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Client Horror Stories

Transcription of Braden Cadenelli’s episode (That time when a customer frequently visits your workplace and uses the “quality control” card to eat free cupcake samples)

Transcription of Braden Cadenelli’s episode (That time when a customer frequently visits your workplace and uses the “quality control” card to eat free cupcake samples)

This transcription belongs to Episode #32: Braden Cadenelli’s customer-horror-story that made Our Beloved Host, Morgan Friedman, drop his jaw during the interview. Please watch the complete episode here!


Morgan Friedman (Host): Hey everyone. I’m here  tonight on the latest episode of Client Horror Stories with Braden, the first chef that I’ve ever interviewed and possibly the first chef that I know, and I’m really excited to jump in and hear your stories. I only have some pastries with me right now. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Well, thank you very much, Morgan. I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to send some out to you. Next time, if we do this again, I’ll be forewarned and I’ll make sure you get something. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): That sounds like a plan. So, let’s jump right into the story. Give us the background and then what happened.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Well, certainly. Thank you very much. This is a story that happened at one of my previous places of employment, and where I worked, we were a semi-industrial wholesaler of patisserie. What that means is, let’s say, you operated a restaurant, you could not though hire your own pastry staff. 

We could produce everything you needed to make your desserts or any kind of baked good that you needed for your restaurant, sell it to you wholesale, and then the staff that you had on hand could plate the items or use them in the restaurant’s preparations. 

We would do this for hotels, country clubs, restaurants, grocery stores, a very wide range of different outlets within the food surf industry. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I had no idea that this industry even existed. You learn something new every day. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yes. It’s actually really a large part of the industry.

Just quickly, for example, when you go into a grocery store and if you talk about what we professionally call the in-store bakery, so it’s generally in the corner somewhere. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yes, yes. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Some of that might be produced. Yeah, exactly. Everybody knows that. They all know the in-store bakery. Some of that might be produced beginning to end at the store.

Most of it, though, is either bought in wholesale, and all the store is doing is putting their label on it. Or it’s bought in, kind of, piece mail, but again, wholesale, and they’re just assembling or finishing and then, again, sticking their label on it. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): White labeling for food. I didn’t even know that was a thing.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yes. Yeah. It’s co-manufacturing. You know, comag, as we might say, is a big part of the food industry. 

And at this particular company that I worked for, we were branching out into making these private label products. Whenever you go to a store and you see an item that has maybe the store brand on it or a non-name brand, a non-national brand, it’s considered a private label.

And in this end, we were approached by a retail chain of cupcake stores, and their business was taking off faster than they could handle. In the past, the original business model was they would make the cupcakes from scratch beginning to end at each individual store. So, for example, if they had a triple chocolate cupcake, each individual store had all of the ingredients, the recipe, the know-how, the equipment, everything they needed, and they would each make that triple chocolate cupcake beginning to end.

What they needed to start doing was streamlining and simplifying the process. So what they decided to do was to start purchasing the cake, only the cake. So each store would still ice decorate, finish the cupcake on site. They’ll be buying in the cake component. That’s where we were going to come in. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): By the way, it’s just randomly nothing to do with the horror story. What’s interesting about this is my pure ignorance about the food industry. It’s interesting just the parallels to, like, traditional manufacturing. Like often, a lot of things have to be for laws, but legally, there are a lot of countries that say, “Oh, if it’s made in the USA, you get lower taxes.”

So really they make it in China, but they just finish it  in the USA. And this feels just like, “Oh, we’ll just put the icing on the cupcake. “

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Mm-hmm. Yes. A lot of times, you know why it happens? A lot of times, it’s the element of the theater and the storytelling of the process, right? 

The food-making process is so tied to our senses, and just think about the value that you grant to an item by finishing it in the store. Even if you bought the icing pre-made, bought the cake pre-made, simply the act of having a person pipe the icing on where the consumer can see that it’s happening behind the counter, you’ve increased the value of your product.

Morgan Friedman (Host): Wow. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): So your sale price is higher, your margins are better, and you’re gonna make more money. And these stores know that. I mean, they’re smart. They’re run by smart people. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I already see myself as using this metaphor because subconsciously and psychologically, it gives the potential client in the store the impression that all of it is made there.

I love it. I love it. Okay, great. This is what your business did, and you were approached by someone, and what happened? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yes. So we’re approached by this cupcake retailer and the owner. She came in, and she came in a few times to get to know us, to get to know our owners.

We had two owners, and that’s kind of important to this story, is the fact that we had two owners, one who was the executive pastry chef and one who handled all of the business side, mainly the financial side of running this company. From the minute this customer came in, we knew this was going to not end well.

If you’ve ever just seen a person come in a room and you can feel their energy, you can see how they interact with people, you know, “Oh, I don’t like the direction this is taking.” 

Morgan Friedman (Host): now we’re getting to the preface to the horror. So it’s getting even more interesting. So, a question. Were there any clues that, like little things this person said or did that set off the alarm bells in your head in the very beginning?

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): In my head, personally, one of the… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): or among your other coworkers. The reason why I’m asking is, and this is interesting, is often when you first meet someone, you get this feeling that something’s going wrong.

But what I found is that often, it’s because they said this little thing, they did this little thing, they acted inappropriate. Like these small problems are very often representative of the huge problems there. So, one of the best ways to avoid these disastrous situations is when you notice the small problems to clamp down or leave or solve it before it begins.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Mm-hmm. Oh, you are 100% correct. And I could tell stories about small problems that I’ve seen that were indicative of larger problems. In this instance, one of those small issues was she really seemed more interested in coming to meet us for the free food than for how we could actually help her business.


Morgan Friedman (Host): It’s totally ridiculous. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): She would come over, “What’s that? What are you working on?” And, of course, we’re gonna tell her. It’s a potential customer. We wanna share the work we’re doing. You explain what we’re working on. “Can I try that?” “Sure. We always make extra. Of course. Here you go.” 

And by the second or third visit, we had learned that this was going to happen, so we started preparing snacks for her and her entourage when they would come so we could make sure we could almost proactively head her off at the pass, so to speak. And we would have in the room where they’re going to meet, “You know what? Let’s just put some snacks in there.” 

