Oscar Barrera on Anthropology in Business with Matt Artz


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In this episode of the Anthropology in Business podcast, Oscar Barrera speaks with Matt Artz about his career as a business anthropologist. The conversation covers Oscar's journey into anthropology through eco-tourism, his pivot to business anthropology, the founding of Antropología Corporativa Consulting, and how he positions the business within the context of the business landscape of Mexico. About Oscar Barrera Oscar Barrera, PhD is a Corporate Anthropologist and CEO of Antropología Corporativa Consulting. He is devoted to helping companies to innovate and grow by using techniques, methods and theories from anthropology. He is also a keynote speaker and entrepreneur leading other kinds of businesses. Oscar is based in the city of Veracruz in Eastern Mexico. He received his PhD in Sociocultural Anthropology from the University of Washington. He has international experience by working and living in 21 countries in Europe, Africa and North and Central America. About Antropología Corporativa Consulting Antropología Corporativa Consulting helps companies achieve the transformations they require to grow their business. Whether it is a change in the culture of "how things are done" within the organization or to improve a product or service, Antropología Corporativa Consulting uses anthropological tools to influence human behavior. Recommended Links Watch the Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Db7YHGk5IwI Episode Transcript Please note this transcript is an automated transcription and may have some errors. Matt Artz: All right. Well, thanks everyone for joining today. I'm at arts and I'm with Oscar Barrera today. Oscar is a business anthropologist out of Mexico and the owner of you might have to help me here, but up of motto consulting. And so yeah, please. Oscar Barrera: Yeah, actually, I changed my brand now. It's, Antropología Corporativa anthropology. I changed that years ago and yeah, it has to be because it was such a difficult name for people to relate to. So that's what I changed it. Matt Artz: Got it. Okay. Well, thanks for correcting me. So I've got that. And so why don't you maybe use that as a jumping off point. Can you give us a little background on, you know, education, anthropology, education, your career, how you started your business? Oscar Barrera: Okay. Well, and it started how I became an anthropologist. I actually, when I graduated from college, I just, I majored in tourism studies in planning and development. So I went to the Highlands of Chiapas with the idea of creating a developing project for indigenous peoples in units, communities, and an indigenous village called chermoula subpoint Kamala. So they, the idea that, again, that I have the time, because I was young and naive, I wanted to change the world. I thought that by creating a project and developing projects where indigenous people who develop, create their own infrastructure to cater tourists, I don't know, from room and board or hotels or restaurants, or I don't know, just to great economic options and possibilities for indigenous people to benefit from tourism. I thought that was a very positive contribution that I could make with after finishing thirties in, in university. Oscar Barrera: So I came in touch with with anthropologists in the Highlands of Chiapas, and I met many of them who questioned the purpose of my, my endeavors. And actually there was one anthropologist that he said, Oscar, this sounds very, it sounds very very kind. I'm very, very altruistic that what you're doing for these people, but have you ever asked them, what do they think of tourists? Maybe they don't, if all these years for all these decades, that if they haven't developed a tourism industry on their own is because maybe they have certain beliefs and there are, they have certain world vision than that. Maybe they are not interested to relate to tourists. Maybe they are just happy by keeping them a distance and just being an object of tourism as opposed to such a tourism, because the tourists go there to snap pictures and buy. Oscar Barrera: Maybe it's a few textiles, but pretty much going there is like a visiting a human suit. So these anthropologists like really challenged me, it's like maybe you, you must pursue an explanation why these indigenous people they don't have, they don't seem to have this business kind of mentality what's behind that is not because they are dumb or stupid, but maybe they are not interested. You should find out about that. So with that, with that a framework, I, without any anthropological training I used, I began studying the indigenous perceptions on tourists. What, how they, how the, and actually the reciprocal views, how they help each other, they construct in their imagination. So that's how I I met Peter Vandenberg professor of anthropology at diversity of Washington and sociology. So we met and he wrote the book, the course of the other, a very famous book in the nineties. Oscar Barrera: And he he was actually one of the pioneers in anthropology in, based in tourism anthropology or yeah, tourism anthropology. So after I finished my, my, the, my thesis, I sent him a copy, a copy, and he was very ex happy and excited. So he invited me to, to join the, the PhD program or the university of Washington's. So that's how I, I ended up studying anthropology because of these, these altruistic kind of desires. But then I, I found myself in very naive, no understanding people's agendas and people's or views, and other police changed my life. And after I finished my PhD I decided to work for international organizations to do developing work in Africa, on at, in America because I speak English, French, and German. So