Speaker 2: Hi everybody. Welcome to the latest episode of the Business Development Bunker. My name is Angelo Fraboni and I am joined here by my good friend Mark Stevens. Mark, how are you doing? Really good. How you doing brother? You want a little thank you Brian Schmidt deal. You’re also here virtually in the room with us. How are Ya? Hey, what’s up everyone? Yeah, so if you’ve been following along for some time, uh, we got invited, Brian and I, we have a company called Apex Development Group and what we focus on is we focus on business development and sales channel development before companies primarily in the firearms industry, actually solely in the firearms industry. And Mark has a glomerate of companies around the same things. Mark, you do marketing, you’re a gorilla marketer, a, you have a trend, not a training. You’ve got a firearms company all around accessibility into the sport and you host, uh, many matches for three gun.
Speaker 3: And so kind of the whole thought here is just three guys with kind of a wide different background. Mark in the guerrilla marketing me with the business development. Brian put the sales channel development. We just want to get around and talk about things that we think would add value to you guys. So what are we talking about today, boys? 10 year target, 10 year target. What does that mean? Basically, what is your goal? You know, this whole thing. Um, we’ve started this out. We have three episodes in a row now talking primarily about eos. Um, it’s a concept by Gino Wickman. Uh, mark will put this in the show notes. Traction is the book that we’re kind of referencing this auto and we just want to say this again, this is not a podcast about traction. This just happens to be a common language that the three of us have adopted in our businesses and just makes for really kind of simple, straightforward way for us to talk about business. Um,
Speaker 4: sounds fun too. It kind of, we dive into really the purpose and the goals of our podcast. Um, so if you want to go back and listen to the first episode and really get into that, but you know, essentially where we have an audience, we work strictly in the firearms industry. So our targeted audiences, the, you know, small business, small to medium size business owner in this, in this massive industry, billion, billions of dollars industry. And you know, how are they setting themselves apart? We talk about a lot of these different companies that just accidentally, you know, get into, you know, manufacturing. They have this idea, they make us something in their garage and take 10 years later, they’re trying to figure out how to get from point a to point B.
Speaker 3: Absolutely. Absolutely. So yeah, episode one was really a deep dive into kind of under the hood of three of ours. No talked a lot about vulnerability. You’ve talked about blind spots as business owners. Episode two was around, um, your core value and your core focus and kind of your identity of a business. And today we’re going to be talking about, you know, where are you going as a business? So let’s jump into that.
Speaker 5: Before we do that, Angelo, I’d love to just throw out and ah, you know, an opportunity for anyone listening. So, um, we are, um, we want to hear from you, especially as we wrap up these three episodes around traction and we would love to get your questions and comments about this so we can address those in future episodes. We’re kind of closing the book on traction, uh, as a core focus. It’ll always be an underlying principle of our conversations, but with these three episodes is enough to really get your, you know, your feet wet in this conversation for you know, who you are and what you’re up to. And so we’d love to get questions and comments and, uh, I just occurred to me, I don’t have any really good resource for that right now. So what I’m gonna offer to you is my personal email address, which is mark m a R email@example.com. So you can find that in the show notes, but email firstname.lastname@example.org. Any questions you have from traction or anything else for your business. And we will do our level best to address that in future episodes.
Speaker 3: Yeah, that’s, that’s a great reminder. Thanks for, thanks for reminding me of that. Yeah. Uh, episode one we’ve really went over our goals for the podcast. We did a like a Meta study, you know, a peak behind the curtain into how we sort of process those things. And one of our, one of our goals, um, is to really just be a resource, you know, this is, this is not groundbreaking. We didn’t come up with any of these concepts. We don’t claim to be the best. We just claim to think and talk about things that we think would benefit people. So we wanna invite you along into that. So this is, this is your show. All right. Tenure, target, Brian Wise, the 10 year target. Important.
Speaker 4: It really, it’s just setting a longterm goal. I mean, it’s, um, you know, again, you know, defining who you are and where you want to go and how you want to get there. Right. And you know, your, we spend a lot of time talking about the identity, your core focuses of business. You know, your niche and then, and then ultimately setting yourself up for success by putting yourself out there and setting a goal, a longterm goal. And we say tenured target. And it again, targets a perfect word. Describe that. I mean, that’s what you’re shooting for. It’s, it’s a, it’s a hail Mary sometimes. Right? But there’s needs to be something tangible or metric or measurable. Like how did you come up with that number? It doesn’t have to be 10 years. Uh, you know, Gino Wickman talks about in the book, uh, the whole reason why they’ve selected and they’ve kind of in the VTO if they focus on 10 years, is because 90% of the companies that they had worked with had selected 10 years as the one that makes the most sense for them.
