499. Understanding the Customer Experience
Matt wanted to be his own boss from the day he started trading baseball cards in his make-believe, backyard store. But it was the 10 years working in sales for someone else that first taught him how to succeed by walking in his customers’ shoes.
Matt Ruedlinger is a serial entrepreneur. He’s the founder and CEO of the marketing firm, Triple R Marketing, and president of a caramel baking Company, Jones Caramels. He is the founding partner and president of the app, FanVius, which allows fans to order food and merchandise from their seats at sports and event venues. With more than 20 years of experience in marketing, Matt has been described as, “Highly-creative, with an unparalleled understanding of the customer experience.”
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
“I always thought it was so cool to have your own business. Since I was young, it was always in my mind to start my own company. When I was a kid I collected baseball cards. I remember when my friends would come over to trade cards, I would take blankets and placed them over tables to make things look like I had my own baseball card shop.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
After learning computer-assisted design (Auto-CAD) for a mechanical contractor, and then mastering a 10-year sales job, he found himself unemployed. Matt used the buyout of his employer as the kick-start he needed to move forward on his lifelong entrepreneurial dream. “I decided it was time to do it. There’s probably never going to be that perfect time. You just have to take that leap.”
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
“Empathy is the key to your success, in business and in life. It means putting yourself in the other person’s shoes, and caring about the people you are dealing and working with, all the time. Especially today, when we are so fast-paced. We need to slow down and listen to what people are saying. There’s a reason why people feel the way they do, and you may not know exactly why. Just listen and learn to respect it, and embrace it as much as you can.”
1. Learn to slow down and listen—really listen—to people, in all areas of your life.
2. Look beyond the career opportunity itself and consider the work environment and the many elements that go into making us happy.
3. Stop talking, start walking. Take action.
4. Start writing it down. Write a plan, a timeline and deadlines. Measure and track your progress.
5. Don’t get complacent and think you must stay where you are. You can always make a change.
On His Bookshelf
Jeffrey Gitomer’s Little Red Book of Sales Answers: 99.5 real world answers that make sense, make sales, and MAKE MONEY, by Jeffrey Gitomer, Jessica McDougall, and Rachel Russotto
Connecting With Matt Ruedlinger
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