Nicole Morgan, CEO of Resolute PR, discusses the challenges of workforce recruitment and the need for companies to focus on promoting their brand as an employer of choice. She highlights industries such as healthcare and hospitality that are struggling to find talent due to changing employee preferences and the impact of the pandemic. Nicole emphasizes the importance of offering employee benefits such as healthcare and retirement plans, as well as providing flexibility and work-life balance.

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πŸ“ŒTALKING POINTS

03:04 Industries Struggling to Find Talent

05:22 Creating a Story for Employees

06:30 Promoting Employee Benefits

09:34 Flexibility and Work-Life Balance

11:10 The Four-Day Work Week

14:38 Importance of Clear Expectations and Feedback

19:03 Taking Risks and Asking for Help

22:18 Challenges of Business Growth

25:03 Balancing Work and Family Life

πŸ”—CONNECT WITH NICOLE

πŸ”—CONNECT WITH TOM

Tom Finn (00:00.018)

Welcome into the show my friends, the water is warm. Today we have on the show Nicole Morgan. Nicole, welcome to the show.

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Nicole Morgan (00:06.761)

Thanks for having me on.

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Tom Finn (00:08.498)

Well, we are delighted to have you on and let's take a minute to get to know you. So folks that haven't had a chance to be introduced can't have that warm and fuzzy feeling like the rest of us. Nicole is the CEO of Resolute PR. She has almost two decades of experience in setting up successful campaigns in PR, marketing and workforce planning, spanning diverse sectors like healthcare and retail and technology as well. She's been recognized for her ability to manage complex projects while artfully articulating brand stories. She's a multi award winner, including young entrepreneur of the year, professional of the year as well. And if that wasn't quite enough for you, she also serves as an adjunct professor at Oklahoma State University. Go Cowboys. What a great school. Fun school to go to, fun school to work at, I'm sure. And we will get to that in a second. But before we get there, let's talk some work things. You have been known as a PR kind of person, a marketing kind of person. You've leaned into workforce, workforce strategies, workforce marketing. You're kind of evolving as an entrepreneur and evolving your businesses. So talk to me about some of the work that you're doing and commissioning your own research and trying to understand the workforce.

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Nicole Morgan (01:28.457)

Yeah, well, we have a lot of clients that span a lot of different industries, roofing, manufacturing. I'm located in Tulsa. We actually have the most inland waterway port in the country, which has about 80 different manufacturing companies. And so we have a lot of clients who have struggled, even historically pre -pandemic, with workforce recruitment. The average age of a welder, I think now, is 45. And so… convincing people to go into some of these different industries has been difficult. But when the pandemic happened and everybody started opening back up, we were hearing the same thing from multiple clients. This is great. If you market us, awesome. But at some point we're hitting a wall because we can't find enough people to actually get the work done. And so that told us.

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We have a bigger issue here. I mean, we're always trying to focus on what's the overall goal of the client, not just the output of landing them stories or generating, you know, those were traditional PR deliverables. But if they're struggling with workforce, then we've got to help them solve that problem. And what we found was that it's not necessarily that the employees weren't out there, it's that they had to be convinced this was a job worth taking and that this was going to solve a lot of the problems that they maybe had in previous employers.

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You know, I think by and large, the pandemic made us all reevaluate, you know, our jobs and what makes us happy and where do we want to spend our time in life. And it took the workforce a little time to catch up to that. And in some of these industries, they're pretty traditional and so they're not even quite there yet.

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Tom Finn (03:04.466)

So let's unpack that in terms of industries for a minute, because what you said was welding. And what you're probably getting from the audience right now is a bit of an eye roll of like, well, I'm not in welding, because that's pretty narrow, right? So let's talk through some of the other industries or some of the other job types that you're seeing that there's employers looking, but they just can't find talent.

