Starting a business takes not only planning for its growth. Some of the most successful people also plan for their exit. But where do you start? In this episode, Paul Higgins invites USA’s Top Closer and CEO of Seiler Tucker Incorporated, Michelle Seiler Tucker, to help guide you. Michelle shares her journey on how she started her career in M&A and now owns many other businesses in several different industries. Michelle also discusses how she sold over a thousand businesses in almost every vertical, showing a remarkable track record of success. Living out her legacy, Michelle then shares how she is educating business owners on what they should be doing, how they should be doing it, how they should build their business to run on the Six Ps, and how they should follow the STGP as the exit model.
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Buy, Fix, And Sell: Making Your Exit With Michelle Seiler Tucker
Our guest started her corporate career with Xerox. She had an amazing promotion early on but quickly realized that even though she was one of the best closer, that was a nickname in the company’s history. She knew she wanted to help others and most importantly work for herself. That’s what she did. She went out and helped people buy, fix and sell businesses. She’s going to give you two incredible pieces of value. One is the 6 P’s methodology that is in her book, Exit Rich. The second is the GPS Exit Model. She gives so much value here. It’s incredible. Please get ready for this. What I’ll do now is hand you over to Michelle Seiler Tucker.
Welcome, Michelle Seiler Tucker, to the show. It’s great to have you here, Michelle.
Thank you, Paul. It’s great to be here. Thanks for having me on.
I know it’s hot in your office over there and you’re going to drop lots of brilliant tips for us because I did have an exit of a business. I’m intrigued and I know that my clients want to have exits of businesses. You’re that perfect person to have on. Why don’t we kick off with something that your family or friends know about you that we may not?
I love to write poetry, songs and lyrics. I’m creative and I love writing. I’ve always written short stories. I don’t write music, but I write lyrics and I write songs and things of that nature.
Do you also perform or was it just the writing part?
No, you don’t want me performing. I stick to what I know which is writing and selling. I stick to buying, selling, fixing and growing companies. That’s my core competencies.
I did my research. I went through some of your Facebook photos and you’ve got to tell us, how do you know many celebrities? You seem to be brilliant at Photoshopping.
I don’t know if that’s legal to Photoshop yourself as somebody that you’ve never been with. Is that even legal?
It’s not, but that wouldn’t stop others from doing it.
I would never do that. I don’t do things that are not legal. I’ve spoken on a bunch of stages. I’ve shared the stages with many different celebrities and had dinner with them. Donald Trump is there and I’ve been in Trump’s helicopter. I was with friends in there, plus I’ve been at Celebrity Apprentice where I got to meet Mr. Donald Trump. That’s how I meet celebrities. I’ve networked a lot and I’ve spoken in a lot of different stages and shared a lot of different stages.
You worked for someone else for 21 years, is that right?
No. I’ve never worked for anyone for 21 years.
I thought you are in Capital Business Solutions. Was that your business?
That was my business. I’ve only worked for somebody for maybe a year. I’ve always been an entrepreneur. I’ve owned many different businesses. I did get caught up with Corporate America. I was recruited by Xerox. I went to work for Xerox and was there for about six months. My nickname became “The Closer” because every time they couldn’t close a deal, they’re like, “Bring Michelle in, she can close it. She can close anything.”
About six months, my supervisor or manager came to me and she said, “Michelle, you should interview for the regional vice president position. You’ll never get it because you’ve only been here for six months. Xerox promotes after you’ve been here for two years and you’re up against people who have been here for 5, 10, 15 years.” I said, “Why would I interview for something I’m never going to get?” She said, “Because it’s a grueling process. It’s a three-month process. You’ll learn so much during that experience. Everybody knows Xerox has the best training in the world.” I said, “I’ll do it. I’ll throw my hat in.”
I did that. It was a three-month grueling process with all high-level executives. I had to do Q&A and ask them all these questions, and find out what their hot buttons were or what their sweet spots were, what they want and needed. I had to do a presentation and a demonstration. They then did a Q&A with me and asked me a thousand questions and I ended up getting it. I ended up beating everybody that had been there for many years and was promoted to high-level vice president of the region.
How long did it last?
