CEO Coaching AMA With Angel Ribo

Thomas Green here with Ethical Marketing Service. On the podcast today, we have Angel Ribo. Welcome, Angel.

Thank you. Thank you very much for having me, Thomas.

My pleasure. Would you like to tell the audience a bit about yourself and what you do?

Absolutely. Well, I’m originally from Barcelona, although I live in Texas, they believe they’ve been living here in the Dallas area for the last 10 years. And you know, in a nutshell, what I do is I held both co reported CEOs and established entrepreneurs to breach the gap globally for expansion and exposure. I basically use internationalisation, is, you know, a strategies to help accelerate the growth of their businesses, that’s what I do. And also I have a non-profit, it’s called Wisdom for Kids and what we do is we help underprivileged kids in Latin America become entrepreneurs using the local resources. So those are basically the two main things they do in my life. Well on LinkedIn, we’ve actually had short conversations about that, haven’t we? Absolutely, yeah, I’m very active on LinkedIn. Actually, LinkedIn is I would say the main platform, what I conduct my business and my client’s businesses and I actually want, I consider myself to be it a link to an influencer.

Actually, I, I use my influence to help my clients get their messages and their products and services out to their markets. So yes, exactly, Well, I know from the profile that you are the CEO confidante, but just in terms of what you do, is it accurate to say that you’re a coach. well that’s a great question. So I started as a consultant, right? So basically, you know, giving my, you know, my five cents my piece of advice to the CEOs of this world. Exactly. But eventually I became more of a coach and not only a business coach, but also as you said, the CEO coach in the sense that when you, when you, you know, we started building trust with your clients, you eventually, they eventually asked, ask you or ask me and he can you also help me with my position specifically with my role I have in the company with my life even because again, you cannot isolate the different roles that we all play in our lives.

Right. We are probably friends. We are sons, we’re maybe parents, right? We have many different roles in our lives. It’s difficult to isolate them as soon as this trust is being built with them. Yes. To your point, additional, additional ways of helping my clients and business partners are in a race. They might come to you for business help and then also it might cross over into their personal life. Yes, absolutely. It does. It does very often. Exactly. So what are the common traits of successful CEOs that you have observed? Yeah, number one and actually that’s one of the mantras in my business, which is, I mean, they take action immediately, right? And it doesn’t have to be, it doesn’t have to be necessarily like perfect action and that’s something I use all my, oh my, that’s a nugget. They use all the time, which is take imperfect action now. Taking perfect action now. And I use that also with my entrepreneurial, you know clients, customers. and that would be one.

So they’re, they’re less, let’s say wouldn’t say fearless, but they’re less fearful of taking action and going to the market and making business decisions and marketing decisions. Although they don’t have all the information, all the viable, right? So they like to take risks. That would be the second one. They’d like to take risks because they know that taking risks, they can go to the market and they can actually, you know, in the entrepreneurial world, there’s this concept of the minimum viable product, right? So there’s this minimum viable characteristics of a particular product of service. But when you start sending it, offering it to the market, you get the first feedback, right? So they are very good at that. They are very good in start talking with their potential future clients and asking them, hey, I am planning to do this, I am planning to suffer, you know, this to the market and planning to send this to offer this product of this particular service. What do you think about it? And then they are very good in, in, you know, grasping this market intelligence very early on in the life cycle of that particular product of service, you know?

So, again, taking in perfect action being, uh, you know, open to take risk, and the third one will be, they’re all very, very, very mindful that the key thing inside the organisation, so that they are able to provide their boards with the answers that they’re looking for. You know, the shareholder value that they’re looking for. They’re very mindful that everything relies on their teams, okay. It’s not that everybody does a great job in, you know, educating or engaging or keeping their employees accountable. Obviously, every single CEO would like to have high level of accountability within the employee ways, but the reality is that that depends a lot on the, on the leadership style, right? It depends a lot on the engagement of the of the, of the employees, but they are definitely completely mindful that unconscious that their team is everything for them and every single decision they make, as far as, you know, growing their team or maybe downsizing it whenever the circumstances, you know, make them do that.

They are very, very mindful that the talent and everything that they have been developing within their team, it’s gonna, is the main asset that the company has. So they put a lot of effort in making sure that their own messages, the messages that come from the board really, really, really go down not only onto their own leadership team in the company, but to the rest of the employees of the organisations, those will be my three main traits that I have found throughout my life. The first thing that you mentioned is also something I’ve heard about billionaires. So they basically looked at common traits among billionaires and the way they phrased it, which reminded me of what you said was, uh, they’re willing to take action regardless of the certainty of whether it will work or not. So you said it was a risk, but I mean it just makes me think of that because we don’t, a lot of times we don’t know whether something is going to work, but billionaires or perhaps CEOs in your case they’re willing to take the action anyway.

