“Show me your friends and I'll show you your future.” - Alan Wozniak
Alan Wozniak, CIAQP, CIEC former president/CEO and founder of Pure Air Control Services, Inc. in Clearwater, Florida an environmental / HVAC Mechanical Firm established in 1984 with divisions including: Building Sciences, Environmental Diagnostics laboratory and Building remediation group. In 2021, he successfully managed the sale of the firm to a Fortune 500 organization, RPM International.
Pure Air Control Services is a provider of indoor environmental services in over 19,000 facilities covering 900 million sq. ft. both nationally and internationally and is one of the largest full services, comprehensive healthy building indoor environmental firms in the nation with heavy experience in governments, healthcare, higher education, lower education, commercial and entertainment markets.
Mr. Wozniak has authored numerous articles on IAQ, is a NEWSWEEK Magazine Expert Author, has been guest lecturer on many webinars, podcasts, workshops and at IAQ symposia
Some of Mr. Wozniak’s many accomplishments include leading the firm to:
•INC 500 national list 4 years in a row
•370% growth in the past 5 years
•Tampa Bay FAST 50 – bay area fastest growing private firms
•Tampa Bay Business Journal – MBE Top 25
•National Hispanic Businesses - Top 500
•Frost & Sullivan – Product Differentiation Innovation Award for its Solutions for Improving IAQ
• Provided the management and oversight of the M&A selling his firm for 17.5X EBITDA
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SELECTED LINKS FOR THIS EPISODE
Alan Wozniak, CEC, CIAQP, CIEC, - President - Business Health Matters - Executive Coaching | LinkedIn
Thought Leader And Post-Exit Entrepreneur Alan Wozniak On How To Create Massive Success (#170)
Cockroach Startups: What You Need To Know To Succeed And Prosper
FREE Deep Wealth eBook on Why You Suck At Selling Your Business And What You Can Do About It (Today)
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Deep Wealth LINKS FOR THIS EPISODE
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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?
Are you leaving millions on the table?
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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Enjoy the interview!
[00:00:00] Jeffrey Feldberg: Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast where you learn how to extract your business and personal Deep Wealth.
I'm your host Jeffrey Feldberg.
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.
Are you thinking about an exit or liquidity event?
Don't become a statistic and make the fatal mistake of believing the skills that built your business are the same ones to sell it.
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.
Alan Wozniak is the former President, CEO, and Founder of Pure Air Control Services, Inc. in Clearwater, Florida, which is an environmental and HVAC mechanical firm which was established in 1984. Pure Air Control Services has divisions in building sciences, environmental diagnostics, laboratory, and building remediation groups. In 2021, Alan successfully manage the sale of the firm to a Fortune 500 company RPM International.
Pure Air Control Services is a provider of indoor environmental services in over 19,000 facilities covering 900 million square feet, both nationally and internationally, and is one of the largest full services, comprehensive, healthy building indoor environmental firms in the nation with heavy experience in government, healthcare, higher education, lower education, commercial and entertainment markets.
Some of Mr. Wozniak's many accomplishments include leading the firm to Inc 500 national list four years in a row, a 370% growth in the past five years, the Tampa Bay Fast 50 Fastest Growing Private Firms, the Tampa Bay Business Journal MBE Top 25, the National Hispanic Business Top 500, Frost And Sullivan Product Differentiation Innovation Award for its solutions for improving indoor air quality, and providing the management and oversight of the M&A process to realize a seventeen and half EBITDA. Mr. Wozniak has authored numerous articles on indoor air quality and is a Newsweek Magazine expert author. In addition, Mr. Wazniak has been a guest lecturer on many webinars, podcasts, workshops, and indoor air quality symposiums.
Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast, and once again, we do not have a stranger. We have a very good friend who's back to visit us in the third part of a series that we've been doing on the Deep Wealth podcast. And with me is a post Exit successful liquidity event, incredible business owner, entrepreneur, thought leader, author, you name it, he's done it.
Alan, welcome back. And you know what? For some of our new listeners, because our community has been growing even from your last episode, there's always a story behind the story. Alan, why don't you give us a little bit of that inside track? What's your story? What brought you to where we are today?
[00:04:17] Alan Wozniak: Hey, thank you for inviting me again. This is exciting time I started in business 30 years ago with understanding that you need to be different. There's a differentiation between the best leaders of businesses and those who are average. And I saw it to be different from day one.
And my business I developed, which was an HVAC environmental business. Everything we did, whether it was building sciences, our environmental laboratory as well as our remediation, each one of the divisions, we sought to have a differentiator. And that really propelled us to the success over the next 30 years.
And being able to have a positive Exit. We grew the business 370% in the final five years, from 2017 to 22. And INC 5000, 4 years in a row with a positive Exit plan. So, environmental business, but it could be any kind of business. It doesn't have to be any particular type.