Not long because I didn’t like it. That’s the thing I always tell business owners, “Never promote your top salesperson.” If you have a salesperson that you call the closer, you keep the closer. You don’t want to get rid of the closer. You don’t want to promote the closer. You want to keep your closer. I got promoted and very quickly, I learned how different it was. I like management. I don’t like management in Fortune 500. I like management in smaller companies where I can make decisions and get stuff accomplished.
In Fortune 500 companies, you’re like having meetings, have another meeting to schedule a follow-up meeting, and then have another meeting to discuss a follow-up meeting. It’s frustrating because there are so much bureaucracy and red tape, and you can never get anything done. I’m a doer, problem solver, and a salesperson through and through. I like finding out what the problems are. I like solving problems, coming up with solutions, and building lifetime relationships with my clients. You don’t do that in management. In management, you are overall the employee. I have over 85 to 95 salespeople plus the upper-level management. With the salespeople, it’s like herding cats or running a daycare.
I should have done what you did but I didn’t. I lasted eighteen years. It’s because I got promoted every two years. I worked at Coca-Cola.
They said that’s what would happen to me. I was on the corporate fast track and I was going to move up the corporate ladder quickly, but I missed entrepreneurship so much that I told my husband, “I’m going to look for a business that I can buy and run on the side.” I was still going to keep my six figures from my great benefits at Xerox. I stumbled across a franchise. My husband knew the owner. They only had two locations. I said, “I want to buy a location.” They go, “No. We know of you. We know of your reputation. We want you to partner with us and we’ll give you a franchise.”
I said, “I don’t think I’m going to leave my six-figure position for a company that sold two franchises, but I’ll tell you what I will do. I’ll keep my day job at Xerox. I tried out for six months and see how it goes.” I did that and within six months, I sold many franchises. I made more than six months than I made an entire year at Xerox. That was time to go. I was Xerox for one year.
What’s changed about closing back then to now, if anything?
Maybe it depends on what you’re selling. I don’t think that there’s a lot that has changed. People ask me all the time, “Why were you able to close many more deals than other people? Why have you been nicknamed The Closer?” It’s mainly because I asked the right questions and then I shut up. Many salespeople talk their way out of a deal and it’s all about them. The clients don’t care about you. They care about what’s in it for them, “What’s in it for me?”
That’s the channel that they’re always tuned into. I always focused on them. I asked them all the questions. I build rapport with them. I figured out what their hot buttons were, what they wanted, and what they needed. A lot of times, they don’t even know what they want or need. It’s our job to figure it out. Many salespeople always want to push their own agenda. They go in with a canned pitch and it’s all about them. It’s not. It’s all about the client. If you can’t figure that out, you shouldn’t be in sales. That’s a big difference.It’s not about you. It’s all about the client. If you can’t figure that out, you shouldn’t be in sales. Click To Tweet
Is this something that’s innate for you or is it your upbringing? What makes you great at this?
Is it innate? I don’t know. That’s a good question. Maybe some of it is. I’ve had a lot of sales training as well. I’ve been through Dale Carnegie Sales Training Program. It was a three-month course. After my first course with them, they asked me to be a trainer for them. I became a trainer. I’ve been through the Xerox sales course. I’ve been through many different sales courses. It’s a combination of being innate, liking people, being a people person, and wanting to do the right thing for that person and solve problems. It comes from that.
That training is valuable. Coca-Cola is not a bad sales training company either. A lot of people I work with say, “I find it difficult to sell.” I’m like, “How much training or how much experience have you got?” Most of them have come from corporate. They are running their own business and never had any training. It is something that you need to acquire skills. It’s not just something that falls in your lap. Part of it might be innate, so that gives you an advantage. For the rest, you do have to get those skills.
It’s a mindset too because if you just focused on sales, for people who are not used to sales, that can be daunting and overwhelming. A lot of people don’t like rejection. They’re focused on the rejection, noes, stress, and “I dread doing this.” If you dread something, are stressed out about something, or not confident, then you’re not going to be good at it. A lot of it is about mindset. It takes five noes to get a yes. Every no you gave me, I’m that much closer to the yes. People always tell me, “Michelle, you’re so persistent.”
