Improving a Business Sale or Succession with Growth

In this episode of The Faces of Business, our guest speaker was Brad Smith. With over 25 years of executive coaching, He is CEO of Steller Insight Inc. Brad helps CEOs and their team unleash their potential by getting the right people in place and allowing them to realize their true potential by unlocking mental roadblocks.  This results in tremendous progress in companies, increasing business growth and capabilities.  It also helps improving a business sale.

In this episode of The Faces of Business, our guest speaker was Brad Smith. With over 25 years of executive coaching, He is CEO of Steller Insight Inc. Brad helps CEOs and their team unleash their potential by getting the right people in place and allowing them to realize their true potential by unlocking mental roadblocks.  This results in tremendous progress in companies, increasing business growth and capabilities.  It also helps improving a business sale.
Improving a Business Sale or Succession with Growth was discussed in this episode by Damon Pistulka and Brad.

First, Damon asked Brad, tell us, How do you go from being a chemist and going into executive coaching?

Brad begins with how he likes to deal with people. My dad raised me to be a chemical engineer. I’ve got 30 ways to kill a company in the back of my mind. Buying a company is a selfish process, right? You buy a company that is consistently growing. When you work at that for a period, you build up a process so that people can look at that and say; You start by looking at what’s on the plate of the CEO. He loves to work with people that have ambition. Yeah, you’re the most disappointing thing is to wake up and find out, He has more ambition for my clients.

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Brad discusses his journey and discusses the values list of the website. If integrity is your goal, then have it be absolute. If stuff comes out of your mouth, if it’s not true, stop it, embarrass yourself and retract it. The foundation for lying is insecurity. How you learn certainty is awareness and conscious presence and learning.

Damon kept the conversation going by asking him to give us a quick rundown on improving a business sale. If you have an unrelenting itch for excellence, you might be an excellent candidate to work with me. Damon talks about a brilliant point that will come. We’ll come back to that, too, adds the BBC director-general.

Damon also added that when he looks at businesses that grow and looks at leadership teams that really can grow. It’s almost a new talk about the speed of learning. And he thinks that is so key in these businesses that really grow.

Do you want to know if your business is ready for your exit or what you should do to prepare? Learn this and more with our business exit assessment here.

Damon then asked, What do you need to know how to be a better person? What do you want to know right now? Brad started as he was just a teacher, but he was also a compulsive pusher. You’re willing to grow, he will push up. Right, whatever your comfort zone is, find the edge.

At the end of the episode, Damon expressed his love for Brad’s opinions.

Get the most value for your business by understanding the process and preparing for the sale with information here on our Selling a Business page.

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Exit Your Way® provides a structured process and skilled resources to grow business value and allow business owners to leave with 2X+ more money when they are ready.

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Other websites to check out:  Cross Northwest Mergers & AcquisitionsDamon PistulkaIra BowmanService Professionals Network (SPN)Fangled TechnologiesB2B TailDenver Consulting FirmWarren ResearchStellar Insight, Now CFO, Excel Management Systems  & Project Help You Grow



people, business, year, growth, client, company, grow, read, process, run, buyer, put, succession, person, hiring, training, talk, key, tests, sale


Brad Smith, Damon Pistulka


Damon Pistulka  00:04

All right, everyone, welcome once again to the faces of business. I’m your host, Damon Pistulka. And I am excited. Because with me today, I’ve got Brad Smith, from stellar insight. And we’re going to be talking about improving a business sale or scoop session or succession with growth. Brad, awesome to have you here today.


Brad Smith  00:27

Good. Good to be here. That’s a fun adventure you’re talking about?


Damon Pistulka  00:30

Yeah. Yeah, it is. It is a fun adventure. So Brad, let’s, let’s talk a little bit about Brad to get started here, man, because you’ve got an interesting past. You’ve been an executive coach for a little while now. And but the interesting part is how do you go from being a chemist, and we’re working at HP and doing things with me crazy things with wafer and all this kind of stuff. And going into executive coaching?


Brad Smith  01:03

Well, so the long term view is, watch my dad start 34 companies as I was growing up and kill 30 of them, because he was a product development guy. So he was he raised me to be a chemical engineer, I was like, I think that way, okay. I got within a term of a degree in biochemistry and stopped because I said, not doing that I don’t like to write for a living.

