“Be present, give your heart and soul and enjoy that person because you can learn something from them.” - RJ Grimshaw
A third-generation entrepreneur, RJ Grimshaw has made it his life’s mission to help others succeed.
He has founded companies in a wide array of industries including hospitality, apparel, finance, and automotive. With his extensive experience in business, he has structured a formula for entrepreneurial success that has been shared and documented in a book, ABLE LEADERSHIP. Currently, RJ is writing a book that uncovers the secret to growing your company by deploying the ABLE Leadership operating system. He is a well-respected speaker, educator and author. He delivers relatable experiences which enable businesses to flourish, think big and revel purposeful living.
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Your liquidity event is the most important financial transaction of your life. You have one chance to get it right, and you better make it count.
But unfortunately, up to 90% of liquidity events fail. Think about all that time, money and effort wasted. Of the "successful" liquidity events, most business owners leave 50% to over 100% of their deal value in the buyer's pocket and don't even know it.
Our founders said "no" to a 7-figure offer and "yes" to a 9-figure offer less than two years later.
Don't become a statistic and make the fatal mistake of believing that the skills that built your business are the same ones for your liquidity event.
After all, how can you master something you've never done before?
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Learn how the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience and our 9-step roadmap helps you capture the maximum value for your liquidity event.
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[00:00:00] Jeffrey Feldberg: Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast where you learn how to extract your business and personal Deep Wealth.
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This podcast is brought to you by Deep Wealth and the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience.
When it comes to your business deep wealth, your exit or liquidity event is the most important financial decision of your life.
But unfortunately, up to 90% of liquidity events fail. Think about all that time and your hard earned money wasted.
Of the quote unquote "successful" liquidity events, most business owners leave 50% to over 100% of the deal value in the buyer's pocket and don't even know it.
I should know. I said "no" to a seven-figure offer. And "yes" to mastering the art and the science of a liquidity event. Two years later, I said "yes" to a different buyer with a nine figure deal.
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After all, how can you master something you've never done before?
Let the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience and the 9-step roadmap of preparation help you capture the best deal instead of any deal.
At the end of this episode, take a moment and hear from business owners like you, who went through the Deep Wealth Experience.
A third-generation entrepreneur, RJ Grimshaw has made it his life's mission to help others succeed. He has founded companies in a wide variety of industries, including hospitality, apparel, finance, and automotive. With his extensive experience in business, he has structured a formula for entrepreneurial success that has been shared and documented in a book, ABLE Leadership.
Currently, RJ is writing a book that uncovers the secret to growing your company by deploying the ABLE Leadership operating system. He is a well-respected speaker, educator, and author. RJ delivers relatable experiences, which enable businesses to flourish. Think big and reveal purposeful living.
Welcome to the Deep Wealth Sell My Business Podcast. And for all you business owners out there, we have an incredible guest and episode lined up for you today. And I have a rhetorical question for you, but I'm going to ask it anyways, as a business owner, what would you do if you could simply take an OS an operating OS for your business?
Implemented and then have that be the key to unlock massive success, grow your revenues, your profits, your enterprise value for your future liquidity event, and just be ABLE to have the business and lifestyle of your dreams. Does that sound too good to be true? Is truth stranger than fiction or what? Well, You know what, you're going to find out today and I just know that the answers are going to be very pleasant for you to hear. And I'm getting a little bit ahead of myself. So RJ, welcome to the Deep Wealth, Sell My Business Podcast. It's an absolute pleasure to have you with us today. And there's always a story behind the story, RJ, what's your story?
What got you to where you are today?
[00:03:20] RJ Grimshaw: Well, Jeffrey, I'm glad to be here. Thanks so much. Where I did today, in terms of from a business perspective, I was blessed and fortunate enough to be born into a family of entrepreneurs. My dad and my mom both owned several different businesses. As well as my mom's father owned a soda distributorship back in the thirties, right after the great depression. I had an uncle that also was a optician who owned several locations through New Hampshire.
So just saying that it was just naturally because that was part of my ecosystem to see what business ownership looks like the challenges, the success, the opportunities, and most importantly, the discipline of remaining focused on your business, as well as being dedicated to your family. I actually owned my first business at 23.
My father, who was my mentor was crazy enough to finance my brother and I at that age. And we actually bought an established bar restaurant that was shut down and built back in 19 in the mid-thirties as well. And we completely refurbished it and opened six months later. And we took that from concept to a million-dollar revenue company.
And that was really my MBA in business. I know that you went to school and MBA and things of that nature. Mine was actually in the trenches, learning from my dad because he was a great leader and a great mentor. He influenced us, but he made us do everything in terms of going to the bank, going to our attorney, setting up liquor licenses, and things of that nature.