The other thing too, especially for what I sell because I sell companies, sales need to be more education than just pushing a product down somebody’s throat like a used-car salesperson. I don’t think of myself as a salesperson. I’m always a salesperson, but I also think of myself as somebody who educates business owners what they should be doing, why they should be doing it, how they should be doing it, how they should build their business to run on the 6 Ps, how they should follow the ST GPS Exit Model that we talk about in Exit Rich. It’s more of an education thing. I get the sellers to see things from the buyer’s shoes. I get the buyers to see things from the seller’s perspective. It should be more of an educational sales process than anything else.
I used to buy billion-dollar companies for Coca-Cola. The first thing we’ll always do when we’re buying a business is to look from the seller’s perspective. After the next week, we’re going to be sellers. What’s everything we’re looking for, personal wins, business wins, and then flip it to our side. I think you’re spot on. Why don’t we move into the Build section? When people say, “Michelle, you help people exit businesses,” and on your LinkedIn, it says 20% to 40% higher than others where you help them sell their business. What do you say to people? How do you introduce yourself?
Is it like what is my elevator pitch?
If someone says, “You sell it at 20% to 40% higher than everyone else,” what do you know that many other people don’t?
There’s a lot and it’s all in this big fat book, 325 pages. First of all, I don’t just sell businesses. I specialize in buying, selling, fixing and growing. I buy businesses and flip them. I partner with business owners and help them fix the business, grow the business into our Build To Sell Program, and then help them sell for their desired sales price. What do I do differently? There are a lot of things I do differently.
First and foremost, I know how to run companies. Many brokers and M&A advisors have never run a business before. It was hard to tell somebody what to do in a business if you’ve never sat on the other side of the desk and dealt with payroll, employees, legal issues, accounting issues, etc. If you’ve never dealt with all that stuff, how can you advise anybody else?
A lot of brokers and advisors have been salespeople, but they’ve never owned a business. That’s a big difference because I’ll look at things from the business owner’s perspective. It doesn’t matter what the industry is. I evaluate businesses on what I call the 6 P’s. I help my clients tune up those 6 P’s. If they only function on 3 of the 6, then I want them to get the other three operational and balanced out so that their business is sellable and we can maximize value.
I don’t just go in there and say, “You want $10 million for your business? Let me write up for $10 million. I hope somebody buys it.” That’s what a lot of other brokers and M&A advisors do. We don’t do that. If I tell you your business is worth $5 million and you want $20 million, that’s great. Go and see another broker. I’m not your person.
What are the 6 Ps?
The 6 P’s, number one is People. You don’t build a business, you build people and people build a business. You have to have the right people in the right spot. You have to ask the who question. Who opens the doors? Who handles customer service? Who handles client issues? Who handles manufacturing, distribution, logistics, environmental, embezzlement? The list goes on and on. The clue is you should never be next to the who.
The number one reason that businesses are not sellable is because the business is too dependent on the owner. The owner has created a job, not a business. Buyers want to buy a business, not a job. There are lots of businesses in the US, and I’m sure Australia too, that are completely dependent upon the owner. We have a dentist that came to us who wants to sell his dental practice. One dentist has been in business for 40 years and has six dental hygienists. I pull that dentist out of the businesses, is there a business? All the patients have been coming to him.The number one reason that businesses are not sellable is because the business is too dependent on the owner. The owner has created a job, not a business. Buyers want to buy a business, not a job. Click To Tweet
If he owns the property, he’s probably going to get real estate value out of the property.
The purchase price, we could sell it, but he’s not going to maximize value. The purchase price is going to be tied to him staying on for many years. There are a lot of businesses that are dependent upon the owner.
What’s number two?
I want to say one more thing about that. The other thing is you’ve got to get a layer of management in there. You’ve got to get a management team. It can’t just be the owner managing everybody. Most entrepreneurs do not make good managers. Most entrepreneurs don’t make great leaders. They say, “You need to focus on your strengths, hire your weaknesses and get good managers.”
