The Revenue Engine

Accelerating the Revenue Engine with Kyle Lacy, CMO Lessonly

June 8, 2021
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The Revenue Engine

Each week, Revenue Operations expert Rosalyn Santa Elena shines the spotlight on founders, CEOs, and Revenue Leaders from hyper-growth companies and dives deep into the strategies they implement to drive growth and share their learnings. Rosalyn brings you inspirational stories from revenue generators, innovators and disruptors, as well as Revenue Leaders in sales, marketing, and operations.

How do you accelerate your career and grow? “Take risks. If it feels uncomfortable, do it”. This is just one of the pieces of advice from Kyle Lacy, Chief Marketing Officer at Lessonly. Kyle has built an amazing brand for Lessonly, he also has an amazing personal brand.

In this episode of The Revenue Engine Podcast, Kyle’s talks about his first start up, how he created a revenue engine at Lessonly, how he stays ahead of the game, and much more!

Take a listen and walk away with actionable tips, and maybe a fresh perspective!

Connect with Kyle

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Thanks to Sales IQ Global for powering the Revenue Engine

Kyle Lacy
Chief Marketing Officer I serve the marketing team at Lessonly, a training and enablement software company based in Indianapolis, IN. The team consists of amazing designers, growth marketers, customer marketers, field marketers and inbound/outbound sales reps. I apply the lessons

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Welcome to the revenue engine podcast. I'm your host, Rosalyn Santa Elena. And I am thrilled to bring you the most inspirational stories from revenue, generators, innovators, and disruptors revenue leaders in sales, in marketing. And of course, in operations together, we will unpack everything that optimizes and powers the revenue engine. Are you ready? Let's get to it.

So how do you accelerate your career and grow? Take risks. If it feels uncomfortable, do it. That is just one of the pieces of advice from Kyle Lacy. The chief marketing officer at Lessonly Kyle has built an amazing brand for Lessonly, but he also has an amazing personal brand in this episode of the revenue engine podcast, Kyle and I chat about so many different topics, his first startup, his marketing journey.

How he created a revenue engine within marketing at Lessonly, how he stays ahead of the game, how to build your personal brand. And of course, how revenue operations and alignment helps to drive revenue growth and much, much more. So please take a listen. As I believe you'll walk away, not only with some actionable tips, but perhaps with a fresh perspective. Thank you for listening.

So super excited to be here today with Kyle Lacy, the CMO at Lessonly, but Kyle is so much more in addition to being a marketing leader, he is an author of several publications and active executive member and leader of the revenue collective a strategic advisor to a few different companies and has even been a co-founder of an organization that we will definitely dive into more and maybe his most coveted title.

Dad. So for anyone who is not familiar with Lessonly Lessonly as a powerful, yet simple training software that enables teams to do work better. When you look at the company, you see that their mission is to help teams change how they work so their people can live better lives. I love that. So welcome Kyle, and thank you so much for joining us.

Kyle Lacy: Absolutely. Thank you for having

Rosalyn Santa Elena: This is great. So when thinking about the Revenue Engine podcast, and really thinking about the real revenue disruptors, who are not only accelerating revenue in new ways, but doing it through marketing efforts. Right. You've shared previously how 70% of the net new revenue is sourced through your incredible marketing team and how Lessonly has experienced tremendous revenue growth during your tenure.

So I'm really looking forward to learning more. So let's go ahead and get started. Absolutely let's do it. So you've had a long and impressive career, right. As a marketing leader and advisor and author. And I mentioned even a co-founder. So if we can, I'd love to go kind of way back and start with the company brand swag that you co-founded.

So can you take us back to that time in your life? You know, what led you to the idea for brands wagon? How has that experience really helped shape who you are today?

Kyle Lacy: Yeah, so I, I, uh, I actually was very lucky that coming out of college, I had a job at an agency in Indianapolis where I moved after college.

And, um, the founder of that agency and Lorraine ball was very much a mentor for me when it came to just entrepreneurship and starting companies in general. So. As I experienced that as I had watched my father through entrepreneurship, as I had done stuff in college, it made sense to me that I eventually would want to start a company.

And Lorraine was very kind to allow me to use her office to start my company initially, which was called brand swag, as he said, and it was mostly. Um, I didn't quite know what I wanted to do, and I think that's why we started it. I, I had taught myself graphic design and that's what I was doing at, at round peg, which was Lorraine's agency.