I, I thought I wouldn't have any problems finding a job, but that year that I was pursuing that the these international organizations have no budgets. So I couldn't find any positions, they were interested in my qualifications and credentials. However, there was no job for me. So I decided thanks to the advice of a friend of mine. I decided to create a job of my dreams. So I used to have my own business anthropology consulting script. That's, Matt Artz: That's a great story. And so you know, what is business anthropology to you? W how do you, how would you define it Oscar Barrera: Business anthropology? I think you use the anthropological techniques, theories and methods in order to, to help entrepreneurs in order to help society communities to better off through economic means. I mean, I, in my practice as a corporate anthropologist, I help not only interpreters to make money, but I help entrepreneurs to grow, to create an impact, an impact for their employees. I am planning for the community and infant for the environment and for the client. For me, that's, that's a business anthropology, how we use the techniques, theories and methods in order to create an impact for the, for the wellbeing of humans and the planet, Matt Artz: The PhD program. Yeah. Did you ever come across any of the literature, business, anthropology, literature during the course of that? Or did you find all that on your own? Oscar Barrera: No, actually I must confess, I had a very interesting experience in business when I was in graduate school, I was finishing my doctoral dissertation and I have no, I was never exposed to, to business other than the typical anthropological studies of a student labor unions or studying eh, customer consumption, things like that, but no, really no business only studying the, the actors that are involved in business, but now studying business themselves from the anthropological perspective. So when I was finishing my my doctoral dissertation, my chair of my doctoral committee said, Oh, you should talk to this girl. That is that, that way, that last year, and she's working for a corporation, maybe she will have some insights about you after finishing your PhD. So I went to talk to her and she was working for, she was in the dark zone. Oscar Barrera: She was working for these major corporations that, that work at for, for McDonald's and all these big corporations that were making bunch of money. And I found it troublesome how the, an anthropologist was working for corporations to Quinn Quinn, all my anthropological formation and ambition was against capitalism to empower the powerless, to give voice to the voiceless. So I had this kind of like a, an epistemological, an ethical kind of conflict when I was listening to listening to her story. And I said, why aren't you doing that? Where are you working for, for these corporations? I, she said, Oscar, let me tell you a story. He said, first of all we are, we are working with McDonald's to expand all over Latin America and me as another police, I have the insights of how to create better menus for, for the, for the hell of the people, how to use materials and sources that are from that are produced locally, as opposed to be important. Oscar Barrera: So, as an anthropologist, we can we can help these companies work more with a more ethical kind of approach with a more socially and culturally, eh sensitivity, so to speak. And then she, she, she, she said something to me that I found it very, very like the, it was a crossroad for me in my anthropological kind of way of seeing anthropology in business. She said, Oscar, I must confess that. I when I was working on my dissertation, because she did her dissertation on business or starting a company, she said these business show up to do this research, but I felt on capable. I may, I felt like I was not entirely qualified. So I asked my advisors of my doctoral committee, if they, if they want to join in and, and do their research, it was good money. Oscar Barrera: It was very good, but my advisor said, okay, we're going to do this, but please keep it quiet. The one is spread the word, because it was not well seen. And I said, really, and after years later, I to deal myself with these conflict ethical conflict. Okay. Like, because my formation was to help to the powerless, he voice to the voiceless, but also how am I supposed to help these companies to make money, even at the expense of people? So I have to really it took me a few years to really adjust all these paradigms in my brain. And then I said, I came to the realization that, yes, it's, it's like fire. You can use fire and fire using fire as a metaphor of anthropology. You can use fire to heat what you are to great warm when you're called to cook or to create something wonderful. Or you can use fire to burn the house and destroy something. So it it's, it matters your agenda. It matters. What, what your purpose, your intention, your motivation, what's, what's behind your intention of using entrepreneurial tools for any situation, company or circumstance. Matt Artz: So, you know, how do you choose to use that fire today? What's, what's your main sort of driver, you know, what are you trying to do with your practice? Oscar Barrera: Well, I after bouncing from different different kinds of ways because I started actually as an anthropologist, you just listen, listen to this. I started business anthropology. I was starting my consulting in a very naive way because I said, well, I'm anthropologist, I'm at the goal. I, so what's the best thing I could do is sustainability. I will help companies to be sustainable, but that thing doesn't sell nothing doesn't sell. So I spent almost a year trying to make a business out of nothing, because no matter what, it's interesting, I am less