and Robert talk about branding and vision. Entrepreneurs need brand alignment that communicates their message consistently and effectively
A little bit about Cassie...
Business takes vision. You’ve got that. Branding takes strategy. Cassie Hanuscak is a brand strategist and designer with almost fifteen years of experience working with start-ups to large corporations. She is incredibly passionate about empowering thought-leading entrepreneurs with the brand clarity and consistency needed to thrive through her established 5-Step Big Brand Method™ for small businesses. You don’t need magic to build a big brand, but you do need a method. With the right guidance and resources, you can confidently build a strong foundation for your brand that primes you for unparalleled growth and success.
Robert Peterson 0:00
My guest today is Cassie Hanuscak. Business takes vision. You've got that brand new take strategy. Cassie is a brand strategist and designer with almost 15 years experience working with startups to large corporations. She's incredibly passionate about empowering thought leading entrepreneurs with brand clarity and consistency needed to thrive through her five step big brand method for small businesses. You don't need magic to build a big brand, but you do need a method. With the right guidance and resources you can constantly build a strong foundation for your brand that Prime's you for unparalleled growth and success. Cassia new scheck and Robert talk about branding envision, entrepreneurs need brand alignment that communicates their message consistently. Effectively. What Cassie, thank you so much for joining me today. I'm excited to have this conversation.
Cassie Hanuscak 1:54
I am too. It's great to be here. Nice to meet you, Robert.
Robert Peterson 1:57
Nice to meet you as well. I always have our guests share their own entrepreneurial journey and what got them to what they're working on today.
Cassie Hanuscak 2:05
I'm one of those few lucky people that knew from a very early age, what my talent was and what I wanted to do. I started in art classes when I was a young girl. I knew by sophomore in high school that I was going to go to art school, I was going to be a graphic designer. That's what I did. I had parents that supported me and pushed me in the direction that I wanted to go. I got my graphic design degree, and immediately started working in the industry. I started working. I started doing invitations, and then later went to work for a branding agency, and then later an advertising PR agency. I knew however, when I started my family, when I got pregnant with my son that I needed to take a step back from the marketing world, the intense deadlines, the 60 hour work weeks, I wanted to prioritize my family. I went back into the event industry, I was designing invitations full time for those early toddler years. I knew when my son started school that I was going to start my own business and go back into branding. Gosh, early on, right after he was born, my life kind of got turned upside down. My whole trajectory kind of shifted. I went through divorce, and everything I had intended changed. From that experience, though, I kind of got a love of psychology triggered in me. I was going down that self discovery path that we all go down. I was reading all the books, I was doing all the self growth.Really that's when a passion of branding was boring design and psychology. That's where they intersect. That's the meeting point. when my son started school was 2020. I filed for my LLC at the beginning of the year. What a wild ride? What a year to make the leap and start a business. I was working in the event industry, which crumbled overnight
Robert Peterson 4:27
Cassie Hanuscak 4:29
It really was but honestly looking back on it, I see it as quite a gift. Being a single mom, working a full time job and trying to start a business would have been insane and all of a sudden I had the time that I needed to focus. That's my story in a nutshell.
Robert Peterson 4:51
Let's dig into that idea a little bit, the ability to design your own business, design your life and then build a business around it is something so few experience. You did it out of necessity, it was a requirement? Share a little bit about how that worked for you?
Cassie Hanuscak 5:16
That's a good question. It was really in that period of everything changing, where I really had to sit and take the time to think and look deep and figure out what it was I wanted. Once you have a plan for where you want to go, then you can figure out what's going to get you there, you always have to start with the destination before you can complete the journey. That was really, that was not a quick, easy process either. It sounds simple, it's not easy. We all know that. It probably took me about two or three years before I really figured out where I wanted to go. Really took the first steps to take myself there. Of course, it's changed along the way. It's been three years, and I'm three years into my business now. Things shift as you grow.
Robert Peterson 6:12
The exciting part is that you can shift, it doesn't have to be perfect. You have to get started.
Cassie Hanuscak 6:20
Robert Peterson 6:23
So many people are trying to make it perfect and have perfect plans. Of course, the minute you have perfect plans and you execute that they become perfect trash. You have to put out be able to let go of those plans in order to move forward with what's working.
Cassie Hanuscak 6:41
You're talking to a perfectionist here. My motto this year was do it messy. I had so many new things I was trying and I was kind of falling into that place of analysis paralysis, where you're kind of paralyzed by fear. You're keeping yourself busy, more so than productive? Absolutely. You can't let perfection hold you back. That's a really hard and scary thing for someone like me.
Robert Peterson 7:12
Let's be designers and artists in general. You're not alone in that. First of all, to clarify that aspect. Let's talk about the fear and what worked to help you face that fear and move forward.
