Jason: You’re on Episode 33 of The Business Made Easy Podcast. Let’s do this, Mia!
Mia: You’re on The Business Made Easy Podcast where we make business easy. Here’s your
host, Jason Skinner.
Jason: Thank you, Mia. G’day, g’day, and welcome to The Business Made Easy Podcast where
we make business easy. I’m your host, Jason Skinner, and I am thrilled that you’re with me again
for another week. I hope you’re well out there, whatever you’re up to. We’ve got a fantastic
episode today with a great friend of mine, Dinesh Rudra.
Dinesh is a Communications Expert. He makes these really great, cool animation videos to
communicate difficult messages and communicate change within an organization with these
cool animated graphics and videos.
So we have a fantastic chat, but before we get into that, I hope you’re well out there, whatever
you’re up to in business. So I hope it’s kicking some goals for you. If you are new to the show,
thank you so much for joining me and welcome. I’m glad you are here. And thanks for taking the
time and energy to tune in and listen.
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Dinesh’s journey in business today and also all about employee engagement and
communication and proving communication within your business as well. So we’re going to
have a great episode for you. Dinesh, tell us, mate, a little bit about yourself and background.
Dinesh: Yeah. Thanks, Jason. So I am originally from Malaysia. I come from a town called
Petaling Jaya just outside of Kuala Lumpur and so my background is actually in IT. I’m a
computer science graduate.
Dinesh: But very soon after graduation, I realized that every job I had I was always
working with the IT department but then in the IT department I wasn’t doing all the IT work. I
was doing all the communications work. You know, the storytelling, the presentation design,
the newsletters, working with the business and so I found that the pattern I was going through
was that I’m actually not so much IT. I’m not so IT heavy but I’m actually more of the
communication side. And so my journey led me very quickly from IT into comms, internal
comms, and change communications. So anyway, I’m jumping into my story already. But, but
yeah, I was working in Malaysia for about nine years before my wife and I decided to move to
Australia and so in 2009 we moved to Melbourne and we’ve been there ever since, we’ve been
here ever since and looked for a couple of organizations here in the change communication
capacity for a couple of – second child and I wanted to actually find a way to actually spend
more time at home and help my wife out and I thought that starting a business would be the
best way to do it.
Jason: No. More time, more time and business don’t go together.
Dinesh: That’s right. I thought, oh, I’ll have all this time, more money, and flexibility.
Jason: Yeah, living the dream.
Dinesh: Yeah, this is the trouble when you listen to all of those, you know, those videos
like, you know, lifestyle freedom and you just – you forget that there’s a lot of work that goes
with that and so, yeah.
Jason: That’s right. Yeah, I think a lot of people – a lot of people start their own
business to get away from their boss and yeah, and quickly realize that they’ve got a worse boss
in themselves and the business.
Dinesh: That’s right. Yeah.
Jason: Well, so moving to Australia, so you started the communications business from
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah. So like I said, I was – I was doing IT work for like maybe about five
years and then in – when I was in Malaysia Airlines, it was one of the companies I was working
for in 2005 I’m still doing IT business liaison work and – and one of the managers pulled me out
from that roll and said hey, you know, we’ve got this large 10-year program that we’re starting
and it’s going to touch all of the employees in the organization and I know that you really like
doing presentations and we need someone to go around to all the regions and talk to them
about what’s happening, the change that’s coming and how it’s going to affect them. And I was
yeah, let’s do it because I – you know when you work for the airlines the best benefit you get is
you get first class travel when you travel on the airlines.
Jason: On the airlines, nice.
Dinesh: Yeah, so I was like, yup. I was just, you know, newly married at that time and of
course, you get discounts for your spouse as well and so I thought yeah, this is great, you know.
I get to do what I love.
Jason: Living the dream.
Dinesh: And we get to enjoy first class travel as well and so – so I did that for a couple of
years I think about two years, travel to lots of different countries and did a lot of presentations
and then we decided to move to Australia because my family – my, my sister and brother had
already moved to Australia a number of years before then and so they said, you know what,
when you come over and have a look to see if you’d like to work here as well, you know, because
there are lots of opportunities for communication type work and organizations here as well
and so I said, okay, I will come for a year and see because that was like 2008, 2009 when I think
there was a big financial crisis globally.
Dinesh: And so I was really optimistic that there would be a job waiting for me in
Melbourne so easily but for some reasons I – the first interview I went to I actually go the job.
Uhm I gave myself a month saying I’ll try to get a job within this month and if I don’t get a job,
we will forget the idea. Actually, we were trying to spend a year here so I attended this
interview with – with the Water Agility Board in Melbourne that’s called Yarra Valley Water
and yeah, I got the job and so –
Dinesh: — we moved. It was unbelievable. Like I didn’t really – I didn’t expect it at all. And
so we moved and then we realized soon after that we were actually expecting and my wife was
expecting our first child and so that one year – we thought we’d give ourselves one year in
Melbourne so that went out the window as well. Because when you have a child, you don’t
want to like, have too many changes happening.
Jason: Right, right.
Dinesh: And so – so all our plans to travel around Australia and explore and having
adventures that went out the window. But we had a really good time learning to be parents
here in Melbourne and we found it was so, you know, it’s such a nice place to – to bring up a
family in Australia. Uhm so many opportunities for children to, you know, to really enjoy the
nature, to have a really calm and you know, calm birth and calm child compared to lots of
countries in the world where there’s a lot of hustle and bustle and race too, you know.
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: The rush.
Jason: Yeah, this a good place. Fantastic. So tell me about your business starting the
business. When did you – how long have you been in business yourself now?
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah, so I was still working after Dashna was born and then in 2012 we
were expecting our second child and – and like I said, we were trying to find a way for me to
spend more time at home so I started the business. Uhm at that point I was reading – I was
following Chris Guillebeau. Are you familiar with Chris Guillebeau’s work?