in Mexico. And even less in this small city that I live in everybody is just after the money. Nobody cares about the impact of workers about the environment. Well, Matt Artz: I I'm, I'm very, I'm, I'm, I'm, Oscar Barrera: I am accelerated. Right. But but the point is like years ago, well, seven years ago, you cannot make a living with that perspective, with that paradigm. So I I had some very tiny projects here and there, but I was, I was I was broke. There was no they didn't give me any business to survive, so I had to change. So I, I decided to focus on something that I really passionate about, which is creativity and innovation. So I felt companies to, to innovate whether to study better the, their, their customer's minds, their customers' behaviors to how they develop better products, better services to, for the wellbeing of their other customers, how they can transform their, their culture of their own companies to better cater and do better resolve their customer's problems and to offer solutions. So I, I became a problem solver for, for companies and I have I have focused on two things. One is, eh, cultural change in companies and the other one is innovation or creativity on products. How companies can create more powerful products, how they can create an irresistible offer and how can they provide better solutions. Matt Artz: Okay. So, you know, in there, you talked about some of the challenges you had when you started the business, particularly around sustainability, but as you, as you pivoted to the new sort of value proposition, what did you do to help sell that to, you know, in your case, you know, your clients that, you know, how did you convince them that anthropology would bring value to, to the projects? Oscar Barrera: Well, I, it was a learning curve at the beginning. I, I was selling anthropology and then I'd realized that it doesn't work. And then I'd realize, then I was selling your sustainable sustainability solutions. And that thing didn't sell either. So I, when I began focusing on companies' problems, company solutions of customers, challenges, then people start to listen to me for the solutions that I offered. I, and later people found out that I wasn't apologies later. People learned that what I was doing, and I was introducing these pieces of, Oh, this is anthropology. I am an anthropologist. I'm another, just a normal and ordinary consultant. I am an anthropologist, and this is the insights that I bring to you. So at the beginning I had to I had to just hide so to speak the the term anthropology, because even I lost clients using that term, it's like, is it like a wire? Oscar Barrera: What is that anthropology? I remember there was, I, I, these, this proposal for a, a very compelling proposal for these company that they rent buses and cars to companies. So I said, well, let's use the apology to understand your customer's experience. Let's create an extraordinary, a wow experience for your customers. And we want to use tools are, so I gave him my speech. I gave him my presentation, my value grow a value proposition. And he said, Oh, he said, Oh yeah. Now you understand what anthropology is about. Oh, but that's okay. At the beginning I was kind of confused what it was, what the cake was that said, but, you know, I am, I have two more business partners and I have to show your proposal to your, to my business partners. So after two weeks, he came back to me. Oscar Barrera: I said, Oscar, my business partners don't understand what anthropology's they said that it sounds too weird. So I think we're going to skip it for right now, maybe later on, I said to myself, well, don't, don't call it anthropology. I'm using, I'm not selling you anthropology. I'm selling you a solution to create a certainly in experiences for your clients, but they didn't see it. So I had then I have to, well, I had to do, I had to, to be very sensitive, to, to see with whom I was dealing with or who I was dealing with because some people were okay. They were ready to listen to listen more above anthropology for others. It was just better not to not to speak about it. I had to learn how to be very sensitive and to understand better my clients and to provide my clients with information that was needed in order to, to overcome the solution that he or she needed, as opposed to me selling my wonderful business anthropological product. You see what I mean? Matt Artz: And so how do you, how do you size up that situation? How do you determine if your identity in some way should be, you know, anthropology led or if you should maybe lead with something else? Oscar Barrera: Well I have two, two ways to answer that question. One is the way I use my marketing and the other one is when I am I am sitting in front of a client when I am sitting in front of a client. I'm reading my customer's behaviors volume movements his voice. I listen to everything. I read everything. I, I almost sidekick. I, I literally, I study my client who I am sitting with very, very carefully. And I do it in a very ethical way. I wouldn't have a very professional way. I'm not a, my business is not about cheating or about coercing people by business about offering and transform people's and their companies to, for the wellbeing of, of everyone, all the stakeholders, literally, that's, that's my goal. That's my mission. So I, I, I become very, very aware of, of their, of everything that is happening. And I always have my cell, my mobile off, I don't I get no distractions. I am in there with all my five senses with my client, and I just I just provide them the information that they need instead of, instead of focusing on, I am a I'm selling anthropology, I'm selling, I just focus like what, what they need. Oscar Barrera: So on the other fan with my marketing, I do