Running staff meetings, looking at your PNL payroll on a weekly basis. Everything that business owners go through on a daily basis. And I was starting doing that at 23. However, I ended up in corporate America and it was strictly by accident and I ended up in the equipment finance industry and what attracted me to that industry, Jeffrey was back to the entrepreneurship where I was now ABLE to help business owners across the country on a macro level, finance, the equipment they need for their business.
And there's no two businesses that are exactly the same. So on a daily basis, our team gets to work with all kinds of small to medium-sized business. And financing that the equipment that they need either to generate revenue or become more efficient. So I was ABLE to, and I continue to do this. We've grown this company from 13 million to a hundred million of revenues.
And what I like to do is take these applications and learnings that I have, as you mentioned early in terms of an operating system, and now help business owners that are either struggling. Or would like to either transition out to a liquidity event and, or transition out where they're not heavily involved in the business and the businesses running on that operating system.
[00:06:02] Jeffrey Feldberg: Wow, so a lot going on there, and what's interesting maybe we can start with this because you grew up in an entrepreneurial family and your parents, and you just came from a lineage of entrepreneurship. It's a different way of thinking. It's a different way of life. You experienced that yourself with your restaurant and congratulations from zero to a million easier said than done, particularly in that industry.
But then low and behold, you find yourself in corporate America. Which is completely different in terms of the mindset and their operating system and how things are done. And oftentimes there seems to be an us versus them, but business owner versus the big gigantic 800-pound gorilla enterprises that are out there.
But I always like to find the synergies. And I'm just curious, having been playing in both playgrounds, what do you see as some really valuable lessons that we can learn from corporate America that we can take back into our own businesses to make us thrive and just grow and get things out there?
[00:06:59] RJ Grimshaw: Well, It really depends on in, and I firmly believe my success in corporate America was driven by growing up in a family, a bunch of numbers. So I had that mindset and I started in sales. So as you know, in sales, you really control your own success. You have to get up in the morning and I'd never had a manager.
I was fortunate. I've never had a manager or leader that micromanaged me. So it was really under my own motivation. And I'm a life learner. I love learning and I learn every single day, just like yourself. I study and listen to podcasts, reading all the time. Some books behind me I'll have a whole another office full of books.
And that helped me be successful in corporate America because I just came into corporate America with a completely different mindset. And the mindset is actually defined as an entrepreneur. So you have the same attributes of an entrepreneur, but you're working within the confines of a larger organization.
And because of that, that really drove my success to where I sit today as CEO, president for unifying from the finance because I use those attributes and characteristics and activities to drive my success. Now to answer your other question in regards to learnings from corporate America. There are some, I will say that, however, I actually think that I learned more from small to medium-sized business owners because they don't have the resources as a large corporation.
They don't have the liquidity and the dollars to just throw at things if they want to do it a certain initiative. So the business owners that are successful run on an operating system. They know what's important in their business, they have certain KPIs to drive the activities to be successful.
And they focus on those as we all know what where your attention goes is where you're going to have success. Now granted what I did learn from corporate America too, is teamwork of course, and how to work maneuver. Unfortunately, I'm going to say this, but politics. Cause we all know there are a lot of politics in corporate America, people are looking out for themselves and that's why we try to develop a culture.
We continue to work on a daily basis, our culture at unify, where it's more of a trans entrepreneurship mindset where we're all in it together and we're, we have to be rowing the boat the same exact way. I know it sounds cliche, but we really made this transition four years ago and it's unbelievable to see the results from this team and I'm blessed and fortunate because it comes down to the team. And sometimes in corporate America, people have their own agendas and they're not focused on the team. They're focused on what's in it for them. And that's the big difference where in a business as your own business owner, you have to worry about the doesn't matter if you have 5 people or 20 people or 50 people, you have to worry about them and their families to ensure that they have a paycheck. And I think of that the same way in corporate America. So I think those are some of the differences that why I was ABLE to be successful, but at the end of the day too, I was very lucky, very fortunate to be surrounded by amazing people, very blessed.
[00:10:04] Jeffrey Feldberg: You know, RJ what's really interesting is something that you touched upon that I think as entrepreneurs and business owners, founders, what we tend to overlook and underestimate, and I have a saying, it goes something along the lines of resilience, trumps resources. So in other words, if you gave up, particularly when you're just getting, going in business, if he gave a business a pile of money versus operating, like what I like to call a cockroach startup. That's how I run all my companies. When you don't have the money, you've got to become resilient. And my thesis is that resilience actually makes you a better company. And in other words, if you could write the check, whether you should or shouldn't, let's put that off to the side, just because you can write the check, doesn't make you a better company, but when you have to think, okay, we don't have the capital, but how do we still achieve that you're developing better procedures.