Speaker 4: But it can be five, especially with, you know, if you’re, you know, 300,000, $500,000 company and you know, your goal might be $2 million or $1 million or whatever, you know, and it’s, you know, and it’s like, I want to get there in five years. Right. Um, you know, it makes more sense, especially in those, um, infant stages of businesses. But then, you know, there’s a lot of businesses that have been around for 10 years, you know, and they’re saying like, yeah, I mean 10 years make sense. But it could be 15 years, it can be 20 years. It’s really, it’s in a nutshell, it’s just your larger than life goal that everyone within your organization is rowing in the same direction and they, and it’s all like everyone has the same vision. It’s a long range direction. It’s a longterm goal that you’ve set. It’s clear, it’s concise, everyone’s got bought in or buying into it. And it just makes sense. So just real quick,
Speaker 5: if you haven’t listened to the other episodes, the VTO that Brian is referring to is the vision slash traction organizer. It’s just a simple worksheet that’s available to anybody online as a pdf. We’ll link to it in the show notes that you can use to kind of build out these core values, all the things, all the concepts we’ve talked about end up on this vision traction organizer as a document for you to use
Speaker 3: going forward. Yeah. So you know, we’ve, we talked a little bit about this and I think if we really like practical information, you know, it would be one thing for us to just talk about concepts. It’d be one thing for us to talk about different scenarios, but I think the best value that we can get, and this isn’t that we think we have it perfect, it’s just as real and I think that people can understand this, but we’re going to take a look at some of our 10 year targets, our three year picture and our one year plan just to sign it on that too. So the shorter you get in your timeframe, the more detailed it gets. So a 10 year target is like one sentence, you know, it’s not like this big elaborate, you know, 14 page business plan, keep it simple, keep it simple. Um, and then three year picture of one year plan. So, um, yeah. Mark, do you want to kick us off? I know you’ve done this within the last couple of years and you have dated how you’re kind of re looking at this a little bit. So, so
Speaker 5: I’m like, I’m so, it’s actually interesting if you look at our, Our two vision traction organizers, you guys are essentially at day one of running a plan and yeah. And I’m a year and a half into one. Right? And so I’m, I’m adjusting my target as it speaks. Right. Cause at the time I was far more interested in volume than I was quality. Um, I had a, a whole marketing strategy all in a design philosophy built around having like a, like a self serve marketing set up. Um, that would have been a lot of these numbers we’re going to talk about. And that just doesn’t, it’s, I’m just not doing that. I download it in the space and I was, it was out of alignment with my core values and you co and because of that it just had to be killed. That’s real life.
Speaker 5: Yeah, it’s real life. Right? So it was a product line that did not work, that needs to be killed. That is grossly affecting how I met all the goals in the shorter plans. But the, that market segment wasn’t a piece of it. Right. It actually, it, it was really great cause it was a great thought study for me that, um, helped me design some new systems that made it easier for me to service the clients I had better. And that costs a lot of money for something silly. Right. Um, but anyway, the um, so what my tenure target was, was a hundred entrepreneurial clients living a life of abundance and vitality.
Speaker 5: Got It. Yeah. I know. Well 100 is the number. That’s the number I was going with. I just fucking around. So it was 100 entrepreneurial clients, a hundred entrepreneurs, right. Um, but living a life of abundance and vitality. And when I was really looking at this, this goes back to one of my core values, which is community. And that is like, I don’t get to decide what, you know, wealth looks like to you. And like, I’ve been in interviews before with influencers that I’m, I’m like three quarters of the way through the interview with, with them online, right? And we’re having this conversation and I realized that the whole time I’ve been talking to him, I’ve been talking to them like, they want to be massive influencers and they’re like, dude, I don’t know. I just know that’s not what I want. I want to like, I wanna, I wanna represent a couple of companies I really care about.
Speaker 5: I don’t really care about getting famous in any of this. You know, I don’t want to be a, I don’t want to like to be doing lip balm next week, you know? Um, they have no interest in any of that stuff. And it’s like, here I am driving towards this thing in their lives that’s like wealth or influence or blah, blah, blah, or whatever it is. So it was about abundance, however they define it right. And then vitality, like they’re not left soaked by it. It’s good. You know, it’s just, they, they have a, you know, I’m interested. That’s where the hive came from. I don’t, I honestly don’t care guys with the hive, if anybody listens to about one person, if one person, cause this happened to me when I, like years ago, I tried to do the fitness thing in three gun and nobody was having it.
Speaker 5: And, but I was like, I killed it after a year. And then I was at a range and a good friend of mine, his wife came up to me and I was like, wow, you look fantastic. And she’s like, yeah, I’ve been listening to your show. She’s the one and I, and I’m now doing a whole different thing. But that’s what got me like out of my own head and like just doing the work until I, I noticed a difference. And then, I mean, that’s vitality. It doesn’t look the same. You, yeah, it’s not competing in the tactical games for her, it was just like feeling good at the end of the day instead of like, you know, go into the Haagen Daz, uh, you know, and praying to it ever, you know? And so whatever that is. So it was really clear to me. It was like, I didn’t need to like define that. I just wanted them to be loving their life and have an abundance of it, a full measure life.
Speaker 3: That’s so good. And one of the things that I want to comment on with you, mine too, is how you said, you know, you put a plan in place, you put a target out there, and then after a year of testing you found that that’s not exactly where you want to be. So what I love about that, it’s not like, Hey, I put a plan in place, sat on my butt for a year, and then put a different plan in place. Like, no, you actually went out and tried something and saw what happened and now you’re making modifications. That’s Brian and I, and we adopt those progress, not perfection.