[00:05:17] Jeffrey Feldberg: And so, you went through all of that. And you know what, Alan, for our listeners, there's a method to our madness because in the past two episodes and some of the episodes crossed into the other, which is perfectly fine because it's really all important information that you don't hear anywhere else other than you.
We spoke about the health of building. We spoke about the health of people, and now we're gonna bring this one home. And I know in between the sessions you and I started to talk, and you're updating me of what's been going on, and that's where this episode came from. So, right off the heels of an incredible liquidity event that you had.
You're back at it, you're putting yourself back out there, you're getting a whole new business lined up and launched, so what's going on with that? Can you tell us about that?
[00:06:01] Alan Wozniak: Absolutely. Just as we discussed with you know, doctors, in identifying the metabolic health of an individual and how healthy are they. That's the baseline condition. The same thing we did with our business, The Pure Control Services, we identified the baseline conditions of the bit of the building, and that was through a series of different types of tests and assays and ventilation assessments.
And we were able to come up with prescriptive solutions based on that specific data, like a doctor with a patient. And that when, in being in, coaching a business is I have the same mindset and identifying the baseline conditions of a business. I wish I had a coach 5, 10 years ago that could have helped me along.
Because as a business coach, as all business coaches have, and people who have been entrepreneurs and being in business, they have made thousands and thousands of mistakes. If I had a business coach, I would've minimized some of the mistakes that I made. But we focus on pretty much seven different factors of a business.
One is the financial health. What is the financial condition with a number of different KPIs? We look at the adaptability, the ability for the business, and what's their differentiator. How are they able to adapt? Pivot. And what is their differentiator? The staff and the team, How well are they getting along?
What's the civility of the business? There's so oftentimes, we see that the biggest problem in a business is the civility, meaning that people don't get along, and that causes a tremendous cost to the business. That's immeasurable. People look at it, yeah, that's just normal business.
Well, No, it shouldn't be. Most people should get along and have a plan to minimize that risk should it occur. Then the sales, you know, how well are the sales? What are their KPIs? What are their OKRs? How well are they functioning? What are the goals and objectives? Are they meeting their daily goals or their weekly goals or monthly goals or annual goals or quarterly goals, et cetera?
How is each one within the team achieving that and being making sure that everybody's on track? And the same thing with marketing.
Is the marketing program that has been established effectively working with the sales program, and are they functional? We had in the years passed before I started to have a more congruent business.
My sales and marketing never talked to each other. So, we would lose an example, we would go to a conference, and we'd get, call it a hundred leads, and we'd come back, and the top five or 10 would be marketed cuz those were the ones that were the hot leads, and the rest would go by the wayside.
And I thought that was just a total waste of time. Cuz there's a lot of those people need our service, and they want our service, but we didn't have time or the energy or the system in place to really help them out along the way, so we then our Sales Force Pro program was instituted with what's called Paradot and that we got them working together, so, that we're, it was seamless, and that really made a huge difference in the operations.
How well is the operations? Are they working under effective KPIs and KRS customer service? I've seen some great businesses that have terrible customer service. We've talked about it before. Generally speaking, post covid customer service sucks. It just, it's terrible. I mean, getting on the phone with a sailor company or go online to get a hotel reservation or reservation in general. I've called recently a restaurant, and the phone rang and rang.
And we wanted to have that kind of food, so we just drove there, but we want, it was gonna be a pickup order. And it rubs people wrong when you have, you're not focused on what you're doing or doing, supposedly doing well. And then just time management.
How well is our, is the time of all the different departments, operations, the customer service, sales, and marketing? The team in general, the finance group, and so forth. So we're looking at what areas may be deficient and what areas could be helped, and then how can we get it to the next level with a potential Exit plan, with a five or 10-year plan.
[00:10:12] Jeffrey Feldberg: So, Alan, it sounds like as you're going through this, that this, at the time when you were going with your company, this was your secret sauce. This is what, over the years, you were experimenting with, maybe taking one step forward, two steps back, learning, adjusting until you really fine-tune it. It worked.
And then, really, your liquidity event speaks for itself. When all is said and done, would I be on base with that?
[00:10:35] Alan Wozniak: Yeah, absolutely. It was really critical that we had adapted these items that I talked about in a congruent way that each one, each of the departments, were effectively working with each other and knew what the left hand and the right hand was doing. What I'm finding more recently is that businesses aren't operating in that way.
They think, Oh, we're doing well in sales, or our profits are doing well, but their business is not working well. And that I mean, take Tampa Bay Bucs Anders as an example. They've got a Super Bowl-caliber team, but they're not playing well.
Why is that happening? Why is the team suffering significantly as a result of individual players not playing up to their capabilities?
and that can happen with the professional team with like the Tampa Bay Bucs Anders, who are now what, three and five they should be seven and two or three, and to businesses are the same way. I was reading earlier TED Talk or listening to a TED talk by a doctor to go on, and he had indicated that his topic was want to be great at something to get a coach.
And his, uh, subtopic was how do professionals get better at what they do? You know, the technological approach is you go to school, you study, you practice, you learn, you graduate. And those are the things that, you know, we all do. And that's the normal thing. But how do you get better? Do you rest on your laurels?