Cassie Hanuscak 7:29
One of the most common causes of failure in general, is when you're kind of overtaken by that feeling of temporary defeat. Kind of understanding that you can either quit or you can keep going, Both hurt. Both are hard. You have to choose your heart. Coming to that decision, I have two decisions to make, I have two choices to make. I can go this way or I can go this way. What are the consequences? What are the benefits? That's kind of what's kept me going forward. They both hurt. They're both hard. Choose your heart.
Robert Peterson 8:14
It's giving you the courage to bet on Cassie?
Cassie Hanuscak 8:17
My son. Definitely. He's six now. He's going into first grade. He's my everything so
Robert Peterson 8:28
That's awesome. I love having a powerful motivation to jump out of bed and do what you have to do.
Cassie Hanuscak 8:37
Absolutely. You have to do what you have to do. I'm blessed that I do have time to myself. He does spend some time with his dad a couple of times a month on the weekends. I can struggle finding my balance. Sometimes when I look at it, I do have consistency. I do have balance. It's over a longer time period than most people do. Most people look at the day to day, or the week to week, and my routine kind of goes in a two week cycle.
Robert Peterson 9:12
If that's what works for you, then it's important to find that harmony for your own rhythm in your own body and in your own family. Exactly. So many people miss out on the idea that their body has a rhythm and that their life has a rhythm. You have to find the rhythm that works for you. Not every rhythm is the same, There's we all know that there's people that love staying up at night. There's pure love getting up at 4am. You have to find the one that fits. Then of course, if you've got a son that loves to get up at 4am You gotta figure it out, When you make changes,
Cassie Hanuscak 9:49
That's my biggest struggle because I am creative. I do my productivity peaks in the afternoons and in the evenings. No, you do not line up with a child at that stage either. You make adjustments, you have to figure out what works best for you, also what works best for your lifestyle, and where they overlap. That's where you want to be.
Robert Peterson 10:14
I love that you found it and you're making it work. Obviously, personally for you to find the courage to keep going. Obviously, one of the big attitude shifters in my life and in many others is gratitude and having that opportunity to, to find the things that you're grateful for. How has gratitude served you in this personal growth journey?
Cassie Hanuscak 10:37
Wow, that's a good question. Gratitude always makes what you have enough, It helps you to slow down and not be bogged down day to day, all of the little details that can be so overwhelming. Does it make you have enough? That's what happiness is, isn't it?
Robert Peterson 11:01
I hope so. The biggest piece is, you focus on what you've got, which helps you not focus on what you don't have. Too many of us can get caught up focusing on what we don't have. Then we focus on what we can't control. Then we feel our lives are completely out of control. Focusing on what you do have to start the day gives you a grounding, and a spirit of gratefulness throughout the day for what you do have. Then it's a lot easier to look at the things well, these are things I can control and all that other stuff. Who cares? letting all that other stuff go, is pretty powerful.
Cassie Hanuscak 11:42
That's a great way to put it. Gratitude stops the spiral.
Robert Peterson 11:46
I hope so. It's too easy to spiral today. There's so much influence that that pulls us in the wrong direction. We have to be very intentional about staying positive and focusing on the things we can control and focusing on the destination that we want.
Cassie Hanuscak 12:05
Absolutely. Comparison is the antithesis of gratitude, when you're focusing on the things you don't have. That triggers a spiral every time for anybody.
Robert Peterson 12:18
Absolutely. Let's dig into this psychology thing a little bit more, and obviously, branding, and psychology, and graphic design and how those three intersect to create online presence.
Cassie Hanuscak 12:36
Absolutely. Branding is really about discovering who you are, and who you're speaking to, so who your audience is, and who you want to be. The area where those three things overlap is really where you find your magic, and your unique positioning and what makes you why your audience should choose you in the first place. Once you have that strategy in place, I always say you have to start with strategy first, then you can move on to your branding second, and then you can do your design and marketing third. You start with the strategy, you start with looking at who you are, who your audiences are and who you want to be. Then you start being intentional about creating your brand visuals. There's a psychology to all of that. The fonts, the colors, the shapes, they all have meaning. They're different in different cultures, it has to be in alignment with who you want to be and who you want your reputation to be right, branding is really all about creating an intentional reputation.
Robert Peterson 13:45
Even if you choose not to have a brand and not to put a brand out there, you have a brand.
Cassie Hanuscak 13:56
Absolutely and that's kind of the secret and the key between a small business with small brands and a business with a big brand because you can have a small business and be a big brand. You have to be intentional about it.
Robert Peterson 14:11
Absolutely. Some people might be listening and say, I'm small and I can't afford a brand. Choosing not to have a brand and choosing not to be intentional in that is a brand.
Cassie Hanuscak 14:23
Absolutely. your brand it was Jeff Bezos that said Your brand is what people say about you when you're not in the room. It's your reputation. Whether you're intentional about it and you're designing it yourself or you're letting it be created by someone else. You have a brand and if you're letting someone else create it, they may be seeing things and picking up on things that you send through your voice, the things you say, your messaging, your visuals that aren't quite in alignment with your goals as a business. That's when you start to have problems when things aren't in alignment when they're not consistent. You don't have to be big to do the work. You can be small, you do have to do the work to get bigger.