And then she won’t come and bother us when we’re trying to have production, because at the end of the day, really, after the initial tour, she’s there to meet with the owners. She’s there to work out a deal so that she can understand what value we can bring to her business, how we can help her streamline her process, and how, at the end of the day, this will be profitable for both of us.

Morgan Friedman (Host): this is actually really interesting. So one thing that’s interesting is my work has all been in the digital world, and there’s just such interesting parallels between here and the digital world. So often, you meet potential clients who just want a free meeting after free meeting after free meeting. Unless you have brainstorm on this, how would you deal with this situation?

And they kind of keep on pushing the meeting and all your attempts to say,   “Hey,  it’s time to get started.” It’s like, “Oh, I just have a really little question about this.” So there’s this type of person, and I wonder if there’s some sort of like rule of thumb, like before you sign a contract, there are like three meetings or  somehow maybe a way for everyone watching this, in order to prevent this certain problem is to develop a policy where you have two free meetings or three free meetings, period, and like before the contract starts, in order to avoid these sorts of tire kickers. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Definitely. If we, to hit on that, skip ahead to where I work now, most of the work we do is development. It’s all product development, and we don’t charge for that.

We do the work because at the end of the day, that development leads to sales, and that leads to repeat business. It’s part of the service we offer. What we do though is at a certain point in the development and a certain level of ask, and generally in this case it is a sample amount of one of our products, the customer has to pay for it.

We might provide, say a freight, we’ll get it to them. If though, because we deal in sometimes large volumes, if for them to okay a project, they need, let’s say a thousand pounds of product, they’re buying it from us. And then that’s how we have a measure in place to keep them from abusing the system.

And that’s just one example. We use that same idea though in a multitude of ways to make sure that at certain points along the way, we have a process in place that can bring a stop. And so that if the customer’s not serious about moving forward, we’re not wasting our time or really their time. Cuz if it’s not gonna go anywhere, there’s no value in either of us continuing.

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yeah. This makes sense. So  the timely signal point is an interesting yellow flag. And one solution set is either have a policy of someone for your time or just like charge upfront for for the free time. 

Another interesting aspect of this detail of the yellow flag here is while she kept on coming in, just from the way you describe it, it seems like she wasn’t that interested in like, “Let’s get down to dirty official details,” rather than diving into the specifics of how will a partnership work and all those little details.

And something I’ve seen as another yellow flag  is people who are much more concerned about what it looks like on the surface than what’s actually happening underneath. Those are the clients I wanna run away from. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Definitely. No, again, you’re 100% correct, and I’ve seen it not only in this instance but in others as well. When after a few meetings they’re not really getting down to the true details and the true core of the project, they’re probably not interested, or they just don’t know sometimes. 

They’re just not aware even of the right questions to ask or what that true core is, and those can be different and you can… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): That’s a good point. Sorry, I didn’t mean to interrupt. I think you’re making a good and a subtle point that often, they don’t know. So, some people care about the superficial attitude just because, like, they’re bad clients, they’re not interested. They’re just like, they’re there to waste money. They don’t care about the business or for whatever reason. 

But there’s also a type of person who’s just like too inexperienced or maybe inexperienced in this industry, or maybe a bit naive. So they don’t even realize. So they may be goodhearted and not realize it, and figuring out if it’s the good or the bad form of this naivety, and then figuring out how to deal with it I think is one of the trickier challenges of this type of situation. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): It certainly is because what I’ve learned, at least in our industry, is the folks who don’t know what they don’t know, well they don’t know that they don’t know it. As you said though, when they’re, most of the time, they’re goodhearted smart people, you can work with them. You can get to that. 

If you explain to them what the situation is and what’s important to you as their partner, they’re going to understand. They’re gonna come around. They’re gonna realize. In this specific case though, I don’t think that would’ve helped. At the end of the day, this was a person who didn’t know a lot because they didn’t have a background in the food industry.

The reason that they got into the industry was admirable. I would take nothing away from why they got into the industry and started this business. They got into the industry because they actually started selling cupcakes for a charitable cause, and people liked their cupcakes. I think that’s fantastic.

They were doing good work, right? They were helping people in need through the sale of cupcakes. I’m not gonna stop you ever. When you then decide you’re gonna quit your job and make this your business with no experience, maybe you should have taken some time to figure out what it was that you didn’t know, because we see that a lot especially in the food industry. 

People think it’s Willy Wonka all the time, that there’s chocolate waterfalls and magical people who are going to help you get through everything. It’s hard. Let me tell you, margins are tight. Customers are demanding. It’s a tricky industry to navigate. And even more so today with logistical supply chain issues and inflation, very hard.

If you don’t have the right training, the background, and a personality for it, it’s not a good idea to start a food-based business . It’s just, it’s not, and that’s what we had here. We had somebody who had a love and a passion for food. They didn’t have a good sense of business in general, and they didn’t know the specific areas where one could fail when that business is based in food, because there are a lot of unique variables that you run into with a food-based business that you don’t run into if you’re making, say, jewelry or t-shirts or any type of item that’s not meant for human consumption. 

Now, if we continue with this story, we did come to an agreement. The owners came to an agreement on what we would be delivering, when we would be delivering it, the price point. All of those details were worked out. So the next step was for us to get the recipes because we would be replicating their recipes and to start ordering the ingredients.

They, again, wanted to come in and just have a look at all the ingredients once they’re in. Honestly, a little odd, right? Generally, we trust each other professionally. When your recipe has a certain ingredient, we know what that is. We’re going to purchase it. 

If we have any questions, we’re gonna ask for something called a technical data sheet or a TDS sheet. It’s gonna give us all of the technical specifications. We’ll give it to our vendor, and they’ll get us the right product. Now, what’s interesting here, the right product… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): just, for one second, what’s also interesting about that, I like your point about trusting each other. But usually, signing a contract and giving the first payment is a sign that you trust someone.

Like, you don’t hire and pay someone  if you don’t trust them. So this makes it a little bit weird, and I feel like the best explanation is this naivete, and it’s like, “I’m not a professional, so I’m like really scared about what’s going to happen,” and you don’t really know how things go professionally.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Most definitely, I would 100% agree. The person, they just don’t know, they’re unaware, and they’re used to having a certain level of control. And giving that level of control up right when you’re an entrepreneur can be very scary. That is frightening when you have to trust someone else with your business, with your name on it. That’s hard. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yes, totally. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): And again, continuing, professionally… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yes. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): We can get the same ingredient packaged 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 47 different ways, and it can be the same ingredient. So once we had all the ingredients in, the owner and her team came in. They started looking at the ingredients, and they just started going off on one of our owners saying, “This is not our ingredient. This is not what we use. This is different.” 

