Dad Time

Making "Thank You" and "I'm Sorry" meaningful with 'The Why' with Kison Patel, Founder / CEO / and Podcast Host of Deal Room and M&A Science

May 23, 2020 The Dad Corp Season 1 Episode 6
Dad Time
Making "Thank You" and "I'm Sorry" meaningful with 'The Why' with Kison Patel, Founder / CEO / and Podcast Host of Deal Room and M&A Science
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Dad Time
Making "Thank You" and "I'm Sorry" meaningful with 'The Why' with Kison Patel, Founder / CEO / and Podcast Host of Deal Room and M&A Science
May 23, 2020 Season 1 Episode 6
The Dad Corp

In our 6th episode, The Dad Corp sat down with serial entrepreneur, Kison Patel. He is an M&A expert and CEO of DealRoom, a smart system based upon Agile principles and designed for multi-party collaboration. 

Talking with Kison was incredible.  He shared his philosophies and perspectives to balance fatherhood and entrepreneurial activities. Kison's daughter, Shiloh, also makes a special guest appearance to demonstrate that her dad not only talks the talk, but also walks the walk.

Kison is a father of three and a husband. He has a great family. He is also an accomplished author and runs the M&A Science podcast, which has 14,000 listeners. We hope you enjoy! Listen in, spread the word, and take some great insights.

Key Quotes:

  • “It’s those little achievements with the kids that are always the best.”
  • “Sometimes we ask people to do things or ask for help, but don’t really do a good job on why we’re asking for help and that’s such an important thing I’ve learned is you got to make sure you clarify that why and it makes such a difference.”
  • “You have to dedicate time for each child individually and individualize that experience.”
  • “Establishing goals and then breaking things down into achievable milestones.”

Title 

0:00      Intro 

3:40      Activities to pass the time during Corona situation for Kison’s family

10:02    Starting a business or having a child, which is scarier?

12:57    Family traditions

16:53    The most embarrassing parenting story

19:50    Parents know everything even when kids don’t say anything

20:18    Best memory of being a dad

21:34    Advice on how to handle bullying in school

24:43    Sideline parenting in sports

26:40    Best advice for a dad having his first child

28:26    Book “Calm The [email protected]#$ Down” and earmuff gifts for dads

31:16    Keep the balance going when reaching the max stress level

33:40    Proudest dad moment

33:56    Clarify when saying simple transaction words

40:56    Follow dad’s entrepreneurial career or not

45:15    Life lessons that schools don’t teach

47:18    Ray Dalio’s “Principles” book

51:35    What being a dad means and how it changes life perspective

53:26    Dedicate time to each child individually

60:27    People take punches at you, learning how to handle constructive criticism

62:22    Parallels between raising kids and being an entrepreneur

64:14    Break goals down into achievable milestones to get there

65:35    Learn how to build off of your failures as much as your successes

66:02    Shiloh giving her thoughts on how to be a good dad

66:10    “Find what you love to do and be the best in the world at it”

66:16    “Focus and work ten times harder than everybody else”

66:30    “You sometimes need a schedule to follow so they know what to do”

70:51    What would your kid remember about you as a father

72:08    Discipline is “when you get set on doing something, you get it done no matter what”

74:24    “Continuously and consistently recheck where you’re at”

77:30    M&A Science podcast with Kison Patel

79:37    Outro

Show Notes Transcript

In our 6th episode, The Dad Corp sat down with serial entrepreneur, Kison Patel. He is an M&A expert and CEO of DealRoom, a smart system based upon Agile principles and designed for multi-party collaboration. 

Talking with Kison was incredible.  He shared his philosophies and perspectives to balance fatherhood and entrepreneurial activities. Kison's daughter, Shiloh, also makes a special guest appearance to demonstrate that her dad not only talks the talk, but also walks the walk.

Kison is a father of three and a husband. He has a great family. He is also an accomplished author and runs the M&A Science podcast, which has 14,000 listeners. We hope you enjoy! Listen in, spread the word, and take some great insights.

Key Quotes:

  • “It’s those little achievements with the kids that are always the best.”
  • “Sometimes we ask people to do things or ask for help, but don’t really do a good job on why we’re asking for help and that’s such an important thing I’ve learned is you got to make sure you clarify that why and it makes such a difference.”
  • “You have to dedicate time for each child individually and individualize that experience.”
  • “Establishing goals and then breaking things down into achievable milestones.”

Title 

0:00      Intro 

3:40      Activities to pass the time during Corona situation for Kison’s family

10:02    Starting a business or having a child, which is scarier?

12:57    Family traditions

16:53    The most embarrassing parenting story

19:50    Parents know everything even when kids don’t say anything

20:18    Best memory of being a dad

21:34    Advice on how to handle bullying in school

24:43    Sideline parenting in sports

26:40    Best advice for a dad having his first child

28:26    Book “Calm The [email protected]#$ Down” and earmuff gifts for dads

31:16    Keep the balance going when reaching the max stress level

33:40    Proudest dad moment

33:56    Clarify when saying simple transaction words

40:56    Follow dad’s entrepreneurial career or not

45:15    Life lessons that schools don’t teach

47:18    Ray Dalio’s “Principles” book

51:35    What being a dad means and how it changes life perspective

53:26    Dedicate time to each child individually

60:27    People take punches at you, learning how to handle constructive criticism

62:22    Parallels between raising kids and being an entrepreneur

64:14    Break goals down into achievable milestones to get there

65:35    Learn how to build off of your failures as much as your successes

66:02    Shiloh giving her thoughts on how to be a good dad

66:10    “Find what you love to do and be the best in the world at it”

66:16    “Focus and work ten times harder than everybody else”

66:30    “You sometimes need a schedule to follow so they know what to do”

70:51    What would your kid remember about you as a father

72:08    Discipline is “when you get set on doing something, you get it done no matter what”

74:24    “Continuously and consistently recheck where you’re at”

77:30    M&A Science podcast with Kison Patel

79:37    Outro

J:      Hello dads. You have Jonathan back again with The Dad Corp Podcast for this week’s episode brought to you by The Dad Corp, check ours out www.thedadcorp.com. We have an e-commerce platform, it’s a mall, everything dad. Pick up one of our Dad Life collection shirts. They’re going off the virtual shelves. It is a unique, original design paid by The Dad Corp. It fits well. It looks great. Your kids are gonna love it. Your family’s gonna love it and your friends are gonna ask where they can get it so share the word. Tell them. Have them pick one up too. We hope you’re all following us. We hope you all enjoy the shows and we hope you love our products. We can’t do this without you. We are growing this platform into the largest global platform made for dads.

         Now, for this week’s show we have two visitors. One is my childhood friend and partner, Dustin Boring. He’s making a rare guest appearance which is just exciting. It’s nice to have him on the mic in the mix talking with our special guest and friend of mine, Kison Patel. Kison Patel is a Serial Entrepreneur who has a very impressive background. He’s a M&A expert and CEO of DealRoom. M&A standing for mergers and acquisitions, companies buying companies or becoming one company. You see it out there a lot. Kison’s been highlighted in Business Insider, Forbs, CEOWORLD magazine, business.com, investing.com. Additionally, Kison has recently authored a book around mergers and acquisitions called “Agile M&A” which is a modernization approach to traditional mergers and acquisitions looking to close the deals faster and maximize the value. Great book! You can pick it up. It’s out there in Amazon. Also Kison is a natural disruptor. He recently saw an opportunity with the corona virus and your traditional corporate conferences that are held all over the country that are expensive for employees to get to. They take a lot of time. And they’re really sometimes inaccessible based on schedules, locations, and just the overall cost. Kison came in, he’s now about to launch in June the “M&A Virtual Summit” made by M&A Science. It is the first annual M&A summit online ever. So, he’s coming in. He’s changing the game. He’s gonna bring in experts from all over the industry and it is gonna be an incredible experience.

         Finally, Kison runs his own podcast. It’s very successful, 14,000 listeners. It’s called M&A Science. He brings in experts from all over the industry to talk about M&A and discuss the techniques and approaches that they find that work in different industries and scenarios. And last but not the least, Kison is a father of two. He’s a husband. He’s got a great family. His daughter makes a guest appearance for us so we have a fantastic episode. Listen in. We hope you enjoy. Share it. Spread the word and take some great insights as Kison shares about being a dad, being an entrepreneur, being a husband, and just managing the chaos of all of it. I can’t wait for you to listen. Stay tuned.

J:      Alright, without further ado let’s get Kison Patel out there. Kison are you ready to go?

K:     I’m ready to go.

J:      Alright man. Thanks for joining us today. We are stoked to have you on here. What’s been going on? Tell us about what you’ve been up to.

K:     Well, we have a lot going on the world right now. So I think it’s about staying busy with any downtime and staying active is the big thing.

J:      There’s this little thing called the corona virus. It’s kind of made an impact out there. What are you guys doing to try to pass the time day to day?

K:     Activities, we’re just trying to find stuff, like yesterday I took the kids out for a little jog around the block. They’re hesitant about it too because the park is closed and we live right next to the park but I said we got to get out. We just can’t sit inside and play video games all day. So it just in this nice weather, we had a great break of the weather. There’s a lot of people out and just getting them do something.

J:      Yeah, how many kids do you have?

K:     I have three.

J:      Three, what ages?

K:     So I have two boys that are four and seven and then my oldest is my daughter who’s nine.

J:      And does everyone kind of understand what’s happening with the corona virus or do they have different understanding? I mean that’s a little bit of a different age range.

K:     Yeah, I think it’s per sort of the sense. The oldest probably have the better sense and the middle one kind of gets it. The youngest one thinks corona virus is a song. And when we’re taking them out jogging yesterday, he’s like singing “corona virus, corona virus.” And I’m like “son, don’t. You’re gonna freak people out like they’re already freaked out.”

J:      That is freaking funny.

D:     The new kids probably enjoy this stay-at-home, it’s kind of like a stay-at-home vacation where the parents are around and you’re much more active with taking them out for walks and stuff. They’re probably loving this.

K:     Yeah, it’s funny because they try to emphasize that like oh, we’re realizing we don’t really like school.

J:      How are your teaching skills? Was it like getting better?

K:     Mine are not that great. I’ll be honest, I had a lot of ambition to come in and really model a training program for them to resemble what they were learning in school but amplify it with things I wanted them to learn. And it doesn’t work well. It’s really difficult to do that in your house because they’re used to the environment and culture and it just becomes like weekend time every day. So it’s difficult and I think my wife’s not like the very much like the A type to help drive it so it is tough to do. So now I just treat them like little employees.

J:      Yeah, when you guys go out running, are you wearing masks or have you still refrain from doing that yet?

K:     Oh, we haven’t done that. I don’t know if that’s like the real thing that’s gonna help.

J:      Yeah, there’s a lot of different I guess opinions on it. I just read the other day that CDC was recommending that you wear some type of cloth but then there’s all of this mixed data. Funny my mother actually sent me a care package about five years ago that probably predicted the corona virus. We had rations and water that’s in these kind of lifeless like type non-expirable packages and then there was an N-95 mask. And little did I know that I basically won the lottery with that five-year gift thingy. And wearing my mask once in a while.

K:     Wow.

J:      Dustin your daughters are pretty far apart as well. What are you all doing? I’m sure the teenagers are having a lot challenging time than the baby.

D:     Yes because I have a fourteen year old and then a year and a half old girl so different dynamics, right? So the fourteen year old, she actually had two weeks off of school completely and they incorporated her spring break into one of those. That way they didn’t lose too much traction. But this past week she actually started back to school online which we didn’t know kind of how that’s gonna work but it’s actually gone pretty well. It’s not the same as having classes’ instruction. And we realized how much the teachers probably do help her along each day when she’s doing her assignments because she just asks question after question after question. And luckily she’s still at an age with kind of the complexity of the questions that we can still handle it as we’ve been able to help out. The little one though, that one’s been a little tough because right now she’s at the age where she is just go go go and she wants to get in to everything. If you closed the door, she wants to open it. If you put her toy away, she wants to dump the whole content back out. So it’s been tough to try to get enough free time between working remotely and trying to kind of balance up the life situation at home and try to keep her happy. And it’s a fulltime job and it’s just a huge transition from where we were a couple of weeks ago. How about you with your daughter? You guys just doing everything at home or is there some online programs you’ve been working with?

J:      Yes, and Milan is about Kison’s youngest child’s age. She’s turning six. And you know it’s funny she’s the same way. We have that online school going on but she hasn’t sang the corona song, but every time she watches a movie and sees anybody breaks social distancing roles, she’s asking if they are aware that the corona virus is out there and why are they getting so closed to each other. So it’s kind of comedy, comical it is to watch. So Kison, no pressure today. You’re gonna have to give us all tips and advice on how to also make it through the corona virus. I don’t think I added that question to the original list.

K:     Yeah, I’m still figuring it out and maybe we’ll come out with a game plan by the time this is over.

J:      I like it. I like it. So hey, we have a couple of formats here today I wanna walk you through so let’s get in to it. I’m sure there’s a lot of things that you have going on but for the first part of the format we got a little bit of a rapid fire that just gets the brainwaves going. I’ll get yourself loosened up. Don’t want you to pull a hamstring through the interview and then we’ll really jump in to the meat and potatoes and get down in depth on in some of your philosophies, principles and kind of key views on fatherhood, parenting, balancing entrepreneurial activities and everything else going on with being an epic dad and really living the family life. Does that sound like a fair way to kick this thing off and go through the format?

K:     Sure. Let’s do it.

J:      Awesome. So let’s start out with our rapid fire questions. We have a few of them here for you. There’re some doozies so hang with us. We’ll throw a little softball at the start, though. Which was scarier, starting a business or having a child? And why?

K:     That’s a good question. Probably having a child because there are so much unknowns to it in what to expect and very little direction whereas a business, my father was an entrepreneur. He ran a small like motels and I grew up in that business so there’s some of that exposure already there and sort of a sense of what how much work it entails and being part of that culture growing up. So probably like a little bit more of the expectation into what to get into in starting a business versus becoming a parent. So it’s harder to on the first child.

J:      You what I love about that answer is that you went to your father for advice on how to start a business but not an advice on how to have a baby.

K:     You know I actually did. I did and this is funny because I asked my dad and this is the part of the Indian culture, you get lot of pressure to get married and then after you get married, it’s almost like all these when are you gonna have kids. So there’s pressure there for that. And then I get to this point when I had my first kid, I’m asking my dad I said “Dad what’s up with all this pressure to like get married and have kids?” and he told me, he said “I want to just watch you suffer the same way I did.” That was the parenting advice I got from my dad and I was like okay. It’s not the most helpful thing but I’ll work with it.

J:      Well, better than nothing. That’s all there is to life. So jumping into the next one is your favourite superhero.

K:     Batman.

J:      Are there multiple superheroes in your house running around or do you all have unanimous decision on batman?

K:     We have batman, superman, Spiderman are the top ones and hulk all exists but I don’t know what it is. My littlest one really got me into batman lately. Well, I was close to doing batman for a Halloween last year and getting the full on, as close as you can get to the realistic one.

J:      Have you been able to jump in to like the avenger movies and that kind of stuff or is that still a little bit too far out for your kids?

K:     I’m like a, what’s the word, not like a practical parent. I do like let them just watch everything both marvel and avengers. So they’ve seen them both.

J:      Nice. Batman’s awesome because he’s kind of real, right? Like he turns into Bruce Wayne during the day and so you can kind of relate to him where superman is somebody from a whole different planet. What draws you to batman yourself? Are there any other types of similarities you look at or parallels that you think about with batman?

K:     He’s got a lot of cool gear. What else do you want?

J:      Yeah, that is kind of the American dream, right?

K:     Yeah, being rich and have a lot of toys.

J:      Now they get just having an N-95 mask and be able to go outside again but once that goes through maybe it’ll be rich and having toys again.

K:     Yeah, that’s true.

J:      So what’s your favourite family’s tradition that you all have to pass to go through?