Jason: No, no.
Dinesh: So Chris Guillebeau is a – he does a couple of things. He’s – he is most popular –
the most well known for World Domination Summit. World Domination Summit that he runs
every year in Portland.
Dinesh: He has a blog called “The Art of Non-Conformity” which has been going on for
about 12 years now I think and most recently last year he started a podcast called “The Side
Dinesh: And his podcast is – it’s one of my favorites. It’s like 10 minutes a day.
Dinesh: Everyday there’s an episode and he shares a story of someone in the world
doing a side hustle, how they did it, what they’ve learned and how you can do that too.
Jason: Oh, nice.
Dinesh: Really good resource. I think if anyone else is listening.
Jason: Yeah, they’ll put it in the show now, it’s for sure. Yeah.
Dinesh: Yeah. And anyway, so he has always tried to help people start having a side
income or start a business income and so he wrote a post called “Six Steps To Your First
Business Income” or something like that. I can’t remember exactly. I’ll send you the link after
the show and I was in bed one morning just looking at my phone as you do when you wake up
sometimes, looking in my e-mail and I saw this update from Chris saying he’s got a new blog
post. I read his post, took me about 10 minutes to read the post and at the end of that, I got out
of bed and told my wife, you know what, I’m not renewing my contract with KPMG. I’m just
going to start a business. And she was like what?
Jason: Oh, wow. Oh, no.
Dinesh: Yeah but we had some savings at that time and we thought, okay, you know, let’s
give it a go. Even though we were just about to buy our first house, we’re having our second
child coming soon and it was not really the best time to start a business.
Jason: Yeah, timing is everything there, Dinesh.
Dinesh: Somehow she said go ahead and so I – I got out. I got a – I registered a domain,
did my letter of resignation and oh and just to backtrack a little bit so my last real job was with
KPMG as internal comms manager at one of their divisions and – and one of the things I was
doing there was working on their video strategy.
Dinesh: And a lot of times they would produce internal videos but they were mostly of
partners talking about a certain topic for about five to seven minutes.
Dinesh: And – and our service all showed that no one actually watches the videos like
because it’s –
Jason: Is that because they weren’t interesting?
Dinesh: Yeah. Like if you can imagine these – these employees are actually on the road,
they’re going to client’s engagements. They’re working at clients offices and – and they’re
always busy with, you know, project work and to actually have to come back to the office and
sit down and watch a video on the internet of a partner talking about a topic that’s related to
work, it’s not really –
Dinesh: — like I want to do that. There’s no pull, you know, it’s all a push. Yeah?
Jason: So it’s just not exciting at all, is it?
Dinesh: That’s right and so – and so I quickly realize because I was always in that space
where I’m actually looking at Pat Flynn. I’m watching, you know, people like – like Chris
Guillebeau, like Michael Hyatt and I’m seeing what they do on video – and of course, what’s his
name? Yeah, and I’ve seen what they do and I tried to bring that into the business, right? And a
lot of videos that I was watching at that time was animated a lot of explaining type videos to
help promote products and services and apps and I thought, you know, these are great ways to
get a lot of messages, a lot of – a lot of key messages into – to the audience in a short amount of
time. And so – so at that time at KPMG we were about to do a video on business development
in KPMG. They wanted to do a short video where a partner talks about what does business
development mean to KPMG. They wanted everyone to be on the same page and I said, hang
on, let’s not do this time. I told my manager, please give me four weeks and $1,000. I’ve got a
software that I found on the net. I’m going to try and learn it and I’m going to try and make a
Jason: Oh, nice.
Dinesh: A video and if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work but at least give me this four
weeks and give me this chance to do this. And she was like – she’s good. She said you know
what, go ahead because she’s one of the story backgrounds, from a change story background.
She really knew the power of visuals and so – so I did this. I got myself a room on the fourth
floor of the building. I set up my wife’s camera and I was doing stop motion animation. I don’t
know if you remember those videos in the past where they had like you know, websites in plain
English, you know, where the stop-motion characters, paper cutouts.
Jason: Yup, yup.
Dinesh: So I did a video and – you know, it really went wild. The stats show [inaudible
14:23] over a thousand staff had viewed the video and actually went out of KPMG Australia
and went to KPMG Hong Kong, KPMG USA which never happened with any of our other
videos and so –
Dinesh: — very quickly I knew that was like a validation to the idea. I thought, hey, there’s
something to this and so I developed my skills but I signed up for a comic cartooning cost.
Because I’m not – I don’t have a visual background. I just have communication and IT
background at that point if you remember.
Dinesh: I was really interested in the visuals and me – and I’ve always drawn and
sketched my whole life.
Jason: Oh, okay.
Dinesh: So it’s a passion.
Dinesh: And so I thought I’m going to combine all of this.
Dinesh: And – and see if there’s a business I can start, right? Sorry, I’m just going in and
talking all the way. I’m so sorry.
Jason: No, no. It’s fine. It’s interesting. I’m really interested in your story.
Dinesh: So – so fast forward, at that point when I made a decision to quit, I had already
done four videos, four animated videos on my own for KPMG and they were all pretty good.
They were really crap in terms of, sorry, it was really bad in terms of quality because I’m not
trained for – but they were really effective and people were getting the messages. And so I
thought, this is what I’m going to do. I’m going to start a business and I’m going to do – I’m going
to do what I can do. So I said, starting a business is going to call – I’m going to call it Light
Animations and we’re going to do animations, presentation designs and website content for
anyone who needs that sort of thing. So that was mistake number one. So I didn’t realize that
when you – when you try to speak to everybody, nobody listens to you.
Dinesh: So what I was trying to say was, sorry, were you going to say something?
Jason: I was just going to say yeah, the importance of targeting and segregating yeah,
who you’re messaging, who you’re talking to, yeah.