Exactly. And actually that this is also a common trait with not, I work a lot here in Dallas Fort Worth area with entrepreneurs with start-ups and very, very embedded, let’s say in the startup world and I work with uh, business incubators, business accelerators and something that they find in common all the time is that sometimes people say they really want to go to the market early, but they are fearful of going to the market. They are fearful of, uh, maybe talking to the market too early because they have this idea and they want to get, you know, hold on to this idea, this concept and they don’t want anybody to know, blah blah, blah. I would say, you know, I always tell them the same thing I tell them, I think I’m afraid that you’re looking at the world from a scarcity mindset, right? Because I mean of course there’s this, you know, super multibillion dollar, you know, ideas like, you know, Uber or Airbnb or many others, right? I mean, I understand that, but regardless, regardless of that, I think that it’s very important that very early on you get these early winds, you know, these early winds that they give you the confidence to keep moving to keep moving forward and doing things.

And I like to think of organisations and sometimes you know, I have my own like frame of reference in my life. I see, I see the life a very specific peculiar way and I think that both people and companies are just energy. That’s how I look at the world, They’re just energy. So, you know, a company start up, it’s just, it’s just a hole, you know, a bunch of energy that is being built by one of many different people. But at the end of the day, you want this energy to get into the market, right? You want to this energy to, to touch the market because it’s gonna be, you know, benefiting the market is going to be, you know, a dish bringing additional value to the market in the form of service or product doesn’t matter. And as Tony Robbins says very well, the, you know, the amount of wealth that you are able to generate with your business or with your life is totally no proportional to the amount of people that you are able to add value to.

So you know, why being, you know, again, although I know that intellectual property is important, why not going very early on into the market? Just be just, you know, take your chances. And I started deploying this, started testing it, proof testing, proof testing is the number one thing I always advise my, my, you know, my, both my CEOs when they want to launch a new product, all of the newly established ones, when they’re starting with a completely new venture, you know, just done those precautions, which I understand come from a mindset of scarcity and not everybody is in agreement with me, but hey, there’s enough business, there’s enough needs out there in order to fulfil, you know, as much as you would like to offer to them literally and if it’s not locally, it’s going to be in other areas. That’s why I’m very strong on internationalisation and going international, going global because um, there are a lot of products and services that are, are not only valuable locally, but in many other areas in the world.

Well, yes, so much so tell me if it’s not, this was not what you were going for, but your phrase about the minimum viable product, so much so that it’s actually got its own name now, right? So it’s in, they call it products being in beta. So, you know, we’re pushing this out and you’re going to be the ones that are testing it, right? Is that kind of what you mean? Yes, yes, it’s the concept, this is exactly, it’s very similar, you know, in the entrepreneurial world, they use this term just because you know, it it’s the minimum viable, as far as what viable, as far as you are able to serve a need. Right? So exactly, it’s the earliest stages of a product or a service, which is exactly the kind of the concept of a better, right? So you’re telling your clients, I’m going, I’m launching this, I would like you if you were so kind to test it along with me and you tell me the feedback, you tell me what you think about it, so we can move forward. Exactly, I think that, you know, the smartest companies do that, they actually reach out to you and they tell you would like, would you like to bet to test our next product or service?

I think it’s extremely, obviously it’s extremely smart uh, and allows you to have this addition this early on feedback from what will happen down the road. So what are, because you work with so many of them, what are the common mistakes that a lot of CEOs make? If I had to mention only one, the most important one is definitely that they don’t care enough about engagement. They don’t educate their teams enough. So they didn’t feel engaged and they don’t engage. Excuse me. And if they don’t engage, you cannot keep them accountable. So you know that with staff engagement. Yes, exactly, exactly. That’s definitely the one. And as the company grows, you know, one mistake they see very often is that again, they stopped being the leaders that they were in the beginning when the company started. So they little by little they kind of started building the ivory, the tower kind of thing. And they forget about their not so involved And engage with the rest of the team.

I would say that’s definitely the number one, let’s say, mistake or challenge they have as soon as they start growing, making sure that the heat they give, they give their teams the right education so that they really feel that, you know, oh my God, I feel I feel empowered. I really I really understand that we can do this because at the end of the day, we can’t we do not have to forget. I mean, you have your own business comments. So we don’t have to forget that. We shouldn’t forget that we exist because we exist because, you know, we put an equity and we want a high return on that equity. You know, we invested in our business, we invest with our time, which is the most valuable thing that we have in our lives our time, we invested at that time at that money and we want to return, that’s why companies exist to provide the owners, the shareholders to provide them with our return, right? That’s why we exist and sometimes we forget that, you know, but what if every single every single employee was fully aware of the financial implications of their business decisions, right?

So that’s extremely important. And that actually, it’s funny because as you know, it wasn’t the case in Europe and it’s not the case here in the US either. We are not educated, you know, from kindergarten up to, you know, 12th grade high school, you know, we’re senior high school were not educated on financial, you know, a human, we’re not educated on financial literacy. So even when even if we have worked with for large corporations and then we become entrepreneurs ourselves. We have never received the right level of financial literacy, which allows us to be fully mindful of the consequences of what we do for you, isn’t it? If you want to learn about that stuff. Exactly. But it’s funny because we are still, you know, both of us were entrepreneurs, right? We still made the decision of going out to the market offer our services and risk it. We’re risk it every day. You know, we’ll risk it every day. We go out there, we have our marketing, we have our podcast and exposure and everything, but still we’ll risk it every single day.