both. I talk a little bit about anthro. I, I offer anthropological solutions. But most of the time, I would say maybe 60, 60% of my marketing is about the solutions that I offer. And I don't use the, the, the name of the label anthropology because the market is not ready yet. I may make it Mexico on international stage, but people still don't know what on the apology. So I, I'm very careful when I use it, how I use it with my clients and with, in my marketing, I focus more on solutions as opposed to, to sell in anthropology. Matt Artz: And so, you know, since you are very much focused on delivering value to all stakeholders, what do you think you contribute as a business anthropologist that's beyond just research. What else to the business to you provide or to the stakeholders? Oscar Barrera: You know, I, one of the things that I I came to the realization, this is very interesting. I became, I came to realize that that anthropology provides an amazing insights, these amazing insights to a business due to the systematic or this to due to the systemic approach. And let me give you an example. I was, I was working with a company that is which sell which sell medical equipment. They import medical equipment from China, and they sell it to hospitals, clinics and doctors in Mexico. So for years, this company was growing in the market, but their strategy was sales as sales for price is price. The strategy, they compete in the market by price, and it was very exhausting. They were growing, but every time they had to just release promote a promotion, a sale, or these towns. Oscar Barrera: And it was very, very exhausting. Even the the Salesforce, when I talk to the salespeople, they said that they needed a discount or they needed a sale in order to create, to make business otherwise they couldn't sell anything. So that was their paradigm. So my, my project on my mission was to create a new business model for this company. How could they sell their equipment within a different logic that goes beyond the price? What can they offer to, to their customers, to doctors and hospitals to S to say, okay, I will buy this equipment because, because fill up the blank. So I w I created this project and this company really trust me, and I have done previous work with them. And so they they they had not problems giving myself a shot. I say, okay, we're going to invest with this guy because he says, he seems to be smart. Oscar Barrera: So they paid all my expenses and I traveled to five different cities in Mexico. And I conducted research in hospitals, interviewing doctors, nurses, and healthcare professionals in five cities about their problems, these problems they experienced with their equipment, with the medical equipment. And interestingly enough I discovered that the these, these, these hospitals and these people have no problems with the equipment, the equipment just works fine. The problems or the challenges they face is with the people that manage the equipment. They are the problem. They are the source of the problem. So for instance is several hospitals. They rent their surgery rooms to doctors. So outside doctors who want to perform a surgery with, for their own patients. So they rent the surgery rooms and they mistreat the equipment. They break it, they pulled the cord, they, they destroy it. They they're, they don't care. Oscar Barrera: And also another issue that I, I discovered was that nurses there is a huge role of what's, what's the word that I forgot the word in English. These it's called the rotation. Like at the nurses, they are, they get higher and they get fired, or they quit all the time, turn my turnover, right? There's a tremendous turnover in nurses. So, eh, that's a problem. The, the retention, the retention level in hospitals is very low in with regards to nurses. So they, every time they have to take her a new nurse they need to train the nurse. You have to manage, you have to handle the equipment. So they lose time. And after three months of the training and everybody that, where the nurse has a, a good command of the, of the equipment, Speaker 3: She leaves the hospital. I know we're going to get higher. So you, Oscar Barrera: I discovered all these, all these subtleties, all these challenges that the medical equipment is, the company could provide some value, some, some some solutions. So when I returned after my research, and I gave them a presentation of all my findings, and I said, your business model should shift from selling, from selling equipment to offering solutions. You must, you must focus on the pain points of your clients, of the hospitals, like the nurses don't over, like at the carelessness of the doctors in the surgery room, you must offer them with solutions. So at here comes the entrepreneur the anthropological insights, and also Oscars on crazy ideas and creativity, because I said, you know, you forget about the business that you are in right now, forget about that. You're selling equipment. Now your business is going to be, I say, okay, now your business is going to be we offer solutions for the turnover of nurses. We offer you training 24 hours, three 65 days, days of the year, 24 seven, and the, the owner of it Speaker 3: [Inaudible] companies, how the hell are they going to do that? And I said, well, no problem. We'll live in a beautiful Oscar Barrera: Full world. This offer let's create tutorials, and let's put them on the web and your clients will have this password. And with these passport, they will have access to these database of bigger tutorials with trainings or how to use the equipment. So because also one of the things that I observed during my research was that the healthcare professionals have no time. They are always running. So we offer them in C2. Training is going to be very