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The senior living industry has a voice. You can hear it on Bridge the Gap podcast!

253: Josh & Lucas

Cheers to a great year! What better way to round out Season 5 than with Bridge the Gap founders and hosts Josh Crisp and Lucas McCurdy sharing a recap of incredible moments in 2022.

 

They feature Contributor Hosts Anthony Ormsbee-Hale, Julie Podewitz, Christy Van Der Westheizen, and Chris Heinz. This Series is sponsored by Peak Senior Living.

 

Also catch features on podcast guests Greg Puklicz + Marcus Van Ameringen, David Schless, Charles Mann, Brian McWade, Tim Craig, Jodi Guffee, Matt Thornhill, Michael Bush, Larry Cohen, Pat Mulloy, Chris Brickler, Marc Middleton, and our friend Jay Allen.

 

BTG Magazine: Read, Advertise and Contribute.

 

Become a sponsor of the BTG Network. 

 

See you in Season 6!

 

Listen to more BTG episodes here.

Lucas

It’s hard to even put into words what a privilege it is for us to be able to sit in front of these microphones every single week, have these amazing conversations with these great thought leaders, hear these stories, and be a part of educating, informing, and influencing the industry that we love. 

00:19

You’re listening to Bridge The Gap, season five, a podcast dedicated to informing, educating, and influencing the future of housing and services for seniors. Powered by sponsors Accushield, Connected Living, Hamilton CapTel, Enquire, OneDay, LTC REIT, It’s Never Too Late, Meridian Capital Group, Solinity, The Bridge Group Construction and produced by Solinity Marketing.

Lucas 00:42

Welcome to the Bridge the Gap podcast, the Senior Living podcast with Josh and Lucas on a very special Christmas edition here in Knoxville, Tennessee. It’s a nice, cool, crisp day here at the Solinity Marketing Headquarters in the Bridge the Gap Knoxville Studios.

Josh 00:59

One of our favorite times of the year, and so much to recap over what a wonderful year it’s been.

Lucas 1:06

2022 – wild, crazy, fun roller coaster year for so many people, including Bridge The Gap. We are, like I said we got our hoodies on, our Bridge the Gap Ambassador Hoodies on. For those of you guys out there that have been asking for some BTG merch, we do have some special news, special announcements, for you. We got a store coming out and you’re gonna be able to get to this merch and a bunch of other items, so be looking for that. We’ll put that out there in the show notes and in other areas for you to access, but I digress. 2022. We have covered a ton of ground. We have had a lot of different interviews. The podcast has been downloaded around 130,000 times this year, and we have hundreds of thousands of impressions online, and we’ve got, at this point, over 430 episodes on the BTG network.

Josh 2:09

That’s really hard to believe. So no matter how or where you like to consume content, now you can find it, you can find Bridge The Gap no matter how you like to consume it.

Lucas 2:21

Well, we’ve had a lot of fun and so let’s talk about some of the events that Bridge The Gap found themselves out this year. One of the ways we kicked off the spring session was Bridge The Gap had a hoedown. I mean, we had a Texas honky tonk party in Dallas.

Josh 2:38

Well, in your home state, man, you uncovered some, an amazing talent. We had a true honky tonk band that was just unbelievable. And then I’m telling you what the senior living folks that came out our industry pros and those influencers packed that place out and they’re singers, that karaoke was amazing.

Lucas 3:01

I mean, we have a lot of talented people in this industry on so many different levels. What a fun night that was. Then we also found ourselves at the Senior Living 100 with Lincoln Healthcare. I believe that was in California.

Josh 3:15

Well, yeah, it was a lot of fun. Talk about a beautiful place, beautiful resort. Senior living 100 puts on an amazing event. We got so many great episodes while we were there and got to meet with a ton of great professionals. Wonderful time.

Lucas 3:29

So much fun. And we also did our second annual VIP Ignite experience this year. The theme was Dream Again.

Josh 3:38

And it was at the Dream Hotel, and we had a wonderful time. It was so popular the first year we brought it back and actually expanded it a little bit. We went from really a 24 hour to two day event to almost a three day event. And folks came in early, a day early. People started having a great time, networking, you know, Nashville Music City. So, so much good fun, so much good music. We had an amazing keynote there, amazing concert, FGL House. And I’m telling you, where do we go from here? I don’t know.