K:     You know I think it’s becoming the new thing. I don’t know when we’re gonna do it again so soon but I remember one time I was on vacation, I saw this family and they’re just the most connected family I’ve ever seen and I started talking to the mom like “there’s something different about you guys.” And she was, basically I realized like they all had a sport they played together. So that’s been my thing. I’ve been driving as what’s a family sports that we can all play together. They had baseball, softball and I don’t have a lot of softball fans in my household but we’ve all picked up ice skating. So that’s become like the family tradition where pretty much every weekend we go out ice skating.

J:      No kidding? Was that a sport or an activity that you all started learning right from the beginning so it’s all at level zero or have you…?

K:     Yeah, nobody in our family ice skated prior at all. Maybe with my wife, maybe on a date at some point before we got married, we both like tried it just to fall over. But that was it. Nobody had a background at ice skating.

J:      And who is picking it up the best so far in the family?

K:     That’s interesting. I definitely would say that the two older kids are. My daughter picked it up really fast and I didn’t think the middle one would. I thought he’s really hesitant to have somebody teach him and he kept falling but he just kept making his falls and he got good at it and he’s fast.

J:      Are you guys taking lessons or are you just learning by YouTube videos and then going out and falling a lot?

K:     A mix, a mix of falling. I did have a private instructor a little bit but once you get pass the fundamentals, I think the kids can learn faster on their own in watching some videos and things like that.

J:      Ice skating is a hard activity, I tell you. I don’t know if you’ve thought about the lessons. I put my daughter in some lessons up here and it’s no joke. First of all the parents who are in ice skating, they’re serious. They are coming in to have their next child be an Olympian and so they take it very seriously. They’ll run you over if you’re not able to pick up the speed. And then afterwards, at the rink that my daughter was at, they allowed you to do like a parent-kid skating for about an hour and we were doing it. And one time I tripped and I was holding Milan’s hand and we both kind of went off and I tried to stop her from falling but in the course of it I think I was literally at one point parallel to the ground. And I watched my daughter in slow motion do the same thing so we’re kind of like stopping or freezing time, talk about superhero for a second, like my whole image of us being both parallel to the ground, I just saw her face went bloody nose, like crying. I’m dad of the year, I just got up. I tried to get up and I fall again. So that was probably kind of the extent of our ice skating experience and so from there we’ve kind of moved on to like less impactful sports that take a little coordination and skill.

K:     Well, a couple of tips on that is wear those volleyball kneepads underneath your pants. I still do wear those things and they’ll save you definitely.

J:      One thing I needed more than a kneepad I think we need a facemask and like. We needed some of that like swat gear because the way we were up in the air and fell, I tell you I got bruises in my body for like the next two days.

K:     So my daughter does hockey. And I’m convinced hockey for kids is safer than figure skating because I see those kids go in the air with no pads on and anything and they’re in the air. And those are hard fall to take versus wherein hockey you’re covered up in pads. So even I would go out there and do stick and puck with her and I have more fun because I’m open to trying more aggressive things I wouldn’t normally try with all that padding on.

J:      Yeah, hockey is a serious sport too. I mean hockey parents are no joke either, right? They think…

K:     Most infamous.

J:      They all scare me. Scary! So going on the next question though, tell me about the most embarrassing parenting story that you’ve had.

K:     I got one, probably not the most embarrassing. It’s embarrassing and colorful. So it was with my daughter and because it’s, and I was actually telling her this not too long ago. She was maybe two years old or just approaching two and she’s in there, we’re watching. I don’t know where my wife was. I think she’s out of town so I had her to myself for a bit of time. And she’s like looking at me and she’s like “I want dark milk. I want dark milk.” And I’m like “What? What the heck is dark milk? What are you talking about?” So I go to the fridge and I said “Let me see what I can find.” I opened it up and staring at me was chocolate milk. And I was like dark milk. So I put this milk in a sippy cup. I go sit down and we’re hanging out and I go to hand it to her and like the bottle just falls down. I’m holding the lid and out come splash all this chocolate milk on both of us. And I’m like “shit!” and she looks at me and just as natural as possible looks right in my eyes and said “shit” and I looked at her and I just what do you do? I’m trying not to get an acknowledgement that’s not a good word to say. So I’m just kind of like looking around and just hoping she would just forget about it and just kept going on with things. And then I didn’t think anything of it because it’s kind of funny too with the kids that age you sit down with them and spend a lot of time with picture books and really try to get them to learn different words and I’m just kind of like boggled in the back of my head the fact that, we were just doing over grasshopper and ant and we keep going back and forth and like after the 50th time she’s still not getting grasshopper right. But I accidentally say one word and you pick it up right away. So a month goes by and my wife comes to me and she’s like “something really strange happened today.” I was like “what’s up?” “Well, I was in the kitchen and cooking and Shiloh’s out playing and she was trying to open this jar and she couldn’t open it and she said shit like she knew how to use the word.”

J:      So she not only learned the word, she learned the context at the same time. She’s a fast one.

K:     Yes. That was the story my daughter were what her first swear word was.

D:     Does she stick with it or does she end up dropping it?

K:     Yeah, it was like a, I think the boys are a little different. They kind of stick to their swear words and it becomes very problematic. I think it wasn’t something she really retain that I know of. Unless she was just not brooding when we were not around and knew better to say in front of mom and dad.

J:      Oh man, here’s the key question on that did you blame the wife and say I have no idea why she would’ve have known that word or do you finally fess up and tell her how she would’ve actually known?

K:     She knew, that’s the thing. Women have that. They somehow give you this little look to kind of like see how you facially respond without even you consciously thinking about how you’re responding and then they know right away.

J:      They got a sense, man. They will all sniff it out even if you try to hide it. I don’t think one, we’re great at hiding things in the first place but they got the sense. They know when their kid does something where that came from pretty quickly.

K:     Exactly.

D:     It makes you realize when you’re growing up all the things you thought you were getting away with with your parents that they knew everything.

J:      Yeah, we’ve had those moments Dustin. I’m sure.

D:     A few.

J:      Alright. Kison next one is best memory of being a dad.

K:     Best memory of being a dad. Let’s see… what’s the best memory of being a dad? I don’t know. The family trips were always fun. I think it’s always like those little achievements that you make with the kids are always the best. Like we finally get them to start walking, those little milestones when they’re trying to do something and they’ve been going on and they haven’t hit that achievement until you keep sticking around with them and encouraging them and see them finally getting it. So when they’re like playing sports or I got the two older ones in piano and they’re starting to get good at it. I think that’s kind of been the best moments. And then too, the stuff that you can do activities with. We have jogging, we do skating. Things like that that’s really good highlights. I really enjoy that.

J:      There are so many of them, right? Like you have these different moments. My daughter’s always asking me to tell her stories, tell her stories. And it’s interesting because it’s always difficult for me to come up with one because I have so many to go through my head. Thank goodness for pictures now. So we have 10,000 pictures in my phone so each time we look at the picture, I can tell her the story from that. But it is, it’s one of those things. It’s really hard to just pick one memory, right?

K:     Yeah. I have one. It was like my daughter had a really tough situation to deal with and I surprised by it because it think she’s only seven, around seven years old and she came to me and she said “dad, this girl’s bullying me in school.” And I was taken off guard because it’s like you’re only seven. Like I thought bullies don’t come till later when you’re teenager. And so I could tell just sort of the way she’s motioning she wants some advice in how to deal with it. And she particularly came to me. She didn’t go to mom about it. So the first thing is you start thinking about alright, let me kind of teach you how to fight and throw down and stuff. But wait a minute, wait a minute. That’s not, this kid’s only seven plus she shouldn’t be doing that to begin with. I said “okay, let’s break this down. Why is she bullying you?” and she told me it’s because the girl said her hair is ugly, “she told me my hair is ugly and pushed me.” I said “okay, why does she think your hair is ugly?” she said “I don’t know, dad. She just thinks my hair’s ugly.” And I said “I don’t think it’s your hair. You hair looks fine to me. I don’t think it’s your hair that’s why this person is giving you a hard time. You know it could be anything. I really don’t know. She could have some personal things, maybe something about family or maybe something else.” You know this and that. And she kind of started thinking like “oh, she might be jealous because I have all these other little friends and stuff and I think she’s more like a loner.” I was like “okay, okay. Why don’t you go talk to her? Why don’t you go talk to her and really try to understand. Get inside her head and get a sense of what she’s thinking, what she’s feeling, and just really try to understand. Just do that. Try to empathize.” And that’s kind of what I was trying to get out with her is try to make her feel at fault. Like really understand that person and make them know that you understand them. And then I come home the next day and she comes running to me, “daddy, daddy guess what?” and I’m like “what?” and she said “we’re best friends now.” So that kind of squashed that whole little thing and sort of sends it in different direction. I think that was a good moment where you can really spend the time to teach them a life lesson in how to overcome something like that. That’s probably one of the most memorable ones I had.

J:      Yeah, and probably much more sustainable in long term and really effective than throwing a right cross, right?

K:     That was a backup. Let me show you a takedown move just in case that doesn’t work.

J:      There’s always the escalation chain, right? You have to be prepared just in case.

K:     Yup.

J:      That’s funny. So thanks for being a sport with me on the questions. I know Dustin has a few. Dustin, do you want to kick off your questions and keep the podcast rolling?

D:     Sure. So the next question we have, you may have already touched on it but if you have a different answer, we can discuss it. So what’s your favourite thing to do with your kids? Is it ice skating or maybe that’s just the activity that you guys do with the family?

K:     Yeah, you know that’s still one of the favourite ones because even if my wife’s not up for it, we’ll all go out or maybe I’ll just take one or two of them out. I would add in there the trampoline parks that are popping up. There are closest to where we live but when we do get a chance to go to one of those things, it’s a ton of fun and it’s a good activity to do with them.

D:     Do you watch or do you participate?

K:     I participate. I call it sideline parenting. I try to avoid that. You got to take it as an opportunity to relive some of this youth that you had at that age.

D:     How many other parents do you see just sitting there on their phone on the sideline?

K:     I think it depends. I don’t wanna stereotype it. I say sometimes I think it’s a little bit of the older parents that may be more so. I remember one time where I was playing soccer with the kids and I saw one boy playing by himself and I invited him to join us. And I was kind of wondering I was like “where is your parent at, why are you” he said “oh, my mom’s over there in the car,” because it’s a little chilly out. It’s like cold weather. And she’s nice. She came later and just like “hey, thank you for playing with my son and blah, blah, blah.” That’s like a little bit of being a sideline parent. It doesn’t take much effort and it’s probably just like reliving it. I was a terrible soccer player when I was a kid so I have fun playing with them and trying to relearn it to get better at it and at least you get some sense of pride when you can beat your four-year old in soccer.

D:     There you go. Relive your non-glory days, right?

K:     I would add one more as one of my favourite activities. We live in the Midwest in Chicago and so it’s not far to get over to Michigan, Indiana but they have all these apple-picking farms. Well, they all had like blueberry, raspberry, all these different little fruits to pick. That is a lot of fun. I never realize how much fun that actually is and its’ one of these events you can do where you don’t really have to watch your kids as much as you do for other things. You can sort of find your little Zen and let them do their thing and they have a lot of fun and plus some healthy fruits afterwards.

D:     Nice. That’s a nice healthy activity there.

K:     Yeah. I don’t know what the connection is but they are actually more inclined to eat the stuff they picked.

D:     I can understand that. It’s a little more meaningful than just asking you grab something from the store.

K:     Yeah.

D:     I say what was the next question? What is the number one piece of advice that you would give to a dad who’s about to have their first child?

K:     Oh, okay. So first child, it’s important too because when you get a kid, they don’t come with instruction book. The hospital doesn’t say “hey, by the way here’s the dad handbook for you.”

D:     Yeah, there’s plenty of books out there that you can grab but it’s still not gonna prep you for it.

K:     For me, you’re right, I mean there is. For me one of the biggest challenge that I wasn’t prepared for is the escalation of emotions that happen because you have these really, really tough moments with kids especially that early age and obviously the first weeks where you’re kind of up late and dealing with the whole sleep schedule stuff. That’s pretty prepared and part of it and you know about that but then the kids hit their peak of cuteness around six months and their super adorable. But then they start teething after that around seven, eight months and you got a kid that’s just screaming its head off all day and I mean it sort of drives your emotions up. And then it even gets difficult too when they’re around two because they’re not a baby anymore, they’re not really this toddler. They’re sort of like this giant mutant baby and you can’t reason with them. And it’s really, really difficult and you’re gonna hit this spike in your head that just, I could see why people physically lose it. I think finding and thinking about ways to like prepare for that ahead of time. There’s a funny thing and my wife makes fun of me, I do this gift box for new dads and it’s the big point she makes fun of me because there’s nothing in there for the baby. And I’m like of course, they’re giving stuff for the baby. This is for the dad. And I put a book in there. They might’ve changed the language. It was recently called “Calm the F*ck Down.” I think they still have it at Amazon but they probably changed the title a little bit.

D:     Like put a symbol in there.

K:     Yeah, they have a couple of symbols in there. So I still get that book because I do know, and that just walks you through it like here’s the situation with kid and it’s like calm down and here’s how you deal with it. So that’s a good one and then it’s good too because the wife of the person I’m gifting it to looks at it and gets it and appreciates it. And then I put in this kava. I get sure you get some kava candy at Amazon. And kava’s like a South American plant that function as a natural anti-anxiety. So I remember I used to take that one. Whenever you’re stressed out or angry, it’ll take you down to zero. So, that was like fun little thing to put in there. But the thing I really value the most was gun range earmuffs. I would put a set of gun range earmuffs in this gift box, so when you do have those moments of the screaming kid that’s just screaming on the top of their lungs, you would simply put these earmuffs on. It reduces that decibel volume by 30, 40. I know you could get some headsets. Everybody has their noise cancelling headsets and you can go jam out and stuff like that but I think that sends the wrong message. That sort of sends like I’m just gonna ignore you. I’m gonna put this headset on and this. I think this sort of signals like look, I’m putting this on because you’re screaming and I wanna save my eardrums but then too, it really calms you down. It will really bring you down and all of a sudden you’re like “oh, you’re upset. Let’s talk about it. Why? Are you hungry? You’re upset because it’s time to go to bed?” So it just brings you down so you’re sort of in a much better state and you’re not like at this peak of mental explosion.

J:      That’s a tough point, right? You go through this period of time where I think as a father you were generally trying to fix something that’s broken and anytime we hear a child crying our mind I think naturally goes with something’s broken and fix it. And sometimes it’s not fixable. You just need to let it go through the phase. And so that sounds like a great tool to have on your head and being able to survive that moment and just calm down. I think the other thing that they’d probably be teaching all of us before we go into that is breathing techniques. One of the things I always used to find was that the less I breathe while those situations are happening the more angrier, the more kind of stressed that I got and sometimes you just need to take a couple of deep breaths and just calm yourself down because it does kind of escalate quickly in your head.

K:     Yup. I totally agree with that.

D:     Yeah, and I think the, well I’m obviously speaking of non (31:19) babies but for the first couple of months, they’re crying because they need one of their basic needs met. So it’s getting it fed, or diaper needs to be changed, or something. It’s only a couple of things but as you get into the 6, 9, 12 months, they just have a much more variety of kind of what’s bothering them and they can’t communicate that so it really takes sometimes a village to try to keep your sanity and kind of work through it. My wife and I, I think we’ve done a pretty good job of kind of passing off the kid whenever you’re starting to kind of get to that point where you’re starting to kind of meet your max stress level and where you can kind of reset. So we’ve tried to do a good job of trying to keep that balance going because you’re not always gonna be able to stay ahead of it and it’s always gonna continue to happen. But that’s a, the gift box that you were giving out, do you still give them out to new dads?

K:     Yeah, absolutely.

D:     Contents haven’t changed over the years? You’ve kept it pretty consistent?

K:     Yeah, I haven’t. I mean I should probably sit down and think of other things that could be in there which may change as his kids get older. But yeah, I mean those earmuffs are probably the most valuable. I remember having three of those in my house where it grew with raising three kids so I could find anywhere, any room I was in.

D:     That’s awesome.

J:      Hey Kison, I think you just gave us an idea of our next product that we need and category that we need to have out on our website or for dad mall.

K:     You should 100% do that. I’ll buy that for my gift bow. Actually you should just put the gift box together and then it’ll make it a lot easier for me. So you put that together.