So if you take this into large organisations, the reality is that there is a common elephant in the room and that goes up to sea level as well to the CEOs. Which is not everybody has received the right level of financial literacy. I mean I was reading the other day a great book that that speaks about, you know, very basic, you know, business concepts and only 46% 46 of sea level of business operators really understand the basic financial principles of organisations only. So it means that there’s this big elephant in the room. Excuse me. Just let me take that back. It’s only it’s 46% of sea levels unable to understand the main financial principles of the organisations. So it’s not that they don’t understand it, it’s just that they have not been trained to do it. You know, they have not been educated to understand fully the financial implications of the business decisions that they made every single they make every single day.

That’s why that’s definitely the number one challenge is that it’s that this engagement of the of the of the employees for the lack of on YouTube, a lack of education? Well, coming back to your point of engagement. Do you think that’s a problem of incentives? So I think there’s an issue with staff potentially speaking up where there’s an element of risk there for them. Whereas if they don’t speak up about a, let’s say a problem or an issue, you know, they’re no worse off than they already are right there. Yeah. You’re talking about another of the challenges that companies have, which is managing expectations right all the time Inside an organisation, we are always managing expectations. You know, or our bosses are our peers are managing expectations and we don’t talk about it. There’re things that we don’t talk about it to what you just said. Just explain, we don’t talk about it, but we should talk about, we should be working on a company in an organisation that allows everybody to speak up about anything.

You know, anything, we should be able to speak about anything inside the corporation. One of them being incentives. These incentives. An important ingredient in the engagement equation. Absolutely. It is. But it’s not the only one. And again, think about your career right? Think about your career since you had your first job until you had your last job? Or even if you’re having a, you have a job right now, would you trade some of your paycheck for having a better job? Excuse me. A better boss. Okay. Or a metal culture, culture. Would you be willing to forfeit part of your check. If you were going super excited every single day to your work to the company that you’re working with. And I would probably say yes, 99% of the time. Yeah. Because you know, there’s a lot of evidence to suggest that that’s the case. Exactly. Because you know when you are excited, you are excited. You love it. I just love to go to that place and meet with that person and work together with that thing. You know, because it’s again, and that’s something also that sorry Robin says very much, which is the quality of our lives is the quality of our emotions, right?

And again, we trade unfortunately we trade in those emotions for money. So is money a good incentive. Yes. And there’s people maybe that are more incentivised by money than others. But still, what about culture? You know, what about culture? What about if you were given all the education, again, going back to education, what if you were given all the education that you need inside the company that you will, you feel really empowered? You feel really empowered and you feel that you thrive in that organisation. Is that going to impact positively engagement? I do. I do feel so I do feel so that’s why I believe a lot on very much on, you know, money is important. And again, for me also money is a matter is it’s a, it’s a form of energy, right? Which is good obviously and we have to pay our bills and we want to buy our houses, our boats, our airplanes, whatever that is. But still it’s the every single day emotion that we go through an experience human experience with our feelings and emotions that really counts.

And you know, when you go back home at night, you know, when you explain how was your day, right? If there’s someone at home ask, asking you how your day was, even if it is your dog, right? Your wonderful dog. That’s looking with this beautiful eyes. Do you? You know that he’s asking you? I miss you. You know, I miss you sir, I miss you. How was your day? And you start talking to your dog, you know, uh, sorry to put this comparison here, this metaphor. But I really, I really believe that emotions and feelings that make a big difference when you go back home and you reflect about the day that you just had. Now, it’s the way you want to spend your life, right? So I totally agree with you. Yeah, exactly. So if you’ve got some success stories that you’re proud of in helping CEOs. Yeah, there’s uh, I mean there’s a there’s a lot of stories I would probably like to explain to tell the story about a small company just because I think that um, there’s a lot of entrepreneurs out there. There’s a lot of people listening to this podcast and obviously I thank every one of them here right now listening to us because I think that it’s a story of consistent, imperfect action being taken and believing in one’s products, services and team.

I remember a company that went from literally a few, a few thousands of dollars and having those only two employees that I started to work with, I started to support, they started to coach, I started to help them go to the market, they started defining the different, you know, functions of inside the company And within two years And a half, two years and a half, they were already 43 employees, 43 employees and they were really, really close To $1.5 million dollars in revenue. I like to explain that story because the owners were very young and I remember that I was reluctant to start working with them because they didn’t have really that much of an experience. The most important experience that they had was in a very large corporation, It was actually an appliances company. Both of them, they had had different engineering, engineering responsibilities, positions inside the company, but both, but they didn’t have management experience. Again, they didn’t have management skills, but oh my God, their passion was over the top, you could tell these guys we’re gonna do it.

I still remember when they came to see me, I was, I think we met him at the restaurant or a coffee shop, I was inside, I saw them when they arrived in their car. They had this very small, tiny car. I mean, I remember that, I mean, image as if it was now, but they were with this big smile on their faces and they really wanted to do that and they really wanted to work with me. And oh my God, it was, it was a blast. I mean, obviously we are friends today and, and we, we, we, you know, we, we respect each other a lot, but it was their passion. It was there, there’s nothing impossible. We’re going to do this and we’re going to do that much better than anybody else because this, I mean, they didn’t care about competition. It doesn’t matter if we are the newcomers, it doesn’t matter we’re going to do this in a better way and the right way and we’re going to put a lot of innovation in what we do and we see the world in a different way, You know, and if I had to reflect and also say besides their passion, what also made them, um, successful because they didn’t have the experience as business owners, right?