Lucas 4:15

Well, a lot of fun. We all love Nashville. We also did a visit to the Florida Senior Living Association Conference down in Florida. You know, we love supporting our local state associations in so many different places. Florida’s got a great association. Texas has a great association, and we’re starting to give some attention and some time even to the state chapters, which is a lot of fun.

Josh 4:40

Yeah, we did have a blast. The Ritz Carlton, they put on an amazing show there at that wonderful resort in Orlando. Had a great time, and then went to the, the nation’s capital, Washington, DC.

Lucas 4:52

Back to DC for the first time in very many years for the NIC conference, also known as the NIC Conference. It was great to be back into the mix. You know, we’re talking probably 2,500 – 3000 big decision makers in DC for a great two to three days of deal making, networking and thought leadership.

Josh 5:16

Yeah, and the partnership with NIC was amazing. They set us up in the awesome Huddle Hub, I believe is what that was called, that room that we got to record so much good content. And if you haven’t checked out those episodes from NIC in the fall, you gotta go back and check ’em out.

Lucas 5:32

Totally. A lot of great episodes. So this year, you know, Josh, we can’t do all of these episodes and all this content ourselves. Bridge The Gap, the network, has always been about the industry and the people in the industry. And this year we were proud to continue Contributor Wednesday. And this year we welcomed Anthony Ormsbee-Hale to talk about empowering emerging leaders. We talk to Judy Podewitz, she does executive coaching. We have Christy on sales and marketing. We have Chris on recruiting, and then we also have a brand new sponsor of this series, which is Peak Senior Living by Functional Pathways. Yeah, an incredible series.

Josh 6:14

It really is. And I think a lot of people, I mean, they may be listening to this episode for the very first time and may not even realize that the podcast is actually a network that there’s tons of new shows, not just the Josh and Lucas show that you’re listening to right now, that drops every Monday, But we’ve got shows that are dropping all the time with tons of different new hosts and contributors. So make sure you’re subscribed if you love listening to podcasts on the BTG Network, and it’ll pop up all the latest episodes.

Lucas 6:45

And for those of you that are big readers I have a couple of friends that love reading actually the transcripts of the shows. And you can go on btgvoice.com and all the shows. Every single show is transcribed. You can actually read it and study it and make notes and take those back to your teams to use in your, some of your standup meetings and some of your trainings. It’s a lot of great information. Also, we have the Ambassador Program. So this has now at this point, evolved to something that we never really knew or planned it to be. It has become highly competitive to become a Bridge The Gap Ambassador because of the quality of people that are flying the BTG flag. And this year we do an open call for new ambassadors at the end of every year. And so we are in the process of making initiations for brand new ambassadors for 2023.

Josh 7:50

Yeah. And so far as you said, year over year, the requests have doubled. And so obviously there’s only so many ambassadors that we can bring on at a time, and what a wonderful opportunity and how refreshing that is. We’ve got so many people, so excited about the industry that want to help inform, educate, and influence and get behind the movement in the industry. It’s so cool.

Lucas 8:13

And so many people have asked us, what is a BTG Ambassador? Well, it’s a lot of different things. And you know, one of the things that becoming a BTG Ambassador, it opens you up to an entire network of thought leaders, an entire network of up and comers, established leaders, and tomorrow’s leaders all in one group. And the collaboration that take place within those group of leaders is really unique and something that is hard to find in our industry, which makes it very competitive and very attractive to be a BTG Ambassador.

Josh 8:51

Yeah. And so you’re interested, you wanna learn more? We can only talk about it so much on this show, but you can check out our website, btgvoice.com, check out the ambassador tabs, and you will find all you want to know about the Ambassador Program.

Lucas 9:05

We’re also very proud of our digital magazine. This is, again, another step in pursuing the mission of education, information, and influence, which has always been the pillars of the Bridge The Gap network. The magazine allows us to cover topics in a written format and in a beautifully designed format. We’re very proud of our backend creative team. Big thanks to Solinity Marketing and their creators, and of course, Sara Mitchell, our producer, who helps really produce all of this content. But the magazine is a beautiful production of the love stories and the thought leaders and influencers in our industry.