Yeah, I like to deal with people. So went back and finished in business management, MBA, marketing, and finance. So I’d have the tools. If my you know, if I’d been doing that my dad probably would have only started nine, but nine of them would still be running instead of three. Right? Yeah. So I’ve got 30 ways to kill a company in the back of my mind. Yeah.

So when I work with people, so when you have a chemistry process, you’re looking for a specific end result, you put things in the beaker, you do an experiment, one at a time, you change a single parameter at a time, you turn the heat up, you put a little more salt in whatever you’re doing, right, you change one parameter time, and you measure the results. So if you go after business the same way, and you want a specific result, one of the things you do is okay, if your intent is five years from now, when I get to a certain age, I’m going to sell my business. Why would people buy a business that was losing money?

Why would people buy a business that was flat for 15 years, they’re going to be excited because of the potential for themselves. Buying a company is a selfish process, right? You buy a company that is consistently growing. And what I like to do with my clients is to step in with them, look at every aspect of the business, tweak all the parts and finish the process. So if I can go in and say you’re growing at 20% a year for the last five years, right? I’ve got a client like that right now. You go in you tweak everything that’s there, look at all the gaps that are there.

And at the end of the year, you’re growing at twice that. So 20% to 40%. That’s significant. When you work at that for a period of time, you build up a process so that people can look at that and say, Oh, I’ve got three years of consistent 40% growth. I’m willing to pay this for it. And the person so I have an example. Right. I had a client, he came to me. He said I’m part of a group, you know, we’re doing this, I’m not getting what I need. So I started coaching him. And we went from the three and a half million he’d done the year before 3.6, I think. And the next year he was at 6.8.

Okay, the following year, he was at 9.3. By remembering the right numbers, maybe nine point Yeah, 9.6. And then the following year after that he was at 12.83 years, right? We’ve taken him by a factor of four. But the following year after that he only went from 12.8. So I stopped working with him 4.8 to 13.3. But with all the things I taught him and the restructuring of literally the whole business. He was at 13.3 but had multiplied his net profit by a factor of five. Yeah. Why would you be we’ll build a business but that takes skills insight. So essentially, I trained companies or companies and leaders to learn how to tool themselves for consistent steady, ferocious growth.

What are the limitations around that? You got money limitations. You got people limitations you got Structural production it limitations. If you’re a service industry, then you’ve got people training issues. Right? So training for hiring, training. So everybody talks about having a pipeline for their sales. Almost nobody thinks about having a pipeline for their employees or talent. Yes, pipeline is huge. Yeah. And you start that by looking at what’s on the plate of the CEO. And having them. Obviously, I’ve got this process pretty well drilled down.

But yeah, you look at everything that’s on your plate, this is homework, everybody’s listening, look at your entire plate, what do you do, whatever, if it’s a week, whether it’s a month doesn’t matter, and put a number of hours to it. And then you look at all the things you have really zero business doing. And you figure out how you’re going to pay for the person that can do that better than you. You bring them in, you hire them, you take their talent, you train them up to do things the way you need them done. And you turn them loose, and you check them out on a regular basis. Like everybody ought to do that, right?

There’s a single thing, everybody misses almost everybody of the hundreds of people that I’ve talked to you business owners, I’ve talked to one company hired with a specific process for looking at character. One boggles me, right. Yeah, nobody else was doing it. So when you hire, you start with what are the results that need to be done? What are the tasks that need to be done to get the results? What are the skills that are needed in order to do the tasks in order to get the results? And what character makes those effortless?


Damon Pistulka  06:53

What character makes those? Effortless? Right? Those pass those tests? Yeah, right?


Brad Smith  07:00

If you’re hiring a bookkeeper, the key question, I love this part. There’s a key characteristic that each kind of level needs, right? For a bookkeeper? What’s the key detail? Details? Right? I want this to go around the world. Yeah. You ask them, do you lose socks in the laundry? Because if you naturally don’t lose socks in the laundry, and you’ve trained your whole family, to not lose sight, you’ve got management dialed and you’ve got detail dialed? Isn’t that amazing?


Damon Pistulka  07:41

Socks and laundry. Right? That’s funny.