And he had to try to explain to her what, “Yes, the packaging is different, right? You purchase right now for your stores, which do a small volume, you purchase in smaller packaging from your vendor. We purchase in larger packaging from our vendor. Same product, same exact technical specifications. It just looks different.” 

She could not understand this. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Wait, I wanna clarify this just to make sure I understand it and I’m not like this terrible client. So, when you say it’s a different packaging, is it just like literally the same thing, just the box that it was delivered in is like a different box? Or is it like both like the same chocolate, but it’s like a one chocolate like in a powdered form or a liquid form, like different forms of the same food? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): No, not different forms. You hit it on the head the first time when you said same item, just the box. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Box. The box it comes in. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah, exactly. So where they were maybe buying it in a five-pound box because each of their stores only had to make, let’s say, 100 cupcakes at a time, we were buying it in a 50-pound package because we had to make 500 cupcakes at a time. That’s all it was. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Wait, so I’m kind of confused. Even really stupid people understand that different quantities come in different boxes and you’re making a larger quantity, so you need to buy a version that will have a larger box. 

Like this this isn’t rocket science here. So like, was she really that stupid, or what was actually happening? Or what’s happening in her mind, let’s say? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): I luckily have not been in very fortunate… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Thank goodness for you. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Thank goodness. Yeah. I’m quite fortunate. I think it all goes back because I’ve had experience as an entrepreneur, I’ve had experience in the corporate world, and I know how difficult that is to give up control.

When I look back at the situation, I see almost all of her actions as being those of a person who didn’t know how to give up control and be the leader in a situation where you empower other people to do their best instead of being the hero of the situation. 

Those are two very different roles, and I strongly feel, as I’ve thought about this situation and looked back on it, that while this was blatantly obvious to her, as you said, this was a smart enough person to run a successful business after she started figuring it out. She probably deep down, really understood. 

She couldn’t, I think, handle giving up that control that she had because it is difficult and when you… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So, super interesting. Actually, your analysis makes complete sense, and it sounds right. What I would add to that is something I found in dating is I found that when you date, there are naturally fights.

And whenever my girlfriend is angry and gets very angry over something, it turns out every single time, the real reason why she’s angry has nothing to do with what she’s saying. Like she’s really angry. I didn’t leave the cap on the toothpaste, but really, she’s frustrated about some deeper emotional, “Where’s our relationship going?” some bigger thing. 

But it manifests itself in a stupid way. And it sounds like there’s this business parallel here, and there’s this parallel here. So she shows something completely ridiculous when really, there’s this deeper subtext to her insecurities about delegating and giving up control. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh, I think, again, that’s actually brilliant, and that is something that actually ties into a point that I learned in a class on communication years ago.

And the instructor used this saying to catch people off-guard and definitely kind of make them laugh a little bit, at least people of a certain age. And the saying was that when you are working with people, when you are communicating, when you’re doing business, remember all business is personal, and it kind of makes you laugh if you’re ever a certain age cuz if you grew up like I did watching 80s movies, how many of the bad guys were business people? And it, “Hey, it’s not personal, it’s just business,” right? 

We can all hear that phrase in our head, “Oh no. Hey, it’s not personal. It’s just business.” And the point here was, what the instructor was trying to teach us was, you’re always doing business with other people, so it’s, therefore, personal.

You have to understand where they’re coming from, meet them where they are, have empathy and understanding, and then the situations that you’re explaining, they’re worried about A, but it’s really manifesting as them acting out about B. You’ll be able to handle those and know how to communicate when you remember that they’re not really mad about B, they’re mad about A, because just like you, they’re a person.

Take the business for a moment out of the equation, and try to understand the person. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): that makes perfect sense. So, I love your Star Trek cup, by the way. I kind of want one. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Thank you. I’m a big fan. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): so I like this observation that it’s about the person, and it seems like the underlying challenge at this woman faced is the fact that to grow a business, you fundamentally need to learn delegation and all the trust and the risks that that entails.

And she was just going through her struggle and being angry over the box it came in is a different size is a manifestation of that struggle. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Exactly. In the moment, it was, quite frankly, to those of us who were not the owners and were not dealing with that actively hilarious, I mean,  it was funny to us to see this, you know, tantrum being thrown by a grown person. But it was funny because again, we weren’t on the receiving end. We were working. We were in the other part of the area. We didn’t have to deal with it. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So she actually threw a tantrum over the box size?

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. There was a bit of a tantrum, not a full grown, I’m gonna get down on the floor kicking and screaming toddler tantrum. There was a tantrum to the point of, “I don’t trust you.” And it goes back to that, it goes back to that trust. “I’m not sure that you’re actually purchasing the right ingredients. I’m not sure you’re going to execute this properly for me.”

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yeah, it’s definitely delegation trust issues and an adult having a tantrum, like an adult screaming, is either like you should know better or you shouldn’t be in business. So even just no matter what the context or the background getting at the point of an adult having a tantrum, that alone, forgetting everything else, is like a red flag disqualifier. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. Oh yeah. It is. I’ve, in the past, walked away from people professionally who have acted like that, and I’ve said, “Look, right now, this is not how we deal with problems. This is not how we communicate. I’m gonna give you your space. I’m going to extract myself from the situation. Once you’ve had time, let’s talk. Let’s have an adult conversation.”

And that generally works well. I’ve never really been followed by the screaming person, luckily. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Right? Okay, so now there’s this whole art of dealing with handling the screaming person. So she had the tantrum. What did your boss do? Who was on the receiving end? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): What he did is he tried to diffuse the situation by using facts, figures, information that could not be argued against.

It all goes back really to the technical data sheets that I talked about, right? There are industry standards, and so when we’re given information and said, “Okay, here’s the recipe. Here are the products. Here are the item codes from the manufacturer.” Even if we’re not getting from the same manufacturer, we can line up technical specifications.