Josh 9:49

Absolutely. So long form content, a lot of written content there, but also not only great content, but a great way to put your brand, your company, your messaging out there through advertisement. So it’s an exclusive way on the network that you can put your brand out in an advertisement in a top-notch magazine along with your great thought leadership content.

Lucas 10:10

And in a very affordable way. We’re very proud that we can offer such affordable ways for people to help come alongside and support this educational content on the BTG Network. You know, the guests that we’ve had on this year, it is really hard when we look back at the list to pick out people, because we have, you know, so many different shows, so many different episodes of great thought leaders. But that said, we do have a couple of really notable shows that we wanna mention so that people can go back and listen to this content. A lot of the content that is on the network, some of it is time sensitive, but a lot of it is not necessarily time sensitive. It’s timeless and it’s stories of the people that are in the industry, and they’re also opening up about their leadership skills and what has made them successful. So it’s very easy to go back to older shows and really gain that value.

Josh 11:13

Yeah, absolutely. Well, let’s highlight some of those, Lucas. I mean, you’ve got great operators that were on there, Greg, from 12 Oaks Management. I mean, gosh, what an awesome opportunity to have guys like that, that are so busy. Join us on the show.

Lucas 11:28

Yeah, President 12 Oaks, Greg Puklicz, and also Marcus, he’s over all of their development. We were able to have both of those gentlemen on our show. Great topics, great conversations. Dave Schless, everyone knows and loves Dave. The president of ASHA, really incredible. One of our longtime supporters and a sponsor of the program, Charles Mann of Accushield. I mean, what they have done and grown in that business is really incredible. It looks like it’s an overnight success, but it’s not. These guys have been grinding and hustling for so many years to bring that product to market in a very meaningful way. And it’s impacted and changed, really disrupted everything about how visitors come into a building, which is really important.

Josh 12:17

Absolutely. Another one of our partners Brian from Connected Living, Oh my gosh, you know, what they’ve done over there with the technology platform and engagement is amazing. He stopped by and saw us, I think in Dallas. They stopped by and saw us there and again, at a very, very busy event.

Lucas 12:35

We loved sitting down with Tim Craig, he’s over at Senior Living 100, really appreciate their dedication to putting on really great conferences and events to bring people together in a very meaningful way. Great episode to listen back to. And then one of our favorites, Jodi Guffee. I mean, how awesome is Jodi. Her and her husband have dedicated their entire careers to older adults, specifically in the Pacific Northwest, and just really appreciate her support of our network and their story.

Josh 13:11

Yeah, absolutely. And then it’s also fun, one of the cool things, you know, I feel like we get front row seats to so much that’s happening in our industry. Matt Thornhill over at Cozy Homes, you know, you’ve read about him and there’s been articles out and things like that. He took time to sit down and talk to us about his futuristic model of what he’s wanting to do and his vision. So we literally get to talk with these folks and hear about this stuff every single week.

Lucas 13:35

You know, after years of us doing this, I’m always in awe of a lot of our guests. But we have so much experience at doing this. I’m not as intimidated as I was in the first year or two, but this guest that we had on, I was very intimidated by to begin with. And then as the conversation went on, I just couldn’t be, I couldn’t help but just be drawn into his great leadership style. Michael Bush, a Great Place To Work, CEO, incredible episode.

Josh 14:09

Oh man, talk about a sharp guy, sharp, mentally sharp dressed. I mean, he was excellent. Such a great guy to talk to and in such high demand. And the fact that he took that much time for us says a lot about what he invests in. And we appreciate him investing in our audience.

Lucas 14:28

We also, as our listeners know, are very dedicated to social media. Bridge The Gap is really prolific on the social media channels. Linkedin is a massive influential platform for Bridge the Gap. But, you know, there’s emerging platforms too. Things like TikTok, and when you think about senior living and TikTok, you think, “Oh, that doesn’t go together.” But what people may not know is that there is a big emerging audience and content creation that’s happening on TikTok. And there’s an operator named Story Point that this year went hyper viral over their videos that they cut at their communities.