Brad Smith  07:44

Here’s, here’s another big one. We have a whole generation bless them. of people that have almost no work ethic. That’s a rampant thing in the country. But when you’re interviewing, how do you ask them? If they have work ethic? You can’t ask them that. They’ll say yes, I have it right. Now. You ask them. Who taught you how to work? And how old were you? Yeah. And then you ask them what their first paid job was and how old they were.

And if they’re young, you’re good. If they’re, oh, I didn’t get my first job until I graduated from college. Yeah, then you got to test him for about six months. Yeah. Isn’t that’s just like, you know, it took me probably two months working with a client of mine trying to figure out how do I hire people that have work ethic? And we finally stumbled into that?


Damon Pistulka  08:45

Yeah, yeah. I mean, it really there’s, there’s no there’s Yeah, yeah, there’s just different kinds of they’re just different kinds of work ethic to because the we’re running into a situation now that we your I have never seen before in the fact that there’s five generations in the workplace, though. Right. And, and you and then to top it off. Kristina Harrington, friend of mine shared an article a few weeks ago about being knit that you and I are native analog. But the workplace is the majority of people in the workplace now our native digital people.

Yep. So that we have to we have to think about not only are we trying to communicate with people in their 20s all the way into their 50s 60s and beyond. We have now people that prefer analog conversation and people that prefer digital conversation, which is completely different. Right?

Then that’s, that’s a lot of the things that we see in the in these companies now, especially in older established companies is that they’ve built themselves on being and naturally analog companies, the leaders are still naturally analog people. And but this middle management and some of the executive leaders are now transitioning to these. These are natural native analog people. We’re run founded and started by that. As you as you move over time, some of these, these companies have to develop more digital. It’s really becoming a challenge, I think,


Brad Smith  10:28

well, there’s a problem with digital in that you don’t build depth of trust. Yes. And so what has to happen is you have to compensate for that, by having face to face conversations, you can train people into that, right? Yeah, it’s repetition. It takes 72 repetitions of a single letter for a child to learn a single letter, letter B, letter C, right?

72 times, right, minimum. And so in order to get somebody, fortunately, adults don’t need 72 repetitions in order to build a habit. But if you build a habit of okay, we’re going to talk this way, then you can build them into the analog and build them into it. But it’s not the analog or digital, what’s necessary is the depth. Do you trust them? At what point do you trust them? Or what point do they trust you? So rapport, and trust are the keys?


Damon Pistulka  11:28

Yeah, yeah, that’s a great points around that will come we’ll come back to that, too. So if the one of the things that you said, in your profile I was reading, it says, if you have an unrelenting itch, French excellence, you might be a good candidate to work with me. What? What’s that about? That about?


Brad Smith  11:52

I love to work with people that have ambition. Yeah, you’re the most disappointing thing is to wake up and find out, I have more ambition for my clients than they do. That’s kind of a waste of my time anymore. So if they’ve got an unrelenting itch for excellence, it means that they’re constantly wanting to learn and do more and produce more. Right? Those are great clients. For me, I look at myself as a catalyst for that itch, if you would.


Damon Pistulka  12:20

All right. Catalyst for the edge to be better. I write a lot of notes. So we can ask,


Brad Smith  12:28

well, one of the things that I do is I, I have a, there’s a values list on my website, you can go to it, you can download it, you got to put your email and but you know, download it, print it off. Look at all the things that are important to you mark them printed off, mark them, right, and then rank yourself on them. And when you rank yourself on them, then figure out who you want to be next year. Because your whole 12 months to grow to it. Right? Write it down. One of the things I ask people is, when was the last time you told a white lie?

You know, those sneaky holes and around the edges? Nobody ever says Never. So what you’re saying is and then you ask them, Well, do you have integrity? And they say, oh, yeah, right. But you just said you’d lie once in a while. If you got if you want to grow, then you got to put that when you know, I built this process in 1989.

Put a particular value at the top of your pile, and run all your decisions through that. And that way, you’ve got an understanding of who that makes you be. And if that repetitive process, right? the repetitive process puts it deeper into you. If integrity is your goal, then have it be absolute. If stuff comes out of your mouth, if it’s not true, stop it, embarrass yourself and retract it and eventually you get to the place where the stuff that’s about to come out of your mouth.