Dinesh: Absolutely. Yeah and so – so I was trying to say I can do animation for anybody
who wants one or a slide design for anyone who wants one. And luckily we had one person who
was a friend, a former colleague from Accenture. She – she’s gone so – she started her own
business in Switzerland and she wanted someone to do an animation so I thought, look, it’s
working. Someone wants –
Jason: Friends and family know it can’t.
Dinesh: I didn’t know as well. Nevertheless.
Jason: You ran out of them pretty quickly.
Dinesh: Right after that project, absolutely. I didn’t have anything else to do. Uhm so
anyway, we worked on that project for about six weeks. No, no, no, she wanted us a
presentation done first and so I did that and then she wanted an animation done and so I did
that. And so we worked on two projects for her for six weeks now I thought this is a great start,
you know, it was like three days and I’ve gotten my first job and it’s working and we were all
celebrating and then crickets.
Jason: That’s it. It stops.
Dinesh: Yeah. And I was like, what’s going on? You know, and so I thought, okay, you
know what, I’ll try and reach out to some of my contacts. I was actually only about three years
in Melbourne at that time so I didn’t really have that many contacts. It was just a couple of
organizations that I worked with. Uhm thankfully somehow, someone heard about what we
were doing and they gave me a chance to come in and speak to them and I got another project.
Dinesh: And then I realized that I would work on a project for this is lesson number two,
I would get a project and then I would work for it, work on it for about two months, right? Six
weeks, two months to do the animation or whatever. And then once that’s done, I’ll spend
another one and a half months or two months looking for another project.
Jason: Oh wow. Faced with famine.
Dinesh: Yeah. And the reason was that I was trying to do everything myself. All the way
from sorry, Jason.
Jason: No, you’re alright. Continue.
Dinesh: All the way from writing – from meeting the clients, business development and
writing the script, doing the storyboard, doing the visuals, doing the animation, doing the
reviews and feedback and bringing the final product. So there’s no time to actually go and meet
other people or have coffees and do marketing and write blog articles and none of that.
Jason: Was that – Dinesh, was what do you think out of necessity that you were doing
that? Or that you felt that or was it – was it because of a lack of education? You didn’t know any
better in terms of – you just thought, this is my business. I’m going to do it all because we do
have that as business owners. I know myself, you know, I find myself adjusting our website at
times, you know, and you go that’s not a good use of my time but I like doing this and so was it
more of a case of that or was it more a case of having to, do you think?
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah. I think it’s a—it’s a combination of things. All of the above more
likely. Actually, when you start a business it’s actually really exciting. I think you would know,
right, Jason? When you start a business it’s – it’s really an exciting time because it’s sort of like
there are so many opportunities, there are so many things you can do.
Dinesh: You can decide what, how it’s going to work and a lot of times we, at that time,
we go into research mode.
Jason: Yeah, that’s right.
Dinesh: And we sort of, you know, try and get all of these input from different sources,
you know, people like just what I said Pat Flynn and anyone else who’s already done something
successfully online or as a business owner. Try and learn from them and then practice what
they’ve taught and so – so when it comes to something like, you know, doing your website,
again, I went and learned WordPress and I did i
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: Spent time doing that and then when it came to the animation work at that time
I felt we’re starting the business. We want to save as much money as possible. So it will be most
Dinesh: — if I did everything myself.
Dinesh: It’s a really a mindset thing, right, Jason?
Jason: It is, it is. You’re very – very right and uhm you touched on a point there that
when you do start a business, you are very excited and you do think uhm you can – you can do it
all yourself and like you said, go into research mode and you want to uhm, you want to shoot –
shoot the lights out, you know and I was only saying to someone yesterday, one of my clients is
that you – it’s – it’s cheaper and easier to do all that on paper before you start the business
rather than sort of step off the ledge and – and – and – and say okay, where are my wings? You
Jason: I think it’s – it’s a lot cheaper and easier to get a big piece of paper and my
method and I’m a big of my maps and – and ladle that on paper and get it sorted out then work
– then go and – and spend the money and yeah.
Dinesh: Yeah, it takes a lot of discipline to do that as well though.
Jason: Yeah, it does. It does. for a none so new in here someone who – someone – as
you clearly have an entrepreneurial spirit and mind, yeah, it’s – it’s hard. It’s easier said than
done, isn’t it?
Dinesh: Yeah, how about yourself? Did you, sorry, I’m curious to know. When you
started your business, did you try to do everything yourself when you – when you first started
Jason: Look, to be honest, Dinesh, I still do today, you know. I still try and do things that
I shouldn’t and it’s – it’s – it is hard particularly when you are passionate about what you’re
doing and you – to say for instance I love mocking around on WordPress. I think WordPress is a
fantastic program and you know, I love getting in there and tinkering with it but it doesn’t mean
that I should. So you know, yeah, so I have had to really exercise a lot of – a lot of discipline and
like you clearly have learned that it’s not just yeah, just because I can and want to, doesn’t mean
that I should and that’s the best thing for the business. So uhm yeah, and it’s amazing the time
that you can free out when you do start to let go of things to other people.
Jason: And you actually get a better product and outcome as well.
Dinesh. Absolutely. That’s exactly what happened, actually.
Jason: Tell me about that.
Dinesh: Yeah, so after doing a couple of projects and – and running out of money, like
really close to running out of money a friend, a friend’s father – no, no. Uhm one of our
children’s friend’s father from school was starting his own training business.
Dinesh: And he wanted some help with an animation for—for a segment of his training
video and – and so I thought okay, I’m not going to – I’m not going to charge like this is a friend
and – and I didn’t want to like give him a corporate rate. Is it going to be crazy for him right?so I
said, you know what, I’m going to start hiring a freelancer to do this video and I’ll just charge
him a little bit more to cover the cost of whatever the freelancer charge. In this way I actually
experiment, we’re actually hiring someone to do the video. The animation part of the project so
I still did that, you know, requirements, gathering the writing the script and the storyboarding
but I handed over then to the illustrator/animator —
Dinesh: — to develop the animation. Uhm and so the cost was very reasonable. I found –
I went on to – at that time it was called ODesk.