Speaker 5: Oh yeah. He reminds me of it all the time. Failure is inevitable too, as another point. I mean, you gotta, you’re gonna fail a hundred times, but you just gotta keep picking yourself up and moving forward. For sure. My favorite is, is don’t let great be the enemy of good. Oh, I love it. Action today. You know, good action today trumps great action. Someday, someday never comes. You will never get to someday, no matter how hard you try. I swear to you, you’re either it right now, maybe without the resources, maybe without the time, whatever your either it right now or it’s never going to happen. Yup. And so, and frankly living is being out on the edge of whether it’s gonna work or not. [inaudible]
Speaker 5: had this coin in a, it was just like a plastic like poker chip and I and on it it said to it. Right. And you know, there’s that saying like, you know, I’ll get it done when I get around to it so it’s round. And so my dad, he used to use it as a joke. He kept in his pocket. It is, someone said that and he pulled it out of his pocket and hand-rolled and a Mattoon. That’s really good. We need to make those, we’re making those, there’ll be available, they’ll be email@example.com and you know, 25 minutes. That’s brilliant. That’s so good. There we go. I’ll keep like 10 of those in my pocket. I’d run out at the end of the day. Children’s corner. Yeah. No, that’s really good. But I want to say something I just want to just said was really important to hear. If I had 10 of those in my pocket, I would run out of them every day. Yup. So, and cause I don’t know how often I hear that and I’m, I’m just as guilty of it as anybody else. Don’t get me wrong.
Speaker 3: Yup. No, that’s really good. So, all right, so getting back to 10 year target, so 10 year target, you had that whole concept and what’s good about a 10 year target is you’re not coming up with some ambiguous, like I want a lot of sales or I want a lot of clients 10 years from now you actually should put a number behind it and you should, it’s, it’s two things. It’s M it’s general in the sense that it’s short, but it’s specific in the sense that you can actually filter through it. Yep. So, and that’s really important because we want to make sure, you know, when we talk about doing goals in general, they gotta be smart. I don’t know the entire acronym, so I’m not going to try it. But you know, you need to be measurable, attainable. Um, and then the other whatever s and r and t
Speaker 5: for real simple, precise and measurable. Yup. 100%.
Speaker 3: And so, you know, for you mark having that initial one, like I want a hundred clients living out, you know, those, those two vitality and all that. Um,
Speaker 5: and that’s awesome. Just for the record, um, the 100 is clearly precise. The measurable would be a little imprecise in this. However, in the three year plan, there was a yearly survey, uh, that would go out that would not only include how we’re doing, but how are you doing? Yeah. And, um, and then I was going to use that as a metric and I got that the first time I did that, it wouldn’t be precise. It would take time. But over the seven years, up to the 10 year mark, I would really have a sense of how you’re doing and like did we get there? You know, and it, it’s not quite as precise as it should be. I’m very clear on that and I don’t care.
Speaker 3: That’s great. That’s, that’s great. You know, um, you know, Brian, should we talk about kind of what our working on is and, and it’s funny cause Brian and I, we’re still working through this, but um, we have the general concepts down on what we want all of our 10 year through year one year to look like. Um, but I would say generally speaking, a good metric for us. So we do business development and sales channel development, sales being a huge part of that. You know, a lot of companies need that business arm and a lot of companies need sales. And so for us, one of the key metrics that we were looking at for our 10 year target is, you know, dollars under management. And so we have a target, a 10 year target of $100 billion portfolio under management. So that’s a a hundred million in gross profit or gross sales, gross sales. Yup. And that’s what’s great about that is as we’re bringing on clients, that is something that we can look at. You know, uh, if we have to say, we say we’d get to a scenario where we’re overburdened or we need to hire some people to grow, you know, does this acquisition help us take on more clients? That gets closer to our hundred million dollars under management. If we have to pick client avers client B, one of the filter mechanisms is which one helps us get to our 10 year target of 100 million under management.
Speaker 4: And I think a good point too is that, you know, Mark’s made the point that this change is right and it’s good, it’s a needle that you’re going to continue to move. Um, and as I think about this too, and mark saying like, yeah, I’m thinking about this and it’s already changing in my head, is that we’ve, we kind of set that three months ago, three, four months ago when we were kind of diving into our VTO and we’ve said, we’ve actually got it on the calendar on Thursday. We’re gonna kind of do another deep dive into our VTO and refine it. And I’m thinking that might change. I have some ideas. I got the wheels spinning on. You know, when you say that out loud, it’s, we’re hearing you say it out loud. Makes me think, okay. Is that the right, is that the direction that we’ve been going in the last three months?
Speaker 4: Right. Yep. Versus like, when I think about a 10 year target doesn’t have to be a dollar value. Like we’re saying, y’all can, you know, if you’re in manufacturing or whatever and you say $10 million, I want to be a $10 million business in 10 years. Right. It could be just a simple like, you know, uh, customer service, right? I think about our core focus, and we talked about this in episode two, um, our niche or core focus as a business is to create these lifelong partnerships and continuously adding value. Right? So when I think in 10 years I think of what would be really substantial is that, what is that number of clients that we’ve worked with for 10 years or having these clients that have trusted in us, committed in us and have partnered with us over a longer duration of time versus that short term or longterm kind of, you know, I want to be that. I want to have more clients that we’ve worked with for a longer period of time.