You stop it and reframe it before it comes up. Because the foundation for lying is insecurity. Good flat. Yeah, you’re feeling scared or nervous or anxious. But underneath that is insecurity and lack of self belief, strength, if you would. If you need strength, character strength, key under that is certainty Stark and look at all the things that you’re certain about. All the areas you have strength, you will find a single if you would just bunny you’ll find a single particle of truth, Absolute Truth certainty in the core of that. How you learn certainty is awareness and conscious presence and learning. I drive my clients pretty much


Damon Pistulka  15:00

RT, I’m thinking, I’m thinking through this man, you’re hitting us a little out here. I’m just trying to process this is awesome. This is awesome. Because having conversations with you, Brad is so great, because the depth that you can help people because you’re working to help them in their mind, I mean, really unleash the roadblocks in their mind.


Brad Smith  15:23

You know? Well, the key is this. How do you inspire others if you don’t know how to inspire yourself? Or how are you self inspiring on a daily basis? What gets you excited? What are you doing that stops that? Look at that whole process? Self inspiration is a marvelous skill. It takes time to do that. And then you turn that out on everybody else, and train your entire staff to be self inspiring. What have you got, you’ve got this ferocious energy going on. And then you can focus it on accomplishing the end result. And if that’s okay, we’re gonna go from 15% growth to 100% growth over the next two years. We’re gonna work everybody into this. You’ve got to have everybody completely on fire.


Damon Pistulka  16:11

Yeah. Yeah. That’s the fun, that that’s awesome. And I wrote it down, because we want to go back to that definitely about self inspiration, I think that’s going to be awesome to talk about that. So we’re talking about improving the business sale or succession with growth? I mean, the situations where you’ve been in and help clients that were exiting their business, how I mean, how important was the fact that their business was accelerating the growth was strong, in the overall getting a deal done?


Brad Smith  16:45

And get the deal done? Yeah. Um, Someone’s excited about something, they get your attention. If there’s something boring going on, you know, you go and you talk to the executive team, and you talk, you look at their numbers, and everything’s flat. Nobody’s excited in a flat, no growth company. Nobody? Yeah. Right. So you’re not gonna want to pay a lot of money for a no growth company. Yeah, people are disappointed. So if you’re on the sell side, get excited. Again, if you’re on the buy side, wake up and pay attention. So it makes a significant difference.


Damon Pistulka  17:28

That’s for sure. Like you said, before, we got we’ve got, we’ve got a business sale that’s closing this week. It is a company that grew nearly 100%, last year, and 60%, the year before, and looks to project even harder, larger growth this year. And the thing that happens in that, as you said, not only are the people energized, they’re there that you feel it. But when people are buyers are looking at a company like that the owners are in a position, the sellers are in a position where they say, Fine, if you’re not interested, today, my growth is going to continue.

Or, you can come back tomorrow and pay me a lot more for it. Right. It literally happened to people in this deal. They ended up paying significantly more because they waited or had other deals going on. And it didn’t, it didn’t work out. Like they thought but that’s the thing that we see as, as people that are in the, in the process of helping people get those businesses sold, when there is a significant growth, you have this fire, that’s just the fire, you’re stoking the fire.

And it’s like, it’s like putting, you know, honey, and around the bees or whatever, you know, or in a piece in a flower field. Man, it just, it’s, it’s crazy how it attracts people to it. Right? And so one of the things back to back to growth, because you people talk about growing business, and they talked about 10 15% a year and to me that makes me go to sleep. So you talked about this before and you talk about adding a zero to your business growth.


Brad Smith  19:23

Okay, so let’s take it this way. If you’ve got a company that’s running at 100% growth, all you got to do is wait two and a half years you’ve added a zero. Yeah. Right. So grow, learn how to grow your company faster than it is you know, it’s everybody can do the math, right. So I have a client literally the last time I talked to him, he said I just got off the phone, like in the last half, you know, half day, whether or not a potential client the client said yes they’re literally going to add a zero to this clients revenue. That client over the next five years, but still, they’re going to add and they get half of it up front. So it’s like there’s this Go, go. So it’s not if


Damon Pistulka  20:18

it’s when you do it, right, that’s when you do it. So the thing that I look at, and as I see businesses and talk to business owners and CEOs, it seems like a lot of the barriers to growth are self imposed. Do you see that?