Jason: Yes. Yes.
Dinesh: Upwork it’s now and I hired a – an animator called Warren from India, from
Dinesh: I’ve seen his blog and he’s – he’s not just an animator but an illustrator. He’s
creative, he loves drawing and so that’s why I tried [inaudible 24:20] someone does the
graphics, you know, he’s one who actually loves the arts.
Dinesh: Sorry, I didn’t lose you?
Jason: Yeah. It’s okay. We’re good. We’re back on.
Dinesh: Oh okay. So – so I hired him and I told him what we are working on and I gave
him the script and the visual notes and he just did it like that in like a week and a half. He turned
out something that would have taken me four weeks to do.
Dinesh: And it was so beautifully done and I didn’t have to do too many adjustments or
feedback rounds with him. He absolutely got what I was trying to say. I was quite lucky in that
sense I think I got the right guy to do this.
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: Uhm and the client really loved it and yeah, I didn’t really make money out of
this project. I didn’t make much money out of this project but – but the value that came out of
this project was immense because I learned that, yeah, like you said, you know, someone else
who’s really trained in that area can do that work better than you do and faster than you can do
which will give you time to do the things that you really need to do.
Jason: That’s right. Which is getting more customers.
Dinesh: Which is getting more customers.
Jason: That’s it.
Dinesh: That’s right. And so that – since then – since that project, I have not done any of
the animations myself. I have just worked with other freelance animator creatives around the
world using, you know, Upwork to find them. But I still held on to that initial bid because I want
us to make sure – I think the strength of the videos that we do is that uhm I bring – the strength
that I bring to the table is that I actually understand – understand the complexity of the
message and then simplify it into a visual format like a—like a script that actually can be
visualized. That comes from having that IT background I feel like I understand the –
Jason: The logic.
Dinesh: The logic and the way things are processed and – and – and having the comms
background which is, you know, simplifying things and making it easy to understand and
audience-oriented and so – so yes. So I still held on that but yeah, at least I’ve started to
outsource other bits that I can.
Jason: That’s – that’s fantastic. So – so let’s fast forward to now. I guess, what’s your
team, what’s your team and business look like now?
Dinesh: Okay. So it’s now about five and a half years after we started. Uhm so it’s still me
and my wife primarily running the business and then we’ve got Joe, he’s our project
coordinator who works. So once we sign up with a client, he’s sort of goes and assigns a
schedule of, you know, what the milestones are the review points, you know, who’s doing what
and what you can expect. So there’s Joe and then we’ve got Katherine who’s our write –
content writer in Chicago and she works on researching blog articles, researching topics and
writing the articles that are relevant to our target market.
Dinesh: Uh and that’s another and that’s another big lesson for us. So sorry, that’s the
core team four of us and then we also have a number of freelance animators and illustrators
that we work with on an on-going basis. Uhm depending on what the clients want I work with
different animators. Yeah. Yeah.
Jason: And she’s on the contract type basis, do you?
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah, contract type basis. And all of the people I’ve hired for projects have
gone – have been through Upwork.
Jason: That’s good, isn’t it?
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah.
Jason: It can be a hit and miss with Upwork kind of like you.
Jason: When you get a good one, when you get a good contractor, you really want to
keep them and –
Dinesh: Yeah. You, you, you’re right. You’re right. With Upwork tsk so, I’ve hired a
number of different types of people on hard Upwork and–
Dinesh: — with, with any matters recently what I’ve been finding is we get a lot of
cheaper quotes ahh from some countries but eh you know one of the questions I asked
is for you to share with me three of your best work. You know, three years of the
previous work you’ve done. This is–
Dinesh: –that you’re really proud of. Uhm and we get some really good you know
really cheap. No, not cheap but affordable ahh rates but really good quality work.
Jason: Ahh well.
And eh eh for a while I was like, this is amazing. This, you know, this, these guys are
really good. And then something really fishy happened. Like two people sent in the
same video. [laughs].
And I was like, again? It’s a bit strange. [clears throat] And then I thought, okay I’m
gonna google this video and see if I can find the actual video on YouTube. Coz they
were all on private channels. You know as you do when you have ahh like I have a
private channel because a lot of the work that we do is confidential and we, we don’t
have the rights to share it on our portfolio.
Coz internal com’s related and so I have a private channel for reviews and feedback and
stuff. And so, so I thought some of them they’re sharing their private channel.
Ahh YouTube private channel portfolio. So by anyway like there was one video that
came to me was ahh it was a video of uhm you know Tom’s shoes?
Nah. No, I’ve never.
Tom’s shoes it’s like the social, you know to buy, you buy one shoe and that pay off
shoes goes to the village in–
Oh yes. Yes, I have heard of that. Yup, yup.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And so there was, it was a charity. And so, uhm so there was a video,
explainer video, animated, done for on, on the Tom story.
The Tom’s shoe story. It was so well done and this guy said he did it. And, and I was like,
ahh, I googled it and I found it on Vimeo and there was like a team of 30 people who’d,
who worked on that video. [laughs] And ahh and then, he was not one of them.
So I wrote to this person and said, you know, oh this is really good. You know, how did
you do it? Tell me what the process–
— you come out and see the video.
He sounded, tell me he did this you know. He came up with the video and the
illustration, the script himself. And I’m like, oh, really interesting.