Is that they were really good in dealing with people. 13 members loved them, love them. They were a couple. Their team members love them, love them. Also, they had a very, something that I liked a lot. You know, today, we talked about a lot about, you know, gender equity. You know, they did a great job. I mean, their industry was high tech. So it’s a, it’s a man dominated industry, but they had a very well balanced, you know, I work a lot in the, in the, you know, in the diversity and inclusion space. And they did a great job bringing, you know, female workers and male workers all together for, for the good of the company and very, very young, very, very excited. You know, employees still today. I mean, I haven’t worked with them for the last 10 years now and, you know, uh, assuming five years now, but they still remember me and, and I still, I will, I will never forget, you know, every time I was going to visit them, the excitement, you know, the third team, the way that they were supporting each other and helping each other internally, that was that was really a great experience.

So they went from 2 to 43, did you say now for some reason when I asked the question, I thought that it would be taking a corporate to bigger numbers or something, but I can completely understand why it would be something I no more meaningful a story that’s more meaningful to you taking something which is barely just started to what most people define as successful. Yes. Obviously it’s important to help a company for instance, to expand internationally, to build a distribution channels. So they start generating millions of dollars within a couple of years, three years and you have a big budget to spend to do that as well. But that’s it. I mean, when a when a large corporation starts doing this, they already have all the, you know, checks and balances and everything in place. Obviously it’s a nice story and we help a lot of people and but it’s a completely different environment, right? It’s a completely different experience as well. Yeah. You know, because obviously every single one of these, 43 means 43 different families.

Yeah, it’s more personal, isn’t it? Yes, it is. So have you noticed some trends or circumstances where the CEO would commonly reach out to you? Yes. Yeah. No one, I think that and I want to talk about marketing now, right? I think it all depends on how you market yourself. And obviously, I mean, thank you for this opportunity today because at the end of the day, every time that I exposed myself, every time I exposed myself, I’m reaching out to the world and the world is listening to me. Right? So what, what kind of CEOs you asked me, you know, what would make them reach out to me? I would say what makes them be attracted to me. Okay, that’s the that’s the question I’m going to answer. It’s the smile, isn’t it? Well, obviously, I mean it’s the attitude, it’s the attitude if you’ve If you’ve read that book from this guy that that was so many years in the concentration camps in Germany Victor Frankel, in search of meaning. If you’ve read that book, he would say that regardless of what you are in the world, even if you are for five years, 10 years in a concentration camp is your attitude, which is going to keep you alive.

So it’s the same thing. So I think that number one, obviously people reach out to me because they have a they have a they have something that they want to do or they have something that they want to get rid of and they are looking for help. So number one, they are humble enough to ask for help. That’s the number one thing those CEOs know that they need help and they think that they could help them either because of my professional background or for the values that they put out there every single time I go out there with any of my marketing strategies, right? You probably have seen that. Exactly. I’m very, very active on LinkedIn. I post every single day. I make a mix of my client’s content, my content, very personal things. I actually talked very personal very often last year. I talked a lot about, you know, building bridges and these kind of things, right? I like the comedy. Yeah, exactly. And I like to connect, I like to connect like at the, at the, at an emotional level, right?

At the very human level. So, you know, I stand for humility, I stand for, you know, probably acceptance. I stand for gratitude. I think that those three principles at the end of the day, if you consistently get out to the world and expose yourself with a specific beverage, an attitude eventually, the world comes back to you because of that because they value those principles or they value that what you do every single day. You know, there’s this, you’re a marketing expert. So you know, then when someone starts talking about, okay, so I’m going to serve that community and that’s gonna be my persona or my avatar and very often we make a big mistake which is we’re trying to have this avatar so wide so we can attract everybody. And it’s the other way around. It takes it takes a while to entrepreneurs to understand this, that the more specific, the more specific you are about how you position yourself and how you are yourself, reaching out to the world, the higher the chances that you’re attracting the CEOs or the business owners or the entrepreneurs or the startup, you know, leaders that you that you want, they need that need your services or did you want to attract your to your practice?

If you’re marketing to everyone, then you’re marketing to no one that’s the quote that I use for that one. So would you say that it’s about they’re looking to achieve something And they’re not 100% sure on what it is that they want to achieve. But they see you as the person who can help them get there basically. It’s that’s a possibility. I would say that some they sometimes they know they need they know that they need help but sometimes they’re not able to put it into words perfectly. And it would surprise you from a high level executive. Right? But at the end of the day, they’re humans. They’re human beings and you don’t know the circumstances that made that person become the CEO of that organisation. You have no idea, right? I mean you just you just guess, right? You go to, you go to Facebook, you go to LinkedIn, you look at their profiles, right? And you just guess what they went through in their lives. But that has nothing to see. I think that anything holds on paper anything, you can justify anything?