Brad Smith  20:39

Well, I have a statement about that. Do you think it’s possible to grow an organization beyond the limitations of a leader? No, right? If you go to pick any major corporate bankruptcy, and you go back two to three years, somewhere in that two or three years prior, a group made a decision, there were two or three key people in that decision, they made a decision that was we’re gonna go there.

And they didn’t look at the ramifications, the consequences of their actions, they didn’t think down through it, they were caught up in the moment, they were being greedy, or whatever, they were excited about it, they weren’t paying attention and being rational. So leadership makes a significant difference in whether you get to add more zeros to your life. Right? Or you don’t, period. So if you’re willing to take the work on in hand, and you’re ambitious enough, it can be accomplished. Yeah, if you own a business, and it’s got a good process going, you know, then figure out how to double it. If you can’t call me, we’ll figure it out.


Damon Pistulka  22:00

So when you look at these, though, these businesses mean, how many times do you get in them, and it is the leaders mindset, their view of the world, whatever that really is holding them the business itself back?


Brad Smith  22:20

Rarely? Rarely, it is not found


Damon Pistulka  22:26

it all. So most of the time it is it most of the time, it’s


Brad Smith  22:29

them. Yeah, most of the time it’s stamped, maybe there’s a group of foreigners doesn’t matter. Right. in that collection, if you would group think there are there are flaws in their thinking. There’s a reason why I named my company stellar insight, I sit down with a client for the first time or even a potential client. By the time we finished the first hour, I know almost all the gaps in them in the business. And in the leadership team. I know all of them, right?

And then if they want, and they’re willing to kind of get uncomfortable on a really regular basis, we’ll go down through it. I had a client, talk to the executive team, for the first time face to face. And by the time I finished that day with them. I talked to the President and I said you realize of course your CEO has to go. He said yeah, we hadn’t gone in a week. Okay, we have had him replaced already took me about a year and a half to replace the CFO. That was two and a half years later.

So but everybody that needed to change changed if they couldn’t we adjusted their you know, their training. Yeah. But it’s like, it’s easy to tell if you listen carefully. Think about this list of all your gripes look at your business. List. All the things you hate about it was all the things that bugged the heck out of you about it, list them down and say, Who’s the cause? And if you’re doing blaming, get real, that’s what children do. Yeah, shifts responsibly. The whole purpose of blame or criticism is shifting responsibility. Well, if you’re not responsible for your own business, whether you’re the owner or the CEO, then you have no business being there.


Damon Pistulka  24:23

Yeah. That’s a great. I’ve been reading some of the what is it? Jocko? Whatever, I can’t remember his last name, the navy seal that written the book. It’s Oh, yeah. It talks about all you’re responsible for everything. Whether you What do you really want to admit it or not?


Brad Smith  24:41

I think I’ve got that book, right. You probably do probably


Damon Pistulka  24:43

But it is true. It’s very true in a business and that’s one of the things that I try to say when people someone brought this instance up to me a few weeks ago, they said they were talking with a business and they’ve been having the they just can’t hire people, they can hire the right people can’t hire the right people. And they said, Well, how long has it been that you couldn’t find people?

They said it was been about five years since we’ve really been able to hire people. And they go, Well, how long have you been with the company? Since I’ve been here about five years? That’s it, you know, because it because honestly, when we look back at things, if we you make a great point, if we don’t take ownership for what we’re doing and the things that are happening around us as a leader in a business, then you might as well just turn the lights off.


Brad Smith  25:35

Well, okay, so if you want to hire people, here’s the clue on that. Go to Myers Briggs. Even though people say it’s worthless, you go to the Myers Briggs, you take your own MBTI score and look at it if you’re an introvert. Ouch. If you’re an extrovert, or somewhere in the middle, that’s okay. Right. But what you’re looking for is someone who’s both an N, which is intuitive, as opposed to sensory, and someone who has an F, not all the way to the top, but someone that’s about halfway up on the F scale, and have them run their your hiring process. Because what that means is they have the ability to read people and read their emotions.


Damon Pistulka  26:19

Hmm. Okay, good. Very good.