Robert Peterson 15:10
So good. Now that you've dug into that a little bit, let's talk about the power of social and, how some people want to keep their, keep their profile private, and, or, not pay attention to what they share on social or, certainly there's, there's topics that are divisive. People want to share, and they want to say, I agree, or putting dumpster fires and every page of their social media, what impact does that have, when you're not intentional about your social.
Cassie Hanuscak 15:54
You want to, it's not about you at the end of the day, That's what some people don't necessarily understand. That's kind of the line between personal social media and business social media, even your page, even your bio has to be about your audience and who they support and who they want to work with. When that's an alignment, that's when you have that brand magic. If you're wanting to attract that crowd, the crowd of whatever controversial topic it is that you feel that you want to talk about, then fine, go for it. If that's not in alignment with your audience, you're going to do some real damage that can't be done.
Robert Peterson 16:42
Absolutely. I like how you put that, but it's not about you
Cassie Hanuscak 16:48
It's not and you have to be willing to let go of your wants and desires.
Robert Peterson 16:52
Now, I don't want this to come across as we're giving people permission to be inauthentic. What we're trying to do is talk about being intentional. There's a difference between authenticity and intentionality.
Cassie Hanuscak 17:10
Absolutely, you have to have a filter, every brand, especially if you have a personal brand, you have to share some of yourself. That doesn't mean you have to share everything you ate for breakfast that day. There's a filter, and you don't have to pick and choose, it's not like you're hiding who you are. Depending on your industry, and depending on who your audience is, you do have to kind of control the image you're putting out there. Think of it as a dress code. You're not going to show up to a business meeting. In a diving suit, you may love diving, you may go swimming every day, but you're not going to show up to a meeting wearing the diving suit.
Robert Peterson 18:00
That's an interesting way to put it, I like that dress code and the difference is, you want to make sure that you're on brand. Of course, if your brand has been built correctly, your brand is authentic to who you are and who you want to serve. It's not like we're asking you to keep your social, different from who you really are. It's cutting off the rough edges. For Sony.
Cassie Hanuscak 18:27
You can be private, I'm a very private person, I, gosh, I didn't even have an Instagram account until last fall. I've been on Instagram for less than a year, and I've still been very picky and choosy on what I share. I do share pictures of my son, but they're very minimal. There's not a whole lot of his face. That's me being private. You definitely need to be authentic. Being genuine is one of the biggest compliments you can give anybody. When you choose your brand values, when you figure out what you want to be as a brand and what resonates with your audience, there are certain values that should be given. I've seen so many business owners, they write out their values, they go through the exercises, and they say I'm trustworthy. So was everybody else. Given that should not be valued. If you're not trustworthy. I don't want to work with you. Sorry.
Robert Peterson 19:31
Obviously, there's some values that should be obvious and don't necessarily need to be in your value statement. That opportunity to be genuine. There's a temptation especially in line especially in socials. We talked about the extremes, We don't want to be radical. We don't want to, we want to trim off the edges, radical wise, but we also don't want to try to come across as somebody else. The church Challenge is so many feel like, I'm not, I'm not as good as they are, I'm not an expert, that comparison piece, I need to, I need to post posts, they post and copy their posts and post their quotes up. The challenge is, of course, if somebody does hire you, they're actually hiring that other person. They're not hiring you, because you've been acting like that other person. Then when there's not a fit, when it's incongruent, you're not in harmony, you're not in alignment. It's because your branding was not consistent.
Cassie Hanuscak 20:40
Absolutely, if you're not putting out who you are, if you're putting out someone else's, you're not going to attract the people that you want to work with that are a good fit for you, you're not going to be attracting those dream clients that you want to work with them who wants to work with you. Of course, if it's cliche, but it's true, if you're speaking to everyone, you're speaking to no one.You, it's scary to define your audience and to niche down. It opens up a world of possibility, because suddenly, you're attracting these people that are qualified leads that are perfect for you, and you're perfect for them. You're talking to a particular audience, and you're niching down, doesn't mean you have to say no to anybody else, that you attract those people you're gonna attract those people to, it means that that's who you're speaking to, in your marketing.
Robert Peterson 21:35
Let's dig a little bit deeper into that, because there's a fear, and the niche, the niche gets so small, but the value of a smaller niche is that you can focus your wording and your your language and your imaging and everything around that niche, and everything becomes consistent becomes easier for you to communicate the value that you're bringing to that group. Of course, you start attracting that group. Then of course, you start attracting the people that are around that group. There is huge value in that process. It seems to be one of the hardest things to convince early entrepreneurs of this huge value.