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Nicole Morgan (03:25.641)

Yeah, well, I think restaurant and hospitality industry, healthcare, a lot of, especially industries where there's a lot of human interaction are really struggling. In fact, so you mentioned we actually went down this road because we're like, okay, if we're going to get into the world of workforce recruitment, we've got to have more data. We want to understand this better and really know how companies can message their… their brand to employees and really become an employer of choice. And so we actually commissioned our own research. And one of the things that came out of that, and we heard from employees, is that there's a lot of fatigue around face -to -face roles. People really, especially younger populations, are experiencing a lot of anxiety around human interaction. It makes them nervous. They don't really know how to have that human interaction or they got pulled out of it for a time and now they're getting put back in. And then also customer service has just been tough. I know we've experienced it on both ends of things. You've either had a really bad experience out of business or you have maybe had a customer who did not appreciate how you talk to other people. So that I think is a real struggle in some of these industries because if you're working in healthcare and you've just put… then put through the wringer and you decide I want to do something different. Now you've totally exited that industry and you're left kind of trying to figure out what else you might want to do.

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Tom Finn (04:54.738)

Yeah, I think that sums it up pretty well. It's not just an industry about blue collar work. What you're talking about is face to face human interactions, those human interactions that we feel in a restaurant, whether that's a casual restaurant or something more formal, it's still human interaction. So how do you actually help folks, healthcare, hospitality, blue collar roles, white collar roles, gray collar, manufacturing, how do you create a story for… employees to want to come work at your organization.

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Nicole Morgan (05:26.185)

Well, one of the things that I've been finding as I've been releasing these results to different companies is that companies are doing really great things. They're providing great places to work for their employees, but they're not necessarily recognizing that as something that is a standout thing. So for example, we asked people, why do you work? Like, what are the top reasons to work? Because I think we'd all rather be sipping margaritas on a beach somewhere, right? So if you're going to have to work, why do you do that?

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Top reason is that you want to support yourself and your family, and that makes sense. But the other two reasons that people said were really important to them was one, that they see it as a means to building retirement, and two, they saw it as the way that they access healthcare. And that's true, I mean, you really can't do either of those two things if you're not employed. So if you offer those benefits, that's something you should be talking about, and you should also be promoting that to your employees, because while,

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they might automatically enroll in healthcare, you may have employees that are not taking advantage of your retirement benefits. And so, like another thing that came up was that a lot of employees would really appreciate having some training in life skills. So how do I budget? How do I build for retirement? What does that mean? Why is that important? You know, if my company is saying that they're gonna match my retirement, well, that's free money, but people don't think about that because they have to put money in, and so they're missing out on that benefit. So sometimes employers just need to take a step back and realize, hey, we need to be promoting this to our employees because otherwise they see another employer that might offer some of those exact same benefits. They're just packaging it differently and promoting it in a way that stands out to the employees.

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Tom Finn (07:11.602)

Okay, so I get it and you're right in my train of thought when it comes to what employees want. I feel like employees want three things. It's very straightforward. More money, more time and more energy. That is what every single employee in America and around the world is looking for. More money, more time, more energy. And here's why, here's why. More money is pretty straightforward, right? It allows us to do things, allows us to buy things, it gives us more freedom essentially. More time.

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Uh, allows us to have more time to do the things we want kids vacation, whatever it is, you name it, right? Your point was retirement. And then the last thing, more energy, that's the healthcare piece. So more energy, more, more fitness, more health, more wellness, right? That, that feeling that I can get up in the morning and conquer or anything has something to do with your health. Uh, and so all of those things fall, fall in line with the way that I'm thinking about the world too, Nicole. So.

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Nicole Morgan (07:44.233)

have more time to think about the kids.

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Tom Finn (08:11.986)

Let's take ourselves out of this though, because it's not about you and me. What you said though is pretty generic. Let's be honest. We want to make more money, we want to have a good retirement and we want medical. I mean, I don't know, nine out of 10 employers in the United States will give you all three. So how do you separate yourself as a workforce strategist? How do you separate from the noise?

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Nicole Morgan (08:35.913)

Yeah, well, so I would say that those are the basic things. And if you peel back all the layers at the end of the day, that's the stuff that's really important to people. But then, you know, there are all of the other benefits that companies can provide that they're not necessarily thinking about. So kind of back to your original question about these different industries. A lot of these industries are very traditional and how they've approached work. It's a typical, you know, you work your shifts, you work this many hours a week, you're going to have so much and overtime, blah, blah, blah.