And that's what happens to a lot of businesses. They rest on their laurels, and they realize that the new business like the Amazon, is coming down the road, approaching Walmart or K-Mart and bearing them versus the second option is to be coached. He had referenced you go into the world, and you make it your own.
These are the same processes that doctors and lawyers and musicians and scientists, and salespeople use. But if you don't do something to constantly do better and improve, y'all are gonna stay the same. That's where coaching really comes in the picture.
That's why athletes, both at the high school level and lower level and professional level, have coaches, and the best coaches help win. Not necessarily, they may not be the best coaches, but they have the best instructors and the best leaders of those organizations. In fact, I go, one day went on to say that he brought a coach into his surgical suite to the point where he realized he thought he was doing a really good job, and he just want to have confirmation that he was doing the best he could do.
And so he called in his professor in medical college. He went to Harvard, and the professor came in, and he thought at the end of his surgery, he thought, Oh, I was spot on. I was great. I did this and that and the other. And he sat down with the doctor, and the doctor had a bunch of notes that he had taken, and he was like, Oh my gosh, what did I do wrong?
And you know, he realized that, you know, things like the lighting was not right in the surgical suite. His elbow was up, and it should be down. Things like that, really. It just got him thinking, Oh my gosh, I'm doing things that I shouldn't be doing, and I could be doing things differently, and I could be doing them better and performing a better surgery.
And so, it really goes down to every level of business and community alike that coaches are really key and critical to the success.
[00:13:55] Jeffrey Feldberg: Absolutely so, regardless of your success. How do you take it to the next level while you get someone who's been there, not necessarily smarter, maybe they are, or maybe they aren't, but they've been down that path. There's this old saying when you're walking down the path, I'm already coming back because I've been down there, and I know how to help.
Alan, really what you've been describing then is decades of being in the business, and for listeners, you recall from the first two episodes. Alan started out in an industry that really, for the most part, was generic, very competitive in a red ocean. It certainly wasn't a blue ocean, but he made his a blue ocean.
And these are strategies from the trenches. Alan, why don't you walk us through a business owner comes to you, whether they're a startup, whether they're already well established, and okay? Alan heard what you're doing. Your liquidity event speaks for itself. That's a social proof that what you're talking about works.
How does that process begin, Alan, when you're now speaking with a business owner of how you can take your formula and have them leverage that for their business?
[00:14:57] Alan Wozniak: Great question. And first of all, I'm gonna start with what's not a coach, and a coach is not for punishment. It's not for remediation. People think, ah, you know, I'm gonna get a coach, and they're gonna tell me all the bad things I'm doing and, you know, yada yada. No, it's not the purpose of it.
A business leader doesn't seek professional help of a professional business coach because they failed and they seek it because they want to enhance the skills that they already possess. And they want to add to that knowledge, and so, that being the case. What we do in the process that we take, we go through a series of questions finding out, building into the deficient the potential issues that they're faced with.
What's keeping them up at night?
[00:15:41] Jeffrey Feldberg: One of our favorite questions, Alan, that's one of our X-Factor questions. Hey, Alan, when it comes to your business, what keeps you up at night? That question creates market disruptions.
[00:15:49] Alan Wozniak: Exactly, and you really need to know that because what you think just by communications that you might have had is gonna be totally different than what they think and what their needs are. Asking questions and asking the right questions is critical to effective coaching, identifying their strengths.
Identifying weaknesses with their organization. Helping to learn to adapt. Getting, you know, it's like the doctor, he learned to adapt, made a few tweaks and changes in his system that made him a better physician, a better surgeon. Establishing effective KPIs and OKRs that the objectives and key results program where I've seen so, often that, when you want to go, when you're gonna go to another city and you're gonna fly by airplane, you go to the airport, and you rely on the airlines and the airplane and the pilot to take you from point A to point B. You may happen to going, say, Tampa to New York City. They may run into some turbulence, and during that timeframe, they may be flying at 30,000 feet. They may have to change it to 35 or down to 25, whatever the case is. Or they may have to go around the turbulence.
But the point is they get to their destination, which is point B. Oftentimes, we tend to just go by the sea of our pants. The old cliche, you can't manage what you can't measure. Drucker state of that and then so true today. But it's the measurable side of it, not the management side of the measurable side of that equation.
But I've seen so often that there's not a marketing plan, there's not a sales plan, there's not an operational plan, customer service plan, and therefore, they are just doing the best they know how. And if you had a certain level of key performance indicators that helped you guide, you first all established those and then go along the line.
And again, like a salesperson, if you ask a salesperson what do you wanna achieve?
He may say well, I wanna make $300,000. That's great to think, okay, that's what you want to make.
But the key factor is the how to plan. How are you gonna get there?
Are you just gonna get in the plane and get in the plane you've never flown before, and then rely on the mechanic that services that plane and rely on your lack of experience to fly that plane?