Number two is Product, which is the product in your industry. You need to ask yourself, is your industry product thriving or dying? Do you have an Amazon? Are you on the top of your game or do you have a Blockbuster? Many industries now are a Blockbuster because of the pandemic. You have to look at your industry and find out, is it thriving or dying? If it’s dying, you need to ask yourself three transformational questions.
Amazon did this back in the ‘90s. Amazon asked themselves, “What business are we in?” They said, “We’re in a bookselling business. We sell books.” The second question was, “What did we do well better than everybody?” “We do fulfillment well. We are the best in fulfillment. The best in the industry.” “What business should we be at?” “We should be in fulfillment of everything.”
Those three transformational questions are what transformed Amazon from a small bookseller to a multibillion-dollar conglomerate that they are now. Those are transformational questions. The problem is most owners can’t do that because when you’re in your fog, it’s foggy. You need an outsider’s perspective to see things that you’re not clearly seeing.
Number three is Processes. It is so important. Your business needs to be systematic. Your business has to run without you. It’s going to have all the systems and processes in place. The problem with processes is most owners don’t think about them until they have to because something bad happened. The customer complained and blasted all over the internet so now they don’t have good ratings. “We need a process for that. We need a process for customer service.” You need to design your processes from the beginning, not when something happens. Your processes should be designed with the customer experience in mind. Did you ever watch the movie, The Founder, based upon the McDonald’s story?
It’s a great movie.
That car park or the basketball court was an absolute classic.
Tennis court. That’s what we’re going to talk about is process. Back in the ‘40s, they had a Sonic type of drive-ups and the food was always cold. The order took long and it was terrible. A lot of times, they got the order wrong. The McDonald brothers, not Ray Kroc, he came in after, they said, “We want to start a fast-food restaurant. This is our mission and vision. We want the client experience, the customer experience to be this. We want them to get hot food that tastes great fast, two minutes or less.”
They took all their employees to the tennis courts. They took chalk and drew it all out. They were there all day. They raised it and drew it out again. They kept bumping into each other. They finally figured out who takes the order. Who toasts the buns? Who cooks the burgers? Who place the pickles on a bun and gives it to the client in two minutes or less?
Those processes that they designed back in 1940 is why you can eat at a McDonald’s in Australia, the USA, Russia or anywhere in the world, and receive the exact same experience. It’s because of the processes. Have you ever noticed that we try to do business with a company and you’re like, “It’s the worst customer service, this is the worst process ever?” Their processes are designed the opposite. It’s designed to infuriate you, not create a happy client. Process is needed to be designed to create happy clients. Happy clients make more happy clients.
Should the owner be the person that’s developing the process or should it be someone external that they bring in? What have you seen work best?
It depends. The McDonald brothers were the ones that developed their processes. Ray Kroc came in who’s a real visionary because the McDonald brothers were a little visionary but not like Ray Kroc. He was a big, huge feature. It depends because sometimes the owner or the entrepreneur is a big visionary person, but they might need an integrator to come in and help them because big visionaries don’t always get things done. If there’s an owner that’s a great visionary and a great integrator, then they might not need somebody else. I always say that everybody needs a team because there’s strength in others.
The McDonald brothers did it themselves with their own team, but they are always going to have only one location. They had other locations but they were never successful. It took the real visionary, which was Ray Kroc to build it into what it is. It depends upon the entrepreneur. The processes needed to be productive, efficient, and well documented. When buyers buy companies, one of the first things they are going to do in due diligence is look at your PPP manuals, your policy and procedure manuals. They’re going to look at your SOP checklist. We’re selling a $70 million company and they don’t have all their policies and procedures documented. It’s important.
Number four is Proprietary. Number four is the highest value driver. Answering your question, “Michelle, how do you get your clients 20% to 40% more for their business than what the business appraises for?” This is how I do it. Proprietary are synergies. It’s the number one value driver. I can get you a higher multiple if you have the right synergies, if you have IP.
There are six pillars to proprietary. Number one is branding. The more branded you are, the more money I can sell your business for as long as your brand is relevant in the mind of the consumer. Does anybody want to pay money for Blockbuster? Amazon is way up here. Who’s the biggest brand in the world? Do you know who has the most amount of money?
I thought it was Apple.