So in this case, it might mean the level of fat in a cocoa powder or the level of solid in a product. You can get something that is analogous so we can get B that’s exactly like A. It just comes from a different manufacturer. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So, I have a parenthetical question, which is really more of my complete ignorance about the industry.

If there are two products that have the same technical data, like two chocolates, this chocolate, that chocolate, same percentage fat, same percentage of this sugar, same percentage of that, does having the same technical data even if they’re from different manufacturers, is it the same taste?

Are they effectively the same product? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): So that’s a great example actually, because in certain cases, yes, it could be the same. A lot of that depends on the manufacturing methods. So let’s take, let’s table chocolate for a moment, and I’ll give an example where it could be the same, and then chocolate, where it can be different and why. 

A lot of people will, for various reasons, tell you that different milks might taste different, and they can. Generally though, with like a dairy product, if it’s coming from the same area, the same region, the cows are on the same diet, it’s being pasteurized in the same way, bottled in the same way, you’re gonna get something that tastes just like milk at the end. 

Now when we start introducing different feed or different pasteurization methods, yes you can change. As long as though the input is the same, the processing is the same, the output in that example should be the same.

Chocolate, there are different types of cacao, so different types of trees that are biologically different. Those are gonna have different flavor profiles. Even if, let’s say, we eliminate, there’s three main types. Let’s say we eliminate two of those, and now we’re only dealing with one of those, right? So now our input is, at this point, the same. Now though, once it’s harvested, there are many steps. There’s the drying, there’s the fermentation, which in chocolate is huge.

If any of these steps are completed differently, if that process is different, now your output will be different because there’s also roasting, there’s conching. So you could create two 60% chocolates that have identical TDS sheets that came from the same country, even the same farm. If different manufacturers, though, buy those beans, one might ferment the chocolate, the beans, for a shorter amount of time. One might conch it for a longer amount of time. 

All of that’s gonna lead to a different output. You hit it on the head again, a different flavor. So, in that specific example, let’s say we are purchasing chocolate, we’re going to get the same one because that will be important.

Morgan Friedman (Host): Okay. By the way, I think what you just told me, even though it has nothing to do with the client horror stories, my favorite part of this podcast episode before, cuz I found that endlessly fascinating. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh, good. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): and I also think it ties into this component of trusting who you hire that we are talking about a few minutes ago because if the technical data sheets cover some of this, but there are details of the process that the TDS won’t be able to cover, so she has to trust you to know, “Oh, for milk, it’s okay if it lines up like this. But for chocolate, you have to get from the same manufacturer.”

So this is a example, like reinforcing that when you’re not an expert in an industry, the detailed documentations like the TDS can only cover so much. Cause fundamentally, the professional that’s hired you, in this case, is always going to know the inputs, the processes, everything, much better than you do.

So you have to trust them if you work with them. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So much of what we do in any business is trust. It’s empowering people and trusting them to do what you’ve hired them to do. There’s a reason you hired them. Let them do their job. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Totally. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): I say that to my team all the time. ” You have my 100% trust. Do your job. I’m not worried, right? I wouldn’t have hired you if I didn’t trust you to do it.” 

If we go back to our story, we were talking about her little tantrum. So, as I said, the owner was very calm, let her just have the little tantrum, let her calm herself down a little bit, explained to her using information data that was infutable, what was going on.

All right, situation solved, moved on from. Next step in this process, right? We have our agreement, we have our ingredients, we have our recipes and everything. It’s time to schedule production, and we would, of course, do testing on our own to just make sure that we could produce some samples and everything’s going to be the same, because again, you have to remember process – different.

Many small retail stores, small ovens. Everything’s gonna be different. Larger facility, larger mixers. That puts a different amount of air in the batter. Different ovens are gonna bake differently. So throughout this process, now we’re gonna be making some samples, sharing them with her and her team, and having them sign off on them to make sure that they are good.

We learned from previous steps in the process, best action here is to make the samples, deliver them to wherever she was, drop them off, and then have her call. Just keep her outta the building.  She’s gonna eat all of our profits, literally,  if let in the building anymore. So we got to the point where everything was good.

Okay, we can make the samples. We’re good. We can go into having production runs for her. Oftentimes, in a situation like this, you’re going to do one production run, and then after that, you’ll be contracted for more production runs. The size of the business I worked for and the size of her business did not dictate more than that for this situation. 

We didn’t need to contract out one a month to a month. It was really, “Let’s do one production run, use this as a test case, and see how it goes on from there.” 

Morgan Friedman (Host): See how it goes. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Exactly, which is fine. No worries. It’s the day for the production run. Well, actually, let’s back up a bit about the week before leading up to the production run.

The executive pastry chef comes in and he says, “Well, I have a little bit of news. I’m not too worried about it. Shouldn’t be an issue. On the day of the production run here for the new customer, for the cupcakes, I have to be out of town. I’m not gonna be here.” 

He assigns the pastry sous chef to take the lead, finish the planning so that she’s finished the planning, so then she’ll be there leading it. She should have all that knowledge and have done the work. So good move on his part making sure he turned the process over to the right person who is actually going to be on site for the day of. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): And also prepare her and train her and know like knowledge transfer, etc.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Exactly. Exactly. So, good move on our part. Day of comes. Our staff comes in. The owner had asked if one of her staff members could come in and work with us. That’s somewhat unusual, not a hundred percent. Generally though, again, when you have a co-manufacturer, you’ve done trials. If the customer signs off on the trials, you don’t necessarily need to have one of your people there.

It all comes back again to trust. She wanted this, so we said, “Of course, not a problem. Not gonna get in our way.” So it’s our team. It’s the member of her team. We start, we’re going, going fine. No real issues. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I’m getting nervous. Oh, no. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Well, it, yes. It ended up being a day, let me just say that. And what started happening is we started to slow down a little bit. 

Where I worked, we were semi-industrial, meaning most tasks were still completed by hand. The only tasks that we used any kind of industrial equipment for were really non-value-added tasks, tasks that a machine would be able to complete faster than a person and having the person do it didn’t add value. So example, cutting even cake layers.

We had a piece of equipment that could cut very even cake layers. I can cut even cake layers, but not on 500 cakes. I’m not that good. So wherever there wasn’t value in having the human touch, we would use machinery but never for the finishing, the decorating, everything. All the fine touches were done by hand.