I, I know. I played along and I said you know, hey, so, so, uhm, what’s ahh, you know,
what sort of software did you use? And I, and he said I giving me all these answers and
then I said, I just wanted to show you something that looks pretty similar to this. And I
sent him the link. [laughs] And then he was like, oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. I did work with a
number of other people on the project as well. And then I said, are sure? And then, and
then he didn’t, he didn’t reply. And after that you know uhm so obviously he was just
taking videos from other parts of, of the web. And then downloading them and then
uploading it unto his own channel.
Ahh it’s not good.
And then I had, I looked at all the other applicants and it was a very widely practiced
Ahh you know, tactics. And so, yeah.
So, how did you handle that? Did you get, did you, did you just dig deeper than would
you– So I guess just talk about Upwork from work because I think people would be
interested to know any tips that you might have on, look what’s your process for
scrutinizing or screening someone for Upwork? Coz it can be a challenge. It’s a, it’s a hit
and miss thing and, and particularly for your time pour. And you just want something
done quickly. And then you–
–have to get through five peo
Because if I’m not clear on that and I hire this person, there’s going to be time spent
with me trying to clarify what I want. And that time spent is actually gonna cost me a
lot of money as well.
And so before I even hire anyone, and before I wanna put out an ad, I actually am, I have
to be clear on what the job is, what I want to see at the end of it and how it’s gonna be
And then I, I put that a lot in, in this job post. And so I see as, as, talk about myself ahh–
–so that person knows who I am and what we do. And then I talk about the client that I’m
working with and what they are looking for. Uhm and in, in, in the case of the, oh of any
small business owners sees and tells. Uhm what they are looking for and then, and I save
ahh, I give them examples of things that look similar to what, what I’m actually trying to do.
And then I say ahh ahh I have a few screening questions. And the screening questions
always revolve around their previous work.
Dinesh: They’ll ask, that’s similar to what I’m looking for, right? So, so, if it’s in animation
that I’m, and anything that I’m looking for I say, this is the type of YouTube we just that, that
I’d like to see into the star that I like.
Ahh if you’ve done something similar like this–
–please send them to me. And then I’ve also tried to go, dive into their thought process.
How they actually get to where they, you know, how did actually come up with, with the
work that they come up with.
And then I have ahh ahh I, I have a look at their previous feedback on the, on their work.
Oh yes. Yup. Which is important.
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Which is really important because uhm because there you’ll find all the nuggets. [laughs].
You find things like ahh coz one of the main things I look for is someone who can
Dinesh: And regularly.
Jason: That’s it.
Because you don’t want someone who, who can’t communicate well when you’re signing
them up on as a freelancer. But then when you’re getting the work done, they don’t, they
don’t update you daily. Or they don’t respond to your messages.
They disappear. They disappear on you. Yeah.
Yeah. So, so it’s hard to, to, to, to gauge that [inaudible] daily the job at. Uhm I interview
them as well. So, so moving forward. After screening through all of this applicants I actually
pick about three or four.
That I think then I have a Skype interview with them.
Oh, you do a Skype interview.
A Skype interview, yeah.
Yeah, good idea.
Yeah. And that’s when I actually, you know, see how they respond. And some of them tsk
they don’t they speak English so well. And I say, it’s alright. Don’t worry about it. I’m, I’m not
looking for someone who can speak English well.
But I’m looking for someone who can, uhm, who can communicate you know to say–
–the least of the problems or you know, to say that there’s gonna be a delay. Let me know
upfront. All these things I really, I really want to let them know upfront. And see if they’re
happy with that. Uhm and yeah. So, after that ahh I make a decision and, and go with it.
Hmm I like that idea. That’s a great idea with the uhm Skype interview. Uhm–
Something I haven’t thought of. Because yeah particularly if you’ve got a number of
outsourcing people you’re using. So–
— Princess we have one that does just graphics for us. Graphic design work for us. And we
have another one–
Jason: — that does in our Podcast editing on or, or, or whatever we’re doing. And uhm if
you’ve got a number of people around, it’s important that uhm that they still feel part of
the team I think. And, and, and you know that–
Jason: — they’re part of your team. Because I do think there’s a tendency to go, ahh this is
just cheap labor. Uhm I’ll just get it done. And I think if you do that, if you go into
outsourcing with that attitude you going, you never gonna get the best results. So, would
you agree with that?
Dinesh: Yeah. No. Yeah. That’s right. Ahh they, so, it’s very easy to just treat them as
someone who’s gonna get the work done.
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Ahh and then, not, not actually include them in the team.
Dinesh: Per say.
Jason: That’s it.
Dinesh: Uhm so, you’re right. Uhm it’s important to actually find ways to, to, to let them
feel that they’re actually helping you with the bigger picture.
Dinesh: Not just delivering that small bit that they’re doing–
Jason: That’s right.
Dinesh: –you know.
Jason: Yeah, they’re a part of something. Coz at the end of the day–
Jason: –this is, this is one of the downsides of the internet mark, internet world, I guess and
the online world. Is is it, it’s a tendency for people to forget that there are people on the
Dinesh: That’s true.
Jason: –of that internet connection, you know. And–
Jason: –uhm they have feelings and belong, they, you know needs and want to be part of
something as well.
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: That’s right. And, and sometimes like so, whenever I work with someone else I’ve
tried to find out, so, once I’ve hired them, I try to find out a bit more about them. Ahh about
Dinesh: So a lot of times, they, I just used to being hired for jobs and delivering it and then
going on to the next one as well. And so, they, they feel a real how do you say, ahh
appreciated when you–
Dinesh: — take the time to actually find out about them, their family, you know, what they
do– what else they do for a living and you know that sort of thing.
Jason: Yup, yup.
Dinesh: And, and, and I, and, and some, and a lot of times I’ll also ask them what are they
actually trying to work towards, you know.
Dinesh: So, so, for example, we work with Camilo ahh in Argen in Columbo.