Just because of a piece of paper, right? But what is the reality behind that? What is the real concern? What are the emotions? What are the feelings, right. What is what is the thought process of a person? You have no idea until you start talking to them. That’s why I’m saying they might want something but they don’t really know what they need. I’m going to repeat this. They might want something but not necessarily know what they need, right? That’s why, you know, in the, in the beginning, in the initial conversations with our, you know, potential clients, that’s what we do. We try to make sure that maybe what we think, what they think that they want, you can provide them because you are having able to understand what they need, right? So they have a sense of fulfilment when you provide them with what they want. This doesn’t make sense, Thomas were found. Yeah, it is profound. Yeah. But you know, it is a yeah, I mean, we are complex, We are complex people individually.

You know, we are, you know, we are, we are the sons and others of all the circumstances that we have lived in our lives. Well, the other thing that your answer made me think of is when you get to CEO level, it’s perceived by everyone else that that person is super successful and you know, everything they do just kind of works, but in reality it’s a lot more messy than that. Oh. Oh, absolutely, Exactly. When I lived in the UK, I learned the term that I have used since, which is orderly disorder or literally disorder. Okay, so we would think that CEOs besides being successful besides having a nice paycheck, right. Besides all of that, they have a very order life or maybe they have an orderly disorder. Life, I would say they don’t even get there to be honest because most of the time they have had to sacrifice, they have had to sacrifice some aspects in the life, some of the roles in order to be so successful. Okay, so again, we’re going back to the same place.

It’s like when you’re a CEO and you go to meet your board, the shareholders, right? The investors, it’s like when you are, if you’re ever being called Thomas to the principal’s office, you know, it’s kind of the same thing. He’s still a human being or she is still a human being. The CEO is still a human being and they have to respond to the commitments that they made the previous quarter of the previous fiscal here, Right? Whatever the checks and balances are, but again, they’re still human beings And they have had to sacrifice because how many hours, you know, is it 168 right weeks hours a week. So we have 168 hours a week. So that’s how many hours we have all of us. It doesn’t matter if you are the CEO of general electric or British Aerospace or you know, you’re a small business owner or you are an employee doesn’t matter. We all have the same amount of hours. So what do you do? What do you sacrifice? Are you obliged to sacrifice? Probably you are too, so are you in this, are you at the right company as a CEO, that’s another question.

But sometimes I CEOs to answer, you know, I do have the right, I mean what is the tall that this role of yours is taking into your life? What is the, what is the tall? Are you willing to keep on paying? That’s all every single morning when you get into your car and you, you know, you’re driving towards your office, you know, it’s still, is that still enough? Is still paying off? Are the dividends? Are your personal and family dividends enough? And for instance, the family is a good indicator, right? Family, you know, kids wife, this is a great indicator of someone’s life, of someone’s quality of life because I mean obviously not everybody feels compelled to have a family, but the ones that do very early on they realised that they want to really live the lives of their kids, otherwise someone else is going to be, you know, raising them, raising them, Excuse me, do you find that asking that question typically, are they in the right role often or are they often not in the right role, the CEO or in the right company?

Most of the time? They’re in the right, they are in the right. Well, they think they are because I mean they have been reinforcing that thought for how many years, how many years did it take to them to be in that place. So can you imagine how is strong those neural connections? Let’s talk about thoughts, right? And beliefs, you know, considering, you know, the neuroscientists, the people that know much more than me about, about thoughts and ideas and beliefs, they say that every single idea is that neural connection in your in your brain, the more that that connection fires together, it wires together. So imagine someone that has been for their entire lives, you know, firing together those thoughts, I have to do this because I want to reach the summit, I want to reach the summit of my corporate career, I want to do that, they want to do that so that their thoughts are very strong, you know, very strong. So then it’s when you ask the right questions is that they start opening themselves and they started valuing and assessing the decisions that they made throughout their lives and there might be my questions or there might be maybe some incidences that happened in their kids’ lives or in their relatives lives or even at their parents lives, you know, some people are very, are always very attached to their parents and sometimes, you know, parents obviously they age, you know, they grow older and sometimes they don’t have their kids around or their Children around to help them as they age, you know, So yeah, so I think I think there’s always a discovery there, Well I think that I heard that regarding changing people’s minds, the sort of the emotional feeling that people have around changing those beliefs is because in the in the brain the is located near the pain centre.

So it’s almost like if I have to change my mind at this point, it’s actually going to be painful for me. That’s the link that somehow there, although I’m no neuroscientist, so that might be completely wrong. Yeah, I I don’t know about that. But obviously, you know, we are still animals, you know, we are sophisticated animals, you know, and our brain is a steal, you know, the heritage of this animal kingdom that we a religion, we originated, you know, initially and we have to, well, you know, we know that this is you know, we are still, we want to preserve our lives, right? That’s the main thing. We have this survival instinct and we still have this survival instinct totally ingrained in our personality, in our character. So a segue into how did you get into the field of coaching CEOs? How did you start in this? Yeah. So basically when I started my career in the in the 90s actually was that he was in the in the moment in which I was I moved out of Barcelona and I started my work in the UK that I started to make a lot of phone calls.