 J:     Dustin do you have a little bit more space in our inventory?

D:     We’ll try to put it somewhere.

K:     I would promote it for you. That would be great. I think that’s definitely a good item, good giftable item that will appeal to a broad market.

J:      We’ll be reaching out once we make it happen.

K:     There you go.

D:     We may have to put the credit to you, Kison with everyone that gets sold.

K:     Yeah, I wish it has a simple name like Joe or Bob so you can put it like Joe’s gift box or Bob’s gift box because if it’s Kison, it would be weird.

D:     We’ll move on to the next question. As we already hit you with your most embarrassing parenting moment so what is your proudest dad moment?

K:     Well, it kind of circles back to hitting those levels of achievements with the kids or helping them with a challenge. I have this rule with my kids, my daughter’s on it. She’s really on point with this but the way we use the word thank you and sorry. What I explained to her is that they’re very transactional words that alone don’t have much meaning because we use them transactionally. You go to the store, you buy a snack and you pay for it and you’re like ‘thank you.’ It’s very transactional. What I explained to her is like you kind of create the meaning with it when you use it. So you say thank you, thank you for what? Explain why you’re thankful. So thank you for the great service. Thank you for being so fast. Thank you for getting this to me on time. I think too at the same time it’s something that I sort of wanted to get better at personally myself because even in the work environment, sometimes we ask people to do things or ask for help for things but then we don’t really do a good job of articulating why we’re asking for help and that’s such an important thing I’ve learned is you got to make sure you clarify that why and it makes such a difference. You’ll see people more open to responding better and following through when you add that clarification in terms of why you’re asking for their help and they have a better understanding of it. So it’s similar where for the reason of thank you, clarify it like why? And same thing with sorry like you bumped in to somebody, instead of sorry, sorry I bumped into you. So we’re at a restaurant. I have one of my industry friends, she always gives me this nice restaurants recommend. And then I come home Friday evening and wife’s like “I’m staying home. I don’t wanna go out.” My daughter’s like “I wanna go out.” So we always do a little daddy-daughter date nights and they’re fun. And I remember going to one restaurant and it’s a little bit of a fancier restaurant and it was a nice place. And we get in there and she’s asking me, she’s like “daddy, how come all the women sit on this side of the restaurant, on the side of the table?” And it’s kind of like how you probably gentleman have gone to a date with your wife and it’s kind of like the default where they take the bench in the back and you kind of like have that little wood chair that you have to sit on and lean over.

J:      Yeah, we haven’t done that. I don’t know what you’re talking about.

K:     You’ve been rushing to grab the booth in the back or the…

J:      …never find the first place to sit down ever. I’m always the first person standing.

K:     Well she’s asking me and you know “hey, why do all the women sit on this side of the restaurant or the table.” And I wasn’t sure. I was like “you know, I think it’s so they have more room to put their stuff but I really don’t know. You should ask our server. You might have a better response.” And our server comes by, I think his name was Andy and she’s asking him like “hey, I have a question.” And he’s like “oh, what’s your question?” and said “why do the women all sit on this side?” And he explained like it’s an old folk tradition where women wanted to be more on display so that’s why when they sat on that side of the restaurant, they have more visibility to all the other patrons that are visiting and dining in. And I said “that was really cool, you see I didn’t know that.” And it was funny because when we went to get the check, she gets the check and she’s like “hey Andy, thank you so much for the great service and the recommendations.” And the lady at the table next to her just does this head turn whiplash. And was like “you’re the best father ever. How did you get your kids to do that?” And she just started talking about her son and it’s like “I have a tough time getting him to do anything, blah, blah, blah. So it was kind of funny but that was like a little bit of that proud moment that these are the little things you kind of teach him but the key was teaching him and explaining to him why that they need to sort of do things in a certain way. So that thank you example like why you need to articulate and explain why but you can tell it just made that response and the difference. I think she understood that from that point.

J:      And Kison that was something you’ve mentioned to me in our conversations before and I found that just kind of one of the key advice, the cornerstone of any type of advice you can give to your kids to last through their life. I just think that’s such a genius point and something that we should definitely highlight after the show Dustin because you’re essentially creating not only a logic and an explanation ability of why they’re thankful or why they’re sorry or you’re welcome, but they’re creating a way to be able to communicate to make a point. And that goes through your whole life, right? There are so many different debate models out there. The one that I spent a lot of time studying is called the Toulmin method. And that’s just a method of reasoning that was created. And it creates this like logical step by step breakdown that starts down with your point and then all the support behind it, but it’s so easy especially in corporate America, for us to just get quickly focused on whatever the day’s fire drill is and we just forget to actually communicate the reasoning and the content and then you hear in every single study afterwards of why employees are disengaged or employees aren’t bought into the vision it’s because they don’t understand why they’re doing things. And so being able to instill that in your kids early is just a powerful technique and I just bought you for that when you told me that that’s what you focused on. We’ve been actually trying to do that more in our house. Thank you for sharing that and I think that’s something that we should definitely be highlighting as one of the main fundamental lessons that comes out of this podcast.

D:     Yeah, that was an awesome I think teaching lesson that you shared with us. I know personally I’m gonna take that as we work with our little one as she gets older because just with my thought process has been to I’m gonna make sure that she says please and thank you. Just kind of hitting the manners aspect but I hadn’t really thought about it being more transactional than actually meaningful. So that’s absolutely something I’m gonna use. Kison has that been effective for all of your kids?

K:     Well the four year old certainly in his own world. The four year old was the surprise baby and that kid is the most interesting person I’ve ever met in my entire life to be honest. I could remember, obviously he matures quickly, he has two older siblings but at one years old he walked in our bedroom at night and be like “mommy, daddy I love you. Goodnight.” And walk out. And me and my wife were just looking at each other “what the hell has just happened? What planet is this kid from?” So he’s different. It’s hard to, he’s really set on his ways. He’s on autopilot and he kind of learns and does what he wants. But he’s getting there. The middle one’s got, he’s following along with his sister and really following along that sort of track with her and I think he’s kind of looks up to her and he sort of even learns from her behavior as well. So it’s not so much after reinforcing with him directly.

D:     Awesome. We’ll go on to the next question we had. So you’ve been an extremely successful entrepreneur. Is that something that you envision that you’re gonna kind of push with your kids? Is that for them to try to go down that route or would you may be push them into more of a traditional working environment? Have you put any thoughts into kind of what that, I guess growth and kind of leadership’s gonna be?

K:     You know it’s funny because I grew up in a household that was very business oriented and I literally grew up in the motel and saw every day. But my dad didn’t want me to go down that track. He always pushed me away and wanted me to go to college to become an engineer or a doctor or something less. But I was really interested in business, what I wanna do and it was kind of frustrating. I remember my teenage years, I wanted to learn more. I wanted to get my hands-on and then pushed it away. But with my kids, it started like with my daughter I think she was about seven. And she said “dad, I want to do a lemonade stand.” I think she probably saw one somewhere and said “I want to do a lemonade stand.” At first I was trying to find a reason, a way to convince her out of it. I was “Oh, you really wanna do that?” And after a while, I started getting into it. I was like “You know, this isn’t bad.” It’s kind of fun for us to do together so we go down kind of like well, if we’re gonna do this, we’re gonna do it right. At the back of my head I’m thinking you picked the wrong dad to do a lemonade stand with. We’re not gonna half-ass any of this. We went through seven different sugars just to figure out like what’s the best sugar to use to make our lemonade. And we’d buy all the lemons in bulk (42:33) and do actual fresh squeezed lemon like no shortcuts at all. And she set up our little lemonade stand and we live four blocks west of Wrigley so we have a really nice street to actually do that on. And I really enjoyed teaching her the business fundamentals because it’s like okay, I want you to understand that. And what I did was I basically gave her a loan and said “you got to pay me back. I’m gonna give you this money,” whatever it was like a hundred, 200 dollars, “to start it and we’re gonna buy this stuff.” and I gave her a little debit card too so she can sort of track this stuff better. And then when we’re going through it like “okay, this is how much you’re paying for lemons. This is how much you’re paying.” And she wanna sell like bags of chips. Okay, let’s think about how much money we’re gonna make on that because what’s your net cost and then how much are you gonna sell it for. Okay, do you understand your margins? Do you understand how much money you’re making? It’s funny because our neighbor, he’s also one of the business guys, is asking, giving her a hard time asking “do you know what your cost of goods are?” She’s like looking up at me. I was like “alright, we have to have a talk about that.” So I really had a lot of fun. They learned so much. They learned the people’s skills, with interacting with different kinds of people as customers. And she had a lot of fun. She was getting into it. The business actually turned out to do better than we expected to do because to my wife I said “I need your help to make the lemonade because we’re selling it so fast.” But it was a lot of fun. So I think there’s a lot of value for any kid just to learn some of that early on. I’m definitely pro on the side of pushing them towards it not necessarily like your career is gonna be this but I think doing this is kind of giving them the exposure early so they can start thinking that way. And I think you’ll start seeing if they do have an apt for it pretty early too.

J:      And which one of them, Kison would be most likely to take on the reins of The DealRoom and M&A Science afterwards?

K:     Daughter for sure!

D:     Kison you have mentioned that you’re dad tried stirring you away from business. You think that was due to the amount of time that he kind of got absorbed with his job or what do you think that thought process was?

K:     I don’t think it’s the time. I think it’s more around maybe culture that he came and got educated in like a med tech-type of degree. And he probably wanted to stir me more towards that type of career. I don’t know. I mean even though our family is very entrepreneurial. A lot of the family members have businesses but that’s his thing. Maybe regardless if you do business, you should have some kind of education background in something.

J:      Those lemonade stands or any type of small little activity that teaches them how to buy things, the supply making stuff, dealing with customer service, even though they’re just having fun I think is so valuable. We went through this process a couple of times with Milan especially with her toys and so we’re trying to teach her that you just don’t throw things out right in New York City with every space being limited, one thing in and one thing out. And so we’re trying to get her to think about that the resources now you have and assets may be that is not valuable with you anymore but whole else would it be valuable too. So she’s getting in that mentality. And recently we started to find somebody to do caricatures, and so Kison we’re making a caricature of one of your profile pictures. We’ll give you as one of our gifts for being a guest here. You can see that when I put it up with my LinkedIn profile. So we got somebody to start doing those. And so Milan was looking at the caricatures and she said “you should put the kids on coffee mugs or the family and get that person to make them. And you can sell those things on shirts and everything.” She’s been asking me if I’ve thought about the idea and I’m explaining to her the process that we have to figure out like how much we can get it made for, what can we sell them for, is there demand. It’s kind of fun teaching your kid those kind of processes around business that you hopefully their skills that later down the road whenever they get in front of a real corporate atmosphere that it’s something that becomes natural to her or at least they have seen before so it’s not a surprise or a new learning.

D:     Yeah, and that’s not something that they’re gonna get in their traditional education, right? I think that’s always been a gap in the US education is that people don’t come out of school understanding finances let alone understanding how to possibly run a business and look at your income and your margins and everything. So I think whatever, your kids might have that potential I think it’s awesome to try to teach them whatever you can in real life situations when they’re young.

K:     A little lot to be said about that. There’s a lot of things that school doesn’t teach them. You guys have heard of like Ray Dalio’s Principles book he published a year or two ago?

J:      I have not.

K:     It’s a good one you should get. The thing is for us and where we’re at in our time and career is things that we’ve learned the hard way, learned from experience that he covers. And it’s a good model because it’s taking the idea of like trading principles and playing to life and thinking through like what are life principles to be able to like reference to make better decisions going forward. So I personally use it if I ever have to mentor or do a little time coaching somebody young that’s still in college or undergrad. That’s like I think a really good sweet spot for it. But I actually read it with my daughter when she was eight and a lot of it is over her head but what was interesting is it brought up really good discussions around some of these life lessons that school doesn’t teach. Examples like talking about open-minded versus closed-minded and to really define that and to understand it to a point that you know how to approach closed-minded people and so forth, and how to even push yourself to be more open-minded. So that’s like a good principle to have and it applies to us professionally but to actually have that explanation with her at that age, it’s interesting to get them to start thinking about that. You know at that level like what’s the difference between open-minded and closed-minded. And they start rethinking things a little bit. And then it’s kind of funny because she’ll attack me with it later like “dad, you’re not being open-minded.” It comes back to be careful what you asked for but it is kind of fun that to sort of read to her like, hey do you understand? Let me explain it. And they have some really interesting things like how the brain works, how our personalities are, kind of getting them to understand that we’re so physically unique and different when we can see each other but to get them to think that our brain in the way we think is just as unique. We don’t see it but like the way we literally are wired and think is just as unique as we are physically unique. And that’s why you got to understand people think they’re different. They’re completely different and the more you can understand the better.

J:      Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I’m looking as you’re talking through that. It looks like this is a pretty popular book out there. He even has a website principles.com so it seems like he does a number of talks on how the economic machine works, principles for success, he did a TedTalk. Have you listened to those?

K:     Probably not. I’ve seen some of it. I know his book. You can actually get an app and get it for free. If you buy the book, it really looks like the bible. It’s a big book. But I recommend it. I think it’s a good read and like I said it’s a good one for somebody like young professional, like undergrad. It sort of gets some thinking some good things early.

J:      And was this something that you had put into context for your kids or were you just taking the principles literally, or are you using stories that would resonate with them based on…

K:     I was reading this to put them to sleep very quickly.

J:      … is basically what I’m asking.

K:     What’s that?

J:      I said were you reading this book that as big as the bible to your four year old at night and put them to sleep?

K:     Yeah. You know that two, at that time the two were together. The middle one, I think he was five, so it’s five and seven. So I read it to those two and it would put them to sleep pretty quick. But it was good too, because they’d read it and I would follow up like “hey, do you understand it? Can you explain it back to me?” And they got like maybe a little bit of it like 10, 20 percent and then I’d open up the conversation to really help them to understand it. So it’s like you’re not gonna read, read the book. You sort of read these really small little chapters so you read a little piece and then just use it to open up a little bit of a conversation.

J:      Awesome. We’ll definitely put that as one of the descriptions and recommendations to go and check out. So I think we’re almost done with the rapid questions. I know that they weren’t really as rapid as, at least they were but you said so much interesting thing so hopefully you’re still with us. Alright, Kison so, again thanks for sticking with us through this. We’ve learned a lot already and this has been a great discussion. Now let’s go on a little bit deeper. We’ve gotten the chance to talk a little bit about your memories, and your philosophies, and your favorite superhero but we’d love to understand what does being a dad mean to you? And how has it changed your life perspectives from before you were a parent?

K:     Yeah, it does change a lot. I think I didn’t know what I was getting into in terms of what it entails because if you think about your responsibilities as a parent in the most fundamental view it’s to feed your kids healthy and educate them. So, at the end of the day I always come back to those two things, feeding them healthy and educating them. So I think that’s the most important thing is to really be proactive and keep them obviously keep them in good health and entertained but make sure you’re constantly trying to educate them and embetter them that way.

J:      It sounds like you didn’t know what you’re getting yourself into but you’ve done it three times so you must’ve enjoyed the first one.

K:     Yeah, the first one was a good challenge. I like it. I think like I said it is a challenge. I think the things evolved too when you do have kids and you don’t realize it because when they’re really small and they’re really cute and you play with them like they’re babies and it’s nice to have babies around the house. But it changes when they grow up because that time when I come home and I have, they’re rugrats. Just sitting on the floor and play with them and just let them topple on top of me and just have fun that way. That quickly evolves and changes because they grew up. They have their own hobbies and interests. And that time with the three together doesn’t really count as much in a sense. It’s more about the individual time that you provide for each one. So I think that’s probably, as things evolve like maybe the biggest challenge is the fact that you’ve now really have to dedicate time for each child individually and pretty much individualized experience because they get, if it’s my daughter, I need to get in the ice and put on the helmet and do some stick and puck with her. If it’s my son, he’s more of like the stem projects and things like that so we might build Lego sets together. And if it’s the four year old, he likes causing trouble. So we might end up with some water guns and probably some tools.