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Well, one of the things that came back was that 48 % of the respondents said that they're looking for remote work. Now, how do you do that if you work in healthcare or you work in hospitality? That's a job that really doesn't allow for remote work. There was also a lot about flexibility, the need for flexibility, the need to have more time. The desire to get this have a no questions asked personal day off per month. And so to me, that gets into mental health, being able to take care of the things that you need to take care of. And so all of these really center around flexibility, greater flexibility, needing to take care of things, not just living to work, but working to live. So companies are really having to think about, okay, well, how can I offer some of those benefits within the environment of… of how we work because we still have to get the things done. We still have to produce things. So maybe it's things like offering the opportunity to trade shifts with someone. So now maybe you're working more shifts within three days, but then you get additional days off on the back end of that. That provides more flexibility to people. So there are a lot of things like that that people can do that they don't necessarily cost the company any more money. It might be more logistics, but you're meeting a need that people have and a desire that people have that maybe wasn't as prevalent before.

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Tom Finn (10:40.85)

Yeah, look, the pandemic did a lot of negative, but it also did a lot of positive. And I always like to look at things both sides of the coin, right? And the positives are the employer voice, um, had to turn around and kind of listen to the employee voice. And what I think we've seen is employees standing up and saying, give me a little more flexibility. Like you said, give me a little more time to get my life taken care of outside of work hours. And there are employers that are doing the four day work week, uh, where you can move some hours around and work four days. Um, there's some science behind that, that it really can work in terms of productivity and also in mental health and sort of decreasing anxiety. What's your take on the four day work week?

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Nicole Morgan (11:28.265)

I think it depends on the company and how you work. So in my industry, we're on 24 -7. I mean, at any moment, we can have a crisis situation and we're PR people. So we have to be on, we have to be ready to take the call. So could we scale back to being in the office physically four days a week? Probably. But then with the caveat that we've got to be… ready and checking email and still kind of be on, you know, but because of that, I mean, we do, we work in a hybrid environment. We, you know, took the whole week off of Tune Christmas and New Year's. We have a lot of flexibility, unlimited PTO for our employees. We're able to provide that because of the way that we work. You know, for other companies, I think it's just kind of a numbers game. Like what can you afford? Because for manufacturing, it's all about those man hours and having someone there to push the button and make the widgets. And if you have people shift to a four hour work week, then that could be difficult. However, I think those companies need to be open to it. And so maybe you can't do that for everybody, but you could do it for some people. And...

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What we saw was a lot around women in the workforce and the caregiving roles that they're having to take on, not just for young children, but also for aging parents. And having that extra day of flexibility could be the game changer in them being able to get into the workforce. Whereas right now, they're not able to juggle all of the things. And so they're not entering it. They're sitting out until they can get to a point where they can enter again.

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Tom Finn (13:03.986)

So it's really complex and it's based on industry and it's based on where you are, location. And I would venture to assume that it's also based on leadership style because not all leaders are as forward thinking as you are. So what do you do when you run into that old school boomer mentality? Doesn't have to be boomer by age, but could be boomer in the brain, which is, you know, get your cheeks in seats in the office. You're in here from 8 to 6 every day, Monday through Friday. Wear your collared shirt, tuck it into those slacks and make sure you got dress shoes on. What do you do with that?

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Nicole Morgan (13:44.713)

Yeah, well, you know, it's interesting that you say that because I've definitely encountered the CEO that says, well, back in my day, if the boss didn't talk to me, then that meant that I was doing a good job. So I understand why I have to go talk to people all the time and they're just like, blech about it. And the thing is people want, they want transparency. They want you to talk to them. We actually saw in this research that people want quarterly reviews because they see that as linked to opportunities for bonuses and advancement. They're kind of sick of this ambiguity. Like, why did so and so, why did Tom get promoted, but I didn't? They can't, they're just kind of sick of that. And so if they see a job description, that's really clear about these are the expectations, this is how you're gonna be measured, this is what success looks like. And there's regular feedback into how you're doing and how you're progressing in that role. That's really important to people. So.