I started to sew my position was an inside sales position at that time and it was caring about corporate accounts in many different countries in Europe. But the phone calls, I was making what we’re from the U. K. So I started to have systematically over 1000 over 1000 conversations every single week. Okay, so I was having a lot of conversations, a lot of conversations. A lot of conversations. We were really a machine. You would say they would be very brief. I mean not necessarily, I would have like long conversations and very short conversations, but when you start talking to people and most importantly, listening to people, you realise that we all have, we don’t have different problems as human beings. We all have a lot of the same problem, you know, and it’s fear, it’s fear. For one reason for another, we feel uncomfortable with felonies, whatever that is. And that relates to our company. It raised, you know, relates to a business, it relates, it relates to our employees, it relates to our finances.

But at the end of the day, we all have the same thing, which is we are fearful for something. That’s something that we would like to feel more comfortable about, right? That’s so when you do something systematically and when you do something over and over and over and over again, you start seeing, you know, commonalities. You start saying that, oh my God, maybe there’s something here that I’m realising, I’m realising that if I listen properly and if I ask questions I’m realising that I’m giving these people with the right level of you know trust with the right level and not trust confidence. Excuse me. We use the same word in Spanish. So and that’s when I realised oh my God I really can’t do that. And also something is that I was very good in dealing with gatekeepers. So I would reach out to C level executives with some frequency. So I realised that again these people were exactly the same way that the people at the bottom.

You know maybe they have they were more skirts in time. I get that right because they have a lot of things to do in a single day. I get that. But at the end of the day they’re human beings. And the good thing about people at that level is that they don’t get any. And he we would say BS. In the UK. In the in the US, right? You understand what I mean? So it’s good to have a very direct conversation so they don’t you know you don’t have to go around the bushes. It’s great. I love to be direct. I love to be in a conversation in which you know we spend five minutes And not 30 minutes Or do we spend 10 minutes and not you know one hour you know what I mean? I like to have straightforward conversation. So this is the deal, this is what I would like to do, this is what I would like to accomplish blah blah blah. You know, I like that, maybe that’s the only difference but your question again, it’s realising that when you do something consistently you realise that people really want to be heard and you are good in listening and you are good in analysing what they’re saying.

That’s what got me started, you made a lot of progress in that and you thought you know, I can do this and then what was the steps after that? Well, I have to say that I started to do that while I was in corporate America. So that was part of my role. So even if it was not written in my job description because I mean coach is like a soft skill to be considered in the job description in a corporate, in a corporate environment, right? But in reality the people I was working with and I was from my throughout my corporate career, I was actually coaching a lot of CEOs both for growing their businesses and for making buying decisions. So I started to do that consistently. So again, it’s like my frame of reference was different. So even though I was always developing business like selling right, developing businesses for different companies and helping companies develop their businesses. I was always myself on that, on that spot of being a coach. It’s like I made the decision myself of being a coach, not only being someone that would be there to tell them you have to do this, this, this, this and this, and if you don’t do this, you’re gonna fail.

And then when we review the sales forecast, no, no, no, you didn’t do this, you don’t have to do this, this, this, this and this. It’s a decision that you make right? And I think that very honestly Thomas, I think that that comes from your upbringing, that comes from your heart, That comes from when you have a relationship with someone, where does your relationship start from? I think that it’s a common denominator in your life that you start every single relationship from the same place. I really felt like that myself, honestly, I really felt myself being in that place of I always, always coaching, like asking questions, asking questions, asking questions, trying to understand, right? Trying to understand. And I think again, I I connect that very much with my heart with like listening to my heart’s voice, you know, regardless off my degree is my Computer Engineering degree, my MBA. Regardless, you know, regardless, it’s like we are human beings and what can I do to help you? Good answer. I am, I got a list of questions here and this particular question there’s a context behind it and that is I’m sure you’ve heard the stats before about CEOs working a certain number of minutes per day, The actual productive work that they do.

Are you aware of that statistic at all? No, no, I’m not. I think it’s you know, in a working day, in a normal average working day they get I’m fudging the numbers a bit, but it’s like an hour and 20 minutes of actual solid work or whatever it might be. And the question is, what would you say is the activity a CEO does the most and that’s the context for that question. I think it’s a, I would say, talking to the rest of the organisation, mainly the leadership team to make sure that the organisation is alive, That would be that that would be my number one thing. So it’s essentially communication. Yes. Okay, that’s very interesting because it just means that the emphasis on that particular skill is very high then, right? Yes, I think that you have to yes, you have to, you have to be a good, again, it’s you know, you are the CEO or you are the leader of the organisation. Who are you the CEO or the leader, right? I believe that the real leaders, you know, are the real, the CEOs I work with are the real leaders of the organisation?

Yeah. And what are would you say are the biggest misconceptions about CEOs yeah, the biggest misconceptions is what actually what you mentioned before, which is they’re so successful, they’re so happy, Everything is great, everything works out. You know, they have the perfect life, you know, that would definitely be one of them. I actually have a very interesting example to mention, which is a real, you know, this guy was running a multi 1000 employee company in the healthcare sector here in the US and I will never forget what he was telling actually, I became friends. So he had met with him from time to time and he always tells me I would sacrifice all my wealth and so that, you know, he made, he made an exit of multi 100 millions of dollars. He made an exit. So, you know, the calibre of his wealth, I would sacrifice all my wealth for having the family that you have. Wow, that’s a true story.