We started to get bogged down a little bit because of the way our operation worked. So there, that could have been a learning for our ownership and leadership that we probably should have done an intermediary trial step. We tried going from small scale trial to large scale production. 

There probably should have been an intermediary step there where you make a medium-sized number on your own budget just to make sure everything’s gonna run right. We didn’t do that. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I see. So that’s a really good lesson. And that also applies to every industry. It’s great that you do samples, but if you go from the sample to the huge one without anything in the middle, things change when they scale.

So that’s fantastic learning. Now, when you’re bogged down, does that just mean because the process was mostly manual as was happening, this person got tired sometimes or like a little bit sloppy because they’re all, they’re humans doing a lot of artisanal type work. So that way, you could say, over so many hours, you start going slower and slower.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. Okay. And then also, what you run into is your oven is gonna bake differently when you’re putting full racks into the rather than only two or three pans on a rack. So now, as those extra baking times start to add up, even if it’s just three or four minutes per rack, that all starts to aggregate, and you are an hour behind at this point.

Now, you’re two hours behind. It just keeps going. So when you take all small delays, you can get pretty far behind. At this point, as we’re starting to kind of fall behind, the owner of the cupcake company has come in and she says, “Ah, I know what we can do. I’m going to call some of my staff. I’m gonna bring in extra help. Is that okay?” 

And the non-technical owner was on site, and he said, “Yes, that’s a great idea. Let’s do that.” At the end of the day, as soon as you look back on it, probably should have stretched this out now over a two-day run. Shouldn’t have tried to get all the work done in one day.

There was no value in rushing. I always look at a situation and I say, “Am I adding value, or am I taking value away?” And we were taking value away by now trying to bring in people who didn’t know our process or our machinery in manufacturing ways. It wasn’t gonna add anything cuz now you have to… 

Morgan Friedman (Host): And also, this is getting super, super interesting.

So now with these added people… Here’s my instinct again, knowing nothing about chef cooking in the industry, any situation where  your company is tasked with something, where the client says, “Oh, I wanna bring in my own people to help do it.” 

That’s a disaster situation in the making because from the client’s point of view, it is a huge ” I had some thoughts in my trust, but now I don’t even trust you to do it. So I need to come in and do it.” And then integrating people that don’t know each other to work together on the spot, it feels like a nuclear bomb. So, what’s interesting is that the business partner said yes, rather than be like, “No, no, no, no. We’ll continue doing it on your own.”

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): It’s another example of he didn’t know any better. He didn’t know what he didn’t know. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): He didn’t know. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): He thought he was helping. And with the executive pastry chef out, really the sous chef should have stepped up. She though was stressed out, just keeping production going and trying to make sure we were going to complete the project as it had originally been laid out.

And that’s something I’ve learned. Projects change, situations change. If you cannot be adaptable and flexible, you’re going to fail. You need to be able to change.

Morgan Friedman (Host): By the way, I just wanna call out for viewers a minor point you made that I think is important about how this sous chef should have stepped up. And I think that’s another key point where  the difference between the leadership and the mature professional and  the young person still learning is this ability to like say no and push back.

So by having a more junior person do it, even if the junior person was very, very technically competent and really good at her job, she just didn’t have that senior-level confidence to be like, “No, no, no, no.” So that’s another massive learning as well. 

Exactly. No, I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Now, I’ll throw in here, before we continue with the timeline, this was, again, by this point just hilarious to us who are a little lower on the ladder is the owner of the cupcake company, once she showed up, do you know what she spent the majority of her time doing? 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I’m going to guess. I’m going to say it involves eating something

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): It does. Eating cupcakes off the production line. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Wait, off the production line? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh yes. So they’d be coming out of the oven. They have to be de-panned. And then they went down a conveyor to be packaged, and she would come over and go, “Oh, quality control.” Cupcake. Five minutes later, “Quality control!” Cupcake.

And we eventually had to stop her and say, “Hey, quality control, totally valid. Yes, you need to quality control. You’re quality controlling 10 cupcakes out of every batch. That is not valid. You need to have a set process, and you need to stick to it. And you know what might be a better idea? Why don’t you let us bring you some to quality control? Can we agree to that?” 

Morgan Friedman (Host): This is ridiculous and also really funny and also educational. So, I would’ve guessed all you gotta do is you guys made extra food. But it’s really interesting that she’s like, she knows she’s pink for so many cupcakes and going and like taking her own cupcakes, losing a substantial portion just cuz she wants to eat them. 

I love this imagery. And this also emphasizes a different point about how big words like quality control can always be used. A big word can be used and a business, I’ll say it like this. Fancy business words are often used as excuses to justify what you wanna do.

And I think  the more mature approach is to have a defined process and follow it, but the immature approach is use a big word in order to justify, “Oh, no, no, I didn’t do quality control” which is, which is feeding her own ego and literally feeding, in this case. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. I really, I couldn’t make up this situation. I was just kind of dumbfounded by just, frankly, the sheer number of cupcakes this woman could eat. I’m amazed I haven’t seen her as a professional competitive eater,  some way. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Was she obese? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): She did have a little bit of a weight problem as an outsider looking in. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Yeah. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): I though, I try not to judge because I truly don’t know. I really, I don’t know. 

So yes, do I look at her and say, “Okay, she probably is heavier than she wants to be.” I would say yes. I have no reason.  I don’t know why, and so I’ve learned, and it’s kind of hard, but I’ve learned not to judge  in those areas and, again, just to have empathy and try to meet the person where they are. 

Anything else isn’t fair to them and it’s not fair to me. I need to take that bias and put it to the side. It’s the only way any of us can grow and move forward. 

Now, again, back to the timeline. So we are going, and I should say we started our team at about six that morning. We got an earlier start than usual to make sure we were gonna be ready and everything was set up.

By now it’s getting to be mid-afternoon. I realize that we are just gonna try to keep going. We’re gonna try to get this entire production run done in one day. And I was newly married at the time, so I just called my wife just to let her know, “Hey hon, crazy day at work. I am definitely not leaving as I usually do at 5 o’clock. This is gonna go long.” 

And she is a food scientist, so she also has a food background, knows how to work with food, understands good manufacturing practices, is somebody who you can bring into a wholesale food environment and can quickly pick up on what needs to be done and do it right. “So she says, well, can I come down? We don’t live that far away. Can I come down? I mean, can I help? Can I, is there anything I can do?” 