Cassie Hanuscak 22:17
Absolutely, it can be scary, because it feels like you're saying no to something. You're really saying yes to all this opportunity. It makes everything easier for you as an entrepreneur, because all of these decisions are suddenly made for you when you have a specific person you're speaking to in mind already. You're everything you write, everything you put out there, it happens it's so much easier. Then it makes you so much more memorable to everybody else. They know who you are, and they know who you are about. Real estate agents are a perfect example. How many of us know at least five real estate agents? Who would you recommend? If somebody asked you, Hey, do you know a great real estate agent, there might be one or two people on your list that you would recommend. That's because you probably like them as a person and you're not quite sure if the person that's asking would be a good fit or not. When real estate agents really niche down to them, they choose their initial day, whatever you want to say there. That's really what makes them memorable and stand out. I was working with a real estate agent a couple months ago, and he had been in the tennis industry for over 25 years. He was a great tennis coach. Everyone in the community calls him coach, and he's making the shift to real estate. We found what makes him unique. He's a coach. We found out we know where he's going. He's building his real estate industry. Then we take a look at his audience. We want those three circles and we want to figure out where they overlap. He wants to work with his ideal audience of retirees who are downsizing but want to stay active. They want that active community and they want to work with families who are upsizing but they're all about the community. They want to swim the tennis courts and the neighborhood and 25 years in tennis, he knows a thing or two about community amenities. His branding is all around community lifestyle, and he's gonna coach you through your move. Doesn't that stand out? Don't you remember that?
Robert Peterson 24:40
Of course. As a professional networker, what I think of real estate agents are, it is the ones that have niched down that I can recommend if you're looking for mountain property. I know two people that work in mountain properties. If you're looking for horse properties, I know real estate agents that work exclusively with horse property. isn't so it's absolutely valuable. Especially in Colorado, there's 30,000 Realtors licenses. If you don't make yourself stand out in some way, then you're going to be one of 30,000 people that they can choose from.
Cassie Hanuscak 25:18
Absolutely.That doesn't mean that someone's going to come along and say, I don't want that community lifestyle, we're not a good fit, I'm not going to work with you. You don't have to say no, if they do, it means that that was what your marketing is geared towards.
Robert Peterson 25:36
It makes all those decisions. Now all of his language can be focused on the things that he naturally talks about anyway. Where are the tennis courts, where you, my sister, is a swimmer, she has been a swimmer her entire life, and she moves into towns and finds the swimming pool before she finds her. For the people that are active, have that active lifestyle, that's absolutely an important element. Not everybody understands that. The people like coaches that do that's really important. Why not use that in your language? Why not narrow down to that kind of people that are going to understand your language, and you're gonna understand theirs, and you guys are going to connect, regardless of whether or not you're buying and selling a house for them?
Cassie Hanuscak 26:20
Absolutely. His visual identity, going back to the psychology of it all has to be in alignment with that. He can't have soft, subtle colors and lines, if he is about an active lifestyle, he needs a bright, bold visual identity to go along with that.
Robert Peterson 26:40
Absolutely. That's what we need branding experts for.
Cassie Hanuscak 26:44
This is what I love to do, I really do.
Robert Peterson 26:48
Absolutely. Let's talk a little bit, obviously, you knew early on the graphic design element, the art element, the business element, what helped you make the transition and understand the business side of building your business and growing up.
Cassie Hanuscak 27:07
I guess this is kind of cliche, but people having that growth mindset getting out there. Being willing to learn and connecting with people. With every person I connected with, I learned something new, and they connected me to somebody else. Suddenly, I was going to these masterminds and I was joining this group and I was learning about this. It's all about networking and being open minded and learning.
Robert Peterson 27:37
Let's dig a little deeper into connection and the power of connection and building your business. Yourself obviously.
Cassie Hanuscak 27:47
You have to have a growth mindset. Absolutely. Across the board.
Robert Peterson 27:52
Then how do connections help you grow your business?
Cassie Hanuscak 27:59
You never know what somebody's dealing with. You never know their journey, taking the time to serve first to offer value. To connect with them and learn about them. You're always going to learn something in return. You're always going to walk away with that golden nugget that you didn't have before that's going to take you somewhere else in your journey. Every success that I've had, and I'm sure that you've had you can trace back to someone who influenced you or directed you somehow.
Robert Peterson 28:32
Absolutely, connection is everything. Part of the reason I started the podcast is because of the connections that podcasting can create and make and the people that I've had conversations with that are incredible levels in business and in life and connection is so valuable. You mentioned something in there that not everybody I don't think doesn't recognize, The ability to learn something from everyone that you meet and take something away. That's a pretty powerful little snippet, that I can grab something and I can hang on to it. The challenge for so many at least coming from my side as a coach is that so many people have heard a lot of these things, especially the cliche things and it's easy to say I knew that the minute you say, I knew that your brain stops and says, of course, if you know that you don't need to listen anymore, and the brain is going to save energy. You're talking about connecting and meeting with people and, having this intention of man, I can learn something from every one of them. That's pretty powerful.