And you're just more I find on the ball and doing all the right things. But let's transition to this because you came up with your own OS, able, so Analyze, Blueprint, Leverage, Execute, and that's your OS and that's what you're bringing to other businesses when they're reaching out for help and for your assistance.
What's the Genesis story behind Able, where did it come from and what's going on? What is that all about for you?
[00:11:19] RJ Grimshaw: Yeah. When I accepted this position nine years ago to come here and a little bit of backdrop. The company was actually established in 1978. So I'm old, I'm only the second president in very humbled by that when you have a 45-year-old company, and there's only been two leaders at the top of the company are running the company per se.
It's big shoes to fill in. Two years into this journey of mine. I decided to sit down and start writing a book on exactly what I was doing on a daily basis. I'm a firm believer in application. First philosophy that you have to have both. However, application is where the rubber hits the road. And I just started just keeping track and writing every day around what I was experiencing my losses, my wins, our successes, and just trying to duplicate that because, in the back of my mind, I knew that my next chapter of my life is helping business owners. And I want to be ABLE to take the playbook that we've used, that I didn't document the first time when we started the bar. I didn't document the second time when we grew a business from 6 million to 40 million.
So this time I was very disciplined and growing of writing that down and writing a book and that's where ABLE came from. I'm a simple person I like the KISS, keep it simple, stupid, so ABLE is the same process. And that's where we came up with ABLE and the book should be released.
We're hoping to have the book released by the end of the year. It will be called The Vitals ABLE Leadership. And it's a combination between leadership, walking into a business as a first-time leader, as well as just the applications in terms of putting everything that you just outlined into a certain process.
And there is a system behind that. We've also developed a software that business owners can utilize. And the software is catapult.ai. And ultimately what we want to do is take the AI piece of that as more and more business owners come onto the system to build out world-class KPIs for their certain SIC code.
That's long-term. We're starting the premise today is to make it extremely easy for spreadsheets and other areas and keeping everything into one compact system for communication and things aren't being caught in email. We're very excited about this. We're just starting the launch of this now, but the ABLE platform will run within catapult.
Not that it sounds confusing, but it's the operating system. And then you have the software that actually runs the business and we're having incredible success with it. And it's very similar to Traction and EOS and Scalability and E-Myth and other operating systems that are out there. I also believe that they're all similar.
It's the nuances of each little one. And then the experience of the coach, that's helping you either integrate the plan or implement the plan and being that resource for that business owner.
[00:14:07] Jeffrey Feldberg: Well, It sounds terrific. Why don't we do a little bit of a deeper dive into the ABLE OS and the system? And perhaps we can start with just a quick thought experiment, perhaps just based on your own experiences. A Business comes to you and okay RJ really like what you're doing, can you help us? And I know every business is unique in its own.
And you could probably say with the question, I'm about to ask what Jeffrey had. It really depends what's going on with the business, but generally speaking, are there a few areas that you're seeing time and time again, where most businesses are dropping the ball? And I suspect the answer's probably yes.
And if you are, what will be some of those areas that as business owners, if we knew about that today, We could begin the process of addressing it tomorrow?
[00:14:50] RJ Grimshaw: A lot of times the business owner, when I received the phone call is either hit cap in terms of how far they brought the business and they're either out of energy, out of passion and they need that shot of energy for someone to come in with a second set of eyes.
That's the first situation. The second situation is where there's a decline of revenue and they're trying to figure it out how they can pivot and what they need to do. And then the third and last one, which I really enjoy working is that business owner knows that they have more potential within their business and they have the energy and they have the desire and they're looking for someone to come in and help them get to that next level or build the business to become world-class.
So really, the main challenges Jeffrey are around their go-to market strategy and sales, and really identifying who their perfect customer avatar is. We have a workbook that goes through that. And then secondly leaving the unprofitable relationships and staying focused on leveraging what they have in place.
And that's part of the E of the ABLE of execution against back to the plan. The next step is processes SOPs. So many business owners do not document how things should be done from an operating perspective where it's easy to put anyone into the role within the organization to understand what their responsibilities are.
And then under the SOP is the KPI of defining what success looks like. So those are, that's the real area. Now we can get into all kinds of other things in terms of too much debt leverage and things of that nature, but really at the base level, that's really where we started. We want to take a base measurement to see where they are at.