The outcome's not gonna be really positive. So, why would we do any differently? We need to have a plan, and almost, I always provided or not provided, but I got our team to buy into a daily plan, a weekly plan, a monthly plan, a quarterly plan, and an annual plan. And the irony of that is, it was almost once we established it, and everybody bought into that, it was not necessarily, we were using that as the, okay, we pass this plateau, we get to the next.
The end goal cuz we may have a good month or a good week or a good quarter, or six months. But the end goal was to hit a certain number, and we always achieved or exceeded that number in an exponential way. It was amazing revelation every single time. But had we not had a number, we would not have known.
We all were working hard, so we must be hitting our goals, you know, that doesn't work. We have to be very specific, very detailed, very goal-oriented. And the companies that I've talked to and coached over the months and coaching thousands of clients at my former company is they don't have, they, a lot 'em don't have plans.
They don't have that Idea as to what we want to do other than, Yeah, we want to accomplish something. And that's where the strategy comes into the picture, and the plan comes into the picture, the how-to, and my point was, come hell or high water, I'm going to achieve this because I set out to do it.
[00:19:38] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yes.
[00:19:39] Alan Wozniak: I'm gonna do it. Like I go do it, and I get it done. And there's a sort of sticktoitiveness about that, that you have to ingrain yourself in that certain mindset that regardless of all these circumstances surrounding you and the inflation issues and the cost, the economy.
If you have a goal in mind, you have to stick to it, and you have to go and achieve it, whether you have to double your numbers. If it's an economic downturn, you may have to double your numbers. If you're in sales, you have to double your call numbers and things like that.
[00:20:10] Jeffrey Feldberg: And so, Alan, let me ask you this, and you mentioned this right at the start, I wanna circle back to it because you've really been weaving it throughout your narrative, which is terrific. And for listeners, how many opportunities do you have for someone who not only has a liquidity event? But has the liquidity event where he hits it out of the park in Alan's case, so again, this isn't some theory left to the classroom. This is in the trenches. So, Alan, I'm gonna ask you a bit of a tough question. It's almost as though if you're a parent and you have a number of children, which is your favorite child, let me ask it this way though. You mentioned the seven KPIs, and you were kind enough to go through each of the KPIs at the start of this episode.
If you had to pick the top, call it one to three KPIs, that if you couldn't have all seven, if you could only have one or two, maybe three, that this would make or break it for the business, what would your number one be? And then followed by the other ones.
[00:21:05] Alan Wozniak: I would have to say that sales is definitely one of the top then marketing.
And the reason, if you don't have a strong sales and marketing team, you have the best finance, the best operations, best customer service. But if you have no sales, you're dead in the water. So, sales really drive. That's the engine that drives the car.
The other, the third I'd have to say would be finance, is to have a strong finance. Cuz again, the similar situation, if you have a great sales team, but you lack in strong finance, you think, Oh my gosh, we're making all kinds of money. Well, you know, at the end of the day, you turn around, and instead of doing monthly PNLs or the first six months, your CPA turns around and tells you, Hey, you, Jeffrey, you lost a half a million dollars this last year, six months.
I'm like, What? If you don't know what you're doing, you're gonna realize that you didn't get there. So, all these things that are critical are essential. And I'd say that, yeah, the top three sales, marketing, and then finance are the three, not that the other ones aren't as important, they're all important, but those three would be the most critical, in my opinion, to the success of pretty much any business.
[00:22:16] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Alan, I'm gonna put you on the spot here because it's not necessarily all about this, and I know you would be in your right to say, well, Jeffrey, every business is different. Every industry is different. There's no mistake that you're saying sales and marketing is really number one. As you've been through it yourself and on my side, I have the privilege of speaking to countless business owners, day in, day out, and really the anthem, I'm gonna call it the anthem of pain that I hear from business owners.
Hey Jeffrey, we are the best-kept secret in this industry. You know what, if we knew how to do it, we could scale, we could get more leads, we could get more customers, bump up our revenues, and so that seems to be a universal challenge across business owners and so to put you a little bit on the spot there, Allen, and maybe digging back into your own experiences when it comes to the sales side and to the marketing side if you don't really know where to look or what to do or if what you've been doing, it hasn't been working.
And to make matters worse, you have this thing called social media, which has come onto the scene that everyone is all excited about this and is taking you in different directions. Where should someone start? Let's go back to basics here, that they can begin the process of having a solid sales plan and marketing plan.
What does that look like?
[00:23:32] Alan Wozniak: Great question. In fact, interestingly enough, those who I have talked to more recently I've asked that question, what keeps you up at night? And the number one item has been sales and marketing. That's been the number one across the board. And in other words, what's happened is they've been the best-kept secret.
They might have the best product, the best service, the best widget, but they don't know how to get it out there and move it to the next level.
