Kyle Chambers: [00:09:05] No, it absolutely is you, and it is very beneficial being able to come in with an outside perspective. We'll have a client ask, how much experience do you have with this niche of the industry or with this particular type of work manufacturing and it almost sounds arrogant to say we don't need that specific niche experience because what we're coming in here to do is view everything from a process level. And that's where our expertise is. That's what we're good at. You have the technical experts at your organization. They have far more knowledge and experience than we could ever hope to have. Let's use them. And let's simplify this process. Let's save everyone enormous amounts of time and effort. And that equates straight to the bottom line. Your sales team can spend more time selling your production teams, doing less reworks. Everyone wins. It becomes a situation where you enjoy going to work and that's really what drives me. That's what I love.
Russ Johns: [00:10:03] I think it's important for people to really also think about when I get stuck, the best thing I can do is phone a friend, and having a resource available and in place at different times in your business. Is absolutely critical. One of the things that I really used to love to look at work through on process, because I've been working in engineering and software development, and I've been fortunate to be in so many different arenas and it always comes back to break it down to the smallest common denominator that everybody can agree to. And then look for the nuggets of knowledge that we need to evolve to next. What's the thing that we can tweak and adjust and optimize. And it's really, it falls into two camps there. Some people are very excited about change and others can't stand it. So how do you navigate through that process of change management versus process management?
Kyle Chambers: [00:11:05] Yeah. The two really are in, should be in, are connected because the whole idea of the process approach is that the output of one process inevitably becomes the input of another. And that could mean that it becomes the input for the next iterative stage of planning. But if you come into an organization and you say, we're going to do this, we're going to put all of these new procedures in place. We're going to put all of these processes in place and we're going to tell you how to do your job much better. Get outta here. No one wants to hear that. You hear that blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. It's just, it's a waste of everyone's time, effort, money. No one wants to go down that road. So what we do instead is really trying to spend a lot of time with the people, for instance, when we do a gap assessment, so a lot of these engagements start, but it's not your 300 questionnaire gap assessment. It's not me the consultant telling you what you need to do. I'm in there talking to the individual, operators in the business. What do you do? Tell me about your day. What is it you're responsible for? Great. So you're a welder. Tell me, where do you even get your materials from, do you have any certifications? Does this company require you to have certifications with trainings? You get elsewhere? Man, what are the biggest pain points you have in your job? What drives you bonkers? What makes you go home, cussing your job, and you can have those conversations with folks. And when you treat people like people. It's amazing the difference in you get in you're out, you really are able to engage with folks and then they can see that instead of you being an agent of some corporate change process, you're actually an agent of change to help him have a better day at work tomorrow.
Russ Johns: [00:12:40] And, as well as anyone, cause we've talked several times, is this idea that just 2% perspective on what you're doing can change your outlook on life.
Kyle Chambers: [00:12:52] Amen.
Russ Johns: [00:12:52] It's really one of those things that you have to really think about. Okay, is this happening to me? Or is this happening for me? Yeah. Cause we all have lessons to learn. And the reality is in business. If you're working for someone, if you have a skill that you're delivering to a company or organization, there are going to be days where you're just like, ah, really not. This is not vibing for me. And you still have to perform, you still have to deliver the service. However, if you can wake up, I wake up with #gratitude every day. I'm pretty minimal guy. I don't have lot of overhead in my life. And it's just really one of those things that you have to appreciate, even as complex as the business world can be. It's really nice to be able to step back and say, okay, We're just all here together, working on the same goal. How do I fit in? How can I add value and a new perspective?
Kyle Chambers: [00:13:49] A lot of my personal philosophy, like I truly love to work. I absolutely love work. And that's something you don't hear from a lot of folks. Although I think you could, and I think we should, if things were tweaked a little bit better than some of these organizations, but I really love work. I love any type of a productive exercise. So whether I'm here in the office doing, whatever it is I'm doing during the day, working with clients, if I'm at home, like right now, my wife is a quilter, so I'm rebuilding new quilting furniture for her. I enjoy that productive pursuit. And I think that's something that we really do well with some of our clients is I'm truly excited about whatever the work is that they're doing. And so then I can jump in there with that same enthusiasm, but whatever the job is that they're doing, I don't care if you're processing invoices, you're doing it in a different way than I've seen before. That's fascinating. How do you meet all these requirements or you're out on a field job somewhere and you spent the last two weeks in a main camp. I'm thrilled about what you're doing and when you can bring that level of enthusiasm, like legitimate enthusiasm into it, it changes the perspective of the work and how you accomplish your goals.
Russ Johns: [00:14:57] It's an investment of time. And what a lot of people fail to understand or appreciate is that I'm investing my time to help your job improve. And when people understand and appreciate that and get it, it's really part of the process. And it's really one of those things you have to say, okay, let's see how we can work together to improve it together. And you get ownership, you get buy in and you have that opportunity to actually have help in your job. So that's really nice to be able to do.