J:      Do you try to set aside like scheduled time with each one of the kids to make sure you’re trying to distribute that evenly or you just kind of roll with the punches on however time allows?

K:     I think it’s a blend. I wished we’re a little more structured. I think it’s a big thing I’ve been trying to push in our household. The challenges when you get to the weekend and there always see a set of activities there, so if they’re in classes and things like that. So that helps and at least gives you some basis to guide off of. But then after that, you might have like half a day still open and it’s like okay, what do you guys want to do? Do you want to go to the zoo? Do you want to go…? You try and come up with an activity. And there are some people that are good at it where they plan things ahead. I’m not one of them. I think that’s where I’m trying to get to a point I can introduce some of these project management that I teach and talk about in my work environment and bring it at home where here’s our list of things to do and I want your ideas. I want you to contribute to it. What we’re gonna do is we’re gonna prioritize it and then upcoming weekend, we’re gonna start doing one or two of the top things in the list and then we’ll keep on going down for the next weekend so that way we’ll always have a plan list of things to do ahead of time.

J:      Kison it’s an interesting point because I know you’re also running a company of, I think the last time you and I spoke was 40 or 50 people and so you and I have spent a lot of time talking about mergers and acquisitions and the culture and kind of communication and so you just mentioned on a smaller scale, although much more personal, being able to spend individual time with each kid is definitely the best and optimal but often with the time you try to bundle it all into one family activity. What parallels have you taken from that type of experience where you know you need to get the one on one attention but you know obviously they are at the most efficient part ways as family to managing 40 people that probably all do want your singular attention as well but obviously there’s only so much time in a day so you can only give yourself off to so many people and you also have to make sure the work gets done?

K:     So between balancing the two?

J:      Yeah. How would you actually balance, like what have you learned from like managing 3 kids that all want your singular attention to managing 40 people that all want your singular attention? Have you taken anything from being a father with 3 kids and apply those principles to how you manage people?

K:     It might be a little more of the other way around. It’s a mix between the two. When you talk about here’s the things we do together as a team family and things we do individually together and putting that time. So I think there should be a balance between it and even in the businesswise I learned that where I wanna make sure there’s good communication. We’ll do these very short frequent status meetings and it just helps everybody sync up. Everybody explains in a minute or two what they’re doing, what they’re working on and we get on the same page about it. And then we’ll go off and do our stuff but at the same time when we do those things we identify like “oh, here’s an issue.” We should get together about that and talk about it and we’d know where we need to have like a one on one meetings or with a small group. And then I think beyond that even right now with everything going on and the downturn, it’s really important just to grab one on one calls and just do a health check for me just to, I don’t have any agenda but I just wanna see how things are going for you. I actually used to joke and call like a mental health check but I think it’s just spending the time to listen. It’s really important that you can learn a lot and probably see some of the underlining issues that you might not realize. And it’s similar with family, too. I once did this with my daughter where it was a Friday and I did an exit interview for somebody I really actually like working with and that’s something I tried to do is if you’re given a chance to do an exit interview and try to, people are more open to telling you some unfiltered feedback if you really push them to. So it’s good to do that and I did that. How can I improve as a leader, the work environment, so forth. And then I did it with my daughter. I said “hey, how am I doing as a dad? What’s good and where do you think I can improve?” And it was interesting because the things that she told me that I was doing good were the things I thought she would say that I was doing bad. You have this level of discipline. You’re always pushing us and teaching us stuff and this and that. But even that kind of approach of just really trying to push them towards goals and things like that that they value is even thought of as a good thing. And then when it came to the bad she told me I need to be easier on her younger brother, not the youngest but the middle child. He’s sensitive, you’ve got to go easy on him. So I said “okay, that’s a good point taken.” So I think it’s a mix when you can sort of probably talk and just like a work environment. And I’ve done like this periodic family meetings though a little short but I just said “hey, let’s get some ideas together. Let’s talk. We’re gonna be cooped up in the house for a while. What can we do to make things better around here to make it more comfortable, make us live better together and get along better?” And just let the kids contribute and put their ideas out there and see what they come up with. And it’s funny. Obviously my youngest one’s gonna ask for more toys and candy. And then you just see what ideas they come up with. But then at the same time you got to balance that with some of that one on one attention too. So if they have some certain things like my middle child likes Lego so I come home and get a Lego set and just spend some time with him to help him put it together. I think it’s just mixing the two together but making sure along the way that everybody’s really comfortable to express themselves and you’re listening. I think that works parallel between the work environment and then your family with the kids.

D:     Kison I’m interested to see how that tactic plays out with you asking your kids for some feedback is if they will mature and be able to accept constructive criticism better based on seeing you take that from them. So I’m interested to see how that plays out over the long term.

K:     Yeah. It’s a good point. I think getting them to a leadership role was a big challenge for me early on especially when I move and attack. You got to be more serious about it versus running a small retail store. And that was the big thing I learned is that people take punches at you. It lets you confront the things that you don’t wanna confront about yourself. We have this scenario in nature to think about ourselves in the most beauty and light and colorful way, that’s not always true. You wanna find out what are the things or areas that you can improve and get better at. So getting people comfortable to give you that criticism is effort of its own but it’s the most valuable thing you could do to better yourself. So they’re just things that does apply to kids too and they’re more open to tell you what they don’t like about you.

J:      We have this culture now of everything has to be nice and complementary and I don’t know if that’s the most beneficial way to communicate all the time. One of the activities we’re trying to do in, sometimes it’s just the wording, right? Like the word constructive criticism, I think it’s gotten such a negative connotation over the years. We’re trying to turn that into what we call sparring or training or practicing and that gives an environment of, almost sets up like a platform so that you feel more comfortable to share and be open and give points of feedback. I find that I’m constantly having to ask for that or else you just hear kind of the overall ‘yeah, everything is great. I complain about my boss. I complain about my friends.’ We all complain so it’s impossible for anybody to not have some type of recommendation. And even if it’s something that you don’t take or may not be able to get to at that point, getting people to have that trust and really be able to be honest with each other is critical. And even better if you can get your family to have a discussion and like you said, it’s not always on the surface. You have to dig a little bit. So Kison going on, looking at what you’ve done and how you managed that and really going out and getting feedback, do you see parallels between raising kids and being an entrepreneur?

K:     Yeah, definitely like some of the examples I just cited in terms of like thinking about managing a team in depth was a leadership approach in a business environment. A lot of that sorts of parallels over to the family, with the kids but you’ve got to be careful. You don’t want to make them feel like your employees versus your kids. And then I think some of the structure things too. Like for us we always have goals in our business and we review them every quarter and we discuss the progress in the previous quarter and what we’re gonna achieve the next quarter. I don’t run my household on quarters but I do encourage my kids. My daughter’s probably at that stage where I can have her write down goals. I had her do this. I have a picture of it somewhere. She had a cute little thing she wrote and her goals in life were to be the best hockey player, get into Harvard, and get rich. And then from there it’s like okay, what do you need to do to do that goal. To be the best hockey player, that takes a lot of work. And I started talking to her about Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers, the ten thousand hour rule. It’s a lot. It’s like three hours of practice every day for her to consistently till to get that whatever ten years so you can play it like a collegiate level. But so then things like that where you start giving them to think about what they need to do to be able to achieve those goals and start emphasizing on why it’s important that they have that daily ritual practice to be able to do it to achieve it. So that’s kind of one where like I said I think my kids are a little bit early for that but I’m trying to introduce it with my daughter. I think the other ones, they’re still a little bit young for it but that’s probably one of the big things that I really wanna drive at and just making sure there’s clear goals and having that understanding of what needs to get done to make sure that goal happens and break things down to their little achievable milestones to get there.

J:      You know those are great points, man. We wrote a blog a few months ago around the key principles that it’s lost. There’s always this stem focus and then there’s all kinds of other things, how to be polite, how to communicate. But one of the areas that you never really see a whole lot we call it reverse engineering. Being able to take a goal and break it apart and really put it into chunks and actually execute on it. I see it all the time in business. Everybody, not everybody but you have people come out and say okay, I’m gonna do this and then you just never see that goal actually achieved and I think the minute people start to go down, they have made another plan. They may have not broken up, really understood what they’re intending to achieve and so being able break those up. One of the areas that we’re trying to focus on in my house with Milan is when you don’t reach a goal, what do you do? It’s not that you just give up and say I was just not good enough, it’s assess the situation. Was it something that was a priority with you? Should you have done differently? And really not just stop at that milestone but also learn how to build off of your failures as much as your successes.

K:     Pretty good point. Hey you know what? I’m gonna try some fun real quick. You guys mind for a second?

J:      No.

K:     Alright. I’m gonna see if I can call my kid.

S:      Hello.

K:     Hey, Shiloh.

S:      Yeah.

K:     You’re live right now on my friend’s podcast with Jonathan and Dustin.

S:      (65:58)

K:     Yeah. it’s about being a dad.

J:      Hey, Shiloh.

S:      Okay.

K:     And I wanted to just ask you because we always talk about this but I want you to share with them what your purpose in life is.

S:      Find what you love to do and be the best in the world at it.

K:     How do you do that?

S:      Focus and work ten times harder than everybody else.

K:     Awesome. Thank you for sharing that.

J:      Thanks, Shiloh.

K:     Hey, is there any advice that you’d give to dads to just be good dads out there and do a great job?

S:      Yeah. Don’t always be nice. You can sometimes be strict. And don’t always let you kids go crazy. You sometimes need a schedule to follow so they know what to do and then after.

K:     That’s pretty good. Anything else?

S:      Ah, no.

J:      Kison (66:48) the guest here. You’ve been great but I feel like this is the podcast right here.

K:     Yeah, right! You guys have any questions for Shiloh?

J:      Shiloh, how is your dad doing? Is he doing well?

S:      Yeah.

J:      What are you doing during these times? Are you doing okay with the corona virus?

S:      Yeah, but it’s kind of boring staying home.

J:      But you probably get to spend a lot of time with your family, right?

S:      Yeah.

J:      And how’s school going?

S:      It’s good. Well, I don’t know when we’ll have school again so we have video calls instead.

J:      Here’s the biggest question, we’re all trying to figure out how to be the best dads we could be so what makes the best dad?

S:      Maybe you could teach them life lesson and you could also…

K:     That’s a tough one.

J:      That’s a tough question. Shall we spend more time with our kids?

S:      Yeah.

J:      And watch more shows or less TV?

S:      Less TV.

J:      Less TV. Wow, Kison you’re doing a great job. I think you’re whopping all of us here.

K:     Well, what are we gonna do if we’re not gonna watch TV?

S:      You could do some work and teach some life lessons like my dad does.

K:     What’s like the most important life lesson that I’ve taught you?

S:      Open-minded and closed-minded and thank you and sorry.

K:     You like those two?

S:      Yeah.

J:      This may need to be our new podcast format. Well, Shiloh you’re the best part of this podcast (68:24)

K:     Do you want to explain to the guys how thank you and sorry works?

S:      Yeah. So you can’t just say thank you and sorry without meaning it. You have to mean it. Like you stole someone’s umbrella. Instead you could say yeah, thanks or I’m sorry, you should say I’m sorry that I stole your umbrella. You need a reason why you’re thankful for something.

J:      So if we’re gonna say thank you for being on our podcast today, then we would have to thank you for being on our podcast and sharing so many great ideas and giving us a lot of valuable life lessons in order for us to spread with our audience. Is that how we would have to say thank you?

S:      Yes.

J:      You’re a great teacher. And what’s your favorite activity to do with your dad?

S:      Science. He orders a bunch of science kits and Lego we could do.

J:      That’s great. And you’re dad’s saying wonderful things about you. We were excited to have him on the show. He’s an incredible person. I’ve gotten the chance to know him more over the last couple of months and so he’s very proud of you and it sounds like he’s doing a great job and you sound like you’re a fantastic kid so we’re so happy to have you on our show. So thank you for coming on and sharing all your insights.

S:      You’re welcome.

K:     Hey, thanks Shiloh. I’ll see you a little later.

S:      Okay. Bye-bye daddy.

K:     Bye. Think of something fun for us to do.

S:      Okay. Bye.

J:      Bye Shiloh. That was awesome Kison.

D:     Good idea.

J:      How much did you pay her to do that (70:00) on the podcast at this point.

K:     I had my fingers crossed, hope she doesn’t say anything out there.

J:      She basically reiterated everything that you shared with us. And so you’ve clearly not only talked the talk but you guys are walking the walk and on top of that, I love your radio voice but she’s got a much cuter voice than all of us.

K:     Yeah.

J:      That’s awesome. Thanks for bringing her on. Now we had probably an hour and fifteen minutes and getting close to time so I don’t want to keep you longer but just to wrap up a couple more questions. As far as, I think we’ve hit some of the traditions. You talked about doing a family sports and obviously you’ve discussed the key principles. What do you think about at the end of the day what you want your kids to remember from their childhood in you as a father when they describe you, what would that be?

K:     One of the most valuable things I learned from my dad was discipline. And learning that allowed me to push myself and to be able to achieve what I’m able to achieve across my career. So if the kids love or hate it, I want them to at least remember me for being able to teach them that. And then too just the other things that really spending the time to teach them things that they may not otherwise have learned from school or may not have learned the right things from some of their friends so at least kind of stick up and make sure that they have some sort of guiding principles that they can continue to carry with them through life.

J:      And when you say discipline, Kison, we talked about discipline. I used that word all the time. What does that mean to you like what is discipline when you get to a tactical level our listeners out there, what kind of things can they do to actually execute on a disciple-type mentality?

K:     For me is when you get set on doing something, you get it done no matter what. I mean that’s just it. You do it. You don’t just have this wavy dream and they never come to fruition and that’s the whole idea. Here’s the goal, how are you gonna get there? We’re gonna make sure we get there. There’s no reason not to. I sort of last Friday had the idea about doing the online conference on a whim. Monday, at least convince myself for the weekend to do it and now this weekend it’s all stuff for putting it in action and getting it prepared for and it’s just that set level of discipline where this idea turns into a goal and then we’re gonna do everything that needs to get done to make sure that happens and it’s achieved and successful. And that takes a level of discipline because some people, they don’t have it and they’re gonna get distracted, they procrastinate and things like that. But it’s more of that get things done. Get things done.

J:      And how do you prioritize because there’s always more things to get done? There are hours in the day and I know you have The DealRoom. You have the M&A Science. You’re being asked to speak at conferences. You’ve got employees that want to talk to you. You’ve got partners. You and I have spend a lot of time chatting. You’ve got your kids, your family. How do you prioritize and stay discipline to what you really believe needs to get done gets done?

K:     That is something I’ve not mastered. I think that’s probably one of the difficult things to do. I’m always curious about whether there are better ways to do it. One of the things in my attempts in doing it in even coming into my office today to work on some of the stuff but it’s just having this list that’s always in order of priority. And it gets mixed up pretty quick but you go through and sort of clean it up and reset it. But my daily list of things to do is always in order of priority. So the most important things first and then it goes down. So that way you’re getting even at the very least if I only get one or two things done, I got one or two really important things done and I can feel accomplished and achieved the day. I think that’s one of the important things is to just to sort of continuously and consistently sort of recheck where you’re at but try to have that single list of these are the things I personally need to get done in order of priority.

J:      Yeah. We know that prioritization, and I know Dustin you’ve got your hands full with prioritization. You have a teenager, a baby, a work where we’ve got The Dad Corp and family. We’re all balancing. One of the things Kison, I’ve been absolutely impressed and admire from just our recent friendship and working together on other initiatives is your responsiveness and just execution ability. I think that when I think about words like integrity. Every time you’ve said something, you’ve done it and you do it at a speed and with responsiveness so that’s just kind of incredible. That’s something I admire and I’m actually trying to continue to implement in my own toolkit. It’s been a lot of fun watching and working with you and hearing you on this stuff. But I think when you think about discipline and like that staying focus, that responsiveness ties into that so much and that’s something that I’ve noticed. It’s like a key characteristic of your brand. And in my eyes you’re just a very responsive and have an execution ability that is pretty unparalleled.

K:     At times. You caught me at a good time. It doesn’t always happen that good.