And the, the, the company brand swag was more around logo developers. Which led into like social media consulting, which led to the books. But ultimately it was because I didn't quite know what I wanted to do. So I just, I said, I, I know how to network. I know how to meet people. Um, there is a need here for design web design logo design. And so.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Very interesting. That's a good, I had no idea. That's how it started. So that's great. Um, let's talk, I guess maybe let's shift over and talk more about your marketing journey, right? You've been at a variety of organizations. You mentioned being at an agency. I know you've been at a venture capital firm.

You've even been at a company that IPO, which was later acquired by Salesforce and other companies as well. So can you share more maybe about your career journey? You know, some of the key milestones or decisions made and how that led to the lessons?

Kyle Lacy: Yeah, I think overall throughout my entire career, it has been taking risk for the most part.

Um, you know, when brand swag failed miserably, which I think is a whole different podcast. Um, I had, I had taken some risks when I was there to write some books, you know, Wiley, uh, was w was part of the dummies guides. And then I, I wrote a book called branding yourself from Pearson, and then. Kind of catapulted me into this realm of social media consulting, which at the time nobody knew what the hell to do with any of it.

Right? And so we were teaching people how to use LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, all that stuff. And when the buy business failed exact target was a customer. And I had the choice between exact target, which would have been a huge leap for me and then a smaller company in Indy. And I took the huge. An exact target was a completely different world.

Thousands of employees, a hundred million plus in revenue. Uh, we, you know, we bought two companies a year. I joined, we IPO, we were bought by Salesforce and then understanding that I didn't want to live in the world of Salesforce because there's just too many people. I mean, for those of us that have worked in large companies, you understand right there is, there is.

Mo one of my best friends works there. I have a lot of friends that work in that they love it. It's just, it was not for me. It's a great company. And so that's when open view called and there, they were involved in exact target and there's a lot of like network connections. And it was a huge leap for me to move to Boston, a tier one city and work in venture capital, because that was not something that I had ever thought I'd be doing, but it was, it was a leap and it was something that felt uncomfortable.

And then when Lessonly came around, it was my first executive role and it felt uncomfortable and it was a leap. And so that for me and marketing, it has always been what makes you uncomfortable? And you should, you should do it unless it's something like, you know, don't get hurt or anything.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Right. I love that.

Yeah. I remember a saying, somebody had told me about, you know, get getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. Right. Because that's the only way you grow.

Kyle Lacy: Yeah, absolutely. That's the only way that you can, you grow. I mean, think about working out, right? You run to break down muscles, you lift to break down muscles so that they re you know, that they grow stronger.

The same thing applies to your career. It's like you, you have to take risk and if you fail fine, everybody fails. Everybody is stressing out about all this all the time. Like, I don't care. I don't care who you are. Right. We're always stressing out about it. So, um, but that, you know, you know, for me, that's how, that's, how I've always lived.

And if I feel like I'm starting to settle, that's when I get really anxious to change.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That makes a lot of sense. That's great advice. I love that. Um, so let's talk about Lessonly a little bit, so, you know, since joining Lessonly, I mean, it's grown significantly right. In the four years that you've been there, I'm sure the company has changed quite a bit, especially, you know, as the needs and demands for, you know, revenue enablement, training optimization of the revenue team have all accelerated at you've experienced double digit growth.

And much of that net new acquisition is a direct result of marketing efforts. Um, so what are some of the things that you. Designed and implemented in the marketing function at Lessonly that have really helped accelerate revenue.

Kyle Lacy: Yeah. So the first, the first thing for sure is, um, simplifying the fund.

That was, that was one of the first things that we did. We, we realized pretty quickly that we were looking at too much in the funnel, too many metrics, too many KPIs, too many conversion rates and sales had no idea what we were talking about half the time. Right. So simplified the funnel, the only deals we work or people who raised their hand, like I'm not sending, I'm not sending an ebook lead to, to a rep, to a human being to work.

Right. It's whoever raises their hand, whoever wants to demo, right? Like that is an MQ. So simplifying the funnel was huge because it allowed us to focus and allow, and revenue went up because we focused on the prospects that really wanted the demo. Right. They really cared. Uh, the second thing, which also.

Helps with alignment. The second thing was just pulling a lot of the outbound team under marketing as well. So inside like insight, SDRs, inbound SDRs, and then outbound BDRs all report into the marketing org at Lessonly. And that allowed us to unify top of funnel so that our go to market motions were together.

And it also forced alignment between sales and ops. Because sales is not solely dependent because they self source and that's actually, that's actually been going up in the, in the last year. Um, but marketing was responsible for a lot of their quota attainment. So it forced the AEs to work with the BDRs.