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When I explain that and I can show the data to a CEO, I see that it's gonna be a transition for them and it's a very different way of managing. But the thing is people have choices about where they work, right? Like you could work remotely and work anywhere in the country or the world if you wanted to. So for those employers that don't change, you're just gonna have that much harder of a time finding people.

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Tom Finn (15:04.338)

Yeah, I love how you said for those employers that don't change. And the reality is it's not the employer. It's not, let me pick on someone. It's not Coca -Cola. Okay. It's not the Coca -Cola isn't a person. It's the manager at Coca -Cola who runs the Southeast region, who's hiring and managing in a particular manner. Right. It's not the brand. It's those humans that need to either be replaced in leadership or kind of update their skill set. Wouldn't you agree?

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Nicole Morgan (15:36.905)

I would challenge you a little bit on that because you know I work in the in the PR and advertising world and the stigma of you know having to like work all night and hit the deadline and putting all that creative energy into a campaign and just the grind of having to always be on and in it is very real so sometimes it can be a bad boss but sometimes it's just the culture of that industry.

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that I think needs to change. And I would say the same thing for some of those manufacturing companies. The culture of this is your shift and you have to work and you better be ready to do over time and construction, for example. This never occurred to me, but a lot of those positions are hourly. And so if there's inclement weather, they're not working, which means they don't get paid. And I talked to a construction company that said, well, yeah, our employees don't get paid if there's inclement weather. And I was like, why? I mean, even when I worked an hourly job in high school, I still had PTO or there was some mechanism to be able to fill that gap. But they're like, well, this is just how the industry is. And I think, you know, well, why don't you be a thought leader and a changemaker and do something different?

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Tom Finn (16:50.034)

Yeah, that's an interesting one. I don't, I don't know that many of us have thought through cold weather and not being able to get paid on that particular day. Right. But it makes total sense. Uh, if, if it's snowing outside and you're, you're working in concrete, you're likely not going to be digging that hole today and fixing that, you know, electrical box, whatever it is, it's probably not going to happen on that day and you're not going to get paid. I mean, these, these are the different components, so many different ways to look at the workforce and jobs and how we do this. Is there a silver bullet? Is there a way to create the right culture across all industries?

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Nicole Morgan (17:27.817)

Well, I mean, hopefully you have employees that do love their job and that want to work there. And so I say, start by asking them, I mean, listening to your employees and understanding what is it that they really value about this workplace? What is it that stands out to them? Why are they staying? Because that's a really great clue into what you do that might be different or a selling point for people. Obviously it's gonna be different for every company and...

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Do you know the other part of it is not everybody is gonna be able to hack it in the environment that you have. You know, not everybody's cut out to work in an agency and the multitasking that goes into working in my job. But you know, some people really thrive in that environment. And so just being really clear about what the culture is and making sure that people know what they're getting into so that they're not surprised would be two things that I'd say.

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Tom Finn (18:18.066)

Yeah. Culture is such a big component of our lives in, in the work world. And you've got to find where you fit based on who you are as a person, uh, and, and make sure that that lines up with the organization, um, that, that you're joining for sure. But I want to switch gears for just a second. And I want to, I want to take you down a different path here because we're talking about workforce. We're talking about industries and businesses and which is cool, but I want to kind of get to know you a little bit and get under the hood here because you're an entrepreneur. You've been doing this quite a while. And so I want to know like, what are some of the choices that you've made over time that really make you who you are?

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Nicole Morgan (19:03.241)

Hmm. Um, well, first of all, I never planned on starting a business, so that was a surprise to me. Maybe I would have done a little more research, maybe taken like some business classes. You know, I mean, I knew PR, I knew marketing, I didn't know anything about running a business. So, uh, so, but I will say that I've always been pretty okay with admitting when I'm outside of my comfort zone and outside of my depth of knowledge. So I have no problem saying I need a consultant for this or I need to hire someone to help me with this. Where I've seen other entrepreneurs maybe get a little in over their head when they try to do it all themselves. I think they have to have all the answers and I've made a lot of mistakes but I try to learn from them and try to bring in expertise where I need it. So that would probably be the biggest thing that I've learned. You know HR being one that I just really didn't have any experience in.