Dinesh: And he’s, he’s just ahh, he started up working freelance part time but then he’s
always hoping to do that full time. And so, so, I kept on finding ways to, to uhm to give him
more work ahh on a regular basis and, and, and ahh ahh up to a point where, and then
giving him feedback coz in face, on, on, Upwork, each time you work with a person, you can
actually forward feedback–
Dinesh: — on each deliverable.
Dinesh: And the more feedback you give the better chance this, this person will get of
being pushed up the ranks–
Dinesh: — on the listings and also making himself more visible, right?
Dinesh: To others who looking for, for work. Ahh looking for, for freelancers. And so, he’s
reached a point now where he can actually work full time as a freelancer.
Dinesh: Uhm, yeah. And then, and Byron was the guy any, who animated us, animated a lot
of our projects the beginning. He’s, he’s now top. He’s a top animator in India. And he’s in
high demand. You know, I can’t get to work with him anymore coz he’s really hard to get my
Jason: He’s fees have probably gone up, too.
Dinesh: Yeah, his fees have gone up. And but it was really good I can at first worked with
him it was great, a bit of you know a bit of a struggle. He just gone married as well. And, and
small things like when he, when he had his first child, we sent like a bouquet uhm you know.
That sort of thing.
Dinesh: Like this things make, make a lot of difference for them.
Jason: Yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: You know. Uhm, yeah.
Jason: And that’s a that’s, it’s such an important point. uhm just is uhm you want, you want
them to, you want them to be like, you want them to be part of your team and you want
them to deliver you quality work–
Jason: — for your brand and for your business. Then–
Jason: — then that’s, that that’s really a largely up to you when you’re hiring them and, and,
and communicating that you include them like, you know, that that’s a really important
point that if you want them to be part of your team, make them part of your team.
Jason: And treat them, treat them right.
Dinesh: Yeah. Yeah, I know that’s right. And, and, and it’s also important to show the
progress that’s beyond the scope of work as well. So, for example, if they’ve done a piece of
work that’s helped you deliver something bigger,–
Dinesh: — keep them updated on how that’s going as well, you know. Like, so, they can feel
like, okay, they are contribution has helped achieve something–
Dinesh: — else. You know what I mean?
Jason: Yup. Yeah.
Dinesh: It’s the progress that ahh you want to communicate to your team members.
Dinesh: Uhm yeah.
Jason: That’s fantastic. So, that’s, that’s uhm talk, talk about communication for work coz
you, you’re an expert in that field in terms of uhm ahh communicating ahh change within an
organization. Uhm and as business owners that could be quite a difficult uhm task
sometimes if you got a difficult uhm piece of information or change within you, in your
business or company uhm–
Jason: — it’s, it’s often hard to do. You have uhm your business and your skill is, is an ability
to be able to take the that difficult message and break it down into a uhm visually palatable
for whatever bit of description. But uhm a visually palatable sort of message that, that
engages them, the staff. Is that, is that primarily–
Jason: — your, your [inaudible]
Dinesh: I, I like the words that you’ve used. You’ve used usually visually palatable. I, I, I like,
I like to use the words ahh easily digestible. It’s funny how it’s all relating to food.
Jason: That’s it.
Dinesh: Uhm it, it’s true. In a, in a way, we actually consuming the visuals. Ahh the
information through visuals.
Dinesh: And ahh yeah and so, that’s a lot of what we do is actually trying to help our clients.
Uhm works out the best way to package the information or their message. In a way that’s
easily digestible or palatable Ahh by the audience, they are targeting.
Dinesh: Uhm and so, so the way we do that is actually, what we realized is a lot of
companies or organizations struggle with getting their messages through because they
are, they are focusing so much on the message and their needs and not so much on what
the audience actually needs.
Dinesh: Does that makes sense?
Dinesh: Uhm so, so for example, an organization might be rolling out a new project ahh it
and the project might impact the way their employees work. Uhm but in their messaging
it’s all about how this project will increase their revenue, how this project is gonna be good
for the company, ahh how it’s gonna change the way, the customers ahh are getting you
know, getting the, yeah, services.
Jason: Services. Yup, yup.
Dinesh: Whatever it is. But it doesn’t really say anything about how it’s gonna change the
way you’re working. You know what I mean?
Jason: What’s the benefit for the person delivering it you know although it, it’s gotta
deliver it, yeah.
Dinesh: It was the benefit of the person who’s gonna do the work to get it done.
Dinesh: Ahh or how even if it’s not a benefit. How was it gonna impact this person and what
are we doing to help you through this. That sort of thing. It’s missing.
Denish: Ahh so, usually when I, when I, when I work with a client, the first thing we do is
uhm with, there are two things. There are two primary things. One actually is finding out
what are their key messages and what is their big idea.
Denish: One big idea.
Denish: And what are their key supporting messages for that big idea. So, again a lot of
companies come with five big ideas.
Jason: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And wanna communicate in one go.
Denish: Yeah, yeah, exactly. Ahh or it’s like one big idea but you know two supporting ideas
and two other ideas you know that’s unrelated but we wanna get it out there as well.
Denish: You know. So, so, I tried to hone them in into you know one big message and a cup,
a couple of key messages that support that big idea.
Denish: And then the two primary exercises that we do upfront is an audience analysis and
a think, feel, do the analysis.
Denish: So the audience analysis primarily it seems to the client that I’m trying to find out
more about the audience.
Denish: But the reason I do that exercise is to help them think about the audience.
Jason: Yeah. Yup. Turn it around. Yeah.
Denish: Yeah. So it seems to me, it seems to them like I’m trying to find out more about who
these people are or what are they, what are they’re struggling with. What, what will they
resist with this message. You know, ahh how did they receive most of the messages in the
organization. Ahh what else is going on for them at this point in time? You know, are they
looking on other projects. Are there anything else that’s happening that’s gonna back
Denish: — at this point in time. All these things are questions that look like I’m interested to
Denish: — that is, actually to give them to think, oh yeah. You know what, there’s all this the
other big project was happening, is rolling out at the same time. Little thing.