It forced me to work with sales leadership. Um, and the third thing, which is pretty simple is that one of the first things I did when I got to Lessonly was I introduced a marketing request. And it's really, really simple. Whenever anyone, I don't care if you're the CEO or you're an account executive needed something from the marketing team, they had to fill out a request form because what was happening was the team was getting pulled in every direction because the sales rep would just randomly message somebody and say, I need help on this deck.

And there was no forcing function for them to say, Hey you, I can't right now. So they felt like they always had to have. And so a lot of this aligns to just focus. And so they were, they now had the ability to say, Hey, E I can't help you. You need to go fill out a request form and we'll get back to you.

And that's been, it seems simple. Well, because it is, but it was massive when it came to the demand gen team focus around, um, around I'm just driving revenue. Cause they didn't have to deal with all the other stuff that was happening. Yeah. And then the fourth thing was we read is that we pretty much redesigned the site every year.

That's a, that's a huge thing for us because organic is such a strong channel for us that we need to constantly be evolving the way we think about page load, about design, about how somebody is using the site. And I think that's four things, right. Can I say four things? Yeah.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yeah. It's more definitional done.

Kyle Lacy: You, you know, as well as I do is that you look back on, I've been there four years and you do so much. Yeah. That's why I love venture backed software. You do so much in a small amount of time. That's kind of, it's kind of hard to remember all of it. I'm glad that you preempted this with, with questions so I can think about it.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Think about it. Yeah. I mean, definitely startup. I know with a kind of high growth startup people always talk about how it's like in dog years. And I always say my experience has been not quite. Dog use, but it's about a three X multiplier. That's where I've kind of found the balance. It's like a month is like a whole quarter, you know, a year three.

And that feels about right. So cool. So let's talk a little bit about just sort of the impact of, you know, the global pandemic with COVID obviously it's impacted us all from right. Perspective as well as from a personal perspective, right? Many organizations now have been forced to train and coach and enable their teams remotely.

Right. And virtually, yeah. So how has this impacted Lessonly like, how has it changed if at all sort of your approach to marketing?

Kyle Lacy: So, you know, it, it changed our approach to marketing early on, right? When, when March hit and April hit of last year, we shifted pretty dramatically away from demand and more towards support, like our, our events.

Turned away from like webinars about training, to webinars around, uh, getting changing careers or we hire career consultants to work with some of our customers that have been furloughed. We, we did, we did coloring books and word searches and stuff for kids at home because everybody was at home and everybody was flipping out.

Um, and then, you know, as, as the year progressed, what we found was that, you know, people started getting more used to. They got their, their telephone systems down. They figured out zoom, they got a bunch of stuff going. And then they started thinking about all right, employee development, training, onboarding.

And at the last half of the year, November on for us was. W picked up pretty, pretty quickly just because everybody, everybody was now thinking, oh, now I'm hiring a bunch of people. So for Lessonly it's been, it was tough at the beginning, we had just raised money, which is, we were very thankful that we had that, that series C come in in March and, uh, We started hiring again in November.

And it has been amazing because we have remote infrastructure now and we can hire from anywhere. And that that's not something that we thought we had the ability to do before the pandemic. So from a team building perspective, it has been massive. Like we have the people we're hiring they're remote. Like there's just a different, uh, There's a different skill set now out there.

And that we are looking at outside of just the city that we're in. Right. Um, from an external perspective for business, it's been huge because people are now getting to the point where they're like, yeah, I can't fly everybody in for training or scone needs to be virtual, or, I mean, you and I could talk about this all day long, but it's, it's a.

They're finally getting to the point where they have to, they have to start thinking about remote training. And I don't think that was the case the first half of the year. I think everybody was just trying to figure out what the hell was it?

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yeah, exactly. Like everything else, everything else going on.

It's just a big blur. Um, so I guess aside from COVID, you know, in general, the market. Is changing so quickly, right? What resonates with target personas and buyers it's constantly evolving, you know, and buyers are so well-informed right. Like us as consumers, right. We're so well-informed, we know what we want.

We want it now. Right? So there's so many resources for buyers to determine what they want even ahead of time. So how do you, you know, how do you stay ahead of the game and ahead of what the market needs or wants? Like, what are some of the things that maybe you and your team you think that you've been doing right from this perspective?

Kyle Lacy: Um, so listening, we, we spent quite a bit of time listening to customers. We have a full-time customer marketing manager. We have a mobile app called lamination that has a lot of our customers on it, and we are constantly listening to them. So that's that's number one. Um, number two is we actually started talking to analysts firms, which I was, it was harder for me at the beginning of my career at Lessonly to do that.