You should always go with your first choice. It is Apple. There were $389 billion just for the brand. That’s not for the assets, inventory, EBITDA, real estate. That’s just the brand so build your brand. The other thing that’s valuable is trademark. Trademark company name, products, slogans, systems that are unique to you.
One of the biggest mistakes that business owners make in the United States, I don’t know about Australia, but they go to open up a business let’s say in California. They go to the State of California and get a trademark for their name, but they never checked the Federal database to make sure it’s available from a Federal standpoint.
Somebody else could have that name and you don’t even know it. A lot of times what happens and I’ve seen this happen with my clients, they would be in business for ten years. All of a sudden, they receive a cease and desist letter in the mail that says, “You have to stop using your company name because we have the trademark.”
Everybody has to go out and spend $1,500 to $2,000 and get a Federal trademark. If you have slogans, you need to protect that. I got a trademark for Exit Rich, 6 P’s, and for the GPS Exit Model. The other thing is trademark products. We have a retail business that we’re selling that has twelve different trademark products. They are exclusive and different retailers, and then patents are very valuable. Do you guys have Shark Tank in Australia?
What do all the Sharks ask all the investors? “Do you have a patent pending? Do you have a patent? Do you have a utility patent?” Go out and patent all your products. Go out and patent your invention. It will bring you a lot more money. We once sold a business for $18 million that had 18 patents and wasn’t making any money. That’s $1 million a patent. Also, contracts are extremely valuable, manufacturing contracts, vendor contracts, distribution contracts, franchisor.
Let’s say a franchisor has 3,000 contracts with their franchisees. That’s valuable because that means residual revenues. The most valuable contracts of all are client contracts. If you have a landscaping company, it’s contracts with your commercial landscaping company or contracts with your clients. If your residential, contract with your homeowners.
Contracts are valuable but here’s the caveat. Make sure you have the two-sentence transferability clause. In the United States, 99.9% of all sales are asset sales, not stock sales. Out of the thousands of thousands of business owners I’ve been working with, none of them have a transferability clause in their contracts. If the buyer chooses not to do assets as a stock sell, then you can lose that whole deal altogether. If a client doesn’t agree to transfer their contracts, you can lose that whole deal altogether. Everybody needs to get that two-sentence clause. It’s important.
The other one is databases. Databases are huge and typically overlooked because most of the M&A advisors don’t know what to do with it. If the clients can be repurposed and retargeted, then strategic thinking competitors will pay a lot of money for that. Facebook paid $19 billion for WhatsApp. WhatsApp was hemorrhaging money. They were losing money like crazy, but they had a billion users. That’s a synergy that Facebook wanted to purchase. Facebook knew they can monetize that $19 billion investment. Build your synergies, build your value.
The last pillar in IP is what I call IP real estate. This is where your product gets celebrity endorsement, whether it’s radio endorsements, TV shows, TV commercial endorsements, infomercial endorsements. It could be that you have a skincare line, and Oprah Winfrey who is known around the world has endorsed your product and uses your product.
A competitor who has similar products would pay a lot of money for that because they want it in front of Oprah. The other thing is let’s say you manufacture dining room sets, and you’re number one on Wayfair, or you manufacture a robotic vacuum and you have a patent on that. You’ve cornered the market on Amazon. Let’s say your company has a huge social following. All of this is IP real estate that the strategic thinking competitors will pay a lot of money for. This is what other advisors and brokers don’t look up.
My M&A background, when we had a license with a particular company, I made sure that we got exclusivity for a region, knowing that we’re going to exit the business. When we exit the business, the reason that we got a higher multiple than the average is a lot of the things that you talked about because of my experience I’d put in. One of the most important things is that the vendor contract was exclusive. That got us a lot more. They’re the things that you think about when you’re at the start of the business and planning the exit. Back to you because we can talk to you all day, but I also want to make sure that people go and get your book, which we’ll tell them at the end where to get it.