So I kind of do one of these, “Hey, I have my wife on the phone. She knows food. She’s a food scientist. Do we need the other set of hands?” Everyone starts going, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Tell her to come down. Tell her to come down.” so I say, “Okay hun. Sure.” 

Morgan Friedman (Host): She can do more quality control. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Exactly, exactly. And so she says, “Fine, I’m done with work for the day. I’m gonna come down.” So a little while later, she comes down. So now immediately she gets thrown in to start working as well, and I’m quickly showing her where things are and what to do, and I give her a task, and it just keeps going in this manner where at this point, we have our leader, the pastry sous chef who is trying to keep things organized as they were defined in the original plan, which at this point is a mistake in my opinion.

You needed to, again, be flexible, adjust the plan, call the leaders together, and make a new plan. But that didn’t happen. So she’s trying to execute the original plan. The owner of the cupcake store is freaking out because things are not going to the original plan and she was not capable of leading. She had a little bit of a breakdown, and her husband came, and they spent a little time outside.

Actually, there was some crying involved. It was again, totally judgment-free, like I feel bad. Looking back on it, I feel for her. This is her business, her name, her livelihood, and she was just not mature enough in a business world to know how to keep this situation together. And she needed that support.

She needed her family to come in and offer her support. And then you have our owner who is focused again on the business side doing what he normally did, which was walking around looking confused, not really knowing what to do, because it wasn’t sitting in front of a computer, and I don’t wanna take anything away from what he did.

He though didn’t need to be there. He wasn’t adding value, he was looking confused and not giving good leadership, not suggesting as the senior leader, “You know what, everybody, maybe we need to take a step back. Let’s pause, let’s see where we are, and let’s see how we can come up with a solution.”

That’s another big thing that I have learned is I never look at the problem. I always use solution-based thinking. I tell my team, “We don’t have a problem. We only have solutions we haven’t found yet. So, let’s not get hung up on what’s wrong. Let’s look at where we need to be and how do we bridge this gap. How do we get from the issue we have to our desired solution? What is that? That’s what we need to do.” 

And nobody in this situation had the ability to perform that type of thinking. They stuck to the plan, and that was to the detriment of everybody. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): By the way, this is powerful. I wanna observe that part of what makes this interesting is in a lot of client horror stories, it’s like you have one client that says one big thing that’s bad or wrong or like a big judgment decision.

But here, this is more like of a powerful but underused saying, it’s death by a thousand cuts. It’s like this small judgment, this small misjudgment, plus that small mistake, plus that small misjudgment, plus this little thing happened, all of which add up together to be this pressure cooker. It’s in the process of exploding. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh, yes, yes. And that’s really, I’d love to say, there was some crazy ending. I could make up my Hollywood ending where there’s a big fight and everyone yells and screams and people throw cupcakes and they’re covered in cocoa. None of that happened. Basically, everything just petered out.

The work got done, we wrapped up, the cupcakes were packed, they were delivered, and I think I got home at about two in the morning after my wife probably left around midnight. I stayed with the team to clean up a little bit, went home, and we agreed to come in late the next day since we would’ve had to have been there maybe, you know, five hours after we left.

Morgan Friedman (Host): This reminds me of a poem of Odin.

Like now it’s already a century old that ends, “This is how the world ends. Not with the bang, but with the wimber.” Like there’s no big bang explosion.  It just petered out and it was over. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah, it did. It really did.  And at the end of the day, everyone was just tired, they were frustrated, and nobody wanted to go through this again.

Morgan Friedman (Host): So a few things first. After this happened, any other problems with the woman? Did she pay the invoice or like… 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yes. There, there were no other issues after this. No issues with payment, no issues on any type of follow up. If you wanna look at it as an issue, there was no repeat business,  and everybody.

Morgan Friedman (Host): That’s probably a good thing. So question. What I tried to do in my company is whenever something goes wrong, I always say, “How do we change our processes so that this doesn’t happen again?” Did the company then change a bunch of processes to turn what happened into learnings?

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Not really. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): No. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Sadly, no. I will say it’s getting better. It definitely is getting better in the industry, and the larger the food company you look at, the better they’ve always been at that type of thinking and problem-solving. If you look though at smaller kitchens or smaller companies, there really is this attitude of just keep your mouth shut, get the work done, it’s gonna be hard, this is what we signed up for, and let’s just move through, let’s forget about today, and let’s just do a better job tomorrow. 

Well, how do we do a better job? By doing a better job? Well, yeah. Don’t ask questions. Just do a better job. Okay, chef. Last time though, this… I don’t care what happened last time. Next time, just don’t do that. 

“Oh, so you’re telling me I should learn from my mistakes?” 

“Well, don’t make mistakes.” 

“Oh, but making mistakes is how we learn.” 

“I don’t care. Just do a better job.” 


And that was sort of how this went. And the icing on this, the cherry on top, is that both of these businesses are now out of business

Morgan Friedman (Host):  when companies are making so, so many little mistakes, it’s not a positive sign for the business. So that makes sense. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. Yes. And it wasn’t immediate. It wasn’t as if this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. It wasn’t. This was just, at the end of the day, truly a minor hiccup for the company that I worked for.

And it really wasn’t much more than that for the other company. They slowly though, they petered out over time. You said it, they kept making too many small mistake. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So stepping back, I think an interesting framework or way of thinking about this is the following: the artisan versus the professional.

So, a lot of people get into something because they love that thing. I love cooking, so I want to be a chef. You know, I love skiing. Oh, I have an idea on how to make cooler skis, so I’ll make cool skis. So people get into something because they’re this artisan. They like it. But that way of thinking is very different than the professionals’ way of thinking.

In fact, as a parenthetical side note, I’ll observe this even linguistically cause I’m a little bit obsessed with words and where they come from, where you can think about the amateur and the professional. And the word amateur comes from the Latin word for to love, ammar. So the amateur is you do it out of love, while the professional comes from the Latin word for religion.

You, professor belief. Mm-hmm. . So the professional has, here are the rules of the religion of our profession. The lawyers, you know, client confidentiality. Do it like this, do it like this. Every profession has their religious-like rules, and they’re very different ways. So this challenge happens is often people get into something cause they’re the amateur of the artisan and they love it.