We worked through that. And then we start talking about transitioning onto the ABLE operating system.
[00:16:29] Jeffrey Feldberg: And what's interesting there? And I hear this time and time again, RJ, I'm sure you've seen the same thing. A business owner comes to me and says, Jeffrey, we are world-class in what we do, but we're the world's best-kept secret. No one knows about us again. Can you help us get the world to know about us?
How do we get a path of customers just banging down the door? They want our services so again it's probably dependent on business by business, but are there some generalities RJ that you can share with us? Some best practices, if we're really good at what we do, but just people don't know about us. We're again, that best-kept secret.
What would be some things that we can do on the sales and marketing side that just are proven strategies that work for you?
[00:17:09] RJ Grimshaw: There's so many companies like that. And I would even say unified, that is an area that we continue to focus on because a small little finance company that people don't know about. And that's part of our design because we'd like being a boutique and helping people. However, we also have to ensure that our brand is in the marketplace somewhere.
I always ensuring that people are aware of us. But to answer that question specifically, a lot of times I'll ask what they're doing from a social media perspective because it, believe it or not, there's still so many businesses that aren't active in terms of their social media presence. Also, what does their website look like?
So it's real basic areas and things that they should be doing. And so many business owners, especially if they're older in terms of generation or, just don't believe in it, don't realize that 85% of people who went their shopping start with an internet search, they start with Google and they're going to research. And when they go to that company website, it's a motion that they need to feel to pick up the phone and call, and do you really articulate what you do and how you help people?
And that takes time to be ABLE to build that out. And it takes away time from the business. And a lot of times the business owners either say they don't have the time and, or they don't have the skill set to do that. And I just think it's incredibly important to have a strong presence online, on social media, YouTube people, especially in the world that we live in today.
People want to know who they're doing business with. They want to understand and ensure that there's, they're relating to the business owner and relating to the company. And so many people don't have that presence online or afraid to be vulnerable and put themselves out there in terms of explaining what they do and how they do it.
The second piece of that is are they asking their current partners or their current people that they're doing business with for referrals. This is the greatest way to grow your business. Just starting an initiative around asking your top 10 clients, and it can be real simple questions. What do you like about us? Why do you use us and then ask for a favor, can they make an introduction and have an email already set where they just copy-paste that and send it to people, but really I'm getting ahead of myself because there's a lot of analysis that goes into that.
And then also having a defined sales process. So many business owners don't I always love the question. You know, what's your closing ratio? 9 out of 10 business owners have no idea what their closing ratio is. If it's in a sales perspective, it's B2B, I'm speaking of where, how many quotes are going out the front door, and what's the typical closing ratio?
And it's always interesting when I asked that question, I love the business owners that say, I don't know, I don't measure. That's being honest. And I always say typically that's the answer receipt. However, when someone tries to throw a number at you I've learned now I don't debate the number. I just write it down and we keep continue forward because I know that the numbers it's likely not analyzer or a legitimate number on a closing ratio. But business owners also don't realize the value of salespeople and what they bring to an organization. We have to remember, cashflow is the oxygen to every single business. And if you're not generating revenue in the business in the second and another piece, I actually heard you talk about this before on your podcasts.
Everyone is in sales, everyone. And we talk about that at unify and it's amazing when you start talking about that within your culture, within your organization, all of a sudden opportunities start presenting themselves from people from customer service, from document people from accounting. hey, I ran into this gentleman.
I think he's a perfect candidate for us. And I asked him for a business part. Then you have everyone in again in, and they're selling broadening the brand awareness for your organization and that doesn't cost anything. However, when that takes place, make sure you reward that person and acknowledge that person in front of the company, that what they did because they don't have to do that.
They're doing that in a discretionary effort perspective. And when that happens, it's special.
[00:21:05] Jeffrey Feldberg: Absolutely. And again, there is so, much value. It's almost what unpack their RJ with what you're sharing. And I really obviously I agree with what you're saying. Everyone's in sales and people have this misnomer about sales, the most effective, the most successful salespeople. I know they don't sell a day in their life.
They never have. And people look at and they say what do you mean? They're salespeople they're not selling. Salespeople, don't sell, they educate. And when you educate. You're a terrific storyteller, you have a narrative and you're sharing that. And you're just memorable. People always remember that.
But let me ask you this. Let's do the flip side. So we're talking maybe some of the low-hanging fruits where businesses are not doing well, maybe their skeletons in the closet they don't know about and how they can address them and fix them. But if we looked at the ABLE system in general here, and we said, okay, for the businesses that are doing it right, they are successful.