The last two pieces are very quick. Patron, it is your customer base. You need customer diversification, not customer concentration. A lot of businesses in the United States follow the 80/20 rule, 80% of their revenue comes from 20% of their clients. If they lose a few clients, they could be out of business. You need customer diversification.You need customer diversification, not customer concentration. Click To Tweet
The last P is Profit. That’s the P that all of us are excited about. Profit is never the problem. I have clients that come to me all the time and say, “Michelle, I have a profit problem.” I’m like, “No, you have a people problem. You have the wrong people in the wrong seat, or you have a process problem. You’ve alienated many clients. You lose your patrons, or you have an IP problem. You’re spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in proprietary.” Profit is never the problem. It’s always a symptom. You’ve got to figure out what’s wrong with the other five P’s.
Before you said multiple, most people would have heard of the term but may not fully understand what it is. What is a multiple and what’s the common denominator that’s used?
I don’t know about Australia, so I can only talk about the USA. If the business is under $1 million in EBITDA or Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization, it depends upon the industry, the multiple can be anywhere from 1.5 to 4. It’s probably not going to get much over four. Here’s the sweet spot. If you’re over $1 million in EBITDA and you’ve got some of these synergies, the multiple is 5 and up. It can be 5 to 6 or 5 to 7.
We’re selling companies that’s $12 million in EBITDA and didn’t have a lot of synergies. We’re at a pretty high multiple. We’re at 12, 13, 14 multiples. We have a SaaS company that we’re at 23 multiples. It depends. At the end of the day though, evaluation is an art rather than a science. At the end of the day, you’re going to have a price, I’m going to have a price, but it’s the buyer who decides what the value is to them. We go to market without a price because we’re going to create a bidding war. When we get businesses over $1 million in EBITDA, we know we’re going to have hundreds of buyers because there are more buyers for good businesses than there are good businesses to buy.
I’m a little bit anxious to ask this question but you talked about the GPS Exit Method. Give us a quick summary of that one.
You know by now I don’t do anything quick. I’m detailed.
Which is so much value for everyone.
It’s called the ST GPS Exit Model. In the United States, 8 out of 10 companies don’t sell. That’s according to Steve Forbes. That’s 80% of businesses will not sell. The number one reason they don’t sell is because business owners never planned their exit. They don’t think about selling until a catastrophic event has occurred, whether it is internal or external like partner disputes, divorce, death, health issues, or COVID. That’s the worst time to sell your business because your business is not doing well. I tell all of my clients from the beginning, follow the GPS Exit Model and have a plan. Most business owners never have a plan.
Number one, what do you do when you want to drive somewhere? You pull out your phone and plug in your destination, where you want to drive to. Business owners need to know where you’re driving your business to. Stop going around in circles. Stop driving up and down the financial hills. Figure it out, determine your end game, determine what you want to sell your business for. If you say, “I’m going to sell my business for $20 million,” great. There’s a start. We have a number. You need to know where you are starting from. What’s your current location? What is your valuation?Stop going around in circles. Stop driving up and down the financial hills. Figure it out, determine your end game, determine what you want to sell your business for. Click To Tweet
In the USA, as humans, we’d go to the doctor, we’d get our annual checkup once a year to make sure we’re okay. We drive a car to the shop to make sure we get a checkup and tune-up on our car, but we never get an annual valuation checkup. How is that? I met with a business owner who has been in business for 50 years. He’s never had his business evaluated. That’s insane. You should get a business valuation checkup every year because there are events that can increase your valuation and events that can decrease your valuation. You need to know every year where you are.
Who’s the best to get that from?
Get it from an experienced mergers and acquisitions advisor, not a CPA. Let’s say you want to sell for $20 million, but you are $5 million. That’s great, we have a start of a plan, and then you need to reverse engineer it. Now you’ve got to come up with a timeframe. Everything has to have a timeframe. Let’s say we want to do that in ten years. We want to sell it for $20 million. We’re $15 million and we want to do this in ten years.
What do you need to know? Who are my buyers going to be? Buyers not buyer. Sellers always come to me and said, “Can you exclude this one buyer?” I’m like, “Yeah, because they would never buy.” I know it’s never going to come to fruition. Sellers always think that one buyer is going to buy their business, and it hardly ever happens. You need to know who your buyers are. Here’s the deal. We never stop marketing because we know deals fall apart. We always want backup buyers. There are five types of buyers.