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Tom Finn (20:00.114)

Look, that is a absolutely pro move right there, Nicole. I mean, that is the entrepreneurs most important arrow in the quiver, which is when you don't know something is okay. Just go find somebody that does know that and let them teach it to you and speed up your learning significantly by paying somebody to do it.

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Nicole Morgan (20:25.641)

Yeah, I mean, it's, you know, we're, I think back to when I first started and just that need to feel like I'm an expert, you should hire me, like projecting confidence so that I could get past that entrepreneur newbie narrative. And, and I think it's really easy to fall into that because you're, you're having to, you have to come in confident when you're trying to land business and to get people to buy into what you're doing. And you can get a little inside your own head on that because you're afraid to say, hey, I need help here, or I don't know the answer to this. So I would just definitely encourage any of your listeners who are going through that, that it's okay.

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Tom Finn (21:04.274)

So what makes you different then outside of asking for help when you need it? What makes you different as an entrepreneur?

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Nicole Morgan (21:11.625)

Oh, that's a good question. As an entrepreneur, I would say I spend a lot of time, and this was probably, I have the benefit of knowing the value of thought leadership and the value of promoting yourself. It's not something that comes naturally to me, but I spend a lot of time just pushing myself out there and getting visibility in different industries or different avenues that I know are going to connect me with people who need my service.

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We've had people who have hired us who think, well, I've hired a marketing firm, so they're gonna take care of that for me. But the reality is you as the business owner are really the best person to do that. So you've gotta be willing to get out there and to be able to talk about yourself and to just kind of be a little shameless in promoting yourself. So I don't know that that makes me different as an entrepreneur, but again, I feel like this is an area where people sometimes… It shocks them and surprises them that they have to be willing to get out there.

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Tom Finn (22:12.594)

What's the hardest thing you faced in your journey?

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Nicole Morgan (22:17.897)

The growth, I mean, once we really started taking off, growth is expensive and it's scary and it took me by surprise. And so all of the things that came along with growth were all of a sudden, I'm managing a lot more employees than I started with. I'm hiring faster than I would like to. I'm trying to maintain a certain quality of work for our clients. Then you feel like you're taking on clients just because you have to pay for the people. I mean, it it got very, very cyclical, very fast, where I felt like I was in over my head. So that was probably the hardest. But once I got over that hump and I realized, you know what, I don't have to go this fast. I don't need to, I don't want to, I don't even know if I wanna be this big. And I need to kind of take a step back. And someone said to me, you need to throttle back. You need to quit just going forward and charging forward, but just throttle back and like, take a minute and think, and once I did that, that really helped me kind of wrap my arms around it again, and now, you know, we're bigger than we were back then, but I don't even feel it because I just feel like I have a better handle on who we are and what we're trying to do.

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Tom Finn (23:24.722)

So what do you say to the hard-charging type A personality who would listen to that and say, Nicole, that's crazy. Come on, more is better. And more and more and more and more is better.

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Nicole Morgan (23:37.735)

More is better if it's the right client, if it's a client who actually pays you what you're worth. More clients that pay you teeny tiny amounts. A lot of times those small paying clients are way more high maintenance than the big paying clients are. So more clients, not better. More money, better. But less people paying you more money, even better. So yeah, I get you.

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And there are definitely places for you to channel that energy. And maybe it's more activity where you're promoting yourself or writing more blogs or posting more on LinkedIn and doing things to get in front of the right clients. But more clients is not necessarily better.

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Tom Finn (24:22.514)

Yeah, agreed. And more clients can lead to more, more people. Like you said, that's, that's what Nicole meant by it gets cyclical really quickly. And if, if you're growing and you have just enough revenue to hire that new person, now you're not putting a lot of cash in the bank, right? So you're, you're running at thin margins because you had to hire somebody for 60, 80, a hundred, 150 grand, whatever the number is. And they're supposed to be an expert and provide more productivity but they likely don't provide more sales. Right? So it's this give and take of how much more revenue do I want versus how much do I have to pay people to support that revenue?