Brad Smith  26:22

You want someone to run operations or your IT department, then you want an N T? Right?


Damon Pistulka  26:30

Very good. Yeah. Well, that’s one of the things that I still don’t, I still don’t understand why more companies don’t use testing. personality testing it because it is so effective.


Brad Smith  26:45

Well, let’s put it this way. When people hire Oh, I like that person. I’m going to hire them. Right. What are they stepping over? Think about how many divorces there are in the world? Yeah, yeah. Start out madly in love with a person and then you wake up about a year and a half later you go. What was I really thinking? Yeah. Okay. That’s a that’s the same process we use in hiring. Our gut tells us right, well, you got it your emotions. And what you’re doing is you’re cloning yourself, stop that. Figure out what type of person you want.

There’s several, go figured out tested for yourself. Go down through some of the assessments, the DISC assessment, the MBTI, I heard a new one today, what’s the name of the Colby, right? Check with them, run them yourself and see how accurate they are, about who you are. And then say, okay, is that the sort of person that I need for a salesperson, let me put it this way. If you’ve got outbound sales going on, and you’ve got to do cold calling, you got to have somebody that’s got to be relatively tough, tough, emotionally resilient.

If you got a relationship builder, that’s a different type of human being, relationship sales is different than, you know, outbound sales constantly. So relationship sales is a different thing. person that does marketing is a radically different person. So my recommendation is, and there are tests assessments out there that will tell you, how do I get somebody who, okay, I’ve got a group of most people are familiar with the term of hunters and farmers for salespeople, right? I have no I have a client who has of his whole company. He has two hunters, and the rest of them are farmers. You can’t grow a company with only two farmers. I mean, with only two hunters. Yes.


Damon Pistulka  28:46

Yes, right. Hunting a bit more than that.


Brad Smith  28:52

Teach them yes, you can teach them. Well, you got to structure the company that way, so that the hunters feed the farmers, right?


Damon Pistulka  28:59

Mm hmm. Wow. So when you go another question I had, so again, talking about improving a business sale is because source or succession with growth. And we talk about the business owners, CEOs, the executive, the high level executives. One of the things that I’ve seen a lot of people talking about personally experienced myself over the last several years is the importance of reading and growing yourself into your future self.

Okay, how much do you think that really makes a difference when you’re working with clients and you’re going Listen, we’re here today, but we’re going there tomorrow, and getting an executive team to really understand where they’re at today and where they need to be tomorrow. and working on that for themselves so they can really take the company and everyone else there. Is that I mean, do you see that? That’s a big part of


Brad Smith  30:11

this? Okay. So when you’re hiring people, one of the things you have to determine is, what’s their speed of learning? How fast? How fast do they learn in a new situation? Right? Drop them into the middle of the swimming pool. It’s like, okay, can you learn to swim without drowning yourself sort of thing? How many books have you read in the last year? Isn’t that a good interview question? And what were the ones that stood out to you the most? Yeah. Okay. I have a couple of books that I would I want everybody to read, right? That I’ve read recently. One is good strategy, bad strategy. And the other one is the four disciplines of execution.

The third one that I just finished is the genius habit. And if you’re looking for your career process, read the genius habit. And I think you tuned me into the rock rocket fuel. If you’re a visionary, then you need what’s it called? an integrator? Yeah, we need an integrator. You know, the number of people that are good at both is very rare. Yeah. So I went through I read the book, I did the tests. And the only reason I didn’t get higher on the integrator process was because I had to answer there were some either or questions. I came out 98 A visionary imagine stalwart insight. Right. So 98 on the inner on the visionary and 89 on the integrator. So


Damon Pistulka  31:42

yeah. They usually it’s not, it’s usually it’s way lopsided. Yeah, way different. Pretty different.  I’ve noticed that when I take that test here that I come out fairly independent on the days that actually can flip. Yeah, when you look at it, but the, the point back again, about the growth is when I look at businesses that grow and look at leadership teams that really can grow.

It’s almost a new talk about speed of learning. And I think that is so key in these businesses that really grow because it’s like, listen, that if you’re not able to learn enough to say that yesterday, this, this worked great yesterday, but it’s gonna kill us today, if we keep doing it, and we have to change, which doesn’t work. I think that’s, that’s my thing.

