This piece is part of our ATXtoday Q+A series. Do you know someone we should interview? Nominate them here.
We’re partnering with Trainual, an onboarding and training software for small businesses, to highlight a local business here in Austin that has found success using the platform. Read on to see how Trainual is changing the game when it comes to leveling up the people + the processes that keep these businesses running smoothly (every single day).
Profile: Paul Langley grew up in Austin, where his career in finance sent him to Chicago and New York before making his way back to the Bat City in 2015. We asked Paul what advice he has for fellow business owners, what makes the Austin business community special, and what he thinks a perfect day in Austin looks like.
Q: Tell us a little about your background, your business, and what you do in your current position.
A: I’m Paul Langley, CEO of Enable Dental. My business partner and I bought the roots of Enable Dental in 2017, and I’ve been CEO ever since. That mostly means trying to put the team in a position to succeed and not letting the company get in the way of our people and customers.
Q: What makes ATX’s business community special?
A: The Austin community has such a supportive, collaborative spirit. Everyone you meet is ready to make an introduction, offer advice, or lend a hand.
I’ve never felt the sense of competitiveness and insecurity that’s pervasive in New York, where everyone is trying to run each other over. In Austin, we’re trying to pick each other up, and I think that’s why so many great business leaders are moving here.
Q: What are some of the most important characteristics a leader can have?
A: I think empathy, patience, and making decisions under uncertainty are pretty important characteristics that I’m always trying to be better at.
Q: Who are some local movers + shakers you’re watching?
A: Philip Speer is an amazing chef and entrepreneur who is always cooking up something new. Moyo Oyelola is an amazing artist and, basically, the coolest dude in Austin. Rad Wood at Vela Wood is always doing interesting, Austin-y things.
Q: Describe your perfect day in ATX.
A: Morning run, make breakfast with the kids, hang by a pool for the day, margaritas and tacos for dinner.
Q: What is the best career advice you’ve received?
A: Surround yourself with people who are 10 times better at what they do than you could ever be, and give them the opportunity to show it.
Q: What is your biggest challenge? Reward?
A: I’m constantly challenged to make tough decisions on how to allocate resources and how to communicate those decisions clearly to our team.
The biggest reward in my role, by far, is seeing people’s careers develop and grow at our company. There’s nothing more rewarding than being a part of an employee getting promoted, buying their first house, or finding a career path they didn’t know they could.
Q: How does Trainual make your team feel more connected?
A: Trainual has been a great resource for us as we’ve grown our team to get people up to speed on what we do and to have shared resources that puts people in a position to succeed. We’ve also found that consistently building out Trainual helps us find better ways to do things as we document how and why we do what we do.
Q: What’s your go-to coffee order?
A: Nitro cold brew from the kegerator in my garage — gotta beat the heat.
What type of training platform does your company or small business use? Tell us here.*