Speaker 5: Yeah. You might be looking at like, what’s a better performance indicator, a hundred million dollar portfolio or 85% retention rate over three years.
Speaker 3: Absolutely. That’s point. And that’s, you know, there’s, there’s a lot of, what I love about this book too, and again, this is not a podcast focused on dos and traction by Gino Wickman. We’re not paid by that at all, but they have a lot of examples and there’s a lot of different examples. You know, like 10 million in revenue or 50% net income, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be numbers space. There’s another example in here that says a referral from every client and every client from a referral that company values partnership companies focusing on their customer base that is referred to them and acquired by referral. Yup. So it’s just a great way to, you know, set your northern star. What are we going after? What, what are we supporting ourselves with?
Speaker 5: Really good. Cool. Yeah. [inaudible]
Speaker 4: you know, I mean I was just reading a little nugget that, you know, Whitman talks about in this and he’s, he’s constantly amazed that by the number of business owners or entrepreneurs that they can’t tell him, uh, what their number one goal is. Yeah. I think success, he kind of says this a little differently, but success is measured on the habit of setting and achieving goals.
Speaker 5: Yeah. Look, uh, if you don’t know where to go with this Si your core values. Cause if your core value is like, you know, love and affinity for all and your operating metric for the next 10 years is a a hundred million dollars in your pocket, you might be misaligned. And I don’t think there’s wrong anything wrong with either of those. I just think that your goals in your core values are misaligned. And I think you’re going to find that that’s going to cause you some abrasion in your head space when you’re trying to make good decisions. Correct. Yeah. Because it always, it isn’t always work out to have love and affinity 100 million in your pocket and not saying it won’t. It can, it totally can. But um, in decision making it’s going to make things really muddy.
Speaker 3: Yeah. Yeah. So let’s talk about the three year picture, a three year picture. And what I love about this system is, and mark, you’re experiencing this right now, set a one year target a year and a half ago or when your plan half ago, very actionable steps a year and a half ago. You’re halfway to your three year picture. And so you’re starting to see the evolution of what you set up as a three year picture now becoming a one year plan. And that’s what’s great about the system. As you execute on these one year plans, this is just like traction or no traction, you know, setting up, you’re setting up your business to do yearly planning and quarterly planning. Yup. Making that progress. So re your picture, you know, what’s, what date is that uh, you know, three years from today, uh, some, some things in that two to, you know, as we start to boil it down, this is where we start to get more detailed. And this is, this is where it’s okay to start giving yourself revenue goals, profit goals. There’s other key metrics. And when your three year picture, this is also a good time to dream whether you’re a solo preneur or we’ll have another business owner. What is your work environment look like? What’s your employees? Do you give us summer hours in the summer? Do you have special, you know, whatever. I mean, this is a really good time for you to start setting that vision. And because three years is right around the corner.
Speaker 5: Oh yes it is.
Speaker 3: And actually one of the specific things I like about the three year picture and in the one your plan is just that concept of measureables. Um, so we’ve got a client who um, yeah, we, we for sure we set revenue targets, we set profit targets, but we also set key metrics because there are some things that if this number goes up, it’s good. If this number goes down, it’s bad. And that’s when that everyone in the company should be aware of.
Speaker 5: How about KPIs that we call them KPIs. It’s more of a, it’s a business acronym that’s, you know, if you’ve taken any sort of business class who are economics clients’ KPIs or key performance indicator. Yup. Yeah, the health of the company. These are my indicators. It another good way to think of that is it’s what you would want to look at every month as a business owner at the very top level. And if they’re off, you would dig deeper, but if they’re on or above, then there’s no point in spending any more time on your reporting. Let the people below you deal with that. Um, but if you, if you’re the owner of the company, you know, you got four or five employees and one of your key or majors, whatever, you as a company decide, one of your indicators is off, then it’s, uh, declare a breakdown, get the staff together, figure out what’s going on in that, that, that avenue until you can solve it. And then, you know, there’s some things about here about issues and rocks and stuff we might not get into on this episode, but that would be an immediate thing to put into your short term plan.
Speaker 3: Yeah. And one of the, so just to give a specific example, um, this might not, you know, as a concept makes sense, but so everyone’s like, well, if revenue is going up and profits going up, what else do I need to track? Well, one of the key KPIs or key performance indicators for a client of ours is we look at two things. Um, companies that will place an order rather than individuals that will buy. So direct to consumer, online versus companies that will buy in bulk. And one of our KPIs is increasing the number of people that will place an order in bulk because if that number goes up, one, if it goes up two, if it goes up three, and that’s a significant increase in sales because of the volume and the manufacturing and all that. Um, and the other thing is, the other KPI is product lines that we offer those companies that will buy in bulk. If you have one customer buying one product that’s a very tall tower with not a lot of a stable foundation on it, crease go a little bit wider, you know, or five, six companies that will place a $30,000 Po instead of 30 people that’ll place $1,000 Po. Um, and then you all of a sudden go from one key product to five products that they’re buying. That’s a significant, almost exponential increase in revenue.