And so one of the things that we did early on was in the marketing side of the equation. We made sure that there were no stones unturned. Meaning that every lead that we had, every conference, every presentation, every communication that we made that they were followed up in one way or another through a drip campaign through our internal marketing program. That each one was followed up. And that was a really critical thing for us to be able to really grow the businesses knowing that we've been able to do that. And in addition to that, we really. Focused on in the marketing aspect of it, an educational forum, and to the point where we even called our the educational division the Indoor Air Quality Institute. So, we were educating in the learning.
We were helping people learn. We didn't even have we early on, 10, 15 years ago, I put together a symposium on indoor quality. We had 250 people in attendance, physical attendance, and I brought in individuals from EPA, from OSHA, from Naas to speak at this two-day conference. And by doing that, what happened is we became the resident expert.
[00:25:13] Jeffrey Feldberg: Ah, okay. You became the golden child of the industry. I love that. Yes.
[00:25:17] Alan Wozniak: And then we did a lot of blogs, a lot of webinars educational. We weren't selling anything. But the fact that people came, they saw us, they realized these guys really, they're knowledgeable, what they do, they're good people. They know what they're doing. We need to engage them.
And that really by educating people, by communicating in an effective way through webinars, seminars, workshops, symposiums, trade show conferences, presentations, these, all of these together elevated the company to the expert field. We were pioneers in the industry. There wasn't many in there, so we had. It was one of those things we had to, to educate in order to have the client better understand what their need was and, in essence, sell the why, not the what.
We didn't sell what we did, we sold why we did what we did. And it really was a huge moment that it helped propel us to that next level in that educational format. So, whatever it is, whether it's cars, boats, houses, buildings, you know, you have to have a differentiator, and you have to educate people, and you can't be in a selling mode.
People that, you know, they just wanna blah, you know, talk all about their business and why they do what they do. You don't have to do that. A quick story, I think this was a Zig Ziegler story that an old lady is in the market for a car, and she uh pulls up to the parking lot, and she's looking at this car, this red chevrolet, and a salesman comes up there and says, Hey, my name is Bob. How are you? Let me tell you about this car. It's got a V8 engine 350. It goes from zero to 60 in X miles. It gets X miles per gallon per car. It's the safest, blah, blah, blah, blah. And an exhausting 15, 20-minute dissertation. He stops and says what else would you like to know about the car?
And she says well, will it take me from my home to the grocery store and back safely? And he says, Dumbfound? He goes yeah. And she goes, Okay, I'll buy it. All he had to do is introduce himself and say, Hey, Mrs. Smith. I'm Bob.
How are you? I noticed you were looking at this car. What interests you most about it?
[00:27:26] Jeffrey Feldberg: Uhhuh.
[00:27:26] Alan Wozniak: Saved him, you know, a half hour. An exhausting mode and asked questions about what she wanted, and it wasn't about him and all his knowledge. We had a lot of knowledge. We had doctors on staff, so we could tell you anything ever wanted.
We could tell you about every microbe in the world and what it did and didn't do. But we were focused on the why and the why was the healthy building.
Personal health and the benefits of those, of that value that we've sold. And this really parlays into the business coaching, asking questions, identifying strengths and weaknesses, learning to adapt, establishing OKRs and KPIs.
Put the focus on solutions. Those are the kinds of things that we're now working on with businesses that really were the same thing with patients or with building owners. And Dr. Ovadia's reference to him he's a thoracic heart surgeon wrote a book. Stay off my operating table, and he realized that he was treating the symptom of heart problems and not treating the cause of the problem.
And by treating, he's now on a bandwagon of really educating people. That you need to be metabolically healthy, and there's metabolic health pillars that you need to maintain in order to maintain a healthy position. And here's how to do it versus, you know, you have a heart attack, all of a sudden you gotta operate, and you gotta fix the person's heart.
And that's the same thing with buildings and the same thing with businesses. If you have an air handler and a bill on the building that's been deferred maintenance wise, like a patient and a heart. The business has a heart, and if that heart isn't being maintained or if you defer that maintenance, it's going to fail at some point or another.
[00:29:08] Jeffrey Feldberg: And so Alan, let me ask you this, so you started to put together this system of yours that you're now helping business owners with, you said, hey, you know what? Foundational to my system are these seven KPIs that really, over the years, took my business from zero to hero and the top two KPIs, or three KPIs or the sales, the marketing, and then the numbers on the finance side, and then you also shared something that's priceless.
You and I spoke about this on one of the other episodes, and at that time, we commented, Alan, you've never sold a day in your life. And you said, Jeffrey, you're right, because I just educate and you talked again. Whether it be a webinar you're putting together or some kind of conference or informing people, whatever it is, you're going out there, and you're educating.
So this is the system that business owners working with you will get to learn, implement, and master. But let me ask you this when it comes to the actual business owner because you can have the best system in the world. However, it may not be for everyone, or there's gotta be certain, I'll call it intent. There has to be a certain intent for a business owner to take your system and make it successful.
What would that require for a business owner who says yeah, you know what, Alan sounds great. Sign me up. What would be some of the prerequisites for you to say, Yes, I wanna work with you? We can make this a success.