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Nicole Morgan (24:55.113)

Yeah. Mm -hmm. Yeah, and you know the other thing that I learned because when I first started the business I mean I bootstrapped this thing I didn't go and get a bunch of investment or anything like that So I was looking at it as like I'm just gonna take the money that I need as long as I can survive And I can pay my bills, and I'm good. I don't need any more than that well You know after five years of that you're kind of going this is a ton of work and I'm getting paid peanuts and someone told me, Nicole, you have to be, when you're building your budget and you're looking at your forecasting, if you're not putting a decent salary for yourself in there, you're never gonna get it because you're gonna think, oh, well, I can pay this person more or I can go ahead and hire that other person because we're making money, but you're not paying yourself. So that I think was a changing point for me too, where I said I need to pay myself like an employee, not like a bootstrapping entrepreneur because we're beyond that point. At some point, you grow beyond it.

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Tom Finn (25:58.162)

Yeah, well said. And those are not fun days some days. Actually, I'm going to take that back. They're incredibly fun. It just doesn't show up in your bank account. And they can be really, really fun days because it's early stage of any company. What's your favorite memory from the early stage of your companies?

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Nicole Morgan (26:08.605)

Yeah. Well, so I have two kids and I remember just, man, I just had a fire in me when I started my business and I was like, this is, I mean, I just have so many ideas and so many things I want to do. And I just remember being like up all the time and like just having this passion and this energy to work on things, to get my website launched or to, you know, go to those different networking meetings and just be busy all the time. And I also remember not having any emails on my inbox and I was kind of like,

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Okay, is my email broken or no, this is just, I'm just starting and I thought, well, I'm never gonna see this empty email inbox again. But I thought this is like having another kid, you know, you're up at all hours of the night, it's exciting, it's exhausting and you think I'm never gonna do this again. And so, I don't know, just those early days where I think I just kind of took it for granted a little bit because you're just moving. And I think back on that.

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Sometimes I wish that I would have spent a little more time thinking through what this could be or what I wanted it to be, but I just didn't know. So we're going to be 10 years old this year, and it's cool to look back and see how far it's come.

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Tom Finn (27:28.37)

Yeah, look, I'm with you on this. I think the early stages are really fun to look back on. They're hard some days when you're there and you're staring at an empty inbox, trying to figure out where you're going to get your second customer from your fifth customer, your 10th, whatever it is, might even be your first customer that you're looking for. But those days should be cherished because you're right. Then all of a sudden you've got a staff, you've got people, you've got commitments, you've got other families that are dependent on you to perform and you do generate revenue for the company. So for those of you in the early stage, enjoy it, soak it up, uh, go out for a long lunch. Uh, you know, have a beer at lunch, if you must, and, uh, and enjoy yourself. Cause it gets, my take is it gets a little bit harder, Nicole, before it gets easier. I don't know if it was the same for you.

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Nicole Morgan (28:16.681)

Yes. Yeah, definitely. Like I said, I mean, kind of that midway point is where everything kind of hit the fan, but it's almost like I felt like I had to get to that point to know how far to pull back and to be able to reset because I really just had no concept for what this could grow toward. And so that's part of why I didn't do the planning. I didn't put together a business plan or anything because I didn't know what this could be. And that started to give me a taste for, okay, well, this is a road that I can go down, but if I pull back,

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I can plan better for that growth. It just helped me be so much more organized. And so now, yeah, like I can go take a vacation and the business doesn't stop. The business keeps running because I'm not solely responsible for everything. And I've delegated that and I have people in place who can manage the business while I'm gone.

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Tom Finn (29:07.954)

Yeah. And that's where everybody wants to get to as an entrepreneur. You want to work on the business, not in the business. And that really means that you are able to supervise, lead, provide planning, but there's a lot of other hands that are helping actually do the work on a day -to basis, which allows you to take a vacation with your family and spend more time with your kids and have some semblance of work -life balance along the path. When you think about being a working mom, does that… Is that hard for you to balance the kids and family and the business or have you figured out a nice delicate balance in your life?