If you want to sell for $20 million, who are your five types of buyers? Who are not going to be your buyers are the first-time buyers. Ninety percent of buyers are first time buyers. They can’t afford a $20 million company, and then turn around specialists buy distressed assets. They’re not going to buy you. It’s going to be a private equity group, a strategic/competitor, or a sophisticated/entrepreneur buyer. You then need to know, what do the financials need to look like? What does the gross revenue need to be? What’s the EBITDA need to be to get a $20 million valuation?
Your EBITDA needs to be around $3 million to $4 million unless you have a lot of synergies that will make up for deficient EBITDA. They needed to know what synergies are these buyers looking for, what characteristics. That’s where the 6 P’s come in, but we know our buyers. We know if a buyer buys this manufacturing company, this manufacturing company has a distribution center, but the buyer has distribution centers all around the United States.
They can cut that one distribution company, cutting costs, doubling EBITDA, before they even open the price. We look at the economies of scale. We look at how that strategic buyer can cut costs, how they can increase EBITDA. We look at all that and that’s how we’re able to create a bidding war. That’s how we’re able to sell client’s businesses for more.
I could ask you many more questions. We might even have to have you on again because this has been great. We’re not finished yet, but before we go into the Live section, I’d like to talk about my free live training that’s coming up on the 17th of February 2021, 2:00 PM EST time. What it’s for is service-based business owners that have got two key things in their business. I know Michelle has covered a lot of it. One is that they’re the only person doing the sales and the second is the key source. They’ve only got one source of leads, which is referrals. What we do is we’ll cover how you get rid of 50% of the manual work in sales, how do you get sales on LinkedIn like clockwork. The third thing is how do you get one to many sales channel partners? Go to PaulHigginsMentoring.com/sales and register. The next section is the Live section. We’re going to go a little bit more into what your daily habits are. Tell us what are some of the habits that help you be extremely successful?
First and foremost is giving gratitude. I try to give gratitude before my feet hit the floor, but I get up at 4:45 AM. That’s not always easy. The first thing is giving gratitude, thanking God for what I’m grateful for and all the blessings in my life. I do get up at 4:45 every single morning. I do work out for about an hour. I listen to Joyce Meyer who I adore while I’m working out. I look at the successes I’ve had, and then I look at what results I wanted to generate that day. Those are my daily habits.
I’m also with my daughter. I never listened to the radio. Everybody always asks me, “What’s your favorite song? Who’s your favorite artist?” I don’t know. I like Bob Proctor and they are like, “He’s not a musician.” I like Tony Robbins and Jack Canfield. They’re not musicians. I always listen and feed my mind with Bob Proctor for the day or Jack Canfield or something like that. My ten-year-old daughter who I take to school every morning, I make her listen to it too. She was like, “Mommy, can we put on music?” I go, “This is our music. This is our world.” My other daily habit is to have affirmations like, “I am brilliant. I am blessed. I am loved.” Those are some of my daily rituals.
The next section is the Give section. What’s a charity or a community that you’re passionate about and why?
One of the biggest charities I’m passionate about is Make-A-Wish Foundation because I know the founder and unfortunately, he passed away. He’s a very good friend of mine. There’s a movie after him about his life story that you should watch called Wish Man. Somebody asked him, “What is your wish?” Because he granted many children’s wishes and he said, “I would like a movie made.” Fortunately, he got the movie made before he passed away. I walked the red carpet with him and I got to watch the movie sitting right next to him at the Hollywood Premiere in California. I would say that foundation is near and dear to my heart.Financing should be taught early in education in the school systems. Click To Tweet
The last section is the Rapid-fire section. This is a little different. We do want short responses. What we say here in Australia is, “Not less than a sip of beer.” Let’s see if we can tear through these. The first one is, what are your top three personal effectiveness tips?
Number one is results. Know what I want my results and my team’s results to be for that day. Also, recognition. I start off my day by recognizing everybody’s success. We manage my lists. We make sure that nothing is falling through the cracks because we sell companies. A lot of things can fall through the cracks. We also manage everything by lists.
What’s a piece of technology that is essential around your business?
We have a CRM that we use and it was designed by an M&A advisor out of Canada. We couldn’t live without the CRM.