Denish: Ahh that’s number one. Audience analysis. Number two is the think, feel, do and
that’s to get our client [inaudible] to think about you know put three comes up there. Think,
Denish: Ahh and think about you know what do you want your audience to think after they
watched the video or–
Denish: — after this looked at this infographic. What do you want the audience to feel once
they’ve looked at this info-graphical set down at your presentation? What do you want
them to do after, you know, watch this video. So, uhm, so really, really write down three or
four points under each of those columns. You know the ready to think about what, what’s
the final outcome of this product, you know. Just to look
Jason: Hm-mmm. Hmm.
Denish: And the reason we do that there’s a couple of things. One is they will start to think
really clearly about, you know they really concretely visualize what the outcome is.
Denish: Ahh and then they realize, oh hang on. These messages are not really gonna help.
Denish: We need a couple of different messages to get this outcome. Ahh the second thing
is we want a checklist. We want to create a checklist of whether we’ve covered all of this
things in the script, for example, you know. Ahh Or, I’d give you an example. There was one
client we, we work with. And they, they had done the video already, internally.
Denish: Ahh it was rolling out ahh ahh transformation program internally for, for it was a
bank. And, and they have done this video was like seven minutes long. And it was a bunch
of stakeholders internally talking about the bits and pieces. And then some, some, some be
[inaudible] of the project going on. Was seven minutes long and there are so many
messages and it was just all over the shop, right? And so they asked me if I could help.
Denish: Clean it up a little bit and add some animation. Uhm no, no, actually they asked me
to help add some animation in between, you know.
Denish: So but what I did was I got them to do this thing, feel, do exercise for the whole
video. And that’s when they realized a lot of the stuff they had in the video wasn’t even
Denish: It, it was actually missing parts that they should have included, you know.
Jason: Yup, yup. The message wasn’t getting.
Denish: So you actually do they think, feel, do and then that becomes like a checkbooks.
Okay, we need something in here to get people to feel excited to be a part of the project.
We need something in here to actually go and look at the resources online after they seen
the video. Ahh and then they see, oh we’ve not put that in there, you know.
Denish: Or we have something in there to do this, you know. So, so, that’s really important.
Denish: — working on anything, whenever you’re working on a video or a presentation, or
speech or ahh tsk even if it’s a blog post, you can actually do this exercise where you have a
think, feel and do. Uhm you get really clear on the outcomes for your audience and then
you have a checklist straight up to say you got to have your blog post have to have these
things in order for this to happen.
Jason: Yeah, yeah. So, just to, just to recap that. That’s really powerful I think for anyone in
business. Even if you’re uhm communicating to customers or–
Jason: –any message at all–
Denish: That’s right.
Jason: — is really uhm isolate just and just to recap that. Is that isolate the one big idea and,
that, that you want to communicate. Ahh what’s the outcome that you want from that big
idea, I guess. Is that you’re saying?
Denish: Yeah, yeah.
Jason: And then, and then in terms of communicating it, what do you want the person
hearing the message to think, feel and ahh do. Uhm and that and, and as a framework to
structure your, your communication to them.
Jason: That’s perfect.
Denish: That’s, that’s absolutely it.
Jason: Love it.
Denish: — Yeah, yeah. Because when you don’t do that, you may end up with a lot of fluff–
Denish: — that’s not necessary for your, in your–
Denish: And you lose the impact.
Jason: Yup, yup. That’s good. And we’ll all include that, that framework in the shown out as
well for the listeners too. Because I think that’s really powerful uhm powerful uhm–
Denish: Oh that framework.
Jason: –framework. Yeah. Well, ahh I guess and I’m guilty of it myself. Is, is you know, you
get, you get excited about things. You know as, as a business [inaudible] and you go, oh this
is gonna be so amazing. And you know, I’ve got a, I’ve got a team of people here as well and,
and I know I see their eyes glaze over when I start saying, you know, we’re gonna do this,
we’re gonna do this, we’re gonna do this, you know. It’s like, it’s like information overload.
Jason: And I think if we actually broke it down into more uhm clear, concise, digestible, sort
of palatable was the way I used like, uhm ahh messages then, then I think you’re uhm yeah,
you, you’re gonna have ahh ahh a far, greater take up right ain’t you.
Dinesh: That’s right. That’s absolutely right, Jason.
Jason: Oh, that’s fantastic. No, I love that. So, uhm Denish, although I love this talk. Ahh I
don’t think uhm I think we’ve, we’ve uhm I’m conscious of time too and, and your time.
Jason: Uhm in terms of ahh if we’ve wanna find out more about you, how we do that?
Dinesh: Yeah. Uhm so, our Light Animations website is lightanimations.com.
Dinesh: But I think as we had a chat earlier before the show ahh I’m actually pivoting a
little bit into the training and workshopping space.
Jason: Hmm. Nice.
Dinesh: Focus your communications.
Dinesh: Uhm so, ahh I actually moving into a new sub-brand called visualasusual.com. It’s
still being built at the moment. Ahh it won’t be ready til probably next week.
Dinesh: Uhm but that’s going to be around helping teams ahh plan, advocate, celebrate and
educate it. Everybody into one place.
Jason: Fantastic. Now, that’s fantastic. Well, well, uhm I’ll put a link to that in the, in the
shown out as well. Uhm coz ahh yeah, so people can, can go find you there as well.
Dinesh: Thank you.
Jason: Denish, something I like to ask all my guest on the show uhm is what is something
that’s working for you in the business right now that you’re getting some great results
with? Ahh it could be ahh an app. It could be a productivity tip or could be an idea uhm.
Jason: Putting you on the spot here.