And now that we have over the past year, it has been. It has been massive for our, just our ability to understand what's happening in the market by talking to analysts firms, um, there's positives and negatives to, to working with analysts, but I've experienced very positive things at adolescents. Um, and then the third thing is we kind of create it.

We kind of create our own destiny. We've always been a company that is, that we'll watch trends, but we want to try to create them. And if we can balance those three things, then that I feel like we, we will not be a follower. I think that's my biggest fear is that we fall into this, this category. We fall into a cat category or we, you know, we don't evolve and we just become another, another solution set within sales enablement or whatever.

Um, we have to be constantly evolving in order for us to continue to be a leader.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's great. I love that. That's great advice. Um, so you mentioned earlier about sort of the, the web design and such, and I know that you, you know, you just redesigned not too long ago. Um, you completed a complete redesign and transformation of your website, and I heard that you did that all in house.

So can you share a little bit about, you know, sort of the thought process around the redesign and maybe what you were hoping to accomplish in terms of that brand refresh?

[Kyle Lacy: Yeah. So this, this happened, we had an extreme case happened in 2018 and then we do it every year. Now we actually just rolled out.

We're testing it now, but we rolled out some new designs on Monday, March 22nd. Um, So in 2018, we discovered that, or our organic traffic and our organic leads were, were dropping pretty significantly over like three or four month timeframe. And it had to do after digging, it had to do with one of the Google releases.

I don't know some animal, I think it was penguin, but, um, it was basically they, they released something that said, if your page load time slows down, like we're going to kill you on organic search. Oh, our page load time. There's a, there's an, uh, a Chrome extension called lighthouse. That is built by some Google engineers that will rank each page on your website with like a Google score, across four different things.

I think, and our website was terrible. Like my dog is telling me. Um, and, uh, so I made the decision to say, I'm going to take pretty much the entire team. We pulled them out of the office and put them in a separate location and we rebuild. The website from the ground up in six to eight weeks. And through that, we realized, Hey, this is a great time to do a rebrand too.

At least we had a bunch of dark colors. We had a midnight color that was kind of our main brand color and we just redid all of it. And it was significant improvement when we launched it. And that's when we made the decision to get rid of most of our forms. It was just a complete overall. And then every year we just do what we call just mini projects, where we will like this last one we launched, we redid some messaging on the web, the homepage, we redid the product page.

We redid our enterprise page. Um, and we do everything in house. Like you said, we have designers web. Um, for the website project, we had to outsource some of it because it was a huge lift, but, but now, uh, all of our CRO tests, everything is done by the, by the brain. Oh, that's

Rosalyn Santa Elena: amazing. That's amazing. And I know you guys have, have a great brand too.

I'm Lessonly but you know, on the topic of brand, right. You also have a great personal brand, right? I'm not sure that anyone can think of Lessonly without thinking of Kyle Lacy first. Right? In fact, I know you've written a book all about personal branding, corporate branding. I focused on how to use social media to help drive this.

And you mentioned this a little bit earlier, too, but I'd love to hear how, you know, the idea for the book came about as well as any tips you have for someone who might be interested in really looking to start building their own personal brand.

Kyle Lacy: Yeah. So the book came about, I had just, I had just launched Twitter marketing for dummies, which you can go by if you want, but it's completely out of date because it's a book about Twitter, which was published in 2013, but.

Or 20, no, 2010. So once you publish a book, it's fairly easy to, to pitch other publishers on doing something else. So I had a friend of mine, Eric Deckers, who was here locally in Indy. He was a little bit older than me. And he had this idea to write a book about how do you reinvent yourself using social media?

And then I had the idea why? Okay. Well, at the time I was 28. 27 and he was in his forties. And so we wrote, that's how we wrote the book. Was it mostly around how does a younger person brand themselves online and then how does somebody that wants to reinvent themselves do the same thing? Um, so through that, you know, we, we've had quite a bit of discussions with people around personal branding that the, especially if you're, if you're in a professional setting, the one thing I say is you should never have to use a resume to get.

If you're doing it correctly, if you are, and it's all around you building a community, you know this, you and I know this cause we're in revenue collective. But if you do, if you're, if all you're doing is going to work and putting your head down and not meeting peers and not thinking about what's in the market or who's in your city, and you're not caring about anything other than family and what you do on a daily, you're gonna, you're gonna pick your head up one day and not have an office.