They're checking off the boxes where they should be checking off the boxes. If most businesses did these ones, two, or three things and they did them well. They would serve their clients and the marketplace or stakeholders themselves very well. And they be successful as a result of that. What would that be? What would be on the flip side of things that we should know, strategies that we can be applying today?
[00:22:20] RJ Grimshaw: So, I'm always a fan and I always preach and educate around if something's working well, and we're putting a dollar of investment in a receiving 10 back, but let's put in $20 and that's for fuel on that and continue to leverage. And that's the E part of ABLE of execute. Just continue to execute upon that.
However you have to become before that happens, you have to become very disciplined on what your perfect client is. We lived that at unify. When I first arrived here, I use the metaphor that we are a restaurant. We found our corner lot. We loved the demographics. We opened up, but we had no identity of who we were.
We just wanted to generate customers and generate cash flow. So if you wanted, you came into our restaurant, Jeffrey, you and your wife sat down in order to have a pizza, we would make you a pizza. If you came in the next day and wanted to a steak, we made you a steak. However, that's not efficient. You're not ABLE to scale that.
So after two or three years, we did an exercise where we sat down and said, this is what we're good at. This is where we're going to go. And we're going to start saying no. We're going to be disciplined and we pick a word a year for the whole company is our one word and one year it was no. And it's hard to say when you're in sales, it's hard to say when you want to take care of your customers, however you really doing it.
Just service. When you say yes, and you're not good at that, or you don't have a good process in place. So when we realized we want to be a steak house with a little bit of seafood on the side. That's when we saw the scalability and you saw the stress come out of the business, you saw the factory run more efficiently.
Do the fact everyone knew if this is what it should look like, this is how we do it. This is the KPIs tied to it. So now we have eight really strong customers that provide 83% of our revenue. However, From a concentration perspective. We're always managing that because we never want one customer to become over 10 to 15% from a revenue perspective.
So we're always back-filling that from a BD perspective and relationship perspective. It's really leveraging what you do extremely well. Going all in, in that area to grow the business. And then also pivoting too, so many business owners are afraid to change and pivoting saw that during COVID right where so many people had to go, digital restaurants had to start delivering you're having takeout and either some did it or some didn't.
And it was up to that business owner and that team to make that conscious decision. And I'm still shocked where people just don't want to pivot. They don't want to try different things. They've done it like this forever, and they'd never want to change. Many companies are like that Best buy, Kmart, Sears.
We can go on and on in terms of businesses that have failed because of that. And I think we're going to start to see that now with the digital revolution of what's taking place in the economy, we're going to start to see businesses that overleverage themselves that are going to struggle now in the tech space.
[00:25:10] Jeffrey Feldberg: And RJ, what's really interesting about that? I'm going to bring that back to the word culture. And you had mentioned that a little bit earlier as well because, for me, this is more on the art side of things. And in fact, in the nine step roadmap of preparation, step number two, X-Factors That Insanely Increase the Value of Your Business, your company culture, what you're all about.
That is an X factor that can also be a Rembrandt. If you're world-class in doing it. And as business owners, we need to appreciate that our competitors, with all of their capital, they can copy just about everything we're doing. They can buy the same technology. They can even buy our employees. It can offer more money, take our employees away.
Maybe they can, but maybe they won't. But what they can't do, money does not buy this is culture and the culture. It's like a fingerprint it's unique for every business. And so going back to what you're saying If in that culture, you have transparency. And this is back to your execution side. You have KPIs your standard operating procedures you're being communicative, but change is also part of that culture.
Then we're also doing something that most business owners I find tend to miss the boat on. And tell me if you agree with this or not. I find that within someone's success are the seeds of the future failure because things start going well, human nature, we sit back a little bit. I don't want to change it.
Maybe I'll mess it up, but what worked yesterday doesn't mean that it's going to work today. And to your point, if we don't want to pivot, if we don't want to change, maybe we're putting ourselves out of business and I'd love to hear your thoughts on what you're seeing out there in regards to that and how we can insulate ourselves from that.
[00:26:47] RJ Grimshaw: I completely agree with that statement, even professionally and personally, it happens to people it's happened to me. And that's really where one it's, you're not having fun anymore. And you're not reaching for your potential. Secondly, business owners are the same way and I see it all the time.
Especially when I walk trade shows. It's always interesting when I go to a machine trade show or construction trade show, but it's really evident in the CNC market that those types of equipment and you go from booth to booth and you'll see the business owners that have transitioned in different times.
In terms of their marketing in terms of their sales staff, in terms of their go-to market in terms of their story. And then you walk to the booth next to it. You can see someone who's still stuck in the seventies and you quickly realized most likely that company will have challenges and they're probably having challenges.