[00:30:27] Alan Wozniak: In the business would have to understand that they have to buy into not necessarily change but improvement.
If they're not willing to change or improve, there's no sense in going forward. It's not going to work for them, and it's not gonna work for us. Cuz what we want is we want success stories.
We wanna work with those who are coachable. Not everybody's coachable, quite frankly. The Buck Anders are a recent or a good example of their not coachable yet. And maybe they are but you're not being coached yet. So the ability to understand, listen, and learn and grow from that is really a key element for their success and us to help them become successful.
I had a client the other day that his focus was sales, and marketing was a major issue, and he was half, he was achieving only half of his goal. And I said, why do you feel you're achieving half of your goal? And he said I don't think I have my programs in place. I don't have a plan.
I don't have this, that, and the other. I said, Exactly. These are why we do what we do. And we help mentor, coach, consult, move forward that process, and keep you accountable.
If you're not kept accountable, it's like a parent telling a kid, No, don't do that. And he turns around, and the kid does it again, and he doesn't say anything.
And all of a sudden, now that response is okay now for the kid. The parent thinks what's he keep doing that? He didn't listen the first time. Sometimes you need to tell 'em 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 times or more then for them to understand it or get it or make sure that they're on the same plan.
But again, the football analogy, 11 players on the field, and you got the blockers are blocking, but the running back just decides I'm not gonna do anything. Well, The quarterback says, I'm just gonna take off this game or this play. It would be a total colossal failure.
And they would lose games, so everybody being on the same page. That's why it's critical the buy-in, not just from the top. But all the way down to everybody. It's not the President saying, Yeah, this is what we're gonna do and let's go for it. He has to have everybody buy into that plan because if everybody, not necessarily everybody has to buy into it, but they have to see change and leading through, listening from the leadership is critical.
To them not telling 'em, all you gotta do is so you gotta do that, do this. Get them to understand. I told the story last time that I would encourage people to come see me. We had 125 plus and minus employees, and I'd tell people, Come see me if you have an issue.
I'm here. My door's open all the time, but I said, Only under one condition. I want to hear your issues, but I also want you to bring, if you have a problem, that's great, but bring three solutions to the table. Then we can sit down and discuss cuz I don't want to be the only one telling you how to fix your problem.
I want you to understand that, yeah, you got an issue, but I want you to think this process through what is it gonna take to resolve the problem that you're faced with and before you knew it, time after time, people, my team would do that. The amount people that came by my office to discuss their problems reduced in an exponential way.
It dropped exponentially. So, those are the things that really, the buy-in from the team, the leadership, but also the all the way down through the organization.
[00:33:45] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Alan, let me ask you this because I imagine there are many business owners, absolute best of intentions, smart people, even successful. They're not at the point yet where the business runs without them, and that's a whole other episode that we can talk about, and that's part of our nine-step roadmap here at Deep Wealth.
[00:34:03] Alan Wozniak: Yeah.
[00:34:04] Jeffrey Feldberg: And they're saying, You know what, Alan, it sounds like a wonderful system. I just don't know if I can find the time to do that. And it's very easy to flippantly say you know what? If that person's not willing to invest the time, then it's not really even a person I want to be speaking to, and they're really not ready for what I'm doing.
That said, you've been there, you built a business, you had a family, and all those things were colliding at once, and you figured out a way so for the person who's just feeling overwhelmed, not enough hours in the day to get everything done, but what you're saying resonates with them. What could be one or two things strategize that they can start doing to get their control of the time back, their schedule back to make time for something like this?
[00:34:45] Alan Wozniak: I'd probably start with some type of time management. What are they doing in during their day that is precluding them from being able to tackle something to take them to a whole new level and look at the time management of them and their team and seeing where that can be more effective?
An example, later on in my business, we had four divisions within the company, and I got very frustrated with meetings that we would have because we would meet five, 10 of us in a group, and we weren't accomplishing. We would just talk, and things were talked about.
It was good, but we didn't have a next steps and a follow up plan.
And what I did, I said, Okay, timeout, we need to establish A, anytime we meet, we have to have an agenda. What are we gonna talk about? What are the end results? And what are going to be the next steps? And I reduced it from an hour to 10 minutes.
We had 10 minute huddles. That's what we called it the huddles, huddle meeting. And oftentimes, it was just a standup meeting. It wasn't even sitting down. I don't get too comfortable in your position cuz we're, it's gonna be quick and easy. But we had somebody, you know, we'd have the agenda.
Everybody knew what gonna talk about.
We knew what the end result was we wanted to be. In essence, we're gonna talk about it collaboratively with speaking, and then what are the next steps that we needed to take in order to achieve those goals, those small KPIs that we had initiated and that worked out super good.
In fact, the point where at the tail end, they four teams were meeting or five teams, and we actually had more than that because we had our administrative team, our finance team, et cetera. The only thing I requested from them, I didn't attend the meetings. I would just ask send me a copy of your agenda.