Speaker 5: Yeah. But that also is a shift in there. Like you’re heading in a new direction, not a new direction, but you’ve, you’ve defined a different direction to go. Then maybe they’d been doing direct to customer for years and now they want to go into, so you’re, you’ve got this whole other thing like this, this, uh, initiative in the corporation that you’re measuring at the top level is separate from just profit and expense. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, no, totally. Or you know, it could be as simple as you’ve just got like two profit lines that are existing in the same house and you just want to go to that. Like that’s the level of the CEO wants to see. I want to see, you know, my ex sales versus my y sales. You just don’t want to get too deep in the weeds with your monthly recaps because otherwise you spend your whole life reporting. Yeah.
Speaker 4: Let’s talk about this. Uh, we can talk about this later on, but yeah. You know, traction or eos uses scorecard.
Speaker 3: Yeah.
Speaker 4: And there’s a template for that, but it’ll ultimately, I mean, once you’ve get to the point where you’re having, you know, these, uh, pulse or you know, you’re checking like, you know, you’re having a like a once a week meeting with your stakeholders, your office, your small business, your entire team. But ultimately you have some measureables, right? The things that we’re talking about and it’s a scorecard. It’s how you’re measuring whether you’re on track and the health of the business. Uh, but that’s kind of what we’re talking.
Speaker 5: Oh, I just found out we’re going to have a really contentious episode on meetings. [inaudible] really good. Yeah, totally bench for later. Cause I got a lot to say about that. I’m going to suck it up right now. We call that a teaser. Yeah. Well this is where I really like, there are some things about traction that I very much depart from. Um, like they, they’re meetings philosophy, but it doesn’t, again, there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s something wrong with their meeting philosophy. It’s good. I’m just, I just disagree. It’s just wrong. That’s all.
Speaker 3: Um, so mark, I’m interested to hear, you know, you, I would consider you halfway to your original three year picture. Yeah. We were kind of do a dive into that and, and show people kind of what you had set. Um, and Kinda if, if you have modified their frequency, they’re fine.
Speaker 5: Well, let’s just say right now the 10 year plan has to be re modified. So, um, I am, um, I’m a little rudderless right now as it relates to my longterm planning. I’ll just be really straight. Okay. So, and I’m in the process of kind of deciding what I want out of my life and what I want out of my business. Um, so there’s some just internal questions like is me as a human being, I’ve got to answer before I could even, you know, take the next level. I don’t have the luxury of a lot of employees around me to be like, okay, here’s a raise, here’s a raise, here’s a raise, I’m going to do something different, whatever. I just don’t have that. Right. So, um, you know, I’m looking at whether I want to have a lot more clients bring on human beings or whether I want to take the clients I have and grow them maybe with a profit sharing component.
Speaker 5: I don’t, I’m not kind of opposed to that right now, but, um, you know, and have less clients and I’m really far, far more dedicated to or some hybrid of the boats. So that’s Kinda where I’m at with the conversation. Right. Um, and um, so my three year plan, which would be 1231 21, so I’m literally right in the middle of of that right now would be a $500,000 in revenue, which would be about 200,000 in profit, meaning mark takes home the measurable would be 50 of the a hundred entrepreneurial clients. Part of that process was, um, I know that seems heavy front end loaded, but uh, there’s, I was, I identified the number of people in the space. There was about 200, and so I would be looking at 50% market penetration. I really thought the first 25% would actually be the easiest because those are the people I already know.
Speaker 5: So that was a little front and loaded there. Yeah. And what it looks like was originally this was with the, the other plan was there would be a content creator, a community manager, and a webmaster all on W2, meaning they’re employees of the company. I would have a bookkeeper and a graphic designer on 10 99 there would be 50 clients. Um, and then we’d have a really cool office and like a playful culture. That’s awesome. And um, and so the edit to that is in the process I’ve started using leverage, which is a really great company. If those of you who are looked just like need to outsource some help, um, for anything from, you know, marketing to business development frankly, but also just writing or making sure you’ve got tickets to the theater or you know, you name it, right. You just need someone to lean into it.
Speaker 5: It doesn’t cost you anything unless you’re using it. Leverage, get leverage.com they’re fantastic. Um, they should probably feel a way to monetize that. But anyway, okay. So, um, so, but the um, you know, so I ended up really working with them and that is what kind of was like where we started building the whole idea of having this self-service thing. They would be the self service side of it. Right. And cause they’re very talented. They’re very expensive compared to some other virtual assistants, but they’re very talented. Like you get legit work and most of them are smoking hot. But that’s a story for another layer. I don’t know what the hiring practices are, but it’s like la model slash accuracies that don’t have enough work. That’s who they hire. Um, but um, which makes the meetings I do have to have wonderful. Uh, but the um, so the, anyway, we ended up meeting.
Speaker 5: Yeah, we ended up leaning into that much heavier. And what I found was there was a whole lot of what they say leverage for what I was like, it worked better. If I was like 40%, 50, 60% engaged in the project and they were handling the 40%, you know, up to the whatever it is. And then, then it was for me to just be like, here you go on certain things and I’m 100% on others and that’s where the model fell apart. It did not work to have a non gun person of any quality trying to be a gun social media firm. It just didn’t work. And you’re telling me that a couple a virtual assistants out of California don’t work well, 100% of gun involved. Here’s what’s really interesting about these people. They’re not all in California like my camp manager was show. I know, but no, no, like the girl, the gala girl, she’s a full grown woman.