You have to be wired a certain way. I believe that you're always looking for improvement. Tony Robbins talks about it all the time, so we great speakers in terms of just consistent and never-ending improvement and that is one of my core beliefs of every day, I want to try and become a better version of RJ so I can influence different people in our organization, anytime I interact with anyone. And that's always, what I focus on is how can I help this person from my experiences. I don't force my opinions on anyone. That's not the intent or goal, but if they ask, I want to be ABLE to be well versed. And I continue to invest into myself in terms of education of learning and so many business owners that are afraid to invest.
You'll probably see it. I see it as well when they contact you and then you walk through your services and they decide to keep, stay where they are, and stay in the pain that they're at. And which is okay, that's their just conscious decision because we only want to help people that want to be helped because they're going to be held accountable and we want passionate people and we can give them the plan.
But it's up to them to execute. And that's why I'm transparent as well. Your point was fought on everyone. You know, I tell our team, I've said this to our team all the time. You look at NFL football, everybody stays on the same field, same playbooks. Let's be honest. Everyone has the same playbooks, same balls.
It's all about the team execution and culture. And typically that starts at the top of the house. And then you have to foster it across the entire organization.
[00:28:58] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yeah, it's interesting and I love to get your take on this again, just referencing the ABLE operating system, the ABLE OS, and you're talking about change and RJ, as we both know, change is just difficult. It's difficult for most people on the best of days, but we're coming out of tremendous change.
The pandemic changed the business and societal norms and life, as we know it. And I'd love to get some of your insights. What are you seeing as we now look to the future of the pandemic, I'm going to call it behind us now and we're moving forward. Perhaps it's not going away but is there an in the background, but we're back to the new normal, whatever that's going to be on any particular given day, but how has business changed?
As business owners that we need to know. And then how do we leverage the ABLE OS to be ABLE to successfully respond to this?
[00:29:51] RJ Grimshaw: Sure. I would say what I see. And I personally really been focused on this, but I'm seeing this from successful business owners. Being more empathetic for the situations for the team members and you have to keep them, we keep in mind what all families, what we all went through over the last couple of years.
And specifically, if they have young children at home and now they're homeschooling, their kids are at home they're trying to do their job. So really just being, becoming more empathetic and understanding. And also I think business owners realize that people don't need to be in the office.
However, there's a lot of discussion around remote hybrid in the office, out of the office, things of that nature. And I think that will continue to work its way out. We took the philosophy of being flexible. We still believe that there is positive culture benefits of being onsite with intent on certain days for meetings and things of that nature because you have to have that human interaction from the human being perspective.
We become more efficient because of Zoom. We become more efficient because of online meetings where maybe we're not driving someplace. However, we should not remove the whole human interaction relationship building. Specifically, if you're younger in your career, I wouldn't sit where I sit today if it wasn't for the conversations around the water cooler, if it wasn't for the conversations coming out of a boardroom, if it wasn't, the conversations have a drink after work that's really where the golden nuggets lie. The world has changed, you know, it continues to change. And I view that as a positive because business owners and people that are longing to change will continue to be more successful because people more and more people and businesses will be left behind and change is hard. It's difficult for my change. And when we, I always ask a question when I'm asking a question to a business owner, I always tee it up as I'm not saying it's wrong.
I'm just trying to get an understanding of the current process of this. Or how, why do you think like this? Because it could be spot on and I'm not trying to change it, but I need to understand that. By asking that question, typically the effects of what goes down. I had to learn that the hard of asking that question, especially when you walk into a company that has been in business since 1978, and you're the new guy, you're asking a lot of questions to learn.
I didn't ask that question. And the defense mechanism went up really quick where, hey, we've always done it like this, and we've been successful. Well okay, I'll agree with that, I need to understand it and learn. The next thing I think is from a, just from an overall business perspective, hope business owners are really becoming focused on their business right now, especially if we're headed into a recession.
Because I firmly believe if that takes place, there's going to be no government assistance this time business owners are going to have to rely on their own resources. And there's going to be difficult decisions if we end up heading into a recession, which I hope we don't, however, if things continue the way that they look in the GDP and things of that nature I think we're, we'll at least have a mild one, which could be the best case scenarios if it happens.
[00:32:53] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yeah, a lot going on there and certainly a lot to think about as business owners as we go into tomorrow, not knowing what it brings. And I'm curious, RJ just because you're out there and you're speaking with businesses. You're really applying this as well for yourself. And I love the word. Great. We went from the Great Resignation and now it's being called the Great Return, but no matter what you call it, it's perhaps not so great when you're looking for talent, it's more difficult out there.