But then, to actually grow it in a serious way, you need to be a professional. And they’re just like opposite ways of thinking. And no one teaches you how to be a professional. In fact, one of the subtext of this podcast is to try to help the artisan, learn how to behave in this more professional way to help smooth out these sorts of situations.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah, I like that very much because we see it again with food-based businesses. We see it all the time. And sometimes with food, you know what? That amateur can actually bring something to the industry because they bring a disruption. And that can force everybody to grow and change. Oftentimes though, those people are running very small, very niche, companies, and they don’t scale necessarily.

The only time often you see them scale is when they do bring in a business partner who can handle that. Oftentimes, those companies are successful because the person who truly has the passion and that skill, they don’t move on from that. They don’t delegate, like we talked about earlier. That’s portion of it.

They delegate everything about growing the company, and that can be very important. Again, when I speak here about food-based businesses, is knowing as the entrepreneur, where is your passion, and where’s your skill lie, and then bringing the right people in, setting them up for success, and letting them do the work and trusting them to do the work.

If you love research and development and creating new products, okay, you can at least, when you start, keep that for yourself. Make sure though you hire somebody who can do marketing, who can do sales, who can take care of the areas where you’re not a professional because if you don’t, to go back to some 80s movies, forget about it.

Morgan Friedman (Host): You’re bringing back all these movies of my childhood. I almost wanna quote Ferris Bueller.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Well, people will be coming into your former place of business going, “Bueller? Beul? Anybody?” Eh, you know that that’s what’s gonna happen. So there you go. You’ll be a car going off a cliff. I mean, we can do this all night. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): There’ll be girls sitting in the because I’m teaching them that when they blink how like, uh, low-ridden in their eyelids.

Oh my god, I can believe I remember that scene from that ancient movie.  Okay. So this is a fascinating episode. I learned a lot, especially all about TDSs and all this. 

Any final thoughts or general comments or guidance that you wanna give to a younger version of yourself?

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): In this specific instance, because of where I was and the position I had, I’m not sure how much influence I would’ve had  in this specific situation. If though I were to offer anything to the younger me or anyone who is coming up in an industry, what I would say to them is just remember that leaders are not only assigned. Leaders are not only chosen because they have a specific title in the company.

Leadership is something that you can exhibit no matter where you are. So, those of us who were down the ladder, in this situation, we could have shown leadership by going to the pastry sous chef and saying, “Hey, here’s where we’re struggling. Can we try this or what do you think about this?” and . Starting these conversations, making sure that we’re leading by example, not showing frustration, being the people who are looked up to.

And that’s really what I would say is to people starting out or to younger people, the younger version of myself, remember that. You don’t have to be given leadership. You can develop it within yourself. You can show it, and you can take charge, and you can be a leader regardless of where you sit in a hierarchy for a company. That doesn’t matter. 

With what I do, I’m considered a senior leader. That’s in my title. Good for me. Frankly, it doesn’t mean anything unless I actually perform the work of the senior leader, and I, as part of that work, I want everyone on my team to be just as good of a leader as I am to their teams and to each other.

It’s really about having strong communication skills and doing what is right for the situation and always adding value if you can. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So I love that. I agree a hundred percent. What I would add to that, to throw a bit of a wrinkle into it, is what’s also… ooh, wrinkles are fun. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): I like that. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Unless you’re old. Leadership needs courage. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yes. Yes. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): And I think that’s important. Cause it’s not just communication, cause I think I agree with everything you’re saying in theory, but what I’ve seen happen so much in practice is it’s in difficult, high-stress situations. The client comes in and is having tantrums and freaking out while we’re trying to  speed up cause we’re delayed. 

That’s the moment where everyone gets scared and under pressure. And where from the top to the bottom, it’s where even though if you know theoretically you’re like, “Oh my God, I should say something. I should do something,” you feel out of place cuz you don’t have senior leader in your title.

And even when you do have senior leader in title, you’re like, “Who wants to confront the client?” And because it’s hard to tell the client that they’re being a baby and so on, I think what’s often forgotten or not emphasized enough is in the difficult moments to be a leader, that’s where you need the courage to shine and to stand up for what you know is right.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Yeah. What I’ve learned is to do that, a lot of times it means taking a pause. Step back for a moment. Let the situation breathe for a few seconds. Sometimes I’ll even count to four and then I will say what needs to be said. Don’t just rush into a situation. Stop, pause, and then what you say will be more powerful.

It also though, gives you a second to put your thoughts together, cuz that’s very important. It’s very important to be able to actually have a concise, valuable thought in those types of moments. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): What I have to do in those situations, like when I wanna confront someone and it’s  important, high stress, and I need the courage, one of my favorite personal Morgan methodologies to do this is when I go talk to them, the first thing I do is I repeat to them what is happening as seen from their eyes in the most favorable interpretation. 

So I’ll be like, “Hey boss, here’s what’s happening. I think you are doing this and this and this because you see the client flipping out and we’re delayed. So you are thinking that the best way to quickly solve everything is by doing this and this. So I fully understand that this is why you’re doing it. I just wanted to tell you, here’s what you don’t know. Here’s another perspective. Here’s those and so on.” 

And that’s starting it by reframing it from their eyes with the most positive interpretation. You’ve mentioned about three times today the importance of empathy. It opens that difficult conversation and give you encouragement by showing a deep empathy for them, which immediately disarms them and puts them to be fatalism. He understands me. He can see it from my eyes, like he’s not accusing me or being angry. And now that they feel that,  then you can go into what you think should be done instead.

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Mm-hmm. Yeah, no, definitely never accuse. I always will ask questions as well. I try to ask more questions than make statements and to find out what’s actually going on. If I have to have a difficult conversation with somebody, for example, let’s say I’m told one of my team members performed a certain action. I never assume what I was told is correct.

I go and start asking them questions first to understand, as you’re saying, to have empathy for them to understand the situation, to make sure that I hear exactly their point of view, I can repeat it back to them, and then we can have a conversation around it, because otherwise, you’re seen as attacking, aggressive, and then people will shut down.

I always make sure that I’m trying to frame what I’m saying in the best way for the person to receive it, not necessarily the most comfortable way for me to share it. The most important part of presenting any type of information is that the person receives it well, not you are presenting it, right?