Speaker 5: She does my bookkeeping, she does all the business. She’s like literally has, see if you get firstname.lastname@example.org that’s her, right? Um, the current her’s name is Amanda, but it could switch. That’s the beauty of it. I don’t have to deal with any of that. Um, and they document all your processes. Right. But anyway, she is like a super gun enthusiast and she tries, she, her husband’s retired and they live out of a, like one of those multimillion dollar motor homes. And she runs all of my bookkeeping. She could be in, I talk, I mean she’s all over the country. That’s what they do. My account manager lives in either Belfast or pro Belfast or Provence and um, and then then there’s like the girls from California. Yeah, I joke about that. Cause there, you know, is what it is. It’s funny but, and, but they’re all over the country.
Speaker 5: So you and I just put it out there and every single one I request work, it’s like, hey, if you’re not into guns, just don’t take this please. It doesn’t work for either of us. And then the rest of it, and I’ve, and now I’ve got a team and it’s perfect, you know? But yeah, it doesn’t, you can’t take the gun community is. So, um, and I’m sure it’s like this for a lot of communities but you, you can’t do a level of like B level customer service and elevate if you don’t answer their question in the form in the moment they’re just like you don’t know shit and it’s forget you. So I just didn’t work. Um, so that’s how I came to that. So anyway, um, I’ve got to rework that whole three year plan cause I think what it probably looks like now is similar revenue numbers, much lower client list and um, the W2 is going to probably be one like deputy with leverage handling. Everything else.
Speaker 3: Do me a favor, rip through, just give me a summary of some of the bullet points. I remember you, you had listed out a couple of hires that you wanted W2 yeah, just redo those again.
Speaker 5: At the time it was a, a content creator, a community manager and like a full blown web developer manager on, on stack. We do a lot of website work. Um, that’s just what we do.
Speaker 3: Yup. I love what I love about that is, okay, you’re putting yourself three years from now, you’re anticipating growth and you’re also anticipating needs from the business owner perspective. Um, there are things that you should not do as a business owner. If you suck at document and keeping documents and records, by all means, hire a bookkeeper and hire someone to do your taxes. Don’t
Speaker 5: doing it seriously for 99 out of a hundred of you, you just heard the next person you’re hiring, however you get it done,
Speaker 3: 1000%. Um, and honestly too, you know, [inaudible], you know, we talked about the, we did a hybrid. So, um, or activity hacks is that one higher. We’ll probably take a ton of stress off your plate. And just like if you go to sleep at night, not wondering if your books reconciled and not wanting to forget, you get a call from the IRS, you’ll probably sleep a lot better. Correct.
Speaker 5: Sleep a lot better when they do call you, cause he’ll just be like, print, send. Yup. Let me know if there’s a bill.
Speaker 3: Yup, exactly. And so what I like about what I want to highlight, mark, in your three year picture for the, for the audience here is you’ve identified the things that you want to outsource to other people within your context of a business. And then what I would say you probably have done this is looking at your three year picture, what’s the list and the order of your strategic hires because one of those hires probably makes the next one easier and probably needs to happen before one of the other here you look at, you know, three years from now, what are the things that I’m doing today, but I hate doing that. I want someone else to do, oh, I should probably plan to hire someone or
Speaker 5: I think a better metric for me is what something that takes me twice as long as somebody competent. That’s so like I’m a f. Um, you know, I’ve gotten very good at video editing. I’ve gotten very good at um, photo editing inside of the space that I’m in. You know, especially for direct to Web. But like, I’m a really good example of this for me is like logo design, graphic design. Like I can, I’ve, there’s some logos out there. Y’All are, you know, um, you know, I designed the atlas logo, which is been a hugely successful logo, right. Um, I’ve also designed some garbage logos. Um, and um, and the truth is both of those took me a long time and I’m not talking about like an hour, I’m talking about like a week. Um, I don’t, you know, and then I, I would pass off something to one, like one, a legit graphic designer that would take me days of laboring over and being upset about wondering why it just looks a little weird, you know, like I love it, but it’s just like, Eh, it, there’s all these just real basic rules. These guys know about graphic design and they’re very subtle. Um, and if, and literally, literally 45 minutes, I got it back and I was like, I was so pissed I went out in the garage and like hit a pole with a wrench for like an hour just cause I’m like, I can’t believe I just, I just, cause I mean I built like 150 an hour, you know, am I, and this guy did this pills at like 40.
Speaker 4: So mark, you’re not gonna do apex development group’s logo. Well, I will gladly outsource it for you through my, uh, my, uh, my channels. Yeah, absolutely. You make a really good point, $150 an hour versus $25 an hour. Yeah, I think that’s a good, good a key indicators for when you’re thinking about like how much time you have in a day. You as a business owner, what you’re spending your time doing and then think about like, like when you think of the hierarchy or the structure of your organization and you have like a dollar value like this employee, like me being the business owner, you could be the most expensive employee but you might not, you might be under yourself and have a higher paid employee that’s doing, you know, excellent work for you. But my point is is I think we dig into this a little bit with our clients and I think this is another episode topic, but when you talk about right
Speaker 5: people, right seat, yeah.