It's more expensive. It's really an employee's kind of market. If you're a business owner, who's looking to hire. What was going on with that? Any tips or insights you can give us?
[00:33:29] RJ Grimshaw: I think in, and you said this earlier, that it's not always, you always have to remember there's a recruiter calling your employees or there's someone recruiting your employees every single day. You have to have that mentality. And it's not always about the money. It's about the purpose and having its mission.
And then it's your vision. And people buy into that when it resonates with them. And at unify, our tagline is obsessed with your success. And again, it's really easy. What we do, either finance equipment for business owners or we help dealers sell more equipment by offering finances. Those are two swim lanes.
And if it's outside of that, we don't do it. So, people that are attracted to our business, like helping business owners, the other thing is successful people love being around other successful people, Eagles want to soar together. And when you start attracting top talent, people want to remain with top talent because they're having fun.
They're being pushed. They enjoy what they do, and they give discretionary effort. The other thing that needs to change is the mentality around longevity of people in their jobs. And I remember, when it used to be we'd like to see five years. I think the new benchmark is if you're ABLE to hire someone and they add value for two years, there's nothing wrong with that because my job as a leader, My main intent is to make them a better version of themselves.
So if they end up getting a promotion or going somewhere else as a better version, I'm okay with that. I really am because every single day I want to make people better. It's for them. It's not for me, it's not about me. We did a beta test where we put two different job descriptions into the market.
And all we added Jeffrey was seeking an intrapreneur on the same exact job description. We saw the quality of our candidates improve tremendously because now this was something that someone. Understood that they're going to come in and have some ownership and be ABLE to drive change and make things happen and have their voice heard.
That's the downside of big corporate America. So many people are burnt out from not having their voice, or they want to go to a company that they can get behind their mission. And I think that's more important than pay. Now, you have to be equitable and fair in compensation. And especially in these times of inflation, however, for long term it's around mission and also your core belief.
[00:35:47] Jeffrey Feldberg: And it's amazing, RJ, it all for me, anyways, it all goes back to culture in terms of what you're doing and to your point, you're so spot on, I was reading a report recently where they had surveyed employees and they ask employees, what moves the dial for you? What keeps you at this company?
What had you joined this company in the first place? and at first blush, we're all thinking. Okay. Yeah. Obviously, money is going to be number one. It's going to be the top factor. And I, you know, it was maybe six factors, seven factors that could've been five factors. Don't quote me on that.
But money was towards the bottom of the list. And what was interesting, it was said in a different way, it got back to culture at the top of the list was leadership. the leadership of the company? What's the vision? Where are they going? What are they going to be doing? And to your point, RJ, am I joining a winning team?
No one wants to be on the losing team. Everyone wants to be on the winning team. And so you are absolutely right on the money literally and figuratively on culture. And just having that really innate within the company. You know, RJ, we could just go on and on. We're starting to bump up against some time here.
And so let's do this let's transition as we begin to wrap up the episode to my favorite question, and the question is this, let's do a little bit of a thought experiment. You and I RJ. So think of the movie Back to the Future and in the movie you have that magical DeLorean car that can take you to any point in time.
Now RJ it's tomorrow morning, you look out your window, and there it is. The DeLorean car it's sitting there. The door is open. It's waiting for you to hop on in. So you go in and you can now go to any point in your life, RJ, as a young child, a teenager, whatever that point in time would be. What are you telling your younger self in terms of life wisdom lessons learned, or, hey, RJ do this, but don't do that?
What would that sound like?
[00:37:41] RJ Grimshaw: If I could go back, I love to go back to where I was 17 roughly, and become a bigger sponge around my parents in terms of learning their business and understanding that. And as 17 and 18 year old, we all know there's a lot of distractions, especially for males. So I wish I would have been that, that the other thing is back in my early twenties even though we were running a business and very successful and I was learning probably more discipline in terms of bigger picture and looking longer-term because when you're younger, you think boy, five years, that's a long time, but it goes so quick. So it's really just being more focused. And then lastly, something I've really been trying to work on is being in the moment now there's so many distractions out there, slow down, enjoy who you're talking to be present, give your heart and soul, and enjoy that person because you can learn something from them.
And it's about me when I'm doing that, not about them. I'm focused on me to make sure that I'm giving someone my full intention. And it's so hard nowadays with phones and distractions and things of that nature. But when I'm present with someone I want to be present. So the phone was away. There was no distractions.
And I had give them a hundred percent of my attention. And that goes back to culture too. As a leader, if you're doing that and you're not above, I always speak of our org chart is I'm at the bottom. I report to everyone else and I tell our team, now hold me just as accountable is as your peer accountability, because I'm human.