J:      Yeah. Well hey, I don’t have any more questions. But Dustin is there anything that you want to cover that we haven’t had the chance to hear from Kison today?

D:     No, I don’t wanna take anymore of Kison’s time today. I know for me personally I appreciate you taking the hour twenty minutes plus to talk through and your family life, work balance and kind of sharing your background, your values and some of your vulnerable moments and your most proud moments. I just personally appreciate you taking the time to talk that through and I think we’ve got a couple of really solid tactics and lessons just from talking to you that we’d be able to take ourselves and also be able to share that with the rest of The Dad Corp community that’s gonna be listening to the podcast, so I appreciate it.

K:     Thanks. Thanks for letting my daughter and I guest on your podcast. I had a lot of fun and really appreciate it and I’m sure she did too.

J:      Yeah. We’ll have to figure out a time to have her back on. That would be great to have her on as a full guest at some point.

K:     Good.

J:      Maybe we’ll have the kids’ version and the kids can hold the podcast and the dads will (77:06). Kison before we wrap up, why don’t you share where people can learn more about you, your business. I know you have so many things going on. You’ve recently wrote a book. And so where can we find you?

K:     Probably on LinkedIn. If you want to find me it’s just Kison Patel on LinkedIn, I’m usually on there. I do a podcast myself called M&A Science which is on most of the platforms. We’re at an interesting time right now. I think there’s a lot of people that are really shifted in their daily lives and there’s a lot of people that are struggling or are gonna be struggling so if anybody is listening to it, I just encourage you to be aware and spend a little bit of time in finding ways you can give whether it’s just donating to local foodbank or something of that sort but there’s a lot of people in need so spend a little time and maybe you can get the kids involved with that as well.

J:      Yeah. I know your book, if there’s any M&A professionals out there, anybody in the mergers and acquisitions who are like ourselves, Kison and myself, you definitely have a great book on Agile M&A. Is it your website where they could pick up a copy of that or if they’re interested in reading some of the business work that you’ve done?

K:     It is on Amazon, the printed version. It’s called Agile M&A. but we’re getting ready on agilemna.com to just put all the content out there for free. We’re getting updates because it’s ideas to create a bunch of best practices around mergers and acquisitions so I’m bringing in some other practitioners to continue expanding on that content. So we’re just gonna put it all available free online and just allow people to keep contributing in and adding more of these lessons, similar dad lessons but m&a lessons.

J:      Fantastic! We’ll be sharing. We have a wide audience. We have almost 3,000 contacts on LinkedIn. A lot of them in New York City so I think there’s a decent amount of private equity and investment bankers out there so we’ll keep sharing the word that you’re m&a. But as far as just being a great father, a great friend, and just overall a great guest thanks so much. Give Shiloh a hug for us. She was awesome. We’ll look forward to having her back on again at another time.

K:     Thanks guys. I really appreciate the time and opportunity today.

D:     Take care Kison.

K:     Take care. Thank you.

J:      See you.

 

 

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         So finally, keep spreading the word. We’re out there. We’re all in. And we want to do this with you all. We’re a dad site, built for dad by a couple of dads.

 

 

 J:      Hello dads. You have Jonathan back again with The Dad Corp Podcast for this week’s episode brought to you by The Dad Corp, check ours out www.thedadcorp.com. We have an e-commerce platform, it’s a mall, everything dad. Pick up one of our Dad Life collection shirts. They’re going off the virtual shelves. It is a unique, original design paid by The Dad Corp. It fits well. It looks great. Your kids are gonna love it. Your family’s gonna love it and your friends are gonna ask where they can get it so share the word. Tell them. Have them pick one up too. We hope you’re all following us. We hope you all enjoy the shows and we hope you love our products. We can’t do this without you. We are growing this platform into the largest global platform made for dads.

         Now, for this week’s show we have two visitors. One is my childhood friend and partner, Dustin Boring. He’s making a rare guest appearance which is just exciting. It’s nice to have him on the mic in the mix talking with our special guest and friend of mine, Kison Patel. Kison Patel is a Serial Entrepreneur who has a very impressive background. He’s a M&A expert and CEO of DealRoom. M&A standing for mergers and acquisitions, companies buying companies or becoming one company. You see it out there a lot. Kison’s been highlighted in Business Insider, Forbs, CEOWORLD magazine, business.com, investing.com. Additionally, Kison has recently authored a book around mergers and acquisitions called “Agile M&A” which is a modernization approach to traditional mergers and acquisitions looking to close the deals faster and maximize the value. Great book! You can pick it up. It’s out there in Amazon. Also Kison is a natural disruptor. He recently saw an opportunity with the corona virus and your traditional corporate conferences that are held all over the country that are expensive for employees to get to. They take a lot of time. And they’re really sometimes inaccessible based on schedules, locations, and just the overall cost. Kison came in, he’s now about to launch in June the “M&A Virtual Summit” made by M&A Science. It is the first annual M&A summit online ever. So, he’s coming in. He’s changing the game. He’s gonna bring in experts from all over the industry and it is gonna be an incredible experience.

         Finally, Kison runs his own podcast. It’s very successful, 14,000 listeners. It’s called M&A Science. He brings in experts from all over the industry to talk about M&A and discuss the techniques and approaches that they find that work in different industries and scenarios. And last but not the least, Kison is a father of two. He’s a husband. He’s got a great family. His daughter makes a guest appearance for us so we have a fantastic episode. Listen in. We hope you enjoy. Share it. Spread the word and take some great insights as Kison shares about being a dad, being an entrepreneur, being a husband, and just managing the chaos of all of it. I can’t wait for you to listen. Stay tuned.

 

 

J:      Alright, without further ado let’s get Kison Patel out there. Kison are you ready to go?

K:     I’m ready to go.

J:      Alright man. Thanks for joining us today. We are stoked to have you on here. What’s been going on? Tell us about what you’ve been up to.

K:     Well, we have a lot going on the world right now. So I think it’s about staying busy with any downtime and staying active is the big thing.

J:      There’s this little thing called the corona virus. It’s kind of made an impact out there. What are you guys doing to try to pass the time day to day?

K:     Activities, we’re just trying to find stuff, like yesterday I took the kids out for a little jog around the block. They’re hesitant about it too because the park is closed and we live right next to the park but I said we got to get out. We just can’t sit inside and play video games all day. So it just in this nice weather, we had a great break of the weather. There’s a lot of people out and just getting them do something.

J:      Yeah, how many kids do you have?

K:     I have three.

J:      Three, what ages?

K:     So I have two boys that are four and seven and then my oldest is my daughter who’s nine.

J:      And does everyone kind of understand what’s happening with the corona virus or do they have different understanding? I mean that’s a little bit of a different age range.

K:     Yeah, I think it’s per sort of the sense. The oldest probably have the better sense and the middle one kind of gets it. The youngest one thinks corona virus is a song. And when we’re taking them out jogging yesterday, he’s like singing “corona virus, corona virus.” And I’m like “son, don’t. You’re gonna freak people out like they’re already freaked out.”

J:      That is freaking funny.

D:     The new kids probably enjoy this stay-at-home, it’s kind of like a stay-at-home vacation where the parents are around and you’re much more active with taking them out for walks and stuff. They’re probably loving this.

K:     Yeah, it’s funny because they try to emphasize that like oh, we’re realizing we don’t really like school.

J:      How are your teaching skills? Was it like getting better?

K:     Mine are not that great. I’ll be honest, I had a lot of ambition to come in and really model a training program for them to resemble what they were learning in school but amplify it with things I wanted them to learn. And it doesn’t work well. It’s really difficult to do that in your house because they’re used to the environment and culture and it just becomes like weekend time every day. So it’s difficult and I think my wife’s not like the very much like the A type to help drive it so it is tough to do. So now I just treat them like little employees.

J:      Yeah, when you guys go out running, are you wearing masks or have you still refrain from doing that yet?

K:     Oh, we haven’t done that. I don’t know if that’s like the real thing that’s gonna help.

J:      Yeah, there’s a lot of different I guess opinions on it. I just read the other day that CDC was recommending that you wear some type of cloth but then there’s all of this mixed data. Funny my mother actually sent me a care package about five years ago that probably predicted the corona virus. We had rations and water that’s in these kind of lifeless like type non-expirable packages and then there was an N-95 mask. And little did I know that I basically won the lottery with that five-year gift thingy. And wearing my mask once in a while.

K:     Wow.

J:      Dustin your daughters are pretty far apart as well. What are you all doing? I’m sure the teenagers are having a lot challenging time than the baby.

D:     Yes because I have a fourteen year old and then a year and a half old girl so different dynamics, right? So the fourteen year old, she actually had two weeks off of school completely and they incorporated her spring break into one of those. That way they didn’t lose too much traction. But this past week she actually started back to school online which we didn’t know kind of how that’s gonna work but it’s actually gone pretty well. It’s not the same as having classes’ instruction. And we realized how much the teachers probably do help her along each day when she’s doing her assignments because she just asks question after question after question. And luckily she’s still at an age with kind of the complexity of the questions that we can still handle it as we’ve been able to help out. The little one though, that one’s been a little tough because right now she’s at the age where she is just go go go and she wants to get in to everything. If you closed the door, she wants to open it. If you put her toy away, she wants to dump the whole content back out. So it’s been tough to try to get enough free time between working remotely and trying to kind of balance up the life situation at home and try to keep her happy. And it’s a fulltime job and it’s just a huge transition from where we were a couple of weeks ago. How about you with your daughter? You guys just doing everything at home or is there some online programs you’ve been working with?

J:      Yes, and Milan is about Kison’s youngest child’s age. She’s turning six. And you know it’s funny she’s the same way. We have that online school going on but she hasn’t sang the corona song, but every time she watches a movie and sees anybody breaks social distancing roles, she’s asking if they are aware that the corona virus is out there and why are they getting so closed to each other. So it’s kind of comedy, comical it is to watch. So Kison, no pressure today. You’re gonna have to give us all tips and advice on how to also make it through the corona virus. I don’t think I added that question to the original list.

K:     Yeah, I’m still figuring it out and maybe we’ll come out with a game plan by the time this is over.

J:      I like it. I like it. So hey, we have a couple of formats here today I wanna walk you through so let’s get in to it. I’m sure there’s a lot of things that you have going on but for the first part of the format we got a little bit of a rapid fire that just gets the brainwaves going. I’ll get yourself loosened up. Don’t want you to pull a hamstring through the interview and then we’ll really jump in to the meat and potatoes and get down in depth on in some of your philosophies, principles and kind of key views on fatherhood, parenting, balancing entrepreneurial activities and everything else going on with being an epic dad and really living the family life. Does that sound like a fair way to kick this thing off and go through the format?

K:     Sure. Let’s do it.

J:      Awesome. So let’s start out with our rapid fire questions. We have a few of them here for you. There’re some doozies so hang with us. We’ll throw a little softball at the start, though. Which was scarier, starting a business or having a child? And why?

K:     That’s a good question. Probably having a child because there are so much unknowns to it in what to expect and very little direction whereas a business, my father was an entrepreneur. He ran a small like motels and I grew up in that business so there’s some of that exposure already there and sort of a sense of what how much work it entails and being part of that culture growing up. So probably like a little bit more of the expectation into what to get into in starting a business versus becoming a parent. So it’s harder to on the first child.

J:      You what I love about that answer is that you went to your father for advice on how to start a business but not an advice on how to have a baby.

K:     You know I actually did. I did and this is funny because I asked my dad and this is the part of the Indian culture, you get lot of pressure to get married and then after you get married, it’s almost like all these when are you gonna have kids. So there’s pressure there for that. And then I get to this point when I had my first kid, I’m asking my dad I said “Dad what’s up with all this pressure to like get married and have kids?” and he told me, he said “I want to just watch you suffer the same way I did.” That was the parenting advice I got from my dad and I was like okay. It’s not the most helpful thing but I’ll work with it.

J:      Well, better than nothing. That’s all there is to life. So jumping into the next one is your favourite superhero.

K:     Batman.

J:      Are there multiple superheroes in your house running around or do you all have unanimous decision on batman?

K:     We have batman, superman, Spiderman are the top ones and hulk all exists but I don’t know what it is. My littlest one really got me into batman lately. Well, I was close to doing batman for a Halloween last year and getting the full on, as close as you can get to the realistic one.

J:      Have you been able to jump in to like the avenger movies and that kind of stuff or is that still a little bit too far out for your kids?

K:     I’m like a, what’s the word, not like a practical parent. I do like let them just watch everything both marvel and avengers. So they’ve seen them both.

J:      Nice. Batman’s awesome because he’s kind of real, right? Like he turns into Bruce Wayne during the day and so you can kind of relate to him where superman is somebody from a whole different planet. What draws you to batman yourself? Are there any other types of similarities you look at or parallels that you think about with batman?

K:     He’s got a lot of cool gear. What else do you want?

J:      Yeah, that is kind of the American dream, right?

K:     Yeah, being rich and have a lot of toys.

J:      Now they get just having an N-95 mask and be able to go outside again but once that goes through maybe it’ll be rich and having toys again.

K:     Yeah, that’s true.

J:      So what’s your favourite family’s tradition that you all have to pass to go through?

K:     You know I think it’s becoming the new thing. I don’t know when we’re gonna do it again so soon but I remember one time I was on vacation, I saw this family and they’re just the most connected family I’ve ever seen and I started talking to the mom like “there’s something different about you guys.” And she was, basically I realized like they all had a sport they played together. So that’s been my thing. I’ve been driving as what’s a family sports that we can all play together. They had baseball, softball and I don’t have a lot of softball fans in my household but we’ve all picked up ice skating. So that’s become like the family tradition where pretty much every weekend we go out ice skating.

J:      No kidding? Was that a sport or an activity that you all started learning right from the beginning so it’s all at level zero or have you…?

K:     Yeah, nobody in our family ice skated prior at all. Maybe with my wife, maybe on a date at some point before we got married, we both like tried it just to fall over. But that was it. Nobody had a background at ice skating.

J:      And who is picking it up the best so far in the family?

K:     That’s interesting. I definitely would say that the two older kids are. My daughter picked it up really fast and I didn’t think the middle one would. I thought he’s really hesitant to have somebody teach him and he kept falling but he just kept making his falls and he got good at it and he’s fast.

J:      Are you guys taking lessons or are you just learning by YouTube videos and then going out and falling a lot?

K:     A mix, a mix of falling. I did have a private instructor a little bit but once you get pass the fundamentals, I think the kids can learn faster on their own in watching some videos and things like that.

J:      Ice skating is a hard activity, I tell you. I don’t know if you’ve thought about the lessons. I put my daughter in some lessons up here and it’s no joke. First of all the parents who are in ice skating, they’re serious. They are coming in to have their next child be an Olympian and so they take it very seriously. They’ll run you over if you’re not able to pick up the speed. And then afterwards, at the rink that my daughter was at, they allowed you to do like a parent-kid skating for about an hour and we were doing it. And one time I tripped and I was holding Milan’s hand and we both kind of went off and I tried to stop her from falling but in the course of it I think I was literally at one point parallel to the ground. And I watched my daughter in slow motion do the same thing so we’re kind of like stopping or freezing time, talk about superhero for a second, like my whole image of us being both parallel to the ground, I just saw her face went bloody nose, like crying. I’m dad of the year, I just got up. I tried to get up and I fall again. So that was probably kind of the extent of our ice skating experience and so from there we’ve kind of moved on to like less impactful sports that take a little coordination and skill.

K:     Well, a couple of tips on that is wear those volleyball kneepads underneath your pants. I still do wear those things and they’ll save you definitely.

J:      One thing I needed more than a kneepad I think we need a facemask and like. We needed some of that like swat gear because the way we were up in the air and fell, I tell you I got bruises in my body for like the next two days.

K:     So my daughter does hockey. And I’m convinced hockey for kids is safer than figure skating because I see those kids go in the air with no pads on and anything and they’re in the air. And those are hard fall to take versus wherein hockey you’re covered up in pads. So even I would go out there and do stick and puck with her and I have more fun because I’m open to trying more aggressive things I wouldn’t normally try with all that padding on.

J:      Yeah, hockey is a serious sport too. I mean hockey parents are no joke either, right? They think…

K:     Most infamous.