Send me a copy of your meeting notes and what you want to accomplish, and if there's anything I want to add to it, I'll bring it up. But for the most part, 98% of the time, there was very few times I had to even engage.
This 10-minute meeting, I went from 10, you know, an hour, 60 minutes with 10 people to 10 minutes with five people.
And I got more accomplished in 10 minutes of time than we ever did with hour times. You can imagine multiply that hour times five times X number of departments. It's just a waste.
I've been in meetings where I get so upset. I've been in meetings, not ours, but other meetings that there's 10, 15, 20 people, and there's no agenda.
No one's taking notes, meetings. There's no follow-up. And I go, why did we meet? Why did these 15 people, me? They're just to chalk. That doesn't make any sense.
[00:37:19] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yes. And you know what the takeaway here for our listeners is 90% of the solution, maybe even more than that, is identifying the problem, and so for all you business owners out there saying, Okay, I've identified the problem for any number of reasons, I just don't have the time. Perhaps it's even having a session with Alan.
Hey, Alan, here's my situation. I wanna work with you. I don't have the time. Here's what's going on. Alan can help do a deep dive, see what's there. Maybe you're having too many meetings, Alan; like you're saying, you can take them down to 10 minutes, get your time back, put that across the company, do that for everyone else, and now we start getting some traction, and some momentum.
[00:37:54] Alan Wozniak: You can imagine just that scenario there if someone approached me in that same capacity
[00:37:59] Jeffrey Feldberg: Yes.
[00:37:59] Alan Wozniak: And they were able to take my, you know, say I was attending, five meetings a week times an hour, that's five hours times four, that's 20 hours a month that I'm taking, and I would've reduced that down to whatever what is that number? It would be two hours.
Some reduced number, and now all of a sudden, just something simple. I gained 18, 16 hours a month. Now, what do you wanna do with that time?
[00:38:26] Jeffrey Feldberg: Ah, that's a whole other question. That could be a whole other episode in and of itself. And so when you found yourself in that situation, and I'll ask this question, and then we'll start to need to start wrapping up here. Alan, you cut your time back.
You got the meetings down to 10 minutes from one meeting to the next meeting, to the other meeting, and wow, you had all this time back. So what did you start doing with that time that accelerated your business? Can you let us in on that?
[00:38:50] Alan Wozniak: What we were able to do is by empowering others, it saved, it relieved a lot the energy that was my responsibility.
I coached others to be responsible in the sales and marketing side. Like many small businesses, was it. You did sales and marketing and operations and did the cleaning of the kitchen, the janitorial, everything.
And on the side, I was able to get really A-player-level, caliber personnel.
And let empower them to do what we wanted to do based on the goals and objectives of KPIs and OKRs that we established. And they took that as marching orders and accomplished it in a way that was, it blew me away.
And it got us to the point where we were able to grow the business 370% in five years, 70% a year. And that was even through a covid type environment that most businesses were being shut down. We were thriving, no one else. So it was established. We knew what we playing was, and we just worked it.
And we had, and I got some very good A player level people that if I had C and D level players, they wouldn't have bought into it. And they wouldn't have committed to it, and they would've been as aggressive and forthright, and it wouldn't accomplish. And it took the pressure off of me that now Alan's not having to do all the selling and marketing.
I'm able to be the visionary. I can now go back to the 10, 15, 20,000-foot level and say, Okay, here's what's going on. I don't have to deep dive anymore because everybody's doing what they're supposed to do based on the program that we established.
[00:40:29] Jeffrey Feldberg: That's terrific. And once again, just the power of preparation when you prepare the business, whether it be for growth or a future liquidity event, and it runs without you, Alan, to your point, you get your time back. You get to do what you do best. I mean, you started the business when you found a painful problem that you were passionate to solve.
With your time back, you'll find the next painful problem, Create another market disruption. Do that again, and you keep on going along. You're resilient. You're ensuring that you stay in business, so that you are in business, and it's just a win all the way down. So, Alan, as we head into the wrap-up of this, when you look at your system, when you look at the help that you're able to offer other business owners if you had to wrap it up in a few words to business owners who are thinking about getting some help or getting some coaching, what would you say to them?
[00:41:14] Alan Wozniak: I'd share with them some of the values and benefits of coaching and having somewhat of a mentor that and help them along their path. And again, going back to my earlier days, I wish I had somebody like myself similar to me that could've helped me along my path. Cuz I would've gotten to the point a lot faster that I wanted to achieve.
But basically, you know, it strengthens, and we identifies the strengths and weaknesses and cover blind spots like the doctor, he didn't realize he had his elbow up, and it should have been doubt, you know, that simple things holds leaders accountable for their progress, improves the problem-solving skills with the solution centric type approach.
Helping leaders adapt to change.
Oftentimes they don't like change, but this is, helps them to adopt a change, improves their listening skills. Leaders have to listen. They can't keep, just talk talk, and demand. It has to listen. People feel more comfortable during the pre and post and the Exit.