Dinesh: Okay. Ahh okay, I’ll tell you what, what, what’s really worked today and for the last
couple of years is the 90-day plan.
Dinesh: Have you heard of that? Uhm.
Dinesh: It’s, it’s, it’s actually basically every 90 days you sit down. Okay, the problem
that I used to have was uhm ahh like I said you know. The scrill, the shiny, the shiny
object, you know.
Jason: Yes. Yeah.
Dinesh: Ahh and then entrepreneur, you actually get, you know, you’re always bombarded,
bombarded with new ideas to practice or to try out.
Jason: That’s right.
Dinesh: Ahh and, and sometimes you just spin your wheels on a lot of things and then you
don’t get anywhere.
Dinesh: And so very early on I hired a business coach at one point and, and one of the
things he told me straight up was to exercise a 90-day plan so that you know exactly what
to do every single day for 90 days. Ahh ever, every single day. And so how you do it is ahh
you get a piece of, you get a couple of piece of paper. On the first paper, you write down on
top uhm what, how much money you wanna make in 90, in this 90 days.
Dinesh: Like what’s the income you wanna generate in this 90 days. Uhm and then, the next
step is to say what you’re gonna do in exchange for that 90, for that, for that amount.
Dinesh: And that’s to say like, let’s say I say $90,000 in 90 days and ahh, and the thing is
you have to just think big. No, don’t restrain yourself. Just think big.
Dinesh: Uhm and the second step is to actually ahh break it down. Say I wanna do 6 videos
at $5,000 each and that’s $30,000 and then you, you break down, you know.
Jason: How you gonna achieve that, that 90,000.
Dinesh: So is this a products you can sell for how many people and you get this amount
of money. Then the third step is to say, okay, if I’m gonna do 6 videos I’m gonna actually
I’ll just pick 15 people in my network.
Dinesh: Ahh to get you know, 6 needs or something like that. You know, I’m gonna ahh have
to attend 3 different workshops or ahh three networking sessions or something like that.
I’m gonna right one, one blog post a week. Uhm.
Dinesh: I’m gonna do 3 videos on LinkedIn or whatever it is. Uhm and then the next one I’ve
got to do ahh website with a page on my services you know. And so you, you have things
that you need to do in order to, to sell this products or services.
Dinesh: Okay? And then the 4th step is to break down all those things that you need to go
into actual tasks. And the 5th step is to schedule those tasks into those 12 weeks in the 90
Dinesh: So, that way you have a plan for every single day out of the 90 days for the next 90
days. In order to help you achieve the goals that you’ve set for that 90 days.
Dinesh: The thing is, you don’t even have to do 50% of it and you will reach very close to
the amount that you’ve–
Dinesh: –put up in a paper. That’s the magic of it. I don’t know how it works.
Dinesh: But it just works. Like, you know, yeah.
Jason: I think, I think it’s uhm, I think it’s a great way to give you clarity, isn’t it?In terms of–
Dinesh: It does
Jason: — like it’s, it’s not an eternity that you’re doing it for. Just a 90-day project. And–
Jason: –uhm so this is my focus for this 90 days and these are the things. Just join the dots,
Dinesh: Yeah. And it helps you test things out as well. It’s not too long you know. So, you’ve
let’s say you’re testing on a target market. I’m gonna just do internal coms people ahh. I’m
gonna only just focus on the internal coms market for 90 days. If it doesn’t work out, next
month I’ll look at the change management group–
Dinesh: –of people.
Dinesh: You know. So, it gives you 90 days to test out a certain space or tactic or whatever
Dinesh: If it doesn’t work out, the next I’d say try something else.
Jason: That’s right. Yeah. And I guess of any shiny new things come along in that time you
just park them and until your next review time.
Dinesh: That’s it.
Jason: That’s why I love Evernote so much. It’s fantastic for that sort of thing.
Dinesh: Oh yeah.
Jason: It just uhm I, I’ve got to train myself to uhm if like something comes into my inbox, I, I
have to send it over To Evernote for another time otherwise I’ll, I’ll lose a day, you know.
Dinesh: Yeah, yeah, yeah. That’s a great idea.
Jason: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Dinesh: [inaudible] action to that well.
Jason: That’s great too. Denish, mate, it’s been a fantastic time having a chat with you and
uhm and I really appreciate your time coming on the show. And uhm and sharing this ahh
genes of knowledge and, and particularly in the communications uhm plan and uhm tsk
hearing your business journey as well is, is, is been really good. So ahh thank you. Thank
you, mate, for your time and ahh–
Dinesh: No, thanks so much for having me on. It’s been a real pleasure.
Dinesh: Thank you.
Jason: And ahh I’m gonna let you enjoy your day as well. Okay
Dinesh: Hey, you too. Have a good one.
Jason: You too. All of us, bye. Well, there you have it. That’s Denish Rudra and what a
fantastic go. We had such a fantastic time ahh with that, with that interview and uhm
yeah, he truly does know his stuff and to build a business around his passion ahh of for
communication et cetera. You know, that’s just fantastic ahh I don’t know how he got
away with waking up ahh one morning and just uhm handing it, creating his job like that
but he did it. And he’s, he’s live to tell a tale. So, fantastic. Thanks ahh Denish for, for
joining us. And thank you for joining us on the show today too. I hope you had a
fantastic ahh time with it. With this episode. I really do enjoy bringing this to you each
week. If you’ve got any feedback, please feel free to drop me a line
[email protected] Good or bad, I’d like to hear from you. And I,
now what you’d like more of on the show. If you’d like something, in particular, ahh that
I can help you with on the show, by all means, drop me a line to
[email protected] and I’ll be there to help you and ahh and bring
you ahh the content that you’re after as well. But until next week, I’m gonna hand you
over to Mia, she’s gonna take us out and ahh I’ll talk to you next week. Here’s to your
success. Take us out, Mia.
Mia: Thanks, Jason