Speaker 4: Putting a dollar value next to someone in your organization. I mean it could be, I mean it could certainly, you know, a lot of employees are salary, you know, and everyone of course works four in 45 hours a week if they’re salary. But ultimately like, what does it cost me for this person to do this? Or what does it cost me if I’m a, like you said, mark $150 employee and I’m spending like my pulling my hair out, trying to like design a logo or whatever, it’s someone else can knock it out in 45 minutes, going to be 10 times better than what I could come out with then. Like, does that make sense?
Speaker 5: Yeah. No. And so the way that, like just to Kinda close the loop on the conversation about how things evolved with leverage was if I said create a logo for this company, I would get shit back. If I create the logo, it takes way too long. If I sketch it out and Photoshop and send it to them and say, make me look good, we get Alice. Yeah. That’s, and that’s what happened with that relationship. And it was literally, I didn’t know what I didn’t know about working with these guys. And, um, so yeah, you gotta be flexible. I think it’s like, it’s like my three year plan as I look at this, I’m like very committed to my plan, but I’m not attached to the outcome. That’s really good. That’s awesome. That’s awesome.
Speaker 4: Is Your, you know, and this’ll be good too, is your one year
Speaker 3: plan, how have you seen your one year plan? So yeah, you’re a year and a half in year three year and we’re kind of doing a Mark Case study right now, which I’m totally fine with. This is awesome. So you’re one and a half years into your three year picture. Um, uh, what does your wanting to plan look like?
Speaker 5: Really good. So, um, I crushed this and it’s totally different. So, um, the revenue was, um, I don’t, why am I struggling sharing this? Okay. The revenue was 150,000 and I wanted to make 85 grand in the year of just like out, you know, just clear, free and clear from arc, uh, with a measurable of 15 clients and you know, and then I have some other revenue streams that are included in this. But, and then the goal for the year was to add one full time position, which was, uh, was going to be I believe the web developer, if I remember correctly, I should have labeled labeled that and add the financial officer, 10 new clients. And then I had some things I was going to master in this year, like piercing the veil, like getting things through on social media, you know, that are hard to get through.
Speaker 5: Um, like the scalability of content creation, um, reporting because I liked my reporting, but it was very, um, well it just, it just doesn’t look great, like it wasn’t live. And some other things I talk about that more and then, um, was to improve the debt position of the company. So, cause I’ve been funding, you know, like some of this was funded by mark and it needs to be paid back at some point. Right. So, um, you know, I tell people the story, I had a year to do this with the profits I’d made from my last business. Um, and while that means I am left without a lot of debt, uh, for building a business, which is unique and awesome, um, I still would like to pay myself back for that year, you know, and the IRS says I can, so I’m going to, you know, so good.
Speaker 5: So, um, so what ended up happening was I crushed the revenue and I, and I destroyed the profit. Love it. Cause I didn’t have to add an employee full time with a w two that was gonna, that was gonna be the big net drain on, on my resources financially. So what would have cost me probably 40 to $50,000 a year, all in. And that wouldn’t have been a remarkable employee. It would have been a good one. It’s costing me about a thousand dollars a month with no strings attached. I can compress in or out of it as much as I need to. That’s awesome. Yeah. So that’s a big, big win. And the, and the, you know, it’s a, it’s a less than 30% of what my projected cost for that spot. And I’m getting more. Yeah,
Speaker 3: I was just gonna say, what’s great about that is not only did your top line go up and your expenses go down, but you did that by identifying some additional resources, you know, leverage, you were able to leverage some services and some key parts of your business that just had such a return. You’re able to focus on the big ones. And the truth is,
Speaker 5: is that came out of trying to create and failing at a new market line that would not never have happened inside of a traditional like, look, here’s the deal. I got really clear before I wrote this. Like I thought I wanted a big box subdivided by smaller boxes with the largest smaller box being mine. And there’s a handful of people out there that come and report to me, you know, and Blah, blah, blah, like Mr fucking important. Right? And there’s nothing wrong with that. That is a very traditional model for business. But there’s a zero flexibility for with a life. I want to live inside of that and my life has a lot of things. I want to go on Wednesday at two o’clock and film videos at Forest Lake then set up a big match, invite 30 in my friends and go out to dinner.
Speaker 5: You know, and that doesn’t work in a box world. It’s too expensive. You can’t, you can’t just bust out on Wednesday for half a day in that space. Right. So anyway, so I got that. I wasn’t going to do that and I had to get up over all the ego involved in that, you know, and talk about getting vulnerable for a second. Like I had a lot of ego wrapped up and having the biggest box, you know, my name crisply on the door. And when I ate that shit finally, and I got real about what I wanted was I want to be like, honest to God. I want to be a company that I could live out of a, you know, a custom Mercedes sprinter with a trailer and uh, you know, and uh, um, you know, golf cart riding behind it and I can cruise all over the country and I can play adventure sports and I go to tactical games like good Jeremy’s matching vortex. A shooter said shore source. I’m like, I, I, that’s what I want. I want my dog in the right seat. I want all that. And it does not fit into the traditional paradigm of business. And we live in an economy now that doesn’t
Speaker 3: require that. Yeah. So what I, yeah, I was gonna say, let me take a quick right turn too aggressive. You need to stop that tangent before it goes on any longer. No. What I was going to say is it’s what I like about what I like about this podcast. And you know, you, you kind of hesitated sharing some of these numbers and I’m just gonna address the audience. But it’s like the reason why we do this, this has nothing to do with mark, Angela or Brian. This has to do with look at us, look at our business, look at our numbers. And I know that there’s a stigma, you know, mark, we might be a generation apart, you know, spoiler alert to the audience. But you know, if you’re not learning from people and you don’t have the actual context, gosh, life is really hard. Well then it’s just concepts. Yeah. By the way, I’m not that old. [inaudible] just called me old on the air [inaudible]
Speaker 5: now that’s good. [inaudible] generation. Oh, Angela and I, and then there’s a generation between you and mark and me. So no, I’ll
Speaker 3: just twist the knife. No, if people get uncomfortable with that, the only reason why we do that, it actually, it actually helps to learn the real behind the concepts. What I’d also,
Speaker 5: so now if you see me, you know, taking pictures in front of a flashy Rolls Royce, you could just be like, you’re full of shit. And Dude, every one of those guys out there and in some masturbation land are, are full of shit 90% of the time. That was a really good day with a really expensive rental.