I've talked to way, way too many people that have worked 20 years at a company. And, and I've picked their head up and had no idea what to do after they were furloughed or whatever. Right. It's a little bit different for venture backed software, because like you said, it's three X. So, you know, you got, you got five years in it's like you were 15 at a traditional company.

Right. So, so we're changing jobs a little bit more. So networking comes a little bit more natural to us, but it's how do you, how do you make sure you have a unique story to tell. Because me me saying I'm a CMO at a venture backed software company and I'm a dad is not a unique story. Like it's like anybody, anybody that has that criteria can say that, like, how do you, how do you tell your story in a way that's unique?

Like, what's, I am a huge, uh, military history buff. I would probably be a history teacher if I wasn't in marketing. Right. How do you, how do you make sure that you're constantly doing that and then share it online? Um, I think it comes naturally to two people in their thirties, like to the, the older millennials, because we grew up with Zynga and my space and AOL medicine.

That's true. That's true. No, I, I don't, I, I think I, I it's, it comes naturally to me to share whether I'm talking about my kids or at work on LinkedIn and Twitter, just because I grew up. Um, so for me, personal branding is definitely your ability to create a network that will help you throughout your entire career.

And if you, it, as you've done that, it doesn't matter if you have 20,000 people or 50.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yep. Yep. That's that's great advice. I love that. And I love the, the not having to ever have a resume again. I think that makes a lot of sense too. Um, so let's talk a little bit, what about my favorite topic or maybe not my favorite these days, but one of my favorite topics around go to market and revenue operations.

Right. So, you know, my background is all about operations. Um, you know, you recently posted on LinkedIn about the creme de LA creme. Right of a life and growth, right? Communication, revenue, enablement, and metrics. So of course I love this. Um, because one of the most important responsibilities I think of rev ops is really to drive alignment right across the entire revenue team.

And it's, you know, one of the things I wanted to say is just, you know, we, people talk about rev ops and revenue, operations and alignment and everything. Like it's something new. And for those of us who've been in a revenue, you know, in revenue models, it's nothing. Right. It's just, now there's a lot of focus and people are realizing how important,

Kyle Lacy: well, now it's a category that software company wants.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Exactly. So now everybody's listening. That's right. So how has, um, Lessonly adopted, you know, revenue, operations and revenue alignment, you know, and maybe if you can share sort of what effect have you seen on the organization's ability to really drive revenue growth by adopting, you know, better online.

Kyle Lacy: Yeah, and this has been an evolution for us. And within the first six months of being at Lessonly and this was 2017, we rolled out a funnel and pipeline meeting that's weekly. And I wish I could remember the person that told me they do this, but they kind of did it at exact target two. And I was, I was just in a different team, but, um, Funnel and pipeline, meaning that, that includes every manager from every revenue team, CX sales marketing, and it's run by ops.

Yep. Every week we get in a room for an hour and we go through the metrics, we go through top accounts. We go through, what does forecasts look like? What does weighted pipe look like? What does 90 day rolling pipe look like? Uh, across all of our segments. You know, after three and a half years of doing it, that, that, that, that meaning used to be four people now it's like adding something and, yeah, but it's still important.

I don't care how, how, how, uh, it's usually just people reading off metrics, but there's usually one or two conversations that happen in that meeting that lead to change. And if you're not doing that on a weekly basis, you're going to miss something right. It seems like a simple answer, but that is probably the most important thing we've done.

And that ops team has grown. Um, with that meeting right now, we have sales ops. Now we have somebody from marketing ops. Now we have, you know, revenue ops and, and it is a central it's the. Uh, linchpin is a terror. Like, you know what I'm saying? It's the centralized body that supports all of us when it comes to our metrics and they live in finance and ops.

So operations is then tied to our financial, uh, wellbeing. And that helps as well. So it's been huge because now. Uh, we have the ability to pull information quickly to make decisions quickly. And before that, if you do not have that system put in, I mean, you could talk about this for hours, but if you don't have that system put in place, it's really hard to make decisions quickly.

You're going to be, you're going to feel like you can't and then you're never going to make them, and you're going to die on the vine because you have to make decisions quickly.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's right. Cool. I love that. Thank you so much. So you guys all heard it from Kyle Lacy. You didn't hear it from me.

Kyle Lacy: Well, you gotta, you have to fail quickly, too, right?