hard because they are so busy. So let's offer them something on the web that they can use on demand. So that's, that's that's how, that's what a medical equipment company did. They graded these videos, they put it on the web, and now they sell solutions for their, for their hospitals on, on the different problems that the nurses and the doctors in general, all day, the healthcare professionals experience when dealing with equipment, you agree. Oscar Barrera: And so sometimes even in an interview that I had with this engineer that fixes all the, all the equipment in a hospital this was in in Monterrey, Mexico, and this, the, the, he said, you know, the nurses and the doctors are so mad that these equipment do not work. This equipment doesn't work. So when I go there and I say, Hey guys, did you plug it? It wasn't locked. Well, they were pretty. They were because there was a piece of. So I said, really? I was saying, yeah, it happens all the time are scary topics all the time. So I said, okay. So I this idea of offering solutions through video tutorials was very powerful. And nowadays, eh, the, the company has shifted their business model to not to sell a price. They sell solutions and they have been very successful. And with epidemia, they are selling more Meredith, I think this was there this year was better than the last year. They may, they, they sold way more than last year purposing the proper thing on this, Matt Artz: On these illusions. So in there, you know, you made the comment about, you know, have you, did you research tracking back and, you know, you sort of, you gave him some crazy ideas from yourself, but really like, you know, there's a process of, of course, of getting from insights to, you know, recommendations. And so what does that look like for you, or use it using social theory to help sort of inform that, you know, all the time, some of the times, none of the time? Oscar Barrera: Well, it depends on the depends on the client for, but usually I don't I mean, as I said, I'm very sensitive about the when I about I'm very sick about when I should open my mouth when I should not, because I know also by self experience that is not good to two over peoples to over clients with solutions is better to guide your client to come up to or to a right, to have his own solutions. But also by my experience, I have noticed that sometimes they, my clients and the people that I work with they, they are the, they have this vision in which they don't know other than their business and their problem is that they know too much, they know too much of their business. So in that case, I have to push them and I have to brainstorm on offering my own brilliant ideas because they, they don't see, they cannot see anything else. Oscar Barrera: I like for this, for instance, the talking to this sales personnel in, for the medical equipment company, they, they couldn't see themselves selling any, any other way than just giving discounts to hospitals and doctors. When I asked them to do those, I conduct a workshop to come up with ideas. They have not, no ideas because they, they were not exposed to other ways of being other ways of seeing other ways of thinking. So they, then they either know better. So then, so I, I, I had to, I had to expose them with with empirical data, with some ideas, to get some momentum going and, and create something new create a new business problem. Matt Artz: So that maybe the data relates to what I was just going to ask there, which is, you know, how do you go about really selling that? You know, so oftentimes we do come up with recommendations and sometimes those recommendations are obviously not adopted. You know, do you have any strategies for really selling your recommendations that, and you know, if you've tried many, have any worked better than the others? Oscar Barrera: Yeah. I, sometimes you sell sometimes you, you do recommendations. So sometimes I do recommendations and I think my ideas are great, but my, my, my clients, sometimes they also agree with me that they are great, but they are so complicated to, to pursue because they don't have the capacity. They don't have, the personnel implies more work than what they are currently doing, and they are too busy to, to do more. So I, in that, in that, that respect, then I have to, I have to just be very realistic about helping my clients to do what they realistically can do and push them a little bit further and push them a little bit to the stretch where, where they can grow. Otherwise they wouldn't hire me again, because everything needs to show them results. Right. So I I can give you, I can give you an another example of a, of a case that I gave him some ideas and they were so excited, but at the end, he then follow like a company that they sell. Oscar Barrera: They sell lab tests is this a laboratory company that sells lab tests like blood tests during this all kinds of tests. So they have to have this problem with a competition. They, some corporations move into the city and year after year, they were losing market share. So they say, Oscar, how, how can we do, how can we compete with these corporations? Because they are offering very low low price services. And we cannot we cannot afford that. I mean, we cannot compete. We buy all these chemicals and all these products, we have to import them because of these materials and resources that we use for the, for the tests for the lab tests are important. And the, the, we buy them in dollar sometime the dollar is not, is more expensive. So we cannot compete with, have to we cannot afford to, to offer discounts or, or less, or reduce our prices. Oscar Barrera: So I came up with idea because also they, they, again, they, they, they knew too much about their ex about their business. So I give him some