My passion for helping companies grow and prosper goes back to the 1980’s while working as a CPA in Public Accounting. I gained a lot of experience working at three different CPA firms (first a small local, then a regional, and finally an international CPA firm). However, what I came to realize was that most of the services provided for my clients were compliance work and working on the past such as preparing Tax Returns and Audits. So, I made the decision to transition to industry. I went to work as a CFO in industry because I wanted to be more involved with all that goes into making a business not just succeed but excel. I wanted to participate in everything necessary for the growth and prosperity of the company and all its stakeholders. I thus found my passion and learned a lot. One such CFO experience was being instrumental in the successful growth of a company from $800 million to over $2 billion in revenue... SEE MORE
However, twice in my CFO career I have been forced to resign or quit because I would not falsify the financial statements. The last time that happened was in February of 2004. I then told myself, I am not going to ever let that happen again. I reasoned that there were a lot of privately held companies that I could help as a Strategic Business Advisor. So, I decided to start my own business as a Strategic Business Advisor to owners and CEOs of privately held businesses.
Although I knew that was what I wanted and needed to do, I was still apprehensive, especially with my wife telling me “Get a real job”! So, I continued to send out resumes and answer ads for CFO positions. One such job I had interviewed for, it had come down to me and one other guy, but I did not get selected. However, a couple of months later the owner calls me and asks if I would visit him. So, I’m thinking the other guy did not work out. Anyway, I go to his office, and he asks me if I had any experience with putting loan request packages together. I said “Yes”. Would I mind looking at his, “Sure”. So, he hands me a bound book about 2” thick. As I am looking through the pages; some of my remarks are; "I would limit my opening statement to 2 or 3 paragraphs, certainly not more than one page. . . If you want to include this, I would put in the back as supplementary information. . . really all the bank wants to know is that you can repay the loan . . ." suddenly the owner says WO! STOP! He picks up a pen and paper and rolls up a chair and sits beside me.
He then tells me that everyone, including his professional advisors, he had asked for advice had said “it looks fine”. But whenever he is presenting to a lender, after just a couple of minutes, he sees their eyes glaze over and he knows he’s sunk. He then tells me that a bank has bought out his bank and they have given him a short period of time to find alternative financing. He exclaims “I don’t have much time left and I am about to lose my business!” And this was a very successful business and businessman!
I helped him put together a fresh loan request package, helped him find some bank financing, and saved his business and saved him millions of dollars.
It was very satisfying, and I was happy that I was able to help him. Well, that experience sealed the deal for me, I never responded to another ad for a W-2 CFO job.
Subsequently, I was doing some research on the internet and came across B2B CFO®. This was exactly what I needed to differentiate myself and have other experienced professionals as backup. So, in October of 2004, I became a partner with B2B CFO®. There were about 12 partners then and now over 120 professionals nationwide.
I have come to realize the great need for Strategic Business Advisory Services to owners of privately held companies. B2B CFO® provides me with even more tools and resources to do what I enjoy, helping companies and improving the lives of their owners!
Another one of my real-life experiences involved a retail establishment that used an inventory software system in addition to QuickBooks for their accounting software. Over time the actual inventory markup per items in the inventory system produced erroneous retail sale prices (i.e., the program was not consistently updated for cost increases, had input errors, etc.). As a result, the actual Gross Profit Margin (GM) averaged 10% lower than what the owner expected (26% versus 36%). By highlighting a few of the higher margin errors in his inventory report the owner was able to see why he was not making any money and was in trouble. This one error resulted in a “bottom line” loss of $400,000 on annual sales of $4,000,000. By just performing my complimentary B2B CFO® Gap Diagnostic Analysis I was able to help this businessman immediately and substantially improve his bottom line by . . . $400,000! I did not get hired by this company, as he felt he got what he needed. But that is fine, I enjoy giving and helping business owners. And that is why we, as B2B CFO® partners, perform our B2B CFO®GAP Diagnostic Analysis without charge. I want to give value whenever I can.
As a B2B CFO®, helping clients improve GM and whatever significant Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are relative to their business is a role I play frequently and one that I enjoy. Having a healthy GM enables company leaders to focus on growing, not simply surviving. Even though one specific fix does not fit all companies, there will be one or more possible actions that can make an immediate impact on a company’s bottom line.
If you would like to make sure that your business is at or above your industry average and clear the path to reaching your targeted bottom line profit, please contact me for a complimentary GAP Diagnostic Analysis.