J:      They all scare me. Scary! So going on the next question though, tell me about the most embarrassing parenting story that you’ve had.

K:     I got one, probably not the most embarrassing. It’s embarrassing and colorful. So it was with my daughter and because it’s, and I was actually telling her this not too long ago. She was maybe two years old or just approaching two and she’s in there, we’re watching. I don’t know where my wife was. I think she’s out of town so I had her to myself for a bit of time. And she’s like looking at me and she’s like “I want dark milk. I want dark milk.” And I’m like “What? What the heck is dark milk? What are you talking about?” So I go to the fridge and I said “Let me see what I can find.” I opened it up and staring at me was chocolate milk. And I was like dark milk. So I put this milk in a sippy cup. I go sit down and we’re hanging out and I go to hand it to her and like the bottle just falls down. I’m holding the lid and out come splash all this chocolate milk on both of us. And I’m like “shit!” and she looks at me and just as natural as possible looks right in my eyes and said “shit” and I looked at her and I just what do you do? I’m trying not to get an acknowledgement that’s not a good word to say. So I’m just kind of like looking around and just hoping she would just forget about it and just kept going on with things. And then I didn’t think anything of it because it’s kind of funny too with the kids that age you sit down with them and spend a lot of time with picture books and really try to get them to learn different words and I’m just kind of like boggled in the back of my head the fact that, we were just doing over grasshopper and ant and we keep going back and forth and like after the 50th time she’s still not getting grasshopper right. But I accidentally say one word and you pick it up right away. So a month goes by and my wife comes to me and she’s like “something really strange happened today.” I was like “what’s up?” “Well, I was in the kitchen and cooking and Shiloh’s out playing and she was trying to open this jar and she couldn’t open it and she said shit like she knew how to use the word.”

J:      So she not only learned the word, she learned the context at the same time. She’s a fast one.

K:     Yes. That was the story my daughter were what her first swear word was.

D:     Does she stick with it or does she end up dropping it?

K:     Yeah, it was like a, I think the boys are a little different. They kind of stick to their swear words and it becomes very problematic. I think it wasn’t something she really retain that I know of. Unless she was just not brooding when we were not around and knew better to say in front of mom and dad.

J:      Oh man, here’s the key question on that did you blame the wife and say I have no idea why she would’ve have known that word or do you finally fess up and tell her how she would’ve actually known?

K:     She knew, that’s the thing. Women have that. They somehow give you this little look to kind of like see how you facially respond without even you consciously thinking about how you’re responding and then they know right away.

J:      They got a sense, man. They will all sniff it out even if you try to hide it. I don’t think one, we’re great at hiding things in the first place but they got the sense. They know when their kid does something where that came from pretty quickly.

K:     Exactly.

D:     It makes you realize when you’re growing up all the things you thought you were getting away with with your parents that they knew everything.

J:      Yeah, we’ve had those moments Dustin. I’m sure.

D:     A few.

J:      Alright. Kison next one is best memory of being a dad.

K:     Best memory of being a dad. Let’s see… what’s the best memory of being a dad? I don’t know. The family trips were always fun. I think it’s always like those little achievements that you make with the kids are always the best. Like we finally get them to start walking, those little milestones when they’re trying to do something and they’ve been going on and they haven’t hit that achievement until you keep sticking around with them and encouraging them and see them finally getting it. So when they’re like playing sports or I got the two older ones in piano and they’re starting to get good at it. I think that’s kind of been the best moments. And then too, the stuff that you can do activities with. We have jogging, we do skating. Things like that that’s really good highlights. I really enjoy that.

J:      There are so many of them, right? Like you have these different moments. My daughter’s always asking me to tell her stories, tell her stories. And it’s interesting because it’s always difficult for me to come up with one because I have so many to go through my head. Thank goodness for pictures now. So we have 10,000 pictures in my phone so each time we look at the picture, I can tell her the story from that. But it is, it’s one of those things. It’s really hard to just pick one memory, right?

K:     Yeah. I have one. It was like my daughter had a really tough situation to deal with and I surprised by it because it think she’s only seven, around seven years old and she came to me and she said “dad, this girl’s bullying me in school.” And I was taken off guard because it’s like you’re only seven. Like I thought bullies don’t come till later when you’re teenager. And so I could tell just sort of the way she’s motioning she wants some advice in how to deal with it. And she particularly came to me. She didn’t go to mom about it. So the first thing is you start thinking about alright, let me kind of teach you how to fight and throw down and stuff. But wait a minute, wait a minute. That’s not, this kid’s only seven plus she shouldn’t be doing that to begin with. I said “okay, let’s break this down. Why is she bullying you?” and she told me it’s because the girl said her hair is ugly, “she told me my hair is ugly and pushed me.” I said “okay, why does she think your hair is ugly?” she said “I don’t know, dad. She just thinks my hair’s ugly.” And I said “I don’t think it’s your hair. You hair looks fine to me. I don’t think it’s your hair that’s why this person is giving you a hard time. You know it could be anything. I really don’t know. She could have some personal things, maybe something about family or maybe something else.” You know this and that. And she kind of started thinking like “oh, she might be jealous because I have all these other little friends and stuff and I think she’s more like a loner.” I was like “okay, okay. Why don’t you go talk to her? Why don’t you go talk to her and really try to understand. Get inside her head and get a sense of what she’s thinking, what she’s feeling, and just really try to understand. Just do that. Try to empathize.” And that’s kind of what I was trying to get out with her is try to make her feel at fault. Like really understand that person and make them know that you understand them. And then I come home the next day and she comes running to me, “daddy, daddy guess what?” and I’m like “what?” and she said “we’re best friends now.” So that kind of squashed that whole little thing and sort of sends it in different direction. I think that was a good moment where you can really spend the time to teach them a life lesson in how to overcome something like that. That’s probably one of the most memorable ones I had.

J:      Yeah, and probably much more sustainable in long term and really effective than throwing a right cross, right?

K:     That was a backup. Let me show you a takedown move just in case that doesn’t work.

J:      There’s always the escalation chain, right? You have to be prepared just in case.

K:     Yup.

J:      That’s funny. So thanks for being a sport with me on the questions. I know Dustin has a few. Dustin, do you want to kick off your questions and keep the podcast rolling?

D:     Sure. So the next question we have, you may have already touched on it but if you have a different answer, we can discuss it. So what’s your favourite thing to do with your kids? Is it ice skating or maybe that’s just the activity that you guys do with the family?

K:     Yeah, you know that’s still one of the favourite ones because even if my wife’s not up for it, we’ll all go out or maybe I’ll just take one or two of them out. I would add in there the trampoline parks that are popping up. There are closest to where we live but when we do get a chance to go to one of those things, it’s a ton of fun and it’s a good activity to do with them.

D:     Do you watch or do you participate?

K:     I participate. I call it sideline parenting. I try to avoid that. You got to take it as an opportunity to relive some of this youth that you had at that age.

D:     How many other parents do you see just sitting there on their phone on the sideline?

K:     I think it depends. I don’t wanna stereotype it. I say sometimes I think it’s a little bit of the older parents that may be more so. I remember one time where I was playing soccer with the kids and I saw one boy playing by himself and I invited him to join us. And I was kind of wondering I was like “where is your parent at, why are you” he said “oh, my mom’s over there in the car,” because it’s a little chilly out. It’s like cold weather. And she’s nice. She came later and just like “hey, thank you for playing with my son and blah, blah, blah.” That’s like a little bit of being a sideline parent. It doesn’t take much effort and it’s probably just like reliving it. I was a terrible soccer player when I was a kid so I have fun playing with them and trying to relearn it to get better at it and at least you get some sense of pride when you can beat your four-year old in soccer.

D:     There you go. Relive your non-glory days, right?

K:     I would add one more as one of my favourite activities. We live in the Midwest in Chicago and so it’s not far to get over to Michigan, Indiana but they have all these apple-picking farms. Well, they all had like blueberry, raspberry, all these different little fruits to pick. That is a lot of fun. I never realize how much fun that actually is and its’ one of these events you can do where you don’t really have to watch your kids as much as you do for other things. You can sort of find your little Zen and let them do their thing and they have a lot of fun and plus some healthy fruits afterwards.

D:     Nice. That’s a nice healthy activity there.

K:     Yeah. I don’t know what the connection is but they are actually more inclined to eat the stuff they picked.

D:     I can understand that. It’s a little more meaningful than just asking you grab something from the store.

K:     Yeah.

D:     I say what was the next question? What is the number one piece of advice that you would give to a dad who’s about to have their first child?

K:     Oh, okay. So first child, it’s important too because when you get a kid, they don’t come with instruction book. The hospital doesn’t say “hey, by the way here’s the dad handbook for you.”

D:     Yeah, there’s plenty of books out there that you can grab but it’s still not gonna prep you for it.

K:     For me, you’re right, I mean there is. For me one of the biggest challenge that I wasn’t prepared for is the escalation of emotions that happen because you have these really, really tough moments with kids especially that early age and obviously the first weeks where you’re kind of up late and dealing with the whole sleep schedule stuff. That’s pretty prepared and part of it and you know about that but then the kids hit their peak of cuteness around six months and their super adorable. But then they start teething after that around seven, eight months and you got a kid that’s just screaming its head off all day and I mean it sort of drives your emotions up. And then it even gets difficult too when they’re around two because they’re not a baby anymore, they’re not really this toddler. They’re sort of like this giant mutant baby and you can’t reason with them. And it’s really, really difficult and you’re gonna hit this spike in your head that just, I could see why people physically lose it. I think finding and thinking about ways to like prepare for that ahead of time. There’s a funny thing and my wife makes fun of me, I do this gift box for new dads and it’s the big point she makes fun of me because there’s nothing in there for the baby. And I’m like of course, they’re giving stuff for the baby. This is for the dad. And I put a book in there. They might’ve changed the language. It was recently called “Calm the F*ck Down.” I think they still have it at Amazon but they probably changed the title a little bit.

D:     Like put a symbol in there.

K:     Yeah, they have a couple of symbols in there. So I still get that book because I do know, and that just walks you through it like here’s the situation with kid and it’s like calm down and here’s how you deal with it. So that’s a good one and then it’s good too because the wife of the person I’m gifting it to looks at it and gets it and appreciates it. And then I put in this kava. I get sure you get some kava candy at Amazon. And kava’s like a South American plant that function as a natural anti-anxiety. So I remember I used to take that one. Whenever you’re stressed out or angry, it’ll take you down to zero. So, that was like fun little thing to put in there. But the thing I really value the most was gun range earmuffs. I would put a set of gun range earmuffs in this gift box, so when you do have those moments of the screaming kid that’s just screaming on the top of their lungs, you would simply put these earmuffs on. It reduces that decibel volume by 30, 40. I know you could get some headsets. Everybody has their noise cancelling headsets and you can go jam out and stuff like that but I think that sends the wrong message. That sort of sends like I’m just gonna ignore you. I’m gonna put this headset on and this. I think this sort of signals like look, I’m putting this on because you’re screaming and I wanna save my eardrums but then too, it really calms you down. It will really bring you down and all of a sudden you’re like “oh, you’re upset. Let’s talk about it. Why? Are you hungry? You’re upset because it’s time to go to bed?” So it just brings you down so you’re sort of in a much better state and you’re not like at this peak of mental explosion.

J:      That’s a tough point, right? You go through this period of time where I think as a father you were generally trying to fix something that’s broken and anytime we hear a child crying our mind I think naturally goes with something’s broken and fix it. And sometimes it’s not fixable. You just need to let it go through the phase. And so that sounds like a great tool to have on your head and being able to survive that moment and just calm down. I think the other thing that they’d probably be teaching all of us before we go into that is breathing techniques. One of the things I always used to find was that the less I breathe while those situations are happening the more angrier, the more kind of stressed that I got and sometimes you just need to take a couple of deep breaths and just calm yourself down because it does kind of escalate quickly in your head.

K:     Yup. I totally agree with that.

D:     Yeah, and I think the, well I’m obviously speaking of non (31:19) babies but for the first couple of months, they’re crying because they need one of their basic needs met. So it’s getting it fed, or diaper needs to be changed, or something. It’s only a couple of things but as you get into the 6, 9, 12 months, they just have a much more variety of kind of what’s bothering them and they can’t communicate that so it really takes sometimes a village to try to keep your sanity and kind of work through it. My wife and I, I think we’ve done a pretty good job of kind of passing off the kid whenever you’re starting to kind of get to that point where you’re starting to kind of meet your max stress level and where you can kind of reset. So we’ve tried to do a good job of trying to keep that balance going because you’re not always gonna be able to stay ahead of it and it’s always gonna continue to happen. But that’s a, the gift box that you were giving out, do you still give them out to new dads?

K:     Yeah, absolutely.

D:     Contents haven’t changed over the years? You’ve kept it pretty consistent?

K:     Yeah, I haven’t. I mean I should probably sit down and think of other things that could be in there which may change as his kids get older. But yeah, I mean those earmuffs are probably the most valuable. I remember having three of those in my house where it grew with raising three kids so I could find anywhere, any room I was in.

D:     That’s awesome.

J:      Hey Kison, I think you just gave us an idea of our next product that we need and category that we need to have out on our website or for dad mall.

K:     You should 100% do that. I’ll buy that for my gift bow. Actually you should just put the gift box together and then it’ll make it a lot easier for me. So you put that together.

 J:     Dustin do you have a little bit more space in our inventory?

D:     We’ll try to put it somewhere.

K:     I would promote it for you. That would be great. I think that’s definitely a good item, good giftable item that will appeal to a broad market.

J:      We’ll be reaching out once we make it happen.

K:     There you go.

D:     We may have to put the credit to you, Kison with everyone that gets sold.

K:     Yeah, I wish it has a simple name like Joe or Bob so you can put it like Joe’s gift box or Bob’s gift box because if it’s Kison, it would be weird.

D:     We’ll move on to the next question. As we already hit you with your most embarrassing parenting moment so what is your proudest dad moment?

K:     Well, it kind of circles back to hitting those levels of achievements with the kids or helping them with a challenge. I have this rule with my kids, my daughter’s on it. She’s really on point with this but the way we use the word thank you and sorry. What I explained to her is that they’re very transactional words that alone don’t have much meaning because we use them transactionally. You go to the store, you buy a snack and you pay for it and you’re like ‘thank you.’ It’s very transactional. What I explained to her is like you kind of create the meaning with it when you use it. So you say thank you, thank you for what? Explain why you’re thankful. So thank you for the great service. Thank you for being so fast. Thank you for getting this to me on time. I think too at the same time it’s something that I sort of wanted to get better at personally myself because even in the work environment, sometimes we ask people to do things or ask for help for things but then we don’t really do a good job of articulating why we’re asking for help and that’s such an important thing I’ve learned is you got to make sure you clarify that why and it makes such a difference. You’ll see people more open to responding better and following through when you add that clarification in terms of why you’re asking for their help and they have a better understanding of it. So it’s similar where for the reason of thank you, clarify it like why? And same thing with sorry like you bumped in to somebody, instead of sorry, sorry I bumped into you. So we’re at a restaurant. I have one of my industry friends, she always gives me this nice restaurants recommend. And then I come home Friday evening and wife’s like “I’m staying home. I don’t wanna go out.” My daughter’s like “I wanna go out.” So we always do a little daddy-daughter date nights and they’re fun. And I remember going to one restaurant and it’s a little bit of a fancier restaurant and it was a nice place. And we get in there and she’s asking me, she’s like “daddy, how come all the women sit on this side of the restaurant, on the side of the table?” And it’s kind of like how you probably gentleman have gone to a date with your wife and it’s kind of like the default where they take the bench in the back and you kind of like have that little wood chair that you have to sit on and lean over.

J:      Yeah, we haven’t done that. I don’t know what you’re talking about.

K:     You’ve been rushing to grab the booth in the back or the…

J:      …never find the first place to sit down ever. I’m always the first person standing.