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Nicole Morgan (29:47.945)

It's actually part of why I started my own business when the company that I was working for closed. I was kind of left with, okay, do I go get a job somewhere? But then knowing that I'm probably gonna have to fit in that traditional eight to five schedule, limited vacation, all of those things. Or do I try to do this on my own and actually have the flexibility to be able to be there for the school play or to go pick them up from school or whatever that might be. And that's the option that I chose. And so,

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That's a part of why as a company, it's been really important to me to have that flexibility and to be able to offer that to my employees because I just, I really cherish that. And I think of the things that I've been able to be there for that I wouldn't have been able to in another environment. So, you know, there, there are times that I have to miss things and especially as the business grew, it became less possible for me to do that every single time. But, you know, what was really cool was my kids both.

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Both of them took a business foundations class, which was basically a computer class, but they had to do a report on an entrepreneur and unbeknownst to either one of them, they both chose me. And that was, it was just really cool to see what they, what stands out.

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to them what they feel like it means for me to be an entrepreneur and to hear them say things like my mom's really hardworking and my mom has to be really focused and confident and you know all those things like it brought tears to my eyes because I thought that's, I love that that's what my kids took from it, not that my mom's not around and I don't get seer. I feel like that was the testament to me of okay, as hard as it feels some days, I've been able to balance it pretty darn well.

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Tom Finn (31:32.402)

Wow, what a reward for an entrepreneur to have your kids sign up, praise you around the really good qualities that an entrepreneur has. And you obviously have within your family. That is absolutely wonderful. I'm so glad that that happened for you and for your family, because there are some long hours and some dark nights alone in your office, right? Pulling a rabbit out of the hat, so to speak, making magic in the PR world. So what would you say to that college graduate right now, that next generation? She's 24, she's graduating from one of the finest universities in the world, Oklahoma State University, and she wants to start a PR firm. What would you tell that young whippersnapper?

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Nicole Morgan (32:22.569)

Well, I'm going to be old school on this one. I'm going to say you need to get a job first because I just, I think that you learn so much by being in a work environment. Um, there are so many mechanics of just doing the job and really understanding how to do the job that school can't teach you because it's just not a real world environment. And so you got to throw the textbook out the window a lot of times and just get down to work. And so figuring that out and figuring out how to start a business to me.

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I don't know how people do that, but I know they do, and I know a lot of universities have entrepreneurship programs, but I would say go get a job first and learn a little bit, and then decide if that's something you really wanna do.

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Tom Finn (33:02.098)

I think I'm with you on this. I took that path. You took that path. And maybe it's partly because we both went that direction and we found early success in career and then bounced into being entrepreneurs, right? And it worked. And I'm with you at some level. It is hard, I would imagine at 22 to balance all the things that you have to balance as an entrepreneur. It's not super easy. You got to have some life skills in business before you get there. And that'll make you more successful, more open-minded, more grateful as an entrepreneur that you've been through some other things, right?

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Nicole Morgan (33:37.929)

Yeah, and you know, can you do a side hustle where you're maybe helping a local coffee shop or, you know, something a little smaller where you can test? I mean, that's a lot of my industry is testing and measuring and seeing what's working. So you can do some of that for sure. And that also gives you a good sense of, okay, do I feel like I have the chops to be able to do this? And is this something I really want to take the risk on? Or do I need to learn a little more? Or do I really enjoy working for somebody else and being a part of their vision?

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Tom Finn (34:06.642)

Well, Nicole, we're going to leave it there. I have loved getting to know you. Nicole Morgan, Resolute PR. Where can we track you down, hunt you down, find you, work with you, and figure out how to connect?

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Nicole Morgan (34:19.785)

Yeah, probably the easiest thing is to go to our website, resolutepr.com, and we have links for our LinkedIn and social media channels on there. And then I'm personally on LinkedIn as well, so you can connect with me on there.

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Tom Finn (34:33.778)

Yeah, awesome. Well, we have enjoyed having you on the show today. Thank you so much for being with us and thank you for the great work that you're doing there in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

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Nicole Morgan (34:41.833)

All right, thank you.

Tom Finn
Podcaster & Co-Founder

Tom Finn (he/him) is an InsurTech strategist, host of the Talent Empowerment podcast, and co-founder and CEO of an inclusive people development platform.

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