Cassie Hanuscak 30:20
Even if it's what not to do, you're gonna learn something.
Robert Peterson 30:26
Not everybody has that learning mindset, especially networking. A lot of networking people are so focused on who can I get business from, who can I sell from, and so, so powerful that you, you're going in there with the attitude of serving first and learning. That takes away all the pressure of trying to sell everybody in the room, or collect all their business cards to put on your email list.
Cassie Hanuscak 30:52
Some of my best referrals have come from small business owners that I didn't even work with. They wanted to work together, they weren't quite ready, we still took the time to meet and talk about where they are, how I could help them in their process. A month later, I'm getting a referral to one of the biggest clients I've signed, you never know where that success is gonna come from.
Robert Peterson 31:17
That's so good. I like it. Can dig a little into, you already mentioned that your son inspires you, motivates you, drives you? What do you and your son love to do?
Cassie Hanuscak 31:32
Gosh, I don't know how much of this is developing in him because it's what he was, or if he's enjoying it through me right now. I definitely love getting out. Kayaking and going waterfall chasing, and I live in Atlanta. It's the city in the forest. It's one of my favorite things you can spend all week in the city and go spend all weekend in the mountains. When everything shut down a few years ago, that's what we did. We lived in the kayak, we lived on the water. He was four. He enjoyed it a little bit. He complained a little bit too. This is the first year that he's asking to go do it. That makes me so happy.
Robert Peterson 32:16
Nice. That's fun. I like that. Six is a beautiful age. Our grandson is turning six this summer and it's at least for me as grandpa, it's a lot more fun now, because we can do Legos. We can do Domino's and we can communicate and have fun at a whole different level, which includes a higher level of communication in the process. So much joy there.
Cassie Hanuscak 32:48
Definitely. It's funny though, that we like it for very different reasons. You mentioned getting down and playing and I'm not about the plane, I really am not. That's not something that I've enjoyed about having a child getting on the floor and building Legos and stuff. I wish I did. I try to do it anyway, of course. This is the age where he's kind of growing out of that, and having the interest in going to the other thing. I do feel we're connecting on a different level, like he said, but in a very different way.
Robert Peterson 33:22
Even at the beginning, a couple of years ago, and he was actually still living with us at the time. The only thing you could do is walk right. There was this thing where everybody was putting bears in their window. You could do a bear hunt through the neighborhood. Before I taught him to ride his bike, which happened last year, also, but we were walking through the neighborhood and in the moon was out and he's like, Grandpa looked at the moon and he's like, I want to sleep on the moon. For me, it was an opportunity to dig into that with curiosity and say, Wow, tell me more. What would it be like to sleep on the Moon? MAN? How would we get there? We wrote a book, we're gonna get a graphic designer to do the illustrations. Talked about tying ladders together. He talked about throwing a rope up there and talking about waiting for it to get to the edge of the mountain so we can jump on it when it goes down over the mountains. It was a great conversation. I think about so many conversations that really come back to the mind of a child and the imagination and that anything is possible and how easily. Of course, our parents killed the head for us and parents and grandparents can kill that for their kids. When you say, I want to sleep on the moon. It's so easy to say. That can't happen.
Cassie Hanuscak 34:56
It's too easy. At what point did ops Stickles killer dreams though, at what point was a challenge the end game, because you've said it perfectly as a child, we see those obstacles as a challenge to overcome and we get creative. We think we can do this instead. Or we can do this. At some point in our journey, we look at that and say, that's a shut door, instead of how can I open it?
Robert Peterson 35:25
It's when they started school, they started grading everything that we were doing. That failure became such a negative because prior to prior to school, you didn't even know a failing wasn't. You're taking on this report card. Of course, I was young enough to be carrying a report card home, it was handwritten by my teachers. If it didn't make it home, nowadays, it's all digital, electronic, and much harder to much harder to hide.
Cassie Hanuscak 35:58
I've started a new thing with my son, he's going into first grade next year, and he's a smart kid, things come easy to him. I know that he's going to start facing more challenges.That's hard to fail. You said, failure is hard. I, instead of asking them, what was the best part of your day? At the end of every day, I started asking him, what did you fail at today? I want failure to become a normal thing. Every time he makes a mistake, starting when he was three, every time you made a mistake, I would get excited and say, my gosh, you learned something your brain grew. I want failure to be a good thing.
Robert Peterson 36:41
That's so powerful. Good for you. I wish I learned that lesson when my kids were young, because. I've learned but I still reacted. The reaction, of course, had so much impact. My wife and I made the decision that we wanted home to be a safe space that I didn't want my kids running to someplace else, because home wasn't safe. They could no matter what's happened in life, HomeSafe, we're not going to, we're not going to get upset and industry. Whatever happens, whatever mistakes you've made home are going to be safe. We're going to walk you through whatever will be there with you. That doesn't mean I'm not going to freak out when I find out what happened. Then come down and figure out alright, how can I support you through this? We've got you. I wish I learned how to not freak out. It's part of that growing process.