K:     Well she’s asking me and you know “hey, why do all the women sit on this side of the restaurant or the table.” And I wasn’t sure. I was like “you know, I think it’s so they have more room to put their stuff but I really don’t know. You should ask our server. You might have a better response.” And our server comes by, I think his name was Andy and she’s asking him like “hey, I have a question.” And he’s like “oh, what’s your question?” and said “why do the women all sit on this side?” And he explained like it’s an old folk tradition where women wanted to be more on display so that’s why when they sat on that side of the restaurant, they have more visibility to all the other patrons that are visiting and dining in. And I said “that was really cool, you see I didn’t know that.” And it was funny because when we went to get the check, she gets the check and she’s like “hey Andy, thank you so much for the great service and the recommendations.” And the lady at the table next to her just does this head turn whiplash. And was like “you’re the best father ever. How did you get your kids to do that?” And she just started talking about her son and it’s like “I have a tough time getting him to do anything, blah, blah, blah. So it was kind of funny but that was like a little bit of that proud moment that these are the little things you kind of teach him but the key was teaching him and explaining to him why that they need to sort of do things in a certain way. So that thank you example like why you need to articulate and explain why but you can tell it just made that response and the difference. I think she understood that from that point.

J:      And Kison that was something you’ve mentioned to me in our conversations before and I found that just kind of one of the key advice, the cornerstone of any type of advice you can give to your kids to last through their life. I just think that’s such a genius point and something that we should definitely highlight after the show Dustin because you’re essentially creating not only a logic and an explanation ability of why they’re thankful or why they’re sorry or you’re welcome, but they’re creating a way to be able to communicate to make a point. And that goes through your whole life, right? There are so many different debate models out there. The one that I spent a lot of time studying is called the Toulmin method. And that’s just a method of reasoning that was created. And it creates this like logical step by step breakdown that starts down with your point and then all the support behind it, but it’s so easy especially in corporate America, for us to just get quickly focused on whatever the day’s fire drill is and we just forget to actually communicate the reasoning and the content and then you hear in every single study afterwards of why employees are disengaged or employees aren’t bought into the vision it’s because they don’t understand why they’re doing things. And so being able to instill that in your kids early is just a powerful technique and I just bought you for that when you told me that that’s what you focused on. We’ve been actually trying to do that more in our house. Thank you for sharing that and I think that’s something that we should definitely be highlighting as one of the main fundamental lessons that comes out of this podcast.

D:     Yeah, that was an awesome I think teaching lesson that you shared with us. I know personally I’m gonna take that as we work with our little one as she gets older because just with my thought process has been to I’m gonna make sure that she says please and thank you. Just kind of hitting the manners aspect but I hadn’t really thought about it being more transactional than actually meaningful. So that’s absolutely something I’m gonna use. Kison has that been effective for all of your kids?

K:     Well the four year old certainly in his own world. The four year old was the surprise baby and that kid is the most interesting person I’ve ever met in my entire life to be honest. I could remember, obviously he matures quickly, he has two older siblings but at one years old he walked in our bedroom at night and be like “mommy, daddy I love you. Goodnight.” And walk out. And me and my wife were just looking at each other “what the hell has just happened? What planet is this kid from?” So he’s different. It’s hard to, he’s really set on his ways. He’s on autopilot and he kind of learns and does what he wants. But he’s getting there. The middle one’s got, he’s following along with his sister and really following along that sort of track with her and I think he’s kind of looks up to her and he sort of even learns from her behavior as well. So it’s not so much after reinforcing with him directly.

D:     Awesome. We’ll go on to the next question we had. So you’ve been an extremely successful entrepreneur. Is that something that you envision that you’re gonna kind of push with your kids? Is that for them to try to go down that route or would you may be push them into more of a traditional working environment? Have you put any thoughts into kind of what that, I guess growth and kind of leadership’s gonna be?

K:     You know it’s funny because I grew up in a household that was very business oriented and I literally grew up in the motel and saw every day. But my dad didn’t want me to go down that track. He always pushed me away and wanted me to go to college to become an engineer or a doctor or something less. But I was really interested in business, what I wanna do and it was kind of frustrating. I remember my teenage years, I wanted to learn more. I wanted to get my hands-on and then pushed it away. But with my kids, it started like with my daughter I think she was about seven. And she said “dad, I want to do a lemonade stand.” I think she probably saw one somewhere and said “I want to do a lemonade stand.” At first I was trying to find a reason, a way to convince her out of it. I was “Oh, you really wanna do that?” And after a while, I started getting into it. I was like “You know, this isn’t bad.” It’s kind of fun for us to do together so we go down kind of like well, if we’re gonna do this, we’re gonna do it right. At the back of my head I’m thinking you picked the wrong dad to do a lemonade stand with. We’re not gonna half-ass any of this. We went through seven different sugars just to figure out like what’s the best sugar to use to make our lemonade. And we’d buy all the lemons in bulk (42:33) and do actual fresh squeezed lemon like no shortcuts at all. And she set up our little lemonade stand and we live four blocks west of Wrigley so we have a really nice street to actually do that on. And I really enjoyed teaching her the business fundamentals because it’s like okay, I want you to understand that. And what I did was I basically gave her a loan and said “you got to pay me back. I’m gonna give you this money,” whatever it was like a hundred, 200 dollars, “to start it and we’re gonna buy this stuff.” and I gave her a little debit card too so she can sort of track this stuff better. And then when we’re going through it like “okay, this is how much you’re paying for lemons. This is how much you’re paying.” And she wanna sell like bags of chips. Okay, let’s think about how much money we’re gonna make on that because what’s your net cost and then how much are you gonna sell it for. Okay, do you understand your margins? Do you understand how much money you’re making? It’s funny because our neighbor, he’s also one of the business guys, is asking, giving her a hard time asking “do you know what your cost of goods are?” She’s like looking up at me. I was like “alright, we have to have a talk about that.” So I really had a lot of fun. They learned so much. They learned the people’s skills, with interacting with different kinds of people as customers. And she had a lot of fun. She was getting into it. The business actually turned out to do better than we expected to do because to my wife I said “I need your help to make the lemonade because we’re selling it so fast.” But it was a lot of fun. So I think there’s a lot of value for any kid just to learn some of that early on. I’m definitely pro on the side of pushing them towards it not necessarily like your career is gonna be this but I think doing this is kind of giving them the exposure early so they can start thinking that way. And I think you’ll start seeing if they do have an apt for it pretty early too.

J:      And which one of them, Kison would be most likely to take on the reins of The DealRoom and M&A Science afterwards?

K:     Daughter for sure!

D:     Kison you have mentioned that you’re dad tried stirring you away from business. You think that was due to the amount of time that he kind of got absorbed with his job or what do you think that thought process was?

K:     I don’t think it’s the time. I think it’s more around maybe culture that he came and got educated in like a med tech-type of degree. And he probably wanted to stir me more towards that type of career. I don’t know. I mean even though our family is very entrepreneurial. A lot of the family members have businesses but that’s his thing. Maybe regardless if you do business, you should have some kind of education background in something.

J:      Those lemonade stands or any type of small little activity that teaches them how to buy things, the supply making stuff, dealing with customer service, even though they’re just having fun I think is so valuable. We went through this process a couple of times with Milan especially with her toys and so we’re trying to teach her that you just don’t throw things out right in New York City with every space being limited, one thing in and one thing out. And so we’re trying to get her to think about that the resources now you have and assets may be that is not valuable with you anymore but whole else would it be valuable too. So she’s getting in that mentality. And recently we started to find somebody to do caricatures, and so Kison we’re making a caricature of one of your profile pictures. We’ll give you as one of our gifts for being a guest here. You can see that when I put it up with my LinkedIn profile. So we got somebody to start doing those. And so Milan was looking at the caricatures and she said “you should put the kids on coffee mugs or the family and get that person to make them. And you can sell those things on shirts and everything.” She’s been asking me if I’ve thought about the idea and I’m explaining to her the process that we have to figure out like how much we can get it made for, what can we sell them for, is there demand. It’s kind of fun teaching your kid those kind of processes around business that you hopefully their skills that later down the road whenever they get in front of a real corporate atmosphere that it’s something that becomes natural to her or at least they have seen before so it’s not a surprise or a new learning.

D:     Yeah, and that’s not something that they’re gonna get in their traditional education, right? I think that’s always been a gap in the US education is that people don’t come out of school understanding finances let alone understanding how to possibly run a business and look at your income and your margins and everything. So I think whatever, your kids might have that potential I think it’s awesome to try to teach them whatever you can in real life situations when they’re young.

K:     A little lot to be said about that. There’s a lot of things that school doesn’t teach them. You guys have heard of like Ray Dalio’s Principles book he published a year or two ago?

J:      I have not.

K:     It’s a good one you should get. The thing is for us and where we’re at in our time and career is things that we’ve learned the hard way, learned from experience that he covers. And it’s a good model because it’s taking the idea of like trading principles and playing to life and thinking through like what are life principles to be able to like reference to make better decisions going forward. So I personally use it if I ever have to mentor or do a little time coaching somebody young that’s still in college or undergrad. That’s like I think a really good sweet spot for it. But I actually read it with my daughter when she was eight and a lot of it is over her head but what was interesting is it brought up really good discussions around some of these life lessons that school doesn’t teach. Examples like talking about open-minded versus closed-minded and to really define that and to understand it to a point that you know how to approach closed-minded people and so forth, and how to even push yourself to be more open-minded. So that’s like a good principle to have and it applies to us professionally but to actually have that explanation with her at that age, it’s interesting to get them to start thinking about that. You know at that level like what’s the difference between open-minded and closed-minded. And they start rethinking things a little bit. And then it’s kind of funny because she’ll attack me with it later like “dad, you’re not being open-minded.” It comes back to be careful what you asked for but it is kind of fun that to sort of read to her like, hey do you understand? Let me explain it. And they have some really interesting things like how the brain works, how our personalities are, kind of getting them to understand that we’re so physically unique and different when we can see each other but to get them to think that our brain in the way we think is just as unique. We don’t see it but like the way we literally are wired and think is just as unique as we are physically unique. And that’s why you got to understand people think they’re different. They’re completely different and the more you can understand the better.

J:      Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I’m looking as you’re talking through that. It looks like this is a pretty popular book out there. He even has a website principles.com so it seems like he does a number of talks on how the economic machine works, principles for success, he did a TedTalk. Have you listened to those?

K:     Probably not. I’ve seen some of it. I know his book. You can actually get an app and get it for free. If you buy the book, it really looks like the bible. It’s a big book. But I recommend it. I think it’s a good read and like I said it’s a good one for somebody like young professional, like undergrad. It sort of gets some thinking some good things early.

J:      And was this something that you had put into context for your kids or were you just taking the principles literally, or are you using stories that would resonate with them based on…

K:     I was reading this to put them to sleep very quickly.

J:      … is basically what I’m asking.

K:     What’s that?

J:      I said were you reading this book that as big as the bible to your four year old at night and put them to sleep?

K:     Yeah. You know that two, at that time the two were together. The middle one, I think he was five, so it’s five and seven. So I read it to those two and it would put them to sleep pretty quick. But it was good too, because they’d read it and I would follow up like “hey, do you understand it? Can you explain it back to me?” And they got like maybe a little bit of it like 10, 20 percent and then I’d open up the conversation to really help them to understand it. So it’s like you’re not gonna read, read the book. You sort of read these really small little chapters so you read a little piece and then just use it to open up a little bit of a conversation.

J:      Awesome. We’ll definitely put that as one of the descriptions and recommendations to go and check out. So I think we’re almost done with the rapid questions. I know that they weren’t really as rapid as, at least they were but you said so much interesting thing so hopefully you’re still with us. Alright, Kison so, again thanks for sticking with us through this. We’ve learned a lot already and this has been a great discussion. Now let’s go on a little bit deeper. We’ve gotten the chance to talk a little bit about your memories, and your philosophies, and your favorite superhero but we’d love to understand what does being a dad mean to you? And how has it changed your life perspectives from before you were a parent?

K:     Yeah, it does change a lot. I think I didn’t know what I was getting into in terms of what it entails because if you think about your responsibilities as a parent in the most fundamental view it’s to feed your kids healthy and educate them. So, at the end of the day I always come back to those two things, feeding them healthy and educating them. So I think that’s the most important thing is to really be proactive and keep them obviously keep them in good health and entertained but make sure you’re constantly trying to educate them and embetter them that way.

J:      It sounds like you didn’t know what you’re getting yourself into but you’ve done it three times so you must’ve enjoyed the first one.

K:     Yeah, the first one was a good challenge. I like it. I think like I said it is a challenge. I think the things evolved too when you do have kids and you don’t realize it because when they’re really small and they’re really cute and you play with them like they’re babies and it’s nice to have babies around the house. But it changes when they grow up because that time when I come home and I have, they’re rugrats. Just sitting on the floor and play with them and just let them topple on top of me and just have fun that way. That quickly evolves and changes because they grew up. They have their own hobbies and interests. And that time with the three together doesn’t really count as much in a sense. It’s more about the individual time that you provide for each one. So I think that’s probably, as things evolve like maybe the biggest challenge is the fact that you’ve now really have to dedicate time for each child individually and pretty much individualized experience because they get, if it’s my daughter, I need to get in the ice and put on the helmet and do some stick and puck with her. If it’s my son, he’s more of like the stem projects and things like that so we might build Lego sets together. And if it’s the four year old, he likes causing trouble. So we might end up with some water guns and probably some tools.

J:      Do you try to set aside like scheduled time with each one of the kids to make sure you’re trying to distribute that evenly or you just kind of roll with the punches on however time allows?

K:     I think it’s a blend. I wished we’re a little more structured. I think it’s a big thing I’ve been trying to push in our household. The challenges when you get to the weekend and there always see a set of activities there, so if they’re in classes and things like that. So that helps and at least gives you some basis to guide off of. But then after that, you might have like half a day still open and it’s like okay, what do you guys want to do? Do you want to go to the zoo? Do you want to go…? You try and come up with an activity. And there are some people that are good at it where they plan things ahead. I’m not one of them. I think that’s where I’m trying to get to a point I can introduce some of these project management that I teach and talk about in my work environment and bring it at home where here’s our list of things to do and I want your ideas. I want you to contribute to it. What we’re gonna do is we’re gonna prioritize it and then upcoming weekend, we’re gonna start doing one or two of the top things in the list and then we’ll keep on going down for the next weekend so that way we’ll always have a plan list of things to do ahead of time.

J:      Kison it’s an interesting point because I know you’re also running a company of, I think the last time you and I spoke was 40 or 50 people and so you and I have spent a lot of time talking about mergers and acquisitions and the culture and kind of communication and so you just mentioned on a smaller scale, although much more personal, being able to spend individual time with each kid is definitely the best and optimal but often with the time you try to bundle it all into one family activity. What parallels have you taken from that type of experience where you know you need to get the one on one attention but you know obviously they are at the most efficient part ways as family to managing 40 people that probably all do want your singular attention as well but obviously there’s only so much time in a day so you can only give yourself off to so many people and you also have to make sure the work gets done?

K:     So between balancing the two?

J:      Yeah. How would you actually balance, like what have you learned from like managing 3 kids that all want your singular attention to managing 40 people that all want your singular attention? Have you taken anything from being a father with 3 kids and apply those principles to how you manage people?