ideas. And one of the ideas was let's this offer a service to certain doctors, doctors that you are, you are familiar and let's offer them with with a business, a business offer. This let's offer them that you are going to be there. Their lab company, you're going to be an extension of their, of their practice. So by, by, by, by being an extension, you're going to create a system in which you are going to deliver. You're going to provide all these, the results for your, for the patients directly to the doctor and to the patients via WhatsApp, via email. And you're going to offer a percentage of the, of the revenues to the doctor, and you're going to want to create a tracking system so that doctors can know what, how many referrals are sent to the, to the left company. Oscar Barrera: So they really like the idea because they thought that the best way, well, we, we, we came to the realization that the best way to compete with these corporations is to be very specific and to narrow down a market niche, unless working with some doctors with certain specialties with some expertise and let's just offer them a business for the referrals. They, they really liked the idea, but it was too much work. Apparently they didn't follow through. They had to do all these of these visits and all these all these work with a year with the doctors. And at the end, they didn't, it didn't work out because the idea was great. They really like it, but they, when they went back to just competing with price. Matt Artz: So, you know, you've given two examples there and thanks for those, appreciate the real world examples. They always help. And, but in their eight, a one project obviously has performed very well in terms of the outcomes for the organization, do the other, you know, they didn't accept the recommendations maybe, and maybe they're just sort of doing the same that they were always doing and it's status quo. So how do you know, in those situations, how do you gauge your own value, your own impact, and how do you think those clients gauge it? Oscar Barrera: Well, like what, like like a human being there's so much I can do for somebody else in the same way as an anthropologist, there's only so much I can do for a company. Some sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn't work. I do always my best. I give them my content and 20% to a client. Sometimes there's is the chemistry sometimes is because failed on explaining myself or, or creating a case of what by do it and helping, or guiding my customers to do good, better for everybody. Sometimes it doesn't work that way. So in the case of this medical equipment company, it turned out very well because there were certain causes and causes and conditions. They, there was, as I said, there was previous work with them. They was they, they stressed them. They trusted me. Oscar Barrera: They knew that I was an intelligent guy that could give provide them with some value. So I did everything I could in order to, to reaffirm what they believe about me and also, and of course on primarily on the most important thing to deliver results. So that was, that was, that was key. But in the other case, in case of the left the left company taste, they didn't know me very well. And I also didn't know them very well. I tried to to pursue them, to try to help them, but they were not entirely I would say open to, to the call to further pursue the, the, for the pursuit, the the consulting, because the they probably thought that they they could, they knew better, or they could do it in a better way. Not always ready to change. Yeah, exactly. So even though yeah, there isn't like a religious conversion, right. Sometimes you succeed, sometimes you don't. Right. Matt Artz: But, you know you know, so in there, there's, there's a little bit of a topic that comes up oftentimes here in the New York area where we are sort of talking about Oscar Barrera: What, Matt Artz: How we kind of sell this, what our value is, how know, what we would want, maybe hiring managers to know our clients to know. So, you know, given your experiences some positive, you know, some that maybe didn't have their results that you would like to see and that they probably could have. How would, you know, if you had to summarize, you know, what anthropology can contribute to an organization and what do you think that is? You know, what would, if there's any non anthropologists listening, like how would you sell them on it right now, Oscar Barrera: Anthropology can help you to see things that as an entrepreneur, you cannot see, you were able to find opportunities in the market. You will want to understand better your on personnel and you, you will have clarity on, on what's going on to provide value whether to your clients or whether to your, whether to your to your own company. I think value creation, I think, is the mole is, is is one of the most precious things that anthropologists do is value creation, how we create value. But, but sometimes it's, it's hard to convey, right? Because, because they can, they, they, eh, sometimes people are hesitant or skeptical that what you are, what you are helping them to see can be true, because they're like, Oh, that's sounds too beautiful to be true. Matt Artz: I agree again, I appreciate that. It is oftentimes hard to convey. And I think that relates also to younger anthropologists who maybe are students still, or, you know, early kind of mid career who maybe are potentially anthropologists that are not in business yet, but maybe looking to break in, or maybe they're looking to improve their career. So I appreciate you're at a consulting company, but for anybody, you know, for any other anthropologists, who's sort of looking to grow their career in this. And do you think there are certain things