Cassie Hanuscak 37:35
I'm right there with you. The only thing harder than being an entrepreneur is being a parent.
Robert Peterson 37:43
I'm glad that you labeled it as harder. It is. It's empowering, because obviously, so many people become parents, a lot more people are parents than entrepreneurs for certain. Yet, if they recognized that, if parenting is the hardest thing you've ever done, entrepreneurship wouldn't be so bad. They could make the leap. Of course, more people are making the leap now than ever before. That's so exciting. Entrepreneurs are gonna save the world. I believe they're more nimble, and they're more creative, and they're more responsive. They're more in touch with their purpose in impacting the world. Entrepreneurs are gonna make a bigger difference. Big corporations can throw money at stuff. I don't know if their hearts are always truly in it, right there. They're doing it to, to get the credit from the millennials or from, we support all these organizations. Their heart's not really in it. Whereas entrepreneurs when they want to make a difference in the world, and they're really doing something to make a difference. It really matters.
Cassie Hanuscak 39:00
Huge fan of entrepreneurs, obviously, huge fan of your podcast, you obviously serve with your heart first, your heart centered and everything you do, and I love that.
Robert Peterson 39:08
Thank you. I appreciate that. We've been talking about your boy, we talked about playing fun, how important is playing fun. I know you mentioned not wanting to get down on the floor. What other ways have you been creative with your son and broccoli and fun into your work?
Cassie Hanuscak 39:33
Creativity is fun. Being creative for me, is like solving a puzzle. The destination where you're trying to get and now you have to figure out how to get there, and what's the best way to get there and the most efficient way and the most effective way. It really is like a puzzle for me putting it all together and then seeing it when it's done. It's that feeling of accomplishment. Wow, look, I did that.
Robert Peterson 40:04
That is powerful. You mentioned being a perfectionist, and we haven't talked a lot about routines, but how routines work, you do have some routines that you do on a daily basis.
Cassie Hanuscak 40:22
I mentioned that I feel like I have two different sets of routines that I cycle through. It's very different if I have my son versus if I don't have my son that day. It is still consistent in the grand scheme of things. I guess I guess that's a good thing. I definitely have a routine. I have two dogs. They keep me very on schedule, around the clock. They know, at 1159 to come out their noses on my leak at my desk every day. I stopped for lunch and we went for a walk. I am a firm believer in taking the lunch break, not eating at your desk. That's kind of a non negotiable part of my routine, no matter what I'm getting from my dad. That's really the big one that's consistent every single day no matter what.
Robert Peterson 41:24
We mentioned that earlier about the ability to design your business around your life. I love that you have two different sets of routines, I have these routines that I practice when my son is here and this schedule, and then I have these routines when I'm here with the dogs and that's okay, it is you don't have to do what works for you. You don't have to force your family to fit in. That's one of the advantages of entrepreneurship, is that I'm not on a nine to five, I don't have to punch a clock to start my day. I do choose to eat lunch every day, which is huge. That's what's important, brain space, any event, if nothing else, but it's also consistently your schedule.
Cassie Hanuscak 42:11
Yes. I'm such an introvert, I know that I need that quiet time to myself, especially on meeting days. I know that I can't have meetings every day that ease into my day activity more than anything because I am an introvert, I need that time to decompress to be creative. I don't take meetings on Mondays, Mondays are my deep work day, all day long. I have one or two deep, big projects that I knock out. I get more done on that day than I do Tuesday through Friday.
Robert Peterson 42:43
That's so valuable. You're recognizing your rhythm, you're recognizing what, what really works for you, and you're honoring it. You're not doing busy work, you're doing this on a protected day. I'm making sure I get these specific things done on that predicted day. Then recognizing these days that I spend time with all those crazy people, I've got to have some time to decompress and include that in my schedule as well. As a designer, how important is consistency.
Cassie Hanuscak 43:15
It's so important. If as a single parent, the biggest challenge as an entrepreneur, the biggest challenge is sleep and being rested. You cannot be creative when you are drained. There's two kinds of tiredness that's really the biggest thing that I've learned the last few years. As a parent and as an entrepreneur, you can be physically tired and need sleep, and you can be emotionally drained and you need more of what sparks joy in your life. There are nights that I'm tired. I'm falling asleep on my couch. You better believe I'm gonna stay up this extra two hours to watch that new episode of whatever. I need that joy in my life too.
Robert Peterson 44:04
I like the recognition that there's two types of being drained, there's that physical energy clock or your body and then there's also the heart and spirit side and so good that you fuel them, fuel them both and take care of finding joy and both of those spaces are good for you.
Cassie Hanuscak 44:24
It is a challenge. I thrive on a slow routine. Getting out in nature, being by the water helps me slow things down. I do get stressed easily and there's plenty of triggers in everyday life and you have to be intentional to keep yourself focused and away from that.