I would sacrifice all my wealth, all of it for having the beautiful family that you have, presumably because in order to become a CEO, you’re neglecting the rest of your life, right? Yes, and interestingly enough, you know, he’s a, he’s a people’s man in this case, he’s a man. I mean, he gets along with people a lot, but exactly, he, he sacrificed that part of his life and you know, it’s never too late, right? It’s never too late. But there’re things that with age, they become more complicated. So for people who might be watching this, that would want to become a CEO and they’re smart enough to be able to know that that’s a problem. What would you say to someone who’s essentially trying to have both? Put your priorities right. Put your priorities right. I think that you can achieve both, but you have to put your priorities right since the very beginning and make the different roles in your life, support each other.

Sometimes we believe that we can only be one thing or another. How can one thing help me be the other? Right? So how can you involve maybe, I mean there’s their CEOs that bring their families to there to there to there, to their to their companies. I mean, I don’t mean like employees, but maybe they bring them to just to show them things that can help them, You know, they bring their kids because they want their kids to be inspired. So, and some others try to keep both worlds very separated. Very different. Right? Very, you know, once when I went aside from the other one apart from the other, but I would say that get your priorities right, very early on in your career, and number two, you know, and make sure that you always think of your life as a pyramid, that, you know, every single stone supports each other. Okay. It’s not like, you know, every single every single stone in that freedom, it supports each other. And then when you start, when you start growing, I think that one of the things that we unfortunately don’t do well in life and that’s due to the education that we received is that we don’t we don’t ask enough.

We don’t ask enough. And I think that’s a common denominator inside corporate in the corporate world too. Is that we’ve gone, We don’t set the right expectations or we don’t ask enough or we’re going to ask enough questions. The right people expressing what we can do and what we want to do for that organisation. I’ve seen people progressing inside their organisations are becoming the CEOs and those were people that had that works. Obviously, they were very passionate and very clear that we’re very focused. But at the same time they were asking the questions and they were asking that they wanted to do some things. You know, we tend to be in general asking questions aloud and to be exposed is not properly valued socially speaking. It’s identified as you don’t 15 because you asked that uncomfortable question. I think that we all we all have. We all should if I started my life again. All right. If I started my life again, I will probably ask more questions and continuously ask questions and ask to receive, you know, and there’s a universal law here, which is the law of reciprocity, I think that we don’t receive enough because we don’t ask enough.

I think there’s probably an also an issue there with, I think that human beings feel like they’re more transparent than they are. And I don’t know if that’s a psychology issue from when you’re, you know, when you’re brought raised and you know, you think your parents seem to know a lot and you think that everyone else seems to know what you want. But in reality people know very little about what you want. Right? Well let me tell you a very simple example. You are, you’re going with your parents to see some relatives or some friends. And what’s the first thing that your parents are gonna tell you most likely don’t ask for anything unless you are being offered because it will be considered as rude, right? And I used, I used to think like this before. I mean I remember my mom telling me please make sure that you behave, make sure that you don’t do this. You don’t do that. You don’t do that. How many guns compared to the dues would your parents tell you when you would visit some relatives? You know, so there’s this sense of fitting in that I think it’s too strong in the world today and that makes us not ask in order to receive to be very honest.

So would you ever coach someone to go from an existing lower job to becoming CEO, or have you ever done that? That’s a great question. I haven’t done that. I’ve seen people around my clients in the organisations I’ve been working with, but I haven’t personally done it. But would I be able and willing to do it? Yes. Because I have been able to help people at different levels of the organisation. Right? So, but you know, going back to the marketing thing, you have to be very focused on what you do. Right. So, could I do that? Could I offer someone to do that? Yes. I have not offered it as a service. I have not publicised it. I haven’t, you know, thrown it to the world out there. But could I do it? Yes. Because you would decline it, but you know who your customer is, which is CEO is essential. Yes. So I wouldn’t decline such as such a request from someone. If someone asked me to do it, I wouldn’t say no, I would say yes. Because also I believe that you have to also always, I mean, even myself, I mean I put myself out of my comfort zone every single day not because I like to feel uncomfortable, but because I just like to test myself, it’s like a podcast interview.

Actually, you don’t know what the host is going to ask you even if they provide you with a list of questions, it doesn’t matter. Still. There can be a lot of different questions which are going to be asked and maybe you’re not comfortable answering. I believe honestly I believe that every single podcast interview I’m giving it’s a it’s a growth opportunity for me totally. Well, I mean questions in general can get you thinking about stuff that you had an otherwise thought of before, right? Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So I know you mentioned Tony Robbins. Who are your mentors? Yes. So I haven’t I haven’t really had mentors in my life like mentors one-on-one mentors, but I have had like generic mentors as Tony Robbins. I consider him maybe I don’t consider him a mentor, but I consider him someone that for a couple of years he made a huge impact in my life. it’s coincided with my moving relocating from actually Latin America to the US. I went to unleash your power within event from or by Tony Robbins and it was so intense, so intense, so intense and he mentioned several concepts that changed my life forever.