You have to make sure that you are presenting in a way that works for each individual that you are dealing with, so you know that they are going to hear what you’re truly saying, not their interpretation of it, and that they will understand and retain the message that you are giving to them. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Much easier said than done because everyone interprets things in very different ways, so you have to start with modeling the other person’s mind and then, say, how can I frame this in a way that’s most likely resonate with them, and doing it in real time under pressure requires a lot of practice. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh yes. I mean, it does. It’s much easier when you know the person, when they are a member of your team, or a client that you work with often. It kind of becomes second nature.

You understand their communication style. You understand what works with them. You have past experience. You have data to go off of. With new people though, it can be incredibly difficult, and I am by no means an expert. It’s just a skill. It’s a muscle though. And the more that you try and the more that you work on communicating with people in those difficult situations, the better you get at it.

It’s like any kind of skill. Public speaking is the same. The more that you work at it, the better you get at eliminating filler words. Same idea. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): Love it. This has been great. I wanna end with a 30-second fun question that’s of zero importance and nothing to do with the topic, which is because one of the running themes of our conversations tonight has been 80s movies.

And I realized we’re, I mentioned first, but we’re talking about the blink with love. But I, as I said it in the last few minutes, I was like, “Wait, was that Ferris Beuller or was that Indiana Jones?” 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Indiana Jones. It was Jones, you know? 

Morgan Friedman (Host): So what’s funny is I, cause I remember from the  teacher in this school scene and I remember that blinking and the girl looking at him.

But after I said, “I was like, wait a minute, that was Indiana Jones.” So now I’m happy that I asked the question and clarified to like, I wanna correct the record that I do know my movies

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): probably better than me. I watched a lot of them in the 90s because I was too little in the 80s to watch them. They are though the movies I grew up on. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): It’s actually the same for me. I’m 46, so in the 90s, I watched lots of 80s movies.

In fact, the decade, I always think that the decades that we associate with are kind of off by half decade. Exactly. Like what we think of as the 60s was really like 75 to like 83. What we think of is the 80s was really like 84 to 94. What we think of the 90s was like 95 to 2005, and so on.

And I wanna say, also say, I thank you for not correcting my first Beuller-Indiana Jones mixup. You’re like a very respectful guest. You don’t wanna be the asshole criticizing the host. So I’ll criticize myself. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Well since, since I do that myself as well, I get it. Also, in the moment, I’m not even sure if I’m correct. So why take the time, right? We move on. We’re having a good time. Theme of the night. 

There was no value in interrupting you there to share that’ve been wrong about. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I appreciate cause you’ve emphasized this a few times. I didn’t mention it. I appreciate your constant emphasis on always adding value. I don’t talk to my employees and my team about it, but I think that’s a very powerful way of thinking.

What I realized in real time is something I always tell everyone I work with is I want you to add thought to whatever you do. I say if I wanted to hire a robot, I would just have software do this. So I’m using you and not software only because you have a brain and software just follows rules.

And I realize that’s kind of the same thing. It’s another way of making your point about always adding value. I like your language. I think it’s a useful and powerful way of framing it. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh, thank you. And I like that too about adding thought. We look at it in terms of what I do. You always wanna make sure that whenever you have an interaction with somebody, they’re walking away better for the interaction.

Frame it forward. Make sure that you’ve done an action that’s going to improve their day in some way, shape, or form. A lot of times what that means for us is if you can do a little bit of homework before a meeting or before an interaction so that you don’t waste somebody’s time by having them look up a fact or a figure or just go on a wild goose space for you, just please do it, please. And that’s just one example. 

But I love that too, adding thought to your work. It’s a great, great way to frame because it’s all part of the same concept at the end of the day. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): And hopefully, we both added some value to everyone who’s listening and watching this episode. It’s been fun.

Thank you for coming, and everyone who made it to the end, go watch Indiana Jones or Ferris Beuller. Thank you everyone. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Or Star Trek 2 – The Wrath of Khan. Thank you. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I just read an article about how Star Trek, two days ago, about how Star Trek 1 is an underrated movie. Like everyone hates it. But I just read an article  that is actually a secret masterpiece.

What’s your thought on that before we end it? 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): It depends on which cut you watch. So there’s a director’s cut from Robert Wise, and that’s generally the cut that people are speaking about is that that cut really makes it an even better movie. And then recently, I actually just did a 4K restoration of that cut, so you can actually now find an updated version of that cut, which I haven’t gotten to watch yet.

I hear though it has great sound, good restoration, and I’m hearing exactly what you’re hearing, that it is an underrated movie, especially with this 4K director’s edition. And I will say, personally, I used to watch it a lot growing up, mainly because nobody else in my family liked it, so it would annoy them.

So as a small child, if you can do something to annoy your family, you’re gonna do it. At the same time though, I definitely have an appreciation and love for star Trek the motion picture. It is a good movie. If you’ve not liked it in the past, give it a chance. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): you know, I just read an article. I haven’t watched it in a long time, but I did love Star Trek 2 – The Wrath of Khan growing up and coincidentally, about a week ago, I had a dream about it.

I haven’t seen it since I was a kid, but I was waiting online and at a store. Like there was this old guy in front of me. He had a lot of ear wax. And that night I dreamed of… There’s a scene in Star Trek 2 where they put some  creature in someone’s ear. I haven’t seen this in literally 30 years.

But like all these childhood movies, these things I watched when I was 16 are like ingrained in my ring. So I don’t even remember what it was in the ear, but I remember I had a dream about this Star Trek King going in my ear after seeing his ear wax in this guy’s ear. I don’t even remember the scene.

My mind remembered, but you probably know what I’m talking about. Mm-hmm. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Oh yes, definitely. Yep. The steady eels and Khan. 

Morgan Friedman (Host): I think it’s awesome. This is fantastic. This is fun. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Every that girl I’ve ever dated doesn’t

Morgan Friedman (Host): Well, you’re not really my type. I tend to prefer a more bulbuous face, but it’s 2022 and everyone has their preferences. That’s my personal preference. This is fun. Thank you, and thank you everyone for watching it this far. 

Braden Cadenelli (Interviewee): Thank you. Bye.


This transcription belongs to Episode #32 please watch the complete episode here!