Robert Peterson 44:46
Absolutely. One of the challenges for entrepreneurs that don't consider themselves creative is recognizing the power of creativity in regular Entrepreneurship, we're creative. When you write a Twitter post, you're creative when you create a Facebook post, or when you write an email subject line. That's really creativity. Of course, creating content and all of those other things. There are not as many regular entrepreneurs as non creatives, Non artists, dancers, singers, musicians. If you have those, then you feel like you're creative, you feel like you're creating. Those of us that aren't those don't always feel like we're creating but yet, don't nurture and feed the imagination. How do you feed your imagination?
Cassie Hanuscak 45:45
I read I wasn't a podcast, I was self help. Honestly, this is what we're talking about right now, this is what inspires me and feeds my soul. I get up and walk away from us feeling creative, every time. That growth mindset, that that's everything for me.
Robert Peterson 46:04
I'm going to say I love that because obviously, I like inspiring entrepreneurs and encouraging entrepreneurs and love sharing the entrepreneurial journey, it's so important to, help people believe that it's possible that I could do it that I'm like these other people that Roberts had these conversations with, walk away with that little snippet that says, I can do it.
Cassie Hanuscak 46:32
Absolutely. There are people in my life that wouldn't believe you. If I wouldn't believe me, if I told them I was an introvert because they are so inspiring to me, we have conversations like this all the time that it doesn't matter how I'm feeling, they don't drain me, they inspire me. Those for those few people that do that, constantly add to my life in positive ways. That's what I want to surround myself with.
Robert Peterson 47:01
Absolutely. A lot of people have a misunderstanding of introvert extrovert first of all, but because if I go to a networking event, I promise I'm getting attention and I'm, I'm influencing the room, and I'm smiling and I'm leaning into people. When the events are over with people, and I need to get away from people and I need to spend time hanging out with my wife and her and I chillin because it takes a great deal of energy. It does not feel like I am in a networking room.
Cassie Hanuscak 47:36
Exactly. You can be outgoing, but be an introvert.
Robert Peterson 47:39
Absolutely. Most people would describe me as an extrovert because of the way I show up in the room. Of course I love these conversations, these conversations fuel me, having a conversation, my podcast, coaching conversations fuel me. I also get fueled, chilling and relaxing, and having a ton of quiet time because I love my brain. I want to spend time intentionally having conversations with the voices in my head. A lot of people get confused between what fuels them and what appearance you put out in public.
Cassie Hanuscak 48:23
Absolutely. You'd kind of hit the nail on the head when it comes to growing and figuring out who you are. Where you want to go with your business. Even extroverts, you need to schedule that quiet time to actually process it. If there's so much noise, you're never going to sit and think about those things and ask yourself the hard questions. That's why sometimes introverts kind of do pull ahead a little bit in that sphere, because they understand the priority and they schedule that time first.
Robert Peterson 49:00
Absolutely. Let's talk a little bit about that feeling of voicing in your head or listening to that voice in your head, which one?
Cassie Hanuscak 49:16
The good one or the bad one.
Robert Peterson 49:22
I want to feed the good one. It was interesting. I did a podcast for a friend of mine, and he kind of led our conversation to that place where he said, if you don't believe in God, and somebody doesn't believe in God, how do you know which voice is really true? My answer was, if I get to choose which voice is true for me, why would I choose the negative one? Yet the majority of people do because negativity is easier. It requires energy to choose As the positive one, it requires more energy. More people choose the negative one because they love the drama, they love the negative they, they, they spend all their day absorbing all this negative and, feel like they don't have a choice. The truth is you have a choice.
Cassie Hanuscak 50:19
You do. It requires more energy in the short term, but not the long term. That's because it's like what I said earlier, where you have to choose your heart. They're both hard, they both hurt. It is easier to accept defeat. Off the bat, then, what did I learn from us? This is a challenge that I have to overcome. That's more energy in the short term. In the long term, it's where you succeed.
Robert Peterson 50:54
That's wisdom, right there. No, it really is. That's the difference right now, so many people are really short term thinking. They're microwave thinkers. If I can't do it in under a minute, or if I can't get it delivered in 24 hours, I don't want the solution. The truth is personal development takes time. It takes 21 days to develop a habit and takes a lot more time to make it a long term habit, right to make it a part of your natural, subconscious. It is harder, it does require work on the front end, but the rewards last forever.
Cassie Hanuscak 51:30
Absolutely. I'm gonna take it back to branding for a second here, because it is the exact same with your brand. It takes time, your brand is always growing and evolving. Once you get that focus, and you really do the work on discovering who you are discovering who you're talking to, positioning yourself uniquely creating that visual identity, then you can really go out there and apply it and build your brand awareness, and it will grow and explode and continue to evolve. There is a difference between changing and evolving. That's also an important thing to note.