Speaker 3: 100% and that’s the thing where, you know, if, if you, if if we get uncomfortable hearing people talk about real numbers, go listen up. So the one on vulnerability probably have to do a little soul searching and dig down deep and why this is an issue for you and you shouldn’t cover some stuff really, really good. Get off my soap box and we’ll get back into it.
Speaker 5: No, I think that’s great. It needs to be sad, man. I mean, yeah, this is like this is, these are beginner businesses. Yeah. I mean this is what it looks like. It doesn’t, it isn’t always pretty
Speaker 3: well, and that’s the thing. Oftentimes what you’ll do is you don’t understand the story and the context or whatever. But then you’ll see, you know, Brian shooting his $5,000 rifle in front of his $50,000 car at his own home range. Like Gosh, Ryan’s crushing it in business and I’m working 12 hour days to scrape by. So is he, he’s just fronting a little bit more gracefully than you are.
Speaker 5: Correct. That’s what social media has done to our society. Yeah. Yeah. And look, I, I’m obviously got pros and cons in the world of social media. What I’m pointing out to you is, is that if you read a story about somebody, you would recognize that it’s a story. Just recognize that Instagram and Facebook as a story, you’re not getting your, you didn’t get the other 10 takes where the model fell flat in her fucking phase. You didn’t get, you didn’t get the years I’ve put in like pulling my hair out, trying to make this thing work. Um, and Brian and Angelo are dealing with right now is like they’re trying to launch a business with kids in the house. Scary Shit. I, you asked me how I know I did it. You know, you want motivation, haven’t sleep down the hall from you. Yeah,
Speaker 3: 100%. 100% no, that’s so good. Um, honestly I think we, that’s what I love that, look at the tenure, how you had your original 10 year, you worked for a year and a half and now you’re modifying, you know, you’re modifying your three year, your model on your one year, but what isn’t changing is your core values. You’ve realized that some, some of it, not all of it. So your plan just wasn’t compatible. Correct. You’re figuring out something that works better for you.
Speaker 5: Yeah. You got, you got, I mean, if you can’t pivot in small business, you should really go get a really good job, uh, working for somebody else. Yeah, absolutely.
Speaker 3: Absolutely. So what, you know what I think, why don’t we wrap up here? That seems like a good, good spot to do. Little transition here, folks. Again, this is not an Eos Gino Wickman sponsored attraction podcast. This is just a good place for us to start. The three of us. We’re building our candor, we’re building our report. We’re going to get better. We’re getting new. Mike’s arc is sending us new Mike’s. We’re to the audio quality is going to get better. And like we say, we’re making progress, not perfection here, but as always, if you have questions, comments, concerns, anything, you know, this is your show, please send them to mark at Hawkeye Syndicate, Hawkeye syndicates.com. You got it. That’s it. Yup. email@example.com there will be links in the show notes guys. Do you have any closing comments or partying? Wisdom you want to drop and people can just go do something.
Speaker 4: Yeah, keep it simple too. Um, on down. I mean if we can, you know, Hammer that home. I’m thinking like keep it simple. You know, the thing that keeps back and coming back to my mind is as you’re setting this 10 year target goal and then you’re trying to figure out what your three year picture is and your one year plan. I mean literally, I mean if you set a 10 year target, which is, you know, very simple, your three year picture is just a, it’s a fraction of your 10 year target. When you think about like your future date three years from today and, and then just a rule of thumb on that, if your, it’s July, so three years from now would be your, your, you’re the future date is typically the end of the year, right? Um, again, cities are one year plan. It’s really the rest of this year.
Speaker 4: It’s August through December. So your one year plan is really a fraction because it’s better to work off of like, you know, calendar years or fiscal years versus trying to, okay, I started this in July, you know, what’s one year from now? Right, right. Again, one year is a, a third of three years. If I do the math here one year and then, and then we, and then we, as we kind of break that down even further, we get into 90 day rocks that, okay, we’re not going to add new information at this point. I think the point I’m trying to drive home is don’t over complicate it. Simple. It’s easy. Really good. We’ll see y’all on the next one. Yup. Take care.
Speaker 2: [inaudible] [inaudible].