that they should be doing or thinking about any skills they should be acquiring? You know, like anything, any recommendations that you would give to people looking to get into the consulting space or even just to work, you know, for a larger organization. Oscar Barrera: Yeah. I think if you're going to go for the consulting rail, I would suggest first started your own business. They started your business before you can solve before you guy, another company or somebody else's to do things better, doing your own with a company, sell yourself, lemonade, soldiers, sell products, socks, food hardware, sell something, create your own business, selling something on and apply the anthropological tools you're on, you're on your own business and yourself and get insights, insights from that. And then you will have a knowledge base experience, another space, knowledge base information. So when, when you are so that when you're with a client, a consulting client, you, you have, you have some value to provide, like, because I, in the past I have done this myself, it worked. So I think huge you as a client of mine might be worth to consider these based on my own experience with my own company. Matt Artz: No, that's great. Great advice. And so you know, considering you have your, your consulting company, and I know, you know, as we were just chatting before we started recording, you mentioned you've started a new venture recently to sell some products. So what do you think? And I suppose this would be my last question for you, but like, what do you think in anthropology having the anthropology background actually brings to starting business? How do you, how do you bring that toolkit to make the business successful? Oscar Barrera: Ah, I, I think it, because you are able to see, to read between the lines, you're able to read between the lines you're able to listen, let's say in terms of marketing, you're able to listen the customers and transform your customer's opinions, customers, perceptions to enrich your marketing strategy. Let me give you an example. I I, I I was telling you, I am selling some a dish, a traditional dish for these, for these holidays, Christmas holidays and new years some of the customers, so some of the customers mentioned like, Oh, the dish was just delicious. And I was amazed that he was very kind and gentle with my stomach. It didn't burn, he didn't burn because we use this more, the sauce. And usually this sauce is very spicy and he's very, he's very tough for the stomach. Oscar Barrera: So when I release it to that, I may have a greater campaign. And in my social media, like, Oh, well, this, this dish with a sauce is very kind of gentle. It's very kind of gentle. So you use all this information from their customers and you just throw it back at them to, to generate more traffic, to generate and more traction. So I think that technology can help you to see and read because I have this information, I have seen it with other, with with clients, with consulting clients. And they use say, Oh, this is a customer is just complaining. Yeah. But listen to the complaint, you can create some value out of this complaint and not just throw it away because it's a complaint and this customer is just stupid. They don't understand that our product or our service. So I think as an anthropologist, you are able to, to use that data, turn it into information and create value for your customers, for you on business, on your own. Matt Artz: Great. Nice. So Oscar, is there anywhere or anything you're involved in right now that you would like to sort of mention or call out? Oscar Barrera: I think we are we're living an amazing moments right now with all the [inaudible]. I think anthropologists have amazing tools, amazing tools based on our theories, based on our methods. And we are just made to succeed. We're just made to succeed because you're there was, there was a movement of why anthropologists, why the world needs anthropologists and because of the value they provide. So I think we, as an anthropologist, you are not, how can I say this? You're not allowed to fail because you have all the tools you, you just have to be creative. You just have to don't be afraid to fail. You just have to be brave and, and, and do things with that. We know expectation to succeed. You must do it because, because it's fine because it will lead you to some, somewhere else. As on the police. I think you, you can start your own venture, whether it's a consultant, whether it's an entrepreneur or whether it's a whatever, because you have the tools, you just have to go and do it be breakable. Matt Artz: Great. Appreciate that. And you have somebody who's in a similar space to you, you know, I I can really appreciate that comment. And I think that that's a great way to end it. So is there any place that people should look you up? Anything, any, any social media or anything that you'd like to mention? Oscar Barrera: Yes, I am in LinkedIn, Oscar Beretta, PhD. I am also in Facebook with my own fan page, Oscar Beretta. And I put my website, AntropologíaCorporativat.MX and I have also my YouTube channel, which is Antropología Corporativa. And you can just contact me through my social media, of course. Matt Artz: Well, Oscar, thanks very much appreciate coming on. I know you're passionate about sort of getting the word out about business anthropology as well with your LinkedIn articles. So I would suggest everybody look you up and following follow your work and thanks again for coming on. Oscar Barrera: No, thank you so much for the invitation. I, it was very fun and nice chatting, chatting with you and your audience. Thank you. Please note this transcript is an automated transcription and may have some errors.

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