Kyle Chambers: [00:15:32] Ownership and buy-in, these are words that are so often just tossed around in the business world, take ownership we need in this process, but really what's that look like for the average person? What it looks like is I enjoy going to my job. I know how I fit in with the organization. I know the impact I can make on a day-to-day basis. And I can take pride in my work. That's the ownership. That's buy-in you don't need some 30 minute long PowerPoint to explain that.
Russ Johns: [00:16:02] No, and that's a one-on-one conversation that can happen with everybody and anybody in their organization. I really, and here's a question that we may not be able to answer in the time we have today. However, I think it's something that we want to plant the seed for anyone that's listening that has, an organization or are moving forward and creating, but it's the culture of change and the culture of improvement, in a Six Sigma or Kaizen or any of these principles that your business improvement is a constant evolution. It's not just as okay. One and done it's an evolution of. How can I improve? How can I grow? How can I make these processes as optimized as they can be with our environment today? So how does that fit into your long-term goal and your vision for the individual companies?
Kyle Chambers: [00:16:58] Sure. So if you take a look at the ISO 9001 standard when I say ISO 9001, people's first thoughts are, oh, we've got lots of procedures and forms and checklists and things to do. Not really. If you actually look at the ISO 9001 standard, you look at the fundamental principles of it and they actually publish it. They call it the quality management principles. And these are the foundation of the standard. And like you're not ISO 9001 is the example for the rest of the world. When it comes to quality management standards at the heart of this, it's all about culture. It is absolutely about culture. We start with customer focus, leadership, engagement of people. These are the first three principles that does not sound like process procedures and checklists. That sounds like building a culture around quality and that's absolutely critical. And we've got, I don't know, probably three or four episodes on our podcast where that's all we talk about is just the quality management principles, but is a good quality company. Has a culture based around quality.
Russ Johns: [00:18:01] Yeah. And that's so important. It's really important. Oh, speaking of culture, I want to cultivate a few wonderful relationships here. Sheila Chamberlain in the room. Hiett Ives, good morning, fellow pirates. Sheila says new perspective. It's absolutely, Sheila. Absolutely a new perspective can change the way we look at things all day long. And she says, learn from experience, learn from experts. Kyle, you're an expert in the field. You've had a lot of experience in ISO, is one. Foundational effort. There's a number of different standards of industries. No shortage. Hiett Ives says the Texas Longhorn behind you is fantastic right there in Houston as well. Wendy's jumping in the room. Good morning, pirates. Welcome, Kyle. Did you know there's someone behind you cheering you on. Yeah, it's so fun. Salary is important instead of ownership for me.
Kyle Chambers: [00:19:01] Hey, I agree.
Russ Johns: [00:19:02] There's nothing wrong with that at all. There's nothing wrong with that at all. It's the adage. It's, I used to have this conversation with my son. He was a pipe fitter. He was in the pipe fitters union. I punch out. I go home. I don't have to think about it. He goes, dad, you're always working. You're always doing something. It's I just like to work. I like to create, I like to learn new stuff. I like to do things I like to, it's just, I've always been that way. And it sounds like you're that way as well.
Kyle Chambers: [00:19:30] I am, but I don't expect everyone else should have to be though. What do I do in my free time? I want to do something productive. If we go on vacation after the first two or three days, like I get the itch, I need to do something and drives my wife bonkers, but I do, I start getting the itch. Like I have to do something, I have to do something productive. I've had enough laying around. But on the flip side, that's what a lot of people want is they want to be able to have that time. They want to feel secure in taking that time to do whatever it is that matters the most to them. These processes in this way of operating and managing your business. So one of these are called management systems, allow your people to have that steady salary, to have that steady paycheck and to devote time to what matters most to them.
Russ Johns: [00:20:15] Also, be able to adjust the business to the current landscape of the environment, the economy, the industry, everything that's changing around us. So we've seen those processes are absolutely incredible, incredibly important.
Kyle Chambers: [00:20:31] We've seen folks on the bottom third of the spectrum that have really struggled with the downturn there. Some of them shut their doors. You're just hunkering down, just hoping to survive. Then we see another group of folks on the top third. I can't say that they've thrived financially through all of this, but they are set up to thrive financially here as the world recovers because they've taken this time. Okay, fine. So we don't have as much production as we had before. How can we improve internally? What are the things that we can do, to better ourselves once the world starts getting back to whatever new normal is? And it's that culture around the quality, that culture around improvement that willingness to accept change, because I know the good that it's going to cause.
Russ Johns: [00:21:13] Yeah, absolutely. And let's talk a little bit about that because it's now a year that we've been in a lockdown and COVID and the pandemic. And if you look back on history and other pandemics, it could be another year before we even, evolve out of this and, vaccinations are coming on board. And so what are you seeing in the industry? And I think you brought up a good point when things slow down is the time that you accelerate your development, optimizing your processes and getting that in place. And and so is that something that you're encouraging business owners to look at and investigate?