And I, that I, I, I really think when I see these businesses, and I see the ones that are really good at going not only one year, because, you know, there’s a lot of people that can stumble into something and make a one year ago, but when you make multiple years of growth, it really takes that mindset, I think of being able to go okay, that was the challenge yesterday, but we’re working on this challenge today.


Brad Smith  32:57

Okay, so good. For a corporate people. You can do cost cutting, and make the business work better for about two years. And then after that, you’ve got to jump to another business and do cost cutting. They’re mentioning names. There were some that just like, oh, yeah, get away from businesses like that. Right? Yeah. So if you’re learning, you’re constantly growing, you’re constantly scanning the environment and saying, Okay, what do I need to know right now? What am I going to need to know, six weeks from now? A year from now, five years from now? What do I how do I want to be better?


Damon Pistulka  33:40

So and that is the thing that I was I was thinking about is really, when you’re teaching these teams, you almost have to be Juggy on whether or not they’re that type of person, don’t you?


Brad Smith  33:53

Well, not only take for helping them, well, helping them grow. Yeah, you can’t be around me and not right. So let’s put I’m just a compulsive teacher, but I’m also a compulsive pusher, right? You’re willing to grow, I’m willing to push up. Right, whatever your comfort zone is, find the edge of it and stay there. What do I need to know now? What makes me really uncomfortable though, I need to know how to do


Damon Pistulka  34:23

what makes me really uncomfortable that I need to know how to do I’m gonna write that now.


Brad Smith  34:28

It’s not a weakness. It’s just something you don’t know how to do yet, right? Oh, yeah. Yeah. All of us. There are no humans on the face of the planet. I’ve never heard any stories at least, that we’re too lazy to learn how to walk. None are physically they might not have been able to, you know, brain wise, they might not have been able to, but no lazy people at that age, right? Yeah. So there’s nothing you can’t learn how to do it. Learn how to work. You learned how to drive, you learned how to read the alphabet multiply, right? You learned all those things. Wake up, pick it up and run. There’s no reason why you can’t be magnificently successful. Yeah, reason why


Damon Pistulka  35:18

that is true. I read that again this morning, it was it was something that very thing, it’s like, you’re the only thing that’s holding yourself back,


Brad Smith  35:27

or let’s put it this way. Two worst things you can do in your life is not take responsibility and not prove yourself you’re capable. Right? So proving to yourself you’re capable eliminates No, that’s the learning process, right? So it’s going somewhere with this, I’ve forgotten it already.


Damon Pistulka  35:48

Okay. But when we look at this, when we look at this, and taking, you know, we’re the limit to our girls, and I come back again, and talk about this went down this, this line of discussion, because I think that what you’re doing in a lot of the situations and the coaching that you do, where you’re going to put a company and allow a company to really remove the roadblocks to go into extreme growth is, is getting them into that mindset, where they are taking responsibility,

they are learning at a very fast pace, because they have to stay ahead of everything else, because they’re working to be themselves, that’s good enough for to lead the people in the organization into tomorrow. Rather than letting the organization kind of go where it’s going to go, they have to be the ones that are moving and leading that there are the competitors, right or their competitors. But if they’re really good, they’re not the competitors aren’t the ones that are leading them that way.

That’s the line point. And that is, is it takes, you know, just as much and this is I think happens in a lot people will see success. They think, well, maybe I you know, it success breeds complacency. I think it’s just a fact, you got to deal with it, push them push people out of that, right. And, you know, and especially in this is where he where you’re talking about business growth and a sale or succession. Because when you see somebody that’s been in the business for a while, it generates a lot of money for them.

It’s really easy to slow down and go, Man, this thing is just making us good money, where there’s no reason to, to really push the boat, rock the boat to push things hard, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And far too many people get lulled into the to success loves him into complacency and comfort. But what they don’t realize is that that buyer coming in there does not have that sense of, of comfort, because they’re in a completely different situation than their sellers. And the only thing that gives that buyer or that person coming in, that’s going to take the business over for the family, right, and this happens, a sale, this succession to me is the same thing.