I'm going to get off the rails. So reel me back in and I do have people in my organization that wheel me back in and says, hey, this is where you're the visionary, this is where we need you to go. And I tell business owners too, especially when you walk into a situation, you probably have experienced this Jeffery where the business owner is just burnt out, frazzled, no passion, probably it's not having the right conversations with their team members. If I just start and drop one seat with them and say, focus on your team, slow down. Focus on your team, have some conversations with them, and start seeking the input from them. Three out of four employees have valuable input for business owners.
That's my other message. And that's part of ABLE seek out that knowledge from them. They're doing the day-to-day and they have the ideas to make your company more efficient and better run. Just give them the platform to be ABLE to share those ideas.
[00:40:05] Jeffrey Feldberg: Some terrific advice from just being in the moment to really soak it in and understanding that the people perhaps we take the most for granted are some of the best mentors that we can have. And when they're not with us at one point in time, we'll miss them. And that opportunity has passed to also being in the moment with just the people around you, from your frontline employees, all the way through to get their insight and wisdom.
I think that's absolutely terrific advice, RJ. And thank you so much. I'm going to put everything in the show notes. RJ, if someone would like to reach you online, what would be the best place?
[00:40:38] RJ Grimshaw: My website is rjgrimshaw.com. And my email is rj[at]rjgrimshaw[dot]com. I respond to all my emails. I would just ask you, give me a couple of days. But there's a lot of information on there, on the website as well as what we do for Abel. And then there's plenty of YouTube videos.
I love talking about business, helping business owners, and entrepreneurship. And if I can be of service to anyone in regards to anything relative to business, career coaching, mentorship, growth, sales I love talking. I'm a student of business and I love coaching on.
[00:41:09] Jeffrey Feldberg: Well, there, you have it. You have a, from a thought leader, a successful business owner. He's been in corporate America, a book soon to be coming out. So an author right there, take him up on his offer. It doesn't get any better than that. RJ, a heartfelt thank you for spending part of your day with us here on the Deep Wealth Sell My Business Podcast.
And as we wrap this up as always, please stay healthy and safe.
[00:41:29] RJ Grimshaw: Thank you, Jeffrey, you as well.
[00:41:31] Sharon S.: The Deep Wealth Experience was definitely a game-changer for me.
[00:41:34] Lyn M.: This course is one of the best investments you will ever make because you will get an ROI of a hundred times that. Anybody who doesn't go through it will lose millions.
[00:41:44] Kam H.: If you don't have time for this program, you'll never have time for a successful liquidity
[00:41:49] Sharon S.: It was the best value of any business course I've ever taken. The money was very well spent.
[00:41:55] Lyn M.: Compared to when we first began, today I feel better prepared, but in some respects, may be less prepared, not because of the course, but because the course brought to light so many things that I thought we were on top of that we need to fix.
[00:42:11] Kam H.: I 100% believe there's never a great time for a business owner to allocate extra hours into his or her week or day. So it's an investment that will yield results today. I thought I will reap the benefit of this program in three to five years down the road. But as soon as I stepped forward into the program, my mind changed immediately.
[00:42:33] Sharon S.: There was so much value in the experience that the time I invested paid back so much for the energy that was expended.
[00:42:43] Lyn M.: The Deep Wealth Experience compared to other programs is the top. What we learned is very practical. Sometimes you learn stuff that it's great to learn, but you never use it. The stuff we learned from Deep Wealth Experience, I believe it's going to benefit us a boatload.
[00:42:56] Kam H.: I've done an executive MBA. I've worked for billion-dollar companies before. I've worked for smaller companies before I started my business. I've been running my business successfully now for getting close to a decade. We're on a growth trajectory. Reflecting back on the Deep Wealth, I knew less than 10% what I know now, maybe close to 1% even.
[00:43:15] Sharon S.: Hands down the best program in which I've ever participated. And we've done a lot of different things over the years. We've been in other mastermind groups, gone to many seminars, workshops, conferences, retreats, read books. This was so different. I haven't had an experience that's anything close to this in all the years that we've been at this.
It's five-star, A-plus.
[00:43:42] Kam H.: I would highly recommend it to any super busy business owner out there.
Deep Wealth is an accurate name for it. This program leads to deeper wealth and happier wealth, not just deeper wealth. I don't think there's a dollar value that could be associated with such an experience and knowledge that could be applied today and forever.
[00:44:00] Jeffrey Feldberg: Are you leaving millions on the table?
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Enjoy the interview!