Robert Peterson 52:10
Obviously, you've talked a lot about personal growth, but the truth about personal growth is exactly the same. To grow as a person, you got to know who you are, you got to know who you're serving and know what you have to offer him. Those are the basics of personal development, and the fact that you can tie those same things to your brand. It's how much more powerful it is when you intentionally brand yourself as you're in this personal growth process.
Cassie Hanuscak 52:42
I couldn't have said it better, I am literally getting excited. I am going to leave this conversation and I'm not going to crash on the couch, go hit my email marketing and write out all of these ideas that we've been discussing. This is great.
Robert Peterson 52:59
That's fantastic. Here the place might be a little more challenging, you're still young enough in your business, you talked about giving first serving first. What are their ways is contribution been a part of, of growing your business and giving back to the community and giving in other ways.
Cassie Hanuscak 53:23
Definitely teaching, I love to teach what I do. I love building my community, I like working with startups and solopreneurs that are helping my community grow. I fully support shopping locally, building the small brands, that's what I love to do, and where I focus.
Robert Peterson 53:49
Nice. Obviously, brand building and psychology now keeps getting to higher and higher levels. We're connecting colors and shapes and languages and values. It does require experts to come alongside entrepreneurs who do know the basics for entrepreneurs, I can figure out who I am and who I want to serve and what I can offer them. That's still going to be in language, I help entrepreneurs understand their story and do this and this. Then coming alongside a brand expert allows them to say, these colors, match that these shapes match that and these are the things that go well with that psychology that matches you. Then of course, take the time to bring all those pieces together.
Cassie Hanuscak 54:47
It's so fascinating. It really is.
Robert Peterson 54:51
That's the big challenge for entrepreneurs in those early years. What's the very first thing they do? They reserved their company name and they have somebody design a lot They'll go.
Cassie Hanuscak 55:01
Then the logo is inconsistent. Iit's used here, but a completely different font is used here that sends a very different message that they're not even aware of. It's happening.
Robert Peterson 55:13
Then they're like, my cousin Joe designed that logo and it has had it since the beginning, Versus being able to say, but now you can create a logo, because now you've done the work. Now you know who you are. Now you can create a logo that matches your brand. You can create a brand
Cassie Hanuscak 55:33
I am actually a logo, yes, I'm not for hiring a professional designer to build a custom brand identity when you first start, because you are still learning what it is you do, you are still growing and changing. A year later, you may be offering completely different services. If you spent all this time and money on a brand that was in alignment with something else, and then you change, you're gonna have to redo it now. The truth is, you don't need a big fancy logo to start. You really don't? Eventually, yes.
Robert Peterson 56:16
The problem is, it's so easy now, I can find somebody on Fiverr and Upwork. They could have a logo for me in a couple hours. It feels like they're making progress, versus focusing on the inside work that would actually take them leaps and bounds down the road in their business. The inside is harder.
Cassie Hanuscak 56:39
Strategy first, it is harder. I have a five step process that I've developed for my clients that I do. It's something I teach in a digital course I offer. It's something I do with every client that hires me to create their brand for them. We have a half day workshop where we sit through and work through these exercises, and I have it as simplified as we can get. It is not easy. Working through these exercises will get you to where you need to go. Nice every time.
Robert Peterson 57:15
I will include the link in the description for sure. Cassie, what's the big dream?
Cassie Hanuscak 57:21
What's the big dream? Like my bucket list dream.
Robert Peterson 57:28
Tell me it's your dream. You get to decide which dream you want to share.
Cassie Hanuscak 57:33
I want to travel the world. My bucket list is to see the seven wonders of the world and I'm 347 so far.
Robert Peterson 57:40
getting those like I'm only one persona which one the pyramids in Giza?
Cassie Hanuscak 57:48
That is my asterik they're not? I want to see the seven. I want to see the Seven World Wonders plus Acropolis plus the pyramids because they're actually not on the list.
Robert Peterson 58:00
I was thinking the original seven wonders don't exist anymore, so I wasn't sure about ancient There you go. See, I knew there was a difference. What Cassie paid, I gotta tell us what they are.
Cassie Hanuscak 58:16
Oh my gosh. It's like remembering the Seven Dwarfs when you always forget one.
Robert Peterson 58:20
Cassie Hanuscak 58:24
It's the Chichen Itza in Mexico. The Great Wall of China. Christ the Redeemer in Brazil, the Roman Colosseum, the Taj Mahal Machu Picchu in Peru? There we are, I'm forgetting the seven if I told you I would.
Robert Peterson 58:50
There you go. Every time somebody will know. Let us know. Our guests spent an hour with an entrepreneur you are leaving with gaseous words of wisdom. What would you share?
Cassie Hanuscak 59:05
I would say, remember that you don't have to be big to do the work. You do have to do the work if you want to be big.
Robert Peterson 59:15
Nice. Cassie, thank you so much for sharing today. I appreciate you taking the time and what a wonderful conversation. I appreciate you.
Cassie Hanuscak 59:23
Thank you, Robert.