Like you have to fail quickly and you have to win quickly. And the only way you can do that is to understand the metrics behind it. And without an ops team, that's never gonna have. Yep. Yeah, because you're gonna have a bunch of salespeople creating dashboards, which is not a good idea.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Love that. So, you know, when I think about the revenue engine and you know, this podcast, I'm always hoping that others will be able to really learn how to accelerate revenue growth, right.

And power that revenue engine. And so I think we've touched on a lot of different areas here to help with that. Definitely some actionable tips and some really good perspective and higher level thoughts. So, if we had to sum this up, you know, just in a few points, like what are some, what are the key elements that, from your perspective that have really contributed to the growth, right?

That Lessonly has experienced

Kyle Lacy: Build an ops team. That's more than one person. They should not live in a go to market team. They should live outside of it. You know, whether they live in sales, readiness, sales experience, or if they live in finance and ops, I do not care. They should not live in sales and they should not live in marketing or CRM.

They should live outside of it, have a weekly meeting with that team and with your, your, and the leaders of each org is responsible for bringing information there to that meaning to discuss, um, and. Marketing should own a revenue number and marketing should be comped on a revenue number because when marketing is comped on a revenue number, these alignment between sales and marketing become one.

And we don't even have to talk about alignment because you're doing it daily. The fact that we actually have to talk about this is crazy to me like that there's actually problems with our top of funnel, like not talking to each other and being infused. And it's just, it's so easy to solve for some of this stuff and the central.

The, the people that drive it are the ops are the ops team revenue, ops sales ops, marketing ops. However you want to define it. Um, that's the most important thing in my book. And, uh, if you can kind of align those things together, um, you are going to grow. As long as your product works, just make sure you work for somebody that's products works.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: And people want right.

You gotta make sure people, people actually, yeah.

Kyle Lacy: People want it before you have an ops team and the marketing team and sales team, you've got to build a product people want.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's right. Great. So are there, is there anything that, you know, you wish you knew earlier, or maybe that you would do differently if you had a chance to do everything over.

Kyle Lacy: Yeah. I mean, there's one huge thing at Lessonly, which is I should have hired a product marketer two years before we did. I think, uh, I think it's, it's a great second or third hire for any startup to make is having a product marketer that understands how to craft messaging. And, um, that'd probably be the first thing.

Everything else is kind of, we've kind of evolved with, with the growth. You know, and that's that, that is my, if I were to look back, that's the one thing I would change, I would have hired a product marketer in 27. Got it.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yep. That makes a lot of sense. Um, so, so thank you so much for joining me, Kyle. Um, you know, but before we wrap up, you know, as we wrap up and before I let you go, so I always ask, I love to know two things about you.

So one, what is the one thing about Kyle Lacy that others would be surprised to know? Which might be a little tough since you're pretty open book. Um, and to what is the one thing that you absolutely want everyone to know about you?

Kyle Lacy: So the surprise, um, the first thing that I wanted to be growing up was a civil war reenacting.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Oh, what was the kind of the drive behind that idea?

Kyle Lacy: Always go rent Mo this was back when you rented VHS tapes, we would go to a supermarket that had a video section. Our local supermarket. And, uh, we rented a movie called Gettysburg and I've watched Gettysburg. I had, I had seen Gettysburg 27 times before I was like six years old.

And I think that kind of started, it started like I'm I am obsessed with the civil war in general. I've I've read about it since I, since I first saw that movie, uh, even today I still, uh, research it. Uh, so I had a full drummer boys suits and. I just, and then finally I was like, no, I probably need to think about something other than being a civil war.

Reenactor cause I don't even think they make money. Yeah.

That's number one. That's probably, that's probably the first thing I would say. That's great. We repeat the

Rosalyn Santa Elena: second question is, is there one thing that you, you do want everyone to really know about you?

Kyle Lacy: I hate onions and avocado. I don't.

I don't, I don't, I don't like it. I'll eat avocado and sushi. And onions cooked onions are okay, but onions. I just can't

Rosalyn Santa Elena: 10 years I can do, I can't do the raw onions, but being a being from California and hearing somebody who doesn't like avocados is like shocking to me. I

Kyle Lacy: know, I know my wife says the same thing, but I just can't.

I tried it. I'm not one of those people that was like, oh, that looks gross. I'm not going to try it. I've tried it. I've tried multiple times to enjoy it. All of you, people from California. I'm sorry. I do like the avocado marketing though. They've got good marketing.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's great. Well, thank you so much for joining me, Kyle.

It's been a true pleasure to chat with you and so grateful and appreciative of your time and just sharing your story.

Kyle Lacy: Thank you for having me. It was fun. Thank you.

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