So that’s one of them. The other one is Dr Joe Dispenza. He’s a neuroscientist. Dr Joe Dispenza is a it’s a public figure as well he does. You know thousands of people events and he and I like I like a lot because of what I do. I like a lot to study there. The science behind the behaviour of people. I like that a lot. You know a lot like a lot. And then I consider myself very spiritual in the sense that I’m always looking for additional answers to what’s going on in the world, what’s going on in my life, what’s going on in the universe, these kind of things you know and when you are trying to find those answers so there’s a whole bunch of people you know I have a list of affirmations that they use every single day. I I tried to sing and I tried to dance. You know those are my mentors because I am a very high energy guy. You know I can be very quiet but at the same time I’m also I built I built myself with additional you know strength every time I sing or every time I dance I really you know those are activities that feel my human the spiritual side a lot.

Yes. Well I like the story about the UPW Event. I haven’t been to one personally. So it’s interesting that you say that makes me very intense very intense. Can you tell me about when you met Les Brown? Because I’m a fan. Yes. Yes of course I sit on the border of the organisation called evolutionary business council and I We are basically a group of very highly influential people in the world were like almost 600 million people altogether of outreach. It’s and we are only 300 and 600 and 320 people in that organisation, but that’s the combined outreach that we have. And we very often invite people like Les Brown and he’s actually a member of the organisation. Okay, so we invited him and we were together in Costa Rica. and you know, we had we had a blast, we were like four or five days together. It was a very small event and you know, yeah, we became we became very close.

I mean I’m we have now common friends and there’s people that in his team and he is actually, he I have interviewed him for my activities. I remember one time I did a telethon Like a 24 hour, 22 hours straight of interviews, live interviews on Facebook. And one of my interviewees was actually Les Brown. and since then that was 45 years, four years ago, That was 40 years ago, you’ve probably seen the picture online, my picture with him, right? and with, we’ve been in contact, I met his son then also as well, I met his Dr yeah, he’s an extraordinary human being. It was a great, I’ve quoted Les Brown many times, so big fan as well, a great story. I’ve been doing our Podcast. I did a little bit of research and can you tell me about your goal to help 810,000 kids to become entrepreneurs?

Yes, So When I started, you know, wisdom for kids, basically I started assessing what’s the need in in in Latin America and the need is very clear, you know, it’s there are 81, there were there were 81 million kids in Latin America In 2012 according to UNICEF numbers figures. So I had, I had, When I was living in Latin America lived in Latin America for 10 years, when I was living in Latin America, I was seeing the poverty all over the place. So when I left corporate America I decided to start with a couple of friends, I started wisdom for Kids, which is the foundation that I am the president of and I co-founded and what we do is we help underprivileged kids in Latin America become entrepreneurs using the local resources. So basically I saw this huge opportunity of helping kids with my entrepreneurship skills and my friends, entrepreneur skills, entrepreneurial skills and also to connect those worlds the worlds of the very highly influential people in Latin America, I had met when I was coaching because I coached a lot of people in Latin America a lot And I lived there for 10 years and to bring this world down to the orient connection with, you know, the most underprivileged people in the world which are the kids right?

And then you know everything started. So we have held more we have to stop activities last year but we have held more than 1000 families with their kids in different areas mainly in Mexico because it’s the closest place here to the U. S. And yeah it’s extremely – I mean it’s one of these places in which I recharge my batteries. I get totally inaccurate because I really worked really hard and I do a lot when we have when I go myself and deliver the training the workshops, the inspiration that we give those kids. You know I really empty myself of physical energy but from a from a human spiritual energy you know I feel like totally by doing that and going to very underprivileged areas and indigenous communities these kind of things. That’s amazing. Congratulations thank you. So I mean one thing I have noticed from your linked in activities that philanthropy very important to you. Yeah. Yeah very much because I you know I have been volunteered for local hospitals here you know I always think that we can do so much more with our time now.

It’s like getting your priorities right. I really think that, you know, I’m supposed to be – and I do that a lot because of my business – but I’m supposed to be on social media or on TV you can do so much more to make this world a better place, this world a better place, you know. So yeah, I have helped a lot of people, like I’ve helped a lot of companies, have been pro bono with a lot of organisations. I’ve sat on the board of organisations for free. Yeah, I mean, I think that the world, there’s a lot of differences, there’s a lot of, you know, inequities, let’s put it this way. And some of us, and you are definitely one of one of them with your podcast, we want to help. We want to be inspiring the world every single day, you know, so.

Well, thank you very much for all the value you’ve given on the interview. And can you tell the audience where the best place for people to find you is?

Absolutely yes. As you mentioned before, my brand is the CEO Confident, the CEO confident and my name is Angel Ribo so the easiest way is to go to LinkedIn because I’m very active. I answer all the messages there. And then my email is very simple. It’s Angel A-N-G-E-L at That’s my email address. That’s the easiest way to reach out to me and, and Thomas, I wanted to say thank you very much for you allowing me to be here and to speak to your audience and for having such a great conversation with you today.

It’s absolutely my pleasure. And I will speak to you soon.

All right. Thank you. Thank you very much. Bye-bye.