Because if you don’t If your business isn’t attractive to a buyer, or the person that’s going to take over the business, they’re not going to be there. So I think a lot of people are like, Well, I’m succeeding the business, my children, I don’t have to do that. Well. Let’s back up a little bit. How you really talk to your children about what they want in their in the business and what makes them excited about the business and what they see for the next 20 years. Because they’re the ones going there.

Yep. And if you’re not doing that, today, they’re gonna go someplace else, just like a buyer. And when you do this, and you do things like you’re talking about in the learning and that and getting the right people in the right places and doing the right things. You develop this, this, these organizations that are continually reinventing themselves and moving forward and leading the market and doing and doing really some amazing things. And you feel that energy, you feel that energy when you’re doing it.


Brad Smith  39:05

So makes a difference. Why would I write a check for a company that was asleep?


Damon Pistulka  39:10

There you go. Why would I write a check per company that’s asleep? Yep. Because and it’s an issue, but looking at from both sides, right from the side of the seller. That could be like an annuity, it could kick you money out every year kick $1,000,000.10 million dollars a year every year, but it doesn’t mean that that that buyer is ever going to put $1 down because that same annuity is comes from the fact that you’ve had it for many, many years.

You have zero debt or very little debt probably and it’s all returns for you. Well, that buyer coming in is going to take a loan and may have other investors may have returns they’ve got to do to provide for those investors. There’s a much different risk profile that they see coming in.


Brad Smith  39:58

So there’s a key In this, if business owners gotten to the place where they’re complacent, and they want to sell the company, you can actually hire, bear with me hire fire. Now when they hit, go hire, enthusiasm. Do it.


Damon Pistulka  40:18

It’s a great point. It’s a great point because that does when you’re looking about improving, you proven a sales succession with growth, hiring, the fire is necessary and hiring a fire. Hiring that fire that person that talent is going to help your business just take off to the next level is it does two things.

One, it removes you from the direct line of fire that business it makes it more valuable without you, which is what you want. Yep. And the second thing it does, is it is it get it inspires your team and gives the buyers that sense of comfort that they are not going to have to figure things out. They’re not going to have to and it makes it a much less risky transition for him to


Brad Smith  41:05

Yeah, absolutely.


Damon Pistulka  41:06

So that’s good stuff. Well, rad. It’s been awesome talking to you today about you know, improving business sale or recession with growth. You are the growth Master, you get into people’s teams get into their minds, get into their hearts, and really show them how to do this stuff. And I appreciate you being here today.


Brad Smith  41:25

Thank you. That was the point I’d forgotten. It’s, it’s not just your head. It’s your head and your heart that you’re working with.


Damon Pistulka  41:34

Oh, yeah, we go down that a long time. Because I’ll tell you I use sports metaphors in this all the time. I know it drives people crazy. But you look at the best performing teams, business sports, take it across the world doesn’t matter. It’s not just the strongest people. It’s not just the smartest people.

Now you have to have your you have to be smart, you have to be strong. You have to have your must have your mind in your and you got to be strong, but you have to have your heart in and that heart. When he when you engage the whole person. You get that special thing going on that that’s what wins. Because those are the people that come up with the the game-winning solutions that nobody else thought about because they put that last, you know, infantile decimal percentage of effort in that nobody else ever even thought to do


Brad Smith  42:23

all right. Right. Fun, though.


Damon Pistulka  42:25

I love Oh, yeah, yeah. Yeah. So what are you looking forward to this year? We’re coming out of COVID. Here, kind of we’re getting back to normal. What are you looking forward to this year?


Brad Smith  42:35

I have a long term goal. That’s to coach governors. What would happen if I did this same thing to a whole state? Yes. Right. To grow the economy to the point get everybody inside the state fired up. Because my client governor, if you would, was inspiring enough to get everybody else lit up and moving. grow a company to grow a state. That’s so that’s my, that’s my ultimate goal. I want to do that. Right. So I’ve got write a book, start a podcast, and started training for training in the intuition that’s required for visionary leaders. I want we need visionary leaders in this world. We definitely do it about that.


Damon Pistulka  43:22

Awesome. Awesome. Well, Brad, great to have you here today. I appreciate you. Just love your insight in this and thanks. Thanks to you, thanks to Elizabeth was here today and Curtis and all the other people that were listening but didn’t comment. Thanks for being here. We’ll be back again later this week. Thank you.

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