When meeting with my staff, I simply walked around and say, Hey, how's it going? Is there anything I can do to help you?
Because it was a somewhat of a laborsome M&A and people were like, Ah, what's going on? Kind of thing. So it helped by just sitting down and listening you know, helps meet goals with benchmarks that they set along the way.
Inspires confidence, improves the company culture. That's a critical thing. And civility or unstability could be a major problem. And it has to be addressed. You just can't let that continue on because the one bad apple spoils the bunch and it keeps companies more accountable and more aligned, transparent, and engaged.
It just really makes sense. Once you look at it, sit back, it's like, Oh yeah, yeah, that makes sense. And I feel I can get to my next level a lot faster, a lot better. And with a lot less headache and heartache than I would be had I not had a coach to help me along the path.
[00:43:13] Jeffrey Feldberg: So there's some words to the wise, and you know what? It's a terrific segue into the wrap up mode. Now, Alan, geez, I'm thinking about this. You may be setting a record here of being a guest who's come back three times and so you're gonna hear, you're gonna hear the wrap up question for the third time.
That said, though, maybe a little bit of a twist could be, as I ask, that bot scenario and the wrap-up question. Perhaps you can think about it as it pertains to what you're doing now in terms of taking your system, making it available, being that mentor, being that coach. We'll see where it goes. The choice is yours, and the same answer that you did in the last episode is perfectly fine as well.
So, no pressure either way. Let me just lay it out for you one more time. And so, the wrap-up question is this, think of the movie Back to the Future, and you have that magical DeLorean. Which can take you to any point in time. So, Alan, it's now tomorrow morning. You look outside, and there it is the DeLorean car.
It's not only curbside, but the door is open's, waiting for you to hop on in, and you're now going to go back to any point in your life, Alan, as a young child or a teenager, whatever point in time it would be. What would you tell your younger self in terms of life wisdom or life lessons or, Hey Alan, please do this, but don't do that.
What does that sound like?
[00:44:30] Alan Wozniak: Again, great question. I'm gonna change it up just a little bit, but like I have shared with my children growing up, and this is true both individually and business wise, show me your friends, and I'll show you your future. Who you hang with is what you are going to be, who you do business with.
You know who your colleagues are is what you will be. And if you know, I always would say if I'm the smartest in the room, I gotta find another room. I don't wanna be the smartest in the room. I want to hang around a bunch of smart, good people that can help me, that can mentor me, that can grow me, that can mold me to become the best that I can become.
And if you hang around bad people or bad businesses and bad employees and bad managers and bad owners, yeah, it's gonna be the chances of success are going to be far removed.
[00:45:22] Jeffrey Feldberg: Alan, that is such sage advice. And you know what, Alan, we've always done things differently, you and I on these episodes. Why don't we pause the podcast here for just a moment and for the listeners before you take your next meeting, email, phone call, a break, whatever it is that you're doing, stop.
And to Alan's point, think about the people that you're calling, your friends, the people that you spend the most amount of time with. And sometimes we have blind spots, Alan, that the people that we think are our friends or we look to as our friends, we can't really see what's going on there. And so I would encourage everyone, write down your list and maybe the top three friends, the top five friends, go to people that you really trust.
Who know you well, who love you, who aren't afraid to give you input and suggestions, even if it goes against the grain, and ask them, Hey, here are my friends. You know, some of these people. Any thoughts, you know, are these people right for me, Wrong for me? And maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised, maybe you won't.
But Alan, we take your advice, we apply it to our life and ensuring that we have the absolute right people surrounding us. Your point to show 'em your friends, I'll tell you your future. Love it. That is sage advice. Thank you so, much for sharing that. Well, Alan, this is officially a wrap, and as always, thank you so much for your wisdom, your insights, your strategies, and for people who would like to find you online and learn more about what you're doing, work with you, ask you some questions, what's the best place that someone can do that?
[00:46:50] Alan Wozniak: Our website is businesshealthmatters.org [00:46:57] Jeffrey Feldberg: Terrific. So businesshealthmatters.org. And again, we'll put that in the show notes. It'll be a point-and-click. Can't get any easier. And Alan, as we wrap this up, a heartfelt thank you. And as always, please continue to say healthy and safe.
[00:47:11] Alan Wozniak: Very good. Thank you so, much, Jeffrey.
[00:47:13] Sharon S.: The Deep Wealth Experience was definitely a game-changer for me.
[00:47:16] 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.
[00:47:26] Kam H.: If you don't have time for this program, you'll never have time for a successful liquidity
[00:47:31] Sharon S.: It was the best value of any business course I've ever taken. The money was very well spent.
[00:47:37] 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.
[00:47:53] 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.
[00:48:15] 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.
[00:48:26] 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.
[00:48:39] 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.
[00:48:57] 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.
[00:49:24] 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.
[00:49:43] Jeffrey Feldberg: Are you leaving millions on the table?
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