Josh 15:13

Well, in Bridge The Gap, we launched our TikTok, I think it was this year. And already gaining a big following. And it’s fun. And if you’ve never been on TikTok, we get it. But there’s a ton of people that are now, that’s one of the platforms that they consume a ton of their video content from. So you can go over there and check out that TikTok if you haven’t already at BTG and you can get some short clips, video clips of our guest and some of their great one-liners that you can share with your teams.

Lucas 15:41

Next up, we had a really great friend and a returning guest to the show, Larry Cohen. He took a little hiatus for a couple of years and now is back into the marketplace with his new company Trust Well. Always a pleasure to sit down with Larry. We had another great dynasty figure in the industry, Pat Mulloy. So many people know his influence over the decades in this industry. Another emerging technology from MyndVR. We’ve sat down with Chris Brickler a couple of times now. They were a big supporter of our VIP Ignite Experience. Really, really fun there. And then Josh, if you remember, in Florida, we sat down with Marc Middleton who was a longtime newscaster in Orlando. I remember him when I was a young guy in Orlando. I remember Mark Middleton. And now he has a company called Growing Boulder, where they’re trying to change the perception of aging.

Josh 16:42

Well, and it’s so fun to see a guy that has had so much success, and a lot of people may be saying, “Oh, why don’t you retire? Relax a little bit.” No, he’s launched something totally new, exciting, and it was fun to see his passion come through in that discussion. So go check out there, Growing Boulder. They’re doing amazing things.

Lucas 17:00

And, you know, another big noteworthy thing this year, our good friend Jay Allen, so many of you may know about Jay. He and his story of his mother with early onset dementia Alzheimer’s. He wrote a song called Blank Stares, and it has touched hundreds of thousands of people and a very emotional song. And it’s also helped to raise a lot of money for research around dementia & Alzheimer’s. This year, he is on The Voice, on NBC. What a great success for him.

Josh 17:37

Well, it’s always fun for me to see really good people walk into really great success and opportunities. And so The Voice was awesome. He got married this year. It’s been a big year for Jay, and we couldn’t be more excited that through the years he’s been so gracious with his time and supporting the senior living industry and the cause of Alzheimer’s. It’s really awesome to see his success.

Lucas 18:04

He’s such a genuine guy. Anytime we’ve ever reached out to him and asked him to be a part of the Bridge The Gap Network to speak to the industry, he has always given very generously of his time and his talents. We appreciate you, Jay. Well, you know, season five 2022 has been loaded with memories. And it’s just, it’s hard to even put into words what a privilege it is for us to be able to sit in front of these microphones every single week, have these amazing conversations with these great thought leaders, hear these stories, and be a part of educating, informing, and influencing the industry that we love.

Josh 18:49

We couldn’t do it without our amazing friends, our amazing sponsors and partners. It’s really, really an honor to see this crazy idea we had, this passion project, turn into a huge blossoming network.

Lucas 19:03

I know it. We want to thank our sponsors, Connected Living, Hamilton CapTel and Accushield, and so many more that have come alongside us over the seasons. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts, and thank you to our listeners for making this possible and continuing to send us your notes and messages thanking us, Bridge The Gap Network for bringing this content to you. There’s so many people to thank, this also could not be possible without our producer, Sara Mitchell and her team at Solinity Marketing. All of the beautiful graphics, audio, video clips, all of this big organization that goes on behind the scenes is all out of the leadership of Sara and her team. And they do such a great job.

Josh 19:52

They do. And what a wonderful time of year it is to reflect back on all the amazing things, the blessings and the opportunities we’ve all been given. We thank so much to our listeners for listening, for sharing, for following, and all the things you’ve done to make this possible. You just kind of want to give all of our listeners, you know, from the Bridge The Gap family, a huge hug and wish them a warm and happy holiday season as we wrap up an amazing 2022. Looking forward to an amazing and blessed, happy 2023. It’s gonna be a great time.

Lucas 20:29

Season five is in the books, and we’re so excited about what is going to happen in season six. And we thank everybody. You know, you can go to btgvoice.com to access all this great content and from the bottom of our hearts. Merry Christmas, and thanks for listening to another great episode of Bridge The Gap. 

20:47

Thanks for listening to Bridge The Gap podcast with Josh and Lucas. Connect with the BTG network team and use your voice to influence the industry by connecting with us at btgvoice.com.

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253: Josh & Lucas