K:     It might be a little more of the other way around. It’s a mix between the two. When you talk about here’s the things we do together as a team family and things we do individually together and putting that time. So I think there should be a balance between it and even in the businesswise I learned that where I wanna make sure there’s good communication. We’ll do these very short frequent status meetings and it just helps everybody sync up. Everybody explains in a minute or two what they’re doing, what they’re working on and we get on the same page about it. And then we’ll go off and do our stuff but at the same time when we do those things we identify like “oh, here’s an issue.” We should get together about that and talk about it and we’d know where we need to have like a one on one meetings or with a small group. And then I think beyond that even right now with everything going on and the downturn, it’s really important just to grab one on one calls and just do a health check for me just to, I don’t have any agenda but I just wanna see how things are going for you. I actually used to joke and call like a mental health check but I think it’s just spending the time to listen. It’s really important that you can learn a lot and probably see some of the underlining issues that you might not realize. And it’s similar with family, too. I once did this with my daughter where it was a Friday and I did an exit interview for somebody I really actually like working with and that’s something I tried to do is if you’re given a chance to do an exit interview and try to, people are more open to telling you some unfiltered feedback if you really push them to. So it’s good to do that and I did that. How can I improve as a leader, the work environment, so forth. And then I did it with my daughter. I said “hey, how am I doing as a dad? What’s good and where do you think I can improve?” And it was interesting because the things that she told me that I was doing good were the things I thought she would say that I was doing bad. You have this level of discipline. You’re always pushing us and teaching us stuff and this and that. But even that kind of approach of just really trying to push them towards goals and things like that that they value is even thought of as a good thing. And then when it came to the bad she told me I need to be easier on her younger brother, not the youngest but the middle child. He’s sensitive, you’ve got to go easy on him. So I said “okay, that’s a good point taken.” So I think it’s a mix when you can sort of probably talk and just like a work environment. And I’ve done like this periodic family meetings though a little short but I just said “hey, let’s get some ideas together. Let’s talk. We’re gonna be cooped up in the house for a while. What can we do to make things better around here to make it more comfortable, make us live better together and get along better?” And just let the kids contribute and put their ideas out there and see what they come up with. And it’s funny. Obviously my youngest one’s gonna ask for more toys and candy. And then you just see what ideas they come up with. But then at the same time you got to balance that with some of that one on one attention too. So if they have some certain things like my middle child likes Lego so I come home and get a Lego set and just spend some time with him to help him put it together. I think it’s just mixing the two together but making sure along the way that everybody’s really comfortable to express themselves and you’re listening. I think that works parallel between the work environment and then your family with the kids.

D:     Kison I’m interested to see how that tactic plays out with you asking your kids for some feedback is if they will mature and be able to accept constructive criticism better based on seeing you take that from them. So I’m interested to see how that plays out over the long term.

K:     Yeah. It’s a good point. I think getting them to a leadership role was a big challenge for me early on especially when I move and attack. You got to be more serious about it versus running a small retail store. And that was the big thing I learned is that people take punches at you. It lets you confront the things that you don’t wanna confront about yourself. We have this scenario in nature to think about ourselves in the most beauty and light and colorful way, that’s not always true. You wanna find out what are the things or areas that you can improve and get better at. So getting people comfortable to give you that criticism is effort of its own but it’s the most valuable thing you could do to better yourself. So they’re just things that does apply to kids too and they’re more open to tell you what they don’t like about you.

J:      We have this culture now of everything has to be nice and complementary and I don’t know if that’s the most beneficial way to communicate all the time. One of the activities we’re trying to do in, sometimes it’s just the wording, right? Like the word constructive criticism, I think it’s gotten such a negative connotation over the years. We’re trying to turn that into what we call sparring or training or practicing and that gives an environment of, almost sets up like a platform so that you feel more comfortable to share and be open and give points of feedback. I find that I’m constantly having to ask for that or else you just hear kind of the overall ‘yeah, everything is great. I complain about my boss. I complain about my friends.’ We all complain so it’s impossible for anybody to not have some type of recommendation. And even if it’s something that you don’t take or may not be able to get to at that point, getting people to have that trust and really be able to be honest with each other is critical. And even better if you can get your family to have a discussion and like you said, it’s not always on the surface. You have to dig a little bit. So Kison going on, looking at what you’ve done and how you managed that and really going out and getting feedback, do you see parallels between raising kids and being an entrepreneur?

K:     Yeah, definitely like some of the examples I just cited in terms of like thinking about managing a team in depth was a leadership approach in a business environment. A lot of that sorts of parallels over to the family, with the kids but you’ve got to be careful. You don’t want to make them feel like your employees versus your kids. And then I think some of the structure things too. Like for us we always have goals in our business and we review them every quarter and we discuss the progress in the previous quarter and what we’re gonna achieve the next quarter. I don’t run my household on quarters but I do encourage my kids. My daughter’s probably at that stage where I can have her write down goals. I had her do this. I have a picture of it somewhere. She had a cute little thing she wrote and her goals in life were to be the best hockey player, get into Harvard, and get rich. And then from there it’s like okay, what do you need to do to do that goal. To be the best hockey player, that takes a lot of work. And I started talking to her about Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers, the ten thousand hour rule. It’s a lot. It’s like three hours of practice every day for her to consistently till to get that whatever ten years so you can play it like a collegiate level. But so then things like that where you start giving them to think about what they need to do to be able to achieve those goals and start emphasizing on why it’s important that they have that daily ritual practice to be able to do it to achieve it. So that’s kind of one where like I said I think my kids are a little bit early for that but I’m trying to introduce it with my daughter. I think the other ones, they’re still a little bit young for it but that’s probably one of the big things that I really wanna drive at and just making sure there’s clear goals and having that understanding of what needs to get done to make sure that goal happens and break things down to their little achievable milestones to get there.

J:      You know those are great points, man. We wrote a blog a few months ago around the key principles that it’s lost. There’s always this stem focus and then there’s all kinds of other things, how to be polite, how to communicate. But one of the areas that you never really see a whole lot we call it reverse engineering. Being able to take a goal and break it apart and really put it into chunks and actually execute on it. I see it all the time in business. Everybody, not everybody but you have people come out and say okay, I’m gonna do this and then you just never see that goal actually achieved and I think the minute people start to go down, they have made another plan. They may have not broken up, really understood what they’re intending to achieve and so being able break those up. One of the areas that we’re trying to focus on in my house with Milan is when you don’t reach a goal, what do you do? It’s not that you just give up and say I was just not good enough, it’s assess the situation. Was it something that was a priority with you? Should you have done differently? And really not just stop at that milestone but also learn how to build off of your failures as much as your successes.

K:     Pretty good point. Hey you know what? I’m gonna try some fun real quick. You guys mind for a second?

J:      No.

K:     Alright. I’m gonna see if I can call my kid.

S:      Hello.

K:     Hey, Shiloh.

S:      Yeah.

K:     You’re live right now on my friend’s podcast with Jonathan and Dustin.

S:      (65:58)

K:     Yeah. it’s about being a dad.

J:      Hey, Shiloh.

S:      Okay.

K:     And I wanted to just ask you because we always talk about this but I want you to share with them what your purpose in life is.

S:      Find what you love to do and be the best in the world at it.

K:     How do you do that?

S:      Focus and work ten times harder than everybody else.

K:     Awesome. Thank you for sharing that.

J:      Thanks, Shiloh.

K:     Hey, is there any advice that you’d give to dads to just be good dads out there and do a great job?

S:      Yeah. Don’t always be nice. You can sometimes be strict. And don’t always let you kids go crazy. You sometimes need a schedule to follow so they know what to do and then after.

K:     That’s pretty good. Anything else?

S:      Ah, no.

J:      Kison (66:48) the guest here. You’ve been great but I feel like this is the podcast right here.

K:     Yeah, right! You guys have any questions for Shiloh?

J:      Shiloh, how is your dad doing? Is he doing well?

S:      Yeah.

J:      What are you doing during these times? Are you doing okay with the corona virus?

S:      Yeah, but it’s kind of boring staying home.

J:      But you probably get to spend a lot of time with your family, right?

S:      Yeah.

J:      And how’s school going?

S:      It’s good. Well, I don’t know when we’ll have school again so we have video calls instead.

J:      Here’s the biggest question, we’re all trying to figure out how to be the best dads we could be so what makes the best dad?

S:      Maybe you could teach them life lesson and you could also…

K:     That’s a tough one.

J:      That’s a tough question. Shall we spend more time with our kids?

S:      Yeah.

J:      And watch more shows or less TV?

S:      Less TV.

J:      Less TV. Wow, Kison you’re doing a great job. I think you’re whopping all of us here.

K:     Well, what are we gonna do if we’re not gonna watch TV?

S:      You could do some work and teach some life lessons like my dad does.

K:     What’s like the most important life lesson that I’ve taught you?

S:      Open-minded and closed-minded and thank you and sorry.

K:     You like those two?

S:      Yeah.

J:      This may need to be our new podcast format. Well, Shiloh you’re the best part of this podcast (68:24)

K:     Do you want to explain to the guys how thank you and sorry works?

S:      Yeah. So you can’t just say thank you and sorry without meaning it. You have to mean it. Like you stole someone’s umbrella. Instead you could say yeah, thanks or I’m sorry, you should say I’m sorry that I stole your umbrella. You need a reason why you’re thankful for something.

J:      So if we’re gonna say thank you for being on our podcast today, then we would have to thank you for being on our podcast and sharing so many great ideas and giving us a lot of valuable life lessons in order for us to spread with our audience. Is that how we would have to say thank you?

S:      Yes.

J:      You’re a great teacher. And what’s your favorite activity to do with your dad?

S:      Science. He orders a bunch of science kits and Lego we could do.

J:      That’s great. And you’re dad’s saying wonderful things about you. We were excited to have him on the show. He’s an incredible person. I’ve gotten the chance to know him more over the last couple of months and so he’s very proud of you and it sounds like he’s doing a great job and you sound like you’re a fantastic kid so we’re so happy to have you on our show. So thank you for coming on and sharing all your insights.

S:      You’re welcome.

K:     Hey, thanks Shiloh. I’ll see you a little later.

S:      Okay. Bye-bye daddy.

K:     Bye. Think of something fun for us to do.

S:      Okay. Bye.

J:      Bye Shiloh. That was awesome Kison.

D:     Good idea.

J:      How much did you pay her to do that (70:00) on the podcast at this point.

K:     I had my fingers crossed, hope she doesn’t say anything out there.

J:      She basically reiterated everything that you shared with us. And so you’ve clearly not only talked the talk but you guys are walking the walk and on top of that, I love your radio voice but she’s got a much cuter voice than all of us.

K:     Yeah.

J:      That’s awesome. Thanks for bringing her on. Now we had probably an hour and fifteen minutes and getting close to time so I don’t want to keep you longer but just to wrap up a couple more questions. As far as, I think we’ve hit some of the traditions. You talked about doing a family sports and obviously you’ve discussed the key principles. What do you think about at the end of the day what you want your kids to remember from their childhood in you as a father when they describe you, what would that be?

K:     One of the most valuable things I learned from my dad was discipline. And learning that allowed me to push myself and to be able to achieve what I’m able to achieve across my career. So if the kids love or hate it, I want them to at least remember me for being able to teach them that. And then too just the other things that really spending the time to teach them things that they may not otherwise have learned from school or may not have learned the right things from some of their friends so at least kind of stick up and make sure that they have some sort of guiding principles that they can continue to carry with them through life.

J:      And when you say discipline, Kison, we talked about discipline. I used that word all the time. What does that mean to you like what is discipline when you get to a tactical level our listeners out there, what kind of things can they do to actually execute on a disciple-type mentality?

K:     For me is when you get set on doing something, you get it done no matter what. I mean that’s just it. You do it. You don’t just have this wavy dream and they never come to fruition and that’s the whole idea. Here’s the goal, how are you gonna get there? We’re gonna make sure we get there. There’s no reason not to. I sort of last Friday had the idea about doing the online conference on a whim. Monday, at least convince myself for the weekend to do it and now this weekend it’s all stuff for putting it in action and getting it prepared for and it’s just that set level of discipline where this idea turns into a goal and then we’re gonna do everything that needs to get done to make sure that happens and it’s achieved and successful. And that takes a level of discipline because some people, they don’t have it and they’re gonna get distracted, they procrastinate and things like that. But it’s more of that get things done. Get things done.

J:      And how do you prioritize because there’s always more things to get done? There are hours in the day and I know you have The DealRoom. You have the M&A Science. You’re being asked to speak at conferences. You’ve got employees that want to talk to you. You’ve got partners. You and I have spend a lot of time chatting. You’ve got your kids, your family. How do you prioritize and stay discipline to what you really believe needs to get done gets done?

K:     That is something I’ve not mastered. I think that’s probably one of the difficult things to do. I’m always curious about whether there are better ways to do it. One of the things in my attempts in doing it in even coming into my office today to work on some of the stuff but it’s just having this list that’s always in order of priority. And it gets mixed up pretty quick but you go through and sort of clean it up and reset it. But my daily list of things to do is always in order of priority. So the most important things first and then it goes down. So that way you’re getting even at the very least if I only get one or two things done, I got one or two really important things done and I can feel accomplished and achieved the day. I think that’s one of the important things is to just to sort of continuously and consistently sort of recheck where you’re at but try to have that single list of these are the things I personally need to get done in order of priority.

J:      Yeah. We know that prioritization, and I know Dustin you’ve got your hands full with prioritization. You have a teenager, a baby, a work where we’ve got The Dad Corp and family. We’re all balancing. One of the things Kison, I’ve been absolutely impressed and admire from just our recent friendship and working together on other initiatives is your responsiveness and just execution ability. I think that when I think about words like integrity. Every time you’ve said something, you’ve done it and you do it at a speed and with responsiveness so that’s just kind of incredible. That’s something I admire and I’m actually trying to continue to implement in my own toolkit. It’s been a lot of fun watching and working with you and hearing you on this stuff. But I think when you think about discipline and like that staying focus, that responsiveness ties into that so much and that’s something that I’ve noticed. It’s like a key characteristic of your brand. And in my eyes you’re just a very responsive and have an execution ability that is pretty unparalleled.

K:     At times. You caught me at a good time. It doesn’t always happen that good.

J:      Yeah. Well hey, I don’t have any more questions. But Dustin is there anything that you want to cover that we haven’t had the chance to hear from Kison today?

D:     No, I don’t wanna take anymore of Kison’s time today. I know for me personally I appreciate you taking the hour twenty minutes plus to talk through and your family life, work balance and kind of sharing your background, your values and some of your vulnerable moments and your most proud moments. I just personally appreciate you taking the time to talk that through and I think we’ve got a couple of really solid tactics and lessons just from talking to you that we’d be able to take ourselves and also be able to share that with the rest of The Dad Corp community that’s gonna be listening to the podcast, so I appreciate it.

K:     Thanks. Thanks for letting my daughter and I guest on your podcast. I had a lot of fun and really appreciate it and I’m sure she did too.

J:      Yeah. We’ll have to figure out a time to have her back on. That would be great to have her on as a full guest at some point.

K:     Good.

J:      Maybe we’ll have the kids’ version and the kids can hold the podcast and the dads will (77:06). Kison before we wrap up, why don’t you share where people can learn more about you, your business. I know you have so many things going on. You’ve recently wrote a book. And so where can we find you?

K:     Probably on LinkedIn. If you want to find me it’s just Kison Patel on LinkedIn, I’m usually on there. I do a podcast myself called M&A Science which is on most of the platforms. We’re at an interesting time right now. I think there’s a lot of people that are really shifted in their daily lives and there’s a lot of people that are struggling or are gonna be struggling so if anybody is listening to it, I just encourage you to be aware and spend a little bit of time in finding ways you can give whether it’s just donating to local foodbank or something of that sort but there’s a lot of people in need so spend a little time and maybe you can get the kids involved with that as well.

J:      Yeah. I know your book, if there’s any M&A professionals out there, anybody in the mergers and acquisitions who are like ourselves, Kison and myself, you definitely have a great book on Agile M&A. Is it your website where they could pick up a copy of that or if they’re interested in reading some of the business work that you’ve done?

K:     It is on Amazon, the printed version. It’s called Agile M&A. but we’re getting ready on agilemna.com to just put all the content out there for free. We’re getting updates because it’s ideas to create a bunch of best practices around mergers and acquisitions so I’m bringing in some other practitioners to continue expanding on that content. So we’re just gonna put it all available free online and just allow people to keep contributing in and adding more of these lessons, similar dad lessons but m&a lessons.

J:      Fantastic! We’ll be sharing. We have a wide audience. We have almost 3,000 contacts on LinkedIn. A lot of them in New York City so I think there’s a decent amount of private equity and investment bankers out there so we’ll keep sharing the word that you’re m&a. But as far as just being a great father, a great friend, and just overall a great guest thanks so much. Give Shiloh a hug for us. She was awesome. We’ll look forward to having her back on again at another time.

K:     Thanks guys. I really appreciate the time and opportunity today.

D:     Take care Kison.

K:     Take care. Thank you.

J:      See you.

 

 

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