It’s industry-specific. You talked about the fact that you’re listening to Bob Proctor and Tony. What else is some great source of new ideas for you other than listening to those people?
Joyce Meyer and I have some good friends like Jeff Hoffman. I’m such a sponge. Wherever I go, when I speak on stages, I’m also an attendee. Wherever I go, I learn stuff. Even if I just pick up one thing that I didn’t know, to me, that’s worth it. That’s extremely valuable. I don’t look for problems, but I look for the way things can be done better and come up with those solutions.
The last question is the big question. I always leave it to the end for that reason. What impact do you want to leave on the world?
My big impact is I want to try to help save one business at a time. Even before COVID, the small businesses have been dropping like flies in the United States. It used to be that 85% to 95% of businesses will go out of business. That was for startups. Now out of 27.6 million companies, 70% of businesses that have been in business ten years or longer are going out of business, and that was before COVID. My impact is I’m going to try to save one business at a time and help save the US economy, and then I’ll go to Australia and save your economy, but your economy is pretty good.
The stats are similar here. Small businesses are the backbone of our country as well from a government point of view. I help clients all around the world, mainly in North America. I do it from my home, but it’s all digital. It’s around the world. I don’t think the government here don’t know what it’s like in the US, but the government here doesn’t recognize businesses like this enough. They don’t support businesses like this. There are some countries like Sweden and Germany, where they’ll set you up and support you.
If you want to migrate from corporate into running your own business, and do it globally. They’re smart to know that you live in Germany, as an example, but you’re learning come around the world that comes back in. That’s what governments are going to get smarter at. Bricks and mortar business will always exist, but they’ve got to turn to the new economy as well. Where can we find out more about Michelle?
You can buy it on Amazon, but if you want to read it right away, then I suggest that you buy it on ExitRichBook.com. Also, it’s less expensive than Amazon. For $24.79, we will email you the book immediately, plus we’ll ship the hardcover to your doorstep to anyone in the USA. Outside of the USA, we’ll have to send you the Kindle version. You will also receive a lifetime membership in the Exit Rich Book Club. That is jam-packed with video content and me going into these deep strategies, techniques, and things that I teach plus documents. A lot of business owners are like, “Michelle, I’ve never seen an organizational chart, or an employee handbook, or noncompete,” or business owners are like, “I want to sell but I don’t even know what LOI looks like or a Letter of Intent, a purchase agreement, due diligence checklist or closing docs.”
All of those documents are there for your review and your download. These documents would cost you over $25,000 in the United States if you went to your attorney to prepare it. Not only are you getting the book, Exit Rich, that has all this huge value, but my coauthor for Exit Rich is also Sharon Lechter who wrote Rich Dad, Poor Dad with Robert Kiyosaki. She’s a five-time New York Times bestselling author and she’s written several books in the Think and Grow Rich Napoleon Hill Foundation.
She’s a CPA and financial literacy expert. You will also receive a 30-day membership into Club CEOs, which is a like-minded organization that I started. It’s an online mastermind where we do Q&As, hot seats, and things of that nature. That’s all at ExitRichBook.com. If all of your readers want to follow me on all my social media and other websites, they can text Michelle at (888) 526-5750.
You give a bundle of joy and wisdom. It’s both of those combined that you’ve got them inspired. It’s wonderful having you on the show. Have a great day.
Thank you, Paul. I appreciate it. It’s my pleasure. Thank you.
I loved that interview. She made my job easy because she was articulate and she gave values. Often, a guest comes in and you can’t take notes and walk away with enormous value. That’s what you got out of this episode. Michelle was one of my favorites and I hope it was for you as well. I’d love to know your takeaways with Michelle. Why don’t you grab a photo of her book, ExitRichBook.com, and share it and give her gratitude because I know that’s a thing that she gives to everybody else. If you’d like to build that sales machine, the sales system outside of you being the only salesperson, and also you relying on referrals, as Michelle said, it’s too risky strategies, you need to diversify. Go to PaulHigginsMentoring.com/sales. Please take action to build, live and give.
- Michelle Seiler Tucker
- Make-A-Wish Foundation
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad
- Think and Grow Rich
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