A Company Who Uses NLP
an Interview with Robert Medrala of
Esprit Systems Consulting, Inc.
The following is a telephone interview with Robert Medrala, Vice President of Esprit Systems Consulting, Inc. of West Chester, PA. Robert has used NLP training since the inception of his company and brought in Rex Steven Sikes of IDEA Seminars to train his staff in team building, communication, and sales.
Robert, can you explain what your company does?
We do training and consulting, teaching people primarily how to design large computer systems. In dealing within the computer industry, we have courses that teach methodologies. For instance, one approach is call Structured Methods. It would be similar to teaching an architect how to draw blueprints. In essence, what we do is create models on paper to replicate the computer system that a person is designing.
To achieve those ends, we have courses that teach people the methodology, and then we have other courses that we feel are important additions to the methodology. And those courses are in management and project teams.
Why do you think you've been so successful in your business?
I'd say it's because of our basic general business philosophy that myself and my partner, the founder and owners of the company are always looking for new and better ways of doing whatever we do, whether it's the smallest task or all the way up to designing our courses. We're always looking for new ideas and new ways of solving business problems.
NLP has definitely helped us in this endeavor. It's helped us to be more organized in our thought processes, more focused on the goals that we want to achieve, and the best way to go about achieving them.
How do you incorporate NLP specifically into your business?
All of our people go through NLP training. We've been doing it on an infrequent basis up until this point, but we've decided after our recent training with IDEA Seminars and Rex Sikes that we're going to do at least one NLP training session a year.
Where is NLP most useful in training your employees?
Initially, we were looking at it as being useful to our technical staff, for helping them establish rapport with the clients in a classroom and also on a more intimate one on one or small group situation where they would be doing consulting.
It's been very effective and successful as a teaching technique to make sure the point is getting across to the students. The instructors have been able to change their language or their behavior to communicate more effectively to the students.
What other successes you've had as a result of using NLP in your business?
Well, the recent NLP session with IDEA Seminars was a little bit broader based. It was focused on more than the presentation skills, so the office staff as well as our technical staff got a lot of benefit in many different areas of their life; everything from dealing with clients on the telephone, to being more organized in approaching office duties...some even going as far as getting motivated to start an exercise program for losing weight!
As the Vice President of Esprit Systems, what has been your biggest challenge?
Probably one of the biggest challenges it to keep the excitement and the adventure.
For yourself or for your employees?
Both! When people start a business, they do it because they have a great idea, a love, passion or excitement for doing something. One of the biggest challenges is to take that and turn it into a very profitable business...and still retain the love and the passion for what you're doing, even when it's no longer a hobby. It's now something that you do, that you breathe and sleep. It's sometimes difficult to continue to be motivated to progress, develop, and to become better at what you are doing.
And how do you keep the motivation and excitement?
By being involved in the area of exploring the mind and how people think, makes it very conducive to modeling growth, modeling success and creativity. It helps us to continue to develop our company through developing our people, be more creative, and have more fun...and bring more passion into our lives! The NLP skills have provided a better vehicle for achieving these goals more than anything else that I've studied or come across.
What has been the direct effect of your recent NLP training with Rex Steven Sikes and IDEA Seminars?
It's really pulled everybody together as a tighter team. We've always felt that we have a good group of people and that they were working well together as a team before the training, but your training has pulled everybody together even more and helped them to become very supportive. The training has given people the realization that they are in charge of their lives. Basically, that they are capable of achieving whatever they want to achieve...and the NLP skills are the tools to help them do it.
Every business is interested in the bottom line. Do you see any increase in your employee's productivity?
Definitely! I operate under the philosophy that happy employees, happy on the job as well as happy with what is going on in their personal life, makes for a more productive employee. If you've got an employee that's constantly worrying about home and their problems, whether it is on the job or in their personal life, it's taking away some of their mental energies and their productive time on the job. It also robs them of their peace of mind so that it depletes their creative skills.
Your training program helped them focus more on what they wanted to achieve within the job and within their personal lives and gave them skills to start off on the path of achieving that level of success.
Naturally, being the owner of a company and looking at the bottom line, training is one of those expenditures that's hard to track to see exactly what benefits you're getting. Sometimes, measuring that is very difficult in pure dollars and cents, but one thing that is obviously measurable is seeing a change in the attitude of the people, seeing how they work together more easily and comfortably with each other, and to see them smiling more. I love to watch them leaving at the end of the day in a good spirit, in a good frame of mind, as opposed to crawling out the door frustrated, especially with their work. These changes are definitely effecting the bottom line.
As a company who's business is training, we realize the importance of providing training in areas such as creativity, communication skills, team dynamics and achieving goals in addition to the standard technical areas. NLP is a more wholistic approach to managing employees.
Couldn't a good manager do that as well...or do you think a company would be best to bring in an outside person?
A manager could do it, but the manager would need to have the set of NLP skills to put a program like that into place. And there is something to be said for bringing in outside consultants because they are able to do things from a fresher perspective, they are able to stimulate and motivate people better...sort of giving them a whack on the side of the head.
Any advice for companies who want to institute NLP programs?
Just do it!
Any other comments you'd like to make? Anything we didn't cover that you'd like to say?
I think you guys did a wonderful job and you can quote me on this. The level of training was high quality. The hardest class to teach is a class of teachers. Rex Sikes did a great job in re-directing Esprit instructors and he impressed them with his skills. The quality of your training and the quality of your instructor are superb! And that's why you were brought in rather than somebody else because I know a lot of the other NLP people out there. I was looking for the right person and the right company, and IDEA Seminars is it!
Rex Steven Sikes is the co-founder of IDEA Seminars in Milwaukee, WI, a center for personal growth and communication. He is the developer of Mind Design™, a new teaching method that incorporates accelerated learning and brain based learning. Contact IDEA Seminars for information on having Rex lead a training at your company.