Kyle Chambers: [00:21:50] A hundred percent. When your phone's not ringing with sales orders and you've got guys that are looking to stay busy. This is the time to find those improvement projects and we can have a whole other conversation, but how do you identify what those improvement projects are? Because it's very easy to be, I'm guilty of what I call shiny itis. Here's something shiny over here. I'm going to go work on that. I'm going to go work on this. But you really have to distill it down of what's the expected output from this. Improvement. If you can ask yourself that one question before you start any improvement project, you're going in a good direction. What's my expected output to this process. But yeah, now it's definitely the time if especially, even for us sales folks out there, now's the time to get into the shop. You don't have those customer luncheons anymore. No problem. Go eat lunch in the shop and talk to the guys and ask them about their job. Ask them about the projects that they really enjoyed working on, the ones that really cause problems for them. You'll find that where you actually have more skills and expertise in your organization that you knew you did best can make your next sales efforts so much better. So it's really... everyone can be impacted.
Russ Johns: [00:22:53] Absolutely. Absolutely. And take inventory of all of the skills that you have in your industry or your business. There's a lot of people that have a lot of different skills and like myself, I. I love live streaming. You started a live stream, you started your podcast and that's another way that you can actually communicate. And there's probably in a lot of businesses. There's probably people that are musicians or creative people that would love to contribute. And so if you could take an inventory of elders, individuals to say, okay, what can we do together? How can we produce results? It's not necessarily focused on a certification of anything, but it's optimizing the community and the culture and the business, which allows you to create the culture of improvement and allowing people to be involved and engaged in the process. Yeah, it's amazing.
Kyle Chambers: [00:23:46] If we start at, you mentioned we started the live streaming do you know why we started doing any live streaming?
Russ Johns: [00:23:51] Why did you start doing live streaming, Kyle?
Kyle Chambers: [00:23:54] We started this because we have a training program, a classroom training program that we've done for years. Noone's going to classroom trainings and face it in the last 12 months, small businesses have not had the cash flow to pay for these type of trainings. So it was a, you know, what. We can't find a good way to to market and sell this online. We can't really seem to to get classroom trainings going anymore. I'm just gonna put the information out there for free and basically the goal is I'm going to have half of our QMS bootcamp out there, live streamed on YouTube. Totally free. If you need help, you got questions, you're new to the quality management world. I have been myself. Here you go. This is everything you need for it.
Russ Johns: [00:24:36] Here's the foundation that you need to get started and that's the beauty of it.
Kyle Chambers: [00:24:40] Yeah, absolutely. Yeah.
Russ Johns: [00:24:42] Angie's in the room. Good morning. Pirates. Thank you so much for being here, Angie love it. And Anna's good morning, gentlemen. Anna's here. So thank you so much for being here, I really appreciate you. Involving people just like this on a live stream is really important. And you've been on the live stream. I've been producing live streams for you through OGGN and some of the networks here, and now you're a pirate on the #PirateBroadcast™ and it really helps develop a relationship. And that's, I think the most important benefit or by-product of being out there and putting yourself out there and adding value to the environment.
Kyle Chambers: [00:25:21] If we go back to these quality management principles, right? So the first one is customer focus, all about relationships, leadership engagement of people. The last one is relationship management. So when you think about quality, man, you're hitting on all of the core principles of these standards that help us maintain compliance in this modern world. It's the same idea, just a different spin on it. There's nothing new under the sun.
Russ Johns: [00:25:46] Well, and that's a brilliant point too, to bring it to a conclusion is It's part of life. It's part of everything we do. It's not another thing we have to do. Just engage in a quality process in everything you're doing. And then it's so simple. And I know that with your help, Kyle, a lot of business owners could improve their process. They can improve their certifications, make sure they're in compliance, make sure that their insurance premiums are optimized. Everything about it is just really....if there's a benefit anywhere you look at it. Your employees, your everything, your safety factors, your considerations in your business are all involved in improvement. And it's just an amazing opportunity. So how do people get ahold of you and how do you like to have people track you down Kyle?
Kyle Chambers: [00:26:37] Yeah. I'm pretty active on LinkedIn. So I think most everyone here is probably on LinkedIn already. So a good way to check us out. You can go to texasqa.com. Got a lot of good information available on the website, but there's probably be two best places to to find us.
Russ Johns: [00:26:51] Well, as always, everyone. Thank you, Kyle so much for being here. I really appreciate you. I appreciate everyone that showed up today. Anna says everything comes from something. That's brilliant, Anna. I love it. I love it. Howard Kaufman, great perspective. Thank you so much, Howard, for being here. Howard's awesome. He has a great product ORL. Go buy it, check it out. And I just really love the community. I love the opportunity to have conversations like this, Kyle and I look forward to future conversations and introductions and everything that we can do. So if you like this episode, go like, comment, share it out.
Kyle Chambers: [00:27:32] Amen.
Russ Johns: [00:27:32] Subscribe to YouTube, the channel, the podcast, whatever it happens to be, everything can be found on RussJohns.com and thank you so much for being here, Kyle, I really appreciate you and stay safe in Houston and look forward to the next opportunity that we can connect,
Kyle Chambers: [00:27:48] Awesome. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.
Russ Johns: [00:27:50] All right. And everybody knows #kindnessiscool #smilesarefree, so you #enjoyyourday. Take care.
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